Sunday, October 25, 2009

Cover Remakes:)

So, I'm sure all of you know that the wonderful Cindy from Princess Bookie had a HUGE read-a-thon string of contest blowout! Well, she added a really cool one late in the game. She gace you 9 covers (which you could win) and 4 bonus covers, and the objective is to re-create the covers. For more specific rules go HERE. Theres still time to enter!


My first cover is for Fallen by Lauren Kate:

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I'm currently working on a second entry, so I might have one up later:)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

In My Mailbox*: Oct. 18th (4)

Yes, that huge ginormous mailbox belongs to me. IMM books at YA All The Way are literrally In My Mailbox. (I don't recommend doing this is you don't like getting strange looks from your neighbors) :)

This week all my book income I won in contests. Wow. I must have been lucky recently. Maybe I should buy a lottery ticket. :) I am begging my mom to take me to either Borders or B&N, so next week there should be some books from there.



















(sorry the pictures are so small this week...)

Night Runner by Max Turner
For Zack Thomson, living in the Nicholls Ward isn't so bad. After his parents died, he developed strange and severe allergies, and the mental institution was the only place where he could be properly looked after. As strange as it was, it was home. He could watch as much television as he wanted; his best friend Charlie visited him often enough; and Nurse Ophelia--the prettiest no-nonsense nurse ever--sometimes took him bowling. Of course, that didn't mean he had it easy. His allergies restricted his diet to strawberry smoothies, and being the only kid at the hospital could get lonely. But it never once crossed Zack's mind to leave...until the night someone crashed through the front doors and told him to run. Now he's on a race for answers--about his past, his parents, and his strange sickness--even as every step takes him closer to the darkest of truths.
Won from everyone's favorite Book Blogger- Kristi of The Story Siren!

Maximum Ride: The Angels Experiment by James Patterson
Characters based on James Patterson's international bestsellers When the Wind Blows and The Lake House are re-invented in Maximum Ride and are launched on the ultimate action-packed adventure full of humor and suspense. Fourteen-year-old Maximum Ride, better known as Max, knows what it's like to soar above the world. She and all the members of the "Flock"--Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gasman and Angel--are just like ordinary kids--only they have wings and can fly. It may seem like a dream come true to some, but their lives can morph into a living nightmare at any time--like when Angel, the youngest member of the "Flock," is kidnapped and taken back to the "School" where she and the others were genetically engineered by sinister scientists. Her friends brave a journey to Death Valley, CA, to save Angel, but soon enough, they find themselves in yet another nightmare--this one involving fighting off the half-human, half-wolf "Erasers" in New York City. Whether in the treetops of Central Park or in the bowels of the Manhattan subway system, Max and her adopted family take the ride of their lives. Along the way Max discovers from her old friend and father-figure Jeb--now her betrayed and greatest enemy--that her purpose is save the world--but can she?

Maximum Ride: School's Out- Forever by James Patterson
Fourteen-year-old Maximum Ride and the other members of the "Flock"--Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gasman and Angel--are just like ordinary kids--only they have wings and can fly. It seems like a dream come true--except that they're being hunted by half-human, half-wolf "Erasers" who can fly, too. In Book 2 of the series, the Flock members are taken under the wing of an FBI agent and try to live "normal" lives by going to school, making friends--and continuing their relentless search for their parents. But the Erasers return, forcing the Flock to abandon their search and make their escape once again. The voice inside Max's head keeps telling her that it's up to her to save the world, but this is especially challenging to do when she is faced with her ultimate match: a newer and better version of herself, Maximum Ride II. Max's heart-stopping quest to investigate the mind-blowing mystery of her ultimate destiny continues in the scariest, strangest, and funniest James Patterson novel yet.

Maximum Ride: Saving The World and Other Extreme Sports by James Patterson
There's one last chance to save the world in MAXIMUM RIDE: SAVING THE WORLD AND OTHER EXTREME SPORTS, the closing chapter of James Patterson's thrilling trilogy. The time has arrived for Max and her winged "flock" to face their ultimate enemy and discover their original purpose: to defeat the takeover of "Re-evolution", a sinister experiment to re-engineer a select population into a scientifically superior master race...and to terminate the rest. Max, Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gasman, and Angel have always worked together to defeat the forces working against them--but can they save the world when they are torn apart, living in hiding and captivity, halfway across the globe from one another?

Maximum Ride: The Final Warning by James Patterson
Hold on tight for the wildest ride yet as Max and the flock take on global warming--Earth's biggest threat--in this #1 New York Times bestselling series.
Maximum Ride and the other members of the flock are just like ordinary kids--only they have wings and can fly. It seems like a dream come true...until they're hunted by the world's nastiest villains.
Max returns in a chilling adventure unlike any other. Safe havens for the six highly-sought-after winged kids have become increasingly hard to find, so the flock takes refuge in Antarctica with a team of environmentalists studying the effects of global warming. In this remote wilderness--whether pursued by corrupt governments, bioengineered bad-guys, or the harsh forces of nature--survival of the fittest takes a new twist!

Maximum Ride: Max by James Patterson
In the second book in The Protectors sequence of James Patterson's bestselling Maximum Ride series, someone-or something-is decimating ships and sea life off Hawaii's coast, and Max and her flock find themselves sucked into the Navy's top-secret investigation of the catastrophe. Their objective: Rescue Max's activist mom from a wicked subterranean enemy. The hitch: They must dive deep into dark waters, where gruesome evil dwells... and for high-flying Maximum Ride, could there be anything more terrifying than being trapped in the great abyss?



The Dangerous Days of Daniel X by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge
The greatest superpower of all isn't to be part spider, part man, or to cast magic spells -- the greatest power is the power to create. Daniel has that power. Daniel's secret abilities -- like being able to manipulate objects and animals with his mind or to recreate himself in any shape he chooses -- have helped him survive. But Daniel doesn't have a normal life. He is the protector of the earth, the Alien Hunter, with a mission beyond what anyone could imagine. From the day that his parents were brutally murdered in front of his very eyes, Daniel has used his unique gifts to hunt down their assassin. Finally, with the help of The List bequeathed to him in his parents' dying breath, he has located the killer. Now, on his own, he vows to take on his father's mission--and to have vengeance in the process.

