Tag «Author: Colleen Hoover»

Single Sundays: It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover

Single Sundays: While this blog may be focused on reviewing book series as a whole, we can’t forget about the good ole’ standalone novel! On Sundays, I will review a novel that is considered to be a standalone novel. Here is this week’s offering:

Synopsis for It Ends With Us (from Goodreads):

SOMETIMES THE ONE WHO LOVES YOU IS THE ONE WHO HURTS YOU THE MOST

Lily hasn’t always had it easy, but that’s never stopped her from working hard for the life she wants. She’s come a long way from the small town in Maine where she grew up – she graduated from college, moved to Boston, and started her own business. So when she feels a spark with a gorgeous neurosurgeon named Ryle Kincaid, everything in Lily’s life suddenly seems almost too good to be true.

Ryle is assertive, stubborn, and maybe even a little arrogant. He’s also sensitive, brilliant, and has a total soft spot for Lily, but Ryle’s complete aversion to relationships is disturbing.

As questions about her new relationship overwhelm her, so do thoughts of Atlas Corrigan – her first love and a link to the past she left behind. He was her kindred spirit, her protector. When Atlas suddenly reappears, everything Lily has built with Ryle is threatened.

With this bold and deeply personal novel, Colleen Hoover delivers a heart-wrenching story that breaks exciting new ground for her as a writer. It Ends With Us is an unforgettable tale of love that comes at the ultimate price.

This book contains graphic scenes and very sensitive subject matter.

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SERIESous’ Top Picks: Favourite Read 2017, Favourite Author
Author: Colleen Hoover
Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Heat Rating: warm
Point of View: First Person, Single
Publication Date: August 2, 2016
Source & Format: Public Library–Paperback

thoughts

Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:

It’s no secret that I am a huge Colleen Hoover fan. With the exception of one series, I’ve read all her works. I eagerly await her new releases every year. So I’m embarrassed that it took me so long to get my hands on this book. It took FOREVER for my hold to come in from the library because I added my name to the list late.

But boy, was this book worth the wait!

The Concept:

Normally, I refrain from keeping spoilers in my reviews but I think it is very important that I highlight two things from the synopsis. The first being:

This book contains graphic scenes and very sensitive subject matter.

While I’ve read other books that get a lot more specific in terms of the descriptions of the graphic scenes, these moments were still hard for me to read. So if that makes you uncomfortable as a reader, just be prepared.

And looking at the synopsis you probably think, ‘Gee Lauren, why so serious? This sounds like a love triangle type of story’ because that’s what I thought when I read the synopsis for the first time. But it isn’tfar from it actually. Which brings me to the other highlight of the synopsis:

With this bold and deeply personal novel, Colleen Hoover delivers a heart-wrenching story that breaks exciting new ground for her as a writer.

There is so much more to this story than what the synopsis implies and I really don’t want to give it away. It’s obvious to anyone who reads this that it is such a deeply personal story for Colleen Hoover to write as an author. It shows in every word and every scene. That’s what makes it so beautiful to read. So thank you Colleen for sharing something so personal with the world.

The Plot:

This plot sucked me in from the start. Part of that is because I instantly loved the characters and became so invested in them. More on that below.

As for the plot itself, it was heart-wrenchingly beautiful as the synopsis implies. It moves at the perfect pace; never dwelling on inconsequential things for longer than necessary.

You feel every range of emotions while reading this.


And I really have a hard time saying anything more without giving it away and I literally just finished the book 2 hours ago (January 26, 2017, 1pm) and I’m still at a loss for words.

The Characters:

What really makes this story is the characters. They become so real to you as a reader from the moment you first meet them. I fell in love with Lily and Ryle by the end of the first chapter. I loved Atlas from the moment Lily shares what her past with him is. And I loved every other character we meet along the way. It has been a long time since I loved a cast of characters as much I do with this one.

These are all strong characters in their own rights and so heartbreakingly real. Lily in particular really tore at my soul. How she handles everything that comes her way was so empowering yet so sad all at once. It was wonderful to see her evolve as a person throughout the novel.

The Romance:

It’ll tug at your heart from the start until the very end. I’m still shook up over it.

My Rating: 5/5

overall

Before this novel, I would have told you that Maybe Someday is my favourite Colleen Hoover book because it is such a powerful story. But It Ends With Us is now my absolute new favourite work by her. It’s a story that everyone should read because it is beautiful, sad and most importantly empowering to read as a reader, no matter who you are.

