Thursday, December 31, 2015

I like a good challenge! (aka Hello 2016)

It's that time of year again where I have spent the last couple weeks making lists, checking out reading challenges and trying to figure out what I want to focus on in the next year. I expect a lot of changes in my schedule and life in general next year. But that is not stopping me from keeping my reading goals!

Here are a few of the challenges I found online that I want to participate in. Some of the book on the list overlap (so one book can count for more than one topic/checklist) My main challenge this year is that I want to pick up the books from the category from the books I already own.

1. I want to participate more on Youtube, book buddies, read-a-longs and marathons.
2. Popsugar's reading challenge list for 2016
          http://www.popsugar.com/love/Reading-Challenge-2016-39126431
3. Book Riot's Read Harder Challenge
          http://bookriot.com/2015/12/15/2016-book-riot-read-harder-challenge/
4. Continue with my ongoing challenges of reading the 1001 books to read in a lifetime, and some of the Rory Gilmore book list.
1001 Books  http://www.listology.com/ukaunz/list/1001-books-you-must-read-you-die
Rory Gilmore  http://www.listchallenges.com/rory-gilmore-reading-challenge

Yes I admit I always set my goals high. I find it easier to get through rough times in my life if I can have other things to focus on to get me through. So this year I read 77 or so books and next year I am aiming for 100.   I don't count books I read for my internship into my total count mostly because I cannot track those on Goodreads like I do the others.

I am very excited to tackle some of the classic big books. The Brothers Karamazov, Crime and Punishment and a re-read of The Count of Monte Cristo are also on my list for 2016!

 I know that everybody does not set challenges or goals for themselves, but I do hope that this next year brings you some great reads throughout the year.

You can follow me online or chat with me! Here are some links of where you can find me
http://www.tarasharp.com.au/
http://www.burnbright.com.au/
https://www.youtube.com/user/TheCubicleBlindness/videos?view_as=public
https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/4303947-krista-cubicleblindness-reviews
@cubicleblindnes

Krista

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

2015 Favorites/Most Memorable

Did you see THAT?!  .. That was 2015 flying by faster than a jet plane. I cannot believe it's over already. My year has been full of events, mostly bad but a couple of really good ones too. As you can tell my blog is ever changing and I am gearing up for the whole new year of BOOKS.

         May 2016 bring more good than bad and remember to always say I love you to friends and family.

                                  Some of my most memorable reads from the past year are....
                                         https://www.goodreads.com/user_challenges/2044043

                Moving forward !
Another year is just waking up and  I have a feeling that 2016 will be one to remember. Historically, internationally and personally. Humanity is wanting change, and what a good way to learn about others and explore who you are ....by READING!

Here are a few books that are on my TBR for early 2016
Thank you for taking the time to stop by the blog and Happy Reading! All my love to those that have supported me throughout the last year and all the friends I've met online that keep me coming back. I miss you. 
           And Remember, always end your conversations with I Love You, or take care. 

Krista aka Cubicle Blindness

Friday, December 25, 2015

Vixen by Jillian Larkin



             1922 Gloria, Lorraine and Clara. To bob or not to bob (hairstyle that is) What a refreshing take on older teens in the 1920s Chicago. Mobsters, prohibition, wealth and danger. What more do you need to know? You will love the characters, hate the characters and definitely feel for each of them.
             Gloria is feeling drowned in her arraigned marriage and socialite scene where you are not to be seen with a short haircut, drinking or going to speakeasy's. (in which we see her do all of the above).
             Lorraine is Gloria's best friend and very jealous of all that Gloria is, has and will become.
Clara is a once upon a time flapper running from a secret that sets a dangerous overtone to the novel.
              This novel tapped into most of my emotions, I fell in love with Marcus, I felt anger towards Lorraine, I pitied Gloria and wanted to protect Clara. They are all very well rounded characters and you will have no choice to love 'em or hate 'em. Jillian Larkin does a great job of pulling you into 1920's Chicago. It was a really good, entertaining, refreshing read. I was not disappointed.

