Sunday, February 24, 2013

{In My Mailbox} Library & NetGalley Haul

Sunday, February 24, 2013 with 8 comments
A Meme by The Story Siren &
Stacking The Shelves, A Meme By Tynga's Reviews

When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L'Engle
The Road by Cormac McCarthy

I truly adored reading When You Reach Me, and I look forward to finally reading A Wrinkle In Time, since I know it's such a beloved classic. The Road is a novel I have really been meaning to get around to, so I was glad to see that the local library carried a copy (the library here in Tonopah, NV is so small that there isn't much of a selection.)

Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz

The Nightmare Affair by Mindee Arnett
Whistling Past The Graveyard by Susan Crandall

The four books above were all received for review on my Kindle thanks to NetGalley. They all sound really amazing, so I look forward to reading them. I think I'm most excited to start Whistling Past The Graveyard, because the synopsis makes it sound a bit like The Secret Life of Bees, which I loved, and also because I'm a fan of life-changing road-trips.

So, what new reads have you guys received lately? Please let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

by Jordana Frankel
Expected Publication: April 30, 2013 by Katherine Tegen Books

Sixteen-year-old Ren is a daredevil mobile racer who will risk everything to survive in the Ward, what remains of a water-logged Manhattan. To save her sister, who is suffering from a deadly illness thought to be caused by years of pollution, Ren accepts a secret mission from the government: to search for a freshwater source in the Ward, with the hope of it leading to a cure.

However, she never expects that her search will lead to dangerous encounters with a passionate young scientist; a web of deceit and lies; and an earth-shattering mystery that’s lurking deep beneath the water’s rippling surface.

Jordana Frankel’s ambitious debut novel and the first in a two-book series, The Ward is arresting, cinematic, and thrilling—perfect for fans of Scott Westerfeld or Ann Aguirre.

Why I Can't Wait To Read This
A water-logged Manhattan?! Why wouldn't I want to read this?! Okay, so based on the synopsis I'm thinking that this may be somewhat of a cross between the Kevin Costner film, Waterworld, and the Jason Bourne series. I'm just so intrigued by the setting that it doesn't matter what this book is about, I'd want to check it out.

What do you guys think?

If you haven't done so already, feel free to link-up your own Waiting on Wednesday post at Breaking The Spine. And if you add a link to your WoW post in the comments, I'll be sure to check it out.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Grace just moved to San Francisco and is excited to start over at a new school. The change is full of fresh possibilities, but it’s also a tiny bit scary. It gets scarier when a minotaur walks in the door. And even more shocking when a girl who looks just like her shows up to fight the monster.

Gretchen is tired of monsters pulling her out into the wee hours, especially on a school night, but what can she do? Sending the minotaur back to his bleak home is just another notch on her combat belt. She never expected to run into this girl who could be her double, though.

Greer has her life pretty well put together, thank you very much. But that all tilts sideways when two girls who look eerily like her appear on her doorstep and claim they're triplets, supernatural descendants of some hideous creature from Greek myth, destined to spend their lives hunting monsters.

These three teenage descendants of Medusa, the once-beautiful gorgon maligned by myth, must reunite and embrace their fates in this unique paranormal world where monsters lurk in plain sight 

I can't believe that the only reason I ended up reading this book was because it contained the word "sweet," thus making it eligible to be February's read in Bookmark to Blog's 2013 Monthly Key Word Challenge. I am so grateful that reading challenges exist which make me pick up books I wouldn't otherwise get around to reading - this was such a good read!

I've gotten used to books that are written in different perspectives, but it was a completely different experience reading a novel told from the perspectives of three very different, yet identical triplets. I applaud Ms. Childs for giving the girls very distinct voices, so that I had no trouble telling them apart. I also found it interesting that each girl had such different backgrounds as well, being separated at birth: Gretchen grew up in a lower-class home without love and spent time living on the streets, Grace grew up in a loving home of a middle-class family, and Greer grew up in a wealthy upper-class home and got everything that she wanted materialistically, but was ignored by her parents.

