Wednesday, November 30, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday (66)

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.


Title: Vessel 
Author: Sarah Beth Durst 
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Release Date: September 11, 2012 
In a desert land where serpents made of unbreakable glass fly through the sky and wolves made of only sand hunt within storms, Liyana is destined to be a vessel, to sacrifice herself so that her clan's goddess can inhabit her body... but her goddess never comes.
I LOVE Sarah Beth Durst! Serpents made of glass? Wolves made of Sand? I NEED THIS NOW!AND that fierce cover!
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Title:The Savage Grace (TDD #3) 
Author: Bree Despain 
Publisher: Egmont USA 
Release Date: March 13, 2012 
A troubled soul. An impossible choice. A final battle.

Wrestling with the werewolf curse pulsing deep inside of her, Grace Divine was finally able to find her brother, but it nearly cost her everything.

With her boyfriend, Daniel, stuck in wolf form and Sirhan's death approaching, time is running out for Grace to stop Caleb Kalbi and his gang of demons. If she fails, her family and hometown will perish. Everything rests on Grace's shoulders.

The final installment in The Dark Divine trilogy brings Daniel and Grace's love story to a breathtaking conclusion.
I love these books and the ending for the last book killed me! I can't wait to read this one!


WHAT ARE YOU WAITING ON?

2012 Stand Alone Reading Challenge

Not Afraid 1 
 Hafsah of IceyBooks and Britta from I Like These Books are hosting the 2012 Stand Alone Reading
Challenge.
So what's the challenge? To read 15 standalone YA books in 2012!

What books count towards the 2012 Standalone Reading Challenge? Any Young Adult standalone book that is released between December 27, 2011 and December 31, 2012. Any format (paperback, hardcover, e-book, ARC) counts, but they must be read during the time period mentioned above.
 Go HERE to sign up at Hafsah's blog or at Britta's blog HERE.

I'm not going to include a list because I never know what books I can get my hands on so I'll update it as the time goes on!

1. As I Wake—Elizabeth Scott
2. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight—Jennifer E. Smtih
3. Stolen Away—Alyxandra Harvey
4. Fracture—Megan Miranda
5. Cleopatra’s Moon—Vicky Alvear Shecter
6. Queen of Kentucky—Alicia Whitaker
7. The Fault in Our Stars—Joh Green
8. Epic Fail—Claire LaBeznik
9. Shooting Stars—Allison Rushby

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday {20}

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted over at The Broke and the Bookish!
This week: 

Top Ten Books On My TBR List For Winter:


1) The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michele Hodkin: Um. Yeah, do I need to explain this?

2) Inheritance by Christopher Paolini: The ending to a series I've loved since I first read it!

3) Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake: I love this cover and I've been meaning to get to it!

4) The Future of Us by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler: I need to get my hands on this no matter what!

5) Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi: I'm a little worried about this one since I've read mixed reviews but it still sounds pretty darn awesome!

6) Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare: No explanation needed, right?

7) Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver: Delirium's ending killed me and I need to know WHAT HAPPENS NEXT! 

8) The Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy: Summer reading for AP English 4! I have to read this one! 

9) Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte:
Summer reading for AP English 4! I have to read this one! 

10) and I can't come up with another one!


I want to know something: When you read a post like this, do you prefer it to be a list list this with no picutres or would you prefer I include pictures?

Monday, November 28, 2011

Review: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Title: Anna and the French Kiss
Author: Stephanie Perkins 
Release Date: December 2, 2010
Publisher: Dutton
Source: Gifted (RAK)

Anna was looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. So she's less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris—until she meets √Čtienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, √Čtienne has it all . . . including a serious girlfriend.

But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss? Stephanie Perkins keeps the romantic tension crackling and the attraction high in a debut guaranteed to make toes tingle and hearts melt.
Review: I’ve read this book many, many times yet I’ve never reviewed it. I could never find the words to actually sum up how much I loved this book. Recently (like a few days ago) I read Stephanie Perkin’s sophomore novel and I thought it would be right for me review this one as well.

