Sunday, June 30, 2013

In My Mailbox #85

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Gabrielle Carolina from The Mod Podge Bookshelf, originally created by Kristi from The Story Siren.

-Through the Zombie Glass by Gena Showalter
-Hooked by Liz Fichera
(from Harlequin Teen)

-Of Poseidon by Anna Banks
-Of Triton by Anna Banks
(finished copies from Erica @ The Book Cellar)

-Dreamless by Josephine Angelini
(Signed finished copy from author)

-Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey
-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

-Taste Test by Kelly Fiore
(from Netgalley and Walker Children's)

(from Shelf Awareness and Little, Brown)

I had to run to Barnes & Noble after work to buy Ashes on the Waves (because of my love for anything Edgar Allan Poe) and The Fault in Our Stars (because it's seriously overdue.  I need to read this one now and feel all the feels).  Of course, the same day, I get home and find 3 other books stuffed in my mailbox, one of them being the sequel to Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter!  I'm hoping that one of these awesome books will help pull me out of my reading slump, so I'm excited to get started!

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

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #86

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 Truth That's In Me
Author: Julie Berry
Release Date: September 26th, 2013
Publisher: Viking Juvenile

Four years ago, Judith and her best friend disappeared from their small town of Roswell Station. Two years ago, only Judith returned, permanently mutilated, reviled and ignored by those who were once her friends and family. Unable to speak, Judith lives like a ghost in her own home, silently pouring out her thoughts to the boy who’s owned her heart as long as she can remember—even if he doesn’t know it—her childhood friend, Lucas. But when Roswell Station is attacked, long-buried secrets come to light, and Judith is forced to choose: continue to live in silence, or recover her voice, even if it means changing her world, and the lives around her, forever. This startlingly original novel will shock and disturb you; it will fill you with Judith’s passion and longing; and its mysteries will keep you feverishly turning the pages until the very last.

This book sounds so incredibly eerie...I can't wait to find out the mystery behind it!

What awesome title are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Review: Golden by Jessi Kirby

Title: Golden
Author: Jessi Kirby
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Contemporary
Release date: May 14th, 2013
Pages: 278 (ebook)
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Source: Pulse It
Goodreads | Amazon | Author
Seventeen-year-old Parker Frost has never taken the road less traveled. Valedictorian and quintessential good girl, she’s about to graduate high school without ever having kissed her crush or broken the rules. So when fate drops a clue in her lap—one that might be the key to unraveling a town mystery—she decides to take a chance. 

Julianna Farnetti and Shane Cruz are remembered as the golden couple of Summit Lakes High—perfect in every way, meant to be together forever. But Julianna’s journal tells a different story—one of doubts about Shane and a forbidden romance with an older, artistic guy. These are the secrets that were swept away with her the night that Shane’s jeep plunged into an icy river, leaving behind a grieving town and no bodies to bury. 

Reading Julianna’s journal gives Parker the courage to start to really live—and it also gives her reasons to question what really happened the night of the accident. Armed with clues from the past, Parker enlists the help of her best friend, Kat, and Trevor, her longtime crush, to track down some leads. The mystery ends up taking Parker places that she never could have imagined. And she soon finds that taking the road less traveled makes all the difference.

In Parker's small town, everyone seems to know everyone else, which is why it was such a tragedy to lose two of the most popular students immediately after their high school graduation nearly a decade ago.  Now, Parker is about to graduate and she's realized that she's done nothing spontaneous, unlike her energetic and impulsive best friend, Kat.  She's always played it by her mom's rules, but now it's time to start living for herself.  When she finds Julianna Farnetti's journal nearly ten years after the accident, Parker realizes how much she's truly been missing out on.  For all she knows, she life could end just as abruptly as Julianna's did, except Parker has nothing to show for it but a scholarship to what she once thought was her dream school.

After enjoying the emotional roller coasters that Jessi Kirby's previous books put me through, I definitely had to give Golden a try.  Of course, I enjoyed the writing style and the storytelling, but the emotion lacked a little for me.  The characters were diverse, yet I couldn't relate to a single one.  One thing I loved about Parker is her hope and amount of belief she holds throughout the book, even when something seems impossible.  She makes other people believe, too, and that kind of influence is something I always love to see in stories, no matter what kind it is.

Though this isn't my favorite book of hers, I feel as though the author still did a great job with guiding the characters through the situations they were put in.  I never once felt as though any of them were out of line, though Parker kept digging into someone else's personal life.  The story that she told was interesting and held a few very important points to keep in mind when trying to figure yourself out.  Golden isn't just about a young couple's untimely death and the journey it takes to find out the truth, it's also about being able to find and free yourself from the expectation of others.

