Book Review: The Taking - Kimberly Derting

Title: The Taking
Author: Kimberly Derting

Synopsis from Goodreads:   
A flash of white light . . . and then . . . nothing. 

When sixteen-year-old Kyra Agnew wakes up behind a Dumpster at the Gas ’n’ Sip, she has no memory of how she got there. With a terrible headache and a major case of déjà vu, she heads home only to discover that five years have passed . . . yet she hasn’t aged a day. 

Everything else about Kyra’s old life is different. Her parents are divorced, her boyfriend, Austin, is in college and dating her best friend, and her dad has changed from an uptight neat-freak to a drunken conspiracy theorist who blames her five-year disappearance on little green men. 

Confused and lost, Kyra isn’t sure how to move forward unless she uncovers the truth. With Austin gone, she turns to Tyler, Austin’s annoying kid brother, who is now seventeen and who she has a sudden undeniable attraction to. As Tyler and Kyra retrace her steps from the fateful night of her disappearance, they discover strange phenomena that no one can explain, and they begin to wonder if Kyra’s father is not as crazy as he seems. There are others like her who have been taken . . . and returned. Kyra races to find an explanation and reclaim the life she once had, but what if the life she wants back is not her own?

My Review:
I am not one to pick books that have an “alien” feel about it because it’s just not something I’m interested in, however, the idea of waking up and 5 years have passed, dealing with that and the fact that everyone else has aged and moved on while you’re exactly the same as when you left; I just found the premise enticing, thus saying ‘yes’ to The Taking.  I was not disappointed with this book in the slightest, it had the drama I was looking for and just enough of the sci-fi aspect to make a good story without taking it too far ::cough, cough:: ‘out of this world’ for my liking.  I felt like the book may have progressed a little too quickly in the romance part; while 5 years had passed for Taylor and he was acting on a childhood crush, only a few days had passed for Kyra – and after reading about her relationship with Austin, I wasn’t quite ready for Taylor.  Regardless, I was completely sucked into this book from the onset, the characters are captivating and the storytelling was truly excellent; I completely recommend reading this one if you’re into a light sci-fi theme.  I’m already anticipating the next book which is due to release in April (oh the day before my birthday in fact), and discovering more about why these people are being taken – is war coming? an invasion? or is it just basic evolution sped forward because of some weird black hole situation?

Rated: PG-13 - There's cussing  
Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi/Romance
Rating:  4 of 5


Book Review: How to Hook a Bookworm - Cassie Mae

Author: Cassie Mae

Synopsis from Goodreads:   
Getting kissed for a birthday present should not be a big deal. Especially for Brea Mason, who doesn’t think of her best friend, Adam Silver, in any way other than… well, a friend. But after the liplock she can’t seem to get him off her mind. And she has to, because Adam is a senior while she’s stuck in high school for another two years.

Then BAM, the perfect distraction comes along in the form of a new, hot sophomore who actually seems interested in Brea, despite her anti-social personality. And with the stress at home, stress at school, and ignoring the reality of all her friends leaving come June, Brea welcomes the distraction.

But when she sees four fat Fs on her report card, Brea needs a study buddy, and the best candidate is Adam, book nerd and math whiz. So she enlists his help, hoping the birthday kiss was just a fluke. After all, she has a boyfriend now. It should be easy to ignore the butterflies and fizzy feelings that arise with the bookworm… right?

My Review:
How to Hook a Bookworm is book 3 in Cassie Mae's How To series, a series I have absolutely adored from the very beginning.  This book was my favorite though, which is surprising since I thought Band Geek would totally take that spot since I, myself, was a band geek.  There was just something about Brea and Adam I fell in love with; perhaps it was the best friend scenario, or the building tension, or just Brea's personal growth in general.  I also am always a bit thankful when a learning disability (no matter the form) is thrown into these books, because my son is dyslexic and struggles with things like test anxiety.  I feel like maybe someone who struggles with the same issues will pick up a book such as this one and feel like they aren't alone.  Another favorite part of this series is that all of the couples have put the sex issue on the other side of marriage for reasons that include "because I want to," and because they "stopped making decisions based on how popular they (the decisions) are." These are qualities I completely respect!

And, for all the How To fans out there - this book includes a certain wedding that you simply don't want to miss!! 

Rated:  5 Stars
Genre: Young Adult - Romance
Rating:  PG-13 - Teenage appropriate talk of sex, mild cussing