Tuesday, October 1, 2013

{Tour Stop} Book Review: Six Months Later by Natalie Richards (+Giveaway)

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Title: Six Months Later
Series: None
Author: Natalie Richards
Pages: 336
Pub Date: October 01, 2013
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Book Source: Publisher via NetGalley
My Rating: 4 of 5 stars




**POSSIBLE SPOILERS**


Meet Chloe. High school junior, average student, average family, average life.

One afternoon in late-May, Chloe closes her eyes for a small catnap during study hall—something she is a pro at; something she does frequently. Only this time is different...

When Chloe wakes up the classroom is dark and the clock reads 9:34PM. Upon taking a peek out the classroom window, Chloe sees the impossible: snowfall. In a panic, Chloe whips out her cell phone and starts looking through her call log. It's November.

Somehow, I've missed six months of my life.

A sinister possibility whispers to me. One word, two syllables, and an endless river of humiliation.


Crazy. I could be going crazy.
Chloe is in full freak-out when Adam, the school bad boy, finds her.

Chloe feels an inexplicable attraction and connection with Adam... and he's claiming she just called him. But how is this possible? She's never even spoken to him.

Chloe soon finds out that even more has changed in the six months she can't remember. Her grades have hit genius level, her parents treat her like a star, she's dating her long-time crush—Blake, and her best friend Maggie hates her guts.

As Chloe begins to piece together her missing memories, she realizes just how much trouble she's really in and what or who may be responsible for it.

- - -

What a wonderful debut! ^-^

Let me go a little deeper into the story so you can get a better idea of what this book is all about.

My one complaint is the moment when things change for Chloe. Meaning, her nap in study hall. She goes to sleep and wakes up in a different month. The way it was written makes it seem like a paranormality. It isn't. Don't go into this expecting that, because you'll be disappointed. It's not about alternate realities or dimensions. I feel like it took a little too long to realize that. Maybe it was just me, but I didn't like that.

Moving ahead, I have only positive things to say!

First of all, the mystery. WOW! You know, I've been reading quite a lot of mystery/thriller/suspense novels as of late. This one is a stand-out! I feel like I am so lucky to be finding such diamonds in the rough (another one is Find Me by Romily Bernard - check it out)! Natalie Richards definitely has some marvelous mystery-making skills. She also made sure this book was very much on the creepy side. I can't tell you how many times I got chill-bumps or had to glance around me in paranoia. This is fantastic! A book that touches my mind and my life is exactly what I want—even if it does creep me out!

The reasons behind Chloe's memory loss are the mystery. After doing a little detective work, Chloe finds out that her SAT study group may be involved or behind her time gap. She learns of another girl—Julien Miller—who may have gone through the same sort of episode she is. She also learns, piece by piece, that she may not be able to trust anyone around her. I won't spoil it for you, but I promise you won't be disappointed in the end. Richards keeps you on the edge of your seat. This is definitely a one-sitting type of book. Just one more chapter. Just one more. Okay, really... just ONE more. Yeah, right. ;) I can barely even believe this is Natalie's first rodeo!

Let me take a moment to talk about the characters. Blake. Adam. Chloe. Maggie. These are our main characters. Blake is the boyfriend, the guy Chloe has been in love with for ages. So being with him should be fantastic, right? No. Chloe feels nothing but dread when she thinks of him and nothing but apprehension when he is near her. Her attraction is to Adam, the guy with a bad reputation and arrest record to prove it. Before her missing six months she'd never even spoken to Adam, but now they seem more than just familiar and her only snapshots of memory seem to come back whenever the two of them have physical contact. Then there is Maggie. Chloe and Maggie were as close as two friends could be. Now Maggie looks at her with nothing but anger and contempt. This last bit is what hurts and baffles Chloe the most. Maggie is her partner in crime; her confidant. Without Maggie to confide in, Chloe feels like she's floundering. Chloe doesn't know what happened between them, but she is determined to find out and to mend fences. But it's easier said than done when Maggie won't even answer her calls or texts.

All of these characters are multi-dimensional and very vividly written. I applaud Natalie Richards for her character and plot-building skills. She is definitely an author to watch for!

The climax of Six Months Later is a whirlwind. The suspense only amps up at this point, and the thrill is enough to leave you breathless! Chloe remembers a key memory; a memory so important that lives depend on it. It is here that things get a little crazy... and I mean that in a good way. The ending is amazing and I honestly wouldn't change a thing about it.

Needless to say, Six Months Later is a winner! It's one of the best mysteries I've read so far this year! It's chilling and suspenseful while it still gives you a taste of sweet romance and never-ending friendships. Chloe is a character you will easily love and never forget. Her story is a wild one, but one that isn't to be missed!

I absolutely recommend this book for lovers of mystery and/or YA books that capture your attention from page one until the very end! I'll definitely be keeping my eye out for more from Natalie Richards.


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