Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Wild Cards (Wild Cards #1) by Simone Elkeles


Series: Wild Cards #1
288p.
Publisher: Walker Books for Young Readers
Published: Oct. 1, 2013
Source: NetGalley and Publisher for review
After getting kicked out of boarding school, bad boy Derek Fitzpatrick has no choice but to live with his ditzy stepmother while his military dad is deployed. Things quickly go from bad to worse when he finds out she plans to move them back to her childhood home in Illinois. Derek’s counting the days before he can be on his own, and the last thing he needs is to get involved with someone else’s family drama. 
Ashtyn Parker knows one thing for certain--people you care about leave without a backward glance. A football scholarship would finally give her the chance to leave. So she pours everything into winning a state championship, until her boyfriend and star quarterback betrays them all by joining their rival team. Ashtyn needs a new game plan, but it requires trusting Derek—someone she barely knows, someone born to break the rules. Is she willing to put her heart on the line to try and win it all?

My thoughts:

I had heard so much about Simone Elkeles's other series that I knew I had to read this author. I had a chance to read Wild Cards so I couldn't wait to pick it up. I was thrilled with Ashtyn's character since she is a girl who plays football. She had a terrible home life and no support there. She still is able to find a way to move forward and find her own support in the form of her teammates. She was a character I wish you could find more in YA.

Derek was also a fun character but it was more obvious that he was sabotaging himself in his life and education. The truth of why this happens actually is revealed in the last part of the book. Despite the late reveal, you still find that you like the guy and have sympathy for him. Despite his annoying ways, you can tell there was a heart of gold underneath.

I have to say that the plot was predictable and some of the same ol' tropes were used within the book. I didn't feel like the romance read real nor was their progression toward each other. I'm sure you are now thinking I disliked the book. I actually enjoyed it quite a bit. Despite those problems it was a feel good book. Even through the frustrating parts you knew that it was going to give you that HEA you crave. Plus, when I end with a smile on my face after reading the last paragraph, I can't help but like it. So, if you want something totally original, you may not like this one. However, if you just enjoy a fun story that gives you a good HEA at the end, then pick this one up. I think you'll have fun with it. I give this book 3 1/2 stars.

bloggy PS...  why do publishers keep moving those publishing dates? Stop messing up my schedule! LOL

26 comments:

  1. Sometimes, I really need just a fun, two-neuron story with a HEA, and the characters in this one sound great. I've never read a SE book before, perhaps this is a good place to start.

    And my schedule is a very delicate thing, I hate it when it the publishers mess with it. :D Or someone else, for that matter.

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    1. So true on both accounts. ;D Don't mess with us. LOL

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  2. I think a lot of this author's work is predictable, but I love how much FUN you can have with her books. I really need that from time to time, so I'll have to check this one out soon. Great review, Melissa - I'm so glad you enjoyed this one!(:

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    1. I didn't expect it would be that predictable, but I did have fun with it! That was a WIN for me. :)

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  3. Ending with a smile on your face is always a good thing! And, yes, totally agree about the changing dates thing -- and they're never closer, either! I want what I want NOW, people!

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  4. I enjoyed this one for the most part too Melissa, though like you, there were some things that kept me from giving it a higher rating. I did thoroughly enjoy Derek, but like you said, wasn't overly invested in their relationship. I didn't quite believe in it the way I wanted to, but I still had fun reading the story:) Lovely review my friend!

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    1. Yes, it wasn't perfect, but it was still fun. Sometimes that is all that is needed for a story. :D

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  5. I need to read this one. I love this authors other works so I'm a little nervous to read this one. Nice review

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    1. Oh I think you'll enjoy it. As we said above, it was fun. :D

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  6. 3.5 seems to be the rating for this book. I was really excited to read this one, but I think I might have to tone it down for this book which is kinda sad.

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    1. Just look at it as a book that will make you smile and it's all good. :)

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  7. Sounds like an interesting read - in terms of the girl playing football and everything! I'm not sure if I'd love this one, but i'm glad it was a relatively good story.

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    1. I did like that part with the girl being different. You may still like it.

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  8. Yep, after hearing such great things about her other books I was expecting so much more from this book, but the romance moves from not to hot in a short time and there was so much that lacked development. Yes, it was predictable but at least it was pleasant and not full of drama.

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  9. Tell me about it! Arghhh been waiting for a book forever but they move it and move it

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  10. *shivers* I can handle predictable, but I need to feel the romance building and it needs to feel real. Lovely review Melissa. Happy Hump Day :)

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  11. Nice read. And yes, the dates are all a mess these days. Thank you!

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  12. It seems like overall this is a hit for a shorter read. Both you and Heidi overall liked it. Probably isn't my cup of tea but I like watching people enjoying books :)

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  13. I've heard a lot of mixed things about this one, but I have a copy of it so I'm glad to hear you mostly enjoyed it, hopefully I do as well!

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  14. It seems like football playing girls are becoming a trend.

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  15. Glad you ended up enjoying even through the tropes and predictability

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  16. I've read one book by this author and I really liked it and I confess I didn't know she had another one so I'm curious about it now. thanks!

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  17. YES! Why do pubs change the dates so often? Screws up my schedule all the time. :-) Glad to hear you enjoyed this, even if it was a bit predictable. I don't mind that as long as I get my HEA. I'll give this one a try! Lovely review :-)

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  18. Yeah - this was a fairly predictable yet fun book. I didn't love the end so much. I think it short changed Ashtyn who was an otherwise unique YA character.

    Out of Play by Jolene Perry and Nyrae Dawn did the girl athlete better IMO (It does have more angst though)

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  19. This was my first Elkeles read and I really enjoyed it-I didn't get anything I wasn't expecting but there was comfort in that.

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