Thursday, June 20, 2019

Under the Scrubs by Katerina Baker - Reshelved Books (ARCs)

When Katerina Baker reached out to us asking if we would review Under the Scrubs, I was super excited!  While I love working in the library and reading; my heart is still with healthcare.  Spending so many years with patients and working in the hospital is something that I miss.  Last month we were lucky because not one but two authors reached out to us for reviews of their new books via ARCs. 

Under The Scrubs by [Baker, Katerina]
This book falls under the romance umbrella, but it’s packed to the brim with  a lot of action and adventure (and even mystery) mixed in! Emilia Hughes is an OBGYN who is *finally* able to deliver babies on her own.  With her new found freedom within the confines of her job, she comes into a startling sequence of events. 

On her way to teach classes at the YMCA, Emilia finds herself trying to protect a woman and her baby from a very dangerous man.  In standing up to the man, Emilia finds herself in the sight of Kai.  Kai becomes Emilia's knight in shining armor! He protects her from the assailant. 

(I knew when I started reading this book I knew that there would an love affair with law enforcement.  When I started reading the book I didn't realize who the bad guy would be and who the good guy was).  

On her way into work, Emilia is met with the daughter, Melissa, of a gold tycoon.  Melissa is on her to deliver her baby - a baby that is not prepared to have.  Something very strange happens after the baby is born- Melissa and her newborn son elope from the hospital.  What's even crazier is that Emilia is kidnapped and thrust into the role of taking care of newborn Jayden.  

More than once, Emilia has her life put on the line by Melissa. But throughout it all, Kai and Taylor are there to keep Emilia safe.

Looking back on the book to write this review, I feel a little confused about everything that was going on and here's why.  If you do have an interest in reading Under the Scrubs, please stop reading this review! Spoilers are coming up and I don't want to ruin anything for anyone. 
 *-----Spoilers are coming!!-----*

There was something about this book in the beginning that made me feel like I was spinning in a powerful vortex asking myself what was going on.  NOW this isn't the first time that I've felt this way when reading a book.  Because of that, it's not going to have a negative on my review of Under the Scrubs!!

The beginning made sense until Emilia first encounters Melissa. Then the kidnapping happens after the elopement. Okay, I guess I could see how one could take a newborn out the hospital? (eh... not really...) Kai’s behavior started to confuse me. He was very aloof but then he was always there? 

When Melissa sent Emilia to the prison to meet Taylor, I was like “eh okay...?”  But I could t figure out where Taylor spend so many years in jail IF he actually didn’t do anything wrong. Why would the FBI pick him back up if they let him sit in jail for 3 years for a crime that he didn’t commit?

Around this time, Taylor and Emilia start to have more interactions between each other and I thought that they were longer and more meaningful. What I’m trying to say is this....

I started off thinking that maybe Kai was the bad guy because of the chemistry that was going on between Emilia and Taylor.  I thought that they would have been a better couple.  (I was not feeling Kai's behavior either!) To me, I thought that chemistry between Emilia and Taylor was better. 

Then poor Emilia gets herself in a very bizarre situation with Taylor as a bodyguard and also as a spy and it results in someone being shot and killed. 

(When I said before that this book was adventurous and action packed, I wasn’t lying!)

I give this ARC 3.5 coffee beans out of 5 and it really upsets me to say that.  While this book may not have been for me, that doesn’t mean that it’s not for anyone else out there. 

I want to thank Katerina for reaching out to us and giving up the opportunity to read and review her book!

Have a great weekend everyone!

- Jillian

Friday, June 14, 2019

The Chaos of Standing Still by Jessica Brody- Reshelved Books

Has anyone ever experienced a "book hangover"? No? If so, you're lucky!
For some reason, Where the Crawdads Sing gave me a serious book hangover.  The book that I picked up to read after it was not The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (sorry, MB >_<) but rather The Chaos of Standing Still by Jessica Brody.  

I picked up this book a couple weeks ago at Barnes and Noble.  It was on an end cap and the cover was really pretty! I read the back of the book and figured that I'd give it a try.  As I'm sure that some of you have noticed, I haven't been reading a lot of YA lately.  I haven't found anything that I've been excited to read (but that will all change with my next review!) 

For some reason plants make me think of airports
Was this the best book to read after a book hangover? Meh, that remains to be seen but I couldn't think of any other way to start off this review....

