Monday, April 30, 2012

Review + Author Interview: Slated

Author: Terri Terry
Series: Slated #1
Pages: 448
Format: ARC
Source: Orchard Books
Release Date: May 3, 2012
Publisher: Orchard Books
Rating: 5/5

Summery:
Kyla’s memory has been erased,
her personality wiped blank,
her memories lost for ever.

She’s been Slated.

The government claims she was a terrorist, and that they are giving her a second chance - as long as she plays by their rules. But echoes of the past whisper in Kyla’s mind. Someone is lying to her, and nothing is as it seems. Who can she trust in her search for the truth?


Review:
After reading all the rave reviews about this book I was super excited to get the chance to read it.  And it didn’t disappoint.

First off, may I just say that this is one of the most original, imaginative ideas I have seen in a book in a long time.  I have a friend who has diabetes, so I think that Terry got the idea for the Levos from that, but it was such an interesting spin on it that I honestly didn’t care.  Everything about this book I loved: the writing, the story line, and the staging.  Everything worked it’s way up to an amazing climax, with all the events flowing together perfectly and amazing, amazing writing finishing it all off.

One thing that I really liked about this book and have not seen in any book I’ve read before is the romance, or lack there of.  I loved that Ben and Kyla were friends and not together because it would have messed it up.  I think the fact that they were best friends and then started having feelings for each other was a much better way to convey the romance and you really feel it more.
It also helped because it made Kyla, who was already a very strong character, seem even stronger.
And Ben was different too.  In most books the main boy character is super hot, sexy, all that, but Ben wasn’t, and I love that.  He was a normal guy, and that made the friendship and romance that much more believable.

Wow Terry, just wow.  You have penned a masterpiece of a debut novel.  I honestly don’t think I have read a debut novel this good before.


________________________________________________

~Interview with Terri Terry~

Teri has lived in France, Canada, Australia and England at more addresses than she can count, acquiring three degrees, a selection of passports and a silly name along the way. Past careers have included scientist, lawyer, optometrist, and, in England, various jobs in schools, libraries and an audiobook charity. The footpaths and canal ways of the Buckinghamshire Chilterns where she now lives inspired much of the setting of Slated. She hates broccoli, likes cats, and has finally worked out what she wants to do when she grows up.











1. Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m a little mixed up – I was born in France, my Dad was born in the Netherlands, my Mum was born in Canada to Finnish parents, I grew up in Canada and moved to Australia. Then I met an English guy while on holiday here, and that is how I got both the silly name, and the English address!

Along the way I’ve tried a lot of things. I did science and law in Canada and was an intellectual property lawyer – inventions, mostly. I loved figuring out how things work. When I moved to Australia I did an optometry degree and was an optometrist for years.

2. Why did you become a writer? Who were your biggest influences?

As a child I was a BIG reader. I used to hide under the covers reading with a torch when I was supposed to be asleep, except I called it a flashlight, because this was in Canada. Then I worked out that if I shoved a blanket under the door my parents couldn’t see the lights were on, so that also worked. And I got in less trouble for the torch batteries always being flat.

To me to write books was the most magical wonderful thing I could imagine – and there was no way I ever thought I could do it. I was always a natural story teller, and I made up some whoppers. But it wasn’t until I’d tried just about every job going that I finally decided it was time to give in to what was inside me, and write. I’ve been writing seriously now for almost ten years, and in a haphazard fashion for many more.

As far as biggest influences go…there are particular books that stand out in my memory from childhood. Many of the authors and titles are now forgotten, but the stories are ones that stuck. But I think one of the biggest things was being taken to the library when I was quite small. Grabbing one of those big baskets, and filling it up with books, ones I chose myself. I read everything.

3. Any special places you like to write?

First thing in the morning, 6 am or even earlier, in my PJ’s in bed with a cup of tea is where most of my writing happens. During the afternoon my favorite place is the Writing Shack – a summer house in our garden. It hasn’t got power, though, so is too cold in the winter. No power also means no internet – always helpful for concentration!