Golden was a quick and entertaining read that will make you think and keep any contemporary lover turning the pages.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Where I've been: An explanation in Friends gifs

Some of you have probably noticed that the amount of posts I put up a month have died down, and I'm here to give a little explanation why.

In April I started a new job, and while training left me with anxiety, I was still able to focus on my reading.  Now the anxiety is gone and I've become more comfortable with the people and my tasks, but after work, I'm left physically (and sometimes emotionally) exhausted.  I wish I could say that all I want to do is come home, curl up and read, but lately it's been come home, nap, wake up and watch Friends until I go to sleep again.  Almost every. single. night.

Though I have been reading a little more, it's nothing compared to what I used to read, and by the end of the month when I'm doing my wrap-up, I realize how much of a reading and blogging slump I'm actually in.  In fact, it's the worst I've ever been in, and despite any advice on the topic, there's no way for me to pull myself out.

So what am I saying?  What about the future of The Hollow Cupboards?  I definitely don't want to quit!  While I'm having trouble keeping up with things on the blog, I still feel so much joy when I do post.  Each comment I get encourages me to post more.  I just find that at the moment, I'm having trouble keeping a schedule and I don't want to force myself to do anything blog-related, because then it will become work, and I already have enough of that.

BUT there's good news!  I've been craving more stories, especially contemporary, so I'm going to try and push a couple more of my review books aside (because I've been awful and I'm behind on most review books that have come out since April) and read what I want to read, which may just do the trick.

So far in the entire month of June, I've only read one book, which I haven't done in years.  At this point, I haven't even reviewed it on my blog even though I finished it about a week ago.  I'm hoping to get back into a set schedule so I can catch up, because posting Waiting on Wesdnesday and In My Mailbox isn't enough for me, and I'm betting that it's not enough for you or the publishers and authors that have sent me books to review.  Thank you all for sticking with me, and I assure you that this won't be the last you see of me!  If I could give you all a hug, I would!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #85

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: Perfect Ruin
Author: Lauren DeStefano
Release Date: October 1st, 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

On Internment, the floating island in the clouds where 16-year-old Morgan Stockhour lives, getting too close to the edge can lead to madness. Even though Morgan's older brother, Lex, was a Jumper, Morgan vows never to end up like him. She tries her best not to mind that her life is orderly and boring, and if she ever wonders about the ground, and why it is forbidden, she takes solace in best friend Pen and her betrothed, Basil. 

Then a murder, the first in a generation, rocks the city. With whispers swirling and fear on the wind, Morgan can no longer stop herself from investigating, especially when she meets Judas. He is the boy being blamed for the murder — betrothed to the victim — but Morgan is convinced of his innocence. Secrets lay at the heart of Internment, but nothing can prepare Morgan for what she will find — or who she will lose.

I loved Lauren DeStefano's Chemical Garden series and I'm so psyched to see what she has in store for us with her new series!  Plus, just look at that cover!  It's definitely one of my favorite book covers of the year.

What awesome title are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Sunday, June 16, 2013

In My Mailbox #84

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Gabrielle Carolina from The Mod Podge Bookshelf, originally created by Kristi from The Story Siren.

I haven't been getting many books in the mail, so I'm excited that I finally get to share some this week!

-Parallel by Lauren Miller
(ARC from Julia @ That Hapa Chick)

-How My Summer Went Up in Flames by Jennifer Salvato Doktorski
-If I Should Die by Amy Plum

I love the Die for Me series, so of course I had to get Amy's newest release, especially after what happened in the last book!  How My Summer Went Up in Flames was also very high on my wishlist from the moment I first heard of it and I believe that's the book I'll be reading next!

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

It's Chey's 21st Birthday & Giveaway!

I know it's been a little quiet on the blog lately, but while I had a little time, I wanted to let you guys know that today is my birthday!  I'm finally 21 and even though I plan to celebrate it with my first (legal) alcoholic drink, I also wanted to post a giveaway to celebrate with you!

When I was picking up a few birthday presents for myself, I found a signed copy of The Rules by Stacey Kade in Barnes & Noble.  I almost passed it up since I already have a copy of my own, but I decided that it would be great for a giveaway!

Just enter the rafflecopter below!
-Open to residents of the United States and Canada
-Ends on July 17th

Thank you for stopping by and look for another international giveaway next week!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #84

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: Hereafter
Author: Kate Brian
Release Date: October 1st, 2013
Publisher: Disney Hyperion

Rory Miller thought her life was over when a serial killer set his sights on her and forced her into witness protection. But a fresh start on Juniper Landing Island was exactly what she and her family needed. For the first time in years she and her sister hang out at the beach, gossip about boys, and party together. She's also made friends with a local clique--including a magnetic and mysterious boy named Tristan. 

