Waiting on Wednesday (11)

Who: Brenna Yovanoff
What: The Space Between
When: November 15th, 2011
Where: Razorbill, Penguin

Everything is made of steel, even the flowers. How can you love anything in a place like this?

Daphne is the half-demon, half-fallen angel daughter of Lucifer and Lilith. Life for her is an endless expanse of time, until her brother Obie is kidnapped - and Daphne realizes she may be partially responsible. Determined to find him, Daphne travels from her home in Pandemonium to the vast streets of Earth, where everything is colder and more terrifying. With the help of the human boy she believes was the last person to see her brother alive, Daphne glimpses into his dreams, discovering clues to Obie's whereabouts. As she delves deeper into her demonic powers, she must navigate the jealousies and alliances of the violent archangels who stand in her way. But she also discovers, unexpectedly, what it means to love and be human in a world where human is the hardest thing to be.

So excited to read this! I really liked The Replacement so i'm excited for her sophomore novel.

Happy Reading!
What are YOU waiting for?


Fury by Elizabeth Miles

Who: Elizabeth Miles
What: Fury
When: August 30th, 2011
Where: Simon and Schuster
Why: Mythology Love!
How: For Review (BEA)

Sometimes sorry isn't enough....

It’s winter break in Ascension, Maine. The snow is falling and everything looks pristine and peaceful. But not all is as it seems...

Between cozy traditions and parties with her friends, Emily loves the holidays. And this year’s even better--the guy she’s been into for months is finally noticing her. But Em knows if she starts things with him, there’s no turning back. Because his girlfriend is Em’s best friend.

On the other side of town, Chase is having problems of his own. The stress of his home life is starting to take its toll, and his social life is unraveling. But that’s nothing compared to what’s really haunting him. Chase has done something cruel...something the perfect guy he pretends to be would never do. And it’s only a matter of time before he’s exposed.

In Ascension, mistakes can be deadly. And three girls—three beautiful, mysterious girls—are here to choose who will pay.

Em and Chase have been chosen.

So i'm gonna do a little recap, as always: Fury is about a girl named Em who is in love with her best friend's boyfriend. So when her friend leaves for Winter Vacation and Em and Zach are lumped together...yeah. And then we have Chase, your typical popular asshole with a lot to prove, seeing as how he's not filthly rich like the rest of the people around these parts. But when the Furies stop by in town to torment these two for their misdeeds, things start to get a little bit creepy!

As for characters go, you're able to connect a lot with Emily than you do with Chase. Both of their points of view were interesting, and in the core the pitfalls of both their "love stories", but in the end, it was Emily's chapters that I got genuinely excited about. Chase was just a big asshole, despite his inner turmoil. As for plot goes, I wish we had had more background information when it came to the furies! It was well done and creepy enough that I wouldn't want to read it in the dark. Especially Ty, who as one of the furies plays a major role in the story, especially in Chase's chapters. One of my favorite things about writing, you guys know, is when everything interconnects in the end.

The side characters weren't very important throughout the story, although I suppose Em's best friend was. I was glad to see that she had some sense to her, unlike the other girlfriends going around lately, and ended up with her own -- not happy but satisfying -- ending. And Fury definitely has that. Plot points wrap up neatly around each other and you're left with an ending that is both perfect but makes you grumble. It's the type of ending that you knew had to happen, but you were rooting for the alternate anyway.

Overall, a great book with characters you'll love to hate and great mythology!

Happy Reading!


In My Mailbox (49)

Hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren

For Review:
Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi (already read, absolutely amazing!)
Eyes in the Mirror by Julia Mayer

Traded from Lauren:
Falling For Hamlet by Michelle Ray

Gifted from Nicole:
The Exiled Queen by Cinda Williams Chima
Claire De Lune by Christine Johnson
The Queen's Daughter by Susan Coventry

Happy Reading!
What did YOU get?


Epic Fail by Claire LaZebnik

Who: Claire LaZebnik
What: Epic Fail
When: August 2nd, 2011
Where: Harperteen
Why: Premise Interest
How: For Review

Will Elise’s love life be an epic win or an epic fail?
At Coral Tree Prep in Los Angeles, who your parents are can make or break you. Case in point: As the son of Hollywood royalty, Derek Edwards is pretty much prince of the school—not that he deigns to acknowledge many of his loyal subjects.As the daughter of the new principal, Elise Benton isn’t exactly on everyone’s must-sit-next-to-at-lunch list.
When Elise’s beautiful sister catches the eye of the prince’s best friend, Elise gets to spend a lot of time with Derek, making her the envy of every girl on campus. Except she refuses to fall for any of his rare smiles and instead warms up to his enemy, the surprisingly charming social outcast Webster Grant. But in this hilarious tale of fitting in and flirting, not all snubs are undeserved, not all celebrity brats are bratty, and pride and prejudice can get in the way of true love for only so long.

