ARC Review: The Best Possible Answer by E. Katherine Kottaras


I received an ARC from Raincoast Books in exchange for an honest review.

Title: The Best Possible Answer
Author: E. Katherine Kottaras
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Publication Date: November 1, 2016
Stars: 4/5

Summary (from Goodreads): A contemporary YA novel about growing up and learning that loving yourself is more important than trying to be perfect.

AP Exams – check
SAT test – check
College Application – check
Date the wrong guy and ruin everything you’ve spent your whole life working for– check

Ultra-high-achiever Viviana Rabinovich-Lowe has always had a plan—and no room to be anything less than perfect. But her quest for perfection comes to a screeching halt when her boyfriend leaks racy pictures of her to the entire school. Making matters worse, her parents are getting divorced and now her perfect family is falling apart. For the first time, Viv feels like a complete and utter failure.

Then she gets a job working at the community pool, where she meets a new group of friends who know nothing about her past. That includes Evan, a gorgeous guy who makes her want to do something she never thought she’d do again: trust. For the first time in her life, Viv realizes she can finally be whoever she wants. But who is that? While she tries to figure it out, she learns something they never covered in her AP courses: that it’s okay to be less than perfect, because it’s our imperfections that make us who we are.

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon | iBooks

The Best Possible Answer really surprised me! This book is all about overcoming difficulties and contains a main character who overworks herself. I didn’t know that it would be set at a pool, one of my favourite locations ever! I loved the mix of fun and seriousness and would recommend it if you are a fan of the same thing.

This book is all about dealing with hardship. After her ex leaks pictures of her, she overworks herself to the point of being hospitalized, and her parents announce divorce, Viviana takes the summer to calm down and work at the local pool. I loved how this book is light yet deals with serious topics and sadness. There is also a big theme of friendship and family, which is one of my favourite things in books. I would say that this book is perfect for curling up with on a rainy day.

Viviana is an interesting character who I really sympathized with. She deals with so much stress in her life and her family situation doesn’t help. I feel like AP students and academic overachievers will be able to relate to her, even if the situation is on the more extreme side. I admired Viviana’s determination to get through her issues and her ability to recognize that she should change her ways and not strive for perfection all the time.

I adored the setting in The Best Possible Answer. The book is set at an apartment building with a pool where Viviana works. In the building and across the street are these quirky neighbours that Viviana and her friends create backstories for. The pool is one of my favourite places to be and I was thrilled when it was introduced. Although it’s fall, it is still nice to read about summer and days in the sun.

The Best Possible Answer is a fun yet intense book with a perfectionist main character. I loved the setting of the pool and the summer vibes. I would recommend this book to those who like their contemporaries more on the serious side.

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop 2016


Welcome to the Spooktacular Giveaway Hop hosted by BookHounds! This hop runs from October 22nd to the 31st and is all about spooky books! You can enter to win all sorts of book related items such as books and gift cards.

I do believe that this hop is one of my all time favourites. I simply love all things Hallowe’en and it is really a season to have fun and get a little bit spooky. There are so many amazing books that will get you into the spirit of Hallowe’en! Here are a few that I suggest to help get you in the mood:


For this giveaway, I will be giving away one book of the winner’s choice worth up to $20 CAD from The Book Depository. As always, this giveaway is open international as long as The Book Depository ships to you!

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Make sure to check out all of the other amazing giveaways along the hop: Click here

Amazon Giveaway: Sci-Fi and Fantasy Book Party

Welcome to the Sci-Fi and Fantasy Book Party!

I am so excited to bring to you the genreCRAVE Science Fiction and Fantasy $1200 Giveaway! We have something really exciting set up for you. First, some KILLER Science Fiction and Fantasy books at a steal, and after that, a chance to enter our $1200 Gift Card Giveaway! Read on for more information, but first, check out the books from our sponsors at the link below!


Below are a couple of sneak peeks!

Ambassador 1: Seeing Red

I had never been on first-name terms with the president, but while I sat there trying hard not to succumb to jet-lag, he chatted about my father, whom I had just visited, and who had finally retired from Lunar Base to his native New Zealand. Sirkonen opened the drawer of his desk and took something out, which he flipped across the gleaming wooden surface. I could do nothing but catch it. A datastick. I turned it over. The black plastic cover reflected the sunlight.

