Saturday, October 29, 2011

On My Wishlist

 

On My Wishlist is a great event that Book Chick City runs every Saturday. It's where you list all of the books that you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. I thought that this was a fantabulous idea so I thought I would join in!
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 "Deadly Cool" by Gemma Halliday

From Goodreads: "Hartley Grace Featherstone is having a very bad day. First she finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her with the president of the Herbert Hoover High School Chastity Club. Then he's pegged as the #1 suspect in a murder. And if that weren't enough, now he's depending on Hartley to clear his name. Seriously? Not cool.

But as much as Hartley wouldn't mind seeing him squirm, she knows he's innocent, and she's the only one who can help him. Along with her best friend, Sam, and the school's resident Bad Boy, Chase, Hartley starts investigating on her own. But as the dead bodies begin to pile up, the mystery deepens, the suspects multiply, and Hartley begins to fear that she may be the killer's next victim."


I have heard that this is similar to Veronica Mars and I love me some Veronica! Must get my hands on this ASAP! 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Winner!


Congrats to Victoria Zumbrum! She has won an E-book of Michelle Franklin's "Tales from Frewyn: The Opera"!

She has 48 hours to respond my email or I will draw a new winner. 

Thanks to all who entered and thanks to author Michelle Franklin!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Free E-books!

Lately I have come across some really amazing E-books that are currently being offered for FREE on Amazon (though only for a short time)! Therefore I have compiled a list of some of them for y'all! Just click on the cover and it will take you to Amazon.


***If you decide to pick up some of these books look at the prices to ensure that they are, in fact, still being offered for free as their prices are subject to change quite quickly!***

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday


"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating...
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Title: "Grave Mercy: His Fair Assassin" 
Author: R.L. LaFevers
Release Date: March 7th, 2012

From Goodreads: "Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?  

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?"

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

"Smokeless Fire" by Samantha Young And GIVEAWAY


From Goodreads: "Fear the Heat...


For the last two years Ari’s life has been anything but normal and on her 18th birthday, when her friends surprise her with a gimmick genie claiming to grant wishes, Ari discovers the truth. The tragic and strange occurrences surrounding her 16th birthday were not coincidental and her life is never going to be the same again.

Ari’s real parents are not normal. They are not loving. They are not human.

They are myth.

They are Smokeless Fire.

They are Jinn."


I must admit, I have been kicking myself hard since I finished reading this book. Why might I be kicking myself? Because I cannot believe that this is the first book of Samantha's that I have read (especially since I have at least five of her books on my Kindle- and have had them on there for at least half a year)! If you have yet to read one of Samantha's books, what are you waiting for? Seriously, go read one, I guarantee that you won't be disappointed!

This book was jam-packed with everything that I love, a wholly unique premise (I personally believe that Samantha has done for Jinns what Rachel Vincent did for bean sidhes), a strong (and snarky) female character, equally strong male characters (both of whom were entirely swoon-worthy), and the basis for a successful love triangle (for some of you a 'successful love triangle' may seem like an oxymoron, but in my opinion, a successful love triangle is one in which the reader has an extremely difficult time choosing which of the characters they would like the main character to end up with, in this case Charlie and Jai, because both are such equals, possessing amazing qualities and whatnot, versus an unsuccessful or unnecessary love triangle where it is obvious from the get-go who the main character will choose as one option clearly outweighs the other- for instance Jace over Simon in Cassie Clare's "Mortal Instruments" series). While I am a tad bit more Team Jai than Team Charlie, I wouldn't be disappointed in the slightest if Ari were to choose Charlie.

As mentioned, each and every one of the characters in this book was so well developed and complex (main characters and secondary characters alike!)- from Ari, lonely and struggling to find her place in the world (even before being made aware of her paranormal heritage), from Jai, also lonely, being a pariah amongst his family, to Charlie, a boy blaming himself for something that was out of his control. Furthermore, I loved the change in perspectives as it allowed us to gain an even better understanding of each character- I think it would be near impossible to not feel for these characters and come to befriend them.

All in all, this is a book that I know I will be rereading time and time again. Not only can I not wait to read the next next book in this series, but I cannot wait to start reading Samantha's other series including her "The Tale of Lunarmorte" series, her "Warriors of Ankh" series, and her "Chronicles of the Fade" series!

Rating: 10/10

Memorable lines from the book:

"Sarcasm is such an unattractive quality in anyone but me" (38%). 

"You think you're in love with him." 
"There;s no 'think' in that sentence" (44%). 

"But just so you know... She's been mine for a long time."
You little price of fu-
Ratbag little-
"[...] Yours?" (70%)

I received this book from the author to read and honestly review. I was not compensated in any way for said review.

And now onto the fun stuff! GIVEAWAY TIME!

There will be TWO (2) winners!

  • The TWO (2) winners will receive an e-book copy of the book.

Hows it work? 

  • One only entry per person. 
  • There will be TWO (2) winners. 
  • Contest is International (as the prizes are e-books).
  • Giveaway ends Tuesday November 1st, 2011 at 11:59 p.m.
  • Winners will have 48 hours after notification to respond.
  • Prize are being distributed by a third party (the author).
  • You do not have to be a follower of my blog to enter the giveaway BUT if you Tweet (or spread the word) about the giveaway you will receive an additional point in the draw (FYI: See that little "Tweet" button at the bottom of this post? Click on it and all of the information you should include in the Tweet is already in it!)