Anna Oliphant was such an awesome protagonist. I could connect with this girl instantly and her snakiness made me laugh from the very beginning of the book! She wasn’t perfect but rather she had flaws that she wasn’t afraid to deal with. She did things I would have done and didn’t always deal with issues in the best way possible, something a lot of us can compare with! Seeing Paris from her eyes was just so much fun! Anna was also someone I could been myself being friends with and I really, really wanted her to be real!

The plot in an essence seems so over done: the whole going to boarding school in another country but not with Stephanie Perkins. She really made Paris and the school and the secondary characters come alive and it really was an original idea. The reason why Anna goes, though, to me was the most perfect because she wasn’t a bad kid whose parents thought she needed a life lesson. I love Meredith, Rashmi (yay for diversity!) and Josh…and Etienne St. Clair. Like the rest of this book and characters, they are very realistic. Etienne St. Clair was a history lover, short, awkward, sweet and a whole bunch of other things all rolled into one.

Stephanie Perkins has written a magical, funny, sweet, awkward and awesome debut. She’s a great writer who really knows how tell a good story and knows how the inside of a girl’s mind works when it comes to the question: Does he like me or not?



Overall: 5/5
Cover Comments: 2/5—I don't like this cover! Why can't I see the guy????It's just...BUT I do like the Eiffel Tower in the background!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

2012 YA Contemporary Challenge!

Angela of Reading Angel and Katie of Katie's Book Blog are hosting the 2012 YA Contemporary Challenge! I love contemporary and I can't wait to get started this challenge! I am LEVEL 3!
Levels:

Level 1: 5+ books

Level 2: 10+ books

Level 3: 15+ books

Rules: You can read any contemporary YA novel that is published between January 1, 2012 and December 30, 2012 but you must read them in 2012! (All formats accepted: paperback, ARC, e-book)
 SO sign up HERE at Angela's blog or HERE at Katie's!

1. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight—Jennifer E. Smith
2. Queen of Kentucky—Alicia Whitaker
3. The Fault in Our Stars—Joh Green
4. Epic Fail—Claire LaBeznik
5. Shooting Stars—Allison Rushby

In My Mailbox (48): Unbecoming, Nook, and Contemp Edition

THIS IS TWO WEEKS WORTH
From the Library:
Secrets of My Hollywood Life: On Location by Jen Calonita (read and reviewed)
Secrets of My Hollywood Life: Family Affairs by Jen Calonita 
Secrets of My Hollywood Life: Paparazzi Princess by Jen Calonita
(I'm addicted to this series!)

For Review:
None

Purchased: 
None

Gifted (by my big sis):

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michele Hodkin (OMG. Reading it now and loving it!)
Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins (OMG. I.LOVED.IT.READ.IT.IN.ONE.DAY)

Won: 

A NOOK COLOR WITH AN IF I DIE SKIN AND ALL OF RACHEL VINCENT'S SOUL SCREAMERS EBOOKS INCLUDING THE NOVELLAS!!!!!!!!! 

Sorry for the rather interesting pictures! I got an iPad 2 and I used the camera and Picnik to fix them up!

Hosted by The Story Siren



WHAT DID YOU GET IN YOUR MAILBOX?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

#JustContemporary: What I Want to See More of In YA

YA is such a great genre for books. As a teen, this is the main genre of books I read and review. While YA is awesome, I’m always in store for some new things. That said, I see a lot of overdone topics and I want to see more of other things as well. Why can’t the guy have two girls instead of the girl with two guys? Why can’t a character be of another race? So, here are a few things I want to see more of in YA books:

1) Male Protagonists: I don’t think anyone can truly understand a boy (and I’m sure boys say the same thing about girls) so it would be nice to read a book from the POV of a guy. I know how a girl reacts to her parents’ divorce so now I want to know how a guy reacts. How does he feel when someone he loved dies? How is peer pressure affecting a guy? I want to know more about boys and their thoughts!

2) LGBT Characters: Teens are gay or lesbian or bisexual so why can’t we get more characters that are? I want to see how an LGBT characters handles themselves and their views on the world.

3) Diversity: I want a Japanese character or an Indian character or a Colombian character to tell me about his or her life and how she lives it. I want to learn more about the culture and heritage of the Japanese people. I want there to be diversity in YA. There are so many different types of people in the world so let’s get to know them better. As an Indian and Asian, I don’t see enough of this in YA. Do I mind that the character is Caucasian? No, I don’t. But I’d love to see more diversity.

