Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday



Synopsis: Phoebe finds herself drawn to Mallory, the strange and secretive new kid in school, and the two girls become as close as sisters . . . until Mallory's magnetic older brother, Ryland, shows up during their junior year. Ryland has an immediate, exciting hold on Phoebe, but a dangerous hold, for she begins to question her feelings about her best friend and, worse, about herself. Soon she'll discover the shocking truth about Ryland and Mallory: that these two are visitors from the faerie realm who have come to collect on an age-old debt. Generations ago, the faerie queen promised Pheobe's ancestor five extraordinary sons in exchange for the sacrifice of one ordinary female heir. But in hundreds of years there hasn't been a single ordinary girl in the family, and now the faeries are dying. Could Phoebe be the first ordinary one? Could she save the faeries, or is she special enough to save herself?

I cannot wait to read this one. If you don't remember, Nancy is the author of the novel Impossible. Wow. Me likey. Me wanty!

Fun and random thought: The cover is awesome, but who runs through the forest in heels? That girl is going to sprain her ankle if she doesn't take it easy!

Release date: September 7th 2010

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Teaser Tuesday: Return To Paradise


Teaser Tuesday is weekly meme hosted by Mizb at Should Be Reading.
The rules are simple:

-Grab your current read
-Open to a random page
-Share 2 “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!(make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

-Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week's Teaser Tuesday is from Return To Paradise by Simone Elkeles. If you're a huge fan of Simone Elkeles like I am, you'll know this is the sequel to Leaving Paradise (which is FABULOUS!).

There are 2 quotes I'm going to share with you. Why? Because I couldn't pick one and stink at following the rules. I like to think of this as a win-win situation. No worries, neither are spoilery. Even if you haven't read Leaving Paradise, it's not going to ruin it.

Leaving Paradise and Return To Paradise alternate POVs between Maggie and Caleb. Both of these quotes are from Maggie's POV. Here we go:

Maggie Part 1

"This is unreal. I can't feel my toes because I'm in shock, and Caleb and this guy are going to get into a fight over...farting?"-Page 12

Maggie Part 2

"'Then prove it.'
I narrow my eyes at him and wonder what he's up to. 'How?'
'Kiss me, Maggie. Right here, right now.'"-
Page 36-37

Monday, June 28, 2010

Summer Cleaning Contest



With all the new amazing releases this year, I find my bookshelves becoming more and more disorganized and overbearing. I just have too much stuff and must make room for newer ones. Thus, the first of probably many Summer Cleaning Contest.

It's simple.
*You must be a follower to enter
*US participates only. If you do not live in the US, but have someone in the states I can ship the package too, feel free to enter.

**What you can win**

Books:
*Bones of Fairie by Janni Lee Simner (HB)
*A Certain Slant of Light by Laura Whitcomb (PB)
*Leap Day by Wendy Mass (PB)
*Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin (PB)

Swag:
*Forget-Her-Nots postcard
*Highway To Hell postcard
*Forgive My Fins bookmark
*Cinderella Society/Great Savenger Hunt Bookmark (signed by Kay Cassidy)
*Cleopatra's Daughter bookmark
*Sucks To Be Me bookmark
*The Owl Keeper business card
*The Dead-Tossed Waves sticker
*Forgive My Fins tattoo

To enter, please fill out this FORM.

Contest ends July 11th at 12am (CST). Winners will be drawn and announced sometime July 12th.

Good luck everyone!
*Sends you good juju*

Sunday, June 27, 2010

In My Mailbox



In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. I didn't get that much this week, but what I got was excellent. Here we go!

Books:

*The One That I Want by Allison Winn Scotch
*My Name Is Memory by Ann Brashares
*Life After Yes by Aidan Donnelly Rowley

ARCs:

Return to Paradise by Simone Elkeles

Special thanks to Aidan Donnelley Rowley for sending me The One That I Want and Life After Yes. Also, thanks to my girl Karen at FWIW for loaning me her copy of Return To Paradise.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Review : The Eternal Ones


Title: The Eternal Ones
Author: Kirsten Miller
Published: August 24th 2010 by Razorbill (first published 2010)
Details: Hardcover, 432 pages

Synopsis: What if love refused to die?

Haven Moore can’t control her visions of a past with a boy called Ethan, and a life in New York that ended in fiery tragedy. In our present, she designs beautiful dresses for her classmates with her best friend Beau. Dressmaking keeps her sane, since she lives with her widowed and heartbroken mother in her tyrannical grandmother’s house in Snope City, a tiny town in Tennessee. Then an impossible group of coincidences conspire to force her to flee to New York, to discover who she is, and who she was.

In New York, Haven meets Iain Morrow and is swept into an epic love affair that feels both deeply fated and terribly dangerous. Iain is suspected of murdering a rock star and Haven wonders, could he have murdered her in a past life? She visits the Ouroboros Society and discovers a murky world of reincarnation that stretches across millennia. Haven must discover the secrets hidden in her past lives, and loves¸ before all is lost and the cycle begins again.


