Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Waiting On Wednesday: Boys Don't Knit


Boys Don't Knit
Author: T.S. Easton
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication Date: March 24, 2015

Synopsis:
Knitting is a man’s game.
After an incident regarding a crossing guard and a bottle of Martini & Rossi (and his bonehead friends), 17-year-old worrier Ben Fletcher must develop his sense of social alignment, take up a hobby, and do some community service to avoid any further probation.
He takes a knitting class (it was that or his father’s mechanic class) under the impression that it's taught by the hot teacher all the boys like. Turns out, it’s not. Perfect.
Regardless, he sticks with it and comes to find that he’s a natural knitter, maybe even great. It even helps ease his anxiety and worrying. The only challenge now is to keep it hidden from his friends, his crush, and his soccer-obsessed father. What a tangled web Ben has weaved . . . or knitted.
My Thoughts: I like that this book takes traditional gender roles and plays with them. I'm excited to read about Ben and his knitting skills, maybe it'll even inspire me to take up knitting!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

10 Books I Really Want To Read But Don't Own Yet


There are a whole lot more then 10 books I want to read but don't own but these books are all at the top of my list. I've you've read any of them let me know you thoughts in the comments. Also if you have these books and want to trade check out my trade list on YA Book Exchange and shoot me an e-mail!

1 The Prince of Venice Beach by Blake Nelson
2 The Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan
3 The Theory of Everything by Kari Luna

4 Tsarina by J. Nelle Patrick
5 Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas

6 Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
7 What's Left of Me by Kat Zhang
8 When You Were Here by Daisy Whitney

9 Vicious by V.E. Schwab 
10 Forget Me by K.A. Harrington

Monday, August 25, 2014

A Whispered Darkness by Vanessa Barger Bog Tour



A Whispered Darkness
Author: Vanessa Barger
Publisher: Month9Books
Publication Date: August 26, 2014

Synopsis:
When Claire Mallory's father leaves, her mom moves them to a new town and into a dilapidated Victorian house.

The old house creaks and whistles, and smells well -- like it's been abandoned for years. But as the nights grow longer and the shadows take on substance, Claire wonders if the strange sounds and occurrences might be more than the house showing its age.

Just as things start to pick up in Claire's love life, her mother becomes possessed. In an attempt to save her mother and their new home, Claire enlists the help of two boys, each of whom is interested in Claire for different reasons. As she chooses one boy over the other, something dangerous is unleashed, and the spirits make their move.

They aren’t content to moan and scream inside Claire’s house, or even control her mom. They want a taste of freedom, and she’s their key to getting it. But is Claire strong enough to fight off the evil spirits, or will they claim her and her mom before it's all over?
Amazon  Barnes & Noble ♥ Kobo ♥ Chapters Indigo!  TBD  IndieBound


About The Author
Vanessa Barger was born in West Virginia, and through several moves ended up spending the majority of her life in Virginia Beach, Virginia. She is a graduate of George Mason University and Old Dominion University, and has degrees in Graphic Design, a minor in Medieval and Renaissance Literature, and a Masters in Technology Education. She has had articles published in Altered Arts Magazine, has had some artwork displayed in galleries in Ohio and online, and currently teaches engineering, practical physics, drafting and other technological things to high school students in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. She is a member of the SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) and the Virginia Writer's Club. When not writing or teaching, she’s a bookaholic, movie fanatic, and loves to travel. She has one cat, who believes Vanessa lives only to open cat food cans, and can often be found baking when she should be editing.

Website  Twitter  Facebook  Goodreads
Giveaway
  • Four (4) winners will receive a digital copy of A Whispered Darkness by Vanessa Barger (INT)
  • One (1) winner will receive a digital copy of A Whispered Darkness by Vanessa Barger AND a $10 Amazon Gift Card or B&N Gift Card – Winner’s Choice (INT)

Friday, August 22, 2014

Second Star by Alyssa Sheinmel

Second Star
Author: Alyssa Sheinmel
Publisher: Farrar, Straus, & Giroux
Publication Date:
Goodreads ♥ Amazon

Review:
Although Second Star is a loose re-telling of Peter Pan it truly is its own story. Wendy Darling’s brothers, John and Michael, are missing surfers who are presumed dead. Six months after their disappearance Wendy is unwilling to believe that they are gone, instead she thinks they are out surfing. Taking off on her own Wendy begins her search for them.

