Second Look: Kathy Perks’s THE LIFEBOAT CLIQUE

I’d see Kathy Perks’s The Lifeboat Clique advertised and on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, but I never really gave it a second thought.

Until, I read someone compare it to Libba Bray’s Beauty Queens.  And then I was like I MUST READ THIS BOOK THAT IS LIKE BEAUTY QUEENS!!1


So, of course I dashed off to Amazon and ordered it.

After finishing Daughters Onto Devils, I picked it up.  And let me tell you, I nearly read it in a day — if I’d have the time to read all day.  Once I got going, it was hard to put down.  I was basically walking around reading as I was doing things.  (No lie, I made pancakes while reading.)  I was like Belle.


So, without further ado, here is the review…hey, that rhymed!


The Lifeboat Clique by Kathy Perks
Katherine Tegen Books, 2016

What It’s About:

The basic premise is, an earthquake-caused tsunami overtakes Malibu, California, and ends up killing a bunch of high school kids at a party.  A small group of five of those kids survive on a floating roof.  Three of them are Popular Girls, one (our narrator) an outcast, and a boy who drifts between groups.

Here’s the more direct run-down.  Denver, a social outcast and self-proclaimed loner, attends a party in Malibu, thrown by her ex-best friend, Abigail, after being invited by hot-Popular Boy, Croix.

All day, California has been feeling tremors of tiny earthquakes, which of course sets up for the Big Disaster later in the novel.  (And by later, I mean by Chapter 4 or so.)

I’m going to skip over the play-by-play, because while the plot is interesting, it’s not really the “heart” of the story, or what makes it so good.  So, skip to behind the cut if you’d like to read more about the plot, and maybe be a little spoiled…

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Bonus Content: Books Ashley’s Excited For!

As I was browsing YALit’s list of upcoming books, I found three I’m really excited about.

For some reason, recently, I’ve been obsessed with the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland.  She’s not a particularly lovely character, but nonetheless.

So, I was super excited to learn Marissa Meyer has a book focused on the Queen of Hearts coming out later this year.  (Heartless, November 8, 2016)

But, coming sooner…

Colleen Oakes’s Queen of Hearts from HarperCollins May 3, 2016.


From Barnes & Noble:


This is not the story of the Wonderland we know. Alice has not fallen down a rabbit hole. There is no all-knowing cat with a taunting smile. This is a Wonderland where beneath each smile lies a secret, each tart comes with a demand, and only prisoners tell the truth.

Dinah is the princess who will one day reign over Wonderland. She has not yet seen the dark depths of her kingdom; she longs only for her father’s approval and a future with the boy she loves. But when a betrayal breaks her heart and threatens her throne, she is launched into Wonderland’s dangerous political game. Dinah must stay one step ahead of her cunning enemies or she’ll lose not just the crown but her head.

Evil is brewing in Wonderland and maybe, most frighteningly, in Dinah herself.

The first novel in Colleen Oakes’s epic, imaginative series proves heroes can become villains and fairy tales can become nightmares.

This is not a story of happily ever after.

This is the story of the Queen of Hearts.

I mean — how cool does this sound?  And it’s a first novel in a series.  BRING THEM ON.

Another book I’m excited about is Margot Harrison’s The Killer in Me, but it’s not released until July 12, 2016.


From Barnes & Noble:

Hasn’t he lived long enough? Why not? I could take him like a thief in the night.

This is how the Thief thinks. He serves death, the vacuum, the unknown. He’s always waiting. Always there.

Seventeen-year-old Nina Barrows knows all about the Thief. She’s intimately familiar with his hunting methods: how he stalks and kills at random, how he disposes of his victims’ bodies in an abandoned
mine in the deepest, most desolate part of a desert.

Now, for the first time, Nina has the chance to do something about the serial killer that no one else knows exists. With the help of her former best friend, Warren, she tracks the Thief two thousand miles, to his home turf-the deserts of New Mexico.

But the man she meets there seems nothing like the brutal sociopath with whom she’s had a disturbing connection her whole life. To anyone else, Dylan Shadwell is exactly what he appears to be: a young veteran committed to his girlfriend and her young daughter. As Nina spends more time with him, she begins to doubt the truth she once held as certain: Dylan Shadwell is the Thief. She even starts to wonder . . . what if there is no Thief?

From debut author Margot Harrison comes a brilliantly twisted psychological thriller that asks which is more terrifying: the possibility that your nightmares are real . . . or the possibility that they begin and end with you?

