12.31.2011

My Last Post Of The Year (Holy Crap...)

So uhhh....hey guys! I can't believe this is going to be my last post for 2011, considering I've got hopefully awesome things planned out for 2012. I'm quite emotional, considering this is the first full year of my life in which I have been blogging and it's been pretty amazing. I've gotten to meet so many amazing bloggers, authors, and YOU GUYS! Seriously, my readers make all of the effort and work worth it. And so, to end the year, I want to go ahead and do my New Years Resolutions! Especially since I missed my Totally Booksessed video this week.

But before I do that, really: Thank You. Thank you so much for sticking around and reading and commenting because it means so much to me! There are going to be some changes in 2012, especially with my Youtube Channel which was only used for In My Mailbox! I will officially be Book Vlogging in addition to my Book Blogging (not as often as I do on here of course, but at least twice or three times a week!) so if you want, go ahead and subscribe to my channel: Harmony Beaufort. 

1. Post Every Day
       Now, I know I made this resolution last year but this year? I plan to get organized! You see, I write my reviews/discussions/everything RIGHT when it goes up. Every one of my reviews is written in about 10-20 minutes and then immediately put up. I don't schedule, I don't write posts the night before but that's going to change! I'm not gonna start scheduling because I feel it takes the fun out of it but I intend to post every day so help me! Haha.

2. Comment More
      I am the suckiest blogger when it comes to commenting on other people's blogs. I really NEVER do it, ever. And I want to be more social when it comes to that! I'm on twitter all the time and such, but I want to venture out and discover some new blogs since i'm usually so apprehensive about them.

3. Read More Classics
     I do not read classics, but I want that to change!

4. Actually Participate In The Challenges I Enter
    I read a lot of debuts this year, but I didn't actually put in any of my reviews or participate! I've signed up for...I think three challenges this coming year and I intend to do them all right this time around!

5. Learn How To Read At Home
    I'm going to sound crazy but: I don't read at home. I can't read in silence and having no noise around while i'm reading just completely unnerves me and I can't do it. I read very, very fast which is how I manage to read about three to four books a week just reading during the 20 minutes each of my classes give for "Sustained Reading" at school but I seriously need to start learning how to read at home! I hardly get any books gone during Summer Vacation because of this and no more!

6. Reply To Comments
      Starting in 2012, I can going to be installing a comment system that allows other people and I to reply to comments left on my posts. It will be awesome considering I want to see some discussions going on in the comments when I do discussion posts! Haha.

And that's really all I can think of at the moment! Although there will be changes, no worries, me and my big mouth aren't going anywhere! Happy Reading guys and SEE YOU NEXT YEAR!

12.30.2011

Giveaway: Incarnate by Jodi Meadows



INCARNATE | JODI MEADOWS | JANUARY 31TH | HARPERCOLLINS 

NEWSOUL
Ana is new. For thousands of years in Range, a million souls have been reincarnated over and over, keeping their memories and experiences from previous lifetimes. When Ana was born, another soul vanished, and no one knows why.
NOSOUL
Even Ana’s own mother thinks she’s a nosoul, an omen of worse things to come, and has kept her away from society. To escape her seclusion and learn whether she’ll be reincarnated, Ana travels to the city of Heart, but its citizens are suspicious and afraid of what her presence means. When dragons and sylph attack the city, is Ana to blame?
HEART
Sam believes Ana’s new soul is good and worthwhile. When he stands up for her, their relationship blooms. But can he love someone who may live only once, and will Ana’s enemies—human and creature alike—let them be together? Ana needs to uncover the mistake that gave her someone else’s life, but will her quest threaten the peace of Heart and destroy the promise of reincarnation for all?
Jodi Meadows expertly weaves soul-deep romance, fantasy, and danger into an extraordinary tale of new life.

My review for this book will be going up like in two weeks but I LOVE THIS BOOK LIKE WHOA. So I wanted one of you guys to get the chance to read it!

rules are the same as always:

  • you have to be 13 or older to enter unless you have parent's permission
  • the giveaway ends January 18th, 2012
  • US Only! 
  • the form is below

Happy Reading and TOMORROW IS MY LAST POST IN 2011. Dear god. 

12.28.2011

Favorite Books of 2011 (that aren't debuts)

Because it's SO much easier to break it up like that.


The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater: Absolutely amazing with the classic Maggie writing, compelling and beautiful characters, and a fantastic plot.

The Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor: The writing in this book was GORGEOUS. The setting was breath-taking and Karou was a total bad-ass. I loved the world-building and the romance and everything was SO LOVELY.

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins: LOOOOOVE. I loved Lola and Cricket and their romance and their self-discovery and I loved Anna and St.Clair's appearance in this book. 


A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young: I love this book so much! Charlotte and Harlin were amazing characters and the ending was so sad and bittersweet. I can't wait for the sequel!

Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst: Totally hilarious. A great take on Vampires and mythology that was so funny but still intriguing and action-packed.

Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement Moore: I love this author SO MUCH. The writing is compelling, the ghost witchy murder plot is to die for, and the romance? Slow, sizzling tension! 


Apothecary by Maile Meloy: An in-between of Middle Grade and Young Adult and I absolutely loved it. 

The Gray Wolf Throne by Cinda William Chima: These books are so brilliant, I can't even.

Where She Went by Gayle Forman: I liked If I Stay enough to buy the sequel, so I did. BUT OH MY GOD THE SEQUEL? So amazing. It was sad and beautiful and the writing! And Adam! And Mia! 


Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter: I thought Heist Society was alright but I got this one for review so I thought: Why not? OH MY GOD. It was funny and smart and the tension between Kat and Hale is as sizzling as ever and the CONS! The cons and the character development and the fact that Hale is the richest person EVA. So much love, can't wait for the second book!


Happy Reading!
Agree with me? Disagree? Should another book have been added?

