Monday, March 31, 2014

Audio Review: Shatter Me




Title: Shatter Me
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Pages: 340
Format: Audio
Release Date: October 2, 2012
Publisher: Harper Collins
Rating: 3 Cows





Goodreads Description:

Juliette hasn’t touched anyone in exactly 264 days.

The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal. As long as she doesn’t hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war – and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she’s exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.




Having already read all three books in this series before writing this review, I can say that Shatter Me is my least favorite book in the series. After finishing Shatter Me, I almost decided to not continue the series but in the end I felt that the story was compelling enough for me to continue. Plus, I hate not finishing a series.

Shatter Me is written very different from other books I have read. There's a lot of imagery. However, the most different thing is the strike throughs. There are a lot of them. It is kind of like reading Juilette's journal. It's a stream of conciousness writing and every time Juilette thinks something that she wishes she didn't she marks it out. Since I listened to the audio I'm not sure how I would feel about reading a book with half of it marked through. I can say that it did get on my nerves in the audio version. Every time there was something that would have been marked out in the book they made a noise in the audio. It was either like chalk on a chalkboard or a pencil marking something out very loudly (I can't remember which it was in this book). The writing style took some getting use to but after I did I enjoyed it. 

I really liked Adam in Shatter Me. He was protective, strong and kind. He was simply put a good guy. He helped Juilette and it was obvious he cared for her. Juilette did get on my nerves in this book. I found her to be a weak character that was immensely pessimistic. I understand that she had a very difficult life but her attitude was depressing. I hated, HATED, HATED Warner. He was evil and insane. I couldn't understand why anyone would be Team Warner. (However, I did find out later!) 

The plot for Shatter Me was really interesting. It a dystopian story with supernatural elements. At first, I couldn't figure out how the supernatural elements were going to play into the dystopian story and wasn't sure if it was going to fit but somehow Mafi makes it work. 

The main problems I had with Shatter Me were the strike throughs and Juilette. The intersting plot it what really made me decide to continue the series. I felt there was enough of a story for me to want to continue and I am so happy that I decided to continue it!


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Book Blitz: The Boyfriend List

Displaying BoyfriendListBlitzBanner.png









Displaying BoyfriendList.jpgThe Boyfriend List by R.S. Novelle
Publication date: February 10th 2014
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Synopsis:
The Boyfriend List follows twenty-year-old Reagan in her quest for the perfect relationship after a somewhat tragic spring break breakup leaves her disillusioned about love… again.

Reagan had always prided herself on making levelheaded, practical, analytical decisions about everything. Everything, that is, except where guys are concerned. Which was proven to her, once again, when her “boyfriend” opts to take another girl on their oh-so-romantic trip to his lake house. In order to prevent future heartbreak, she creates a checklist of all the qualities she wants in a man, and vows not to give her heart away again until she can determine if they fit every last criteria.

After scouring campus with her two best friends in her tricky journey, her detective work returns a pile of unworthy rejects, and it seems as though her choices are narrowed down to only two options: the hot stranger who’s inspired her new project, and her best guy friend Ian, who she’s always kept at bay due to his perceived playboy reputation.

Reagan gets more than she bargained for with her new set of rules, however, and is surprised to find that love, and the perfect boyfriend, may have been within reach the entire time. But will Ian’s reputation ruin his chances to prove his worth? And can Reagan let go of her insecurities long enough to even give him a chance?

The Boyfriend List is a light, New Adult romance about friendship, trust, and learning to let go in order to embrace what real love can offer.
AUTHOR BIO
 
 
Displaying RSAuthor.jpgRenee’ Novelle is Preceded by a long line of published family members, including Pulitzer Prize nominated author and Poet Laureate of Kentucky Jesse Stuart.

As a child, Novelle was already gaining recognition for several of her works, and in her formative years, she continued this trend by earning local awards for her short stories and poems.

Inspired to cultivate her talent, Novelle pursued freelance journalism and has found placement of 75 of her pieces in both online and print publications since 2008. Additionally, she has written multiple screenplays, and contributed her savvy, effective writing style to many non-profit and for profit organizations. She launched several blogs over the years, which garnered international attention.