I thought I was going to end up having a favorite sister, but I really ended up liking all three sisters equally - even Greer, who was a bit of a snob, but still loveable. Plus, the story was so face-paced that it was hard to put it down. The idea that mythological monsters are entering our world through a doorway from another world, and that the girls have to fight those monsters and send them back, is very appealing. Even more so when you discover that all of the normal rules (such as monsters only appearing at night, and one at a time) are drastically changing, and that someone's put a bounty on the girls' heads.

I hope to find out more about their past in later books to the series - especially about their ancestor Medusa and her sisters, and why they were chosen to maintain the balance between worlds. I can't wait to start the next book! This is the first book I have read from this author, and from the good impression I received, I will certainly be checking out some of her other novels after I finish this series. 5 of 5 Stars!


Thursday, February 14, 2013

So, in the spirit of Valentine's Day (or Single Awareness Day, in my case), this week's chat is about romance novels. Now, as I've mentioned in a previous post, I don't really tend to read books that are strictly romance, but I do often read books of other genres that have romances in them. My absolute favorite love story, whether in novel or film form, is between Elizabeth Bennet & Mr. Darcy in Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice. I just adore the chemistry between those two, and never tire of their story.

"In vain have I struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you." - Mr. Darcy

Other Romances I Enjoyed

Aria & Perry (Under The Never Sky)
Ella & Prince Char (Ella Enchanted)
Amy & Poe (Secret Society Girl)

I truly am a huge fan of the romance genre, but I like to read books from such diverse genres that romances aren't a large percentage of my book choices. I actually think I get most of my romance fix from movies. I've even *gasp* seen a lot of romance films that are based on books without ever reading the novels. Not that I don't plan on reading them in book form, but with everything that's on my TBR, it may take a while.

Here are some of the books I would like to read the most, based on my love for their on-screen versions:

Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell
North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
P.S. I Love You by Cecelia Ahern

Trust me, there are a TON of others, but those three were the first to come to mind, and they've been on my to-read list for as long as I can remember. I feel I should mention that North and South isn't actually a movie, but a BBC mini-series. If you haven't seen it, it's EPIC, and it's available for streaming on Netflix.

Thanks for stopping by - if you feel like participating in this week's book chat, feel free to make your own post and link-up HERE.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Amazon | Goodreads

Separated by thousands of miles, two young women are about to realize their extraordinary powers which will bind their lives together in ways they can't begin to understand.

Protecting others. Maintaining order. Being good. These are all important things for Bonnie Braverman, even if she doesn't understand why. Confined to a group home since she survived the car accident that killed both her parents, Bonnie has lived her life until now in self-imposed isolation and silence; but when an opportunity presents itself to help another girl in need, Bonnie has to decide whether to actually use the power she has long suspected she has. Power that frightens her.

Across the country, Lola LeFever is inheriting her own power by sending her mother over a cliff...literally. For Lola the only thing that matters is power; getting it, taking it, and eliminating anyone who would get in the way of her pursuit of it. With her mother dead and nothing to hold her back from the world any longer, Lola sets off to test her own powers on anyone unfortunate enough to cross her. And Lola's not afraid of anything.

One girl driven to rescue, save, and heal; the other driven to punish, destroy, and kill.

And now they're about to meet.

In case you don't know, I am what you would call a superhero fan-girl, and I love all things comic book related. Unfortunately, while I've read my fair share of comics, I haven't read that many actual novels about superheroes - only Perry Moore's Hero and Superman: Last Son of Krypton by Elliot S! Maggin. That's why I was beyond ecstatic to hear about this book while browsing through Kickstarter.

