Sunday 28 March 2021

BOOK REVIEW: Finley and the Foster Brother by Anna Catherine Field and My Body Sends A Signal by Natalia Maguire

Finley and the Foster Brother

Anna Catherine Field
Publication Date: 
Genre: YA Coming of Age / Romance

Book Description:
When a social worker and a truancy officer show up at Finley Rhodes' cottage in Ocean Grove she knows her life is about to change forever.

She just didn't realize how much.

At sixteen, she'd grown up fast, having the responsibility of taking care of her mentally ill mother, holding down a job to pay the bills and dropping out of school to do both. When her case manager tells her she's being placed in foster care, Finley never expected her new  home to be in the exclusive gated community and she certainly never thought she'd attend The Academy, a school for the privileged and elite. But the biggest surprise comes from down the hall.

Her new foster brother, Chase Powell.

Chase Powell grew up in the shadow of his famous model mother, living a life of fame and excess. After a dangerous accident Chase is sent to live with his grandmother in Ocean Grove, where he settles into a life of normalcy and routine.

Until Finley moves in.

Late night talks, a game of truth, and revelations about their fears bring these two closer together, but it’s not like they can ever be more than friends and even if they could, does Finely worries that her whole life can be taken from her once again. What’s the point of falling in love?

Finley and the Foster Brother is a standalone novel from Love in Ocean Grove, a series of books about swoony, first-time love and toe-curling kisses for readers of all ages..

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Finley Rhodes and Chase Powell live completely different lives, but when Finley's mentally ill mother is taken into care, their worlds collide when Finely is placed into foster care and ends up garnering the attention of Mrs Caldwell, a woman who resides in a lavish house in a gated community with her grandson, Chase, the boy Finley crashed into while on her dog-walking job two weeks prior to being placed into foster care. Given the immediate attraction the two had towards each other, being housemates while under the supervision of a strict matriarch means Finley and Chase have to keep their feelings - and their hands - to themselves.

This was a good read, but it could have been so much better if it had taken a little more risk and not played it so safe. It's cute and clean, but I had hoped for a little more passion and fire from Chase and Finley. It was predictable and it lagged somewhat. It felt repetitive and didn't progress much in the way of plot. Finley did open up a little and learned to confide in others, but apart from that, the plot was a little bland.

Overall, it was a good read; it just wasn't that exciting and didn't leave me eager for more. I would recommend it for those who are looking for a clean YA read with a cute romance.


Rating: 3 Star
Source: Own copy

Mateo Finds His Wow
Author: Natalia Maguire
Publication Date: 13th June 2020
Genre: Children's Picture Book

Book Description:
How to teach kids about emotions and feelings?

Like teaching them everything else - using clear words, familiar situations, exciting pictures and a lot of hands-on activities (games, puzzles, coloring pages, etc.) One can, of course, spend time and find various resources online. Or one can get just one book.

This book is an excellent educational source that has is all. The book includes a cute story that kids can relate to, beautiful illustrations that capture children's attention, calming-down activities for kids, instructions to adults on the follow-up activities, emotions cards, feelings cards, coloring pages and related short stories to teach kids empathy.

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I'll be honest. I didn't warm to this one from the get-go. Having said that, however, it didn't take long for the book to gain my vote. This was a lovely portrayal of a young boy experiencing various emotions and feelings that he is very much aware of but can't fully comprehend or control. This book explains and explores ways in which kids can learn to take control of their behaviour by first understanding what they are feeling and why they are feeling  the way they do.

I loved the illustrations and the examples used to demonstrate the various emotions and feelings we all experience. This book is ideal for both kids and adults as it teaches adults how to approach topics and simple things we often ignore and don't take the time to explain to children as we're under the impression they'll just figure it all out one day.

The book shows the importance of acknowledgement and communication. A wonderful read that I highly recommend.


Rating: 5 Star
Source: Own copy

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