In 2013, Novelle returned to her first love – fiction. She writes psychological and paranormal thrillers, as well as contemporary fiction and new adult fiction. For a complete schedule of upcoming releases, please visit www.RSNovelle.com

Though she received her Bachelor’s of Science in Communication, Summa Cum Laude, she considers herself a constant student of the written word. She’s an avid reader, an enthusiastic quote poster, and rarely takes “no” as a final answer. She has an unhealthy obsession for theater, dance, music and art, and strongly believes that wine is simultaneously the beginning of, and resolution to, all of life’s problems. She believes in following dreams, and that in the end, you always end up where you're meant to be.

Author links:
 


Excerpt:

Maybe she needed to get some fresh air, she decided. Go for a walk,
clear her head. Anything to distract her focus from her thoughts and reset her
mind back on her paper.
Decision made. She shut down her computer, set aside her books and
wrapped her long hair into a somewhat sloppy bun on the top of her head.
Reagan had contemplated a light sweatshirt to ward off the last cold brisk of
winter that clung to the night air in stubborn resignation, then decided against it.
But before she’d even left her bedroom, she turned back and yanked it off her
bed after all. Apparently she was having a hard time making up her mind about
everything that night.
Zipping it halfway up her torso, just below her breasts, she crept quietly
out the front door and turned to lock it behind her. A quick breeze whipped its
way around the corner and down the corridor, and as a shiver worked its way up
her spine, she was thankful she’d listened to her intuition. Maybe she should do
that more often.
But just as Reagan turned to go down the stairs and head out on her walk,
she was met – nearly head on – by an unexpected sight. Ian stood before her,
mildly drunk but mostly sober, looking as surprised to see her as she was to
see him. It was clear he’d been out for a night of fun, though she’d seen him far
worse on more occasions than she could count on both hands. But it was also
just as clear that, once again, he’d come home alone. She couldn’t help the little
smirk of satisfaction that turned up at the corners of her mouth on that discovery,
though internally she chastised herself at the thought.
 “And just where do you think you’re going?” His voice danced over the
words with dramatic flair, an indicative side effect of his inebriated condition.
It took her a minute to find her voice. “I need a break.” She finally
explained, “This essay’s killing me and I want to clear my head.”
 “Nice jacket.” He flicked the toggle of her zipper, and Reagan felt it flutter
in her core. “Want some company?”
The flutter was moving faster at the suggestion. His eyes had grown dark,
almost as dark as the night sky, and she thought she saw something in them that
begged her to say yes. Suddenly, she wasn’t so sure she needed her sweatshirt
any longer, since the temperature seemed to have risen up all around her,
working a pink tint into her cheeks. She was glad it was so dark out, hopefully
he couldn’t tell this time. “Aren’t you just getting in though? You’re probably
tired...right?”
Please say yes, please say yes, please say yes... she chanted in her
head. The truth was she very much would’ve loved his company, maybe a little
too much, but she wasn’t certain she trusted herself around him yet...alone...in
the middle of the night. There were too many possibilities, too many temptations
that her imagination could come up with. If she acted on any one of them, and
was wrong in her assumption, well the let down could be brutal at best.
“Tired? Me?” He shook his head and made a face at the suggestion. “The
party was just getting boring. Too many of the same people, not worth the time.”
Was he implying that she was worth his time then? Reagan certainly hoped so,
considering how long they’d been friends. But she couldn’t help wondering if
there was something more behind the words. “So what do you say? Can I walk
with you?” And as he tilted his head in that subtle way that only Ian could, a
dimple working it’s way into the corner of his cheek, she felt her breath rush out
of her lungs.
He’d put the ball back in her court again. Damn him! There’d be no getting
around it this time, she’d have to give him a definitive answer. And quickly.
Reagan knew she should say no. There was something inside, warning her that it
wasn’t a good idea. As though accepting his innocent invitation would somehow
change things. Alter their relationship and shift their energies toward one another
in a way that could never be put back again. But, when she really thought about
it, hadn’t they kind of done that already?
And yet everything inside of her wanted to scream yes, and keep the
momentum of what they’d started earlier in the day moving forward. It wanted
to let him take her hand in his, entwine her fingers around his, as though it was
the most natural thing in the world for them to be doing. All she could manage
though was a simple nod, stiffened by the breath she held tightly in her chest. It
was almost as though she was afraid to acknowledge what she wholeheartedly
wanted, even to herself, because doing so would only leave her open and
vulnerable to a future of regrets and failures.
 
 

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday (50)


Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the  Broke and the Bookish!

