Tag: Samantha Young

Throwback Thursday Review: Echoes of Scotland Street by Samantha Young

Posted August 1, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 5 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Echoes of Scotland Street by Samantha YoungReviewer: Holly
Echoes of Scotland Street by Samantha Young
Series: On Dublin Street #5
Also in this series: On Dublin Street , Down London Road (On Dublin Street, #2), Before Jamaica Lane (On Dublin Street, #3), Before Jamaica Lane, Castle Hill, Fall From India Place, Fall From India Place, Fall from India Place , Castle Hill, Echoes of Scotland Street , Moonlight on Nightingale Way, Moonlight on Nightingale Way, One King's Way, One King's Way, One King's Way, On Hart's Boardwalk (On Dublin Street #6.7) , On Hart's Boardwalk, Down London Road
Publisher: Penguin
Publication Date: October 7th 2014
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 336
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

From the New York Times bestselling author of On Dublin Street comes a seductive story of forgiving the past and making up for lost time.…
Shannon MacLeod has always gone for the wrong type of man. After she drifted from one toxic relationship to the next, her last boyfriend gave her a wake-up call in the worst possible way. With her world shattered, she’s sworn off men—especially those of the bad-boy variety.Cole Walker is exactly the sort that Shannon wants to avoid—gorgeous, tattooed, charming, and cocky. But his rough exterior hides a good man who’s ready to find “the one.” He’s determined to pull Shannon from her self-imposed solitude to win her heart.As Shannon opens up in the face of Cole’s steady devotion, the passion between them ignites to blazing levels. But when Shannon’s past comes back to haunt her, her fears may destroy the trust Cole has built between them—and tear them apart for good.…

*** Every Thursday, we’ll be posting throwback reviews of our favorite and not-so-favorite books. Enjoy! ***

This review was originally posted on Oct 15, 2014.

I fell in love with Cole in Down London Road. I’m so glad he got his own book. He was everything I expected. I wasn’t sure what to make of his heroine at first, but she ended up being his perfect match.

Shannon moves to Edinburgh to start over. She’s had a pretty rough go of things lately and she needs a change of scenery. She applies for several jobs but the only interview she gets is at the tattoo shop INKarnate. When the owner offers her the position she’s thrilled to have found something so quickly. But she’s also terrified of accepting. Tattoo shops are bad boy hangouts and she’s a bad boy magnet..and not the good, sexy kind of bad boy, either. The lie, cheat, steal and beat on you kind.

When she meets Cole, the shop manager, she’s dismayed to feel an instant attraction to him. He doesn’t help things by coming on to her pretty strong. The last thing she needs in her life is another player like Cole. She wants to avoid him as much as possible, but when she moves in with another tattoo artist from the shop and gets pulled into their friend circle, it’s really hard. Cole won’t let up until she eventually slaps him down, hard. Then she realizes she made a mistake. Cole isn’t a player like all her exes. He’s actually a pretty great guy. And while she isn’t looking for a relationship – she isn’t sure she’ll ever be able to trust a guy again – she knows she has to make things right with him. Except once she does, once she lays out her secrets to him, Cole becomes even more determined to have her. Keeping him at bay isn’t easy, but she knows she has to. Because the alternative is opening her heart, and she just can’t do that.

This isn’t what I expected from Cole’s book. First, I thought it would be from his point-of-view. Second, I thought there would be more angst on his side of things. At first I was disappointed in the direction Young went with the story, but as the novel progressed I realized it was played just right. Though Cole had some drama growing up, he had strong role models in his sister, her husband and their circle of friends. He was firmly grounded. Had Young made up some kind of angsty drama for him, I would have been disappointed. His pursuit of Shannon early in the book was almost uncomfortable to read about, since we saw it from her perspective and she wasn’t exactly charmed (or, more to the point, didn’t want to be). Once she bares her soul to him, though, I thought he treated her exactly right.

“Delicate, beautiful, fragile. I want to protect you while at the same time I want to shatter you,” he murmured against my lips, “but only in the best way possible.”