“What’s on it?”

“You might find it useful. Think of it as some . . . personal advice, from me to you. We’ll talk about it later, when you return for your first briefing.” He shut the drawer with a thud as if closing the subject.

This was highly irregular. “Mr President, can I ask—”

He shook his head, and offered me a drink—Finnish vodka, best in the world, he said. While he poured, his hands trembled.

I should have insisted that he tell me what was wrong, but who was I? An unimportant, sending-out-our-feelers type of diplomat, expendable and twenty years his junior. Not the type of person to draw attention to his problems—with alcohol or otherwise.

We made a toast. The heavy scent of the vodka did nothing to improve my alertness.

“Mr Wilson, when you come back in six month’s time, you must present your report to the general assembly. We need to know in detail what sort of regimes we’re dealing with.”

I didn’t understand why he spoke in such empty generalities; I wondered when he was going to open that folder on his desk and sign the contract. Nicha, my Coldi assistant, was waiting in the foyer. We had a whole heap of work to catch up on. I was annoyed that Sirkonen had changed our meeting time at the last minute—the original meeting had been scheduled for tomorrow morning.

Sirkonen stopped speaking.

I stared at him, realising with embarrassment that I’d been off with the fairies. Was I meant to have said something? Was I breaking rule number one of the diplomatic circle: never show any sign of sleep deprivation?

An attack of dizziness overtook me. My vision wavered, as if the world were painted on a silk flag that flapped in the wind, and all the furniture was rimmed in a red aura. “Mr President, I’m—”

I just managed to put my vodka down. The glass hit the wood with a soft clunk, the only sound in the frozen silence.

There was a small sound from outside, a click.

As if stung, Sirkonen turned to the window; his eyes widened.


The president opened his mouth, but a sharp crack interrupted his words.

25799111Releasing Rage

She stepped into the firewall square. The door behind her closed and she authorized the interior door to open.

A buzz swept over her. No, not simply over her. Into her. She gasped, her inhalation of air drawing more of this unknown presence inside her.

It was too much, almost suffocating. Joan swayed, lightheaded. “Do not faint. Do not faint,” she repeated to herself, closing her eyes.

The rolling under her feet gradually stopped. She opened her eyes and wished she hadn’t. Crimson spray covered everywhere she looked. Gore was splattered into the farthest corners, hanging from the ceiling. Cleaner bots scrubbed the walls and floor.

This was why she felt dizzy, she reasoned. She smelled and sensed this butchery.

C899321, the being she had been told was responsible, stood in his uploading dock, a cable inserted into his nape, his towering form naked, covered with blood, his long black hair dripping with it.

He turned his head, locked his gaze with hers and she sucked in her breath. There were worlds of agony, of rage, in those bright blue eyes. This was no rational, logic-driven cyborg. This was a man, an animal, crazed by bloodlust and pain.

“They thought to pacify me with the use of a human female?” he thundered, his deep gravelly voice clawing across her skin, awakening parts in her she didn’t realize slept. “I’d kill you before I allowed you to touch me.”

This insult didn’t hurt her the way he’d intended. Joan knew she wasn’t the slim tiny female males desired. She was solidly built, good breeding stock, as her mother had once said.

She discarded his words and focused on the torment in his tones. He hurt. Horrifically. Her fingers twitched, the urge to reach out to him, to comfort him, tremendous. Judging by the flex of his powerful biceps and thigh muscles, by the anger radiating from him, he wouldn’t appreciate that response.

He also wouldn’t listen to any command she issued. A reprimand, verbal or physical, would add to his hostility. Some being had already tried to restrain him and failed. The reportedly unbreakable wrist and ankle cuffs attached to the frame of the uploading dock had been shattered, rendered useless.

Joan discarded four solar cycles’ worth of theory on how to handle malfunctioning cyborgs, realizing now that the academy experts knew nothing.

Her late father, however, had taught her how to deal with wild beasts.

“I would never touch you without your permission.” She lowered her gaze, showing submission, recognizing C899321 as the dominant male he was. He’d seek to harm any aggressor, to protect himself and his territory. If she wasn’t female, she suspected she’d already be dead.

“I also would never hurt you.” Joan stuffed a couple of cleaning cloths into her pockets and dropped to her knees, into a puddle of red. The moisture soaked through her flight suit. “I’m here to serve you, to clean you.”


