Monday, July 30, 2012

ARC Review: "Wake" by Amanda Hocking

Release Date: August 7, 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Pages: 309

From Goodreads: "Lose yourself in the magic of Watersong, an unforgettable new series about two sisters who nearly lose their lives - and their loves - when they fall under the spell of three beautiful but deadly sirens.

First in a four-book paranormal romance YA series from bestselling author, Amanda Hocking."

While I have followed Amanda Hocking success story for months, if not a year now- from a young writer rejected hundreds of times to a self-publishing author sensation- I must admit that this was the first book of hers that I have read, however, it will be by no means my last.

I think that Amanda's greatest strength is writing of entirely relateable and likable characters- from Gemma, a passionate young girl trying to find her place in the world, to her sister Harper, a girl who has been forced to grow up too quickly and who is constantly putting others before herself, to the boy next door Alex, who you can't help but find cute and charming despite all of his awkwardness.

That being said, I wish that the story line of this book had been more unique. I personally found it to be far too similar to Elizabeth Miles "Fury" series (which I will be posting reviews of later this summer)- from three strange and mysterious girls showing up in a small town, to them showing an interest in an everyday average girl, to the eventual transformation of the girl in some way, shape, or form. At times I felt that the only difference between the two books was that this book dealt with sirens, primarily water beings, while the other dealt with the furies, more so terrestrial beings.

Furthermore, overall I found the book to be quite a bit more juvenile than I had expected- in its writing, its characters, and in the plot. At times I forgot that the characters were 18 years old because they acted as how I would gauge 15 and 16 year olds would- not as soon-to-be college students would.

All in all, despite my complaints I did still find this book to be quite enjoyable and as mentioned, this will by no means be my last Amanda Hocking written read! Furthermore, I do plan to continue to read this book to see what she has in store next for the gang!

Rating: 7/10

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

Saturday, July 28, 2012

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!

Title: "This Is Not A Test"
Author: Courtney Summers
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Release Date: June 19, 2012

From Goodreads: "It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self. 

To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up. As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually want to live. 

But as the days crawl by, the motivations for survival change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life—and death—inside. 

When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?"

Thursday, July 26, 2012

"Shadows" by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Release Date: Entangled Publishing
Publisher: February 21, 2012
Pages: 179

From Goodreads: "The last thing Dawson Black expected was Bethany Williams. As a Luxen, an alien life form on Earth, human girls are…well, fun. But since the Luxen have to keep their true identities a secret, falling for one would be insane.

Dangerous. Tempting. Undeniable.

Bethany can’t deny the immediate connection between her and Dawson. And even though boys aren’t a complication she wants, she can’t stay away from him. Still, whenever they lock eyes, she’s drawn in.

Captivated. Lured. Loved.

Dawson is keeping a secret that will change her existence...and put her life in jeopardy. But even he can’t stop risking everything for one human girl. Or from a fate that is as unavoidable as love itself."

Random note: For some unexplainable reason I ended up reading "Oynx", the second book in Jennifer's "Lux" series before I read this, a novella that takes place before the events in both "Obsidian" and "Onyx". In all honesty, I am very glad that I did- had I read this first, I don't think that I would have had been taken by surprise and experienced all of those feelings (those heart-pounding and rip-your-heart-out-and-stomp-on-it-feelings) that I did while reading "Onyx". Therefore, in my personal opinion I do recommend that you read "Obsidian", then "Onyx", then this book, "Shadows" (otherwise I feel like little in "Onyx" will take you by surprise as you will most likely be able to foreshadow at least 87.3% of it).

In all honesty prior to reading this book I thought that I would have a difficult time discerning Daemon/ Dawson's voices from one another and Katy/ Bethany's voices from one another, however that wasn't the case whatsoever. That being said, while Dawson and Bethany did have their own voices, Bethany being an the epitome of the 'girl-next-door', Dawson being the black sheep of the family of sorts, wanting more out of the Luxen life, I didn't think that they were quite as developed as I hoped that they were, especially when compared to Daemon and Katy (then again, I have to understand that this *is* a novella and therefore there are time/ length constrictions when compared to a full length novel). 

Furthermore, I really quite disliked Daemon in this book- I seem to recall that in "Obsidian" and "Onyx" other characters, such as Dee and Adam, had said that prior to Dawson's death Daemon had been A LOT more easygoing/ friendly, however that wasn't the case whatsoever- he was even more of a jerk in this, when his brother was still alive, than he was in "Obsidian" (I mean, if this is Daemon being *nice* I'd hate to see what he is like when he is REALLY trying to be a jerk).

All in all, I must admit that I am a tad disappointed with this novella (it is unfortunately my least favourite thing that Jennifer has written to date). That is not to say that it is bad, it isn't, but I just wish that there had been more to it- whether it be more developed characters or more to the storyline (I mean, after having read "Obsidian" we basically know what happens in this novella, it doesn't deviate from it whatsoever or gives us anything new).

Rating: 3/5

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

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: "Hollowed"
Author: Kelley Young

Release Date: August 15, 2012

From Goodreads: "All 18-year-old Briar Greyson wanted was to figure out this whole living-away-from-your-parents thing. Apartment, steady job, cool roommate? Check. Noah, her adorable (albeit elusive) boyfriend? Check. Everything in the life of Briar was pretty good.

Then she and her roommate are attacked on their way home one night. Briar wasn't supposed to survive.

Instead, according to the two guys who saved her, she's turning into the things that attacked her: a vampire. Totally crazy and Not Okay. Now Noah's secrets are coming to light, and he wants Briar dead. Then there are the vampires who attacked Briar to lure out her sister.

Her sister...who died years ago.

(Didn't she?)

The city's body count is rising, and Briar wants to help put a stop to it. But first, she has to figure out who the real enemy is: the vampires, the boy she loves, or the sister she thought she'd lost."

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

"Cold Fury" by T.M. Goeglein

Release Date: July 24th, 2012
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Pages: 313

From Goodreads: "Jason Bourne meets The Sopranos in this breathtaking adventure

Sara Jane Rispoli is a normal sixteen-year-old coping with school and a budding romance--until her parents and brother are kidnapped and she discovers her family is deeply embedded in the Chicago Outfit (aka the mob).