12.27.2011

Books I loved in 2011 that indeed, did not come out in 2011

Because I need to talk about my love for the oldies, right?

note: when you make a list like this, you start to realize that as a blogger, you don't deviate too much from the year in which you're in.


Bleeding Violet by Dia Reeves: Totally insane and twisted but in such a fascinating and awesome way that i'm going to read all of Dia's books for the rest of eternity!

The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen: Yeah, you guys were outraged I hadn't read a Sarah Dessen so I went out and did it! And this one is my favorite!

Looking For Alaska by John Green: Again, you guys were outraged and I LOVE the Vlogbrothers so bam! Loved this book. 



The Thief by Megan Whale Turner: for hardcore high fantasy lovers; brings on the prose and the action and everything I love. Plus, the characters are awesome!

The Dust of 100 Dogs by A.S King: Pirates! A kick-ass heroine! I fell in love with this book the minute I opened it.

The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima: She is brilliant. This series is brilliant. She has me completely entranced and I can't wait for The Crimson Crown. And the romance is exquisite (saying this because people seem to think High Fantasy can't have romance in it)



Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins: Because guys, this came out in DECEMBER. So many of you tried to nominate it for Best Book/Contemporary of 2011, but no dice! But it's funny, sweet, and absolutely brilliant. A thousand recommends. 

The Queen's Daughter by Susan Coventry: Smart and brilliant and a beautiful view into Richard The Lion-heart's younger sister and how her life might've been like (considering history skims over her very, very briefly). The author changes from history a bit, considering I always wiki historical characters after I finish, but i'm so glad she did and subtly. 

Eon by Alison Goodman: Just absolutely amazing in every aspect of the word. High-Fantasy at it's best. I didn't even care there was no romance, which is SAYING something (but I did comfort myself with the fact it seems there will be in Eona)

Happy Reading!



12.26.2011

Best Debuts of 2011

AND I'M BACK! And since it's the end of 2011, it's time to do the obligatory 2011 Favorites posts you're going to be seeing everywhere this week! Don't worry; it won't be painful.


Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi: Everything about this book was beautiful and amazing and I completely loved it. Especially the writing, gah!

Legend by Marie Lu: I didn't actually expect this one to make it but when I was scrolling through my covers, I had to put it! Action-packed, nerve-wreaking, kick ass protagonists, must!

Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick: a brilliant, heart-pumping post-acopalyptic (I like hyphen words a lot) that I couldn't stop thinking about once I finished!



The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson: An amazing High Fantasy that is a lot like Graceling and definitely lived up to my exceptions. It was everything a High Fantasy should have: beautiful setting, kick-ass heroine with lots of character development, and a heck of a lot of sacrifice.

All These Things I've Done by Gabrielle Zevin: A lot of people thought this book was "okay" but I completely loved it! A lot of people went into it wanting different things, but the minute it turned into more of a mafia crime story, I was hooked!

Divergent by Veronica Roth: No surprise there, right? Divergent was thrilling and absolutely amazing in every way. Tris is one of my favorite all-time heroines. 


Unearthly by Cynthia Hand: That romance was completely breath-taking and Clara was an amazing heroine. Angel mythology gone right, considering I haven't had too great of an experience with it!

Wither by Lauren DeStefano: I want to eat her words for breakfast, people! I have a holy grail of beautiful prose authors: Maggie Steifvater, Tahereh Mafi, and? Lauren DeStefano.

Hourglass by Myra McEntire: Like you guys haven't heard me rave enough? This book is smart, sexy, funny, and everything a time travel book should be! (and it makes sense!)



Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys: I wanted to make this cover the biggest because this book is absolutely breathtaking. It makes you think and cry and it's so raw and sad and hopeful that I just felt a million things while reading it. And because it's historical and about a delicate time a lot of people won't pick it up but PLEASE: do it. You won't regret it. I thank Ruta a million times for writing this book about a whole country of people that most people didn't even know were suffering.

Happy Reading!
Anything you think I should've added?

p.s I AM SO EXCITED FOR YOU GUYS TO SEE WHAT'S COMING IN 2012 OH MAI GOD.

12.16.2011

Mini-Hiatus

Hey guys!

Don't panic, but yes, I am going to be taking a hiatus this week leading up to Christmas.

I've just gotten off for Winter Break and school has simply sliced me to pieces. I want to take a break and not have to worry about posting anything, just for a week!

I'll constantly be on twitter because I can't stay away from you guys, but I really just wanted to step back for a little bit and relax from having such a stressful few months in school!

Love you guys and see you soon! And as always Happy Reading!
-Harmony

12.14.2011

Waiting On Wednesday (18)

Title: My Life Next Door
Author: Huntley Fitzpatrick
Publisher: Dial Books (Penguin)
Release Date: June 14th, 2012
Pages: 304 ; Hardcover


"One thing my mother never knew, and would disapprove of most of all, was that I watched the Garretts. All the time."

The Garretts are everything the Reeds are not. Loud, numerous, messy. And every day from her balcony perch, seventeen year old Samantha wishes she was one of them… until the day Jase Garrett climbs her terrace and changes everything.
Jase can sense that his beautiful neighbor is missing something in her sterile home, and as the two fall fiercely in love, his family makes her one of their own.

But when the bottom drops out of Sam's world, which perfect family will save her–and will her perfect love survive?

Set among the haves and have-nots of a coastal New England town, My LIFE NEXT DOOR captures the angst, the heartache, and the raw-nerve emotions of first time love—and biting loss.


Contemporary that sounds very Sarah Dessen/Sarah Ockler like? YES PLEASE!


Happy Reading!

12.12.2011

Shattered Souls by Mary Lindsey

Who: Mary Lindsey
What: Shattered Souls
When: December 8th, 2011
Where: Penguin
Why: Cover/Premise Love
How: For Review (Tour)

Lenzi hears voices and has visions - gravestones, floods, a boy with steel gray eyes. Her boyfriend, Zak, can't help, and everything keeps getting louder and more intense. Then Lenzi meets Alden, the boy from her dreams, who reveals that she's a reincarnated Speaker - someone who can talk to and help lost souls - and that he has been her Protector for centuries.Now Lenzi must choose between her life with Zak and the life she is destined to lead with Alden. But time is running out: a malevolent spirit is out to destroy Lenzi, and he will kill her if she doesn't make a decision soon.

