Book Review: Endless Summer - Jennifer Echols

Author: Jennifer Echols
Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Romance

Synopsis (from Goodreads.com)Two irresistible boys. One unforgettable summer.

Lori can't wait for her summer at the lake. She loves wakeboarding and hanging with her friends-including the two hotties next door. With the Vader brothers, she's always been just one of the guys. Now that she's turning sixteen, she wants to be seen as one of the girls, especially in the eyes of Sean, the older brother. But that's not going to happen-not if the younger brother, Adam, can help it. 

Lori plans to make Sean jealous by spending time with Adam. Adam has plans of his own for Lori. As the air heats up, so does this love triangle. Will Lori's romantic summer melt into one hot mess?

Review:  Endless Summer is a duet of books that will capture your attention straight from the beginning.  It’s a summer romance on a lake, spending time with friends and working through normal teenage issues.  Two books, one story – so I’m doing the review as one.


What’s the Drama:  Lori is so excited for summer to have finally arrived because she now gets to try out her newly revamped teenage body on her long-time crush Sean.  In order to do so, she enlists the help of Sean’s brother and her summer best friend, Adam.  What she doesn’t know is that Adam might object….


What I Loved:  Oh the setting!  The fun of wakeboarding.  Just the idea of spending a summer working with your best friends, hanging out and just being outside the entire time.  Adam and Lori have something pretty good going on.  I love, love, love the “…or what” comments, and their secret handshakes.  They are cute and hot at the same time.


Not so Much:  I was getting very frustrated with Lori around the second book.  She really has a hard time learning from her mistakes in the worst way.  And when she and Adam get into trouble, despite it taking an entire book, it felt like Lori’s father was way too quick to recant and drop the punishment.  I was really hoping for a true heart-to-heart via father and daughter to work some of this mistrust and silliness out, but no.  I mean – yes he over reacted BIG TIME, but geesh.   I also felt like the military-school was a huge jump of a punishment, and the fact that Adam was constantly being blamed for things and the very little acknowledgement (by the parents especially) to at least apologize.  The ending was sort of dissatisfying in this way. 


Can my Kids Read This:  Yeah, it’s a very clean book.  I mean kissing and such, but it’s a summer romance! 

Book Review: Pan's Revenge - Anna Katmore

Author: Anna Katmore
Genre: Young Adult - Fiction, Romance, Fairytale Retelling

Synopsis (From Goodreads): “Are you ready to be kissed?” he breathes against the corner of my mouth.

My knees start to tremble and there are butterflies in my belly now. Way too many. “I don’t think this is a good idea.”

“I think it’s the best idea I had in a long time.”

Desperate to leave Neverland and find his love in this notorious town called London, James Hook makes a grave mistake. He puts his own wishes above those of his half-brother and once-arch-enemy, Peter Pan.

The consequences alter Peter’s life in a way no one could have foreseen. The boy who wouldn’t grow up swears revenge, and what better way than by stealing Hook’s girl?

The first to arrive in London, Peter finds Angel once again without any memory of ever being in Neverland. That gives him time to plant the idea of a ruthless pirate captain in her mind—someone who tried to kill her once and is now on his way to kidnap her again. If only this stubborn girl would stop playing with Peter’s head. He’d completely forgotten how beautiful she was. Or is it only because he sees her through different eyes now?

Through a shower of falling stars, a loop around the moon, and then a hard left at the Clock Tower—when James Hook finally arrives in London, he has to fight with a vengeance for his love and face a boy who grew up after all…

Review:  Pan’s Revenge picks up right where Neverland left off.  Angel is back in her own time, and has no memory of her time spent in Neverland, outside of haunting dream-like thoughts based around the necklace that one of her sisters brought home.  Hook is stuck in Neverland trying desperately to figure out a way back to Angel.

What’s the Drama:  Pan feels betrayed, not only does he figure out Angel inadvertently told Hook where his treasure is located, but Hook tricks him into breaking the Time-Stop curse on Neverland and is now seeking his revenge – and the best revenge he knows is to hit Hook where it will hurt the most; Angel.

What I Loved:  The chemistry between Angel and Hook is still going strong.  I was afraid of a love triangle scenario, but we were blessedly spared from that! (THANK YOU, Anna Katmore!)  The entire time I was reading, all I could think is..please let them have a HEA!

