15 Books to Read in March

running-mateRunning Mate
by Katie Ashley
March 1st 2017
Katie Ashley Productions

Synopsis
Barrett
The name’s Barrett Callahan. Yeah, that Barrett Callahan—the one the press dubbed “Bare” after those naked sexting pictures surfaced. At twenty-five, I was armed with an MBA from Harvard, an executive position at my father’s Fortune 500 company, a penthouse, and a different piece of delectable eye candy in my bed every weekend. I had a life most men dreamed of. But then my father decided to run for president, and my playboy lifestyle became a liability to his campaign that was built on family values. My “makeover” comes in the form of a fake fiancée who I don’t even get to choose–one who is an uptight, choirgirl acting priss but also sexy-as-hell.
Addison
My latest relationship had gone down in flames, and I was drowning in a sea of student loans when in true Godfather status, James Callahan made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. Seven figures for seven months on the campaign trail pretending to be the adoring fiancée of his son, Barrett. As soon as he won the election, our engagement would be dissolved amicably for the press, I was free to ride off into the sunset a million dollars richer, and because of the NDA, no one would be the wiser. Sure, I’d never met the guy, but I’d been a theater nerd in high school. I could pull off any role from Lady Macbeth to Maria Von Trapp. But that was before I met my fake fiancé—the infuriating, self-absorbed, egotistical, drop-dead-sexy King of the Manwhores.
The race will be a fight to the death finish, and that’s not even the actual campaign.

the-inexplicable-logic-of-my-lifeThe Inexplicable Logic of My Life
by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
March 7th 2017
Clarion Books

Synopsis
Sal used to know his place with his adoptive gay father, their loving Mexican-American family, and his best friend, Samantha. But it’s senior year, and suddenly Sal is throwing punches, questioning everything, and realizing he no longer knows himself. If Sal’s not who he thought he was, who is he?

seven-days-of-you

Seven Days of You
by Cecilia Vinesse
March 7th 2017
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Synopsis
Sophia has seven days left in Tokyo before she moves back to the States. Seven days to say good-bye to the electric city, her wild best friend, and the boy she’s harbored a semi-secret crush on for years. Seven perfect days…until Jamie Foster-Collins moves back to Japan and ruins everything.
Jamie and Sophia have a history of heartbreak, and the last thing Sophia wants is for him to steal her leaving thunder with his stupid arriving thunder. Yet as the week counts down, the relationships she thought were stable begin to explode around her. And Jamie is the one who helps her pick up the pieces. Sophia is forced to admit she may have misjudged Jamie, but can their seven short days of Tokyo adventures end in anything but good-bye?

youre-welcome-universeYou’re Welcome, Universe
by Whitney Gardner
March 7th 2017
Knopf

Synopsis
When Julia finds a slur about her best friend scrawled across the back of the Kingston School for the Deaf, she covers it up with a beautiful (albeit illegal) graffiti mural.
Her supposed best friend snitches, the principal expels her, and her two mothers set Julia up with a one-way ticket to a “mainstream” school in the suburbs, where she’s treated like an outcast as the only deaf student. The last thing she has left is her art, and not even Banksy himself could convince her to give that up.
Out in the ’burbs, Julia paints anywhere she can, eager to claim some turf of her own. But Julia soon learns that she might not be the only vandal in town. Someone is adding to her tags, making them better, showing off—and showing Julia up in the process. She expected her art might get painted over by cops. But she never imagined getting dragged into a full-blown graffiti war.
Told with wit and grit by debut author Whitney Gardner, who also provides gorgeous interior illustrations of Julia’s graffiti tags, You’re Welcome, Universe introduces audiences to a one-of-a-kind protagonist who is unabashedly herself no matter what life throws in her way.

goodbye-daysGoodbye Days
by Jeff Zentner
March 7th 2017
Crown Books for Young Readers