Keep your eye out for it Mid-December 2010. There is also more to look forward to with Jillian's next novel Ingenue due out 2011. http://www.theflappersbooks.com/.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Unthinkable by Shirley Duke

Description from Goodreads.com: Omar Phillips is Bridgewater High's favorite local teen author. His Facebook fans can't wait for his next horror story. But lately Omar's imagination has turned against him. Horrifying visions of death and destruction come over him with wide-screen intensity. The only way to stop the visions is to write them down. Until they start coming true... Enter Sophie Minax, the mysterious Goth girl who's been following Omar at school. "I'm one of you," Sophie says. She tells Omar how to end the visionsbut the only thing worse than Sophie's cure may be what happens if he ignores it

When you cannot put a book down, you know you have something amazing. I enjoyed this book so much I was completely immersed into it and shut of the world. I just loved this story! A great creepy read for a night under the covers. Scary visions, Facebook stalkers, a missing girl and mysterious goth girl. I read a lot of young adult novels, and it is rare for me to find one that I get obsessed with. I like the books that are a little quirky and different, because for me that is entertainment. I am buying copies for my friends. Omar is a great main character and I wish I could know him for real

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

In the Arms of Stone Angels by Jordan Dane

In the Arms of Stone Angels
Description from Goodreads.com
Two years ago I did a terrible thing. I accused my best friend of being a killer after seeing him kneeling over a girl's body. That moment and that outcast boy still haunt me.

Now my mom is forcing me back to Oklahoma and I can't get White Bird out of my mind. But when I find out he's not in juvie—that he's in a mental hospital, locked in his tormented brain at the worst moment of his life—I can't turn my back on him again.
No one wants me to see him. My mom doesn't trust me. The town sheriff still thinks I was involved in the murder. And the other kids who knew the dead girl are after me.
I'm as trapped as White Bird. And when I touch him, I get sucked into his living hell, a vision quest of horrifying demons and illusions of that night. Everything about him scares me now, but I have to do something. This time I can't be a coward. This time I have to be his friend.
Even if I get lost, as well…



WoW, Amazing and I think I am in Love. I found this book addicting and wonderful. *sigh*
I almost didn't pick up this book, wasn't sure what I thought of the synopsis. But I am so grateful I did. I couldn't put it down, so many twists and interesting paranormal snippets. In the acknowledgments the author says it was meant as a "dark, edgy YA Novel" and I could not agree more. I loved the main character Brenna, she's a little on the weird, quirky side (she makes her own clothes and can see ghosts, visions etc). Whitebird is a very endearing boy you just want to hug him. They have a connection together than is more than any typical high school romance. The other high school students are really mean and bully Brenna and Whitebird beyond belief and I was amazed at the torture, but I felt it added so much to both of these characters personalities to hear what they endured. I really enjoyed the sections where the story jumped to another characters story. (I think it's called head-popping). I have to say In the Arms of Stone Angels is one of the best books I have picked up this year, completely unexpected and one of my new all-time favorite reads. There just isn't enough words to describe the enjoyment that came from this book,  amazing writing.



In the Arms of Stone Angels (Harlequin Teen)
http://www.jordandane.com/YA/books.php  Authors Web page that includes a wonderful trailer



Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

Clara's visions have began. They have been waiting for this day, for all Angels will discover their calling through their visions. But her calling takes her from her home in California and her whole family must move to Wyoming so she can fulfill her calling. Wyoming brings unexpected events, a love triangle and learning how to hone her skills on becoming a full-fledged Angel and perform to the best of her abilities.

My Opinion: Although there were some things that bothered me as I read. The parts I enjoyed outweighed the ones that distracted me. I cannot say that I am team Angel. This is the Third angel book I picked up in 2010 and have to say it was the most entertaining one. But there is still something about Angels on Earth that gives me some pause. I think that Angel stories are a new trend, but I think I enjoyed this one the best so far.

What I enjoyed: I enjoyed this story out of all the other Angel stories (yes I did enjoy it more than Hush Hush and Fallen) Because: we get some action with the main character in this one a lot more than the others. I am a sucker for some good action and adventure. We get to see Clara learn how to be an Angel, thus we see her learning to fly, how to maintain control of her "glowing" features and actually have a purpose that does not just involve love for the boy. (aka there is a higher/more important purpose) Oh ya, and her mom (who trains her) is my favorite character, and it's about time we had a strong mother figure in a book. It seems to be harder to find these days.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Dreams of the Dead by Thomas Randall


I loved this book!  
Summary:      Kara’s mother has just died and her father takes a post in Japan as an English teacher. She is fluent enough in Japanese, that the language is not much of a barrier, but the understandings of their local legends becomes one. Upon arriving to her new school Kara discovers a girl has been murdered, and nobody has been captured. She is referred to as “Bonsai‘- Loosely translated as being cut away and moved from her home, no roots to grow on.  And not making a lot of new friends, but there are some that find that she belongs and she begins to settle in. There are still some taunting and rudeness from the other kids, and then the bad dreams come. And she is not the only one experiencing them. Then students begin to die. Is there a killer loose at the Monju-no-chie School and will the nightmares stop?

