Tag: Sarah Billington

Buddy Review: Over It by Sarah Billington

Posted December 5, 2013 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Over It Sarah Billington
Rowena and Ames buddy review of Over It (Kiss Off #2) by Sarah Billington.

Warning: Sexual References, occasional coarse language.

Teen Youtube song writing sensation Poppy Douglas’s lead singer boyfriend Ty’s been criss-crossing the country and living it up on tour for months while Poppy has been stuck in the boring suburbs, finishing out the school year.

But it’s Summer now, and the best thing just happened: Poppy’s royalties for writing the hit song The Kiss Off just came in. She’s minted, and she knows just what she’s going to blow it on.

Ty’s band Academy of Lies are headlining a summer music festival, and Poppy is taking her girlfriends along for the best weekend of their lives. It’s all organized: the weekend is going to be full of camping under the stars, backstage passes, VIP rooms and partying like rock stars, not to mention some long awaited one-on-one time with America’s favorite front man.

Except, when someone drops out of the trip and Poppy takes the opportunity to mend a broken friendship, it doesn’t quite go according to plan. And when she meets her boyfriend’s BFF from another band, the paparazzi form their own totally wrong conclusions. There’s also the matter of Ty’s ‘super fan’ stalker, but the less said about her the better.

The biggest test of all comes in the form of an opportunity too good to pass up. But will insecurities and jealousy stand in Poppy’s way? Can Poppy and Ty’s relationship even survive it?

Life is about to get much more complicated for Poppy Douglas, but what can you expect when your boyfriend is a rock star?

Ames: I was so looking forward to reading Over It…and when the date got pushed back for its release, that filled me with some trepidation. Pushed back release dates don’t usually mean good things. And I definitely had some issues with Over It. But overall, I was caught up in Poppy’s story and I want to read more. What about you?

Rowena: I’m the same as you. I read The Kiss Off and enjoyed it so I wanted to read this one. After all the release date pushbacks, it fell off my radar until it popped up into our Book Binge email…then I got excited all over again. Also, like you, I had issues with this book but I still want to continue the series.

Over the weekend, I watched 27 Dresses on T.V. and it was one of those DVD on TV showings where the producers, the writers and the actors share tid-bits from the movie, their thoughts and what not. One of the producers talked about Jane’s character. She talked about how writing Jane’s character was tricky because as a protagonist, she had to have conflict but she also had to be likable and there’s a line that you can’t cross or people will hate your main character. I kept thinking about that while reading this book. Poppy had to have conflict for the story to move forward but there were times when Poppy got on my nerves so much that I wanted to wring her neck. But Billington did a good job of pushing me back and then pulling me back in with other stuff.

Ames: Poppy got on my nerves too! I think Billington went over that very fine line of creating a likeable heroine with conflict a few times, but each time she did bring it back. And some of Poppy’s antics did have me cracking up. The beach scene? I laughed out loud. And there was other stuff going on that was interesting too.

Rowena: I laughed at that scene too because stuff like that only happens to Poppy. I also really liked the introduction of Gordo. He was an interesting character and I was going to be really mad if he turned out to be a new love interest for Poppy. Because I’m so Team Ty! But I thought Gordo was cute and I liked seeing him make bonehead decisions when trying to save the day.
I thought for sure Hamish was going to hook up with one of Poppy’s friends. Poor Hamish, didn’t get any kind of action…haha. And I totally knew who Ty’s stalker was. Well, not at first but I knew something was off about that chick and when she came up to be the stalker, I fist pumped because I was right.

The thing that made me the most mad about Poppy was every issue Ty had with her. She came all that way to see Ty and yet, she was making all of these plans that didn’t include Ty. What the hell? And then she’s pissed off at him for not being as supportive of her as she wanted? Oh, bite me you dumbass teenager. LOL. I’m glad Billington turned her around. I’m glad that I didn’t hate Poppy when I closed the book. She learned her damn lesson.

