Thursday, June 28, 2012

Cover Reveal: The Indigo Spell

Title: The Indigo Spell
Author: Richelle Mead
Publisher: Razorbill
Expected Release date: February 12, 2013

I really love this cover! I love how all the covers match the names of the books. I hadn't noticed it really until someone pointing it out to me! I know, I should have been obvious. Obviously, I'm not the most observant person.

I am very excited about this book. I have enjoyed all of the books that I have read by Richelle Mead but so far I haven't loved the Bloodlines series. The way that The Golden Lily left off though has me very excited about The Indigo Spell.

Oh, and I can I just say that I love Adrian because really I do!!

Find Richelle Mead
Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (8)

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

The Lost Prince (The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten, #1)
Title: The Lost Prince
Author: Julie Kagawa
Expected Publication: October 23, 2012
Why I Waiting:  I absolutely love The Iron Fey. Actually, I think I love pretty much anything Julie Kagawa writes. I can't wait for this one!!
Goodreads Description:  Don't look at Them. Never let Them know you can see Them.

That is Ethan Chase's unbreakable rule. Until the fey he avoids at all costs—including his reputation—begin to disappear, and Ethan is attacked. Now he must change the rules to protect his family. To save a girl he never thought he's dare to fall for.

Ethan thought he had protected himself from his older sister's world—the land of Faery. His previous time in the Iron Realm left him with nothing but fear and disgust for the world Meghan Chase has made her home, a land of myths and talking cats, of magic and seductive enemies. But when destiny comes for Ethan, there is no escape from a danger long, long forgotten.

My name is Ethan Chase. And I may not live to see my eighteenth birthday.

So what are you waiting on?

Also, while you're here. You should check out my giveaway for a signed copy of Monument 14!
Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Fierce Reads Recap + Giveaway

I was lucky enough to attend the Fierce Reads event in Pensacola last Saturday. When I first heard that there was going to be a signing in Pensacola, I was super excited because there are never events this big, this close to me!

The Pensacola event included Emmy Laybourne (Monument 14), Anna Banks (Of Poseidon), Jennifer Bosworth (Struck), and Leigh Bardugo (Shadow and Bone). The event started off by each author explaining a little bit about their book.  (Covers and Goodreads descriptions are below)

Monument 14

Goodreads Description: Your mother hollers that you’re going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don’t stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don’t thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not—you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner.Only, if it’s the last time you’ll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you’d stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus.But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran.Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong.

In Emmy Laybourne’s action-packed debut novel, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart.


Goodreads Description: Mia Price is a lightning addict. She’s survived countless strikes, but her craving to connect to the energy in storms endangers her life and the lives of those around her.

Los Angeles, where lightning rarely strikes, is one of the few places Mia feels safe from her addiction. But when an earthquake devastates the city, her haven is transformed into a minefield of chaos and danger. The beaches become massive tent cities. Downtown is a crumbling wasteland, where a traveling party moves to a different empty building each night, the revelers drawn to the destruction by a force they cannot deny. Two warring cults rise to power, and both see Mia as the key to their opposing doomsday prophecies. They believe she has a connection to the freak electrical storm that caused the quake, and to the far more devastating storm that is yet to come.

Mia wants to trust the enigmatic and alluring Jeremy when he promises to protect her, but she fears he isn’t who he claims to be. In the end, the passion and power that brought them together could be their downfall. When the final disaster strikes, Mia must risk unleashing the full horror of her strength to save the people she loves, or lose everything.

Of Poseidon (Of Poseidon, #1)

Goodreads Description: Galen, a Syrena prince, searches land for a girl he's heard can communicate with fish. It’s while Emma is on vacation at the beach that she meets Galen. Although their connection is immediate and powerful, Galen's not fully convinced that Emma's the one he's been  looking for. That is, until a deadly encounter with a shark proves  that Emma and her Gift may be the only thing that can save his kingdom. He needs her help--no matter what the risk.

Shadow and Bone (The Grisha Trilogy, #1)

Goodreads Description: Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart.

After introducing themselves and their books, they answered questions. They were all very nice and funny. They all joked around with each other. It was obvious they had all gotten to know each other during the tour.

Then we got to the best part the signing.  I got to talk to all of the authors while they were signing my books. A lot of our conservations revolved around Target. Emmy had admitted that she spent a lot of time in Target doing research.  She said she would take pictures there and then the workers told that she couldn’t do. She said it was really fun research and also expensive. So when Leigh and Jennifer told me that they liked my dress and I told them it was from Target, it opened the conversation up for a lot of fun.

After getting my books signed, I hung around until everyone was done signing books and asked for a picture with them. We took a serious one and then some not so serious ones.

