July 31, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #8: The Returned by: Jason Mott

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

I'm Waiting On...

The Returned by: Jason Mott
Release Day: Aug. 27, 2013
Goodreads Summary: Jacob was time out of sync, time more perfect than it had been. He was life the way it was supposed to be all those years ago. That's what all the Returned were.

Harold and Lucille Hargrave's lives have been both joyful and sorrowful in the decades since their only son, Jacob, died tragically at his eighth birthday party in 1966. In their old age they've settled comfortably into life without him, their wounds tempered through the grace of time ... Until one day Jacob mysteriously appears on their doorstep—flesh and blood, their sweet, precocious child, still eight years old.

All over the world people's loved ones are returning from beyond. No one knows how or why this is happening, whether it's a miracle or a sign of the end. Not even Harold and Lucille can agree on whether the boy is real or a wondrous imitation, but one thing they know for sure: he's their son. As chaos erupts around the globe, the newly reunited Hargrave family finds itself at the center of a community on the brink of collapse, forced to navigate a mysterious new reality and a conflict that threatens to unravel the very meaning of what it is to be human.

With spare, elegant prose and searing emotional depth, award-winning poet Jason Mott explores timeless questions of faith and morality, love and responsibility. A spellbinding and stunning debut, The Returned is an unforgettable story that marks the arrival of an important new voice in contemporary fiction.

What are you waiting on?
17 comments
July 29, 2013

Review: The Contaminants by: Devin K. Smyth

The Contaminants (#1) by: Devin K. Smyth (2013)
155 pages
Genre: Young Adult/Sci-Fi
Source: I received a free copy from the author for an honest review.
Purchase: Amazon
Goodreads Summary: When America attempts to "purify" earth to maintain its own dominance, it sparks a worldwide nuclear holocaust. Teen friends Jessil and Soraj are among the few survivors. They escaped on a cruiser that now orbits the planet and is designed to help regenerate the earth's ecosystem. Soraj’s father leads the regeneration process and is hopeful that he can salvage a region in North America for the cruiser’s return.

But when Jessil discovers a message indicating her own father may have survived the holocaust back on earth, she’s determined to rescue him immediately with Soraj's aid. Can they succeed even though the planet they return to is very different from the one they left—and that their success could mean failure for the regeneration process?

My Review

I was finding it hard to write a review for The Contaminants and I’m not sure why. It was a pretty good book but I’m thinking it was just a little too crazy for me. So here is a breakdown of the different parts of the book and what I thought of them.

Setting: Part of the story takes place on a cruiser in space and the other part takes place back on Earth after a worldwide nuclear holocaust. The descriptions in this book were very well done. The setting was unique and complex. I loved reading about the space cruiser where the few people that escaped Earth resided and how it was falling apart and yet was originally built to be something amazing. The descriptions of the desolate Earth were also great. Smyth did a good job at painting the reader a vivid picture of what the new barely inhabited, except for some strange and crazy creatures, Earth looked like.

Characters: There are two POVs in this book. One is from Jessil, a teenage girl who boards the cruiser at the last minute while her father gets left behind on earth, and Soraj, a young man who is a geek and has an overly strict father. I enjoyed reading the story from Jessil’s point of view the most. She had the perfect female teenage voice and it just worked. When Soraj was narrating I felt more disconnected and didn’t really like his tone. It just seemed off. I wasn't a fan.

Plot: I would say that The Contaminants is a hard core science fiction novel for young adults. The plot was fast paced and well thought out. There were a couple of minor plot holes/unanswered questions that I picked up on while reading but nothing major. The main problem I have with the plot is how crazy it is and just way too unbelievable for my tastes. I know it is science fiction but I just couldn’t grasp the whole idea of the worldwide nuclear holocaust and the idea that one scientist could come up with a way to regenerate earth’s plants and animals and ecosystem and pretty much everything. It was just too far-fetched for me. I guess for me to enjoy a book more I need there to be just a tiny chance that this could actually happen in the future when Earth is the setting. I hope that made sense. Also a quick heads up, pay attention to the date/time stamp at the beginning of each chapter or you are going to get confused.

