Monday, January 30, 2012

High School Heroes II Camp Hero by James Mascia

Lizard-men. Time travel. Genetic experiments. What really went on at the Camp Hero Military Base? Camp Hero continues the adventures of Christine and her friends as they delve deeper into the legacies of their grandfathers. On the day Christine's baby brother is born, Christine is given a vision of a young boy being taken by the MHDA-Meta-Human Detection Agency. Obsessed with finding this boy before the MHDA can get to him, Christine and her friends go on a quest to rescue him. The journey takes them to Camp Hero, where their grandfathers once served. They discover secrets about themselves, their grandfathers, the MHDA and their science teacher, Mr. Quinn. Now they must deal with the burden of these secrets, even as they try and rescue the mysterious boy from the clutches of the MHDA.

I read and reviewed a copy of High School Heroes last year, and jumped at the opportunity to read the next book. I also had an interview with the author and a guest post in which he discusses Heroes. You can find the link on the sidebar of my blog under "pages"
I was pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed this next book in the adventures of Christina and Ethan even MORE than the first book. His first book was one that stuck with me for awhile after reading it. I have never really been much of a comic book fan or one that reads a lot of superhero stuff in general, but after reading his books I have found an interest in Graphic Novels, Comic books and enjoying the super hero stories even more that I thought I ever would.
The second book steps it up a bit with a little more danger and intrigue to their stories. The introduction of the the Military base and the mystery of Christina's vision, along with some great new characters, makes for an entertaining and movie-like read. The writing is so amazing you can imagine what is going on visually as it happens and the development of their superpowers is fantastical and leads to some pretty all-out fighting scenes.
I enjoyed they got to learn more about their grandparents and the introduction of more kids to the group other than Christine and Ethan. I can't say how much I like the fact that Christine and Ethan's relationship continues to grow instead of turn into drama and fighting.
Although the books are very intriguing and are pretty fast paced, at 344 pages it's not a quick read, but you'll enjoy every minute of it.

This book is available right now on amazon kindle for $5 (amazing deal) or paperback version

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Dark Territory by J Gabriel Gates and Charlene Keel

Star-Crossed Love, Martial Arts, and Supernatural Evil meet at the Abandoned Tracks in the Deceptively Quaint town of Middleburg...When Ignacio Torrez moved from the rough streets of Los Angeles to a small town dead smack in the middle of nowhere, he never expected to find himself in the midst of a gang war. But, he soon learns, these are no ordinary gangs. The wealthy, preppie Toppers on one side of the tracks and the working-class Flatliners on the other adhere to a strict code of honor and use their deadly martial arts skills, taught to them by the wise Master Chin, to battle one another for pride, territory, and survival. When Raphael, leader of the Flatliners, falls for Aimee, a Topper girl, the rival gangs prepare for a bloody, all-out war. The only hope for peace between them lies within the dark territory of the abandoned train tunnels where the tracks cross. Under the direction of the mysterious and frightening Magician, the awesome power within the crossing sends the rivals on a terrifying mystical quest to fight the malevolent force that threatens the existence of Middleburg

For the majority of this book I could not help but be reminded of the Karate Kid movies. A new kid attending a new school, gets into some rough times with another gang of boys. They call themselves the TOPPERS and the FLATLINERS. They fight each other with martial art skills that can become deadly and serious very fast.
The twist to this story that takes it away from being too similar to Karate Kid is the combination that we get to have half of the story from a Aimee, and that was nice to get some alternative perspectives into the story.
There is also some supernatural twists to this one, as well as some incredibly creepy Train Tracks in which the town refers to as the "Dark Territory" some magic, kidnappings full of ransom notes and danger.
I have read other books by J Gabriel Gates and appreciate the flow of the stories he tells. Just like sitting back and watching a good film. A great ensemble of characters and dialogue that really keeps the reader interested with the plot. This for instance is a 504 page book, but once you get into the story you'd never realize it was.
I think that the amazing this is that this book at the time I am writing this review is only $1.30 on Amazon, both the ebopy and the physical paperback copy! Now this amazes me, it's a steal at this price and a great story with great characters. I don't know why'd you ever want to pass up this offer.
Happy Reading.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Unnatural Law (Darwin's Children Book 2) by Natasha Larry

If you would like to read my review of book 1 click here
Seventeen-year-old Jaycie Lerner’s psychokinetic power surge is over, and her astounding powers are under control for the time being – sort of. As she struggles to maintain her humanity in the face of the awesome terror and responsibility of her abilities, she also yearns for the chance at a normal life – and a relationship with Matt Carter, the best friend she had to leave behind. But Matt’s got a few tricks up his sleeve, and he’s not about to give up on his feelings for Jaycie.

