Sunday, September 30, 2012

Review: Eve by Anna Carey

Title: Eve
Author: Anna Carey
Publisher: HarperTeen
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Dystopian/Romance
Release date: October 4th, 2011
Pages: 318 (Hardcover)
Rating: 5 out of 5
Source: Won
Goodreads | Amazon | Author
Where do you go when nowhere is safe? 

Sixteen years after a deadly virus wiped out most of Earth's population, the world is a perilous place. Eighteen-year-old Eve has never been beyond the heavily guarded perimeter of her school, where she and two hundred other orphaned girls have been promised a future as the teachers and artists of the New America. But the night before graduation, Eve learns the shocking truth about her school's real purpose--and the horrifying fate that awaits her. 

Fleeing the only home she's ever known, Eve sets off on a long, treacherous journey, searching for a place she can survive. Along the way she encounters Arden, her former rival from school, and Caleb, a rough, rebellious boy living in the wild. Separated from men her whole life, Eve has been taught to fear them, but Caleb slowly wins her trust . . . and her heart. He promises to protect her, but when soldiers begin hunting them, Eve must choose between true love and her life.

This story shows the dangerous world from the point of view of an eighteen-year-old girl named Eve.  Orphaned girls are taken to school, where they spend their lives with the wool pulled over their eyes.  They learn about the plague that has killed most of the population, but what they don't know is that their fate has already been decided for them before they graduate.  All of those years spent studying has gone to waste.  Feeling the need to escape, to find a way to free herself and eventually her friends, Eve makes a run for it.  After days spent traveling alone through the woods, she's able to find hope for her future in the form of a boy named Caleb.

Eve is a likable character who has been in the dark for far too long.  Everything in this live has been a disappointment to her, and I know that all she wants is to have a family again, to feel that protection that she hasn't felt in a long time.  When she runs into an old schoolmate on her way to a safe haven called Califia, they team up and try to find the safest way possible.  This girl, Arden, won't be your favorite character at first.  She seems selfish, but slowly she begins to peel off her mask.  They meet a boy, Caleb, who becomes a large part in their survival.  He's interesting, caring, and may actually be my favorite character of them all.

Throughout the book, you notice that Eve isn't the strongest heroine, but that didn't bother me at all.  She needed to be saved more than once, but it's pretty understandable after being shielded from harm her entire life.  If anything, those girls at school weren't being kept safe; they were being kept captive, and that's bound to put you at a disadvantage among those who have been living in the wild for years.

Overall, the plot was absolutely captivating.  The action will keep you turning the pages, but the characters and their emotions will really draw you in.  Anna Carey's writing alone makes me want to begin reading the sequel straight away.  Once the story ended, I sat there with my heavy heart, wondering what could possibly happen next.

Review: Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Title: Saving June
Author: Hannah Harrington
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Contemporary Romance
Release date: November 22nd, 2011
Pages: 322 (Paperback)
Rating: 5 out of 5
Source: Won
Goodreads | Amazon | Author
Harper Scott’s older sister has always been the perfect one so when June takes her own life a week before her high school graduation, sixteen-year-old Harper is devastated. Everyone’s sorry, but no one can explain why. 

When her divorcing parents decide to split her sister’s ashes into his-and-her urns, Harper takes matters into her own hands. She’ll steal the ashes and drive cross-country with her best friend, Laney, to the one place June always dreamed of going, California. 

Enter Jake Tolan. He’s a boy with a bad attitude, a classic-rock obsession and nothing in common with Harper’s sister. But Jake had a connection with June, and when he insists on joining them, Harper’s just desperate enough to let him. With his alternately charming and infuriating demeanour and his belief that music can see you through anything, he might be exactly what she needs. 

Except June wasn’t the only one hiding something. Jake’s keeping a secret that has the power to turn Harper’s life upside down again.

Saving June is an incredibly emotional story about love, loss and how to cope with both.  When Harper's older sister commits suicide, she couldn't feel more alone in the world.  Not only did Harper live in the shadow of June when she was alive, but she remains in that shadow even after her death.  Shortly after the funeral, she realizes that instead of splitting her sister's ashes between their divorced parents,  she and her best friend will take a road trip to California, the only place that June wanted to be.  With the help of a boy June once knew, they slowly but surely make her dream come true.