Now on the run from a masked assassin, rogue cops and her turncoat uncle, Sara Jane is chased and attacked at every turn, fighting back with cold fury as she searches for her family. It's a quest that takes her through concealed doors and forgotten speakeasies--a city hiding in plain sight. Though armed with a .45 and 96K in cash, an old tattered notebook might be her best defense--hidden in its pages the secret to "ultimate power." It's why she's being pursued, why her family was taken, and could be the key to saving all of their lives.

Action packed, with fresh, cinematic writing, Cold Fury is a riveting and imaginative adventure readers will devour."

When I first read the synopsis of this book I knew that I had to get my hands on a copy- everything about it sounded intriguing, a kick-ass heroine, a budding romance, a fast packed story line and the likes of. Then when I started reading it and I learned that it has a subtle paranormal element to it I fell even more so for this book (as I am a totally paranormal junkie)- the paranormal-ish element seemed so realistic, potentially the most realistic/ least far-fetched paranormal element I have ever read in a book before, and I found that it fit seamlessly within the feel of this book- it wasn't just there for the sake of being there, like some other books, it actually impacted and shaped the story line, making it better than I think that it would have been had it not existed.

So much was thrown at Sara in this book and she took everything in stride and kept a strong head on her shoulders the entire time. Furthermore, I really enjoyed the Al Capone aspect to it- like with another book that I recently read and enjoyed that incorporates the story of Capone into it's plot (Aimee Agretsi's "Illuminate") I thought that it was extremely interesting and educational without feeling like it- all of the information surrounding it was seamlessly intertwined with the remainder of the book and not once while reading it did I feel like overwhelmed (or underwhelmed) by it.

That being said, my biggest complaint about this book was the 'budding romance', I'm not entirely convinced that the promise of it was delivered upon (admittedly I am a HUGE romance fan and I have actually started to find that I have difficulties getting through a book if it doesn't have some sort of romance to it)- unlike the paranormal element I don't feel like the romance was a necessary element, I do feel like it was there simply for the sake of being there and, in all honesty, I think that I would have preferred if hadn't existed because then I wouldn't have felt disappointed by the lack of it. Additionally, I sort of felt that the ending lacked resolution- however, I can slightly forgive it as this is the first book in a series.

All in all, there was literally never a dull moment in this book- I was on the edge of my seat the entire time while reading it. I think that because of this this book will appeal to both male and female readers, despite having a female lead (think "Divergent" level intensity/ action and adventure). I think that this is an amazing debut from Goeglein and I cannot wait to see what is thrown at Sara next.

Rating: 9.5/10

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

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Stacking the Shelves

To support my fellow Canadian bloggers I have decided to participate in Stacking the Shelves created by Tygna over at Tygna's Reviews. As Tygna writes, "Stacking The Shelves is all about the books we are adding to our shelves each week, sharing with you our excitement for our newest titles and maybe have you discover a new book in the process!" 

I haven't done a STS post in forever! These are all of the books that I have received in my mailbox over the last 3ish weeks, if not a month.

  • "Tiger Lily" by Jodi Lynn Anderson (I bought both of the following books solely because of Brenna's, from Esther's Ever After, glowing reviews of them!)
  • "For Darkness Shows the Stars" by Diana Peterfreund 

For Review 
  • "Revived" by Cat Patrick (I reviewed this a few weeks back already)
  • "Rift" by Andrea Cremer ARC (This has been, without a doubt, one of my most favourite books of this year. My review will be going up mid-August as part of the Razorbill blog tour)
  • "The Dead I Know" by Scott Gardner ARC (I have also read this, my review will also be going up early August as part of the Razorbill blog tour)
  • "Junk-Box Jewelery" by Sarah Drew (I do a lot of crafts, but jewelery making isn't one of them so I am really excited to try some of these!)
  • "Waking Storm" by Sarah Porter (Unfortunately I haven't read "Lost Voices" yet, but hopefully I can find a copy so that I can read this!)
  • "The Vindico" by Wesley King (I have heard a lot of good things about this book so I am really excited about it)
  • "Soulbound" by Heather Brewer (Ditto)

Special thanks goes out to Hachette Book Group Canada, Razorbill Canada and Thomas Allen and Son!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

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!

Title: "Darkness, Kindled"
Author: Samantha Young
Release Date: November 2012

From Goodreads: So there isn't actually a description of this book yet, but do we really need one? I mean, I'm sure it will be about Ari being kick-ass and Jai and Charlie being super swoon-worthy. And that cover! Just ogle it every once and again and it will help pass the time til November!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Guest Post: Author Ashley Stoyanoff

Today I am excited to have author Ashley Stoyanoff stop by the blog to tell us a bit about her writing process! 

Some of us write just to write, scribbling words on a page out of love and letting our imaginations soar. Others like to take a more planned approach. We outline, create character sketches full of back story, plan out every detail of the town, and the details go on and on...

I like to think I fall somewhere in the middle. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m an obsessive planner. I create outline after outline after outline until the story is sound. But then as I pound out the words on the keyboard, I always seem to get lost in the story and then before I know it, I’m at a new place I had never before imagined.

This can be a great thing, but, like all organization freaks, I find myself pulling back, and again, I'm back at the drawing board trying to find a way to have this new development work in the story.

After hours, days and even weeks of frustration, trying to balance out my obsessive and creative sides, I came up with a compromise which has led to a writing process that keeps both my personalities happy.

I write every day no matter what. I always start out the first 30 minutes with my imagination, letting the words come out however they please. This is my warm up, getting those creative juices flowing. Usually I pick one of the minor characters within the story I’m writing to play the lead. I never fail to be surprised to see some of the crazy things those minors do when they have the spotlight. It gives them a chance to shine and gives me new inspiration.

Then I like to have a coffee or 5 (I drink at least three pots a day). While I sip on the delicious java, I read over my little sprint and see if any of it is usable in my present or maybe a future story. If a new story idea comes to mind from the warm up, or I think of an awesome place to add it in the current story, I take 20 to 30 minutes to jot it down, if not I move on, checking out where I left off on my outline. Then I take a few minutes to review the last few paragraphs from the day before to get my bearings.

