Debut Review: Just for Click – Kara McDowell

Debut Review: Just for Click – Kara McDowellJust For Clicks by Kara McDowell
Published by Amberjack
Published: February 19, 2019
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
five-stars

Mommy blogs are great . . . unless the blog happens to belong to your mom.

Twin sisters Claire & Poppy are accidental social media stars thanks to Mom going viral when they were babies. Now, as teens, they're expected to contribute by building their own brand. Attending a NY fashion week and receiving fan mail is a blast. Fending off internet trolls and would-be kidnappers? Not so much. Poppy embraces it. Claire hates it. Will anybody accept her as "just Claire"? And what should Claire do about Mom's old journals? The handwritten entries definitely don't sound like Mom's perfect blog persona. Worse, one of them divulges a secret that leaves Claire wondering what else in her life might be nothing but a sham . . .

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

There is no denying we live in an internet famous world. We have YouTube and Instagram and Snap Chat. We have blogs and Facebook and Twitter. People want to make their mark and they try to become internet famous overnight. So when I read the description for Just for Clicks I immediately wanted to pick it up because we never think of the people that are brought into internet fame just because their parents are internet famous. I was intrigued by the idea and I can say happily that Kara McDowell did not let me down. This book is fantastic guys! Like, blow you away, fantastic!

Just for Clicks is the story of Poppy and Claire, twins that become internet famous thanks to their mom’s blog going viral when they were babies. Now teenagers, they must continue to build their brand at all times. But as one twin starts to hate all the notoriety more and more she must figure if she should continue doing with makes her mom and sister happy or if she should finally do what makes her happy. And what to do about her mom’s handwritten journals that contain stuff that wasn’t on the blog.

The thing I loved most about this book is that it made me think a lot about social media. I follow a couple of Instagram accounts that have been using their children to do ads for different brands and it got me thinking about what their lives will be like when they are older. Currently the choice is being taken away from them because they are basically too little to decide. But what will happen when they are Poppy and Claire’s age? When they want to have a life of their own outside of the public eye? When it becomes a job and not fun? Those where the things that jumped out to me most when I was reading Poppy and Claire’s story and Claire’s struggle with it all.

The other thing I loved about this book is the unexpected turns it took. As I was reading it I would read a part and be shocked that what I read happened because I never expected the story to go that way or for something like that to be unveiled. It was all done so naturally it took my completely off guard and I loved it. It made the reading experience all the more enjoyable.

Just for Clicks is not at all what I was expecting. When I picked it up I thought I was going to get a story about twin girls and their ‘whoa is me’ attitude. Instead I got a deeper story about being put on a path you didn’t choose and what that means when it is your choice and who it affects. This book is A+, top notch and I 100% recommend you snag a copy and read it. I think you will be pleasantly surprised that it is more than you expect going in. Read it!

