Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday: A Long, Long Sleep

This week's WoW book is A Long, Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan! It will be released on August 9, 2011.

Rosalinda Fitzroy has been asleep for sixty-two years when she is woken by a kiss. Locked away in the chemically induced slumber of a stasis tube in a forgotten sub-basement, sixteen-year-old Rose slept straight through the Dark Times that killed millions and utterly changed the world she knew. Now her parents and her first love are long dead, and Rose -- hailed upon her awakening as the long-lost heir to an interplanetary empire -- is thrust alone into a future in which she is viewed as either a freak or a threat. Desperate to put the past behind her and adapt to her new world, Rose finds herself drawn to the boy who kissed her awake, hoping that he can help her to start fresh. But when a deadly danger jeopardizes her fragile new existance, Rose must face the ghosts of her past with open eyes -- or be left without any future at all.

This one sounds pretty cool yet I haven't heard any talk about it. PUBLISHED ON AUGUST 9, 2011!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

For the Future (19)

This is a monthly meme of mine that I made up! :) It's similar to my "Waiting on Wednesday" posts, but highlights many books, not just one, and doesn't include summaries. Here's a list of young adult books that are still in-the-making or will be published in the future. These can range from being released tomorrow, to two years from now! The covers and release dates might not be permanent, it's just what I saw on Amazon, Goodreads, or the author's website. Hope this will be efficient to expand your reading pile! All of the titles are linked to their Goodreads' pages so you can add them to your TBR shelf. :)

Envy by Gregg Olsen (August 23, 2011):
Hayley and Taylor Ryan secretly use their wits and their telepathic “twin-sense” to uncover the truth about the town's victims and culprits. Based on the shocking true crime about cyber-bullying, Envy will take you to the edge - and push you right over.
Daughter of Smoke and Bone
by Laini Taylor (September 27, 2011):
Karou sketches monsters that may or may not be real, speaks many languages (not all of them human), and has bright, blue (all natural) hair. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.
Going Underground by Susan Vaught (September 13, 2011): Basing her story on real-life cases of teens in trouble with the law for texting explicit photos, Susan Vaught has created a moving portrait of an immensely likable character caught in a highly controversial legal scenario.

Wildefire by Karsten Knight
(July 26, 2011):
Ashline Wilde is having a rough sophomore year. She’s struggling to find her place as the only Polynesian girl in school, her boyfriend just cheated on her, and now her runaway sister, Eve, has decided to barge back into her life.
Hades by Alexandra Adornetto
(August 30, 2011):
The sequel to Halo (which I still haven't read!) and yet another beautiful, stunning cover.
The Beginning of After
by Jennifer Castle
(September 6, 2011):
Laurel's world changes instantly when her parents and brother are killed in a terrible car accident. In the aftermath of the tragedy, Laurel navigates a new reality in which she and her best friend grow apart, boys may or may not be approaching her out of pity, and overpowering memories lurk everywhere.

A Plague Year by Edward Bloor
(September 13, 2011):
It's 2001 and zombies have taken over Tom's town. Meth zombies. The drug rips through Blackwater, PA, with a ferocity and a velocity that overwhelms everyone.
Shut Out
by Kody Keplinger
(September 5, 2011):
A contemporary reimagining of the Greek play, "Lysistrata," in which high school senior Lissa decides it's time to end her school's ridiculous sports rivalry once and for all by starting a hook-up strike.
Shifting by Bethany Wiggins (September 27, 2011): Fitting in has never been Maggie's strong suit, but it's not for the reasons most people would expect - it all has to do with the deep secret that she is a shape shifter. Full of romance, mysticism, and intrigue, this dark take on Navajo legend will haunt readers to the final page.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Waiting On Wednesday: Between

This week's WoW book is Between by Jessica Warman! It will be released on August 2, 2011.