From left to right: Leigh Bardugo, Anna Banks, me, Emmy Laybourne, & Jennifer Bosworth

Gazing into the distance.

Emmy was cracking us all up!!

Now, on to the part you have all been waiting for, the giveaway! Since Monument 14 was the only one I had read at the signing and I enjoyed it I picked up a signed copy for one lucky reader! You can see my review here. All you have to do is fill out the rafflecopter below! Good Luck! This giveaway is US only!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Monday, June 25, 2012

Review: Monument 14

Monument 14 Goodreads Description:

Your mother hollers that you’re going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don’t stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don’t thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not—you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner.Only, if it’s the last time you’ll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you’d stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus.But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran.Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong.

In Emmy Laybourne’s action-packed debut novel, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart.

My Thoughts:

When I first heard the Fierce Reads tour was coming to Pensacola, I immediately went and looked up all of the books to see what they were about. I ordered them and planned on reading as many of them as possible before the event. Sadly, I only made it through one.

Monument 14’s description immediately got my attention. The idea of living in a superstore while the world outside was quite literally crashing and burning was so intriguing. How would a bunch of kids work together to stay alive? Needless to say, Monument 14 was the first book that I picked up.

I really enjoyed this book. I read it pretty much in one sitting. It was easy to read and it had a good pace. Monument 14 keeps you on the edge of your seat. You are constantly wondering what crazy scenario Laybourne will throw at these kids next.

The characters were okay. They all were dealing with their own issues in their own way. I didn’t form an intense connection with any of them but they were each interesting in their own way. One of my favorite characters was Jake. To me, he changes the most throughout the book. He starts off as the leader but as the book progresses Jake begins to unravel. Another character I enjoyed was Sophie. Her progression is the exact opposite of Jake’s.  Sophie starts off in complete shock but in the end she emerges as somewhat of a leader. The kids love her and she takes care of them. I loved all of the kids, even the annoying ones were cute and adorable.

The only real issue I had with the characters was with Dean & Astrid. I didn’t care for Astrid at all. I couldn’t understand why Dean was so into her. She wasn’t extremely nice or strong. The only good quality I really got about her was that she was beautiful.

My favorite thing about this book though is the story itself. From almost the first page you are sucked in and committed to the story. What’s going to happen? How will they survive? Will they survive? I loved the fact that they were stuck in a superstore. I know that if something like this ever happens to me I’m headed straight to Wal-Mart or Target (whichever is closest).

Monument 14 is fast paced read that once you pick it up you’ll be unable to put it down. Laybourne’s ability to create a story that keeps you on the edge of your seat, while portraying both the best of humanity and the worst of humanity, makes Monument 14 a book that anyone should enjoy!

Grade: A-

***Click here to enter to win a SIGNED copy!!***
Friday, June 22, 2012

Review: Last Breath

Last Breath (The Morganville Vampires, #11)

Goodreads Description:

With her boss preoccupied researching the Founder Houses in Morganville, student Claire Danvers is left to her own devices when she learns that three vampires have vanished without a trace. She soon discovers that the last person seen with one of the missing vampires is someone new to town-a mysterious individual named Magnus. After an uneasy encounter with Morganville's latest resident, Claire is certain Magnus isn't merely human. But is he a vampire-or something else entirely

My Thoughts:

Last Breath is the 11th book in The Morganville Vampires series. Usually, when a series gets as lengthy as this one has gotten, it begins to feel like the author is forcing the series to continue. That is not the case with The Morganville Vampires. There is so much going on in Morganville, Rachel Caine could probably write a thousand books and the series would never get to that point.

However, Last Breath gets off to a slow start. Mostly, it’s Eve and Claire planning Michael and Eve’s wedding. No one wants them to get married (aside from Eve, Michael, Shane, and Claire) but other than the drama of dirty looks at the wedding shops there isn’t a lot of action. Until the vampires start disappearing…
As the vampires start disappearing, everyone starts acting weird and it is clear that something very bad is going on. About midway through, the book takes a very interesting turn. It was one of those instances where I looked up from my book and said, “I didn’t see that one coming!” After that the book went pretty quickly. I couldn’t wait to find out how things were resolved. Unfortunately, things are only semi-resolved. This book ends on a mild cliffhanger. Everyone gets some closure but the bigger picture is still very much in the air. (To me, it reminds me of the storyline with Bishop. It took a couple of books to get all of the loose ends on that storyline tied up).

For fans of Eve and Michael, this book is definitely for you. This book deals more with their relationship than most of the other books. Shane and Claire get plenty of page time too but it is Eve and Michael’s relationship that takes center stage.

