Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Love Notes by Heather Gunter (4 stars) Review, Excerpt & Giveaway

Title: Love Notes
Author: Heather Gunter
Genre:  YA Contemporary Romance
Release Date: May 2, 2013
Please visit other blogs on the tour here.


How do you cope when the people you care for hurt you the most? When the way you feel on the outside, smothers you on the inside. And when you are left to face your demons alone, will you learn that only you have the power to overcome them?
Charlie has never had it easy. Between the constant moving and the incessant fat comments and jokes from her father, her self-worth is nonexistent. Her reflection in the mirror shows her nothing but a plain Jane. Music is the only thing that keeps her sanity in check. 

Charlie catches the eye of the town star quarterback, Maverick. With her curves, her brunette hair, and the voice of an angel, Maverick has never met anyone like her. Everything that is different about Charlie just makes Maverick like her more. Unfortunately, Charlie doesn’t see it herself. Proving it to her may deem harder than he thinks, especially when tragedy strikes and tears them apart.
Now standing on her own two feet she may finally learn exactly who she is, what’s she’s capable of and how very un plain Jane she really is.


Home should be a safe place, one where you know you are loved. But that's not the case for Charlie. Her father does nothing but ridicule her, and her mother does nothing to stop it. In a different town yet again, Charlie heads to school as the new girl. 

At school, she connects quickly with a new friend, Tori, and notices a handsome boy who is also the star quarterback. Maverick notices her, too, but Charlie has a hard time believing he could ever be interested in a plain, uninteresting girl like herself. Slowly, she starts to believe the compliments Tori and Maverick give her, but then tragedy strikes and she spirals into the depths of insecurity and a tarnished self-worth. Can she find the strength to be honest with her mom and dad? Will it matter?

Nobody should suffer cruelty at the hands of their own parents. Every time Charlie's father put her down or her mother stood by and did nothing to stop it, I cringed. Thankfully, Tori and Maverick were there for her, trying to undo the damage of her home life. Charlie is a character you'll find yourself rooting for--not just to get the guy, but to start loving herself.

Although written in a very young adult style, I think both adults and young adults will appreciate this coming-of-age story. At times heartbreaking, it's also a story about love, friendship, and believing in yourself.

Rating: 4 stars

About Heather Gunter

When not writing or updating her Into the Night Reviews book blog, you will find Heather curled on the couch reading, surrounded by her children and four dogs. Her cravings for music and books are insatiable. 

One of her favorite things to do is sing and used to have a dream of becoming a singer. The dream has since changed and is now to become a full time writer. She holds a strong anti-bullying conviction and voices it regularly. She resides in Canton, GA with her husband, 3 boys, 4 dogs, 1 cat and 2 ferrets.


My eyes are glued shut, making it even more difficult for me to wake up. I feel like I need a crow bar, just to pry them open. My thoughts instantly drift to the conversation with my parents last night, and the tears that caused my nasty crusted eyes.

Mixed feelings fall to the pit of my stomach and I’m second guessing myself already. 
Everything I felt so confident about last night, now seems uncertain.
I drag myself out of bed before anyone can scream and holler at me. I don’t need that first thing in the morning. Last night was more than enough.

I pick out my clothes, just like I always do, mindful of my weight. Carefully I apply my makeup, taking a critical look at myself in the mirror. I’m as satisfied as I can be, looking the way I do.

I quietly walk in to the kitchen to grab a bite to eat and hope to avoid all confrontation. 

Unfortunately, I spot my dad sitting at the bar, in his trademark spot, coffee in hand with the newspaper. My mom is standing at the stove, in her bathrobe. I see her stiffen when she hears me, but she doesn’t turn.
The minute I walk in, he lifts his head up from that damn paper, and smirks at me before, dropping his head back down to continue his reading. I don’t speak, I’ve already said enough. I grab my breakfast of choice, a bagel. I decide to grab and go—no toaster, no cream cheese. I can’t stand another minute in his house any longer then I have to be.  As if he can sense my weakness, my dad decides to speak. I don’t turn around. I just stand there, waiting to hear his cut. Because I know, that’s all it ever is. I expect it. One more dig.

“Charlie, try not to embarrass yourself with this boy today.”

I don’t respond. I just start to walk to the front door so I can escape. I need air, and I feel like I’m suffocating. The moment I’m outside, I crouch down, head between my legs, with my hands on my knees and take a deep breath.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Note: I received a complimentary copy for review purposes. A positive review was not guaranteed or requested; the opinions expressed are my own.