Out of all the characters, Harper was my favorite.  It was easy to see her grief and the guilt that she felt over her sister's death.  She was left without answers, and in a way, this trip across the country helped her heal.  Jake was another one of those characters you learn to love.  The connection they both had to June brings them closer than they could have ever imagined, and I loved seeing the bond grow between them.  Laney is Harper's best friend.  She's her rock, really, and a friendship like that can be hard to come by.  The characters, the situations they had to deal with, and the relationships that both blossomed and strengthened made the story feel incredibly real.

This book will tug at your heartstrings.  I know that I had to blink away a few tears after reading certain scenes throughout the book.  Our main character is experiencing so many different emotions, it's difficult not to feel them yourself.  One thing I loved most about this book, though, was that the story revolved around music.  Jake introduces Harper to all of these amazing songs that make you feel.  It changes the way that she looks at everything.  With the help of that, she slowly learns how to express how she's feeling before the emotions consume her whole.

Hannah Harrington is simply amazing.  Her stories are plagued by struggle for her characters, but always end on a high, hopeful note.  This book holds a beautiful story full of more life than one would imagine upon first picking it up.  Saving June will make you appreciate those around you more, and for that, I can easily call it a new favorite.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

In My Mailbox #49

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren

This week has been an amazing book week!  So many great additions to my shelves.  :)  


Review
-The Elementals by Francesca Lia Block
(Finished copy from St. Martin's Press)

ARCycling
-The Blessed by Tonya Hurley
-Team Human by Justine Larbalestier and Sarah Rees Brennan
(ARCs from Karen @ For What It's Worth)

Won
-Of Poseidon by Anna Banks
(ARC from Debbie @ Wrighty's Reads)

-Starling by Lesley Livingston
-The Hunter's Moon by O.R. Melling
-The Summer King by O.R. Melling
-The Light-Bearer's Daughter by O.R. Melling
(from Nori @ Nori's Closet)

-Blink Once by Cylin Busby
(Signed, from Brandi @ Blkosiner's Book Blog)

-The Story of Us by Deb Caletti
(Finished copy from Jean @ Jean Booknerd)


-Swag pack full of bookmarks, postcards, tattoos, stickers, chapter samplers, headphones and a Crewel bracelet
(from Ashley @ Ashley Loves Books)

-Origin bookmark, sticker and signed bookplate

Ebooks


-Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs
(Free offer from Epic Reads)

Last Wednesday Tonya Hurley, author of The Blessed came to my city.  I'd gotten her book in the mail a few days earlier so I was pretty excited to go meet her, but as it turns out, just an hour before the event, my car died!  Just my luck, right?  The arrival of many more awesome books made my week brighter, especially when I found Francesca Lia Block's new book in the mail!  

Thanks for stopping by!  What have you received in your mailbox?
Also, I'm currently holding a giveaway for copies of Embrace and Entice by Jessica Shirvington!  Click here to find out more and enter to win!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Review: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Title: The Raven Boys
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Paranormal/Fantasy
Release date: September 18th, 2012
Pages: 408 (ARC)
Rating: 5 out of 5
Source: Publisher
Goodreads | Amazon | Author
Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her. 

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble. 

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little. 

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

Up until this point, Blue has never had what most people consider to be a normal life.  Raised by a pack of psychics, she finds that magic does exist, but the only gift she has is the energy to make psychic readings stronger.  Every year on St. Mark's Eve, Blue's mother tries to get a glimpse of the people who are meant to die within the next 12 months, but when Blue sees her first spirit, she's told that he is either her true love or that she killed him.

The most that Blue knows about this boy is that his name is Gansey and he's a Raven Boy, meaning that he's a student as an elite private school.  This gives her the impression that he's no good, because the Raven Boys rarely are, but when their paths cross, they both come to find that Blue has much of the information he needs in order to find something he's been searching for.  With that, she becomes drawn into his group of friends and their unique quest.