The way he acted toward the end frustrated me, but knowing where he came from (based on the way he was raised in Down London Road) made his actions tolerable. Shannon had a great amount of inner strength. Despite her family turning their backs on her and mistreatment by former boyfriends, she was determined to get back the girl she used to be.

Tears stung my eyes, and my mouth trembled as I glared out at the city. If it was the last thing I did, I would buy those acrylics and use them . . . and somehow, hopefully, along the way I was going to find the girl I’d lost because of him.

I had a lot of admiration for her. Especially as her relationship with Cole developed and she owned her behavior. She had the occasional setback, but she was quick to admit when she was wrong.  That isn’t to say she didn’t frustrate me at times, because she did. I wanted her to see how great Cole was sooner, and then to give in to the inevitable between them immediately. That wouldn’t have been realistic based on her past, however.

Shannon’s friendship with her roommate (a tattoo artist at INKarnate), Rae, as well as the relationships she develops with her other co-workers was great. It was good to see her spreading her wings and getting back out there. I always love it when the heroine has friends outside her relationship. Speaking of Rae, I really loved her. She was bold and brash, yet compassionate and caring when she needed to be. That didn’t stop me from being seriously pissed at the way she acted toward Shannon during the main part of the conflict. I’m not going to go into a huge rant here about it, but..I expected better from her. There’s a surprising amount of humor laced throughout. Shannon has a great sense of humor. There were times, especially when dealing with Cole’s family, that I was literally laughing out loud.

“Jo, sheathe the mother- bear claws.” He said it in such an authoritative tone I wasn’t surprised when she snapped her mouth shut. Cole’s fingers tightened their hold on my waist. “Shannon is my business, not yours.”

“And you’re my business,” she argued, glowering at me.

Awkward. ” Everyone stopped talking and looked at me.

I blanched.

“Did I say that out loud?” Cole nodded, shaking with amusement. Joss, Hannah, and Liv burst into laughter and even Jo’s scowl cleared as her lips twitched.

Speaking of Cole’s family, it was really great to see his interactions with Hannah and the rest. His relationship with Hannah had come under fire in the past, so I wondered how Shannon would deal with it. Her quick acceptance of their friendship was great, as were Cole and Hannah’s reactions to it.

I couldn’t imagine anyone being mean to Hannah. She was so lovely. “Why would she start on Hannah?”

Cole grinned. “You like Hannah, don’t you?”

“Eh, yeah. She’s a pregnant superwoman. She’s a teacher, she’s a mum, she’s a stepmum, she’s a wife, and she’s smart and organized and caring and somehow manages to be all those things while looking absolutely amazing. I kind of want to be Hannah.”

All-in-all, this was a great addition to the series. Cole was everything I expected him to be, and Shannon’s personal growth, as well as their developing relationship, really pulled me in. This book is emotionally charged, funny, sweet and full of depth. I couldn’t put it down.

4.25 out of 5

On Dublin Street

four-half-stars


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Throwback Thursday Review: Down London Road by Samantha Young

Posted July 25, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Throwback Thursday Review: Down London Road by Samantha YoungReviewer: Holly
Down London Road by Samantha Young
Series: On Dublin Street #2
Also in this series: On Dublin Street , Down London Road (On Dublin Street, #2), Before Jamaica Lane (On Dublin Street, #3), Before Jamaica Lane, Castle Hill, Fall From India Place, Fall From India Place, Fall from India Place , Castle Hill, Echoes of Scotland Street , Moonlight on Nightingale Way, Moonlight on Nightingale Way, One King's Way, One King's Way, One King's Way, On Hart's Boardwalk (On Dublin Street #6.7) , On Hart's Boardwalk, Echoes of Scotland Street
Publisher: NAL
Publication Date: May 7, 2013
Point-of-View: First
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Genres: Contemporary Romance, New Adult
Pages: 369
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Johanna Walker is used to taking charge. But she’s about to meet someone who will make her lose control...

