March 31, 2015

TTT #35: Ten Books I Recently Added to My TBR Pile


Not only am I excited to share the top ten books I recently added to my TBR pile with everyone today, but I am mostly excited to find some new books to add to my own TBR pile. Not that it isn't big enough already. Share your Top Ten Tuesday picks with me in the comments! **All book titles are linked up to goodreads if you want to find out more about each one.

Tried & True (to me) Authors

1. Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin

2. Signs Point to Yes by Sandy Hall

3. A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis

4. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

5. The Dark Dreamer by Heather Topham Wood

Shiny and New (to me) Authors

6. Legacy of Kings by Eleanor Herman

7. The Way We Bared Our Souls by Willa Strayhorn

8. Dreamland by Robert L Anderson

9. The Oathbreaker's Shadow by Amy McCulloch

10. Depth by Lev A.C. Rosen

8 comments
March 30, 2015

Review: Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover

Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover (March 2014)
367 pages
Genre: New Adult/Romance
Publisher: Atria
Source: The Library.
Purchase: Barnes & Noble | Amazon | The Book Depository
My Rating:
Goodreads Summary: At twenty-two years old, Sydney is enjoying a great life: She’s in college, working a steady job, in love with her wonderful boyfriend, Hunter, and rooming with her best friend, Tori. But everything changes when she discovers that Hunter is cheating on her—and she’s forced to decide what her next move should be.

Soon, Sydney finds herself captivated by her mysterious and attractive neighbor, Ridge. She can't take her eyes off him or stop listening to the passionate way he plays his guitar every evening out on his balcony. And there’s something about Sydney that Ridge can’t ignore, either. They soon find themselves needing each other in more ways than one.

A passionate tale of friendship, betrayal, and romance, Maybe Someday will immerse readers in Sydney’s tumultuous world from the very first page.

MY REVIEW

I did it! I read my very first Colleen Hoover book. I feel like I am the last person on earth to read a book by her. Since I am sure you are all just dying to her what I thought I will give it to you straight. I loved it.

When my friend at work forced this book on me I was nervous to read it. I was worried that this book was going to be another romance novel where everyone has baggage, is childish, there is a bad boy, and they never talk out their feelings. It turns out that this book didn't really have any of those things, at least not to their extremes. It was different. Maybe Someday is a book that I won't soon forget. 

Did I love the characters? You bet. I wish Sydney and Ridge were real so they could be my friends too. No joke. Their dynamic and attraction were wonderfully written. The sexual tension was glorious. Sydney is a cool girl who ended up with a crappy guy, but that led her to Ridge. I don't want to talk all that much about their friendship because I don't want to ruin any of the tiny surprises and plot points. Let's just say I love all the characters in this book, and I mean ALL.

Did I love the writing? I sure did. I laughed. I got teary eyed. I felt a wide range of emotions while reading Maybe Someday. After a handful of pages in I became addicted to the story and Hoover's writing. There was just something about it that drew me in. The story was unique and real. It was painful and playful. I felt raw. It was marvelous even if it was a little drawn out in the middle when the story seemed to stall just for a few beats.

Should you read Maybe Someday? Yes. Will I read more books by this author? Definitely. When I picked up this book I was in the mood for a love story, one that would make me laugh and was a little emotional but not overly depressing. I got what I was looking for.

8 comments
March 26, 2015

Review: We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach

We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach (March 24, 2015)
384 pages
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Source: I received a free ARC at ALA Midwinter. This did not affect my honest review. Thanks Simon & Schuster!
Purchase: Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository | Amazon
My Rating:
Goodreads Summary: Four high school seniors put their hopes, hearts, and humanity on the line as an asteroid hurtles toward Earth in this contemporary novel.

They always say that high school is the best time of your life.

Peter, the star basketball player at his school, is worried “they” might actually be right. Meanwhile Eliza can’t wait to escape Seattle—and her reputation—and perfect-on-paper Anita wonders if admission to Princeton is worth the price of abandoning her real dreams. Andy, for his part, doesn’t understand all the fuss about college and career—the future can wait.

