Standalone Sunday | Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that spotlights a standalone novel that you loved and would recommend or one that you’re excited to read. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


19547856Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

-Goodreads Synopsis (x)

So, I ended up reading this book in a matter of hours this past week – it was unputdownable. Given how quickly I read it, I also ended up not taking any notes for a full review and just put a quick mini-review on Goodreads. But, of course, I couldn’t not mention it on my blog in some way or the other because I loved it so much!

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda has so many things I love seeing in the YA contemporaries I read – diversity, a cute romance, family dynamics, and last but not least incredible friendships. I absolutely adored Simon and his family and his friends. Especially his family! I need more contemporaries in my life with great parents and siblings. Also, this book has one of my favorite romance tropes which I’m now calling mysterious love interests who write letters to each other. I’ve only read two, this being the second, and officially need more of them in my life. The romance between Simon and Blue was so cute! I was a fangirling mess by the end. And contrary to what I believed going into this I ended up not finding out who Blue was until right before it was revealed and then I proceeded to facepalm because it was so obvious.

All in all, if you’re looking for a cute, quick, and quirky read with incredible characters and a romance that will make you fangirl then I highly recommend this book!

Also, who else is beyond excited for the movie!? I CAN’T WAIT!

“Why is straight the default? Everyone should have to declare one way or another, and it shouldn’t be this big awkward thing whether you’re straight, gay, bi, or whatever. I’m just saying.”

– Becky Albertalli, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

You can check out my mini-review on Goodreads here.

4STARRATINGBNM


Have you read Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | Ugly Love

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that spotlights a standalone novel that you loved and would recommend or one that you’re excited to read. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


17788401When 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.

-Goodreads Synopsis (x)

Much like the last Standalone Sunday I did, I realized this week that I’ve never recommended a Colleen Hoover book. Which needs to be changed because she’s one of my all-time favorite authors. Thus, this week I’ll be recommending Ugly Love.

It’s been a long time since I last read it but, hands down, it’s one of my favorites by her. It’s told in alternating perspectives that also go from past to present as well as from prose to being in a sort of verse form. That may sound confusing but honestly it flowed extremely well and added beautifully onto the story. Ugly Love is a friends with benefits to lovers story that has some minor NA cliches but combined with the heartbreaking message of grief and moving on as well as Colleen Hoover’s incredible writing and characters it was a standout story for me. I remember it being a book that was unputdownable as well as one that I cried so much over. Trust me, if you’re into NA and haven’t checked this one out yet I highly recommend it.

“Sometimes not speaking says more than all the words in the world.”

– Colleen Hoover, Ugly Love

5STARRATINGBNM


Have you read Ugly Love? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | I’ll Give You The Sun

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that spotlights a standalone novel that you loved and would recommend or one that you’re excited to read. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


20820994Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant novel from the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.

-Goodreads Synopsis (x)

I was going through the previous Standalone Sunday’s I’ve done and realized that while I recommended Jandy’s debut novel I haven’t recommended I’ll Give You The Sun. Well, I think it’s time to fix that.

Even though The Sky is Everywhere is my favorite of the two I absolutely loved this one. Much like her debut novel, I’ll Give You The Sun explores the way in which grief and secrets can affect a family. It’s told through alternating perspectives as well as past and present and through those perspectives we get to see what exactly happened to create a rift between twins Noah and Jude. What I continue to love about Jandy’s novels, especially this one, is how raw they feel in terms of emotions. She has a way with crafting words that really hit you. But don’t let me fool you this book is more than just it’s sad moments because it also has these humorous lighter moments that will make you crack up laughing or even fangirl. Also, like The Sky is Everywhere, we get to see both of these siblings experience first love (and first heartbreak) which, hands down, I believe Jandy Nelson does flawlessly. Plus, I love how I’ll Give You Then Sun has such a family focus. Neither Noah or Jude are perfect, their whole family isn’t perfect but it’s realistic and I loved that fact.

So, if like any of the above things in a contemporary novel then I highly recommend giving this book a read.

“Sometimes you think you know things, know things very deeply, only to realize you don’t know a damn thing.”