Read if You Like: realistic fiction, strong characters
Avoid if You: dislike books about mature subject matter
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Single Sundays: November 9 by Colleen Hoover

Single Sundays: While this blog may be focused on reviewing book series as a whole, we can’t forget about the good ole’ standalone novel! On Sundays, I will review a novel that is considered to be a standalone novel. Here is this week’s offering:

Synopsis for November 9 (from Goodreads):
Fallon meets Ben, an aspiring novelist, the day before her scheduled cross-country move. Their untimely attraction leads them to spend Fallon’s last day in L.A. together, and her eventful life becomes the creative inspiration Ben has always sought for his novel. Over time and amidst the various relationships and tribulations of their own separate lives, they continue to meet on the same date every year. Until one day Fallon becomes unsure if Ben has been telling her the truth or fabricating a perfect reality for the sake of the ultimate plot twist.

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SERIESous’ Top Picks: Most Read Author 2015, Favourite Author, Fav Standalone 2015
Author: Colleen Hoover
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Drama, Humour
Heat Rating: warm
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Publication Date: November 2015
Source & Format: Public Library–Paperback

thoughts

Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:

It’s no secret that Colleen Hoover is one of my new favourite authors. I devoured her books within a month of discovering her works in the spring of 2015 and had to wait until NOVEMBER to read this one! Slightly torturous but was it worth it?

The Concept:

When I first read this premise, I thought, “Isn’t this what that Anne Hathaway movie based on a book is about?” I will admit I don’t know the first thing about the book One Day or its movie other than that it follows two people on the same day of the year for so many years and people didn’t like Anne Hathaway’s accent. Ironically, this book also alludes to the fact that these stories are similar with the characters. But based on the way they go about it, both sound like they have their unique execution.

The Plot:

It’s an interesting premise for sure and for the most part it worked. I have some mixed feelings on it because I don’t really like insta-love stories and this one sorta starts like that. However, given the synopsis of the novel I expected that and so I knew what mindset to go into the novel with: caution.

The first few “chapters” were slow to me but  when I picked it up the next day, I finished the rest of the book in one sitting. There was just something about this story and the characters that sucked me in. I got so invested in figuring out their pasts and what happened in the other 364 days a year we didn’t see them that I just couldn’t put the book down. Everything just builds and then falls apart in the most fantastic way that it really becomes addicting to read.

The Characters:

I loved both Ben and Fallon for very different reasons. When it comes to Ben, I just loved how he empowered Fallon to see herself in a new light. He didn’t give her false praise or make her stronger because she was with him; he let her do that on her own by giving her a nudge in the right direction. He doesn’t force Fallon to be dependent on him and that was really important for me. He was also really funny and charming and he won me over in a matter of seconds.

As for Fallon, I loved watching her grow into the person she was always meant to be. I will admit, I didn’t love her scorned attitude when we first meet her but I definitely understood where it was coming from and so I didn’t mind too much. But once she starts living her life and not hiding, I really enjoyed watching her character develop. I might not agreed with all her decisions but I felt like I knew her character well enough to see why she did what she did. Plus, I found her to be funny, agreed with her views on books and loved her banter with Ben.

The Romance:

I was worried when I first started because this book just SCREAMED insta-love! Yet, I quickly found myself on board with it in a matter of a few pages.

Despite their brief meetings, I really understood why these two would work if they actually had met and dated in a real world situation. They brought out the best in each other and I loved the idea that their love helped them develop into the individual people they needed to be. It was refreshing to read about a couple who could love each other for who they are and not who they want them to be. Plus, I loved that it didn’t focus on all the “sexy” times it you know what I mean 😉 It sticks to the relationship and I will be the first to admit I definitely shed a tear or two over their story.

My Rating: 5/5

overall

If you’re a fan of Colleen Hoover, this one will not disappoint! But if you aren’t or are new to her work, I’m not sure if this one is the one to win you over. It’s definitely good but if you can’t get over the “insta-love” premise, it would be a hard one to get over.

Read if You Like: New Adult coming of age, flawed characters growing up
Avoid if You: dislike insta-love, dislike New Adult

similarreads

  • One Day by David Nicholls
  • Kiss a Stranger by R S Lewis
  • Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

 

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Series Review: Maybe by Colleen Hoover

Series Review: Is this series worth your time? Does it get better as the novels progress? Or does it get worse? Find out below:

booksynopsis

Synopsis for Maybe Someday (from Goodreads):

At twenty-two years old, Sydney is enjoying a great life: She’s in college, working a steady job, in love with her wonderful boyfriend, Hunter, and rooming with her best friend, Tori. But everything changes when she discovers that Hunter is cheating on her—and she’s forced to decide what her next move should be.