To enter, fill out the form below 

This giveaway has now closed.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

On My Wishlist

 

On My Wishlist is a great event that Book Chick City runs every Saturday. It's where you list all of the books that you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. I thought that this was a fantabulous idea so I thought I would join in!
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Okay, so I am not going to lie- I hated "The Vampire Diaries" novels. I read then in their entirety (well, the originals) and basically had to force myself to finish them, but I LOVE the TV show. And now I love "The Secret Circle" TV show, so I am kinda wondering what the books are all about, how similar they are to one another and all that jazz.

"The Secret Circle: The Initiation and The Captive" by L.J. Smith

From Goodreads: "The circle's power has lured her home.

Forced to move from sunny California to gloomy New England, Cassie longs for her old life. Even so, she feels a strange kinship to a terrifying group of teens who seem to rule her school. Initiated into the coven of witches that's controlled New Salem for hundreds of years, she's drawn into the Secret Circle, a thrill that's both intoxicating and deadly. But when she falls for the mysterious and intriguing Adam, Cassie must choose whether to resist temptation or risk dark forces to get what she wants—even if it means that one wrong move could ultimately destroy her."

Friday, October 21, 2011

"The Fate of the Muse" by Derrolyn Anderson

From Goodreads: "Trouble is stalking Marina. She’s already escaped the clutches of her formidable foe once, but fate has even more trials in store for her. There are evil plans in the works– plans that threaten both her and her newly found family. 

As she struggles to come to grips with her unwanted powers, outside forces threaten to tear Marina and Ethan apart, making her doubt their vision of an idyllic future together. Can first love be true love?"

When I read the first book in Derrolyn Anderson's "Marina's Tales" series, "Between the Land and the Sea", I was completely blown away- the book was everything that I had hoped for. While the next book, "The Moon and the Tide", did have everything that I had liked from the original book, a captivating and fast-paced storyline, likeable characters, and whatnot, I did find myself growing frustrated at the turn Marina and Ethan's relationship took. 

In "Between the Land and the Sea" Marina and Ethan's relationship was simply "SQUEE"-worthy (they were just so cute together, her the little willowy artisty girl, him the popular All-American boy), I found that in "The Moon and the Tide" their relationship started to change, becoming not so cute (with Ethan becoming quite possessive and demanding), and in the large majority of this book, (it pains me to admit this) I found myself actually hoping that they would break up just so I wouldn't have to read of their constant bickering back and forth. 

The main reason why I wanted them to break up was because of lack of trust- on both their parts. Marina didn't trust Ethan to not fall in love with his ex all over again, Ethan didn't trust Marina to not go running off into the sea, deciding to become a mermaid rather than stay human, with him. Also, I found it quite frustrating whenever they would bicker about something one of them (typically Ethan) would say something along the lines of, "Well, it will get better when we are married." In constantly saying to one another, "Things will get better in marriage", they really showed their age (17 years old) and their immaturity- in no way are they prepared to take that HUGE leap (I can't help but think to myself, "You don't trust one another when you are just dating, what will it be like when you are MARRIED? No better, I am sure."). Furthermore, I feel that Marina and Ethan are just holding one another back- that they cannot reach their full potential when together.

*NOTE: I didn't dislike Marina and Ethan being together in the ENTIRE novel, there were a few times in the book where something cute would happen between Ethan and Marina  (ie. a look exchanged between them and whatnot) that would make me root for them to be together, but these moments were few and far between, in my opinion. 

That being said, I did enjoy the other aspects of this book. I loved when Marina was globetrotting with Shayla (specifically when they were at the photo shoot in Hawaii), I loved when Marina was spending her nights surfing (I have never had any inclination to go surfing before, mainly because I can barely swim, but I really want to give it a go after reading Derrolyn's beautiful descriptions of it), and I loved seeing Cruz come into his own!

All in all, while this was not my most favourite book in the series, I still enjoyed it and I would highly recommend this series to anyone looking for a light-hearted and fun read! I cannot wait to see where Derrolyn takes the next book in the series!

Rating: 4/5

I received this book from the author to read and honestly review. I was not compensated in any way for said review.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

GIVEAWAY: "Tales from Frewyn: The Opera" by Michelle Franklin

I am happy to share that Michelle Franklin, one of my most favourite indie authors, has a new release, "Takes From Frewyn: The Opera", and that she has not only shared an excerpt of the book with us, but she has also allowed me to give an E-copy of this book to one of you!

From Goodreads: "When due homage is paid to the heroes of Frewyn, what could possibly go wrong?

The Frewyn Players at the Royal Theatre in Diras are looking for new material to perform when a famous director from Marridon arrives to impart a Marridon theatrical pastime that is certain to make them famous. An opera will be their new performance, one that glorifies Frewyn's greatest heroes, but what begins as homage ends as mockery, and the play that would make them the greatest exhibition in Frewyn might instead make them the Den Asaan's most merited enemy."