4. What is your favorite movie?

I can’t say I’ve got one favourite, but I LOVE the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and the original Star wars movies. Of recent movies the Hunger Games is pretty awesome!

5. Favorite food?

Popcorn! – the salty kind. I don’t really get sweet popcorn: what is that about?

6. Are you a cat person or a dog person?

Very much a cat person. All the cats of the neighbourhood visit my Writing Shack.

7. What is your next book? What's it about? When will it be released?

Slated is a trilogy, so book 2, Fractured, continues Kyla’s story where Slated leaves off. Fractured is out in the UK in May 2013; dates aren’t official yet in the US/Canada but both Slated and Fractured should be out in there in 2013.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
And that's all for today.  I hope you guys enjoyed my review and the interview.  Seriously, this book is amazing and I really hope you guys check it out when it's released.  It's being released May 3 in the UK and sometime in 2013 for the US and Canada.  And btw I love comments *hint hint*

Sunday, April 29, 2012

In my Mailbox: (#20)



In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren, where we spotlight the books that we've received for review, swapped, or purchased that week.

So I've noticed that after the whole Story Siren fiascoe in which she stole content from another blog that a lot of bloggers are no longer using her meme, In My Mailbox. I completely agree with them, but I am not running around looking for a new meme because while I don't like her blog, I do like this meme, so I will continue to use it. But don't get me wrong, I still have no respect for her or her work because I don't even know if it's her work anymore, and I am not following her blog or entering her giveaways or in any way associating with her.

FOR REVIEW



Promises, by Amber Garr (From Amber Garr)
Betrayal, by Amber Garr (From Amber Garr)
(Thank you Amber Garr for sending me finished copies of these books and for signing them as well!!)



Inside, by Maria V. Snyder (From Maria V. Snyder)
Fated, by Alyson Noel (From St. Martin's Press)


SWAG:

From Maria V. Snyder


SIGNED PRETTIES:


Finished copy of Promises


Finished copy of Betrayal


Finished copy of Inside


And that's all for me!  What did you guys get this week?  Link me up!! :)

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Review + Giveaway: Elemental

Author: Emily White
Pages: 260
Format: ARC
Source: Spencer Hill Press
Publisher: Spencer Hill Pressrc,
Release Date: May 1, 2012
Rating: 4/5


Summery:


Just because Ella can burn someone to the ground with her mind doesn't mean she should. 

But she wants to. 

For ten years—ever since she was a small child—Ella has been held prisoner on an interstellar starship. Now that she has escaped, she needs answers.

Who is she? Why was she taken? And who is the boy with the beautiful green eyes who haunts her memories?

Is Ella the prophesied Destructor… or will she be the one who's destroyed?

Review: 
This book has a bit of everything: romance, adventure, faeries, sci-fi, dysopian.  Right up my ally :p

I think it was a pretty solid book.  The idea was really good, the story line was really good, and the writing was really good.  The idea really sticks out to me; it’s so original.  I mean, who thinks of combining distopia with faeries?  It’s ingenious!  And the story line and writing just completed the whole thing, with great staging.  All the events flowed together perfectly, leading up to an amazing climax.  Perfect work, Emily White.

I didn’t expect to have a particularly strong female character in this book, but Ella fits the description perfectly:  she’s strong, kick-butt, and can totally take care of herself.  If you’ve read my other reviews, you’ll see that I love Maria V. Snyder’s female characters (Yelena and Avry), and I always say that they are definitely the strongest I’ve ever read about.  Well, Ella joins that exclusive club, because she is super kick-butt.
I really wish I could say I liked Cailen, because he was obviously supposed to be the main guy in this book, but unfortunately I didn’t.  I think what happened was White just didn’t develop him enough over the course of the book, so we didn’t get to connect and fall in love with him.
In the beginning, I loved Malick.  The whole book I was thinking, Is there going to be a love triange?and in a way I kind of wish there was because I liked Malick way better than Cailen, because I though he was a more developed character.  But by the time I finished the book, I hated him (read the book and you’ll find out why ;P)  In my opinion, it would have been better if there had been a love triangle because that would make what Malick did more groundbreaking.  But, that was White’s choice, and I’m not a published author, so I can’t really talk ;P

I really wish there were more books like these out there.  People are just sticking to the normal things.  Why not mix it up?  Why not combine werewolves and faeries and dystopia?  That would be cool.  So, tip of the hat to Emily White for having an open mind and trying something new.