Overall I think that The Contanimants is a pretty good science fiction novel for young adults. It just was a little too crazy/far-fetched for my tastes, although I will say that it is pretty unique. It was a quick read and full of great descriptions. I think readers that are more into science fiction than me will enjoy this.

Side Note: I think the cover doesn't do this book justice. It could have been better executed.

**Thanks to the author for a fee copy of this book for an honest review.
My Rating: 2.5-3/5 
8 comments
July 28, 2013

Top Bookish News of The Past Week


Here are all of the top bookish stories, blog posts, pictures, and videos I found this past week. I put this post up every Sunday so come back again next week for more bookish awesomeness.
Click away and enjoy your Sunday!


ARTICLES

Goodreads thanks its users after hitting the 20 million member mark. That is a lot of readers!

If you live in London and are trying to find a significant other that reads and has similiar literary tastes then you are in luck. The book review website Omnivore can now hook you up. Very interesting indeed.

Find out what the horrible "disease" Libramnesia is. It will make you super sad. 

The ten-pound note will feature Jane Austen in 2017. Now that is pretty cool.

Read the first three chapters of the next I Am Number Four novel. I have yet to read these books but I hope to get around to it some day. 

I am a pretty big fan of Arrested Development so when I found out one if its stars is part owner of a book store I got a little giddy. I give props to Jeffrey Tambor for being awesome. 

Do you read Shelf Awareness? If not than you should check out their Saturday newsletter to see their story "Amazon's Declaration of War'. It's all about Amazon pricing their books even cheaper than normal.
BLOG POSTS

Two different blogs that I follow, Confessions of a Book Addict and The Book Addict's Guide, had great posts about young adult books that adults would also enjoy. Read and spread the young adult love with other adults out there. 

More controversy around the book "Speak" by Laurie Halse Anderson has popped up. A very huge frustrated sigh on this.


INFOGRAPHIC


2 comments
July 25, 2013

Review: Pivot Point by: Kasie West

Pivot Point (#1) by: Kasie West (2013)
343 pages
Genre: Young Adult/Paranormal
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: The Library
Goodreads Summary: Knowing the outcome doesn’t always make a choice easier . . .

Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.

In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.

My Review
“There were already enough alternate realities floating around in my head that sometimes it was hard to keep track of which one I had actually lived and which was the opposing choice never made.” ~ pg. 3
I love abilities in my books, I am an X-men fan, and there are plenty in Pivot Point. Addie is a Searcher, when having to make an important choice she uses her ability to see into the future hoping it will help her choose the right path. She is a little neurotic but I can totally relate to her little quirks so it made me love her character even more. One of those quirks that I love the most is how she is always comparing her real-life situations to ones from books. It’s hilarious and I’m sure we have all done it. The other characters are interesting and complex as well, especially Trevor. However, I was not a fan of Duke in any way shape or form. Just wanted to put that out there.

Pivot Point is a unique novel set up in an interesting and perfect way. The chapters switch off from one of Addie’s futures to the other possible future/path. I didn't find it confusing it was just at times frustrating when I wanted to keep following one future over the other. I found one more intriguing than the other. On the other hand, I absolutely loved reading and finding the little connections/overlapping instances between the two futures. It kept me really interested and on my toes. I was so immersed inside the story I couldn’t read it fast enough. It gets crazy good. 
On a side note, there are a couple of amazing lines in Pivot Point that I won’t soon forget. Sadly I can’t share them with you unless you have read the book because I don’t want to give anything away, let’s just say page 299 and page 317 are emotionally awesome.

I’m not sure I have enough or the right words to describe how much I enjoyed Pivot Point. All I can say is that I advise you to read it. A page-turner at its finest full of interesting teenagers with abilities and a more complex plot than it lets on. So read it already.

