Blog Tour: Defending Taylor by Miranda Kenneally (Review + Giveaway)

taylor

Blog Tour: Defending Taylor by Miranda Kenneally (Review + Giveaway)Defending Taylor by Miranda Kenneally
Series: Hundred Oaks #7
Published by Sourcebooks Fire
Published: July 5th 2016
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four-half-stars

There are no mistakes in love.

Captain of the soccer team, president of the Debate Club, contender for valedictorian: Taylor's always pushed herself to be perfect. After all, that's what is expected of a senator's daughter. But one impulsive decision-one lie to cover for her boyfriend-and Taylor's kicked out of private school. Everything she's worked so hard for is gone, and now she's starting over at Hundred Oaks High.

Soccer has always been Taylor's escape from the pressures of school and family, but it's hard to fit in and play on a team that used to be her rival. The only person who seems to understand all that she's going through is her older brother's best friend, Ezra. Taylor's had a crush on him for as long as she can remember. But it's hard to trust after having been betrayed. Will Taylor repeat her past mistakes or can she score a fresh start?

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.

I originally read Defending Taylor as a draft and I loved it right away. It was one of those books that made you think how far you would go for a friend or someone you loved and if it would be worth it. It made you think about how mistakes can define you even when you don’t want them to and how people can perceive you differently. And it did all this in pure Miranda fashion, with humor, a hot boy prospect, and natural drama.

Defending Taylor is about Taylor Lukens, high school senior and the daughter of a US Senator. Taylor has been working hard her whole life at her private boarding school. She wants to get into Yale and wants to make her parents proud. In a split second decision Taylor does something that completely changes her life and how people look at her. Now home and going to Hundred Oaks high school she finds herself lost. The people she was trying to make proud are disappointed in her, she no longer knows if Yale will be an option and she lost everything she loved about her life. She is lonely. And then she runs into her long time crush Ezra. Ezra helps her start to look at things differently. Suddenly Taylor has her eyes opened on more than just Yale. But when you made a bad decisions in the past does that mean you will do it again?

I guess what I love most about Miranda’s books is that she doesn’t use what I call manufactured drama. She takes her plot and makes her characters actually talk about things and fight instead of having misunderstanding where people storm off. Defending Taylor does all of this with great finesse and I just love that. Not to mention I really loved Taylor and that cutie Ezra.

Defending Taylor is yet another gem by Miranda Kenneally. Honestly I don’t really know what to say about her books any more That I haven’t already said. They are just the kind of books that make you feel good and books everyone should read.

Amazon || Apple || Barnes&Noble || BooksAMillion || !ndigo || Indiebound

About Miranda Kenneally

Growing up in Tennessee, Miranda Kenneally dreamed of becoming an Atlanta Brave, a country singer (cliché!), or a UN interpreter. Instead she writes, and works for the State Department in Washington, D.C., where George W. Bush once used her shoulder as an armrest. Miranda loves Twitter, Star Trek and her husband.

Tour Schedule:

Week 1:
6/27: Bookiemoji 
6/29: Lost In Lit 
 
Week 2:
7/4: Andi’s ABCs 
 

3 Finished Copies of DEFENDING TAYLOR (US/Canada Only)

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Blog Tour: Jesse’s Girl – Miranda Kenneally (giveaway)

 Blog Tour: Jesse’s Girl – Miranda Kenneally (giveaway)Jesse's Girl by Miranda Kenneally
Series: Hundred Oaks #6
Published by Sourcebooks Fire
Published: July 7th 2015
Buy on Amazon
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four-half-stars

Practice Makes Perfect.Everyone at Hundred Oaks High knows that career mentoring day is a joke. So when Maya Henry said she wanted to be a rock star, she never imagined she’d get to shadow *the* Jesse Scott, Nashville’s teen idol.But spending the day with Jesse is far from a dream come true. He’s as gorgeous as his music, but seeing all that he’s accomplished is just a reminder of everything Maya’s lost: her trust, her boyfriend, their band, and any chance to play the music she craves. Not to mention that Jesse’s pushy and opinionated. He made it on his own, and he thinks Maya’s playing back up to other people’s dreams. Does she have what it takes to follow her heart—and go solo?

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.

I don’t deny the fact that I am a lucky girl. I got to read Jesse’s Girl for the first time when it was in draft form and wasn’t even called Jesse’s Girl. I fell in love with it then but I wanted to wait to review it until I had done a reread. Honestly, though, it didn’t matter. The book was awesome in draft and awesome in a final copy. Miranda Kenneally once again does what she does best and gives you awesome boys, wicked cool girls and a story that will keep you invested ill the end. Not to mention the laughs.