I thought this book was a nice addition to the series. All of the things I come to love about this series; the punch lines, the smart comments, the playful banter between everyone in the house are present in Last Breath. I recommend this book to fans of the series and for anyone that hasn’t read this series I urge you to take a chance on it. You won’t regret it!

Grade: B+

Note: This review was originally published at Me, My Shelf, and I where I am a PT Reviewer. See this review and others I posted there by clicking here.
Thursday, June 21, 2012

Review: Elemental


Goodreads Description:

Just because Ella can burn someone to the ground with her mind doesn't mean she should.
But she wants to.
For ten years—ever since she was a small child—Ella has been held prisoner on an interstellar starship. Now that she has escaped, she needs answers.
Who is she? Why was she taken? And who is the boy with the beautiful green eyes who haunts her memories?
Is Ella the prophesied Destructor… or will she be the one who's destroyed?

My Thoughts:
Let me start off by saying that this book is definitely Sci-fi. To me the book description didn’t scream Sci-fi (also, on the back of the ARC it just says Ella has been held prisoner, not held prisoner on an interstellar starship). I’m guessing that was added later to clarify.

It took me a long time to read this book. I would read a little but I frequently found myself wanting to put it down. There were some really good parts that made me think, “Finally, things are picking up!” Only to be let a few pages later when the story flat lined again.

This story has a lot of very different names in it. Ella is the only normal one. Examples of this are Meir, Manoo, Malik, Ranon, and one group of people is called Mamood. (As I’m writing this, it seems there were also a lot of “M” names.) And these are just a few. There were several groups of people with even longer names and it made it difficult to keep everything straight. I felt the names were distracting and took away from the story.

Most of the time, I wasn’t really sure what was going on. It felt like a lot of information was left off and we were never given answers. I think White was trying to make the novel more suspenseful by doing it but it just made me confused and uninterested. I never did figure out if they were different races of people or just different religions. On a side note, there were a lot of religions in this book.

The book is narrated by Ella and she continuously gave me whiplash. She either really hated someone or really loved them. It wasn’t just one character she was like this with either, it was multiple. She also referred to Meir as her “savior” a few too many times for my taste.

Overall, I thought the book had some good parts where things were interesting and action packed but they were too few and far between for me to really get interested. I know there have been a lot of positive reviews on Goodreads so maybe it was just too Sci-fi for me.

Grade: D
Note: This review was originally published at Me, My Shelf, and I where I am a PT Reviewer. See this review and others I posted there by clicking here.
Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (7)

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

Carnival of Souls

Title: Carnival of Souls
Author: Melissa Marr
Expected Publication: September 4, 2012
Why I Waiting:  I loved Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely series. This sounds like it's going to be just as amazing as that series was.
Goodreads Description: In a city of daimons, the Carnival of Souls hosts a deadly competition. Once in a generation, every citizen can fight to join the ruling elite. Without the competition, Aya and Kaleb would both face bleak futures—if for different reasons. For each of them, fighting to the death is the only way to try to live.

In our own world, Mallory knows that her father—and every other witch—fled the daimons’ city long ago. She trains to be lethal because it’s only a matter of time until the daimons catch up with them.

While Mallory possesses little knowledge of The City, every inhabitant of The City knows of her. There are plans there for Mallory, and soon she, too, will be drawn into the decadence that is the Carnival of Souls.

From Melissa Marr, bestselling author of the Wicked Lovely series, comes a brand-new tale of secrets, love, and the struggle to forge one’s own destiny.
Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Top 10 Tuesday (8)



Top 10 Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.


Top 10 Books on my Summer TBR List
1. Blood Born by Jamie Manning- Jamie is an author from my hometown that I keep meaning to read but haven’t yet. :( You are on my list though Jamie!!

2. Of Poseidon by Anna Banks- Another (somewhat) local author. I was lucky enough to attend the Fierce Reads event in Pensacola and can’t wait to read this one.

3. Endure by Carrie Jones Can’t wait to see how this series ends!
4. Black Dawn by Rachel Caine- I am a huge fan of the Morganville Vampires! I recently received this book through R.A.K. so I am super excited to read this soon.
5. Before I Wake by Rachel Vincent- I got into the Soul Screamers series by participating in the Soul Screamers reading challenge hosted by Fiktshun. I ended up loving this series and can’t wait for Before I Wake.
6. The Statistical Probablity of Love at First Sight- I’ve been wanting to read this book for what seems like forever but I finally broke down and bought it and it’s now very close to the top of my TBR pile.
7. Wake by Amanda Hocking- I just found out that I got accepted into an ARC Tour for this book. It’s my first ARC Tour so I’m double excited.
8. Biting Cold by Chloe Neill- I cannot wait for this book! This series is amazing. Biting Cold comes out August 7!!
9. The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan- Huge, Huge fan of Rick Riordan. If you don’t believe me just check out my gushing review of Son of Neptune. 
10. Divergent by Veronica Roth- Everyone keeps talking about this series. I’m really hoping I’m able to find time to read this book this summer!
And that’s my Top Ten! What books made yours?
Monday, June 18, 2012