Or can it? Because it turns out the future is hurtling through space with the potential to wipe out life on Earth. As these four seniors—along with the rest of the planet—wait to see what damage an asteroid will cause, they must abandon all thoughts of the future and decide how they’re going to spend what remains of the present.

MY REVIEW

I had the hardest time getting through this book. In all honesty I can't pinpoint exactly why I had such a hard time getting into the story. Sure it was a little slow at first but that usually wouldn't affect my reading all that much. I think it was my own personal life that truly affected my reading and enjoyment of We All Looked Up. I was in a weird reading funk when I started this book AND I was also having a very stressful week. This type of heavier book probably shouldn't have been my reading choice at the time, but it was. I am sad to say that I can't go back in time and fix my mistake. Without further ado, here is my somewhat coherent but probably not very helpful review of We All Looked Up.

We All Looked Up had its boring moments, its spectacular moments, and its so-so moments. I did enjoy the book overall no matter how this review may come off.

We All Looked Up is a deeper book. It focuses on the idea of living in the moment. We see the characters try to figure out how they want to spend their final hours alive rather than trying to just survive the upcoming possible apocalypse. It started off slower for me but ended strong. I never did end up connecting with the characters in any deep way though, making this type of story harder for me to appreciate. When I finally finished reading the book I had to ask myself one question... Was it profound? Given the synopsis and the type of book I took this to be I thought that this was a very important question to ask myself after I finished reading. Sadly, I can't seem to answer the question. I can't make up my mind. Maybe that means it didn't have that big of an impact on me. I don't know.

Do I recommend that you give this book a read? Sure. I feel like I can't really be all that objective here. If you are curious about the book then I suggest you go ahead and give it a go. Once again I apologize for this very wishy washy review. I hope that if you choose to read We All Looked Up and love it.

8 comments
March 25, 2015

Library Loot #31


Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

** I have a small loot this week since I still have a lot of books out from my last couple of library trips.


MY LIBRARY LOOT

1. I hope this lives up to the hype.

2. I just read my first book by this author (Maybe Someday) and enjoyed it enough that I want to try more.

3. I liked this author's Article 5 trilogy.

4. I need to read this one for my Outlander challenge. I hope it is as good as the first one.

5. The next Chicagoland Vampire book.

6. It's here!!!


8 comments
March 23, 2015

It's Bloggiesta time!

I have spring cleaning fever! I have cleaned out and organized my laptop. I have cleaned out and organized my linen closet in the apartment. I cleaned out my locker at work. I even have a date set for doing a big clean of the apartment next month. I guess it is time I use my spring cleaning fever to give my blog some updates. Therefore, I decided to participate in Bloggiesta!

Find out more information here!

This is the first time I have ever participated in Bloggiesta and I'm pretty excited. I have heard about it before and seen it around the web but never really got into it. Now I am more than ready to tell Bloggiesta to... Bring. It. On. :) As you all know It's a Book Life just got a new face lift and ever since then I have been in the mood to make it the best that it can be. So here we go.

To-Do List

1. Brainstorm and draft a few discussion posts.
2. Update my 2015 book Challenges progress posts.
3. Catch up on all reviews. (I think I am only three behind because I have been being good about this so far this year.)
4. Update old posts into my new design/theme. (I want to at least get another 7 months of old posts updated.)
5. Write up Outlander Challenge posts and schedule them out.
6. Do some future Top Ten Tuesday posts.
7. Create a tentative blogging schedule in my new planner.
8. Organize my e-books. Seriously.
9. Participate in a couple of Twitter Chats.
    - Monday Chat: PEOPLE: Giving and Getting Comments and Followers
    - Thursday Chat: REVIEWS and Other Content Ideas
10. Complete some mini challenges.
    - Create a Treasure Trove of Blog Post Ideas
    - Twitter Chat Tutorial 
    - Using Trello to Organize All the Things
11. Catch up on comments on my blog and visit other blogs that have commented.
12. Organize Bloglovin.
13. Update my goodreads to-read list.
14. Figure out a way to really utilize Twitter. (Maybe make a checklist of sorts.)
15. Find some new potential blogger friends. :)
16. Look over the different pages on the blog and find ways to make them even better.
17. Update my Netgalley profile.

