Nostalgic Book Haul (April)

 

Sweet Valley University #35 – Undercover Angels“Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield have each been investigating the same murder at the Verona Springs Country Club. They’ve kept their undercover schemes a secret from each other… and their true identities a secret from the club. When their paths cross, will their looks be a dead giveaway? Scott Sinclair is madly in love with Elizabeth. He’ll do anything to take her far, far away from her lovesick ex-boyfriend, Tom Watts. But will Scott try to take her too far? Lila Fowler and Bruce Patman have all the fun money can buy, including an exclusive membership at Verona Springs. But when the Wakefield twins hit the scene, will Lila and Bruce wind up exiled from the land of the young, rich, and fabulous?”
 
Sweet Valley University #38 – Good-Bye, Elizabeth“Elizabeth Wakefield is about to say hello to an exciting new school. But first she has to say good-bye to everything–and everyone–she loves. Good-bye to Nina Harper, her best friend. Good-bye to Todd Wilkins, the ex-boyfriend who’s stood by her through thick and thin. Good-bye to Tom Watts, the guy who broke her heart into a million pieces. But how can she say good-bye to her twin sister, Jessica?”
 
Sweet Valley University #39 – Elizabeth ♥ New York“When Elizabeth Wakefield wins a summer fellowship to produce her own play in New York City, no one is more surprised than she is. It’s an offer Elizabeth can’t refuse, even though she and Tom Watts vowed to spend the summer together. So Tom gives up his prestigious summer internship to be with her! Will Elizabeth have to give up something in return and make a sacrifice she’s not yet ready for? Jessica Wakefield is embarking on a wild, adventurous, and totally butt-kicking journey this summer to a training camp in Florida for her specialized security agents! Hand-to-hand combat, stunt driving, hot guys in uniform… this place has it all. Will she submerge herself in total excitement? Or will Jessica end up over her head in trouble?”

April TBR

 

Miracle Creek by Angie Kim – “In rural Virginia, Young and Pak Yoo run an experimental medical treatment device known as the Miracle Submarine – a pressurised oxygen chamber that patients enter for “dives”, used as an alternative therapy for conditions including autism and infertility. But when the Miracle Submarine mysteriously explodes, killing two people, a dramatic murder trial upends the Yoos’ small community. Who or what caused the explosion? Was it the mother of one of the patients, who claimed to be sick that day but was smoking down by the creek? Or was it Young and Pak themselves, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? The ensuing trial uncovers unimaginable secrets from that night–trysts in the woods, mysterious notes, child-abuse charges–as well as tense rivalries and alliances among a group of people driven to extraordinary degrees of desperation and sacrifice.”
 
Honeybee by Craig Silvey – “Late in the night, fourteen-year-old Sam Watson steps onto a quiet overpass, climbs over the rail and looks down at the road far below. At the other end of the same bridge, an old man, Vic, smokes his last cigarette. The two see each other across the void. A fateful connection is made, and an unlikely friendship blooms. Slowly, we learn what led Sam and Vic to the bridge that night. Bonded by their suffering, each privately commits to the impossible task of saving the other.”
 
Every Last Secret by A.R. Torre – “Cat Winthorpe has worked hard to get what she has: a gorgeous home; social standing; and William, her successful, handsome husband. Then a friendly new couple moves into the estate next door. While cautious, a good neighbor like Cat greets them with open arms and warm hospitality. Neena Ryder isn’t a fellow lady of leisure. A life coach with off-the-rack dresses, personal issues, and a husband who hasn’t delivered, she’s anxious to move up in the world. This beautiful new town is a step in the right direction. It’s also making Neena aware of what she doesn’t have. Namely, William. When Neena’s infatuation escalates into obsession, it’s just a matter of eliminating a few obstacles to get the life she wants. The life next door. As Neena’s secret fixation grows, so does her friendship with Cat. But beneath their cordial interactions is a wealth of temptations, secrets, and toxic jealousy. For both women, the desire for a perfect life can turn perfectly dangerous.”
 
The Night Swim by Megan Goldin – “Ever since her true-crime podcast became an overnight sensation and set an innocent man free, Rachel Krall has become a household name – and the last hope for people seeking justice. But she’s used to being recognised for her voice, not her face. Which makes it all the more unsettling when she finds a note on her car windshield, addressed to her, begging for help. The new season of Rachel’s podcast has brought her to a small town being torn apart by a devastating rape trial. A local golden boy, a swimmer destined for Olympic greatness, has been accused of raping the beloved granddaughter of the police chief. Under pressure to make Season 3 a success, Rachel throws herself into her investigation – but the mysterious letters keep coming. Someone is following her, and she won’t stop until Rachel finds out what happened to her sister twenty-five years ago. Officially, Jenny Stills tragically drowned, but the letters insist she was murdered – and when Rachel starts asking questions, nobody in town wants to answer. The past and present start to collide as Rachel uncovers startling connections between the two cases – and a revelation that will change the course of the trial and the lives of everyone involved.”