My Opinion:    I thought every time I had to set it down “what is going to happen next?” I was very happy to find there were no slow parts in the story, it moves along at a great pace and plenty of scary happenings. The dream scenes will give you goose bumps and make your heart beat a little faster. Kara is a very intelligent character and does not back away from the other school mates when she needs to. She is curious which brings an element of detective work, and problem solving. The author spells out the Japanese words to better pronounce them. Very good supporting Characters, my favorite character is the main one, Kara she is so down to earth and easy to relate to,  but I also found Sakura very entertaining.  Most of the kids at the school are having the same bad dreams, and seeing  or hearing the cat, and then the Cherry Blossom smell appears…awesome scene set ups that get you to ask is it time for somebody else to die, are these the signs of death? This story will keep you on the edge of your seat.  I was ecstatic to see there will be two more books for THE WAKING series and will be on pins and needles until next June when the next one will be released!
To read more about this series, please visit the link below:                       
http://www.christophergolden.com/waking/awake.html

Sunday, December 20, 2015

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Mia and her family have a car accident on a snow day while going to visit some friends. She is the only survivor of the crash, and she's in bad shape, if she makes it. If I stay is her thoughts while in limbo of whether she should stay for her extended family and friends or if she should choose to die with her family.
         While this story was thought provoking and gives you as a reader insight on your daily life. It really concentrated on Mia's family's  love for music. Her father used to be in a band, She has just had an interview with Julliard and her boyfriend is in a up and coming rock band. And they all have music in common. I felt that this story kinda fell short in places, but can be a good read for those whom during this Holiday season would like a good reminder of how much your family and friends mean to you, and what you mean to them.
         This book is Young Adult that can be enjoyed by all ages.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Inside Out by Maria V Snyder

Ok in the blogosphere I met David and Kelly from http://yabookreads.com/  great people that love to read. One day David sent me a message that I should check out some books by Maria V Snyder. Stating that he thinks I would like. The Study Series Bundle and Inside Out (Harlequin Teen) I already had Poison Study on my wish list but have never actually purchased it yet, so I thanked him for the recommendation (as nice people should respectfully do) and kept it in my mind for a later date.. so I come across Inside Out available from my library, picked it up and was HOOKED! Thank you David =P so literally I was hooked from page one. I was soo entranced by this story that I literally did not want it to end. I devoured every page and found myself constantly thinking about this world every second that I was not reading it ( and would literally just stop reading so I could ponder what it was I was reading)\
Here is the blurb from http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7059135-inside-out
Keep Your Head Down.
Don't Get Noticed.
Or Else.
I'm Trella. I'm a scrub. A nobody. One of thousands who work the lower levels, keeping Inside clean for the Uppers. I've got one friend, do my job and try to avoid the Pop Cops. So what if I occasionally use the pipes to sneak around the Upper levels? The only neck at risk is my own…until I accidentally start a rebellion and become the go-to girl to lead a revolution.
Trella is a scrub, she works as a pipe cleaner in the lower levels. She was raised by a caretaker in the nursing center and trained to work from the moment she could walk and talk. She has only become friends with another care mate Cog. She keeps to herself, sleeps in the pipes and never pays attention to what's going on around her. Raised to believe that the Uppers are privileged and the lowers are workers being controlled by the pop cops.  But everything runs smoothly..until
           Needless to say this book was constant action, dystopian awesomeness and a complete mind trip. I loved every minute of it and it deserves much more praise. It ranked for me up with the Hunger Games and was listed as one of my favorite reads of 2010. Maria is coming out with the sequel Outside In on Feb 22 2011 and I am patiently awaiting my copy in the mail. If this type of book does not quite sound like something you would be into, please open your mind and check out some other books by this author! http://www.mariavsnyder.com/

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Breathe My Name by R.A. Nelson

Breathe My Name      Summary from Book: Since her adoption, Seventeen-year-old Frances has lived a quiet suburban life, but soon after she begins falling for the new boy at school, she receives a summons from her birth mother, who has just been released after serving eleven years for smothering Frances' younger sisters. "I need to see you. Please come right away. We have to finish."
Frances Robinson can try to forget her birth mother, she can even try to forgive her. But she can never escape their past.