Monday Pick-Me-Up (16)

Monday Pick-Me-Up is a post intended to get everyone over their Monday Blues by sharing quotes I thought were funny in the books I read the previous week.
Quotes this week are from The Selection! I absolutely LOVED this book!
You can see my review of The Selection here.

The Selection (The Selection, #1) 

“Do you think the ability to sleep in
counts as a special skill?” I asked Dad, trying to sound torn over the decision.
“Yes, list that. And don’t forget to write that you can eat an entire meal in under five minutes,” he replied. I laughed. It was true; I did tend to inhale my food.
“Oh, the both of you! Why don’t you just
write down that you’re an absolute heathen!” My mother went storming from the room.”

Friday, June 15, 2012

Review: The Selection

The Selection (The Selection, #1)
Goodreads Description:
For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in the palace and compete for the heart of the gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself- and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

My Thoughts:
I got an ARC of The Selection at RT Teen Day in Chicago and I was lucky enough to meet the author (plus a ton more). I actually have a picture with me sandwiched between Kierra Cass (The Selection) and Rachel Caine (The Morganville Vampires) . Anyways back to the point, I put it on my TBR pile but I wasn’t in any hurry to read it. Then one of my friends tweeted me asking if I had read it. I said no and they told me I had to read it immediately. So I did.
I had originally thought this was going to be a rip-off of the Bachelor. It was NOT. Don’t get me wrong there are definitely some elements from the Bachelor but it’s not exactly like it. For example, I thought the camera crews would be on them all the time watching their every move. This is not the case. The camera crews are only there a very limited amount of time. It is still a dating competition like the Bachelor but it’s more than that. There’s a lot more to this book than finding love. Maxon’s choice on who to marry will have a significant impact on the course of the country. That’s a lot of pressure to put on a relationship.
When I first met Aspen, the guy America is in love with from back home, I’ll be honest I swooned. My friend told me upfront she was Team Maxon and in the beginning I couldn’t understand why. All we saw were glimpses of Prince Maxon on stage before the selection and during the selection. He seemed quiet and reserved and also a little on the stuck up side. However, a few chapters later we meet him. As soon as Maxon and America met, my allegiances switched. I loved their first meeting and how they both acted. It was so funny.
America’s attraction to Maxon isn’t immediate. America was blinded by her prejudices against him. She thought he was a spoiled brat that got whatever he wanted.  Plus, she was still very much in love with Aspen but over time you can tell she begins to have feelings for Maxon. And honestly I think she has more feelings for him than she realizes. I loved how their relationship developed. It seemed real in spite of everything going on around them.
But like I said before there is so much more to this book than a dating competition. Part of the reason I loved Maxon and America was because of the conversations they had. They didn’t have meaningless conversations. Their conversations were real and dealt with real issues. America showed Maxon that the world outside of his castle is bleak. She tells him about how the lower castes often go to bed hungry and that she, herself, had done it on more than one occasion. America comes in to Maxon’s world and shows him that the world isn’t black and white. There isn’t just right and wrong, there’s a gray area in the middle that the rest of the world has to live in. What’s even more inspiring is how Maxon takes this information. He’s outraged and immediately seeks to correct these injustices.
I really can’t tell you how much I loved this book. It is definitely one of my favorite books I’ve read this year. Actually, I think it’s simply one of my favorite books. The Selection is a great love story that deals with learning people aren’t always who you think they are and  that figuring out what you really want is a lot easier said than done.
Oh, and the ending?? Amazing! I will be on absolute edge until book two comes out!
Grade: A++
Thursday, June 14, 2012

Review: The Golden Lily

The Golden Lily (Bloodlines, #2)
Goodreads Description:
The second thrilling installment in Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy spinoff series

Tough, brainy alchemist Sydney Sage and doe-eyed Moroi princess Jill Dragomir are in hiding at a human boarding school in the sunny, glamorous world of Palm Springs, California. The students--children of the wealthy and powerful--carry on with their lives in blissful ignorance, while Sydney, Jill, Eddie, and Adrian must do everything in their power to keep their secret safe. But with forbidden romances, unexpected spirit bonds, and the threat of Strigoi moving ever closer, hiding the truth is harder than anyone thought.