4) International Settings: Anna and the French Kiss is the first example that comes to mind when I think about (I just remembered Die for Me by Amy Plum as well) books with international settings. Not only is Paris awesome, I’d love to go to a boarding school there. Stephanie Perkins describes Paris beautifully and the school Anna attends sounds awesome as well. Let’s get out of America and go around the world to new places, meeting new people and seeing new cultures.

5) Parent/Child relationship that isn’t horrible: Against the contrary, not all teens hate their parents. Not all teens have a bad relationship with their parents. SO let’s not make it where it seems that all teens hate their parents and want nothing to do with them. It’s not true people!

6) Mysteries: As a young kid, I loved reading Nancy Drew books and the Hardy Boys books and I’ve noticed that there aren’t that many mystery books out there. Furthermore, I want a good mystery book to read. I want something that actually keeps me guessing and doesn’t give anything away in the first half of the book. I want to be surprised when the mystery is solved. The Agency books by Y.S. Lee are some of the best mysteries books I’ve read in a few years; something that isn’t Nancy Drew. Also, as a bonus, it’s a mix with historical fiction!

7) A Good Best Friend: WHY ARE ALL THESE BEST FRIENDS SO HORRIBLE? I’ve read numerous books where the best friend sucks. Yes, I’ve seen people like that but my besties aren’t like one of them at all. I want more best friends to not be bit**** and back stabbers. I want caring and trust worthy best friends.

8) A Good Love Interest AND the Good Guy Wins: There are so many flat, horrible love interests out there. Why is it that the bad boy always gets the girl? Yes, I understand that they are swoon worthy and wonderful but guys, there are some really great good guys out there too and THEY deserve to get the girl just as much as the other guy. I want the love interest to have flaws; no more perfect, absolutely gorgeous guys please. I want him (her) to be realistic. Why can’t he like history or not be the quarterback. Let him (her) be a science geek or a theater person. Let the love interest be real.

What about you? What do you want to see more of in YA??

Friday, November 25, 2011

Review: Shade (Shade #1) by Jeri Smith Ready

Title: Shade
Series: Shade #1
Author: Jeri Smith Ready
Release Date: May 4, 2010
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Source: Library

Love ties them together. Death can't tear them apart.

Best. Birthday. Ever. At least, it was supposed to be. With Logan's band playing a critical gig and Aura's plans for an intimate after-party, Aura knows it will be the most memorable night of her boyfriend's life. She never thought it would be his last.

Logan's sudden death leaves Aura devastated. He's gone.

Well, sort of.

Like everyone born after the Shift, Aura can see and hear ghosts. This mysterious ability has always been annoying, and Aura had wanted nothing more than to figure out why the Shift happened so she can undo it. But not with Logan's violet-hued spirit still hanging around. Because dead Logan is almost as real as ever. Almost.

It doesn't help that Aura's new friend Zachary is so understanding—and so very alive. His support means more to Aura than she cares to admit.

As Aura's relationships with the dead and the living grow ever complicated, so do her feelings for Logan and Zachary. Each holds a piece of Aura's heart...and clues to the secret of the Shift.
Review:To say that I loved this book is an understatement. To say that I want a Zachary in real life is an understatement. I’d heard numerous good things about this book and it looked good but I never picked it up. I was bored one day and I decided to read it. Now I’m mad because I didn’t read this book sooner!

This book has such a unique idea. 16 and ¾ years ago, after the Shift, all the babies born are able to see ghosts. Seriously, that is the coolest thing about the plot! Not only does our protagonist see ghosts but she’s not the only one who can which makes this even more fun to read about! There is so much great world building in this book! Jeri Smith Ready moves the plot along in the best pace possible and doesn’t confuse you at all. ALSO the mystery involving the Shift and Aura and Zachary kept me wondering what the heck was going to happen next!

Aura is a very independent, confident girl who can see ghosts. After her boyfriend Logan dies on his birthday, she begins to see his ghost. It creates lots of problems for Aura since Logan is a ghost and obviously, she still loves him. Things get even more complicated for her when Zachary comes into the picture. Scottish with a killer awesome accent, Zach is a nice guy who genuinely cares about Aura. When she begins to fall for Zach, she wonders if she’s being unfaithful to Logan, who as a ghost can see what Aura does. The relationships are very complicated but they are very realistic as well.

