Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Reluctant Bachelorette by Rachael Anderson

Unknowingly cast as the bachelorette for her town’s charity event, Taycee Emerson wants out. Especially when she discovers her old teenage crush, Luke Carney, is one of the bachelors and it's up to the viewers--not her--to decide which bachelors stay or go. Coerced into participating, Taycee does what any self-preserving girl would do. She launches a subtle attack on Luke’s good name with the hope of getting him voted off the show. Unfortunately, Luke's an eye-for-an-eye kind of guy, and when he discovers what she's up to, it means revenge. But when their pranks go south, will they screw up any chance they have at a future together, or will they be able to forgive and forget and prove that love really does conquer all?

So, so good. You can never go wrong with a Rachael Anderson book. This may be my favorite of hers so far. Even though it’s a little cheesy, my husband and I love to watch The Bachelor. It’s been a tradition of ours since we were first married and we love our Bachelor nights. So, when I heard Rachael’s next book had a similar theme I couldn’t wait to read it. When I saw on her blog yesterday that the book was finally available I immediately bought it. Even if you're not a fan of the TV show, you'd enjoy this book.

I really liked that the story didn’t unfold how I thought it would. I liked how Taycee and Luke’s story progressed and by the end you are totally rooting for them. Taycee was a really likable lead. You can’t help buy feel for her sitation. I thought the idea and version of the Bachelorette that they did was really believable. In fact, I wanted to go onto their website and watch some of Taycee’s dates! I liked that the show was for charity to help out the people of her town. Taycee has loved Luke for ages, since they were kids. He left for college and never looked back. Even after all their years apart she couldn’t get him out of her heart. Luke had moved on, but realized he was missing something from his life and went back to his childhood home to try and find what he was missing. I loved their first encounter after not seeing each other for ten years. I actually liked all their encounters, they had great chemistry.

I thought this was a great story. The characters were well developed and while it’s a nice romantic comedy type book, it also had nice depth to it. It’s a nice feel good story and one I will definitely read again.

Rachael, I know this just came out yesterday, but I can't wait for more. When is your next book coming out?? :)

Content: Clean

Article 5 by Kristen Simmons

New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C., have been abandoned. The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes. There are no more police—instead, there are soldiers. There are no more fines for bad behavior—instead, there are arrests, trials, and maybe worse. People who get arrested usually don't come back. Seventeen-year-old Ember Miller is old enough to remember that things weren't always this way. Living with her rebellious single mother, it's hard for her to forget that people weren't always arrested for reading the wrong books or staying out after dark. It's hard to forget that life in the United States used to be different. Ember has perfected the art of keeping a low profile. She knows how to get the things she needs, like food stamps and hand-me-down clothes, and how to pass the random home inspections by the military. Her life is as close to peaceful as circumstances allow. That is, until her mother is arrested for noncompliance with Article 5 of the Moral Statutes. And one of the arresting officers is none other than Chase Jennings—the only boy Ember has ever loved.

I really liked this one; I thought it was one of the better dystopian’s that I’ve read lately. I liked Ember and Chase quite a bit. Ember did seem a bit impulsive at times, not really thinking things through. Which would be fine, but it did end up getting other people in trouble or put people in danger and that kind of bugged me. I would have liked if she had taken the time to think things through a bit more. On the otherhand I could also understand her urgency and how the dangers of the situation would cause you to act without necessarily thinking. I thought Chase was great, the brooding silent type, and also knows you to kick a little butt (especially if you mess with his girl). To me it was obvious that he cared for Ember, but he sure does a good job of pushing her away. I guessed what his secret was right from the beginning.

I thought the story moved along well. I was hooked from the first chapter and each chapter usually ended with a cliffhanger which of course kept me reading “just one more chapter”. There are some violent themes and situations; some reminded me a bit of the holocaust. It definitely shows how giving any government too much power is a BAD thing. While there are some disturbing things, I thought it was handled pretty well and wasn’t overly descriptive.

I admit, I was a bit confused at times. I wasn’t always sure of the timeframe with the relationship between Ember and Chase. There are a few flashback/memories along the way and eventually I think I was able to figure them out. I was also never sure how far into the future the book is supposed to take place. It wasn’t way way into the future, but it also seemed like the events going on couldn’t be this close to our time. If that makes sense. I also wondered what happened to all the people. I mean, I know there was a war that lasted awhile, but it also talks about how certain big cities had been evacuated, but never really made clear where they evacuated to. Who were we at war with? Why did us being at war make the government come down so hard on its citizens? Maybe I just missed some of the explanations.

Overall, it kept me reading, I liked the characters and I look forward to reading the next book.

Content: Maybe a handful of swearwords, a few mild innuendos (Ember and Chase's relationship was clean), and some violence.

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