It has always been up to Johanna to care for her family, particularly her younger brother, Cole. With an absent father and a useless mother, she’s been making decisions based on what’s best for Cole for as long as she can remember. She even determines what men to date by how much they can provide for her brother and her, not on whatever sparks may—or may not—fly.

But with Cameron MacCabe, the attraction is undeniable. The sexy new bartender at work gives her butterflies every time she looks at him. And for once, Jo is tempted to put her needs first. Cam is just as obsessed with getting to know Jo, but her walls are too solid to let him get close enough to even try.

Then Cam moves into the flat below Jo’s, and their blistering connection becomes impossible to ignore. Especially since Cam is determined to uncover all of Jo’s secrets... even if it means taking apart her defenses piece by piece.

*** Every Thursday, we’ll be posting throwback reviews of our favorite and not-so-favorite books. Enjoy! ***

I recently re-read this book and it was just as good as the first time. Although I enjoyed most of this series, Down London Road remains my favorite.

This review was originally posted on May 3, 2013.

We first met Johanna Walker in On Dublin Street. She was Joss’s good friend and co-worker. She was also a shameless gold digger. She was portrayed as a blond bimbo who was just looking for a man to take care of her. Yet even in that story we see there’s more to her, since she takes care of her younger brother, Cole.

Here we finally learn what’s behind the bimbo mask Jo wears. Yes, she dates older, wealthy men. But she’s never been with someone she didn’t genuinely care about. And who can blame her for wanting stability and wealth when she has her younger brother to think of?

Until she meets Cameron McCabe at an art show. Cameron seems to see right through her, into her very soul. They have an immediate attraction and Jo, for the very first time ever, craves a man who won’t be any good for her family. Until Cam opens his mouth and ruins it by jumping to conclusions about her and making her feel bad about herself.

Thanks to his harsh words, she starts seeing herself in a new light, and what she sees isn’t good. When Cam gets a job bartending with her, then moves into the flat below hers, she’s forced to admit she wants him, even if he is a total jerk. But when Cam realizes he was wrong about Jo and presses her to explore what’s between them, she’ll have to choose between doing something for herself and the stability of providing for her family..

The truth about Johanna isn’t that she’s a gold digger. She’s just desperate to provide a good life for her brother. She grew up with an abusive father who finally disappeared when she was around 10. Since then she’s been caring for her younger brother, as her mother is nothing but a drunk. And not a functional drunk, either, a bed-ridden one. Jo dropped out of high school at 16 to get a job to support them and she’s determined that Cole with have a better life than she did.

Because she’s uneducated, she knows there isn’t much hope of her providing a stable life for Cole….unless she can find a man. She might be dumb, but she’s pretty and that’s enough to get her what she needs. The interesting thing is that though she takes gifts from her boyfriends, she doesn’t ask them to support her. She doesn’t have them pay her bills, or give her cash. They buy her gifts she later sells on ebay for money, but she won’t take money from them direct. She also works two jobs.

In this, Young did an excellent job of showing us both sides of Jo. The insecure girl who has a fear of poverty and the strong, independent woman who only wants the best for her younger brother (who is really more like her son). I’m not sure she would have worked quite so well if there hadn’t been such a good balance between strong and vulnerable.

Cam hits every one of her insecurities right in the heart. He judges her and makes her feel less than she already does. She’s used to people thinking the worst of her, but for some reason his scorn really cuts her to the quick. Although it was hard to read those parts with Cam being such a jerk at times, I feel they were necessary to force Jo to really look inside herself and find her worth. She has to look inside herself to find out why his opinion of her matters so much, and what she can do to live up to his expectations.

That isn’t to say she changes for him. I think this book is as much Jo’s personal journey as it is a romance. She doesn’t want to change to be the person he wants her to be, but she wants to stop being the insecure woman who jumps at her own shadow. Cam was merely the catalyst for this transformation.

Cam is a tough character to like in the beginning. His disapproval of Jo and her lifestyle is understandable in one respect, as he isn’t too far off the mark about her. Yet he goes too far, jumping to conclusions and saying things that are way out of line. But we see there’s more to him than the judgmental jerk we meet in the beginning. Jo sees flashes of kindness in him almost immediately and as the story progresses he’s revealed as a strong, steady man who knows himself and is willing to put himself out there for those he cares about.