Populated with new faces as well as familiar ones, Richelle Mead's breathtaking Bloodlines series explores all the friendship, romance, battles, and betrayals that made the #1 New York Times bestselling Vampire Academy series so addictive. In this second book, the drama is hotter, the romances are steamier, and the stakes are even higher.

My Thoughts:
The Golden Lily is the second book in the Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead. When I first heard about this series words cannot describe how excited I was about it. Unfortunately, I didn’t love Bloodlines. I liked it but it just didn’t live up to my very high expectations. Still, I hoped The Golden Lily would be amazing. Again, it wasn’t BUT I will say I like where things seem to be headed.
Like the first book and I’m assuming all of the future books in the series, the book is told strictly from Sydney’s perspective. For fans on the Vampire Academy series, Sydney’s voice is much different than Rose’s. Sydney is extremely descriptive and she analyzes EVERYTHING; this one of my main issues with The Golden Lily. It’s just too much meaningless information. I see where this is supposed to be giving us insight into how Sydney thinks but it also makes the story move at a much slower pace. Fortunately, about halfway through the story does pick up and things start to get interesting. Of course this could also be due to the fact that Adrian begins appearing much more frequently.
Adrian was by far the best part of this book. I loved him in Vampire Academy and I love him in this series. He’s so funny and has some of the best smart comments. He has all of this potential to be such a spectacular person and finally in this book we get a small glimpse of him trying to be responsible and be a that person. Sydney has a lot to do with this, which is why I think she’s growing on me. (Plus, I find all of her social awkwardness to be extremely funny). She sees the potential in him and pushes him to be better and you can tell that being around her makes him want to which is something Rose could never do.
Another small complaint I have with this book is the number of love triangles and trying to keep up with who likes who. To be honest, it’s somewhat exhausting. She likes him but he likes her but she’s with him. It just goes around and around. No one can like the right person at the right time. However, there is one romance that FINALLY starts to pick up in this book and I must say I’m very excited. I wasn’t sure if it would work and I’m still not sure how something will work but I’m beginning to see what a good fit they are. They really balance each other out well.
The action still isn’t as high as it was in Vampire Academy and even when there is action you see it from a very different perspective. Rose told us what she was doing, how she was fighting, whereas, Sydney is telling us what other people are doing. Although, Sydney is far from a fighter The Golden Lily definitely proves that she is a strong female lead. Sydney fights with her brain, where Rose used her fists.
I know it is somewhat unfair to compare the Vampire Academy series to the Bloodlines series but it’s almost impossible not to. It’s the same author, same world, and some of the same characters. You just can’t help it or at least I couldn’t.
While I didn’t love The Golden Lily I still very much enjoyed it. The beginning is slow but if you can just stick it out until Adrian starts appearing you’ll see that it was worth it. The ending was a heartbreaker and I can’t wait to see what Richelle Mead has in store for book 3.
Grade: B
Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Cover Reveal: Blood Awakening

The Blood Prophecy Series #2
Author: Jamie Manning
Reading Level: YA
Genre: Paranormal
Release Date: April 23rd 2013

Jamie Manning is an author that is from the same itsy bitsy dot that I am. Imagine that? I mean, seriously, what are the odds? His first book Blood Born came out on April 24, 2012. I haven't read it yet but I am...SOON!! The book sounds really good so I am extremely excited about it. Here's the description for Blood Born from Goodreads:

Waking up in a coffin hungry for blood is only the beginning for sixteen-year-old Ava Blue. When Chance Caldon, the hottie who dug her up, tells her that she’s half vampire, Ava’s world really turns upside down.

Half vamp? Ava can’t believe it...she doesn't even know what that means! Not until Aldric, a thousand-year-old vampire, shows up and tells her it’s true--and that he’s the one who turned her. Then Ava truly begins to believe what she is. Now, she has to deal with a sudden and powerful bloodlust, the desire to see Aldric dead, and her growing crush for Chance. Ava knows she's a monster now, she can feel it; and her life is over.

But redemption isn’t lost. Aldric is giving her a chance to regain her humanity. The price? Kill a hundred vampires, or remain a bloodsucker forever.

So Ava sets out to get her life back. But killing vampires begins a battle that could destroy everything she is working toward. In the end, Ava's decisions will forever change her life and the lives of those she loves.

Sounds great, right? So go out and pick up a copy or you can enter to win a copy over at Once Upon a Twilight. The giveaway is almost over so hurry! Just be sure that if you don't win you go out and buy it!

***I did not enter because I absolutely HAVE to support any author that's from my hometown and buy my own copy! :)

The second book in the series Blood Awakening comes out on April 23, 2013. So far all we have is this short teaser:

Ava thought her new unlife couldn't get any worse.
She's about to find out how wrong she was... 