By simple luck Frances was saved that day from being suffocated by her mother. She is now almost an adult, very insecure and soft-spoken. Her adoptive parents are awesome and her new boyfriend is quirky.It's obvious she's attracted to him for his ability to connect with people. She soon finds out that his brother is autistic and his home-life requires this special attention to people others just don't understand. So this makes him kind of a weirdo to others in the school. But Frances feels an instant connection. She seems to only have one best friend who is very outgoing and encourages Frances to explore life more.

I really enjoyed this story. Enough intrigue and development it kept the story rolling. Anticipation building throughout the book as she gets closer to finding out all the answers about her past, and what it really is her mother is trying to finish. Developing the story into Frances' nervous behavior, her unwilling to trust most people and slowly learning the answers to her past and how they can help her form a better future.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Across the Universe by Beth Revis

 
Description from Goodreads.com: A love out of time. A spaceship built of secrets and murder.

Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.
Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone-one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship-tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn't do something soon, her parents will be next. Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed's hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there's only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.
I have been pushing this book for a week now, several posts that leave you wondering "well all these posts are great, but what did she actually think of the book."  Or maybe you haven't thought that but. I have been pimping this book because 1- It's awesome 2- I recommend it 3-I got delayed on reading it and just finished it! I knew this book was going to be awesome the moment I read about it.
    1- The reverseable cover. 1 side is the spaceship diagram and side 2 is the people about to kiss
    2- The chapters are written the same way 1-told from Amy's point of view 2- From Elder's
   There is just enough happening in each chapter to keep the pace of the novel moving along. The whole concept of the situation Amy is thrown into is awesome. There was some tremendous thought put into the world inside the ship. 1- I love the idea that all the people on the ship are of the same race to solve difference issues (fighting, wars, jealousy). It was a very interesting concept and issues of how it worked and didn't work are awesomely thrown into the story. 2- The idea of the people in the ship really have no knowledge of what the past or future will bring, their lives are focused on the here and now and uniqueness is frowned upon and your put in the hospital away from society.
    Amy's perserverance to figure out why she was almost killed and Elder's confused but willing attitude to help her is cute. I adored the way that Elder was completely awed by Amy and what she represented, (compared to the other people on the ship who felt she was a danger) She throws him off-balance and forces him to take some of the command that he was born to do.
                       I am going to stop there because I don't want to ruin any of the story for you.
So Since the 11th I have been posting video's frequently and I will link those again here now if you are :

interested in checking out the book trailer:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmVvuxpEubE
Author's Video talking about the book: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3312f9wW8M
Mark to-read on Goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/8235178-across-the-universe
Accross the Universe Book's Website http://www.acrosstheuniversebook.com/
and of course to purchase the book: Amazon Across the Universe and direct from the publisher (Penguin) http://us.penguingroup.com/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,9781595143976,00.html?Across_the_Universe_Beth_Revis

Friday, December 11, 2015

Witch Child by Celia Rees

http://www.witchchild.com/   Descriptionhttp://www.goodreads.com/book/show/803120.Witch_Child
Mary's grandmother is executed for witchcraft, and Mary is forced to leave her home to avoid the same fate. At first she flees to the English countryside, but when the atmosphere of superstition and suspicion becomes all consuming she leaves on a boat for America in the hope that she can start over and forget her past. But during the journey, she realizes that the past is not so easy to escape.