As Jaycie and her family grapple with the day-to-day routine of trying to keep their world together, Jaycie’s mother figure, Allison Young, endures a personal crisis of her own. The superhuman blonde possesses the physical equivalent of Jaycie’s awesome psychic power. So evolved, at ninety-two she still looks twenty. But what good is extended life when everyone else around her is so fragile? With no one to share her unusual life, she’s a uniquely lonely woman yearning for the romantic love she sees all around her. But in a dream she gets her wish – and it quickly turns to a nightmare for everyone else in her life. The memory of a rose is all she can hold onto in the storm of obsession that nearly sweeps her away.

Things quickly turn deadly for the vampires, but the Dey-Vah Guard fairies refuse to acknowledge there’s an imbalance in the nature they protect. As the danger gets ever closer to Jaycie and her family, the race is on to find answers before a secret plot can destroy them all

I love these books because they are so unique and the world building is very descriptive and imaginative. There are vampires and fairies but unlike any other Paranormal teen read out there today.
I love Jaycie, and watching her learn how to control her powers is an intriguing one that you really don't know what is going to happen, whether somebody will actually end up getting hurt or not because she has not control. I also love the ensemble of characters, we get to know more about each person from the first book as well as bringing in some new characters..and maybe the beginning of a love triangle?
The author has a great way of letting the story flow smoothly and great timing of events. 6 characters trying to figure out their own lives, yet intertwine with each other. I enjoyed the deeper look into the Dey-Vah guard. The Fairies, vampires and super human's intermingling into a flawless story that has a little bit of everything and not overdone or overwhelming at all. As nobody is quite feeling themselves these days this installment turns into a bit of a mystery to solve to see if all their ailments may be related.
I enjoyed this 2nd book just as much as the first, I am immensely excited to see what is going to happen in their story especially when Jaycie gets a grip on her powers and can start building on them. I'm excited to see what she can really do when she puts her mind to it.

There is currently a giveaway happening on goodreads for this book

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday : Loss by Jackie Morse Kessler

I was really excited to hear that the 3rd book was coming out because I really enjoyed the first two books, Hunger and Rage. (You can click on their names to be linked to my reviews) and now Loss will be here

I really like these books because they are unique.
Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Bending The Spine

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Everneath Book Trailer

Everneath By Brodi Ashton

Last spring, Nikki Beckett vanished, sucked into an underworld known as the Everneath, where immortals Feed on the emotions of despairing humans. Now she's returned- to her old life, her family, her friends- before being banished back to the underworld... this time forever.

She has six months before the Everneath comes to claim her, six months for good-byes she can't find the words for, six months to find redemption, if it exists.

Nikki longs to spend these months reconnecting with her boyfriend, Jack, the one person she loves more than anything. But there's a problem: Cole, the smoldering immortal who first enticed her to the Everneath, has followed Nikki to the mortal world. And he'll do whatever it takes to bring her back- this time as his queen.

As Nikki's time grows short and her relationships begin slipping from her grasp, she's forced to make the hardest decision of her life: find a way to cheat fate and remain on the Surface with Jack or return to the Everneath and become Cole's.