Elizabeth Valchar --- pretty, popular and rich --- wakes up the morning after her 18th birthday on the yacht where she’d been celebrating with her closest friends. A persistent thumping noise has roused her. When she goes to investigate, she finds her own drowned body is hitting the side of the boat. Liz is dead. She has no memory of what happened to her, and can only observe in horror the fallout of her death. She’s also soon joined by Alex Berg, a quiet boy from her high school who was killed by a hit-and-run driver. The two keep each other company, floating in and out of memories and trying to piece together the details of what happened to each of them. In her regular life, Liz was a runner. It wasn’t abnormal for her to run 8-10 miles per day. But as memories from closer to her death begin to surface, Liz finds that she’d been running much more than normal, and that she’d all but stopped eating. Liz’s mother, who died when Liz was nine, had battled with anorexia as well, and those around her worried that Liz was following in her mother’s footsteps. But something more sinister was consuming Liz from the inside out...

Sounds like an awesome book; can't wait to read it once it comes out. PUBLISHED ON AUGUST 2, 2011!


The two lucky winners of my giveaway for Paradise Rules by Jimmy Gleacher are...

Cassandra H from Book & Movie Depository


Lydia M from Gardening Literature

Congrats! I emailed you both so please claim your prize within the next 5 days or new winners will be picked. Thanks for entering everyone!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Six Moon Summer by SM Reine

Title: Six Moon Summer
Author: SM Reine
Published: April 2011

My Rating: 3 stars
Tags: YA | Paranormal | Werewolves | Camp

First Lines: Empty buses idled in the parking lot at the bottom of Gray Mountain. Almost everyone had arrived for the first day of camp an hour ago, but one girl came in her own car.

As Rylie's parents arrange for their divorce, they send her off to camp for the summer. Right away, Rylie hates camp. All of the other girls are mean to her, there's nothing vegetarian on the menu, and she doesn't like the camp activities. One night after finding a camper reading her diary outloud, Rylie has had enough. She darts into the woods on a full moon...and gets attacked by a wolf. The next morning, Rylie can't remember anything from the night before. She does take note of the scratches on her chest though. A guy from the other side of camp, Seth, seems to have the answers to everything and aids Rylie as she begins to change. Into a werewolf.

From Page 46
She collapsed to her knees. The fever had been momentarily cooled by her flight in the forest but returned with a fury, and Rylie tore at her own skin. She wanted to shed it like clothing. She wanted to let the thing inside of her out. Throwing her head back, Rylie screamed. The sound that ripped from her throat was more beast than human.

I'm definitely a fan of werewolf novels, don't get me wrong, it's just that lately they are all the same. However, this is one werewolf story that you've never read before. Rylie's change into becoming a werewolf is raw and gruesome, there's no sparkle or glitz. I also liked how the author gave background history of Gray Mountain and how the werewolf process took six moons, not one night. She took an overused concept and made it her own, and for that I give her kudos. On the other hand, unfortunately the character development lacked. For one thing, the novel is written from the third person point of view - ugh - so it was hard to get into Rylie's mind. I would have liked to know exactly from her perspective, what slowly changing into a werewolf felt like, not just looked like. I didn't feel connected to her character and she didn't do much for me.

The more that I read the story, the more it grew on me. At first, I found Rylie annoying but by the end of the book she had grown and matured into a new person! These kind of characters are the ones that really impress me; I love watching a protagonist change.

The book was very predictable and didn't throw any curve balls, yet I still enjoyed it. Reine's writing was interesting and she included some scenes in the novel that were hard to forget. The climax of the book was well done and the ending left just the right amount of room for the sequel. This is a good choice of book to read over the summer and will really get you into the camp spirit!

Cover Thoughts: I like all of the little details like the multiple moons in the background and the creepy text. One thing I don't get is the picture of the girl - Riley is supposed to have very light blonde hair...?

Friday, July 15, 2011

Bookshelf of the Week (8)

This one's pretty funky and interesting. It's kind of like an illusion, and would be so much fun to have in my house!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Waiting On Wednesday: Wolfsbane

This week's WoW book is Wolfsbane by Andrea Cremer! It will be released on July 26, 2011.