Synopsis
Can a text message destroy your life?
Carver Briggs never thought a simple text would cause a fatal crash, killing his three best friends, Mars, Eli, and Blake. Now Carver can’t stop blaming himself for the accident and even worse, there could be a criminal investigation into the deaths.
Then Blake’s grandmother asks Carver to remember her grandson with a ‘goodbye day’ together. Carver has his misgivings, but he starts to help the families of his lost friends grieve with their own memorial days, along with Eli’s bereaved girlfriend Jesmyn. But not everyone is willing to forgive. Carver’s own despair and guilt threatens to pull him under into panic and anxiety as he faces punishment for his terrible mistake. Can the goodbye days really help?

the-bone-witchThe Bone Witch
by Rin Chupeco
The Bone Witch series #1
March 7th 2017
Sourcebooks Fire

Synopsis
When Tea accidentally resurrects her brother from the dead, she learns she is different from the other witches in her family. Her gift for necromancy means that she’s a bone witch, a title that makes her feared and ostracized by her community. But Tea finds solace and guidance with an older, wiser bone witch, who takes Tea and her brother to another land for training.
In her new home, Tea puts all her energy into becoming an asha — one who can wield elemental magic. But dark forces are approaching quickly, and in the face of danger, Tea will have to overcome her obstacles…and make a powerful choice.

catching-carlyCatching Carly 
by Emma Hart
Barley Cross series #2
March 7th 2017

Synopsis
My name is Carly Porter… And I’m really good at bad decisions.
How do I know this, exactly? Well, not including the time I accidentally bleached my eyebrows or sprained my ankle changing a lightbulb…
I had sex with my best friend’s brother.
Zeke Elliott has been a thorn in my side for eleven years. A very sexy, very tempting, very freaking annoying one. With big…hands.
And now my clitoris has a crush on the guy.
Seriously. I can’t look at him without my vagina performing accidental kegels. Which would be fine, but he’s Cain’s brother. I hate him. He’s off limits, right?
Right.

the-play-mateThe Play Mate
by Kendall Ryan
Roommates series #2
March 13th 2017

Synopsis
His best friend’s little sister is all grown up … and ready to play in a whole new way.
Smith Hamilton has it all—he’s smart, good-looking and loaded. But he remembers a time when he had nothing and no one, so he’s not about to mess up, especially with his best friend’s little sister. That means keeping Evie at arm’s length … even though the once pesky little girl is now a buxom bombshell. A sexy blonde who pushes his self-control to the limit the night she crawls into bed with him.
Evie Reed knows she’s blessed—with an exclusive education, a family who loves her, and a new job managing social media for her family’s lingerie company. But she wants more, like a reason to wear the sexy lingerie herself. She has just the man in mind to help with that. She’s crushed on Smith forever. Surely tricking her way into his bed will force him to see her in a new, adult way.
Except that when Evie’s plan leads to disaster, she and Smith must decide—ignore the attraction sizzling between them, or become play mates and risk it all.

the-heartbeat-of-wing-jonesThe Heartbeats of Wing Jones
by Katherine Webber
March 14th 2017
Delacorte Books for Young Readers

Synopsis
Wing Jones, like everyone else in her town, has worshipped her older brother, Marcus, for as long as she can remember. Good-looking, popular, and the star of the football team, Marcus is everything his sister is not.
Until the night everything changes when Marcus, drunk at the wheel after a party, kills two people and barely survives himself. With Marcus now in a coma, Wing is crushed, confused, and angry. She is tormented at school for Marcus’s mistake, haunted at home by her mother and grandmothers’ grief. In addition to all this, Wing is scared that the bank is going to repossess her home because her family can’t afford Marcus’s mounting medical bills.
Every night, unable to sleep, Wing finds herself sneaking out to go to the school’s empty track. When Aaron, Marcus’s best friend, sees her running one night, he recognizes that her speed, skill, and agility could get her spot on the track team. And better still, an opportunity at a coveted sponsorship from a major athletic gear company. Wing can’t pass up the opportunity to train with her longtime crush and to help her struggling family, but can she handle being thrust out of Marcus’s shadow and into the spotlight?