FINAL THOUGHTS

This was my first time participating in Bloggiesta and I think I did a pretty good job! I learned a lot of new things, met some new bloggers, spent a lot of time really cleaning up my blog, and had fun. Although I didn't get everything done on my list I feel pretty good about what I did accomplish. Even after this week I can safely say that my spring cleaning fever is still here to stay... which is a good thing because I still would like to get the rest of the items on my list completed.

Did you participate in Bloggiesta? What were your goals? Did you accomplish them? Share below!


17 comments
March 22, 2015

The Bookish Report

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!

FUN BOOKISH NEWS

So I saw the trailer for Insurgent a while ago and was really confused, which apparently I should have been because the movie is radically different from the book.

Book art is awesome. End of story.

These Harry Potter wedding ideas are the best! Too bad I am already married. ;)

Veronica Roth is going to have some new books published!

Have you heard of the app Clean Reader?! Come on. Really?

Look at this cast for the live-action version of Beauty and the Beast!


FELLOW BOOK BLOGGER POSTS

The Book Addict's Guide - Young Adult Meets Friends - LOVE this post. Perfect for readers who love Friends.

Recaptains - Happy Two Years - This is a MUST visit site.

The Novel Hermit - Essential Reading | Five Books that Mim From Mosquitoland Would Love & Why - I loved Mosquitoland (It's a must read.) and I love this list.

Parajunkee - Social Media Day 2 Day - This post has a nice inforgraphic with some social media tips and lists.

VIDEO OF THE WEEK



9 comments
March 19, 2015

Review: Salt & Stone by Victoria Scott

Salt & Stone (Fire & Flood #2) by Victoria Scott (Feb. 24, 2015)
320 pages
Genre: Young Adult/Dystopian
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Source: The Library.
Purchase: Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository | Amazon
My Rating:
Goodreads Summary: What would you do to save someone you love?

In Fire & Flood, Tella Holloway faced a dangerous trek through the jungle and across the desert, all to remain a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed for a chance at obtaining the Cure for her brother. She can't quit--she has to win the race, save Cody, and then fight to make sure the race stops before it can claim any more lives. In the next legs of the race, across the ocean and over mountains, Tella will face frostbite, sharks, avalanche, and twisted new rules in the race.

But what if the danger is deeper than that? How do you know who to trust when everyone's keeping secrets? What do you do when the person you'd relied on most suddenly isn't there for support? How do you weigh one life against another?

The race is coming to an end, and Tella is running out of time, resources, and strength. At the start of the race there were one hundred twenty-two Contenders. As Tella and her remaining friends start the final part of the race, just forty-one are left--and only one can win.

MY REVIEW

On the cover of Salt & Stone there is a blurb that pretty much sums up the book in its entirety. I have never seen one so true before. "Mind-blowingly intense." - Kirkus Reviews, starred review

After reading the very first page of the book I knew this one was going to be crazy. "That's the thing about life: When you're dealt a crappy situation, you think to yourself, at least it can't get any worse than this. And then life slaps you upside the head for being naive. ~ pg. 4

Once again Victoria Scott managed to write an amazingly stressful, in a glorious way, quick paced action packed story. There were many OMG Moments, several nail biting moments, a hand full of laughing out loud moments, and there were even a few sighing with happiness moments. I just want you to know what awesomeness you are in for when (notice I say when and not if) you pick up this book and read it.

