Book Review: Other Broken Things by Christa Desir

other-broken-thingsBook Review: Other Broken Things by Christa Desir

Other Broken Things by Christa Desir
Published by Simon Pulse on January 12th, 2016
Genres: contemporary
Pages: 256
Format: Bought

From the author of Bleed Like Me, which Booklist called edgy, dark, and turbulent with passion comes another compelling and gritty novel about addiction and forbidden romance, starring a fearless, unforgettable heroine.

Natalie’s not an alcoholic. She doesn’t have a problem. Everybody parties, everybody does stupid things, like getting in their car when they can barely see. Still, with six months of court-ordered AA meetings required, her days of vodka-filled water bottles are over.

Unfortunately, her old friends want the party girl or nothing. Even her up-for-anything ex seems more interested in rehashing the past than actually helping Nat.

But then a recovering alcoholic named Joe inserts himself into Nat’s life, and things start looking up. Joe is funny, he’s smart, and he calls her out in a way no one ever has.

He’s also older. A lot older.

Nat’s connection to Joe is overwhelming, but so are her attempts to fit back into her old world, all while battling the constant urge to crack a bottle and blur that one thing she’s been desperate to forget.

Now, in order to make a different kind of life, Nat must pull together her broken parts and learn to fight for herself

MY THOUGHTS:

Nat is dealing with adult issues, the pressure of bad decisions breathing down her neck, and in court ordered AA meetings. She is trying to turn her life around but it does not get any easier because her old group of friends aren’t supportive, and only wants party girl wild Nat back. then there is also the forbidden romance aspect when she meets a much older guy, but one who seems to get her.

I don’t know how Desir does it. She manages to keep readers hooked from beginning to end. She weaves complex characters into a raw & gritty story that takes you on a roller coaster of emotions. I thought for sure I’d be creeped out by Joe, given his age. But I wasn’t. I really thought that he was a good balance of reality for her since he has been in the position that she is in and what it takes to get better. I was okay with him & Natalie. Yes Joe was considerably older than her. Yes, he was in recovery, and had been for several years. But I was rooting for them as a couple. Yet, by the end I knew that he had made the right decision for the both of them. I understood the possibility that Natalie was just switching one addiction for another. She was switching addiction to alcohol to an addiction to love, to sex. There was something about Joe that made him seem younger than he really was even though he has been  through a lot.

I really love the character development in this one. Natalie begins to realize a lot about her life and limits on the how to let her mom in and when to Start becoming the young adults and she is and taking responsibility for what she needs to. I like that she keeps her personality that she doesn’t become a rule follower or someone who just goes along with what someone else. But she keeps her strong woman quality, but realizes she has to put in hard work to be the kind of person deep down she has always wanted to be. I liked where it left her. She had accepted she had problems, She formed relationships and she knows that she has a long road ahead of her. the overall story was amazing and this is a definite “to read”. I would love to see a sequel to this book to see where Nat lands. Definitely go pick up your copy, this was a good decision for me and a great read.

I look forward in reading more from C. Desir. HAPPY READING 🙂

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Before I Fall: Movie Set

5 Things Lauren Oliver Learned On The Set of BEFORE I FALL

EPIC READS EXCLUSIVES

 

Did you know Before I Fall is going to be a film starring Zoey Deutch? We are super excited to see this beautiful book come to life! Luckily for us, Lauren Oliver is here to give us a sneak peek and maybe share some secrets. Read below for a special guest post from Lauren Oliver!

 

In December I was lucky enough to visit the set of Before I Fall in Vancouver, which was one of the weirdest, coolest, and most surreal experiences I’ve ever had. To celebrate the fact that I recently saw, and loved, an early cut of the movie, I put together a little real-deal retrospective.

5. You will wait. All the time, always.

 

Imagine you are in a dentist’s office full of the most attractive people you’ve ever seen in your life. That is a movie set. I would estimate that the cameras are rolling about ten percent of the time. Maybe eight percent. The rest of the time, actors are conversing with the director, the director is conversing with the cinematographer, someone is fixing lights or sound or costumes or the lead’s hair.

4. Practice makes perfect.

You would be amazed by how many takes are required for even the simplest moment or interaction. We’re talking seven, eight, nine reshoots of the same four seconds. But interestingly, the actors aren’t playing it the same way every time. They’re experimenting with tone and language, gesture and facial expression, and nuancing the characters to dial the focus up or down on certain feelings or motivations. It’s like…jazz variations. They’re kind of floating around a theme, trying to find the best way to express it.

