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Author: Lauren Barnholdt

Monday, February 23, 2015

Review: Right of Way by Lauren Barnholdt

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, Review, Young Adult0 Comments

Review: Right of Way by Lauren BarnholdtRight of Way by Lauren Barnholdt
Series: Two-Way Street, Book 2
Also in this series: Two-Way Street
Published by Simon Pulse on 09 July 2013
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friendship, People & Places, Road Trip, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 320
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Two-Way Street, Through to You

Place(s) Traveled To: Siesta Key, Florida // Greenwich, Connecticut // Sarasota, Florida // Bradenton, Florida // Ocala, Florida // Savannah, Georgia // Richmond Hill, Georgia

First Line(s): I’m a traitor to my generation.

Right of Way by Lauren Barnholdt is a companion book to her story, Two-Way Street (my review) and follows the cousin of Courtney. The two books are very similar in premise that they are almost interchangeable. The only real differences are the names, there is a dog and Jace is driving Peyton home and they are not heading off to college together. They have an existing relationship but unlike Courtney and Jordan theirs is more of a summer time fling but like Jordan, Jace just cuts off all contact without a word leaving Peyton all sorts of heart-broken. These aren’t a grouping of books that you want to read back to back as you’ll just get frustrated at the almost copy & paste of the story. But with some time in between the two the similarities aren’t quite as glaring though still pretty obvious.

Peyton, like Courtney, is a bit of an unlikable character and I just don’t get what Jace sees in her and the reason he had for cutting off all contact was just dumb. With as close as they were supposed to be the fact that he didn’t ask her to explain was just rage inducing. Ugh to the ugh ugh ugh with the pointless breakup!! Nothing frustrates me more than that and this was just made me sigh and roll my eyes.

Right of Way Quote

Overall though, Right of Way, is a quick brain candy type of read and its a good follow-up to an emotionally draining book. Its not a deep story and it doesn’t take long to read which makes it a great pallet cleanser. While I didn’t like Peyton at first she does change during the story and I do cheer for her and Jace’s inevitable coming back together. While this isn’t a book that I will re-read its not one that I feel like I wasted my time on either. Even with all the similarities to Two-Way Street.

irishdarkblue

IR - Right of Way

Add How My Summer Went up in Flames by Jennifer Salvato Doktorski to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add Trust the Focus by Megan Erickson to Goodreads (Review coming soon.)

three-stars
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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Review: Through to You by Lauren Barnholdt

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, Review, Young Adult0 Comments

Review: Through to You by Lauren BarnholdtThrough to You by Lauren Barnholdt
Published by Simon Pulse on 08 July 2014
Genres: Adolescence, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friendship, Girls & Women, Love & Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 256
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Two-Way Street, Right of Way

Place(s) Traveled To: Southboro, Massachusetts // Boston, Massachusetts

First Line(s): This is how it ends: with me crying in a bathroom at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, cursing myself for being so stupid.

Through to You by Lauren Barnholdt was a quick, easy, brain candy sort of read. There is nothing deep within its pages and for me, was just a so-so contemporary young adult romance. The story focuses on Harper who is a good girl who passively exists in high school along with one of her few friends, Anna, who was super annoying and a character I did not like. Harper’s love interest is Penn, the very cute bad boy loner who can have any girl in school but for some reason impulsively writes Harper a note telling her he likes her sparkle. I liked the premise of the book and the set up of the meet-cute but what followed was just a hum-drum predictable story where I never really bought this couple as a couple.

Harper and Penn where your typical high school characters although Penn has some serious issues and, in my opinion, needs a whole lot of therapy. He’s the sort of character who blows more cold than hot and would constantly push Harper away. Often being cruel in the process. I honestly don’t know why Harper put up with his bullshit and why she always seemed to accept his non-apologies. I get that Penn was dealing with some serious things and that his home life wasn’t the greatest but his attitude left much to be desired. Harper herself was also pretty passive and accepting and was a bit of a Mary Sue.

Through to You was a quick read and I like how Barnholdt writes but it just seemed a bit too formulaic and there wasn’t enought depth or heart within its pages. I never felt that heat achy feeling when our couple was going through their stuggles as they journeyed to their happily for now. Instead I found myself sighing at all the cliches that were contained withing its pages. For me, Through to You was just an average read but its not a total waste of time. Its a book that would make a good pallet cleanser when you are coming off a book high or something that was super emotional. Its not a book that I would rush out to read and I probably won’t ever re-read it but Lauren Barnholdt will still have shelf space devoted to her on my bookcase.

 

irishdarkblue

Through to You Quote

three-stars
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Monday, July 1, 2013

Review: Two-Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, New Adult, Review, Young Adult2 Comments

Review: Two-Way Street by Lauren BarnholdtTwo-Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt
Series: Two-Way Street,
Also in this series: Right of Way
Published by Simon Pulse on 26 June 2007
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Love & Romance, New Adult, People & Places, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 304
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased
Buy on Amazon
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Through to You, Right of Way

Place(s) Traveled to: Unnamed, Florida // Boston, MA

First Line: I’m a traitor to my generation.

Well, dear readers it shouldn’t surprise you what initially drew me to Two-Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt because this, my friends, is a road trip book. I adore road trip books with a passion that is probably a tad bit unhealthy. They feed my wanderlust and let me “travel” to multiple places in a short amount of time. I love all the random crazy things that happen on a road trip and its always just such a fun experience. So, its with a heavy heart that I saw that Two-Way Street fails at being a road trip book. Or at least, how I like my road trip books to be.

There are no crazy side trips. There are no fun adventures. There is also very little description of any of the stops that Courtney and Jordan make along the way. Its all quite disappointing. Oh there is talk of them in hotels and on the road but you never get a sense for where they are. And that makes me sad because the journey is what makes a road trip book. Now, there is a journey in Two-Way Street but its more of internal one that the two main characters take as they drive from Florida to Boston in order to start school.

Courtney and Jordan used to date until one day Jordan breaks things off unexpectedly. So there is lots of tension in the car at the start of this trip. Courtney is pissed and Jordan is so obviously hiding something. As this story is told in the present and the past its not long before the reader is aware of what this secret of Jordan’s is. When you do your heart breaks a little for his situation. While so much could have been avoided by simple communication its not all that easy in this case. Jordan is walking a very fine line and I can totally understand why he made the choices that he did.

Also, once you know the why it becomes a bit harder to sympathize with Courtney as her attitude just makes her a tad bit unlikable. I liked past Courtney but future Courtney is a bit hard to take. But her actions are also totally realistic so I can’t hold her bitchiness against her…much. Two-Way Street is very much a character driven novel and its one where I was really glad that it was told from both Courtney and Jordan’s perspectives. This alternative POV telling adds a bit of depth that would be severely lacking if this was a one-sided story.

Two-Way Street is a quick, fast-paced story that I read in just a few hours. Its easy to get lots in this book and its one that I would consider to be a brain candy read. Its a lazy day book, or one for a rainy day, or a day at the beach. Its not a book you pick up if you want something serious and that’s not a bad thing. This isn’t a book that I’ll bully people for but I don’t feel like I wasted my time reading it. Its a cute story even though its a predictable one. This was my first Lauren Barnholdt book but it probably won’t be my last. After all, Two-Way Street does have a companion story…which sounds an awful lot like this one so I will probably wait to read that one.

three-stars
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