 

The Royal Theatre 

                Beyond the main portion of Diras castle keep, between the memorial garden, dedicated to the kings and queens of Frewyn’s past, and the latrine tower, a place where everyone in the keep must visit but where no one wished to venture, was the Royal Theatre. It was called royal due to its origin in being constructed for the enlivenment and entertainment of the king and Frewyn nobility, but over the many years of its various exhibitions and staged depictions, with the declining gradations of quality in the performances and the diminishment of the general interest thereof, the theatre was opened to the Frewyn public for proper scrutiny, gapes and disparagement as the situation would allow. Grand balls in the royal parlour and private concerts became the amusement of choice for the Frewyn royals, and though the king still must sponsor the Frewyn Royal Players to tender affordable evening entertainment to the rest of his kingdom, while the productions were well executed, the originality and creativity of their displays soon waned. Old favourites such as One Man’s Woe and Mad Queen Maeve, the grandiose and colourful retellings of the more tragic moments in Frewyn’s history, prevailed and became traditions for the various seasons the threatre underwent, but to end the monotony of reiterating the same lines and singing the same songs, a new play was often introduced on the off-season, usually written by one of the cast with the hopes of such a production becoming a fever among the people of Frewyn as the others had done.
                Many attempts were made to capture the delights of the threatre-goers in this style and many times the players failed. The yeomanry, tradesmen, and artisans of the kingdom who were in want of a little evening entertainment at the end of the day were simply too well-versed in the arts and had too estimable an appreciation of writing, acting, and singing to be diverted by modest endeavors. They must have more for their hard-earned wages: they must have the pinnacle of performing arts, for they were not simple creature to be easily deceived by moderacy. Farmers left their seats and went outside to enjoy their pipes and good banter on the subjects of crop rotation and field mice; children fussed and fidgeted about, taking more pleasure in trying to step upon their friends’ toes than they could derive by watching the performance; women knitted and took to carpet work while discussing and comparing the various accomplishments of their children; babes cried and were fed, and the general disinclination of the audience to attend the given piece made the actors anxious to continue. Traditional plays were one thing, but new stories that the hale and hearty Frewyn spectators did not enjoy were entirely another. The distress and vexation the actors felt was expatiated by the audience’s unwillingness to regard them, and though Frewyns were never uncivil at first, tedium accorded was deserving of retaliation. Word soon reached the rest of the capital of the paltry attempts to entertain. A full theatre was reduced to half, the players grew despondent, and from their desperation to be adored, and from their worry of King Alasdair reneging his sponsorship, a new production of Mad Queen Maeve was staged and all good Frewyn society was disposed to return to their seats and marvel at the performance.
                Though the desires of the audience had been appeased, proven by their standing ovations and the increase in ticket sales, the aspirations of the Frewyn Players to perform something new and inspiring were yet unfounded. Everything that could be done to secure their livelihoods was done, but everything that could be done to secure their happiness and fulfillment was not. They pined for new lines, new characters, new dances and new songs, and their only reprieve from  the glaring uniformity came in concerts and festivities for the Frewyn holidays. A concert or two was given by the majesties to exercise their musical talents, the ballet of Sesterna made its annual visit, the acrobats from Lucentia came but twice a year when the weather suited their northern constitutions, and though these displays were enjoyed by the audience and therefore envied by the Frewyn Players, none besieged and confounded them all so well as the Marridon Opera. With voices so strident, subjects so catastrophic, costumes so outlandish and sets so refined, the opera more astounded than delighted. The Frewyn audience applauded because they knew they must to give propriety to their guests where it was due, but the amount of pleasure derived from such a performance was left to be guessed by each. Their general perplexity was mistaken for complete awe: the indiscernible feelings, the halfhearted accolades, the talk of not knowing what to make of such glorified tragedy was enough to convince the players of the opera’s magnificence. Only something so brilliantly contrived could amaze to such a degree, and the more it stunned, the more Frewyn would flock to it in hopes of understanding it.
                A Frewyn opera was therefore to be performed, and the subject of the recital but be one to which every Frewyn could relate. It must have love, it must have war, it must have loss and sanguinary themes, but above all it must be familiar. The Galleisian War was talked of and songs were even written for it, but while there was a certain romance in battle for those who had never fought one, there was even more romance to be found in another quarter: heroes of war must have their tales told, and two such Frewyn heroes would be the question to draw all of Frewyn to the theatre.
And now onto the fun stuff! GIVEAWAY TIME!

There will be One (1) winner!

  • The one (1) winner will receive a e-book copy of the book.

Hows it work? 

  • One only entry per person. 
  • There will be ONE (1) winner. 
  • Contest is International (as it is an e-book).
  • Giveaway ends Thursday, October 27th, 2011 at 11:59 p.m.
  • Winner will have 48 hours after notification to respond.
  • Prize are being distributed by a third party (the author).
  • You do not have to be a follower of my blog to enter the giveaway BUT if you Tweet (or spread the word) about the giveaway you will receive an additional point in the draw (FYI: See that little "Tweet" button at the bottom of this post? Click on it and all of the information you should include in the Tweet is already in it!)