3. Wires and boom mics and lights, oh my!

This is kind of mundane, but I honestly couldn’t believe the sheer quantity of equipmentrequired to make movie magic. When I arrived on set I wasn’t initially sure I was in the right place–until I saw half a dozen enormous trucks jig sawed in the lot next to a bunch of trailers. The halls had been completely deformed by wires: seriously, it was like a horror movie where electrical equipment comes to life to strange everyone. Moving through the set you’re navigating a maze of cables, folding chairs, banks of cameras, and undercaffeinated people squinting dolefully at their phones, waiting.

2. It takes a village.

Similarly, oh my god!! Who are all those people? I met, like, one percent of the people on set that day–and I’m not even counting all the extras, who patiently hung back and then swarmed the halls when crowds were required, like especially well-mannered locusts. If the zombie apocalypse comes, I will be sure to run to the nearest movie set, as there will no doubt be like one hundred scruffy-cute techie guys (and girls) who know how to fix a half a million dollar electrical equipment with gaffing tape and a wad of gum.

1. The script is never final.

This surprised me, honestly, maybe the most. Up until Day One of shooting, the director, producer, and actors were still making tweaks to the script–but I guess I’d thought at some point this would stop? Nope. The actors improvise; they try things one way and then another. The director shoots footage and then simply discards it. I mean, they’re still making tweaks to the script, now, in post-production (i.e., editing). I am pretty sure that at the movie’s premiere the director is going to stand up and be like, “Okay, fast forward through this part, it’s not working for me, kthanksbye.”

Fine with me, as long as I get to wear a pretty dress.

To Capture What We Cannot Keep

Set against the construction of the Eiffel Tower, this novel charts the relationship between a young widow and an engineer who, despite constraints of class and wealth, fall in love.

In February 1887, Caitriona Wallace and Émile Nouguier meet in a hot air balloon, floating high above Paris–a moment of pure possibility. But back on firm ground, their vastly different social strata become clear. Cait is a widow who because of her precarious financial situation is forced to chaperone two wealthy Scottish charges. Émile is expected to take on the bourgeois stability of his family’s business and choose a suitable wife. As the Eiffel Tower rises, a marvel of steel and air and light, the subject of extreme controversy and a symbol of the future, Cait and Émile must decide what their love is worth.

Seamlessly weaving historical detail and vivid invention, Beatrice Colin evokes the revolutionary time in which Cait and Émile live–one of corsets and secret trysts, duels and Bohemian independence, strict tradition and Impressionist experimentation. To Capture What We Cannot Keep, stylish, provocative, and shimmering, raises probing questions about a woman’s place in that world, the overarching reach of class distinctions, and the sacrifices love requires of us all.

Expected publication: November 29th 2016 by Flatiron Books 

This Is Our Story

No one knows what happened that morning at River Point. Five boys went hunting. Four came back. The boys won’t say who fired the shot that killed their friend; the evidence shows it could have been any one of them.

Kate Marino’s senior year internship at the District Attorney’s Office isn’t exactly glamorous—more like an excuse to leave school early that looks good on college applications. Then the DA hands her boss, Mr. Stone, the biggest case her small town of Belle Terre has ever seen. The River Point Boys are all anyone can talk about. Despite their damning toxicology reports the morning of the accident, the DA wants the boys’ case swept under the rug. He owes his political office to their powerful families.

Kate won’t let that happen. Digging up secrets without revealing her own is a dangerous line to walk; Kate has her own reasons for seeking justice for Grant. As she and Stone investigate—the ageing prosecutor relying on Kate to see and hear what he cannot—she realizes that nothing about the case—or the boys—is what it seems. Grant wasn’t who she thought he was, and neither is Stone’s prime suspect. As Kate gets dangerously close to the truth, it becomes clear that the early morning accident might not have been an accident at all—and if Kate doesn’t uncover the true killer, more than one life could be on the line…including her own.