Epic Fail was a funny, cute, and positively romantic retelling of Pride and Prejudice that is the type of read you curl up and read in one sitting (which is totally what I did.)

Epic Fail is a Pride and Prejudice retelling set in LA, in a private school for the offspring of the rich and famous. Elise, as well as her three other sisters, have been uprooted from Massachusetts to Hollywood because her parents got a new job at a totally snobby private school, which Elise has to attend. There her older, soft-spoken sister meets the boy of her dreams, Chase, and Elise is lumped together with Chase's best friend, Derek, who is cold and doesn't exactly like opening himself up to people due to the fact his mom is the biggest star in Hollywood.

Elise was funny, up-tight enough that I gave her narrative voice and personality when it came to Derek and just how irritating she found him, and mostly, she just had a good voice! She was straight-forward about her decisions, although stubborn, and proved himself someone kind-hearted whenever it came to her older sister, who was a total sweetheart as well. Layla was a complete pain in the butt and I suppose her Pride and Prejudice equivalent was as well? She was selfish and just followed the "in crowd", which ends up getting her in a lot of trouble! Chase was a sweetheart as well (you see why him and Jules are so good together) and Elise's parents were probably my least favorite part of the whole story. Her parents were so annoying. Unnecessarily strict (I understand disciplined, but their rules were extreme, to say the least) and totally embarrassing, i'm afraid it'd probably be as annoyed as Layla if I had to deal with them.

Finally, we have Derek and Elise. Their relationship was absolutely adorable, despite their ups and downs. I looked forward to every meeting, their little quips and sweet moments. Heck, even their arguments! They had a chemistry to them that I appreciated. Webster? Total loser, never ever thought he had a chance!

Overall, a cute and heart-warming book! Definitely recommend!


Waiting on Wednesday (12)

Who: Lia Habel
What: Dearly Departed
Where: Del Ray Books
When: October 18th, 2011

Love conquers all, so they say. But can Cupid’s arrow pierce the hearts of the living and the dead—or rather, the undead? Can a proper young Victorian lady find true love in the arms of a dashing zombie?

The year is 2195. The place is New Victoria—a high-tech nation modeled on the manners, mores, and fashions of an antique era. A teenager in high society, Nora Dearly is far more interested in military history and her country’s political unrest than in tea parties and debutante balls. But after her beloved parents die, Nora is left at the mercy of her domineering aunt, a social-climbing spendthrift who has squandered the family fortune, and now plans to marry her niece off for money. For Nora, no fate could be more horrible—until she’s nearly kidnapped by an army of walking corpses.

But fate is just getting started with Nora. Catapulted from her world of drawing-room civility, she’s suddenly gunning down ravenous zombies alongside mysterious black-clad commandos and confronting “The Laz,” a fatal virus that raises the dead—and hell along with them. Hardly ideal circumstances. Then Nora meets Bram Griswold, a young soldier who is brave, handsome, noble . . . and dead. But as is the case with the rest of his special undead unit, luck and modern science have enabled Bram to hold on to his mind, his manners, and his body parts. And when his bond of trust with Nora turns to tenderness, there’s no turning back. Eventually, they know, the disease will win, separating the star-crossed lovers forever.

Steampunk! Victorian age! Romance and dead people and walking corpses!

Happy Reading!
What are YOU waiting for?


Interview with Clarie Lazebnik : Epic Fail

Hey guys! So today I have the lovely Clarie Lazebnik, author of her YA debut Epic Fail, a Pride and Prejudice retelling in a private school for the sons and daughters of the rich and famous, to answer some questions about herself and her writing.

1. If you could live with three YA characters (not your own), who would they be and why?

1. Peeta from THE HUNGER GAMES because he is the sweetest, most wonderful hero ever created.

2. Peeta from CATCHING FIRE, because I love him dearly.

3. Peeta from MOCKINGJAY because he's perfect, even when his brain and memory have been altered by the bad guys.

I'm a little obsessed with Peeta, in case you haven't noticed. Suzanne Collins is my idol.