Top Ten Books on my Spring TBR Pile

1. The One by Kiera Cass

2. Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor

3. Of Neptune by Anna Banks

4. The Forever Song by Julie Kagawa

5. To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

6. Monument 14: Savage Drift by Emmy Laybourne

7. On the Fence by Kasie West

8. Steadfast by Claudia Gray

9. Panic by Lauren Oliver

10. The Rules of Breaking by Ashley Elston

There's my top ten, what's on your spring TBR list??
Monday, March 17, 2014

Audio Review: Cress





Title: Cress
Author: Marissa Meyer
Pages: 550
Format: Audio
Release Date: February 4, 2014
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Rating: 5 Cows



Goodreads Description:

Rapunzel’s tower is a satellite. She can’t let down her hair—or her guard.

In this third book in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army. 

Their best hope lies with Cress, who has been trapped on a satellite since childhood with only her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker—unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice. 

When a daring rescue goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing stop her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only ones who can.

Cress is my favorite book in the Lunar Chronicles. There, I said it. It's out there. Yeah, I pretty much laid all my cards on the table right out out of the gate but maybe you would like to know why I loved it more than the others. 

I have liked Cinder and Kai from the get-go but Thorne is the one that really had my heart. He's so funny and lighthearted. So the fact that Thorne kind of takes center stage in Cress gave Cress a leg up. In Cress, we get to see a different side of Thorne and I loved every second of it. I loved seeing how he treated Cress. Cress and Thorne's whole relationship was cute and sweet.

I also loved both Cinder and Kai in this installment. I think both Kai and Cinder grew as characters. They both had to take on even more responsibilty. It's great to see two people that are young to show such strength. 

In Cress we were able to see a little more about Dr. Erland's past. I found his storyline in Cress very interesting and it was his storyline that offered a nice twist. 

Cress was action packed and there was never a dull moment. I was worried that with all of the different characters and different storylines it would slow things down and make me feel disconnected from the story. However, I think it was the opposite. I loved all of the different storylines and how Meyer weaved them together. I was constantly wondering what would happen next. 

I listened to the audio of Cress as I did with both Cinder and Scarlett and again I loved Rebecca Soler. She does a great job with the different voices. 

I honestly can't think of a single thing I didn't like about Cress. It had great character development, swoonworthy guys, romance, action and suspense. Cress really did have it all and I cannot wait to see how this series ends! 





Saturday, March 15, 2014

Why I Love Binge Reading (or Listening)


When I first started reading YA, way back when, (I honestly can’t tell you the exact year), I binge read a lot of books. I remember going to Wal-Mart and looking at the book section. I would look at the pretty covers and pick a series to read then I would binge read the entire series in a week. I did this with Twilight, the first three books in The Mortal Instruments, Percy Jackson, The Hunger Games, Vampire Academy (the first four books), and several others. I was new to YA so there were a lot of  books I hadn’t read.

Then I got into reading blogs and discovering new books. I found new series and discovered (and was horrified) that there was typically a year gap in between books. Still, I read them and waited.

Looking back now, (and realizing there are so many books I am waiting on the ending for a series) I miss binge reading series. I feel like being able to read all of the books in a series back to back to back makes the connection stronger. I don’t have to figure out what happened in previous books or remember who this random guy is. I remember because I just read it. It’s like reading one big book and it’s so much fun! The book ends in a cliffhanger? Fine, I’ll pick up the next book. Easy Peasey.

But….

What isn’t so easy peasey is that there are so many books out there that people talk about and you want to join in and read them. Especially, if you are in the blogging world. You want to be in the loop.

However, I think I am going to start trying to wait until the entire series is out before reading the books. I actually have several books on my shelves that are part of a series that I haven’t read and I’m going to try to wait until the all the books are out before reading.

Why, the sudden desire to change?

Well, I’ve been listening to this fabulous series on audio. You may have heard of it. It’s a little series called Shatter Me by Taherah Mafi. This series is so good! I didn’t love the first book but the last two are oh my gosh. Ignite Me is honestly about killed me. But the point is that listening to this series and being able to just get the next audiobook in the series really reminded me how nice it is to be able to do that.

So what are y’all’s thoughts?

Also, show of hands of people that have read and loved Shatter Me? I just finished the series so I need someone to talk to about it!  

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday (49)



Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the  Broke and the Bookish!