HiddenMemory_jkt_des2_CC14.inddThe Hidden Memory of Objects
by Danielle Mages Amato
March 21st 2017
Balzer + Bray

Synopsis
Megan Brown’s brother, Tyler, is dead, but the cops are killing him all over again. They say he died of a drug overdose, potentially suicide—something Megan cannot accept. Determined to figure out what happened in the months before Tyler’s death, Megan turns to the things he left behind. After all, she understands the stories objects can tell—at fifteen, she is a gifted collage artist with a flair for creating found-object pieces. However, she now realizes that her artistic talent has developed into something more: she can see memories attached to some of Tyler’s belongings—and those memories reveal a brother she never knew.
Enlisting the help of an artifact detective who shares her ability and specializes in murderabilia—objects tainted by violence or the deaths of their owners—Megan finds herself drawn into a world of painful personal and national memories. Along with a trusted classmate and her brother’s charming friend, she chases down the troubling truth about Tyler across Washington, DC, while reclaiming her own stifled identity with a vengeance.

Sstrange-the-dreamertrange the Dreamer
by Laini Taylor
Strange the Dreamer series #1
March 28th 2017
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Synopsis
The dream chooses the dreamer, not the other way around— and Lazlo Strange, war orphan and junior librarian, has always feared that his dream chose poorly. Since he was five years old he’s been obsessed with the mythic lost city of Weep, but it would take someone bolder than he to cross half the world in search of it. Then a stunning opportunity presents itself, in the person of a hero called the Godslayer and a band of legendary warriors, and he has to seize his chance to lose his dream forever.
What happened in Weep two hundred years ago to cut it off from the rest of the world? What exactly did the Godslayer slay that went by the name of god? And what is the mysterious problem he now seeks help in solving?
The answers await in Weep, but so do more mysteries—including the blue-skinned goddess who appears in Lazlo’s dreams. How did he dream her before he knew she existed? and if all the gods are dead, why does she seem so real?
In this sweeping and breathtaking new novel by National Book Award finalist Laini Taylor, author of the New York Times bestselling Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy, the shadow of the past is as real as the ghosts who haunt the citadel of murdered gods. Fall into a mythical world of dread and wonder, moths and nightmares, love and carnage.
Welcome to Weep.

radio-silenceRadio Silence
by Alice Oseman
March 28th 2017
Harper Collins Children’s Books

Synopsis
What if everything you set yourself up to be was wrong?
Frances has always been a study machine with one goal, elite university. Nothing will stand in her way; not friends, not a guilty secret – not even the person she is on the inside.
But when Frances meets Aled, the shy genius behind her favourite podcast, she discovers a new freedom. He unlocks the door to Real Frances and for the first time she experiences true friendship, unafraid to be herself. Then the podcast goes viral and the fragile trust between them is broken.
Caught between who she was and who she longs to be, Frances’ dreams come crashing down. Suffocating with guilt, she knows that she has to confront her past…
She has to confess why Carys disappeared…
Meanwhile at uni, Aled is alone, fighting even darker secrets.
It’s only by facing up to your fears that you can overcome them. And it’s only by being your true self that you can find happiness.
Frances is going to need every bit of courage she has.

things-i-should-have-knownThings I Should Have Known
by Claire LaZebnik
March 28th 2017
HMH Books for Young Readers

Synopsis
From the author of Epic Fail comes the story of Chloe Mitchell, a Los Angeles girl on a quest to find love for her autistic sister, Ivy. Ethan, from Ivy’s class, seems like the perfect match. It’s unfortunate that his older brother, David, is one of Chloe’s least favorite people, but Chloe can deal, especially when she realizes that David is just as devoted to Ethan as she is to Ivy.
Uncommonly honest and refreshingly funny, this is a story about sisterhood, autism, and first love. Chloe, Ivy, David, and Ethan, who form a quirky and lovable circle, will steal readers’ hearts and remind us all that it’s okay to be a different kind of normal.

