Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Book That Would Be on My Syllabus if I Taught New Adult Romance 101

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is Top Ten Books That Would Be On Your Syllabus If You Taught X 101 (examples: YA fantasy 101, feminist literature 101, magic in YA 101, classic YA lit 101, world-building 101). I chose New Adult Romance 101. I tried to pick different authors and different types of stories in the genre. All of these books gave me “the feels.”

Top Ten Books That Would Be On My Syllabus if I Taught New Adult Romance 101:

1. Left Drowning by Jessica Park

 Left Drowning

2. Bright Side by Kim Holden

Bright Side (Bright Side, #1)

3. Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Ugly Love

4. Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan

Archer's Voice

5. Falling Into You by Jasinda Wilder

Falling into You (Falling, #1)

6. There is No Light in Darkness by Claire Contreras

There is No Light in Darkness (Darkness, #1)

7. Broken by Lauren Layne

Broken (Redemption, #1)

8. Sincerely, Carter by Whitney G.

Sincerely, Carter

9. The Mistake by Elle Kennedy

The Mistake (Off-Campus, #2)

10. How We Deal with Gravity by Ginger Scott

What New Adult book would you add to my list? Let me know in the comments.

Wild Reckless

Wild Reckless by Ginger Scott

Publication Date: March 17, 2015

Publisher: Ginger Scott

Synopsis:

Thanks to Kensington Worth’s parents, her senior year of high school is going to suck. Instead of completing high school at her Chicago private school with her best friends, she’s stuck at a public school in the middle of nowhere. She should be practicing piano with her favorite instructor. Now, she’s practicing solo in her new dining room. It just isn’t fair. To top it all off, her new neighbor has it out for her. He’s doing everything to ruin what little she has left.

All the rumors are true. Owen Harper is trouble. Everyone knows it. He’s wild and he’s reckless. Since he’s trying to ruin Kensi’s life, she should be running in the opposite direction. But after one horrible night, she can’t stay away from him. Kensi sees things in him no one else does. She knows those rumors cover up something more, something good.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This book! Oh, man. I loved this book. It was soooo good. If I could give it more than 5 stars, I would. It dealt with so many issues and brought out so many feelings. I want to say more about it, but I’m at a loss for words. It’s that good. It makes me want to dump my TBR list and read the rest of Ginger Scott’s books immediately.

Wild Reckless is a contemporary romance that YA, NA and adult readers will enjoy. I think readers that love Colleen Hoover, Tammara Webber and Jessica Park will especially enjoy this Ginger Scott novel.

ARC Review: Romancing the Dark in the City of Light

Romancing the Dark in the City of LightRomancing the Dark in the City of Light by Ann Jacobus

Publication Date: October 6, 2015

Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin

Synopsis:

Summer Barnes is stuck in France. She’s living with her mom and redoing her senior year of high school after being kicked out of four boarding schools. Summer really needs to get on the right path and graduate high school, but she can barely make it through the day. If she could just meet the perfect guy, it would be the answer to everything. Her life would be so much better — maybe even worth living.

As she starts her new school and navigates Paris, Summer meets not just one guy but two. They’re very different. Moony is a classmate with problems of his own. He brings out the best parts of Summer, parts she didn’t know existed. Kurt is a handsome older man, but there’s something alarming about him. He takes Summer to places she never thought she wanted to go.

Summer struggles with which version of herself she wants to be. Can she be as good as Moony thinks she is? Or is she stuck being as worthless as she feels when she’s with Kurt?

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Romancing the Dark in the City of Light is a book that kind of snuck up on me. From the description, I thought it was going to be about a troubled girl looking for a guy to fix her. I knew there was going to be depression and suicidal thoughts. What I didn’t expect was a story about a girl coping with not only her father’s death but her own alcohol addiction.

I loved the way Romancing the Dark in the City of Light portrayed Summer’s addiction. Her feelings of helplessness were easy to relate to. While I didn’t necessarily like Summer, I could feel her pain. I wanted her to make healthy decisions and succeed, to rise out of the darkness.

