Cover Image: Authentically, Izzy

Authentically, Izzy

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Member Reviews

Authentically Izzy by Pepper Basharm is quite literally all about Izzy and tells her story of her search for love.  This book jumped out at me as usually I love books that are set around bookshops however as this book is told in an epistemolary format so I found it very difficult to follow. Emails, text and conversation in books just didn't hold my attention. 

The story itself is about young adults trying to find their place in the world with their families support this goes for Izzy and the Sutherlands who's 'family own a growing number of bookshops'.
Issy and her love interest Luke enough to survive in real life outside in the real world?.

Many thanks  to NetGalley and the publishe as I recieved a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed are completely my own.
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This is my first book by Pepper Basham and I am grateful that I received the complimentary copy and all opinions expressed re entirely my own.

The book tells the story of Izzy a Lord of the Rings fan who is also a hopeless romantic but doesn't go much but her meddling but caring cousin  Josephine decides help Izzy by creating a dating profile for  her. And things go well when Izzy meets a fellow Lord if the Rings lover who also loves books, family and Lord of the rings. Will this hobbit man be the happy ever after ? Loved the plot, how the story was told and this story doesn't start strong because of the format . It's a different format but an endearing romance.
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Thank you Netgalley and Thomas Nelson for providing an e-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review!

This story is adorable. The love and friendship that grows between Izzy and Brodie is beautiful. I love the story's progression and how Izzy learns more about herself and what she wants from the future. 

Thanks to the meddling of her cousin Josephine Izzy finds herself on a dating website. There she finds Brodie, a fellow book lover and family man. The only problem? He lives on the other side of the world. Can this relationship that is growing between them work?

I had a lot of trouble getting into the book. At first, it was confusing, and many emails felt redundant. It took me about 100 to 150 pages to get into the story.
Additionally, you do not find many epistolary novels in the form of emails anymore, simply because, realistically, we do not email with our friends and family on a daily basis. We are much more likely to text or call. That was one of my problems with this format. Eventually, it also turned into a 'regular' written story, which were my favourite parts.
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I received a complimentary copy of this e-book from Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. Authentically, Izzy stands out for its great writing and wonderful collection of book references. The love story is sweet and the heroine is plucky and relatable. The pacing is a little slow and the book is definitely more than a little Hallmark-esque but still an enjoyable read. One thing to note is that this book does contain references to God and church groups. It is not a large part of the story however and still enjoyable even if this is not something you look for in a book. This book is mostly written in an epistolary style that is perfect for fans of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society if you are able to handle a heavy dose of cheesiness.
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You know those stories you read and when you finish you can only think “how cute!”? Well, that's how this reading has been for me. I think most of the time while I was reading I had a smile on my face that I couldn't help, it came out on its own, and when I finished reading I had this feeling that I had read a super cute book and that it had made me happy.

I have to say that despite the fact that I am a big fan of romance, I don't usually read these more tender books, so in a way it has been a bit out of my comfort zone. This has been a tender, funny and simply beautiful read. As I say, I think the best thing about this novel is the good feeling it leaves you with.

Also the format is something that I don't usually read and that depends on the moment I like it or not. The epistolary format has the advantage of being original and a breath of fresh air when reading a different book, but it is also a style that can get tiresome. The latter is not something that has happened to me all the time, but it is true that it happened to me a couple of times that I stopped reading because I was choking a bit on the format. And the logical thing has also happened to me that you want to live some scenes in a more "real" way to enjoy it more.

It was the first book I read by the author and I really liked it. His style is quite easy to read, and in part I think that is why the epistolary format of the book has not "bothered" me (as it has in other books). I want to see what other books he has published and perhaps give another novel a chance, perhaps with a more conventional format and in my style.
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Thank you so much to Thomas Nelson for the opportunity to read and review this book prior to release. All opinions are my own.

First of all, this cover is beyond adorable!

When I saw this book was written in letters, I was so excited because I love formats like that! It was a clean and overall cute read, but I did become a little bored sadly.

I think  a lot of people will love this book though!

It is available for purchase on November 15th!
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So I loved the beginning of this book, I was intrigued and keen to see where it was going but omg I struggled hardcore with the constant emails and texts and messages. I had to keep rereading the messages and who was messaging who and I was getting a bit confused but I think it’s because I’m not used to it so took a second for my head to wrap around it.
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I had so much fun reading this book! I love the online relationships, the protective family members, the books, quotes, scenic descriptions...all of it!
Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for the ARC and a chance to absorb this incredible story!
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This was my first Pepper Basham book and I enjoyed it! This was a funny, sweet story and I was impressed with the writing. Thank you to the publisher for an arc. All opinions are my own.
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This story was so cute! I loved that most of it was told through emails and text messages. I felt like the tension at the climax of the story was rather predictable, but it was still a delightful, enjoyable read.
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What a delightful read!

Pepper Basham shares the story of Izzy, who is pressured into creating a dating profile. Upon doing so, she takes on the authenticity of herself and chooses to share her obsession with Lord of the Rings (books first, but also the movies). 
It's a wholesome romance story of embracing your quirks and finding someone that loves you for you.
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Thank you NetGalley and Thomas Nelson- Fiction for the ARC of Authentically, Izzy. 