Soon, Sydney finds herself captivated by her mysterious and attractive neighbor, Ridge. She can’t take her eyes off him or stop listening to the passionate way he plays his guitar every evening out on his balcony. And there’s something about Sydney that Ridge can’t ignore, either. They soon find themselves needing each other in more ways than one.

A passionate tale of friendship, betrayal, and romance, Maybe Someday will immerse readers in Sydney’s tumultuous world from the very first page.

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SERIESous’ Top Picks:  Favourite Author, 2015 Favourite Read
Series: Maybe
Author: Colleen Hoover
# of Books: 1 (Maybe Someday)

Maybe Not is a companion novella with different characters as the leads but read AFTER Maybe Someday!

Book Order: Companion
Complete?: Yes
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary, Music
Heat Rating: warm
Point of View: First Person, Alternating (Novella is First Person, Single)
Source & Format: Public Library–eBook

thoughts

My Expectations/Why I Picked it Up:

This has been the year of Colleen Hoover for me. Ever since I read her Hopeless series, I’ve been steadily adding her books to my TBR list and making sure I have her books on hold at the library. With her writing, I know I’m reading a Colleen Hoover book but I don’t feel like I am reading a regurgitation of her previous books. Which is really important to me as a reader because I find quite a few authors have an almost formulaic style to their characters and plots which gets boring to read after awhile. But with Hoover, something always surprises me and Maybe Someday was no exception!

The Concept & The Plot:

Maybe Someday was just a fantastic book! Given the synopsis, it doesn’t seem like anything special but there is so much more under the surface. And I mean so. much. more. It’s really hard to talk about without spoiling everything –and I’m having a hard time writing about how impressed I was with this book! But I’m going to try…

I also want to give huge props for providing audio versions of the songs from the book. It just adds another layer to the book and makes it come to life, especially if you listen to the songs as they appear in the book. It’s one thing to make and include a playlist of popular songs at the end of your novel, its a completely other thing to make a SOUNDTRACK of all the original songs included in your book! You can find all the songs here (don’t worry, they aren’t spoilers!). Just supremely well done and it’s what makes me give this book such a high rating (well that and the fact that it is just plain awesome even if you forget about the soundtrack!).

The Characters:

Where this book really wins is with the characters: and not just the leads. Given the initial plotline, this book could have been a mess of over the top drama, sex and angst but it never goes in that direction. Not only is there hardly any sex (so the sex scenes don’t overshadow the relationships) but everyone handles the situations in an extremely mature way. I mean in a “let’s talk about this and our feelings” kind-of way instead of a “I hate the world” angsty kind-of way. I never got annoyed with this characters and respected them for how they handled everything. They made it so easy to read this book and root for them throughout the novel.

The Romance:

And while the romance plays a huge role in this book, there is a considerable amount of time dedicated to character growth–as a new adult novel should have. What 22 year knows exactly what they want out of life? I know I sure don’t and I really appreciated Sydney’s desire to find herself instead of being consumed by her romantic life. It just made for a nice treat that she had this romantic relationship developing on the side.

The Novella:

It is important to know that you should read the novella, Maybe Not, AFTER you read Maybe Someday or else you will read major spoilers despite the fact that it follows two different characters. It is a little confusing because Maybe Not starts before the events of Maybe Someday but eventually the events overlap. However, it does have spoilers and it really won’t mean as much to you unless you are introduced to these characters before you read their story. I do recommend you read it right after Maybe Someday because it explains some of the little events that happen in the first novel plus, after you meet these characters you just really want to read their story anyways 😉

My Rating: 5/5

overall

This is probably an inflated 5/5 rating because I just loved the execution of this novel! You can tell Colleen Hoover puts everything into her books and it shows. It was so refreshing to read about characters who had a genuine connection, who weren’t jumping into bed with each other as soon as they lay eyes on each other and actually mature into adults. A great book for Colleen Hoover fans to read but an even better book for people who want to read a Colleen Hoover book!