Find Jamie Manning:

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday (7)

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Top Ten Books I'd Recommend As Good Beach Reads

Most of the books I picked are action/adventure or fun, lighthearted books because that’s the kind of books I like reading at the beach. I don’t want anything too serious because let’s face it no one wants to be crying at the beach. However, there is one on here that is a little sad and could cause some water works.

1.The Summer I Turned Pretty Series by Jenny Han
2. Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler
3. Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally
4. Ten Things We Did by Sarah Mlynowski
5. The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan
6. Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
7. Anything by Sarah Dessen
8. The Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa
9.  The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks
10. The One that I Want by Jennifer Echols
Monday, June 11, 2012

Monday Pick-Me-Up (15)

Monday Pick-Me-Up is a post intended to get everyone over their Monday Blues by sharing quotes I thought were funny in the books I read recently.

This week's quotes are from The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan. Excellent book!
You can see my review here.

 The Son of Neptune (Heroes of Olympus, #2)
“There!" Mars finished writing and threw the scroll at Octavian. "A prophecy. You can add it to your books, engrave it on the floor, whatever."
Octavian read the scroll. "This says, 'Go to Alaska. Find Thanatos and free him. Come back by sundown on June twenty-fourth or die'."
"Yes," Mars said. "Is that not clear?"
"Well, my lord...usually prophecies are unclear. They're wrapped in riddles. They rhyme, and..."
Mars casually popped another grenade off his belt. "Yes?"
"The prophecy is clear!" Octavian announced. "A quest!”

“ that thing tame?" Frank said.
The horse whinnied angrily.
"I don't think so," Percy guessed. "He just said,
'I will trample you to death, silly Chinese Canadian baby man'.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Story Thoughts: Niederwald

Enthralled: Paranormal Diversions

Niederwald is a short story that can be found in Enthralled edited by Melissa Marr and Kelly Armstrong. It is very short, only a few pages. Think of it like a chapter. In the story, Sabine and Emma take a road trip to Niederwald. Niederwald is a city where the line between the real world and the netherworld is extremely thin and because of this there are a lot of supernaturals hanging around there. Of course, the trip isn't as easy as planned and they get into a little trouble.
I read this AFTER I read If I Die when I was dying to read something else Soul Screamers related. I already had Enthralled so I thought it might help me a little. The events in Niederwald are foreshadowing some of the events that will take place in If I Die so, in my opinion; you could read it before or after it and be okay.
To be honest, I wasn’t incredibly impressed with it. The story itself was okay and I did like that it was hinting at what was to come without us knowing it, however, I just found the whole premise of Emma and Sabine going on a road trip alone…odd. I mean they did hang out on occasion but it was always with a group.
One of the things I did enjoy was that Niederwald is told from Sabine point of view. I did enjoy seeing things through her eyes. As with everything in life, things are never black and white, but often, gray. This is the case with Sabine and her motives for doing things.
While I wasn’t overly impressed, I still felt that it was a nice addition to the story. I loved the foreshadowing! If you already own Enthralled it’s worth the few minutes it will take to read it.
Thursday, June 7, 2012

Review: The Son of Neptune

The Son of Neptune (Heroes of Olympus, #2)
Goodreads Description:
Seven half-bloods shall answer the call,
To storm or fire the world must fall.
An oath to keep with a final breath,
And foes bear arms to the Doors of Death.

Percy is confused. When he awoke from his long sleep, he didn't know much more than his name. His brain fuzz is lingering, even after the wolf Lupa told him he is a demigod and trained him to fight with the pen/sword in his pocket. Somehow Percy manages to make it to a camp for half-bloods, despite the fact that he has to keep killing monsters along the way. But the camp doesn't ring any bells with him. The only thing he can recall from his past is another name: Annabeth

Hazel is supposed to be dead. When she lived before, she didn't do a very good job of it. Sure, she was an obedient daughter, even when her mother was possessed by greed. But that was the problem - when the Voice took over her mother and commanded Hazel to use her "gift" for and evil purpose, Hazel couldn't say no. Now because of her mistake, the future of the world is at risk. Hazel wished she could ride away from it all on the stallion that appears in her dreams.

Frank is a klutz. His grandmother says he is descended from heroes and can be anything he wants to be, but he doesn't see it. He doesn't even know who his father is. He keeps hoping Apollo will claim him, because the only thing he is good at is archery - although not good enough to win camp war games. His bulky physique makes him feel like an ox, especially infront of Hazel, his closest friend at camp. He trusts her completely - enough to share the secret he holds close to his heart.