This thrilling sequel to the much-talked-about Nightshade begins just where it ended - Calla Tor wakes up in the lair of the Searchers, her sworn enemy, and she's certain her days are numbered. But then the Searchers make her an offer-one that gives her the chance to destroy her former masters and save the pack-and the man-she left behind. Is Ren worth the price of her freedom? And will Shay stand by her side no matter what? Now in control of her own destiny, Calla must decide which battles are worth fighting and how many trials true love can endure and still survive.

I fell in love with Nightshade and am crossing my fingers that the sequel is just as awesome. I'm not a huge fan of this cover though. PUBLISHED ON JULY 26, 2011!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

A & L Do Summer by Jan Blazanin

Title: A & L Do Summer
Author: Jan Blazanin
Published: May 2011 by Egmont USA

My Rating: 3 stars
Tags: YA | Girls | Realistic

First Lines: "Just imagine it, Aspen." Laurel walks beside me waving her arms. I feel like a football player, dodging her flapping hands and the lunatics rushing to their lockers.

It's the summer before senior year and best friends Aspen and Laurel are craving some attention. They're tired of being single and nobodys at their school, so they decide to change just that. Aspen has lived the Iowa country-life since she was born, but Laurel moved to Cottonwood Creek from Chicago just last summer. She's still getting the hang of things. Over the course of three months, a lot happens in such a boring, small, country town...

From the summary on the back of the book, I expected this to be another story about a girl switching from city-life to country-life, but I couldn't have been more wrong. For one thing, the story isn't even told from Laurel's perspective - but from Aspen's. The best friends have a tight bond and the basis of the book was centered on their friendship. For awhile, I couldn't quite figure out what the plot of the novel was. It seemed like every few chapters a big event would happen, and the chapters in between would just be fillers. However, when these said big events would take place, they were so much fun to read! Aspen and Laurel have trouble lurking in their shadows because they get grounded more times in one summer than I've ever been in my life. Their little adventures were clever and real, and I liked seeing how country girls spend their time surrounded by chickens, pigs, and farm boys.

Probably the best thing about this book is the realism. After reading so many romantic paranormal books lately, with plots and character bonds that could never happen, this novel was a nice change. The guy that catches Aspen's attention, Clay, is just your average farm boy. He doesn't have chiseled abs and a Greek God's face, but instead has freckles and red hair. Their interest in each other was merely a side story and wasn't that developed in the book. I liked how they weren't automatically in love with each other, like many YA couples are, but I do wish that their almost-romance could have played a bigger part in the story.

This was a light, breezy, and fun read for the summer. It's not a book that will stick with me for many years, but was still enjoyable. The author seemed to stay in the shallow end of the pool, and only near the end of the book did she start dipping her toes into the deep end. There were some laugh-at-loud moments that kept me grinning (and my family giving me weird looks) and the novel held my interest. There was a mix of interesting characters, not to mention a group of infuriating bullies who will make your skin itch, a cute little romance, and a nice, realistic plot.

Cover Thoughts: Nothing that great or memorable. I do like the text though, and the red barn background.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Hourglass by Myra McEntire

Title: Hourglass
Author: Myra McEntire
Published: June 2011 by Egmont USA

My Rating: 5 stars
Tags: YA | Romance | Paranormal
Includes: Sensuality

First Lines: My small Southern hometown is beautiful in the haunting way an aging debutante is beautiful. The bones are exquisite, but the skin could use a lift.

Emerson can see things...people from the past, like dead soliders and southern belles.
Since her parents died four years ago, she now lives with her brother, Thomas, and his wife. Thomas is eager to help stop Emerson's visions so he hires a consultant from an organization called the Hourglass, to do the job. His name is Michael Weaver, and right away Emerson notices how handsome and young he is. And weird enough, Michael tells her that he can see these visions, too, and that she's not crazy. As Emerson begins to learn more and more about herself and her special ability, the closer she becomes to Michael. But what is he not telling her?