It's the first story I have read that involves a city and places that I actually know and have been to! Park City is only miles away from my house and I have frequented it enough to know what she is referencing and could actually picture the scenes more clearly. That was kind of awesome.
Like Abandon by Meg Cabot, this story is also told with alternating chapters between the present time and 6 months ago before Nikki (or Becks) traveled to the Everneath. What I did have a harder time grasping was that Cole (or Neal) kept saying they had been together in the Everneath for a Century. But here on Earth only 6 months had passed. It is explained in the book of course, but I had a very hard time wrapping my brain around the concept of 1 Century (100 yrs) vs 6 months.
It took me about 80% of the book before I started to really root for the main characters Nikki and Jack. I was frustrated with Nikki through most of the story because she only had a short time back on Earth to say goodbye to her loved ones before she had to go back. I felt that the majority of her time back on Earth was completely wasted with School, homework and Cole (who would not leave her alone, ever) and not doing the things she came back to do , I wanted to just pull her hair and tell her to move on with it!
But sometimes characters will do that to you, make you so frustrated, but in the end the story always wraps up, or it leaves you with a huge WTF moment. Guess what, we also get a WTF moment at the end of this one. A complete twist to the story you never saw coming and now your wondering what is going to happen next. A very tricky things that authors do that make the reader want to pester them and poke them in the arm until the next book is released and we can finally see what happened.
Now lucky for me Brodi Ashton is a local author so now everytime I see her in public I just may poke her until she tells me what happens next, because how can you just leave it like that? HUH? No Fair! You get me all emotionally wrapped up in this story and then just leave it? No final answer?
The interesting twist with this one is the story of Persephone's Daughters. We get to dig a little deeper into the myth of Hades and Persephone than for example Abandon Or The Goddess Test did.
And I have to admit that Jack kinda grew on me, even though I hated him most of the book for being the cheater boyfriend. He's my favorite character. I understand that Cole was meant to always be in her way and an added challenge that she must overcome, but I really did want to punch him in the face every time he showed up.
I find that some of the best writers keep you emotionally engaged in their stories. I personally could not connect with Nikki and her decisions, but I eventually connected with Jack, and he won me over in the end.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Transcendent: Tales of the Paranormal Review

Discover the secrets of a siren, fly with a hawk girl over the mountains of Montana, and flee supernatural party-crashers as the décor comes to life in this magical journey through paranormal stories.
Along the way, watch for ghosts in a haunted house, or ride through the moonlight with a stranger. Save a comatose boy who has lost his soul, and don’t forget to bring your garlic and wolfsbane—you never know when the shadows will snag you.

Transcendent includes eight stories of magic, love, death, and choice by some of the newest names in young adult fiction

I couldn't figure out how to review each story in detail without giving away spoilers, so I have summarized each short story into one or two sentences.

Seduction of a Siren by Lani Woodland and Melonie Piper
2 boys on a school trip end up on an Island with a Siren. A story of lost love, new love and a little bit of overcoming your weaknesses.
Feather by Rita Webb
A Blackfoot Indian girl goes on her spirit journey and discovers she can shape shift and finds a new friend.
Spectre by Wendy Swore
A party becomes more than expected when the rented decorations become more than they asked fore.
Shadows of Promise by Heather McCubbin
A party at an abandoned house provides a ghostly guest and solves a murder mystery
Pumpkin Thief by Evan Joseph
A knight in shining armor shows up to her aid and defends her honor against
her stalkers
Strike by Wendy Swore and Rita Webb
After getting struck with lightning, Dex ends up in his mp3 player and Lani must help him get back
Ryan's Wish by Melanie Marks
After her boyfriend disappears Ava makes it her birthday wish every year that he will come back. When he does, he comes back as something else.
Kiss of Death by Lani Woodland and Melonie Piper
Prom night, a night to remember and Scarlet's dream guy just walked in the door. A story about soulmates that transcend time, and an illness that may culminate in this being the best night of her life.

These short stories are clean, there is no sex and very little kissing, and a little drinking. They have just enough fun and edge to them this is a perfect book for Halloween reading. I loved that each story was so different from the other. From Sirens to out of body experiences, vampires and ghosts this book contains a little bit of everything and a little romance never hurt anybody.

Giveaway! ****CLOSED***** winner is twirllygirl! Who has responded and requested the Nook Version of this book! Congratulations :)

One of the authors, Rita Webb is offering one of my blog readers a ecopy of this book, either Nook or Kindle versions. If you want to be entered to win, just leave a comment with a way I can reach you.
1. an email address
2. your twitter name
I will be contacting the winner this Friday January 28th and will pass on the winners email address to the author.
Which paranormal/fantasy story peaked your interest the most and why?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Book Haul

Books Mentioned In Video
The Girl In The Garden by Kamala Nair
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
The Callgrapher's Daughter by Eugenia Kim
Cloudburst by VC Andrews
Our Lady of Darkness by Friz Lieber
Unleashed by Nancy Holder and Debbie Viguie
Folly by Marthe Jocelyn
The Woman in Black by Susan Hill
A Million Suns by Beth Revis
The Ivy by Lauren Kunze with Rina Onur
Bloodrose by Andrea Cremer
Blood & Flowers by Penny Blubaugh
Mercy by Rebecca Lim
Half Life by Shelley Jackson

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Thorn and The Blossom by Theodora Goss

One enchanting romance. Two lovers keeping secrets. And a uniquely crafted book that binds their stories forever.

