Friday, June 6, 2014

Friday Favorites - Favorite Underrated Books (June 6)

So, I was pretty excited to learn about this meme, and I love the topic for this week - so obviously I had to participate! 

Five Friday Favourites is a weekly event hosted by the Book Badger, where once a week, a five favourites subject will be posted by me and everyone is welcome to join in. You can find out more about Five Friday Favourites and the future subjects here.

This Week's Topic:

Favorite Underrated Books

Now since I had both YA and Chick Lit titles I was excited to talk about, I've decided to list five YA titles and five Chick Lit titles that I believe are underrated. Hopefully, I can help others learn about some titles that I think are great but are not as well known or advertised!

Five Underrated YA Titles

Cinders & Sapphires by Leila Rasheed

One house, two worlds...

Rose Cliffe has never met a young lady like her new mistress. Clever, rich, and beautiful, Ada Averley treats Rose as an equal. And Rose could use a friend. Especially now that she, at barely sixteen, has risen to the position of ladies' maid. Rose knows she should be grateful to have a place at a house like Somerton. Still, she can't help but wonder what her life might have been had she been born a lady, like Ada.

For the first time in a decade, the Averleys have returned to Somerton, their majestic ancestral estate. But terrible scandal has followed Ada's beloved father all the way from India. Now Ada finds herself torn between her own happiness and her family's honor. Only she has the power to restore the Averley name-but it would mean giving up her one true love ... someone she could never persuade her father to accept.

Sumptuous and enticing, the first novel in the At Somerton series introduces two worlds, utterly different yet entangled, where ruthless ambition, forbidden attraction, and unspoken dreams are hidden behind dutiful smiles and glittering jewels. All those secrets are waiting ... at Somerton.

Secret Society Girl by Diana Peterfreund

In a fabulous blend of the bestselling traditions of Prep and The Devil Wears Prada, Secret Society Girl takes us into the heart of the Ivy League’s ultraexclusive secret societies when a young woman is invited to join as one of their first female members.

Elite Eli University junior Amy Haskel never expected to be tapped into Rose & Grave, the country’s most powerful—and notorious—secret society. She isn’t rich, politically connected, or…well, male.

So when Amy receives the distinctive black-lined invitation with the Rose & Grave seal, she’s blown away. Could they really mean her?

Whisked off into an initiation rite that’s a blend of Harry Potter and Alfred Hitchcock, Amy awakens the next day to a new reality and a whole new set of “friends”—from the gorgeous son of a conservative governor to an Afrocentric lesbian activist whose society name is Thorndike. And that’s when Amy starts to discover the truth about getting what you wish for. Because Rose & Grave is quickly taking her away from her familiar world of classes and keggers, fueling a feud, and undermining a very promising friendship with benefits. And that’s before Amy finds out that her first duty as a member of Rose & Grave is to take on a conspiracy of money and power that could, quite possibly, ruin her whole life.

A smart, sexy introduction to the life and times of a young woman in way over her head, Secret Society Girl is a charming and witty debut from a writer who knows her turf—and isn’t afraid to tell all….

What Would Emma Do? by Eileen Cook

Thou Shalt Not Kiss Thy Best Friend’s Boyfriend...again...
There is no greater sin than kissing your best friend’s boyfriend. So when Emma breaks that golden rule, she knows she’s messed up big-time...especially since she lives in the smallest town ever, where everyone knows everything about everyone else...and especially since she maybe kinda wants to do it again. Now her best friend isn’t speaking to her, her best guy friend is making things totally weird, and Emma is running full speed toward certain social disaster. This is so not the way senior year was supposed to go.
Time to pray for a minor miracle. Or maybe, just maybe, it’s time for Emma to stop trying to please everyone around her, and figure out what she wants for herself.

Someone Else's Life by Katie Dale

When 17-year-old Rosie's mother, Trudie, dies from Huntington's Disease, her pain is intensified by the knowledge that she has a fifty percent chance of inheriting the crippling disease herself. Only when Rosie tells her mother's best friend, "Aunt Sarah," that she is going to test for the disease does Sarah, a midwife, reveal that Trudie wasn't her real mother after all. Rosie was swapped at birth with a sickly baby who was destined to die.
Devastated, Rosie decides to trace her real mother, joining her ex-boyfriend on his gap year travels, to find her birth mother in California. But all does not go as planned. As Rosie discovers yet more of her family's deeply buried secrets and lies, she is left with an agonizing decision of her own, one which will be the most heart breaking and far-reaching of all.

Stork by Wendy Delsol

Family secrets. 
Lost memories.
 And the arrival of an ancient magical ability that will reveal everything. 

