Blog Tour: Truly Madly Famously – Rebecca Serle (Giveaway)

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Blog Tour: Truly Madly Famously – Rebecca Serle (Giveaway)Truly, Madly, Famously by Rebecca Serle
Series: Famous in Love #2
Published by Poppy
Published: October 13th 2015
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four-stars

In this romantic sequel to Famous in Love, new Hollywood "It Girl" Paige must navigate love with her co-stars, both on and off screen and all in the public eye.

Lights, camera, love!

After being plucked from obscurity, Hollywood's newest starlet, Paige Townsen, has a hit film to her name and Rainer Devon on her arm. But being half of the world's most famous couple comes with a price, and soon Paige finds herself dodging photographers; hiding her feelings for her other costar, Jordan Wilder; and navigating tabloid scandals that threaten to tear her and Rainer apart-and end her career as quickly as it began.

Rebecca Serle's sequel to Famous in Love is filled with the kind of celebrity drama and swoon-worthy romance fit for the silver screen.

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.

What is it like to live in the bubble of Hollywood? A thought we most likely have all had at one point or another. I mean we hear the stories of the small town girl thrust into the spotlight. We read the magazines on celebrity lifestyles and partying, but we never really know what they could be thinking. What Rebecca Serle does in Famous in Love and Truly Madly Famously is show us what is potentially a celebrities side of it and I must admit it got me wondering if this is really what it is like.

Truly Madly Famously basically picks up where Famous in Love had left off. Paige has now been thrust into the spotlight and is famous. She is dating a celebrity, she is living in Beverly Hills, and she has a hit movie. She is navigating this crazy life without a clue what she is doing but she is enjoying it. But she can’t seem to shake her thoughts about a certain someone she can’t help but have feelings for. And those thoughts lead her to do something that causes the media to attack. Now caught in a media frenzy Paige needs to figure out how to navigate Hollywood without being America’s Sweetheart, how to make friends, who to trust, and which guy is really the soul owner of her heart.

The action was a little slower in this one for me. Not slow in a dull way, but in a real world kind of way. In Truly you get to see what Paige’s life is like and how the paparazzi and her decisions and the people she hangs around with affect her perception to the world. Paige starts to change what she does based on this perception and it was fascinating to read about and wonder if people in Hollywood actually do this.

What better location for a book about Hollywood and the media than Los Angeles. I loved the setting of this book so so much! Paige was a fish out of water when it came to Hollywood hotspots and the press. It was awesome to see her at places like The Ivy and to see what was actually behind some of that glitz and glamor. Plus we get to see Hawaii again and a brief visit to Japan. So much fun.

Paige, Rainer and Jordan are my favorite parts of Truly Madly Famously. The three of them and the relationships have changed so much since the first book but they are exactly who they always were but different versions of themselves. They are going through this huge thing together but the tension between all of them complicates things and makes them real have to figure out what they want out of celebrity life and each other. I know a lot of people aren’t love triangle fans, but I have to say I really enjoyed this one although I did favor one boy over the other. 😉

I read the first book in this series last May and I loved it. At the time I didn’t know there would be another book but after finding out I was beyond thrilled. To be honest I wasn’t sure what Rebecca could do to keep it fresh and keep me interested, but she did just that. It was nice to be back in a world with Rainer, Jordan and Paige and I loved how their story unfolded. I heard there may be a 3rd book but I have to be honest, I’m more than happy with how the second ended. Definitely recommend this fun series.

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Review: Famous in Love – Rebecca Serle

Review: Famous in Love – Rebecca SerleFamous in Love by Rebecca Serle
Series: Famous in Love #1
Published by Poppy
Published: October 21st 2014
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five-stars

The romantic story of a girl who gets plucked from obscurity to star in the next major feature film franchise based on a book and the ensuing love triangles she gets entangled in on—-and off screen.

Meet Paige Townsen, Rainer Devon, and Jordan Wilder…

When Paige Townsen, a young unknown, gets cast in the movie adaptation of a blockbuster book series, her life changes practically overnight. Within a month, Paige has traded the quiet streets of her hometown for a crowded movie set on the shores of Maui, and is spending quality time with her co-star Rainer Devon, one of People’s Sexiest Men Alive. But when troubled star Jordan Wilder lands the role of the other point in the movie’s famous love triangle, Paige’s crazy new life gets even crazier.