To enter, fill out the form below 

This giveaway has now closed. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday/ Book Trailer Casting Call


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

"Masters of the Veil" has been on my radar for quite a while now, since the synopsis of it began popping up in the blogosphere world a few months back AND this week I actually have an amazing opportunity to share with you regarding this book! Author Daniel Cohen and Spencer Hill Press are actually looking for you (yes YOU!) to participate in the book trailer for "Masters of the Veil"! You might be wondering how? Well, that it all outlined later on in this post and you can find more details HERE
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Title: "Masters of the Veil"
Author: Daniel Cohen
Release Date: March 1st, 2012

From Goodreads: "Life can't get much better for Sam Lock. Popular, good-looking, and with a future as a professional football player. every guy at Stanton High School wishes he were Sam. That is, until his championship football game, when Sam accidentally links with an ancient source of energy known as the Veil and reveals his potential to become a powerful sorcerer.Sam is whisked off to Atlas Crown, a community of sorcerers who utilize the Veil as a part of everyday life. Once there, he trains beside a mute boy who speaks through music, an eternal sage who's the eyes and ears of the Veil, and a beautiful girl who's pretty sure Sam's an idiot.As it becomes clear Sam's meant for power magic-the most feared and misunderstood form of sorcery-people beyond Atlas Crown learn of his dangerous potential. An exiled group of power sorcerers are eager to recruit Sam, believing that he is destined to help them achieve their long-held goal. If they succeed, they could bring about the downfall of not only Atlas Crown. but all humankind."


Want to be in a book trailer? Now's your chance! 

Here's the deal: Sam Lock, the star player of your beloved Carver (Texas) High School football team, just choked during the crucial play of the championship game. We want the reactions of the fans, and you are the fans.

First, wear green and gold. Have fun; feel free to use face paint, accessories, etc., like you have a ton of school spirit. Alternatively, go goth with a tiny green and gold "C" on your black nail polish or something. You can dress like a nerd, a cheerleader, a stoner, a jock, a member of the marching band, a seriously over-involved booster parent, or whatever you'd like. Have fun and be creative!

Second, talk into the camera as though you're being interviewed by the local news or by one of your school's video bloggers. You're angry or dismayed or otherwise in shock, since football is practically a religion in your Texas town (don't go overboard on the accent, please!). Read the opening chapter here if you'd like to improvise your own lines. In fact, improvisation is encouraged.

Here are some suggested lines. You can use just one or send us takes of several. We prefer several short clips, rather than one long take.

"He choked!"

"What a loser! He could've gone pro!"

"He'll never live this down."

Or you can just sob hysterically while a friend hugs your shoulder.

You may enter as many times as you like; please have your submissions in by November 30th, 2011. By sending us the clip, you are consenting to allow us to use it for the book trailer, but everyone who appears on camera needs to print and sign a release form (download a PDF here) as well. If you're under eighteen, please have a parent sign, too.

The release forms can then be mailed to:
      MOTV Trailer
      Spencer Hill Press
      PO Box 247
      Contoocook, NH 03229
Or scanned and sent as PDF attachments to: editor@SpencerHillPress.com

Digital clips can be sent as attachments to: submissions@SpencerHillPress.com

Everyone who submits a clip will receive a Masters of the Veil rack card signed by the author. If we use your clip in the trailer, you'll receive an advance reading copy of Masters of the Veil (shipped to a US mailing address) inscribed to you by author Daniel Cohen.
 

(*information taken directly from: http://www.site.spencerhillpress.com/MOTV_Trailer.html).

So what are you waiting for? Go add this book to Goodreads and get filming! ;) 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Winner!


 Congrats to Chrystal! You have won a copy of "Dark of the Moon" by Tracy Barrett!

Gothical has 48 hours to respond to my email (which I will be sending shortly). 

Thanks everyone for entering (and special thanks to Thomas Allen and Sons publishing) and don't forget that you can find my review of "Dark of the Moon" HERE.

Monday, October 17, 2011

"Sisterhood Everlasting" by Ann Brashares

From Goodreads: "From #1 New York Times bestselling author Ann Brashares comes the welcome return of the characters whose friendship became a touchstone for a generation. Now Tibby, Lena, Carmen, and Bridget have grown up, starting their lives on their own. And though the jeans they shared are long gone, the sisterhood is everlasting.

Despite having jobs and men that they love, each knows that something is missing: the closeness that once sustained them. Carmen is a successful actress in New York, engaged to be married, but misses her friends. Lena finds solace in her art, teaching in Rhode Island, but still thinks of Kostos and the road she didn’t take. Bridget lives with her longtime boyfriend, Eric, in San Francisco, and though a part of her wants to settle down, a bigger part can’t seem to shed her old restlessness.

Then Tibby reaches out to bridge the distance, sending the others plane tickets for a reunion that they all breathlessly await. And indeed, it will change their lives forever—but in ways that none of them could ever have expected.

As moving and life-changing as an encounter with long-lost best friends, Sisterhood Everlasting is a powerful story about growing up, losing your way, and finding the courage to create a new one."


Ann Brashares' "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" series was one of few that epitomized my childhood- I seriously cannot recall the number of times I read and reread these books as a youngin' (enough times that my copies spines completely split down the middle and had to be taped back together). I think that why I liked these books so much at the time was because everything about them was so realistic, from the flawed characters, to the everyday problems the characters encountered, and whatnot- Tibby, Lena, Bee, and Carmen were truly some of my best friends. However, it has been a number of years since I last read these books- one of the main reasons being that I can no longer connect to the characters as I once had (now being a technical adult *gulp* at a totally different point in my life than the characters). Therefore, you can imagine my delight when I had heard that Ann had written this book, a companion novel to her "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" series, where the girls (like their original fans) were now adults.

