Losing Hope — Book Review


The Deets

author: Colleen Hoover

released: July 8, 2013

format: e-book, hardcover

pages: 336 pages

publisher: Atria Books

Read: July 2 – 3

Book Pages: Amazon.com • Goodreads.com •  Author’s Website  

Book Type: NA, YA, contemporary romance, realistic fiction

The Down-low

In the follow-up to Colleen Hoover’s #1 New York Times bestseller Hopeless, the charming and irresistible Dean Holder tells the passionate story that has melted thousands of hearts.

In Hopeless, Sky left no secret unearthed, no feeling unshared, and no memory forgotten, but Holder’s past remained a mystery.

Still haunted by the little girl he let walk away, Holder has spent his entire life searching for her in an attempt to finally rid himself of the crushing guilt he has felt for years. But he could not have anticipated that the moment they reconnect, even greater remorse would overwhelm him…

Sometimes in life, if we wish to move forward, we must first dig deep into our past and make amends. In Losing Hope, bestselling author Colleen Hoover reveals what was going on inside Holder’s head during all those hopeless moments—and whether he can gain the peace he desperately needs. (From Goodreads.com)

Why You Should Buy It

If you thought it couldn’t get any better than Colleen Hoover’s Hopeless, you were wrong.  This book is the epitome of grief, love, healing, and coming-of-age.  Hoover’s ability to craft a story so devastating and beautiful is a rare and precious talent.

My Thoughts

*I received this e-book in exchange for an honest review via Netgalley.*

“All those nights you held me and just let me cry . . . you have no idea how many
times you’ve already saved me.”

I’m not a note-taker when it comes to book reviews.  I don’t like to lose the rhythm I get when I’m reading by writing something down.  And normally I don’t do play-by-plays, because A) I think my review style is more of an overall impression (the kind of reviews I like to read) and B) I don’t want to accidentally spoil anything.  However, this book made me stop and write down things.  I have no idea why, but I felt compelled to make notes.

The first note I made: “Well, that has to be a record for book-induced tears — not even a whole chapter in.  Someone tell me WHY I decided to start reading this in a public place!?”

And it goes on from there.  I thought I knew what to expect from this book.  I mean, we’d already seen everything from Sky’s point of view.  I expected it to be very much like This Girl, which was more of a fill-in-the blanks book (which I loved! You can read my review here.)

Boy, was I wrong!  This book honestly could have been a stand-alone.  The overlap was minimal and was in all the right places.  For the first time in a series, I did NOT re-read Hopeless, and I’m glad I didn’t.  I got to see Holder’s perspective with fresh eyes.  And I loved every.single.minute. of it.  This book was heart-breaking in a much different way from Hopeless.  Sure, we got the specifics of Holder’s grief, but in Losing Hope we really get inside his head a see what kind of turmoil is going on that leads him to where he was when he met Sky.

I loved seeing the best friend (Daniel) and how he interacted with Holder.  Every single new character (and even those we saw before) were perfect for the role they played in the story.  Colleen perfectly created characters that helped drive the story where it needed to go.

“I let everything I’m seeing sink in because this is what I want to remember the most.  I want to remember exactly what she looks like the second she hands over a piece of her heart.”

For me, the best parts of this book weren’t the intimate moments.  I mean, I already experienced those.  No, for me the intricate details of Holder’s emotions, and what led him to make the decisions he did, not only helped me understand his character better, but really completed the story for me.

You’ll find yourself holding your breath, mopping up tears with industrial size tissues, and even laughing at the power of a good friend.  But most of all, your heart will break for these two precious souls as they knit the pieces back together.

“Time has completely stopped, and all I’m thinking about while we kiss is how this is what saves people. Moments like these with people like her are what make all the sufferings worth it.”


Five Six out of Five Stars


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Book Blitz & GIVEAWAY — Shine Not Burn by Elle Casey


Shine Not Burn by Elle Casey
Publication date: June 30th 2013
Genre: NA Romance

IT HAPPENED IN VEGAS. I can’t be held responsible. Things that happen there are supposed to stay there, right? Right? Yeeeah. Not so much. … Andie’s just days away from tying the knot, but there’s just ooooone little glitch. Apparently, she’s already married. Or someone with her name is married to a guy out in Oregon of all places, and the courthouse won’t issue her a marriage license until it’s all cleared up. Tripping her way through cow pies and country songs to meet up with a man who gets around places on horseback is her very last idea of how to have a good time, but if she’s going to get married, make partner at the firm, and have two point five kids before she’s thirty-five, she needs to get to the bottom of this snafu and fix it quick … before her fiance finds out and everything she’s been working toward goes up in flames.

