Tuesday, August 20, 2019

books | what I read on vacation

links for my kimono & bathing suit

I've been meaning to get this post up for a minute now, but as you know I've been a little preoccupied (read about that here). Better late than never I always say! I hadn't been in a reading mood heading into vaca-I was more in a reading slump, but there's something about the beach and the Carolina room at the house that gets me right in the mood to cozy up with a good book :) Here's the 7 I devoured while I was away!

Brief Summary: At age twenty-one, Auburn Reed has already lost everything important to her. In her fight to rebuild her shattered life, she has her goals in sight and there is no room for mistakes. But when she walks into a Dallas art studio in search of a job, she doesn’t expect to find a deep attraction to the enigmatic artist who works there, Owen Gentry. 

For once, Auburn takes a chance and puts her heart in control, only to discover that Owen is keeping a major secret from coming out. The magnitude of his past threatens to destroy everything important to Auburn, and the only way to get her life back on track is to cut Owen out of it.

To save their relationship, all Owen needs to do is confess. But in this case, the confession could be much more destructive than the actual sin.

My thoughts: Well duhhhh, I loved this book. It had everything a Colleen book has it kicked off my vacation the right way. I was a mess on the beach finishing this one, so just a fair warning. 5 star read for me! 

Brief Summary: Meth, crank, ice, glass, fire, tina, chalk, crystal or crystal meth.
Whatever you call it, it’s the same thing. Addictive.

Drugs ruin people’s lives. 
I should know, they destroyed mine. 
I’m Hannah and I got hooked on ice. What started as a trickle, ended with a tsunami washing everything away; my family, my life.
I’m not sure you’re ready to read my story; it’s real and confronting. 
Open the book, read the pages and see how easy it is for anyone to get addicted. 
Ice affects all types of people. It doesn’t discriminate. 
It will SCREW. YOU. UP.

*Drug abuse, physical abuse, emotional abuse and emotional conditioning. Recommended for 16+ Contains distressing content. It will cause you anger, frustration and you'll want to hurt some characters.

My thoughts: This book deals with some real heavy shit. There were times I wish it was written a little better and a little more adult (which sounds strange cause the topic of drugs is very adult.) There are parts of this story that you will want to reach in the book and hurt the main character to shake some sense in her...this was a 3.5 star read for me.

Brief Summary: Solène Marchand, the thirty-nine-year-old owner of an art gallery in Los Angeles, is reluctant to take her daughter, Isabelle, to meet her favorite boy band. But since her divorce, she’s more eager than ever to be close to Isabelle. The last thing Solène expects is to make a connection with one of the members of the world-famous August Moon. But Hayes Campbell is clever, winning, confident, and posh, and the attraction is immediate. That he is all of twenty years old further complicates things. 
What begins as a series of clandestine trysts quickly evolves into a passionate and genuine relationship. It is a journey that spans continents as Solène and Hayes navigate each other’s worlds: from stadium tours to international art fairs to secluded hideaways in Paris and Miami. For Solène, it is a reclaiming of self, as well as a rediscovery of happiness and love. When Solène and Hayes’ romance becomes a viral sensation, and both she and her daughter become the target of rabid fans and an insatiable media, Solène must face how her romantic life has impacted the lives of those she cares about most.

My thoughts: This is BY FAR the best book I've read ALL YEAR. This was the BEACH read for me.  I stumbled upon it and I have never been happier with a random purchase. If you read the summary then you know that this book is my dream (ahem, there's a certain member of *nsync that this could happen with...JT boo, looking at you) but man, this is a top 5 fave for sure.

Brief Summary: Not every mistake deserves a consequence. Sometimes the only thing it deserves is forgiveness.

The Voss family is anything but normal. They live in a repurposed church, newly baptized Dollar Voss. The once cancer-stricken mother lives in the basement, the father is married to the mother’s former nurse, the little half-brother isn’t allowed to do or eat anything fun, and the eldest siblings are irritatingly perfect. Then, there’s Merit.

Merit Voss collects trophies she hasn’t earned and secrets her family forces her to keep. While browsing the local antiques shop for her next trophy, she finds Sagan. His wit and unapologetic idealism disarm and spark renewed life into her—until she discovers that he’s completely unavailable. Merit retreats deeper into herself, watching her family from the sidelines, when she learns a secret that no trophy in the world can fix.