Blue and her family are rather eccentric, which I loved to read about.  They're exactly how you picture a family of psychics to be.  Gansey was extremely determined throughout the book, almost obsessive about finding what he's been searching for.  Though he comes off as a bit rude at some points, you can see that his heart is good, especially when it comes to caring for his friends.  Ronan was tough, definitely someone you don't want to mess with, but his softer side shows itself when its most needed, and for me, Adam has to be the character that outshines them all.  He's so hardworking and he doesn't quite fit in the way he's supposed to, but that's what makes him special.

The Raven Boys turned out to be so much more than I would have ever expected.  When I first began the story, it seemed like it was going to be more about the relationship between Blue and Gansey, but it took a completely different turn.  What made me fall in love with this book, though, was the writing.  Maggie Stiefvater's way with words is absolutely gorgeous.  It flows perfectly and leaves you aching for more.  This story is nothing short of brilliant, definitely a must read for anyone who loves passionate characters and an insanely gripping storyline.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday #49

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by, Breaking the Spine, which spotlights upcoming releases we can't wait to get our hands on! 

Title: Everbound
Author: Brodi Ashton
Release Date: January 22nd, 2013
Publisher: Balzer + Bray

Nikki Beckett could only watch as her boyfriend, Jack, sacrificed himself to save her, taking her place in the Tunnels of the Everneath for eternity — a debt that should’ve been hers. She’s living a borrowed life, and she doesn’t know what to do with the guilt. And every night Jack appears in her dreams, lost and confused and wasting away. 

Desperate for answers, Nikki turns to Cole, the immortal bad boy who wants to make her his queen — and the one person least likely to help. But his heart has been touched by everything about Nikki, and he agrees to assist her in the only way he can: by taking her to the Everneath himself. 

Nikki and Cole descend into the Everneath, only to discover that their journey will be more difficult than they’d anticipated — and more deadly. But Nikki vows to stop at nothing to save Jack — even if it means making an incredible sacrifice of her own.

I have no idea how this book hasn't been featured in my WoW yet!  I read Everneath earlier this year and absolutely loved it, so Everbound is a must-read for me when it comes out in the beginning of 2013.  Have you started this series?  Are you eagerly awaiting Everbound's arrival?  

What awesome title are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Also, I'm currently holding a giveaway for copies of Embrace and Entice by Jessica Shirvington!  Click here to find out more and enter to win!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Giveaway: Embrace and Entice by Jessica Shirvington


















I just finished reading and reviewing Entice by Jessica Shirvington, which I enjoyed quite a bit, so I thought I would share a giveaway with you guys!  ARCs of Embrace and Entice are up for grabs and will go to one lucky winner.

If you'd like to read my thoughts on each of the books, you can find them here:
Embrace by Jessica Shirvington
Entice by Jessica Shirvington

Giveaway info
-Open to US and CA only
-Ends on October 7th, 2012
-Winner must reply within 72 hours or I'll be forced to choose someone else


Thanks for stopping by and good luck!  :)

Review: Entice by Jessica Shirvington

Title: Entice (The Violet Eden Chapters #2)
Author: Jessica Shirvington
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Paranormal/ Fantasy
Release date: September 4th, 2012
Pages: 464 (ARC)
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Publisher
Goodreads | Amazon | Author
Violet Eden is Grigori - part angel, part human. Her destiny is to protect humans from the vengence of exiled angels. 

Knowing who to trust is key but, when Grigori reinforcements arrive, it becomes clear everyone is hiding something. Even Lincoln. The only thing Violet does know: Phoenix's hold over her is more dangerous than ever. The race to find the one thing that could tilt the balance of power brings them all to the sacred mountains of Jordan, where Violet's power will be pushed to the extreme. And the ultimate betrayal exposed.

When I originally read the first in the series, Embrace, I was thrown into this entirely new world.  Angels aren't something I've read much about, but I can say that this series has definitely kept my interest.  In Entice, our main character, Violet, is still learning how to become the best Grigori she can be.  We see quite the difference in her now that she's not struggling with the new information that was thrown at her when she first learned what she was.  Actually, if anything, she's stronger and even more determined.  When Phoenix comes back into the picture, Violet realizes that getting rid of him won't be easy, as he has the ability to take her life at any time.

