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Tuesday, August 7, 2012


Stand up and clap your hands for Margaret Sarah Bechtel! *claps very loud* 4.5 STARS! Awesome book! “Learning in the Dark” is full of emotion from start to finish. Every emotion imaginable – anger, sadness, joy, despair, hope, and more are expressed in this book. Bechtel did such a great job of making the reader feel and really care for these characters. I found myself talking about this book to people and thinking about it when I wasn’t even reading. I love when that happens! It was a book that I wanted to see what happened next, but didn’t want to end. I definitely recommend “Learning in the Dark” to anyone looking for an all-around good read, though I suggest the reader be at least a mature young adult due to some scenes and words. I plan on reading more of Margaret Sarah Bechtel’s work, including her first novel “In the Land of Winter.”

This story is told by four different points of view (Lynn, Sophie, Carter, and Davis); the main voice however is Lynn Moore. Lynn was blinded when she was ten years old in a horrible accident caused by a group of kids. Kids mess around with other kids all the time and don’t end up blind, but in this case…Lynn did. Fortunately for Lynn she was able to live a pretty normal life. Things did get a little more complicated when she went to med school and was reunited with Carter. Carter was one of the kids from the accident – you can just imagine that first encounter between him and Lynn. Carter’s older brother Davis (also from the accident) is in a relationship with Lynn’s best friend, Sophie – you can also imagine that encounter when Lynn found out. So, with all the connections everywhere Lynn is forced to face her past. Will Lynn continue to hate the boys who caused her to be blind? Will she forgive and forget? Or will Lynn forgive them and try to get to know them…perhaps even develop a relationship?

I really enjoyed everything about this novel. I liked that I was able to get into the heads of more than one character. Being able to see the thoughts and feelings of Lynn, but also the emotions of the people who caused her accident was genius. I give this book 4.5 STARS out of 5 STARS. It was a near flawless book except there were a few teeny-tiny editing mistakes. I think everyone should definitely check out “Learning in the Dark” though, it is just such a moving novel. I haven’t read a book that made me feel so much in a long time. Go add Margaret Sarah Bechtel to your to be read list and make sure “Learning in the Dark” is at the top!

“Inkarna” by Nerine Dorman

Wow, this book was quite something! I am going to give it 4 STARS. I recently read another book that had to do with Egyptian Mythology that I really enjoyed, but this was a whole different style book. “Inkarna” is dark and AWESOME! I am not sure if there is going to be a sequel or if this book will be a stand-alone novel, but either way I was happy with how it ended. Of course, I would love it if there was a sequel because then I would just get to find out more about these incredible characters!

Lizzie Perry was supposed to be reincarnated as a 3 year old girl…but she wasn’t. Nope, instead she is reincarnated as Ashton Kennedy – Goth/rocker-wannabe/trouble maker. A female reincarnated as a male, fully aware that she was reincarnated, was definitely something Lizzie needed to get used to. She needed to learn how to live Ashton’s day to day life, and also how to stay away from the trouble that Ashton caused in those days. In the beginning of this book I was thinking of Lizzie as “in Ash’s body” and towards the end I was just thinking of her as Ash.

Nerine Dorman definitely had me thinking more about reincarnation. I always wondered if it were true and if I would be reincarnated one day. I hope that if it is real then I don’t have the same complications as Lizzie!

“Inkarna” was a great read that was full of emotions and conflict. I loved the detail the author put in to everything and I loved her characters. I hope there is a sequel so I can learn more about them and everything else going on. Ms. Dorman definitely did her job in keeping me interested.

I was happy to curl up with this book. I always enjoy YA novels, and “For Always” was no exception. I enjoyed that it wasn’t a happy-go-lucky teen scene book; I liked that I felt raw emotion. I am going to give “For Always” 4 STARS and I would definitely read more from author Danielle Sibarium. I would recommend this book to people who like to read Young Adult novels and to anyone who likes to read fiction that deals with real life issues. Though, due to some of the scenes and concepts of this book I would say that this book is more for the mature young adults.

Main character Stephanie Barrano is a relatable character for a lot of teenage girls. She has many issues in her life that are real. This isn’t the popular YA paranormal type book (even though I love those) where the character is dealing with fictional drama. This book has issues like depression, death, rejection, and anxiety – all issues ANYONE can experience. But there are also the lighter emotions of love, happiness, and hope. This novel is based on the relationship between Stephanie and older “friend” Jordan.

Stephanie meets Jordan when she is a freshman in high school and he a senior. They developed a friendship, but Stephanie wanted more. Jordan was against a relationship between them due to their age difference. Four years later, when Stephanie turns 18, can she and Jordan finally have a relationship? Will Jordan find some other excuse not to be with her? Will something else prevent them from being together? Or will Stephanie and Jordan finally live happily ever after? Find out in “For Always” by Danielle Sibarium!

Again, I give this book 4 stars! I think that if you like Contemporary Romance, YA, and real-life issues then you will love this book!

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