I had no idea what this book was about based on the cover and summary, but thought, "Why not give it a try?" And I am so glad that I did just that. Right away, this book had me hooked. There was so much mystery and intrigue, not to mention the author's beautiful way with words. Her writing was vivid and clear, opening my imagination to a new world she created. I have mixed feelings about Emerson - the stubborn, bold, and daring protagonist. Those are all great traits for a strong female lead role, but at times in the story it just became annoying. She won't listen to anyone, and will do whatever she wants, regardless of the outcome. Of course, because of this, the book was definitely full of surprises and adventures. Throw in a cup of romance, a tablespoon of mystery, and a pinch of suspense, and you've got yourself the perfect recipe of a new kind of paranormal book.

Ah, the ever well-known love triangle. It doesn't play a huge role in the story, but it definitely will hold your attention. I hope that it plays out more in the next book! Just as Emerson is falling for Michael, out of nowhere comes his best friend and roommate, Kaleb. Sort of on the bad boy side and a major flirt, Emerson is soon batting eyelashes at him, too. For me, both guys won my heart and I liked them both for different reasons.

From page 274
He moved swiftly. Cupping my face in his hands, he bent forward until he was a breath away from my lips. My blood rushed through my veins, every inch of my skin shivering and boiling at the same time. I half expected fire to shoot out of the electrical sockets. The lightbulb blew in one of the lamps on the buffet table, sounding a quiet ping into the dark. I closed my eyes. Just as quickly as he'd grabbed me he let me go.

The story never stops moving; it will grab your interest and run with it. Each character in the novel is deeply well-developed and the emotions are captured perfectly. The ending will take you by surprise and you'll never see it coming. Oh how I love a good plot twist! McEntire has written a breathtakingly creative book that will have you greedy for more, even once it's over.

Cover Thoughts: It's completely awesome. At first glance, it looks really simple...until you realize that it's all an illusion and she's actually walking on a wall!

Friday, July 8, 2011

For the Future (18)

This is a monthly meme of mine that I made up! :) It's similar to my "Waiting on Wednesday" posts, but highlights many books, not just one, and doesn't include summaries. Here's a list of young adult books that are still in-the-making or will be published in the future. These can range from being released tomorrow, to two years from now! The covers and release dates might not be permanent, it's just what I saw on Amazon, Goodreads, or the author's website. Hope this will be efficient to expand your reading pile! All of the titles are linked to their Goodreads' pages so you can add them to your TBR shelf. :)

Pearl by Jo Knowles (July 19, 2011):
A grandfather's death unleashes a host of family secrets and threatens to change everything.
The Near Witch
by Victoria Schwab (August 2, 2011): The Near Witch is only an old story told to frighten children... but soon children start disappearing and a boy who seems to fade like smoke
appears outside Lexi's home.
Sign Language by Amy Ackley (August 18, 2011): Abby's dad is suffering from cancer and meanwhile her feelings are changing for her best friend, Spence.

The Fox Inheritance by Mary E. Pearson (August 30, 2011):
The sequel (and very similar cover) to The Adoration of Jenna Fox.
Every You, Every Me by David Levithan (September 13, 2011):
In this psychological tale, a tormented teen named Evan starts to discover a series of unnerving photographs—some of which feature him. Someone is stalking him... messing with him... threatening him.
Ripple by Mandy Hubbard (July 21, 2011):
Lexi is a siren - a deadly mermaid destined to lure men to their watery deaths. She soon finds herself caught between a new boy at school who may have the power to melt her icy exterior, and a handsome water spirit who says he can break Lexi's curse if she gives up everything else.

Burnout by Adrienne Maria Vrettos (September 13, 2011):
On the day after Halloween, Nan wakes up in a subway car. She is not dreaming. She doesn’t know where she’s been or what she’s done. She’s missing a whole day from her life.
The Girl Is Murder by Kathryn Miller Haines (July 19, 2011):
Iris is sneaking out of the house, double crossing her friends, and dancing at the Savoy till all hours of the night. There's certainly never a dull moment in the private eye business.
Hooked by Catherine Greenman (August 9, 2011):
This smart, touching first novel brims with realistic, beautifully drawn characters, and reminds us that love is never as easy or predictable as we might like it to be.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Bookshelf of the Week (7)

I was looking through some of my old posts and realized that I randomly stopped with my "Bookshelf of the Week" posts, which I really enjoyed doing. No idea why I stopped, but why not start it back up again? For those of you who are new to my blog, basically just each week I'll share a funny, creative, awesome, or unique bookshelf picture that I came across. I don't know where you can actually find/buy these bookshelves though, they're just fun to look at.