One thing that I was nervous about before starting Entice was that I wouldn't remember what happened in the first book, but that wasn't the case at all.  Everything came back to me easily once I started reading, which I was thankful for, because a reread would have set me back.  This story, like the last, moves at a comfortable pace and there's a ton of information packed into each chapter.  Readers will constantly learn something new about the characters, so it's difficult to put the book down.

My main concern about continuing Violet's story was that the romance would be just as unsatisfying for me as it was in Embrace, but that wasn't the case at all.  What she has with Lincoln will both excite you and make your heart ache, because as we've been told before, she can't actually have a romantic relationship with her partner even though their souls are connected in more ways than one.  Still, you will see that Lincoln will do anything to protect Violet, as she would for him.

Entice is, by far, my favorite installment in the Violet Eden series.  We're introduced to a handful of new characters that you will grow attached to along the way, as well as being reintroduced to many characters we've learned to love and loathe.  The determination in each of them is strong, especially when they're trying to take care of each other, no matter that the harm is.  Just as beautifully written and action-packed, Entice is a must-read, even for those who didn't enjoy Embrace as much as they thought they would.  

Saturday, September 22, 2012

In My Mailbox #48

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren

This week has been so much better for me blogging and reading-wise!  I've gotten 3 books read and reviewed this week, which is good, but not my best.  I still have a lot of catching up to do.  Thankfully, I've only received  two books in the mail this week!


Random Buzzers
-The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman
(ARC from Random Buzzers)

Won
-Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
(from Inga @ Me and Reading)

While I'm excited to start both of these books, Masque of the Red Death is creeping its way to the top of my TBR.  The moment I got it in the mail, I began reading it and had to force myself to stop, just because I have other books that need to be read first.  I definitely won't be waiting long to devour this steampunkalicious Edgar Allan Poe retelling.

Thanks for stopping by!  What have you received in your mailbox?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Blog Tour Review & Excerpt: The Blemished by Sarah Dalton

Title: The Blemished
Author: Sarah Dalton
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Science Fiction/Dystopian
Release date: August 2012
Pages: 328 (e-book)
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Blog Tour
Goodreads | Amazon | Author 
A beautiful world comes at a price... 

In a world filled with stunning clones Mina Hart is Blemished. Her genes are worthless and that takes away her rights: her right to an Education, her right to a normal life and her right to have a child. 

Mina keeps a dangerous secret which she never thought she could share until she meets Angela on her first day at St Jude's School. But their friendship is soon complicated by Angela’s adoptive brother Daniel. Mina finds herself drawn to his mysterious powers and impulsive nature. Then there is the gorgeous clone Sebastian who Mina is forbidden from even speaking to…

In Mina's world, those like you and I would be considered "Blemished".  The government has taken over and found a way to genetically modify humans so that they don't have to worry about disease or anything that could possibly make life more difficult.  These "clones" are called GEMs and it seems as though they run the world, now.  Poor Mina is forced to dress in drab clothing and become nothing more than a slave to those higher than her, but what no one else knows is that she holds an incredible power within.

The author did a fantastic job with creating such a horrifying world, where those who were born with "bad genes" were more likely to be harmed and less likely to live a free life.  Their right to bear children is taken away and they undergo operation to make sure that they will not pass their genes on to anyone else.  Just the thought of that sickens me, to be forced to live a life where you have no say in what happens to you.  Mina is sick of walking on eggshells just because she's Blemished.  When a gorgeous GEM boy named Sebastian takes interest in her, everything changes and she becomes more of a target than ever before.

Mina isn't the only one with a gift, though.  When she meets another Blemished boy, Daniel, with a similarly unique power, she grows closer to him and his sister as if they were her own family.  Together, they dream that they can change it all, but first they have to find a way out.  Many of the characters were likable and some will definitely boil your blood.  I have to say that Daniel was my favorite, and his loyalty to both Angela and Mina was heartwarming.

