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Book Reports (129-135)...

For those of you who happened to Google your title and ended up here, please know that one star is not a bad thing in Robin's world -- just the fact that I picked up your book and started it means that somewhere it's getting good buzz (or that your blurb was really cool).

* I didn't make it beyond the first 20 pages.
** I made it to the end, but I either skimmed or skipped large sections.
*** I might have skipped/skimmed, but I liked it and might read it again.
**** I read at least 95% of the book and it was good -- probably will be reread.
***** I read every word, and I loved it! A favorite and definite reread.

This year, I'm only going to list the stars and a brief recommendation for the type of readers I think will enjoy the book [(R) means it's a re-read; [] means it's an ARC].



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***
[The Cabin, by Natasha Preston -- recommended for those who like angsty teen drama, those who like mystery/suspense, and those who don't mind some *shallow reactions/motivations -- Sourcebooks Fire, 9/16]

* This was definitely suspenseful, and I found the tension engaging. However, the teens continually made stupid choices (which teens tend to do, I know), and I found it hard to believe they'd all react as they did. Still, I suspect that a teen reading this would find it much more enjoyable than I did. :)

**
Tangled Thoughts, by Cara Bertrand -- recommended for those who've read the *first two, those who don't mind drawn-out plots, and those who like love quartets (ha) -- Luminis Books, 7/16

* I really enjoyed the first two, but I came into this one with the idea that it was the last of a trilogy...when it's simply the next book in a series. :( It felt unnecessarily long and drawn out to me, and I didn't really appreciate the two extra characters thrown in to add love interest to a story that was (in my opinion) already filled with a strong and romantic sub-plot. Basically, it didn't work for me at all, and although I might pick up the next one (IF it's the final book in the series!), this one really disappointed me.

****+
The Dead and Buried, by Kim Harrington -- highly recommended for those who like mysteries, those who like *ghost tales, and those who like sweet teen romance -- Point, 1/13

* I liked that we got to know a bit about the ghost here (she died not long before the MC arrived in her house), and I liked that the characters were complex and interesting throughout. I've read most of Harrington's other books, and I think she's a solid writer. :)

****
[Genius: The Game, by Leopoldo Gout -- recommended for those who like *adventure/techno-thrillers, those who like unique characters, and those who like hints of teen romance -- Feiwel & Friends, 5/16]

* The description here was right up my alley, but it honestly took 100+ pages before the real action began. I originally picked this up for my son (at PLA), but I've already told him to simply begin at the second section; I honestly don't think the first section adds anything of value (some background that you can pretty much pick up reading between the lines in the rest of the book). However, other than being too long and detailed, it's an interesting thriller, and I'll definitely look for the next one.

****
Wickedpedia, by Chris Van Etten -- recommended for those who like *standard horror, those who like teen drama, and those who like gory justice -- Scholastic, 6/14

* I actually don't really like horror that much, but this reminded me of I Know What You Did Last Summer (the movie more than the book), and despite the corny feel to it, it was a fun read. I think teens will probably really enjoy it.

***
Love and Other Foreign Words, by Erin McCahon -- recommended for those who like McCahon's writing, those who like friends-to-romance tales, and those who like *uptight heroines -- Dial Books, 5/14

* I really liked McCahon's first book (I Now Pronounce You Someone Else), but I somehow missed this one when it first came out. It didn't work as well for me, mostly because of the MC. She was simply too uptight and clueless for my taste, and although I loved the love interest, I found it frustrating to read through all the issues the heroine dealt with as she worked through her own feelings.

****-
Secrets, Lies, and Scandals, by Amanda K. Morgan -- recommended for those who like teen murder drama, those who like *multi-POV tales, and those who like hints of romance (some past GLBT) -- Simon Pulse, 7/16

* The multi-POV approach was the best part of this, imo. I liked the insight into the various characters, but I did think they were pretty clueless (and yes, I know this is realistic for many teens). Despite their cluelessness, their motives were more realistic than other books with a similar premise, so I didn't mind. One thing I didn't love was the ending...perhaps there's going to be a sequel?

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