But Rory's world is about to change again. Picturesque Juniper Landing isn't what it seems. The truth about the swirling fog that rolls in each morning, the bridge that leads to nowhere, and those beautiful locals who seem to watch Rory's every move is more terrifying than being hunted by Steven Nell. And all Rory ever wanted was the truth. Even if it means learning that she can never go home again.

Shadowlands completely blew me away when I read it earlier this year, so I can't wait to continue the series!

What awesome title are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Friday, June 7, 2013

Two Year Blogoversary- Giveaways #3 & 4!

Today I wanted to give a special thanks to all of the publishers, authors and readers.  If it weren't for any of you, I'd be book-less and lost in my own daydreams instead of someone else's!

Publishers have continuously invested in my blog, from asking me to be apart of blog tours to sending me books for review, even asking me to interview authors at a book event!  I'd just like to thank everyone at HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster, Harlequin Teen, Bloomsbury, Egmont, Scholastic, Macmillan, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Disney Hyperion and Little, Brown who have been in contact with me over the past year.

If it hadn't been for authors like Lauren Oliver, Kody Keplinger, Stephanie Perkins, Veronica Rossi, Kendare Blake, Amy Plum, Wendy Higgins, Susan Dennard, Tahereh Mafi, Simone Elkeles, Rainbow Rowell and Laini Taylor, I doubt I would still have the urge to read as much as I do!

Finally, I wanted to thank every one who keeps encouraging me with their comments, discussions and questions!  I love hearing from you, because it makes me realize that my time is never wasted!  Even when I go through reading and blogging slumps, I remember that there is always at least one person who values the things I post, and that alone makes me want to blog as much as possible!

The first giveaway I'm going to hold today has to do with the books I would have never read if it hadn't been for blogging.  A whole new world *cue music* opened up for me when I made the decision to write reviews and these books have become some of my favorites, so I'd love to pass some to you!


This giveaway is open internationally & two winners will be able to choose one of the books listed.

Ends on July 6th, 2013 (I'm extending the rest of the blogoversary giveaways because I've been such a bad blogger...yay for you!)

Now for the next giveaway, I have a mystery box of 8 books to send to someone who lives in the US or Canada!  All of them are ARCs from earlier this year...some I've reviewed and some I haven't!

All of them are YA and many of them came out in the spring.  Want more?  How about a few hints about two of the books?  Both of them came out in April.  One is about a main character who is made up of human and extraterrestrial DNA.  The other is the sequel in a vampire series written by the author of another much-loved series.  Pretty easy to guess at least one of these, right?

Good luck and don't forget to return for more blogoversary fun!
P.S. I'm still giving away Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor & Park!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #83

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 Coldest Girl in Coldtown
Author: Holly Black
Release Date: September 17th, 2013
Publisher: Little, Brown BYR

Tana lives in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. The only problem is, once you pass through Coldtown’s gates, you can never leave. 

One morning, after a perfectly ordinary party, Tana wakes up surrounded by corpses. The only other survivors of this massacre are her exasperatingly endearing ex-boyfriend, infected and on the edge, and a mysterious boy burdened with a terrible secret. Shaken and determined, Tana enters a race against the clock to save the three of them the only way she knows how: by going straight to the wicked, opulent heart of Coldtown itself.

Not only does this book sound's by Holly Black!  How could I pass it up?

What awesome title are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Most Anticipated: June Releases

June 4th

-The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen
-Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
-Phoenix by Elizabeth Richards


-You Look Different in Real Life by Jennifer Castle
-Tidal by Amanda Hocking
-Tides by Betsy Cornwell

-When You Were Here by Daisy Whitney
-Elegy by Tara Hudson

June 11th

-Dance of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
-Belle Epoque by Elizabeth Ross
-Born of Illusion by Teri Brown

-Linked by Imogen Howson
-Another Little Piece by Kate Karyus Quinn

June 18th

-Star Cursed by Jessica Spotswood

June 25th

-Ink by Amanda Sun
-In The After by Demitria Lunetta

June 27th

-Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey

Which June releases are you looking forward to reading?

In My Mailbox #83

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Gabrielle Carolina from The Mod Podge Bookshelf, originally created by Kristi from The Story Siren.

This week I'll keep it short and sweet!  I received two eGalleys from Netgalley...