Overall, The Blemished was a raw and shocking book.  Though the idea of genetically modified people has been done before, Sarah Dalton gave it a fresh take.  The action runs high and keeps your heart racing as you read on in order to find out if Mina stays safe or risks it all.

Excerpt

He lifted his head from his hands and looked at me. Even in the dimmest of lights his eyes seemed to shine. They took me, whole-heartedly, all of me. They took every bit of my attention, swallowing me up. Even if at that moment we were hit by a meteor I wouldn’t have noticed. Everything was Daniel. Daniel was everything.
“Um….” I faltered. “I don’t know, I erm…”
He leaned towards me, his face just inches from mine. Tingles ran down my spine and I heard the rushing noise of blood in my ears. I held my breath. He tilted his head, angled so that our mouths would fit together. Our lips touched just for a moment and then I heard Angela stir. I pulled back, my breath rasping out of my body. Panicked I jumped to my feet. Daniel stared up at me, wounded.
“What’s going on?” Angela said sleepily.
“It’s time to leave,” I answered.

About the Author

Sarah grew up in the middle of nowhere in the countryside of Derbyshire and as a result has an over-active imagination. She has been an avid reader for most of her life, taking inspiration from the stories she read as a child, and the novels she devoured as an adult. 

Sarah mainly writes speculative fiction for a Young Adult audience and has had pieces of short fiction published in the Medulla Literary Review, PANK magazine, Apex Magazine and the British Fantasy Society publication Dark Horizons. Her short story ‘Vampires Wear Chanel’ is featured in the Wyvern Publication Fangtales. The Blemished is her first full-length novel.

Photobucket

Waiting on Wednesday #48

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by, Breaking the Spine, which spotlights upcoming releases we can't wait to get our hands on!

Title: The Nightmare Affair
Author: Mindee Arnett
Release Date: March 5th, 2013
Publisher: Tor Teen


16-year-old Dusty Everhart breaks into houses late at night, but not because she’s a criminal. No, she’s a Nightmare. Literally. Dusty is a magical being who feeds on human dreams. 

Being the only Nightmare at Arkwell Academy, a boarding school for magickind, and living in the shadow of her mother’s infamy is hard enough. But when Dusty sneaks into Eli Booker’s house, things get a whole lot more complicated. He’s hot, which means sitting on his chest and invading his dreams couldn’t get much more embarrassing. But it does. Eli is dreaming of a murder. The setting is Arkwell. 

And then it comes true. 

Now the Dusty has to follow the clues—both within Eli’s dreams and out of them—to stop the killer before more people turn up dead. And before the killer learns what she’s up to and marks her as the next target.

I know I have quite the wait ahead of me, but I've been fascinated by the premise since I first heard of this book.   I just had to share it with you guys as soon as possible.  Doesn't it sound awesome?  Are you as excited to read it as I am?

What awesome title are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Review: If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Title: If I Stay
Author: Gayle Forman
Publisher: Speak
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Contemporary
Release date: April 6th, 2010
Pages: 234 (Paperback)
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Bought
Goodreads | Amazon | Author
In a single moment, everything changes. Seventeen-year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck... 

A sophisticated, layered, and heart-achingly beautiful story about the power of family and friends, the choices we all make, and the ultimate choice Mia commands.

When Mia woke up on a cold winter morning, she and her family couldn't have been more full of life.  The snow is falling, light and cheerful, and school has been cancelled.  To most, this would be a perfect day to spend with your loved ones, making the best out of the unexpected free time.  When Mia wakes up on the side of the road, she's in a daze.  She can't recall what happened only moments ago, but what she does see is horrifying--the lifeless bodies of her parents thrown from the car.  If I Stay tells the heartbreaking story of a young girl who has to choose between fighting for her life or joining her family and the journey that she recalls to help her decide.

I wasn't sure what to expect when I began the story other than that it would be an emotional roller coaster.  This girl is in critical condition and she's looking at her life from outside her own body, which is a fascinating concept.  She doesn't have much will to live, but over the span of the first 24 hours since the accident, she recalls important events from the past and realizes that the family she lost isn't her only family.  The pacing on this book was perfect and the way the author wrote the story hooked me from the moment I began.