I wanted this book and I wanted it badly. As soon as I heard Rebecca had a 3rd book I needed it to be mine. You see, her first two books were fantastic; such depth and emotion in them. Really heavy, realistic reads that made you, as the reader, have all the feels. She has a way about her writing that just sucks you in and pulls you along. With Famous in Love having a different kind of vibe to it I wasn’t sure how it would fit. Would it still be Rebecca that I heart or would it feel off in some way? Happily, I report that Famous in Love did not let me down. I heard Rebecca’s voice loud and clear and I loved every minute of it.

Famous in Love is the story of Paige, a girl that has dreamed about being an actress. She read scripts and stars in small plays but has always lusted after the big screen. When an opportunity presents she finds herself auditioning for the role of a lifetime to star as the heroine in the latest YA trilogy to be adapted into a movie. When she lands the part she is whisked off to Hawaii to begin filming and everything changes. Suddenly Paige finds herself not only playing a girl in a love triangle but being in an actual one herself with her two sexy costars Rainer Devon and Jordan Wilder. As this gets more and more complicated Paige has to figure out how not only to navigate her new life but to navigate her love.

What I loved about this book is how totally Rebecca it is. If you follow her on Twitter or Tumblr you can see just how much of a pop culture junkie she is. She loves all things Hollywood and the fact that she created a book out of that love just made me smile. She hit on all the important things a good YA, Hollywood story needs too. She got the love triangle, the pop star references, the small town girl making it big, the YA trilogy that people devoured made into a movie. She even managed to capture the feeling a reader gets when a 3rd book is about to be released and you NEED TO KNOW HOW IT ENDS! It amazed me how she managed to capture all of that in just over 300 pages and to do it at the level she did.

The other thing about Famous in Love was Paige, Rainer, and Jordan. It felt genuine to me. Paige was a girl that was on this roller coaster. Her life was upside down and she was living in a world that was so foreign to her. And here were these two hot guys that had been in the business for a long time that she is attracted to. It was 100% natural that she would grab on to them and feel the things she did and for them to reciprocate. It all had a follow to it that added to the beauty and the tension to the story that elevated the whole book for me. I found myself invested in what would happen and how everything turned out which is important when reading a book. At least for me anyway.

My word of advice to readers is that you don’t go into Famous in Love expecting to have the same kind of journey you had in Rebecca’s 2 previous books. This book is a different kind of journey in the way that it is told and how the characters get from A to B and how everyone ends up. It isn’t as heavy as The Edge of Falling and doesn’t have the Shakespeare vibe of When You Were Mine. It is its own book and one that works when all the pieces have clicked into place. It made me smile and almost miss my train stop. It made me what to savor reading it and hurry up and finish. And it made me want to read the fake book it is based on and find out what the heck happened in the last book. It cemented my love of Rebecca Serle and now I sit and wait for her next book to arrive whenever that may be.

*note: Just found out this will be a trilogy so SCORE!

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Review: The Edge of Falling – Rebecca Serle

Review: The Edge of Falling – Rebecca SerleThe Edge of Falling by Rebecca Serle
Published by Simon and Schuster
Published: March 18th 2014
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five-stars

Sorrow can be seductive—but can hope triumph over heartbreak? A dark and searing novel from the author of When You Were Mine.

Caggie never wanted to be a hero, but some things are decided for us. Growing up among Manhattan’s social elite, Caggie always had everything a girl could want, including a storied last name. But after saving a girl from the brink of suicide, Caggie becomes infamous, and now all she wants is to be left alone.

After all, she’s still reeling from the death of her younger sister last January, the subsequent destruction of her relationship with high school boyfriend, Trevor, and the way in which her family has since fallen apart.

So when mysterious Astor appears on the Upper East Side, he just might be the rescue she needs. But what is he hiding? As life as she knew it begins to unravel, Caggie realizes Astor’s past may be as dark as her own. And in a world in which she’s been branded a hero, Caggie will soon discover that no one can save you…not until you save yourself.

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.