So when I started this book, I was kind of nervous. Initially it's very similar to Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton (warrior who gets reincarnated but doesn't remember this time around, guardian love interest that cannot be, having to learn the ropes again, etcc) but it's definitely not like that at all! Despite the similarities, Shattered Souls managed to impress me and I really liked it!

Lenzi was a fun main character to read about and her struggle with who she is vs. everything she's known in life was truthful and believable. Her character development was also wonderful: she went from this confused, scared girl to being a total badass and really coming into herself, even though she doesn't remember who she was and everything she had done before them. I liked Lenzi much more than I did Rose and I liked how Mary managed to show them to be the same person at the same time, very different from each other. Rose was much too detached and guarded and the contrast with Lenzi through Alden's memories was great to read!

The whole idea of Speakers was actually really interesting and I want to see it developed even further in the next book in the series. The whole idea of there being angry spirits in need of containing was fascinating, especially the whole possession factor and how exactly people went up or down in rank in their world. The whole idea of raking up the necessary weekly points of spirit-hunting? That was awesome! Mary packs a bunch with all the plot twists, heart-breaking scenes, and creepiness factors that are spread throughout the book!

And now we have side-characters! Zak: you didn't have my heart, EVA. While you could tell Zak really liked Lenzi, he went about the entire thing in a really aggressive and bad way. He was the only friend Lenzi had and he handled himself poorly and needs some serious help in the emotional stability department. Even though I did feel a little bad for him when Lenzi basically forgot about him the minute Alden arrives, I can't blame her! Alden was so lovely! Being her guardian, I loved how he was overprotective to a fault but never tried to push her to do something she didn't want to do without any sort of good reason. He was reasonable with slowly trying to get her back into the game and remember and the sexual tension between them was sizzling! I loved their attraction and the fact that Alden's so sweet and caring gave him major points!

Overall, I recommend the book, even if you did read Angelfire! Shattered Souls manages to stand on it's own!

Happy Reading!

12.10.2011

YA WATCH (5)


COVER NEWS:
all from...everywhere



Title: Fade Out
Author: Nova Ren Suma
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release Date: June 5th, 2012
Note: This is a book that's already released under the name

Dani Noir but is being repackaged and released to reach a more
Young Adult Audience!


If this were a movie, you'd open to the first page of this book and be transported to a whole other world. Everything would be in black and white, except maybe for the girl in pink polka-dot tights, and this really great music would start to swell in the background. All of a sudden, you wouldn't be able to help it--you'd be a part of the story, you'd be totally sucked in. You'd be in this place, filled with big lies, mysterious secrets, and a tween girl turned sleuth....

Zoom in on thirteen-year-old Dani Callanzano. It's the summer before eighth grade, and Dani is stuck in her nothing-ever-happens town with only her favorite noir mysteries at the Little Art movie theater to keep her company.

But one day, a real-life mystery begins to unravel--at the Little Art! And it all has something to do with a girl in polka-dot tights.... Armed with a vivid imagination, a flair for the dramatic, and her knowledge of all things Rita Hayworth, Dani sets out to solve the mystery, and she learns more about herself than she ever thought she could.


Title: The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden #1)
Author: Julie Kagawa
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: April 24th, 2012

Note: I AM SO EXCITED. I love Julie's Iron Fey series so i'm 
excited to see her take on vampires, especially since she says it's darker than Iron Fey! 


You will kill. The only question is when.

In the dark days since the insidious Red Lung virus decimated the human population, vampires have risen to rule the crumbling cities and suburbs. Uncontested Princes hold sway over diminished ranks of humans: their "pets." In exchange for their labor, loyalty and of course, their blood, these pets are registered, given food and shelter, permitted to survive.

Unregistered humans cling to fringes, scavenging for survival. Allison Sekemoto and her fellow Unregistereds are hunted, not only by vampires, but by rabids, the unholy result of Red Lung-infected vampires feeding on unwary humans. One night, Allie is attacked by a pack of rabids, saved by an unlikely hero...and turned vampire.

Uncomfortable in her undead skin, Allie falls in with a ragtag crew of humans seeking a cure, or cures: for Rabidism and for Vampirism. She's passing for human...for now. But the hunger is growing and will not be denied. Not for friendship—not even for love.


Title: Touching The Surface
Author: Kimberly Sabatini
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: September 4th, 2012
Note: I like the title BUT her neck is freaking me out...it seems like it's cracked. 


Life altering mistakes are meant to alter lives…

When Elliot dies for the third time, she knows this is her last shot. There are no fourth-timers in this afterlife, so one more chance is all she has to get things right. But before she can move on to her next life, Elliot will be forced to face her past and delve into the painful memories she’d rather keep buried. Memories of people she’s hurt, people she’s betrayed…and people she’s killed.

As she pieces together the mistakes of her past, Elliot must earn the forgiveness of her best friend and reveal the truth about herself to the two boys she loves…even if it means losing them both forever.


Title: Embrace
Author: Jessica Shirvington
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: March 1st, 2012
Note: It's been a while since i've read an Angel book! 


Violet Eden is dreading her seventeenth birthday dinner. After all, it’s hard to get too excited about the day that marks the anniversary of your mother’s death. The one bright spot is that Lincoln will be there. Sexy, mature and aloof, he is Violet’s idea of perfection. But why does he seem so reluctant to be anything more than a friend?

After he gives her the world’s most incredible kiss – and then abandons her on her front doorstep – Violet is determined to get some answers. But nothing could have prepared her for Lincoln’s explanation: he is Grigori – part angel and part human – and Violet is his eternal partner.