Jeri Smith Ready includes lots of music that is really important to our characters and lots and lots of mystery, danger, suspense, and of course, romance! Shade is a great read for lovers of paranormal that is totally addicting. If you haven’t read this one yet, go and read it now!


Overall: 5/5
Cover Comments: 5/5—Goes really well with the story! I love the purple whispy smoke!


Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!


Happy Thanksgiving to all my US readers, bloggers, and people!

I'm so thankful for my family and my freinds and everyone I know in real life and who have help make me who I am today.

I'm so thankful for all of the blogging friends I've made during these years! You're always there no matter what!

Thanks to all of you readers who are still with me and I hope you continue to be with me!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Books For Kids Charity

Farrah and Britney of I Eat Words are two very awesome women! Not only are they amazing book bloggers but they are also involved in a charity (THAT THEY STARTED!) that I think it super awesome!

Why Books for Kids? (from I Eat Words)
Many hospitals, like Phoenix Children's Hospital and Scottish Rite Children's Hospital (in Dallas, TX) strictly run off of brand new book donations from book donators. It's hard for these hospitals to keep an abundant supply of brand new, up and coming and inspirational books. This is where YOUR donations come in. 100% of the money you donate goes to buying books for these sick children. They have to be brand new because the hospitals do not want to expose children to used material. Books for Kids accepts brand new book donations or money donations in our PayPal account. The best part? We film the entire process, right up to donating to these hospitals so you can really see where your donation is helping.
Doesn't that sound awesome!? I don't know what my childhood would have been like without books and the thought of giving a book to a sick child and get them to smile and be excited about reading, well, I'm all for that! Don't we want to, as book bloggers and other wise, to get people to read? Here's what YOU can do:
We're asking ALL bloggers, authors, publishers, etc. to film a 30 second or less video of themselves saying a one-liner about Books for Kids, like "I support Books for Kids" (or something WAY more creative than that). These clips will be combined into a giant promotional awareness video for Books for Kids! In your clip, it will also have your name and blog site (or name and book title, if you're an author!) so people know who's supporting BFK. :)

This is a reminder post! We're asking everyone to please film a clip and get it in before December 1st. If you don't feel comfortable on film but want to be in the video, email me at farraheatswords@gmail.com with your name, website, and one-sentence line of why you support BFK and I'll add it in!

If you're a part of nerdfighteria, this charity is going to be a part of John and Hank Green's Project for Awesome, which launches in December!
ALL you have to do is send in a sentence saying something as simple as "I support Books for Kids!" OR you can even send them a brand new book! I think since Thanksgiving in tomorrow, it would be really nice to share something we all love with kids who need it: BOOKS!

GO HERE TO FIND OUT MORE!

"Waiting On" Wednesday (65)

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.


Title: Grave Mercy: His Fair Assassin Book 1
Author: Robin LaFevers
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release Date: March 7, 2012
Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?
History. Assassins. Death.Britain. The Cover. Oh my, yes please!
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Title:Survive 
Author: Alex Morel 
Publisher: Candlewick Press 
Release Date: August 12, 2012 
Jane runs away from Life House, a facility for kids with mental health disorders and addictions. She boards a plane to Montclair, New Jersey, though her destination does not matter—she doesn’t plan to be alive when the plane lands. Jane has planned the perfect suicide: she’ll fall asleep on the plane and never wake up. As she’s reaching for her pills in the cabin’s bathroom, the plane hits turbulence. Another jolt, and the engine’s down. The plane crashes into the mountains of Montana, and Jane and a boy named Paul are the only two survivors.

What starts out as a death mission quickly becomes a fight for life.
The cover. The synopsis. Need I say more?


WHAT ARE YOU WAITING ON?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday {19}

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted over at The Broke and the Bookish!
This week: 

Top Ten Authors I'd Love To Have At My Thanksgiving Feast:

1) J. K. Rowling: Guys, seriously, do you have to ask? But of course, I won't really be able to talk to her because...she's J.K. Rowling!

2) Maureen Johnson: Her blog and tweets are fun to read and she seems to be a funny person!

