Sunday, August 18, 2013

Be Back Soon

I'm going to be starting classes again soon, so I will be taking a week off to get ready & adjust to my new schedule. I'll be back in a week or so! 

Hope everyone has a fabulous week :)

Wednesday, August 14, 2013


WoW is hosted by Breaking The Spine

Author: Andrea Colt
Release: August 22nd, 2013
Genre: YA paranormal
To Cassandra Kelleher, trust is a dirty word.

A teenage selkie who grew up on land, all she wants is to free her family from the man who stole their sealskins long ago. With her twin brother Brennan losing hope and her window of opportunity disappearing like the beach at high tide, she’ll try anything.

Before long, however, Cassandra can’t tell whether her biggest threat is the man holding her family captive, a classmate who’s discovered her secret, or her own paranoia. Battling broken friendships and alarming romantic entanglements, Cassandra finds that trust could be the key to winning her family’s freedom … or losing her own.

I enjoyed Colt's debut, TORCHED, so I'm very curious and excited for this book. Plus, I don't think I've read a selkie book before....

Release: January 7th, 2014
Genre: YA contemporary
For the past five years, Hayley Kincaid and her father, Andy, have been on the road, never staying long in one place as he struggles to escape the demons that have tortured him since his return from Iraq. Now they are back in the town where he grew up so Hayley can attend school. Perhaps, for the first time, Hayley can have a normal life, put aside her own painful memories, even have a relationship with Finn, the hot guy who obviously likes her but is hiding secrets of his own.

Will being back home help Andy’s PTSD, or will his terrible memories drag him to the edge of hell, and drugs push him over? The Impossible Knife of Memory is Laurie Halse Anderson at her finest: compelling, surprising, and impossible to put down.

Laurie. Halse. Anderson. I feel like that's all that needs to be said. This book? Very high on my wishlist! 

What are you waiting on this week? 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Review: DARE YOU TO by Katie McGarry

Author: Katie McGarry
Published: May 28th, 2013
Series: Pushing the Limits #2 (companion novel)
Genre: YA contemporary
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
POV: 1st person, dual, alternating
Pages: 462
Format: Hardcover
Source: Amazon Vine Program
Rating: The Royal Library, Middle Shelf
"I dare you..."

If anyone knew the truth about Beth Risk's home life, they'd send her mother to jail and seventeen-year-old Beth who knows where. So she protects her mom at all costs. Until the day her uncle swoops in and forces Beth to choose between her mom's freedom and her own happiness. That's how Beth finds herself living with an aunt who doesn't want her and going to a school that doesn't understand her. At all. Except for the one guy who shouldn't get her, but does....

Ryan Stone is the town golden boy, a popular baseball star jock-with secrets he can't tell anyone. Not even the friends he shares everything with, including the constant dares to do crazy things. The craziest? Asking out the Skater girl who couldn't be less interested in him.

But what begins as a dare becomes an intense attraction neither Ryan nor Beth expected. Suddenly, the boy with the flawless image risks his dreams-and his life-for the girl he loves, and the girl who won't let anyone get too close is daring herself to want it all....

Like some other people who read McGarry's debut, I was surprised to find that Beth was going to have her own story – and one that did not involve Isaiah as her main love interest. In addition, I was amazed that McGarry chose to write from Beth's POV. In PUSHING THE LIMITS, Beth was hardly an enjoyable or endearing character, so I was a bit nervous when I started DARE YOU TO. Yet, right from the start, McGarry proves there is more to Beth than her rough, don't-f%#$-with-me exterior. Even Ryan, the seemingly Mr. Perfect baseball star who provides the second narration in this novel, proves there is more to him than how fast he can throw a baseball. 

In the beginning of the story, Beth says that she is a piece of a puzzle that never quite fits in. Her words are fitting, because when it comes to Beth and Ryan, they are two puzzle pieces – they're shaped differently, but they still somehow manage to fit together perfectly. Even as their personalities clash and challenge one another, Beth and Ryan simultaneously bring out the better qualities in each other. And, as in any good book, the collision of these two different characters begins with a simple dare, which complicates everything for both of them. Filled with electric tension, surprising secrets, and tantalizing drama, DARE YOU TO is an exceptional story. If you're hesitating when it comes to checking out this story, I dare you to read this book – you won't regret it. 