While I am sure that some readers of this book were ecstatic to find, that in the beginning of the novel, the girls were entirely true to their earlier selves, I must admit that I found it to be quite frustrating and tiresome- primarily because I felt that the girls had accomplished very little and learned anything since we had last seen them- ten years earlier. I mean, Bee was still her crazy-afraid-of-commitment-self, floating through life, Lena was still the struggling artist and still hung up on Kostos, Carmen still didn't have the balls to take charge for her own life and Tibby? Well, she was still her enigmatic/ on-the-fringe self. But perhaps worst of all, each was extremely depressed that their friendship was basically non-existent (not bothering to do anything to rectify the problem). I don't think that I have ever wanted to shake some sense into a character so hard than I did these girls. That being said, I did find the latter half of the novel to be much more enjoyable than the beginning of the novel primarily because the girls actually learned something and grew up

All in all, while I did come to like the book I am still on the fence as to whether or not I feel that it was all that necessary (like the epilogue of the "Harry Potter" series)- I feel that in some instances the lives that you imagine for the characters outside of a series is actually more satisfying than where the author decides to take them (at a later date). 

Rating: 4/5

Sunday, October 16, 2011

In My Mailbox


In My Mailbox is a weekly post hosted by Kirsti at The Story Siren as a chance to share the books we've bought or received over the past week.
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Won
"Enthralled" Anthology (Special thanks to Rachel over at Fiktshun
"Across the Universe"/ "A Million Suns" charms and swag (Special thanks to Beth Revis)

I received a paperback copy of "Legend of Witchtrot Road" (and some swag) from author E.J. Stevens because I was blurbed in the book (Thanks E.J.)! 

What did you receive in your mailbox?

PS. Don't forget that you can now find my blog on Facebook!
Photobucket

PSS. Don't forget that there are a few more days to enter my "Dark of the Moon" giveaway! Canadian only!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

On My Wishlist

 

On My Wishlist is a great event that Book Chick City runs every Saturday. It's where you list all of the books that you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. I thought that this was a fantabulous idea so I thought I would join in!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Life As We Knew It" by Susan Beth Pfeffer

From Goodreads: "Miranda’s disbelief turns to fear in a split second when a meteor knocks the moon closer to the earth. How should her family prepare for the future when worldwide tsunamis wipe out the coasts, earthquakes rock the continents, and volcanic ash blocks out the sun? As summer turns to Arctic winter, Miranda, her two brothers, and their mother retreat to the unexpected safe haven of their sunroom, where they subsist on stockpiled food and limited water in the warmth of a wood-burning stove."
    
Told in journal entries, this is the heart-pounding story of Miranda’s struggle to hold on to the most important resource of all--hope--in an increasingly desperate and unfamiliar world."

Thursday, October 13, 2011

"Blood Wounds" by Susan Beth Pfeffer

From Goodreads: "Willa is lucky: She has a loving blended family that gets along. Not all families are so fortunate. But when a bloody crime takes place hundreds of miles away, it has an explosive effect on Willa’s peaceful life. The estranged father she hardly remembers has murdered his new wife and children, and is headed east toward Willa and her mother.

Under police protection, Willa discovers that her mother has harbored secrets that are threatening to boil over. Has everything Willa believed about herself been a lie? As Willa sets out to untangle the mysteries of her past, she keeps her own secret—one that has the potential to tear her family apart."

I cannot recall the last time that I experienced such a range of emotions (and physical reactions) while reading a book than I did while reading this- One minute my heart was practically beating out of my chest as the suspense built up more and more, the next I was tearing up (I challenge you to read the church scene and not tear up), and the next I wanted to shake the characters for their stupidity/ selfishness like there was no tomorrow. So what does all of this mean? The fact that I was able to be so impacted by this book attests to Susan Beth Pfeffer's talents as an author.

And not only is she talented at reeling the reader into her work, making them feel like they are truly a part of it, but she is also exceptionally talented at creating realistic characters- characters that are flawed, like each and everyone of us- characters that we can see a bit of ourselves in (I *thought* that I had read books that had realistic characters in them before, those characters don't have anything on Willa and her family).

After reading this book I am shocked not only at how hauntingly realistic/ beautifully written it was, but at the fact that this is the first book by Susan Beth Pfeffer that I have read before- taking into consideration that she has written over seventy novels and many of them seem to be right up my alley (ie. Her "Last Survivors" series). I highly recommend this book to all YA fans (even you paranormal lovers who are wary of books that don't possess paranormal elements- this book is dark enough to satisfy you) and I know that this will not be the last book of Susan's I read.

Rating: 9/10

I received this book from the publisher to read and honestly review. I was not compensated in any way for said review.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday


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

Title: "Article 5"
Author: Kristen Simmons
Release Date: February 14th, 2012

From Goodreads: "New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC have been abandoned.

The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.

There are no more police — instead, there are soldiers. There are no more fines for bad behavior — instead, there are arrests, trials, and maybe worse. People who get arrested don’t usually come back.