BLOOD ROSE REBELLION R3 V11.inddBlood Rose Rebellion
Rosalyn Eves
Blood Rose Rebellion series #1
March 28th 2017
Knopf Books for Young Readers

Synopsis
Sixteen-year-old Anna Arden is barred from society by a defect of blood. Though her family is part of the Luminate, powerful users of magic, she is Barren, unable to perform the simplest spells. Anna would do anything to belong. But her fate takes another course when, after inadvertently breaking her sister’s debutante spell—an important chance for a highborn young woman to show her prowess with magic—Anna finds herself exiled to her family’s once powerful but now crumbling native Hungary.
Her life might well be over.
In Hungary, Anna discovers that nothing is quite as it seems. Not the people around her, from her aloof cousin Noémi to the fierce and handsome Romani Gábor. Not the society she’s known all her life, for discontent with the Luminate is sweeping the land. And not her lack of magic. Isolated from the only world she cares about, Anna still can’t seem to stop herself from breaking spells.
As rebellion spreads across the region, Anna’s unique ability becomes the catalyst everyone is seeking. In the company of nobles, revolutionaries, and Romanies, Anna must choose: deny her unique power and cling to the life she’s always wanted, or embrace her ability and change that world forever.

the-opposite-of-you

The Opposite of You
by Rachel Higginson
March 30th 2017
Reckless Siren Publishing

Synopsis
I’ve sworn off men.
All men.
Famous last words, right? You’re expecting some epic tale of reluctant love and my dramatic change of heart? Well, you’re not going to get it.
I’m stubborn. And headstrong. And I’ve just survived the worst three years of my life. After escaping an abusive fiancé to live in hostels and cheap hotels while I worked my way across Europe, I’ve come to two conclusions.
The first? Now that I’m back home, I’m going to squander my expensive culinary degree on a food truck that caters to the late night drunk crowd.
The second? I’m going to prove to the bastard across the plaza that my street food is better than his fussy five course monstrosities.
Killian Quinn might be Food and Wine’s Chef to Watch Out For. He might have a Michelin Star. He might have every food critic in the city wrapped around his too-large fingers. But he’s also pretentious and unbearably arrogant and the very opposite of me.
So he can keep his unsolicited advice and his late night visits and his cocky smiles. I want none of it. Or him.
I want the opposite.

Review: Anything You Can Do by R.S. Grey

anything-you-can-doAnything You Can Do
by R.S. Grey
February 2nd 2017
Kindle Edition
247 pages
Romance / Contemporary / New Adult / Adult / Chick Lit

Synopsis
Lucas Thatcher has always been my enemy.
It’s been a decade since I’ve seen him, but our years on opposite coasts were less of a lasting peace and more of a temporary cease-fire. Now that we’re both back in our small town, I know Lucas expects the same old war, but I’ve changed since high school—and from the looks of it, so has he.
The arrogant boy who was my teenage rival is now a chiseled doctor armed with intimidating good looks. He is Lucas Thatcher 2.0, the new and improved version I’ll be competing with in the workplace instead of the schoolyard.
I’m not worried; I’m a doctor now too, board-certified and sexy in a white coat. It almost feels like winning will be too easy—until Lucas unveils a tactic neither of us has ever used before: sexual warfare.
The day he pushes me up against the wall and presses his lips to mine, I can’t help but wonder if he’s filling me with passion or poison. Every fleeting touch is perfect torture. With every stolen kiss, my walls crumble a little more. After all this time, Lucas knows exactly how to strip me of my defenses, but I’m in no hurry to surrender.
Knowing thy enemy has never felt so good.

Rating: C – Okayed

Recently, I’m into nemesis-to-lovers trope – all thanks to The Hating Game by Sally Thorne which I totally adore so much that it went straight to my favorite romance reads. So I ended up recommending it to a good friend who recommended this book back.

What I Liked

The love and hate relationship. This is one of my go-to romance tropes. If I’m in a reading slump and currently in the mood for something romantic, I make my way for this kind of books on my bookshelf. They almost always work. So this book was hard to pass for me.

The flavor of sweetness and sexiness. This is the kind of book that doesn’t disappoint because it meets your expectations. And what do you expect in a contemporary romance novel? Well, obviously some hot stuff and sweet nothings for you. The plot almost hit the right spot. Mind you, almost. The emails totally made me swoon!

The practice. It’s a plus for me that they’re both doctors because I don’t really meet a lot of contemporary romance or new adult characters that work in this field. Most of them are in corporate jobs – you know those men in Armani suits.

What I Didn’t Like

The first lovin’. In the wrong place at the wrong time.

Childish act. The main female character is a big joke to the point that, it felt like the male character had to redeem her at times. She was just petty.