Beginning at the "other" camp for half-bloods and extending as far as the land beyond the gods, this breathtaking second installment of the Heroes of Olympus series introduces new demigods, revives fearsome monsters, and features other remarkable creatures, all destined to play a part in the Prophesy of Seven
My Thoughts:
I really can’t express how much I have come to love the Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan. It seems that with each book of Riordan’s I read I fall a little bit more in love with him, his books and his characters. The Son of Neptune is no exception. I was almost positive I was going to love this book going in because I had loved the first book in the series, The Lost Hero, so much and I had a good idea where the series was headed. Still, it took me a while after I bought to read it. However, when I finally did I loved it!
This book has all of the elements that I loved from the Percy Jackson series and more. The Son of Neptune gives us our first look inside the Roman demigod camp (the one we only recently discovered existed at all), Camp Jupiter. In a lot of ways, Camp Jupiter is like Camp Half Blood but in others they are very different. For example, Camp Jupiter is much harsher than Camp Halfblood. The rules are stricter, the training is more intense, and the people are less trusting. When Percy winds up there with no memory, everyone is more than a little suspicious. Luckily, Percy gets some help from some new friends and they set out on their quest.
One of the things I love most about Riordan’s books is how he manages to turn the most unlikely people into heroes. Both Frank and Hazel have confidence issues. Frank thinks he is a complete failure and Hazel is constantly worried that someone will discover her secret. Both feel inferior to Percy because let’s face it, Percy is an amazing demigod and who wouldn’t feel that way? However, through the course of the quest Frank and Hazel not only prove that have the potential to be a truly amazing hero, but also prove that without them the quest would fail. By the end of the book, Hazel and Frank finally see themselves for the amazing heroes they are.
Another thing that I just have to point out that I loved was the Amazons and that they owned Amazon. Is that not the cleverest thing ever? I mean, how does he come up with this stuff? It was just too funny and too cute. Plus, I loved that they were strong women.
Like all of the Percy Jackson books, The Son of Neptune was non-stop action. Percy, Hazel and Frank were constantly in some kind of predicament and I was continuously amazed at how they managed to get out of the situations. I usually prefer more of a love story in books but this book had so much action I barely noticed the lack of romance. (Don’t worry there is some romance, just not a lot.) After reading this book I found myself wanting another action book but was disappointed to find I don’t own any real action books.
I can honestly say that I can’t think of a single thing I didn’t like about The Son of Neptune. It’s an excellent book in an excellent series that I would recommend to anyone!
Grade: A+
Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (6)

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

The Mark of Athena (Heroes of Olympus, #3)

Title: The Mark of Athena
Author: Rick Riordan
Expected Publication: October 2, 2012
Why I Waiting:  I have fallen in love with Rick Riordan's books. I love the adventure and excitement. The Son of Neptune left with a cliffhanger and now I'm patiently (or anxiously) waiting the next installment.

Goodreads Description: Annabeth is terrified. Just when she’s about to be reunited with Percy—after six months of being apart, thanks to Hera—it looks like Camp Jupiter is preparing for war. As Annabeth and her friends Jason, Piper, and Leo fly in on the Argo II, she can’t blame the Roman demigods for thinking the ship is a Greek weapon. With its steaming bronze dragon masthead, Leo’s fantastical creation doesn’t appear friendly. Annabeth hopes that the sight of their praetor Jason on deck will reassure the Romans that the visitors from Camp Half-Blood are coming in peace.

And that’s only one of her worries. In her pocket Annabeth carries a gift from her mother that came with an unnerving demand: Follow the Mark of Athena. Avenge me. Annabeth already feels weighed down by the prophecy that will send seven demigods on a quest to find—and close— the Doors of Death. What more does Athena want from her?

Annabeth’s biggest fear, though, is that Percy might have changed. What if he’s now attached to Roman ways? Does he still need his old friends? As the daughter of the goddess of war and wisdom, Annabeth knows she was born to be a leader, but never again does she want to be without Seaweed Brain by her side.