When Evelyn Morgan walked into the village bookstore, she didn’t know she would meet the love of her life. When Brendan Thorne handed her a medieval romance, he didn’t know it would change the course of his future. It was almost as if they were the cursed lovers in the old book itself . . .

The Thorn and the Blossom is a remarkable literary artifact: You can open the book in either direction to decide whether you’ll first read Brendan’s, or Evelyn’s account of the mysterious love affair. Choose a side, read it like a regular novel—and when you get to the end, you’ll find yourself at a whole new beginning.

If you don't know yet this book's presentation is different than others, it's put together in an accordion style. There is no spine and the pages are glued together in the format of an accordion. Quirk books as been coming out with several new interesting novels and presentations to their stories in an all new way. (They published Pride and Prejudice and Zombies as well as Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, if you are familiar with those.)

So you can approach this book by opening it from either side. From one side you get Evelyn's story and the other Brendan's. I chose to begin with Brendan's story. It's a story about reincarnation, a love between two souls that began in the Middle Ages through today.
The only thing that I was unhappy with with how shortened and chopped I felt the stories where. In one paragraph jumping from the death of a father, to attending school to getting married and having the wife hurt in an accident. I felt that one paragraph to tell this huge lump section of his life was a little too short, but the book was really meant to just focus on the romance/love story between Brandon and Evelyn.
It was a very fast read total of 80 pages and the set up is very unique and interesting although I found it hard to hold the book normally as it had no spine.
I enjoyed Brendan's story more than Evelyns but they do tie in nicely together.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Settling by Shelley Workinger (Solid Book 2)

At the beginning of the summer, Clio Kaid was one of a hundred teens brought to a secret Army installation. But it was no ordinary camp and they weren’t ordinary kids…

Picking up where “Solid” left off, Clio and her friends realize that they aren’t ready to go home; they’re determined to stay on campus and continue their journey of self- discovery. But someone doesn’t feel the same way and will do anything to drive them away – even kill.

Friendships will be tested, abilities will evolve, and more secrets will come out as the teens race to stop the killer before he sets his sights on one of them…

Goodreads Page

I enjoyed this second novel as much as the first! It is a high energy and fast paced story that has great characters and super hero action scenes.
As Caliope and her friends are still continuing their training and schooling, murders have begun to happen. They are trying to continue on with learning more about what is going on, building up their powers all while trying to figure out who is committing the murders. And, last but not least, stay alive.
My favorite part of these stories so far have been the characters. I enjoy the dialogue and banter between them. Very humorous lines amidst the amazing super hero powers and the crazy killer.
If I were able to choose my super-hero power it would also be to turn invisible.

What would your super-human power be? would you rather be be able to fly or become invisible..or run fast?

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Magic of Finkleton

Most folks say, "Mother Nature controls the rain." However this is not the case in the village of Finkleton.

In the perfect little village of Finkleton, the weather is always perfect. Every farm grows the best, biggest, healthiest crops in the entire world, and everyone is happy.

Soon after the Finkles inherit their Uncle Harry's shop and move to Finkleton, they discover magical secrets hidden in his shop. One clue at a time, Jack, Lizzy and Robert learn the town's amazing secret. No, Mother Nature is not in charge in Finkleton!

Ever since Uncle Harry's death, the weather has not been cooperating. Farms are starting to fail. Will the Finkle children be able to solve all the magical mysteries before the village is destroyed?

Come along to Finkleton. A very special, magical adventure is about to begin!