Daniel X by James Patterson & Ned Rust
All's quiet in the small town of Holliswood, the television sets a-glow in every home. But not all is as perfect as it seems.
A terrifying outlaw has just arrived in town, with the goal of throwing it into chaos--and filming the pandemonium for the fellas back home.
Only one person can stop him and his thugs from destroying the city and everyone living there. Daniel X assembles an all-star team of his own creation, but not even he could imagine the enormity of this made-for-TV-villain's powers.




Maximum Ride: The Manga by James Patterson & NaRae Lee
Fourteen-year-old Maximum Ride, better known as Max, knows what it's like to soar above the world. She and all the members of the "flock"--Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gasman and Angel--are just like ordinary kids--only they have wings and can fly. It may seem like a dream come true to some, but their lives can morph into a living nightmare at any time...like when Angel, the youngest member of the flock, is kidnapped and taken back to the "School" where she and the others were experimented on by a crew of wack jobs. Her friends brave a journey to blazing hot Death Valley, CA, to save Angel, but soon enough, they find themselves in yet another nightmare--this one involving fighting off the half-human, half-wolf "Erasers" in New York City. Whether in the treetops of Central Park or in the bowels of the Manhattan subway system, Max and her adopted family take the ride of their lives. Along the way Max discovers from her old friend and father-figure Jeb--now her betrayed and greatest enemy--that her purpose is save the world--but can she?
All James Patterson Won from Promotion from Lisette of T.V. and Book Addict
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*IMM was started by Kristi over at The Story Siren, who was inspired by Alea from Pop Culture Junkie

Review: The Hunger Games

So like I said, the reviews from now on will most likely be longer, but I'm hoping with more quality and love infused. So it should all even out. :)


The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Published: By Scholastic Press- 10/1/08
Pages: 374
Series or Standalone?: First in a trilogy
Acquired From: Local Library


Summary(from Goodreads): Katniss is a 16-year-old girl living with her mother and younger sister in the poorest district of Panem, the remains of what used be the United States. Long ago the districts waged war on the Capitol and were defeated. As part of the surrender terms, each district agreed to send one boy and one girl to appear in an annual televised event called, "The Hunger Games." The terrain, rules, and level of audience participation may change but one thing is constant: kill or be killed. When Kat's sister is chosen by lottery, Kat steps up to go in her place.

My Review: The Hunger Games is definitely remembrable! It the kind of story that stays with you, and enthralls you into each word of the story.
When Hooked? Immediately. Maybe not from first paragraph of book, but somewhere throughout the first chapter of The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins hooked me in to the alternative world she portrayed.
Hookability: (10/10) As I said The Hunger Games hooks you in right off the back. As you continue reading, at no point do you become un-hooked. Once your hooked, your staying that way. Most likely you'll stay up all night, or drop everything else your doing to finish this book.
Writing: (10/10) Extemely engaging! Everything flows well, and sentence structure, and vocabulary are also very good. No choppy sentences and complex vocabulary= Yay! Writing. Also, very descriptive. Point of view is set in first person from the lovely Katniss.
Characters: (10/10) Katniss was superb. Very relatable, believable, and an awesome heroine. I admire Katniss deeply, and wish I possessed her courage and strength.
Peeta. I'll say it- I love Peeta. What you see is what you get, and what an awesome package you get with him. Team Peeta!
Gale. Okay we didnt see much of him in this book, but when we did my heart when out to him. So I am also Team Gale! (???)
Primrose. I love the connection between the two sisters, and I really like the loyalty and need-to-protect feelings Katniss has for Primrose.
Effie & Haymitch. Very amusing characters. They added to the enjoyment, and were fun to read about.
Plot: (10/10) The plot was so vast, and wild, and totally gets you sucked-in, that there is no way you can't enjoy it with every bone on your body.
Originality: (10/10) Very, very original! I don't know if its just my readign taste, but I had never read anything like this before. I am now totally going to look for more books like this though, because it rocked. (I'm not sure if I'll find something liek this, or atleast not as good, due to its extreme awesomeness. But I'll try!)
Romance: (8/10) This book isn't centered around a specific romance, but it does have a important background cause. The parts when the romance was there, it was so cute, and believable, and enjoyable. I have a feeling that Catching Fire leads us into more of the romance.
Ending: (10/10) Left you wanting more. Definite cliff-hanger. Luckily for me, I had the second book on hand, if not I would counting everyday until it came out. (I'll probably do this for the 3rd book)
Quotability: (9/10) Not the best book for quotability, but there are still some awesome quotes in there. Such as: "You don’t forget the face of the person who was your last hope." -Katniss, and "Destroying things is much easier than making them."-Katniss. (Along with others)
Recommendability: (10/10) It is a necessity that all read this book. Boys and girls alike, both will totally be captiveted by book. Especially for book lovers, meet your new love. Also, especially for non-readers, this could be the book that gets them to be a reader.
Any particular graphic/violent/inappropiate content? In my opinion, pretty clean. No swearing/drinking-drug references/sexual content. Sure, there is some violence, but all in all, its not graphic. Even squeamish shouldn't mind it. For conservatives: 12+ But for me, I say: 10+
Overall: (9.86/10) The Hunger Games is now one of my all time favorites. Every aspect of this book was flawless, and leaves you wanting more.


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(For those of you who like letter grades: 97/100 = A+)
Cover Comments: I don't know if I would pick this book up due specifically to it's cover, but it is very symbolic. (Mocking Jay) Bonus Points: (8.5/10)


Want More of The Hunger Games?: The second book in the trilogy, is called Catching Fire, and is out now. The third book is to be released sometime in 2010, and is currently un-titled. (If anyone has more info on 3rd book, let me know please.)
Want More Suzanne Collins? Suzanne Collins is the author of the Underland Chronicles, there is currently five book in the series released.

