Sunday, September 17, 2017

Blog Tour: Speak Easy, Speak Love by McKelle George...Review, Giveaway & More!

So happy to be a stop on the Speak Easy, Speak Love Blog Tour today!
Isn't that cover just gorgeous? 
Anyway, keep reading to learn more about this fabulous book!
Plus, there's a giveaway and a chance for you to discover which character from Speak Easy, Speak Love you are most like...
Speak Easy, Speak Love 
September 19, 2017

Six teenagers’ lives intertwine during one thrilling summer full of romantic misunderstandings and dangerous deals in this sparkling retelling of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.

After she gets kicked out of boarding school, seventeen-year-old Beatrice goes to her uncle’s estate on Long Island. But Hey Nonny Nonny is more than just a rundown old mansion. Beatrice’s cousin, Hero, runs a struggling speakeasy out of the basement—one that might not survive the summer. Along with Prince, a poor young man determined to prove his worth; his brother John, a dark and dangerous agent of the local mob; Benedick, a handsome trust-fund kid trying to become a writer; and Maggie, a beautiful and talented singer; Beatrice and Hero throw all their efforts into planning a massive party to save the speakeasy. Despite all their worries, the summer is beautiful, love is in the air, and Beatrice and Benedick are caught up in a romantic battle of wits that their friends might be quietly orchestrating in the background.

Hilariously clever and utterly charming, McKelle George’s debut novel is full of intrigue and 1920s charm. For fans of Jenny Han, Stephanie Perkins, and Anna Godbersen.
McKelle George is a reader, writer of clumsy rebels, perpetual doodler, and reference librarian at the best library in the world. She mentors with Salt Lake Teen Writes and plays judge for the Poetry Out Loud teen competitions (but has no poetic talent herself). Her debut young adult novel Speak Easy, Speak Love comes out from Greenwillow/HarperCollins in 2017, and she currently lives in Salt Lake City with an enormous white german shepherd and way, way too many books.

Title: Speak Easy, Speak Love
Author: McKelle George 
Format: Digital ARC
Source: Edelweiss

From the fun, detailed story to the vivacious characters, Speak Easy, Speak Love is one of the most memorable and entertaining books I've read in awhile. From start to finish, there was rarely a dull moment and I couldn't put it down!

Wonderfully-written and set during the fabulous 1920s when jazz was king and a little thing called Prohibition was law, Speak Easy, Speak Love is a highly entertaining retelling of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.  This is definitely one of the most unique and fun Shakespeare retellings I've come across in awhile, but to be honest with you I quickly forgot all about that whole retelling thing and found myself lost in the world and characters that McKelle George created.

Before I even started reading and as someone who is intrigued by the past, I was fascinated by the author’s choice of the 1920s as the setting for this reimagining and curious to see how it would work.  But it was honestly perfect for this story and had all of the fun and history for which the decade is notoriously famous…speakeasies, bootleggers, mobsters, jazz, and more!  It all just worked perfectly. It was obvious that the author had done her research of the era and the story was all the better for it. And now I wouldn't mind more stories set during this time period.

As for the story of Speak Easy, Speak Love itself, I absolutely loved it. An unlikely group of people are unexpectedly brought together one summer thanks to a speakeasy at the Hey Nonny Nonny.  Beatrice had hoped for a quiet summer at her uncle’s home so she could study for medical school.  However, she didn't plan on her cousin Hero running a speakeasy out of the basement. Now along with an assortment of colorful characters from a struggling writer to a talented blues singer, Beatrice finds her summer to be anything but quiet as she and her unlikely companions deal with crooks, bootleggers, rival gangs, and more…including a little matchmaking and they try to save the Hey Nonny Nonny.

Speak Easy, Speak Love is such a unique and fun take on Shakespeare's classic tale.  McKelle George manages to pay homage to the Bard and still create her own rollicking good time and unpredictable and entertaining story filled with wit and charm.  And no, you don't need to be familiar with the original at all to enjoy this one. Speak Easy, Speak Love can definitely be read and enjoyed on its own.  But if you are familiar with the play, you'll probably enjoy this fresh reimagining of the classic.

As well as enjoying the fantastic story, I fell in love with the characters of Speak Easy, Speak Love. McKelle George has created fun, vibrant characters each with distinct personalities that definitely live up to their Shakespearean counterparts, but with enough differences and unique characteristics to more than hold their own.  From their individual struggles to their relationships and interactions with one another, I loved how well the characters worked and meshed together.  

Plus, fun and witty banter is something I simple adore in books and McKelle George is a master at it in Speak Easy, Speak Love!  I especially enjoyed the battle of wits between Beatrice and Benedick. Their banter combined with the setting brought to mind some of my favorite classic romantic film pairings from the 1930s-40s such as Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn or Hepburn and Spencer Tracy. I absolutely loved the chemistry between these two characters as well as other characters in the book.

As you can probably tell, Speak Easy, Speak Love is definitely one of my favorite reads of the year and I look forward to reading more of McKelle George’s work!
*I received a digital ARC in exchange for an honest review.*

So for fun, the author of Speak Easy, Speak Love, McKelle George has created a character quiz so you can determine which character from the book you are most like

I got...

Benedick Scott
You're Benedick! You're full of passion and charisma. With a natural confidence that begets influence, you take a great deal of pride and joy in cheering and guiding those around you. You have a natural way with words and are able to bring ideas together and communicate them with an eloquence that is nothing short of mesmerizing. You might have a slight tendency to over-reflect on and analyzing your own feelings--and you're a little sensitive, but if someone doesn't like you, you take it as a challenge and a chance to exercise your effortlessly quick wit..

A couple of these things are somewhat accurate…hmm.

Here’s a link so you can discover which Speak Easy, Speak Love character you are…

Be sure to share who you got! I’d love to know!
1 ARC of SPEAK EASY, SPEAK LOVE by McKelle George
Pre-order swag including:
1 signed SPEAK EASY, SPEAK LOVE bookplate
1 signed SPEAK EASY, SPEAK LOVE postcard
The full set of SPEAK EASY, SPEAK LOVE character cards

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