Fed up with the lies, Merit decides to shatter the happy family illusion that she’s never been a part of before leaving them behind for good. When her escape plan fails, Merit is forced to deal with the staggering consequences of telling the truth and losing the one boy she loves.

Poignant and powerful, Without Merit explores the layers of lies that tie a family together and the power of love and truth.

My thoughts: My second Colleen book of the trip & it pains me to say this, but I didn't love this book like I wanted to. It was well written, but I was missing that Colleen factor. I think it was just cause I had read another one 4 days prior. I know there are a ton of Without Merit Stans out there and unfortunately, I'm not on that train. For me this was 4 stars, cause Colleen just writes so freaking well...!

Brief Summary: Sometimes at night, I wake up and stare at the heart for hours. I think of how I collected each piece from the beach, how I glued it all together into one big sculpture. I wonder if Connor realizes what it means, that he'll always have a piece of me no matter what happens. Each piece of glass is another piece of myself that I gave to him. It's too bad I didn't keep any pieces for myself. At the beginning of senior year, Ann was a smiling, straight-A student and track star with friends and a future. Then she met a haunted young man named Connor. Only she can heal his emotional scars; only he could make her feel so loved - and needed. Ann can't recall the pivotal moment it all changed, when she surrendered everything to be with him, but by graduation, her life has become a dangerous high wire act. Just one mistake could trigger Connor's rage, a senseless storm of cruel words and violence damaging everything - and everyone - in its path. This evocative slideshow of flashbacks reveals a heartbreaking story of love gone terribly wrong.

My thoughts: I found this because I googled books like Colleen Hoover (what can I say, I have a type!) And this book was gut wrenching at times, you felt this story. It hurt and I just wanted to get to the ending so I could see how it ended (& hoped it ended how I wanted it to). For me this was another 4 star read. 

Brief Summary: It's been one year since the brutal murder of her older sister, Zoë, and fifteen-year-old Echo is still reeling from the aftermath. Her parents are numb, her friends are moving on, and the awkward start to her freshman year proves she'll never live up to her sister's memory. Until Zoë's former boyfriend Marc shows up with Zoë's diary.
At first Echo's not interested, doubting there's anything in there she doesn't already know. But when curiosity prevails, she starts reading, becoming so immersed in her sister's secret world, their lives begin to blur, forcing Echo to uncover the truth behind Zoë's life so that she can start to rebuild her own.
Prepare to laugh your heart out and cry your eyes out in this highly addictive tale as Alyson Noël's Saving Zoë tackles the complicated relationship between two sisters and shows how the bond can endure long after one of them is gone.

My thoughts: I needed a mystery and man did this one deliver. I had a hunch where this one was going and I was right, but it was still a great read. It will be a movie later on this year (or maybe next year!), but either way I can't wait to see the real life sisters play Echo and Zoe. Def a 4 star read for me! 

Brief Summary: Brooklyn wanted two things.
Her own bakery.
And Nate Riley.

Opening her own business was the easy part.
Trying to forget about Nate when he disappeared was the hard part.

Now, years later, she's running her bakery while engaged to the ideal man.

Then the unimaginable happens.

She is left shattered once more and vows to never love again.

An unexpected meeting with Nate has him back in her life, wanting a second chance.

He'll do anything to win her back.
But Nate must confront his demons before he sends Brooklyn's life into another tailspin.

Can they reconnect and overcome their obstacles to be together?

If there is such a thing as destiny, does it win at all costs?

My thoughts: I love these types of books...the will they get back together type books. One, you know there will be drama & two, you know there will be some sort of hot make up sex along the way...this book delivers the steaminess that I love in a beach read. For me it was 4 stars for sure!

 What do you like to read by the pool or on the beach? Let's chat in the comments and share with me what you have loved this summer so I can add it to my to be read list,

ps-all these links are affiliate links, so I'll get a small piece of the pie! Which means that I will smile really big and you will be helping me pay for Buggy's v expensive vet bills and we will love you forever and ever! 

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