Without warning, Violet’s world is turned upside down. She never believed in God, let alone angels. But there’s no denying the strange changes in her body ... and her feelings for Lincoln. Suddenly, she can’t stand to be around him. Luckily, Phoenix, an exiled angel, has come into her life. He’s intense and enigmatic, but at least he never lied to her.

As Violet gets caught up in an ancient battle between dark and light, she must choose her path. The wrong choice could cost not only her life, but her eternity...




DEAL NEWS:
all this news comes from Publisher's Weekly. 


National Book Award finalist Beth Kephart signed with Philomel’s Tamra Tuller in a two-book deal brokered by Amy Rennert at the Amy Rennert Agency. Both titles will be YA novels and will follow Kephart’s Small Damages, about a teenager who goes to Spain to deal with an unplanned pregnancy, which Philomel is publishing in July 2012. The books in the new deal are currently untitled, and the first work is about a teenage graffiti artist in Berlin during the 1980s. Kephart has written over a dozen books—her latest YA novel, You Are My Only, was published by Egmont in October.


Amie Kaufman and Megan Spooner's WREAKED, pitched as Titanic in outer space, in which a wealthy teen socialite and a young war hero crash land on an uncharted planet after their flagship spaceliner goes down mid-voyage, forcing them to confront harsh conditions, otherworldly incidents, and their own mutual attraction, to Abby Ranger at Disney-Hyperion, in a significant deal, at auction, in a three-book deal, for publication in Summer 2013, by Josh Adam and Tracey Adams at Adams Literary (World English)


MOVIE NEWS:
all this news comes from Page To Premiere


"William Hurt is in talks to join the adaptation of Stephenie Meyer’s ‘The Host‘ as Jeb, according to EW. The movie already has Saoirse Ronan, Jake Abel, and Max Irons attached to star. It tells the story of a future where a race called ‘Souls’ have taken over the bodies of humankind, and almost everyone has succumbed. However, Melanie Stryder (Ronan) won’t let go and ‘The Host,’ tells the story of Melanie and ‘Wanderer’ (the soul trying to inhabit her body, also to be portrayed by Ronan) throughout their struggle. The character Hurt would play, Jebediah or just “Jeb,” is Melanie and Jamie’s eccentric uncle, who some believe is crazy. He was one of the first humans to suspect an alien invasion, and thus constructed an elaborate hide-out in caves beneath the Arizona desert. ‘The Host‘ will be directed by Andrew Niccol (In Time), and will hit theaters March 29, 2013. "

"Gabriel Hugoboom posted today that he has read for the role of Ethan Wate in the Beautiful Creaturesadaptation. Hugoboom is the same actor who auditioned for the role of Jace in City of Bones. With casting beginning for the main character, Beautiful Creatures could be on the fast track to becoming a movie."

"Hailee Steinfeld, an Oscar nominee for her role in ‘True Grit,’ is in negotiations to join the adaptation of Orson Scott Card’s novel ‘Ender’s Game.’ The novel is about a future where the brightest young kids are brought together to fight an alien invasion. If everything works out, she’ll be playing Petra, “the lone female in the child army who develops a relationship with the lead character,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. Asa Butterfield recently confirmed that he is officially cast in the lead role, Ender Wiggin, while Harrison Ford is reportedly among a list of choices to join the cast as Colonel Hyrum Graff. "

"The screenwriter of ‘X-Men: First Class,’ Jane Goldman, has signed on to script ‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children,’ according to Deadline. Another notable adaptation that she’s scripted, is ‘Woman in Black,’ the dark horror flick headlined by Daniel Radcliffe. Tim Burton has been showing interest in directing ‘Miss Peregrine,’ so it is shaping up to be quite a high profile project. The novel by Ransom Riggs tells the story of 16-year-old Jacob, whose childhood was filled with stories his grandfather told him about an orphanage for unusual children. Among the residents: a girl who could hold fire in her hands, another whose feet never touched the ground, and twins who communicated without speaking. When his beloved grandfather dies unexpectedly but leaves a message behind for his grandson, the teen heads off to his grandfather’s home on an isolated island off Wales. There he discovers the abandoned remains of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children."


And that's all for today, see you next time!
Happy Reading!

12.08.2011

The Statistical Probability of Love At First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

Who: Jennifer E. Smith
What: The Statistical Probability of Love At First Sight
When: Janurary 2rd, 2012
Where: Little Brown (Poppy)
Why: Premise Love
How: For Review (BEA)

Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?
Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. She's stuck at JFK, late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon to be step-mother that Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's in seat 18B. Hadley's in 18A.

Twists of fate and quirks of timing play out in this thoughtful novel about family connections, second chances and first loves. Set over a 24-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it.

A cute and quick-read for lovers of contemporary and a greatly told love story. 

First Sight (which is what i'm going to be calling it because that name? LONG) is about a girl named Hailey who misses her flight to London to go to her father's second wedding by four minutes. There, she was forced to take another flight that is leaving in three hours, in which she meets Oliver, a cute, funny brit who is now on the same flight as her. The book takes place over a 24 hour period but at any point did I ever roll my eyes and complain about insta-love. Hailey and Oliver had so much in common and had such quick and fun chemistry that I instantly loved the two of them together and were rooting for them from the very beginning! Plus, there's no: INTENSE EYE STARE, CUE HAIR FLIP moments. The two characters do into heavy conversations about their families and their lives but it never sounded melodramatic and cliche. 

Hailey was awesome! She was funny and I completely believed all the difficulties in her life. I also really liked the fact that the book is not only about her and Oliver's relationship, but also their relationship to other people. You get a lot of insight on her relationship with her father and about-to-be new step mom and how Hailey's coping with the fact she's basically being forced to attend this wedding. She was flawed in her own way but I'd be friends with her in a heartbeat! Oliver was a total sweetheart. I loved all of their conversations, they had a tone a lot like Stephanie Perkin's writing, light-hearted but at the same time heavy, witty, and lovely. Plus they were awkward and adorable and this is what teenagers are like people! TAKE NOTES. 