________________________________________________________

And now onto the giveaway


I am giving away one ARC edition of Elemenal.  Enter below and if you have anything to say feel free to leave a comment!! :)

The Rules:
~There will be one winner. 
~Giveaway ends on May 12, 2012 @ 12:01 AM
~This giveaway is US/Can
~Must be a GFC follower
~Must be 13 years or older.
~Fill out the Rafflecopter



Thursday, April 26, 2012

Cover Reveals: Scent of Magic + The Evolution of Mara Dyer

Scent of Magic
by Maria V. Snyder
#2 in Healer
Release Date: 2013
Number of pages: ----
Format: Hardcover


Hunted, Killed - Survived? As the last Healer in the Fifteen Realms, Avery of Kazan is in a unique position: in the minds of her friends and foes alike, she no longer exists. Despite her need to prevent the megalomanical King Tohon from winner control of the Realms, Avery is also determined to find her sister and repair their estrangement. And she must do it alone, as Kerrick, her partner and sole confident, returns to Alga to summon his country into battle.

Though she should be in hiding, Avery will do whatever she can to support Tohon’s opponents. Including infiltrating a holy army, evading magic sniffers, teaching forest skills to soldiers and figuring out how to stop Tohon’s most horrible creations yet; an army of the walking dead - human and animal alike and nearly impossible to defeat.

War is coming and Avery is alone. Unless she figures out how to do the impossible ... again.
Words cannot describe how excited I am for this book.  While the cover is ok (Kerrick is not that ugly) I love Maria V. Snyder and I know this book is going to be amazing!
The Healer series:
 


See my review of Touch of Power here.



by Michelle Hodkin
#2 in Mara Dyer
Release Date: October 23, 2012
Number of pages: 272
Format: Hardcover


Two days after Mara walks into a police station in Miami at the close of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, she is committed for psychiatric treatment for what her parents believe is a mental breakdown. But what seems like a hallucination to everyone else is a chilling reality for Mara. Someone from her past has discovered her strange, disturbing secret and that someone wants her to pay. But she's about to discover that the price is more than she can bear.




Although I haven't read the first book yet it looks really good and I love this cover so I'm excited to start this series.
The Mara Dyer series:

ExtraNormal Blog Tour: Review + Author Interview



Hi everyone!!  Thanks for checking out my stop in this great tour.  Today I have a review and author interview so I hope you stick around to read them and it should be fun!  Thanks Suze Reese for asking me to be a part of this fantastic blog tour.  YOU ROCK!!

~Review~

Author: Suze Reese
Series: ExtraNormal #1
Pages: 370
Rating: 2.5/5 

Summery:
Mira Johns is pretty much like any other teenage girl. Except that she knows how to harness electro-magnetic energy to communicate without words. And she's really, really far from home. Her assignment as an emissary to Earth sounds fairly simple: blend in, observe, and stay away from the planet’s primitive males. But after she finds one mysterious boy too irresistible for stupid rules, she realizes the real reason she's supposed to keep her distance: mates from her world can die if separated. But a series of serious accidents make it clear that someone wants to force her return. Mira decides her only hope is to uncover the truth to why she, the most mediocre of candidates, was actually chosen for this assignment—before the agency discovers her secret and sends her back home.

Review:
I was super-excited to read this book.  I loved the cover and the summery made it seem like a really original, interesting book.  Sadly, it was the complete opposite.