Entering is easy! Directions are on the Rafflecopter, but as an overview:

  1. Subscribe to genreCRAVE and confirm your subscription when you receive the confirmation. You must confirm via the confirmation email to get entry for the $1200!
  2. Select what other newsletters you would like to join. Each newsletter = 1 entry. Enter your email to confirm. This email must match the email you used for confirmation in step 1!
  3. You may unsubscribe at any time, but reporting as Spam will get you disqualified from all future giveaways, and we run some pretty awesome giveaways (in the last 30 days, we’ve given away multiple books as well as a $2000 and $1000 gift card, and now this $1200 one!)
  4. Winner will be announced at our Facebook Party and contacted via Email. We will have other prizes at the Facebook Party as well!

THIS GIVEAWAY IS FOR SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY FANS ONLY. IF YOU ARE NOT AN AVID READER OF THOSE GENRES, YOUR ENTRY WILL BE DISQUALIFIED. Please do not try to find a way around this. There will be other giveaways. Enter this one if you love SCIENCE FICTION and FANTASY! Thank you!

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Waiting on Wednesday #84: Chloe Snow’s Diary: Confessions of a High School Disaster by Emma Chastain


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week’s book:

30312593Title: Chloe Snow’s Diary: Confessions of a High School Disaster
Author: Emma Chastain
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: March 7, 2017

Summary (from Goodreads): In the tradition of Bridget Jones’s Diary, a lovably flawed high school student chronicles her life as she navigates the highs and lows of family, friendship, school, and love in a diary that sparkles with humor and warmth.

I’m Chloe Winter, and my life is kiiiiind of a disaster.

On the plus side, I got the lead in the musical!

On the down side…

1. I’m a kissing virgin (so so so embarrassing).
2. My best friend, Hannah, is driving me insane.
3. I think I’m in love with Mac Brody, the most popular senior guy, whose girlfriend is so beautiful she doesn’t even need eyeliner.
4. My dad won’t stop asking me if I’m okay.
5. Oh, and my mom moved to Mexico to work on her novel. But it’s fine—she’ll be back soon. She said so.

Mom tells me everything is copy. So I’m writing down all the horrible things that happen to me in this diary.

This is the worst year of my life so far, unless maybe it’s the best.

Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository


Any book that starts off with a comparison to Bridget Jones immediately gets my attention! I love a great contemporary with a flawed main character. Also, this book just sounds so adorable and I can’t wait to find out how this story plays out.

Teaser Tuesdays #76: The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon


Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Books and a Beat. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Today’s Teaser Tuesday:

28763485Summary (from Goodreads): Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon | iBooks

I am loving this book so far! Everything about this book so far is so satisfying and fun to read. Natasha and Daniel are both such interesting characters and I can’t wait for them to meet.

Here is the teaser:

“In the end, she chose both. Korean and American. American and Korean. So they would know where they were from. So they would know where they were going.”

ARC Review: How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You by Tara Eglington


I received an e-ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Title: How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You
Author: Tara Eglington
Publisher: St. Martins
Publication Date: October 25, 2016
Stars: 2.5/5

Summary (from Goodreads): Executor of the Find a Prince Program™ and future author, sixteen-year-old Aurora Skye is dedicated to helping others navigate the minefield that is teenage dating. Counsellor-in-residence at home, where her post-divorce ad-agency father has transformed into a NAD (New Age Dad) intent on stripping his life bare of ‘the illusionary’ (i.e. the removal of home furnishings to the point where all after-hours work must be done in lotus position on a hemp cushion) Aurora literally lives and breathes Self-Help.

When the beginning of the school year heralds the arrival of two Potential Princes™ who seem perfect for her best friends Cassie (lighthouse beacon for emotionally fragile boys suffering from traumatic breakups) and Jelena (eye-catching, elegant and intent on implementing systems of serfdom at their school) it seems as if Aurora’s fast on her way to becoming the next Dr Phil.