The entire time I was wondering just how Jennifer was going to tie everything together but she didn't fail me in the end! The book is a series of coincidences that were realistic and hopeful and I loved finding out about all the characters, even Hailey's step mom, who actually sounds like a lovely person! Overall, a great book that I definitely recommend! 

Happy Reading!

P.S it's almost the new year! some changes going on around here (nothing serious, don't worry!) but FUN stuff!

12.07.2011

Waiting On Wednesday (17)


GILT | KATHERINE LONGSHORE | VIKING JUVINILE | MAY 2012




In the Tudor age, ambition, power and charismatic allure are essential and Catherine Howard has plenty of all three. Not to mention her loyal best friend, Kitty Tylney, to help cover her tracks. Kitty, the abandoned youngest daughter of minor aristocracy, owes everything to Cat – where she is, what she is, even who she is. Friend, flirt, and self-proclaimed Queen of Misrule, Cat reigns supreme in a loyal court of girls under the none-too-watchful eye of the Dowager Duchess of Norfolk.
When Cat worms her way into the heart of Henry VIII and becomes Queen of England, Kitty is thrown into the intoxicating Tudor Court. It’s a world of glittering jewels and elegant costumes, of gossip and deception. As the Queen’s right-hand-woman, Kitty goes from the girl nobody noticed to being caught between two men – the object of her affection and the object of her desire.
But the atmosphere of the court turns from dazzling to deadly, and Kitty is forced to learn the difference between trust and loyalty, love and lust, secrets and treason. And to accept the consequences when some lessons are learned too late.

Historical AND it takes place in the Tudor Court, which is only the most scandalous and awesome of all the courts! I'm dying for this book to come out!

What are you waiting for?
Happy Reading!

12.06.2011

Sweetly by Jackson Pearce

Who: Jackson Pearce
What: Sweetly
When: August 23rd, 2011
Where: Little Brown
Why: Author Love
How: For Review

Twelve years ago, Gretchen, her twin sister, and her brother went looking for a witch in the forest. They found something. Maybe it was a witch, maybe a monster, they aren’t sure—they were running too fast to tell. Either way, Gretchen’s twin sister was never seen again.

Years later, after being thrown out of their house, Gretchen and Ansel find themselves in Live Oak, South Carolina, a place on the verge of becoming a ghost town. They move in with Sophia Kelly, a young and beautiful chocolatier owner who opens not only her home, but her heart to Gretchen and Ansel.

Yet the witch isn’t gone—it’s here, lurking in the forests of Live Oak, preying on Live Oak girls every year after Sophia Kelly’s infamous chocolate festival. But Gretchen is determined to stop running from witches in the forest, and start fighting back. Alongside Samuel Reynolds, a boy as quick with a gun as he is a sarcastic remark, Gretchen digs deeper into the mystery of not only what the witch is, but how it chooses its victims. Yet the further she investigates, the more she finds herself wondering who the real monster is, and if love can be as deadly as it is beautiful.

I felt a lot of the same things I did during Sister's Red that I did for Sweetly (in many ways, they are quite similar) so let's get started!

I really liked Gretchen. I liked that she was a nice girl with a bit of an attitude and I love how brave and determined she was! In the face of danger, she doesn't back down, she goes up to Samuel and tells him to teach her how aim a gun and fight the Fenris and I definitely give her a round of applause there! She felt a lot more genuine to me than Rosie did (but you know, I didn't like Rosie so) and reminded me a little bit of Scarlett just with a more subtle badassery. One thing that disappointed me was the fact that there wasn't a lot of sibling love going on in the story! Sister's Red was about sibling love and separation and identity and I was expecting that from the beginning of the novel. Instead, Ansel was pretty one-dimensional and like Rosie, fell flat the minute he fell in love.

Sophie, on the other hand, was fascinating. She was complex and scary and wonderful and like Gretchen, I wanted to trust her so much! But because it's a Hansel and Gretel retelling, I was suspicious of everyone. But her plot line was amazing and her desperation and love that eventually turned her to madness was so sad and I wish I had had more time with her to discover the depths of her character. Samuel, I liked! I thought he was a total sweetheart hidden under that whole "macho" guy exterior and he totally grew on me throughout the novel. I also love how he is Sila's (the love interest from Sister's Red) brother and that whole "kick ass" mentality was present even in him! But I definitely liked Samuel more than Silas since I vaguely remember wanting to kick Silas in the shins at one point in that novel.

Jackson brings back the Fenris and I love it! The Fenris, these werewolf monsters, are not to be taken lightly and will kill you anytime you let your guard down (especially if you're pretty). I really liked how we got a lot more detail into the inner workings of their work as well as character development from the animals themselves in this book and I cannot wait until Fathomless because there's all these little clues sprinkled throughout Sweetly that find towards what exactly it's going to be about!

I recommend if you like Fairy Tales and if you loved Sister's Red! A good addiction to the companion trilogy.

Happy Reading!

12.05.2011

TOTALLY BOOKSESSED OSCARS FINAL VOTING SHEET

Welcome everyone, to the final voting round of Totally Booksessed Oscars! If you don't know what i'm talking about, the Youtube channel I run with Lauren, Bailey, Katie, and Audrey is hosting a Book Oscars this year and we got you guys to send in your nominations for 14 categories and here are the final results!

Please, only vote once. The results will be revealed the week of December 19th, in video form on Totally Booksessed and then at the end of that week, on all of our blogs! Okay? HERE WE GO!



Good luck to all! Happy Reading!

12.04.2011

In My Mailbox (59)

Hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren

For Review:
Switched by Amanda Hocking
Dead To You by Lisa McMann
Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Other Stuff:
Books For Kids wristbands
Head Scratcher (dude...dude just watch.)

Happy Reading!
What did you get in YOUR mailbox?

12.01.2011

Contemporary YA Challenge!