2. What character do you think is most like you? Least?

It's funny: I think the character who's most like me is Elise's aunt, who only appears in one short scene. She's saner than Elise's mom and mildly sarcastic and even though she only has a couple of lines, I totally relate to her. I'd like to think Elise is a younger version than me, but I was never that self-possessed and attractive. The least like me is Juliana--she's way too sweet and patient and kind.

3. Do you listen to any music while you write? If so, what are some of your favorites?

It's very hard for me to write a first draft listening to music--I'll get distracted and find myself paying attention to the lyrics instead of to what I'm writing. But rewriting requires a little less focus so as long as the music isn't too loud or too catchy, I can have something playing while I do

a second (or third or fourth) pass.

I actually created a playlist for Elise Benton (my main character), using some of my favorite songs but also consulting with my teenage son and a friend of his so the list wouldn't be too old-fashioned or boring. If you want to check it out, it's at http://c.itunes.apple.com/us/imix/elise-bentons-best-songs-ever/id449946670.

4. if you could say something to your younger writing self, what would you say?


No, I'm just joking--although, believe me, there are lots of frustrations connected to being an author. But what I'd really say is something I've learned over time, and that's to JUST KEEP MOVING FORWARD. You can get bogged down in word choice and disappointment that your sentences aren't as perfect as you want them to be--but the truth is that as long as you're getting the ideas down on paper, you can go back and rewrite until you're happy with it. The important thing is to get SOMETHING down on paper. Anything is fixable, but if you don't keep moving forward, you'll stall.

Happy Reading!


In My Mailbox (48)

For Review:
The Pledge by Kimberly Derting
Virtousity by Jessica Martinez
Epic Fail by Clarie

LOTS of swag.

ALSO: leave me questions in the comments since this week on Totally Booksessed is Q&A week! Or if you want to be anonymous: http://formspring.com/HarmonyBeaufort


Tuesday -- Top Ten Tuesday

Happy Reading!


A Psychological (not really) analysis of Disney vs. YA Boys

o I was catching up on my blogs a few days back and I stumbled upon this post by Nicole from Word For Teens where she compares YA romances to Disney romances. Which got me thinking….Disney love interests definitely end up falling in the same categories as so our lovely YA boys, so let's do this!

(note: i'm not counting any sequels, JUST the one movie)

the awkward boy who has no idea what he's doing:

I’m sure most people would put Beast in the category of bad boy turned good but I see him in a different light. He’s that YA boy who has no experience dealing with girls and therefore, tries to do things to impress them that end up coming out COMPLETELY WRONG. He’s that cute boy across the cafeteria that catches you staring and drops his tray and turns around because he thinks you’re looking at the jock behind him. And then he gets frustrated because he has NO IDEA what to do with you. (in Beast's case, a little too frustrated, but I'd be pissed too if a witch decided to just make me a werebear)

I wish there were more awkward boys in YA today, because really? That’s like 70% of the boy population.

The guy with no personality:

Sadly, this is much more common. I hate reaching the end of a book and not knowing…well anything about the love interest. What is his family like? Where does he like to go? Does he like ANYTHING ELSE BESIDES THE HEROINE? I hate love interests whose whole life seems to revolve around the main character and sadly, these Disney boys make the cut. And Eric, you and that dog doesn’t really count as character development. And the other love interest hardly even have...names! Two are called Prince Charming, for crying out loud!

The cocky, suave boy turned good and responsible:

Aw, you all know this one. MOST common in YA, as if we all have hot, witty boys in our life who are confident smooth talkers that also read camus or something. And the thing is, as well as most of the YA boys, you can’t help but love them. Aladdin happens to be one of my favorites ever and Simba? Who doesn’t LOVE Simba? And then they have their change of heart to pulls them out of their cocky, arrogant, snotty-ness, which always ends up being the very heroine herself (or in Simba's case, his family, and the vision quest spirit thing of his father)

The one that is “just right”:

This is Unearthly. And Anna and the French Kiss. And every fantastic slow build-up of a romance you can think of. Characters like Shang and Flynn and Dimitri get to KNOW their heroines before they end up in a romantic relationship with one another, whether through a journey or a war or anything of the sort. They respect one another and earn each other’s respect and love by doing things (most of the time saving each other’s lives or something of the sort) and genuinely end up together not because he picked up a glass slipper or woke her up from a long slumber. But they got to know each other along the way. (Beauty and the Beast would also count here too) (and I have just discovered Anastasia is fox but I DON’T CARE) (Also, Naveen's face messed up the format, so he had to go)

I think what I really like seeing is that Disney is changing with the times. It’s not instant love anymore in these movies, and it’s always a journey that brings these people together instead of a curse or an apple. And I hope it stays that way! Mulan was the start of it and I hope the rest of the Disney princesses earn their respect from their man just like she did! Yeah!

