Saturday, June 16, 2012

Emma Hearts LA by Keris Stainton (Review + Giveaway)

Genre:Young Adult, Contemporary, Comedy, Romance
Publication.Date  June 7th 2012
Published By:  Orchard
WebsiteKeris Stainton

Emma Hearts LA - Goodreads
My review copy:ARC received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Where to get:

Emma's not sure that LA's for her, but when she accompanies her sister Jane to an audition, a chance meeting with a teen TV star starts to change her new sunshine lifestyle for the better... But what about Oscar, so far her only friend in LA, who's turning out NOT to be the idiot she thought he was?

Soon Emma begins to find herself torn between two boys and reconsidering her entire future.

Maybe LA's not that bad after all.(Goodreads)

Oscar's wearing a relatively normal outfit today: skinny jeans - except they're bright green, so he looks a little bit like a poppy - and a black, short-sleeved T-shirt, and I can see the muscles flexing in his arm as he manoeuvres the car. I would never have imagined that Oscar had muscles in his arms or anywhere else. Combined with the fact that he's actually driving,well... it's distracting.
I just think people will try to put you off doing what you want to do - I don't know why they do that, but they definitely do - but if you really want something you have to ignore everyone else and do it anyway. 
I'm sorry to have intruded on a private and not at all mental moment.
"You just want to see my bedroom,"he says, raising one eyebrow.
"You're right. I've been trying to get you up there since I saw you were invisible from the waist down."

     Emma Hearts LA was an adorable, quick read. A perfect little treat for long summer afternoons on the beach. While it's not exactly a book that will change your life, it's most definitely an enjoyable, charming book with a simple but solid plot line, and characters that you'll adore. I honestly did not expect to like it that much, heck - I did not expect to like it all! - but I couldn't help falling under its charm. In the end, this book proved do be really fun and entertaining, and although I did have a few problems with it, they were small and easy to overlook thanks to this book's undeniable sweetness and readability

     If you had a chance to read Keris Stainton's previous book, Jessie Hearts NYC, you probably remember Emma, Jessie's best friend. You'll be pleased to know that Emma now gets her very own story, and what a story it is! The book kicks off with Emma arriving in Los Angeles, where her brilliant astro-physicist mom was offered a new job. Emma's not very thrilled about the move overseas (reluctant to leave her friends and father behind), but there isn't much she can do about it, the decision has been made. Shortly after arriving in the US, Emma realizes that LA isn't as bad as she thought. In fact, it's every teenage girl's dream destination - filled with sunny beaches, celebrities, vibrant night life, hot guys, beautiful tourist attractions and plenty of new possibilities. Reunited with her nerdy childhood friend, Oscar, Emma quickly adapts to the new surroundings. She's also very pleased to see that Oscar is no longer the awkward, annoying kid he used be. He's a blush-worthy, attractive, confident young man, and one that seems to be interested in Emma in a romantic way. And he's not the only one! There's also the hot and famous TV show star, Alex, and he, too, seems to be very fond of our pretty, English girl. Is it just me, or is it suddenly getting very hot in here? ;) 

     As much as I enjoyed this book, I can't say that I instantly fell in love with it. In fact, it took me about 100 pages to actually get into it. It was mainly due to the fact that the first 100 pages or so act as nothing more but a set up for the love triangle that comes later, and, for a book that is only 250 pages long, it's a very long set up. That is not to say that the first part of the book is totally meaningless and unnecessary. Yes, it could be a bit shorter, and yes, I would certainly like to get to the point a bit faster, but the part about Emma moving to LA, and Bex getting invited to a movie casting and learning the ins and outs of show business, was very interesting to read about, too. I guess what I'm trying to say is: Try to keep an open mind, enjoy the ride, and don't give up on this book too early. It's a book worth sticking with all the way to the end. The second part of the book makes up for the first, slower one, and if you push through and keep on reading, you'll be rewarded with a cute, sigh-worthy love story, funny dialogues and perfectly satisfying ending. 

     While it's clearly a spin-off of Jessie Hearts NYC, it's also a book that stands entirely on its own. You do not need to read about Jessie's adventurous to be able to enjoy reading about Emma's. Both books are stand-alones, and although they share some of the same characters and ideas, there is nothing that could prevent you from enjoying one without knowing the other. 

     Overall, this was a great, quick read that kept me pretty entertained all the way through. I enjoyed the funny dialogues and thought that Keris Stainton did a great job depicting teenage relationship's, with all their angst, idiosyncrasies, and occasional awkwardness. She made me believe in these teenagers and care for them. And although the romance part was missing steam and chemistry, I most certainly appreciated the humour and lightness of it. It's a drama-free book, and I wouldn't have it any other way. I recommend this book for a quick, summer read! 


Hachette Children's UK has generously offered to give away one paperback copy of Emma Hearts LA to one lucky INTERNATIONAL reader!

Open to: WORLD WIDE 
Ends: June 30th
Enter through Rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This review and giveaway is posted as part of the Contemporary Fiction Month feature!

Click on the picture for full schedule.

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About the Author
Evie is the Blogger behind Bookish. She enjoys reading many different genres, especially YA, Paranormal, Contemporary Fiction and Fantasy.
She loves talking to authors and is always happy to welcome them for interviews, and guest posts. She also likes spreading the love for awesome books and  chatting with fellow book-worms.
You can find Evie here: Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Shelfari | The Library Thing


Unknown said...