The Girl Who Would Be King tells the story of two very different girls: Bonnie Braverman and Lola LeFever. Bonnie is an orphan who survived the car crash that killed her parents at the tender age of six. She grew up in an orphanage, and moved to New York City as soon as she turned eighteen. I absolutely adore Bonnie - she's a hard worker, has a kind heart, and when she finds out about her abilities, she decides that she wants to use them to help people. Bonnie also goes through her fair share of struggles, including trying to balance being a superhero, working at a bookstore, and having time to spend with her friends and boyfriend.

Lola, on the other hand, finds no pleasure in helping or being around others. Instead, the novel opens with a sixteen-year-old Lola drugging her mother and driving her off of a cliff in order to steal her powers. She then runs off to Vegas, and later Los Angeles, where she commits various crimes and murders. While Lola may not have grown up knowing how to trust others, she does take a stab at trying to find love and friendship - but those relationships usually end in Lola killing more people, to the point where she becomes rather insane. I found that Lola's descent into madness was quite fascinating, and I enjoyed reading from her perspective.

And yes, this novel is told from both Bonnie's and Lola's perspective - I love it when authors choose to alternate viewpoints in a story. There are so many things going on in the lives of those two girls that this book never got boring - it was a very quick read. And once Bonnie and Lola finally met and battled, the story became so gripping that I could not put it down.

Kelly Thompson wrote a fantastic first novel, and I'd recommend The Girl Who Would Be King to anyone - especially those of you who enjoy comic books or superheros in general. I will warn you that there are some typos (at least in the printed version), but while there are enough to be noticeable, they don't detract from the story at all, and there weren't enough to really be a big bother. I truly loved reading this book, and I hope Ms. Thompson decides to put out more novels soon, as I would love to read more of her work! This definitely added any of her future books to my insta-buy list!


A Meme By The Broke and the Bookish
In honor of Valentine's Day, which is fast approaching, this weeks top 10 list is all about our favorite bookish romances. I decided to keep this list short and simple, and so I listed out my favorite couples and skipped writing up explanations why - I just love 'em, that's all. This list would have been way harder to narrow down if I had included manga and comic book couples, so I just stuck with novels only:

10. Forney & Novalee (Where The Heart Is)
  9. Michael & Eve (The Morganville Vampires)
  8. Anna & Charles (Alpha & Omega)
  7. Jenny & Juan (As The World Dies)
  6. Amy & Poe (Secret Society Girl)
  5. Bill & Fleur (Harry Potter)
  4. Ron & Hermione (Harry Potter)
  3. Ella & Prince Char (Ella Enchanted)
  2. Aria & Perry (Under The Never Sky)
  1. Elizabeth Bennet & Mr. Darcy (Pride & Prejudice)

I would have listed romance novels, but I don't think I've read enough books that were solely romances. A few good ones I can name off the top of my head, in case you're looking for recommendations, are:

Thursday, February 07, 2013

{} Re-Reading Books

Thursday, February 07, 2013 with 8 comments

I'm just gonna come out and say it: I am a huge believer in re-reading books, and not just once or twice, but over and over again. I mean, of course it really just depends on the book, but I find nothing wrong with immersing yourself in a world as often as you wish. Take Harry Potter, for example. I re-read that series probably more than any other books combined - just about every year or two, depending on if I have the time. And no, I have never grown tired of it, I just happen to love the world Rowling created so much that I want to re-visit it as often as I can.

I also have a guilty-pleasure re-read, which I'm not afraid to admit is the Twilight series. I know the flaws in those books, sure, but I also don't care. I still am a sappy romantic at heart, and Twilight is my third most re-read series, right after Harry Potter and Secret Society Girl (which does not count as a guilty pleasure, as it is pure awesome). I actually re-read the first Twilight book a lot more often than the others, as that series actually just gets weirder as it progresses, leading to a bunch of WTF?! moments scattered in the final book. And while I enjoy the books, please don't mention the movies to me because I absolutely despise them (same for the HP films). As I said, guilty pleasure.