3) John Green: I love his vlogs (and Hank! He should bring Hank too!) and I think he and Maureen Johnson together would be really awesome (not to mention entertaining and hilarious!)

4) Jane Austen: First, there was no time limit on this! And again, do I need to explain?

5) Sarah Dessen: The Queen of YA Contemporary!

6) Meg Cabot: Dude, I LOVE her writing and speaking to her would be super awesome!

7) Suzanne Collins: No explanation needed, right?

8) Lauren Oliver: One of my all time fave authors ever!

9) Rick Riordan: I ALMOST met him in person! He makes mythology SO MUCH FUN and I'd love to pick at his brain, asking him a zillion questions about his books and stuff.

10) Stephanie Meyer: I was a little surprised that I inluded her here but then I realized that Twilight, no matter how I feel about it now, was a big part of my young teenage years. I would love to have her at my table and to discuss the books with her.


Monday, November 21, 2011

Review: Last Sacrifice (VA #6) by Richelle Mead

Title: Last Sacrifice
Series: Vampire Academy #6
Author: Richelle Mead
Release Date: December 7, 2010
Publisher: Penguin USA
Source: Bought

It all comes down to now.

Murder. Love. Jealousy. And the ultimate sacrifice.

The Queen is dead and the Moroi world will never be the same. Now, with Rose awaiting wrongful execution and Lissa in a deadly struggle for the royal throne, the girls find themselves forced to rely upon enemies and to question those they thought they could trust...

But what if true freedom means sacrificing the most important thing of all?

Each other.
Review:Though I read this series quiet late and after many of my friends had, I decided to read it...and I fell in love with the first book. And I read the next four books, expecting awesome, amazing, fantastic books and that's what I got. And then this book came out.

It broke my heart to read this. I read this book in about a week, savoring every last moment with Rose and Dimitri and Lissa and Christian and Adrian. Sure I could go back and read the rest of the books BUT it would never be like read them for the first time.

The Plot: OH.MY.GOD. There were so many twists and turns and surprises that I was literally at the edge of my seat THE ENTIRE TIME I READ THIS. So many things happened that I wasn't expecting and I knew that Richelle Mead would tell one heck of a story and did she ever. So many things were explained. So, so many revelations and it's so freaking awesome!

The Characters: I love Rose so much! She's back to all her glory but for the...well, I dunno, third? fourth? time we see the sensitive side of Rose. The side where she is not only kick ass awesome but vulnerable also. Lissa is so much stronger than I ever gave her credit for. She’s so freaking awesome in this book and the way she takes her place in society was just so great. I’m glad things worked out for her. Dimitri and Adrian and the other boys that I’ve grown to love were also back and even though things worked out for one of the main guys, man did I feel for the other one. You know the one who had his heart broken? The other supporting new and old characters are back and some play a much bigger role than ever and other add to the suspense and the intrigue and answer a lot of our burning questions.

Overall, I loved this book. So, so, so much. I actually teared up when I closed this book. I really, really need to get Bloodlines so I can continue my adventure in this world. Please don’t be put off by the fact that there are vampires in this book. Believe me, I feel ya BUT this is one of my all time favorite series and there is so much more going on in these books than vampires. In a way, it’s like the vampires actually take a back seat in this series! It’s a must read for all of you who like a good, fulfilling read.

Overall: 5/5
Cover Comments: 5/5—Love how they continued the whole faces on the covers. I think that this model actually conveys what is going on really well. She's got something in her eyes that reminds me of Rose.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Review: On Location by Jen Calonita

Title: On Location
Series: Secrets of My Hollywood Life #2
Author: Jen Calonita
Release Date: May 1, 2007
Publisher: Little, Brown Young Readers
Source: Library

It seems like the summer of dreams come true for Hollywood princess Kaitlin Burke: the media loves her (again), super-cute and funny Austin Meyers is finally her boyfriend, and she's starring in a movie by her all-time favorite director Hutch Adams. What could be sweeter? But life on set is not as perfect as the makeup and costumes. And with an old love and a scheming new publicist on the scene, it's about to get a whole lot messier.
Review: I love the first book in this series, Secrets of My Hollywood Life and I couldn’t wait to read the rest of the books in this series! On Location, book two, was just as fun, cute and a quick read!