Top Ten Favorite Paranormal Books

Vampires:
1. Vampire Academy/Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead - These books are excellent! Adrian will forever have my heart!

2. The Morganville Vampires by Rachel Caine- A long series but a very good one. I still have three books left to read in the series but I love all of the ones I have read.

3. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer- I know, I know! It's the first YA series I ever read and what got me into reading YA so yeah I love it. Don't hate!

4. The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa- Very different vampire series! Love it though! Julie is amazing!

Fey:

5. The Iron Fey by Julie Kagawa- Didn't I just say Julie was amazing? Well, I'm saying it again, she's amazing. I love, love, love Meghan Chase. Such a strong character!

6. Wicked Lovely series by Melissa Marr- Loved this series! So good! 

7. Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston- A great series!

Witches:

8. Spellcaster by Claudia Gray- Not a fan of witch stories typically but really enjoyed this one. I have the audio for Steadfast on my ipod waiting for me! 

Other:

9. Poison Princess by Kresley Cole- This series is amazing! It's so different and I absolutely love it!

10. The Mortal Instruments/Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare- I love the shadowhunter world. 

T



Monday, March 10, 2014

Review: The House of Hades




Title: The House of Hades
Author: Rick Riordan
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Release Date: October 8, 2013
Pages: 583






Goodreads Description:

At the conclusion of The Mark of Athena, Annabeth and Percy tumble into a pit leading straight to the Underworld. The other five demigods have to put aside their grief and follow Percy’s instructions to find the mortal side of the Doors of Death. If they can fight their way through the Gaea’s forces, and Percy and Annabeth can survive the House of Hades, then the Seven will be able to seal the Doors both sides and prevent the giants from raising Gaea. But, Leo wonders, if the Doors are sealed, how will Percy and Annabeth be able to escape?

They have no choice. If the demigods don’t succeed, Gaea’s armies will never die. They have no time. In about a month, the Romans will march on Camp Half-Blood. The stakes are higher than ever in this adventure that dives into the depths of Tartarus.



It's no big secret that I'm a huge fan of the Heroes of Olympus series, which is why it's so surprising that it took me forever to read this book. Granted, it is an extremely long book but usually I knock out one of Rick Riordan's books in 4-5 days. The House of Hades took me months. However, I don't think it's because I didn't enjoy the book, I think it's simply the timing of when I started it. I started it, stopped, started again, stopped, then didn't pick it up again for several months. Once I really got into it though I did it enjoy. 

If you've read Mark of Athena you know that Rick Riordan quite literally left us with a cliffhanger. Percy and Annabeth fell into Tartarus. The House of Hades picks right up after that. The book is once again told in multiple points of view. 

I gotta say that one of my favorite characters in The House of Hades is Bob. I really, really loved him. I thought it was a very interesting addition to the story. 

I continue to love Percy and Annabeth. They are always adorable. My feelings for Leo really grew in this book. I felt that we got to see a more serious side to him which I definitely enjoyed. Piper finally starting showing a little strength and got her chance to save the day. Frank probably grew the most in this book. He really came to terms with who he is and got more comfortable with himself.

Like previous books the action is nonstop. With Percy and Annabeth in Tartarus, things are pretty dire most of the book. Percy and Annabeth are one wrong move from death the entire book. And things aren't much better for everyone else. Camp Half Blood and Camp Jupiter seem pretty much set to kill one another. (Well, Camp Jupiter wants to kill Camp Half Blood so Camp Half Blood has to defend theirselves). Frank, Hazel, Leo, Jason, Piper, and Nico are under constant attack. It's just a bad situation all the way around. 

The House of Hades is yet another great novel by Rick Riordan. However, I still think it's my least favorite of the series. Gladly, Riordan does end the book with a semi-happy ending (i.e. no one is falling into Tartarus). I can't wait for The Blood of Olympus! 


Thursday, March 6, 2014

Audio Review: Rose Under Fire




Title: Rose Under Fire
Author: Elizabeth Wein
Pages: 368
Format: Audio
Release Date: September 10, 2013
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Rating: 5 Cows




Goodreads Description:

While flying an Allied fighter plane from Paris to England, American ATA pilot and amateur poet, Rose Justice, is captured by the Nazis and sent to Ravensbr ck, the notorious women's concentration camp. Trapped in horrific circumstances, Rose finds hope in the impossible through the loyalty, bravery and friendship of her fellow prisoners. But will that be enough to endure the fate that's in store for her?