And of course, with so many series coming out, I usually find myself re-reading books just so I can remember what's happened before a sequel is released. If I have to wait a whole year, sometimes more, for the next book to come out, chances are I may not remember the majority of what's going on without re-reading its predecessors (or at least looking up a summary online if I don't have the time, but I prefer re-reads). This is why I have taken such a long hiatus from The Morganville Vampires, a super long series that I made the mistake of taking a break after reading book 8, and now there's a lot I don't remember. I may have to re-read it all (that series has 15 books, people).

My Top 5 Most Re-Read Books
  1. The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling
  2. The Secret Society Girl Series by Diana Peterfreund
  3. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  4. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
  5. The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger
Anywho, I know that many people don't like re-reading books because they can't seem to find the time, or they'd rather read new books, but I am definitely not one of them. For me, re-reading is actually comforting - just like re-watching a beloved movie. So, what do you guys think - do you re-read? Why or why not? Feel free to either comment below, or join us by making your own post and linking up HERE.

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

“Angels aren’t supposed to fall in love, especially with each other. But for the record, you were worth it.”

Grace Tate is a Protection Angel and Vampire Hunter, and she has always followed the rules. But some rules are made to be broken…

Until now the fight against evil has been simple, and falling in love was never part of the plan. So what happens when it’s beyond Grace’s control, and when she least expects it she falls for the wrong person?

All hell breaks loose, that’s what.

At Hopetown Valley High, not everything is as it seems, and the one person Grace thought was her enemy becomes her most important ally.

Blood will be shed, lives will be lost and friendships will be tested. It all comes down to one decision, and when Grace tries to save all those dear to her, she realizes not everyone can be -- or wants to be -- saved.

About The Book:

Title: Fall For Me (The Tate Chronicles #1)
Author: K. A. Last
Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Date of Publication: January 17th 2013
Number of pages: Paperback – 312
Word Count: 71,000
Formats available: eBook and Paperback
Cover Artist: KILA Designs –

Purchase Links:


Excerpt from Chapter Six – Josh’s POV

We stood in silence for what felt like an eternity, and all I wanted to do was reach out and touch her just to make sure she was real.

“You’re so beautiful, you glow,” I said, closing the gap between us. We were as close as we could be without actually touching. I sensed that Grace was a little nervous and it excited me, having that effect on her. At least I knew the feeling was mutual, or I thought it was. The warmth I felt emanating from her was amazing. I could feel little sparks of electricity flying between us. She took my breath away, and all I could think about was her.

“You know, you’re pretty easy on the eyes yourself,” she said.

“Remind me again why we’ve never been friends?”

“Um … Abby, you know your ex-girlfriend.”

“Who?” I asked with a smile.

Grace looked up at me—she was almost an entire head shorter—and for a brief moment I thought I saw apprehension in her expression.

“What is it?” I asked, raising my hand to tuck a lock of hair behind her ear. She closed her eyes, pushed her cheek into my palm, and I felt her warmth spread through me.

“I shouldn’t be here, with you,” she said, her eyes still closed. I put my other hand on her back and pulled her close.

“Why? Why not?”

I held her tightly, she put her palms on my chest and I gazed into her eyes. Behind their beautiful sparkle I could see a hint of sadness.

“I can’t explain it to you, Josh. I just can’t.”

I found Fall For Me to be a very quick read. This was my first time reading a novel that had incorporated both angels and vampires into its storyline, and the result was quite interesting. I also admit that this was my first time reading a noticeably Australian novel, in that I was able to tell that the characters were Australian due to certain vocabulary used (i.e. saying "esky" instead of portable cooler, or "bitumen" instead of asphalt). So not only did I get to picture Australian accents on the characters, I got to pick up some new vocab words as well!

I think that my favorite character in this novel was Seth, as he was the most complicated. Seth was an angel like Grace, but he fell, and now spends most of his time on Earth attending the same school that Grace does. He also has a way of getting under her skin, and has even been known to work with vamps. I'm actually hoping that Seth ends up getting his own point of view told at some point in the later novels, as this first book alternated only between Grace and Josh.

