Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (96)

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme to discuss upcoming books we can't wait to get our hands on. Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.   

This week, I'm waiting on:

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
Release date: July 10, 2012


Four decades of peace have done little to ease the mistrust between humans and dragons in the kingdom of Goredd. Folding themselves into human shape, dragons attend court as ambassadors, and lend their rational, mathematical minds to universities as scholars and teachers. As the treaty's anniversary draws near, however, tensions are high.

Seraphina Dombegh has reason to fear both sides. An unusually gifted musician, she joins the court just as a member of the royal family is murdered—in suspiciously draconian fashion. Seraphina is drawn into the investigation, partnering with the captain of the Queen's Guard, the dangerously perceptive Prince Lucian Kiggs. While they begin to uncover hints of a sinister plot to destroy the peace, Seraphina struggles to protect her own secret, the secret behind her musical gift, one so terrible that its discovery could mean her very life.

In her exquisitely written fantasy debut, Rachel Hartman creates a rich, complex, and utterly original world. Seraphina's tortuous journey to self-acceptance is one readers will remember long after they've turned the final page.

I think this sounds very promising! I love books about dragons and I liked the prequel.

Another book I'm waiting for with great anticipation:

The cover was just revealed and I can't wait to find out more about The Indigo Spell. I'm guessing that it is Eddie on the cover with Sydney and Adrian?


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Review: Smart Girls Get What They Want

Smart Girls Get What They Want
By Sarah Strohmeyer
Published: June 26, 2012

My review:

Gigi and her best friends Bea and Neerja are the smartest in their class and their role model has always been Parad, Neerja's older sister who just got accepted to Princeton. When the girls are helping her pack, they find out Parad's "dirty little secret"-no one in her class remembered her at all. Gigi, Bea, and Neerja decide right then that while their grades are still important, they want their classmates to know who they are when it is their turn to get their yearbook signed. They want to be involved, date cute boys, and do the kinds of things that normal teens get to do but to succeed they'll have to face their fears...

I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked this book. It is nice to see YA books portraying intelligent girls in a positive way. At first I was worried that the goal of the girls would be to achieve popularity and that they would act less intelligent or change who they were in order to get it. Thankfully that was not the case. They managed to be true to themselves as they worked toward their goals. The girls may be smart academically but they still had lessons to learn when it came to social interaction with others, especially boys. When one character starts to think she needs to change to please a boy she likes, the other two are quick to squash that idea. Romance may be part of the story but friendship is the focus as Gigi, Neerja, and Bea take on their challenges.

I also appreciated the message that sometimes we judge people unfairly. The girls come to the realization that they look down on some of their classmates and instead of judging, they actually get to know them. The author could have taken the usual route of having the popular girls be "mean girls" who are obstacles to the heroine but I'm glad she didn't. This book reminded me of A Match Made in High School by Kristin Walker, which deals with the same topic. 

Gigi was a character I really liked getting to know. While I was not quite so academically driven as a teen (I was good at procrastinating), I found her to be easy to relate to, especially with her fear of public speaking. I love how she becomes so politically involved in her school and how she works to make a difference in spite of her fears. Neerja and Bea are also admirable characters and I liked how they supported each other in their goals. I wouldn't mind reading sequels featuring either of them as main characters.

If you are looking for YA contemporary fiction with humor, an intelligent heroine, strong friendships, and a little romance, then give Smart Girls Get What They Want a try.

Readalikes: A Match Made in High School by Kristin Walker, Sophomore Switch by Abby McDonald, The Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart, Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern

Note: I received an ARC for review through the Amazon Vine program

Sunday, June 24, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading (110)

It's Monday, What Are You Reading is a fun weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journey where we share what we've read and reviewed over the past week and what we plan to read next.

I only managed to finish one book this past week but I am nearly done with my other book group book and I hope to get through more books this week if I'm inspired.

Books read:

The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings

This is a book club book and I think it will make for an interesting discussion. I liked the movie in spite of the language and the sometimes obnoxious behavior of the kids and the book is pretty much the same.

Books reviewed:

Currently reading:

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows 

This is a reread and another book discussion book. I am enjoying getting reacquainted with characters like Dawsey, Isola, and of course, Juliet. Incidentally, it is being made into a movie starring Kate Winslet...