Kaitlin is back in this second installment and her life is going great. She’s got a great boyfriend, the media loves her and she’s about to being working on a movie by her favorite director; life couldn’t be better. But this is Kaitlin, a big star and she’s in Hollywood. There is always something going on in Hollywood. And soon, the plot thickens when a slimy ex comes into the picture and everything goes downhill from there. The plot did seem repetitive but I can understand that the same things can happen over and over again.

Kaitlin was a great protagonist once again and there was a lot more character building in this book than there was in the first book. I really did feel for her though, since she seemed to always get the bad end of the stick and everyone was after her. But then again, if everything wasn’t against her and she didn’t prevail, we wouldn’t have such a good story!

While the writing wasn’t absolutely exceptional, it was very entertaining and I highly enjoyed reading about Kaitlin’s new adventure. I’m currently read book three and I’m liking it too!



Overall: 4/5
Cover Comments: 5/5—I love how these are such simple diary covers!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Discussion: Reviews and Re-Reads and Ratings

On many occasions, I will read a book, love it and write a raving review of it. For a long time, that’s what I think of the book. Then I re-read the book and I begin to think otherwise. My opinion of this book changes. Not my opinion for every single book of course, just some of them.

I have read so many reviews where I go “that’s what I thought” or I read the review and I realize that I thought that but didn’t write it on my review. Then I begin thinking if I’m an easy grader which doesn’t go with the fact that my reviews are honest. I’ve raved about certain books I’ve read at the time I read it and then later, I’m thinking to myself “Really? I liked this book that much?”

I’ve thought about changing that review but I know it’s not right to do that. BUT I’m always honest with my reviews and when I change my mind about it, it seems…wrong? I’m not sure how to put this but here are two things that I want to talk about and why I feel this way:

1) Ratings: I like ratings. I use them because they help me summarize my thoughts on a novel but I’m not sure if it’s right to use them, ya know? Sometimes a 5 star book changes to a 3 or lower star book during the re-read and that just makes it all the harder to talk about that book later on.

2) Raving: I rave about books I love. I talk about them. I tell others to read them. So it feels weird when I re-read a book I raved about months (or weeks or days) ago and I don’t like it as much. I don’t know why I raved about it so much. And then a person will ask about that certain book because they heard from someone else that I loved it a whole lot, I have no idea what to say to them!

SO this goes to the topic of using ratings systems. Should I remove my numerical grading system? As NaNoWriMo comes closer, I’ve gotten a better sense of this. No one book is written the same so is it fair to judge them all on the same scale, for every single book?

What do you all think?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday (64)

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.


Title: Endlessly (Paranormalcy #3) 
Author: Kiersten White 
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: July 24, 2012
The third book in the Paranormalcy trilogy.

The final chapter of Evie's adventures. Old friends, new ones, all wrapped up in impossible decisions. And some ball gowns. Because what's a life of normal and paranormal drama without a ball gown or two?
I think Kiersten White has some of the most gorgeous covers out there!
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Title:The Selection
Author: Kiera Cross   
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: April 24, 2012 
For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in the palace and compete for the heart of the gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself- and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.
Love the cover. Love the summary. I can't wait to read it!


WHAT ARE YOU WAITING ON?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Review: Where the Truth Lies by Jessica Warman

Title: Where the Truth Lies
Author: Jessica Warman
Release Date: Walker Books for Young Readers
Publisher: September 28, 2010
Source: Library
On the surface, Emily Meckler leads the perfect life. She has three best friends, two loving parents, and the ideal setup at the Connecticut prep school where her father is the headmaster. But Emily also suffers from devastating nightmares about fire and water, and nobody knows why. Then the enigmatic Del Sugar enters her life, and Emily is immediately swept away—but her passionate relationship with Del is just the first of many things that aren't quite what they seem in Emily's life. As the lies she's been told start to unravel, Emily must set out to discover the truth regarding her nightmare; on a journey that will lead her to question everything she thought she knew about love, family, and her own idyllic past.