Read if You Like: character focused novels, sweet love stories
Avoid if You: don’t like/can’t tolerate love triangles*

*I’m not the biggest love triangle fan but I found this one wasn’t an all consuming, immature one so I really didn’t mind it.
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Single Sundays: Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Single Sundays: While this blog may be focused on reviewing book series as a whole, we can’t forget about the good ole’ standalone novel! On Sundays, I will review a novel that is considered to be a standalone novel. Here is this week’s offering:

Synopsis for Ugly Love (from Goodreads):
When Tate Collins meets airline pilot Miles Archer, she knows it isn’t love at first sight. They wouldn’t even go so far as to consider themselves friends. The only thing Tate and Miles have in common is an undeniable mutual attraction. Once their desires are out in the open, they realize they have the perfect set-up. He doesn’t want love, she doesn’t have time for love, so that just leaves the sex. Their arrangement could be surprisingly seamless, as long as Tate can stick to the only two rules Miles has for her.

Never ask about the past.
Don’t expect a future.

They think they can handle it, but realize almost immediately they can’t handle it at all.

Hearts get infiltrated.
Promises get broken.
Rules get shattered.
Love gets ugly.

breakdown

SERIESous’ Top Picks: Favourite Author
Author: Colleen Hoover
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Heat Rating
: really warm
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Source & Format: Public Library–eBook

thoughts

Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:

I’m at the point now where Colleen Hoover writes a book and I automatically read it. It could be a love triangle infested, alpha male overload book (two automatic book passes for me) and I would still pick it up. So me reading Ugly Love wasn’t a huge surprise.

I really didn’t know what to expect once I started reading. As with all Colleen Hoover (CoHo) books I knew that there was definitely going to be something more to this story than a simple “no-strings-attached” sex plot-line but I had no idea what and that made me excited. I have yet to be disappointed in CoHo’s delivery so I don’t feel guilty putting so much anticipation on this book.

The Plot:

I just love how CoHo writes her books. The plot can be so simple, like it is in this case, but she makes you feel like you are reading a brand new story every time. So while we might not have had music (Maybe Someday)–though there is a special song written for this book, it’s just not featured within the book–or art (Confess) or slam poetry (Slammed) as a primary element in this story, it was still as beautifully crafted as her other novels.

With this book we get the present day told from Tate and the alternating chapters are Miles from his past. While I enjoyed watching Miles and Tate together, I have to admit that reading Miles past was really addicting to me. I was immediately captivated by his story and loved how is character is presented. It just added a depth to his character that made me like him more because I’m not sure if I would have liked him if his story was kept hidden and he told his POV in the present…

The Characters:

Compared to previous CoHo books I felt like the character development wasn’t completely on point when it came to Tate. She really takes a backseat in this story. I’m not sure if it’s because I found Miles to be a much more interesting character given his past but Tate wasn’t all that impressive of a character to me. Of course I liked her and I loved her interaction with Miles (they had great sexual tension together!)–she is a solid character in her own right and I think that is the “problem”.

Miles is the one who has to overcome this issues and grow into the man he was always meant to be. Tate just has a much better grasp on her life so you really don’t see her growth as a character since she already has found herself by the time we are introduced to her.

I know that there aren’t any plans for immediate sequels for these books but I would love to read Corbin (Tate’s brother) and Ian’s (Miles’ BFF) stories *sigh*

The Romance:

I thought Miles and Tate had great chemistry together. I could see their connection despite not having these long, emotional talks together. I think their relationship in this book is more about finding that person you feel you can be completely comfortable with and the work it takes to let the past go and  embrace that. So what I mean is that I didn’t see this great connection between them like I have in other books but I did see it coming to light and that was enough for me in this book.

Movie!

This is going to be an indie movie! You can watch the official teaser trailer here!

My Rating: 4.5/5

overall

It’s definitely not my favourite Colleen Hoover book but it is definitely worth a read! I shed some MASSIVE tears reading this because the story is so heartbreaking and wonderful at the same time. CoHo fans will love this and those new to her works will definitely enjoy!

Read if You Like: no-strings-attached romances, emotional drama, tragic pasts
Avoid if You: want equal character development in your leads, don’t like emotional baggage, want a more erotica based novel
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Single Sundays: Confess by Colleen Hoover

Single Sundays: While this blog may be focused on reviewing book series as a whole, we can’t forget about the good ole’ standalone novel! On Sundays, I will review a novel that is considered to be a standalone novel. Here is this week’s offering:

Synopsis for Confess (from Goodreads):
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover, a new novel about risking everything for love—and finding your heart somewhere between the truth and lies.

