Wednesday, June 19, 2013

by Melissa Landers
Expected Publication: February 4, 2014 by Disney Hyperion

Interplanetary relations have never been more exciting! The first in a funny, romantic YA sci-fi series.

Two years ago, the aliens made contact. Now Cara Sweeney is going to be sharing a bathroom with one of them. 

Handpicked to host the first-ever L’eihr exchange student, Cara thinks her future is set. Not only does she get a free ride to her dream college, she’ll have inside information about the mysterious L’eihrs that every journalist would kill for. Cara’s blog following is about to skyrocket.

Still, Cara isn’t sure what to think when she meets Aelyx. Humans and L’eihrs have nearly identical DNA, but cold, infuriatingly brilliant Aelyx couldn’t seem more alien. She’s certain about one thing, though: no human boy is this good-looking.

But when Cara's classmates get swept up by anti-L'eihr paranoia, Midtown High School suddenly isn't safe anymore. Threatening notes appear in Cara's locker, and a police officer has to escort her and Aelyx to class. 

Cara finds support in the last person she expected. She realizes that Aelyx isn’t just her only friend; she's fallen hard for him. But Aelyx has been hiding the truth about the purpose of his exchange, and its potentially deadly consequences. Soon Cara will be in for the fight of her life—not just for herself and the boy she loves, but for the future of her planet.

Why I Can't Wait To Read This
Aliens!!! Plus, how does the above synopsis not sound interesting?! I just love that description! At first glance it brought to mind Singing The Dogstar Blues by Alison Goodman, but once I actually read through it I saw how different it actually seems - for one, it seems that this series may actually have some romance, whereas Goodman chose to focus on the friendship between a human girl and a male alien (which I loved, btw). I think I must be in some sort of phase or something in which books about aliens on Earth sound very appealing. At any rate, I just really want to read this! Too bad it won't be out until 2014...

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.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Dead Sea by Brian Keene

Sunday, June 16, 2013 with 2 comments

Amazon | Goodreads

The streets of the city are no longer safe. They are filled with zombies -- the living dead, rotting predators driven only by a need to kill ... and eat. Some of the living have struggled to survive, but with each passing day, their odds grow worse. Others have fled, frantically searching for a place to escape, even briefly, the slaughter around them.

For Lamar Reed and a handful of others, that safe haven is an old Coast Guard ship out at sea, with plenty of water separating them from the grasping hands and tearing teeth of the dead. These desperate survivors are completely isolated, cut off from the dangers of the mainland. But their haven will soon become a deathtrap, and they'll learn that isolation can also mean no escape!

Holy crap. I just finished this one, so excuse me if I'm still trying to process it. I've only read a handful of zombie novels, but I can easily say that this was one of the freakiest. It starts out with this guy named Lamar, a gay African-American who is hiding out with his neighbor, Alan, during the zombie apocalypse. Alan unfortunately gets bitten at some point, and Lamar goes off on his own until he into a couple of kids that he takes under his wing. They receive help from another man, Mitch, and the group of four run towards the harbor and join more survivors on board a ship that's heading out to sea. 

What makes this book stand out from the plethora of zombie novels out there is that not only can humans become infected and turn into zombies, but animal species, as well. According to Lamar's character, this disease, dubbed 'Hamelin's Revenge,' first appeared in rats, and then spread to humans as the rats began attacking people. The disease would periodically jump from species to species, until even fish weren't safe from catching it. 

I think the reason I found this book to be creepy was because of how the disease began infecting animals. It's scary enough trying to imagine surviving and fighting off hordes of human zombies, but what about zombie sharks? Or zombie birds? What the heck do you do then?!

This novel was a quick read, with lots of suspense, but admit that I soon find myself visibly cringing while reading certain scenes - after all that Lamar had witnessed, he still seemed to let his guard down at the worst possible moments. For one, he shrugged off a gaping wound on a fish they had caught, which is not something you should do when you know that with a wound in any other species your first thought would be "zombie!" It's the middle of the apocalypse, for Pete's sake! Then, while knowing that zombie fish actually were roaming the seas, Lamar put his freakin' hand into the ocean, just to feel the water on his skin! C'mon! How could you possibly forget about the fish?! 

At any rate, despite the fact that Lamar was clearly very lucky to make it past the first day, let alone the first chapter, I still enjoyed reading this book. It was unique, and really made zombie apocalypses sound even scarier than they normally do. I'd recommend it to anyone who's a fan of the genre!

A Meme by The Story Siren &
Stacking The Shelves, A Meme by Tynga's Reviews

So, it seems that it has finally happened: my beloved Kindle Keyboard has finally moved on to that big library in the sky....I've had it for a while now, and the screen recently decided that it wanted to freeze on the top portion of John Steinbeck's head:

R.I.P Lex
None of the troubleshooting steps worked on it, and I figured that, sadly, maybe it was just too old. It had been with me through a lot, including making it through a fall off of the top bunk bed in my college dorm room my senior year - which scared the hell outta me, by the way, as it was only a few days old. Luckily, it had been one tough lil' bastard.

Since my Kindle Keybord (which I had nicknamed Lex) had gone well past Amazon's warranty date, I figured I'd have to shell out for a new one, but, apparently, it was more outdated than I had thought, as Amazon no longer sold them. Instead, I only saw keyboard-less Kindles.

After endless internal debates, I eventually settled on one: the Kindle Paperwhite. I must say, I am quite happy with the little guy! I've also dubbed him 'Hank' (after Mr. Green, of course). Here's Hank in all his glory:

At first I thought it would be weird having a touchscreen kindle, but I've quickly grown accustomed to it. I also really love that the screen has it's own built-in light for reading in the dark - and it isn't back-lit, the light is actually in front of the text and shines back on it, so it isn't hard on the eyes like an iPad or computer screen would be.