17-year-old Ember Miller is old enough to remember that things weren’t always this way. Living with her rebellious single mother, it’s hard to forget that people weren’t always arrested for reading the wrong books or staying out after dark. That life in the United States used to be different.

In the three years since the war ended, Ember has perfected the art of keeping a low profile. She knows how to get the things she needs, like food stamps and hand-me-down clothes, and how to pass the random home inspections by the Federal Bureau of Reformation. Her life is as close to peaceful as circumstances allow. That is, until her mother is arrested for noncompliance with Article 5 of the Moral Statutes. And what’s worse, one of the arresting officers is none other than Chase Jennings…the only boy Ember has ever loved."

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

"Savor" Blog Tour Giveaway Winners!



Congrats to the following winners! 

AshleyEliza was the first place winner and has won a signed paperback of "Savor" by Megan Duncan!

Giselleco was the second place winner and has won a an e-book copy of "Savor"! 

Paula Phillips was the third place winner and has won a "Savor" and "Released" bookmark!

The winners have 48 hours to respond to my email (which I will be sending out shortly). 

Thanks to everyone for entering and don't forget to check out the remaining blog tour stops and Megan's blog where more giveaways will be taking place! 

Monday, October 10, 2011

"Dark of the Moon" by Tracy Barrett + GIVEAWAY

From Goodreads: "Ariadne is destined to become a goddess of the moon. She leads a lonely life, filled with hours of rigorous training by stern priestesses. Her former friends no longer dare to look at her, much less speak to her. All that she has left are her mother and her beloved, misshapen brother Asterion, who must be held captive below the palace for his own safety. 

So when a ship arrives one spring day, bearing a tribute of slaves from Athens, Ariadne sneaks out to meet it. These newcomers don’t know the ways of Krete; perhaps they won’t be afraid of a girl who will someday be a powerful goddess. And indeed she meets Theseus, the son of the king of Athens. Ariadne finds herself drawn to the newcomer, and soon they form a friendship—one that could perhaps become something more. 

Yet Theseus is doomed to die as an offering to the Minotaur, that monster beneath the palace—unless he can kill the beast first. And that "monster" is Ariadne’s brother . . ."  

In all honesty I had never heard of the Greek myth of Theseus, Ariadne, the Minotaur and the labyrinth prior to reading this book (What can I say? I was more of an artsy kid than a history buff in high school). Therefore when I read this book and saw how everything was played out, I was quite disappointed by it (I was under the impression, from reading the synopsis, that this book was a sort of epic romance, that the main character, Ariadne, is torn between the boy that she loves and her brother and it was anything but). However, after reading the book and doing a bit of research into the myth I must say that I like the book a lot more than I originally had, in learning more about the myth I discovered a new-found appreciation and respect for the book. I believe it to be an interesting and different take on the well-known tale. 

Ariadne was a bit of a difficult character to connect to for the large majority of the novel- being uptight and high-strung- however it worked for the story as she had the special/ elevated ranking of 'She-Who-Will-Be-Goddess'. Though, she was extremely likeable and relateable when she was with her brother- reading about the relationship between her and her brother, the Minotaur, was truly heartwarming. Theseus, on the other hand, was an extremely likeable character the entire novel and, in all honesty, I much preferred to read the story from his POV (as the beginning of the book, told from his POV, was so entertaining and genuinely funny). 

Overall, I just found the book to be very heavy (ie. in the language, in the religious aspects, in the history, and whatnot)- which shocked me quite a bit as the book is labelled as "Juvenile Fiction". There were a number of times that I (someone who has been out of the 'juvenile' age category for quite some time) became confused as to what was happening in the book, therefore requiring me to reread parts of it. Furthermore, this book was quite gory , violent, and sexually oriented for juveniles in my opinion (a major component of this book was that She-Who-Is-Goddess has to sleep with a man every year and potentially become pregnant with his kid, she will then sacrifice said suitor in the hopes of appeasing the gods/ ensuring an abundant year of crops).

All in all, I do recommend that those unfamiliar with the tale do read this book as it is quite enlightening and educational (but perhaps older readers, because as mentioned, some themes in the book were quite mature) and I feel that those familiar with this tale will be extremely happy with this retelling!

Rating: 2/5

I received this book from the publisher to read and review. I was not compensated in any way for said review. 

And now onto the fun stuff! GIVEAWAY TIME!

There will be One (1) winner!

  • The one (1) winner will receive a copy of the book.

Hows it work? 

  • One only entry per person. 
  • There will be ONE (1) winner. 
  • Contest is CANADIAN ONLY!
  • Giveaway ends Monday, October 17th, 2011 at 11:59 p.m.
  • Winner will have 48 hours after notification to respond.
  • Prize are being distributed by a third party (the publisher). I am not responsible if your prizes get eaten by the postal system/ whatnot.
  • You do not have to be a follower of my blog to enter the giveaway BUT if you Tweet (or spread the word) about the giveaway you will receive an additional point in the draw (FYI: See that little "Tweet" button at the bottom of this post? Click on it and all of the information you should include in the Tweet is already in it!)

