Release Date: October 28, 2016
Melissa (Missy) has just lost her mother in a car accident and because her alcoholic father is unable to cope, they move to her aunt’s home in Florida while her aunt is on assignment as a photographer. Melissa is resistant to the change because all of her friends, mainly Karley who has been a tremendous support as well as her best friend, are in Kansas and she has a place on the basketball team. And she’s really, really good. All of the upheaval feels like too much and she’s positive she won’t have any friends in Florida.
On her first day she literally bumps into a boy and his cute friend, Adam Miller, helps her pick up her things. Adam is a basketball player as well, but he is also in her photography class and it is here where they work together on an assignment and bond.
Meanwhile, Missy is trying to keep her father’s alcoholism a secret so that social services doesn’t become involved and she isn’t taken away from him.
This first installment of Ava Wood’s Broken the Sea trilogy is quite involving although I had to keep reminding myself that Missy is a teenage girl and that her self-obsession and judging of others is related to that. I enjoyed her relationship with Adam as he was a good guy and managed to help her through a lot as did his family. I found the fact that the Millers stood up for Missy so quickly to be really admirable.
Some of the drama with her father was not entirely believable, not the part where he would be violent because that is frequently an attribute of an alcoholic, but rather the part of mistaken identity which happened too frequently. One time perhaps would be believable, but several times were not.
What made Forgetting Yesterday work for me was that it wasn’t episodic, which the following two novels are. It was a story about a girl going through a rough time and finding friendship along the way with a kind, as well as very cute, boy who shared her interests.
I would have appreciated a bit more character development. Both the father and the aunt are rather one-dimensional characters. In this first entry for the trilogy Missy describes herself as once having a good relationship with her father. It would have been nice to see that reflected, but we only see a very broken man who either cries or is violent. Aunt Emily is pretty much a caricature and even then over-the top. In Books 2 and 3, Missy’s relationship with her father is only described as abusive without any indication that there had ever been any real closeness between them. I found that sad that the author pursued that route rather than examining the much more difficult and sensitive scenario of a good father and his good relationship with his daughter dissolving, which would have been far more effective, involving, and interesting.
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review
rating: 4 out of 5 butterflies
Book 3 in the Broken by the Sea Trilogy
Remnants of Yesterday (Broken by the Sea #3)
by Ava Wood
Genre: YA Romance
Release Date: January 6th 2017
“Saying goodbye is never easy.”
Missy Shaw has lived through her fair share of heartache and abuse, mostly at the hands of her own father. After finally taking a stand against her abusers, Missy is faced with a new dilemma when her father unexpectedly falls ill. Longing to take care of the man who’s never really been a father to her, she’s forced to make a difficult decision that could cause a cataclysmic collision with her past and her future.
Now that Adam Miller was a major fixture in Missy’s life, making those hard decisions shouldn’t be so difficult, but when Missy heads to Tampa for college and Adam returns to Kansas, she’s left feeling vulnerable and alone. Moving forward is harder than she imagined when the demons from her past continue to haunt her.
In this gripping finale to the Broken by the Sea trilogy, find out if Missy is finally able to find her happy ending, or if the demons of her past become the nightmares of her future.
Excerpt from Remnants of Yesterday
But Adam filled that void, and a need I’d had, but never realized. Quickly he forced his way into my life, first as my friend, then suddenly becoming so much more. He and his family had shown me what a real family was supposed to be. My father’s illness was giving me my own sense of family for a short time, but I wasn’t sure I would ever really see my dad as my father again. He’d so easily thrown everything away to save himself from my mother’s grief. Dad was simply the name I’d learned to call him. The deeper I delved within myself, I realized that it probably couldn’t be much more than just a name.
During our conversation, Adam helped me to see that the time I had with my father now wasn’t about fixing some bond we once had. No, that bond had never really formed to begin with. It finally dawned on me that the anxiety I’d felt over my father’s illness hadn’t been about me leaving or feeling like I’d abandoned him, but had been from a deep–seeded fear that he wouldn’t be able to forgive himself. I’d done all I could to forgive him, and though I would never forget, my forgiveness had been granted that first day I came home to see him.
Now, our time together had to be about making my father’s final days on earth as peaceful and easy as possible, about helping him to forgive himself so that he could move on from this life free from any guilt or hatred he might have toward himself.
About the Author
Ava Wood is an insomniac who writes to calm the voices. When the voices get too loud, stories are formed.
Ava was born and raised in Texas but got to Florida as quick as she could, enjoying the fresh sea air and summer storms. She believes there is nothing more beautiful than an evening summer light show.
She’s married to the love of her life whom she shares two beautiful daughters and four sweet fur babies. Their marriage is the perfect “North-meets-South” pairing.
When she’s not writing, Ava can be found chasing her children all over the county, snapping photos of any and everything, visiting one of her local theme parks, or just spending quality time with her family.
$10 Amazon Giftcard
Publisher: Clean Reads
Publication Date: July 27, 2016
Once in a former lifetime this reviewer used to be a little girl playing softball with her big brother’s baseball mitt, which is one reason why I was excited to see the subject of Clay Cormany’s young adult novel, Fast-Pitch Love, and couldn’t wait to read it.
Fast-Pitch Love is a frequently didactic novel (not in your face) that did remind me a lot of learning how to play a sport I loved and how a team comes together and learns to play as one.
Seventeen-year old Jace Waldron has had a crush on Stephanie Thornapple since the beginning of the semester when she appeared in his class. However, Carson, a scary and very intimidating offensive lineman snagged her for his own and warned all of the other boys away. Jace’s mother coaches a girls summer league fast-pitch softball team and asks Jace to copy the roster. When Jace sees that S.A. Thornapple is the assistant coach and that Carson is going to be spending the summer in Michigan, he sees an opportunity to ingratiate himself to Stephanie.
Fast-Pitch Love is quite different from a lot of YA novels out there in that there is a lot of softball talk and descriptions of the games, which I really enjoyed. It’s kind of like watching a sports movie and becoming fascinated by the team playing because the hero is the player or the coach (or whatever) and hoping they’ll make it to the play-offs. In this case, the Valkyries start out playing very badly, but improve throughout the season. If you like sports, you will find yourself cheering for this team of girls and their coaches.
Speaking of coaches, yes, there is some romance! So even if you aren’t fond of softball, there’s something here for you. In fact, Fast-Pitch Love offers a lot to its readers in that the characters are well-written and relatable; the story is intriguing; and writing is well-paced.
You might even find that Jace’s romantic dilemma keeps you guessing until the very end.
I received an ARC from YA Bound Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.
From Amazon: Fast-Pitch Love
rating: (4 out of 5 butterflies)