Continue Reading

Debut Author Take Over – Just for Clicks by Kara McDowell

Next on my journey of Debut Books I have Kara McDowell on the blog. Her book, Just for Clicks is coming out in a little under two weeks and it is fantastic! I seriously loved this one. Since the book is about twins that are brought into the social media spotlight because of a choice from there mother Kara is sharing her inspiration behind this must read book!

~~~~~~~~~~~~

I’ve been following the same woman online for the last decade.

(More than a third of my life!)

I can’t decide if this is horrifying, or not.

(It probably is.)

Although, truth be told, keeping up with this woman hasn’t been much work. Ten years ago, I faithfully read every blog post. Now, the highlights are available to me as I scroll Instagram. Through almost no effort on my part, I can tell you the cities she’s lived in, the style of wedding dress she wore, her favorite restaurants, the places she buys her clothes.

Even more bizarre, I can tell you the names of all five of her children. (Not to mention their birthdates, favorite colors, Halloween costumes, Christmas presents, and favorite family vacations.)

As a test, I just Googled the name of her eldest daughter. Without even scrolling, I see fourteen pictures of her childhood, including a newborn picture still in the hospital bassinet. (It’s adorable, by the way.)

This young girl is a child star, but not. She is famous for being born, for looking cute, for knowing how to pose for a camera. An internet starlet before any of us knew what that term meant. Unlike the Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsens of the world, however, this girl does not go to work in the morning and come home at the end of the day. She’s eating ice cream at the park and playing with her siblings and riding her scooter. The work is her life, and vice versa. And thanks to careful editing, her parents are making more money off these breezy, carefree images than most of us can even comprehend.

I won’t lie: in the first half of this decade, I also had a mommy blog. (Didn’t we all?) One day, shortly after the birth of my second son, I was thinking about my blog and the pictures and stories I’d shared, and I had two distinct thoughts.

What if my blog had a huge following?

and

What if I never stopped writing about my kids?

The next day I hung up my mommy blogger hat and started writing JUST FOR CLICKS, which imagines the lives of two teenagers raised in the internet limelight. One of them loves it, the other resents it.

This story is inspired by so many things: my blog and my kids. This woman and her family, as well as dozens of others just like her. It’s inspired by the hateful, disgusting comments written not only about these women, but also about their children.

But most of all, it’s inspired by the question: What’s going to happen when all these blogger babies become teenagers?

~~~~~~~~~~~~

Debut Author Take Over – Just for Clicks by Kara McDowellJust For Clicks by Kara McDowell
Published by Amberjack
Published: February 19, 2019
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads

Mommy blogs are great . . . unless the blog happens to belong to your mom.

