Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Cath is a Simon Snow fan. Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan . . .
But for Cath, being a fan is her life — and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.
Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.
Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.
Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words . . . And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.
For Cath, the question is: Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?
Brief Thoughts: This was my first Rainbow Rowell book, but it definitely will not be my last. Fangirl is a fascinating look at one girl's first year in college that is full of well-developed characters, an emotional plot, and a super sweet romance.
Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson
Amy Curry thinks her life sucks. Her mom decides to move from California to Connecticut to start anew--just in time for Amy's senior year. Her dad recently died in a car accident. So Amy embarks on a road trip to escape from it all, driving cross-country from the home she's always known toward her new life.
Joining Amy on the road trip is Roger, the son of Amy's mother's old friend. Amy hasn’t seen him in years, and she is less than thrilled to be driving across the country with a guy she barely knows. So she's surprised to find that she is developing a crush on him. At the same time, she’s coming to terms with her father’s death and how to put her own life back together after the accident.
Told in traditional narrative as well as scraps from the road--diner napkins, motel receipts, postcards--this is the story of one girl's journey to find herself.
Brief Thoughts: I loved almost every minutes of reading Amy and Roger's Epic Detour. It is a road trip story, but still so much more when you discover the journey that Amy needs to take to deal with her father's death. I was really impressed with Morgan Matson's writing skills and will be checking out more of her work in the future.
Opal (Lux #3) by Jennifer L. Armentrout
(YA Science Fiction)
No one is like Daemon Black. When he set out to prove his feelings for me, he wasn’t fooling around. Doubting him isn’t something I’ll do again, and now that we’ve made it through the rough patches, well... There’s a lot of spontaneous combustion going on. But even he can’t protect his family from the danger of trying to free those they love.
After everything, I’m no longer the same Katy. I’m different... And I’m not sure what that will mean in the end. When each step we take in discovering the truth puts us in the path of the secret organization responsible for torturing and testing hybrids, the more I realize there is no end to what I’m capable of.
The death of someone close still lingers, help comes from the most unlikely source, and friends will become the deadliest of enemies, but we won’t turn back. Even if the outcome will shatter our worlds forever. Together we’re stronger... and they know it.
Brief Thoughts: I highly recommend this installment and this series to anyone interested in suspenseful, creative YA fiction. I am not the biggest fan of science fiction, but absolutely adore this one. Katy and Daemon's story is funny, dangerous, super romantic, and everything is heightened in Opal especially with that cliffhanger ending!