**Thanks to Nicole at The Quiet Concert for getting me to read this! I owe you one. :)

RATING 5/5 
18 comments
July 22, 2013

Review: The Curiosity by: Stephen P. Kiernan

The Curiosity by: Stephen P. Kiernan (July 9, 2013)
448 pages
Genre: General Fiction
Publisher: William Morrow
Source: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher for an honest review.
Purchase: Barnes and Noble | Amazon 
Goodreads Summary: Michael Crichton meets The Time Traveler's Wife in this powerful debut novel in which a man, frozen in the Arctic ice for more than a century, awakens in the present day.

Dr. Kate Philo and her scientific exploration team make a breathtaking discovery in the Arctic: the body of a man buried deep in the ice. As a scientist in a groundbreaking project run by the egocentric and paranoid Erastus Carthage, Kate has brought small creatures-plankton, krill, shrimp-"back to life." Never have the team's methods been attempted on a large life form.

Heedless of the consequences, Carthage orders that the frozen man be brought back to the lab in Boston, and reanimated. As the man begins to regain his memories, the team learns that he was-is-a judge, Jeremiah Rice, and the last thing he remembers is falling overboard into the Arctic Ocean in 1906. When news of the Lazarus Project and Jeremiah Rice breaks, it ignites a media firestorm and massive protests by religious fundamentalists.

Thrown together by circumstances beyond their control, Kate and Jeremiah grow closer. But the clock is ticking and Jeremiah's new life is slipping away. With Carthage planning to exploit Jeremiah while he can, Kate must decide how far she is willing to go to protect the man she has come to love.

A gripping, poignant, and thoroughly original thriller, Stephen Kiernan's provocative debut novel raises disturbing questions about the very nature of life and humanity-man as a scientific subject, as a tabloid plaything, as a living being: A curiosity.

My Review

The Curiosity may seem like a daunting read at 448 pages with the plot being very scientific but that shouldn’t keep you away. Although this book took me a while to finish, it was a unique and memorable read. It is engaging, thought provoking, heartbreaking, and just down right life changing. What would you do if you were brought back to life more than a hundred years after you already died? What is your ethical opinion on bringing a man back to life and then treating him just like a science experiment? Those are just some of the questions that arise in The Curiosity.

All of the characters in The Curiosity are unforgettable. We get the POV of Dr. Kate Philo, a scientist at heart but she questions the project; the man in ice, Jeremiah Rice; the head honcho, Erastus Carthage; and the journalist, Daniel Dixon. Although it may seem like getting this many point of views would be confusing or annoying I think that it is actually the perfect number of different people telling the story, really rounding it out because everyone was so different and had different beliefs. The storytelling is done magnificently from Dr. Philo’s point of view. My least favorite character would have to be Dixon, he just never sat right with me, seems to be a womanizer, and just down right annoying.

When I first started reading The Curiosity the scientific terminology was throwing me off. I was slightly nervous that I wouldn’t be able to follow everything that was going on in the book since a scientific discovery is the main point of the novel, but it worked out just fine. The story gets better and better with each page. It’s captivating to say the least. The story of Jeremiah Rice is more than just science but everything in-between, and his story is heartbreaking. Overall I really enjoyed this book. There were a few out of left field moments that occurred, but in all reality it wasn’t anything too troublesome and it barely registered on my “I care” scale. I also just want to state that the title is aptly named. Read it to really find out what I’m talking about.

So if you have some time and are looking for a unique novel you should read The Curiosity. It’s sure to make you think and leave a lasting impression. Plus, I really enjoyed taking a second to think about the whole situation and trying to decide how I would act if I were ever to encounter something like that. (Sorry I’m slightly vague but I don’t want to give anything important away.)

** I received a free copy of this book from the publisher William Morrow for an honest review. Thanks!


4 comments
July 21, 2013

Top Bookish News of The Past Week

Here are all of the top bookish stories, blog posts, pictures, and videos I found this past week. I put this post up every Sunday so come back again next week for more bookish awesomeness. 
Click away and enjoy your Sunday!

ARTICLES

I'm already in love with Four from Divergent, but if you need more proof read these 15 quotes that will make you fall in love with Four.

If you need a good laugh check out these photos of horrible restaurant name puns, some are from books! There is going to be a book published full of these.

