3 out of 5 stars
Okay, this first book is definitely in the "adult" category. Not young adult at all, maybe one of those "new adult" books? The main character is college aged so I suppose that counts. There are definitely sexy times in this one, so don't be like me and read it at work because you will get embarrassed lol.
Meghan is about to start her last year of college and still doesn't have an idea of what exactly she wants to do when she graduates. She feels like she's drifting thru life so decides to sign up for an ArtCorps program for the summer, which will allow her to teach art in under-funded areas. (Sounds like fun!) She'll stay in one of the local people's homes and decide whether teaching is for her or not, and best of all, get away from her real life and family.
Sam is the perfect, straight-laced, "do things right and take care of your family" guy that Meghan has the bad fortune of making a horrible first impression on and then having to spend the summer with. He has worked hard to get his family farm up and running again after his parents died, while also taking care of his sister Ali and her 8 year old daughter. He doesn't have time for romance or flighty college girls, but when Meghan arrives, he realizes that maybe he should make time.
Mosquitoland by David Arnold
4 out of 5 stars
This is a book that will make you feel. When you finish it, you will either love it or hate it, there is no in between. For me, I loved it. Mim is a deeply flawed character. We can see those flaws but still love her for or in spite of them. In her own words, she is "not okay". The author tackles mental illness, self-medicating, Down Syndrome, and a slew of other "serious topics". But he does it with an honesty and self-humor that is refreshing.
When Mim finds out that her mom is seriously ill, she runs away from her dad & stepmom and begins an epic roadtrip back home. On the way, she meets a host of eccentric and sometimes terrifying characters that change her life in one way or another. This is so much more of a spiritual roadtrip than a physical one, for both Mim and the reader, and you will both be in tears by the end.
For Real by Alison Cherry
4 out of 5 stars
Amazing Race is one of my and my sister's (my sister and I's? Help, grammar police!) favorite shows. To find a book that mimics that theme was so exciting and then when I actually loved it? A miracle! Claire and Miranda are sisters and love each other, but they are exact opposites in every way. Claire is shy, quiet, awkward, loves watching reality shows. Miranda is outgoing, popular, gorgeous. But when Miranda needs to get revenge on a cheating boyfriend, Claire has the perfect plan. It just involves dropping everything and going on a race around the world together with millions of people watching on their tv's.
The behind-the-scenes moments were just as fascinating as the race. I never really thought about it, watching reality shows, but I'm sure they all do dozens of reshoots for each one hour show we watch. Can you imagine having to eat slugs 4 times because the camera angle was wrong? ew. So Claire and Miranda go off on this epic journey, but right from the start, things are not as great as they expected. No spoilers, of course, but there are some fun twists and surprises here. And boys, oh yes, boys.