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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Two for Tuesday!! Past Perfect and Wanderlove reviews

I have a treat for you today - two reviews for the price of one!! Meaning you only have to listen to me once. HA! Why am I doing this, you ask? Doesn't each author deserve her own moment in the spotlight? Well, er, yes, but this is going to save me (and you) time, and don't we all love saving time these days? Thing is, I read these two books within a week of each other, and they're so similar, I think it will benefit both to do a little compare and contrast. That way if you like one, you'll know exactly what to go for next. Sounds good, eh? So here are our two books:

Title:Past Perfect
Author: Leila Sales
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: October 4, 2011

An abbreviated Goodreads summary about Past Perfect:

All Chelsea wants to do this summer is hang out with her best friend and finally get over Ezra, the boy who broke her heart. But when Chelsea shows up for her summer job at Essex Historical Colonial Village (yes, really), it turns out Ezra’s working there too. Maybe Chelsea should have known better than to think that a historical reenactment village could help her escape her past. But with Ezra all too present, and her new crush seeming all too off limits, all Chelsea knows is that she’s got a lot to figure out about love.

Author: Kirsten Hubbard
Publisher: Random House Children's books
Release Date: March 13, 2012

An abbreviated summary about Wanderlove: 18-year-old Bria Sandoval wants to be a global vagabond. In a quest for independence, she signs up for a guided tour of Central America— one filled with middle-aged tourists and fanny packs. When Bria meets Rowan, devoted backpacker and dive instructor, and his  humanitarian sister Starling, she seizes the chance to ditch her group and join them off the beaten path. Bria's a good girl trying to go bad. Rowan's a bad boy trying to stay good. As they travel across a panorama of Mayan villages and hostels plagued with jungle beasties, they discover what they've got in common: both seek to leave behind the old versions of themselves. But Bria comes to realize she can't run forever, no matter what Rowan says.

Now these two books may sound quite different, but they actually have a lot in common. Both books:

1. Are set over the summer
2. Are about second romances/loves.
3. Have deliciously witty and engaging voices that had me smiling the whole time.
4. Have unusual settings - one a colonial America re-enactment site, the other Central America. I found myself wanting to visit both.
5. Have a swoon-worthy male love interest.
6. Hooked me within the first 2 paragraphs.
7. Both authors share a personal interest/hobby through their story, and both left me thinking how cool those interests were.
8. Include a theme wherein the MC has to get over a past love who didn't show her the respect she deserves.

Some differences about the two:
1. Wanderlove includes some very lovely drawings by the author, Kirsten Hubbard.
2. Past Perfect has a slightly younger main character than Wanderlove (16 rather than 18). I think that Wanderlove will really hit home for those looking for something in the "new" adult category.
3. We don't hear much about Bria's friends back home in Wanderlove, but the friendship between Chelsea and Fiona (love that name, btw) in Past Perfect includes just enough detail to make it stick in your head while not becoming an obtrusive subplot.
4. Wanderlove was maybe a little on the long side. I didn't have any problems getting through it in 2 days, but I think it could have been tightened a bit more or a scene here or there nixed. I'm all about condensed writing these days (after trimming my own WIP), and I'm learning to appreciate shorter manuscripts.
5. I love both covers, but I have no idea how the cover for Past Perfect fits with the story. *shrug*

I DO DO DO recommend both of these reads, but if I had to pick one over the other... ah, forget it, I won't do that. You'll just have to read both and make your own call! :)


bibliophile brouhaha said...

Yayayayayay! I LOVED Like Mandarin, so I've really been looking forward to Wanderlove! And of course, I want to try anything that can be termed New YA :) Thanks for the great mini-reviews!


Kelley Vitollo said...

HI! I can't get your email to work. Can you email me? You won a book at For the Love of Contemporary.

Nomes said...

oh i LOVED past perfect (seriously, loved)

and i am thinking wanderlove will be my thing (even though i couldnt get into like mandarin)

love how you chat books angie :)



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