Highlights: McGarry brought two very different characters together and made their relationship believable and worth rooting for. Beth and Ryan's voices were distinct, nearly impossible to confuse, and they proved to be layered characters. Side characters were fantastic, especially Lacy and Uncle Scott. I especially enjoyed the mystery behind what was going on in Beth's mother's home. As a whole, characters were wonderfully written. 

Lowlights: The story became a bit soap-opera-dramatic a few times. I wish McGarry would have written more about Beth and her Uncle Scott, it would have been nice to see them bond a bit more on page instead off the page.

Notes: Cursing (mostly by Beth), hot-and-steamy moments, mentions of safe sex, mentions of drugs/drug use, and physical abuse. Also, if you take the book jacket off the book so no one will know that you're reading a kissing book, think again. A slightly different version of the cover is printed on the actual book, so you'll just have to bravely read it and ignore the people who stare. Also, you do not need to read PUSHING THE LIMITS in order to understand this novel (you do get to see the two narrators from that novel appear in this story, which is always fun).

Rating: The Royal Library, Middle ShelfDARE YOU TO is fantastic, worth owning, and has earned a spot in the royal library. I enjoyed this story very much, despite a few small issues here and there, and would recommend this book to other readers. 

My reviews of other novels by Katie McGarry: 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (117): FATES and CRESS

WoW is hosted by Breaking The Spine

FATES by Lanie Bross
February 11th, 2014
"What if your destiny was to kill the one you love?

One moment. One foolish desire. One mistake. And Corinthe lost everything.

She fell from her tranquil life in Pyralis Terra and found herself exiled to the human world. Her punishment? To make sure people’s fates unfold according to plan. Now, years later, Corinthe has one last assignment: kill Lucas Kaller. His death will be her ticket home.

But for the first time, Corinthe feels a tingle of doubt. It begins as a lump in her throat, then grows toward her heart, and suddenly she feels like she’s falling all over again—this time for a boy she knows she can never have. Because it is written: one of them must live, and one of them must die.

In a universe where every moment, every second, every fate has already been decided, where does love fit in?"

I'm intrigued by this book! It sounds like it could be interesting, and I like the cover!

CRESS by Marissa Meyer
February 4th, 2014
"Rapunzel's tower is a satellite. She can't let down her hair - or her guard. 

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

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

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

*freaks out silently* I pretty much need this book. Glad to see that it got a fabulous cover!

What are you waiting on this week?

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Top Ten Books I Wish Had Sequels

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

1.   VESSEL by Sarah Beth Durst. An awesome fantasy novel with amusing, lovable characters? I definitely wish I could have more of this world and the characters that live in it.

2.   THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green. You know what? Never mind. Green would probably just make me cry. Again.

3.   OUT OF THE EASY by Ruta Sepetys. I adored these characters, and it would be nice to see them again. Although, I enjoyed the ending, so I'd be a bit concerned for the characters if there was a sequel....

4.   THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater. Not really sure how well a sequel would work out for this novel (which is fantastic), but I'd still love to read more books set in this world.

5.   WANDERLOVE by Kirsten Hubbard. Travel, romance, and fun! Who doesn't want a sequel to this book? Plus, it would mean more lovely artwork!

6.   HARRY POTTER by JK Rowling. This is cheating, isn't it? I know there are seven books, but I need MORE. This series is so charming, exciting, and surprising. It would be incredible to read more books set in this novel's world.

7.   THE TRUTH ABOUT FOREVER by Sarah Dessen. This is one of my favorite Dessen books, so I'd love to see these characters again. In fact, if Dessen just wrote a book entirely about Wes, I wouldn't complain. *swoons over Wes*

8.   MEGAN MEADE'S GUIDE TO THE MCGOWAN BOYS by Kate Brian. This book was so much fun, and by the time it ended, I was wishing for more. Plus, there's a very small moment during the conclusion that always makes me wonder if Megan ends up with the wrong guy...