A Change In Plans

First off, I'm just going to get it out there, this is not another whiny, excuse-making post. Though I do talk about my lack of posting reviews, this has more of a "inspirational" feel.

Like I said, I'm not trying to make excuses, because honestly I find there really is no excuse. However, I have realized that sometime during me starting this blog, and started to attempt making reviews, I lost hold of the reason I started this blog. For the love of the books. No, I have not lost my love for books, I am still very much in love with them, even if I havent had as much time as I would have liked to devote to reading. The problem is I lost the fun of reviewing books. I always had so much fun spreading the word on good books, and annoying my friends and family with my constant updates, and everything else book.

But then, I started to feel so much pressure to deliver good reviews, and what not. When I take on a responsibilty, I take it seriously. I mean I have 4o Followers right now. And while that might not seem like a lot to some, thats more than I honestly ever expected I would get. I want to provide quality stuff, or as best as I can do, so atleast those 40 don't regret following.

So that is why I'm changing things up. I am altering my current style of reviewing books. While they might now be drastically longer, I know it helps capture the joy I have towards books. Plus, its set up in a prompt-like style. And for some reason, regardless of the size, I find it easier to write reviews using this new style now that I have laid out everything I want to talk about. I hope we will both be equally pleased with the new style. Also, I hope to never have to write another post like this, becasue it deeply saddens me to say some of those things.


One more thing. As much as I tried to be original as I possibly could, some other review styles on other blogs served as an inspiration. (I don't want to say "stole" because I'm sure that along with you, I hate things being too obviously a copy-cat of another blog)
So, I've decided to mention all the glorious blogs who's reviews possibly served as my inspiration, some more of than others... The Hiding Spot, Sarah's Random Musings, Book Reviews by Jess, Bloody Bookahalic, {Insert Book Title Here}, The Undercover Book Lover (Not Really), and I'm sure many others in part, I just didn't realize it.

So without futher adu, lets get on with the reviewing...

Friday, October 16, 2009

Noticing a Pattern*...

So, I was searching Goodreads for Tenners books on the Debut novels of 2010: A Book Odyssey list, because I had a sudden urge to. As I was looking at all the books and the ones I want to read (which is like all of them minus one or two), I noticed a pattern...

A lot of the books start out with Seventeen-year-old or Sixteen-year-old.
Don't believe me? Well, I've provided you with proof by summary of the book. (Summaries from Goodreads)




Bleeding Violet by Dia Reeves

Sixteen-year-old Hanna Järvinen is an unusual girl with a head full of hallucinations, a medicine cabinet full of pills, and a closet full of frilly, violet dresses. Everything a girl needs--except love. But that's what mothers are for, and Hanna is sure she can reconcile with hers, even though she was abandoned as a baby.

Unfortunately, her mother lives in Portero, an odd East Texas town with doors that lead out of the world, flesh-eating creatures, and parasitical spirits--not an ideal environment for winning a mother's love.

Hanna, however, refuses to let a few monsters interfere with her plans. If she has to flirt a little, lie a little, kill a little, or even bleed a little, she'll do it. Hanna can live with monsters and mayhem, but she would rather die than live without love.

(Bleeding Violet will be released January 5th, 2010)
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The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard

Seventeen-year-old Colt has been sneaking out at night to meet Julia, a girl from an upper-class neighborhood unlike his own. They’ve never told anyone else about their relationship: not their family or friends, and especially not Julia’s boyfriend.When Julia dies suddenly, Colt tries to cope with her death while pretending that he never even knew her. He discovers a journal she left behind. But he is not prepared for the truths he discovers about their intense relationship, nor to pay the price for the secrets he’s kept.

(The Secret Year will be released January 7th, 2010)


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The Mark by Jen Nadol



Sixteen-year old Cassie Renfield has seen the mark since forever: a glow around certain people as if a candle were held behind their back.

The one time she pointed it out taught her she shouldn't do it again, so Cassie has kept quiet, considering its rare appearances odd, but insignificant. Until she watches a man die. Mining her memories, Cassie realizes she can see a person's imminent death. Not how or where, only when: today.

Cassie searches her past, her philosophy lessons, even her new boyfriend for answers, always careful to keep her secret. How does the mark work? Why her? Most importantly, if you know today is someone's last, should you tell?

(The Mark will be released January 19, 2010)

------------------------------


Dirty Little Secrets by C.J. Omolulu

When 16 year-old Lucy comes home to find her mother dead under a stack of National Geographics in their garbage-filled home, she hesitates as she starts to dial 911. She hardly notices the mountains of stuff that fill every available space in the entire house or smells the decay anymore - but she knows the paramedics will, and so will the news cameras that will follow. They’ll notice the garbage and the smell and wonder how anyone ever lived like this. Only freaks live like this.

As she stares at the cell phone, Lucy can already hear the echoes of “Garbage Girl” and picture the look of disgust on everyone’s faces. With a normal life finally within reach, Lucy has to decide how far she’ll go to keep the family secrets safe.

(Dirty Little Secrets will be released April 1, 2010)


Okay, for this one technically the second word is the age, but still....
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The Rise of Renegade X by Chelsea Campbell

Sixteen-year-old Damien Locke has a plan: major in messing with people at the local supervillain university and become a professional evil genius, just like his supervillain mom. But when he discovers the shameful secret she's been hiding all these years, that the one night stand that spawned him was actually with a superhero, everything gets messed up. His father's too moral for his own good, so when he finds out Damien exists, he actually wants him to come live with him and his goody-goody superhero family. Damien gets shipped off to stay with them in their suburban hellhole, and he only has six weeks to prove he's not a hero in any way, or else he's stuck living with them for the rest of his life, or until he turns eighteen, whichever comes first.

To get out of this mess, Damien has to survive his dad's “flying lessons” that involve throwing him off the tallest building in the city—despite his nearly debilitating fear of heights—thwart the eccentric teen scientist who insists she's his sidekick, and keep his supervillain girlfriend from finding out the truth. But when Damien uncovers a dastardly plot to turn all the superheroes into mindless zombie slaves, a plan hatched by his own mom, he discovers he cares about his new family more than he thought. Now he has to choose: go back to his life of villainy and let his family become zombies, or stand up to his mom and become a real hero.