This is where my writing process takes, what I like to think of as a designer feel. Like most, I write scene by scene, breaking the book down into sections. However, I don’t stop there. I strip it down and write every scene in sections, dialogue, emotions, narrative, and then setting. And by splitting it up into steps my organizational side stays content.

My favorite thing to write is dialogue so this is where I always start. I will sketch out the whole scene with just the dialogue. I find that when I’m only thinking about what is actually being said and nothing else the dialogue is more natural, not forced, and overall, original.

But the neat thing about this is, when the dialogue is done, the emotions are easy to fill in since I already have a great sense of exactly what is being said.

At this point, I read through everything again, filling in narrative and thinking of the perfect place for this scene to happen. I find setting can be tricky, which is probably why I leave it to the end. I really over think this part. Would an 18-year-old boy throw a punch in his own living room when his parents could be in the kitchen? What if a 16-year-old girl was being picked on at school? Would she cry in public or would she run to the bathroom? Where is the best place for that first kiss? Should it be a romantic setting or did it just happen at a continence store?

However, in the end, I have a great scene; my imagination has been let loose and my fixation with organization has been kept satisfied, and then I get to start the process all over again.

About the Book:
From Goodreads: "Anxious to leave her destructive past behind, Amelia Caldwell moves to Willowberg, excited for a fresh start. Once there, she discovers that her birthmark is more than it seems. She has been marked by a vampire's soul. Not only does she hold his soul, but Amelia is also his soulmate.

After almost a century of searching for his soulmate, Mitchell Lang fears the worst—he is going to lose Amelia to another man. His heart takes over, and his impulsive decision to take away her free will and to intensify their bond quickly turns her growing love into hate.

When they become trapped in the emotional rollercoaster of their souls' bond, open conflict erupts. Amelia has no intentions of belonging to anyone, not even her soulmate, and Mitchell refuses to let her go.

While she frantically searches for a way to escape his grasp, Amelia unlocks the painful memories of her past and uncovers a powerful secret. But before she has a chance to explore her newfound edge, she finds herself caught in the middle of a deadly game of revenge and is forced to realize that YOU CANNOT RUN FROM DESTINY." 

You can find the author at: 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

"The Calling" by Kelley Armstrong

Release Date: April 10, 2012
Publisher: Harper
Pages: 326

From Goodreads: "Maya and her friends--all of whom have supernatural powers--have been kidnapped after fleeing from a forest fire they suspect was deliberately set, and after a terrifying helicopter crash they find themselves pursued by evildoers in the Vancouver Island wilderness."

My biggest complaint about the first book in this series, "The Gathering", was that I found that as readers we were told very little about what the paranormal element actually was- I felt that we had to go out of our way to learn more about it- I personally read everything that I could get my hands on about this series through Tweets, blog posts, etc. (had I just picked this series up without ever having read any of Kelley's books before I would never have guessed that these books involved genetic manipulation on paranormal teens- I would have thought that it involved the Otherworld, Shamanism, or something of that nature). However, I didn't find that with this book whatsoever, I felt that we actually learned things in  about the genetic manipulation aspect of this book (albeit not as much as we had in her "Darkest Powers" series, but still, some is better than none IMO)- furthermore, Kelley didn't answer questions with more questions in this book like I felt that she did in "The Gathering".

Additionally, I really enjoyed that there was a greater emphasis on the secondary characters in this book and that they actually impacted the storyline- rather than just being there for the sake of being there (like the annoying mindless best friend or the socially inept quiet boy who hovers in the background that seems so prevalent in the world of YA). In fact, Corey is really starting to grow on me, I feel like he brings a lot of much needed humour to the book. Not to mention I am entirely intrigued by what sort of paranormal beings they all are (I can't believe that it still hasn't been confirmed when there is only one more book left in the series!).

However, at times I did find myself grow frustrated by one seemingly impossible situation after another (I couldn't help but think to myself, "Don't these kids *ever* get a break?)- from a helicopter crash, to near drownings, to being shot at numerous times to the likes of. But then as I thought about it, all of Kelley's books read similarly- having character after character thrown through various, seemingly impossible situations, is her "thing". If it really bothered me (RE: not superficially bothered me), I probably wouldn't have invested the time in reading all of her "Women of the Otherworld" and "Darkest Powers" books.

All in all, I am extremely glad that I continued on with this series- I think that it was better in almost way than its predecessor- I can't wait to see what happens with the gang next in the final book in this series, "The Rising"!

Rating: 5/5

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

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: "Through To You"
Author: Emily Hainsworth
Release Date: October 2, 2012
Publisher: Balzer and Bray
Pages: 272

From Goodreads: "Camden Pike has been grief-stricken since his girlfriend, Viv, died. Viv was the last good thing in his life: helping him rebuild his identity after a career-ending football injury, picking up the pieces when his home life shattered, and healing his pain long after the meds wore off. And now, he’d give anything for one more glimpse of her. But when Cam makes a visit to the site of Viv’s deadly car accident, he sees some kind of apparition. And it isn’t Viv. 

The apparition’s name is Nina, and she’s not a ghost. She’s a girl from a parallel world, and in this world, Viv is still alive. Cam can’t believe his wildest dreams have come true. All he can focus on is getting his girlfriend back, no matter the cost. But things are different in this other world: Viv and Cam have both made very different choices, things between them have changed in unexpected ways, and Viv isn’t the same girl he remembers. Nina is keeping some dangerous secrets, too, and the window between the worlds is shrinking every day. As Cam comes to terms with who this Viv has become and the part Nina played in his parallel story, he’s forced to choose—stay with Viv or let her go—before the window closes between them once and for all."