I really wanted to like this book, I really did.  But I just couldn’t.  It was so clichéd and dramatic and…dumb.  I couldn’t stand it.  First off, I had no idea what Mira was.  Reeze didn’t explain ANYTHING.  She just assumed we already knew everything.  The writing was good, the idea was good, but the story line was horrible.  I feel like Reeze was trying a bit too hard.  I don’t watch any of the mystery shows out today like CSI or Cold Case or anything, but I’m pretty sure that if I did I would feel like I was reading this book.  There was no originality; it was just the typical mystery drama.  And speaking of drama, I hated the romance.  It was way too dramatic, and kind of creepy.  Jesse thought Mira was helpless and followed her home every night.  That’s not romantic, that’s creepy.  He’s like a stalker.  I just think it was way overdone.  Here’s a quote about the romance:

“Listen Jesse, if I do have to leave…and I promise to try to let my pattern go back to how it was…will you promise to do the same? To move on and find someone else?”
“No. I can’t even imagine…”
“Neither can I. But if I’m willing to try …”

That’s what the entire book was like: drama drama I’ll never get over you and more drama.

I really really wish I could say that I liked Jesse even a little bit, but I can’t.  He was so annoying.  He stalked her every night, thought she was weak and couldn’t take care of herself, and was just downright annoying.
Same for Mira.  Way to dependent on Jesse.

I really wish I had liked this book more, and I really tried to, but I just couldn’t.  The clichés and annoying romance was just too much to overlook.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

~About the Author~

Author of YA paranormal romance ExtraNormal. In real life I fight pirates, travel to outer space and am trained in lethal jiu jitsu. In my imagination I sit in front a computer all day writing and eating peanut m&ms. Or maybe its the other way around. I get confused. I have published in a different genre, but this one is way way more fun. I have a degree in communications. Which I guess means I know how to communicate good.


~Interview~


1. Why did you start writing?
I've always been a writer, though it took years for me to decide to write fiction. I was in my twenties when I read a book (won't say which one) that I thought was really awful. I kept picking it apart until eventually I told myself I could do better. And then I accepted the challenge.

2. Who are your biggest influences?
My high school English teacher Mrs. Haws (isn't that cliche?) But it's true. As far as writing influences, there are way too many to list but I'll throw out some that come to mind. When I was really young I inhaled Judy Blume and Laura Ingalls Wilder books. Back in those high school days I loved Twain and Poe and even Chaucer (total geek, I know). Some of my favorites as I was considering becoming an author myself were Lisa Wingate, Scott Westerfield, and maybe even Orson Scott Card.

3. Where do you like to write?
I do my writing curled up on a couch. I use my netbook and sit by a window where I have a view of the valley below me. I do my editing in my office on the home computer. The room is stuffy and cluttered, but I have a giant monitor that lets me use a giant font so I can catch my mistakes.

4. Any special talents?
I play the piano really poorly. One of my favorite things in the world is leading a choir. In high school I could do Chinese splits and put my leg behind my head. Impressive I know.

5. Five random things about you?
Random. Hmm. Let's see:
1. I was born with a hole in my heart and a few adult teeth missing. My Mom was 42 when she had me, so my siblings say I was put together with spare parts.
2. I have this condition with my hands (unrelated) that causes my fingers to lock up. Sometimes that means my middle finger won't bend. I do not recommend driving that way.
3. I love both mountains and beaches. I don't know which I'd choose if I had to pick just one.
4. I hate hate hate pickles.
5. I couldn't whistle a note to save my life.

6. Favorite candy?
Chocolate. Red Vines. Peanut M&Ms. Chocolate. (Some of those might sound familiar if you've read ExtraNormal.)