I really liked The Girl in the Steel Corset and so far I like this one too. The new villain is definitely interesting.

What I plan to read next:

The Queen's Lady by Eve Edwards

I would be reading this one right now but the Kady Cross book is a library book that needs to be finished first. 

Dark Force Rising by Timothy Zahn

After reading Heir to the Empire, I am eager to get to the rest of the trilogy. Sadly these have not been reissued as unabridged audio books yet (I've heard the abridged versions are terrible) so I'll be reading e-books from the library instead. 

The Last Command by Timothy Zahn

That image of Han and Leia reminds me of The Return of the Jedi. The covers for this series do a good job of echoing the movies.

What have you been reading? 
And "May the Force Be With You" as you read this week ;)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (95)

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme to discuss upcoming books we can't wait to get our hands on. Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.     

This week, I'm waiting on:

By Jay Kristoff
Release date: September 18, 2012

Description from Goodreads:

The Shima Imperium verges on the brink of environmental collapse; an island nation once rich in tradition and myth, now decimated by clockwork industrialization and the machine-worshipers of the Lotus Guild. The skies are red as blood, the land is choked with toxic pollution, and the great spirit animals that once roamed its wilds have departed forever. 

The hunters of Shima's imperial court are charged by their Shōgun to capture a thunder tiger – a legendary creature, half-eagle, half-tiger. But any fool knows the beasts have been extinct for more than a century, and the price of failing the Shōgun is death. 

Yukiko is a child of the Fox clan, possessed of a talent that if discovered, would see her executed by the Lotus Guild. Accompanying her father on the Shōgun’s hunt, she finds herself stranded: a young woman alone in Shima’s last wilderness, with only a furious, crippled thunder tiger for company. Even though she can hear his thoughts, even though she saved his life, all she knows for certain is he’d rather see her dead than help her. 

But together, the pair will form an indomitable friendship, and rise to challenge the might of an empire.

I am very excited about this book because it is part epic fantasy/part steampunk and set in a world based on Feudal Japan. I was under the mistaken impression that this is a YA book but apparently it isn't. I still plan to read it anyway!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Review: Heir to the Empire

Star Wars: Heir to the Empire
By Timothy Zahn
Published: 1991, 2011 (20th Anniversary edition)

My review:

Heir to the Empire takes place 5 years after the events of Return of the Jedi. The Rebel Alliance is now the New Republic. Leia and Han are married and she is pregnant with Jedi twins. Luke has been working with Leia on how to use the Force. At the start of the book, it becomes clear that the danger isn't over with internal fights among the New Republic and skirmishes with the Empire. The Emperor may have died but there is a secretive and cunning new Grand Admiral in charge. Leia and her unborn twins are the target of kidnapping attempts and there are rumors of a Jedi Master who has emerged from seclusion. New characters are introduced and old favorites return in this action packed first book in the Thrawn Trilogy.

I first read this book as a teenager who couldn't get enough of the Star Wars universe. I was curious when I saw that the book was being reissued in a 20th Anniversary edition and I decided to read it again to see if it would stand the test of time. Thankfully it did. I don't know if it was the passage of time or listening to the book on audio but I thoroughly enjoyed rereading Heir to the Empire. For fans of the original movies, Timothy Zahn does a great job in capturing the film characters in his book. It is not just a rehash of the same story five years later however. The standout part of the book was the creation of super-villain Grand Admiral Thrawn. He is shrewd and intelligent and has more depth than the average Star Wars villain. He reminded me of an evil version of Captain Jean-Luc Picard. There are also some interesting "gray area" characters like smuggler Talon Karrde and Mara Jade that add to the complexity of the story. 

I am an incredibly picky audio book listener and I was mostly pleased with this one aside from a couple of annoying voices for minor characters. The unabridged audio book is read by Marc Thompson who does a fantastic job with most of the voices. His portrayals of Han Solo and Luke Skywalker sound a lot like the film characters. The addition of sound effects and excerpts from the movie soundtracks at emotional or action driven moments added to the listening experience for me. For those looking for all the additional footnotes and information in the 20th Anniversary Edition book-they are not on the audio book but have to be purchased as a separate audio. I did take a look at the e-book and print versions (I checked them out from the library for comparison) and while I liked learning some of the facts in the footnotes, it wasn't as important for me as the actual story and I could do without it.