– Jandy Nelson, I’ll Give You The Sun

5STARRATINGBNM


Have you read I’ll Give You The Sun? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | Bellamy and The Brute

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that spotlights a standalone novel that you loved and would recommend or one that you’re excited to read. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


32419641When Bellamy McGuire is offered a summer job babysitting for the wealthy Baldwin family, she’s reluctant to accept. After all, everyone in town knows about the mysterious happenings at the mansion on the hill—including the sudden disappearance of the Baldwin’s eldest son, Tate. The former football star and Golden Boy of Wellhollow Springs became a hermit at the age of sixteen, and no one has seen or heard from him since. Rumors abound as to why, with whisperings about a strange illness that has caused deformity…turned him into a real-life monster. Bellamy wants to dismiss these rumors as gossip, but when she’s told that if she takes the job she must promise to never, ever visit the 3rd floor of the mansion, she begins to wonder if there really is some dark truth being hidden there.

Tate’s condition may not be the only secret being kept at Baldwin House. There are gaps in the family’s financial history that don’t add up, and surprising connections with unscrupulous characters. At night there are strange noises, unexplained cold drafts, and the electricity cuts out. And then there are the rose petals on the staircase. The rose petals that no one but Bellamy seems to be able to see. The rose petals that form a trail leading right up to the 3rd floor, past the portrait of a handsome young man, and down a dark hallway where she promised she would never, ever go…

As Bellamy works to unravel the mysteries of Baldwin House and uncover the truth about Tate, she realizes that she is in way over her head, in more ways than one. Can her bravery and determination help to right the wrongs of the past and free the young man whose story has captured her heart?

– Goodreads Synopsis (x)

This week I’ve decided to spotlight a standalone that I’ve yet to read but really want to. Bellamy and The Brute is a Beauty and the Beast retelling, which is a huge reason why it caught my eye. I adore Beauty and the Beast retellings! There’s also the fact that I’ve seen nothing but praise for it and it’s a standalone. Coming across a great fantasy standalone is still pretty rare so anytime one is published it almost always goes straight on my TBR. So, yeah, this is definitely one book I’m going to have to read soon.

If anyone is interested it’s currently $4.99 for a Kindle copy through Amazon US.


Have you read Bellamy and The Brute? Did you like it? If not, do you want to read it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | Last Seen Leaving

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that spotlights a standalone novel that you loved and would recommend. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


25036310.jpgFlynn’s girlfriend has disappeared. How can he uncover her secrets without revealing his own?

Flynn’s girlfriend, January, is missing. The cops are asking questions he can’t answer, and her friends are telling stories that don’t add up. All eyes are on Flynn—as January’s boyfriend, he must know something.

But Flynn has a secret of his own. And as he struggles to uncover the truth about January’s disappearance, he must also face the truth about himself.

– Goodreads Synopsis(x)

 

 

I’m running out of standalone novels that I’ve read and haven’t reviewed so this week won’t be a mini review like normal but more of a short recommendation. This book has been on my mind the past few weeks so I figured Standalone Sunday would be the perfect excuse to recommend it.

Last Seen Leaving was my first venture into the YA mystery/thriller genre. I’m someone who has always been more into watching mystery/thriller rather than reading it. I don’t think I’ve had any book surprise me quite like this one did. There were times when I thought I knew what was happening only to be proven completely wrong. I can’t even count the amount of times where I gasped or my jaw dropped. I loved it and it made for an incredible reading experience. However, this book is also more than just a mystery novel. It’s really two stories in one – the mystery of January’s disappearance and Flynn coming to terms with his sexuality. I love how much it explored Flynn’s journey separate from the events as well as within them. Overall this book is an addictive story full of mystery, suspense, and a journey of self-discovery. I highly recommend it to anyone who is even the least bit intrigued!

“There was a corpse in my neighbor’s front yard.”

The first line of this book will always be my favorite. You can check out my full review for Last Seen Leaving here.


Have you read Last Seen Leaving? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | Fangirl

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that spotlights a standalone novel that you loved and would recommend. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


16068905From the author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor & Park.

A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love.

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan…

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words… And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this?

Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

– Goodreads Synopsis (x)

Fangirl is a book I love so much that I have a hard time conveying why in words. This is definitely one of those times where I wish all I had to say is I love this book, read it but that wouldn’t be enough.

This book is one of those books where I automatically connected with the story and the characters, namely the main character. Cath is someone who struggles with change and social anxiety. She would much rather stick with what makes her comfortable, which is her twin sister, their love for Simon Snow, and her fanfiction. So, when she experiences the biggest change of her life, moving away to college, on top of her twin sister’s decision to not room with her it forces her to expand her world in a way she never anticipated.