See the new The Hunger Games: Catching Fire trailer! I guarantee this will make you even more impatient for the next movie. It aired at Comic-Con and they were nice enough to show it to us fans that didn't have the money or time or means to get out to San Diego. Too bad they didn't do that with the Divergent clip they showed fans at Comic-Con. One year I want to go.

Here are some other various trailers and clips that have been played at Comic-Con, including Veronica Mars, Spider-Man, and more.

A library book returned 41 years later! Find out how much that cost!

BLOG POSTS

Find out what kind of reader you are! Thanks to Read My Breathe Away for posting this fun and interesting chart.

Are you in a reading slump or just can't figure out what book you want to read next? Check out The Book Addict's Guide to paranormal, sci-fi, and fantasy!

PHOTO
I'm not a huge fan of this one.
8 comments
July 20, 2013

Allegiant Tour Dates Have Been Announced!

It is official. I am going to meet Veronica Roth!!!! I bought a ticket for the Oct. 26th book signing as part of the Allegiant tour and I couldn't be more excited. *squeals* This is my first ever author event! I even have two of my friends that are Divergent lovers going with me. What more could I want?

The Allegiant Tour Dates are below. For more information follow this link to Veronica Roth's official post about the tour dates.

Is anyone else going to participate in this awesome tour?
_____________________________________________________________________________

Tuesday, October 22nd @ 8:15PM
92nd St. Y
1395 Lexington Ave.
New York, NY 10128

Wednesday, October 23rd @ 7:00PM
Barnes & Noble – Store 2884
7700 West Northwest Hwy. Ste. 300
Dallas, TX 75225

Thursday, October 24th @ 7:00PM
The Castro Theatre, hosted by Books Inc.
429 Castro St.
San Francisco, CA 94114

Saturday, October 26th @ 2:00PM
Tivoli Theater, hosted by Anderson’s Bookshop
5021 Highland Ave.
Downers Grove, IL 60515


4 comments
July 19, 2013

I'll Share Mine If You Share Yours - My Bookish Pet Peeves

Bookish pet peeves, everyone has them and I want to share my craziness with you and in return I hope that you will share yours with me. I always find this topic really funny and interesting to discuss with fellow book nerds.This isn't an extensive list, I narrowed it down to 11 because I'm sure you don't want to hear me complain all day long. 

1. People Interrupting Me While I'm Reading
 - Sometimes I swear that people see me reading a book and automatically assume I can talk to them and that I'm not busy. This is false. Unless it is really important I don't like to be interrupted while I'm reading. I'm in a whole other world and don't want to come back to reality. To the next person that feels the urge to interrupt me. I dare you. This could very possibly happen.

2. Brand New Books That Have Flaws
 - When I go to a bookstore to buy a brand new book they have to be pretty and shiny. I'm one of those people that check to make sure there are no tears in the cover or weird creases on the pages. I love finding that perfect book on the shelf. Book Shimmy!

3. Misleading Synopsis
 - There is no reason for this. How dare you mislead me. This drives me insane, unless of course the book turns out to be amazing anyway. Otherwise, just no.

4. Ugly Book Covers
- I'm all about pretty book covers. I hate to say it, but I probably won't pick up a book that has an ugly cover. I feel that if authors want their book taken seriously they need to put some effort into the cover design. Even if I don't particularly like the cover but it is well done then that is fine, I'm just not a fan of the ones that look like a kid made them.

5. Spoilers in Reviews With No Warnings
 - Come on, there is no excuse for this. Please just have a warning at the beginning of your post or right before it if the spoilers happen in the middle of your post. This isn't hard to do and it only takes a minute. I don't mind little spoilers that don't matter in the long run, but if you are going to give something big away please just give us readers a heads up. I'd really rather not feel like this...

6. Characters Acting Out of Character
- Really? They just did that? I don't understand! This make no sense. When I'm reading a book the characters come alive and when they do something so crazy with no reasoning behind it I get really confused and kicked back into reality, the same place I am trying to escape by reading. It just throws me off.