I was excited to read this because I love books centered around book lovers. The writing was strong and clever.  I just wasn’t hooked by the story this time.  I tried to get into it and get lost in the story several times and it just didn’t happen.
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Overall this book was cute and had a fun plot. The characters were funny and I especially appreciated the family dynamics and personalities coming from a large family myself. 

The romance and sweet and the fun tropes we know and love we’re there. The LOTR references made my millennial heart happy too! :)

I will say, I love books that include text conversations and emails but these were harder to follow than most books like it because the emails were so lengthy and the characters were writing very formally, not just the main character Izzy who you would expect this from as she is an avid reader and self proclaimed nerd. I think this would’ve been an easy more enjoyable read had the conversations been a little more brief or as text messages instead.
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I mean. how could you not want to read a story about two bookish people falling in love?  Based on the trope I was super excited, but I feel that format of this book let something to be desired. The characters were cute. but not too much depth to this story. 

Thank you to Thomas Nelson and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review this ARC
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I wanted to love this book because I love the author and it’s fun to have a book loving character but the story and format just didn’t come together and I couldn’t finish. 
I like the concept of epistolary story but it just doesn’t work in 2022. No adult is emailing back and forth daily with their cousins-a group text I can totally see but not emails. The messaging on the dating site worked for the couple but otherwise it just didn’t seem realistic. 
I also wasn’t fully connecting with Izzy, she was a little too far down the book loving introvert passing and kind of crossed into nerdy hermit which isn’t a great look. 
All in all not the book for me but I’ll still be reading other things this author puts out!
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I think the best description for my feelings on this book is “it wasn’t for me.”

I went into this book with different expectations than what it gave me. In a quick list form:

* I thought this book was going to be New Adult. Izzy is 30.
* The description says Izzy is a “Lord of the Rings nerd”, which I thought meant more emphasis on the “nerd” part. Instead, the book references Lord of the Rings a lot. I’ve never interacted with any LOTR media and had no idea what I was reading. That’s my fault.
* There’s a lot of references to god and religion in this book. I’m an atheist.

I also went into this book knowing it was an epistolary, but I think I bit off more than I could chew with this. This book contains so many emails. A tiring amount of emails. Enough emails that I never want to look at another email in my life.

I think this book is about 200 pages longer than it should be. There’s a lot of content in this book, but not a lot of it is important. It feels as though you’re reading through a whole server of emails and text messages between these characters and hoping you’ll find even so much as a glimpse into something interesting, which makes this book a very tiring read.

93% of the way through the book introduces conflict, but this conflict is something readers will already have known from the very first page. Instead of being surprised, readers instead have to watch the main character find out this information and go through a period of shock as she wrestles with her feelings on the matter, which works in some books. Not this one.

As I say in my vlog for this book: “Smash or pass? It’s a pass.”
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Thank you NetGalley for an ARC of this book.

I requested this book because of the amount of great reviews it has and I'm so glad I did.  This book completely surpassed my expectations in so many ways and I wish I already had the physical copy of it to put on my shelf!
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There is something special about how we can learn so much about a person by what they write. 
I believe that the insight into our thoughts that come out when we compose our thoughts into readable words is a special kind of expression. 
That kind of expression is exactly what you see to get to know the characters in this book.
Emails, texts and messages take the place of traditional letters in this modern twist of the epistolary novel. 
It took me a bit to get into the flow of the story and away from the distractions of life but once I was in, I was here for it!
The banter between the cousins is very entertaining and you get the fun quirky characteristics of the characters,  as well as the hints of hurts and insecurities. It is beautiful and entertaining to watch. 
I especially loved Luke's humor in this story.  He was definitely the funniest of the bunch, and someone who has his loved ones back. I love Luke.....
The romance was adorable,  sweet and just a delight to read. It was a sweetly evolving slow burn that was filled with things book lovers, love. I underlined several parts because there are some very quotable lines in this book. Some insight that strikes me as something that I want to remember. 
If you are at all interested in checking out a modern expiratory that once you get connected with the characters you will want to know how it all turns out. 
A book for book lovers, and readers who love a thoughtful, sweetly romantic read.
I recieved a complementary copy of this book from the publisher through Netgally.  All opinions are completely honest and my own.
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Thank you NetGalley for this ARC for an exchange for an honest review .

A really great book, it flows well.
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Izzy enjoys her life and family but once her cousin sets her up on a dating site, and the man of her dreams shows up, she starts to question her life and self on what she really wants.  Is this man even real or is it her cousin messing with her? 

I didn’t realize this was Christian fiction but I really appreciated the inclusion of God without it feeling preachy.  It was a part of their lives without seeming inauthentic.  I loved the idea and the creativity in the style of storytelling through emails, texts and when it was most important (aka when the deep parts were happening), third person.  

My beef:
When it got to about 75%, I lost interest.  The story seemed to drag on. I struggle with stories where the lovers are just infatuated the whole time.  There didn’t seem to be any heat or climax.  Just a sweet story of two bookish people meeting and falling in love on a dating site.
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