Summer’s two love interests, Moony and Kurt, added another whole dimension to the story. I loved Moony and his determination. It was amazing that he was willing to support Summer when it wasn’t always in his best interest. Kurt was….well, he was different. I hated him, but I liked they way his character had Summer on the edge.

My absolute favorite thing about the entire book is the last 1/4 of the novel. Up until then, I was planning on giving it 4 stars. The writing was beautiful, but it was just so dark and depressing! I wanted at least a glimmer of sunshine somewhere on those pages! But then the last 1/4 of the book happened and I felt like I finally got it. I won’t even hint at what happens, but it was enough to make me add that final star.

Romancing the Dark in the City of Light is truly a beautiful book about teenage substance abuse, suicide and family ties.

I would like to thank Goodreads and St. Martin’s Griffin for the opportunity to read and honestly review Romancing the Dark in the City of Light.

How We Deal with Gravity

How We Deal with GravityHow We Deal with Gravity by Ginger Scott

Publication Date: June 11, 2014

Publisher: Ginger Scott

Synopsis:

Nothing in Avery Abbot’s life has gone as planned. She dropped out of college to get married and have a baby. Then, her husband left her without a backward glance when their one-year-old son, Max, was diagnosed with autism.

Now, Avery plans her days around Max’s needs. What she wouldn’t give for someone to share her joys and pains with. But Avery knows her chance at love has passed. Or at least she thinks it has until Mason Street saunters back into town.

Mason’s spent the last five years on the road with his band, living his dream–until it all came crashing down. With a dropped record contract and nowhere else to go, he ends up back where his love for music began: the Abbot house.

While Mason’s rediscovering his love for music, he’s also learning about the kind of person he is. He thought he and Avery were friends, but her reception of him is less than friendly. Can he prove to her that he’s changed?

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

How We Deal with Gravity is the first book I’ve ever read by Ginger Scott. A friend on Goodreads suggested it for a buddy read and since I always like the books the people in the group suggest, I decided to join in. I’m so happy I did!

How We Deal with Gravity sucked me in from the Prologue. It had me close to tears. I do not have a child with autism, but I do have a nephew with it. I could totally picture my sister-in-law as Avery. The selflessness Ginger Scott gives Avery is the same selflessness I see in my sister-in-law.  It made me love Avery’s character even more.

And Mason. Oh, Mason. What a special guy. He may just be my new favorite book boyfriend. Mason starts out as kind of a jerk, but I loved the way he tackled learning that he wasn’t all that. The way treats not just Avery but the entire Abbot family warmed my heart.

The writing and storyline were spectacular. Mason and Avery’s chemistry was hot! There were even a couple of things I didn’t see coming in the story. I honestly don’t have even one complaint about it.

How We Deal with Gravity has cemented Ginger Scott’s place as one of my favorite go-to authors.  I can’t wait to read another one of her novels.

The Impossible Knife of Memory

The Impossible Knife of MemoryThe Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson

Publication Date: January 2, 2014

Publisher: Viking Children’s

Synopsis:

Hayley Kincain is spending her senior year of high school in high school. For most kids that would be normal. For Hayley, it’s a tough transition from being homeschooled on the road with her Iraq war veteran father.

Hayley’s trying to lead a normal life. She has a new best friend in Grace and a possible boyfriend in Finn. If only her father’s transition was as easy. Riddled with PTSD, he can barely keep it together. Hayley’s doing everything she can to keep him safe, but she’s worried it might not be enough.

My rating: 3 out of 5 stars

The Impossible Knife of Memory left me feeling kind of…blah. I had such high expectations for it. It just didn’t meet most of them. I can’t decide whether I liked it or not. There were some really great things about it, but there were also things I didn’t like or get.

The writing was amazing. It flowed well and kept me reading when I might have wanted to set the book down. I read it in two days.

I liked the PTSD topic and how Hayley’s dad was portrayed. Even though he wasn’t very likeable, he felt real and I couldn’t help but feel compassion for him and anyone else dealing with returning from war.