7. Food Gunk on Library Books
 - I know many many people read the books I get at the library before me, but that doesn't mean they should be gross by the time I get my hands on them. I understand that there will be creases in the pages and what not, but there shouldn't be like food stuck to the pages or weird stains that I can't even tell what they are. I know library books are free and you have to return them, but that doesn't mean you should mistreat them. Let's be nice to the library books.

8. When the Movie is Nothing Like the Book
- I know book to movie adaptations can't be perfect. You can't fit everything from the book into the movie. I know this, but that doesn't mean the movie should be so completely different from the book that it is ridiculous. Cue the Percy Jackson movie. There are so many important things left out of that movie that I was furious when I watched it. It is a good movie if you keep it separate from the books when you watch it, but I was still really disappointed and frustrated.

9. Waiting for the Big Finale and I Get Nothing
 - I'm one of those readers that believes that if I stick to a series or trilogy and there is a big battle brewing then I should get a big battle with a lot of action at the end. I believe that since I've waited this long and read countless of pages that I think I should get a big reward. Yes, that does sound selfish and it is, but I can't help how I feel. I know that not every book needs to have an epic end all battle between good and bad, but the ones that build up to that and I get nothing are the ones I hate. The two books that really disappointed me with an ending that left me wanting more, Mockingjay and Breaking Dawn. What a let down. I want the series/trilogy to go out with a bang. 

10. Generic and Error Riddled Review Requests
- I am really not a big fan of receiving very very generic and not well thought out review requests. I love reading and reviewing books. I love receiving review requests. I don't love receiving a poorly written not friendly and overly generic review request. Or a review request in a genre that I state in my book review policy that I don't read. Sigh.


11. Not Having an Internet Connection in My Apartment
- I recently dealt with moving and not only did I not have time to check my email or update my blog, goodreads, or twitter or anything else for that matter, but it took a couple of days to get internet at my new apartment once we moved. This wasn't really anyone's fault in the long run but it was still annoying. Therefore when I finally logged back into the internet it looked something like this. 

Now that I have spilled my heart out to you by sharing some of my bookish pet peeves I would love to hear what you guys think!

Do you want to read some other great bookish discussion posts? Check out the discussion link up post at The Fiction Conniption!
19 comments
July 18, 2013

Review: Dark Premonitions (Second Sight #3) by: Heather Topham Wood

Dark Premonitions (Second Sight #3) (2013)
273 pages
Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance
Source: I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.
Goodreads Summary: Psychic Kate Edwards had her first premonition—a vision of her own murder by a faceless attacker. With very few clues to go on, she has to use her psychic gifts to uncover who wants her dead. Paranoia sets in and Kate wonders if there’s anybody she can trust.

As Kate fears her impending death, she’s desperate to seek comfort with her ex-boyfriend Jared Corbett. As she tries to win him over once again, she worries that he’ll never forgive her for the mistakes she has made in the past. Kate questions whether fate will give her a chance to be with Jared again before her existence is ended.

Meanwhile, a sixteen-year-old girl has gone missing. The police and her family insist the girl is a troubled runaway, but Kate suspects there’s more to the story. Kate is frantic to locate the girl before her own time runs out.

Dark Premonitions is the third book in the Second Sight series.

My Review

**This review contains spoilers of the first two books in the series. In case you missed it before, here are my 4.5 star reviews for Second Sight #1, First Visions.& Second Sight #2 New Revelations!

Once again I sing my praises to Heather Topham Wood for writing a charming and intense New Adult paranormal romance. I find the Second Sight series to be easy (not in a bad sense) and fun reads.

The characters are back in Dark Premonitions and just as entertaining as they were in the first two novels of the Second Sight series. Kate Edwards tries to win back Jared’s heart while continuing to figure out her psychic gifts that are becoming more complex. She never thought she would be able to see the future, let alone a horrible one. Jared is as charming as ever, although frustrating at times, but mostly I just I wish I could fix his broken heart. And don't worry Declan fans, he is as cocky and interesting as before. There are also some great mother-daughter moments. 

Wood keeps this series going with more twists and turns and drama from start to finish. Although it has its darker side, there is still plenty of comic relief so you won't get too depressed while reading. This book in the series in particular had a good sense of mystery and some very interesting scenes with Jared and Kate interacting.