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About the Author

Elle Casey is a full-time writer of New Adult and Young Adult titles in several genres, including romance, urban fantasy, sci-fi dystopian, and action-adventure. She’s an American girl who’s been living in southern France with her husband and three children since 2010. She loves chatting with her readers, so feel free to drop her a line.
Connect with Elle

Inside the Author’s Head

1. You started out writing in YA. What brought you over to New Adult?

I’ve been a reader of new adult titles even before they were called ‘new adult’. And I love the age group it covers. 18-30 years old is such a great time in life, isn’t it? I mean, it’s when you sow your wild oats, learn about yourself in the context of the whole world and not just your family and friends; it’s where you figure out who you’re going to be. The adult-formative years I guess you could call it. And the sex part is awesome too, I won’t lie. You can only get so sexy with a YA book, so as a writer, I have to hold back. In NA, I don’t have to do that. It can be passionate, raw, sometimes awkward and full of bad decisions, but it can be REAL. I guess that’s what I love about NA most … it’s raw and real.

2. You have a lot of novels in the urban fantasy genre. What interested you in writing romances?

Romances were my first love. Well … aside from Disney fairy tales. But then again, those are all romances aren’t they? They’ve got misunderstood heroines – beaten down by others – who are looking for love and understanding, finally finding it in the hands of a guy on horseback. I’ve read hundreds of romances in my time, from every publisher out there, including indie authors of course. It doesn’t matter how many I read, I always want more. Since I love them as a reader, I really wanted to try my hand as a writer in the genre. I have so many romance stories simmering in my brain right now, at this point, it’s like therapy just getting them out of there. I have 6 romances planned for the rest of the year and lots more for 2014. I’m going to be very busy. But I’m happy being busy because it’s very important to me that I keep hunger readers fed. I live to write for voracious readers.

3. What’s your favorite part of being a writer?

My readers. Hands down, it’s the readers. I get emails and messages every day from devoted fans, and I can’t express how much that means to me. There are readers out there who’ve set up book blogs just because they were so excited about my books, people who make it a point to promote my books on their Facebook pages and Twitter just because they want to share the reader-love, and whole families who are reading my series and discussing them at dinner. It just blows my mind that people would be so generous and so involved in my made-up worlds. Recently I had a fan dress as one of my characters at a comic con event. I also occasionally get a very heart-warming message about how my writing has changed someone’s life – caused them to finally start reading or to go to college. To me, that’s the sign of a life well-lived – that I’ve somehow inspired another person to reach for something they want in life that they thought they didn’t have a chance at having before.

4. Why do you live in France?

I came here for a vacation with my husband in 2007 and we both fell in love with it. After the economy took a downturn and my husband lost his job, we started talking about simplifying our lives and focusing on different things. That’s when the idea of living in a foreign country came up. We wanted to do it for one year, to give our three kids the opportunity to experience another culture and learn another language while also refocusing our grown-up lives to get away from the rampant materialism that had kind of taken over everything. And we loved France, so it seemed like the logical place to go. Once we were here, we fell in love more deeply and decided to stay indefinitely. We still love our home country of course, but for now, we’re content with a very laid back life in the south of France. What can I say … we love wine and cheese A LOT!



Now comes the fun part!  Today’s giveaway is for a copy of Shine Not Burn, thanks to the author and Xpresso Book Tours.  Please be sure to complete each item on the list BEFORE you click it, as they will be checked prior to giving out the prizes.  Good luck!

Click HERE to win
a Rafflecopter giveaway

This contest will be open June 30 through July 12 (12 a.m. eastern time).  There is no purchase necessary and the contest is void where prohibited.  Open to & US/Int!  

This promotional post is affiliated with Xpresso Book Tours


Indie Spotlight: J.A. Templeton


Today’s Indie Spotlight features J.A. Templeton.  Julia Templeton is an adult romance author who has written two series for young adults and new adults under the pen name J.A. Templeton.  While I haven’t gotten to read Thin White Line (it’s in my TBR folder on the Kindle now!), I absolutely LOVED her MacKinnon Curse series.  The best part — The prequel novella (The MacKinnon Curse) and the first book (The Deepest Cut) are both FREE on Amazon!

The Books

Young Adult Series – The MacKinnon Curse

The MacKinnon Curse (0.5)

Novella written in Ian’s POV.