Jesse’s Girl is about Maya Henry (if you read Catching Jordan there is a reason the name seems familiar) a punk rock girl in a country world. Maya has dreams of being a famous punk rocker some day but those are few and far between in her hometown in Tennessee. When Maya is given the chance to shadow Jesse Scott, country music God, for one day she feels like this is her chance to see how the business works. Too bad Jesse doesn’t trust anyone, as they are all looking for something, and makes that very clear to Maya off the bat. Even with their differences, the two spend a day together that changes them both in a way they never expected.

If you have read a Kenneally book before you know they usually involve some kind of sport. Football, running, softball…they have all played a role in the past Hundred Oaks books. Jesse’s Girl is different in that case.  Instead of using a sport Miranda went with music and it worked for this story. I think the magic of two different music styles in a music city was the perfect way to take a tale about a normal girl and a famous guy. When I first read the synopsis I was sad there would be no use of sports, but it was the right decision for this story and I think ended up adding to it.
Nashville! What isn’t there to love about Nashville?? I have gone once and it has been one of my favorite cities that I have ever visited in the US. Having that is the background for Jesse’s Girl was pretty amazing as I was able to picture a lot of the places from my short visit there. I was also able to picture how easy it was for Maya to feel out of place as a punk rock girl because Nashville is anything but. It was pretty much the perfect setting for a story like this. Truthfully…it made me want to hop on a plane and go to the Ryman Auditorium, the Grand Ole Opry and pop in a Tootsie’s. Who’s in for a road trip??
Hands down what I liked best in Jesse’s Girl was the characters. Maya Henry…talk about spunk. She knows who she is and isn’t afraid to stand out. She stands up for herself and does what she thinks is the right thing. She’s funny and uncertain but also sure of who she wants to be and I loved that. And Jesse. Oh adorable Jesse Scott. He had some of the perfect one-liners in the book that just made me laugh, still make me laugh when I think about them. He is definitely closed off (and with good reason) but there is something very open about him too. Just add him to the list of the amazing Kenneally Boys (have we trademarked that term yet?? We should!). Plus you know there will be the inevitable cameo from characters in other books, I mean Maya’s last name is Henry for crying out loud.
All in all I loved Jesse’s Girl both times I read it. It made me laugh and cringe and then smile as Maya and Jesse navigated through whatever was going on between the two of them. I loved the way the story was told and how it all went down in the end. I loved the cameo of some old favorites while starting off a generation of new Hundred Oaks kids to love. It did exactly what I think a good book should do and it made you feel just like you were part of the day and had become friends with Jesse and Maya yourself.

Open Internationally (if The Book Depository ships to your country). Winner gets one Miranda Kenneally book of their choice. One winner. Goes until 7/6/15 at 11:59pm EST.

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Pre-order Campaign: Jesse’s Girl by Miranda Kenneally

preorder

Pre-order Campaign: Jesse’s Girl by Miranda KenneallyJesse's Girl by Miranda Kenneally
Published by Sourcebooks Fire
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads

Practice Makes Perfect.

Everyone at Hundred Oaks High knows that career mentoring day is a joke. So when Maya Henry said she wanted to be a rock star, she never imagined she’d get to shadow *the* Jesse Scott, Nashville’s teen idol.

But spending the day with Jesse is far from a dream come true. He’s as gorgeous as his music, but seeing all that he’s accomplished is just a reminder of everything Maya’s lost: her trust, her boyfriend, their band, and any chance to play the music she craves. Not to mention that Jesse’s pushy and opinionated. He made it on his own, and he thinks Maya’s playing back up to other people’s dreams. Does she have what it takes to follow her heart—and go solo?

On July 7th, Miranda Kenneally has a new book coming out, Jess’s Girl. And to do along with that book release her publishing company Sourcebooks Fire is running a pre-order campaign which I find pretty cool. And pretty easy to do.

The gist is that you pre-order Jesse’s Girl (it’s awesome by the way!) and email proof of purchase to Sourcebooks Fire. You will then get an email back with an EXCLUSIVE Playlist, an invite to an online author event on July 6th where Miranda will be giving some fun prizes, a signed/personalized bookplate, a super-cute custom guitar pick, and you are entered to win a $300 gift card to TicketMaster so you can go to a concert or some other fun event. Not a bad deal for a book that will cost you under $10. I know I’m going to do it.

