Monday, July 11, 2016

Excerpt and Review: Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor by Meena Jelks

Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor banner

This is my stop during the book blitz for Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor by Meena Jelks. This book blitz is organized by Lola's Blog Tours and runs from 11 till 15 July. View the tour schedule here

Read this book for free!
From 11 till 15 July Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor by Meena Jelks will be free on amazon.

Teenage Temptation & Personal HonorTeenage Temptation & Personal Honor
by Meena Jelks
Genre: Teen Fiction/ Contemporary
Age category: Young Adult
Release Date: 31 May, 2016

Fifteen year old Gaby swore she’d always put books before boys. She could solve an algebraic expression faster than anyone in her class, play Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor with better technique than her music teacher, but couldn’t tell her best friend Anna that she secretly adored her older brother, Josh.

Gaby’s secret feelings tormented her for almost a year. Now that they were all going to be counselors at Camp Sesquahade for the summer, Gaby wondered how long she’d be able to keep her own secret.

Surrounded by temptation, she worries about shattering her good-girl image. Will Gaby get through summer without falling victim to her furtive feelings?
How can she be with Josh while standing firm on her values and morals?
My Review:
Teenage Temptation and Personal Honor is a coming of age story about a practical girl named Gaby. She’s got her eyes on getting straight As, getting into college, and following her dreams. She also has her eyes on Josh, her best friend’s brother. But she is practical, as I said, and cautious, doing her best to resist temptation, despite pressure from her friends, pleadings from Josh, and even her own wants.
This story caught my eye because of the description, mainly because the main character reminds me of myself as a teen. Good grades, inexperience with boys, and yet still someone with crushes and a desire to fit in. I thought the story did pretty well at making Gaby a realistic girl, and though at times things get tragic and might seem out there in the realms of probability, I remember some of my friends actually experiencing the things the kids in the book do. Shocking things. Tragic things.

And that leads me to the moral of the book, and yes, this is one of those rare YA books where there is an actual purpose beyond entertainment or selling more books. All these things are happening around Gaby and to her. She questions her decisions, but consistently chooses brain over heart, while her friends often seem to do the opposite.

All of these other stories about her friends and family are almost like glimpses into the future of possible choices. If this, then that. But the moral isn’t to follow your brain and ignore your heart. It’s actually that we all make decisions, and there isn’t really one right or wrong way to go, but all of those decisions do affect our lives, for good or bad. That’s the main one, I think, but as Gaby learns more about herself, many insightful philosophies shine through. On the downside, the book sometimes reads more like a cautionary tale than a teenage romance or coming of age. 

As for the book itself, it goes a little fast in places, particularly in the dialog. I think a little more attention to the non-verbal behaviors that go along with talking might have helped with those parts. Also, my copy of the book had no paragraph indents, which sometimes made it difficult to tell where one person stopped talking and another started, and sometimes that also made it seem a bit choppy. On the other hand, some of the descriptions and language in the book are truly beautiful. The author has a particular knack for describing the diverse characters in the book. I usually don’t picture a person in detail when I’m reading, more just an image, but I found it easy with these. And again, the language used to describe them was quite nice, unique, and enjoyable.

Overall, I somewhat liked this story. Folks who like coming-of-age and teenaged drama might also like this book.

I received a copy of this book from the author via Lola’s Blog Tours in order to provide this review.

You can find Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor on Goodreads

View the book trailer for Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor here on Youtube

You can buy Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor here:
- Amazon
- Amazon Paperback
- Amazon UK

Note from the author:
My YA novel, Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor, is finally complete at 74,059 words. Fifteen-year-old Gabrielle Perez is a straight A good-girl musical prodigy. Gaby comes from a hard-working, two parent, loving home, lives in an upper-middle class neighborhood in a small town in upstate NY and has lived a pretty sheltered life up until now. With her junior year ending and summer camp looming around the corner, Gaby isn’t sure how long she can keep her secret from her best friend, Anna. What’s her secret: she is in love with Anna’s older brother Josh. Gaby is forced to deal with her hidden feelings this summer as they all attend Camp Sesquahade as summer counselors.

Over the summer, Gaby gets a taste of her first kiss, first crush and first heartache. She realizes quickly that being book smart isn’t the same as being street smart. And that being into a boy doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to give into your desires. Gaby is faced with the decision to follow behind what all her friends are doing, or staying true to her values and morals. But Gaby’s life is changing with unexpected and meaningful relationships that broaden her sense of what love and loss is. These new relationships along with the discovery of love, maturing and following your dreams leads Gaby down a path of uncertainty and confusion. How will she ever learn to balance it all?

This is a coming of age story of self-discovery, self-empowerment and how the many shapes of love – maternal, romantic and platonic – lead to Gaby’s struggle to come to terms with growing up and owning your destiny.

This novel was has been a labor of love for so very long. I hope that you enjoy reading it. My personal experiences as a teenager (oh so many years ago) being exposed to similar scenarios and just having a longing for characters that realistically portray a young girl’s growing up.

Meena JelksAbout the Author:
Meena Jelks is a dreamer. From an early age, she developed a voracious appetite for reading, writing and daydreaming. Being a writer was always something she loved but never thought would ever come to fruition. That is, until she decided to take her writing seriously, bypassing the traditional limitations of the literary industry as a whole.

A fan of punchier, pacier, and chattier books, her love for Young Adult (YA) fiction cultivated her desire to do what makes her happiest--she believes you don't have to be a teen to enjoy reading or writing stories of self-exploration, new-found love, or uncharted waters.

Young Adult/Teen fiction is exploding now, it's finally getting the recognition that it deserves. Meena is so happy to be contributing to such an amazing movement right now. Her first book, Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor will debut May, 2016.

You can find and contact Meena Jelks here:
- Website - Facebook
- Twitter
- Goodreads
- Amazon
- Instagram

Everything BluEmber Summer Swag Bag Giveaway
There is a tour wide giveaway for the book blitz of Teenage Temptation & Personal Honor. One winner will win an Everything BluEmber Summer Swag Bag (US Only).
This swag bag will include a BluEmber Books Cotton Zippered Tote filled with:
- an Amazon Fire Tablet
- BluEmber Books Silicon Wristband
- BluEmber Books Aluminum Water Bottle
- a Beach Towel

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
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