This book was fun but I really can’t say that I enjoyed it that much. It met the basic requirements for it to be considered a good read but I guess, I just need something more.

Waiting on Wednesday: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

the-hate-u-giveThe Hate U Give
by Angie Thomas
February 28th 2017
Balzer + Bray

Synopsis
Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed. Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is a powerful and gripping YA novel about one girl’s struggle for justice. Movie rights have been sold to Fox, with Amandla Stenberg (The Hunger Games) to star.

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly book meme created by Jill at Breaking The Spine.

Top 5 Wednesday: Favorite Non-Written Novels

Last year, I didn’t do much reading – which is the reason why I call 2016, the ‘Dark Age’. But I was still able to read around 60 something books according to Goodreads. In fact, I only read a few ARCs and some manga. But what I included in this list is a bunch of webtoons I recently started reading on Line Webtoon.

Webtoons are webcomics or comics published online. On the other hand, Line Webtoon is a site or an app for comic artists where they can share their works. It’s basically Wattpad for Korean comics. The best thing about Line Webtoon is that it’s free. Yep, you read that right. It’s totally free and so far, I haven’t noticed some annoying ads unlike in *coughs Wattpad*. Also, you could like download the episodes/chapters on your phone so that when you lost your internet connection, you can still read continue reading. I’m pretty sure there are a bunch of other sites or apps but so far, I’ve only used Line Webtoon. I’m new to this anyways. Note: I was not paid to promote this site or app.

cheese-in-the-trapCheese in the Trap
by soonkki
Updated every Sunday

Synopsis
Seol Hong is a hard-working student, who has returned to college after a long break. Jung Yu is a senior at the college known as Mr. Perfect. Seol feels like her life took a turn for the worse since she got involved with Jung. Is Jung intentionally turning Seol’s life?

Last year, I watched the K-drama based on this comics and I liked it so much. I believe it was the best Kdrama of 2016 – ha, Cheese in the Trap was the only Kdrama I watched last year so I have no place to tell which was the best or worst lmao. Cheese in the Trap is pretty special for me because it introduced me to webtoon. The second half of the series was a total mess and I did some quick research and learned that apparently, it was because the webtoon was on a slower pace during the series’ production. Up to this point, it is actually still on-going. So basically, the people behind the drama just came up with some random plot on the spot without consulting the creator properly. Seriously, the whole miscommunication between the creator and the director is a drama on its own. Also, I read somewhere that they’ll redeem this webtoon by turning it into a film somewhat this year or maybe next year. Anyways, this series is in its third season on Line Webtoon while the Korean edition is in fourth, I think.

orange-marmaladeOrange Marmalade
by Seokwoo
Completed

Synopsis
People are no longer afraid of vampires but that doesn’t stop humans from discriminating against them. Can Mari Baek hide her identity when she falls in love with a popular boy who hates vampires?

You know what this reminds me? Twilight. Just a far better version – I  think. The human guy has this irresistible sweet smell while the girl is a vampire who sustains her thirst by drinking pork’s blood hidden in a tomato juice plastic container. And they had their first encounter on the subway, totally cute.  I’m not the biggest fan of the male character… so far. But this is a fun read which reminds me how I got so hooked with Twilight before. Btw, I just learned that this one has a K-drama too. This is probably the reason why the title sounds so familiar like I’ve heard it before. I’ll check it out after I’m done with the webtoon.

winter-woodsWinter Woods
by COSMOS, VAN JI
Updated every Wednesday

Synopsis
A few thousand years has passed since an alchemist created Winter. He is now living with Jane learning what it means to be alive as a human.

The prologue for this webtoon is just pretty epic – a great intro for real. This seems a really interesting read and I like the whole feel of this series. Also, how do I stop myself from falling for the main character? He looks so serene, beautiful and everything nice. And that gray hair… ugh just simply adorable. The first chapters gave me quite a heart-attack though. He looked pretty creepy and inhumane in there. I can’t wait to get far into the series and see him transform right before my eyes.

ecstasy-heartsEcstasy Hearts
by SilentMaru
Updated every Thursday

Synopsis
Shimizu Anya is the daughter of the two former top Tennis Players of the world. And now, it’s her time to conquer the domain of Professional Tennis at least until her destined rival came and completely crushed her before she could even break out of her bubble. This is where her one-sided rivalry begins.