Age Range 9-12
Childrens / Middle Grade Fiction

Very cute short story that I think children will enjoy. The beginning of the story is full of mystery and intrigue, you are not sure what is going on and as the children begin to discover new mysteries inside their new store and house in Finkleton, the interesting part for me was the fact that each children figure out a piece of the puzzle and by talking with each other start piecing them together.
Finkleton is a magical place with interesting characters, I hope we meet more of them as the stories continue. The only reason I did not end up giving it 5 stars is the pace of the story slows in the middle, I wanted to see them leave the house/store and actually get a look at Finkleton and the farmlands and lastly I wanted to get to know their parents better, they seemed to disappear through the majority of the story and I missed them.

The magic continues for the Finkle children in this exciting new adventure. Two years after moving to Finkleton, Jack, Lizzy and Robert realize the perfect weather wasn’t the only secret waiting to be discovered in Uncle Harry’s shop.

The devious Mr. Lowsley is growing more impatient and will stop at nothing to get what he wants!

Once again Jack, Lizzy and Robert must learn to work together to protect the magical secrets of the tiny village they now call home.

Come along to Finkleton. A new, magical adventure is about to begin!

Age Range 9-12
Childrens / Middle Grade Fiction

We return to Finkleton village where the kids are still running most of the duties around the shop. This time there is a hidden door in the floor where more magical things are found for the kids to discover. One of the new discoveries involves a clock, one that can bring about time-travel. More danger and magic ensues.

These stories are cute and fast paced reads, they are really short and would be perfect for story-time, offers up an opportunity for children to build upon their imaginations and what it would be like to live in a magical village, especially in this store/house.

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E Pearson

Who is Jenna Fox? Seventeen-year-old Jenna has been told that is her name. She has just awoken from a coma, they tell her, and she is still recovering from a terrible accident in which she was involved a year ago. But what happened before that? Jenna doesn't remember her life. Or does she? And are the memories really hers?

This fascinating novel represents a stunning new direction for acclaimed author Mary Pearson. Set in a near future America, it takes readers on an unforgettable journey through questions of bio-medical ethics and the nature of humanity. Mary Pearson's vividly drawn characters and masterful writing soar to a new level of sophistication.

This book was one of those that I talked about with my friends as I read it. I found that several of them did not feel the same way as I did and I couldn't understand why, even after explanation that they did not love this book. Some just commented that it didn't have the "feel" or plot they expected from it. Well this was one of those instances that I picked up the book clearly on the cover (the 2nd one with the puzzle pieces) I didn't know a thing about it, just loved the cover.

I don't regret it one bit, and don't quite understand where my friends are coming from. I enjoyed the story. There was very little that I didn't like about the book.
I liked the mix of characters. Jenna's grandmother being my favorite. She just seemed really logical and down to Earth. I liked hearing about Jenna and her grandmother's relationship before the accident, the connection that used to be there before the accident, and the transformation it had made after. I also loved how the grandmother (Lily) would be so supportive of her daughter (Claire) Jenna's mother in the whole thing, even though the situation was not acceptable, she was there to support her daughter in the decisions being made. That is a good mother.
There is a certain level of mystery and danger to their story. They are taking baby-steps regarding Jenna's "recovery", she has to be able to live her life, get out of the house and go back to school. But the revelations that come about because of her need to live a life is what this is all about really.
A very good story of what could become of our future, medical advances and if we are able to achieve such great things, what is the point.
Although there is not a huge religious concept brought into the book, it is mentioned, but not overwhelming and definitely something that would need to be approached if our future is headed this way.
I enjoyed the characters in this book, they each represented a part of humanity, showing the reader different human reactions to school, technology, religion, loss/death. All kinds of emotional ranges from fear, anger, love, happiness, friendship. A very wide range of things being represented in different characters and how they all interacted with Jenna, as she is now and her memories of before the accident. A huge eye opening experience for me into the range of human emotions regarding advances not only in technology but also medicine and the affects that our future may have on the environment around us (only lightly touched on in this particular story, but still there)
This would be a really good book for teachers to use as a tool in classrooms for the above reasons.

I decided to rate it 4 out of 5 stars. It was so close to getting the 5 but something about the progression of Jenna's emotions didn't flow well with me.

Meme: Weekly Read 1-15

Something new I started for the new year in which I talk about books I read this week and what I plan on reading next week. Feel free to comment, link up your posts or videos of your current reads or TBR stacks! :)

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award!

RJ Does Books nominated me for The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award! Thank you RJ!!!

