Broken Down, from Amanda K. Byrne (Hidden Scars #2)

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Hi, there! Welcome to the first official review of the day! I’m hoping to write more than my two schedule, that’s why I say “official”. I’m here to talk about Broken Down, second book in the Hidden Scars series, from Amanda K. Byrne! I’ve received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review from Xpresso Book Tours. Thanks again, guys! Let’s do it!

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from my Instagram!

the story

Shane knows that Krista sent him on his way all those months ago for a reason. He was a jerky during their relationship – if one can call what they had a relationship at all. Shane was too weak to fight for what he wanted with Krista then.

Not anymore. Not after Eric.

Shane won’t stand losing Krista too. He wants her, he needs her in order to keep breathing. And he knows she won’t refuse to at least help him, so he takes a long shot and appears on her doorstep, in the middle of the night…

.Krista broke up with Shane for a reason. Ok, several reasons, but still: they were just fuck buddies and she fell for him. The rules were simple and she broke then. She had to walk away in order to keep sane. She refuses to allow anyone else to break her again.

Not anymore. Not after Riley and her break down.

Krista is doing her best to move on with her new career and life in Portland, far away from the temptations of Los Angeles. Away from Shane. She just didn’t count that the one thing she couldn’t have would appear on her door… Just like he always did.

the analysis

Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂

Broken Down is a very well-written book. At first, I was afraid this would be one of those romances full of meaningless porn-like sex with ridiculous existential doubts.

And then I read page one and was hooked.

I fell deeply in love with both Shane and Krista, they were wonderful protagonists and managed to not irritate me at all! They screw up for sure, but they were so real, their situation so down to earth that my heart was always filled with emotion during the read. I won’t lie, there were some parts in that I couldn’t believe what I was reading and how much of an ass Shane was, but even then, I also could understand a little his side. I didn’t let go of Broken Down until it ended and it is with the deepest pleasure that I announce it a five stars book! ❤

The narrative style is third person, with switching points of view between Shane and Krista. I loved how Byrne manages to insert us deep within the characters minds without using the first person narrator, IT IS BLACK MAGIC!! =O

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This is my favorite narrative style and Byrne’s writing was so powerful and beautiful that I wanted to hug her several times during this book. Also, there were lots of funny moments to harmonize all the drama that James and Krista are going through.

The plot was complex on a simple way, as both Shane and Krista had many pending problems and secrets that they kept from each other. They had to basically come clean and start their relationship over in order to be together and this is so much more easier said than done. Also, there are a couple of twists that simply blew my mind up!

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The characters were just awesome. As I said, I fell in love with Krista and Shane and found myself pinning for them to be together all the time – I usually don’t fangirl about heterosexual couples, which proves the black magic use on Byrne’s part, haha! Shane only didn’t make it to My Bookish Boyfriends list because his behavior is not quite my style. I prefer my men more open and gentlemen like, haha!

Also, all characters were so real. Their struggles, funny quotes, how they deal with problems… EVERYTHING! I loved it ❤ I’m tempted to give a go to the first book (Hidden Scars) and see how Sara and Taylor really met and got together, as she is the PERFECT best friend, haha! Let’s see if I have an opportunity to read it some time 🙂

One of the strongest points on Broken Down was how Byrne handled abortion. One of the characters chose to have one and lose her incoming child and defended her choice as the correct one until the end. Given that:

  • her brother was in a coma due to heroin use;
  • her parents didn’t give a crap for what happened to her brother;
  • her work had given her a nervous breakdown and she had to quit;
  • she was taking anxiety meds;
  • and, most importantly, she had dumped the father of the child before acknowledging the pregnancy (which was result of a bad condom incident) and thought they would never meet again;

I say I’m with her on that. And when the said former boyfriend asked if he didn’t have a say in the abortion, she’s absolute: no, he hadn’t! It was her body, it was her problem! They weren’t together anymore, her life was a mess and both her mind and body couldn’t afford to bring a child to this world. She would have never forgiven herself if she hadn’t stopped the pregnancy. This is such a delicate matter and Byrne just slayed it like a queen. I am so proud of her!

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I am most pleased to say that there are three sex scenes in the book and each one important for a reason. No frantic bodies every two pages, no hours reading porn on the reader’s end, not any of the things that usually makes me avoid contemporary romance 😀 And, to be honest, the scenes are very hot, filled with emotion, passion, unspoken and spoken love and vulgarity free!

And can we take a moment to appreciate this cover? It’s not my usual cup of tea, but I liked it! It totally matches the mood of the book *–*

Overall, if you love well-written books, romance, down to earth characters that could live up on your street and be your neighbors, strong females and grumpy rock stars, Broken Down will be the book of your lifetime!

5star

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Thanks for reading my review! Bellow, you can check where to grab your copy of Broken Down (its official release date is tomorrow), info on Amanda K. Byrne and details about a juicy giveaway!

purchase links

For now, Broken Down is only available in ebook format at our usual book buying places. I’ll double check tomorrow and update this post if something changes 🙂

Amazon | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iTunes

the author

Amanda k. byrne

When she’s not plotting ways to sneak her latest shoe purchase past her partner, Amanda writes sexy, snarky romance and urban fantasy. She likes her heroines smart and unafraid to make mistakes, and her heroes strong enough to take them on.

If she’s not writing, she’s reading, drinking hot chocolate, and trying not to destroy her house with her newest DIY project. She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, and no, it really doesn’t rain that much.