This looks so good! I am in the US.

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

RuthB said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RuthB said...

i hate when a book is slow at first, but I always give it a chance. Maybe they intend to save the best for the end!

BTW I'm WW (Uruguay)


Unknown said...

I don't know how I would feel about this book. I do like those light, fast reads, but its not very encouraging to know that over a third of the book is not all that good =/
Hope I still enjoy it!
Penny Pe

Oh, PS: I'm INT :D

Carl Scott said...

You're right 100 pages is a very long set-up. It sounds like the rest of the book is pretty good though. I think it would be a good summer read. Thanks!

Jen said...

THis book looks really good:)
i'm US :)

Kristia said...

I always want to add new books on my TBR list so thank you for recommending this quick, summer read :)
Thank you for the international giveaway,
Kristia Miltiadou.

nurmawati djuhawan said...

i think i'll love this book..
looking forward to read it...
thx u so much :)

PuttPutt1198Eve said...

It sounds like even tho you liked the book, it was not a challenging read. I think you're right when you say it would be a good book to read on the beach. Now, I just need to find one!!

Mary Preston said...

I've seen a little about EMMA HEARTS LA on the Internet. It does look like a wonderful read. Thank you for your review.

precious said...

With all the books that is all about vampires and all, this is definitely a nice break with all of it. Looks really great!

Tore923 said...

I would love to read this book. It sounds very good.

Sara In Bookland said...

I really liked your review! Like you, I've read some contemporary fictions recently and, despite initially I couldn't really get into them, at the end I appreciated their lightness and humorism. If you want check out my review for "Wrecked" a funny contemporary novels about 4 teen shipwrecked on a desert island

Veronika said...

I need to read this book!! It sounds awesome! I'm a little worried about the "slow start" though. But I'll give it a try!
I'm WW!

Randi M said...

When I first saw the cover for this book, I wanted to read it. And then I saw that it was part of a series... Really glad you said it could be read as a standalone! :) Great review!

Unknown said...

I've heard many great reviews about this book but I'm always kinda hesitant to check it out because I don't read much contemporary fiction and romance, I'm more on PNR. But I guess it's not so bad to try other genres, right? Hopefully, I'll try to read this one even if I don't win.

Thank you for the giveaway! :)

Lili said...

Most of the time I can read through slow books because I know something awesome is awaiting me at the end. It's been that way for old favorites of mine. I'm sure that this is one of those types of books!

Badass Bookie said...

Last year I read Jessie <3 NYC which I loved so I can't wait to read Emma Hearts LA :D They're really cute, short reads but I agree with your point about "it's not love at first read" it really takes time to get used to! Great review Evie as always! :D

Unknown said...

I really like the sound of this book! And it's DRAMA-FREE?! I totally need to get my hands on this. Awesome review! :D

Fara @ Tumbling In Books

May said...

This seems like a really interesting read. THanks for the giveawy :)

Vidisha said...

Sounds really great!!! cant wait to read it

precious said...

I like that this is a refreshing read. That is what it seems to me. I would love to read something like this to take a break from all the 'problematic' storylines.

Felicia said...

This definitely sounds like something I'd get my hands on. I haven't read the author's previous book, but I wouldn't mind reading this one.

Thanks for giving us a chance to win :)

Michelle Chew said...

Sounds like a fun contemporary read! Thanks for bringing this book up on my radar. I'm thankful for a chance to read the book.

Amber Kirk-Ford said...

This book sounds so good, I would love to win. And your blog is amazing! :)

Amber x
The Mile Long Bookshelf

Sarika Patkotwar said...

Thanks for the giveaway!
Great review. :D

PuttPutt1198Eve said...

Thanks for the heads up on the extra long lead in to the body of the story. When I go to read it I'll remember that and not give up too soon.

Filia Oktarina said...

I would love to read this book. Please enter me in contest.
Thanks for giveaway!!

Bookie Bee said...

The plot sounds intriguing. But I am on the fence knowing that almost a third of the book is not good.

ZaraAlexis said...

A fun, entertaining read is just perfect for the summer. Sounds good. Thanks.

Denise Z said...

Thank you for sharing with us today and for the fun giveaway opportunity. I love a book that makes me like the characters and become emotionally invested in them. It sounds like this did that for you and I am definitely looking forward to the read :)

holls said...

Awesome giveaway. Thanks

Lis said...

Great review!
To be honest I have never heard about this book before. Sounds good though.

Molly said...

Love finding out about great new books! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this one. It's definitely going on my to be read list!

Aleksandra said...

Sounds good & I'm glad it can be read as stand alone, 'cause I haven't read Jessie Hearts NYC & it sounds like such a fun & sweet read, and books like that are definitely perfect summer reads :)

Gabrielly said...

This sounds super interesting! Thanks for the giveaway

Unknown said...

Hi, thank u for this giveaway and making it international. The book sounds interesting, it's perfect for the summer :)

Eli Yanti said...

summer.. summer.. i should to pick this book for summer then :)

thanks for the review and giveaway

FairyWhispers said...

I don't really fancy the cover, but the story sounds great though =)

Stella Chen said...

Love contemporary novels and there isn't enough focus on them in the YA community. Thanks for giving one away.

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