7. Favorite movie?
Right now I'm really into the Avengers. And anything with Johnny Depp.

8. Are you Team Peeta or Team Gale?
Noooo!!!! Don't make me choose! Seriously, I love them both. Peeta is noble and humble and determined and fiercely loyal. Peeta is beautiful and self-less. I'd like to take them both home and comfort them and care for their wounds.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

And that's all for today.  Isn't she awesome?!  I hope you guys enjoyed reading and if you feel like saying something feel free to comment below.  Thanks again to Suze Reese for inviting me to be a part of this fab blog tour and for being such a good sport and answering my questions. <3

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (#28): The Unnaturalists

This is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlites upcoming new releases that we're highly anticipating.
This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

The Unnaturalists, by Tiffany Trent
Release Date: August 14, 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

In an alternate London where magical creatures are preserved in a museum, two teens find themselves caught in a web of intrigue, deception, and danger. Vespa Nyx wants nothing more than to spend the rest of her life cataloging Unnatural creatures in her father’s museum, but as she gets older, the requirement to become a lady and find a husband is looming large. Syrus Reed’s Tinker family has always served and revered the Unnaturals from afar, but when his family is captured to be refinery slaves, he finds that his fate may be bound up with Vespa’s—and with the Unnaturals. As the danger grows, Vespa and Syrus find themselves in a tightening web of deception and intrigue. At stake may be the fate of New London—and the world.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Teaser Tuesday: (#22)




Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading.
Anyone can do it. You just have to do is:
(1): Grab your current read.
(2): Open it to a random page.
(3): Share 1 or 2 "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page. BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!!
(4): Make sure you also mention the author and title.

Elemental, by Emily White

**PLEASE NOTE: These teasers were taken from an ARC edition of this book so the quotes might not be the same as the finished copy**

#1: "When I walked through the doorway, the huge room felt much smaller than before.  I rushed to my unmade bed and sat down with my legs crossed.  I didn't exactly know my motivation behind the move.  Maybe it was because my mind was running wild with the assumptions I was afraid were going through Cailen's head, and DI wanted to hide the messy sheets.  Surely he would't actually think Malik and I..."

#2: "I crumpled onto the floor and let my cheek rest against the cold metal.  It felt soothing against my hot, clammy skin-familiar.   I groaned.  The thought that a cold, metal floor should comfort me with its familiarity absolutely revolted me.  Never in my wildest imaginings had I thought I would look back at any part of my time on Sho'ful with longing."

What's your teaser this Tuesday?  Link me up!! :)

Summer Lovin' Blog Tour: Reviews & a Giveaway!


~Review~

Author: Karen Schreck
Pages: 256
Format: ARC (Thanks Sourcebooks Fire!!)
Release Date: May 1, 2012 (Mark your calanders!! :P)
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Rating: 5/5

Summery:
All she wants is for him to stay. She's been doing pretty well, pretending he doesn't have to go. But one day, after one last night to remember, she wakes up and there's no denying it anymore. He's gone.

When Penna Weaver's boyfriend goes off to Iraq, she's left facing life without him. As summer sets in, Penna tries to distract herself with work and her art, but the not knowing is slowly driving her crazy. Especially when David stops writing.

She knows in her heart he will come home. But will he be the same boy she fell in love with?

Review:
First off, let me just say that I LOVE this cover.  It is amazing.  I mean, look at it.  I love it.  The girl is so pretty and the guy's back is totally cute! ;p  Anyway, on to the review! :P

I loved it.  I don't usually like books like these, but I loved it.  It was like reading a Sarah Dessen book, only a little better.  I've never read a book about the army before, and this was a great introduction to the genre.  The idea was amazing, the writing was amazing, and the story line was amazing.  Everything was perfect.  It's always hard to make books like these interesting, and Schreck did an amazing job with keeping things interesting.  Although it was super sad, I loved the ending.  I really hope Schreck writes a sequel because I want to see what happens with David.  Please, oh please write a sequel!

Even though for most of the story he was in Iraq, I really liked David.  He was nice, sexy, and totally perfect boyfriend material.  And even though by the end I didn't like him as much, I like him.
I also really love Penna.  This book needs a strong female character because a weak person can't deal with her boyfriend being in Iraq, so it was crucial that Schreck write Penna as strong.  And she was. I loved her.

