Today I get to celebrate The Stolen Kiss series by Shana Norris. I'll be reviewing The Truth About Boys which is the most recent in the series.
Before I do, however, here is a little bit about the previous books in the series. Keep in mind that you can read them in any order you want so you don't have to start with the first book that was released (but I do recommend it).
The first book released was The Boyfriend Thief. You can find out all about by visiting it's Goodreads page.
The second book released was The Secrets Between You and Me and be sure to visit it's Goodreads page.
The fun thing about this series is that the characters overlap and each book allows you a glimpse of what is happening with them! It's fun and exactly why I love companion style novels.
There is also a short story called One Week that you can read that is set in this same world.
Be sure to visit it's Goodreads page. The Studio (by Paper Lantern Lit) also has a series page set up where you can learn more about each of these titles. The images above will link to The Studio page for each book as well.
Lastly, if my review temps you (and I hope it does) you can start this series for FREE! Yup, FREE! The Boyfriend Thief AND One Week are both currently free on multiple platforms.
Here are the purchase links for each book (if you want to check them out).
The Boyfriend Thief
The Secrets Between You and Me
The Truth About Boys
There is also a Rafflecopter giveaway after the review for a copy of The Secrets Between You and Me and The Truth About Boys to round out the series for FIVE lucky winners.
Publisher Website - The Studio
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages - 251 pages
My Rating - 4/5
**received for honest review from the publisher**
6 guitar strings. 2 boys. 1 summer to let it all go.We've all heard the saying about ships and how they are safe in harbour. We also know the ending of that saying. The harbour may keep the ship safe, but that isn't their purpose. The idea that keeping yourself (or your heart) safe may mean missing out on some pretty great experiences is the heart of this novel. Shana Norris focuses on a young woman who struggles to take risks, and in doing so inspires us to take a few ourselves.
The summer before college, Kate Watts wants to do three things: make music, hang out with her best friend Ashton, and scoop ice cream. With an ailing grandfather, a flaky mom who shows up once every who-knows-when, and a looming tuition bill to pay, Kate doesn’t need any more complications.
But “complications” have a way of finding her.
Like when an infuriating new boy named Rory humiliates her at a party.
Like when her wild cousin Paisley shows up unexpectedly at her doorstep to stay.
Like when she’s offered the chance of a lifetime—but only if she throws away the dream she’s been working for.
Soon, straight-shooting Kate gets swept up in a whirlwind of parties with Paisley, all while falling for hot-and-cold Rory…until she begins to suspect that Rory and Paisley might be keeping a huge secret together. Will Kate have to leave everything behind to untangle the truth—including herself?
The Truth About Boys is a companion novel to The Boyfriend Thief and The Secrets Between You and Me and the third book in Shana Norris’s Stolen Kiss Collection. The Stolen Kiss Collection may be read in any order.
The entire Stolen Kiss series is a fun read. It's light, and well paced. The story isn't needlessly dragged out, and it balances the drama with resolution rather well. It's this fact that made the series such an enjoyable one. The author knows what works for her skills and characters and uses it to her advantage. The writing is straight forward and matches the style of novel perfectly.
Kate is careful, controlled, and safe. She has a plan and nothing will stand in the way of it. She also judges those around her, sometimes unfairly and harshly. I think that everyone will recognize a little of themselves within these pages. We've all made decisions and regretted them. We've all been too scared to grab an opportunity and been haunted by the notion of 'what if'. Even if you cannot relate to Kate, you can at least understand her and her motivations. Her character arc is predictable, but there is something comforting about that predictability and the character herself.
Putting other people's desires before your own is thoughtful, but not to the detriment of your own happiness. Sometimes it is okay to be selfish and say that you want something for yourself. Sometimes you have to make your own decisions and follow your own path because it'll lead to your own happiness. Kate struggles with this. She is, at her core, a people pleaser. Particularly when it comes to those people she cares about. I can relate to this aspect of her character strongly. Telling readers, particularly young girls, that putting yourself first sometimes is not only okay but necessary, is perhaps one of the most important messages that a novel can have. This novel doesn't over do it making this point, but it's meaning is clear. Follow your dreams, let your voice be heard because what you want matters. If readers take anything away from this novel, I hope it's this message.
This ended up being my second favourite from this series of companion novels (The Secrets Between You and Me is still my favourite). Shana Norris has written a fun, enjoyable series that is a perfect read for a day at the beach. You'll fly through The Truth About Boys quickly, and immediately want to go read the others (if you haven't already).
Most days, Shana Norris still feels like she’s stuck at sixteen, which is probably why she enjoys writing about teens. She's played the flute since she was eleven years old, but is definitely not planning to start her own DJ business anytime soon. Shana lives in a small town in eastern North Carolina with her husband and small zoo of pets, which currently includes two dogs, seven cats, and a small flock of chickens.
Shana Norris has entertained millions of readers as the author of Troy High, the popular Swans Landing series, and the Stolen Kiss Collection, which includes The Boyfriend Thief, The Secrets Between You and Me, and The Truth About Boys. You can find her at shananorris.com.