Overall, I thought that this was an excellent listening experience and just as much fun to read the second time around. Now they need to release unabridged audio editions of the other books in the trilogy! If you are a fan of the original Star Wars films and haven't tried any of the books, this would be the series I would suggest. I only wish it wasn't too late to make it into a movie with Timothy Zahn writing the script...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading (109)

It's Monday, What Are You Reading is a fun weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journey where we share what we've read and reviewed over the past week and what we plan to read next.

Books read:

Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn (reread)

It was fun rereading this by listening to the audio book.  I hadn't read it in so many years that I didn't remember some of what happened and it was almost like reading the book for the first time. I hope they release the rest of the books in the trilogy on unabridged audio.

Bloodlines by Richelle Mead (reread)

This book was even better the second time around (and I liked Adrian even more). That is one of the things I like about Richelle Mead's YA books. They are fun to reread. 

The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

This is an excellent sequel to Bloodlines and it definitely brought the romance for those who missed that element in Bloodlines

Books reviewed:

Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins

Currently reading:

The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings

This is a book for my book discussion group. I've seen the movie and I really liked it so I'm hopeful that I'll like the book too.

What I plan to read next:

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

This is another book discussion book but I will be rereading it. I first read it in 2009 and don't remember much of it.

The Queen's Lady by Eve Edwards

I am probably being optimistic by putting this on my list but I do want to read The Queen's Lady soon.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Review: Spell Bound

Spell Bound
By Rachel Hawkins
Publication date: March 13, 2012

My review:

This third book in the Hex Hall series has many surprises in store for Sophie Mercer including a big secret about her heritage. The book opens shortly after the end of Demonglass. With the cliffhanger from the last book I was a little let down by how this book starts but the story quickly grabbed my interest as it headed towards the conclusion.

Spell Bound introduces the Brannick family to the story and they are not what I was expecting. Sophie and the Brannicks have a truce of sorts so they can work together to stop the villains and thwart a war. We also find out more about Sophie's family and of course the fate of Jenna and the rest.  I enjoyed seeing Sophie's growth in this book and her relationship with Archer. It was also nice to see the interaction between Sophie's parents and the Brannicks.  I also liked seeing Sophie back at Hex Hall and how much the Hall had changed. That wasn't exactly fun to read about but it made the story more interesting and drove home the point of how what was happening outside the walls affected the school. 

While reading, I felt that there was something lacking in terms of the excitement and suspense I was expecting as the book drew to a close. The final battle is almost anticlimactic until the very end. Then Rachel Hawkins took me by surprise and it more than made up for my disappointment. Overall, I thought this was a fun book like the rest of the series even if it let me down a little. Spell Bound had the humor and romance I enjoyed as well as the drama. I like the character of Sophie Mercer and hope we haven't seen the last of her. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (94)

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme to discuss upcoming books we can't wait to get our hands on. Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.    

This week, I'm waiting on:

Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier
Release date: October 30, 2012


Gwen’s life has been a rollercoaster since she discovered she was the Ruby, the final member of the secret time-traveling Circle of Twelve. In between searching through history for the other time-travelers and asking for a bit of their blood (gross!), she’s been trying to figure out what all the mysteries and prophecies surrounding the Circle really mean.
At least Gwen has plenty of help. Her best friend Lesley follows every lead diligently on the Internet. James the ghost teaches Gwen how to fit in at an eighteenth century party. And Xemerius, the gargoyle demon who has been following Gwen since he caught her kissing Gideon in a church, offers advice on everything. Oh, yes. And of course there is Gideon, the Diamond. One minute he’s very warm indeed; the next he’s freezing cold. Gwen’s not sure what’s going on there, but she’s pretty much destined to find out.

I loved Ruby Red and I am looking forward to this sequel though I have to admit that I am not happy about the cover change (this cover is pretty but it won't match my copy of Ruby Red) and I am concerned about the whole Gideon hot/cold treatment. Still, I am hopeful that I will enjoy this book anyway.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Top Ten Beach Reads

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. There is a new subject each week and this week's topic is "Top Ten Beach Reads".