You can find out more information including the email address HERE.

About Miranda Kenneally

Growing up in Tennessee, Miranda Kenneally dreamed of becoming an Atlanta Brave, a country singer (cliché!), or a UN interpreter. Instead she writes, and works for the State Department in Washington, D.C., where George W. Bush once used her shoulder as an armrest. Miranda loves Twitter, Star Trek and her husband.

Get thee pre-ordering!

FIND IT: GOODREADS || AMAZON || BARNES & NOBLE || INDIEBOUND || BOOK DEPOSITORY

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Who Would Wear My Boots? Jesse’s Girl by Miranda Kenneally

Frye Boots

 

If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen me wearing my new Melissa Frye Boots…like a lot! I have wanted these boots for a really long long time and finally this Christmas, thanks to family and friends, I was able to get them. Honesty, they are EVERYTHING I have ever wanted in a riding boot. Perfect fit, the perfect color, the perfect height on my calf. They are basically amazing!

As you may know, on occasion, I like to pick characters in books and “dress” them. I’ve dressed Anna from Anna and the French Kiss, Celaena from Throne of Glass/Heir of Fire, Reagan from Open Road Summer and others. I like to test myself and see what I can come up with. So when I thought about my new boots I start to think and wonder which book character would wear these boots? It didn’t take long for me to come up with a name. Honestly one name immediately popped into my head. Maya Henry from Jesse’s Girl by Miranda Kenneally.

I got to read a very very early draft of Jesse’s Girl and I loved Maya right away. She is sassy and has a style all of her own. Don’t let her Tennessee roots trick you. This girl is anything but country. And I know all of you don’t know her yet, but you will and you will learn her style is all about punk rock. She likes plaids and leather and uses duct tape to make belts. She likes lace and tulle and zippers. She is definitely a different make than you expect. And to show that Miranda Kennealy has offered up a treat to you guys. Below is brief way that Maya describes her style in Jesse’s Girl, which is out in July!

“In the bathroom, I examine my outfit to make sure nothing is out of place following our ride. It’s totally me, this sleeveless, purple tartan mini dress covered with leather accents and silver zippers. I’m wearing a cropped leather jacket over it. I look good. Take that, Natalia Naylor, you silly supermodel, you. I inhale deeply. Who am I kidding? She’s a supermodel! How can I compete with her?” –Jesse’s Girl, Miranda Kenneally
Based on this I created a look for Maya built off my Frye Boots, with Maya’s boot being black. Girly with an edge and so completely Maya Henry.

 

maya

 

If you want to know more about Maya and Jesse, pre-order your copy of Jesse’s Girl today! (You can read the first chapter of Jesse’s Girl on Miranda’s website HERE or on Wattpad HERE.)

Who Would Wear My Boots? Jesse’s Girl by Miranda KenneallyJesse's Girl by Miranda Kenneally
Published by Sourcebooks Fire
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads

Practice Makes Perfect.

Everyone at Hundred Oaks High knows that career mentoring day is a joke. So when Maya Henry said she wanted to be a rock star, she never imagined she’d get to shadow *the* Jesse Scott, Nashville’s teen idol.

But spending the day with Jesse is far from a dream come true. He’s as gorgeous as his music, but seeing all that he’s accomplished is just a reminder of everything Maya’s lost: her trust, her boyfriend, their band, and any chance to play the music she craves. Not to mention that Jesse’s pushy and opinionated. He made it on his own, and he thinks Maya’s playing back up to other people’s dreams. Does she have what it takes to follow her heart—and go solo?

About Miranda Kenneally

Growing up in Tennessee, Miranda Kenneally dreamed of becoming an Atlanta Brave, a country singer (cliché!), or a UN interpreter. Instead she writes, and works for the State Department in Washington, D.C., where George W. Bush once used her shoulder as an armrest. Miranda loves Twitter, Star Trek and her husband.

Want me to dress a character in your book or in a book you love? Let me know.

 

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Review: Breathe, Annie, Breathe – Miranda Kenneally + a Giveaway {CLOSED}

babtour

Review: Breathe, Annie, Breathe – Miranda Kenneally + a Giveaway {CLOSED}Breathe, Annie, Breathe by Miranda Kenneally
Series: Hundred Oaks #5
Published by Sourcebooks Fire
Published: April 7, 2015
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
five-stars

From the bestselling author of Catching Jordan comes a contemporary YA you won't forget.