Happy Reading!


Fateful by Claudia Gray

Who: Claudia Gray
What: Fateful
When: September 13th
Where: Harperteen
Why: PREMISE! (i love this summary guys, it's SO good)
How: For Review (BEA)

It's about a servant girl named Tess in 1912, who wants to escape from the house where she works, and most particularly the lecherous young lord of the manor. But that's not her biggest problem. While on a voyage to America, where she plans to escape and start a new life, she meets Alec, who's ruggedly handsome, fabulously wealthy, intelligent and yet so clearly troubled that she'd rather not fall for him, but she does. That also is not her biggest problem. Alec, it turns out, is a werewolf ... one cursed to change every night, unless and until he surrenders his independence and joins the Brotherhood, a pack of violently misogynistic werewolves who have been tracking him for months. You'd think that would be their biggest problem, wouldn't you?

But no. Their biggest problem -- though they don't know it yet -- is that they're aboard the RMS Titanic.

Claudia has woven history and supernatural elements to give me the ultimate historical, a love story. With werewolves. On the titanic.

The story revolves around a girl named Tess, who is a servant who plans to escape once her masters reach America and start her own life there. What ship to they happen to be aboard? The RMS Titanic. Claudia's writing is beautiful, and explains everything in such vivid detail to every part of the ship whether it was the beautiful deck or the wealthy rooms all the way down to the third-class basement where she's been thrown down too. And then she meets Alec, and their relationship was intense and sweet and I loved how so many of the subplots entwined and the fact that WHOA Alec is a werewolf was not the main focus.

Mr.Marlowe is one crazy villain. He really would stop at nothing to get what he came on the ship for, and that included not only Alec but the reason Tess got tangled in this in the first place, something from her family's chest. And he's totally willing to hurt a few people along the way, make some cruel tricks, befriend the very people who control Tess' future, and completely destroy everything he can along the way.

In other words, my kind of villain.

Another thing I liked is the fact that you know where this is going to end, because everyone knows the story of the Titanic! But Claudia still does loosely show the events of that day, in her author's note saying she didn't want to touch the deaths of that day and respect it, and i'm a sap and started crying crocodile tears. But the end is hopeful and lovely and i'm not gonna say anymore. (oh, and yeah, there is some sexytimes.)

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Books That Are Coming Out In September!

So this week's Top Ten Tuesday is a freebie, and since i'm almost done with my August books, I want to talk about September books! September is FULL of YA releases (possibly one of the busiest release months in the year) so here we go!

September 20th | HarperTeen

High Fantasy! So excited!

2. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

September 27th | Little Brown

Everyone has talked about it's beautiful prose and how amazing it is so I can't wait to just dive in.

3. Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst
September 13th | Simon and Schuster

Featured this in the last In My Mailbox but I am so excited! It reminds me of Infinite Days a bit but with a much more sardonic voice to it.

4. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

September 27th | Simon and Schuster

Yeah, i've already read this one, but i'm so so so excited for other people to read it so we can all talk about it!

5. Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
September 29th | Dutton

I've read this, but I couldn't NOT include it on the list! A fantastic, romantic, and amazingly written companion to Anna and the French Kiss.

6. Fateful by Claudia Gray
September 13th | HarperTeen

Also read this one before, but it's really amazing! Claudia is great at weaving a real life event with a supernatural element that left me (not gonna lie) shedding some major tears in the end.

7. The Beginning of After by Jennifer Castle
September 6th | Harperteen

Needed a contemporary in here, right? SO psyched for this one!

8. Ashes by Isla J. Bick
September 6th | Egmont

Dystopian that sounds creepy and dangerous.

9. Shut Out by Kody Keplinger
September 5th | Little Brown

I loved The Duff so i'm definitely ready to read this new contemporary from her

10. Vanish by Sophie Jordan
September 6th | Harperteen

A sequel! I'm dying to find out more about Cassian and follow Jacinda journey to finding Will again.

Happy Reading!


Dark Souls by Paula Morris + Contest

Who: Dark Souls
What: Dark Souls
When: August , 2011
Where: Point (Scholastic)
Why: Ghost Story!
How: For Review

Welcome to York, England: the most haunted city in the world.