This giveaway is now closed. Thank you to all who entered and thank you to Thomas Allen and Sons!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

In My Mailbox


In My Mailbox is a weekly post hosted by Kirsti at The Story Siren as a chance to share the books we've bought or received over the past week.
~~~~~~~~~~~


Bought 
"Fateful" by Claudia Gray

Won 
"Silence" by Becca Fitzpatrick (Special thanks to Simon and Schuster Canada!)

Traded (Special thanks to Ashley from the Book Labyrinth)
"The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" by Michelle Hodkin
"A Touch Mortal" by Leah Clifford
"Across the Universe" by Beth Revis

What did you get in your mailbox?

Saturday, October 8, 2011

On My Wishlist

 

On My Wishlist is a great event that Book Chick City runs every Saturday. It's where you list all of the books that you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. I thought that this was a fantabulous idea so I thought I would join in!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Anthema" by K.A. Tucker

From Goodreads: "Evangeline has spent her teenage years in obscurity. Her foster parents have the emotional aptitude of robots and her classmates barely acknowledge her existence. About to turn eighteen and feeling like a social pariah, she is desperate to connect with someone. Anyone.

When Evangeline meets Sofie after literally stumbling upon her cafĂ©, she believes she’s found that connection. Willing to do anything to keep it, she accepts a job as Sofie’s assistant and drops everything to fly to Manhattan, where she is thrust into a luxurious world of Prada, diamonds, and limitless cash.

With such generosity and kindness, it’s easy for Evangeline to dismiss certain oddities . . . like Sofie’s erratic and sometimes violent behavior, and the monstrous guard dogs. She’s even willing to dismiss her vivid dreams of mob-style murders, beautiful homeless people living in caves, and white-eyed demons that haunt her each night as figments of her imagination—especially when one of those figments is the gorgeous Caden. When she wakes up with bite marks on her neck, the fairy tale quickly turns into a nightmare. She slowly unravels the mystery surrounding Sofie and friends, and the reality of the bites and the “dreams.” What she discovers is far more mysterious and terrible than anything she could have imagined.

In a world where everyone has motive to lie for personal gain, Evangeline must decide which deception is least likely to get her killed."

Friday, October 7, 2011

I'm on Facebook!


I just wanted to let y'all know that you can now find me on Facebook! I will be posting everything that I do on here on there, but I will be posting a lot more reminders about giveaways (primarily my own and perhaps others) on there, so it is definitely something you should check out!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday


"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating...
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Title: "Under the Never Sky"
Author: Veronica Rossi
Release Date: February 7th, 2012

From Goodreads: "Exiled from her comfortable home, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland – called the Death Shop – are slim. Violent energy storms can strike suddenly, and even the very air she breathes might kill her. Then Aria meets an Outsider named Perry. He’s wild, dangerous – a savage. He’s also her only hope.

Because Aria alone holds the key to his redemption, Perry needs her, too. Their unlikely alliance will determine the fate of all who live under the never sky.

Debut author Veronica Rossi is accumulating fans from all over the globe—the book has already sold to more than twenty countries. It’s not surprising that foreign rights for this title have been flying off the shelf. It’s a tantalizing romance in any language."

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

"Radiant Desire" by Inara Scott

From Goodreads: "The object of every man’s fantasy just lost her wings…

Kaia Verde is one of the four Faerie Handmaids of Zafira, Queen of the Fey. To redress an ancient wrong done to Zafira by a human king, the Handmaids make sport of mortal men, seducing and humiliating them. When Kaia sets out to seduce Garrett Jameson, but ends up being the one surrendering to pleasure, Zafira is furious. Kaia’s punishment is simple: make Garrett fall in love with her by the summer solstice, then break his heart, or face eternity without her wings—or her soul. To make the task harder, Zafira tells Kaia she cannot use her faerie magic or charm to lure Garrett into her bed.

…and now she’s losing her heart…

Kaia thinks her task will be relatively easy—as a faerie, she understands lust, and can love be much different? But once she is living among the humans, Kaia discovers the race she once disparaged is far more complex and beautiful than she imagined. She learns before she can break Garrett’s heart, she must find a way to heal it. And eventually, discovers that losing her wings may be a far easier price to pay than losing her heart.
"


While this book is geared towards adults I think that mature young adult readers will enjoy just as much, if not more than the intended audience (note that there are a few explicit sex scenes in it which may not be appropriate for younger YA readers). This book possess traits which will appeal to all readers, a unique storyline, a captivating plot and likeable characters.

And speaking of characters, not only do the main characters of this book, Kaia and Garrett shine, but the secondary characters do as well, Rachel, Ted, Portia, and Lexi (and for that I am truly grateful, not once did I find myself annoyed by the secondary characters and just want to skip over their scene as I am oft to do)- in fact, at times I actually found myself rooting more for Rachel and Ted than I did for Kaia and Garrett as their scenes together were so heart-wrenching.

I think that my biggest complaint about the book is the climax- I wouldn't say that it was rushed per se, I just wish that it had been a bit more in-depth (primarily because what is exposed during in it is so EPIC, I want to exactly how the past events transpired, leading to the major confession- can anyone say 'spin-off series'?).

All in all, this is much more than your average bodice-ripping romance- the world building in this book is impeccable, the characters are so relateable and realistic (being flawed as they are), and the romance is so sweet and cute (while being sexy at the same time, for all of your hardcores out there). I highly recommend this book and I cannot wait to see what Inara has in store for us next!

Rating: 8.5/10

I received this book to read and honestly review. I was not compensated in any way for said review.

Monday, October 3, 2011

"Savor" by Megan Duncan+ GIVEAWAY


From Goodreads: "When Claire Miller turned eighteen all she wanted to do was celebrate her birthday, but after a night on the town with her best friend she awakes to a visitor she never expected. The rulers of her region, a vampire royal family, have chosen her to be turned as their new heir and vampire princess. Claire quickly discovers the royal family is not what they seem and that she has secrets in her past, she never knew existed."

This is the second book that I have read by Megan Duncan (my first being "Released") and as such I find it difficult not to compare the two. One of my largest complaints about "Released" was that I found the book to be lacking in description (Megan's writing style was very to the point, with little dilly-dallying to it) and therefore I had a difficult time connecting to scenes, however I did not find myself experiencing that feeling whatsoever as I read this book- everything was described beautifully in this book and as such it was almost near impossible to situate yourself in Claire's position. However, I must admit that there were a few times in the book that Claire very much grated on my nerves (more so in the beginning of the book than the end), as she seemed a bit too superficial for my liking (unlike Abby from "Released" who didn't have enough time on her hands to be worry about superficial things. You know, being busy running for her life).

And like "Released", this book has a swoon-worthy male lead. Scratch that- TWO swoon-worthy male leads. I typically hate love triangles so I am astonished to find myself getting excited by the prospect of a love triangle playing a major role in the next book, "Indulge". While Dmitry seems to be perfect- non-judgmental (especially when compared to his slightly psychotic brother), gentle, and good-looking, I must admit that I find myself more interested in Arrick- though we know nothing about him when compared to Dmitry (call me a sucker for the underdog/ bad boy).

Though this book is vampire-based, it is quite unlike any other vampire book I have read to date. While the book does start off quite slowly, the ending of it (especially the last twenty or thirty pages) more than makes up for the slow beginning- you will seriously be kept on the edge of your seat during these ages AND the last two or three pages will leave you flabbergasted and slack-jawed (in the best possible way). Seriously, I need the next book in the series, "Indulge", NOW.

Rating: 7.5/10

I received this book from the author to read and review. I was not compensated in any way for said review.


And now onto the fun stuff! GIVEAWAY TIME!

There will be THREE (3) winners!
  • The first (1st) winner will receive a signed paperback copy of "Savor".  
  • The second (2nd) winner will receive a free Kindle copy of "Savor" (if you do not have a Kindle you can download the Kindle for PC app or perhaps you and Megan can work something out). 
  • The third (3rd) winner will receive a "Savor" and "Released" bookmark.   

Hows it work? 

  • One only entry per person. 
  • There will be THREE (3) winners (each winner can only win one of the provided prizes). 
  • Contest is International where allowed by law. 
  • Giveaway ends Monday, October 10th, 2011 at 11:59 p.m.
  • Winner will have 48 hours after notification to respond.
  • Prize are being distributed by a third party. I am not responsible if your prizes get eaten by the postal system.
  • You do not have to be a follower of my blog to enter the giveaway BUT if you Tweet (or spread the word) about the giveaway you will receive an additional point in the draw (FYI: See that little "Tweet" button at the bottom of this post? Click on it and all of the information you should include in the Tweet is already in it!)

To enter, fill out the form below 
This giveaway is now closed. Thank you to everyone who participated- especially Megan Duncan! 


PS. Don't forget to check out Megan's blog, she will be hosting giveaways for the remainder of the month!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

In My Mailbox


In My Mailbox is a weekly post hosted by Kirsti at The Story Siren as a chance to share the books we've bought or received over the past week.
~~~~~~~~~~~~


