Confessions of a High School Disaster by Emma Chastain

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I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book. Thanks to NetGalley and Simon Pulse for the opportunity to read and review Confessions of a High School Disaster: Chloe Snow’s Diary by Emma Chastain! Chloe is nervous about starting high school and is trying to figure out who she is and what she wants. Her freshman year turns out to be nothing like she imagined and so much bigger than she could have guessed it would be. Through the year, Chloe has crushes, makes friends and learns how to grow and still hang onto lifelong friendships. She’s also involved in drama, some she causes and some she’s blameless for. Her dad is a solid part of her life, while her mother turns out to be selfish and flaky. In the span of that eventful year, Chloe matures and ends up being a sophomore willing to share her painfully gained wisdom with her underclassmen. 5 stars for an entertaining realistic fiction read for young adults!

The Shadows We Know By Heart by Jennifer Park

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I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book. Thanks to NetGalley and Simon Pulse for the opportunity to read and review The Shadows We Know By Heart by Jennifer Park! My first reaction was surprise and curiosity as I read the first chapter. The story involves a young woman and her family who recently moved close to the woods after their son, Sam, died. Leah, her brother Matt and their parents don’t discuss their loss, but they each deal with it in their own way. Leah ventures into the woods, even though her family forbids her to enter them. She makes a surprising discovery, a human male among the Sasquatch she’s been observing. A tragedy occurred when Sam went camping with the neighbors, Reed and his father. The father was killed and his body was found, but no one ever found the two boys. The two families have tried to move on but the search for the boys has continued for years, which Leah knows nothing about. The mystery unfolds as secrets come out into the open. The story is very interesting and better than I expected. 4 stars for a twist on the uncommon!

One Cut by Eve Porinchak

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One Cut by Eve Porinchak is a nonfiction story on riveted.com. This true telling of a young man’s death brings all sides into the light and shows how complicated seeking justice can become. The media attention and heresy escalated the case that didn’t have much solid evidence. Regardless of the lack of evidence and even the fact that the young man driving never left the vehicle, they were all still charged with homicide. The book felt one sided and I believe it was written that way to help show the injustice of the entire case. I read it and still haven’t come to any conclusions about where the guilt should be placed and I can’t imagine the jury’s frustration with this case; 3.5 stars.

Fate of Flames by Sarah Raughley

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Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review.
Thanks to NetGalley and Simon Pulse for the opportunity to read and review Fate of Flames by Sarah Raughley! The book opens with an excerpt from “The Fight with the Dragon” by Friedrich von Schiller, translated by Sir Edward Bulwer Lytton 1852. I found the excerpt and its implications to the story interesting. The area has been attacked by hostiles, as the warning siren is telling the city. The students and teachers at the school are heading to the shelter. Maia sees a terrified young girl under a jeep. Maia feels the need to save her, since she is now an effigy and has been for forty-eight hours. That’s when an Effigy mentor died and Maia took her place. There can only be four effigies at a time. Earth, fire, ice and wind are the four effigies at a time. When Maia meets Saul, I was instantly intrigued by his silver hair and mysterious ring. There’s more to Saul and his ring than Maia realizes. The Effigies are a type of super hero with flaws and attributes just like regular people. The mystery goes beyond someone just being a villain. The plot is intense, interesting and full of twists. I give 4 stars for this science fiction adventure!