Miranda Tennant arrives in York with a terrible, tragic secret. She is eager to lose herself amid the quaint shops, hoping she won’t run into the many ghosts who supposedly roam the cobblestone streets. Then she meets Nick, an intense, dark-eyed boy who knows all of York’s hidden places and histories. Miranda wonders if Nick is falling for her, but she is distracted by another boy -- one even more handsome and mysterious than Nick. He lives in the house across from Miranda and seems desperate to send her some sort of message. Could this boy be one of York’s haunted souls?

Soon, Miranda realizes that something dangerous -- and deadly -- is being planned. And she may have to face the darkest part of herself in order to unravel the mystery -- and find redemption.

Dark Souls takes you across the pond to the most haunted city in the world, York, and follows Miranda, a girl who, ever since her friend died in the car accident that killed her best friend but left her and her brother alive, can see ghosts wherever she goes. So, when she meets Nick, who can see them as well, she starts figuring out exactly how it works while simultaneously being stared at from her bedroom window by a crazy beautiful ghost that definitely takes them on a wild ride.

I liked it, which isn't saying that I hated it, but it's one of those books that's just "alright." The beginning didn't grab me and I didn't find myself actually investing in the characters or the story until around page 150. The story's pace could have been picked up a bit and I felt like we got too much just explaining of the history and foreshadowing and such before we got to where things actually start happening. Miranda was your average heroine, not very confident in herself but determined, and completely confused about these ghosts that are everywhere in York!

Sally was probably my favorite character because she knew how to take charge, even in bad and spur of the moment decisions, especially those that involved ghosts even though she'd never been in the world. Miranda's parents were funny and flighty so they were useful in not being around in dramatic parts, and I found Rob to really just be a major pain unless he was getting something out of it and otherwise, completely useless. Nick was another typical love interest, brooding, with a bad boy-esque air to himself, but it's nice to know he wasn't this frantic all the time!

Overall, an alright book for people who don't mind slower plots but still love a good ghost story!


For more information about other Scholastic titles and Paula Morris:

thanks to the lovely people at Big Honcho Media, I have TWO copies of Dark Souls by Paula Morris up for grabs:
  • giveaway ends September 29th
  • US/Canada only
  • you must be 13 or older to enter
  • fill out the form below


In My Mailbox (47)

Hosted by The Story Siren

For Review:
Dark Parties by Sara Grant
Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst
The Death Catches by Jennifer Ann Kogler

Game of Thrones 1-4 by George R.R Martin

Happy Reading!


Want To Go Private by Sarah Darer Littman

Who: Sarah Darer Littman
What: Want To Go Private
Where: Scholastic
When: August 1st, 2011
Why: Author Interest
How: For Review

Abby and Luke chat online. They've never met. But they are going to. Soon.

Abby is starting high school—it should be exciting, so why doesn't she care? Everyone tells her to "make an effort," but why can't she just be herself? Abby quickly feels like she's losing a grip on her once-happy life. The only thing she cares about anymore is talking to Luke, a guy she met online, who understands. It feels dangerous and yet good to chat with Luke—he is her secret, and she's his. Then Luke asks her to meet him, and she does. But Luke isn't who he says he is. When Abby goes missing, everyone is left to put together the pieces. If they don't, they'll never see Abby again.

It's gonna be hard writing this review.

Want To Go Private is the story of Abby, who's feeling isolated and alone after she starts high school. Add to that the fact her best friend and her don't have much in common anymore, her parents don't understand her, and she has absolutely no self-esteem. So when she meets "Luke" in an online chat room, he understands her like no one else does...and you can see where it does from there.

This is a hard review to write for me because i'm fifteen, guys. Abby, in the book, is fourteen. And I spent most of the book just thinking and getting frustrated and going: "How could she do that? How didn't she see it coming? I was her age last year!" And it's...strange to know that it happens, because it does, and it happens to girls that are the same age as me. Reading this book, I couldn't relate to Abby, because i'm just not that type of person (you guys know me, i'm perky and all AHHH, and I couldn't imagine my self confidence dropping enough to put myself in that situation) but her story was real and raw and something that happens, every day.

Seeing her evolve from this normal girl to someone who just became consumed by this "boy" was expertly written and engrossing, due to Sarah's amazing writing and her ability to just dive into the mind of a character. Once you get to Part Two and the perspectives start changing, was really when the novel completely sucked me in. Lily, her sister, was well-rounded as well as her best friend Faith and Billy. Billy charmed me from the beginning, and the plot and construction of the novel really speaks for itself.

Overall, a well-written and heart-breaking story tinged with hope for not only Abby, but her family and friends, but something that was just hard for me to read.