Ames: I loved the way Gordo was introduced! That scene had me cracking up. And I like how it created this little inside joke for them. I like how quickly they became friends. I also like how secure Ty was. Because even though the media was trying to make it seem like there was a love triangle, there wasn’t really. And poor Gordo, all his attempts to make things better kind of made them worse. But at least he wasn’t the one to drop Poppy on her head! haha

Ok, part of the reason I was annoyed with Poppy was she was letting everyone pull her in different directions. She really needed to stand up for herself and I’m glad she got her gumption back at the end. And that’s why I was happy that I still liked Poppy by the end of this book -she’s a fun character who is crazy talented. She just needs to be more confident in herself.
I liked her friends too. Even when they weren’t getting along.

And I had an inkling about who the stalker was but OMG I didn’t expect her to be so totally crazy!!

Rowena: She really was off her rocker, huh? Crazy stalker girl.

I hear you about Poppy. She really did need to get herself because it was really frustrating to see her put everyone and everything above Ty. When Ty tells her that at the end that the concert (with her and stalker girl) wasn’t about her. It wasn’t about them. It was about the band. And she ruined that. I about fist pumped in the air because that was it exactly. My issue with her. Her insecurities drove me bat shit crazy. Ty was completely confident that nothing was going on with Gordo, and he had such faith in them together but to see that Poppy didn’t have the same confidence in them as he did had to suck for Ty.

Yeah, things were different now because Ty was so successful and his life was turned upside down but he was handling it the best way that he could and all of Poppy’s issues about everything? Were her issues and she took them out on Ty, which pissed me off.

Her friends were cool too. I liked seeing them fight and bicker their way toward becoming actual friends. They sure have come a long way from that first book.

Ames: I agree 100%, her issues were definitely all about her. But despite all that, we do see her character grow by the end. Which is why I want to read the third book right NOW. haha I liked the way it ended. It wasn’t a totally happy ending, but it was realistic.

Rowena: I’m right there with you. I want the next book right now and even though I wasn’t ecstatic about the ending, I still liked the book as a whole. Poppy drove me crazy but I didn’t hate her. It was more of a frustration that you usually get for your best friend or sister who acts completely dumb and yet you still love them. I’m glad that I read this book because the writing style flowed nicely, the story moved at a great pace and the characters did their job. They kept me interested in what was coming and while the book wasn’t perfect, it was still a solid read.
I’d give this book a 3.5 out of 5. You?

Ames: I am giving it the same grade, 3.5. Despite Poppy being annoying, you nailed it, its like the antics of a friend or sister and you still love them. That’s how I felt. I highly recommend starting with the Kiss Off though, this is not a book that can be read as a stand-alone. Billington has a very engaging writing style that makes you want to be friends with these quirky characters. 🙂

Rowena: Amen, to all of that. And we’re done.

This book is available from Indie Inked. You can purchase it here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review: That One Night by Sarah Billington.

Posted September 10, 2013 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment

Genres: Anthologies (multiple authors)

That One Night - Sarah Billington
Rowena’s review of That One Night by Sarah Billington.

Can a friendship that lasts just an hour be completely perfect?

A year ago, Annie and Bree were best friends, then they graduated high school and it turns out a year is a long time.

When Annie shows up at her best friend’s birthday hoping to slip back into the friendship that was, she discovers she’s no longer a part of Bree’s world and decides to slip out quietly without making a scene.

But a chance encounter on the way out means that sometimes you can find friendship when you least expect it.

This was such a short, that it felt more like a chapter of a story but even still, I enjoyed it.  It was a pretty damn good chapter.

This short story follows Annie.  Annie’s best friend Bree is having a birthday party of sorts and Annie goes.  She’s pretty excited about seeing her best friend again because it’s been a while since they had any best friend time and she misses her.  But Bree has gone to college and it becomes apparent that she’s pretty much moved on from her friendship with Annie.  Annie spends most of the night hanging out by herself and drinking by herself because Bree looks pretty content to hang out with her college friends.