Hey guys! For 2012, I've decided I want to participate in more challenges and because of that i'm joining the lovely Katie from Katie's Book Blog's Contemporary Challenge for this year!




 
LINK IF YOU ARE INTERESTED: CLICK ME!

The list I will be working off to of will include:


  1. Don't Breathe A Word by Holly Cupula 
  2. The Fault In Our Stars by John Green
  3. Life Is But A Dream by Brain James
  4. The International Kissing Club by Ivy Adam
  5. Winter's Kiss by Jennifer Echols
  6. Try Not To Breathe by Jennifer Hubbard
  7. Dead To You by Lisa McMann
  8. The Fine Art of Truth Or Dare by Melissa Jensen
  9. Someone Else's Life by Katie Dale
  10. The Rivals by Daisy Whitney
  11. Pretty Crooked by Elisa Ludwig
  12. Where It Began by Ann Redisch Stampler
  13. Wanderlove by Kristin Hubbard
  14. The List by Siobahn Vivian
  15. Take A Bow by Elizabeth Eulburg
  16. Breaking Beautiful by Jennifer Shaw Wolf
  17. The Story Of Us by Deb Caletti
  18. Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson
  19. In Honor by Jessi Kirby
  20. First Comes Love by Katie Kacvinsky
  21. A Midsummer's Nightmare by Kody Keplinger
  22. Something Like Normal by Trish Doller
  23. 52 Reason To Hate My Father by Jessica Brody
  24. The Thing About The Truth by Lauren Barnholdt
  25. Isla And The Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

And BAM, there you go! Hopefully I introduced you to some new titles you've ever seen before and talk to you later! Happy Reading!

11.30.2011

Waiting On Wednesday (16)

FOR DARKNESS SHOWS THE STARS | DIANA PETERFREUND | BALZER + BRAY | JUNE 12th, 2012

Generations ago, a genetic experiment gone wrong—the Reduction—decimated humanity, giving rise to a Luddite nobility who outlawed most technology.
Eighteen-year-old Luddite Elliot North has always known her place in this caste system. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family’s estate over love. But now the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists is jumpstarting the wheel of progress and threatening Luddite control; Elliot’s estate is floundering; and she’s forced to rent land to the mysterious Cloud Fleet, a group of shipbuilders that includes renowned explorer Captain Malakai Wentforth—an almost unrecognizable Kai. And while Elliott wonders if this could be their second chance, Kai seems determined to show Elliot exactly what she gave up when she abandoned him.
But Elliot soon discovers her childhood friend carries a secret—-one that could change the society in which they live…or bring it to its knees. And again, she’s faced with a choice: cling to what she’s been raised to believe, or cast her lot with the only boy she’s ever loved, even if she has lost him forever.
Inspired by Jane Austen’s PERSUASION, FOR DARKNESS SHOWS THE STARS is a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it.


THAT COVER. AND THAT SUMMARY. AND THAT TITLE. Gah, so much love.

Happy Reading!

11.28.2011

Daughter of Smoke And Bone by Laini Taylor

Who: Laini Taylor
What: Daughter of Smoke And Bone
When: September 27th, 2011
Where: Little Brown
Why: Premise
How: For Review (BEA)
Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil's supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she's prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages--not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.

When one of the strangers--beautiful, haunted Akiva--fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

The plot was astounding. The whole idea behind Brimstone's shop and the wishes and the teeth was so beautifully constructed and woven into Laini's writing that I find myself wanting to look for Brimstone's store myself even though it kind of sounds scary as hell! Maybe i'd just peek inside, I don't want to have to wear one of Issa's scary snakes around my neck. The hidden world in the back of Brimstone's shop was also completely unbelievable and everything that went into it: the chimera myths and the angels and the war? I loved every second of it. AND THE SETTING? Urgh, I want to go to Prague so bad. The whole time I was reading this, my sister knew it was set in Prague and she kept telling me stuff about the city when she'd gone and I was just like: I hate you.

Karou was so kickass, guys. She was funny and fierce but she was also vulnerable and, like Akiva once said, had this sad loneliness about her that made me just want to jump into the book and give her a bear hug. But when things get bad, she doesn't cringe in fear of it! Instead, she bursts out of her shell and becomes this total BAMF, determined to do what she needs to do to find Brimstone and find out that exactly she saw behind that door. I love her courage and also just the way she spoke to people. She always sounded so sure of herself and confident and you guys know I love heroines like that that take charge, even if they're feeling lost. Zuzanna was an awesome best friend and like a true best friend, stuck by Karou no matter how crazy things got! I thought Kaz was hilarious and so full of himself that he provided some funny moments, particularly the opening scene!

Laini's writing is one of those that speak to my soul (a la Maggie Stiefvater, Lauren DeStefano) and her prose was magnificent. The descriptions of Prague and the Other World (which has a name but it's escaping me) were lush and beautiful and seriously made me feel like I was there. Also: the book is divided into three parts by these little sections that give a taste of the story and I loooooved that. One example being:



Gorgeous! And finally, we have the love story. Karou and Akiva were...strange in a good way. They fell together in such a fashion that I didn't know how I felt about the two of them together. I felt the tension and the attraction but it was all rushed and random but THEN. Then everything is revealed. And when you find out everything you find out, their romance is beautiful and lovely and I want more!

Overall? Recommend!
Happy Reading!

11.27.2011

In My Mailbox 58

Hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren

For Review:
Under The Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Bought:
Virtuosity by Jessica Martinez

+ Awesome Pledge Swag

Happy Reading!

11.26.2011

YA WATCH (4)

COVER NEWS:

TRISH DOLLER | SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL | BLOOMSBURY | JUNE 19th 2012

OPINION? KISSY COVER OH MY GOD. But at least it's not too visible and doesn't irritate me as much.


A powerful debut novel about a young Marine's return home from Afghanistan and the new life and love he finds while fending off the ghosts of war.