Expected publication: November 15th 2016 by Disney-Hyperion

The Beautiful Dead

Belinda Bauer is a marvel. Her novels are almost indecently gripping and enjoyable. Sophie Hannah, “New York Times” Bestselling Author of “The Monogram Murders” and “Woman with a Secret”
Belinda Bauer is an award-winning British crime writer of the highest caliber, whose smart, stylish novels have captivated readers and reviewers on both sides of the Atlantic and earned her a reputation as the true heir to the great Ruth Rendell (“Mail on Sunday” (UK)). In her latest, “The Beautiful Dead,” Bauer turns the trope of the media-attention-hungry killer on its head, with a riveting narrative centered on a down-on-her-luck crime reporter and a serial killer desperate for the spotlight.
Crime reporter Eve Singer s career is on the downward slope when a spate of bizarre murderseach carefully orchestrated and advertised like performance artbegin in her territory. Covering these very public crimes revives her byline, and when the killer contacts Eve to discuss her coverage of his crimes, she is suddenly on the inside of the biggest murder investigation of the decade. But as the killer becomes increasingly obsessed with her, Eve realizes there s a thin line between inside information and becoming an accomplice to murderpossibly her own.
A seamlessly-plotted thriller that will keep readers breathless until the very end, “The Beautiful Dead” cements Belinda Bauer s reputation as a master of heart-stopping suspense.
Belinda Bauer s thrillers are always compelling, always original, always brilliant. I will rush to read anything she writes. Mark Billingham”
Expected publication: November 17th 2016 by Bantam Press 

Coming Soon to Young Adult Readers

Of Fire and Stars

Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile lands. But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a kingdom where magic is forbidden.

Now, Denna must learn the ways of her new home while trying to hide her growing magic. To make matters worse, she must learn to ride Mynaria’s formidable warhorses before her coronation—and her teacher is the person who intimidates her most, the prickly and unconventional Princess Amaranthine (called Mare), sister of her betrothed.

When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. As the two work together, each discovers there’s more to the other than she thought. Mare is surprised by Denna’s intelligence and bravery, while Denna is drawn to Mare’s independent streak. Soon their friendship is threatening to blossom into something more.

But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Forced to choose between their duty and their hearts, Mare and Denna must find a way to save their kingdoms—and each other. 

Expected publication: November 22nd 2016 by Balzer + Bray

I’ll See You in Paris

After losing her fiancé in the Vietnam War, nineteen-year-old Laurel Haley takes a job in England, hoping the distance will mend her shattered heart. Laurel expects the pain might lessen but does not foresee the beguiling man she meets or that they’ll go to Paris, where the city’s magic will take over and alter everything Laurel believes about love.

Thirty years later, Laurel’s daughter Annie is newly engaged and an old question resurfaces: who is Annie’s father and what happened to him? Laurel has always been vague about the details and Annie’s told herself it doesn’t matter. But with her impending marriage, Annie has to know everything. Why won’t Laurel tell her the truth?

The key to unlocking Laurel’s secrets starts with a mysterious book about an infamous woman known as the Duchess of Marlborough. Annie’s quest to understand the Duchess, and therefore her own history, takes her from a charming hamlet in the English countryside, to a decaying estate kept behind barbed wire, and ultimately to Paris where answers will be found at last. 

Published February 9th 2016 by Thomas Dunne Books 

In Another Life

Historian Lia Carrer has finally returned to southern France, determined to rebuild her life after the death of her husband. But instead of finding solace in the region’s quiet hills and medieval ruins, she falls in love with Raoul, a man whose very existence challenges everything she knows about life–and about her husband’s death. As Raoul reveals the story of his past to Lia, she becomes entangled in the echoes of an ancient murder, resulting in a haunting and suspenseful journey that reminds Lia that the dead may not be as far from us as we think. 

Steeped in the rich history and romantic landscape of rural France, In Another Life is a story of love that conquers time and the lost loves that haunt us all.
 
Published February 2nd 2016 by Sourcebooks Landmark

Beautiful Broken Things

I was brave
She was reckless
We were trouble

Best friends Caddy and Rosie are inseparable. Their differences have brought them closer, but as she turns sixteen Caddy begins to wish she could be a bit more like Rosie – confident, funny and interesting. Then Suzanne comes into their lives: beautiful, damaged, exciting and mysterious, and things get a whole lot more complicated. As Suzanne’s past is revealed and her present begins to unravel, Caddy begins to see how much fun a little trouble can be. But the course of both friendship and recovery is rougher than either girl realises, and Caddy is about to learn that downward spirals have a momentum of their own. 

Expected publication: February 11th 2016 by Macmillan Children’s Books (UK)

Grace & Style: The Art of Pretending You Have It

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Grace’s Guideand the host of The Grace Helbig Show on E! comes a beautifully illustrated, tongue-in-cheek book about style that lampoons fashion and beauty guides while offering practical advice in Grace Helbig’s trademark sweet and irreverent voice.
Published February 2nd 2016 by Touchstone (first published October 6th 2015)