As Aurora discovers, however, Self-Help is far from simple. Aurora’s mother arrives home from her extended ‘holiday’ (four years solo in Spain following the infamous ‘Answering Machine Incident’) throwing the NAD into further existential crisis. With Valentine’s Day drawing closer and the new Potential Princes not stepping up to the mark, Aurora is literally forced to take to the stage to throw two couples together. However, being cast opposite Hayden Paris (boy next door and bane-of-Aurora’s life) in the school production of Much Ado about Nothing brings challenges of its own. Not only does Hayden doubt that Cupid is understaffed and thus in dire need of Aurora’s help, but playing Beatrice to his Benedict throws her carefully preserved first kiss for a Prince into jeopardy. As Aurora races to save love’s first kiss and put a stop to the NAD’s increasingly intimate relationship with her Interpretive dance teacher (guilty of putting Aurora on detention for a ‘black aura’) she is left wondering who can a self help guru turn to for help? Can she practice what she preaches? And can long-assumed frogs become Potential Princes?

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon | iBooks

I had really high hopes for How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You, which is probably why it was such a let-down. This is a book about acting, which I always seem to enjoy. Even so, I found the main character to be really whiny and annoying, and the plot was too predictable to be enjoyable.

How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You is an acting book and what I would consider a Shakespeare retelling. The characters in the book perform a 50s version of Much Ado About Nothing, which I found to be an interesting twist on the original play. What I especially enjoyed about this book was the fact that the story really goes into depth describing play rehearsals. The story really had so much potential, but there were multiple aspects that really annoyed me.

The main character, Aurora, really got on my nerves. She believes that she should save her first kiss for her true love and does everything she can to preserve it. I think that this is a sweet thing to do, but it actually becomes really annoying. Aurora just takes things too far, even arguing with the play director more than once when she is stuck kissing her enemy in the production. She is such a whiny character who creates a lot of unnecessary drama, so she really impacted my enjoyment of the book.

My biggest issue with How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You is how predictable the plot is. Aurora’s “secret admirer” was obvious from the beginning and she is so clueless that she can’t figure it out from all the hints. The story also has pretty much the same plot as Much Ado About Nothing, adding to the predictability for those that have a basic understanding of the play. Even at the beginning of certain scenes, you can tell right away what’s going to happen. When reading a book, I like plot twists and surprises, which this book unfortunately couldn’t offer me.

How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You is a Shakespeare retelling that seemed so promising. The main character is whiny and dramatic and the plot is way too predictable. However, if you are more of a fan of cheesy and clichéd romances, you might enjoy this book.

Release Week Blitz: All Laced Up by Erin Fletcher with Giveaway


Welcome to the Release Week Blitz for All Laced Up by Erin Fletcher presented by Entangled Teen Crush! 

Happy Book Birthday, Erin!!



Everyone loves hockey superstar Pierce Miller. Everyone except Lia Bailey.

When the two are forced to teach a skating class to save the rink, Lia’s not sure she’ll survive the pressure of Nationals and Pierce’s ego. Not only can’t he remember her name, he signed her bottle of water like she was one of his groupies. Ugh.

But if there’s one thing Lia knows better than figure skating, it’s hockey. Hoping to take his ego down a notch—or seven—she logs into his team website under an anonymous name to give him pointers on his less-than-stellar playing.

Turns out, Pierce isn’t arrogant at all. And they have a lot in common. Too bad he’s falling for the anonymous girl online. No matter how much fun they’re starting to have in real life, she’s afraid he’s going to choose fake-Lia over the real one…

Disclaimer: This book contains a swoony hockey player (and his equally swoony friends!), one-too-many social media accounts, kisses that’ll melt ice, and a secret identity that might not be so secret after all…

add to goodreads

All Laced Up by Erin Fletcher
Publication Date:  October 10, 2016
Publisher:  Entangled Teen Crush

Google Play | BAM | Chapters | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooksAbout-the-Author2



Erin is a young adult author from North Carolina. She is a morning person who does most of her writing before sunrise, while drinking excessive quantities of coffee. She believes flip-flops qualify as year-round footwear, and would spend every day at the beach if she could. She has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, which is almost never useful when writing books.



Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!

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Cover Reveal: The Boyfriend Whisperer by Linda Budzinski

The Boyfriend Whisperer
Linda Budzinski
Published by: Swoon Romance
Publication date: November 15th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult

As President and CEO of Boyfriend Whisperer Enterprises, Lexi Malloy is Grand View High School’s undercover Cupid. One problem: She’s stuck in the friend zone when it comes to her own crush, Chris Broder. She and Chris have been best friends since the third grade, and he doesn’t even seem to realize she’s is a member of the opposite sex.