When Travis Stephenson returns home from Afghanistan, his parents are on the brink of divorce, his brother has stolen his girlfriend and his car, and nightmares of his best friend getting killed keep him completely spooked. But when he runs into Harper Gray, a girl who despises him for trashing her reputation with a middle school lie, life actually starts looking up. As Travis and Harper see more of each other, he starts falling for her and the way through the family meltdown, the post-traumatic stress, and the possibility of an interesting future begins to emerge.

His sense of humor, sense of his own strength, and incredible sense of honor make Travis an irresistible and eminently lovable hero in this fantastic and timely debut novel.

SARAH BETH DURST | VESSEL | SIMON AND SCHUSTER | SEPTEMBER 11th, 2012

OPINION? I love this cover. Love the colors and the girl and the scarf billowing out and the text and EVERYTHING.

In a desert land where serpents made of unbreakable glass fly through the sky and wolves made of only sand hunt within storms, Liyana is destined to be a vessel, to sacrifice herself so that her clan's goddess can inhabit her body... but her goddess never comes.









BRIDGET KEMMERER | STORM |  KENSINGTON | APRIL 24th, 2012

OPINION? this looks like the cover of a book about a Boy Band or something...not a fan. 

Earth, Fire, Air, Water – they have more power than you dream.

Ever since her ex-boyfriend spread those lies about her, Becca Chandler is suddenly getting all the guys—all the ones she doesn't want. Then she saves Chris Merrick from a beating in the school parking lot. Chris is different. Way different: he can control water—just like his brothers can control fire, wind, and earth. They’re powerful. Dangerous. Marked for death.

And now that she knows the truth, so is Becca.

Secrets are hard to keep when your life’s at stake. When Hunter, the mysterious new kid around school, turns up with a talent for being in the wrong place at the right time, Becca thinks she can trust him. But then Hunter goes head-to-head with Chris, and Becca wonders who’s hiding the most dangerous truth of all.

The storm is coming . . .

DEAL NEWS:
all information comes from either Publisher's Weekly or the author's blog.

Tessa Gratton has signed a three-book, six-figure deal with Suzy Capozzi at Random House Children’s Books for a new YA trilogy. Laura Rennert at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency handled the world rights deal for Gratton; the series is called the Songs of New Asgard. The series presents an alternate history of the U.S. in which the country was founded on elements of Norse religions, and gods walk among humans, with some maintaining powerful positions in the government. Rennert said Gratton’s inspiration was, in large part, her own translation of Beowulf. The first book, Weight of Stars, follows two teenagers who embark on a cross-country search for a missing god. As the kids travel through the United States of Asgard they encounter, as Rennert put it, “smalltown zealots, trickster gods, and sadistic field trolls.” Gratton’s YA debut, Blood Magic, was published by RH Children’s in May 2011, and the companion book to that title, The Blood Keeper, is coming out in August 2012.

AH! I'm so excited for this, it sounds awesome. You knows how I love mythology!


NYT, WSJ, and USA Today bestselling author Ally Carter's sixth and final novel in the Gallagher Girls series, and the third novel in the Heist series, to Stephanie Owens Lurie and Cat Onder at Disney-Hyperion.

I loved Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter, the second book in the Heist Society Series, SO BAD! I can't wait for the third book for more Kat & Hale! And this sixth Gallagher Girls Book WILL be the last one!

In a six-figure, two-book acquisition, Tamra Tuller at Philomel took world rights to the next two YA titles from its current author, Ruta Sepetys. (Philomel released Sepetys’s debut, Between Shades of Gray, in March.) Agent Ken Wright, at Writers House, brokered the new deal for Sepetys, and the first novel, which is set near the end of WWII and is currently untitled, follows a family aboard the doomed ocean liner the Wilhelm Gustloff, which was sunk by a Soviet submarine as it was carrying thousands of European refugees trying to escape war-torn Europe. Wright said that Sepetys, who had family members aboard the ship, will draw from personal histories for the novel.

Between Shades of Gray was one of my favorite books this year so i'm quite excited!

In a six-figure, two-book pre-empt, Molly O’Neill at HarperCollins’s Katherine Tegen Books bought North American rights to Hilary Smith’s YA debut, Midnight at the Radio Temple. Laura Rennert at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency handled the auction for O’Neill and said the novel, which is scheduled for summer 2013, is a coming-of-age story about a teenage musician who uncovers shocking family secrets during “an unforgettable summer of love and chaos, music and madness.” Smith was behind the formerly anonymous publishing blog, The Intern (www.internspills.blogspot.com), in which she chronicled toiling away as an unpaid laborer in the editorial department at a nameless publishing house; the blog became something of an industry phenomenon in 2009, drawing, at its height, 10,000 visits per month.

I LOVE HER BLOG! So excited for this!

MOVIE NEWS:
all movie information comes from the awesome site, Page To Premiere
" BEAUTIFUL CREATURES movie is now underway! A script has been written, casting is starting this week, and it's set to start shooting April 2012! "

How exciting!

And that's actually all for this week! See you next week on YA WATCH.
Happy Reading!

11.25.2011

Another One Bites The Dust: Keep Your Side Characters!

So i've been thinking about Vampire Diaries a lot lately (but this isn't going to be a post about it, don't worry! YET!) But that got me to thinking about side characters. Because I feel like the show does such an amazing job of intertwining different subplots between characters (evident by the fact my favorite plot line is not Elena's, but Caroline's) and as always, my brain is wired to think about books no matter what the subject:

Acute triangles? LOVE TRIANGLES. Cellular Respiration? OH MY GOD [INSERT BOOK HERE] COMES OUT TOMORROW! Black Plague? I WONDER WHAT DYSTOPIAN I'M GOING TO READ NEXT.