I think that this one is rather appropriate, it being July 4th recently and all. I wonder how big it is?

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Waiting On Wednesday: Sometimes It Happens

This week's WoW book is Sometimes It Happens by Lauren Barnholdt! It will be released on July 12, 2011.

On the last day of her junior year, Hannah's boyfriend Ryan dumped her. Facing a summer of loneliness, Hannah turns to her best friend Ava for comfort. Ava does what BFFs do: she stays by Hannah's side...until it's time for Ava to head up to Maine for the summer. Also left behind is Ava's boyfriend, Noah, who's such a great guy he gets Hannah a job at the diner he waits tables at. Slowly, Hannah comes out of her funk thanks to Noah's good conversation and their fun times at the diner. But things get complicated when their friendship turns into attraction--and one night, into a passionate kiss. The novel opens on the first day of senior year; the day Hannah is going to see Ava, Ryan, and Noah all in one place. Over the course of the day secrets and betrayals are revealed, and alliances are broken and reformed. In the end, everyone is paired up once again, but not the way you might think...

Aughhh I still haven't read anything by Barnholdt yet! All of her books' summaries really catch my attention though, and this one is no exception. PUBLISHED ON JULY 12, 2011!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Giveaway for Paradise Rules

Paradise Rules by Jimmy Gleacher

Gates has a lot of secrets, but he’s determined to keep his heart true. When he’s not swinging golf clubs like a pro, he reads pulp fiction to old folks at the retirement home. And despite his occasional slip-ups—drinking before noon and sneaking glimpses through his sexy godmother’s open negligees—Gates only has eyes for Mel. But she knows he’s hiding something, and she’s beginning to lose her patience. Just as Gates is about to spill his shameful secrets, he gets tangled up in a golf club scandal that jeopardizes his dreams of a normal life. He’s never been a fighter, but this time he finally pushes back at the world—which could have been a breakthrough but turns into an epic fail. Probably because Gates fights back dirty. Now his life is on the verge of ruin, and he’s got no one to turn to for help. Or so he thinks. Because what Gates is about to discover might hit him with the most amazing shock of his life. Will be published on July 12, 2011.

Giveaway time! Thanks to Simon & Schuster, I have TWO copies of Paradise Rules available to give away! Just fill out the form to enter, but comments are appreciated as always.

Open to the USA only. Ends on July 18.
Extra entries for being a wonderful blog follower.
Two winners will be randomly chosen and emailed;
they will have 5 days to claim the book.

Click here to fill out the form!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

Title: Dash & Lily's Book of Dares
Authors: Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
Published: October 2010 by Knopf Books

My Rating: 4 stars
Tags: YA | Realistic | Romance
Includes: Brief profanity

First Lines: Imagine this: You're in your favorite bookstore, scanning the shelves. You get to the section where a favorite author's books reside, and there, nestled in comfortably between the incredibly familiar spines, sits a red notebook.

Lily has never had a boyfriend, thanks to her very overprotective family. And by family, I mean older brother, parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and cousins that all live close by. Lily leaves a red Moleskine notebook
on a bookshelf in the Strand one day, hoping that just the right guy may find it. And he does. His name is Dash. Soon, Lily and Dash are writing things to each other, two complete strangers, that they've never told anyone else. Over the course of just a week during the Christmas season, Dash and Lily grow close through the notebook and begin to fall for each other. But at the same time, they're nervous about finally meeting in person. What if the boy Lily is writing to is different in person? And what if Dash isn't completely over his ex-girlfriend yet?

