Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Dear Cassie Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway

Title: Dear Cassie (Pretty Amy #2)
Author: Lisa Burnstein
Release date: March 5th 2013
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Format: eARC
Source: Review copy from Rockstar Book Tours
Purchase links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository

What if the last place you should fall in love is the first place that you do?

You’d think getting sent to Turning Pines Wilderness Camp for a month-long rehabilitation “retreat” and being forced to re-live it in this journal would be the worst thing that’s ever happened to me.

You’d be wrong.

There’s the reason I was sent to Turning Pines in the first place: I got arrested. On prom night. With my two best friends, who I haven’t talked to since and probably never will again. And then there’s the real reason I was sent here. The thing I can’t talk about with the guy I can’t even think about.

What if the moment you’ve closed yourself off is the moment you start to break open?

But there’s this guy here. Ben. And the more I swear he won’t—he can’t—the deeper under my skin he’s getting. After the thing that happened, I promised I’d never fall for another boy’s lies.

And yet I can’t help but wonder…what if?

I admit I haven't read Pretty Amy yet, but I immensely enjoyed Dear Cassie regardless. This book is a companion to Pretty Amy, but it works great as a standalone. I was immediately sucked into Cassie's crazy life, and it was an awesome experience! I definitely have to get around to reading Lisa's other books soon.

I loved how Dear Cassie is written like diary entries. We get to read all of Cassie's deepest thoughts, and the style of writing really helped me connect with her. Cassie is sent to a one-month-long camp for troubled teens, and when I say camp, I mean camp. Wilderness camp. Cassie and the others have to sleep in cabins, gather wood, and basically find out what it's like to live in the wilderness. Cassie hates being there, and desperately counts down the days until she can leave. She also stays the hell away from the other teens. Until, of course, Ben decides not to let her. He gets under her skin, and she's not sure if she likes that. Dear Cassie shows us how Cassie gets past her inhibitions and learns to trust again.

Cassie is freaking awesome. She does swear a lot, like A LOT, but I was totally cool with that. I get that she's gone through so much, and knows how harsh the world can be. She's hesitant to let people in, and that's her undoing. Cassie can't seem to let go of her past, or her so-called friends, Amy and Lila. I do wish I'd read Pretty Amy before this, so I could get a feel of their characters, but this book focuses on Cassie. And I love her character! She's snarky, and isn't afraid to let people know what she thinks. She may be a bit of a smart-ass, but she's a pretty funny one. I loved reading from her perspective. There's also a vulnerable side of her that Ben can bring out, and seeing that was really sweet.

Ben is a guy Cassie meets at the airport, and she's shocked to find out he's also headed to the same camp she's going to. Ben seems really care-free, and he's always grinning and joking around. I found it hilarious how he tried his best to get on Cassie's good side, but she never let him.

Either way, he was doing whatever he could to be my knight in shining armor.
Unfortunately, I was no princess.

This part cracked me up! I felt sorry for Ben considering how hard he tried. At least it didn't go to waste! I love the part where Cassie finally lets Ben in. Their relationship is intense but sweet at the same time.

All the characters in this book are so incredibly unique. I really liked Troyer, who was Cassie's only friend at camp. Other than Ben, of course. She didn't talk at all, but it was so great to see how easily Cassie connected with her, once she let her in. I definitely did not like the remaining girl, Nez. She was definitely something, but she just seemed so bitchy. Though she did redeem herself eventually. It's kind of weird that everyone at camp calls each other by their last names, so we don't even get to find out Troyer and Nez's first names until much later. As for the other guys at the camp, we don't find out at all. But one of them's an asshole and the other didn't do much, so I'm not exactly complaining!

There are sensitive issues addressed in this book that make it seem more NA than YA, but I think Lisa wrote them in really well. Cassie seems so incredibly real to me, because what she went through happens to a lot of people her age. But she got through it, and that's why I admire her strength so much. Cassie really is an amazing character. Seriously, I'd recommend this book to everyone! It's a beautiful contemporary, serious and fun at the same time. And it will make you tear up, I guarantee it. I'm now definitely going to check out Pretty Amy as soon as I can!

*Thank you to Jaime and Rachel at Rockstar Book Tours for picking me for this tour and providing me with a copy for review*

Rating: 4/5

About the author:

Lisa Burstein is a tea seller by day and a writer by night. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from the Inland Northwest Center for Writers at Eastern Washington University and is glad to finally have it be worth more than the paper it was printed on. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her very patient husband, a neurotic dog and two cats.
She wrote her first story when she was in second grade. It was a Thanksgiving tale from the point of view of the turkey from freezer to oven to plate. It was scandalous.

Find Lisa on:


As part of this blog tour, all the hosts are having a giveaway for one paperback (US) and one ebook (International) copy of Dear Cassie. Enter the Rafflecopter below!

Don't forget to check out the rest of the tour schedule here!

1 comment:

  1. Yes, I am. It sounds like an interesting story.


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