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

giveaway

AND WE HAVE AN INTERNATIONAL GIVEAWAY!

Two lucky winners will take home each a $25 gift card of the store of their preferences! *–*

To join me on this shot, just click here and good luck: GIVEAWAY!

That’s it, thanks so much for reading it all! And thanks to Xpresso Book Tours for my review copy and for sparing a place for me on the book tour!

assinatura

xpresso book tours

Percy Jackson and the Lightening Thief, from Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #1)

Hi, there! AFY, today your blogger is on fire, as all my posts are going live – thank you, February new books ¬¬”

Anyway, we are not here to talk about my failed posting schedule, but to talk about the first book in the Percy Jackson series (is there someone on the world who calls it “the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series”? Like, all fanciness and all? I can’t even picture saying it out loud on the title, haha!), The Lightening Thief 😀 To my shame, I only read this series for the first time last January (I mean 2015 and not last month, haha!). Needless to say that it changed my heart and now I’m a believer. This was one of the books I wish to re-read this year and I can’t wait to squeeze the rest of the series into the other months ❤

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the natural light that I got on this pic makes it look like it’s blured… Sorry, haha!

The Story

I feel a bit silly re-telling a story that everybody knew way before me, but here we go

Percy is a 12-year-old boy without much luck in his life. No matter how hard he tries, disasters seem to follow him anywhere, making the weirdest things happen – and getting him expelled of five schools in a roll. To top everything, he is dyslexic, has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and the worst stepfather of the whole world: Smelly Gabe. And trust me, you don’t want to know the reason behind this lovely nickname.

Until a trip to the beach with his mom, Percy thought his life weird and unlucky, but manageable. But a hurricane totally out of season and a big monster show Percy that things can always get worse. Without any choice, he ends up on the Half-Blood Camp with his best friend Grover – that, by the way, reveals himself as a satyr.

Now, besides being really unlucky, dyslexic and attention deficient, Percy also has to deal with the existence of real (and very angry) Greek gods that are more than willing to use him and the other children at the camp as they please for their own schemes. Percy time has arrived and his life depends on completing divine tasks.

The thing is… Can Percy focus on the gods’ will?

 

The Analysis

Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂

When I was younger and this series exploded in the world, I remember reading a synopsis that was so crappy that led me into believing that this was a stupid series. Then the movies came out and I was “sure” It was crap. Sorry if you enjoyed the movies, haha! Then last summer came (again, 2015, not last month) and I was at a friend’s place – yeah, I’m talking about you, Jen! – and she pestered me so much that I said “FINE, I WILL GIVE PERCY JACKSON A GO, NOW SHUT UP”. Or something like that. Her memory is better, she can tell our stories better than me, haha! Anyway, long story short, I was madly in love with Percy Jackson and devoured all five books in a week’s space. And then felt like life didn’t matter anymore because there was no more than five books. You know, same old, same old with us book lovers.

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On my first read, I gave it four stars. I’m officially raising it to five stars now 🙂

The narrative is first person styled from Percy’s point of view only. On the beginning of my first read, it bothered me a little. On my re-read, I think it works. Percy is just like us – you know, our 12-year-old selves – and this makes it so easy for the reader to connect with him. He grew up believing that Greek gods were just random characters from another culture and suddenly has to deal with the living things. Also, the narrative style makes the story funny and light, even on its worse moments.

The plot is complex and full of twists, as there are so many elements to fit into the book. I loved how well Riordan executed it. Percy Jackson is one of the most well written series that I ever read, the kind that you just can’t find a flaw, a lose end, a forgotten character. Seriously, there is nothing to hold against it, haha!

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Rick Riordan facing society

Percy is the perfect 12-year-old, in qualities and flaws. It is amazing! Even being 20 when I first read this book, I highly identified with him. Percy is random, observant, kinda lazy, funny and gets real mad when he is accused of doing something he clearly didn’t. (Btw, that was one of Jen’s arguments: “you will love him because he is just like you!”. Damn, she was right! But don’t tell her that, she’ll get cocky.) And he has the natural curiosity of children towards anything he doesn’t know, which is really helpful for the reader that is so new on the real Greek gods world as himself is.

All Riordan’s characters are very well constructed and developed. I call favorites with Annabeth, because she is not a helpless female in the team, Luke, because he is beautiful and skillful and has another secret trait that really attracts me but it would be a huger spoiler to tell, Hades, because he is the best god #justsaying, and Percy’s mom. Okay, but Grover and Quíron in the list. Ugh, I love Percy Jackson’s world!

Naturally, I have to comment on the semi-dystopian world that Riordan created: awesome stuff.

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Seriously, I have nothing to add to what has been already said. He re-created the Greek gods in such a fashion that is hard to imagine them any different now. It absorbers you and suddenly you’re convinced that you’re a victim of the Mist and that’s why you can’t see the true monster nature of your Math teacher. As I said, I’m a believer, haha!

Overall, I think that everyone that hasn’t already should just pick up this series and give it a go. Forget all about the crappy (sorry) movies and just allow uncle Rick to carry you around ❤

5star

Thank you for reading and thank you Jen, who so vehemently insisted that I should give this series a go ❤ I can’t wait for the next series that you will push through my guts recommend me 😀 And please don’t forget I love you, so there is no need for slapping me after you read this review.

assinatura