The wonderful writing is just another reason as to why you will read this book. "They are not the good guys. They are the monster under the bed, a slippery shadow in the corner at midnight. They are the thing you didn't think to fear until it was too late." ~ pg. 38

Now let's get to the important stuff. The pandoras (we get new and old), especially Madox (he is too adorable for words), still managed to delight me, surprise me, make me giggle, and make me oh so envious of the characters in the story because they get to have pandoras and I don't. We get to see Tella grow as a character and I loved that! She really starts to become more independent and even more determined to win the race. For those of you that liked her just how she was in the first book, don't worry, she still sometimes reminisces and wonders about fashion and stuff too. She doesn't lose that part of herself. So what about Guy? He also struggled with some personal stuff and really learned more about himself on this deathly race. I like Guy a lot and I really like how both Guy and Tella challenge each other in ways they probably didn't even realize they should be challenged in. I did however wish there was MORE in the ways of Guy and Tell's interactions.

Salt & Stone was beyond intense and I loved every single stressful second of it. Read this series if you haven't yet. They are quick action packed reads that will keep you on the edge of your seat. To put it simply, Salt & Stone is so very good!

Salt & Stone was a darn near perfect sequel to Fire & Flood. I so very hope that the publisher decides to take on the third book. If there is no third book I will cry. No joke. I will ugly cry. Here is my review of the first book, Fire & Flood.

12 comments
March 18, 2015

I Feel Like Gabbing Today


** I have no idea how often I will post this feature. It is a work in progress. I do however know that I want to share with you the very random thoughts that pop into my head and chat with you about them. Many are bookish thoughts and many are not. I feel like I don't have enough discussion type posts on the blog so I am giving this a whirl. Some days I will talk about a specific topic and sometimes I will just throw some random thoughts at you. So please sit back, relax, and take a second to chat with me today.

Random Thoughts

1. I would like a bookmark that I can attach to my person while I am reading. I can't even begin to tell you how many times I lose a bookmark while reading! I am either sitting on it, it falls under the bed, it somehow gets dragged across the room, or it generally just ends up disappearing completely.

2. I'm still obsessing over my new blog design. I keep telling everyone about it. I know I am starting to annoy people, but I am not sure I care. ;)

3. I have been exercising every day (10-40 minutes a day) for the past month. I am so proud of myself. Even though I haven't really lost a lot of weight I already feel healthier.

4. It was 70 degrees here on Monday!!! I went for a long walk with my husband and I loved every single second of it. I love spring and I am not in any way sad to say good bye to winter.

5. My library just got a 3D Printer. That thing is very cool. I took a training class on it and I already want to make so many things. They are opening it up to the public in a couple of months after all of our renovations are done. I can't wait to see what the patrons think.

6. I might be slightly stressed and crazy busy right now, but I still managed to find time to start watching Sleepy Hollow and become addicted.

7. I haven't read a single page of a single book in 3 days! I just wasn't in the mood or something. :/ That changes TODAY. (After I finish doing my blog stuff.)

8. I spent an hour last night organizing all of my files and stuff on my computer. It was a mess! Now it is all pretty and organized and it is a lot easier to find things. I am really taking this spring cleaning thing seriously.

Tell me, how are you doing today? Do you have problems keeping track of your bookmarks as well? How is the weather where you live? Chat with me!


12 comments
March 16, 2015

TTT #34: My Spring TBR List


This list was hard to come up with. I just decided to pick 10 books that I really really want to read in the near future. I really hope to stick to this list... but you never know. Share your lists with me in the comments below. Happy reading everyone!

1. Things We Know by Heart by Jessi Kirby: I think this one is going to be a new favorite of mine.
2. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard: I really hope this is as epic as everyone claims it is.
3. The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West: Kasie West wrote this. Need I say more?
4. Red Rising by Pierce Brown: This one is for you Nicole! 
5. Half Wild by Sally Green:  I loved the first book, Half Bad.
6. The Perilous Sea by Sherry Thomas: The magic. I want the magic and the ship.
7. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins: I feel left out when everyone else at my job has read this one but me.
8. H2O (The Rain) by Virginia Bergin: I am always happy to try a new survival book.
9. The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin: I have only heard good things about this book and I promised my mom I would read it.
10. Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon: I may be nervous to read the sequel to Outlander since I liked the first book so much, but I'm going to dive in and just do it.