After finally reaching America they land in Salem. The people they expected to already have settled the land are missing and a lot of decisions have to be made.This story is based off a journal told from Mary's point of view. The thoughts of witchcraft have travelled with them from England, and spoken of several times in the boat voyage over and of course continue in Salem. Her story/diary in the first half of the book concentrates more on the traveling and the every day life. Indians are introduced and are very helpful to the pioneers with help supplying them food and finding other white people settled "nearby." Though witchcraft and Indians are introduced this story is 80% the daily life of the early enlish settlers in America.
     As the story goes on you see more anxiety, sickness and more controversy happening in the towns. The story of course is told in a calm tone  I think it was more of a Middle Grade read. Overall I think the story was told very well and was interesting and written well.
    Celia Rees has several other novels out City of Shadows (Celia Rees Supernatural Trilogy) Pirates!Sorceress (Witch Child) Witch Childand The Fool's Girl being her newest. If you are interested in her website http://www.celiarees.com/

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Who would have thought that Love can conquer the world? In this newest book by Lauren Oliver we see a town in which every person gets a procedure done at the age of 18 to remove the need for love. Love is considered a sickness that brings with it desire and pain. Deliria Nervosa is a disease that only makes the mind sick and found unnecessary and detrimental. Scientists have found a cure and the laws passed that all people must have the procedure, the dystopian town follows the book of SHHH to the T. "It's been sixty-four years since the president and the Consortium identified love as a disease and forty-three since the scientist perfected the cure"
       "The most dangerous sicknesses are those that make us believe we are well"  You don't get a choice if you want the procedure or not, you get limited choices of all the decisions you make, and your every move is watched over by the regime. Lena Holloway's mother did not take to the procedure and was taken away. Lena is just weeks from her procedure and has never considered anything different that the ways of her normal everyday life, Until..Alex appears.
        Delirium by Lauren Oliver is a Romeo and Juliet story that is not disappointing. It will keep you engaged and thinking about your life in a whole new way. Sure Love can be a sickness, but without it can we really call ourselves human?
        I am not a fan of romance books, but this book about what love is, left me wanting more.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Here Lies Bridget by Paige Harbison

Description from Goodreads.com
Heroine, Bridget Duke, rules her high school, but when she crashes her car and ends up in limbo, she must confront the people she has wronged, all of whom want her to go to hell. The outcome of these meetings will decide her final destination.
I was on kind of a kick lately reading similar stories to compare. If I Stay by Gayle Foreman, Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver and Here Lies Bridget by Paige Harbison. I am not here to compare these stories today. I did find similiarities in the main characters however between Before I fall and Here Lies Bridget. Bridget, lets face it was a mean girl! As you read you almost want to say that she deserves what she gets, but really nobody deserves to die, no matter what. Of course this book takes on a different look at bullying in schools that really needs to be acknowledged more. In this story we see Bridget going into the minds of her fellow students and seeing herself from their point of views. It was a great read and books like this should be considered required reading for any school-aged child, honestly.

Stolen by Lucy Christopher


Sixteen year old Gemma is kidnapped from Bangkok airport and taken to the Australian Outback. This wild and desolate landscape becomes almost a character in the book, so vividly is it described. Ty, her captor, is no stereotype. He is young, fit and completely gorgeous. This new life in the wilderness has been years in the planning. He loves only her, wants only her. Under the hot glare of the Australian sun, cut off from the world outside, can the force of his love make Gemma love him back? The story takes the form of a letter, written by Gemma to Ty, reflecting on those strange and disturbing months in the outback. Months when the lines between love and obsession, and love and dependency, blur until they don't exist - almost
Description and photo from Goodreads.com

An interesting take on Stockholm Syndrome. I say interesting because of the way it made me feel while I was reading the book. I read this during a stressful time in my life. As Gemma is taken from the Bangkok airport by a really cute and seemingly nice guy who didn't abuse her, rape her or even talk rudely to her. Besides the fact that he chose to kidnap her, this guy is somebody I could fall for in a second. I kept thinking during this stressful time in my life how nice it would be to be taken away from my life and taken care of far away from society with a seemingly very nice person.
Well that is why you can learn to identify with the situation, and how Stockholm Syndrome can arise. Of course I am not saying that in any form that this situation is like any other real life kidnapping situation, but it was a nice read and written beautifully. I did keep wondering throughout the story when something was going to happen. I kept thinking something huge would happen to cause him to act out and hurt her, but he was always very kind and treated her like she was the world to him.
There are some creepier parts when he talks about all the planning that went into the decision. And of course the outback in Australia where it's just hot desert, with very little entertainment and no people...oh and lots of bugs, snakes and insects.
It's a beautifully written story that portrays this idea brilliantly.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson

The Girl of Fire and Thorns Description and picture from Goodreads.com
Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness.
Elisa is the chosen one.
But she is also the younger of two princesses, the one who has never done anything remarkable. She can’t see how she ever will.
Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king—a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs the chosen one, not a failure of a princess.
And he’s not the only one who needs her. Savage enemies seething with dark magic are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people’s savior. And he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake.
Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young.
Most of the chosen do


Elisa is an interesting main character. She is described as being overweight and being the younger princess, as more of an outcast. She exhibits very kind behavior and in times of upset she is level headed and decisive. As the story continues we find out that her marriage is to be held a secret until the correct time. Soon she finds herself traveling around the kingdom. She meets several different types of people during her travels and we see different sides of her.
Some of the time the fact that her being overweight is described as holding the group back, as they are traveling on foot. But when she has moments of conflict she is very level-headed and you can see she has what it takes to become a queen.
When I initially picked up the book I was expecting a lot more magic to take place. I think I got my hopes up for the majority of the book to be magic filled. While there is magic in the book it takes on more of a religious aspect of prophecy and being the chosen one. (Than potion making, weather changing, explosion kind of magic. )  I am still torn about how I feel about most of the characters,like her husband, the new love interest and others she travels with. As of right now I think I liked her sister the best.
With all the war, and the talk of being a chosen one it weighed down the story for me a bit. But it is very well written and will definately take you on an adventure. As it's not a historical novel, but does take place in fantasy world of Kings, Queens and War. I think readers that enjoy historicals will also like this one as well.



I think you may like:
Legacy by Cayla Kluver
Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly

White Cat by Holly Black

White Cat (Curse Workers)White Cat (Curse Workers, #1)Description from Goodreads.com
Cassel comes from a family of curse workers — people who have the power to change your emotions, your memories, your luck, by the slightest touch of their hands. And since curse work is illegal, they're all mobsters, or con artists. Except for Cassel. He hasn't got the magic touch, so he's an outsider, the straight kid in a crooked family. You just have to ignore one small detail — he killed his best friend, Lila, three years ago.

Ever since, Cassel has carefully built up a façade of normalcy, blending into the crowd. But his façade starts crumbling when he starts sleepwalking, propelled into the night by terrifying dreams about a white cat that wants to tell him something. He's noticing other disturbing things, too, including the strange behavior of his two brothers. They are keeping secrets from him, caught up in a mysterious plot. As Cassel begins to suspect he's part of a huge con game, he also wonders what really happened to Lila. Could she still be alive? To find that out, Cassel will have to out-con the conmen.
Holly Black has created a gripping tale of mobsters and dark magic where a single touch can bring love — or death — and your dreams might be more real than your memories.

Not sure what to say about this one that hasn't already been noted. But yes, very entertaining, mystery filled and worth your time. I really enjoyed every minute of it, I read it in one day and can't wait to see where this story goes. The ending will really get you thinking, and wanting more. I got this book as a recommendation from Holly Black fanatics http://yabookreads.com/blog/2010/11/23/interview-with-holly-black-part-1/#more-1076 and you can check out their awesome website and interviews with this author.
White Cat (Curse Workers)    Red Glove (Curse Workers, Book 2)




Monday, December 7, 2015

Glimpse by Carol Lynch Williams

Glimpse
Description from Goodreads.com
Twelve year old girl Hope's life is turned upside down when her older sister Lizzie becomes an elective mute and is institutionalized after trying to kill herself. Ever since their dad died Hope and Lizzie have relied on each other from a young age. Their mother is a reluctant and unreliable parent at best, who turns tricks to support the family. Throughout the course of this lyrical and heartbreaking narrative readers and Hope discover that the mother is prostituting Lizzie and it’s up to Hope to bring the truth to light to save her sister.