Happy Reading!


Vanish by Sophie Jordan Contest!

So today I have a contest for you guys that i'm sure you'll be excited about! Up for grabs I have a copy of Vanish by Sophie Jordan! Here's the cover and description:

To save the life of the boy she loves, Jacinda did the unthinkable: She betrayed the most closely-guarded secret of her kind. Now she must return to the protection of her pride knowing she might never see Will again—and worse, that because his mind has been shaded, Will’s memories of that fateful night and why she had to flee are gone.

Back home, Jacinda is greeted with hostility and must work to prove her loyalty for both her sake and her family’s. Among the few who will even talk to her are Cassian, the pride’s heir apparent who has always wanted her, and her sister, Tamra, who has been forever changed by a twist of fate. Jacinda knows that she should forget Will and move on—that if he managed to remember and keep his promise to find her, it would only endanger them both. Yet she clings to the hope that someday they will be together again. When the chance arrives to follow her heart, will she risk everything for love?
  • contest ends August 28th
  • you must be 13 or older to enter
  • contest is open to US/Canada
  • fill out the form below:

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Tuesday: Underrated Books!

So this week we're doing books that we think haven't gotten the crazy buzz they absolutely deserve!

1. Every book by Rosemary Clement Moore

  • Yeah, yeah, yeah. I've talked about this before but seriously guys, so underrated! Much more people should be reading the awesome.
2. Dust of 100 Dogs by A.S King

  • I loved this book! A.S King's sophmore novel, Please Ignore Vera Ditz, is much more well known around these parts but I think this one doesn't get enough credit. Pirates!
3. Fixing Delilah by Sarah Ockler

  • Well known, but mostly in the blogging community (and because Sarah is awesome). But I want more people to read it! It's the book that made me not hate contemporary so I love it when everyone gives it a try.
4. The Thief by Megan Whale Turner

  • Read it! All of you! It's one of those books where you get to the end, and you simmer over it, and then you're like: "OH MY GOD, SHE'S A GENIUS" because everything clicks in your head.
5. Heist Society by Ally Carter

  • This is Ally Carter's newest series about teen con artists and I is so. Damn. Good. Especially the second book, Uncommon Criminals! I think everyone should pick it up!
6. Lament by Maggie Stiefvater

  • For this time, I'm thinking more in like, the real world. Because Maggie's Shiver Books are HUGE and her debut novel don't really get much attention!
7. The Mediator by Meg Cabot

  • One of Meg's lesser known series. Paranormal, about ghosts, totally awesome.
8. Brightly Woven by Alexandra Bracken

  • Just...don't even ask. Just read it! It's amazing!
9. Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

  • It got a LOT of buzz, but I really want it to just explode people! It was such a beautiful novel, it deserves to be in the hands of a lot more people.
and...I can't think up a ten, guys. So Top Nine Tuesday today!
Happy Reading!


Misfit by Jon

Who: Jon Skovron
What: Misfit
When: August 1st, 2011
Where: Amulet Books
Why: Premise Interest
How: For Review (BEA)

Jael has always felt like a freak. She’s never kissed a boy, she never knew her mom, and her dad’s always been superstrict—but that’s probably because her mom was a demon, which makes Jael half demon and most definitely not a normal sophomore girl. On her sixteenth birthday, a mysterious present unlocks her family’s dangerous history and Jael’s untapped potential. What was merely an embarrassing secret before becomes a terrifying reality. Jael must learn to master her demon side in order to take on a vindictive Duke of Hell while also dealing with a twisted priest, best-friend drama, and a spacey blond skater boy who may have hidden depths.

I loved this book! Mysterious, Smart, and with a mythology and backstory that would interest pretty much anyone, Misfit is definitely something you should pick up!

Misfit is the story of Jael, a girl whose mother died when she was a baby but she finds out was a demon when she was eight years old. With a father who doesn't want to talk about old memories, she turns sixteen and receives a necklace that opens up hell itself, and reveals everything she had been missing in her head. The story here was brilliant, and I loved every second of Jael's discovery of not only herself, but the dreams of her parents. Her parent's story was so heartbreaking and beautiful, I looked forward to every dream.

And then the characters! I love how Jon weaved humor into a book chock full of bad consequences, while still managing to not make it sound out of place. Jael was headstrong, funny, and perfectly capable of beating some demon ass, even if she didn't believe it for herself. Uncle D had to be my favorite, Rob was hilarious and adorable, and her father discovering himself and his daughter was heartwarming. By the way, Jack? Totally called it. It's the type of book that takes in biblical references without sounding all preachy and actually making it relevant to the story.