Ian MacKinnon returns to Scotland after two years abroad and discovers the town of Braemar is no longer the safe haven he remembers. As strange events begin to unfold in the forest beyond the castle where he lives, Ian grows more concerned about those he cares about the most…and with good reason.

The Deepest Cut (1)

Sixteen-year-old Riley Williams has been able to see ghosts since the car crash that took her mother’s life and shattered her family. Guilt-ridden over the belief that she’s somehow responsible for her mom’s death, Riley is desperate to see her mother’s elusive spirit to gain her forgiveness.

When her father moves the family to Scotland so they can all start over, Riley believes her life couldn’t get worse––that is until the ghost of nineteen-year-old Ian MacKinnon catches her purposely cutting herself. An uneasy truce quickly turns into friendship, and soon Riley’s falling hard for Ian.

Riley believes her gift could help Ian end the curse that has kept him tied to the land for centuries, but that would mean letting him go forever and she’s not sure she is strong enough to do that. As if her life wasn’t complicated enough, the spirit of the woman who killed Ian returns and she’ll stop at nothing to keep Riley from helping Ian find eternal peace.

The Haunted (2)

After battling a malevolent ghost that held the spirit of her friend Ian MacKinnon bound to the land for two hundred years, sixteen-year-old reluctant psychic, Riley Williams, felt as if she was finally easing into her new life in Scotland.

Or so she thought.

Laria, the spirit of the witch who had cursed Ian wants revenge for Riley’s interference and she’s bringing along friends—dark entities who thrive on evil.

The one bright spot in Riley’s world is Ian’s descendent, Kade MacKinnon, who could easily be Ian’s modern day twin. The parallels between the two guys are undeniable. As Riley’s relationship with Kade blossoms, she begins to realize Laria has grown in her power since their last confrontation—a power that could very well manipulate the living just as effectively as the dead.

Please note: THE HAUNTED is a mature YA. Due to strong language, mention of alcohol and drug use, cutting, and sexual content, it is not recommended for younger teens.

The Departed (3)

Psychic? Check.

Haunted by a malevolent spirit who is making life a living hell? Check.

In love with a smoking hot Scot, who is the reincarnation of the man creepy malevolent ghost murdered two centuries before? Check.

Friends and family think you’re losing your mind? Check.

Welcome to the life of sixteen-year-old Riley Williams, whose life hasn’t been the same since she moved to Scotland and met the spirit of Ian MacKinnon, and Laria, the witch who murdered him.

Since helping Ian cross over to the other side, Riley became Laria’s target, and now the witch has made it clear she wants her dead. Laria has already possessed Riley’s brother and friends, and Riley is starting to feel a little strange herself. She just hopes that she can stop Laria before the ghost takes everything from her. With her boyfriend Kade, her brother, and her buddies by her side, Riley is in for the fight of her life.

New Adult Series – Thin White Line

Thin White Line

Good girl gone bad…

Kenzie’s picture perfect California life is turned upside down when her father leaves the family for another woman. Within months, she goes from private school and posh beachside living to public school and a sub-par apartment in rainy Washington.

On her first day at her new school, Kenzie is reunited with her cousin Brooke, a rebellious senior who sings in a popular rock band with two of the sexiest men Kenzie has ever met.

Kenzie is soon swept into a world of partying, concerts and tattooed bad boy rockers. Just when she starts to feel like she finally belongs, a single night and a fateful decision changes everything.

New Adult Contemporary Romance
**Mature Content Warning** This book is recommended for ages 17+ due to sexual situations, drug use and strong language.

About the Author


J.A. Templeton is the YA pen name for adult romance author Julia Templeton. She loves history, travel, and reading in every subgenre of romance, especially young and new adult.  Here’s a little info from her website!

I wrote my first young adult novel fifteen years ago, and took a slight detour from writing YA to publish nineteen adult romances.  Now, I’m following my heart and writing in the genre I’ve been passionate about for so long, and about characters who don’t exactly fit into any specific box.

Aside from writing and reading, I’m obsessed with history, love research, traveling, hanging out with family, and riding motorcycles with my hubby, my first and only love, who stole my heart when I was fourteen and he was eighteen (yes, he robbed the cradle).

I love to hear from readers.  If you feel so inclined, please fill out my contact form or send an email to ja@jatempleton.com.  I respond to all emails.

Connect with J.A.

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Buy Her Books

The MacKinnon Curse Series

*NOTE* The MacKinnon Curse and The Deepest Cut are now free!  Click any cover for more information.

The Thin White Line Series

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