Spotlight Friday (117)

Hello my lovelies!  It’s Friday, so it’s that time of the week again where we check out what new books are coming out this month!  And there are some I’m super excited about!  Check them out.

Sway by Kat Spears

Release Date: September 16, 2014

Summary (from Goodreads):

In Kat Spears’s hilarious and often poignant debut, high school senior Jesse Alderman, or “Sway,” as he’s known, could sell hell to a bishop. He also specializes in getting things people want—term papers, a date with the prom queen, fake IDs. He has few close friends and he never EVER lets emotions get in the way. For Jesse, life is simply a series of business transactions.

But when Ken Foster, captain of the football team, leading candidate for homecoming king, and all-around jerk, hires Jesse to help him win the heart of the angelic Bridget Smalley, Jesse finds himself feeling all sorts of things. While following Bridget and learning the intimate details of her life, he falls helplessly in love for the very first time. He also finds himself in an accidental friendship with Bridget’s belligerent and self-pitying younger brother who has cerebral palsy. Suddenly, Jesse is visiting old folks at a nursing home in order to run into Bridget, and offering his time to help the less fortunate, all the while developing a bond with this young man who idolizes him. Could the tin man really have a heart after all?

A Cyrano de Bergerac story with a modern twist, Sway is told from Jesse’s point of view with unapologetic truth and biting humor, his observations about the world around him untempered by empathy or compassion—until Bridget’s presence in his life forces him to confront his quiet devastation over a life-changing event a year earlier and maybe, just maybe, feel something again.

What’s To Like: I love the concept behind this.  It reminds me a lot of 10 Things I Hate About You, in that Jesse (or Patrick, in 10 Things) is hired to help someone else land the girl.  (It’s not an exact match, but it’s close.)  Anyway, I really am looking forward to the character development that has to go into this.  For Jesse to go from his original persona to the one at the end of the summary, he’s got to undergo a ton of character development.  I just hope it doesn’t move too fast.

Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

Release Date: September 30, 2014

Summary (from Goodreads):

In 1959 Virginia, the lives of two girls on opposite sides of the battle for civil rights will be changed forever.

Sarah Dunbar is one of the first black students to attend the previously all-white Jefferson High School. An honors student at her old school, she is put into remedial classes, spit on and tormented daily.

Linda Hairston is the daughter of one of the town’s most vocal opponents of school integration. She has been taught all her life that the races should be kept “separate but equal.”

Forced to work together on a school project, Sarah and Linda must confront harsh truths about race, power and how they really feel about one another.

Boldly realistic and emotionally compelling, Lies We Tell Ourselves is a brave and stunning novel about finding truth amid the lies, and finding your voice even when others are determined to silence it.

What’s To Like: I think this is a historical fiction that’s going to hit audiences hard.  I mean, it’s something that our generation still learns in school.  (It’s recent enough that people still remember these days, but old enough to actually be taught in history class.)  And the issues it is sure to deal with are issues we still have today.  Just watch the news.  Daily, it seems, there is something like this happening.  I was always fascinated by the courage of the Little Rock Nine, so I think I’ll really like this.

The Fine Art of Pretending (The Fine Art of Pretending, #1) by Rachel Harris

Release Date: September 30, 2014

Summary (from Goodreads):

According to the guys at Fairfield Academy, there are two types of girls: the kind you hook up with, and the kind you’re friends with. Seventeen-year-old Alyssa Reed is the second type. And she hates it. With just one year left to change her rank, she devises a plan to become the first type by homecoming, and she sets her sights on the perfect date—Justin Carter, Fairfield Academy’s biggest hottie and most notorious player.

With 57 days until the dance, Aly launches Operation Sex Appeal and sheds her tomboy image. The only thing left is for Justin actually to notice her. Enter best friend Brandon Taylor, the school’s second biggest hottie, and now Aly’s pretend boyfriend. With his help, elevating from “funny friend” to “tempting vixen” is only a matter of time.

But when everything goes according to plan, the inevitable “break up” leaves their friendship in shambles, and Aly and Brandon with feelings they can’t explain. And the fake couple discovers pretending can sometimes cost you the one thing you never expected to want.

What’s To Like: I’m such a fan of romances.  It seems like the older I get, the sweeter they become.  I really want to see how this project between Aly and Brandon breaks down.  I think it’ll be funny and sweet.  I just want to see what happens!  Is that enough of a reason?


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