Like I said before, I hope there is a sequel to this book and if so I will probably start screaming when I hear about it because I will be SO FREAKING EXCITED!! :D
 
__________________________
 
 

 
~Review~

 
Author: Katherine Grace Bond
Pages: 290
Format: ARC
Source: Sourcebooks Fire (Thank you!)
Release Date: May 1, 2012
Rating: 2.7/5

 
Summery:
The day Brigitta accidentally flings herself into the lap of a guy she's never met, her friend Natalie is convinced he's Trent Yves, egotistical heartthrob-in-hiding. When the boy, who calls himself Luke, is nearly eaten by a cougar, Brigitta finds herself saving his life, being swept into his spectacular embrace and wondering if she wants Natalie's fantasy to be true.
 
As the two spend the summer together raising orphaned cougar cubs, Brigitta still can't be sure of his true identity. But then again, since her grandparents' death, her father's sudden urge to give away all their possessions and become a shaman, and her own awkward transition from girlhood into a young woman, she isn't sure of anything. What is the truth? More importantly, can she accept it?

 
Review: 
I have truly never read a book like this before.  In the beginning I hated it so much I was going to give it 1 star.  By the end I liked it enough to give it 2.7.  And here’s why.

 
Okay, so in this review I am going to do two sections: The rant about the things I hate, and then the probably much smaller section about the things I liked.  So, enjoy!!

 
First off, I have to get something out of the way.  I’m a homeschooler.  For non-religious reasons.  So you can imagine why the main character being a homeschooler and a religious fanatic might be a problem for me.  I don’t know if the author was homeschooled herself, but if all homeschooled families are like Brigitta’s, then I’m ashamed to be a homeschooler: Here’s a sum-up of the family: Brigitta is an innocent person who has never told her mom a lie but is groundbreakinly a lover of famous people and runs a secret blog.  Her sister is sleeping with her college teacher.  Her dad is off in the woods banging drums like the wacko he is.  And the mom…well, she’s the most normal person there.  Add in preaching about religion and you get a big fat 1.  I thought the story was pointless and shallow.  NOTHING WAS HAPPENING!  Except finding super cute cougar cubs {baby animals are my weakness ;)}.  I had no idea why the author was even incorporating a stupid idiot like Trent Yves into the story.  I actually almost gave up a couple times, but I’m glad I stayed with it.

 
In the beginning of the story, I hated Brigitta.  I though she was a complete idiot and airhead for thinking Luke was Trent Yves.  And then there was the whole dead grandparents thing.  Well, here’s a suggestion for you: get over it.  Yes, it is okay to bawl and cry after your grandparents die, in fact, it’s expected.  But she just went on and on and on and on until I just skipped all the parts.
Really the only character that I liked from the beginning was Luke. From the second he was introduced I loved him.  He’s super nice, super sweet, and super cute.  *drools over keyboard*  Stay back everyone, HE’S MINE!!

 
To be honest, I didn’t like this book until the last 50 pages, when everything came together, and I realized, Hey, maybe this wasn’t such a bad book after all.  The idea was good, the story line was good, and the writing was good.  I still think it was a bit boring at times and I skipped the preaching and the grandparents, but pretty much a good book.

 
Brigitta still isn’t my favorite character ever.  She didn’t really have any personality.  The main character is the one that should be the most developed of the whole cast, and I think Brigitta was the least developed.
Love Luke. *drools some more*

 
I don’t usually do this, but I have to do some cover talk right now.  I hate the cover.  Do you realize that the girl isn’t wearing any pants?  Just a bikini bottom.  And the title makes no sense either.  I guess since it’s a contemp book the author wanted a comtemp title, but it just doesn’t fit.  One of the worst title/cover combinations ever.

 
I have honestly never read a book like this before.  I went from absolutely despising it to thinking it was okay.  I wouldn’t really recommend it to anyone, but if you think you would enjoy it then by all means, pick it up. :)

 
Thank to Sourcebooks for sending me an ARC of this book.  You guys rock!! :)

 
_________________________________________
 
~Giveaway~

 
In honor of this fantastic blog tour, I am going to give away one e-book ARC of The Summer of No Regrets!  Enter below!! :)
 The Rules:
~There will be one winner. 
~This giveaway is international
~Giveaway ends on May 8, 2012 @ 11:59 p.m.
~Must be a GFC follower
~Must be 13 years or older.
~Fill out the Rafflecopter


 

 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Has anyone seen War Horse?