Just when Annie thinks she can’t take anymore, she starts to head out and leave Bree behind once and for all but she ends up sticking around when she spills her drink on one of Bree’s college friends.  His name is Skylar and Annie remembers his name from when Bree used to talk to her about her college life.  He was the guy that Bree was in love with before she got with her boyfriend that she’s with now.  After Annie spills her drink on Skylar, they embark on a night of adventure…and that’s exactly what it was.  A one night adventure.

Skylar is going to Japan in the morning and it’s his last night in town and he spends it with a stranger who knows someone he knows.   And their night is filled with awesome and I liked it very much.  I just wish that it was longer.  That it was fleshed out more but for what it was, it was pretty great.  I liked Skylar and I liked Annie so overall, this was a cute read.

Grade: 3.5 out of 5

This book is available from Sarah Billington.  You can purchase it here or here in e-format.

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Review: The Kiss Off by Sarah Billington

Posted December 19, 2012 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Review: The Kiss Off by Sarah BillingtonReviewer: Rowena
The Kiss Off (The Kiss off #1) by Sarah Billington
Series: The Kiss Off #1
Published by Sarah Billington
Publication Date: March 1st 2012
Genres: Young Adult
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books

When sixteen-year-old Poppy Douglas writes a song about her ex-boyfriend Cam and ex-friend Nikki, she has no idea that her heartbreak is about to go global. A local band picks up her song from Youtube and soon she’s along for the ride with her own fanbase as they blow up on the local club scene and hit the international charts. Though it turns out leaving Cam behind isn’t as easy as she had hoped.Tangled in a web of unfinished homework, ill-considered sexting and a new lead-singer boyfriend, Poppy has a choice to make between the ex that inspired it all and the rock God whose poster lines the inside of half the lockers at school. But as she struggles to keep her emotional dirty laundry private, she learns that the truth can be hard to find when your life is in the headlines.

After reading the blurb for this book, I thought it would be a light and fluffy read.  One that didn’t really take itself too seriously and while it wasn’t a deep read, it had some depth to the story and I really enjoyed it.

This book is about a young girl named Poppy Douglas.  Poppy’s boyfriend cheats on her with her friend and Poppy gets mad, writes a song about them and then posts it on YouTube.  The song really takes off when it catches the attention of a local band, who record the song and make the song into a smash hit.  Poppy’s life changes when she starts dating Ty, the lead singer of Academy of Lies.  Ty becomes an A List celebrity and he goes on tour and dating him becomes a lot more complicated than Poppy imagined.  To make things even complicated, Cam (the cheating ex) turns out to not be an asshole who might want to get back with Poppy and I really liked that there wasn’t a clear choice for Poppy.  Both Cam and Ty were good guys and I liked them both.  I liked one more but I thought the other one was a good guy too.

This book was too cute for words.  I really enjoyed getting to know the characters and even though there were times when I wanted to smack the crap out of Poppy, I really liked her in the end.  Poppy was your typical teenage girl who felt strongly and reacted heatedly and passionately.  She really cared about Cam and was really hurt by him and she handled it the only way that she knew how to, by expressing her feelings through song.  That song became a national hit and it changed her life.  It brought Ty into her life and it brought the band into her life and helped her get over Cam.  I liked seeing her come to terms with who she was and who she wanted to be but also who she wanted to be with.  She grew a lot over the course of the book and I really enjoyed reading about her journey.  I am not at all shy to say that I loved the choice that she made.  He was totally the guy that I would have chosen and not just because of, well…read the book and you’ll understand.  I really liked him more than the other guy.  He was too freaking cute.

I really enjoyed this book and definitely recommend this book to lovers of contemporary YA books as well as fans of books by Sarah Dessen, Morgan Matson and Elizabeth Eulberg.  This was an enjoyable read and I can’t wait to read more by this author.

…and that’s your scoop!

This book is available from Billington Media. This book was received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Buy the book: B&N|Amazon|Book Depository
Book cover and blurb credit: http://barnesandnoble.com


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