Sixteen-year-old Katla LeBlanc has just moved from Los Angeles to Minnesota. As if it weren’t enough that her trendy fashion sense draws stares, Katla soon finds out that she’s a Stork, a member of a mysterious order of women tasked with a very unique duty. But Katla’s biggest challenge may be finding her flock at a new school. Between being ignored by Wade, the arrogant jock she stupidly fooled around with, and constantly arguing with gorgeous farm boy and editor-in-chief Jack, Katla is relieved when her assignment as the school paper’s fashion columnist brings with it some much-needed friendship. But as Homecoming approaches, Katla uncovers a shocking secret about her past — a secret that binds her fate to Jack’s in a way neither could have ever anticipated. With a nod to Hans Christian Andersen and inspired by Norse lore, Wendy Delsol’s debut novel introduces a hip and witty heroine who finds herself tail-feathers deep in small-town life.

Five Underrated Chick Lit Titles

Holly's Inbox by Holly Denham

Ever wanted a peek at someone else's emails?

Meet Holly Denham. It's her first day as a receptionist at a City investment bank and, with no cooperate front-of-house experience, Holly is struggling to keep up. Add to this her mad friends, dysfunctional family and gossipy colleagues, and Holly's inbox is a daily source of drama, laughter, scandal and even romance. But Holly's keeping a secret from everyone - and the past is about to catch up with her...

Unpredictable by Eileen Cook 

Sophie isn't crazy, she just wants her guy back. And posing as a psychic to give his new girlfriend a fake reading designed to break them up isn't going overboard, is it? Don't answer that.

Faking psychic powers turns out to be fun, especially after a few lessons from Nick, the cute skeptic, who teaches her all the tricks of the trade. But her readings do a lot more than she could have predicted. Now she must decide whether to accept her rising stardom in a less-than-honest line of work-and whether the best option is trying to rekindle her old flame or finding romance with someone new. And, most importantly, she needs to figure out whether the answers lie in the stars-or in herself.

Adored by Tilly Bagshawe

Sienna McMahon was born into glamour. The granddaughter of film legend (and ogre) Duke McMahon, she grows up amid Hollywood scandal and opulence. Determined to forge her own identity, she becomes first a successful supermodel, then an actress; but unhappiness and tragedy keep breaking through. Then, in the time-honored tradition of Jackie Collins and Danielle Steel, the love of a good man brings her happiness and fulfillment.

The Runaway Princess by Hester Browne

If Amy Wilde’s new boyfriend, Leo, treats her like a queen, that’s because he’s secretly a prince himself: Leopold William Victor Wolfsburg of Nirona, the ninth most eligible royal bachelor in the world. Amy soon discovers that dating an heir to a throne has many charms—intimate dinners, glittering galas, and a dazzling new wardrobe with tiaras to match. But there are also drawbacks: imagine the anxiety of meeting your boyfriend’s parents multiplied by “riding in a private jet,” “staying in a castle,” and “discussing the line of succession over lunch.” Not to mention the sudden press interest in your very un-royal family. Amy would do anything for Leo, but is finding her Prince Charming worth the price of losing herself?

Sweet Love by Sarah Strohmeyer

An irresistibly delicious novel about the power of love and dessert. Like other well-meaning mothers, Julie Mueller believed she did the right thing when she secretly ended her teenage daughter's crush on Michael Slayton, a wild older neighborhood heartthrob with a penchant for Shakespeare and the pedigree of trailer trash.

Twenty years later, Betty Mueller has come to realize that was a big mistake. Her daughter Julie - divorced and raising a teenage daughter alone - is a workaholic obsessed with her career. And Michael, the one man who could make her happy, is the one man to whom she won't speak.

Now dying and determined to make amends, Betty stages her last great feat of motherhood by reuniting the couple in a dessert class where she hopes the sweetness of a chocolate almond Torta Caprese will erase the bitterness of a wretched misunderstanding.

Sweet love, renew thy force; be it not said thy edge should blunter be than appetite, Shakespeare once pleaded though it will require more than poetry and passion fruit for Julie and Michael to renew their love.

It will, in fact, require the sweetest sacrifice of all.

Well, that's it for my underrated titles. I tried to choose titles that on Goodreads had 3000 or fewer reviews, I believe the highest on these lists was Holly's Inbox (at 3778 reviews) and the lowest was Unpredictable (at 673 reviews). I hope you enjoyed my lists, and perhaps even found a new title to check out? 

Please feel free to comment and tell me about some of your favorite underrated books - I'd love to find some new ones! (And if you too have chosen to do a list please leave a link, so I can come visit!)

- Jennie @ Tale of Two Doxies

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