Bought
"Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident" by Eoin Colfer
"Artemis Fowl: The Opal Deception" by Eoin Colfer
"Artemis Fowl: The Lost Colony" by Eoin Colfer
"Artemis Fowl: The Time Paradox" by Eoin Colfer
"Artemis Fowl: The Atlantis Complex" by Eoin Colfer
"The Recruit" by Robert Muchamore
"Ready Or Not" by Meg Cabot
"The Spiderwick Chronicles: Care and Feeding of Sprites" by Diterlizzi and Black
"Eragon: Guide to Alagaesia" by Christopher Paolini

Won
"As You Wish" by Jackson Pearce

What did you get in your mailbox? 

Saturday, October 1, 2011

On My Wishlist

 

On My Wishlist is a great event that Book Chick City runs every Saturday. It's where you list all of the books that you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. I thought that this was a fantabulous idea so I thought I would join in!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"The Chosen One" by Carol Lynch Williams

From Goodreads: "Thirteen-year-old Kyra has grown up in an isolated community without questioning the fact that her father has three wives and she has twenty brothers and sisters, with two more on the way. That is, without questioning them much---if you don’t count her secret visits to the Mobile Library on Wheels to read forbidden books, or her meetings with Joshua, the boy she hopes to choose for herself instead of having a man chosen for her. 

But when the Prophet decrees that she must marry her sixty-year-old uncle---who already has six wives---Kyra must make a desperate choice in the face of violence and her own fears of losing her family forever."



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