Monday, July 1, 2013


Today on Novels On The Run I have my stop on the blog tour, my review for Freshman Forty by Christine Duval. The author has been picked up by one of the BIG SIX publishers. It has not been revealed yet which one. Congratulations Christine. 

Check out the synopsis and then have a read of my review. I enjoyed this book, it wasn't what I thought it was going to be. 

There is also a giveaway to enter. Don't forget to stop by the other blogs on the tour and check out their posts.


Freshman Forty by Christine Duval 
Publication date: February 21st 2013
Genre: New Adult Contemporary 


By: Christine Duval
Published By: Currently Showing as Self Published
Released : Available Now
Details: Digital, 185 Pages


Blurb: Goodreads

When eighteen-year-old Laurel Harris discovers she’s pregnant four weeks into the start of her freshman year at prestigious Colman College, she has all intentions of telling her father. But being away at school makes it too easy to hide. And while she can’t explain to her friends, or to herself even, the reasons why she doesn’t want the baby’s father to find out about the pregnancy, the rest of her world begins to unravel.

Freshman year is hard enough. Most girls get through by forming close friendships, finding new boys and a phone call from mom or dad on Sunday. Laurel has to navigate all of it while hiding an unplanned pregnancy from a summer fling...

An imperfect heroine plagued by bad choices and haunted by the memory of her deceased mother and grandparents, readers are sure to identify with Laurel as she navigates teen pregnancy, in secret, in a remote college setting.

BOOK REVIEW by Michelle:

In her book Freshman Forty, Christine gives a realistic portrayal of what an eighteen year old single, out of touch with what was left of her family , pregnant, scared, confused, teenage college student is going through. The decisions that she must make.

We watch Laurel trying to fit into college life, with its parties and drinking and go undetected as being pregnant. She even tries to have a college no strings attached romp with a good looking guy who is in to her. But in Laurel’s secret condition, how far do you play that out?

Did I find it believable that an eighteen year old pregnant girl in college did not get questioned by any of her class mates? Nah. I found that a bit questionable. Hiding under big loose clothing, you still have a waddle, big boobs, you have a certain shape. Especially putting on weight so quickly. I mean girls know when another girl is putting weight on, , you would only have to look at a girl side on. To only have a teacher question you out of everybody .... it didn't seem feasible. I loved the connection Laurel had with this teacher.  

Laurel is living almost like she is in a bubble or a tunnel of her own making in this book. She has a difficult relationship with her father and can’t bring herself to tell him she is pregnant. He doesn’t make it easy for her even when she finally gets the courage. She hides from her college friends to the point that she is quite alone.

I felt Laurel’s emotion and confusion and the dilemma of making some pretty tough choices by herself. Her family has money, hell, she even has a house and land in her name, but through circumstance she felt she could not ask for help. 

Laurel seemed to make everything that much more difficult and stressful for herself. She essentially shut herself off from getting help other than the lovely Karen and Dr Adler and the support group and her teacher. 

To stay in college and continue studying whilst keeping this under wraps and to yourself is a big stress.

This was not a joyous time for Laurel. She wasn’t letting her friends in on her pregnancy , there was no choosing baby clothes and getting all girlie and glowie. Laurel shuts herself down to the happiness as she feels so alone. She has easy ways out with her father’s 'set up' apartment, her father’s insurance, but she doesn’t feel their relationship has a connection that she can have that father daughter relationship. Her family connection has broken down to virtually nothing.

Sub characters kind of floated about in the story line but didn’t really grab on to it. Tara the bff back home, did eventually come in and hang on to the pages. Mike I would have loved to have had him about more, much more than a floating about character. Audrey grabbed on for a bit then floated about.

The mysterious father of the little ‘bean’ was nonexistent. I did have a bit of trouble with this as he was not just a random one night stand, he has known Laurel for a period of time. I understand it will make for a great lead in for book 2, but I felt like something was missing from the first book. I needed to be convinced more why she could not tell the mysterious 'D'. I for whatever reason feel like he is going to be a gorgeous character. In this book I needed to be convinced why we couldn't find out more about 'D' when he had been a 'friend' to her, previous to the unprotected sex. For him to not even check up on her, with regards to the unprotected sex, I get it if he was a random guy but he had her phone number. I don't mean the casual text he gave.

I think my favorite part of this story was when dad got a clue. I felt like his character grabbed me, I connected with a character other than Laurel. I even got a tad teary. I felt quite emotional during that part of the story. 

This book was an interesting read for me as it has great potential to be a very important tool for teenage readers and up, as I think Christine did a wonderful job of taking the reader quite methodically through doctors appointments, forms etc. It was like a what to expect when you are expecting from a clinical, financial point of view, woven into a story. I am in Laurel’s head making those decisions with her. I am answering the questions too. What would I choose if I was in Laurel’s situation?

I thought this book showed clearly why unprotected sex is a much bigger thing to let slide in the heat of the moment. There is nothing more important than STD's and pregnancy when it comes to unprotected sex. The heat of the moment lasts only so long, but an STD or child is for life.

I know first hand the joy and difficulty in raising children. I have three myself. It’s not easy. Any parent, no matter what age they bring a child into the world will tell you that. But to have support and somebody to lean on and help you is what makes the journey that bit less bumpy. 

Sometimes you may think you have nobody to help you, but if you look hard enough you will find someone.



one (1) ebook copy of Freshman Forty. 

Open internationally


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Christine Duval has been writing creatively since the fourth grade when she penned her first short story entitled "London Terror," about the murder of a cat in London. She grew up on the North Shore of Long Island and lived in Italy twice as a teenager: once when she was sixteen in Bologna and in a small town on the Adriatic Sea called Porto San Giorgio; then in Florence when she was nineteen. Her parents wondered if she'd ever come back.

College was spent in the Finger Lakes: the inspiration for Colman, Milton, and Kashong Lake in Freshman Forty. It really is cold, wet and grey there - OFTEN! But when the sun comes out, boy is it pretty.

Life eventually took her to New York's Upper West Side, the place she'll always consider home. Though for now she resides in New Jersey with her family and a very spoiled love bird who can't decide if he's a boy or she's a girl.


-Freshman Forty took won an Honorable Mention at the New York Book Festival

-Won an Honorable Mention under General Fiction for the Beach Book Festival



  1. This sounds like such a book for me! And you have 3 kids? Eep I have one and I could never ever have any more haha. This one devil is enough to make me lose my hair >.<

    1. Sorry Giselle this was supposed to be top post. Marissa came in with a surprise blog tour that I didn't know about :)


    2. My first was a devil, lol!! He be a red head who is very stubborn. But I went on to have 2 more. They are the quieter ones. It's all hard work but at the end of the day... :)


  2. Great review Michelle. I've got 3 myself, aged 5, 3 & 10 months; life is always interesting. This sounds like an interesting read, thanks for the giveaway.

    Katie Turner
    mobi format please

  3. I love the blurb on this book!! I cannot wait to read it!! Thank you for the chance at winning a copy!!
    Amy Pollard Woolard
    ag_girl76 at yahoo dot com
    mobi format, please.

  4. Sounds like a great read!!
    Thanks for the chance to win!
    natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

  5. Congrats Amy you are the winner I shall fill the form out for you and expect it next week sometime:D




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