With raw and haunting writing reminiscent of Ellen Hopkins and Elizabeth Scott, Carol Lynch Williams is a promising new YA voice.
In one moment

it is over.
In one moment
it is gone.
The morning grows
thin, grey
and our lives-
how they were-
have vanished.
Our lives have
changed
when I walk in
on Lizzie
my sister
holding a shotgun.
A sad story about 2 sisters and their mother. Their father has died in a motorcycle accident years ago. This is the story of the girls and their mother still trying to cope with the loss years afterwards.
I did find this story interesting, but having it in verse form left me really wanting more. I wanted more descriptions and details. I wish I could have seen inside the mother's head and Lizzie's head. Although the story was interesting, I just wanted more, a fuller story with more details and descriptions and words.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Instrinsical by Lani Woodland

IntrinsicalDescription from Goodreads.com
Sixteen-year-old Yara Silva has always known that ghosts walk alongside the living. Her grandma, like the other females in her family, is a Waker, someone who can see and communicate with ghosts. Yara grew up watching her grandmother taunted and scorned for this unusual ability and doesn't want that to be her future. She has been dreading the day when she too would see ghosts, and is relieved that the usually dominant Waker gene seems to have skipped her, letting her live a normal teenage life. However, all that changes for Yara on her first day at her elite boarding school when she discovers the gene was only lying dormant. She witnesses a dark mist attack Brent, a handsome fellow student, and rushes to his rescue. Her act of heroism draws the mist's attention, and the dark spirit begins stalking her. Yara finds herself entrenched in a sixty-year-old curse that haunts the school, threatening not only her life, but the lives of her closest friends as well. Yara soon realizes that the past she was trying to put behind her isn't going to go quietly.
 
This was the most unique ghost story I have ever read. It really took some unexpected twists that kept me very intrigued to see what happened next. I am going to list what I loved about this book.
1. The characters: You really want to be in this circle of friends, they are very likeable.
2. The dialogue: Very funny banter between Yara and Cherie and Yara and Brent, You will giggle a lot.
3. The bad-guy: (*spoiler*)  is the guy you love to hate, he's got a great back-story and very selfish.
4. The love interest: Brent is very swoon-worthy, definitely a ladys man, he knows just the right things to say to make your heart beat faster. And teases Yara in the way you just rather hug him than hit him.
 
    I took my time reading this book because I really did not want it to end. I was really enjoying the fact that I could relax with a good book that I was enjoying. During my work day I found my thoughts drifting -dreaming about the book, what I had read the previous night and what that night had in store for me. I did caution myself after the first couple of chapters to not read it right before bed because it gave me the creepy-crawlies and I did not want to have any nightmares. (but it's really not that scary)
   An overall really entertaining read, I rate it 5 stars. I cannot wait to see what comes next in the series and where Yara's story will go next.
 
Author's info http://www.laniwoodland.com/ 
Instrisical website http://www.intrinsicalthebook.com/
Here is a preview to the Prologue and first couple chapters http://www.intrinsicalthebook.com/Intrinsical-sneak-peak.pdf  
Amazon link Intrinsical

Little Brother by Cory Doctorow

Little Brother
Little BrotherDescription from Goodreads.com
Marcus, a.k.a “w1n5t0n,” is only seventeen years old, but he figures he already knows how the system works–and how to work the system. Smart, fast, and wise to the ways of the networked world, he has no trouble outwitting his high school’s intrusive but clumsy surveillance systems.

But his whole world changes when he and his friends find themselves caught in the aftermath of a major terrorist attack on San Francisco. In the wrong place at the wrong time, Marcus and his crew are apprehended by the Department of Homeland Security and whisked away to a secret prison where they’re mercilessly interrogated for days.
When the DHS finally releases them, Marcus discovers that his city has become a police state where every citizen is treated like a potential terrorist. He knows that no one will believe his story, which leaves him only one option: to take down the DHS himself

The story of Marcus is awesome. I love the action and the drama and the real-world reactions he has for the events he's put through. I don't think I have ever read a book where the lead male character cried (more than once) But his circumstances are very serious and that is a human reaction.
What I had trouble getting through were the how-to break downs of how a computer/technology works. On the parts where he goes into details about how to find hidden cameras, how to write computer code or encrypted messages...I had some dozing off times and honestly felt like I was reading a computer manual. I also listened to the audiobook which I thought would be easier, but no those parts still sounded like I was back in the classroom being lectured.
But...these aspects will appeal to some of you, and the parts of the story that are not detail-filled really does keep you reading, you will want to know the outcome and the crazy events that happen.
     Paranoia expecially when it comes to terrorism and safety are real issues and this book does an awesome job of describing a very frightful situation and a glimpse into the fear factor.
Little Brother