I know I don't usually write reviews about movies (and this isn't even a review) but I saw War Horse last night and it was so sad.  I cried almost the entire time.  I never cry during movies.  You can call me heartless all you want (I didn't even cry when Rue died in The Hunger Games, although I came close) but I just don't do it.  But for whatever reason I was bawling after ten minutes.  But the thing is, it was a great movie!  Even though it was heartbreakingly sad it was a really good movie.  The plot and the characters (Albert was really cute (;  ) and the camera work especially, was really good.

And I just finished watching Journey 2 literally ten minutes ago and it was SO FUNNY!  I love Dwayne Johnson.  My BFF is pretty much in love with Josh Hutcherson and she's been trying to convince me he's cute and at first I was like no...but now ;).  One thing I will say is he works out!  After all he does have to do his pecks performance ;p (you'll get it when you watch the movie).  And Vanessa Hudgens...gorgeous.  And her dad in the movie was so funny I could barelly stop laughing.  All in all, a great weekend with two great movies.  Have you guys seen these movies and what do you think? :):):)

In my Mailbox: (#19)


In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren, where we spotlight the books that we've received for review, swapped, or purchased that week.


FOR REVIEW:
Lost Voices, by Sarah Porter (Thank you Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for sending me a finished copy of this book!!)
Waking Storms, by Sarah Porter (Thank you Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for sending me a second ARC of this book!)
ReVamped, by Ada Adams (Thank you so much Ada Adams for sending me this book and for SIGNING IT!!)





WON:
Daimon, by Jennifer L. Armentrout (Thank you Giselle @ A Cupcake and a Latte for hosting this great giveaway!)






BORROWED:
Dark Eyes, by William Richter

Friday, April 20, 2012

Cover Reveals: Endless & Fragile Darkness

Endless
by Jessica Shirvington
#4 in The Violet Eden Chapters
Release Date: October 2012
Number of pages: 400
Format: Paperback


OMG this cover is GORGEOUS!!  Love love love it!!


























The Violet Eden Chapters series:
   



by Ellie James
#3 in Midnight Dragonfly
Release Date: November 27, 2012
Number of pages: 352
Format: Paperback

I will admit, this is not my favorite cover ever.  It's kind of weird.  But, I bet it will be amazing so it's okay :P




















The Midnight Dragonfly series:


What do you guys think of these fab new covers?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Review: Shattered Dreams

Author: Ellie James
Series: Midnight Dragonfly #1
Pages: 342
Format: Paperback
Source: Ellie James (Thank you!!)
Release Date: December 6, 2011
Rating: 3.5

Summery:
Sixteen-year-old Trinity Monsour wants nothing more than to live a normal life. But that isn’t as easy as it seems. Trinity is different. She is special. She sees visions, and for those she’s seen, it’s already too late. 
Trinity arrives on her aunt’s doorstep in New Orleans with virtually no knowledge of her mysterious heritage. She begins settling into life at a new school and even starts making friends. But all too quickly her dreams accelerate; twisted, terrifying visions of a girl locked in a dark room. And when the head cheerleader, Jessica, goes missing, Trinity knows she has no choice but to step forward with what she’s seen.
But people believe that Trinity has information about Jessica’s disappearance not because of a dream, but because she is involved. She iskind-of dating Jessica’s ex-boyfriend, Chase, and Jessica did pull a nasty prank on Trinity. Revenge seems like the likeliest scenario. 
Nothing prepares Trinity for the dark odyssey that ensues while searching for Jessica, including the surprising romance she finds with Chase, or the shocking truths she learns, not just about the girl who has gone missing, but the past that has been hidden from her.



Review:

From the cover, you would think that this book would be some kind of fantasy about fairies or something like that.  Wrong.  This book was much more.