Fans of the first two books will love this one as well, maybe even more so. I couldn't stop reading Dark Premonitions once I started, which is always a sign of a great read. The ending will leave you in awe.

If you haven’t read this series yet you really should. If you have read the previous two books and have yet to read this one then I’m not sure what you are waiting for. I am highly anticipating the release of the last book in the Second Sight series which should be out later this year.

** I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review. Thanks Heather!


My Rating: 4.5/5 
2 comments
July 17, 2013

Library Loot #10

Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

I haven't done a library loot post in ages and I'm so happy to be back! My husband and I just moved to a new town which means I got to explore a brand new library, and man does this library rock my world. It is way bigger than my old one and it has a drive through window where you can pick up books you have on hold or if you call an hour in advance they can get your books ready for you and you just drive up to the window to check them out! I like to browse so I probably won't use this window too much but it is perfect on those days where I just want to grab a book I've been waiting on. I walked through those library doors to get my library card and I was like a kid in a candy shop. Anyway, now that I am done rambling here is my loot! I am super excited about each and every book I checked out.



9 comments
July 16, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday #11: Authors Who Deserve More Recognition

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly event hosted over at The Broke and the Bookish. 

This week's topic:Top Ten Seven Authors Who Deserve More Recognition. This one was kind of a hard topic for me. I think it was difficult because I feel like most of the authors I read are pretty well known already. Click the book titles to find out more about them! 

1. Christopher Farnsworth is a man who knows how to write an awesome vampire novel without the mushy love stuff. His Nathaniel Cade series is awesome. Full of crazy monsters and a vampire that works for the president of the United States of America. I'm still not sure why I don't see more people in love with his books as I am. Read: Blood Oath (Nathaniel Cade #1)

2. Heather Topham Wood is a wonderful New Adult author who is incredibly nice to her readers and whose books are unique and aren't all just about steamy scenes and romance. Who doesn't love reading about a young snarky woman who has psychic visions? Read: First Visions (Second Sight #1)


3. Cate Tiernan knows how to write a good paranormal novel. I was smitten with this author when her Sweep series featuring witchcraft came out back in 2001. I don't know if I'm missing something or what but I don't see nearly enough people reading her books. Read: Book of Shadows (Wicca #1) or Immortal Beloved (Immortal Beloved #1)

4. R.L. Mathewson is a self-published author that rocks my world. I love spreading the word about her books whenever I can. She writes cute and hilarious (and don't worry they are steamy too) romance novels and a very well done and unique vampire series. Read: Playing for Keeps (Neighbor from Hell #1) and Tall, Dark, & Lonely (Pyte/Sentinel #1)

5. Nikki Jefford is another author who deserves some more recognition. I just read her New Adult vampire novel a couple of months ago and really enjoyed it. She also writes a young adult paranormal fantasy series. Read: Aurora Sky Vampire Hunter: Volume 1 Transfusion

6. John Marsden is still amazing to this day. I am a huge fan of the Tomorrow series and I never understood why his books are not more popular. I know this series came out in the 90's and was probably more popular then but I don't remember, but they are due for a comeback anyway. The Tomorrow Series is one of the best young adult series that I have ever read and will always remember. I know many people that have never even heard of John Marsden. :( Read: Tomorrow, When the War Began (Tomorrow #1)

7. How to Lead a Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller is an amazing book. Why is everyone not reading it? I'm really surprised it isn't more popular. I mean this author should get way more recognition for this book alone. I have yet to read any other books by her so I can't say anything about those but I'm going to give them a try. Read: How to Lead a Life of Crime

Please share links to your Top Ten Tuesday posts below and tell me what you think of mine. :) I can't wait to see everyone else's lists to find out what authors I'm missing out on.
14 comments
July 15, 2013

Review: Throne of Glass by: Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass by: Sarah J. Maas (#1) (2012)
404 pages
Genre: Young Adult/High Fantasy
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Source: The library
Goodreads Summary: After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin. Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king's council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she'll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom.

Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she's bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her... but it's the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead... quickly followed by another.
Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

My Review

Warning: When you start reading this book, which you should right away, even before finishing this review is fine, you should be warned that late night reading and possibly no sleep will incur once you begin reading Throne of Glass.

Throne of Glass, to put it simply, was an amazing read. Why oh why did it take me so long to read this? Luckily, there is one upside for waiting so long to read Throne of glass (only one mind you) and that is I now don’t have to wait long for the sequel because it comes out in August! So listen here, I’m going to start my review off with a simple request, READ THIS BOOK RIGHT NOW! Seriously, stop what you are doing and get a copy in some way. This book is especially perfect for fans of Graceling by Kristin Cashore. Did I mention that I’m not even a big high fantasy fan but I loved this book?

I will admit this book is not perfect, (well it is 99% perfect which is pretty darn close) but it was so darn good that I gave it 5 stars anyway. I only had a few very tiny issues with Calaena’s character and a tiny issue with trying to follow the magic in the book, but I’m thinking the magic part will work itself out more in the next book.

The relationships in Throne of Glass were done right. Nothing too unbelievable and the love triangle (well there isn’t too much of one but I think there will be) didn’t bother me at all, and that is saying something. Both men were complex, sexy, and I can’t even choose which one I love more.

Now I will be a little creepy…  Celaena is a heroine that is so kick ass that I’m pretty sure I am in love with her. She has a few flaws and I was hoping to get to see her more in action, but in the end she had my heart. This assassin rocks my world in so many ways. I love listening to her strategic assassin type planning whenever she is in any kind of situation, always checking for exits and the best way to take someone down. She is also girly at times and a little full of herself, but I thought that really rounded out her character. Oh and I guess I should mention the minor characters, they all rock in their own way too. I think that about sums that up.

The world building was great. A castle made of glass, crazy cool. The magical history worked for me. The evil king that I wanted to throttle was also spot on. The descriptions of everything from the people to the castle to the city were well done. Even the gory type scenes were well written, although I will warn you that they are graphic. I had so many feels while reading Throne of Glass. My heart reached out for the poor souls being treated horribly in a slave camp and for other innocents that had a horrible fate, and especially for Celaena, assassin or not, I felt for her. Oh and the book does get a little crazy but in a glorious way, and the action scenes are perfection and are in abundance.

In case you didn’t go pick up the book like I insisted you do earlier, now is the perfect time. If you are not a fan of high fantasy you may not enjoy this book, but other than that I think many people will enjoy Throne of Glass if they give it a try.

On to the novellas I go while I wait for the next installment.

My Rating: 5/5 
11 comments
July 14, 2013

Top Bookish News of The Past Week

I'm back after a very hectic week of moving! I'm really hoping to have a whole bunch of posts for you this week. So let's start with my usual Sunday bookish news post. :)


Here are all of the top bookish stories, blog posts, pictures, and videos I found this past week. I put this post up every Sunday so come back again next week for more bookish awesomeness. 
Click away and enjoy your Sunday!


ARTICLES

I always carry a book with me in my purse and I even usually try to keep one in my car for back up. You just never know when you are going to be bored and need something to read. Look over Epic Reads' funny list of places you go where you should really bring a book with you.

Get ready all of you Outlander by Diana Gabaldon fans! Starz is turning Outlander into a television series. I don't get Starz but I'm more than willing to figure out a way to watch this one.

Read NPR's book news pile up this week. It's pretty sad when a school reading list given to students is full of typos. Sigh. 


J.K. Rowling has a new book coming out! That's right folks, she was writing under the name Robert Galbraith. The book sounds interesting and it is on netgalley. 



BLOG POSTS

Writer of Wrongs introduced a new feature on her blog, Baking the Books. It is a really cute idea and this week she shares a recipe for Butterbeer Cupcakes!

Read Jamie's hilarious, interesting, and true post about how her life of being married to a non-reader works out just fine in many ways. 


