Yours Truly, Cammie by SJ Sylvis

yours truly cammie

5 out of 5🔥🔥🔥🔥 out of 5 steam level

REQUIRED READING FOR ROMANCE LOVERS

official blurb
I follow one rule in life: Don’t get involved with a Marine. After this past year of heart-wrenching misery, and an entire childhood as daughter of one of the highest ranked officers in the Marine Corps, I’ve had enough of saying goodbye. I’ve had enough heartbreak to last me a lifetime. But in an attempt to avoid an awkward run-in with a previous blind date, whom I may or may not have abandoned mid-dinner, I found myself standing in an exam room with Lucas Wells. He was exceptionally handsome on the outside, but the second he started to run that egotistical mouth of his, I wanted to do one of two things: smack him or kiss him. Lucas Wells, the United States Marine, has me bending my rule in more ways than one. But the real question is, will I succumb to breaking my rule altogether, or will he break me before I even get the chance? This was a reread of this book for me. I loved it the first time and I still devoured it the second time.  (That’s such a weird sentence to write about a book that it almost makes me uncomfortable but it also made me laugh, so I kept it.)

what i liked
I love Luke.  Did SJ Sylvis choose his name because she’s a Gilmore Girls fan? I don’t know but I will pretend the answer is yes. (Even though we all know that I’m team Christopher).
Speaking of Gilmore Girls there is room full of sunflowers scene in this book that is VERY reminiscent to a room filled with daisies.  If you know, you know.
I liked Cammie’s BFF named Jojo. I like it when the characters have a good crew around them.
I recently started watching Hart of Dixie (which the author also watches)  and there’s a very lovable character in the show named Wade. He refers to the main character in the show as “Doc” the whole time.  And Luke in the book always refers to Cammie as “Doc” (even though she’s a nurse).  I personally liked this nickname! I know, I’ve complained a lot in the past about cutesie nicknames in romance novels. But I liked this one, what can I say?
This book is hilarious.  I laughed out loud a lot at how ridiculous Cammie’s train of thought was because I was so here for it!  Here are some examples:

“He was what you’d call a nice, tall glass of water. Actually, I almost felt as if I needed some water to moisten my now drying mouth. Jesus, take me now.”

“Whenever I’d acted bitchy (read as: beautifully sarcastic and witty) toward someone, it was only ever because I either: (1) knew the person really well, so they knew I was kidding, or (2) knew that I would never see them again.”

Trigger Warnings:
If you do not like reading a book with cussing, then this book is not for you.
If you do not like a book with a high steam level, this book is not for you. (4 out of 5 steam level according to my steam meter)
This book features the loss of a loved on, specifically a military loss.

I read this book quickly both times I read it. It even features multiple epilogues- You know I’m a sucker for an epilogue!

what i didn't like
I really love this book- hence the required reading on my romance novel list status.  I would say if there’s something that readers won’t like about this book it is maybe how little we actually know about Luke. Or maybe the way that Cammie deals with conflict.  I wasn’t bothered by either of these very much.  But I would TOTALLY be down with a novella from Luke’s perspective.  Maybe a second book featuring Luke’s brother featured in the epilogue and then Luke can be in it too?!  I know, I’m an idea girl- and I only require 2% of the commission from these ideas! (Just kidding, SJ Sylvis, write more about these two!!!! )

when to read
Because this is required reading- you can read it anytime. BUT I recommend it during warmer weather, or during a crazy rain storm.

while reading you should
Watch: Gilmore Girls and Hart of Dixie
Eat: chocolate chips
Do: prank someone
Listen to: Nothing But You by Bob Moses

DuxSignature

The Forever War by Joe Haldeman

4.5 out of 5

The Earth’s leaders have drawn a line in the interstellar sand–despite the fact that the fierce alien enemy they would oppose is inscrutable, unconquerable, and very far away. A reluctant conscript drafted into an elite Military unit, Private William Mandella has been propelled through space and time to fight in the distant thousand-year conflict; to perform his duties and do whatever it takes to survive the ordeal and return home. But “home” may be even more terrifying than battle, because, thanks to the time dilation caused by space travel, Mandella is aging months while the Earth he left behind is aging centuries…

The Forever War is a military science fiction novel set in the future. It tells the story of an intergalactic war that is fought over millennia. But for the soldiers actually fighting, the war lasts only years. Every time they come home for a little R&R (rest and relaxation), they find their world completely changed. Even the language isn’t the same. William Mandella’s journey is both inspiring and heartbreaking, and I could not put this book down.

While this story is fiction, Joe Haldeman wrote it for a purpose. The Forever War is widely perceived to be an account of Haldeman’s experience in Vietnam. As with Spencer Quinn’s The Right Side, Haldeman’s account of Mandella’s time in service evokes similar feelings in the reader as perhaps Haldeman felt on his return home after Vietnam. The seemingly dramatic span of time in this novel allows us as readers to understand the alien feel that home had for many. The Vietnam War occurred during a time of tumultuous change in the United States, and while we back home may not have been speaking a language quite so literally foreign as Mandella’s fellows in The Forever War, those who served in Vietnam returned to a place in which they didn’t seem to belong anymore.

I highly recommend this book to everyone, even those who are not fans of science fiction or space operas. It’s a short novel, and while it clearly introduces new technology and a new society, it’s not heavily focused on those things. It is definitely more about the individual experience than about advanced societies. You don’t need to buy this book, but you should definitely pick it up at your local library.

 

-Hawk-

The Right Side by Spencer Quinn

3.5 stars

The Right Side follows a woman returning from war as she struggles to find her place and purpose back home. Helping to find a friend’s missing daughter reminds her of her purpose in life, and of the goals she once had for herself. She also finds a friend in a dog who won’t let her get too down on herself.

I randomly picked The Right Side up at my local library when I was there to pick up some holds. I’m a sucker for things that businesses put on display and make look exciting, so at least the library is free and I didn’t spend money I hadn’t planned on spending…

For my own personal reasons, I rarely read serious non-fiction books, especially any that deal with Iraq and Afghanistan or returning veterans. But this book intrigued me.

The Right Side is very well written. I thought the author told a great story, but also detailed the struggle many veterans face returning to the U.S. and/or to civilian life after spending time in Iraq or Afghanistan. There were some times I wasn’t sure I was going to finish the book, not because it wasn’t good, but because the author really made you feel what the main character was experiencing.

It’s not a must-read, and definitely not a buy, but if you like contemporary fiction and a little bit of mystery, you should definitely check this book out. I still think about it sometimes, and what it taught me about the human ability to overcome trauma.

-Hawk-