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First and foremost I’m a huge, huge, huge fan of Rebecca Serle’s other novel, her debut, When You Were Mine. I seriously loved that book to pieces and have been dying for her to publish something else. So I was super super excited when I saw her next book show up on Edelweiss as an advanced copy. I immediately requested it and thanks to some help was approved fairly quickly. And thank goodness for that because the book was fantastic! It was everything that I loved about When You Were Mine but with more. Rebecca Serle has grown as an author (which I didn’t think was possible after finishing her other book) and has truly entered the world of young adult books with her sophomore novel The Edge of Falling. Between the characters and her use of New York as almost a character itself(more on that to come) she definitely has mastered the art of young adult literature.

The Edge of Falling is the story of Caggie, a privileged girl from Manhattan that is carrying around the guilt of her younger sister’s drowning. Wanting the pain of her sister’s death to go away Caggie does something drastic only it doesn’t go as planned. Instead she finds herself labeled a hero and has a whole lot of unwanted attention on her. Feeling trapped Caggie begins to self-destruct and in the process meets Astor, the mysterious new boy at her school. Soon Caggie is on a path that may lead her to more danger than she could have imagined and she has to make a choice if she wants to let the guilt take over or if she wants to live her life.

Oh Caggie! Caggie, Caggie, Caggie! Will someone please give this girl a hug! Man did she break my heart. I mean she was just so lost and so vulnerable and so…sad. She was plain sad and in turn that made me sad. But the thing about Caggie was even in her sadness she was so unbelievably likable. And that is a testament to Serle’s writing and how she makes the reader identify with Caggie. Instead of just wanting her to let go all of that emotion she was feeling and to get on with her life, I wanted to take the journey with Caggie while she figured out what her place was in this world now that everything she once knew was gone. She was the epitome of a lost soul when the book started and those glimpses of light she would have every now and then really brought her to a new level.

Now right from the start I knew Astor was bad news. I thought he was a creepster right from the start. He was too familiar too quickly and I’m not one to believe in those kinds of coincidences. He felt off from me from the start and that was without even reading the description for the book. What I didn’t expect was really how deep his darkness really was. I kept trying to figure out what his deal was and I never would have guessed it in a million years. That made his character kind of fascinating to read in a weird way. I knew I disliked him, but I also wanted to know more.

I also really liked Caggie’s best friend Claire and her ex-ish boyfriend Trevor. Both of these characters seemed to ground Caggie in their own way even when Caggie did everything in her power to push them away and get them to turn their backs on her. I often find the best friends in books to be overbearing and annoying but this wasn’t the case. Claire was there for Caggie and supported her no matter what. Even when they fought and didn’t see eye to eye she knew her best friend needed her and at times did the hard thing which really made me like her.  And Trevor was just the cutest. It was so obviously clear how much he still loved Caggie. He did everything in his power to make up for his past mistake and to be there for her even when she refused everything he had to offer. The way he worried about her made me completely swoon. He was basically awesome!

But truly one of my favorite parts of this amazing book was how Serle used New York not as a setting but as a character itself. You have all heard how Sex and the City(the TV show, not the book) made NY a main character to the series, how Central Perk was a 7th friend on Friend’s, how Buffy the Vampire Slayer wouldn’t have been Buffy the Vampire Slayer without The Bronze. Well Serle has woven NYC into The Edge of Falling in such a way that you actually feel the life of the city jumping off the pages.  Whether it is the Hamptons or the Upper East Side or the MOA, you can feel the energy of the city that never sleeps and in turn makes it an integral part to Caggie’s story. It really was quiet genius and it made me want to make a visit.

Serle’s sophomore novel is a story of pain and love and growth. It has fantastic characters, a great plot and fantastic writing. I had no doubt after reading When You Were Mine, Serle’s debut, that she would become an auto-buy author for me, and The Edge of Falling has cemented that. I can’t wait to see what comes out of her next. She has a fan in me for sure and when you read her books you will undoubtedly feel the same way.

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Waiting on Wednesday: The Edge of Falling – Rebecca Serle

waiting*Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It is a weekly meme that allows you to share a book you can’t wait to read!

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The Edge of Falling – Rebecca Serle
{purchase}
Release Date: March 18, 2014

Growing up in privileged, Manhattan social circles, Caggie’s life should be perfect, and it almost was until the day that her younger sister drowned when Caggie was supposed to be watching her. Stricken by grief, Caggie pulls away from her friends and family, only to have everyone misinterpret a crucial moment when she supposedly saves a fellow classmate from suicide. Now she’s famous for something she didn’t do and everyone lauds her as a hero. But inside she still blames herself for the death of her sister and continues to pull away from everything in her life, best friend and perfect boyfriend included. Then Caggie meets Astor, the new boy at school, about whom rumors are swirling and known facts are few. In Astor she finds someone who just might understand her pain, because he has an inner pain of his own. But the more Caggie pulls away from her former life to be with Astor, the more she realizes that his pain might be darker, and deeper, than anything she’s ever felt. His pain might be enough to end his life…and Caggie’s as well.

