Pushing the Limits By Katie McGarry

Title: Pushing the Limits

Author: Katie McGarry

First Published: 1st July 2012

Publisher: Mira Ink

Blurb:

“I won’t tell anyone, Echo. I promise.” Noah tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did. Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins? His dark brown eyes shifted to my covered arms. “You didn’t do that-did you? It was done to you?” No one ever asked that question. They stared. They whispered. They laughed. But they never asked.

So wrong for each other…and yet so right.

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with “freaky” scars on her arms. Even Echo can’t remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal. But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo’s world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she’ll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again. (From Goodreads, 12th May 2014).

Review:

Firstly, before I begin this review I have a confession to make…it has been quite a few months since I read this book and although I remember most of what happens I am a little hazy on the details. For that I appologise.

However, I am still going to review this book as I really did enjoy it and know I will be getting the companion novels at some point in the future (maybe when my TBR pile is slightly smaller!) ‘Pushing The Limits’ presents us with two protagonists who are dealing with a lot for their ages, however, sometimes finding another who is going through a rough time is what you need to get through it. Echo is dealing with forgotten memories. Noah is dealing with the death of his parents. Both are dealing with high school…and a persistent school councilor.

This is a novel that deals with difficult issues whilst also being very readable and not too ‘dark’ making it fantastic for teens and young adults…and adults too. We have a little bit of everything in this novel that makes it very real and raw. Katie McGarry captures human emotions impeccably and gives readers an adventure through the eyes of two teenagers lives. A realistic and gripping novel. Highly recommended.

4.5 out of 5

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The Scent of Lemon Leaves By Clara Sanchez

Title: The Scent of Lemon Leaves

Author: Clara Sanchez

First Published: 2010

Publisher: Alma Books

Blurb:

Having left her job and boyfriend, 30-year-old Sandra decides to stay in a village on the Costa Blanca in order to take stock of her life and find a new direction. She befriends Karin and Fredrik, an elderly Norwegian couple, who provide her with stimulating company and take the place of the grandparents she never had. However, when she meets Julián, a former concentration-camp inmate who has just returned to Europe from Argentina, she discovers that all is not what it seems, and finds herself involved in a perilous quest for the truth as well as a powerful account of self-discovery and an exploration of history and redemption. (From Goodreads, 12th May 2014).

Review:

“The Scent of Lemon Leaves’ was a novel I picked up after remembering a friend buying it a couple of years ago at the local book store, and since then it has sat on my Kindle patiently waiting. So I tapped it. It opened and I began reading.

I was surprised how quickly I was sucked into this novel and began to live the life of Sandra. Sandra is a character that many of us recognise – an individual in a ‘time out’ from life, pondering where she will go next. It is a reminder that life does not follow the plan many of us wish for. However, soon Sandra finds herself in a situation that is so peculiar that one must read this book to learn about it. Furthermore, Julian, an elderly survivor of World War II takes a last journey attempting to right the wrongs inflicted against him.

This is a novel that is about understanding why we live our lives, what we grip onto to allow us to continue, what is important enough to live for. In addition, ‘The Scent of Lemon Leaves’ has an air of mystery and an adventure which intertwines human fallibility with human strength. A fantastic novel twisting history, power, loss, youth, and death.

4 out of 5

Emma’s Secret By Steena Holmes

Title: Emma’s Secret (Finding Emma #2)

Author: Steena Holmes

First Published: 25th June 2013

Publisher: Amazon Publishing/Self Published

Blurb: Please click for more, however, be aware this is the second book in the series and therefore this has spoilers

Finding Emma By Steena Holmes

Title: Finding Emma

Author: Steena Holmes

First Published: March 14th 2012

Publisher: Amazon Publishing/Self Published

Blurb:

Megan sees her daughter Emma everywhere. She’s the little girl standing in the supermarket, the child waiting for the swings at the playground, the girl with ice cream dripping down her face. But it’s never Emma.

Emma’s been missing for two years.

Unable to handle the constant heartache of all the false sightings, Megan’s husband threatens to walk away unless Megan can agree to accept Emma is gone. Megan’s life and marriage is crumbling all around her and she realizes she may have to do the thing she dreads most: move on.

When Megan takes a photo of a little girl with an elderly couple at the town fair, she believes it to be her missing daughter. Unable to let go, she sets in motion a sequence of events that could destroy both families lives. (From Goodreads, 25th May 2014)

Review:
‘Finding Emma’ is a novel that struck me. It has reminded me of other novels, which unfortunately I cannot remember the name of, however, although I found this novel predictable it was still highly enjoyable. The book was well written and portrayed human emotions fantastically. This is a novel, along with it’s sequel ‘Emma’s Secret’ which I would recommend to individuals who want a quick read that is not overly complicated but has a gripping element, whilst also having a human element that makes the novel seem so believable.
A series to enjoy, especially this summer!
3.5 out of 5

The Shock of the Fall By Nathan Filer

Title: The Shock of the Fall

Author: Nathan Filer

First Published: May 8th 2013

Publisher: Harper Collins

Blurb:

‘I’ll tell you what happened because it will be a good way to introduce my brother. His name’s Simon. I think you’re going to like him. I really do. But in a couple of pages he’ll be dead. And he was never the same after that.’ (From Goodreads, 25th May 2014)

Review:

‘The Shock of the Fall’ is a novel that is best to go into without knowing much about it, so I am going to keep this review short and sweet. ‘The Shock of the Fall’ is Nathan Filer’s debut novel and takes on the complexities of describing the world through the eyes of an individual with mental health problems. This novel interweaves the past and present to build a picture, a movie, a story of one families life. This is a novel that is elegantly written and captures real people. Nathan Filer makes you feel for his characters and understands humans more than most, no wonder this novel won Costa Book of the Year 2013.

This is a novel I highly recommend.

4.5 out of 5