Friday, November 7, 2014

Mini Reviews: My Own Mr. Darcy, Cinder & Ella

Title: My Own Mr. Darcy
Author: Karey White
Genre: Adult Contemporary Clean Romance
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Received for review

After being dragged to the 2005 movie Pride and Prejudice by her mother, sixteen-year-old Elizabeth’s life changes when Matthew Macfadyen’s Mr. Darcy appears on the screen. Lizzie falls hard and makes a promise to herself that she will settle for nothing less than her own Mr. Darcy. This ill-advised pledge threatens to ruin any chance of finding true love. During the six intervening years, she has refused to give any interested suitors a chance. They weren’t Mr. Darcy enough. Coerced by her roommate, Elizabeth agrees to give the next interested guy ten dates before she dumps him. That guy is Chad, a kind and thoughtful science teacher and swim coach. While she’s dating Chad, her dream comes true in the form of a wealthy bookstore owner named Matt Dawson, who looks and acts like her Mr. Darcy. Of course she has to follow her dream. But as Elizabeth simultaneously dates a regular guy and the dazzling Mr. Dawson, she’s forced to re-evaluate what it was she loved about Mr. Darcy in the first place.

I will say, I have never understood the fascination people (women) have with Mr. Darcy. I mean, I get it, kind of, but I don't know. The book version, that is. I've seen/read quite a few retellings/modernizations where I could see it. But I digress. Elizabeth was super obsessed with finding her own Mr. Darcy. Like, super obsessed.

Elizabeth is actually a likeable character. She's sweet and caring and quirky and fun. But her obsession with Mr. Darcy... like come on. One of the reasons that it bothered me was that is was so superficial. She's dating a guy based on how he looks. I mean, when he asked what he wanted him to call her, she goes by what Darcy says, Elizabeth instead of the Lizzie everyone else calls her.

I will say, though, I did still like Matt. And he did have the Darcy thing down, from being snobby and a bit pretentious, but nice enough once you got to know him. But Chad was where my heart was at. I mean, he was so nice and sweet and funny. But I did start to like Matt, and started to not like Elizabeth for leading the two men on.

Regardless, this progressed in a quick and easy manner. It took me slight while to get into it, but once I did I couldn't stop because I needed to know how it ended. And it was super cute and fluffy and all-around will just make you feel good.

This review can also be found on   Goodreads

Karey WhiteKarey White:

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Title: Cinder & Ella
Author: Kelly Oram
Genre: NA clean contemporary romance
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Received for review

It’s been almost a year since eighteen-year-old Ella Rodriguez was in a car accident that left her crippled, scarred, and without a mother. After a very difficult recovery, she’s been uprooted across the country and forced into the custody of a father that abandoned her when she was a young child. If Ella wants to escape her father’s home and her awful new stepfamily, she must convince her doctors that she’s capable, both physically and emotionally, of living on her own. The problem is, she’s not ready yet. The only way she can think of to start healing is by reconnecting with the one person left in the world who’s ever meant anything to her—her anonymous Internet best friend, Cinder. 

Hollywood sensation Brian Oliver has a reputation for being trouble. There’s major buzz around his performance in his upcoming film The Druid Prince, but his management team says he won’t make the transition from teen heartthrob to serious A-list actor unless he can prove he’s left his wild days behind and become a mature adult. In order to douse the flames on Brian’s bad-boy reputation, his management stages a fake engagement for him to his co-star Kaylee. Brian isn’t thrilled with the arrangement—or his fake fiancĂ©e—but decides he’ll suffer through it if it means he’ll get an Oscar nomination. Then a surprise email from an old Internet friend changes everything.

This book was super cute. It kept me up until 3AM needing to know how it ended, and it did not disappoint. Ella isn't like most other main characters. For one, she's a book blogger. I mean, how cool is that? She was perfectly nerdy and quirky and reminded myself of many a fellow book blogger ;) But also, she's was permanently scarred in an accident that took her mother's life. After months in a coma, then therapy, she's been moved across the country to live with her father, the man who walked out on her over 10 years ago. Seeing him with his perfectly perky new blonde family, who barely hides their disdain for her, only reminds Ella of all that she's lost.

Before her accident, Ella's best friend was one that she had never met before. An online friend that went by the name of Cinder. But what she doesn't know is that "Cinder" is actually a Hollywood star, Brian. Stuck in the life that everyone else keeps picking for him, Brian feels that he has nothing to live for after losing touch with his best friend. That is, until months later, she emails him again.

This book was just so cute. But it wasn't all fluff. Ella has been through some truly horrible experiences. And instead of letting her make her own choices, a father she barely remembers has taken over her life. Instead of letting her finish high school in a few month online, he's making her retake her senior year at the same private school her evil stepsisters go to. And boy, are they evil. Especially Ana, who seems to be doing anything to make Ella's life miserable. But one thing I loved was how much all of these characters grew. Yes, even the step-witches. There are some serious issues dealt with here, and they are resolved in realistic ways that testify to the growth of the characters. I loved seeing Ella grow and become more than just her scars, and how her friends were there for her the whole way.

And Brian. Most of us can only dream of our online pen pal actually being a movie star. While Brian himself was questionable, Cinder was so sweet and nearly perfect. And the fact that he was a closet nerd was super adorable. Well, I guess Cinder wasn't a secret nerd, Brian was. But also, the nerd quirks that we all can relate to. How much they fangirled together over their favorite series and argued about everything. It was so cute.

While on the surface, this may seem like a fluffy book, really, it was so much more than that. It tackled some serious issues. But it was super cute, and I'm pretty sure I had a goofy grin the whole time I was reading it.

 This review can also be found on   Goodreads

Kelly Oram:

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