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Take Two: "The Gathering" by Kelley Armstrong

We all do it, we read a book and we make an initial impression of it, whether it is a positive or negative impression it doesn't matter- just the fact that we make one matters. And sometimes the impression that we make can very well be impacted by factors outside of the book (ie. our mood while reading the book, other books we were reading at the time, etc.). We then reread the book (which I don't know about y'all, but I am totally a rereader) and notice things we didn't see the first time around, come to understand those characters who bothered us the first time around or just come away from the book with a totally different idea of how we feel about it. As mentioned, I am a rereader sort of person, whether I reread a book right after my initial time reading it, or months, if not years later, well, I don't think that really matters, what I think matters is that with time something about that book hooks us, reels us in, and forces us to once again pick it up. I thought that it would be interesting if I were to reread some books that I have previously read and/or reviewed to see if my initial impression of the book has changed, hence this new little feature I like to call "Take Two".

You can find my original review of "The Gathering" HERE.

From Goodreads: "Sixteen-year-old Maya is just an ordinary teen in an ordinary town. Sure, she doesn't know much about her background - the only thing she really has to cling to is an odd paw-print birthmark on her hip - but she never really put much thought into who her parents were or how she ended up with her adopted parents in this tiny medical-research community on Vancouver Island.

Until now.

Strange things have been happening in this claustrophobic town - from the mountain lions that have been approaching Maya to her best friend's hidden talent for "feeling" out people and situations, to the sexy new bad boy who makes Maya feel . . . . different. Combine that with a few unexplained deaths and a mystery involving Maya's biological parents and it's easy to suspect that this town might have more than its share of skeletons in its closet.

In The Gathering , New York Times best-selling author Kelley Armstrong brings all the supernatural thrills from her wildly successful Darkest Powers series to Darkness Rising, her scorching hot new trilogy."

After rereading this book I must admit that my opinion of it has changed very little from the first time I read it and I must also admit that I am quite disappointed by that fact. I was hoping that in rereading the book I would come to understand it better, connect to characters I was previously on the fence about, and things along those lines (as what does happen in some instances of rereading a book), however, I unfortunately didn't in most instances.

Again, I found that the plot to be quite slow and underdeveloped in places. And, again, I can't help but wonder why there are so few references made to the Genesis and Phoenix Projects in this book- in my opinion the first book of a series is supposed to suck the reader in, guaranteeing that they will continue on with the series and I'm not quite sure that this book is entirely successful at that. The paranormal aspect of this book plays an EXTREMELY small role, there is much more mention of cliques, wildlife, and the likes of.

That being said, I did pay more attention to the characters the second time reading this book than I did the first time, primarily Rafe and Daniel, though also Sam, Corey and Hayley. Daniel and Rafe finally made an impact upon me the second time reading this book (but no where the impact that Derek and Simon had from Kelley's "Darkest Powers" series did).

All in all, while I was a fair bit disappointed with this book (again) I will continue to read on with this series (mainly because it is written by Kelley Armstrong, one of my most favourite authors ever, and an author I know is capable of writing amazingness- though, in all honesty, I can't say that I would continue on with this series if it weren't written by Kelley as I don't find it to be near as engaging as it needs to be).

Rating: 8/10

Memorable lines from this book:

"What happened?"
"You fainted." The corners of his mouth twitched. "I believed swooned is the correct term. It's not nearly as romantic as it sounds, you know. More like a deadweight collapse. With drool" (pg. 60).

"... you're an equal opportunity hater. You pick on all of us" (pg. 118).

"I promise not to try to get you back into the woods." He paused. "For at least forty-eight hours" (pg. 198).

"You have to pass the parental exam first. It'll take you awhile to compile the data, They'd like it in triplicate... We have Kenji. We have my cell phone. Since we aren't officially dating, I'm sure you'll agree that's all the protection we need" (pg. 202).

"Dad's trying to marry me off to Daniel." I looked at him. "You know, if you offer him a new truck for a dowry, he might go for it" (pg. 221).

Monday, July 16, 2012

YA Crush Tourney: Vote for Cricket Bell

As many of you probably know by now I am competing in YA Sisterhood's YA Crush Tourney and I could use YOUR help! I am Cricket's advocate (from Stephanie Perkins "Lola and the Boy Next Door"- one of my ALL TIME favourite books) and for the next 24 hours Cricket is going head-to-head with Adrian from Richelle Mead's "Vampire Academy" and "Bloodlines" series (also two of my most favourite series of all time). I would appreciate it more than you could imagine if you could head over to YA Sisterhood's blog and vote for CRICKET! Let's let the nice guy finish first for once!

Personality/ Special Attributes/Best Qualities
  • Cricket, in my opinion, is without a doubt one of the most romantic YA male characters I have ever encountered before- he truly wears his heart on his sleeve and he isn't afraid to show his emotions: 
"I can't stop thinking about you, and I'm not the guy I used to be, I've changed- [...] Go out with me tonight. Tomorrow night, every ni-" (pg. 92). 
"A star. Every star he's drawn onto his skin has been for me" (pg. 328). 
  • Furthermore, he is without a doubt one of the most genuine, kind-hearted, and humble characters I know of, constantly putting others before himself, whether it be his sister, Calliope, and her figure skating or walking Lola home when she was unable to do so DESPITE having a major school assignment due the next day 
  • He's funny: 
"Cricket tells a joke and turns to see if I'm laughing, if I think that he's funny, and I want him to know that I do think that he's funny, and I want him to know that I'm glad that he's my friend, and I want him to know that he has the biggest heart out of anyone I'd ever known" (pg. 136).
  • He doesn't hold judgements against ANYONE- whether it be Norah, Lola's dads, or heck, even Lola when she makes some pretty terrible mistakes throughout the book
  • He is close friends with Etienne St. Clair from ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS. Put those two boys in one room? 'Nuff said: 
"Cricket dwarfs St. Clair. They look like Rocky and Bullwinkle, and the comfortable manner between them makes it appear they've been friends for just as long. I suppose that when one overly kind person and one overly outgoing person become friends, it's easy like that" (pg. 163).
  •  Cricket is evidence that chivalry is not dead- as Lola says, "Cricket Bell has integrity" (pg. 270).
  • And perhaps best of all, he likes Lola for just the way that she is- he doesn't expect her to change or be someone that she isn't:
"And maybe some people think that wearing a costume means you're trying to hide your real identity, but I think a costume is more truthful than regular clothing could ever be. It actually says something about the person wearing it. I know that Lola, because she expressed her desires and wishes and dreams for the entire city to see. For me to see" (pg. 281).