Auburn Reed has her entire life mapped out. Her goals are in sight and there’s 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 risk and puts her heart in control, only to discover Owen is keeping major secrets 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.

The last thing Owen wants is to lose Auburn, but he can’t seem to convince her that truth is sometimes as subjective as art. All he would have to do to save their relationship is confess. But in this case, the confession could be much more destructive than the actual sin…

breakdown

SERIESous’ Top Picks: Favourite Author
Author: Colleen Hoover
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary 
Heat Rating
: warm
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Source & Format: Public Library–eBook

thoughts

Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:

I think by this point it’s fairly obvious that anything Colleen Hoover publishes, I will be reading it. But even if she didn’t write this one, I would have picked this book up for the concept alone. It just seemed like a book that would be filled with secrets and–obviously–confessions and I needed a good drama filled contemporary romance when I picked this up. It’s just an added bonus that Colleen Hoover writes this because I just know there are going to be some AWESOME plot twists.

The Concept:

In Slammed, the focus is Slam Poetry; in Maybe Someday we get a music soundtrack. But in Confess, the focus is art–and you betcha, there is actually photos of the artwork in the text! I recommend you either get this book in print or at the very least look at the eBook on your computer or tablet because the photos look great in black and white (like your eReader) but they look even better when in colour! I just love these additions Colleen Hoover adds to her works and it’s what makes her a must read author for me.

The other cool concept this book plays with is confessions. I’m not sure how many of you are familiar with the community project Post Secret but the idea is that you mail in your secret/confession on a postcard anonymously. A few years ago, the band All American Rejects used postcards from the site in their video Dirty Little Secret. Anyways, Owen’s artwork is inspired by similar confessions which is a interesting spin and really grounds this book and makes it more realistic to me.

The Plot:

Don’t go into this book expecting a cheery and light romantic read–it’s actually kind-of depressing. Which is why it took me a while to get into it. I cried three pages in (you’ll understand why if you read it) and I cried at the very end for the same reason. While some aspects of the plot I figured out before they were revealed, in classic Colleen Hoover style there were some great twists which kept the plotline from getting too predictable. As I was reading, I really didn’t know what was going to happen next and, even better, I had no clue how everything was going to wrap up.

I’m not sure how many of you are familiar with the Broadway musical Once but this book gave me similar vibes in the sense that two people are exploring their connection despite external forces and secrets driving them apart. But instead of music, we get artwork.

The Characters:

I really liked all the characters we meet in this book–even the ones you are supposed to hate. Hoover writes great characters that always feel developed yet still manage to grow at the same time. I find they are consistent in their convictions (ie they don’t flop like fish) but they still have flaws and they try to fix it. So while these character might not be gracing a list of my all-time favourite characters, I still enjoyed reading about them.

The Romance:

As I said before, this isn’t a happy-go-lucky type of romance book. It’s also a bit of a insta-connection / “must be fate” kind of romance which I don’t really like. However, I didn’t mind it in this case because you watch these characters struggle with that connection. It isn’t like they dive into bed together as soon as their eyes connect and forget the rest of the world. In fact, it is the complete opposite. It also helps that the focus of a majority of the book is on individual character growth and dealing with the world around them rather than their romantic connection. There were definitely enough “romantic” scenes but there was just the right amount to balance the “drama” portion of the story.

My Rating: 4/5

overall

This may not be my favourite Colleen Hoover book but I still really enjoyed it! I thought it had a great execution and unique attributes that made this different from your everyday romance novel. It kept my attention from beginning to end and I loved the fact that it still surprised me at the very end. Another great book by Colleen Hoover!

Read if You Like: romantic fate, drama, a dash of suspense, artist heroes
Avoid if You: dislike insta-connection, want a more “upbeat” romance
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Series Review: Hopeless by Colleen Hoover

Series Review: Is this series worth your time? Does it get better as the novels progress? Or does it get worse? Find out below:

SERIESous’ Top Book Series: Fav New Adult 2015; Must Read Author
Series: Hopeless
Author: Colleen Hoover
# of Books: 2 (Hopeless, Losing Hope)

There is a FREE standalone novella after book 2 called, Finding Cinderella

Book Order: Alternate POV Sequel; The novella is Connected
Complete?: Yes
Genre: Young Adult/New Adult, Romance, Drama
Heat Rating: really warm *spicy YA*
Point of View: First Person, Single

Thoughts:

When I first got into New Adult novels, Hopeless graced every recommended read list I encountered. So I purchased it for my Kobo but didn’t end up reading it until much, much later. And truth be told I probably wouldn’t have picked up for a little while longer if I hadn’t read–and loved–Hoover’s other YA novel, Slammed. Once I read Slammed and saw what Hoover was capable of, I made sure I had the entire Hopeless series in my grasp before I moved them to the top of my to-read pile.

