This book had me shook from page one and that’s saying a lot for this being my first Danielle Steel book. I’ve now become a fan, and I believe anything can happen if you believe.
For me, a young adult novel has to have a romantic story line for me to get into it, and stick with it. This story is from a French writer who is only 21 years old and this is her second YA novel. Her first novel, I Was A Bitch, was an Amazon best-seller.
I personally felt the story was cute and reminded me of a YA book version of Me Before You. The characters were relatable and I loved that they were best friends and in love but the story to me lacked pull. There was no invisible string pulling me along and I skimmed some of the chapters just because there was conflict missing.
Sure, the main guy character Damon is dying but I felt like there needed to be more hiccups along the way in terms of him completing his Bucket List.
My favorite part of the whole story was the letter Damon leaves for Leah after he passes away. It was full of real, genuine emotion, quotes, and humor. And it made me feel a little sad that he didn’t get to live that long.
Yet, I did enjoy the overall theme of the story and book: life is short so make it count.
We are all familiar with the hashtag on social media #BlackLivesMatter. Yet I didn’t come face to face with it until I read Jodi Picoult’s newest masterpiece, Small Great Things.
Following the main characters through vignette like first-person accounts of the story we meet Ruth Jefferson, the woman this story is centered around. Ruth Jefferson is a 20 year nurse at West Haven Mercy Hospital and is working when the Bauer’s come in because Brit Bauer is in labor is ready to deliver her baby. Ruth Jefferson is a neonatal nurse and a mother herself. Her husband died while serving in Afghanistan.
Instantly, you relate to Ruth and connect with her.
So it equally pisses you off when a wonderful woman like Ruth who was just doing her job is suddenly under investigation for murder, and not just any murder.
The murder of Davis Bauer, newborn son of Brit and Turk Bauer, known white supremacists.
— The Smart Cookie (@TSCPhiles) October 3, 2016
Picoult weaves a story that shows literary merit but relevance in today’s racism-driven society, one that shares the struggle each person goes through when living based on skin color, or judged solely by it.
It’s brilliant. And I recommend you read it NOW. Get to your local bookstore and buy a copy for you and a friend or family member. It may be Picoult’s 24th book and 9th best-seller but it showcases Picoult’s true talent of writing literature that isn’t limited by time but instead exceeds beyond her years in wisdom, words, and grace.
I’m holding a fundraiser to benefit The Smart Cookie Philes and Metropolitan Ministries! Want to help out? Check out the link below. Can’t donate? No worries. Just share the campaign by retweeting the tweet below or by sharing the campaign via the webpage.
— The Smart Cookie (@TSCPhiles) October 16, 2016
The first time I ever saw Anna Banks, I thought she was the coolest person in the room. I admired her personality and how she could command the authority of every eye in the room not with just her good looks but also because she had a brain and clever one-liners. There, in a lecture hall, at Saint Leo University, I vowed that one day when I was a best-selling author, I would be as cool and confident as Anna was that day.
Just as the author herself made me want to be her when I grew up, her writing does the same thing to anyone who dares to not get hooked by the authenticity of her characters and the social issues her books discuss. Being that I knew she was a best-selling author of the Syrena Legacy, I knew her writer was going to be far from mediocre. Yet, one thing I wasn’t aware of is how quickly her writing took me out of this world and into the world of Carly Vega.
Carly Vega is just like any other teenager except that her home life is anything but pristine. She studies hard, and works every available shift at the Breeze Mart just to take care of her and her brother who live together in a trailer park. And before you go and judge her, you should watch what you say around Carly because she’ll put you in your place if she thinks you’ve stepped over the line. And she is cool with going unnoticed and not being an unruly teenager.
That is until she meets Arden Moss, former star quarterback and the town sheriff’s daughter.
Not only did I find myself relating to Carly on a personal level but this story will take you on the ride of your life from page one. I’m not even kidding.
Banks grips you with romantic plotlines and witty remarks said by characters that go from being ethnically defined on page one to being a human you both admire and want to be friends with someday. and a hero you root for. Banks’ Joyride mentions current social issues like illegal immigration and racism but she uses clever plotlines to make you fall in love with the character as a human and start to see that maybe people shouldn’t be defined by ethnic heritage but as who they are as humans, as people.
I’m pleased to announce that in order to get the whole world in on the Joyride bandwagon, I am hosting a new giveaway. 10 winners will win either a Joyride bookmark or a Joyride sticker signed by NYT best-selling author and Florida native, Anna Banks.
Just enter this Rafflecopter giveaway and you’re all set. Winners will be announced 1 month from today!