-Wild Cards by Simone Elkeles
(eGalley from Walker Children's and Netgalley)

-Where the Stars Still Shine by Trish Doller
(eGalley from Bloomsbury and Netgalley)

I'm so excited to get started on these, because you all know how I love contemporary books!  I'm especially excited for Wild Cards!

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

May Wrap-Up and June TBR

As you'll see below, May wasn't the best month for me.  It seems as though the year progresses, my reading is suffering more and more.  I read half of what I usually read, which isn't so bad, but I just feel like reading one book a week is ridiculous for me, especially when I set my goals to read at least 115 books by the end of the year.

The books I managed to read in May:
-Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
-Nantucket Blue by Leila Howland
-Enchantment by Nikki Jefford
-The Program by Suzanne Young

I think reading Eleanor & Park so early in the month set me up for failure.  By the time I finished that book, I was so hung up on how beautiful the story was to really invest myself in anything else.

The books I started in May but have yet to finish:
-Parallel by Lauren Miller
-The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
-The Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elston
-Wild Awake by Hilary T. Smith

All of these were very good so far, and the only reason I didn't finish them was because I got busy near the end of the month.  I do plan to try and finish these over the next few months, as well as catch up on some review copies I skipped from April and May.

The books I will definitely try to read in June (for review):

I'm so excited...I finally get to read Ink!  I've been waiting to since I received the ARC earlier this year, and now that it's finally June, I plan on starting it as soon as possible!

The books I hope to get to (list may change depending on mood):

Around summer, I ache for contemporaries about adventure and romance, so it's obvious why I chose these three!  Aside from trying to get through the review books I pushed back, I would love to get to at least one of these within the next couple months!

Ironically enough, my only May discussion post was about reading slumps and how to get out of them...ha!

At the beginning of the month, I was lucky enough to be able to meet Kiera Cass, Elizabeth Norris, Aprilynne Pike, and Amy Tintera.  They were total sweethearts!  I had a blast interviewing them for my blog, which you can see in my event recap!

I also took part in Armchair BEA this year, since I wasn't lucky enough to attend the actual event in NYC.  Check out my posts, where I introduced myself, spoke of tips to become a better blogger, held a giveaway to win my new favorite read, and shared my idea of good blogging ethics.

Finally, last month The Hollow Cupboards turned two!  My blog is now a toddler!  To celebrate, I'm hosting  giveaways until the end of June, so don't forget to check back!

Armchair BEA Day 5: Young Adult & Keeping It Real

Womp womp.  I failed and forgot to post because I went straight to bed after work today.  I really need to start scheduling my posts... Anyways, welcome back!  Are you sad that Armchair BEA is almost over?  I've enjoyed posting everyday, and I definitely plan to participate each year that I don't make it to BEA in NYC!

Today...err...yesterday the topics were Young Adult and Keeping It Real, so instead of choosing one, I decided that I wanted to share my thoughts on both!

Young Adult

As you can see, a majority of my blog is dedicated to the Young Adult genre.  I do read and review New Adult and even Adult Fiction, but for the most part, I'm more drawn to YA.  I'm not technically considered a "young adult" anymore, but I still feel like one and connect to the characters more.  I think over the past few years, YA has grown into a genre that most people can relate to, no matter their age, which is why it's become much popular than it used to be.  Occasionally, when someone asks me to explain the book I'm reading, I get embarrassed, because I feel as though I should be reading something more profound, but then I realize that it doesn't matter, because I read books that I enjoy.  I don't do them to look more intelligent or to fit in with others, I read them because they hold the type of stories I want to read about.

Keeping It Real

After blogging for so long, the question, "How do you keep things fresh?" actually stuns me.  I don't have an answer to that.  For the most part, I blog because it's what makes me happy.  I share what I want to share and when I post on my blog, I know that it's with people I want to share it with.  For the first half of my blog, I spent too much time worrying about what I thought other people wanted to see.  I wanted to get my hands on books that people wanted to read reviews about.  I wanted people to look up to me like I looked up to my favorite bloggers.  I then realized that blogging isn't about popularity.  Reading what I wanted to read, when I wanted to read it, really changed the way I blog.  That was step 1.  Step 2 was creating content that wasn't only helpful to my readers, but helpful to me as well.  Why do I post recaps/tbr piles, discussion posts, or new releases?  They're surely not original, but they all help me out, and I share them because I know that it could help out someone else, as well.  My only advice to keep an audience coming back for more is to be yourself.  :)

Thanks for stopping by!  Let me know if you're participating in Armchair BEA this week so I can check out your posts!