Monday, March 25, 2013

Review(+15$ Giveaway!) of Desert Flower by Angela Scott

Title: Desert Flower
Author: Angela Scott
Series: Desert Rice #2
Pages: 216
Publisher: Evolved Publishing
Date Published: January 24, 2013
Format: eBook
Genre: Contemporary YA
Source: copy provided for touring purposes

Bodies have a canny way of finding Samantha Jean Haggert. The first, the dead body of her mama. The second, a naked man in the middle of the Arizona desert. For Sam, dealing with one dead body in her lifetime is more than unfair. Two, is downright cruel.

Seven years after running from West Virginia, Sam's now a young woman of nineteen, trying to put the pieces of her life together with the help of her family—Jacob, Boone, and Laura. But the naked man in the desert spirals her world out of control, resurfacing past hurts, revealing old secrets, and pitting her between two men who via for her heart. Carson, her friend, her first kiss, and the one man who knows everything about her past and loves her despite it. And Turner, the stranger who knows nothing, but who excites and frustrates her all at once.

When bad choices made as a child leads to more bad choices as a young adult, Sam finds herself at a crossroads and is forced to face her demons head on if she plans to have any future at all—with Carson, with Turner, or with anyone. But fixing the wrongs of the past takes time, and learning to forgive herself is damn near impossible.

My Review:
What a lovely story. For whatever reason, I have had a hard time getting into contemporary YA for the last little while now. Maybe it just seems too fluffy and young for me what with all of the high school drama and immaturity. But Desert Flower brought me out of my reading slump because of just how wonderful it was. It's a mature and beautiful work of literature while still portraying a young and fresh story about a girl and her struggles through life.

We left Sam off in Desert Rice when she was still a pre-teen struggling to deal with a life that has left scars on her for the rest of her life. Desert Flower takes us a few years down the road. Sam, now nineteen, has to face the struggles and demons from her past.  You feel so much for her because she's gone through so much abuse and pain in her life and it's still affecting her as she's grown up. Like book one, Desert Flower takes readers on an intensely emotional ride as we travel along with Sam. In this book she has to face many new and more adult issues like the true death of her mom, not being able to be in her nephew's life, and dealing with the complicated ins and outs of her own troubled love life. Also, you'd think this poor girl is killing people herself the way she happens to find bodies everywhere. If I found ONE dead body in my lifetime I'd have to be in counselling sessions till I'm fifty. This one seems to take them in stride and just deal with the fallout that a dead body would do to a person's life...

In my opinion, Angela is a fantastic author. I love the imagery that fills the book up and makes it seem so much more alive than many of the books I've read recently. The setting positively shines out of the pages and paired with an excellent cast of characters you feel like you are deeply involved in the story and the struggles that the characters face. The dialogue is extremely well written and stirs up a lot of emotions. I've included an excerpt from one of my favorite scenes that really kind of showcases both the sweet romance budding between the Sam and one of her men (yes there was a love triangle...but surprisingly it didn't bug me as much as they usually do. It was well thought out and made a lot of sense so I'll forgive it).

Excerpt from Desert Flower:

He felt my hesitation, and instead of kissing me, he whispered, "Close your eyes, Sam."

My heart pounded faster. His close proximity was nearly too much, claustrophobic, but I did as he asked. Just hurry, do it before I change my mind. His thumb brushed my lips, exploring, but not demanding. He gently parted them, leaned forward, his breath on my skin, and softly captured my mouth with his own. His movement was tender and kind. He took it slowly, meeting my weak response with an equivalent desire, holding back.

Every kiss I had ever experienced had been forced upon me, hurting me, including Turner's. But this... this was different. It didn't scare me as I'd expected it to. It was okay. I was okay. It was a beginning, and tears of relief ran down my cheeks.

He pulled away from me and wiped the tears away with his thumb and kissed my forehead. "I'm
so sorry, Sam."

I shook my head. "Don't be." I smiled through tears that kept coming. "Your kiss was wonderful."

Meet the Author: Angela Scott! 
I hear voices. Tiny fictional people sit on my shoulders and whisper their stories in my ear. Instead of medicating myself, I decided to pick up a pen, write down everything those voices tell me, and turn it into a book. I’m not crazy. I’m an author. For the most part, I write contemporary Young Adult novels. However, through a writing exercise that spiraled out of control, I found myself writing about zombies terrorizing the Wild Wild West—and loving it. My zombies don’t sparkle, and they definitely don’t cuddle. At least, I wouldn’t suggest it.
I live on the benches of the beautiful Wasatch Mountains with two lovely children, one teenager, and a very patient husband. I graduated from Utah State University with a B.A. degree in English, not because of my love for the written word, but because it was the only major that didn’t require math. I can’t spell, and grammar is my arch nemesis. But they gave me the degree, and there are no take backs.
As a child, I never sucked on a pacifier; I chewed on a pencil. I’ve been writing that long. It has only been the past few years that I’ve pursued it professionally, forged relationships with other like-minded individuals, and determined to make a career out of it.
You can subscribe and follow me on my website, where I blog obsessively about my writing process and post updates on my current works. I’m also on Twitter and Facebook, but be forewarned, I tweet and post way more than a normal person should. 
The Amazing Angela will be giving away a 15$ Amazon giftcard to one lucky commenter for this blog tour! In addition, one commenter at every stop will be gifted a copy of WANTED: Dead or Undead or a copy of Survivor Roundup from her backlist of books! To enter just leave a comment below! Maybe talk about your first kiss or if you ever had a situation like Sam's (Hopefully not though!) or just leave a question for Angela when she stops by later in the day! 


  1. thanks for the awesome post! This sounds fantastic! I'm definitely going to be adding it to my wishlist :)

  2. What a beautiful review. It really sounds like a sensitive and tender story.

  3. Andra...What a great review. As a reader and a librarian, I appreciate an honest and thoughtful review. The YA tag covers a lot of territory. For what age range is this title most suited?

    1. Thanks Catherine! I agree that YA can be a pretty hard label to figure out age appropriateness. I think this story is definitely a possibility for teens, even maybe dipping into pre-teens because they can read Sam's story at 14 and maybe identify with it. Hope that helps!

  4. Sounds good! I'm looking forward to read more!

    lyra.lucky7 at gmail dot com

  5. Oh, this one sounds very nice I love the setting as well, I'm always interested in a well researched story!

    moonsurfer123 AT gmail DOTcom

  6. Great review, are there any special warnings? I'd like to give the book to my niece :)


  7. Very nice review and excerpt

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

  8. If I ever had a situation like Sam's I'd probably be huddled in the corner somewhere.


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  11. I rally really want these books.

  12. This sounds great! I'll have to add it to my wishlist!