I don't want to mess with Stephanie's description of Cricket ('cuz, we all know that you don't mess with perfection ;) ) so here it is straight from LOLA AND THE BOY NEXT DOOR: 

Courtesy Simini Blocker
"Cricket Bell was always taller than most boys, but in the last two years, he's added half a foot. At least. His slender body- once skinny and awkward, despite his graceful movements- has also changed" (pg. 36). 

".... his dark hair is tall. It's floppy, but... inverted floppy. I'm not sure how it's possible without serious quantities of mousse or gel... It gives him the air of a mad scientist..." (pg. 36). 

"Cricket Bell has always been... nice. And he was cute, and he was intelligent, and he was older, and it was only natural that I would develop feelings for him. But the day everything fell into place was the same day I discovered that he'd become interested in his appearance. Not in an egotistical way. Simple in a "maybe baggy shorts and giant sneakers aren't the most attractive looks for a guy like me" way.
So he started wearing these pants.
Nice pants. Not hipster pants or preppy pants or anything like that, just pants that said he cared about pants. They were chosen to fit his frame. Some plain, some pinstriped to further elongate his height. And he would pair them with vintage shirts and unusual jackets in a way that looked effortlessly cool" (pg. 37). 

"And now here he is, and his dress habits haven't changed. If anything, they've improved. Both his pants and his shirt are still slim-fitting, but now he's accessorized. A thick, black leather watchband on one wrist, a multitude of weathered colorful bracelets and rubber bands on the other. Cricket Bell looks good. He looks BETTER" (pg. 38). 

  • Cricket is not only a genius (I mean, he's in university while everyone else his age is finishing high school), but he is also an inventor- creating the most fantastical and wondrous things: 
"When I was five years old, Cricket Bell built an elevator. It was a marvelous invention made from white string and Tonka truck wheels and a child-size show box, and because of it, my Barbies traveled from the first floor of the dollhouse to the second without ever having to walk on their abnormally slanted feet" (pg. 59). 
  • Cricket is a descendant of Alexander Graham Bell. Yes, the Alexander Graham Bell who invented the telephone. AKA it is because of Cricket's descendant that you are able to vote in the Crush Tourney on your phone. 
  • The boy can BAKE
"Andy explains that baking is actually a science- leavening and acids, proteins and starches- and Cricket gets it" (pg. 115).
  • He is good with children- babies especially- he can calm them down when no one else can
  • He knows how to do hair and make-up and does a good job of it- even when under pressure

Anything else? 

Special thanks goes out to the wonderful ladies of the YA Sisterhood for all of the hard work that they do in the organizing of this tournament- they are truly rockstars! Special thanks also goes out to @librarychickD for her being a member of the Team Cricket Street Team and thanks to all who vote for Cricket! 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

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!

Title: "Shadowlands"
Author: Kate Brian
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: January 2013

From Goodreads: "Rory Miller had one chance to fight back and she took it. Rory survived … and the serial killer who attacked her escaped. Now that the infamous Steven Nell is on the loose, Rory must enter the witness protection with her father and sister, Darcy, leaving their friends and family without so much as a goodbye.

Starting over in a new town with only each other is unimaginable for Rory and Darcy. They were inseparable as children, but now they can barely stand each other. As the sisters settle in to Juniper Landing, a picturesque vacation island, it seems like their new home may be just the fresh start they need. They fall in with a group of beautiful, carefree teens and spend their days surfing, partying on the beach, and hiking into endless sunsets. But just as they’re starting to feel safe again, one of their new friends goes missing. Is it a coincidence? Or is the nightmare beginning all over again?"

Friday, July 13, 2012

"The Destiny of Shaitan" Guest Post and GIVEAWAY!

Today I am hosting Laxmi Hariharan in celebration of her new release The Destiny of Shaitan. Check out the guest post below and make sure to enter the giveaway at the end of this post for a chance to win either a $15 Amazon Gift Card or Autographed Paperback of The Destiny of Shaitan. 

The birth of an Indie writer - Laxmi Hariharan 

A chance meeting with a stranger in Hong Kong sparked off The Destiny of Shaitan. At that point, Harry Potter had released, and the blackberry had just squeaked to life. By the time I completed it, fantasy was a mainstream genre, and the tube was alive with the silent swoosh of kindles.

On the advice of a writing program, I decided to move on to my next novel without completing Shaitan. Six months into plotting chapter and scenes for my second, my first born clamored for more.

If I wanted readers to dedicate time to my novel then I had to be a one hundred percent sure of my content. I commissioned an editor - and rewrote the entire second half of the book; a full 150 pages in three weeks. At the end of which, I felt like Michael Fassbender’s character in A Dangerous Method. I had a swollen right hand; minus the orgasms of course.

Then, came the search for my cover. I first found a young Romanian student based in Bucharest who was very eager to try his hand at it. After a few changes I had what I thought were interesting clothes for my baby. I happened to show it to my husband who dismissed it in one sentence: “The woman looks like an ugly Bollywood heroine.” Crushed, off I went, hunting for a superior artist, and found a New York based book cover designer, ready to take it on. This time everyone loved the results, even my husband.

It had taken me nine years to birth it, but within three weeks, I had edited it, crafted the cover and released my first born to the swells of Amazon.

The Destiny of Shaitan was uploaded in time for the first round of KDP promotion.

Closure? It was just the beginning. Within minutes of declaring it a life-event on my Facebook timeline a friend told me she had downloaded it for her son. I panicked wondering if her fourteen year old should be reading the love scenes in the novel. A guest blog post on how western science fiction draws from Indian mythology drew emails from kindred souls. I was not alone.

Oh! I also wiped out my annual savings in a matter of weeks. Once I opened my purse strings to promote Shaitan, there was no looking back. Within days it was clear that while I was a London based writer, my real market was the US, with its wide kindle reach. I refocused, targeting all my efforts stateside. Most mornings I was awake at four a.m. trawling the internet, promoting my first born on various social networks; I discovered a family of writers like me; many ready to lend a helping hand and an encouraging word.