Overall, definitely pick it up when you see it!
Happy Reading!


Dark Parties by Sara Grant

Who: Sara Grant
What: Dark Parties
When: August 3rd, 2011
Where: Little, Brown
Why: Premise Interest
How: For Review

Sixteen-year-old Neva has been trapped since birth. She was born and raised under the Protectosphere, in an isolated nation ruled by fear, lies, and xenophobia. A shield "protects" them from the outside world, but also locks the citizens inside. But there's nothing left on the outside, ever since the world collapsed from violent warfare. Or so the government says...

Neva and her best friend Sanna believe the government is lying and stage a "dark party" to recruit members for their underground rebellion. But as Neva begins to uncover the truth, she realizes she must question everything she's ever known, including the people she loves the most.

Oh, the conflict that is going to be this review.

Dark Parties is a dystopian about a girl named Neva who's society is trapped about something called the Protosphere, which forbids anyone from getting in or out while the goverment controls every aspect of your life. Population is dwindling, people are going missing, and rebellion is sparking all over the city. And in the center of this is Neva who just wants to find out what's going on and get the hell out of there.

Sara Grant writes with suspense and intrigue lining every page, and I was flipping faster and faster to find out what was going to happen to this society and what other secrets the goverment was keeping. The story was brilliant and Sara's grasp of story-telling and how to construct a dystopian was spot-on. This book would've been perfect for me if it hadn't been for the character.

I wanted to strangle most of them.

The main character Neva was headstrong and I like how she never gave up, but dude, your best friend's boyfriend? (not a spoiler since it happens on like page 5, right?) Never okay. Ever ever ever. But okay, alright, I could look past that because she was determined and I liked that. Then we have Braydon, who I loved to hate, and then just hated, and then everything's explained and now I just feel neutral towards the guy. Ethan was someone I felt so sad for, he was so crazy. But then there's Sanna.

My god. Sanna.

Sanna was dumb. She's one of those girls who will drop all of her priorities just because she has a boyfriend, can't have a normal conversation without bringing up how "a-ah-mazing (and if I had to read that once more, I would've freaked)" it was to have a boyfriend, and could forgive her boyfriend for doing something awful he started but not even her best friend. Just no. I hated her so much.

But on the other hand, a person has to be a really good story-teller to make me fall in love with the writing and story-building and still hate her characters. So do with that what you will.

Happy Reading!


Waiting and Wanting (5)

So let's get ready for this!

Who: Robin Bridges
What: The Gathering Storm
When: January 12th, 2012
Where: Delacorte (Random House)

St. Petersburg, Russia, 1888. As she attends a whirl of glittering balls, royal debutante Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, tries to hide a dark secret: she can raise the dead. No one knows. Not her family. Not the girls at her finishing school. Not the tsar or anyone in her aristocratic circle. Katerina considers her talent a curse, not a gift. But when she uses her special skill to protect a member of the Imperial Family, she finds herself caught in a web of intrigue.
An evil presence is growing within Europe's royal bloodlines
—and those aligned with the darkness threaten to topp
le the tsar. Suddenly Katerina's strength as a necromancer attracts attention from unwelcome sources . . . including two young men—George Alexandrovich, the tsar's standoffish middle son, who needs Katerina's help to safeguard
Russia, even if he's repelled by her secret, and the dashing Prince Danilo, heir to the throne of Montenegro, to whom Katerina feels inexplicably drawn.
The time has come for Katerina to embrace her power, but which side will she choose—and to whom will she give her heart?

Who: Cat Hellisen  
What: When the Sea is Rising Red
When: Feburary 28th, 2012 
Where: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux 
When sixteen-year-old Felicita’s world, magic is strictly controlled—or so those in power like to believe.
After her dearest friend, Ilven, kills herself to escape an
arranged marriage, Felicita chooses freedom over privilege.
She fakes her own death and leaves her sheltered life as
one of Pelimburg’s magical elite behind. Living in the slums,
scrubbing dishes for a living, she falls for charismatic Dash while also becoming fascinated with vampire Jannik. Then something shocking washes up on the beach: Ilven’s death has called out of the sea a dangerous, wild magic. Felicita
must decide whether her loyalties lie with the family she
abandoned . . . or with those who would twist this dark power to destroy Pelimburg’s caste system, and the whole city along with it.

Who: Jodi Meadows
What: Incarnate
When: Janurary 31st, 2012
Where: Harperteen


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.