Here are The Rules:

Thank and link to the person who nominated you.
Share 7 random facts about yourself.
Pass the Award on to 10 deserving blog buddies.
Contact those buddies and let them know.

7 Random Facts about Me:

I collect things/borderline HOARDER! I collect cd's dvd's audiobooks, physical books, t-shirts, pens, ipods, ereaders, notepads.

I like to dye my hair
My hair has ranged from platinum blonde to orange, red, purple, pink, brown, black, stripes.

I can type super fast
85 wpm For Fun, go test yourself HERE

If I make a decision (like getting a hair cut) I need to do it RIGHT NOW. It takes me forever to make up my mind, but once it's made up it has to happen immediately or I freak out.

My favorite food is pizza...with ranch
I do not dip all of my pizza in ranch (like pizzas with garlic sauce) but all red sauced pizza is not complete without a side of ranch.

When I as a child I used to bring home all the neighborhood animals I found outside and put them in my backyard.

I have been an avid reader ever since I learned how to read, my choice of books (genre's) differ depending on my mood, but I cannot remember a time in my whole life that I was not reading a book. Ever. The biggest book I have ever read is The Count of Monte Cristo, It took me 3 months and was over 1100 pages long. Also one of my favorite books.

thank you RJ! this was fun, hope you got to learn a little something about me (Krista) I have decided to tag/nominate the following people.
Laura @ the reading nook
Karen @ ocdaboutbooks
Lindsay @ Lindsay Mead aka The Book Vlogger
Kelly @ Stratchic (youtube vlogger)
Renee @ Nehomas2
Teresa @ Teresa's reading corner
Lea @ Beautiful Reader (youtube vlogger)
Debra @ Debra's book Cafe
Brittany and Farrah @ Ieatwords
Stacey and Jessica @Chapter Chicks

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Exiled (The Protector #1) By M.R. Merrick

Chase Williams is a demon hunter in the Circle, or at least he was supposed to be. On his fifteenth birthday, Chase stepped up to the altar to claim his elemental power, but it never came. Elemental magic is passed down to a hunter through the bloodline, but on Chase's birthday, the bloodline stopped.

Exiled without the Circle's protection, Chase has spent two years trying to survive a world riddled with half-demons and magic. When he has a run in with a frightened and seemingly innocent demon, he learns the Circle's agenda has changed: the Circle plans to unlock a portal and unleash pure-blood demons into the world. Vowing to stop them, and knowing he can't do it alone, Chase forms a reluctant alliance with Rayna — a sexy witch with an attitude and a secret.

In their attempt to stop them, Chase and Rayna find themselves in the middle of the Circle's plan, leaving one of them to decide what their friendship is worth, and the other's life depending on it

In all honesty here, I have read a lot of books this year with Demons and recently have found them all kind of mixing together in my head and not remembering much about them only weeks after reading the book.
This book however completely stood out on it's own and incredibly entertaining and memorable.
I had been hearing some good things about the book in some blogs, so I had it on my radar, it's a great price right now and jumped at the opportunity to review it. Needless to say when I started reading it I was unsure how it was going to turn out for me, but about halfway through is when I really knew it was going to get the 5 star rating and worth every penny in my opinion.
What I did like immediately from page one was that it's told from a male perspective. I am starting to appreciate this more and more as it is not so common in Young Adult books out there (I read mostly young adult books for review) I find a the male's perspective on things refreshing and different especially when it is written so well.
This book had great characters, they interacted well with each other, I also like a story with a great evil villain that really adds content that keeps me entertained and guessing at what will happen next. Also the mixture of characters and the world building and traveling was a unique mixture and really fit the story.
I don't know why I find it important to emphasize that the 2nd half of the book rocked! Once the characters were established and we get a feel for everything, it takes off into a crazy adventure and incredible fighting scenes. Rounded off nicely with a epilogue that is very fitting and not a cliffhanger! :)
Goodreads Page

