Check It Out!

Staff recommendations and reviews from the Plainfield Public Library

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Crazy For You by Rina Gray

Overworking her body, Charlotte Jones passes out at the nonprofit where she teaches dance. Yankees playboy pitcher Jake Ross happened to be nearby admiring her moves and rushes to her side. At the hospital, Jake poses as her boyfriend so the staff will let him in.

With a multi-million dollar endorsement on the line from a family-oriented company, Threx isn’t sure they want a notorious ladies man to represent their brand. His publicist Gina suggests Jake and Charlotte continue the “relationship” ruse so Jake can secure the contract. In return, Jake offers to be Charlotte’s personal trainer so that she loses the weight the right way. Although she is protective of her heart, Charlotte is falling hard for Jake even though she knows it is not forever.

When a stalker, who may be one of Jake’s former lovers, threatens Charlotte, Jake finally realizes he will do whatever it takes to protect the woman he loves.

In this series finale, Gray’s (It’s Been You) romantic set up starts strong but falls flat with a predictable and cliched subplot (the stalker uses cut-up magazine letters to draft the threats), and the readers will figure out the culprit early on. This is standard fare that most readers have seen before.

Originally published in Xpress Reviews: E-Originals | May 19, 2017

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Fifty Shades Darker

Ana Steel (Dakota Johnson) and Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan) are back and hotter than ever. We start the movie with Ana and Christian still broken up and both are miserable. But when Christian shows up at Jose’s photography show, Anna agrees to have dinner with him. As they talk, Christian agrees to throw out all of the rules and have a normal relationship with Ana.

Ana is happy. She is working her dream job at a publishing house and has Christian back. The only thing is that a girl keeps appearing who looks similar to Ana. Christian soon realizes that it is Leila (Bella Heathcote), a previous submissive who is having issues since  her boyfriend died in a car accident. And lets not forgot Mrs. Robinson (Kim Basinger). She finally makes an appearance and it does not go over well. Will Ana and Christian be able to maneuver through this new relationship or is it doomed before they even start?

I don’t care what anyone says, I like these movies and books. This one follows the book pretty well and I enjoyed it. The last one, Fifty Shades Freed, hits theaters in February 2018. Also starring, Marcia Gay Harden, Eloise Mumford, Rita Ora, Luke Grimes, and Max Martini. Rated R

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La La Land

Mia (Emma Stone) wants to be an actress. She works as a barista and goes on as many auditions as possible. Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) is a jazz musician. He lives and breathes jazz. He wants to open his own club one day but until then he takes any gigs he can get. Their first couple of meetings don’t go well but they find themselves attracted to each other. They fall in love but the demands of their careers pull them apart. Does love conquer all or will their careers keep them apart?

I do not understand how this movie won so many awards! It was so boring. I love a good love story but this one just didn’t do it for me. I enjoyed the majority of the musical numbers but did not like the ending. I would only only recommend this if you are curious about why it got so much hype. Also starring, J.K. Simmons, John Legend, and Thomas Everett Scott. Rated PG-13

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As Max Vatan (Brad Pitt) parachutes into the Sahara desert for an assignment, he’s probably not thinking that he’d meet the love of his life today. In fact, when he meets Marianne (Marion Cotillard), a member of the French Resistance and his partner for their top secret mission, he’s not quite sure what to make of her. But, as they play the roles of man and wife for their mission, they get to know each other well, and by the end, they’ve fallen in love. Once back in England, the two marry, and Max continues to work for the military. Despite the war raging all around them, everything seems to be going well for the young couple – a beautiful home, a new baby. And then Max receives a phone call that may change all of their lives forever – Marion is suspected of feeding information to the enemy. Now, in a mad rush for time, Max becomes desperate to prove her innocence.

I really wanted to like this movie much more than I did, but it really fell flat for me. The story line was good, but it felt rushed at times, and I just wasn’t feeling any chemistry between Pitt and Cotillard. It seemed like the director was trying (and failing) to capture the look and feel of an older classic film, but with modern special effects. It’s not a horrible movie – the story is compelling, but overall the movie is just kind of blah. Rated R.


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Every Day by David Levithan

A wakes up in a new body every day. It started right from birth. As the years go by, A is always put in an age appropriate body. It can be male or female. A is able to access the person’s memories so it helps throughout the day. A is sixteen now and today wakes up in the body of Justin. He has a girlfriend but is kind of a jerk to her. When “Justin” meets Rhiannon for the first time, he falls in love. But of course it is doomed from the beginning. She thinks A is really Justin and tomorrow A will be in a new body.

After having the best day with Rhiannon, A wakes up in a new body. But he can’t stop thinking of Rhiannon. So A decides to tell her the truth. It takes some convincing but Rhiannon finally believes A. But there is someone else out there who remembers that A took over his body and he is determined to find out the truth. And A comes to realize that there are others out there just like A. Is there a way for A and Rhiannon to be together?

My nephew actually had me read this one and I am glad he did. I was a little disappointed that we didn’t get all the answers but there is a follow up book , Another Day, from Rhiannon’s  point of view and maybe that will satisfy my questions. Overall, I really find this book interesting and enjoyed it.

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Solace Island by Sara Flynn

attachment_77273131After learning of her ex-fiance’s infidelities, a three-week vacation to Solace Island with her sister Eve is exactly what Maggie Harris needs.

Unsure of how to find the cottage at night in the wooded Pacific Northwest, she pulls into a neighboring driveway until daylight but instead runs into the owner, sexy Luke Benson while dressed in red long Johns. Not the greatest first impression. Eve and Maggie next see Luke, a baker, selling his bread at the Saturday market and Eve sets them up on date.

Everything is going so well that Maggie considers Eve’s idea to make Solace Island their permanent residence, that is, until a car tries to mow them down on the sidewalk. Luke, a former military man and securities specialist, goes into protection mode to save the women he has fallen for before it’s too late.

This fetching debut from Flynn (pseudonym for actress and author Meg Tilly) sets up a satisfying romance in a cozy, small-town setting. The sex scenes sizzle and an unexpected suspect raises the tension.

Originally published in Xpress Reviews: E-Originals | March 7, 2017

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Sacking the Quarterback by James Patterson and Samantha Towle

Melissa St. James isn’t a fan of late night calls. But as a ADA she is always on call. This call was different. Her boss is calling to let her know that star quarterback, Greyson Knight, has been arrested for drug possession and her boss wants to make an example of him.

When Melissa meets Greyson for the first time she is shocked at how attracted she is to him. And not only that but she is convinced he is lying about the drugs. As she starts to work with him, she tries to fight her desire and tries to get him to tell her the truth.

Another fun Bookshot! I really enjoyed the characters and the story. It was a little predictable but I still liked it!