Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Birthday Giveaway!




My parents have made fun of me since I was a kid, that I celebrate my birthday the entire month of March. Well I'm embracing this as totally true and celebrating my birthday with all of you! I am giving away a book of your choosing from Amazon.com valued at $10! To enter just fill out the rafflecopter below.


*This giveaway is US only, Sorry! 



a Rafflecopter giveaway





Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Dark Seeker by Taryn Browning



1/5 Stars

Review:
This is my first 1 star review. I pride myself on always finding the good in a book but with Dark Seeker it was almost impossible. Just be forewarned this review is going to be riddled with spoilers because I’m sitting here dumbfounded that I even made it through this book.

To start off I did not like the main character at all. Janie is supposedly the seeker and she is meant to kill Daychildren and vampires. Ok we were off to a good start but within the first 10 pages she meets Kai, a daychild, and suddenly can not be bothered to do her job or even take it seriously. Apparently Janie has been training her whole life for this job but CAN NOT EVEN FIGHT! Kai literally has to rescue her from every fight she gets into it is rather pathetic. It is 2012 can’t a girl be strong, independent, and get her job done? No apparently according to Taryn Browning her main character must be the perpetual damsel in distress.

This could have even been ok with me if Kai, Janie and all the other characters weren’t so one dimensional. Matt was a jock, Kai was the vampire looking for redemption; and Janie was a nock off Buffy who read Twilight. And apparently Janie had friends that we never really heard from except when it was convenient for Janie to go to school.

Oh I also forgot to mention remember Kai who Janie meets for the first time within the first 10 pages of the book and suddenly feels drawn to him well halfway through the book when it seems there hot-no-cold-no-hot again relationship may be getting somewhere (Oh I wish it had gone somewhere, a fire pit maybe?). We find out that Kai is actually the person who killed Janie’s father years ago. AND THEN SHE STILL LOVES HIM! I can’t get over how flipping unrealistic this is. I don’t know about you, but if someone killed my Dad I would sure as hell have a hard time getting over that! I would probably kill them, which is Janie’s job! But alas Janie has no backbone and declares her love for Kai even after she finds out what he has done.

The plotline was also terribly jumpy (maybe like this review?). One minute we are at Kai’s house, the next minute school, home, school, party, seeking, and vampires! You get the picture. I found myself getting whiplash with how much everything jumped around and the writing was seriously choppy. This book would definitely have benefited from an outline.

Needless to say I really did not like this book and apparently someone told this woman to write a sequel, which I will never be reading. 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

In My Mailbox 5


I got some really fabulous books this week that I can not wait to start reading and reviewing! I won Legend from Reading with ABC's 300 Follower giveaway and A Million Suns from Book Stacks on Deck's  1000 Follower giveaway.

Won:
From the Author: 
Bought:



Saturday, February 25, 2012

Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown


4/5 Stars

Expected Publication: June 12th


Review:
Lies Beneath the debut novel by Anne Greenwood Brown is set on Lake Superior just as late winter blooms into spring which makes for a perfect summer read. The novel is set around Calder a merman mentally tied to his sisters Tallulah, Pavati, and Maris who are all looking to avenge their mothers death. It is this summer that the siblings will get there revenge on Hancock whose father killed their mother. That is if Lily, Hancock’s Daughter, doesn’t get in the way.

The story in Lies Beneath was very well developed and the writing is spectacular. Forget everything you think you know about Mermaids. The mermaids in Lies Beneath are not The Little Mermaid and her sisters these mermaids are murderous, vengeful, and a bit monstrous. This made the story all the more enjoyable for me!

It was refreshing to have a male point of view in a YA novel. Calder was just the right mix of mysterious, brooding, and caring. At first I wasn’t sure how I felt about Calder. He was so focused on the mission to kill Hancock that I had a hard time relating to that bloodlust. It wasn’t until Calder realized his feelings for Lily that I began to really like him in earnest. I loved the slow pace the relationship between Lily and Calder took, too often YA relationships just happen and the girl falls for the boy. In Lies Beneath Calder had to work to get Lily’s attention and even then she tried to push him away, it was a nice change! I loved what a strong girl Lily was, it made for a more realistic heroine.

