Second Chance Sunday – Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

twenty

 

Title: Twenty Boy Summer [Amazon]
Author: Sarah Ockler [website]
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Genre: Contemporary
Source/Type: Purchased/Paperback
Stars: 5 of 5

 

Publisher Description:
“Don’t worry, Anna. I’ll tell her, okay? Just let me think about the best way to do it.”
“Okay.”
“Promise me? Promise you won’t say anything?”
“Don’t worry.” I laughed. “It’s our secret, right?”

According to her best friend Frankie, twenty days in ZanzibarBay is the perfect opportunity to have a summer fling, and if they meet one boy ever day, there’s a pretty good chance Anna will find her first summer romance. Anna lightheartedly agrees to the game, but there’s something she hasn’t told Frankie—she’s already had that kind of romance, and it was with Frankie’s older brother, Matt, just before his tragic death one year ago.

My Thoughts:
GAH I flipping love this book! No seriously, I’m insanely in love with this book. It is such a great take on first love and loss and moving on. I honestly can’t stand how good it is and I can’t say enough how much I love it. From Anna to Frankie to Sam and to Matt(who we knew SO little of), I can’t find one single thing to complain about because I got every character, understood where they were coming from and why they were acting the way they were. Their story is real and you feel that coming off the pages.

Twenty Boy Summer is about Anna. She is best friends with Frankie and Matt who are brother in sister. Anna has been in love with Matt for as long as she could remember and all she wanted was for him to notice her. When he finally does Anna is on cloud nine. Being with Matt is everything she thought it would be, they just don’t know how to tell Frankie. Deciding it would be best coming from Matt they keep their romance a secret and then the unthinkable happens, Matt dies and Anna is left alone with not only the burden of their secret love and the grief of his family, but with the daunting task of what-ifs and the possibility of moving on. Spending the summer in California with Frankie Anna has to figure out if letting go of Matt is the same as forgetting him and just what their time together, although short, meant to her.

When I read this book the first time there was one sentence that jumped out at me and I think sums up the whole book. “I’m fine. Thanks for not asking.” That right there is what completely broke me because Anna wasn’t fine. She wasn’t fine at all and no one asked because no one thought they had to.  Anna lost something no one knew she had. She had to deal with grieving on her own, had to push aside her pain, her hopes, her loss of love, and that is what I related to. Not because I have ever been in Anna’s place, but because I can’t even imagine what that would be like. One day you are on top of the world and the next everything has been shattered and the person you were is no more. It killed me. Completely killed me! And that is why I think I loved Anna. Not once did she complain. Not once did she let her feelings come first. She was there for Frankie every single time and when Frankie couldn’t do the same I wanted to throw something. Anna did everything she could to hold herself together. Anna let go to one of the most important moments in her life and not being able to have her best friend there to support her hurt me. And that is a testament to Ockler and her talent for writing. She gets it and therefore her readers get it.

I have read Twenty Boy Summer twice now and it has affected me the exact same both times. Sarah Ockler has written a book that will completely tear your heart out of your chest, stomp on it, and then mend it slowly with every tiny piece being handled with care. You will go on the same journey of loss as Anna and in the long run you will grow and be a better person from it. And that’s all I have to say about that.

Continue Reading

JCrew Style

To say I have become obsessed with JCrew clothes and accessories is kind of an understatement. Ever since they came out with adorable iPhone cases, Pixie Pants, and the best ballet Flats ever, oh, and did I mention all the adorable anchor stuff and Sperry’s?!, I have been hooked. I try not to spend too much time browsing the site ( just “spent” $400.00 just the other day) but I couldn’t help creating some looks using all JCrew items. Sounds easy, but it was really hard to narrow it down.

Look #1

JCrew Look #1

Look #2

JCrew Look #2

Look #3

JCrew Look #3

Look #4

JCrew Look #4

Yup, with unlimited resources, this would so be my closet! What would your outfit from JCrew look like?

Continue Reading

Printed Pants

I received a message from a friend asking about printed pants. She asked if I thought they were still in, what pattern was the best for summer and color choice. Well let me tell you that I have recently become a huge fan of the printed pants and have even branched out to animal print (seen here). I have several different types of printed pants in a variety of colors and am slowly working on getting some shorts into the equation. Basically I grabbed a few options of the styles I’m lusting over (and by no means is this all that is out there) and created three different looks to go with them. This is for you dear reader:

PRINTED PANTS

Printed Bottoms

Black and White Graphic

B/W Print

Geometric Shorts

Shorts

Textured Print

Texture Print

How do you wear a pair of printed pants?