Thoughts: The Eternal Ones is a beautifully written novel about past lives, reincarnation and undying love. While the story is very similar to other current YA novels (*ahem* Evermore), I still found it captivating and lovely.

For as long as Haven can remember, she's had visions of another life and a boy she believes is her soulmate. Unfortunately, Haven lives in a small southern Tennessee town where different is considered devilish. When she was a child, Haven used to share her visions with her classmates and family. The whole town is convinced she's crazy or worse, possessed by a Demon. With the strict lifestyles as a Southern Baptist, Haven begins blocking out these memories the best she can.

Now in her teen years, Haven realizes she'll never fit in. At least she has Beau, her BFF and fellow outcast. One day, while watching tv, she notices a boy and realizes he's her soulmate. It's Ethan, the one from her visions. After much thought, Haven decides to head up to NYC and find him.

No longer Ethan and now Iain Morrow (rich, famous and scandelous), it doesn't take long for Haven to find him. He recognizes her right away and they soon drift off into the perfect love affair. The honeymoon period doesn't last long. Now there are other things out to get her. For example, the Ouroboros Society isn't the safe house it once was. With all their secrets and Iain's secrets, Haven soon begins puzzling the pieces into her past lives, her present and her future.

For the most part, I really enjoyed The Eternal Ones. The only thing that bothered me was the multiple similarities between this book and Evermore by Alyson Noel. Here are some examples:

*Iain (aka Ethan) remembers everything whereas Haven only remembers bits and pieces. In Evermore, Damon remembers everything and Ever remembers nothing. Sure Damon never dies, but still.
*Haven and Ever's BFFs are gay guys.
*Haven and Ever get lost in the love affair, but then begin to question their guys. They both believe their guys are killers.
*Haven and Ever are both quick to judge and both a little pig headed. They would rather believe strangers than their family, friends and lovers.
*In each life, Iain and Damon search for the girls.
*The snake symbol and secret clubs designed for their kind.
*Jealous eternal lovers.

Honestly, I could add more, but I think you get the point. When writing novels with similiar backgrounds, it's difficult to not make it mirror others of it's kind. I remember reading The Eternal Ones and thinking "Wow, Iain is just like Damon and Haven is just like Ever." I think it's important for the characters to establish a uniqueness which makes them stand out above the rest. Unfortunately, in this case, they were just TOO much alike. Even Beau reminded me of Miles.

With all that said, there are things I did enjoy about The Eternal Ones. I loved how all the past experiences were relived. I loved Iain and his protective nature. He's such a sweetheart and very swoon-worthy. Beau's humor kept the story interesting and fun. In my opinion, the writing was more elegant than that of Evermore's. And of course, the drama. Got to love the drama.

At times, the pacing can be a bit slow, but if you love a good romantic read, I would recommend checking this book out.

Raiting: 3.5/5 stars

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Coming Soon: CSN Product Review


In case you haven't noticed, a lot of blogs have been posting giveaways and reviews on CSN products. From bookshelves, to furniture, kitchen supplies, and more, CSN seems to have it all.

One of the things they're currently featuring is their lighting. Have you seen the stuff they have to offer? It's pretty awesome. I never thought lighting could be so much fun or creative. Feel free to check out their store by clicking here or going to http://www.csnlighting.com/.

Since I'm a book blogger (and addict), naturally I'm choosing to review a bookshelf. I just don't know which one yet.

**Stay tuned**

Be sure to keep checking by because sometime next month, I will also be helping CSN host a giftcard giveaway. Take a look at the stores, find something you like and don't forget to enter the giveaway next month!

Waiting On Wednesday



Synopsis:
Frannie Cavanaugh is a good Catholic girl with a bit of a wicked streak. She's spent years keeping everyone at a distance—even her closest friends—and it seems her senior year will be more of the same...until Luc Cain enrolls in her class. No one knows where he came from, but Frannie can't seem to stay away from him. What she doesn't know is that Luc works in Acquisitions—for Hell—and she possesses a unique skill set that has the King of Hell tingling with anticipation. All Luc has to do is get her to sin, and he’s as tempting as they come. Frannie doesn’t stand a chance.

Unfortunately for Luc, Heaven has other plans, and the angel, Gabe, is going to do whatever it takes to make sure that Luc doesn’t get what he came for. And it isn't long before they find themselves fighting for more than just her soul.

But if Luc fails, there will be Hell to pay…for all of them.


I freakin' can't wait to read this! It probably doesn't help that Lisa keeps posting teaser chapters on her blog every Tuesday. Definitely check her blog out here for all things Personal Demons.

Release date: September 14, 2010

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Teaser Tuesday: Beautiful Darkness


Teaser Tuesday is weekly meme hosted by Mizb at Should Be Reading.
The rules are simple:

-Grab your current read
-Open to a random page
-Share 2 “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!(make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

-Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week's Teaser Tuesday comes from Beautiful Darkness (Caster Chronicles 2) by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. Originally, I wanted to share a quote/scene between Ethan and Lena. The thing is, their scenes either give away too much from Beautiful Creatures or borderline spoilery regarding Beautiful Darkness. Never fear, I found a different one I'm sure you'll love. This is a conversation Ethan has with his father. Again, it's longer than 2 sentences, but so worth it. Enjoy!