The Chaos of Standing Still introduces the reader to Ryn Gilbert, an 18 year old who spent the last 11 months and 31 days on learning how to navigate through her life without her best friend, Lottie.  Ryn is on her way home from Atlanta, but due to a blizzard and a lay over at the Denver Airport- Ryn won't be able to make it home for the 1 year anniversary of Lottie's death. 

The story flashes back between the present, with Ryn being in the airport during the snow and in the past through a series of flashbacks.  

With each flashback, the reader learns more about Lottie and Ryn's relationship with her.  Lottie was this intense force field that was constantly moving around Ryn; she seemed to influence everything that Ryn did.  Without Lottie, Ryn's life completely fell apart.   I'm not a psychologist and I'm not going to try and diagnosis a character but as the reader, you could tell that there was something going on with Ryn.  She seemed to be very withdrawn and at times, you could sense that she was anxious.  Ryn has an obsession with googling questions for answers; regardless of the question, she was always looking for an answer. 

 Ryn trips and falls, causing her to unknowingly switch phones with a guy named Xander.  This accidental swap causes a chain reaction of a series of events that create one very unforgettable night at the Denver Airport for Ryn.  It's a night that causes her to think back to Lottie and to help her move forward. 

The only way you're going to find out about the events from that night is if you read the book.  I'm not going to spoil it for anyone!

I found The Chaos of Standing Still to be super heavy!  The topic that it tackles, for me, was something that I found to be heavy.  Ryan has a massive amount of survivor's guilt toward what happened.  Here is this girl, she lost her best friend and as a result, she lost her ability to live.  That's not something that's easy to digest.  When you learn about their past, to me, it seemed like Ryn really loved Lottie.  I thought that maybe it was more than a friendship type of love.  Feel free to disagree with me but I seemed to me that Ryn was in LOVE with Lottie.  So much so, that her feeling toward Xander kinda surprised me.

As the reader, your heart broke for Ryn :(

I would Brody's book a solid 4 coffee beans out of 5. 

(I actually lent my copy out to a co-worker! I'm looking forward to hear what she has to say about the book.)


Thursday, June 13, 2019

Very Nice by Marcy Dermanksy - Reshelved Books

Hello there Dewey Readers! 

I was privileged to review an Advance Reader Copy of Marcy Dermansky's latest novel Very Nice, which is to be published on July 2, 2019. 

This novel is the perfect literary summer beach read...or soap opera, whichever you prefer. Rachael is in college with the hopes of being a writer. Rachel has written a short story about a flight attendant with a wild life and venereal disease that her professor offered criticism on (a Chris Bohjalian reference?).  Rachael is totally enamored with her writing professor, Zahid Azzam, who is famous in the literary and writing world, but has stopped turning in her assignments due to the criticism.  She fantasizes about him, secretly loves him, even ends up watching his dog, and eventually sleeps with him. Zahid is a bit naive but also thinks a little bit too highly of himself.  When I was reading this novel, I kept comparing Zahid to Adelle Waldman's character of Nathaniel P. (Check out our review of The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P. here.)  After Rachael and Zahid sleep together, Zahid ends up traveling back to Pakistan because his grandmother is dying and Rachael ends up taking the dog home with her. 

Now, you see the dog is a poodle, and Rachel's mother's dog (who was also a poodle) recently passed away.  Her mother takes the dog right into her home and heart, filling the void of having lost the love of her companion. Her mother and father have also recently separated, her father leaving her mother for a young flight attendant who may or may not infect him with a disease.  (You'll have to read it to find out.) This is where things get weird.  Zahid ends up returning for his dog but ends up staying with Rachael and her mother.  He even falls in LOVE with her mother.  Rachael's mother hides her relationship from Rachel, and Zahid hides his one-time-stand with Rachael from the mother, throw in some guns, a strange relationship with a family who's son almost caused a mass shooting in Rachael's mother's classroom, a lesbian ex-babysitter and grown woman love story, and you get this messy literary soap opera with a wowsza of an ending I don't think anyone saw coming.  

Would I recommend this book as a beach read? Yes.  Do I really know what I read at the end?  Not really. Do I really care? Nope.  So Dewey Readers, this book makes a great addition to your beach bag and Days of Our Lives episodes.  I leave you with a rating of 4 out of 5 Coffee Beans.

Until the next read!