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

This year I will be participating in a challenge hosted by Lindsay Mead (aka The Book Vlogger) It is called the "Kill The TBR Challenge" In which I will be reading 12 books that I currently own that have been sitting on my bookshelves. I am starting off with a low number because I like to always feel like I accomplished my challenges but fully intend on adding more once I complete the first step.
I will also be adding my own incentive to the challenge by putting $1 in a jar every time I read one of those books off my shelf. I am hoping that once the year gets rolling I will be able to look at that jar and have a visual of what I have actually accomplished so far, and by the end of the year am looking forward to a spending spree of all new books!
So if you have books sitting on your selves I encourage you to sign up as well, committing to a challenge is always the best way to get you motivated to do something.
As I read by mood and really am not sure what books I will be reading over the year I am not choosing them at this moment, but here is a list of books that have been really nagging me to pick them up asap:
The Adoration of Jenna Fox (currently reading)
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (whole series)
The Lord of the Rings Series (including the Hobbit)
Song of Fire and Ice series (aka The Game of Thrones series)
Vampire Academy Series
Blue Bloods Series

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Meme: Weekly Read 1-8

A new meme I decided to do this new year in which I show and talk about books that I read this past week and what I plan on reading next week. Please feel free to comment, post your reads or TBR stacks and links :)

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Aloisius (The Aloisius Series) by Jonathon Charlap

A series from author Jonathon Charlap that asks the questions... What makes us human... How far will we go for the ones we love... Are we willing to die to protect them? Tori is a Watcher. A young genetically engineered soldier who is at the pinnacle of her life. But when she fails to kill Spencer Estornel, a fugitive from The Assimilated Nations, she must confront a terrible truth that her agency never viewed her as anything more than expendable. Now, those who created her will do anything to kill her. And the closer she grows with her new lover Spencer, the more she realizes that protecting him may be easier than losing him
Highly entertaining, fast pace story with great characters and world building.

You know your going to enjoy reading a book when it grabs you within the first couple of pages. Intrigue and mystery will keep you reading to find out what is going on. Then you get a mixture of futuristic technology and action packed chapters that I dare you to put it down.
I always love a fast paced novel. Something that will keep me entertained and interested in the characters, and this one had that.
I loved these characters, Tori is an amazing heroine that kicks ass! Fantastic storyline and dialogue between characters, both evil and good.
I loved the idea of the world and the Agency, how it's set up, who works there and some of the types of jobs the agents take on as well as what it is they do, and how they do it.
There is a good human interest story going on with all the action. By the time the story was over, I actually kept trying to flip the page looking for more..I didn't quite expect it to and it left me wanting to know more.

Goodreads Page
Amazon Physical Copy
Kindle Copy

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Veil by Cory Putman Oakes

Seventeen-year-old Addison Russell is in for a shock when she discovers that she can see the invisible world of the Annorasi. Suddenly, nothing is as it appears to be -- the house she lives in, the woman who raised her, even the most beautiful boy in town all turn out to be more than what they seem. And when this strange new world forces Addy to answer for a crime that was committed long ago, by parents she has never known, she has no choice but to trust Luc, the mysterious Annorasi who has been sent to protect her. Or so he says . .

Yay! This one caught me off guard, I knew that the blurb sounded fantastic, but I was so worried that it would be set up like so many other books I have been reading lately. What I ended up really enjoying about this world is the originality of it. The combination of the world being just beyond the site of humans, but right in front of us..if that makes any sense at all. The line between the Annorasi and the human is a thin veil, only those with the knowledge that it's there and the ability to see beyond the veil can see it. The people and creatures of the Annorasi world are walking around in our everyday world, we just can't see them. One day Addy kind of comes into her "powers" and is able to see beyond the veil. She very quickly discovers that her Gran and Luc, and even her cats are not who she thought they were.
What really makes a story for me, besides the world building is the characters. I found the characters highly likeable and interesting. Gran was my favorite character, she is quirky, strong and protective. Luc, I had my ups and downs with as the story progressed, but overall enjoyed the scenes in which he and Addy really get to learn about who she is and what she means to the Annorasi people. Addy also has some really great friends and supporting cast of characters.
The love interest Luc is introduced early in the story, and although Addy has a crush and refers to him as the hottest guy in school, there is not "insta-love" happening here. It's a slow and unraveling relationship between the two with a major focus more on Addy adapting to who she is.
The story has a great pace and will have you interested in what is happening from the very beginning.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Aria is a teenager in the enclosed city of Reverie. Like all Dwellers, she spends her time with friends in virtual environments, called Realms, accessed through an eyepiece called a Smarteye. Aria enjoys the Realms and the easy life in Reverie. When she is forced out of the pod for a crime she did not commit, she believes her death is imminent. The outside world is known as The Death Shop, with danger in every direction.

