Review: Call It What You Want – Brigid Kemmerer

Review: Call It What You Want – Brigid KemmererCall It What You Want by Brigid Kemmerer
Published by Bloomsbury YA
Published: June 25, 2019
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four-stars

When his dad is caught embezzling funds from half the town, Rob goes from popular lacrosse player to social pariah. Even worse, his father’s failed suicide attempt leaves Rob and his mother responsible for his care.

Everyone thinks of Maegan as a typical overachiever, but she has a secret of her own after the pressure got to her last year. And when her sister comes home from college pregnant, keeping it from her parents might be more than she can handle.

When Rob and Maegan are paired together for a calculus project, they’re both reluctant to let anyone through the walls they’ve built. But when Maegan learns of Rob’s plan to fix the damage caused by his father, it could ruin more than their fragile new friendship...

This captivating, heartfelt novel asks the question: Is it okay to do something wrong for the right reasons?

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’ve been a fan of Brigid Kemmerer since I opened Letters to the Lost and read it in one day. There is something about the way that Brigid writes, not only romance but the friendship aspect as well. She also writes the best boy characters! Anyway, when I heard about Call It What You Want I was beyond thrilled to get a new contemporary from her. And I can happily say it hit the spot for the most part and I was happy to be on the journey with these characters.

Call It What You Want is the story of Rob and Maegan, two high school students that are in for a tougher year than they ever expected. Maegan has always been known to be the good girl that does the right thing until she has a serious lapse in judgment and makes a terrible mistake, and now is avoided at school like the plague. Rob, on the other hand, didn’t do anything personally, but his father did. His father got caught embezzling from half the town and Rob is left dealing with the repercussions, on top of taking care of his dad after his failed suicide attempt. When Rob and Maegan are paired together for a project these two outcasts start to learn something about themselves and start on a new kind of journey together. But not everything is as it seems.

Once again I loved the boy Brigid created. Rob was hands-down my favorite thing in Call It What You Want. He was so broken and in such a bad place. He had his whole life upended and was navigating a path he never saw coming. He broke my heart with how alone he felt. And he was so angry. Angry enough to make some really bad decisions that he would justify even knowing he was doing the wrong thing. But underneath all of that, he was just a scared kid. Maegan, on the other hand, had a terrible lapse in judgment and made a mistake that cost a lot of people. She was under pressure and did something she shouldn’t and was paying the price. I hated how she just accepted that people should treat her the way they did because of what she did. It made me sad to see her just accept it. In the end, I liked how these two interacted together. I like how they learned and grew by being around one another when no one else really wanted to be there for them.

I enjoyed Call It What You Want a lot. It had some really good, strong parts. There were also some parts that I just wanted more of and I didn’t get it. I think because of that I didn’t have as strong of an emotional connection as I did to Letters to the Lost and More Than We Can Tell. But with that said, it still packed a punch and made me grateful Brigid shares her talent as an author with us. Pick this one up for sure!

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Barely Have the Words (2)

I was looking at some of my 5 star reads, some read almost 3 years ago, that I still need to review. I realized there are some books I love so much I’m not sure I will ever be able to put into words how I really felt about them so welcome to my new feature, Barely Have the Words. I can’t adequately review this books since “READ IT” doesn’t really tell you how it made me feel, but this is my start:

Barely Have the Words (2)Letters to the Lost by Brigid Kemmerer
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Published: April 4, 2017
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five-stars

Juliet Young always writes letters to her mother, a world-traveling photojournalist. Even after her mother's death, she leaves letters at her grave. It's the only way Juliet can cope.

Declan Murphy isn't the sort of guy you want to cross. In the midst of his court-ordered community service at the local cemetery, he's trying to escape the demons of his past.

When Declan reads a haunting letter left beside a grave, he can't resist writing back. Soon, he's opening up to a perfect stranger, and their connection is immediate. But neither Declan nor Juliet knows that they're not actually strangers. When life at school interferes with their secret life of letters, sparks will fly as Juliet and Declan discover truths that might tear them apart.

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.