I don’t really like this webtoon so far. Both characters are just meh. Okay, the guy is pretty hateable for me. He’s a freaking pervert and the girl is still attracted to him for some reason which is frustrating somehow. Talk about insta-love. Let’s just say I need a filler for this post and I’ve only read like six comics on Line Webtoon so far. I would still give this book a go, though. I’m quite curious with the male character and his inner ‘demon’. Maybe, there’s more to him after all.

heartbeats-per-secondHeartbeats per Second
by mjBee

Synopsis
Mia’s life was once colorful when a mysterious but charming boy walked into it one day. Yet one fateful evening he vanished leaving nothing but a few sweet words. 2 years later, Mia looks back longingly at her cherished past just as she’s about to have to untangle the knots that connect to the future she’s going to face.

I only added Heartbeats per Second for the aesthetic feels. The artist’s work is just so incredibly beautiful – not the one on the right side in particular. That’s just a side doodle on the webtoon – but it looks too cute, right? Unfortunately, the creator isn’t really updating much – with only two chapters and a filler post. So I’m not really sure if this story will get anywhere soon.

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly book meme created by Lainey at Gingerreadslainey, but is now hosted by Sam at Thoughts On Tomes.

Review: Poison’s Kiss by Breeana Shields

poisons-kissPoison’s Kiss
by Breeana Shields
Poison’s Kiss series #1
January 10th 2017
Random House Books for Young Readers
Paperback
304 pages
Fantasy / Young Adult / Mythology / High Fantasy

Synopsis
Marinda has kissed dozens of boys. They all die afterward. It’s a miserable life, but being a visha kanya—a poison maiden—is what she was created to do. Marinda serves the Raja by dispatching his enemies with only her lips as a weapon.
Until now, the men she was ordered to kiss have been strangers, enemies of the kingdom. Then she receives orders to kiss Deven, a boy she knows too well to be convinced he needs to die. She begins to question who she’s really working for. And that is a thread that, once pulled, will unravel more than she can afford to lose.

Rating: B+ – Loved

I don’t really know a lot of things about India or its culture except for the basic stuff taught in my world geography class back in high school. What I do know though is that I really enjoyed reading this book.

What I Liked

Page-turner. You will not be able to put this book down. You’ll enjoy this book so much that you’ll read it in one sitting – or maybe two like I did.

The plot twists. Emphasis on the second ‘s’ on that word. This book is really an engaging read particularly halfway through the book, it’s suddenly a surge of plot twist after plot twist after plot twist.

The romantic interest. I love Deven. He’s giving me the nice guy vibe and you can’t just hate guys like him. He’s seriously the kind of guy that you would bring home to your parents to meet. He’s that nice.

Predictable but not quite. That’s what I like about this whole book. It’s like you can make absurd predictions but end up getting them right anyways. Well, that was what I did and ha! I was correct on the most parts and boy, I don’t feel pissed at all.

Good writing. I really think the writing is good. Especially when the author started describing these mouthwatering food. She left me craving and hungry. I’m not just sure about the world- building, though. It felt like just modern-day India to me – not that I’ve been to India anyways.

What I Didn’t Like

The not a total badass character. The main character, Marinda, who is a visha kanya aka a poison maiden is basically a female assassin. Poison is her main weapon. That’s what makes her lethal but still, my impression of her is that she’s not really that deadly. In fact, it weirded me out when she kept on mentioning that she’s an assassin. But that’s probably because I see an assassin as the full-package killer deal: someone with kickass fighting skills, tricky mind and a real strong personality, someone who makes cautious decisions and actions. Highlight on that last part btw.

A little slow. The beginning is a snore. I wasn’t really hooked in the beginning. That’s why it took me a couple of nights to finish this because I almost lost interest reading it on the first night. But exactly midway, things started happening and got more exciting.

Not a stand-alone. If this was a stand-alone, I would’ve given this a higher rating like an A- or even an A+. That is only if everything was summed up in just one novel.

Now, I’ll have to wait for the sequel.