March TBR (Nostalgic Reads)

 

Sweet Valley High #21 – Runaway“Jessica Wakefield is sick and tired of taking second place to her twin sister, Elizabeth. Everyone adores Elizabeth; she’s kind and loving and generous. But Jessica can’t seem to do anything right. Then Jessica meets handsome, sensitive Nicky Shepard, who feels the same way she does. Nicky is running away to San Francisco and wants Jessica to join him. At first she doesn’t take him seriously. But when things reach the breaking point at home, Jessica starts to see that she might be better off if she left Sweet Valley – forever!”
 
Sweet Valley High #22 – Too Much In Love“Bill Chase and DeeDee Gordon have been happy together for a long time. But lately DeeDee has become too dependent on Bill. She wants to do everything and go everywhere with him. Bill feels that he doesn’t have any room to breathe and decides it’s over between them. Elizabeth doesn’t know why DeeDee is acting the way she is, but she knows DeeDee’s strange behaviour is killing her relationship. Can Elizabeth help DeeDee regain her strength and independence before its too late?”
 
Sweet Valley University #18 – Billie’s Secret“Billie Winkler is breaking Steven Wakefield’s heart. By competing for a scholarship to study in Spain, she has shattered Steven’s plans for their perfect future. Will Billie win a year abroad and risk losing Steven forever? Jessica Wakefield is miserable. She has the job from hell at Taylor’s department store, and if she messes up one more time, she’ll be fired! Everyone’s taking bets on how long Jessica will last, even her ex-husband Mike McAllery. But there’s no way she’ll let Mike get the last laugh. Posing as a waitress in a sleazy nightclub, Elizabeth Wakefield is about to uncover a major scandal. But can she expose the crooks without exposing too much of herself?”
 
Sweet Valley University #19 – Broken Promises, Shattered Dreams“Billie Winkler and Steven Wakefield are having a baby! But Steven’s joy quickly turns to misery when Billie tells him that marriage is not the only option. Will this mean the end of Billie and Steven? Now that she owns her own clothing business, Jessica Wakefield’s life is perfect. But then her flirty partner, Val Tripler, and scheming ex-husband, Mike AcAllery, disappear with all the company’s borrowed money. How will Jessica find her way out of this one? Lila Fowler’s sick of her freeloading friends! She opens a non-profit doughnut shop to help the neighbourhood, and her friends help themselves to all the free food. Can Lila keep her store without losing her friends?”

February Wrap Up – Books

 

American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins – I went into this with high expectations, which could be why it ended up disappointing me. This book put me into a massive reading slump, and it was a struggle for me to want to pick it up every night. I’m not saying this was a bad book, it was interesting enough and the subject matter was unlike anything I’ve read before, but I didn’t find it captivating enough to want to keep reading.
 
High Fidelity by Nick Hornby – This was another slump-inducing read, which meant February was an unsuccessful month for me reading wise. Luckily it was a relatively short book and I managed to smash almost the entire thing out over the last weekend of the month. This was an okay read for me. It was well written, and Nick Hornby is clearly masterful at writing characters… I just didn’t like any of them. This normally wouldn’t be an issue for me but unfortunately in this case I could not see past it to enjoy the overall story.

Nostalgic Book Haul (March)

 

Sweet Valley High #43 – Hard Choices“Enid Rollins can hardly wait for her grandmother to come live with her and her mother. But when she arrives, Enid is dismayed that the kind, sprightly woman she remembered is now burdensome and demanding. Because Enid’s mother works long hours and is often out with her boyfriend, Enid finds herself making all sorts of sacrifices to please her grandmother. She skips school events and even stands up her best friend, Elizabeth Wakefield. Worst of all, she never has any time for her boyfriend, Hugh. It’s beginning to look as if Enid may have to say good-bye to someone she loves.”
 
Sweet Valley High #53 – Second Chance“Quiet, determined Kristin Thompson knows exactly what she wants from life. Since she was little, she has had one goal–to become a world-class tennis player. Now all she has to do is win one more tournament and she’ll qualify to turn professional. Then handsome Bruce Patman invites her out and sweeps her off her feet. But there’s not enough room in Kristin’s life for a boyfriend and professional tennis. She begins to wonder if a romance with Bruce will make her happier than winning the tournament ever could. Will Kristin give up the dream of a lifetime to live like an ordinary teenager?”
 
Sweet Valley High #55 – Perfect Shot“People are always telling Shelley Novak that she has everything going for her. She’s one of the best basketball players at Sweet Valley High, and she’s as tall and graceful as a model. The problem is, being so tall makes Shelley feel like a freak. Until she meets Jim Roberts. He has a way of making her feel special. But when Jim, a photography buff, starts taking of her, Shelley makes him promise never to show them to anyone. Then the Sweet Valley News sponsors a photography contest and Jim thinks he could win with a photograph of Shelley. But if he’s wrong, will Shelley ever forgive him?”