At its core this book is about learning that change isn’t as scary as it seems and that even though thing’s do change in our lives it doesn’t mean we need to give up the thing’s we’ve always loved. In Cath’s case that happens to be her love for Simon Snow and writing fanfiction. Fangirl also explores a complex family dynamic that isn’t perfect but is beautiful in all of its flaws. I loved Cath’s relationship with her father and her relationship with her sister and how both grew and changed throughout the book. The character development was on point in this book. Also, beyond all of that, there is a fantastic friendship and a very adorable romance. Levi and Cath are still and will always be one of my top ships, they are so cute! Plus, it also brought back all of my memories from my fanfiction writing days. I loved it.

So, if you love any of the above things I mentioned in a good contemporary then I highly recommend this book! 

“In new situations, all the trickiest rules are the ones nobody bothers to explain to you. (And the ones you can’t Google.)”
― Rainbow Rowell, Fangirl

5STARRATINGBNM


Have you read Fangirl? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that features a standalone novel that you loved or would recommend. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


10798416.jpgWho would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?

Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan’s life. Having missed her flight, she’s stuck at JFK airport and late to her father’s second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon-to-be stepmother Hadley’s never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport’s cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he’s British, and he’s sitting in her row.

A long night on the plane passes in the blink of an eye, and Hadley and Oliver lose track of each other in the airport chaos upon arrival. Can fate intervene to bring them together once more?

Quirks of timing play out in this romantic and cinematic novel about family connections, second chances, and first loves. Set over a twenty-four-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver’s story will make you believe that true love finds you when you’re least expecting it.

– Goodreads Synopsis (x)

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight is literally a book that questions if fate is real, how likely you are to meet someone again, and above all else if love at first sight exists. It’s also set over a twenty-four hour period. Sound a bit instalovey? It never felt that way once to me. I’m not big on the trope but the way in which this book was done never broached the cliches of the trope because the character’s never professed their undying love for each other. It was more the development of an attraction in a very cute and unique way.

Hadley and Oliver both meet by coincidence (or is it fate) when Hadley misses her flight to London. He offers to watch her luggage but instead they end up walking together and talking a lot. Somewhere along the way they end up separated again only to find themselves seated together on the plane. They spend the majority of the flight, again, talking. It’s been a while since I read it but I remember their interactions throughout this being so cute. I couldn’t get over it! At the airport in London, Hadley loses track of Oliver and feels sad about it because in a way between the flight and before that they had become friends. She realizes she doesn’t even know his last name, however, and that there’s a big chance she’ll never see him again. Given the fact that she’s rushing to her father’s wedding she kind of puts it to the back of her mind after a while. Does she see Oliver again though? In a city so big is there possibility for them to stumble upon each other again? You’ll have to read to find out.

I love how the author played on fate and the question of love at first sight. And although the book was set in such a short span of time it felt like it was longer, which I attribute to fantastic characters and the author’s writing. There’s great character development in this book. Not as fine tuned as a longer one would be but perfect for what it was. It’s just an all around cute, fluffy, quick read for anyone who needs a pick me up. I highly recommend it! 

Also, it’s being made into a movie and I heard that Robert Sheehan is playing Oliver. You have no idea how excited I am for that because I love this book and Robert is one of my favorite actors. 😍

4STARRATINGBNM


Have you read The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | Chasing Brooklyn

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that features a standalone novel that you loved or would recommend. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


6556855Restless souls and empty hearts

Brooklyn can’t sleep. Her boyfriend, Lucca, died only a year ago, and now her friend Gabe has just died of an overdose. Every time she closes her eyes, Gabe’s ghost is there waiting for her. She has no idea what he wants or why it isn’t Lucca visiting her dreams.

Nico can’t stop. He’s always running, trying to escape the pain of losing his brother, Lucca. But when Lucca’s ghost begins leaving messages, telling Nico to help Brooklyn, emotions come crashing to the surface.

As the nightmares escalate and the messages become relentless, Nico reaches out to Brooklyn. But neither of them can admit that they’re being haunted. Until they learn to let each other in, not one soul will be able to rest.

-Goodreads Synopsis (x)

Chasing Brooklyn is probably one of my all time favorite books. It’s not your typical book because of the fact that it is written in verse. I’m a sucker for books written in verse but haven’t come across very many so when I do they always stick with me.