I had never read anything by either of these two authors so I started this book not knowing what to expect. Right from the start, I liked the protagonists. Since Rachel Cohn wrote from Lily's perspective and David Levithan wrote from Dash's, the two characters had very unique personalities and their own style of thinking. Lily is such a quirky and cute girl, and even though I had a hard time visualizing her, she was still a pretty memorable character. She was sweet and sheltered, and I liked watching her break out of her cocoon and actually experience life via the red notebook. Dash was equally just as interesting and original, but I wish I could have gotten to know him a bit better. Both of the characters have messy family problems, and I think the two authors worked marvelously together. They weaved together the lives of two lonely teens and made a sweet and beautiful story out of it.

I wasn't exactly hooked right away to the book. I'd definitely say the second half was much better than the first half, though I can't quite put my finger on why. By the final chapters, I was so immersed in the novel that I wouldn't let my eyes linger away from the pages for even a second. (Literally, I walked through my house and up the stairs with the book in my face!). This wasn't your average, sappy, romance book with two characters destined for each other that leaves the reader swooning with jealousy. Instead, it was REAL. Honest to goodness, a realistic novel that captured the little moments of two teens who are in like with each other. No cheesy scenes or romantic conversations right out of a soap opera. The book was laugh out loud funny. And the awkward exchanges between Lily and Dash in person felt so believable and were just plain cute.

From page 149
The drapery was so thick and the furniture so cloaked that I half expected to find Sherlock Holmes thumb-wrestling with Jane Austen in the corner. It wasn't as dusty or smoky as one expects a parlor to be, but all the wood had the weight of card catalogs and the fabrics seemed soaked in wine. Knee-high sculptures perched in corners and by the fireplace, while jacketless books crowded on shelves, peering down like old professors too tired to speak to one another.

The book is loaded with memorable lines and characters, even the minor ones whom I grew to love! Dash's dialogue was a little hard to follow at times because he's such a word-nerd, but once again, this just added to his flair. The novel was sweet on the surface, but went so much deeper, too. I have about six bookmarks wedged between the pages right now, with quotes that I want to memorize and apply to my life. There were some awesome words of wisdom (in disguise of course) that came out of certain characters' mouths. Things that I had never even thought about before. I really recommend reading this book, falling in love with Dash and Lily, and maybe even learning something new about the world or just yourself.

Cover Thoughts: I really love it! It's colorful, eye-catching, and pretty simple yet at the same time creative. I also like how it portrays the setting of the book: a wintry New York.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Summer of Paranormal Giveaway!

Weirdest thing happened today. I was cleaning out my car, throwing away candy wrappers, napkins, receipts, etc. that were stuffed underneath the chairs...when I happened to find a 100 dollar bill! I pretty much started freaking out for 5 minutes straight. So I decided instead of using it to buy
myself more books, since I already have way too many, I'd use it towards a giveaway for you guys!

I decided to go with a pre-order giveaway, how does that sound? I've rummaged around on Goodreads, trying to come up with the very best list of future paranormal YA books to choose from. Here's what I came up with:

Bloodlines by Richelle Mead (August 23, 2011)
Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake (August 30, 2011)
After Obsession by Carrie Jones and Steven Wedel (Sept 5, 2011)
Possess by Gretchen McNeil (August 23, 2011)
Hades by Alexandra Adornetto (August 30, 2011)
Vanish by Sophie Jordan (Sept 6, 2011)
Witch Song by Amber Argyle (Sept 1, 2011)
Fury by Elizabeth Miles (August 30, 2011)
Enthralled: Paranormal Diversions by a bunch of wonderful authors (Sept 20, 2011)

Open to anywhere that the Book Depository ships to.
There will be three winners; each can pick a book from the above list.
Open to blog followers only - new or old.
Extra entries for commenting on book reviews or spreading the word!
Ends on August 3.
Winners will be randomly selected and emailed.

Fill out this form to enter!
Comments are much appreciated. (:

I hope everyone is enjoying their summer and making a dent in their reading pile!