I’ve been on a true crime kick, so this just looks pretty awesome.  Plus, who doesn’t love a good story that includes a sociopath and murderer?

In the meantime, I’ll try to get through as many of the books on my TBR pile as I can…

What books are upcoming this year that you’re excited about?  Share with us!

Second Look: Amy Lukavics’s DAUGHTERS UNTO DEVILS

I’ve been wanting to read Lukavics’s debut novel since it first released last year.  However, I finally got around to putting it in my Amazon cart and bought it.  What excited me even more than the cover was the blurb on the cover.

Imagine Stephen King writing Little House on the Prairie. — Cat Winters

And you all know how much I love Cat Winters.  So, eeeeiii!

Okay, so onto the review…


Daughters Unto Devils by Amy Lukavics
Released 2015, HarlequinTeen

Before I go onto the review, I will say this: I’m excited to read more by Lukavics.  (She does have a book coming out soon…)  This particular book just wasn’t my cup of tea.  But she’s a great writer and I do think she’ll just get better with each publication.

What It’s About:

The story centers on 16 year old protagonist Amanda Verner who lives in a small (one-room) cabin high in the mountains with her six family members.  The newest family member is her infant sister, Hannah, who was born deaf and blind as the result of a horrible fever her mother had during a four-month blizzard.

Now, I know that sounds crazy, but Lukavics does a great job of explaining the probability of this.  It takes place way before cars and hospitals and near-by towns.  When I say they live in the mountains, I mean they live in the mountains.  The ride to the nearest town (or settlement) is at least a full day’s horse ride.  (And that’s not including if the horse is carrying a wagon or heavy load.)

Lukavics’s choice of setting changes from the mountains to prairie lands.  The family decides to leave their home and travel (two weeks worth by ox and wagon — think real life Oregon Trail).

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Reblogged: The Most Addictive Books of the Last 25 Years!

I found this list from Oprah.com via Book Riot.  While this is extremely subjective — who can say that all of these books are addicting — but I wanted to show the ones I did agree with.

You can read the entire list here on Oprah.com.

Ashley Agrees with These Picks

lovely_bones_coverAlice Sebold’s The Lovely Bones

I read this…oh, 10 years ago?  The heartbreaking thing is, I read it on the one-year anniversary of my Nana’s death.  At her gravesite.  So, the subject matter was just hard to deal with.  But the story is compelling and mixes in a little bit of literary fiction with mystery, without being TOO much mystery.  The true crime addict in me loved the “villain” of the tale.


41afp8yyb-l-_sx303_bo1204203200_Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl

I will admit it — I haven’t read this yet.  And what’s holding me back is I pretty quickly guessed The Twist when I heard the main premise of the novel.  Although, working at the library, everyone that read it and brought it back said how good it was and that they couldn’t put it down.


the_fault_in_our_starsJohn Green’s The Fault in Our Stars

If you know me, you know how much I absolutely lovelovelove this book.  I don’t even know if I can properly explain why this is a purely addicting book, it just is.  Here’s the thing: I read it, and I teared up, but didn’t cry.  Then I listened to the audio book, and then I ugly sobbed in my car.

You can read my review from way-back-when here!


4667024Kathryn Stockett’s The Help

I listened to this book first, but when I hit the last disc, and it was a weekend and I wouldn’t be driving until the following week, I finished by reading the book because I couldn’t wait to see what happens.  I liked that it was told in alternate voices (there’s a total of four, I think), and how it shows multiple perspectives of the town and the story.  In my opinion, it really added a fuller understanding, not only to the plot, but to the setting and historical aspect, as well.


41zav4ncy0lTina Fey’s Bossypants

Again, I haven’t read this…yet.  But seeing as I’m a fan of ALL THINGS TINA FEY these days, how could I not include it on this list?  Let’s just say it’s on my summer TBR pile.

(Sidenote: I really dislike this cover, which is part of the reason I haven’t bought the book…)

Now, there were a few books on the list that I didn’t necessarily agree with — *coughFiftyShadesofGraycough* — and others that I read but didn’t find “addicting.”  What books on the list do you agree with?  Any you’d recommend to me and Katie?



Ashley won a contest!

I won Dawn Kurtagich’s BOOKISH BANANA contest!  I never win things!

I fangirled.


I’ll be getting an awesome Author Only Autograph book.  (Saving for YA Fest 2017!) And an ARC of And the Trees Crept In — which I am so, so, so excited about.  And a letter for Kurtagich.


September 6, 2016

And then wished she didn’t live in the U.K. so we could get her to come to YA Fest 2017.