This is my first encounter with mermaids. Like the faerie genre I have steadfastly avoided anything to do with mermaids and now that I have had my first taste I keep asking myself why? I thoroughly enjoyed Lies Beneath and am now eagerly awaiting the second book in the series Deep Betrayal! I think a trip to Lake Superior is in the works to make the long wait a little more bearable.  

Thank your Random House Children's Books and Anne Greenwood Brown for allowing me to review an advanced readers copy of Lies Beneath.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson

4/5 Stars

Review:  

The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson centers around the Jack the Ripper myth and brings the original serial killer into modern day London. Prior to beginning this book I knew very little of Jack the Ripper other then the basics: he killed woman and it was a long time ago. The Name of the Star was littered with both truth and fiction surrounding the legend. I came to learn just how much of Jack’s story was made up by the news agencies andt how little is know of this serial killer.

The Main character Aurora “Rory” is a New Orleans transplant who comes to an English Boarding School, Wexford, after her parents choose to go on sabbatical. It is here that she meets her new roommate Jazza , her love interest Jerome, and of course Jack the Ripper.

I thoroughly enjoyed The Name of the Star the novel was rich with descriptions and prose. I really like Johnson’s style of writing it has the right combination of character interaction and description of the setting and goings on at Wexford Academy. It is quickly apparent that she has written books before and knows how to tell a story.

I had a few qualms with this book and most are spoilery so in vague terms I will say that I did not like the plot twist in the middle of the novel. I felt like there was other more realistic ways to have solved the new Jack the Ripper murders. I also didn’t like that following the plot twist we see very little of Jazza and Jerome who had been Rory’s best friends prior to the event.

I did like all of the characters in The Name of the Star Jazza, Jerome, Boo, and even Charlotte won me over. That is probably why I was sad to see the characters in the first half lose page time. Everyone had very distinct personalities and no one more then Rory! She was a very southern gal trying to get used to living in London and adjusting to life and boarding school she was very realistic and relatable to me and that made her all the more likable.   

Overall I definitely enjoyed The Name of the Star it was a fun re-telling of the Jack the Ripper murders that kept me up late at night reading.  

Monday, February 20, 2012

In My Mailbox 4


This week I received some pretty great books and I can't wait to begin reading! I also won a few contests this week so I can't wait to get things actually in my mailbox. Be sure to look out for those in future posts.

Contests:
Thanks to Emily at Confessions of a Book Junkie . I won her YA blog hop and now have a shiny new copy of The Iron Queen which I can not wait to start reading!


From The Author:
Purchased:


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

5/5 Stars

Review:
The Daughter of Smoke and Bone is not your typical Angel story. I went in expecting something similar to Hush Hush and WOW was I surprised and pleased when it was something completely original and completely different!

Laini Taylor writes a different kind of story about the world of Angels and Chimera (demon-like, but not like, beings) and the war that has been raging between then for eternity. I really enjoyed Taylor’s writing, it was fluid and stopped in all the right places leaving me wanting more and staying up late at night! The war is a pivotal part of the story and the descriptions of ancient battles made me feel like I was right there with the character. Taylor does a great job of showing and not just telling.

My favorite part about The Daughter of Smoke and Bone was the relationship between Karou and Akiva. It was everything I wanted it to be deep, sweet, and never wavering. And it wasn’t the pivotal driving force of the story. One of my biggest pet peeves with YA lately is that the relationship between the characters is the only part of the story which allows for character development. In Smoke and Bone Karou grew as a character for the entirety of the story and we get to see Karou go from a teen who knows nothing about the world she has been living in to someone who wants to change the world she has been kept from, and change preconceived notions about both Angels and Chimera.

