Category Archives: Contemporary

Review: Running Lean @dianalee4jc

RunningleanPublisher: Zondervan Publishing House
Author: Diana Sharples
Genre: Young Adult, Comtemporary
Review Source: Booksneeze

★ ☆★ – 3 Stars

Running Lean [run·ning leen]

1) A term referring to a deficiency of fuel in the fuel-to-air ratio of an internal combustion engine.
2)A physical condition where not enough caloric fuel is present for optimal performance of the body.
3)A spiritual condition in which a believer relies on his own strengths.

Equilibrium. That’s what Stacey and Calvin found in each other. He is as solid as his beloved vintage motorcycle and helps quiet the constant clamor in Stacey’s mind. She is a passionate, creative spirit—and a lifeline after Calvin’s soldier brother dies.
But lately the balance is off. Calvin’s grief is taking new and more dangerous forms. Voices of self-loathing are dominating Stacey’s life. When struggles with body image threaten her health, Calvin can’t bear to lose another person that he loves. Taking action may destroy their relationship, but the alternative could be much more costly.

Running Lean, I loved the aspect of teaching us about a real life situation to an eating disorder. Now, I know what to look for as my daughter gets older. Some of the tricks and techniques that Stacey used was very spot on for a lot of people.
My opinion of the book, and the reason why I only gave it three stars was due to the lack of depth. We never understand Calvin’s pain, or how his brother died or how Calvin coped with his grief. We never learn anything about Calvin other than he gets jealous, likes motorcycles, and his brother died. That is all.
Running Lean is fully impacted by the whines of Stacey and how everyone starts revolving around her. Sure, something is wrong, but “sorry” was overpowered in the book. The story felt forced to me, and I don’t know why Calvin stayed with her. You never get to experience the “love connection” before Calvin and Stacey, and why they love each other… they just seem “there”. I do understand when we go through life, us girls (no not all of us) get clingy. We demand attention, we stomp our feet when we don’t get our way, but by the time I was Stacey’s age I wasn’t whining. I knew what life was about, and I had to take it by the horns and do what is right for myself. I never seen Stacey step up to the plate til it was almost too late, and even then it was like she didn’t understand the whole picture.
I wish I could get more invovled with the book, the cover is awesome, and the summary seemed like it would be well worth it. It was okay.

About the Author
Diana Sharples lives in north Georgia with her husband and teenage daughter, along with a house full of pets. She started writing stories when quite young and finished her first novel at age thirteen. Life intruded and bills had to be paid, but in the late 80s she returned to school and earned a degree in communication design/illustration from the Atlanta College of Art. She pursued a career in science fiction/fantasy illustration and won numerous awards for her work, which appeared on a magazine cover in Great Britain and in the pages of a gaming manual. She worked for a number of years on a never-ending elvish soap-opera-novel, receiving feedback and mentoring from several published authors in the speculative fiction genre. However, she changed career tracks in 2001, after accepting Christ as her Savior.

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I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com  book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Review: Pushing the Limits

PushingthelimitsPublisher: Harlequin Teen
Author: Katie McGarry
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance
Series: Pushing the Limits #1
Review Source: Library

★ ☆★ ☆★ – 5 Stars!

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with freaky scars on her arms. Even Echo can’t remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal.
But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo’s world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.
Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she’ll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.

Awesome, totally completely beyond Awesome.. I wonder if we could come up with another term: breathtaking, awe-inspiring, magnificent, wonderful, amazing, stunning.. could we use anymore words??!!
I knew I was missing out with this series, and I can not wait to start the second book. Hopefully, I can get caught up and be up-to-date with the series. I can not wait to see what will be in store for me as I take the journey to find out about Noah, Echo and all the others.
The road of emotions you will ride through is so overwhelming, but I can promise you it is worth it. It is worth even the tears that will be shed, and the smiles that will broke through, I promise.
Echo was pretty amazing. She has flaws, and issues. Throughout this book you will come to realize who she is, find out what black hole has been in her mind, she will also figure out how to find herself.
Noah has a dark side, but he is also lost for many of reasons. He definitely values his family, and he doesn’t want nothing to stop his love for his brothers. I am glad he got to see the truth before the darkness took everything he ever wanted.
Everyone in this book has a purpose/importance, and I loved watching the characters come together. I loved that life wasn’t perfect, people made mistakes, and love didn’t just happen. Love did happen, but it wasn’t the “swoon” love at first. I loved how they had to battle each other, and learn to let go before the other one could fall. Falling is not all about falling in love, but it is also about falling into getting to know yourself, your well-being and what makes you whole. Okay, enough of me rambling, just go get this series!

“Let him be, Beth. Sometimes you can’t help who you fall for.” – Isiah” ― Katie McGarry

About the Author
Katie MCGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, and reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

Playlist For Theme:
Push” by Matchbox Twenty
Bad Romance” by Lady Gaga
Scar Tissue” by Red Hot Chili Peppers
Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon

Special Song to Katie:
Can You” by Angela McGarry

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Disclosure: I received this book from the library. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.