(The Rise of Renegade X will be released May 11, 2010)

------------------------------

Other by Karen Kincy - NO COVER!

Seventeen-year-old Gwen hides a dangerous secret: she’s Other. Half-pooka, to be exact, thanks to the father she never met. Most Americans don’t exactly roll out the welcome mat for Others, especially not the small-town folks of Klikamuks, Washington. As if this isn’t bad enough, Gwen’s on the brink of revealing her true identity to her long-time boyfriend, Zack, but she’s scared he’ll lump her with the likes of bloodthirsty vampires and feral werewolves.

When a pack of werewolves chooses the national forest behind Gwen’s home as their new territory, the tensions in Klikamuks escalate-into murder. It soon becomes clear a serial killer is methodically slaying Others. The police turn a blind eye, leaving Gwen to find the killer before the killer finds her. As she hunts for clues, she uncovers more Others living nearby than she ever expected. Like Tavian, a sexy Japanese fox-spirit who rivals Zack and challenges her to embrace her Otherness. Gwen must struggle with her own conflicted identity, learn who she can trust, and-most importantly-stay alive.

(Other will be released July 1, 2010)

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*I guess we can call this a unique version of Friday Finds as it is Friday.
Though I have known about/have pined for all of these books for awhile now. :)
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Edit: Ha like 2 minutes after I posted this post I looked at my Tenners tab I had opened and I found another tenner book with the pattern, take a look:

Skin & Bones by Dawn Metcalf

When sixteen-year old Consuela Bones discovers she can remove her skin, revealing a lustrous mother-of-pearl skeleton, she slips into a parallel world known as the Flow; a place inhabited by archetypical teens with extraordinary abilities. Crafting skins out of anything – air, water, feathers, fire – she is compelled to save ordinary people from dying before their time. Yet now someone is murdering them, one by one, and Consuela finds herself the focus of an intricate plot to end the Flow forever when all she really wants is to get back home, alive.

(Skin & Bones will be released Spring, 2011)
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This is fun, I like finding books with a pattern:)

Saturday, October 10, 2009

This week in Memes*

A Collaboration of all the week's memes I've missed in my absence.
I'm going to apologize in advance for the extreme longness of this post.
...............................................................................................
In My Mailbox*
Not a lot of books this time around**, even with my absense, but thats okay because I had to go through some extreme re-adjusting to school.

#1:














#2:















In Picture #1: All books are from local library. Bookmark was in a book won from Bree Despain. (see next set of books)


Skinned by Robin Wasserman

Lia Kahn was perfect: rich, beautiful, popular -- until the accident that nearly killed her. Now she has been downloaded into a new body that only looks human. Lia will never feel pain again, she will never age, and she can't ever truly die. But she is also rejected by her friends, betrayed by her boyfriend, and alienated from her old life.
Forced to the fringes of society, Lia joins others like her. But they are looked at as freaks. They are hated...and feared. They are everything but human, and according to most people, this is the ultimate crime -- for which they must pay the ultimate price.




As You Wish by Jackson Pearce

Ever since Viola's boyfriend broke up with her, she has spent her days silently wishing—to have someone love her again and, more importantly, to belong again—until one day she inadvertently summons a young genie out of his world and into her own. He will remain until she makes three wishes.
Jinn is anxious to return home, but Viola is terrified of wishing, afraid she will not wish for the right thing, the thing that will make her truly happy. As the two spend time together, the lines between master and servant begin to blur, and soon Jinn can't deny that he's falling for Viola. But it's only after Viola makes her first wish that she realizes she's in love with Jinn as well . . . and that if she wishes twice more, he will disappear from her life—and her world—forever.
Jackson Pearce spins a magical tale about star-crossed lovers, what it means to belong . . . and how important it is to be careful what you wish for.




Rampant by Diana Peterfreund


Forget everything you ever knew about unicorns...

The sparkly, innocent creatures of lore are a myth. Real unicorns are venomous, man-eating monsters with huge fangs and razor-sharp horns. And they can only be killed by virgin descendants of Alexander the Great.

Fortunately, unicorns have been extinct for a hundred and fifty years.

Or not.

Astrid Llewelyn has always scoffed at her eccentric mother's stories about killer unicorns. But when one of the monsters attacks her boyfriend in the woods — thereby ruining any chance of him taking her to prom — Astrid learns that unicorns are real and dangerous, and she has a family legacy to uphold. Her mother packs her off to Rome to train as a unicorn hunter at the ancient cloisters the hunters have used for centuries.

However, at the cloisters, all is not what it seems. Outside, the unicorns wait to attack. And within, Astrid faces other, unexpected threats: from crumbling, bone-covered walls that vibrate with a terrible power to the hidden agendas of her fellow hunters to — perhaps most dangerously of all — her growing attraction to a handsome art student... and a relationship that could jeopardize everything.




In Picture #2: The next set of books is from contests I was lucky enough to win. And some other goodies...


Candor by Pam Bachorz

Oscar Banks has everything under control. In a town where his father brainwashes everyone, he's found a way to secretly fight the subliminal Messages. He's got them all fooled: Oscar's the top student and the best-behaved teen in town. Nobody knows he's made his own Messages to deprogram his brain. Oscar has even found a way to get rich. For a hefty price, he helps new kids escape Candor, Florida before they're transformed into cookie-cutter teens. But then Nia Silva moves to Candor, and Oscar's carefully-controlled world crumbles.


Won from: The Book Butterfly Thanks Kim!
(The cover sheet on top is a print out Kim attatched to the ARC, so cute.)/(Along with the ARC, Kim also got Pam Bachorz, the author, to send a signed bookcard. Pam also included a cute little note that relates to her book.)