During the search Wendy runs in to Pete who is living in an abandoned house on the cliffs. Pete is a skilled surfer and Wendy begins surfing in order to get closer to her brothers and figure out just how the ocean called to them.

I really loved the setting and ambiance Sheinmel created. This novel felt like sunshine, summer, and salt air. I could easily envision Pete and Jas’s abandoned houses on the cliff above the beach. I wish I could have curled up and stayed a while longer, it was that sort of place.

Speaking of Jas, he is Pete’s foil and I wouldn’t exactly call him Captain Hook. Honestly, he really doesn’t have a character equivalent in the original story. Jas is his own character. He is a drug dealer who Wendy’s brothers may have hung out with. Wendy, while looking for them, is pulled in to Jas’s world where she finds a piece of herself and I’m not really sure she wants to leave. Jas was probably my favorite character in this novel, although, I usually have a soft spot for teenage drug dealers with problems.

Overall, I liked the twisty-turney plot and how Sheinmel made the timeless tale of Peter Pan truly her own. If you’re looking for a deeper sort of beach read look no further!


Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Girl from the Well Blog Tour

The Girl From The Well
Author: Rin Chupeco
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication Date: August 5, 2014

Synopsis:
You may think me biased, being murdered myself. But my state of being has nothing to do with the curiosity toward my own species, if we can be called such. We do not go gentle, as your poet encourages, into that good night.

A dead girl walks the streets.
She hunts murderers. Child killers, much like the man who threw her body down a well three hundred years ago.
And when a strange boy bearing stranger tattoos moves into the neighborhood so, she discovers, does something else. And soon both will be drawn into the world of eerie doll rituals and dark Shinto exorcisms that will take them from American suburbia to the remote valleys and shrines of Aomori, Japan.
Because the boy has a terrifying secret - one that would just kill to get out.
Goodreads ♥ Amazon ♥ B&N


Book Trailer
Review
Remember when Japanese horror movies were all the rage? Well, The Girl from the Well channels Japanese horror, a la` The Ring and The Grudge, and reinvents the story of the girl from down the well giving her a back story.

The Girl from the Well begins with the ghost killing a killer. It starts off very violently and honestly I was ready to DNF it right there. I wasn’t sure it was my thing, but I read on and I am glad I did!

Rin Chupeco has a very distinctive style of writing and I think this style lent itself well to the horror story atmosphere. I also liked that the feeling she created wasn’t lost when the characters left America and visited Japan.

I really enjoyed how Chupeco made a character who is made out to be a villain in the movies the heroine of this story. It was interesting to see more of her back story and discover how she came to be at the bottom of a well.

I also liked the inclusion in the story of Japanese doll’s and Shinto exorcisms. It is something I’m not very familiar with and I loved watching the old and new Japan meet.

Overall, The Girl from the Well was a dark and atmospheric novel. I enjoyed the setting, and found the story to be fresh and original.

About The Author
Despite an unsettling resemblance to Japanese revenants, Rin always maintains her sense of hummus. Born and raised in Manila, Philippines, she keeps four pets: a dog, two birds, and a husband. Dances like the neighbors are watching.

Her work, The Girl from the Well, is a YA psychological horror novel due out in Fall 2014, pitched as "Dexter" meets "The Grudge". She is represented by Nicole LaBombard and Rebecca Podos of the Helen Rees Agency.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Clear Your Shelf Giveaway Hop


Welcome to the Clear Your Shelf giveaway hop! You have the chance to win one of the below books off my shelf. Just fill out the rafflecopter and you're entered to win. 

The Giver by Lois Lowry
Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
Strands of Bronze and Gold by Jane Nickerson
Second Star by Alyssa B. Sheinmel
We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
Academy 7 by Anne Osterlund
On A Dark Wing by Jordan Dane
The Splendor Falls by Rosemary Clement-Moore


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Drawn by Cecilia Gray

Drawn
Author: Cecilia Gray
Publisher: Gray Life, LLC
Publication Date: December 12, 2013
Goodreads ♥ Amazon

Review:
I love street art. Growing up in a bad neighborhood there was always graffiti around, most of it really terrible some of it less terrible. As I’ve gotten older my tastes have changed but I still love street art and the political and social messages behind the art.

Sasha is basically a human truth serum. Around her people can’t help but say exactly what is on their mind, even if that they’re thinking isn’t so nice. This skill leads her to be employed by the FBI and when the CIA is in need of her skills she is spirited away to Belgium to infiltrate the street art community and find Kid Aert, a Banksy-esque street artist.