25 comments

Review: The Last Dragonslayer by Jasper Fforde

The Last Dragonslayer (#1) by Jasper Fforde (2012)
287 pages
Genre: Young Adult/Fantasy
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Source: The library.
My Rating:
Goodreads Summary: In the good old days, magic was indispensable—it could both save a kingdom and clear a clogged drain. But now magic is fading: drain cleaner is cheaper than a spell, and magic carpets are used for pizza delivery. Fifteen-year-old foundling Jennifer Strange runs Kazam, an employment agency for magicians—but it’s hard to stay in business when magic is drying up. And then the visions start, predicting the death of the world’s last dragon at the hands of an unnamed Dragonslayer. If the visions are true, everything will change for Kazam—and for Jennifer. Because something is coming. Something known as . . . Big Magic.

MY REVIEW

The Last Dragonslayer has to be the most fun book I have ever read... EVER. It sent me on the most amazing zany fantasy adventure. Fforde knows how to weave a very good story. One with hilarity, characters that leave a lasting impression, and one that shows love to all creatures.

Jennifer Strange works as a manager for an agency for magicians. Jennifer is a tough heroine, an amazing girl, and a straight-up no nonsense taker. She is witty and wonderful just like the many other unique characters that grace the pages of The Last Dragonslayer. This book is like no other book I have read before. It's crazy in an absolute perfect way. Not only does the book contain magic and dragons, but there is a creature called the Quarkbeast that will forever stay with you. Talk about an animal I wish was real.

My best advice when getting ready to read this book, just close your eyes and jump in. Expect it to be wacky and fun. The Last Dragonslayer put a smile on my face the entire time I was reading it. Everything is unique. Even when the story seems to go at an extremely fast pace that made me scratch my head at some of the small world building instances, I didn't care. The world is crazy enough that it doesn't really matter if you always know all the rules.

There was nothing in The Last Dragonslayer that I didn't love. This is the BEST book choice for when you want to be put in a happy mood. It's full weird and full wonderfully shockingly good.

5 comments
March 13, 2015

A Look Back: It's a Book Life Through the Ages

Do you notice that my blog looks a little different? Or I guess I should say a LOT different?! Do you? This is how excited I am right now about the new look of my blog!




Okay, I think you get it.

For Christmas my husband gifted me with offering to pay for a professional designer to update the look of my blog for me. Since I have been doing this on my own since I first started this blog, almost three years ago, I was ecstatic. I am no designer and only know a little CSS and such so I could only do so much blog designing on my own. To celebrate I thought I would show you my three main past blogger headers so you could reminisce a little with me and see how awesome my blog has progressed through the ages. ;)

The Beginning

Here is my first attempt to design my own blog header.


I had no idea what I was doing at the time I made this and I think it turned out pretty good. After a while I got bored with this header and kind of wanted something that had a different feel to it. I was just ready to spice up my blog a bit and I was tired of looking at the same thing every day so I went ahead and gave the design thing another whirl.

The Middle

Here is the something fresh I came up with.


Not to shabby if I do say so myself. I was really enjoying this new look for a long while. Then I got bored again and when I took a second to look at the header a little closer I realized that the font wasn't doing anything for me. So I created my most recent header. (I took a fuller shot of my blog so you could also see my valiant effort at creating a cool background and side bar headings. Once again, I thought I did a pretty good job with such little experience.)


I loved the look of this one better even though it was really similar to my previous header. I thought it was super cute. I am pretty proud that I made all this myself, but after a while I realized that there really wasn't much else I could do on my own to give my blog a face lift. I was also looking for something a little more professional looking. I am kind of a very frugal person, and therefore I never thought I would spend money on having someone design my blog for me, but when my husband said he would buy me a blog redesign for Christmas as my gift... I was sold.