This was my new avatar. Welcome Indie writer.

Self-e-publishing seems to be an oxymoron. It’s great to be published, but terrifying to be actually read. Once the book is out there, you scramble to promote it and soon there is no mind-space to write, which is why you got into it in the first place. But, I love it. I thrive on the contradiction that comes with the freedom of being the captain of your own destiny; wouldn't have it any other way!

What are your experiences with e-publishing? I would love to hear from you.

Summary: Partially set in a dystopian Bombay of the future, The Destiny of Shaitan is a coming of age story, painted against the backdrop of a post-apocalyptic world. 

Yudi, Tiina & Rai embark on a mission to save the universe. Sent to retrieve the Isthmus from the ruthless Shaitan, Tiina seeks more than the end of the tyrant; she seeks herself. Shaitan is determined to stop them at any cost. The three friends must learn to trust each other and overcome their fears as they fight towards the ultimate showdown. The universe is at stake and the combatants determined. Will Shaitan's ultimate destiny be fulfilled? 

Author Bio 

About Laxmi Hariharan: I am a writer, technophile & dare I say, a futurist, with a penchant for chai and growing eye-catching flowers. Wanderlust drove me out of my home country India and I travelled across Asia, living in Singapore and Hong Kong before coming home to London. I am inspired by Indian mythology; I draw strength from the stories my grandmother narrated to me as a child. It is in acknowledging my roots that I found my voice. When not writing I love walking in the woods with my soulmate, and indulging my inner geek.

I would love to connect with you on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest or my website.


"The Destiny of Shaitan is mind blowing, dark, humorous, and clever. It took me on a powerful journey inwards, which was a surprise as I'm not generally drawn to scifi or fantasy."
- Sonia Ducie Dip.CSN.AIN, Numerologist, Author 11 Numerology books. 

"The low-key humour that runs like an under-current through this delightful, gripping adventure had me chuckling from page one" 
- Pippa Merivale, Author, Rescued by Angels 

“A truly refreshing approach because it is inspired by Indian mythology, direct references to which are few in the sci-fi/fantasy genre. That aside, Shaitan is a ripping yarn and a gripping read and a must have for every fan of the genre. Besides, it's bound to win more fans from across genres too. The character of Rai in particular is the most fascinating, but that's not to take away from the other players in the narrative especially Yudi and Tiina and of course the titular evil Shaitan himself, who makes Darth Vader look like a kindergarten wimp.” 
- Amazon Review by Moviescriptwriter 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

"Revived" by Cat Patrick

Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers (Hachette)
Release Date: May 8th, 2012
Pages: 336

From Goodreads: "As a little girl, Daisy Appleby was killed in a school bus crash. Moments after the accident, she was brought back to life. 

A secret government agency has developed a drug called Revive that can bring people back from the dead, and Daisy Appleby, a test subject, has been Revived five times in fifteen years. Daisy takes extraordinary risks, knowing that she can beat death, but each new death also means a new name, a new city, and a new life. When she meets Matt McKean, Daisy begins to question the moral implications of Revive, and as she discovers the agency’s true goals, she realizes she’s at the center of something much larger—and more sinister—than she ever imagined." 

When I first read the synopsis of this book I knew that I had to get my hands on it- it quite literally sounded like any other book I have read before. Overall while I did enjoy it, I must admit that it did have a few flaws. I think that my largest complaint about this book was the pacing- being a dystopian of sorts I had expected it to be quite action packed, but I didn't find it to be in the slightest. At times I felt that some aspects of the story line dragged by, while others .

Furthermore, I wish that the emotions would have been more amped up in it- because at times I found the emotions to be quite I had difficulties connecting to what was going on in the story line, for instance I never felt that that heart wrenching moment when Audrey's fate was revealed (I mean, I expected at least a tear or two since I am almost always a puddle when it comes to something remotely cute/ sad/ the likes of) or that heart-pounding feeling when Daisy was in danger. Also, I found the fact that Daisy has died five times somewhat unbelievable and it made her a bit unrelatable in my opinion (I don't know if I have met someone so accident prone since Bella Swan- after the first couple of deaths you would think that Mason would bubblewrap her and bathe her in her epi-pen medication). 

That being said, this book has one of the most adorable romances I have read in a very long time- perhaps since I read Kimberly Derting's "The Body Finder"? When I read of Matt trekking hours to rescue Daisy it totally took me by surprise- but the best sort of surprised, my heart literally skipped a beat while reading of it. Additionally, not only was the romance extremely adorable, but it was very real. Like a real life relationship Matt and Daisy's wasn't perfect, it was ever-changing, always up and down as they faced a bumps in the road and the likes of.

Furthermore, I thought that this book had a cast of amazing secondary characters- typically with secondary characters I can take or leave them, as oftentimes I feel that they do little to propel the story line, that they are just there for the sake of being there- I think that they each really established themselves and propelled the story line forward in some way, from Audrey, who brought a much needed lightheartedness to the book, to Mason, the 'cool' authority figure, to Cassie, a robotic-like/ emotionless character who you couldn't help but be intrigued by.

All in all, despite my complaints I think that this was still a very enjoyable book! I also enjoy the fact that as of right now it appears that this book is a standalone (especially with its epilogue which goes on to detail which happens to each character months, if not years, after the happenings of this book)- it seems that nowadays there are far too few standalones and therefore I find this refreshing. I can't wait to check out Cat's other books!  

Rating: 8/10

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

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

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: Etiquette & Espionage: Finishing School, Book the First
Author: Gail Carriger
Release Date: February 5, 2012

From Goodreads: "It's one thing to learn to curtsy properly. It's quite another to learn to curtsy and throw a knife at the same time. Welcome to finishing school.