In 2017 I opened Letters to the Lost, a book I hadn’t heard much about, and didn’t close it until I finished all 391 pages. And since then I have not been able to accurately describe how Declan and Juliet’s story made me feel.  Simply put and the only adjective I can think of that is fitting for this story is beautiful, and that still feel inadequate. It was an emotional read from start to finish. Declan and Juliet were dealing with so much pain and heartache but they found each other and found an unexpected kindred soul. This was my first Brigid Kemmerer book and it is the book that made me a fan for life.

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Barely Have the Words (2)More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer
Published by Bloomsbury Children's
Published: March 6, 2018
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five-stars

*While this book exists in the same universe as Letters to the Lost, it is a standalone title.*

Rev Fletcher is battling the demons of his past. But with loving adoptive parents by his side, he’s managed to keep them at bay...until he gets a letter from his abusive father and the trauma of his childhood comes hurtling back.

Emma Blue spends her time perfecting the computer game she built from scratch, rather than facing her parents’ crumbling marriage. She can solve any problem with the right code, but when an online troll’s harassment escalates, she’s truly afraid.

When Rev and Emma meet, they both long to lift the burden of their secrets and bond instantly over their shared turmoil. But when their situations turn dangerous, their trust in each other will be tested in ways they never expected. This must-read story will once again have readers falling for Brigid Kemmerer’s emotional storytelling.

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.

How could Brigid Kemmerer make me more a fan? Easy, she gave me Rev’s story (which I read a few months after Letters to the Lost) and punched me in the feels. Another one I devoured in one glorious day that still hasn’t left me. As a massive fan of the romance in a book to me More Than We Can Tell is more about Rev and Declan’s AMAZING friendship and what they will endure for each other. I mean the romance was excellent too, but Rev and Declan is where it is at. Other than that I am at a complete loss on how to explain just how amazing this book was and everything that was worth loving in it.

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Barely Have the Words (2)Reign the Earth by A.C. Gaughen
Published by Bloomsbury
Published: January 30, 2018
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four-half-stars

Shalia is a proud daughter of the desert, but after years of devastating war with the adjoining kingdom, her people are desperate for peace. Willing to trade her freedom to ensure the safety of her family, Shalia becomes Queen of the Bonelands.

But she soon learns that her husband, Calix, is motivated only by his desire to exterminate the Elementae—mystical people who can control earth, wind, air, and fire. Even more unsettling are Shalia’s feelings for her husband’s brother, which unleash a power over the earth she never knew she possessed—a power that could get her killed. As rumors of a rebellion against Calix spread, Shalia must choose between the last chance for peace and her own future as an Elementae.

This intense, richly drawn high-fantasy by the author of Scarlet will hold readers spellbound.

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.

A.C. Gaughen writes something shocking in a book every time and I’m still surprised. She seriously gets me in the feels always and I’m here for it. Annie manages to write characters that are so intriguing you can’t help but get invested in them and I don’t really know what else to say or how to accurately describe my love for this series starter. Honestly this book was amazing and left me dying to know what was to come for these people I grew to care about.

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Barely Have the Words (2)Imprison the Sky by A.C. Gaughen
Published by Bloomsbury YA
Published: January 22, 2019
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five-stars

Stolen from her family as a child, Aspasia has clawed her way up the ranks of Cyrus's black market empire to captain her own trading vessel--and she risks it all every time she uses her powerful magic to free as many women, children, and Elementae from slavery as she can.

But Cyrus is close to uncovering her secrets--not only that Aspasia is an air Elementa with the ability to sail her ship through the sky, but that she is also searching for her lost family. And if Aspasia can’t find her younger siblings before Cyrus does, she will never be able to break free.

Armed with her loyal crew full of Elementae and a new recruit who controls an intriguing power, Aspasia finds herself in the center of a brewing war that spans every inch of the ocean, and her power alone may not be enough to save her friends, family, and freedom.

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.

If I thought I loved Reign the Earth it was nothing compared to the love I ended up having for Imprison the Sky. A.C. Gaughen came back to this world and took it up a notch. The complexity to Aspasia endeared her to me from the start. She was doing something that wasn’t 100% moral to the naked eye but she was doing what she could to not cross a line she couldn’t get back from, all while trying to find/save her family. I felt a lot of emotion reading this book as I got to know Asp and her crew and the good she had in her. And the love interest was top notch! Just another book I loved so much I can’t manage to find the words to describe. All I know is I desperately want to read about the other two elements!