Continue Reading

Review: Requiem – Lauren Oliver

requiem

 

Title: Requiem(Delirium Series) [Amazon]
Author: Lauren Oliver [website]
Publisher: Harper Teen
Genre: Contemporary Dystopian
Source/Type: Borrowed/ARC
Stars: 5 of 5

 

Publisher Description:
After rescuing Julian from a death sentence, Lena and her friends fled to the Wilds. But the Wilds are no longer a safe haven—pockets of rebellion have opened throughout the country, and the government cannot deny the existence of Invalids. Regulators now infiltrate the borderlands to stamp out the rebels, and as Lena navigates the increasingly dangerous terrain, her best friend, Hana, lives a safe, loveless life in Portland as the fiancée of the young mayor.

Maybe we are driven crazy by our feelings.

Maybe love is a disease, and we would be better off without it.

But we have chosen a different road.

And in the end, that is the point of escaping the cure: We are free to choose.

We are even free to choose the wrong thing.

My Thoughts:
I was lucky, SUPER lucky and got to read this book back in November when a friend lent me her Advanced Readers Copy. To say I devoured it would be a huge understatement.  I read the whole book in probably less than 8 hours and it has taken me 3 months to get my thoughts on paper, 3 months to realize it is over, 3 months to accept that Lena’s story is done(well until the TV show starts!).  Why has it taken me so long? Truth: I’m devastated it’s over. I loved this series with everything I have and when I turned that last page and read those last words I was slightly heartbroken because it was an ending. Lauren Oliver had crafted such a deep, emotionally story for these characters and I was sad to see them go. From the first page of Delirium to the last page of Requiem I was invested and to say goodbye was hard. But every good beginning must have an end and I’m thrilled to say I’m happy that Requiem was that end.

Much like Delirium we get to see both Lena and Hana’s lives, but this time from both girl’s eyes and not just from Lena’s perspective. Both girls have chosen different paths in their lives and that is evident almost immediately because neither one of them is the same girl they were at the beginning of the series. Lena is much harder than she was. She has seen things she never imagined she would back in the days she was with Alex. She has had her heart broken and has been thrown for a loop. She feels things more than she ever could have imagined when she left Portland. And then you have Hana. Hana has been living a loveless life in Portland with guilt slowly eating her alive. Once full of life and energy Hana is now a drone fighting her natural urge to feel things. She is torn and restless and yearns for the life that she could have had. Both girls are in two different places in their lives but suddenly on the same path which is about to coverage right while a war is about to begin and everything is about to change.

Amazing really. Requiem is an amazing ending to an amazing series. Each book gave me a different feeling when I was reading it and I think the anxious feeling I got from Requiem was appropriate. It was more action packed and tense then the other two books, but had a deep level of emotion as well. I completely understood Lena’s motives and Hana’s feelings(or lack there off) and why it led each of them to take the actions they did. Lena was stronger than she ever was and Hana was the weak one which in reality was always the case no matter how it appeared. The dynamic between both girls was really spot on.

What I really loved about this book was how you could see the complete growth and maturity of Lena. Oliver managed to show how she became a woman in a subtle yet blatantly apparent way and that was a highlight of this final book. Gone was the uncertain Lena with the school girl like crush on Alex and the envious feelings about her best friend’s life. She did what few others had done, she ran and stood up for what she believed in and she was a better person for it.

Bravo Lauren Oliver for opening my eyes to this world and thank you for letting me spend time with these amazing creations. Much like I felt reading that final word, I leave with a smile on my face and tear in my eye.

Continue Reading

Character Dress Up

So I had a request from my friend Angie to dress some of my favorite characters. She mentioned dressing the little girl on my favorite(depends on the day really) soap so because I was going to do that I dressed her hot daddy. From there I went to Emily on Revenge because money wouldn’t be an object. And finally I had to do someone from a book and who better but Anna Oliphant from Anna and the French Kiss.

patrick & emma drake

patrick & emma drake by andiabcs featuring a x armani exchange

emily thorne

emily thorne by andiabcs featuring high heels

anna oliphant

anna oliphant by andiabcs featuring a clear hair care

So how’d I do? How would you dress some of your favorite fictional characters? (I’m still not convinced that Etienne isn’t real but don’t tell anyone that. ;-))

Continue Reading