Saturday, December 5, 2015

The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell

The VespertineThe Vespertine (Vespertine, #1)Description from Goodreads.com
It's the summer of 1889, and Amelia van den Broek is new to Baltimore and eager to take in all the pleasures the city has to offer. But her gaiety is interrupted by disturbing, dreamlike visions she has only at sunset—visions that offer glimpses of the future. Soon, friends and strangers alike call on Amelia to hear her prophecies. However, a forbidden romance with Nathaniel, an artist, threatens the new life Amelia is building in Baltimore. This enigmatic young man is keeping secrets of his own—still, Amelia finds herself irrepressibly drawn to him.
When one of her darkest visions comes to pass, Amelia’s world is thrown into chaos. And those around her begin to wonder if she’s not the seer of dark portents, but the cause.

This one intrigued me because the main character has something a little extra..she has visions, and that got my attention. It was full of the stage in a girls life where courting, dances, kisses are special and new. This story had some great twists, and turns, romance with some distressing vision dreams. I would recommend this to those that like historical fiction, with a twist.

 The Vespertine http://www.saundramitchell.com/  video from Youtube

Friday, December 4, 2015

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness




Description fron Goodreads:
Todd Hewitt is the last boy in Prentisstown.
But Prentisstown isn't like other towns. Everyone can hear everyone else's thoughts in a constant, overwhelming, never-ending Noise. There is no privacy. There are no secrets.
Or are there?
Just one month away from the birthday that will make him a man, Todd unexpectedly stumbles upon a spot of complete silence.
Which is impossible.
Prentisstown has been lying to him.
And now he's going to have to run...

One thing I can say about this book is that it has never-ending action and twists in every chapter. Every time you think that Todd has over come one danger, he's in even more and still running.
Patrick Ness' writing style takes a while to get used to. It is unlike anything I have ever read and not exactly sure what the style is called to refer to. But like Priscilla at TheReadables http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frR1vPwdraM  says "read the first couple of pages while at the story, and you'll get it" The link above she also gives a very loving very energetic review of this book.
My favorite aspect of the book was the characters. I found them all very awesome, even the mean guys. You wanted the battle to play out. I have to say my favorites were Manchee, his dog and Viola. This style of writing takes awhile to get into and I also had trouble focusing on the audiobook as well. I originally picked up the audiobook and found it jumping all over the place and hard to follow, so I picked up a copy of the book and figured out it's written that way. I attempted the audiobook again and found that I really did enjoy the story from both aspects, written and word.
So if you looking for a different kind of tale, with lots of action, loss and heartache told from a boys perspective check this one out!

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Lockdown: Escape from Furnace by Alexander Gordon Smith

Lockdown (Escape From Furnace, #1)      
Description from Goodreads.com
Furnace Penitentiary: the world’s most secure prison for young offenders, buried a mile beneath the earth’s surface. Convicted of a murder he didn’t commit, sentenced to life without parole, “new fish” Alex Sawyer knows he has two choices: find a way out, or resign himself to a death behind bars, in the darkness at the bottom of the world. Except in Furnace, death is the least of his worries. Soon Alex discovers that the prison is a place of pure evil, where inhuman creatures in gas masks stalk the corridors at night, where giants in black suits drag screaming inmates into the shadows, where deformed beasts can be heard howling from the blood-drenched tunnels below. And behind everything is the mysterious, all-powerful warden, a man as cruel and dangerous as the devil himself, whose unthinkable acts have consequences that stretch far beyond the walls of the prison.

Together with a bunch of inmates—some innocent kids who have been framed, others cold-blooded killers—Alex plans an escape. But as he starts to uncover the truth about Furnace’s deeper, darker purpose, Alex’s actions grow ever more dangerous, and he must risk everything to expose this nightmare that’s hidden from the eyes of the world
                 My thoughts are short because I believe the synopsis says it all!
This was a great, action filled, intense read. I of course listened to the audiobook as I often do and found that the Australian accent they used for the narrator added a lot to the story. This is a read that you do not want to read before bed. I loved it and would recommend it to anybody that has an interest in the above synopsis.
    It was really written well, very detailed, very enthralling and of course a cliff-hanger ending. The 2nd book in the series Solitary was released December 2010 and I will be picking that up in the near future.