I feel like side characters are an important part of any story and if you do it right, you can incorporate them flawlessly into a story and still give them a voice!

sidenote: not in the way TV shows can, obviously. Unless it's told in Third Person, you can't really have more than one plot line going on and that's alright! But this is something I totally hate:

1. WHEN THE BEST FRIEND DISAPPEARS

Ummm...remember her/him? That kid you've known since you were in diapers that sat next to you in lunchduring Kindergarten and pushed all the bullies that tried to bother you? YEAH THEY ARE STILL ALIVE. I hate hate hate when the Heroine discover her TRUE PATH/LOVE OF HER LIFE and suddenly, it's like they're the only two characters! WHA? No! I understand you can't tell them but dude, don't just pretend your friends don't even exist!

And then the Best Friend tells her something and the Heroine starts complaining and i'm like WELL THEY SHOULD TELL YOU YOU'RE A SUCKY FRIEND.

An example of this that really stood out to me was in The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin. Jamie. Jamie was Mara's first friend when she moved to her new school and was super sweet and tutored her and was funny and awesome and halfway through the book...WHO'S JAMIE? He just..disappears. You can't just bring in a character and then once he's done serving his purpose, make him disappear!

THIS ISN'T THE MAFIA.

And something I do like?

2. WHEN A BEST FRIEND SERVES A PURPOSE IN THE STORY

Photobucket

My favorite example of this is Hanna from Delirium by Lauren Oliver. If it wasn't for Hanna, Lena's story wouldn't even exist. Hanna is the one that drags her to the party thing that made Lena meet Alex and sent her on this whirlwind quest of love and awesomeness.

And does Hanna disappear? Nope! Hanna sticks around throughout the entire novel, helping Alex and Lena as well as just being a good best friend and being happy for Lena and her new discoveries of love and such. This is what I want to see more of! Side characters (also like Puck from The Iron Fey Series by Julie Kagawa, Jenna from Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins, etcc) that have their own back stories and contribute to the story and make me want to be their best friends.

And even if the heroine is being a bad friend, stick by then as much as they can.

Here's another post on Best Friends if you haven't seen it by me: Best Friends: You're Doing It Wrong.

Happy Reading!

11.23.2011

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

Who: Maggie Stiefvater
What: The Scorpio Races
When: October 18th, 2011
Where: Scholastic
Why: AUTHOR LOVE
How: For Review (BEA)

It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die.

At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them.

Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn’t given her much of a chance. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen

This is no doubt one of my favorite books of 2011.

Maggie takes you away from faeries and werewolves and into this alternate universe in which there is an island where these dangerous water horses are captured once a year and used in a deadly and amazing competition called The Scorpio Races. Sean has won four years in a row and plans on making this his next win while Puck, a girl (which in itself is a problem, because this is a MAN'S GAME), is going in because she has no choice. The plot was wonderful and I loved reading about everything that leads up to the races: the festival, all the foreigners that come in, the training. All the tradition that was woven into the writing was a beautiful touch.

And the WRITING? Maggie Stiefvater never disappoints in that field. The writing was lush and lyrical but still rough depending on who was talking. This book, like most of Maggie's books, is told in a dual perspective: Puck and Sean. And I wouldn't have wanted it any other way! Both writing styles and voices contrasted and worked together in complete harmony and I enjoyed the interactions and emotions between the two form when I could read both sides to the story.

My favorite character had to be Sean, because his relationship with Corr, his water horse, was beautiful and sad and I just felt something pulling at my heart every few minutes. Sean was so sweet and determined and everyone took him for granted and didn't realize how important he was (but I DID. I LOVE YOU SEAN.) Plus, I like that he wasn't so outwardly strong but he was respected and reveled in town and had this sort of air about himself that showed what an amazing person he was, through simple, subtle gestures.

Puck was much more volatile. She was always feeling a million different emotions at once and she yelled and got confused and was so brave, I loved her for it. Really, one of the bravest characters I've ever read about. She's riding in a race with horses twice the size of hers, she's raising a family virtually by herself, plus she's joined this race just so she could save her family and make sure they didn't lose their house. She was so strong, I applaud her. The romance was subtle but sweet, and watching Sean and Puck become friends and then more was one of my favorite parts. Especially since they both have so much to lose if they don't win the race.

Overall, a fantastic, fantastic book that I recommend a million times over.

Happy Reading!

11.22.2011

So you know whose Birthday it is today?


I write a post every year on her birthday because she is my bestest friend ever and she's lovely and her blog is amazing so you should definitely go check her out (even though you likely do considering she's way more popular than me, haha!)

But seriously, I've known this girl for over two years and she's the person who inspired me to start blogging so really, if you love this blog, you should be thanking her because it wouldn't exist without her! I know for a fact I wouldn't be where I am today if I hadn't met her on Jackson Pearce's chats so I like doing these little things to remind her she's the awesomest friend ever.

SO YES. HAPPY BIRTHDAY JULIE! If you want to wish her happy birthday, her twitter handle is: @JulieHeartBooks.

-Happy Reading!

11.21.2011

2011 BOOK OSCARS

ARE YOU READY?

FOR THE 2011 BOOK OSCARS?

So Totally Booksessed, the Youtube Collab Channel I created along with Lauren, Katie, Bailey, and Audrey, are hosted something called the 2011 Book Oscars! Here's the lowdown:

There are 14 categories on the form below and I want you to nominate your favorites! ONLY BOOKS THAT HAVE COME OUT THIS YEAR WILL BE ELIGIBLE TO WIN.


  • November 30th: Nominations End
  • December 5th: Final Voting Begins
During final voting, the team over at Totally Booksessed will have narrowed all the nominations down to a top four for each category. You will vote and on DECEMBER 19TH, we will announce all the winners in our videos for the week very fancy-like! 

MORE RULES:

  • if you're feeling conflicted, you CAN put more than one. But please no more than three because i'm gonna have to do all of this! Haha. 
  • again, ONLY books that have come out this year will be eligible to win. 
  • which means as much as you like Anna & St.Clair, they came out December 2010. 
  • you can't have to be subscribed to Totally Booksessed to put in nominations, i'll also be announcing the winners on the blog!

So here's the form and vote away! 




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