Aside from the fact that Jo and Cam are both dating other people, there’s added drama that comes from Jo’s life. Her alcoholic mother, gone but not forgotten abusive father and surrogate uncle who abandoned her. She has to overcome all of these obstacles in order to have happiness with Cam. I liked that her self-awareness grows as she does.

This is a novel of multi-faceted characters filled with emotion and depth. Highly recommended.

4.5/5

On Dublin Street

This book was provided by the publisher for an honest review.

four-half-stars


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Review: Fight or Flight by Samantha Young

Posted October 15, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 5 Comments

Review: Fight or Flight by Samantha YoungReviewer: Rowena
Fight or Flight by Samantha Young
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: October 9, 2018
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: First
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 288
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-stars

A series of chance encounters leads to a sizzling new romance from the New York Times bestselling author of the On Dublin Street series.

The universe is conspiring against Ava Breevort. As if flying back to Phoenix to bury a childhood friend wasn't hell enough, a cloud of volcanic ash traveling from overseas delayed her flight back home to Boston. Her last ditch attempt to salvage the trip was thwarted by an arrogant Scotsman, Caleb Scott, who steals a first class seat out from under her. Then over the course of their journey home, their antagonism somehow lands them in bed for the steamiest layover Ava's ever had. And that's all it was--until Caleb shows up on her doorstep.

When pure chance pulls Ava back into Caleb's orbit, he proposes they enjoy their physical connection while he's stranded in Boston. Ava agrees, knowing her heart's in no danger since a) she barely likes Caleb and b) his existence in her life is temporary. Not long thereafter Ava realizes she's made a terrible error because as it turns out Caleb Scott isn't quite so unlikeable after all. When his stay in Boston becomes permanent, Ava must decide whether to fight her feelings for him or give into them. But even if she does decide to risk her heart on Caleb, there is no guarantee her stubborn Scot will want to risk his heart on her....

Fight or Flight is a standalone contemporary romance by Samantha Young that had me thinking I would DNF it right at the very beginning but I am so glad that I didn’t. The story starts off with the hero and heroine meeting at the airport. They both want to upgrade their seats on their flight and the hero does not make a good first impression on the heroine, nor did he leave a good impression on me. I honestly wanted to punch him in his junk and make sure he hurt before I moved on. But Ava can’t shake the asshole that almost ran her over to get to the counter because, after that, she sees him in line for coffee, he shows up to “save her” at dinner, the spend a very intense night together and to top off her already shitty week, she’s stuck sitting next to him on the flight home.

Ava wants to get home too much to put much effort into her seat partner but for some reason, he brings out the worst in her and they clash at every turn. When she gets home and she continues to run into her seat partner around town, they figure they’re not done with each other.

Our hero, Caleb Scott is from Scotland but is in Boston on business. While he’s in town, he’s interested in keeping the naked party going with Ava and our heroine Ava figures, why not? They continue on as they’ve been going for the past few weeks with the knowledge that as soon as Caleb’s business in Boston is at an end, so is whatever is happening between them. They’re both going through some serious issues, both avoiding rather than dealing and seeing them both come to terms with those issues and fix them made reading this book just that much more enjoyable.

Caleb struggled with his ex-girlfriend, and because of that, he struggles with commitment and relationships. Ava’s issues were more outward then internal as her struggles came about from outside sources and seeing her really come into her own, really own her future while letting go of the past brought me such joy.

Caleb and Ava together were such a great source of entertainment. Their bickering and their chemistry leaped right off the pages and I thought Samantha Young crafted a delightful romance between two people who were right for each other and came to love each other in a very organic and believable way. After that shaky start with Caleb, I came to love him so much over the course of the book.