The characters all feel very real, and that's what made me feel the most sympathy for them.  While Mia's family seems a little different than most, you grow to love them the more you dig into Mia's memories.  Her parents were probably my favorites, as well as her best friend Kim and her loving boyfriend, Adam.  We also see the importance of her relationship with her grandparents.  Although they weren't always the closest people to her, they express how much it would wreck them if she were to join her family in death.  The most important relationship, though, is the one that Mia has with herself.

If I Stay will tug on its readers heartstrings.  It's not as heavy as it sounds, but it's definitely touching.  The author's writing style is beautiful, and it's really what made the story worthwhile.  Overall, Mia's story is inspiring, raw and full of emotion.  Anyone who enjoys brilliant and breathtaking prose must get their hands on this.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Review: Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter

Title: Alice in Zombieland
Author: Gena Showalter
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Fantasy/Horror
Release date: September 25th, 2012
Pages: 404 (ARC)
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Source: Publisher
Goodreads | Amazon | Author
Had anyone told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that’s all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.

Her father was right. The monsters are real...

To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn’t careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies...

I was in love from the moment I first read the title.  I love a good zombie book, but the author had me at the slight, yet refreshing Alice in Wonderland theme.  When one traumatic event causes Alice to lose her family, she's left to fend for herself.  Worse, she starts to see what her dad saw all these years; creatures that no one else noticed.  No one but a select few.  Alice feels like she's been thrown into this completely different world, but with the help of others, she learns how to protect herself before it's too late.

Every time Alice locks eyes with Cole, the most vivid and unusual visions play behind their eyes.  Because of this, they realize that they're connected in some way and once they get to know each other, they find out that they're much more alike than they could have ever imagined.  Though Cole has a tough shell, he turns out to be a lovable character.  Like Ali, he's willing to do anything to save the people he cares for.  Though Ali originally thought that she was developing a mental illness, once she found out the truth, she was even more determined than ever.  It wasn't just about avenging the deaths of her family, it was about protecting others from going through the same thing.

I found the plot to be incredibly interesting, the fact that these zombies were merely spirits instead of the image that most people picture when they hear the term.  I loved that the team had to learn to separate their spirits from their bodies in order to do any damage to them.  There was so much action in this story, it made it hard to put the book down, even just to take breaks.  It will be easy for many readers to see the struggle these characters go through and that makes it difficult not to get emotionally attached.

Overall, Alice in Zombieland has proven to be a fantastic story with a well-thought-out plot, characters that are easy to relate to and scenes filled with pure excitement and enough romance to make your teeth ache.  You'll find yourself cheering Alice on as she makes her transition to good-girl to kick-ass heroine.  I can easily say that I'll be anticipating the sequel, Through the Zombie Glass.

Cover Reveal: Aurora Sky by Nikki Jefford

Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter (Vol. 1, Transfusion) by Nikki Jefford
Coming November, 2012

Her blood is toxic to vampires. 

If there is one thing eighteen-year-old Aurora Sky wants, it’s to get off the iceberg she calls home. Being kissed before she graduates wouldn’t hurt either. 

Then a near-fatal car wreck changes everything. Secret agents step in and save Aurora’s life in exchange for her services as a vampire hunter. In Alaska. 

Basically she’s a glorified chew toy. All thanks to her rare blood type, which sends a vampire into temporary paralysis right before she has to finish the job… by hand. 

Aurora is alienating friends at school while attracting attention from the last person she wants noticing her – the dark prince of temptation himself: Fane Donado. And that can’t lead to anything good.

Watch the trailer:



About the author:

Nikki Jefford is a third generation Alaskan who found paradise in the not-so-tropical San Juan Islands where she is, once more, neighbors with Canada. She has a B.A. in journalism from the University of Alaska Anchorage and was a reporter before returning to her first love: fiction.

After a whirlwind romance in France, Nikki married S├ębastien in March 2000. They reside with Cosmo the wonder Westie.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

In My Mailbox #47

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren

Things haven't been going that great for me and because of that, my reading and blogging has definitely suffered.  I can only hope to get back on track soon, and I'm not going to lie, these books got me so excited to start reading more just so I can get to them.