When I think of beach reads, I think of books that are lighthearted and funny so here are some of my favorites. Unfortunately I've never had the opportunity to read any of them while sitting on a beach...

1. Anything by Sophie Kinsella

While my favorite Sophie Kinsella books are the Shopaholic series, I know that Becky Bloomwood isn't for everyone. One of Sophie Kinsella's most popular non-Shopaholic books is The Undomestic Goddess. Another fun beach read is her latest, I've Got Your Number. The only Sophie Kinsella book that disappointed me is Twenties Girl which I didn't like because of the ghost. If you are a fan of chick lit, Sophie Kinsella is a sure bet.

2. Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie

Bet Me is a good pick for fans of chick lit and romance. Min and Cal have a lot of obstacles to overcome on their way to happy ever after but it is a lot of fun to read. 

3. Spring Fever by Mary Kay Andrews

From the beach themed flip flops on the cover to the warm Southern setting, this is a good book to add to your beach bag if you like second chance love stories. 

4. Austenland and Midnight in Austenland by Shannon Hale

I put these on the list because for Jane Austen enthusiasts, what better place to take a vacation than Pembrook Park where you dress and act like it is the Regency era and have the opportunity to meet your own Mr. Darcy? Austenland is a straightforward contemporary romance but Midnight in Austenland also involves a potential murder mystery. Austenland is even being made into a movie...Also try Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler about a modern woman who wakes up in Regency England (if you liked the movie Lost in Austen then you should definitely try that book).

5. Driftwood Summer by Patti Callahan Henry

Driftwood Summer is about three sisters, two of whom are estranged, reuniting at their Georgia beachfront hometown to try and save the family bookstore. There is romance also as the guy who came between the two older sisters years ago returns for a visit. This might be a good pick for fans of authors like Nancy Thayer and Elin Hilderbrand.

6. Seven Year Switch by Claire Cook

Really a number of Claire Cook's books would be great beach reads (like her latest Wallflower in Bloom) but Seven Year Switch stood out to me and it features travel to Costa Rica. Main character Jill Murray has been a single mom to her daughter Anastasia since her husband abandoned them seven years before. Jill is now working as a travel agent and teaching cooking classes to make ends meet when she has the opportunity to go on a trip to Costa Rica. Then her husband comes back into her life just as she meets someone new. What I like about this book is that though there is romance, it isn't the sole focus. I enjoyed reading about Jill's travels too.

7. Stay by Allie Larkin

Stay is about a woman who has just watched her best friend marry the guy she loves. She goes home, gets drunk, and goes online where she makes an unusual purchase. Suddenly she finds herself the owner of a $6,000 German Shepard from Slovakia. If you like books with humor, friendship, romance, and cute dogs, this book might be just right for you!

8. Sixteenth Summer by Michelle Dalton

Sixteenth Summer is a sweet love story that takes place on an island near Georgia. Anna's same-old summer of working in her family's ice cream shop takes a turn when she meets Will on the beach. Will and his family are vacationing on Dune Island for the summer and the two quickly hit it off but Anna knows it can't last because at the end of the summer, Will has to return to New York. This book reminded me of the movie The Last Song (I still haven't read the book).

9. The Juliet Club by Suzanne Harper

This is a fun homage to Shakespeare and though the title mentions Juliet, the story is also a modern retelling of Much Ado About Nothing. Teenager Kate Sanderson has sworn off boys after she is painfully dumped. Her dad is teaching at a summer seminar on Shakespeare in Verona, Italy and Kate will be going along as a student. Kate and her fellow "Shakespeare scholars" answer letters written to Juliet and put on the play Romeo and Juliet where Kate is cast as the lead. Will Kate be able to resist the chance for love when she is surrounded by the romantic atmosphere of Verona? The Juliet Club reminds me a little of the movie Letters to Juliet. If you like romantic comedy and reading about Italy, this fun little YA book might be a great pick for your beach bag.

10. Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

Amy and Roger's Epic Detour is both funny and sad. Amy is mourning the loss of her dad and her mom has just sold their home to move across the country. Amy will be traveling there with Roger, the son of her mom's friend and a boy she doesn't really know. Along the way, they share adventures but also help each other over some serious pain. This book is great for those who enjoy road trip fiction.