King Dork by Frank Portman

Tom Henderson (a.k.a. King Dork, Chi-mo, Hender-fag, and Sheepie) is a typical American high school loser until he discovers the book, The Catcher in the Rye, that will change the world as he knows it. When Tom discovers his deceased father’s copy of the Salinger classic, he finds himself in the middle of several interlocking conspiracies and at least half a dozen mysteries involving dead people, naked people, fake people, ESP, blood, a secret code, guitars, monks, witchcraft, the Bible, girls, the Crusades, a devil head, and rock and roll. And it all looks like it’s just the tip of a very odd iceberg of clues that may very well unravel the puzzle of his father’s death and–oddly–reveal the secret to attracting semihot girls. Being in a band could possibly be the secret to the girl thing–but good luck finding a drummer who can count to four.

Won from: Bree Despain Thanks Bree!
(Bree also slipped in a signed bookmark for her upcoming release "The Dark Devine", see Picture #1)



Ash by Malinda Lo

Cinderella retold

In the wake of her father's death, Ash is left at the mercy of her cruel stepmother. Consumed with grief, her only joy comes by the light of the dying hearth fire, rereading the fairy tales her mother once told her. In her dreams, someday the fairies will steal her away, as they are said to do. When she meets the dark and dangerous fairy Sidhean, she believes that her wish may be granted.

The day that Ash meets Kaisa, the King's Huntress, her heart begins to change. Instead of chasing fairies, Ash learns to hunt with Kaisa. Though their friendship is as delicate as a new bloom, it reawakens Ash's capacity for love-and her desire to live. But Sidhean has already claimed Ash for his own, and she must make a choice between fairy tale dreams and true love.

Entrancing, empowering, and romantic, Ash is about the connection between life and love, and solitude and death, where transformation can come from even the deepest grief.

Won from: Meghan's Book Blog Thanks Meghan!



Another Faust by Daniel & Dina Nayeri

One night, in cities all across Europe, five children vanish - only to appear, years later, at an exclusive New York party with a strange andelegant governess. Rumor and mystery follow the Faust teenagers to the city’s most prestigious high school, where they soar to suspicious heights with the help of their benefactor’s extraordinary “gifts.”

But as the students claw their way up - reading minds, erasing scenes, stopping time, stealing power, seducing with artificial beauty - the side-effects of their own addictions. And as they make further deals with the devil, they uncover secrets more shocking than their mostunforgivable sins.

At once chilling and wickedly satirical, this contemporary reimagining of the Faustian bargain is a compelling tale of ambition, consequences, and ultimate redemption.

Won from: Fantastic Book Review Thanks Tina!



You Are So Undead To Me by Stacey Jay


Fifteen-year-old Megan Berry is a Zombie Settler by birth, which means she’s part-time shrink to a bunch of dead people with a whole lot of issues.
All Megan wants is to be normal—and go to homecoming, of course. Unfortunately, it’s a little difficult when your dates keep getting interrupted by a bunch of slobbering Undead.
Things are about to get even more complicated for Megan. Someone in school is using black magic to turn average, angsty Undead into flesh-eating Zombies, and it’s looking like homecoming will turn out to be a very different kind of party—the bloody kind.
Megan must stop the Zombie apocalypse descending on Carol, Arkansas. Her life—and more importantly, homecoming—depends on it.





The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

In Mary's world there are simple truths. The Sisterhood always knows best. The Guardians will protect and serve. The Unconsecrated will never relent. And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village; the fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth.

But, slowly, Mary's truths are failing her. She's learning things she never wanted to know about the Sisterhood and its secrets, and the Guardians and their power, and about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness. When the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, she must choose between her village and her future - between the one she loves and the one who loves her. And she must face the truth about the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Could there be life outside a world surrounded in so much death

Won from: The Epic Rat (from Zombie Grab) Thanks Cecilia!


Also, thanks to Jordan from Inside The Mind for the Give Up the Ghost bookmark.
And she added a sticky note message which I have shown because anything written on a sticky note becomes 10 times cooler.


* In My Mailbox is the creation of Kristi from The Story Siren
** Got more books after took pictures, they'll be included next time. Don't have the energy to completely reconatruct post to add new pictures. Sorry!


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Teaser Tuesday

This week I have two books to tease. And I felt the need to tease you with Willow twice.


Willow by Julia Hoban

" 'Seriously, I mean he needed to get out of the ivory tower and into the real world once in a while. I distinctly got the feeling he hadn't done too many Jello-O shots in his time!'

'Absolutely right.' "

-Page 98

"Willow takes a few steps forward and is immediately assaulted by the smells, crush of people, the sheer energy of the place. But its okay, she can handle it now."

-Page 150


Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

"If it were up to me, I would try to forget the Hunger Games entirely. Never speak of them. Pretend they were nothing but a bad dream."

-Page 3



-->I didn't want to spoil anything! :) <--

Teaser Tuesday is brought to us by MizB from Should be Reading.

Rules:1) Grab your current read

2) Open to a random page

3) Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

4) BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

5) Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

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Waiting on Wednesday*

All the books look amazing! I can't wait to read them. 2010 is too long to wait for all the amazing releases.

Shadow Hills by Anastasia Hopcus

Since her sister’s mysterious death, Persephone “Phe” Archer has been plagued by a series of disturbing dreams. Determined to find out what happened to her sister, Phe enrolls at Devenish Prep in Shadow Hills, Massachusetts—the subject of her sister’s final diary entry.

After stepping on campus, Phe immediately realizes that there’s something different about this place—an unexplained epidemic that decimated the town in the 1700s, an ancient and creepy cemetery, and gorgeous boy Zach—and somehow she’s connected to it all.

But the more questions she asks and the deeper she digs, the more entangled Phe becomes in the haunting past of Shadow Hills. Finding what links her to this town…might cost her her life.


--->Shadow Hills will be released on a now undetermined date of 2010, but you can be sure I'll pick a copy when it is released! Edit: Summer 2010 from Egmont!




The Beautiful Between by Alyssa B. Sheinmel

If high school were a fairy-tale kingdom, Connelly Sternin would be Rapunzel, locked not in a tower by a wicked witch but in a high-rise apartment building by the SATs and college applications—and by the secrets she keeps. Connelly's few friends think that her parents are divorced—but they're not. Connelly's father died when she was two, and she doesn't know how.