The other thing I really enjoyed is the Fairy’s involvement in Hook and Pan’s life.  It might have been deceitful in a way, but  I liked that they were concerned about everyone getting what they needed/wanted.

Not so Much:  It’s really hard to view Pan in the light that he is given in this book.  I’m purposefully being vague, but die hard Pan-Fans may not like the book because of this.  You really have to let the book stand on its own and let the ending bring you a glimmer of hope.

Can my Kids Read This:  Yes.  There is some language, and a bit of sensuality, but other than that, it’s a pretty safe read.  And it’s loosely based off of a well loved story – so you know, they are going to WANT to read it!


Book Review: Neverland - Anna Katmore

Title:  Neverland (Adventures in Neverland, 1)
Author:  Anna Katmore
Genre:  Young Adult - Fairytale Retelling, Romance
Amazon Link:  http://www.amazon.com/Neverland-Adventures-1-Anna-Katmore-ebook/dp/B00JLA8C50/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1404564610&sr=8-1&keywords=Neverland

Synopsis (From Goodreads.com):  Why is there a boy who doesn't want to grow up?  How can an apple start the sweetest romance in fairytale history?
And what does a ruthless pirate have to do with it all?

Angelina McFarland loves reading fairytales. But she never dreamed of falling right into one herself. That’s exactly what happens when she slips on her balcony and a flying Peter Pan catches her mid-fall.

Ending up in Neverland where no one seems to age and laws of nature are out of control, Angel has no idea how to get home. Worse, the ruthless Captain Hook captures her and keeps her trapped on his ship, the Jolly Roger, where she gets caught between the lines of a timeless battle. But the more time Angel spends with the captain, the more she sees beneath his ruthless fa├žade.

As Angel desperately tries to find a way to return to her real life, she discovers a train ticket to London in her pocket. It won’t be any help in getting off the island, but as her memory fades away the longer she stays, this is all she has left to remind her of her former life and why she can’t give up trying.

Or is staying in Neverland forever the better choice after all?

Grab a happy thought and follow Angel on an adventure that will keep you breathless and smiling long after you read the last page…

Review:  I have been nosing around this book for a few weeks.  I'd look it up on Amazon.com, then move on, only to later come back to it.  Yesterday morning I finally bit the bullet and "One-Clicked" the book.  The fact that the book was on sale for the $.99 in celebration of the release of book 2 didn't hurt any.  I devoured the book.  I feel like I just consumed each word and am going to hold each and every one of them within me forever.  Peter Pan is one of my kid's favorite stories.  We've been reading the Peter and the Starcatchers Series, by Dave Barry with my kids, thus my hesitancy to actually buy this book; I was kind of "Peter'd out."   In truth, Peter, while a driving figure in the story, is present very little...

What's the Drama?  Angelina "Angel" McFarland was having an absolutely typical weekend, babysitting her twin sisters - playing games, reading stories, giggling; all things that don't normally happen when Mom and Dad are around, but then trying to get to a sweater her sister accidently threw into the tree outside her balconey, Angel slips and falls...into a whole new world.  Fighting against time and sleep, Angel wants desperately to return home to her sisters and home; all the while falling for the ruthless pirate, James Hook.

What I Loved:  I love fairytale - retellings.  Lately they are my vice, and while I'll drift away and read something new, I always come back to these retellings.  But this story is wonderful, and complete; the book didn't really end with me having any questions, which I love!  You know the character, who they are and why they are there before the book ends (a rare occurance in a series!)  Better than all of that, the "bad guy" is actually the hero of this story, and I always love that twist.  Jamie (Hook) starts off as the typical rutheless pirate, but his smirks and gleeming eyes make him just amusing and sexy enough even from the beginning, but as he starts letting his guard down and falling for Angel, he's even more appealing as "just Jamie."  This story is just - it's just amazing, and even as Angel fights to get home, you can also understand the desire to allow herself to just forget and stay forever.

Not So Much:  I don't have much I didn't like.  I'm sitting here racking my brain....and I can only think of the ending, which is a big obvious "duh!"  I mean, she has to leave - and leave Jamie. 

But there is book 2.  And lucky me, it came out yesterday!!