Fourteen-year-old Sophronia is the bane of her mother's existence. Sophronia is more interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper etiquette at tea--and god forbid anyone see her atrocious curtsy. Mrs. Temminnick is desperate for her daughter to become a proper lady. She enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

But little do Sophronia or her mother know that this is a school where ingenious young girls learn to finish, all right--but it's a different kind of finishing. Mademoiselle Geraldine's certainly trains young ladies in the finer arts of dance, dress, and etiquette, but also in the other kinds of finishing: the fine arts of death, diversion, deceit, espionage, and the modern weaponries. Sophronia and her friends are going to have a rousing first year at school.

First in a four book YA series set 25 years before the Parasol Protectorate but in the same universe."

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

"Dead Is A Battlefield" by Marlene Perez

Release Date: March 2012
Publisher: Graphia (Thomas Allen and Son)

From Goodreads: "Jessica Walsh is starting her freshman year at Nightshade High and trying to forget about the tragic events surrounding her brother’s graduation. She wants to have a normal high school experience. But that’s easier said than done in Nightshade.

When a new boy shows up at school, the girls are infected with a case of seriously creepy crushes. But when their obsession turns to violence, Jessica and her friends start to wonder if there’s more going on than just a little friendly rivalry. Are the smitten girls turning into love zombies?

And Jessica has other worries—like her crush on Dominic Gray, the cute but moody new singer for Side Effects May Vary, and the mysterious tattoo that appeared on her arm one day and lets her know whenever there is trouble brewing. Jessica learns she's a Virago, a woman warrior chosen to fight evil whenever it threatens her hometown. But does a lowly freshman really have what it takes to keep Nightshade safe?"

Despite this being the sixth book in Marlene Perez's "Dead Is" series (and a series which has been around since 2008) I must admit that the first time I learned of this series was a few weeks ago when I received this book in the mail from the publisher to read and review. While I ALWAYS read series in order (I can't recall EVER having started a series in the middle of it) I knew that I would be unable to do so in this case due to time constraints, plus, after reading the synopsis' of the earlier books on Goodreads I felt comfortable reading this book without having read the earlier books as each book appeared to be a self-contained book, a book which though has repeating characters has its own individual storyline that is nicely summed up by the end of the book (additionally this book's main character is Jessica where in the earlier books the main character was Jessica's neighbour Daisy)- which, thankfully, did turn out to be the case.

As mentioned, as I had never read any of Marlene's books before I wasn't entirely sure what to expect, but it surely wasn't this. This book was a fair bit more juvenile than I thought that it would be- both in the fact that in this book Jessica is four just entering her first year of high school and that I found the plot of it to be more so MG than YA- with love potions, character reactions, insta-love and the likes of (I found the plot to be similar to Sherrilyn Kenyon's "Infinity").

An additional problem I had with the book was that I found that overall it lacked any emotion- Not once while reading this book did I experience any feelings of "SQUEE" at the sappy moments nor heartpounding feelings at the most action-packed moments. Furthermore, after having read the book I don't feel like I truly know any of characters- I found that they were quite flat and one-dimensional (I mean, Dominic Gray is a rockstar, you'd think I would swoon once or twice over him, not unlike Logan from Jeri Smith-Ready's "Shade" series). AND I felt that there were A) far too many characters to keep track of and B) many of the characters had similar names which both resulted in it being difficult to keep track of each and every one of them (for instance Eva and Evan, a potential couple).

That being said, despite the storyline being much more juvenile than I had expected it was fun and lighthearted, a nice reprieve from heavier and darker YA books. Furthermore, the book was an EXTREMELY quick read (I think that I finished it within 2 or so hours). I think that this book would be perfect for fans of Gina Damico's "Croak" and earlier Meg Cabot series, including her "Mediator" series and her "1-800-Where-R-You" series.

Rating: 6.5/10

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

Monday, July 9, 2012

"Enchanted" by Alethea Kontis

Release Date: May 8th, 2012
Publisher: Harcourt (Thomas Allen and Son)
Pages: 305

From Goodreads: "It isn't easy being the rather overlooked and unhappy youngest sibling to sisters named for the other six days of the week. Sunday’s only comfort is writing stories, although what she writes has a terrible tendency to come true.

When Sunday meets an enchanted frog who asks about her stories, the two become friends. Soon that friendship deepens into something magical. One night Sunday kisses her frog goodbye and leaves, not realizing that her love has transformed him back into Rumbold, the crown prince of Arilland—and a man Sunday’s family despises.

The prince returns to his castle, intent on making Sunday fall in love with him as the man he is, not the frog he was. But Sunday is not so easy to woo. How can she feel such a strange, strong attraction for this prince she barely knows? And what twisted secrets lie hidden in his past - and hers?"

The thing that resonates most with me after having finished reading this book is how seamlessly author Alethea Kontis was able to weave together countless fairy-tales, nursery rhymes and stories- from "Cinderella" to "The Frog Prince" to "The Princess and the Pea" to "The Old Woman Who Live in the Show" (and with arguably a "Romeo and Juliet" vibe going on). Not once did I find myself being overwhelmed by the plethora of said characters, in fact, I looked forward to their introductions to the storyline/ I welcomed each and every one of them with open arms.

Furthermore, I found each of the characters to be extremely well developed and complex, from Sunday, a young girl trying to find her place in the world, whilst trying to recover from a broken heart, to Prince Rumbold, who was simply trying to simply remember who he was, let alone finding his place in the world, to Trix, a young feyish boy who valued family above all, to Wednesday, an ethereal beauty with powers like no other.  

That being said, my largest complaint about this book was the 'insta-love' that took place- only within two or three days of meeting one another Sunday and Grumble were admitting their undying love to one another- however, being as this was a fairy-tale and as these sorts of things are quite common in them, I was able to forgive it. A bit.

All in all, this is an extremely cute and lighthearted read- after reading it you will be hard-pressed to not have a smile on your face and a happy heart. I think that this book would be perfect for younger YA fans (or older MG fans) or fans of the television show "Once Upon A Time"!

Rating: 7.5/10

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

Saturday, July 7, 2012

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!

Title: "52 Reasons to Hate My Father"
Author: Jessica Brody
Publisher: Farrar Strous and Giroux
Release Date: July 3, 2012

From Goodreads: "Being America’s favorite heiress is a dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it. 