This one, in particular, is a contemporary romance with quite a bit of paranormal aspects. It’s about this girl, Brooklyn, who is dealing with a lot of grief in her life. She lost her boyfriend in a car wreck and then his best friend, who she was friends with too, died of a drug overdose because of his grief. On top of the depression and grief she’s going through she starts having horrific nightmares, seriously they even freaked me out, that begin to bleed into her waking hours. Then comes along Nico, Lucca’s older brother, who begins to receive messages as well – desperate ones begging him to help Brooklyn. Is Nico able to help her? Is Brooklyn able to get rid of the terrible nightmares? You’ll have to read to find out.

This book is powerful. It may have a bit of a fantastical way of conveying its message given the slightly unrealistic paranormal aspect but it works so perfectly. It’s about grief and how sometimes it can become extremely unhealthy and about how to learn that it’s okay to move on and then begin to move on once you have. Plus, there is a cute romance which isn’t a cure all. The romance doesn’t fix the character’s problems. It’s told in alternating perspectives from Brooklyn’s to Nico’s which I enjoyed a lot. Plus, even though it’s really short and written in verse the way the author conveyed everything made it feel like so much more. If you love powerful stories, romance, and books written in verse then I highly recommend it! 

5STARRATINGBNM


Have you read Chasing Brooklyn? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | This Lullaby

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that features a standalone novel that you loved or would recommend. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


15394334.jpgShe’s got it all figured out.

Or does she? When it comes to relationships, Remy’s got a whole set of rules.

Never get too serious. Never let him break your heart. And never, ever date a musician.

But then Remy meets Dexter, and the rules don’t seem to apply anymore.

Could it be that she’s starting to understand what all those love songs are about?

-Goodreads Synopsis (x)

 

 

This Lullaby was the first book I read by Sarah Dessen, which led to me reading several of her other books. It’s been a long time since I last reread it, over a year, so I apologize if this is a tad all over the place. However, I love this book. The main character Remy is a tad anti-relationship and she has reason to be that way, which I won’t spoil. At least until she meets the adorable Dexter who is almost the complete opposite of her. Not to mention he happens to be in a band. This book is full of an incredible cast of characters who are each flawed in their own ways, no one is perfect. It’s a book about learning that it’s okay to be vulnerable and it’s okay to take chances. Overall it’s a great book with a great message. If you love YA contemporary romances then this book is perfect for you. I highly recommend it!

4STARRATINGBNM


Have you read This Lullaby? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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Standalone Sunday | Smut

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Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan @ bookslayerReads that features a standalone novel that you loved or would recommend. Be sure to check out her blog and original post by clicking on the above link! 😊


29381926What happens when the kink between the pages leads to heat between the sheets?

All Blake Crawford wants is to pass his creative writing course, get his university degree, and take over his dad’s ailing family business. What Amanda Newland wants is to graduate at the top of her class, as well as finally finish her novel and prove to her family that writing is a respectful career.

What Blake and Amanda don’t want is to be paired up with each other for their final project, but that’s exactly what they both get when they’re forced to collaborate on a writing piece. Since Amanda thinks Blake is a pushy asshole (with a panty-melting smirk and British accent) and Blake thinks Amanda has a stick up her ass (though it’s a brilliant ass), they fight tooth and nail until they discover they write well together. They also may find each other really attractive, but that’s neither here nor there.

When their writing project turns out to be a success, the two of them decide to start up a secret partnership using a pen name, infiltrating the self-publishing market in the lucrative genre of erotica. Naturally, with so much heat and passion between the pages, it’s not long before their dirty words become a dirty reality. Sure, they still fight a lot, but at least there’s make-up sex now.

But even as they start to fall hard for each other, will their burgeoning relationship survive if their scandalous secret is exposed? Or are happily-ever-afters just a work of fiction?

-Goodreads Synopsis (x)

Smut by Karina Halle is the perfect book to read if you’re in a slump. How do I know this? Because it got me out of one of my worst slumps, which was caused by It Ends With Us. This book is hilarious, cute, sexy, and everything you could hope for in a romance novel. Plus, if you’re on the search for your next book boyfriend then look no further because Blake Crawford is your next book boyfriend. Trust me. I loved Amanda and Blake. I loved Blake’s younger step-brother. I loved Amanda’s roommate. I just really loved this book. Also, if you enjoy reading books where the characters are writers or aspiring writers then this book is perfect for you. It’s pretty much your all around light hearted NA romance with plenty of steamy scenes. If you’re into that then read it. I promise you won’t regret it!


Have you read Smut? Did you like it? If you participate in Standalone Sunday be sure to link me to your post so I can see it. 😊

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*scheduled post*