Out With the Old. In with the new.

MY NEW PRETTY.


Stephanie from These Paper Hearts was wonderful to work with and made my now current blog design. I asked for something fun, clean, and professional and I got just that. I freaking LOVE it.

I really think the images in the header are a great representation of my book life. I work at a library and have always used my local one since I was little hence the library card, the books are pretty self-explanatory items, I am always drinking coffee, I wear glasses, and the journal represents my writing.

Once again, a huge thank you to Stephanie!

I'm sorry to say that due to time restraints and her new job Stephanie is no longer creating new blog designs, but you can find a whole bunch of her awesome blogging tips and tricks and design help on her blog These Paper Hearts.

12 comments
March 12, 2015

Blog Tour Review & Giveaway: Adapted for Film




Adapted for Film by Stacey Rourke
Genre: Romance
Source: I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review as part of Xpresso Book Tours.
Purchase: Amazon
Synopsis: Aubrey Evans is living every author’s dream; her sizzling romance novel is being turned into a blockbuster film. She would be celebrating this momentous event, if she wasn’t busy fighting over every tiny production detail with the maddeningly cavalier director, Kole Camden.

When news of their heated rivalry hits the gossip columns, drastic measures must be taken to save their sinking project. In an elaborate PR hoax, she is publicly linked to Greyson Meyers, the swoon-worthy star of her movie. A whirl-wind love affair is staged for the couple to mirror the steamy chapters of her own books.

Can the introverted author resist the charms of Hollywood’s sexiest leading man? Or will love find her in the City of Angels?

My Review

Adapted for Film was a cute read. It was playful and made me giggle quite a bit. I always love a romance novel that can get me to laugh. Those are usually my favorite kinds.

Aubrey is a likeable enough character, one I even related to at times. I also enjoyed the minor characters a good deal as well. Kole was swoon worthy and cute and I loved her best friend Tandy the most. Even though I did like the irresistible actor Greyson, he was a very typical character without any unique charms. I should also note that there were a few good steamy scenes between the characters, an important factor when reading/rating a romance novel.

SometimesAdapted for Film had a few too many silly stupid moments, but that didn't cloud the fact that it was a joy to read. One of my favorite things about this novel is its format. The whole story is pretty much told by Aubrey to a reporter during an interview. My other favorite aspect of the book was getting to read about the whole book to movie adaption process. As an avid reader who can get frustrated when movies based on books turn bad, I found this part of the novel rather entertaining and to my liking.

Although Adapted for Film had pretty much all the same romance plot points I've read before, it was still a good entertaining read.


The Author

- RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel
- Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012
- Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best - Teen Book of 2013

Stacey Rourke lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant, dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head. Mark your calendars! Her latest literary adventure, Crane, will release May 26, 2014. She is currently hard at work on the continuations of this thrilling Legends Saga, as well as other literary projects.

Giveaway

4 comments
March 9, 2015

Review: Undead with Benefits by Jeff Hart

Undead with Benefits (#2) by Jeff Hart (Aug. 2014)
416 pages
Genre: Young Adult/Zombie/Comedy/Romance
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: I bought it.
Purchase: Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository | Amazon
My Rating:  
Goodreads Summary: The living dead are living it up in this hilarious and surprisingly romantic sequel to Eat, Brains, Love, which Kirkus Reviews called “one hell of a road trip...funny, gross, and scary in equal, alternating measures."


Jake and Amanda are in love, on the run—and undead. They've teamed up with Cass, who’s ditched her former job as shady government psychic zombie-tracker, and they're headed across the border into Iowa, where there’s rumored to be a zombie cure.