As an Outsider, Perry has always known hunger, vicious predators, and violent energy storms from the swirling electrified atmosphere called the Aether. A bit of an outcast even among his hunting tribe, Perry withstands these daily tests with his exceptional abilities, as he is gifted with powerful senses that enable him to scent danger, food and even human emotions.

They come together reluctantly, for Aria must depend on Perry, whom she considers a barbarian, to help her get back to Reverie, while Perry needs Aria to help unravel the mystery of his beloved nephew’s abduction by the Dwellers. Together they embark on a journey challenged as much by their prejudices as by encounters with cannibals and wolves. But to their surprise, Aria and Perry forge an unlikely love - one that will forever change the fate of all who live UNDER THE NEVER SKY

The first book in a captivating trilogy, Veronica Rossi’s enthralling debut sweeps you into an unforgettable adventure

The chapters are told from alternating perspectives between Aria and Perry. Aria comes from a very protected dome-like dwelling in which she knows very little of the outside world. The outside world is under a sky of Aether. It's described as the Van Gough painting Starry Night with electric and wind storms that cause a lot of damage and only the savages live outside the Pod's.
The alternating chapters get us to see each character from a different perspective. Seeing Aria through Perry's eyes or vice versa. It took me awhile to warm up to these characters and appreciate them for who they are to become. I really enjoyed later on in the story when Atria begins to train and we get to see a fighter in her. Perry, I am still trying to warm up to.
When Aria is banished from the Pod she has no choice but to keep moving and to focus on finding her mother who was away on business when Aria was banished. She finds Perry in her travels and he becomes not only a companion but a teacher, and eventually a love interest. They learn to get to know each other mainly through bickering, arguing during their travels.
My favorite part of the story was the world building and descriptions of the land scape and the places they traveled. I only wished to get to be apart of the Pod a little bit more before Atria was kicked out, I found the life inside the pod was just as interesting to get to know as the life outside it. But the majority of the book is told from the outside and we hear very little about life on the inside except through their dialogue exchanges. My favorite part and what was most noticeable to me was when Atria gets her first period (because it's not apart of the Pod life to get one) her reaction to it and Perry's was priceless. I have never seen this subject matter come up before in a non-contemporary book.
The story was very fast paced, flowed well, it was unique and interesting.
It took until the book was almost over for me to really like the characters but about 20% to the end I started to appreciate them more and became invested in their story.
It's been stuck in my mind since I finished reading it and thing it would make a fantastic movie. Especially the visuals you get with the Aether sky and the storms.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Pull by Chelsie Shakespeare

Evie Remington had always done what people expected of her. As a result, at twenty-six she finds herself the unhappy owner and manager of a Denver hotel. That is, until deep-rooted memories of a past life and the hidden knowledge of a promise she made in that other lifetime pulls her away from it all. Without knowing where it will lead, Evie sets out on a cross-country journey that will challenge what she believes about life, death, and love

When I was contacted by the author to review this book, I didn't understand why this novel was labeled as "Young Adult". The main character is twenty-six, although there was no overly mature content in the story, it does not deal with teen or even young adult issues in any way. It does however fit into the new publishing niche of "new adult" that is becoming more popular these days. After finishing the story I figured that maybe some of my blog readers would be interested in picking it up and decided to post about it.

The book is really kind of a sad story. It starts off with the death and deciding to get away from her current situation. There was a lot of flashbacks of her childhood and her loss. The relationships of her past and why she could not return to her life as she knew it. There is a very heavy weight of the despair that she feels to this book, saddness and loss and the unknown.

Later in the book it starts to take a turn with an idea of reincarnation. The idea that maybe it's like Deja Vu or always feeling that you can't quite remember things or her dreams coming true, only with the person that they are remembering now has a different face. It was interesting to find out how the story unravels, and what her dreams turned out representing.

Overall it did take me a little longer to get through this one, I am not much of a romance reader and the story had a little bit too much saddness in the opening of the book that I took it slow, but I do know there are some of you that like the stories that have interesting twist, some romance and overcoming a loss.


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