*description from Goodreads
**picture found on PicMonkey and edited by me

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Second Chance Sunday – When You Were Mine by Rebecca Serle

Today’s Second Chance Sunday may look familiar to you. I posted a review discussion that Michelle and I did on When You Were Mine a few months back. Having just been lucky enough to get to read Rebecca’s newest book The Edge of Falling(out March 2014) I thought it would be appropriate to post my review of When You Were Mine as this week’s Second Chance Sunday.

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Title: When You Were Mine [Amazon]
Author: Rebecca Serle [website]
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Genre: Contemporary
Source/Type: Gifted/Hardcover
Stars: 4 out of 5

Publisher’s Description:
In this intensely romantic, modern recounting of the greatest love story ever told, Romeo’s original intended—Juliet’s cousin Rosaline—tells her side of the tale.

What’s in a name, Shakespeare? I’ll tell you: Everything.

Rosaline knows that she and Rob are destined to be together. Rose has been waiting for years for Rob to kiss her—and when he finally does, it’s perfect. But then Juliet moves back to town. Juliet, who used to be Rose’s best friend. Juliet, who now inexplicably hates her. Juliet, who is gorgeous, vindictive, and a little bit crazy…and who has set her sights on Rob. He doesn’t even stand a chance.

Rose is devastated over losing Rob to Juliet. This is not how the story was supposed to go. And when rumors start swirling about Juliet’s instability, her neediness, and her threats of suicide, Rose starts to fear not only for Rob’s heart, but also for his life. Because Shakespeare may have gotten the story wrong, but we all still know how it ends….

My Thoughts:
Wow I loved this book! I’m a huge, huge, huge Leonardo DiCaprio fan and I have seen the version of Romeo and Juliet he is in no less then 100 times. Every time I see it I take notice of the mention of Rosaline, but have never really though much about her. That is until this fantastic book came about. Simply put When You Were Mine is kind of ingenious! Serle took a classic story, gave it a new POV with some modern twists to it and made it into a new story entirely. I apologize for any spoilers, but you guys know the story of Romeo and Juliet so I have a feeling you know where this book is going.

Basically the book is about Rosaline, the girl in love with the boy next door, her best friend Rob. When Rob comes back from his summer away it looks like things between him and Rose are finally going to take off, that they are on the road to coupledom. Every one is thrilled with this new development, especially Rosaline. And then her cousin Juliet shows up and everything Rose thought was hers is taken away from her. As Rob and Juliet heat up the reason why Juliet hates Rose starts to come into focus and a whole new scandal rocks the world of these high school kids. When all is said and done, who will be left standing.

I think what made this story really stand out and work the way it did was the use of Rosaline and this quote sums it up perfectly:

“They died together; they’ll always be remembered together. It’s decided, once and for all. He was hers. The rumors don’t matter; they’ll fade…People may remember it was suicide, but my name won’t be attached. It will just be two lovers, fused together forever.”

And that is exactly what happened. No one remembers Rosaline was even a part of the story. I mentioned to a friend and her exact words were, “That’s right, I forgot all about Rosaline.” And that right there is why this story was as good as it was for me. Rosaline is an unknown, a non-entity in Shakespeare’s play. And yet she seems to be the heart of it. By Serle taking notice of a barely mentioned character and giving her life, it really helped to take the reader on a truer journey. Now they were seeing what it was like to be the one left behind, how it feels when you have to deal with the aftermath. Like I said genius! And honestly, Rosaline was just plain likable. I thought Rob was obnoxious and Juliet, eh, don’t even get me started on her spoiled, selfish, self.

Basically Serle made her debut novel a must read and not just for Shakespeare fans. It’s a must read for the underdog, the girl stuck in the middle, the girl that is left to pick up the pieces of something she never wanted any part of. It’s a book for the fan of the girl that is left behind and must make a choice for herself and stop living in someone else’s shadow.

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