Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Reviews: Almost and Unmaking Hunter Kennedy by Anne Eliot + Giveaway!

At a freshman party she doesn't remember, Jess Jordan was almost raped.

...Almost. Very nearly. Not quite. Three years later, Jess has managed to make everyone believe she's better. Over it. Because she is.

...Almost. Very nearly. Not quite.

Unfortunately, until Jess proves she's back to normal activities, her parents won't discuss college. So, she lands a summer internship and strikes a deal with hockey jock, Gray Porter: He gets $8,000. She gets a fake boyfriend and a social life.

Jess has no idea Gray signed on for reasons other than money. She also never expects to fall in love. But Gray’s amazingly hot, holds her hand all the time, and makes her forget that he’s simply doing his job. It’s like having a real boyfriend.

...Almost. Very nearly. Not quite.

Gray Porter is hiding secrets of his own. About Jess Jordan. About why he’s driven to protect her, why he won't cash her checks, or deny her anything she asks.

Description taken from Goodreads

My Review

Holy friggens how sweet was this book?!  Like extra sweet, like cotton candy at an amusement park, sweet.  I absolutely loved Almost.  It was heartbreaking and real but at the same time it was adorable and filled with awkward firsts.  This book had me staying up to ungodly hours of the night.  Thank God I don’t have a job, or a life really, because both of those things would have totally gotten  in the way of me reading this amazing book.

Jess Jordan and Gray Porter are our main characters and the story is told from both of their POVs which really gives a full look into what they were thinking throughout Almost.  Both Jess and Gray harbor secrets.  We all have secrets, right?  But what if your secrets affected other people in a really big way.  Unhealthy, even.  Well, then you would be in Jess and Grays positions.

I really liked Jess as a character.  She was strong when she had to be and she was completely weak when she had every right to be.  She was feisty and sarcastic, everything I love in a main character.  Most importantly she made me FEEL.  I felt for her character.  She made me feel her pain.  I heard every scream, felt every tremor.  It was devastating to read about what she went through.

And then there’s Gray.  Oh, Gray.  I wish I could pay him to be MY boyfriend.  He was the epitome of the perfect gentleman.  He was funny and considerate.  He also knew how to flirt.  And this is a big one…he actually knows who Mr. Darcy is.

shocked joey photo: Joey Shocked tumblr_m85lzmztUg1qigluvo1_r1_250.gif

Yup.  I almost lost it then.  He even quoted him.  That’s right!  Quoted Mr. Darcy!  That never happens.  Seriously.  I think I need to borrow, or possibly steal, one of Jess’s bumper stickers that say BBB- Boys in Books are Better because, honestly, Gray was perfect.  He obviously had some flaws but those even made him perfect.  Clearly, I’m under a spell if you haven’t noticed.

The relationship between Jess and Gray is what made this book absolutely unputdownable (not a word…just go with it).  It was sweet and funny and completely awkward at times but that’s what made it so freaking special.  I can’t even describe it without it being just a jumble of letters.  So you really just have to read the book in order to understand it.

If you enjoy books about first loves, troubling pasts, with snarky comebacks then Almost should definitely be on your TBR list.  

4 out of 5 hearts

Unmaking Hunter Kennedy 
After a car accident--an event he considers a prank gone bad--pop star, Hunter Kennedy is forced to hide out with his aunt in small-town Colorado. He’s supposed to rest, heal his scars and attend high school in disguise until the press dies down. But he only wants to get back to work.

Worse, the girl who’s been assigned to make him over into a geek is a major geek herself. Vere Roth is a chattering pixie, a blushing tornado and a complete social disaster. He’s never met a girl who’s never-been-kissed, believes in romance and thinks Hunter’s a 'nice' guy.

Funny thing is...Hunter is nice around Vere because she’s his first real friend. He also can’t seem to stop sharing his secrets or keep her out of his heart. Knowing he’d never deserve a girl as sweet as Vere, he resigns himself to the friend zone, and helps his new bestie with her own makeover.

She tortures him daily for ridiculous guy advice on how to snag her life-long crush. A guy Hunter thinks is totally wrong for Vere, and sadly, one who has taken note of Vere’s transformation.

When Vere asks her best friend for some kissing advice, Hunter can’t resist...

And that’s when things get out of control...

Description taken from Goodreads

My Review

Adorkable.  My new favorite word.

I felt such a strong connection with this book.  I have never related to both main characters in a novel at all before.  Not like this.

Anyways, the story was heartbreaking.  Told from dual POVs, we have Vere who suffers from social phobia as well as Hunter Kennedy AKA Dustin McHugh who suffers from major depression.  Both sides were so hard to read and yet I couldn't stop reading.  I laughed, I cried, I’m sure I snorted at one point.  Major feels, guys.  Major feels.  Be prepared to think that your petty problems are nothing compared to Dustin’s.  Ever had a hard time talking in front of your crush?  That’s nothing compared to what Vere has to go through.

I absolutely loved how Hunter and Vere hit it off right away.  There wasn’t exactly insta-love, more like intsa-attraction, and I mean, we are all guilty of that right?  Meeting someone, thinking they are completely gorgeous and then not being able to stop thinking about them?  We all do it.  It doesn’t mean we are in love though and that’s why, I think, their relationship was done so well.  It was realistic.  There was attraction but they were also friends.  Besties.  And they were adorkable together.

The whole unmaking process was really entertaining and thought that it was a good twist.  We normally hear about someone who needs a makeover throughout the entire book but this was about a guy who needs an unmaking.  He goes from being fashionable to a complete dork in just a matter of days and it was just so…excellent.  I do have to say that when Dustin AKA Hunter, meets Vere’s best friend Jenna, it was absolutely hilarious.  I was totally laughing throughout that entire scene.

And I have to say that this was one of the best first kisses I have read in a YA novel.  Seriously, I had the biggest grin on my face and felt like a total creeper.

cheshire cat gif photo:  CheshireCatAliceSyfy.gif

The ending was also something that kept me turning pages so fast that it probably looked like I was a having a fit or something.  I just couldn’t stop reading because it was just so freaking swoon worthy and made me so angry because I don’t have a hot rock star boyfriend!  Seriously, when is that going to happen?

So, if you are a fan of contemporary romances with a tad of heavy subject matter, than this is the book for you!  Unmaking Hunter Kennedy was sweet, lighthearted at some parts but definitely serious in some others.  Pick it up, cause you will not be disappointed.

                                                                   4 out of 5 hearts

Thank you so much Annie for providing me with copies of both books and for letting me review them as well.  

On to the giveaway!  Annie was so kind enough to let me host a giveaway for you guys.  This is going to be open for US and UK residents only.  Sorry to everyone else.  :(   The winner will receive Kindle copies of Almost as well as Unmaking Hunter Kennedy.

Number 1:  You must be from the US or UK 
Number 2:  You must be older than 13 unless you have a parents permission
Number 3:  You must be able to receive ebooks for the Kindle.
Number 4:  I will contact the winner as soon as it ends, you then have 48 hours to respond (please check SPAM folder!) 




  1. Love Unmaking Hunter Kennedy!!! Such a great book!

  2. Couldn't agree with you more, Courtney! Awesome books - adorkable indeed!!

  3. I'm so glad you liked the books, too, and agreed on the page-flipping at the endings :)

  4. I loved Unmaking Hunter Kennedy and Almost is definitely on my TBR list after reading your review. Gray quotes Darcy? Where has this book been all my life?