Armed with a trunk full of guinea pigs (aka zombie snacks), they're ready to take on the Midwest’s first undead warlord, the psycho psychic out for their blood, and their own super awkward love triangle. But the virus is spreading faster than you can say "zombie apocalypse," and Jake, Amanda, and Cass have to find the cure—if it even exists—before the whole state of Iowa goes up in flames.

With its heartwarming blend of guts, romance, and spot-on teen humor, this road trip–ready paperback original is perfect for fans of Isaac Marion's Warm Bodies and AMC’s The Walking Dead. Readers will devour Jeff Hart's fresh, funny, and irreverent take on love and life (well, unlife) in an eat-or-be-eaten world.

My Review

It has gore. It has hilarious moments. It has brains.

Undead with Benefits is a humorous teenage story about love and friendship in a world slowly filling with zombies. This is the sequel to Eat Brains Love. Although I enjoyed the first book better, this one still packed a punch.

The reader gets to see inside the head of the hormone filled Jake, also a zombie, and Cass, the girl who you can’t help but like, also someone with psychic type powers. Jake’s girlfriend, the snotty Amanda, also a zombie, is part of the three person crew on a road trip to Iowa, where they hope to find the zombie cure.

The book starts out a little slow considering who is in the weird trio of travelers. Not a lot starts to happen until you get about 70 pages in. At that point the plot really starts to move forward and at this time I finally felt like Undead with Benefits had a better chance of living up to its predecessor. I was relieved to finally be completely engrossed in the story. What I thought was going to be kind of a lame teenage book (which is saying something since it stars zombies and psychics) turned into a very cool and funny novel. I liked the amount of blood and guts there was mixed in with the funny one-liners. It’s always interesting when zombies try to live off of eating just genuine pigs. Later in the story when it picked up we also get to meet new characters and get a new setting, which made everything that much more entertaining and interesting.

Undead with Benefits is a good book, but the first book in the series, Eat Brains Love, was a great book. I still say you should give this series a try, especially if you like a good laugh given to you by some teenage zombies. I'm not sure if there is going to be a third book, but if there is that would be nice, if there isn't, the ending wasn't really all that bad.

Check out my review of the first book! My Four Star Review of Eat, Brains, Love


12 comments
March 6, 2015

The Taylor Swift Book Tag

Graphic thanks to Danielle @ Love at First Page!


Nicole over at The Quiet Concert tagged me in this fun book tag and I couldn't resist. I just had to participate! The tag originated over at The Book Life.

1. ‘WE ARE NEVER EVER GETTING BACK TOGETHER’

Pick a book (or book series) that you were pretty sure you were in love with, but then wanted to break up with
The House of Night Series by P.C. Cast - I started off enjoying this series a great deal but then it started to seem never ending and became very repetitive. I just felt like the story was going no where and after a few books the main character continued to be so childish. I was over it. I haven't read the last few and don't plan to. I broke up with this series.

2. ‘RED’ 

Pick a book with a RED cover 
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas - Not only do I love the cover, but while looking for other books I have read with red covers I found my options very limiting. Interesting.

3. ‘THE BEST DAY’ 

Pick a book that makes you feel nostalgic 
Harry Potter - I know HP is the obvious choice here but I still have to pick it.

4. ‘LOVE STORY’ 

Pick a book with forbidden love 
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah HarknessDiana Bishop and Mathew Clairmont - Witches and vampires are not supposed to be together. I love these two.

5. ‘I KNEW YOU WERE TROUBLE’ 

Pick a book with a bad character you couldn’t help but love  
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo - The Darkling - I just found him so intriguing. 

6. ‘INNOCENT’

Pick a book that someone ruined the ending for 
I seriously can't think of one right now, which I see as a good thing.

7. ‘EVERYTHING HAS CHANGED’

Pick a character from a book who goes through extensive character development 
I just finished Salt & Stone by Victoria Scott and Tella grows so much in that book from the first one! I loved her.

8. ‘YOU BELONG WITH ME’

Pick your most anticipated book release 
I'm going with non-sequel book - A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis - The cover alone has me convinced I need to read it.