Sasha is the type of character you want to root for. She has grown up largely alone, abandoned by one foster family after another when she begins to make friends in the street art community you want it to work out for her. I also liked Sasha’s love of comics and how Gray incorporated that in to the novel by having a little comic strip before each chapter.

I liked the Belgian setting. Gray did a great job of making the reader feel like they are there along with Sasha. Prior to reading this book I had no desire to visit Belgium and now I’m ready to get on a plane, the country sounds lovely!

My biggest issue with Drawn was that there wasn’t enough detail. This novel felt like the outline of a story and not the story itself. Sasha’s history wasn’t discussed in detail, we never learn more about where she came, and the story ended in a strange way, it didn’t feel resolved. Drawn was rather short so I’m not entirely sure why more information wasn’t added there was definitely the space to do so.

Overall, I liked the premise and the characters in Drawn but the lack of detail didn’t allow me to fully enjoy this story. Still, it was a quick fun read and if you have any interest in graffiti or comics this is a novel you will enjoy.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Cover Reveal: Between Now and Goodbye by Hannah Harvey

Between Now and Goodbye
Author: Hannah Harvey
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Release Date: September 22nd 2014

Synopsis:
Three friends. One eventful summer.
Libby finally has the settled life she's always wanted, and never before had. She has a happy family, two best friends Julie and Charles, and loves her home.
This summer will be the best of her life. A summer spent learning in a culinary camp in New York, but when something happens at home and she's forced to return, how will her summer turn out?
Charles had big dreams for his future, college, medical school, and spending as much time as possible with his girlfriend Julie. This summer will change all of that. His mom's sick, his dad's gone and he's left trying to hold his family together. On top of that, Julie's pulling away from him. Will he be able to fix things before they fall apart?
Julie is bored. She's bored of her private school. Bored of always doing the same thing. Bored of having plans cancelled by her boyfriend who's always busy. She's bored and she wants a change. When she attempts to liven things up with some of her school friends, she ends up making a mistake. How will that mistake end up shaping her summer?
Follow Libby, Charles and Julie as they fight their way through an emotional summer, as they learn that sometimes theirs no escaping goodbyes, but that they aren't always bad things.

About the Author
Hannah is a young adult fiction author from the UK. She lives at home with her parents, brother and sister, and spends a lot of her time reading and writing.

She also runs two blogs, one focussed on all things bookish, and the other dedicated to other things she loves.


Connect with Hannah:

Friday, August 15, 2014

Play Me Backwards by Adam Selzer

Play Me Backwards
Author: Adam Selzer
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: August 26, 2014
Goodreads ♥ Amazon

Review:
Play Me Backwards follows smartie turned slacker Leon as he finds out his first love Anna might be moving back to town. Leon upon learning that awesome Anna is heading to Iowa realizes that his life isn’t where he wants it to be. Leon enlists the help of his friend Stan better known as Satan who sends him on random adventures that might or might not help him get his life in order.

I loved Leon, his voice felt so natural. I couldn’t put the book down because I wanted to know what task Stan was going to give Leon and how Leon was going to handle it. Having Leon as a narrator I learned to expect the unexpected because he was always surprising me.

Stan or rather Satan was probably my favorite character. I loved the morally ambiguous grey area he operated in and the fact that I was never sure if he really was Satan or not. He was just a fun character and, despite some hairy moments, a good friend to Leon.

While I loved the characters in Play Me Backwards I think my absolute favorite thing was the setting. One of my best friends in Law School was from Iowa so I ended up driving all over the state and I have been to Des Moines a few times. Selzer really captured the feel of the city. I am also so freaking excited that someone is finally discussing the fact that Kum & Go is a terrible/hilarious name for a gas station. The author is right, the day I stop laughing at that gas station is the day my soul has died a little.

Overall, Play Me Backwards was a novel with strong voice, fun characters and an excellent setting. I really enjoyed following Leon and Satan and will definitely be reading whatever Adam Selzer writes next!

Read Play Me Backwards while listening to
Moby Dick by Herman Melville Audiobook- Throughout much of the book Leon is listening to Moby Dick so it's only appropriate that you listen along with him!

Du Hast by Rammstein- In the Ice Cave they usually listen to Norwegian heavy metal music. I know Rammstein is German but I think it similarly captures the experience of being in the Ice Cave.