Book Review · Books

Amelia Unabridged

Amelia’s life comes crashing down the day her dad leaves her and her mom for a younger woman. In her distress Amelia goes to the local bookstore to just window shop. In her glazed over pain she doesn’t notice Jenna until Jenna asks if she’d like to come in. Amelia discovers a true fellow book lover in Jenna when she offers to purchase a book for Amelia. This purchase tumbles them both into the exciting world of N.E. Endsley’s books.

With Jenna’s friendship comes a set of surrogate parents: Mark and Trisha. Jenna’s parents take Amelia into their lives in stride, treating her like the second daughter they never had. For their high school graduation gift they gift the girls tickets to a big book convention where their beloved author will be. They are so stoked to go on a trip out of state and BFF time as brand new adults.

The book convention ends up being a disappointment when N.E. Endsley’s time slot gets canceled. Amelia is crushed, hopping mad. The worst part is that while she was using the bathroom, Jenna gets to meet THAT author. Amelia has mixed emotions. Jealous doesn’t quite cover it.

After Jenna goes off on a trip overseas. Amelia misses her best friend. At least they have their college plans mapped out. Life can resume when Jenna gets back. Unfortunately Jenna comes back in a box. Amelia is thrown for a loop. Jenna was the captain to their BFF ship and now Amelia has to navigate their plans solo.

One day Amelia gets a call from the bookshop where Jenna used to work. A mysterious gift is waiting for Amelia. Who sent her this mystery gift? Inside is a limited fancy edition of their favorite book by their favorite author. Awkward thing is the local bookstore has no clue why this other bookstore shipped the book to their store instead of directly to Amelia. Was it Jenna’s surprise gift from the grave? Does this other bookstore have any clues? Amelia wants to find out.

This novel is my top favorite for 2020, so far. The characters come across like real life friends you want call up and hang out with. The depiction of grief is varied and true. This story is for those bookworms who have that one favorite author they squeal over at a book signings. This is for those that have that one nerdy best friend who understands their love of reading and actually enjoys reading by their side. This novel does have some magical realism in it. Other topics it tackles are social anxiety, death, people pleasing, family and what family loyalty looks like. I already want to reread this book, buy a physical copy when it comes out, so I can highlight my favorite lines and recommend it to all my book loving friends.

I received my complimentary digital copy of Amelia Unabridged by Ashley Schumacher from St. Martin’s Press, care of NetGalley. The views are mine and my full choice. This book is so magical, lovely, gut wrenching, perfect. For a devout novel I’ve discovered a new favorite author. Thank you Ashley Schumacher for writing this novel from the heart. It is a gift that will become a classic.

Book Review · Books

The Handbook For Beautiful People

Marla seems to be getting her life back together. She has an accomplished musician boyfriend Liam and her roommate Dani is a true friend, minus her drug addiction. Marla enjoys her job at the diner and doctor’s office. When Marla’s deaf brother Gavin comes for a visit her world is upended. Gavin and Dani get along better than she thought. She wasn’t expecting them to fall in love. Liam tries to convince Marla that Dani is a bad influence on her. When Marla gets pregnant she thinks her happily ever after has finally arrived until she realizes Liam isn’t as much the night in shining armor she thought he was. When Marla gets into a car accident she’s sure Liam will come to her rescue, but it ends up Dani and Gavin arrive instead. Even though Dani has her drug and men addictions she truly does care about Marla.

This book was tough to get into except for the prologue. The story’s POV jumps around within chapters so it can get a bit confusing of whose talking. The chapter names make no sense in relation to the story except for one chapter. I had to force myself to finish this book. I don’t believe in DNFing a book. Thankfully the ending made up for the struggle.

I received my free copy of The Handbook For Beautiful People by Jennifer Spruit from TLC Book Tours care of Inana Publications and Education in exchange for my review. If you enjoy new adult novels you may enjoy this one.