If Connelly is the Rapunzel of her school, Jeremy Cole is the crown prince, son of a great and rich New York City family. So when he sits down next to her at lunch one day, Connelly couldn't be more surprised. But Jeremy has a tragic secret of his own, and Connelly is the only one he can turn to for help. Together they form a council of two, helping each other with their homework and sharing secrets. As the pair's friendship grows, Connelly learns that it's the truth, not the secrets, that one must guard and protect. And that between friends, the truth, however harsh, is also beautiful.

This lovely and memorable debut by Alyssa B. Sheinmel contains many of the hallmark themes found in young adult literature—friendship, coming of age, finding a place to belong, and overcoming the death of a loved one. Emotionally moving from start to finish, The Beautiful Between introduces a strong new voice to the genre, a voice with a long future ahead of it.

--->The Beautiful Between will be released on May 11, 2010.


*Waiting on Wednesday is brought to us by Jill from Breaking the Spine
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Waiting on...January 5th!*
Along with my WOW picks, I am also "waiting on" a specific day...January 5th.
Why you may ask am I waiting on this day? Well, take a look of all the wondrous reads released on January 5th (compiled from my Upcoming Releases list)...

Photobucket

And here are the summaries for each of the books...
(Incase you didn't believe me on the "wondrous releases")


Captivate by Carrie Jones

Well, there is no summary. Since it is the sequel to Need though, I will provide the summary for Need...


Now fans of Stephenie Meyer and Melissa Marr have a new author to devour . . .

Zara collects phobias the way other high school girls collect lipsticks. Little wonder, since life's been pretty rough so far. Her father left, her stepfather just died, and her mother's pretty much checked out. Now Zara's living with her grandmother in sleepy, cold Maine so that she stays & safe. Zara doesn't think she's in danger; she thinks her mother can't deal.

Wrong. Turns out that guy she sees everywhere, the one leaving trails of gold glitter, isn't a figment of her imagination. He's a pixie and not the cute, lovable kind with wings. He's the kind who has dreadful, uncontrollable needs. And he's trailing Zara.

With suspense, romance, and paranormal themes, this exciting breakout novel has all the elements to keep teens rapidly turning the pages.


Bleeding Violet by Dia Reeves

Sixteen-year-old Hanna Järvinen is an unusual girl with a head full of hallucinations, a medicine cabinet full of pills, and a closet full of frilly, violet dresses. Everything a girl needs--except love. But that's what mothers are for, and Hanna is sure she can reconcile with hers, even though she was abandoned as a baby.

Unfortunately, her mother lives in Portero, an odd East Texas town with doors that lead out of the world, flesh-eating creatures, and parasitical spirits--not an ideal environment for winning a mother's love.

Hanna, however, refuses to let a few monsters interfere with her plans. If she has to flirt a little, lie a little, kill a little, or even bleed a little, she'll do it. Hanna can live with monsters and mayhem, but she would rather die than live without love.


Bad Blood by Mari Mancusi

Sunny McDonald is in the ultimate forbidden relationship. Her boyfriend Magnus is a vampire, and the leader of the Blood Coven. Their differences have never been an issue, until now…

When the Blood Coven decides that Magnus needs a mate to be his co-ruler, Sunny’s humanity puts her out of the running. The Coven’s chosen candidate is Jane Johnson, a magna cum laude graduate of Oxford University who just happens to look like a vampiric celebutante.

Sunny is suspicious of a Rhodes Scholar who can’t answer the most basic poly-sci questions, but Magnus brushes it off as petty jealousy. Still, when the Blood Coven goes to Las Vegas for a vampire convention—where Magnus and Jane’s bonding ceremony will be the main event—Sunny and her sister Rayne secretly tag along. And Sunny’s not going home before she learns the truth about Jane. Because not everything stays in Vegas—especially bad blood…



Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder

Restless souls and empty hearts.


Brooklyn can’t sleep. Her boyfriend, Lucca died a year ago, and now their friend Gabe has died of an overdose. Every time she closes her eyes, Gabe's ghost is there, waiting for her. She has no idea what he wants or why it isn't Lucca chasing her through her dreams.


Nico can’t stop. He’s always running, trying so hard not to feel the pain of missing Lucca. But when he begins receiving messages from his dead brother, telling him to help Brooklyn, emotions come crashing to the surface.


As the nightmares escalate and the messages become relentless, Nico reaches out to Brooklyn. But neither of them can admit that they're being haunted. Until they learn to let each other in, not one soul will be able to rest.


Firespell by Chloe Neill

As the new girl at the elite St. Sophia’s boarding school, Lily Parker thinks her classmates are the most monstrous things she’ll have to face…


When Lily’s guardians decided to send her away to a fancy boarding school in Chicago, she was shocked. So was St. Sophia’s. Lily’s ultra-rich brat pack classmates think Lily should be the punchline to every joke, and on top of that, she’s hearing strange noises and seeing bizarre things in the shadows of the creepy building.


The only thing keeping her sane is her roommate, Scout, but even Scout’s a little weird—she keeps disappearing late at night and won’t tell Lily where she’s been. But when a prank leaves Lily trapped in the catacombs beneath the school, Lily finds Scout running from a real monster.


Scout’s a member of a splinter group of rebel teens with unique magical talents, who’ve sworn to protect the city against demons, vampires, and Reapers, magic users who’ve been corrupted by their power. And when Lily finds herself in the line of a firespell, Scout tells her the truth about her secret life, even though Lily has no powers of her own—at least none that she’s discovered yet…




The Girl With The Mermaid Hair by Delia Ephron
(Ahhh, I screwed up. See cover picture HERE.)


Sukie Jamieson is obsessed with her appearance. She checks her reflection in windows, spoons, car chrome—anything available. So when her mother gives her a full-length mirror that once belonged to her grandmother, Sukie is thrilled. So thrilled that she doesn’t listen to her mother’s warning: "This mirror will be your best friend and worst enemy.” Because mirrors, as Sukie discovers, show not only the faraway truth but the truth close up. And finding out that close-up truth changes people. Often forever.