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These ‘reviews’ don’t do the books justice, but I have no other way to describe them. In the end I leave you with…READ THEM!

What books to you love and can’t review because you love them so much?

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Review: A Curse So Dark and Lonely – Brigid Kemmerer

Review: A Curse So Dark and Lonely – Brigid KemmererA Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer
Published by Bloomsbury YA
Published: January 29, 2019
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five-stars

In a lush, contemporary fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Brigid Kemmerer gives readers another compulsively readable romance perfect for fans of Marissa Meyer.
Fall in love, break the curse.

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she's instead somehow sucked into Rhen's cursed world.


Break the curse, save the kingdom.

A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn't know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what's at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

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.

Back in March 2017 I opened a book called Letters to the Lost and I didn’t close it until it was finished. I wouldn’t stop until all 391 pages were done and I had let Brigid Kemmerer thoroughly break my heart. That was also the day I fell in love with her writing. So when I heard about A Curse So Dark and Lonely, a book that is a retelling of my favorite fairytale, Beauty and the Beast, I was so there for it. Two readings of it later, I am COMPLETELY IN LOVE, love beyond measure, with this book and these characters.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely is about Harper, a girl who is ‘transported’ from her home in DC to the kingdom of Emberfall. Having no idea why she was taken she confronts Rhen and Grey, her captors and soon finds out that Emberfall is cursed. Wanting to get back to her family Harper makes a deal to help Rhen and Emberfall rebuild their trust in one another and their trust in the Royals. But as Harper gets herself deeper and deeper into their story she learns there is so much more going on and starts to feel less like a prisoner and more like a person that belongs there even though her heart is with her family in DC.

My explanation of the story honestly doesn’t do it justice. It really is hard to explain just how amazing this story actually is. It is filled with flawed people and action and love and heartbreak. It has monsters and royalty and evil witches. It has sweet, heartfelt moments, moments of sadness, and moments WHEN CAN I HAVE MORE?! It truly hits all the marks and you won’t want to put it down. You will be left hugging the book and never wanting to let go. Rhen, Grey and Harper will steal your heart and you will gladly give it to them.

I don’t want to give anything away so I’m being as vague as possible. All I can say is you need to read A Curse So Dark and Lonely. I promise you will be happy you did. It is just that good!

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Cover Reveal – Imprison the Sky by A.C. Gaughen {giveaway}

Today, on the blog, I have something really exciting to show you. It is no secret that I am a fangirl of not only A. C. Gaughen’s books, but of her. I was first time moderator for an appearance that included her and Sarah J. Maas and I have moderated for her since. She killed me with her Scarlet series and with the first book in her new series, Reign the Earth. Truly I haven’t read anything by Gaughen that I haven’t loved. So you can imagine how excited I am for book two to come out.

Well  today I get to play a part in it’s release. I’m one of the awesome bloggers that will be revealing the cover for Imprison the Sky, book two in The Elementae series!

Imprison the Sky by A.C. Gaughen
Published by Bloomsbury YA
Published: January 22, 2019
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Stolen from her family as a child, Aspasia has clawed her way up the ranks of Cyrus's black market empire to captain her own trading vessel--and she risks it all every time she uses her powerful magic to free as many women, children, and Elementae from slavery as she can.

But Cyrus is close to uncovering her secrets--not only that Aspasia is a wind Elementa with the ability to sail her ship through the sky, but that she is also searching for her lost family. And if Aspasia can’t find her younger siblings before Cyrus does, she will never be able to break free.

Armed with her loyal crew full of Elementae and a new recruit who controls an intriguing power, Aspasia finds herself in the center of a brewing war that spans every inch of the ocean, and her power alone may not be enough to save her friends, family, and freedom.

Bloomsbury Social Media:
Twitter: @bloomsburykids
Instagram: @bloomsburypublishing

A.C. Gaughen Social Media:
Twitter: @acgaughen
Instagram: @acgaughen

Are you ready for it?

Here it is:

Seriously I can’t wait to read this book!

To get you excited I have another great surprise:

The people at Bloomsbury are offering to get one lucky winner in the US or Canada ONLY the chance to start this fabulous series. Enter below for your chance to win a hardcover of Reign the Earth. Giveaway ends on May 20th, at 11:59pm EST. It is US and Canada ONLY.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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