These are just a few of my favorite beach reads. 
What books would you pack in your beach bag?

Sunday, June 10, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading (108)

It's Monday, What Are You Reading is a fun weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journey where we share what we've read and reviewed over the past week and what we plan to read next.

I had a crazy week at work and home but I still found time for reading (and it kept me sane!). This coming week will hopefully be calmer but I have a lot to do before the weekend so I may not get much reading done at all.

Books read:

Wallflower in Bloom by Claire Cook

I had high expectations for Wallflower in Bloom and sadly they were not exactly met. I did like the Dancing With the Stars part (the little of it that there was) but the book ended abruptly with the heroine learning her lessons really quickly. 

Anyone But You by Jennifer Crusie

The basset hound on the cover is Fred and he is one of the delightful things about this book. I liked it but it wasn't as good as Bet Me. This May-October romance had a rushed ending too but it was a fun and quick read.

This was a fun spoof of fairy tales featuring the various princes known as "Prince Charming" and their plan to become heroes that will be recognized.

Books reviewed:

Spring Fever by Mary Kay Andrews
Wentworth Hall by Abby Grahame

Currently reading:

Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn (reread)

When I was a teen I became a huge Star Wars fan and this was one of my favorite books. The audio book is a lot of fun to listen to. Marc Thompson does a fantastic job with the voices. It really does sound like Han Solo and Luke Skywalker. He even does an eerily accurate Obi-wan Kenobi and there are sound effects and snippets of the movie soundtrack. Can you tell that I like it?  :)

Bloodlines by Richelle Mead (reread)

What I plan to read next:

The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

This is released on Tuesday and I will be buying it right away to read on my Kindle.  I've read an excerpt already and it was really good.  I may be tired of vampire books but this is one series I make an exception for. Richelle Mead has yet to let me down!

The Queen's Lady by Eve Edwards

I hope to get to The Queen's Lady soon. I love Tudor fiction and thought the first book was pretty good.

What have you been reading lately?
Have you read any of the books on my list this week?

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Review: Wentworth Hall

Wentworth Hall
By Abby Grahame
Published: May 1, 2012

My review:

Wentworth Hall is home to the Darlington family. Even though the family has fallen on hard times financially, Lord Darlington likes to act as though nothing is amiss. His eldest daughter Maggie has just returned from a year spent abroad when he makes the announcement that they are to have two houseguests-Teddy and Jessica, teenage siblings who will be worth a fortune when they come of age. He expects Maggie to try to snare Teddy. Meanwhile Maggie's younger sister Lila hopes to get Teddy's attention for herself. The Darlingtons have their secrets and so do their servants but it appears that someone in the house is selling stories about them to the press...

Wentworth Hall is very similar in tone to The Luxe by Anna Godbersen.  It is light historical fiction that features family drama, gossip, and romance. Wentworth Hall also taps into the popularity of the Downton Abbey craze with its early 20th Century setting and focus on the upstairs/downstairs relationship between the aristocracy and their servants. 

The story is told through the point of view of multiple characters including Maggie Darlington, her sister Lila, the maid Nora, new nanny Therese, and the groom Michael. I much preferred the chapters from Maggie's POV. Having multiple narrators should have given us greater insight into the characters but it didn't quite work that way. I liked Maggie and even her sister Lila though she annoyed me at first. I also liked opinionated Nora and it was nice getting the perspective of those below stairs. 

While I found the story to be an addicting read, there were some flaws that kept me from liking it as much as Anna Godbersen's books. The characters are not well developed with the exception of Maggie, the "secrets" were not so difficult to figure out, the gimmick of including the newspaper parodies of the Worthless family became incredibly annoying (they should have been shorter and fewer in number), certain of the characters just seemed to disappear from the narrative, and the threads of the story did not wrap up very plausibly. In fact it ended so abruptly that it took me by surprise. The ending was very rushed with an epilogue of sorts tacked on.  I am under the impression that this is not a series but perhaps I am wrong. Still for all its flaws, I found this to be an enjoyable and addictive book. It didn't completely live up to its potential for me but  if there is a sequel, I'd likely pick it up (from the library) just to see what happens next. For readers looking for a YA book with more substance to fill that Downton Abbey fix, try the Luxe novels by Anna Godbersen instead.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (93)

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme to discuss upcoming books we can't wait to get our hands on. Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.   