Thirst No.2: Phantom, Evil Thirst, Creatures of Forever by Christopher Pike

Not much of a summary but...
A bind-up of this classic paranormal thriller series from bestselling author Christopher Pike















By The Time You Read This, I'll Be Dead by Julie Anne Peters

23 Days and Counting

Dear
___mother
___father
___other

There was nothing you could do to stop me because:
___I’d already made up my mind
___I have been suffering my whole life
___ you were too slow to notice

I offed myself because:
___my life sucks
___the world sucks
___ you suck

Good-bye, Daelyn



Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers

Climbing to the top of the social ladder is hard--falling from it is even harder. Regina Afton used to be a member of the Fearsome Fivesome, an all-girl clique both feared and revered by the students at Hallowell High... until vicious rumors about her and her best friend's boyfriend start going around.

Now Regina's been "frozen out" and her ex-best friends are out for revenge. If Regina was guilty, it would be one thing, but the rumors are far from the terrifying truth and the bullying is getting more intense by the day. She takes solace in the company of Michael Hayden, a misfit with a tragic past who she herself used to bully. Friendship doesn't come easily for these onetime enemies, and as Regina works hard to make amends for her past, she realizes Michael could be more than just a friend... if threats from the Fearsome Foursome don't break them both first.

Tensions grow and the abuse worsens as the final days of senior year march toward an explosive conclusion in this dark new tale from the author of Cracked Up To Be.


Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood by Eileen Cook

Popularity is the best revenge.


In the final weeks of eighth grade, Lauren Wood made a choice. She betrayed her best friend, Helen, in a manner so publicly humiliating that Helen had to move to a new town just to save face. Ditching Helen was worth it, though, because Lauren started high school as one of the It Girls--and now, at the start of her senior year, she's the cheerleading captain, the quarterback's girlfriend, and the undisputed queen bee. Lauren has everything she's ever wanted, and she has forgotten all about her ex-best friend.


But Helen could never forget Lauren. After three years of obsessing, she's moving back to her old town. She has a new name and a new look, but she hasn't dropped her old grudges. She has a detailed plan to bring down her former BFF by taking away everything that's ever been important to Lauren—starting with her boyfriend.


Watch out, Lauren Wood. Things are about to get bitchy.


*Waiting on...(a certain day) will be a common occurance on YA All The Way from now on, but I'm not sure if it will always be on Wednesday though.

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Friday Finds*
This week, I found a great new series of books called the "Beautiful Dead" series. Not only do they sound really good, they also have they also have the most amazingly striking covers. I have mad love for the covers.


Jonas: Beautiful Dead Book 1 by Eden Maguire

Something strange is happening in Ellerton High. Phoenix is the fourth teenager to die within a year. His street fight stabbing follows the deaths of Jonas, Summer andArizona in equally strange and sudden circumstances. Rumours of ghosts and strange happenings rip through the small community as it comes to terms with shock and loss. Darina,Phoenix's grief-stricken girlfriend, is on the verge. She can't escape her intense heartache, or the impossible apparitions of those that are meant to be dead. And all the while the sound of beating wings echo inside her head ! And then one dayPhoenix appears to Darina. Ecstatic to be reunited, he tells her about the Beautiful Dead. Souls in limbo, they have been chosen to return to the world to set right a wrong linked to their deaths and bring about justice. Beautiful, superhuman and powerful, they are marked by a 'death mark' -- a small tattoo of angel's wings.Phoenix tells her that the sound of invisible wings beating are the millions of souls in limbo, desperate to return to earth.Darina's mission is clear: she must help Jonas, Summer,Arizona, and impossibly, her belovedPhoenix, right the wrong linked to their deaths to set them free from limbo so that they can finally rest in peace. Will love conquer death? And if it does, can Darina set it free?


Arizona: Beautiful Dead Book 2 by Eden Maguire

There's been no sign of the Beautiful Dead for weeks. Darina achingly misses Phoenix all over again. But surely he will return with the rest of the Beautiful Dead as so much still remains unresolved. It's been ten months since Arizona drowned in Hartmann Lake. Suicide, it would seem. But something doesn't add up. Drowning herself in a hidden-away lake does not sound like strong, confident, Arizona: Ellerton High School's high-maintenance drama queen. Darina needs to help Arizona the way she helped Jonas. But time is running out ...

Arizona: Beautiful Dead Book 2 comes out October 15, 2009, or this Thursday!









Summer: Beautiful Dead 3 by Eden Maguire

This book currently has no summary released but it is to be released May 6th, 2010. It also has my favorite cover of the three.












*Friday Finds is brought to us by MizB from Should be Reading
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Once again, I apologize for the extreme length of this post.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Review: The Vampire Diaries: The Awakening and The Struggle


Ahhh, its been too long! I've spent the time incognito trying to adjust to school again. But now that I'm back, I'm here to stay!
I finally found a place where I can write my reviews, Math Class! :) No seriously, instead of using class time to work on my homework I will be writing reviews. Now that I have found my review-writing spot, look out for the 5(+?) reviews I have planned for this week.
So without futher adu, the review...


The Vampire Diaries:
The Awakening and The Struggle by
L.J. Smith
Published by: HarperTeen- 2007
Pages: 492 Pages
Acquired: From Library

Summary (from Goodreads):

Elena: the golden girl, the leader, the one who can have any boy she wants.

Stefan: brooding and mysterious, he seems to be the only one who can resist Elena, even as he struggles to protect her from the horrors that haunt his past.

Damon: sexy, dangerous, and driven by an urge for revenge against Stefan, the brother who betrayed him. Determined to have Elena, he'd kill to possess her.

Collected here in one volume for the first time, volumes one and two of The Vampire Diaries, the tale of two vampire brothers and the beautiful girl torn between them.


My Review:

The Vampire Diaries is definitely a tale to remember. Having written this review several days after completing this book, I can attest to that fact. (Though this could partially be due to a certain show recently premiered. See below.)