I loved Sky from the moment we met her. I just loved her attitude about things and I loved her interactions with Holder. Their chemistry together was awesome throughout the entire book. One thing I love about these YA/New Adult crossover books is that the leads don’t usually jump right into bed together. You actually get to see them form a relationship that is more than physical chemistry and that is what we had here.

But the best part about this series is the many layers to this story. I really wasn’t sure what the underlying plot was going to be based on the synopsis of Hopeless but once I started reading I thought I had it all figured out based on the little tidbits we get here and there. Well, I was completely wrong! Eventually all these clues add up to be the BIG secret reveal and once it was revealed, all my expectations for the plot were out the door. These big twists are something I commend Colleen Hoover for because I never see them coming in her works and I love how she blows away my preconceived notions so easily. Rarely am I surprised when I read a novel, so when I do get surprised it quickly elevates the book from a 4 star review to a 5. And Hopeless is definitely a book worthy of 5 stars and endless praise. This book is a must read for New Adult fans!

Losing Hope is the alternate POV sequel to Hopeless. This time we get Holder’s take on things and it really does add to the story you get in Hopeless because if fills in some of the blanks about Holder’s actions (not that they weren’t complete in the original story, they are just further elaborated on). It starts a little before Hopeless and ends a little after as well. Like its predecessor, its simply well done. Not only to we get to see some added events but all the events that you want to see from Holder’s POV are included. I know that sometimes it is tempting to read alternate POV sequels congruently with the first book but I highly discourage it because it has major spoilers and will absolutely ruin Hopeless for you!

Finding Cinderella is a novella (FREE on most major eBook sites) about two characters we meet separately in Hopeless and Losing Hope. You could definitely read this book before you read Hopeless because these characters don’t have major roles and Hoover did a great job of not revealing anything about Holder & Sky’s story in the novella. It was super cute, the perfect length and had an unexpected twist (well, it was an expected twist but what the twist actually was was unpredictable). And because it’s FREE you can’t really go wrong with reading it!

Conclusion:

From the two books straight to the novella, this series blew me away. Definitely a favourite series for me and has officially moved Colleen Hoover into must-read author series. For those who like books with lots of layers and don’t mind more mature subject matter, this is an EXCELLENT series for you to grab.

Rating: 5/5
Would I Recommend this Series to a Friend: HELL YES!!!

Similar Reads: Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker (Ten Tiny Breaths Series #1) and Wait for You by J. Lynn (Wait for You Series #1)

Synopsis for Hopeless (from Goodreads):
Sometimes discovering the truth can leave you more hopeless than believing the lies…

That’s what seventeen-year-old Sky realizes after she meets Dean Holder. A guy with a reputation that rivals her own and an uncanny ability to invoke feelings in her she’s never had before. He terrifies her and captivates her all in the span of just one encounter, and something about the way he makes her feel sparks buried memories from a past that she wishes could just stay buried.

Sky struggles to keep him at a distance knowing he’s nothing but trouble, but Holder insists on learning everything about her. After finally caving to his unwavering pursuit, Sky soon finds that Holder isn’t at all who he’s been claiming to be. When the secrets he’s been keeping are finally revealed, every single facet of Sky’s life will change forever.

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Series Review: Slammed by Colleen Hoover

Series Review: Is this series worth your time? Does it get better as the novels progress? Or does it get worse? Find out below:

booksynopsis

Synopsis for Slammed (from Goodreads):
Following the unexpected death of her father, 18-year-old Layken is forced to be the rock for both her mother and younger brother. Outwardly, she appears resilient and tenacious, but inwardly, she’s losing hope.

Enter Will Cooper: The attractive, 21-year-old new neighbor with an intriguing passion for slam poetry and a unique sense of humor. Within days of their introduction, Will and Layken form an intense emotional connection, leaving Layken with a renewed sense of hope.