Do you ever get nervous that your blog will be deleted?! Well you may want to start thinking about this becoming a problem after reading Parajunkee's post on how Goggle can delete your blog. I'm not overly worried because I download/backup my blog once a month. I do hope to one day move up in the blogger world and get my very own paid for website, but I don't think that will be happening soon. On a happier note, I have a very very small number of posts on my blog that Parajunkee talks about as being a red flag so I think I will be good for now. *fingers crossed*


Bookish Treasures has a great reading list for those of you looking for New Adult novels that are unique and stray away from the norm.



VIDEO

Breaking Down the Apple E-Books Court Ruling


4 comments
July 11, 2013

Blog Tour: Branded by: Abi Ketner & Missy Kalicicki (Review)


Branded by: Abi Ketner & Missy Kalicicki (Sinners #1) (2013)
252 pages
Genre: YA/Dystopian/Romance
Source: I received a free copy of the book from the author and CBL Book Tours.
Purchase: Barnes and Noble | Amazon
Synopsis: Twenty years ago the Commander came into power and murdered all who opposed him. In his
warped mind, the seven deadliest sins were the downfall of our society. He created the Hole where sinners are branded according to their sins and might survive a few years. At best. Now LUST wraps around my neck like blue fingers strangling me. I’ve been accused of a crime I didn’t commit and now the Hole is my new home.

Darkness. Death. Violence. Pain.

Now, every day is a fight for survival. But I won’t die. I won’t let them win.

The Hole can’t keep me. The Hole can’t break me.
I am more than my brand. I’m a fighter.
My name is Lexi Hamilton, and this is my story.

My Review

Branded is an original dysoptian novel full of dark and twisty ideas, a lot of romance, and a crazy world. I cringed more times than not and still enjoyed reading Branded from start to finish in one day.

Branded starts off with a bang, immediately pulling the reader into Lexi's crazy life. We witness the capture of Lexi and her being forced into the Hole, or what I like to call a living nightmare or just simply, Hell. Full of graphic imagery of the poor and mistreated "sinners," this book was at times hard to swallow, but really helped give me a sense of what the Hole was really like. The authors did a great job with descriptions of pretty much everything in Lexi's world, and this book is pretty fast paced and action packed, making it easy for you to get pulled into the pages.

Lexi is an pretty good main character  She is a little too weak for my taste though. She has a horrible past that makes up for some of her weakness, but I'm still not sure how I felt about her in the end. I will say that she may act stupidly at times but she is very passionate, and that I liked about her. I think I was just hoping for a slightly stronger female lead, although she is pretty kick ass by the end of the novel. I did however really like her guard, Cole. He was an interesting character that reminded me of a knight in shining armor whose job is to keep the damsel in distress safe. ( I liked that about his character, and I know saying that is counter to saying that I wanted Lexi to be stronger. Sometimes I just don't make sense and I can't help it.) He was complex and handsome.  I may even add him to my book boyfriend list. ;) My favorite character of all would have to be Zues, Cole's dog. He is one hell of a guard dog and was beyond lovable. He really did steal the show if I do say so myself.

Let's talk romance, because it is a pretty big part of this book. Although somewhat too mushy and crazy, I still think the romance was handled well given the circumstances of the characters. There are some really good love type quotes you could pull out of this book. I will say that this is definitely a Romeo and Juliet type love story, luckily if done correctly I really enjoy this type of plot, and this one was done correctly. The only real problem I had with the romance was that I felt that it could have been more complex and maybe just a tad bit less corny. 

There were not as many shocking moments as I had hoped, but the well written action scenes made up for it. The end was perfect and had me teary eyed. I can tell you that I will be reading the next book in this series when it comes out. Overall, I did really enjoy reading Branded even with the very few things in the book that bothered me.

Give this book a chance if you are looking for a darker young adult dystopian novel. It was a good read. Just make sure you set some time aside to read it because you will not want to put it down.

My Rating: 3.5/5


Authors

Abi and Missy met in the summer of 1999 at college orientation and have been best friends ever since. After college, they added jobs, husbands and kids to their lives, but they still found time for their friendship. Instead of hanging out on weekends, they went to dinner once a month and reviewed books. What started out as an enjoyable hobby has now become an incredible adventure.
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