At the start of this book I went in with high expectations, or high hopes rather. While this book took some turns down a path I was not expecting, it absolutely met/exceeded my hopes.

When Elena was first introduced, I started to get a little apprehensive. Right off the back we learn that Elena is the blonde haired, blue eyed, über popular cheerleader, and while that make a for a good story, I wasn't sure how that would work with a story about vampires. After a couple of pages however, I quickly dismissed my apprehensiveness. Elena is a strong character who you cant help but to root for in her pursuits of a certain, tall, dark, and handsome new transfer.

Which leads me to my next point, Stefan. In my opinion, Stefan is a multi-layered person. (Like an onion, as Shrek would say) He is first portrayed as that desirable hunk of man that of course you can not live without. Then, we begin to enter Stefan's thoughts and see his vulnerablity side which kind of cements his likability. As time and his relationship with Elena progresses, yet another side of likeabiltity is shown, but from a more romantic aspect. There is a point in which, trying not to giveaway anything, his likeability did waver for me, or more along the lines of me wanting to smack him across the head with a frying pan, though I felt this towards Elena too. All in all though, I still adore both characters.

On to other characters of the book...

Damon. There is some love coming Damon's way from me, but for completely other reasons. With Damon I love to hate him. He is so Bam! in your face, and causes so much mishaps and mayhem, you can't help but to step back and acknowledge, I mean look at all the great plot scenes he has created. This does not cause me from having random "I wish Damon would just go away" moments throughout the book though.

Bonnie and Caroline. While you don't see an awful lot of Caroline, in the times that you do I always liked her. She is strong and loyal and I always felt "good vibes" from her.
As for Bonnie, she was awesome! Her psychic/"witch" powers were pretty cool, and her overall personality was quite interesting. Yeah, these two weren't that much of standout characters, though they do play important roles, but I like them, and wanted them acknowledged.

Plot: I don't know if I had a pre-inticipatory plot in my head before reading The Vampire Diaries, but for some reason the plot startled me at first. Not in a negative way, just surprised. Having said that, I did quite enjoy how everything played out. I did however (mild-spoiler) think that a little bit too much time was spent on the "mystery killer."

After reading the Vampire Diaries, I came to this ideal that, in a sense, I think L.J. Smith is the one who planted the first seed that grew into this Vampire-craze we are currently in. (These book were originally published in 1990 and beyond) I wouldn't go to far as to say that LJ started the whole vampire-craze, because that is more along the lines of Anne Rice and Bram Stoker. I do however believe she might have been a cause that helped get the ball rolling for the current vamp-craze, specifically in YA.

Romance: While I felt the connection could have been a little deeper between Elena and a certain dreamy vampire, it will satisfy and then some. I wouldn't pick it up specifically for the book it's romantic appeal, which sounds weird since the romantic aspect plays a big part, I would try to go into this book looking for a great story, and then have the romance be a bit of an added bonus!

Any particurarly graphic/violent/inappropiate content? Overall, this book is pretty clean. There is one scene where someone does try to rape(well move further than other person is comfortable with) someone, but even that is non-graphic and pretty low-key. Also, there is some mild violence, but thats basicly a using-my-super-cool-vampire-powers-to-protect-my-love kind of thing, nothing to hard core. Mild blood and gore do come into play, but like before nothing too bad, so the squeemish have been warned.

Bottom Line: The Vampire Diaries: The Awakening and the Struggle is a great book that will really have you captivated from page one. It is interesting and original, even among the umpteen million vampire book out there. (Though that tidbit would be irrelevant anyhow since this book was probably published first) Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed it, and am looking forward to picking up the sequel.


Overall Rating:


(4.5/5)



Would I recommend this book? Heck yes! I want the world to see, what in my humble little opinion, could have started this massive Vamp-Craze that seems to be upon us. Plus, it is just a really entertaining book.


Cover Comments: This cover recieves a solid three from me. Nothing particurarly special about the cover, though I do think the blood on the lips is a nice touch. Also, I think the dude on the front, who I'm presuming is Stefan, is a little too haunting. I don't feel as if the cover accurately portrayed the essence of the book, though it is 100% better than the original printed covers. *shudders* In addition, the actual physical cover of the book, while feeling absurdly cool to touch, is a little too subjective wear-and-tear for my liking. (3/5)


Want more Vampire Diaries? Check out the other collection of the re-prints of the original Vampire Diaries with The Vampire Diaries: The Fury and Dark Reunion.
And...the CW has turned The Vampire Diaries into a TV show that plays Thursdays @8/7 pm central on your local CW channel.

Want a Vampires Diaries "Spin off"/Continument? L.J. Smith has also come out with a new trilogy based off the Vampire Diaries, with the same characters- or Elena atleast. The first book in the trilogy is The Vampire Diaries: The Return: Nightfall, the second book is The Vampire Diaries: The Return: Shadowed Souls and comes out February 9th, 2010*, and the third book is The Vampire Diaries: The Return: Midnight and comes out December 8th, 2010*.

Want More L.J. Smith in general? L.J. has a series of re-prints of her original Night World series from Simon Pulse with the first three books combind in Night World No.1: Secret Vampire: Daughters of Darkness: Spellbinder, the fourth-sixth books combind in Night World No.2: Dark Angel: The Chosen: Soulmate, the seventh-eighth books combind in Night World No.3: Huntress: Black Dawn: Witchlight, and a final, previously un-released conclusion to the Night World series with Night World No.4: Strange Fate to be released April 6th, 2010*.

Yet another L.J. Smith series was re-printed since original publication from HarperTeen with the Secret Circle series. The first book and half of the second have been combind into The Secret Circle: The Initiation and The Captive Part I, and the second half of the second book along with the third have been combind into The Secret Circle: The Captive Part II and The Power.

That still not enough re-printed L.J. Smith goodness for you? Simon & Schuster have bound together the entire Dark Visions series with Dark Visions: The Strange Power: The Posessed: The Passion.


*All dates are subjective to change
** Was that not a long review? :)