All of the supporting characters in Smoke and Bone were pure awesomeoness. Brimstone, Yasiri and all of Karou’s Chimera family were so real and I could feel how much Karou loved them because I started loving them too! Zuzana, Karou’s best friend in Prague was absolutely hilarious and I really enjoyed all the scenes were they went Poison and just vented. It was such a realistic friendship that seemed so natural it was a great foil to the craziness of Karou’s life with the Chimera.
Another thing I really enjoyed was the setting in Prague! Not often is a YA book set in Europe. So often it is set in nowhere, USA in a High School. Karou’s school really felt more like a college and the entire city oozed history it was fun to escape to a different place through The Daughter of Smoke and Bone.

Overall I really enjoyed this book and will definitely be picking up the sequel Days of Blood and Starlight. But with a slated release date for September 2012 it looks like I have a long wait ahead of me!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Fever by Lauren DeStefano


5/5 Stars


Review:

I had to take my time to write this review because I loved Fever so much. Lauren DeStefano’s writing is so poetic that at times my heart was just breaking and at others I felt like I was soaring. Her prose is so wonderful to read that I always read just a little bit slower to savor every sentence.

Fever begins exactly where Wither left off. Rhine and Gabriel have just escaped the Mansion only to wind up in an even worse situation with people just as scary as Housemaster Vaughn. I loved the broken Carnival run by Madame. The imagery of a rusted Ferris Wheel and broken merry-go-round are so spooky and vivid that I felt like I was there with Rhine and Gabriel trying to escape. (And that is all the spoilers I will give!)

I felt like there was good character development in Wither. But there was even better character development in Fever. I finally feel like I know who Gabriel is and I am starting to like him more then I did in this first book. Also even though Jenna has passed away I felt like she played an important role in this book because of how much her loss affected Rhine. There were also some characters in Wither that really surprised me in Fever but I won’t tell who! You will just have to read and find out.

The relationship between Rhine and Gabriel really developed in Fever as well. It went from being ho-hum, to me, to actually being a relationship that I was rooting for! Gabriel is the perfect guy, sweet, deep, and willing to take care of and do anything for Rhine. I wish there were more guys like that in the world!

Needless to say I absolutely adored Fever and am already counting down the days until the final Chemical Garden novel releases! 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

In My Mailbox 3


I got a pretty good haul this week! I was preparing peoples taxes at my local library and found out they not only have a YA section but a pretty extensive YA section! It is my new favorite thing about Vermillion and I will definitely be back soon =) I also got 4 books from the authors and I wanted to thank Chelsea Fine, Patti Roberts and Michelle Scott for those!


From the Library:



From Net Galley:
From the Author:


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Project Tell Taylor


Michelle Madow's debut novel Remembrance was inspired by Taylor Swift's "Love Story" music video. She talked all about it in a blog entry a few months ago, discussing how Remembrance was inspired by Taylor Swift's "Love Story" music video. She even wrote a letter to Taylor Swift and sent it to her, along with a signed book!

It's been a few months now, and she has yet to hear back from Taylor that she received the letter and book. She really wants to tell Taylor about how inspiring she and her music have been to her, but since Taylor Swift is an international superstar, she’s a little hard to reach. This is where YOUR help comes into play! Michelle is giving away the biggest prize pack she's offered yet, and the ways to enter to win are by telling Taylor Swift about Remembrance.

The Goal: Get Taylor Swift to Tweet about Remembrance!"


If you haven't yet heard of Remembrance the synopsis is below and my review can be found here 

Remembrance Synopsis:

Lizzie Davenport has been reincarnated from Regency Era, England ... but she doesn't know it yet. 

Then Drew Carmichael transfers into Lizzie's high school at the beginning of the year, and she feels a connection to him, almost like she knows him. She can't stop thinking about him, but whenever she tries talking with him about the mysteries behind her feelings, he makes it clear that he wants nothing to do with her. Reaching him is even more difficult because she has a boyfriend, Jeremy, who has started to become full of himself after being elected co-captain of the varsity soccer team, and her flirtatious best friend Chelsea starts dating Drew soon after his arrival. So why can't she get him out of her mind? 


Even though Lizzie knows she should let go of her fascination with Drew, fighting fate isn't going to be easy 






Wow! After watching that video I bet you are wondering were the raffelcopter is! Just click below and remember to visit the other blogs on the linky below and TELL TAYLOR!