9. ‘FOREVER AND ALWAYS’

Pick your favourite book couple
Sooooo trying to pick only one is ridiculous and therefore I am going to pick at least two. I'm going to go with Thorne and Cress (The Lunar Chronicles) because I want them to be together for all of time. My other pick is Chaol and Celaena (Throne of Glass). I am 100% positive that they are destined to be together and should be together in the end.

10. ‘COME BACK, BE HERE’

Pick the book you would least like to lend out, for fear of missing it too much 
All of them?! Kidding... I guess I would have to go with Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. It is a signed copy and I love it. It is so pretty and perfect and I would miss it. Plus, what if I had to urge to re-read it and it was lent out to someone. The HORROR.

11. 'TEARDROPS ON MY GUITAR'

Pick a book that made you cry a lot
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak - I don't need to explain myself with this one I don't think.

12. 'SHAKE IT OFF'

Pick a book that you love so much, you just shake off the haters
Half Bad by Sally Green - I'm not sure there are haters for this book per se, but no one seems to love it as much as I do.

13. 'BLANK SPACE'

Favorite autographed book 
I only have a handful of autographed books, but my favorite has to be Royal Wedding by Meg Cabot. She is the sweetest woman and I loved getting to meet her, especially since I have been a fan of hers for a very long time.

14. 'WELCOME TO NEW YORK'

Favorite setting 
Any world with magic. I'm not even kidding. I of course love Hogwarts the most.

15. 'TODAY WAS A FAIRYTALE'

Favorite retelling 
Cress by Marissa Meyer. Hands down.


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8 comments
March 5, 2015

A Straight to the Point Review: Mosquitoland by David Arnold

Mosquitoland by David Arnold (March 3, 2015)
352 pages
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Publisher: Viking Books for Young Readers
Source:I snagged a free ARC copy at ALA Midwinter 2015. This didn't affect my honest review.
Purchase: Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository | Amazon
My Rating:
Goodreads Synopsis: "I am a collection of oddities, a circus of neurons and electrons: my heart is the ringmaster, my soul is the trapeze artist, and the world is my audience. It sounds strange because it is, and it is, because I am strange."

After the sudden collapse of her family, Mim Malone is dragged from her home in northern Ohio to the "wastelands" of Mississippi, where she lives in a medicated milieu with her dad and new stepmom. Before the dust has a chance to settle, she learns her mother is sick back in Cleveland.

So she ditches her new life and hops aboard a northbound Greyhound bus to her real home and her real mother, meeting a quirky cast of fellow travelers along the way. But when her thousand-mile journey takes a few turns she could never see coming, Mim must confront her own demons, redefining her notions of love, loyalty, and what it means to be sane.

Told in an unforgettable, kaleidoscopic voice, "Mosquitoland" is a modern American odyssey, as hilarious as it is heartbreaking.

MY REVIEW

Mosquitoland is like nothing I've read before. You simply must read it.

Here is why...

Mim is one of the most unique and memorable characters I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. I love her. She along with the people she meets on her journey are each in their own way rich, lively, real, strong, and memorable.

The writing in Mosquitoland is one of a kind. It. Is. Beautiful.

Mim goes on one hell of a journey that you need to witness. It's full of surprises, good and bad.

Mosquitoland is more than just a book. Read it and you will see what I am talking about. I can't even put it into words.

The Bottom Line: Mosquitoland is perfection. It is a MUST read.

5 comments
March 3, 2015

TTT #33: My Favorite Books from the Past Three Years


Below are my Top Ten Books that I Would Classify As my ALL TIME FAVORITE BOOKS from what I read over the past 3 years.How did I narrow down my choices for this list? Well, it was very difficult so I tried to just focus on these two factors. Factor #1: Re-Readability. Was it so good that I plan on reading it again? If yes, then it made the list. Factor #2: How many feels did it give me? If it gave me ALL the feels then it made the list.

HONORABLE MENTIONS
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