Review
-The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa
(ARC from HarlequinTeen)

Won
-Crewel by Gennifer Albin
(ARC from Macmillan)

-The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa
-Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
(from Anna @ Pocketful of Books)

Ahhh!  I was SO surprised when The Lost Prince and Crewel showed up in my mailbox on the same day.  I had no idea they'd be coming, but I'm so thankful that the publishers sent them to me!  Also, thanks to Anna for giving me my choice of two awesome books!  I can't wait to dig into The Immortal Rules or Shadow and Bone either.  :)

Thanks for stopping by!  What have you received in your mailbox?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Review: 34 Pieces of You by Carmen Rodrigues

Title: 34 Pieces of You
Author: Carmen Rodrigues
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Contemporary
Release date: September 4th, 2012
Pages: 336 (ebook)
Rating: 3 out of 5
Source: Pulse It
Goodreads | Amazon | Author
There was something about Ellie... Something dangerous. Charismatic. Broken. Jake looked out for her. Sarah followed her lead. And Jess kept her distance, and kept watch.

Now Ellie’s dead, and Jake, Sarah, and Jess are left to pick up the pieces. All they have are 34 clues she left behind. 34 strips of paper hidden in a box beneath her bed. 34 secrets of a brief and painful life. 


Jake, Sarah, and Jess all feel responsible for what happened to Ellie, and all three have secrets of their own. As they begin to confront the darkest truths about themselves, they will also find out what Ellie herself had been hiding all along...

Having Ellie in your life meant that things were bound to get a little crazy at one point or another.  She was daring, unusual and desperately in need of someone to care for her.  No one could have guessed that she'd been so unhappy and destructive enough to end her life.  34 Pieces of You unleashes her deepest secrets and you realize that the possibility of her overdose being accidental is slim.

From the moment I heard of this book, I was looking forward to reading about the life and death of this troubled girl.  Emotional stories are some of my favorites, and since this one had been compared to Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher, I was even more excited to read it.  Unfortunately, though it's still very raw and heartbreaking, it didn't live up to my expectations.  While I love bouncing around from the point of view of different characters, I found it a little difficult to relate to the main three that told their sides of the story.

I did find it interesting that all of the characters were connected in more ways than meets the eye and that Ellie was always in the middle.  They could all relate to her in different ways, but for one reason or another, they all thought that her death was their faults.  While I enjoyed the fast-paced writing and interesting premise, I was still left feeling a little empty after finishing this book.  It didn't leave as much of an impact as I thought it would.

Overall, 34 Pieces of You is intense, but not to the point where it's overwhelming.  The mystery behind this girl's decision will keep you reading, and though it ends on a good note, I can't say that this book will be on my mind for long.  I still feel that many teens will be able to relate to the feeling of solitude in this book, and for that, I think it's worth a read.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday #47

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by, Breaking the Spine, which spotlights upcoming releases we can't wait to get our hands on!

Title: The Spindlers
Author: Lauren Oliver
Release Date: October 2nd, 2012
Publisher: HarperCollins


One night when Liza went to bed, Patrick was her chubby, stubby, candy-grubbing and pancake-loving younger brother, who irritated and amused her both, and the next morning, when she woke up, he was not. In fact, he was quite, quite different. 

When Liza's brother, Patrick, changes overnight, Liza knows exactly what has happened: The spindlers have gotten to him and stolen his soul. 

She knows, too, that she is the only one who can save him. 

To rescue Patrick, Liza must go Below, armed with little more than her wits and a broom. There, she uncovers a vast world populated with talking rats, music-loving moles, greedy troglods, and overexcitable nids . . . as well as terrible dangers. But she will face her greatest challenge at the spindlers' nests, where she encounters the evil queen and must pass a series of deadly tests--or else her soul, too, will remain Below forever.

Though this is a middle grade book, it's on my wishlist purely because Lauren Oliver's writing is magical.   I still haven't gotten to read her first middle grade book, Liesl and Po, but I have no doubt that both of them are just as amazing as her YA novels.