Lexington Larrabee has never to work a day in her life. After all, she’s the heiress to the multi-billion-dollar Larrabee Media empire. And heiresses are not supposed to work. But then again, they’re not supposed to crash brand new Mercedes convertibles into convenience stores on Sunset Blvd either. 

Which is why, on Lexi’s eighteen birthday, her ever-absent, tycoon father decides to take a more proactive approach to her wayward life. Every week for the next year, she will have to take on a different low-wage job if she ever wants to receive her beloved trust fund. But if there’s anything worse than working as a maid, a dishwasher, and a fast-food restaurant employee, it’s dealing with Luke, the arrogant, albeit moderately attractive, college intern her father has assigned to keep tabs on her. 

In a hilarious “comedy of heiress” about family, forgiveness, good intentions, and best of all, second chances, Lexi learns that love can be unconditional, money can be immaterial, and, regardless of age, everyone needs a little saving. And although she might have 52 reasons to hate her father, she only needs one reason to love him."

Thursday, July 5, 2012

"Illuminate" by Aimee Agresti

Release Date: March 6, 2012
Publisher: Harcourt (Thomas Allen and Son)
Pages: 534

From Goodreads: "Haven Terra is a brainy, shy high school outcast. But everything begins to change when she turns sixteen. Along with her best friend Dante and their quiet and brilliant classmate Lance, she is awarded a prestigious internship in the big city— Chicago—and is sent to live and work at a swanky and stylish hotel under the watchful eyes of a group of gorgeous and shockingly young-looking strangers: powerful and alluring hotel owner Aurelia Brown; her second-in-command, the dashing Lucian Grove; and their stunning but aloof staff of glamazons called The Outfit.

As Haven begins falling for Lucian, she discovers that these beautiful people are not quite what they seem. With the help of a mysterious book, she uncovers a network of secret passageways from the hotel’s jazz-age past that leads her to the heart of the evil agenda of Aurelia and company: they’re in the business of buying souls. Will they succeed in wooing Haven to join them in their recruitment efforts, or will she be able to thwart this devilish set’s plans to take the souls of her classmates on prom night at the hotel?

Illuminate is an exciting saga of a teen’s first taste of independence, her experience in the lap of luxury, and her discovery she may possess strength greater than she ever knew."

While this book is not the most unique of this nature, angels versus demons, that I have read before (comparable to Lauren Kate's "Fallen" series and Lisa Desrocher's "Personal Demons" series) that I have read before I still found it to be extremely enjoyable (in fact, once I started it I literally couldn't put it down, this book took me less time to read than 2 of my most highly anticipated books of 2012, despite being just as long, if not longer, than them). I think that the main contributing factors as to why I enjoyed it so much were author Aimee Agretsi's prose, the world-building and the likeable characters. 

Aimee described everything in such minute detail- from the characters clothing/ uniforms, to plates of food, setting- though she did so in an enlightening and rather upbeat way, not once did I find her descriptions to be boring. Aimee truly has a way with words unlike any other author I can ever recall reading before.

Futhermore, I would have thought that because the large majority of this book takes place within the confines of the Lexington Hotel that I would quickly tire of it, finding the setting to be too redundant and the likes of, however, I didn't find that to be the case whatsoever. Every time I thought that there surely couldn't be another component of the hotel, there was- from the tunnels both beneath and below Haven's room, to the Pit to Alcatraz. Furthermore, I also really enjoyed the historical aspect to it (the Al Capone aspect)- I found it to be quite educational without feeling educational. 

I really liked Haven, which I found to be quite surprising as female characters typically make very little to no impact upon me (I oftentimes find them to be too underdeveloped, too dependent upon the males in their lives, and the likes of)- Haven almost solely propelled the story by herself (she had a good head on her shoulders and was extremely selfless). Furthermore, I REALLY liked Lance which I also find surprising as in almost every case I root for the female character to be with the 'new guy' rather than her friend, the boy she has previously known (for instance, Jace over Simon in Cassie Clare's "Mortal Instruments" series, Dimitri over Mason in Richelle Mead's "Vampire Academy" series, etc.). Why I rooted for Lance over Lucian was that I found him to be so much more real, genuine and approachable. 

All in all, I believe this to be a stunning debut from author Aimee Agresti, she is an author that I think that we should all keep our eyes on. I cannot wait to see what she has in store for Haven and the gang next!

Rating: 4/5

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

Memorable lines from the book: 

"Since I can't be with you, since you won't have me, I will do everything I can to help you beat them, even if it kills me in the process" (pg. 409). 

"You make me want to be better than I am" (pg. 412). 

"It's a funny thing- the more time you spend with someone, the more they change in your eyes. You find yourself studying everything about them, the shape of their face and the way their lips curl when they say certain words, their tics. The smallest things like that can become fascinating, And then it can catch you off-guard when you realize how much you've learned from countless hours with this person- hours that ticked by without your even noticing- and all of a sudden you know them as well as your closest friends. You know when he's going to adjust his glasses and when he's going to put his hands in his pockets or when he's going to be still watching you when you've looked away" (pg. 447). 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

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: "When We Wake"
Author: Karen Healey
Release Date: March 15, 2013

From Goodreads: "My name is Tegan Oglietti, and on the last day of my first lifetime, I was so, so happy. 

Sixteen-year-old Tegan is just like every other girl living in 2027 - she's happiest when playing the guitar, she's falling in love for the first time, and she's joining her friends to protest the wrongs of the world: environmental collapse, social discrimination, and political injustice. 

But on what should have been the best day of Tegan's life, she dies - and wakes up a hundred years in the future, locked in a government facility with no idea what happened. 

Tegan is the first government guinea pig to be cryonically frozen and successfully revived, which makes her an instant celebrity - even though all she wants to do is try to rebuild some semblance of a normal life. But the future isn't all she hoped it would be, and when appalling secrets come to light, Tegan must make a choice: Does she keep her head down and survive, or fight for a better future? 

Award-winning author Karen Healey has created a haunting, cautionary tale of an inspiring protagonist living in a not-so-distant future that could easily be our own."

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