Elizabeth Wein, author of the critically-acclaimed and best-selling Code Name Verity, delivers another stunning WWII thriller. The unforgettable story of Rose Justice is forged from heart-wrenching courage, resolve, and the slim, bright chance of survival.


I honestly didn't think that I would be able to love Rose Under Fire as much as I loved Code Name Verity but somehow I did. Rose Under Fire is in ways even more gut-wretching than Code Name Verity but I suppose in other ways it was slightly less harsh. 

I loved the fact that Maddie is part of Rose Under Fire. It was interesting to see Maddie's life after Code Name Verity and also to find out more details about other characters. It seems Maddie has a habit of befriending those that find themselves in terrible situations. (Though, terrible doesn't even began to cover what Rose and the others endured). 

Rose is a strong character full of spirit and determination. I admired her for how strong willed she was. If I were put in her situation, as much as it pains me to admit, I don't think I could have done what she did. I'm afraid I would have taken the easiest road as much as possible. 

While Code Name Verity portrayed the harshness of torture during war, Rose Under Fire, portrays the pure evil of Nazi Germany and the concentration camps. I've always had a fasnication with WWII. It's so hard for me to understand why the world would simply stand by while someone like this killed thousands upon thousands of innocent people. Then I hear people say that the U.S. needs to stay out of other countries affairs. Heck, at times, I'm sure I've said it. But reading Rose Under Fire really changed my perspective. I now realize that if someone is doing a great wrong, even if it's not to me or anyone I care about, they should be stopped at all cost. You can't stand idolly by. 

I applaud Elizabeth Wein for her ability to capture the true evil that is present during war. I honestly feel like Wein opened my eyes to a whole new world. Rose Under Fire  truly is a beautiful story!


Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday (42)


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





Title: The Forever Song
Author: Julie Kagawa
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: April 15, 2014








Goodreads Description:

VENGEANCE WILL BE HERS

Allison Sekemoto once struggled with the question: human or monster?

With the death of her love, Zeke, she has her answer.

MONSTER

Allie will embrace her cold vampire side to hunt down and end Sarren, the psychopathic vampire who murdered Zeke. But the trail is bloody and long, and Sarren has left many surprises for Allie and her companions—her creator, Kanin, and her blood brother, Jackal. The trail is leading straight to the one place they must protect at any cost—the last vampire-free zone on Earth, Eden. And Sarren has one final, brutal shock in store for Allie.

In a ruined world where no life is sacred and former allies can turn on you in one heartbeat, Allie will face her darkest days. And if she succeeds, triumph is short-lived in the face of surviving forever alone.

Why I'm Waiting: That's easy I L-O-V-E anything Julie Kagawa writes and can't wait to read more about Allie and Zeke!!
Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday (48)




Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the  Broke and the Bookish!

Ten Popular Authors I Have Never Read

I found this a really hard topic because I have at least tried most of the really popular writers out there. Still, I was able to come up with this list.

1. Meg Cabot- I actually bought one of her books a while but just haven't gotten around to reading it. I need to get to it!

2. Jennifer Armentrout- I think everyone loves her books but to be honest I don't even know what they are about. I know this is awful but I dislike the covers to her books and just can't get past them. (Yes, I judge a book by it's cover).

3. George R.R. Martin-  I thought about reading his books but I'll admit I was a little intimidated. OKAY, OKAY A LOT INTIMIDATED. But seriously, have you seen the size of these books? They are huge!

4. Rainbow Rowell- I bought Eleanor and Park when it was on sale on Amazon during Cyber Monday but haven't gotten to it yet! I will though soon!

5. Marie Lu- I bought the box set of the Legend series on Cyber Monday as well. Haven't gotten to it either!

6. Ally Carter- I bought her books right after RT in 2012. She was so funny there I just knew I had to read her books. I'm at a loss as to why I haven't read them yet. 

7. Ellen Hopkins- I just don't think these books would be my thing. 

8.  Neil Gaiman- I have at least one of his books on my kindle but just haven't gotten to it. 

9. Holly Black- I have White Cat, Red Glove, and the Tithe series sitting on my shelves neglected and unread...

10. Anne Rice- I also bought one of her books one time just because she was at a book convention I was at and thought it would be cool to have a book signed by her. The outrageously long line stopped me though. 

And there's my top ten! Who made yours??


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