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2024 Bookish Books Reading Challenge (Hosted by Yours Truly)

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My Progress:

12 / 30 books. 40% done!

2024 Literary Escapes Challenge

- Alabama (1)
- Alaska
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- England (10)
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My Progress:

28 / 51 states. 55% done!

2024 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

My Progress:

22 / 50 books. 44% done!

2024 POPSUGAR Reading Challenge

23 / 50 books. 46% done!

Booklist Queen's 2024 Reading Challenge

My Progress:

48 / 50 books. 96% done!

2024 52 Club Reading Challenge

My Progress:

40 / 52 books. 77% done!

2024 Build Your Library Reading Challenge

My Progress:

26 / 40 books. 65% done!

2024 Pioneer Book Reading Challenge

15 / 40 books. 38% done!

2024 Craving for Cozies Reading Challenge

My Progress:

10 / 25 books. 40% done!

2024 Medical Examiner's Mystery Reading Challenge

2024 Mystery Marathon Reading Challenge

My Progress

12 / 26.2 miles. 46% done!

Mount TBR Reading Challenge

My Progress

25 / 100 books. 25% done!

2024 Pick Your Poison Reading Challenge

My Progress:

64 / 104 books. 62% done!

Around the Year in 52 Books Reading Challenge

My Progress

43 / 52 books. 83% done!

Disney Animated Movies Reading Challenge

My Progress

69 / 165 books. 42% done!
Saturday, November 27, 2021

YA Romantic Adventure a Fun, Exciting Read

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

The Texas River Odyssey is a grueling, 265-mile competition that pits canoers against every kind of danger—from raging rapids to snapping alligators to paralyzing exhaustion to agonizing injuries. Sadie Scofield can't wait to tackle the race. Not only is the 17-year-old out to prove that she, like competitors from the past three generations of her family, can finish the race but she also has to redeem herself after last year's debacle. Because of her, her father's 20 year finishing streak ended. Their relationship hasn't been the same since and Sadie can't stand it. This year, she's teamed up with her older brother, Tanner. Despite some tough competition, she knows they have an excellent chance of finishing the race, maybe even winning. If she can just make her dad proud, maybe things will go back to normal between them.

When Tanner joins another team at the last minute, Sadie is shocked. And desperate. Her only option is to team up with John "Culley" Cullen, the boy she once called her best friend. She hasn't spoken to him in six years, not since a bitter family feud turned them into enemies. With no other choice, the two form a tense, awkward partnership. Out of synch from the get-go, it seems unlikely the pair will make it through the next hour, let alone through three days of forced closeness while competing in a punishing race against dozens of well-oiled teams. Can they set aside their differences long enough to finish? As the competition intensifies, tempers flare, and truths from the past are revealed. Will the tension break the uneasy duo? Or will it bring them together in ways neither of them could ever have imagined?  

Contemporary YA isn't my usual genre, but In the Same Boat—a debut novel by Holly Green—sounded like a fun change of pace, so I decided to give it a whirl. The story features competitive canoeing, something I've never read about before. It may be a little over-focused on the race at its core, but the story offers lots of interesting details about canoeing and the canoeing community, which helps bring the setting to vivid life. Although a lot of unfamiliar terms are used in the novel, which sometimes made it tough for me to picture exactly what was happening, I got the drift enough to become engaged in the story. It's got plenty of action, tension, and conflict to keep the reader burning through the pages. While I'm not a competitive person and really can't understand the kind of drive that would make anyone want to compete in an exhausting, dangerous river race, Green created convincing motivations for the main characters so I got while they were all in. Sadie and Cully are both sympathetic and determined, which made me root for them, even though I didn't really love the former. All in all, though, I enjoyed this book. It's a quick, entertaining read that teaches some good lessons about friendship, family, being enough, and working to accomplish one's goals. 

(Readalikes: I don't read much in this genre, so I'm not sure what to compare In the Same Boat to. Any ideas?)


If this were a movie, it would be rated:

for language (a dozen or so F-bombs, plus milder expletives), violence, and innuendo

To the FTC, with love: I received an ARC of In the Same Boat from the generous folks at Scholastic in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

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