ARC Review: Everything Beautiful is Not Ruined by Danielle Younge-Ullman

Book cover for Everything Beautiful is Not Ruined by Danielle Young-Ullman

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

Title: Everything Beautiful is Not Ruined
Publisher: Viking Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: February 21, 2017
Stars: 4/5

Summary (from Goodreads): Wild meets The Breakfast Club in this story of a girl who must survive an extreme wilderness experience to prove to her mother that she has the strength to pursue her dreams.

Then 
Ingrid traveled all over Europe with her opera star mother, Margot-Sophia. Life was beautiful and bright, and every day soared with music.

Now 
Ingrid is on a summertime wilderness survival trek for at-risk teens: addicts, runaways, and her. She’s fighting to survive crushing humiliations, physical challenges that push her to her limits, and mind games that threaten to break her.

Then 
When the curtain fell on Margot-Sophia’s singing career, they buried the past and settled into a small, painfully normal life. But Ingrid longed to let the music soar again. She wanted it so much that, for a while, nothing else mattered.

Now 
Ingrid is never going to make it through this summer if she can’t figure out why she’s here . . . and why the music really stopped. Continue reading

ARC Review: Blackhearts by Nicole Castroman

Book cover for Blackhearts by Nicole Castroman.

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

Title: Blackhearts (Blackhearts #1)
Author: Nicole Castroman
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: February 9, 2016
Stars: 5/5

Summary (from Goodreads): Blackbeard the pirate was known for striking fear in the hearts of the bravest of sailors. But once he was just a young man who dreamed of leaving his rigid life behind to chase adventure in faraway lands. Nothing could stop him—until he met the one girl who would change everything.

Edward “Teach” Drummond, son of one of Bristol’s richest merchants, has just returned from a year-long journey on the high seas to find his life in shambles. Betrothed to a girl he doesn’t love and sick of the high society he was born into, Teach dreams only of returning to the vast ocean he’d begun to call home. There’s just one problem: convincing his father to let him leave and never come back.

Following her parents’ deaths, Anne Barrett is left penniless and soon to be homeless. Though she’s barely worked a day in her life, Anne is forced to take a job as a maid in the home of Master Drummond. Lonely days stretch into weeks, and Anne longs for escape. How will she ever realize her dream of sailing to Curaçao—where her mother was born—when she’s stuck in England?

From the moment Teach and Anne meet, they set the world ablaze. Drawn to each other, they’re trapped by society and their own circumstances. Faced with an impossible choice, they must decide to chase their dreams and go, or follow their hearts and stay. Continue reading

ARC Review: Instructions for the End of the World by Jamie Kain

Book cover for Instructions for The End Of the World by Jamie Kain.

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

Title: Instructions for the End of the World
Author: Jamie Kain
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Publication Date: December 8, 2015
Stars: 3/5

Summary (from Goodreads): From the author of The Good Sister comes a gripping novel about two sisters who learn that there are things in life—love, loss, and self-discovery—that you simply can’t prepare for.

He prepared their family for every natural disaster known to man—except for the one that struck. 

When Nicole Reed’s father forces her family to move to a remote area of the Sierra Foothills, one without any modern conveniences, it’s too much too handle for her mother, who abandons them in the middle of the night. Heading out to track her down, Nicole’s father leaves her in charge of taking care of the house and her younger sister, Izzy. For a while, Nicole is doing just fine running things on her own. But then the food begins to run out, the pipes crack, and forest fires start slowly inching their way closer every day. Wolf, a handsome boy from the neighboring community, offers to help her when she needs it most, but when she starts to develop feelings for him, feelings she knows she will never be allowed to act on once her father returns, she must make a decision. With her family falling apart, will she choose to continue preparing for tomorrow’s disasters, or will she take a chance and really start living for today?

Instructions for the End of the World is a gripping, young adult novel that explores family, friendship, and love in the midst of the most difficult and dangerous circumstances.  Continue reading

ARC Review: Never Never by Brianna Shrum

Book cover for Never Never by Brianna R. Shrum.

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

Title: Never Never
Author: Brianna Shrum
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Publication Date: September 22, 2015
Stars: 4/5

Summary (from Goodreads): James Hook is a child who only wants to grow up.

When he meets Peter Pan, a boy who loves to pretend and is intent on never becoming a man, James decides he could try being a child—at least briefly. James joins Peter Pan on a holiday to Neverland, a place of adventure created by children’s dreams, but Neverland is not for the faint of heart. Soon James finds himself longing for home, determined that he is destined to be a man. But Peter refuses to take him back, leaving James trapped in a world just beyond the one he loves. A world where children are to never grow up.

But grow up he does.  

And thus begins the epic adventure of a Lost Boy and a Pirate.

This story isn’t about Peter Pan; it’s about the boy whose life he stole. It’s about a man in a world that hates men. It’s about the feared Captain James Hook and his passionate quest to kill the Pan, an impossible feat in a magical land where everyone loves Peter Pan.

Except one.  Continue reading

ARC Review: Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman

Book cover for Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman.

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

Title: Vengeance Road
Author: Erin Bowman
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: September 1, 2015
Stars: 4/5

Summary (from Goodreads): When her father is killed by the notorious Rose Riders for a mysterious journal that reveals the secret location of a gold mine, eighteen year-old Kate Thompson disguises herself as a boy and takes to the gritty plains looking for answers–and justice. In the spirit of “True Grit”,” “acclaimed young adult novelist Erin Bowman brings to life the unpredictable and cutthroat days of the Wild West.  Continue reading