As if the cover wasn't enough, the story was amazing.  It twisted and turned and was so complex and perfect.  The idea to have Trinity as a semi-physic was a great one, and the writing really completed things very well and made it an all around solid book.  And I always say that ending make or break a book...well, it made this one.  Great, great ending.  Everything came together perfectly, everything was explained, and it all came to a climax, with great staging leading up to it.  The combination of mystery and fantasy worked perfectly together.  Fabulous work, Ellie James.


While she isn't a super kick-butt character, I really liked Trinity.  She didn't have any mad powers or was a kick-butt fighter, but she was strong and confidant.  I do feel like she could have been a little less sappy when it came to Chase, but hey- I can't get on her for that.
And the reason why is that I loved Chase.  He was nice, caring, super-sweet, totally swoon-worthy, and completely unpopular-football-player-ish (if that makes any sense :P).  He really cared about Trinity and really took care of her.  So Trinity, you can drool over him all you want, because I certainly am! :D


Honestly, I'm not sure where the second book is going to go.  There wasn't a cliffhanger or unfinished business at the end so I'm excited what Ellie James is going to come up with next.


Huge thanks to Ellie James for sending me a finished copy of this fab book AND for signing it as well! <3

Waiting on Wednesday (#27): The Peculiars


This is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlites upcoming new releases that we're highly anticipating.


This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

The Peculiars, by Maureen Doyle McQuerry

Release Date: May 1, 2012
Publisher: Amulet Books

This dark and thrilling adventure, with an unforgettable heroine, will captivate fans of steampunk, fantasy, and romance. On her 18th birthday, Lena Mattacascar decides to search for her father, who disappeared into the northern wilderness of Scree when Lena was young. Scree is inhabited by Peculiars, people whose unusual characteristics make them unacceptable to modern society. Lena wonders if her father is the source of her own extraordinary characteristics and if she, too, is Peculiar. On the train she meets a young librarian, Jimson Quiggley, who is traveling to a town on the edge of Scree to work in the home and library of the inventor Mr. Beasley. The train is stopped by men being chased by the handsome young marshal Thomas Saltre. When Saltre learns who Lena’s father is, he convinces her to spy on Mr. Beasley and the strange folk who disappear into his home, Zephyr House. A daring escape in an aerocopter leads Lena into the wilds of Scree to confront her deepest fears.

What do you guys think?  And what are you waiting on?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Author: Laini Taylor
Series: Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1
Pages: 432
Format: Hardcover
Rating: 5/5

Summery:
Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil's supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war. 


Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she's prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages—not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.

When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?



Review:

Wow.  Just wow.  I can't believe I waited so long to pick this book up. It's amazing.  It is 432 of pure joy to read.

Really the best word to describe every little bit of this book is amazing: amazing writing, amazing story line, amazing characters, amazing idea, amazing action, amazing everything.  This book is just amazing.  The writing was perfect, flowing together effortlessly and it really draws you in.  The story line was really good.  All the events flowed together perfectly and there was great staging.  Even though it was a bit slow at times it is one of the best story lines I have seen in a long time.  I loved the cast of characters because they all contributed to the story so much.  And the way Taylor created this whole new world was amazing.  She explained it in such detail that you felt like it was real.

Like I said, I adored this cast.  I haven't seen a truly strong female character in quiet some time, so I was super excited when Karou became just what I was looking for.  She ranks up there with Yelena and Avry (both from Maria V. Snyder books).  She is strong, kick-ass, and can totally take care of herself.
And, of course, there is the swoon-worthy man in the story: Akiva.  While I do really like him, I don't love him.  I think that of all the characters he is one of the least developed.  We got to know Karou really well but not really Akiva.
I also really liked Brimstone.  He was the father that Karou never had, and he was just so caring and he really took very good care of Karou, which I think is great.

One more thing before I sign off.  I don't usually pay attention to titles when I read books, but this one is amazing.  It goes perfectly with the story.  It really describes it perfectly, and I think everyone will realize that when they read this amazing book.
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