This companion novel to Warman's critically acclaimed Breathless proves that sometimes the biggest lies are told to the people you love the most.
Review: I’m not sure about this book. I wasn’t going to write this review at first but then I thought, why not. Here’s why:

The plot: While I was completely engrossed in Emily’s story, I still do not feel that I was connected to her. Some of her actions and decisions really, really bugged me to the point where I just wanted to slap her and get her to stop! Her relationship with Del Sugar, for me, was not well developed and happened really suddenly. I have to say that it didn’t even feel like a relationship to be, but rather an obsession. There was SO much going on in this book and while I kept guessing at what was going to happen and all, I got a little frustrated by it all. BUT I like have surprises and twists and turns and they kept me at the edge of my seat!

The characters: To me, it was like Emily was the only one who changed and not for the better either. She was the good girl in the beginning of the story and began to rebel after she met Del Sugar. This would have been nice…if it hadn’t been so annoying. Ethan, Stephanie, and her other friends were just kind of there. I did like Rene a lot and I liked how their friendship became stronger and more prominent.

The writing: This book is so beautifully written that in the end, it was the reason I finished and enjoyed this book as much as I did. It really kept the book and the plot going and it brought out the emotions of the characters and the feel of the school and the fields.

Overall, I enjoyed this book for some of the plot and mainly for the writing, I’m still not sure exactly how I feel about this book. I do love the cover and it does go really well with the book….



Overall: 3/5
Cover Comments: 5/5—I love it! I love how it's tilted and the school in the background and the field!

Review: Love Story by Jennifer Echols

Title: Love Story
Author: Jennifer Echols
Release Date: July 19, 2011
Publisher: MTV Books
Source: Owned

She’s writing about him. he’s writing about her. And everybody is reading between the lines..

For Erin Blackwell, majoring in creative writing at the New York City college of her dreams is more than a chance to fulfill her ambitions–it’s her ticket away from the tragic memories that shadow her family’s racehorse farm in Kentucky. But when she refuses to major in business and take over the farm herself someday, her grandmother gives Erin’s college tuition and promised inheritance to their maddeningly handsome stable boy, Hunter Allen. Now Erin has to win an internship and work late nights at a coffee shop to make her own dreams a reality. She should despise Hunter . . . so why does he sneak into her thoughts as the hero of her latest writing assignment?

Then, on the day she’s sharing that assignment with her class, Hunter walks in. He’s joining her class. And after he reads about himself in her story, her private fantasies about him must be painfully clear. She only hopes to persuade him not to reveal her secret to everyone else. But Hunter devises his own creative revenge, writing sexy stories that drive the whole class wild with curiosity and fill Erin’s heart with longing. Now she’s not just imagining what might have been. She’s writing a whole new ending for her romance with Hunter . . . except this story could come true.
Review: I’d never read anything by Jennifer Echols before so I was excited to read this book. I’d read plenty of reviews around the blogosphere so I knew what I was going to get. Everyone loved her and her books and her writing and now I can see why. Love story is a very sexy, realistic and just plain awesome.

This book is different from a lot of YA’s since its set in college and no in high school which I loved a lot. They were different from high schoolers, obviously, but they were still young people and it really showed through in this book, and it was awesome. It’s also set in NYC and anything in NYC is awesome. The book is set up even more perfectly by having our main characters in a creative writing class!

I absolutely loved the stories that Hunter and Erin wrote for their creative writing class. They really brought out what our characters where thinking and who they were. Hunter and Erin used their stories to communicate with each other and I thought that this was a nice mix up. Erin was a great protagonist to read about and from her POV. She was a young, fiery, independent woman who didn’t want to be seen as weak but she didn’t want to always be tough. She was actually really easy to relate to. Jennifer Echols put in a lot of twists that really made me not want to put this book down!

The only thing about this book was the fact that Erin doesn’t want her creative writing professor to find out that Hunter is the stable boy in her story but we never understand why it was such a bad thing for her professor to find out. Overall, though, it was a fun, had a lot of sexytimz, and a quick read.



Overall: 4/5
Cover Comments: 5/5—I like it as far as covers go and I think that it actually does go with the book.

Top Ten Tuesday {19}

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted over at The Broke and the Bookish!
This week: 

Top Ten Books That Have Been On My Shelf For The Longest But I've Never Read:
1. Courtney Summer’s Books: I’ve got all three of them on my shelf but I have yet to read them. I’ve heard they are amazing though! 