I also really enjoyed the friendship between Ava and Harper. It made me appreciate my friendships and how I have the same support system that they have with each other and that made me happy. This was a fabulous stand-alone romance that did its job. It made me laugh, it made me sigh and it also made me hopeful for the human race after certain current events. I definitely recommend this one if you’re in the mood for a hate to love romance with a super sexy hero and a heroine that will have you cheering for her to come out on top. So good.

4 out of 5

four-stars


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Sunday Spotlight: Fight or Flight by Samantha Young

Posted October 14, 2018 by Rowena in Features, Giveaways | 1 Comment

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight

I fell in love with Samantha Young’s contemporary romances when I first read On Dublin Street and I haven’t looked back since. With every contemporary romance that she releases, it automatically goes on my must have list and it wasn’t any different with Fight or Flight. That’s why we’re featuring Fight or Flight today for Sunday Spotlight. Enjoy the excerpt!

Sunday Spotlight: Fight or Flight by Samantha YoungFight or Flight by Samantha Young
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: October 9, 2018
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 288
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books

A series of chance encounters leads to a sizzling new romance from the New York Times bestselling author of the On Dublin Street series.

The universe is conspiring against Ava Breevort. As if flying back to Phoenix to bury a childhood friend wasn't hell enough, a cloud of volcanic ash traveling from overseas delayed her flight back home to Boston. Her last ditch attempt to salvage the trip was thwarted by an arrogant Scotsman, Caleb Scott, who steals a first class seat out from under her. Then over the course of their journey home, their antagonism somehow lands them in bed for the steamiest layover Ava's ever had. And that's all it was--until Caleb shows up on her doorstep.

When pure chance pulls Ava back into Caleb's orbit, he proposes they enjoy their physical connection while he's stranded in Boston. Ava agrees, knowing her heart's in no danger since a) she barely likes Caleb and b) his existence in her life is temporary. Not long thereafter Ava realizes she's made a terrible error because as it turns out Caleb Scott isn't quite so unlikeable after all. When his stay in Boston becomes permanent, Ava must decide whether to fight her feelings for him or give into them. But even if she does decide to risk her heart on Caleb, there is no guarantee her stubborn Scot will want to risk his heart on her....

Order the Book:

AMAZON || BARNES AND NOBLE || KOBO

Excerpt

“Take that,” he grunted out and I turned my head to see he was holding his empty tray out to the flight attendant. The flight attendant stared at it, momentarily stunned.

“Of course, sir,” he said calmly, practiced, before taking it and walking away.

Irate at his behavior, I couldn’t help myself. “Do you ever say please or thank you?”

He cut me a dark look. “What?”

I gestured with my plastic fork to where the flight attendant had been standing. “People aren’t your servants. The flight attendants are not your servants. They’re doing a job and trying to make this flight easier on you. You can be forgiven for being abrupt and standoffish and maybe unintentionally insulting because you’re anxious about flying. I was trying to tell myself that anyway. But the way you speak to people in customer service makes you an arrogant, entitled prick.”

“If I were you I’d shut up and mind your own business.”

“Yeah, well if I were you I’d reach into that goddamn dark soul of yours and pull a thank you out of there every now and then.”

I didn’t know if it was the honest pique trembling in my words, but the Scot’s eyes widened marginally before he glowered and pulled his laptop back out with a clatter on top of his table.

Hateful, hateful man.

Ignoring him now came much, much easier. In fact, after lunch (and another coffee) I actually got into my book. The urge to use the bathroom about fifty minutes from our estimated arrival, however, made continuing to ignore my neighbor impossible. I was going to have to ask him to move. Plus, I was too warm and dying to take off my jacket.

“Could you please let me out?” I asked in a carefully neutral tone.

Equally lacking in expression, he grabbed up his laptop, pushed his table back in and gestured for me to get out.

I stared at the barely-there gap between his knees and the seat in front of him. Was he kidding? He wasn’t going to get out of his seat? My gaze flew to his face but he was staring determinedly ahead.

Fine!

If I happened to step on his feet and then grind my stiletto into his toes that was his fault. Huffing, I got up, grabbed hold of the top of the seat in front of him, trying not to touch the head of the woman sitting in it and I shoved my right leg into the teeny gap he’d left. If he was an average-sized man I probably would have squeezed past no problem in the spacious first class seats.