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?


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?

Happy Reading!


The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab

Who: Victoria Schwab
What: The Near Witch
When: August 2nd, 2011
Where: Disney Hyperion
Why: Premise
How: For Review

The Near Witch is only an old story told to frighten children.

If the wind calls at night, you must not listen. The wind is lonely, and always looking for company.

And there are no strangers in the town of Near.
These are the truths that Lexi has heard all her life.

But when an actual stranger—a boy who seems to fade like smoke—appears outside her home on the moor at night, she knows that at least one of these sayings is no longer true.

The next night, the children of Near start disappearing from their beds, and the mysterious boy falls under suspicion. Still, he insists on helping Lexi search for them. Something tells her she can trust him.

As the hunt for the children intensifies, so does Lexi’s need to know—about the witch that just might be more than a bedtime story, about the wind that seems to speak through the walls at night, and about the history of this nameless boy.

I absolutely adored this book! The Near Witch is full of wonderful characters, beautiful writing, and a setting so lush that it's straight out of a fairy tale! But don't think it's just completely light, because there's some creepy stuff going down in the town of Near.

I loved Lexi was our heroine on this crazy journey! She was head-strong and knew what she had to do and the consequences of doing it, but did it anyway because it was what she felt was right despite the rest of the village's wishes. The children start disappearing from the village and unfortunately at the same time, the arrival of a strange boy named Cole coincides with this. So the village automatically assumes it's him and Lexi and Cole form a strange alliance to prove him innocent. My favorite part had to be Victoria's writing, which is ethereal and just like a fairy tale should be. She captured the essence of evil perfectly, to the point where I was creeped out myself about the wind in the trees.

There is romance but like in most fairy tales, it's light and adorable and completely fit the story. I swear, if they would've started getting angsty or steamy, it would've totally ruined the vibe (don't laugh at me, I said it: VIBE) of the novel. Overall, an absolutely beautiful debut and i'm looking out for anything else Victoria has to offer!

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Tuesday: Trends!

So Top Ten Tuesday time! This meme is hosted over by the lovely ladies at The Broke and The Bookish and this week we are doing Book Trend We want to see Less/More of.

1. Switching to hardcover mid-series
WHY? WHY?!?! Vampire Academy did this and now Iron Fey is gonna do it as well. I don't mind when my covers don't match, but then they're different sizes?

2. Love Triangles where the girl picks the tortured soul.
The nice guy is an EXCELLENT choice too, you know! Or better yet, just focus on one boy!

3. The Series Craze
Okay, I love series books and all, but sometimes you need to have everything resolved in one book! Standalone? GREAT. Or heck, even companion novels (Lola and the Boy Next Door, Slice of Cherry, Sweetly-esque)

4. Heroines who can't really...do much.
Okay, yeah, I get it. You're human, but that doesn't mean you need to be useless! You know a dangerous, evil villian is after you? Don't curl up into fetal position and rest on the fact your paranormal boyfriend/love interest can protect you! Take a karate class, learn some sword-fighting, do something!

Dude. You guys know this gets under my skin, so damn much. There is nothing I hate
more than having to read about a girl who hates her body, and hates herself, and thinks she's useless. Ummm, what the hell? I want to see more girls out there who are confident in themselves without the author or publisher thinking that people just won't be able to relate to them. Because seriously? I never relate to those girls who just bag on themselves!

6. High Fantasy/Historical Fiction
Please! I absolutely love both of these genres and there's a lot of really awesome o
nes coming up (The Gathering Storm, Girl of Fire and Thorns)

7. More "real life events" and throwing a twist in it
Maybe this is just because I totally loved Fateful by Claudia Gray and how they were on the titanic and she stayed true to that but there was paranormal stuff going on and everything was so good! More of this!

8. More funny narrators
Don't get me wrong, serious narrators are awesome, but sometimes it's nice to kick back with a book that has a serious undertone but has an awesome, funny, and snarky main character (a la Hex Hall, Hourglass, Paranormalcy, Angelfire)

9. Pictures!
Guys, I love pictures. And when books like Leviathan, Wintertown, and The Sky is Everywhere put little pictures to help with the actual novel, I love it! More!

10. Mythology
Yeah, people are getting tired of it. But I love mythology! Bring it on!

Happy Reading!


Bookshelf Tour!

Hey guys! So this week is Bookshelf Tour Week on Totally Booksessed, and since it's something you might want to see, I decided to post it up on here as well!

Enjoy and happy reading!


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