2. Shiver Trilogy by Maggie Stiefvater: No idea why I haven’t read these books. 

3. The Extraordinary Secrets of April, May, and June by Robin Benway: Another book I have had on my shelf for goodness knows how long! 

4. Forgive My Fins by Tera Lynn Childs: I actually won the second book some time ago and I was excited to read it…until I realized I still hadn’t read the first book…no idea why. 

5. The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan: I've had it on my shelf for a long time but I haven't read it. 

6. The Host by Stephenie Meyer: I got this because I'd heard that it was actually really good but I still have not read it.

7. Losing Faith by Denise Jaden: I got this one when it came out 

8. The Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa: Yeah, I know, I STILL have not read this one....

9. Nightshade by Andrea Cremer: I've heard that it's such a good book and the cover is super gorgeous but I haven't read it!  

10. Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce: Love the cover, heard it's good, but I haven't read it...

Monday, November 14, 2011

Review: Wither (Chemical Garden Trilogy #1 )by Lauren DeStefano

Title: Wither
Series: The Chemical Garden Trilogy #1
Author: Lauren DeStefano
Release Date: March 22, 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Source: Library

By age sixteen, Rhine Ellery has four years left to live. She can thank modern science for this genetic time bomb. A botched effort to create a perfect race has left all males with a lifespan of 25 years, and females with a lifespan of 20 years. Geneticists are seeking a miracle antidote to restore the human race, desperate orphans crowd the population, crime and poverty have skyrocketed, and young girls are being kidnapped and sold as polygamous brides to bear more children.

When Rhine is kidnapped and sold as a bride, she vows to do all she can to escape. Her husband, Linden, is hopelessly in love with her, and Rhine can’t bring herself to hate him as much as she’d like to. He opens her to a magical world of wealth and illusion she never thought existed, and it almost makes it possible to ignore the clock ticking away her short life. But Rhine quickly learns that not everything in her new husband’s strange world is what it seems. Her father-in-law, an eccentric doctor bent on finding the antidote, is hoarding corpses in the basement. Her fellow sister wives are to be trusted one day and feared the next, and Rhine is desperate to communicate to her twin brother that she is safe and alive. Will Rhine be able to escape–before her time runs out?
Review: Before reading this book, I’d read plenty of mixed reviews to mix up my thoughts. Did I want to read this book? What if I read it and I didn’t like it? That would be a waste of my time. What if I didn’t read it but I would have loved it? I finally decided to give it a try and I’m glad I did! I’m going to say that I absolutely loved it because I didn’t but I enjoyed reading it a lot.

Any other day polygamy would not be my choice of subject to read about but I did in this book and I enjoyed it. I liked reading this book and reading more about this world and what was happening in it. I have to give it to Lauren for not making polygamy the absolute main focus of this plot. To me, the main focus was on our protagonist Rhine and her feelings of where she currently was and what was happening to her. The plot moved a bit too slowly at times and some things seemed a bit repetitive and that really pulled me away. BUT the main thing that bugged me about this book was this: the world’s population is dying out. Guys live till 25 and girls till 20. YET, even after this fact, you kill a van full of young girls because they don’t meet the status quo? HOW does that make any sense to anyone? I get that you want the best traits for the new generation but really? Kill all those girls?

I think there are two things this book is, in my opinion, going to be known for: the gorgeous cover and the equally gorgeous, lyrical writing of Lauren DeStefano. I just loved, loved the feel and sounding of the words together. This book really, really came alive with her descriptions but the best part was that the descriptions weren’t overdone. They were just right! The feel of this entire novel is just so palpable. The emotions and the descriptions were just so darn real! Rhine in turn was an amazing protagonist! She’s a strong, fierce girl who knows what she wants but she’s human too.

There wasn’t a lot of romance in this book and usually I like a book to have a certain amount and I felt that this book didn’t necessarily have enough. Rhine’s relationship with Linden and Gabriel wasn’t developed enough to my liking but I hope that in the next book, it will get better.

Overall, I enjoyed this book a lot but some aspects didn’t work for me. I will read Fever when it comes out but I don’t think it will be right away. I think people should really give this book a try!



Overall: 4/5
Cover Comments: 5/5—GEORGOUS! I LOVE THIS COVER SO MUCH. It’s got so much symbolism to the book and it fits the book perfectly!

 
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