But he wasn’t an average-sized man.

My leg touched his and my fingernails dug into the headrest in front of me. I shimmied into his space, bringing my left leg into the mix and I heard him curse when my heel came down on his left foot. A fizzle of satisfaction moved through me and I pushed further into his space. I felt his legs tense and I was suddenly very aware that my ass was in his face. Thankfully, it was mostly hidden by the peplum of my jacket.

With one last shimmy I stumbled out into the aisle and looked back at him, hoping he was seared and scorched by the heat of my glower.

The bastard already had his laptop back out.

Wondering how it was possible a person as ill-mannered as him hadn’t been caught by karma by now, I marched down the short aisle and into the toilet at the entrance of the galley.

Inside I did my business, washed up, and yanked out of my jacket feeling unbearably hot. Thankfully, the silk camisole I wore was cut low enough under my arms that there were no damp patches on the material. I patted under my arms and sniffed to make sure I didn’t smell. Though I didn’t, I’d need to freshen up soon in order to avoid it. Not that I cared if I smelled while sitting next to that asshole. I’d do anything to make the rest of his flight uncomfortable.

Knowing I couldn’t stay in the restroom any longer, I slipped out, nearly bumping into the woman who had been sitting in the seat in front of the Scot.

“Sorry,” I smiled apologetically. “Have you been waiting long?”

She shook her head, her expression filled with a sympathy that didn’t make sense until she said, “It’s okay. If I were sitting next to that jerk-off I’d want to stay in there forever, too.”

Of course the people around us had heard our conversation. Weirdly, when I was talking to the miserable bully I forgot everything else around me but him. That knowledge was not welcome. “Yeah,” I managed feebly.

“Good for you, though. You know how to handle him. I think I’d probably have been thrown off the plane before we even took off. You know, for swinging a punch at him.”

I laughed and thanked her, walking back to my seat feeling relief move through me that our flight was nearly over. As I approached, the Scot looked up at me. His gaze dropped to his computer but only for a millisecond before it flew back up. That arctic stare of his moved over my cleavage, now visible in the cami that was tucked into my high-waist pencil skirt.

A shiver I detested for betraying me skated down my neck.

His eyes flew back up to my face and he no longer looked right through me.

He appeared displeased.

Narrowing my eyes, wondering what the hell I’d done now, I gestured to my seat. “Can you let me back in?”

He snapped shut his laptop, dropping his table again. “High maintenance,” he murmured quietly.

I gripped the now empty seat in front of him and turned my back to him as I shimmied in. “Yeah, needing to pee is so high maintenance.”

My left foot hit his left foot and he pressed his knees in closer to the back of my thighs, trapping me.

I glanced over my shoulder, about to snap at him, only to catch him glaring at my ass. There was an angry heat in that stare, heat he hadn’t looked at me with before. The kind of heat a guy usually had in his eyes when he wanted to find the nearest bed and throw me on it.

Suddenly the image of him looming over me, his body pressed between my legs, flashed through me in a surge of fire that shocked and pissed me off in equal measure.

Huh.

I snapped my head back around, not going there. “Would you move?” I bit out.

His knees suddenly pulled back and I stumbled out of his space and tumbled into my seat with less grace than I’d have liked.

Feeling his gaze on me, I shot him what had to be the hundredth filthy look of the day. “What?”
Instead of answering he turned, bent down toward the aisle and came back up with my jacket in his hand. I hadn’t even realized I’d dropped it. He shoved it at me and I snatched it out of his hold.

“What? No thank you?” he mocked.