I couldn’t stand Hayley most of the time. Her denial of her dad’s condition was understandable, as was her warped sense of the past. Her habit of referring to her classmates as zombies drove me nuts. I just didn’t get it. The only time I really felt like I could connect with her character was toward the end of the book.

I also couldn’t stand Hayley’s dad’s flashbacks. I don’t know why we were treated to them, but they didn’t add anything to the story for me. At least the memories Hayley had were able to show how she was twisting her own truth.

So while I loved the writing and the issue the story was tackling, there were just too many things I didn’t like. I will be trying another of Laurie Hulse Anderson’s stories in the future since she’s obviously a talented author.

Saving Toby

perf6.000x9.000.inddSaving Toby by Suzanne McKenna Link

Publication Date: August 26, 2013

Synopsis:

Everyone in town knows the Faye boys are bad news, but Claudia can only remember Toby Faye as a nice kid. So when Claudia receives a job offer that will have her working with Toby and his mother, Julia, she accepts it.

Claudia never thought working near Toby would be such a measure in self-control. Toby’s made it obvious he wants her. Claudia can’t deny that she wants him, too. Just as they’re beginning to fall for each other, Toby is linked to a brutal hate crime. Claudia knows Toby couldn’t be involved, but her policeman father isn’t so sure.

As the police investigate, Claudia is be forced to choose sides and try to hold together a relationship that may have been doomed from the start.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I absolutely loved Saving Toby. It was fun, romantic, intense and fast-paced. The chemistry between Toby and Claudia was amazing.

I couldn’t help but fall in love with Toby’s cocky personality. The way he antagonized Claudia made me smile. It was just what her uptight personality needed. 

Despite her age, Claudia was very mature. I was surprised at how mature she was through the second half of the story. I don’t think many young adult women could handle things the way she did.

The hate crime part of the book was so intense! I could see what was going to happen and I was so worried for Toby! (I admit I may have had to take a little break from reading because it was stressing me out — but in a good way!)

Overall, Saving Toby was an amazing New Adult read. The writing was excellent and I was completely drawn into the story. I can’t wait to read the next book in the series, Keeping Claudia. I would highly recommend Saving Toby to fans of authors Colleen Hoover, Tammara Webber, and Jessica Park.

Thank you to Suzanne McKenna Link for the opportunity to read and honestly review Saving Toby.

Nine Minutes

Nine Minutes (Nine Minutes, #1)Nine Minutes by Beth Flynn

Publication Date: July 19, 2014

Synopsis:

One day and one decision changed Ginny Lemon’s life forever. On May 15, 1975, the fifteen-year-old was abducted from a convenience store in Fort Lauderdale, FL by a motorcycle gang member. From that day on, Ginny’s life depends on the goodwill of Satan’s Army leader, Grizz.

Grizz may be the frightening gang leader, but he has a soft spot for Ginny. She’s his obsession and he’s dedicated to keeping her as safe and happy as a captive can be.

Ginny is forced to trust in Grizz and try to adjust to life in the motorcycle gang. As time goes by, Ginny wonders if she will ever be able to get out alive or if she’ll be a prisoner forever.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Oh. My. Goodness. My mind is blown. BLOWN! I am honestly struggling with what to even write about Nine Minutes.

Nine Minutes was amazing. I loved it…but I hated it! The entire premise was so messed up. Everything that happened in this book was so disturbing! But the writing was so good. The surprises I didn’t see coming were amazing. The cliffhanger was awesome. I must have reread the last few chapters two or three times just to wrap my head around it.

So while I hated everything that was happening to poor Ginny, I couldn’t help but love this book. It’s going on my list of best books I’ve read so far in 2015. I highly suggest to READ. IT. NOW. Seriously. I would warn, however; Nine Minutes is filled with violence, sexual situations, and anything else you could think of happening in a motorcycle gang story. Think of a Sons of Anarchy type story.

If you’re interested in reading it, as of now Nine Minutes is $1.99 on Kindle and the second book in the series is releasing this Thursday, July 23, 2015!

Other books in this series:
Out of Time (Nine Minutes, #2)