This week, I'm waiting on:

The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan
Release date: October 2, 2012


Annabeth is terrified. Just when she’s about to be reunited with Percy—after six months of being apart, thanks to Hera—it looks like Camp Jupiter is preparing for war. As Annabeth and her friends Jason, Piper, and Leo fly in on the Argo II, she can’t blame the Roman demigods for thinking the ship is a Greek weapon. With its steaming bronze dragon masthead, Leo’s fantastical creation doesn’t appear friendly. Annabeth hopes that the sight of their praetor Jason on deck will reassure the Romans that the visitors from Camp Half-Blood are coming in peace.

And that’s only one of her worries. In her pocket Annabeth carries a gift from her mother that came with an unnerving demand: Follow the Mark of Athena. Avenge me. Annabeth already feels weighed down by the prophecy that will send seven demigods on a quest to find—and close— the Doors of Death. What more does Athena want from her?

Annabeth’s biggest fear, though, is that Percy might have changed. What if he’s now attached to Roman ways? Does he still need his old friends? As the daughter of the goddess of war and wisdom, Annabeth knows she was born to be a leader, but never again does she want to be without Seaweed Brain by her side.

Narrated by four different demigods, The Mark of Athena is an unforgettable journey across land and sea to Rome, where important discoveries, surprising sacrifices, and unspeakable horrors await. Climb aboard the Argo II, if you dare. . . .

I love Rick Riordan's books and though I prefer the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, this one is still a lot of fun and I can't wait to find out what happens in The Mark of Athena. The cover is certainly exciting with the Owl of Athena looking on as the Roman and Greek heroes battle...

Have you read this series or the any of the other books (Percy Jackson, Kane Chronicles)?
What are you waiting on this week?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Review: Spring Fever

Spring Fever
By Mary Kay Andrews
Release date: June 5, 2012

My review:

Annajane Hudgens is finally leaving her past and the town of Passcoe, NC behind and moving on to a new career and a new guy-or so she thinks. On the day of her ex-husband's remarriage, Annajane is shocked to realize that she still has feelings for him and that he may still have feelings for her. When the wedding is postponed due to a health emergency and circumstances work to keep Annajane in Passcoe a little longer, it looks like Annajane might have a second shot at love.

Spring Fever is a fun cinematic romance, the kind of story that would work as a romantic comedy movie. In fact it reminded me a little bit of Sweet Home Alabama. Annajane had a crush on Mason Bayless, her best friend Pokey's big brother when she was a kid but he doesn't notice her till she is 19. They have a summer fling that leaves Annjane with a broken heart when Mason seems to forget about her when he returns to college. They reconnect a few years later at Pokey's wedding when Mason convinces her to give him another chance. A brief marriage ends due to neglect and distrust. Now with Mason about to get remarried and Annajane engaged to someone else, they are still undeniably bound to each other. 

I really enjoyed the second chance romance story line. It was nice to see Annajane and Mason's relationship develop and see how much they've changed from who they were before, particularly Annajane. The secondary characters could have been a little more developed but I liked Pokey and the way she championed the efforts to get her stubborn best friend and brother back together. The emphasis on family relationships and Mason's protectiveness towards his family really appealed to me. Mason is not a perfect hero but that just makes him more likeable. The villain was two dimensional but that didn't bother me. It was fun to see her get her comeuppance. 

Passcoe, NC is a small town known for Quixie, the soda company that Mason's family owns. Annajane works for Quixie, taking care of marketing and advertising campaigns. These details add to the story but I didn't find them as interesting as I'd hoped. Mary Kay Andrews is known for including details of living in the South as well as the career of her heroine. In the other books I've read, she describes what it's like to be an antique "picker" or an interior decorator and I found that to be really interesting compared to this. Thankfully Spring Fever has a stronger focus on the romance that pulled me in instead.

Overall, I think this is my favorite of the author's books and I loved the romance. I think this would make a great beach read when you are in the mood for a light romance that sparkles with humor and warmth.

Note: I received an e-ARC for review through NetGalley