The best feature, however, is the fact that you can choose to browse through your books by their covers rather than in list form, which is pretty friggin' awesome (in my opinion). 

All in all, I'd say that I'm pretty happy with my new Kindle. I just hope that it will last me a good while. *fingers crossed* Now all I need is a case to protect it...

Do you have an eReader? 
If so, what kind?


Also, I'm not sure if you are aware, but I recently returned to Texas after living in The-Middle-of-Nowhere, Nevada (for 8 months!), so I had a pile of packages waiting for me at home, some of which were books I had received for review or from giveaways. Here's what I got:

Icons by Margaret Stohl
American Dervish by Ayad Akhtar

Friday, June 14, 2013

{Follow Friday} Spine Poetry

Friday, June 14, 2013 with 10 comments

Follow Friday, or Feature & Follow, is a meme hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read. The premise is for bloggers to get to know more about other bloggers, and to keep in touch with each other while also discovering new blogs. This week's question:

Activity:  Spine Poetry. Create a line of poetry with your book spines (take a picture). Not feeling creative? Tell us about your favorite poem.

This would have been easier if I had more books with titles that started in verbs, but here's what I came up with:

every day
the lovely bones
under the rose
fade out
the raging quiet

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Top 10 Beach Reads

Tuesday, June 11, 2013 with 3 comments
A Meme By The Broke and the Bookish

It seems that summer is approaching very quickly (June 21st!), which means that it's time to pick out my top ten beach reads! Unfortunately for me, I don't get to go to the beach this summer, but I will still enjoy going outside and reading in the sunshine, which beats reading indoors by a long-shot. All of my selections for this top ten list fit my perfect formula for a summer beach read: they're quick, light reads that have all transported me to the most amazing places, and I feel they are all better enjoyed when read out by the shore (or the lawn!). They are:

The Mediator by Meg Cabot
Secret Society Girl by Diana Peterfreund
Medusa Girls by Tera Lynn Childs

The Summer I Became A Nerd by Leah Rae Miller
Can You Keep A Secret? by Sophie Kinsella

Voices of Dragons by Carrie Vaughn
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
The Girl Who Would Be King by Kelly Thompson

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

How fun would it be to read Treasure Island on the beach?! I've only read it from the comfort of my living room couch, but I feel that the sunshine and waves would really help set the mood of the novel - I'll definitely have to try it sometime! This is such an amazing story that I could not help but give it the number one spot on my top ten list.

I wanna know what your favorite beach reads are - please let me know in the comments!

Sunday, June 02, 2013

On the outside, seventeen-year-old Madelyne Summers looks like your typical blond cheerleader—perky, popular, and dating the star quarterback. But inside, Maddie spends more time agonizing over what will happen in the next issue of her favorite comic book than planning pep rallies with her squad. That she’s a nerd hiding in a popular girl's body isn’t just unknown, it's anti-known. And she needs to keep it that way.

Summer is the only time Maddie lets her real self out to play, but when she slips up and the adorkable guy behind the local comic shop’s counter uncovers her secret, she’s busted. Before she can shake a pom-pom, Maddie’s whisked into Logan’s world of comic conventions, live-action role-playing, and first-person-shooter video games. And she loves it. But the more she denies who she really is, the deeper her lies become…and the more she risks losing Logan forever.

This story was insanely cute - even I'm crushing on Logan after reading this! Of course, he may be too good to be true - he's geeky, cute, kind, hosts a radio station, plays soccer, and is close with his family. Maybe a bit of a male Mary-Sue? Oh, well. He's still daydream material. 

What really irked me was Maddie. Don't get me wrong, she seemed pretty cool, and her inner dork was fun to read about, but I just couldn't believe how stupid she could be - she had to wear a disguise just to go to the comic shop. All she worried about was what other people thought of her. Sadly, I know that a lot of people really do care about how they're seen in the eyes of others (I myself am also guilty), but she just really seemed to take it to the extreme. Maybe things are different depending on where you live, but when I was in high school (class of '07!), being a nerd was not a bad thing - everyone was nerdy in their own way, even the cheerleaders. 

At any rate, Maddie eventually gets over her phobias and realizes that it's just not worth it to live her life in a way that she feels meets everyone's expectations. Finally! And, *spoiler alert* it also turns out that no one even cares that she's a closet comic-book geek. Who knew? I guess all that work she did to hide her interests from her peers was all for nothing...

But despite that one annoyance that I had with Maddie, I still really enjoyed reading this book. She and Logan made a really cute couple, and there were some funny moments in the story as well (though they came mostly from Logan's friend, Dan). I also found myself wishing that I had some friends to go LARPing with, as it kinda sounds like fun....any-who, if you're proud nerd and a fan of cute, quirky romances, then I recommend that you at least give this a try - it's a perfect summer beach read!


Saturday, June 01, 2013

{June Releases}

Saturday, June 01, 2013 with No comments
I always look forward to learning about upcoming releases in the book world, and this month is no exception - so many good books are going to be released in these next few weeks, that I don't know how I'll ever get around to reading them all. Here are the ones that I'm looking forward to the most:

*Click the covers to view the books on Goodreads*


I think that what I like most about this month's releases is that they seem to be so different from each other. I get really annoyed when there are books that are released around the same time that have such similar plots to each other. This month, I was able to find that many of the books being released have really interesting story-lines. I think I'm most looking forward to reading Ink - mainly because it takes place in Japan. I really have a love for YA novels that take place in different countries.