Not long after an intense, heart-stopping first date, they are slammed to the core when a shocking revelation forces their new relationship to a sudden halt. Daily interactions become impossibly painful as they struggle to find a balance between the feelings that pull them together, and the secret that keeps them apart.

breakdown

SERIESous’ Top Book Series: New Favourite Author 2015
Series: Slammed Trilogy
Author: Colleen Hoover
# of Books: 3 (Slammed, Point of Retreat, This Girl)
Book Order: Chronological but This Girl is an alternate POV of Slammed
Complete?: Yes
Genre: Young Adult/New Adult, Romance, Contemporary, Drama
Heat Rating: warm
Point of View: First Person, Single

thoughts

Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:

Despite finishing Hoover’s other series Hopeless before this one, Slammed was the first book I read by Hoover. When I first picked up Slammed from my library, Hopeless had been sitting on my Kobo for probably 2 years unread. I think it’s vague synopsis and all the hype made me hesitant to read it. But I have always heard really good things about Slammed so when they added new eBooks at my library and this series was one, I made sure I was near the top of that holds list. (Afterwards, it encouraged me to pick up Hopeless and I am so thankful that I did!)

My Review:

Slammed started out like any other Young Adult/New Adult where the lead moves to a new town after the death of a parent. Enter the angst-driven heroine and the cute boy who notices her right away and you’ve got the basis of many New Adult novels out there. But this book is nothing like those other books and it quickly sets itself apart through its characters, plot lines and poetry.

Layken is angsty–but not in annoying way. Obviously she is upset about what has happened to her family and it shows. I don’t think anyone can blame her for feeling and thinking the way she does. So this is well-done (read: valid reasons for) angst and I wish all authors did angst like this. However, she isn’t my favourite heroine ever. Her stubbornness bothered me a bit and because I didn’t love her, it stopped me from giving Slammed a 5/5. Will is a great character though: he had me smiling and charmed from the minute we meet him. And I loved watching them together because it was more than a physical attraction that drew them together and I could see why they liked each other. Despite not loving Layken, I really did feel like they were a good pair.

Then comes the “shocking revelation” and it really was shocking! I had no idea what was going to happen and when it did, my attention was grabbed. It’s not often that I get surprised by a plot line: so when I do, the book gets major points and this one does for sure!

As for the poetry aspect, like most people (in my classes at least) it was my least favourite subject in English. That definitely changed when I got to university and studied English and read a variety of poems. I don’t like writing poems but I don’t mind reading them. However, Slam Poetry is something that I have no experience with–just those clichéd bits on sitcoms and I watched a YouTube video one time of a Dad’s message “To the Boys Who One Day May Date My Daughter” (it’s really well done!). Reading this book almost made me wish that I was listening to the audio books because it would really add to the reading experience–though it really isn’t necessary as Hoover bolds/italicizes words so you get the gist of how it would be performed. So while poetry really isn’t my thing, it was refreshing to read (I find most people choose music lyrics instead of poetry) and added to the story in a way I didn’t expect.

I didn’t really think Point of Retreat was a necessary sequel per say, but it sure was icing on top of an already awesome cake. I really felt like Point of Retreat tied up some loose ends from Slammed that weren’t necessarily left dangling but it was nice to have them neatly wrapped up nonetheless. Of course there was a great twist along the way that I didn’t see coming (I should honestly know better by now).

What I love about Hoover’s work is that she doesn’t stretch out her character’s stories by publishing more books than necessary. Two, plus an alternate retelling is the perfect amount for this series. It might be tempting to read This Girl right after Point of Retreat or even congruently with Slammed but I wouldn’t. It actually chronologically follows the events of Point of Retreat and is told like as flashbacks to the past (ie Slammed). So read it as if it were a Book 3 or else you read major spoilers 🙂

(Though I enjoyed reading This Girl and appreciated how it told a different side of the story and provided some insight into Slammed‘s events, it was a little nauseating to read. You know, like that couple that is overly in love and always shows it? It was kinda like reading that at times. BUT, I enjoyed reading it and thought it was a great way to wrap up the series).

Rating: 4/5

overall

It may not be my favourite YA to New Adult series ever but I loved every minute I spent reading these books! They are just so well done with touching characters, amazing plot twists, poetry and great messages about family and love. I laughed, I cried and I smiled throughout the entire series. I will definitely be picking up anything and everything by Colleen Hoover in the future!

  • Charade by Nyrae Dawn (Game Series #1)
  • Someone to Love by Addison Moore (Someone to Love Series #1)
  • On Jamaica Lane (On Dublin Street #2)

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