What awesome title are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

In My Mailbox #46

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren

Phew!  This was a busy week for me, but a slow week for my mailbox, so I didn't get much done with my blog and only managed to get two new books.  Hopefully things will speed up soon!


Won
-The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron
(Signed ARC from Rochelle @ Books Like Stars)

-Every Day by David Levithan
(ARC from Random Buzzers)

I've been so into Steampunk lately, I can't wait to read The Dark Unwinding.  Also, I'm very excited to have won a copy of David Levithan's newest book.  I featured Every Day on a recent Waiting on Wednesday post, so imagine my excitement when this came in the mail!

Thanks for stopping by!  What have you received in your mailbox?

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Review: The Dark Light by Sara Walsh

Title: The Dark Light
Author: Sara Walsh
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Fantasy/Romance
Release date: August 28th, 2012
Pages: 496 (ARC)
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Publisher
Goodreads | Amazon | Author

Mysterious lights have flickered above Crownsville for as long as Mia can remember. And as far as she’s concerned, that’s about the only interesting thing to happen in her small town.

That is, until Sol arrives. Mia’s not one to fall for just any guy, but she can’t get Sol—or the brilliant tattoo on his back—out of her mind.

Then Mia’s brother goes missing, and Mia’s convinced that Sol knows more than he’s sharing. But getting closer to Sol means reevaluating everything Mia once believed to be true. Because Sol’s not who Mia thought he was—and neither is she.

Mia has never given the lights that appear around her small town a second glance.  No one did.  They were unusual, but they've just been there for as long as anyone can remember.  The only time she sees them as anything more than lights is when she watches her little brother disappear into them in front of her eyes.  The only person she can trust to help her is someone that she barely knows--a mysterious newcomer named Sol.

The Dark Light is a delicious and highly addictive romantic fantasy.  Readers will quickly fall in love with the plot as well as the characters.  When Mia realizes that she and Sol are the only ones who know what really happened to her brother, she takes it into her own hands to bring him back.  With the help of a few clues and her mother's old necklace, Mia steps into a different world called Brakaland.  Sol, feeling obligated to protect her, follows and quickly becomes more than just a stranger as they fight their way across the land to get to the person that matters most to her.

While reading, I never once felt that the story was dragging on, and that's a little hard to believe with how long the book was.  There's a lot of information, action and twists that help quicken the story.  I was intrigued by Sol from the very start, and it's easy to say that my admiration for him only grew the more I read.  Mia is also very easy to relate to, and you can feel her determination throughout the entire story.  Though the mystery is unveiled rather slowly, a lot of action is involved, which seemed to tide my curiosity over.

Overall, The Dark Light wasn't what I expected it to be.  It was SO much more.  This author surely knows how to create a captivating fantasy novel.  Brakaland was built fantastically, with which I found no visible flaws.  The creatures that inhabited the land, the variety of places, the idea that anyone could be passing back and forth from their world to ours was fascinating.  Every twist in this story was shocking, yet believable, and left me wanting more.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday #46

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by, Breaking the Spine, which spotlights upcoming releases we can't wait to get our hands on!

Title: Through the Ever Night
Author: Veronica Rossi
Release Date: January 8th, 2013
Publisher: HarperCollins


It's been months since Aria last saw Perry. Months since Perry was named Blood Lord of the Tides, and Aria was charged with an impossible mission. Now, finally, they are about to be reunited. But their reunion is far from perfect. The Tides don't take kindly to Aria, a former Dweller. And with the worsening Aether storms threatening the tribe's precarious existence, Aria begins to fear that leaving Perry behind might be the only way to save them both.

Threatened by false friends, hidden enemies, and powerful temptations, Aria and Perry wonder, Can their love survive through the ever night?

One of my favorite reads (and by one of them, I mean this very well may be my #1) of 2012 was Under the Never Sky. Its captivating story and incredible writing wouldn't even allow me to put the book down. I have very high hopes for its sequel, and you can bet that I'll probably pee my pants once I get my hands on it!  TMI?  Deal with it!  I can't contain my excitement!  :)

What awesome title are you waiting for this Wednesday?