Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Mini Reviews: The Leaving Season by Cat Jordan and A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro

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The Leaving Season
     by: Cat Jordan

Publication Date: Mar. 1, 2016
Publisher: Harper Teen
Genre: Contemporary
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: e-ARC received via Edelweiss in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 352 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Middie Daniels calls it the Leaving Season—the time of year when everyone graduates high school, packs up their brand-new suitcases, and leaves home for the first time.

It happens every late August, but this year Middie’s boyfriend, Nate, is the one leaving. Nate, who’s so perfect that she can barely believe it. Nate, who makes her better than she is on her own. Nate, who’s promised to come back once he’s finished his gap year volunteering in Central America.

And when he does, it’ll be time for Middie to leave, too. With him.

But when tragedy strikes, Middie’s whole world is set spinning. No one seems to understand just how lost she is…except for Nate’s best friend Lee.

Middie and Lee have never gotten along. She’s always known that she was destined for great things, and Lee acts like he’s never cared about anything a day in his life. But with the ground ripped out from under her, Middie is finding that up is down—and that Lee Ryan might be just what she needs to find her footing once more.

Cat Jordan’s heartbreaking story proves that no matter the season, no matter the obstacles, love can help you find yourself in the most unexpected of places.

I wasn't sure how this one would go when I originally dove in, but I have to say I really ended up enjoying it.
"How could I write about an experience that defined me when I had no idea who I was?"
I thought Meredith (Middie) was such a relatable character and she's far from perfect. She makes mistakes. She acts immaturely at times. I liked seeing that though. She's young, she's figuring life out, and most of all she's searching for her identity. For so long she has been defined by her role as Nate's girlfriend. She knows what the two of them wanted together, but now that she's on her own, she starts to rethink her future. Nate's absence really made Middie reexamine her life and if she wanted what they once had planned.
One of the biggest factors in this is Nate's best friend, Lee. I liked Lee a lot and I wish we had gotten a bit more development from him. Middie doesn't have to pretend with Lee. He doesn't pretty things up for her and pity her. He's real and he's unashamed of who he is. I really liked that. Middie and Lee were quite the surprise because Lee has some pretty hostile feelings toward her at first, calling her Yoko, and making her feel that she kept Nate from spending time with his friend. Lee is a wild card and he challenges and pushes Middie to be herself.
Middie doesn't handle things in the best way with Lee, but I understand her actions, even though they sucked. When your entire world is shaken up and thrown into chaos, it's natural to freak out. You want nothing more than for things to go back to the way they were, even though it might not be possible. Middie does this. She clings to the familiar and while she wants to go back to the way things were before, it's too late. She's been changed and she's finally figuring out who she is... as an individual.
I am a huge advocate for books where teens are trying to figure their lives out. Let's be honest. It's rare that they have their lives figured out at 17-18 years old. They make mistakes and they learn from them. Seeing them find their own path is an experience that I love reading about.

A Study in Charlotte (Charlotte Holmes #1)
   by: Brittany Cavallaro

Publication Date: March 1, 2016
Publisher: Katherine Tegan Books
Genre: Mystery
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: e-ARC received via Edelweiss in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 336 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 3/5 stars

The last thing sixteen-year-old Jamie Watson–writer and great-great-grandson of the John Watson–wants is a rugby scholarship to Sherringford, a Connecticut prep school just an hour away from his estranged father. But that’s not the only complication: Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, the famous detective’s enigmatic, fiercely independent great-great-granddaughter, who’s inherited not just his genius but also his vices, volatile temperament, and expertly hidden vulnerability. Charlotte has been the object of his fascination for as long as he can remember–but from the moment they meet, there’s a tense energy between them, and they seem more destined to be rivals than anything else.

Then a Sherringford student dies under suspicious circumstances ripped straight from the most terrifying of the Holmes stories, and Jamie and Charlotte become the prime suspects. Convinced they’re being framed, they must race against the police to conduct their own investigation. As danger mounts, it becomes clear that nowhere is safe and the only people they can trust are each other.

Equal parts tender, thrilling, and hilarious, A Study in Charlotte is the first in a trilogy brimming with wit and edge-of-the-seat suspense.
I will confess that I am not really a Sherlock Holmes fan, so I have to wonder if that was part of my problem with this book. I was really intrigued by the premise and I am always up for a good mystery. However, I struggled to relate with the characters, especially Charlotte. I did eventually warm up to her by the end though. There were times I felt bored as well and wanted the mystery to ramp up.
I did like how Jamie was with Charlotte though. The two made a good pair and when Charlotte would actually let him in, it really worked.
I did feel the last 1/4 of the book was really well done and I really enjoyed how the book hit the conflict and resolution. I wasn't able to figure out exactly who was at fault, but I did have my suspicions.
This one just felt lackluster to me and I honestly don't really have much more to say about it. It wasn't a very memorable read for me.

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  1. I'm glad The Leaving Season ended up working for you, especially since A Study In Charlotte fell a bit flat. Great reviews as always *hugs*

  2. I hate it when a book is just so not memorable -- it's not necessarily terrible but just, as you put it, lackluster. That seems to happen to me a lot.

    I also completely agree that teens should be figuring stuff out when they're 17-18 -- it seems silly to expect perfection from them, especially in books!

  3. The second book most intrigues me, but I understand why you didn't think it was memorable. I haven't read either of them yet, though.

    Majanka @ I Heart Reading


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