Giveaway Alert

We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the Gleam widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

Sunday Spotlight: October 2018

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About the Author

Samantha Young

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS

Samantha Young is the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of adult contemporary romances, including the On Dublin Street series and Hero, as well as the New Adult duology Into the Deep and Out of the Shallows. Fight or Flight, a new standalone to be published by Berkley Romance, is out October 9th 2018. Before turning to contemporary fiction, she wrote several young adult paranormal and fantasy series, including the amazon bestselling Tale of Lunarmorte trilogy. Samantha’s YA contemporary novels The Impossible Vastness of Us and The Fragile Ordinary are published by Harlequin Teen. Her next adult contemporary romance As Dust Dances releases August 7th 2018. It follows the story of homeless ex-poprock star Skylar Finch and the ambitious Scottish A&R Exec Killian O’Dea who shakes up life as she knows it.

Samantha is from a small town in Central Scotland and is known for her romantic stories set in her beloved home country. She is currently published in 30 countries and is a #1 international bestselling author. When she’s not writing books, she’s buying shoes she doesn’t really need and searching for nooks and crannies to shelve her ever-expanding book collection.


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Review: The Fragile Ordinary by Samantha Young

Posted July 11, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: The Fragile Ordinary by Samantha YoungReviewer: Rowena
The Fragile Ordinary by Samantha Young
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: June 26, 2018
Point-of-View: First
Genres: Young Adult
Pages: 304
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-stars

I am Comet Caldwell.

And I sort of, kind of, absolutely hate my name.

People expect extraordinary things from a girl named Comet. That she’ll be effortlessly cool and light up a room the way a comet blazes across the sky.

But from the shyness that makes her book-character friends more appealing than real people to the parents whose indifference hurts more than an open wound, Comet has never wanted to be the center of attention. She can’t wait to graduate from her high school in Edinburgh, Scotland, where the only place she ever feels truly herself is on her anonymous poetry blog. But surely that will change once she leaves to attend university somewhere far, far away.

When new student Tobias King blazes in from America and shakes up the school, Comet thinks she’s got the bad boy figured out. Until they’re thrown together for a class assignment and begin to form an unlikely connection. Everything shifts in Comet’s ordinary world. Tobias has a dark past and runs with a tough crowd—and none of them are happy about his interest in Comet. Targeted by bullies and thrown into the spotlight, Comet and Tobias can go their separate ways…or take a risk on something extraordinary.

The Fragile Ordinary is the second YA book that Samantha Young has released and it was just as enjoyable as the first book was. This book follows Comet Caldwell as she starts the new school year sitting next to the cute American transfer. She is a bit of a loner though she has two best friends and things at home are a little tough on her because her parents aren’t the supportive kind of parents that all young kids should have.

Comet was one of those main characters that quietly shined throughout her entire story. She was shy and avoided the spotlight at every turn but she was also caring and loving to those she held close to her heart. She worried that her personality didn’t fit with her friends and that it would make her friends realize that they didn’t want to be her friend anymore. She worried that the heartbreak she felt at home with her parents being so indifferent to her would do her in and she very much looked forward to escaping her town and her home to find her own place in the big world.

Comet was an interesting protagonist and I connected with her character, quite a bit. The way that she connected with the characters in her books more than her friends in real life, the way that she hurt at her parent’s distance and then seeing her develop and then nourish a crush on Tobias King made reading this book zip right through.

Everything that Comet felt was so intense and seeing her fall in love with Tobias and then come to care for Stevie despite how different his crowd was from hers made Comet grow up and come out of her shell. There was a lot of stuff happening in Comet’s life and the way that she dealt with the bullying, the shit from her parents, the new relationship with Tobias that came with its own complications, and then there were the insecurities she was dealing with surrounding her friends.

This wasn’t an easy book to read but boy does Samantha Young pack the goodness in this one. The romance between Tobias and Comet was sweet and seeing Comet really come into her own with the Stevie stuff, the friend’s issues and then all of the stuff that goes down with Tobias had me glued to the book. I couldn’t get enough and though there were times that I wanted to strangle Tobias and even Comet, in the end, I loved them both. I loved the resolutions that come forth with her parents and then her friends. I enjoyed Comet’s story and I loved the way that this book ended. Samantha Young is doing the contemporary YA thing right. Lots of feels and strong young characters that are smart and feel real. I definitely recommend this book.

Grade: 4.25 out of 5

four-stars


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