Narrated by four different demigods, The Mark of Athena is an unforgettable journey across land and sea to Rome, where important discoveries, surprising sacrifices, and unspeakable horrors await. Climb aboard the Argo II, if you dare. . .
Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Top 10 Tuesday (6)

Top 10 Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

This week is Top 10 Tuesday: Rewind so I'm going to share with you....
My Top 10 Authors I am DYING to Meet
1) Lauren Oliver
2) Julie Kagawa
3) Cassandra Clare
4) Gayle Forman
5) John Green
6) Rick Riordan
7) J. K. Rowling (I mean, who doesn't)
8. Stephenie Meyer
9. Jenny Han
10. Lesley Livingston
Also, I think it's important that I note that I have had the great privilege of meeting some truly amazing authors. I have my top 10 favorite authors I meet listed below.
This Tuesday is a 2 for 1 special!
My Top Ten  Authors that I HAVE Met
1. Richelle Mead (Twice!)
2. Melissa Marr
3. Rachel Caine
4. Chloe Neill
5. Rachel Vincent
6. Ally Carter
7. Stephanie Perkins
8. Heather Brewer
9. Erin Morganstern
10. Francine Pascal (creator of Sweet Valley High series)

Review: City of Lost Souls

Goodreads Description:

The demon Lilith has been destroyed and Jace has been freed from her captivity. But when the Shadowhunters arrive to rescue him, they find only blood and broken glass. Not only is the boy Clary loves missing–but so is the boy she hates, Sebastian, the son of her father Valentine: a son determined to succeed where their father failed, and bring the Shadowhunters to their knees.

No magic the Clave can summon can locate either boy, but Jace cannot stay away—not from Clary. When they meet again Clary discovers the horror Lilith’s dying magic has wrought—Jace is no longer the boy she loved. He and Sebastian are now bound to each other, and Jace has become what he most feared: a true servant of Valentine’s evil. The Clave is determined to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. Will the Shadowhunters hesitate to kill one of their own?

Only a small band of Clary and Jace’s friends and family believe that Jace can still be saved — and that the fate of the Shadowhunters’ future may hinge on that salvation. They must defy the Clave and strike out on their own. Alec, Magnus, Simon and Isabelle must work together to save Jace: bargaining with the sinister Faerie Queen, contemplating deals with demons, and turning at last to the Iron Sisters, the reclusive and merciless weapons makers for the Shadowhunters, who tell them that no weapon on this earth can sever the bond between Sebastian and Jace. Their only chance of cutting Jace free is to challenge Heaven and Hell — a risk that could claim any, or all, of their lives.

And they must do it without Clary. For Clary has gone into the heart of darkness, to play a dangerous game utterly alone. The price of losing the game is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she even still trust him? Or is he truly lost? What price is too high to pay, even for love?
Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series.

My Thoughts:

City of Lost Souls is the fifth book in The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. These books are definitely not standalone novels so if you haven’t read the first four books you should pick those up before reading this one. If you don’t, you will be completely lost.

City of Lost Souls starts off a little slow which was surprising to me considering how City of Fallen Angels ended. Part of this could simply be the absent of Jace. He is absent for most of the beginning and once he finally does appear you’re not sure how much of it is the Jace that we have all come to know and love.

I did love all of the secondary characters (and when I say secondary characters I mean pretty much anyone besides Jace and Clary). I really enjoyed seeing Isabelle and Simon’s relationship and also Alec and Magnus. I felt there was a lot more Alec/Magnus in this book which I loved. Alec’s insecurities about his relationship with Magnus are clearly evident. While I wanted to tell him to get over it, I couldn’t help but think that if I were in his place I would probably feel the same way.

Isabelle and Simon’s relationship developed in this book a great deal. It is clear that Isabelle has feelings for him which scares her to death. She’s like a fish out of water and has no idea how to act. Simon clearly has feelings for Isabelle but he’s still intimidated by her and doesn’t see how she could possibly have feelings for him.

As I stated earlier, Jace, the real Jace, is absent almost the entire book which was depressing. There were a couple of moments where the real Jace made an appearance which I thoroughly enjoyed. Through it all, Jace and Clary’s love for one another is undeniable. Even the not Jace, can’t stay away from her.

Sebastian was an interesting character in this book. I spent most of the book going back and forth between hating him and feeling sorry for him. At times he seems as if he really cares about Jace and Clary and just wants someone to care about him. Even Clary struggles with whether or not she should trust him.

I love Clare’s writing style and this book is no exception. She is a master at explaining the most unusual things in a way that makes it seem like it is the most natural thing in the world. The characters she creates are ones that you easily fall in love with and are immediately concerned about their well being.

However, there was one thing about this book that kept me from giving it an A+ grade. The main storyline seemed forced. I know that this is an unpopular opinion for some but I really feel that there wasn’t a need for three more books in this series. Don’t get me wrong I’m happy that there are I just don’t think that they were necessary. Sebastian could have stayed dead and everyone could have gone happily along with their lives.

In the end, I felt that this was yet another great book by Cassandra Clare. Her story telling ability never ceases to amaze me. I love the characters and can’t wait to (hopefully) see them get a happy ending in the final book, City of Heavenly Fire.

Grade: A-

Note: This review was orignially published on Me, My Shelf and I where I am a PT Reviewer. You can see my review and many others by clicking here.

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