Twin sisters Claire & Poppy are accidental social media stars thanks to Mom going viral when they were babies. Now, as teens, they're expected to contribute by building their own brand. Attending a NY fashion week and receiving fan mail is a blast. Fending off internet trolls and would-be kidnappers? Not so much. Poppy embraces it. Claire hates it. Will anybody accept her as "just Claire"? And what should Claire do about Mom's old journals? The handwritten entries definitely don't sound like Mom's perfect blog persona. Worse, one of them divulges a secret that leaves Claire wondering what else in her life might be nothing but a sham . . .

~~~~~~~~~~~~

About Kara McDowell

Born in the mountains and raised in the desert, Kara McDowell spent her childhood swimming, boating, and making up stories in her head. As the middle of five children, Kara entertained her family on long road trips by reading short mystery stories out loud and forcing everyone to guess the conclusion. After graduating from Arizona State University with a BA in English Literature, Kara worked as a freelance writer. Now she writes young adult novels from her home in Arizona, where she lives with her husband and three young sons.

JUST FOR CLICKS is Kara's debut novel.

Make sure you pick up a copy of Just For Clicks, in stores February 19th!

 

Continue Reading

What I’ve Read – Debut Authors

I’ve mentioned recently that I am going to be working with some debut authors from the Class of 2k19 over the next few months. In preparation for them guest posting on my blog I have been trying to read their books. So far I have finished 3 and have started the 4th and 5th of a list of 6 books I currently have access to. Why am I telling you this? Because the 3 that I have read I have given 4-5 stars! These debuts are awesome guys and I want to make sure you know that and get them on your TBR!

Read

What I’ve Read – Debut AuthorsMatch Me If You Can by Tiana Smith
Published by Swoon Reads
Published: January 8, 2019
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
four-stars

Mia's best friend Robyn is known for her matchmaking skills, which is perfect, because homecoming is just around the corner. But Robyn refuses to set Mia up with the guy of her dreams, which forces Mia to take matters into her own hands. She uses Robyn's matchmaking service to make sure popular Vince Demetrius falls for her.

Vince asks her out, but Mia doesn't count on Logan, the persistent school newspaper photographer who seems to like her out of the blue. Now she has to choose between Vince - the guy she knows is right for her - and Logan, who insists that she give him a chance. And she needs to make sure Robyn doesn't find out that Mia's been matchmaking behind her back.

Mia has two weeks before homecoming. Can she fix the mess she made or will she have to kiss her perfect match goodbye forever?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

What I’ve Read – Debut AuthorsJust For Clicks by Kara McDowell
Published by Amberjack
Published: January 29, 2019
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
five-stars

Mommy blogs are great . . . unless the blog happens to belong to your mom.

Twin sisters Claire & Poppy are accidental social media stars thanks to Mom going viral when they were babies. Now, as teens, they're expected to contribute by building their own brand. Attending a NY fashion week and receiving fan mail is a blast. Fending off internet trolls and would-be kidnappers? Not so much. Poppy embraces it. Claire hates it. Will anybody accept her as "just Claire"? And what should Claire do about Mom's old journals? The handwritten entries definitely don't sound like Mom's perfect blog persona. Worse, one of them divulges a secret that leaves Claire wondering what else in her life might be nothing but a sham . . .

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

What I’ve Read – Debut AuthorsIf You're Out There by Katy Loutzenhiser
Published by Balzer + Bray
Published: March 5, 2019
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
four-stars

“Funny, engrossing, and one-of-a-kind. If You’re Out There completely swept me away.” —Becky Albertalli, New York Times bestselling author of Leah on the Offbeat

Part whip-smart suspense tale, part touching story of friendship, this is an extraordinary debut about a determined teen trying to solve a mystery no one else believes in.

After Zan’s best friend moves to California, she is baffled and crushed when Priya suddenly ghosts. Worse, Priya’s social media has turned into a stream of ungrammatical posts chronicling a sunny, vapid new life that doesn’t sound like her at all.

Everyone tells Zan not to be an idiot: Let Priya do her reinvention thing and move on. But until Zan hears Priya say it, she won’t be able to admit that their friendship is finished.

It’s only when she meets Logan, the compelling new guy in Spanish class, that Zan begins to open up about her sadness, her insecurity, her sense of total betrayal. And he’s just as willing as she is to throw himself into the investigation when everyone else thinks her suspicions are crazy.

Then a clue hidden in Priya’s latest selfie introduces a new, deeply disturbing possibility:

Maybe Priya isn’t just not answering Zan’s emails.

Maybe she can’t.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Currently Reading

What I’ve Read – Debut AuthorsThe Fever King by Victoria Lee
Published by Skyscape
Published: March 1, 2019
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads

In the former United States, sixteen-year-old Noam Álvaro wakes up in a hospital bed, the sole survivor of the viral magic that killed his family and made him a technopath. His ability to control technology attracts the attention of the minister of defense and thrusts him into the magical elite of the nation of Carolinia.

The son of undocumented immigrants, Noam has spent his life fighting for the rights of refugees fleeing magical outbreaks—refugees Carolinia routinely deports with vicious efficiency. Sensing a way to make change, Noam accepts the minister’s offer to teach him the science behind his magic, secretly planning to use it against the government. But then he meets the minister’s son—cruel, dangerous, and achingly beautiful—and the way forward becomes less clear.

Caught between his purpose and his heart, Noam must decide who he can trust and how far he’s willing to go in pursuit of the greater good.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

What I’ve Read – Debut AuthorsThe Quiet You Carry by Nikki Barthelmess
Published by Flux
Published: March 5, 2019
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads

Victoria Parker knew her dad's behavior toward her was a little unusual, but she convinced herself everything was fine—until she found herself locked out of the house at 3:00 a.m., surrounded by flashing police lights.

Now, dumped into a crowded, chaotic foster home, Victoria has to tiptoe around her domineering foster mother, get through senior year at a new school, and somehow salvage her college dreams . . . all while keeping her past hidden.

But some secrets won't stay buried—especially when unwanted memories make Victoria freeze up at random moments and nightmares disrupt her sleep. Even worse, she can't stop worrying about her stepsister Sarah, left behind with her father. All she wants is to move forward, but how do you focus on the future when the past won't leave you alone?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I’ll be back with reviews of these closer to their publication dates and there is definitely more to come from these amazing authors so stay tuned to Andi’s ABCs over the next few months!

Are there any debuts you are excited for? 

Continue Reading