The Rules of Disappearing by Ashley Elston
When I read the words: "Witness Protection Program" on the cover flap, I was sold. I've always been really intrigued by the whole idea of a program like this and how it works and how families actually survive after having their identities removed and replaced. Elston did an excellent job at creating a main character that felt realistic, with a vulnerability that I can only imagine other teens in this program must feel.
The story flew by and the ending was kind of an OMG moment for me and that doesn't happen nearly enough. Highly recommended for a quick read this summer.
Far, Far Away by Tom McNeal
This one was a tad out of my comfort zone, but so many bloggers were loving it that when it showed up at my door I knew I had to take a chance. It's a quirky fantasy with great main character and the added bonus of having the Grimm fairytales play a huge role. Who doesn't love Grimm?!
Jeremy hears the voice of one of the Grimm brothers, obviously setting him apart from his peers and making for a very interesting twist. The plot is both creepy AND whimsical (not that the combo makes any sense), and secondary character Ginger is really the star of the show. She's awesome in an often terrible way.
This one won't be for everyone, but I encourage you to give it a try. Follow my lead and step outside your comfort zone!
Since You Asked by Margaret Goo
Snark, romance, and cultural all crammed into one book. I laughed my way through this entire book in one afternoon. Main character Holly is Korean American and loves her family and culture, despite the high expectations placed upon her, but she works throughout the book to find a balance to the craziness of her parents and the ups and downs of high school in general.
The solution apparently was getting out all her angst in a hilarious newspaper column. I loved the characters, I thought the plot was fresh and fun, and Holly had a realistic teen voice.
Thank to Disney Hyperion, Knopf, and Scholastic for the review copies.