The finish line is only the beginning.…

Annie hates running. No matter how far she jogs, she can't escape the guilt that if she hadn't broken up with Kyle, he might still be alive. So to honor his memory, she starts preparing for the marathon he intended to race.

But the training is even more grueling than Annie could have imagined. Despite her coaching, she's at war with her body, her mind-and her heart. With every mile that athletic Jeremiah cheers her on, she grows more conflicted. She wants to run into his arms...and sprint in the opposite direction. For Annie, opening up to love again may be even more of a challenge than crossing the finish line.

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.


First and foremost I will state of the bat that I was lucky enough to read a very, very early draft version of this book that was sent to me by the author. I say this because I want it clear that the opinion I have on this book was not swayed by any shape or form by the opportunity to be a BETA reader. These thoughts are my thoughts and my thoughts alone.

With that out of the way I can tell you that Breathe, Annie, Breathe is the MOST FANTASTIC book that Miranda Kenneally has ever written. It had emotion and a beautiful story and fantastic writing. It had all the things I have come to expect from a Kenneally book but on a level that was different from her other books. Breathe, Annie, Breathe is definitely a heavier subject since it deals with death and guilt and being left behind, but Kenneally hit it out of the park with this one and showed the depth of her writing.

Breathe, Annie, Breathe is the story of, you guessed it, Annie. Annie is training to run a marathon to honor her boyfriend who unexpectedly died. Filled with anger and sadness and guilt, Annie decides to honor Kyle’s memory and to do the thing he dreamed of doing and never did, run all 26 miles. With the help of some familiar faces (see the first books in the Hundred Oaks series) Annie begins training and trying to start a life that doesn’t involve Kyle. What Annie didn’t expect though was the attraction she feels to her trainer’s younger brother Jeremiah. And as Annie and Jere get closer Annie has to make a decision just where she wants her life to actually go.

This book is really hard to put into words to show how really good it is. What I can say is that it was really poignant. My heart just broke for Annie. Here she was this 17-year-old girl that had her whole life to look forward to. She was going to college and was going to make something of herself. And the rug was pulled right under her when her boyfriend died. Sure she was still going to go to college and have a career, but Kyle was supposed to be by her side for all of it and then he was just gone. I can’t imagine what that would be like at my age never mind for a 17-year-old that thinks her boyfriend is the be all and end-all of her life. Even feeling so lost Annie did the one thing she could think of and that was to run because that was what Kyle liked to do and had dreamed of running a full marathon. Actually, the running was what I really admired about Annie because it ended up symbolizing two things. It symbolized her love for Kyle and it symbolized her having enough guts to keep on going even when the wind was knocked out of her. And in a weird way, it was Kyle telling her it was okay to move on in the direction of college and life. And he brought her to Jeremiah who changed her in a way she never saw coming.

Ah, Jeremiah Brown. What do I even say about him??!! I loved him for the brief time we saw him in Things I Can’t Forget so I was over the moon when I found out he was the “hot Kenneally boy” (that is a technical term!) in Breathe, Annie, Breathe. And trust me when I say hot he was. But he was also really sweet and patient and caring. He was pretty much a typical boy with his competitiveness and his need for a rush, but he also took thought when it came to other people’s fears and worry for him. And he was the PERFECT counterpart for Annie. She was terrified of losing someone else she loves so she held back, especially after learning about his love of extreme sports and danger. But Jere was also able to teach Annie a lot more about herself through his love of the rush. Basically, they had major chemistry and that is all I’m going to say about that.

Simply put, Breathe, Annie, Breathe was phenomenal. I’ve now read it twice and it got even better the second time which was hard to do. Kenneally put her heart and soul into this book and wrote a winner. It was one of those books that I just laughed and cried and smiled and sniffled over. It was 100% Miranda Kenneally and it was 100% awesome. Can’t wait for her next masterpiece.

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

About Miranda Kenneally

Growing up in Tennessee, Miranda Kenneally dreamed of becoming an Atlanta Brave, a country singer (cliché!), or a UN interpreter. Instead she writes, and works for the State Department in Washington, D.C., where George W. Bush once used her shoulder as an armrest. Miranda loves Twitter, Star Trek and her husband.

 

And because this book is so awesome here is your chance to win a copy for yourself or a BN gift card for $50. Just click on the picture below to enter! US/Canada ONLY. Ends July 29, 2014.

jere

*Jere pin created by me and Jen at Jenuine Cupcakes.

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