When pretty and popular cheerleader Lindsay LaRouche hires Lexi to whisper Chris, she has to decide whether to place her commitment to her company—and Chris’s happiness—before herself.

Add to Goodreads


Author Bio:

My young adult novels, EM & EM (2015) and THE FUNERAL SINGER (2013), were both published by Swoon Romance YA. My upcoming novel, THE BOYFRIEND WHISPERER, scheduled for publication in fall of 2016 by Swoon, received the Romance Writers of America Young Adult Chapter’s 2015 Rosemary Award and the Virginia Chapter’s 2015 Fool for Love Award.

I live in Northern Virginia with my husband, Joe, and our feisty chihuahua, Demitria (also known as Dee Dee, The Puppy, and Killer). I’m a sucker for romance and reality TV and have been known to turn off my phone’s ringer when watching “The Bachelor.”

My favorite flower is the daisy, my favorite food is chocolate, and my favorite song is “Amazing Grace.”

When I’m not writing, I work in nonprofit management. I’m represented by the amazing Andrea Somberg of Harvey Klinger Inc.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter



Waiting on Wednesday #83: Blacksouls (Blackhearts #2) by Nicole Castroman


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week’s book:

30312562Title: Blacksouls (Blackhearts #2)
Author: Nicole Castroman
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: April 11, 2017

Summary (from Goodreads): Nicole Castroman brings the dangerous pirate ports of the Caribbean to life in this vibrant sequel to Blackhearts—the reimagined origin story of history’s most infamous pirate, Blackbeard.

Edward “Teach” Drummond is setting sail to the Caribbean as first mate on the most celebrated merchant ship in the British fleet—until he rebels against his captain. Mutiny is a capital offense and Teach knows it could cost him his life, but he believes it worth the risk in order to save his crew from the attacking Spanish ships.

Sailing on the same blue waters, Anne barely avoids the Spanish attack, making it safely to Nassau. But lawless criminals, corrupt politics, and dangerous intentions fill the crowded streets of this Caribbean port. Soon, Anne discovers that the man entrusted to keep the peace is quite possibly the most treacherous of them all—and he just happens to hold Teach’s fate in his terrifying hands.

Life and death hang in the balance when Teach and Anne are given a dangerous mission. It’s a mission that will test their love, loyalty and devotion, forcing them down a path neither one could have ever imagined.

Goodreads | The Book Depository | Amazon


I have been anxiously waiting for the sequel to Blackhearts for what seems an eternity! The first book in the series was a phenomenal story that is a very unique look at the origins of Blackbeard. I am hoping that this second book will satisfy my need to know what happens next and will have just as descriptive and fast-paced.


Teaser Tuesdays #75: The Amateurs by Sara Shepard


Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Books and a Beat. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Today’s Teaser Tuesday:

24974965Summary (from Goodreads): As soon as Seneca Frazier sees the post on the Case Not Closed website about Helena Kelly, she’s hooked. Helena’s high-profile disappearance five years earlier is the one that originally got Seneca addicted to true crime. It’s the reason she’s a member of the site in the first place.

So when Maddy Wright, her best friend from the CNC site, invites Seneca to spend spring break in Connecticut looking into the cold case, she immediately packs her bag. But the moment she steps off the train in trendy, glamorous Dexby, things begin to go wrong. Maddy is nothing like she expected, and Helena’s sister, Aerin Kelly, seems completely hostile and totally uninterested in helping with their murder investigation.

But when Brett, another super user from the site, joins Seneca and Maddy in Dexby, Aerin starts to come around. The police must have missed something, and someone in Dexby definitely has information they’ve been keeping quiet.

As Seneca, Brett, Maddy, and Aerin begin to unravel dark secrets and shocking betrayals about the people closest to them, they seem to be on the murderer’s trail at last. But somewhere nearby the killer is watching . . . ready to do whatever it takes to make sure the truth stays buried.

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon | iBooks

I just started this book and am enjoying it so far! Okay, I admit, I haven’t read the Pretty Little Liars books or seen the show, so this is my first experience with Sara Shepard. I am excited to keep reading, however, since putting this book down to write this post was very difficult.

Here is the teaser:

“It wouldn’t solve all her problems. It wouldn’t solve all her mysteries. But it was a start.”