Kudos to Ms. Last for combining angels and vampires in one story - she really made the idea fit well. If there was any downside to this novel, however, it may have been that I did not find myself growing attached to any of the characters. None, really (despite my interest in wanting to know more about Seth). I don't know why that was, but for some reason I just felt like the characters were all pretty distant, which was unfortunate as it kept me from really getting into the story. I also saw some insta-love in regards to Grace and Josh, which is why I found myself actually disliking Josh and hoping for more development with Seth instead, who seemed to have some more depth.

Nonetheless, I think Fall For Me is worth checking out - especially for fans of YA Paranormal Romance novels featuring angels or vampires, as seeing them existing side-by-side is really fascinating. I'm curious to see more of the history of their races revealed in the later novels of the series.


K. A. Last was born in Subiaco, Western Australia, and moved to Sydney with her parents and older brother when she was eight. Artistic and creative by nature, she studied Graphic Design and graduated with an Advanced Diploma. After marrying her high school sweetheart, she concentrated on her career before settling into family life. Blessed with a vivid imagination, she began writing to let off creative steam, and fell in love with it. She now resides in a peaceful leafy suburb north of Sydney with her husband, their two children, and a rabbit named Twitch.

Author Links
a Rafflecopter giveaway

First Prize: One eBook copy of Fall for Me, Pair of silver tone angel wing earrings with diamante accents valued at $15 AUD plus a Fall For Me bookmark
Second Prize: $10 Amazon Kindle gift card
Third Prize: 5 Fall For Me bookmarks to five people


Friday, February 01, 2013

{February Releases}

Friday, February 01, 2013 with 2 comments
Okay, so it's the beginning of a new month, and a new month means new releases in the book world! There are a lot of books coming out this month, but the following are the releases that I have been looking forward to the most:

*click the covers to view the books on Goodreads*

That's a lot added to my never-ending TBR list! I think I am most excited for Scarlet and Etiquette & Espionage, but all of these sound so good! Are any of these books on your TBR list? What other February releases are you looking forward to? Please feel free to share your picks in the comments!

Forty Days (Neima’s Ark, Book One)
By Stephanie Parent
Release Date: 02/12/13
Genre: YA
Cover Artist: Najla Qamber

Summary from Goodreads:
The entire village knows Neima’s grandfather is a madman.  For years the old man has prophesied that a great flood is coming, a flood disastrous enough to blot out the entire earth.  He’s even built an enormous ark that he claims will allow his family to survive the deluge.  But no one believes the ravings of a lunatic…

…until the rain starts.  And doesn’t stop. 

Soon sixteen-year-old Neima finds her entire world transformed, her life and those of the people she loves in peril.  Trapped on the ark with her grandfather Noah, the rest of her family, and a noisy, filthy, and hungry assortment of wild animals, will Neima find a way to survive?

With lions, tigers, and bears oh my, elephants and flamingos too, along with rivalries and betrayals, a mysterious stowaway, and perhaps even an unexpected romance, Forty Days is not your grandfather’s Noah’s Ark story.

Forty Days is approximately 45000 words, the length of a shorter novel, and is the first installment in a two-part epic story.  It does contain a cliffhanger ending.
Readers looking for a traditional, religiously oriented version of the Noah’s Ark story should be warned that Forty Days may not appeal to them.  The novel will, however, appeal to lovers of apocalyptic fiction, historical fiction, and romance, as well as anyone who’s ever dreamed of having a baby elephant as a pet.

About the Author:
Stephanie Parent is a graduate of the Master of Professional Writing program at USC and attended the Baltimore School for the Arts as a piano major. She moved to Los Angeles because of Francesca Lia Block's WEETZIE BAT books, which might give you some idea of how much books mean to her. She also loves dogs, books about dogs, and sugary coffee drinks both hot and cold.

Author Links: