Forever With You by J. Lynn

foreverwithyou_jlynnAll of J. Lynn’s books are amazing, but this may be her best yet! The book begins with Stephanie, a girl who just moved into town. She has trouble moving boxes into her apartment, and Nick is the one who helps her out. Stephanie later goes to Mona’s, the local bar, and finds Nick working. They have a one night stand, and they are supposed to be well on their way out of their lives; however, something happens so they have to get together again.

Stephanie has never been in love, but that does not mean she does not believe in it. Her past comes up, again and again, that makes her scared of love. Even when Nick falls straight into her lap, she does not recognize that this is true love. Nick as well has a past that permits him from staying in a relationship; he is known to have flings, and nothing more, and just like Stephanie, he is scared to be in a relationship. But, for the first time, he sees something in Stephanie that he has not noticed in a girl before. “As long as I’ve known him, he’s never been serious about anyone. He’s probably going to need a substantial learning curve when it comes to not saying things that are going to pi** you off.”

Sure enough, Nick and Stephanie get back together after their one-night stand. Stephanie falls for him but is scared that he does not feel the same way about her. Nick, too, is scared to love Stephanie, because he felt the connection from the first time they met, but is he able to convince her that he loves her? “Nick seemed to sense just when I needed him. Even if he was asleep, his arms would tighten around me, sometimes, when my recklessness woke him, he would talk to me until I fell back asleep, distracting me with some of the crazy things he’d seen while working at Mona’s. He was simply there for me, and I let him in completely. And there was no denying how much I loved this man.”

This book has so many plot twists (in a good way), and even though there are MANY sad moments, there are also funny, laugh out loud ones. If someone is looking for a heartwarming, sad, laughable romance, this is the one for you!

-Hailey N.

The Unfinished World and Other Stories by Amber Sparks

The Unfinished World and Other Stories is a beautifully written piece of literature filled with a wide variety of short stories. These stories revolve about everything from time travel and space to thrilling tales of kingdoms and magic. I was truly amazed by the sheer creativity and eccentricity which Sparks was able to spill out and expertly mold into eloquent, intriguing, and though-provoking stories. Each story is unique and unlike anything I’ve ever read before. Although they are completely unrelated, they all seem to have some sort of other-worldy ethereal sense to them. Maybe it’s because of the style in which it’s written, or it could simply be the creative flare with which the author forms her worlds and characters. Either way, I was completely blown away by this book, and cannot get over how utterly incomparable and ingenious it is.

Because this book is composed of so many stories, I have grudgingly decided to speak about only two of them — The Unfinished World ( I suppose I must talk about this one) and my favourite out of the other short stories: And the World Was Crowded with Things That Meant Love.

The Unfinished World (for which this collection of stories was named) tells the story of a boy named Set. Set is an unusual boy who struggles to find and understand himself and his past as he grows older. When he was younger, he was attacked by a bear, and he died…well, sort of. He ended up surviving the attack, but there has always been something missing…no one can quite put their finger on it. He’s never been the same since; there’s an empty hole in his soul. Set follows in the footsteps of his older brother who travels to Hollywood in pursuit of his dreams. Set becomes well-known, and everyone sees him as a handsome, hard-working young man. Anyone who really knew Set would know that that is just a facade — part of him is missing. Then he meets Inge, and she turns his life around.

And the World Was Crowded with Things That Meant Love is a short, but deep and meaningful love story. Early in their lives, a young man and a young woman meet one another and fall in love. However, both have jobs which require constant traveling. They show their love for each other by sending wood carvings and sculptures to each other. By this means, they continue their relationship. A detail which I thought to be particularly lovely was that one would send an artistic portrait to the other, having remembered, in full and perfect detail, what they looked like.

Despite the fact that some of these stories are extremely short (just two or three pages in some cases), the author has a unique ability to weave in and evoke so much emotion. Some of the stories were slightly confusing, some more intense, and some were pretty dark (I would recommend an older audience for this book). However, I would definitely recommend this book, as it felt as if I was in a completely different world while reading it.

-Elina T.

A Dog’s Purpose

Are you a dog lover who believes in destiny? If so, this should a fantastic book for you. Bailey was an ordinary pup that had so many lives that he(she) doesn’t even remember anymore.

But the most remarkable life that imprinted itself on Bailey’s heart was probably when he was a golden retriever that the color gold of his fur enlightened his owner Ethan. The profundity of their friendship is not there to be described by words. But when Bailey passed away after Ethan went to college, the subtle bond still remains unbreakable and the immortality of it freshens Ethan’s entire life from that on.

But Bailey’s reincarnation is never-ending, he continues to walk on his abysmal lives. There are horrible owners that exhibited their insanity throughout the story that you might want to screw them up. And there are also owners that their effusive magnanimity melted your heart in an instant. Though we all know that the final home that Bailey should belong is the genial room of Ethan. The answer whether Bailey will be hugged by Ethan again and play his favorite baseball is waiting for the readers to find out with tears in their limpid eyes maybe.

-April L.

A Dog’s Purpose by Bruce Cameron is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library

One Week Girlfriend by Monica Murphy

Wow, what a great book! It was so good in fact, that I finished it in a day.
“I need your help”

The book starts with our leading man, Drew asking Fable (our leading lady) to work for him. She automatically thinks he want’s her for something else, so she says no, until he says that he only wants her to be his “temporary girlfriend”. How much is he going to pay? Glad you asked, he’s paying her $3,000. She’s struggling, as she has to care for her younger brother as her mother is useless, so she says yes.

“Do you like it?”
“Get it,” he says without hesitation. “You look…”
“Okay? Really? It’s kind of short.”
“That dress is it.” His gaze drops to my legs, lingering appreciatively. “And it’s definitely not too short.”

As you can probably assume by now, they are going to fall for each other. But how couldn’t they? They are both hiding secrets and they both realize that the other is hiding secrets.

“You have the most beautiful body I’ve ever seen.”

I won’t spoil any of their secrets, but let’s say Drew’s are not predictable at all. The author makes you really care for the characters and I can’t wait to read the next one!

But he is so very sweet:
“I woke up not fifteen minutes ago and the second I saw your message, I hopped in my truck and sped over here.” I spread my arms wide. “Look at me. I ran into the rain across my apartment parking lot and yours to get to you.”

-Skylar N.

Forever With You by J. Lynn

Wow! I do love everything written by J. Lynn, but this may be her best yet. The book starts off with Stephanie walking into a bar and finds Nick whom she has a one night stand with–or so they thought. I won’t spoil it for you, but something happens so they have to get together again.

Stephanie has never been in love, but she believes in it. She had a bit of a tragic past, so she is a bit scared of love (listen to She’s Not Afraid by One Direction, that matches her perfectly). So when Nick comes into her life again, she tells herself not to fall in love.

Nick also has his own issues to deal with (again, not going to spoil it for you :p) and he doesn’t want to fall in love either in case he gets hurt again. But the first time he see’s Stephanie, he feels drawn to her in a way he hasn’t felt for anyone else.

“As long as I’ve known him, he’s never been serious about anyone. He’s probably going to need a substanital learning curve when it comes to not saying things that are going to [make you mad]”

But sure enough, they get back together after their one night stand. Stephanie falls for him, though she tried to ward herself off him, she just can’t.

“No. I wasn’t falling for him. Because there was a good chance I had already fallen for him.”

Stephanie fears that Nick doesn’t feel the same about her, so she tries to distance herself. Nick is scared to love Stephanie, but he knew he feel for her the first time he saw her (and no, not in a cliché way).But can he convince her he feels the same way as she does?

“Nick seemed to sense just when I needed him. Even if he was asleep, his arms would tighten around me, sometimes, when my recklessness woke him, he would talk to me until I feel back asleep, distracting me with some of the crazy things he’d seen while working at Mona’s. He was simply there for me, and I let him in completely.

And there was no denying how much I loved this man.”

I did not do this book enough justice! One of my favorite parts of this book is that even though it had many sad moment, J. Lynn always made sure to make you laugh as well, and I found myself laughing a lot about this book. In other words, you NEED to read this book.

Unfortunately, this book is not avaliable at the Mission Viejo Library, but it is avaliable from the Orange County Public Library System.

-Skylar N.

Expensive People by Joyce Carol Oates

Image result for expensive peopleRichard is a 10-year-old kid with a 40-year-old brain. It’s was very astonishing to see how mature he was. His mom looks like a 3-year-old kid to him all the time. And yet, his mom Nada goes away.

But Richard never felt really down until his family moved into a suburban area and he was sent to private school with many other rich but neglected boys to support his dad’s business. His mom Nada is a very pretty woman with a Russian accent and was a writer, though she never let Richard call her “mom” nor allowing him to take a glance at his story.

Life must be really hard for Richard because both of his parents don’t really love him like normal parents are. It was such a shock to me when his dad ended up marrying the neighbor after his mom went away. Richard’s life was tragic, and this book embellished a veil of society on the tragedy.

-April L.

Expensive People by Joyce Carol Oates is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library

Winning by Lara Deloza

Calculative, demanding, and brilliant, Alexandra Miles has one goal in mind in the novel Winning by Lara Deloza, to be homecoming queen. With the ability to make people do whatever she says, Alexandra is the unofficial queen at her school. She wants to cement her status by obtaining the crown. On her side is her loyal best friend Sam. Even though Sam considers them to be best friends, Alexandra only uses her for her own benefit. Alexandra’s scheming for the crown is ruined when the new girl, Erin, moves to the school.

Lively and popular, Erin’s move threatens to hinder Alexandra from achieving her goal of homecoming queen. Along with Sam, Alexandra implements a plan to ensure the crown will land on her head and nobody else’s.  The novel is sure to keep the reader flipping the pages to see if Alexandra ends up getting the crown or not.

Personally, I am not a big fan of stories about the high school hierarchy; I tend to stick to novels with more action and adventure. After reading the synopsis of this novel, I was intrigued. Opening the novel, I could not put it down. Even though the characters were underdeveloped, I continued to read the novel. I would recommend it for high schoolers because of some parts. Otherwise, all highs choolers will relate to some part of this novel.

-Anmol K.