Friday, February 26, 2010

Out with the In Crowd by Stephanie Morrill (Book Tour & Review)

From a talented new voice in YA fiction:

Out with the In Crowd (The Reinvention of Skylar Hoyt Book #2) by Stephanie Morrill
Publisher: Revell Books
Publish Date: January 1, 2010
Paperback, 252 pages

My Review:
Rating: 9.0/10.0

From what I read in the beginning of this book, it takes up pretty much where book #1 leaves off.  Sklar is returning to school after Christmas break facing her last semester of high school with her wonderful boyfriend and without the in crowd of friends she has hung out with for the last four years.

Skylar's uncertainty seems very true of high school girls or anyone who goes back into a situation with friends who aren't friends any more.  Nothing is glossed over and Skylar's emotions and uncertainties are shared throughout the book.  On the outside Skylar looks very put together, but on the inside she is a typical unsure teenager.

In this book she is also coming to grips with her refound faith and what it means to truly forgive people and trust people.  Her life hasn't exactly been perfect for the past few months and with her parents dealing with problems too, her trust level is way down.  Conner, her boyfriend is one of those people you want to be.  Understanding, forgiving and just friendly no matter what the circumstances and while Skylar wants to be like him, she has a hard time giving up her own wants and whims.  Though some of the things her and Conner start to fight over are what she believes, getting Conner to believe them is another story.

The book keeps you turning pages and even without reading the first book in the series, I felt like I knew Skylar within the first ten pages.  You get enough backstory in this book to understand what has gone on without feeling like you missed much and I am guessing it's not too much backstory if you read the first one.  I do plan on going back and reading the first one and I can't wait until the next one.

As a Christian book, this one pulls no punches and does not show ideal life.  Skylar's younger sister is pregnant and Skylar herself has lead an interesting life before turning back to the Lord.  The situations in this book feel real along with the characters and that is what make this a great read.

Rating Breakdown: 
Characterization:     1.75/2.0
Plot:                       1.75/2.0
Writing:                  1.75/2.0
Attention-holding:   0.75/1.0
Ending:                    1.0/1.0
Believable:               1.0/1.0
    Genre:                      1.0/1.0    
Rating:                9.0/10.0

About the Book:

Teens have embraced Skylar Hoyt, the title character in The Reinvention of Skylar Hoyt series by debut author Stephanie Morrill. Skylar is a character readers can relate to, as she struggles with popularity, fitting in and figuring out what really matters in the midst of it all.

In the second book of the series, Out with the In Crowd, Skylar is struggling with her circle of friends: She’s vowed to change her partying ways, but it's not so easy to change her friends and her old life is constantly staring her in the face. Add to that two parents battling for her loyalty, a younger sister struggling with a crisis pregnancy, and a new boyfriend wishing for more of her time, and Skylar feels like she can't win. After all, how do you choose favorites among the people you love most?

With style and grace, Stephanie Morrill delivers another compelling story that addresses teen issues in Out with the In Crowd.

Romantic Times reviewed the first book in The Reinvention of Skylar Hoyt series, with praise:
“This is a good start to a promising new series. Morrill introduces a strong, relatable character to root for.”

About the Author:

Stephanie Morrill is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers and the Teen Lit writers' group. Morrill is the author of Me, Just Different and Out with the In Crowd, and she also serves in youth ministry. She lives in Kansas with her husband and young daughter.

Photo courtesy Amy Hoskins Photography

Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, offers practical books that bring the Christian faith to everyday life.  They publish resources from a variety of well-known brands and authors, including their partnership with MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) and Hungry Planet.

**Available January 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.**

Thank you to Donna Hausler at Baker Publishing  for providing me with a copy of this book to read and review.


I am finally going to try and be good about posting awards I receive and giving them away.  So I'm sorry if I haven't accepted your award in the past - there was no real reason behind it besides not finding the time.  From now on I will do better - if you are kind enough to give me an award I will be thankful and post it on here.

So here goes my first one:

I received the Sugar Doll award from Katrina at Bloody Bad, whose blog I love, if you haven't checked her out - please do. She received the award from Pinkilili at Sandals and Snowshoes, who is new at blogging so head over there and say hi, remember what it was like when you were new?

The rules are list 10 things about yourself and you can pass it on or just paste it on your blog.

10 things about myself:

  1. I still love to eat hot dogs and macaroni and cheese
  2. I like to sing Cowboy by Kid Rock with my kids on the way to school in them morning (and they love it too - we use the edited version of course)
  3. I love to sing when no one is around, when others are around I don't like to as much except with my kids in the car.  Right  now my favorite band is Daughtry.
  4. I threaten my oldest son with blaring songs from a Veggie Tales CD when dropping him off at school in the morning (he's in third grade).  I know I'm evil.
  5. I love young adult books and it's all the book bloggers' fault - I didn't read YA until I started reading blogs.  (seriously I'm glad they turned me on to it)
  6. I love living on the coast of NC but rarely go to the beach.
  7. I have happy meal toys on my desk at work.
  8. I love NASCAR and pull for Tony Stewart (and anyone who doesn't drive for Hendricks motorsports)
  9. I have a new Kindle that I never get to read from because I am busy reading books for review.
  10. I love living near enough to my parents that they can be a part of my boys' life.  I love watching their love for their grandparents'.  It's special.
Five bloggers whose blogs I enjoy. Those who received this award can pass it on or just paste it on their blog.
  1. A Reader's Respite
  2. Ms. Bookish
  3. What Was I Reading?
  4. The Printed Page 
  5. At Home With Books

Thank you Katrina for the award!