9.   THE NIGHT CIRCUS by Erin Morgenstern. Vivid, lovely, and memorable, it would be great to read a sequel for this book (especially one that focuses on Poppet and Widget)!

10.   THE HOST by Stephenie Meyer. I have so-and-so feelings for her other novels, but I loved THE HOST, and the ending left me eager for more of the characters. It seems like Meyer *might* be writing a sequel, but it's been a little more than five years since the first novel published, so I don't really know what to think.

What novels do you wish had a sequel?

Monday, August 5, 2013

Review: CROWN OF MIDNIGHT by Sarah J. Maas

Author: Sarah J. Maas
Published: August 27th, 2013
Series: Throne of Glass #2
Genre: YA fantasy
Publisher: Bloomsbury
POV: 3rd, past, multiple POV's
Pages: 432
Format: electronic ARC
Source: Netgalley / Publisher
Rating: The Royal Library, Top Shelf
"An assassin’s loyalties are always in doubt.
But her heart never wavers.

After a year of hard labor in the Salt Mines of Endovier, eighteen-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien has won the king's contest to become the new royal assassin. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown – a secret she hides from even her most intimate confidantes.

Keeping up the deadly charade—while pretending to do the king's bidding—will test her in frightening new ways, especially when she's given a task that could jeopardize everything she's come to care for. And there are far more dangerous forces gathering on the horizon -- forces that threaten to destroy her entire world, and will surely force Celaena to make a choice.

Where do the assassin’s loyalties lie, and who is she most willing to fight for?"

I became a fan of Maas's writing after the first novella in the series was released, and I quickly devoured each novella until I finally managed to snag an advanced reader's copy of THRONE OF GLASS. While I enjoyed the first full-length novel, I was disappointed with Celaena's bratty demeanor and the lack of time spent during the action scenes. But, I still had high hopes for the sequel, and Maas delivered an outstanding story – so much so, I'm starting to wonder if I'd enjoy THRONE OF GLASS more if I reread it. CROWN OF MIDNIGHT dives equally, and headfirst, into action and emotion. This is one sequel that will pull you in, hold on tight, and never let go.

I'll be extremely vague about the story, and only give you the bare bones. Now the King's Champion, Celaena simultaneously has more and less power than ever before. In addition, Celaena, Chaol, Dorian, and multiple other characters are all struggling against the same beast – desire versus duty. They let it slither closer, wrapping some of them up entirely in a strangled hold, while others manage to break free from its grasp as they choose their side. Everyone has an agenda and a loyalty within this story, and each character is forced to question who they are in order to decide who they want to become. Compelling, humorous, romantic, and devastating,  CROWN OF MIDNIGHT is an exceptional sequel that will leave you begging Sarah J. Maas for the next novel, ASAP1.

Highlights: Danger, action, secrets, romance, and surprises, CROWN OF MIDNIGHT takes everything to the next level. Celaena has grown tremendously. She can still be bratty, but it feels more toned down in this novel. Instead, Celaena is fiercer, stronger, smarter, and somewhat terrifyingly darker. Maas takes Celaena and her readers for an emotional rollercoaster journey that jerks us up, down, and all around. Supporting characters were intriguing, especially in regard to the what is revealed about some of them. Chaol is fabulous2, Dorian is starting to grow on me a tiny bit, and Fleetfoot (coolest fictional dog ever) is made of awesome. 

Lowlights: It took some time to get into the story and to remember previous events. Nothing too problematic.

Rating: The Royal Library, Top Shelf. I love this book and it belongs on the top shelves in the royal library, where everyone can see it. I'd highly recommend this book, because it is an incredible story that only has a couple minor issues. All in all, CROWN OF MIDNIGHT needs to be on your to-be-read list!

1 No joke. If I thought begging SJM for the next novel would work, I'd be bowing down at her feet and begging right at this very moment. Book Three, WHY ARE YOU SO FAR AWAY??
2 As always. *swoons*

My reviews of other works by Sarah J. Maas: 
THE ASSASSIN AND THE DESERT (Throne of Glass #0.2)
THE ASSASSIN AND THE EMPIRE (Throne of Glass #0.4)
THRONE OF GLASS (Throne of Glass #1)