"'I'm here now. Do you want to talk about it?'
'About what?'
'Things you need to know when you have a girlfriend.'
There was nothing I wanted to talk about less. 'Dad, we don't have to-'
'I have a lot of experience, you know. Your mother taught me a thing or two about women over the years.'
I started planning an escape route.
'If you ever want to talk about, you know...'
I could hurl myself through the study window and squeeze between the hedge and the house.
'Feelings.'
I almost laughed in his face."-
Page 47.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Review : Low Red Moon


Title: Low Red Moon
Author: Ivy Devlin
Published: September 14th 2010 by Bloomsbury USA Children's Books. Hardcover, 256 pages

Synopsis: Avery Hood is reeling from the loss of her parents--and the fact that she can't remember what happened to them even though she was there.

She's struggling to adjust to life without them, and to living with her grandmother, when she meets Ben, who isn't like any guy she's ever met before.

It turns out there's a reason why, and Ben's secret may hold the key to Avery finding out what happened to her parents...

But what if that secret changes everything she knows about--and feels for--Ben?


Thoughts: FYI, there isn't an official cover for Low Red Moon yet. This is just the arc cover so it's subjective to change.

Now, back to the book. I think Low Red Moon is a decent start to a hopefully great series. I had a bit of a love-hate relationship with this book.

I loved the design/layout of the book. Each title page is designed with little trees, and I thought that was really cute. I also loved the concept of the story. I wish the synopsis on the back of the arc (which differs from the one I posted from Goodreads) didn't give so much away about Ben. Part of the fun is the mystery and while predictable, it would have been fun to not have it all out there before the book even begins.

Romance. While I found Ben and Avery's relationship to be rushed, I still enjoyed they're interactions. Very smexy. I loved how protective Ben is of Avery. I did have a few problems with Avery herself. She came off as wishy-washy with some of her decisions. Understandable considering her situation, but it doesn't mean I have to like her.

One of my pet peeves with this book is the writing style. The author uses quite a bit of em dashes (-pause, dramatic effect-) and ellipses...which trailed off...and come back again. I think these literary devices are great, but an overkill can be more distracting than interesting. When I see this... and -this-, the reader in me automatically pauses. Considering the arc is a little less than 200 pages, it took me longer to read it than it normally should.

The ending wraps up the story nicely yet still leaves room for a sequel. Overall, I did enjoy the story. As long as the writing is cleaned up, I don't see why I wouldn't grab the sequel.

Rating: 3/5 stars

Sunday, June 20, 2010

In My Mailbox



In my mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi aka The Story Siren.

ARCS:
*Rich and Mad by William Nicholson
*Her And Me And You by Lauren Strasnick
*The Duff by Kody Keplinger
*Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl (arc tour)
*Reality Check by Jen Calonita
*Sleepless by Cyn Balog



Books:
*Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffin
*Raised By Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
*Party by Tom Leveen
*Spells by Aprilynne Pike

**Special thanks to
Good Golly Miss Holly , Around The World Arc Tours, Catie at Book Bound, and YA Book Central.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Review : Glimmerglass


Title: Glimmerglass
Author: Jenna Black
Published: May 25th 2010 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published 2010)
Details: Paperback, 294 pages

Synopsis: Dana Hathaway doesn’t know it yet, but she’s in big trouble. When her alcoholic mom shows up at her voice recital drunk, Dana decides she’s had it with being her mother’s keeper, so she packs her bags and heads to stay with her mysterious father in Avalon: the only place on Earth where the regular, everyday world and the magical world of Faerie intersect. But from the moment Dana sets foot in Avalon, everything goes wrong, for it turns out she isn't just an ordinary teenage girl—she's a Faeriewalker, a rare individual who can travel between both worlds, and who can bring magic into the human world and technology into Faerie.

Soon, she finds herself tangled up in a cutthroat game of Fae politics. Someone's trying to kill her, and everyone wants something from her, even her newfound friends and family. Suddenly, life with her alcoholic mom doesn't sound half bad, and Dana would do anything to escape Avalon and get back home. Too bad both her friends and her enemies alike are determined not to let her go . . .


Thoughts: While I was looking at my Goodreads page, I noticed Glimmerglass seems to be a hit or miss kind of book. Luckily I fall into the former rather than the latter. Glimmerglass takes everything you know about the mortal world and Faerie, but adds a spin to it. What if you were born half-mortal and half-fae? What if you were truly one of a kind, so rare other fey will do anything to possess you ? And what if you couldn't trust anyone, not even family?

If you raised your hand to any of these questions, you'll have an understanding of what Dana Hathaway is going through. After dealing with her drunk mother since the age of 5, Dana decides to call her astranged father and meet him for the first time.

You'd think it'd be simple. Fly overseas, have your father pick you up at the airport, go to Avalon and begin bonding. But I guess no one warned Dana when it comes to the fey, things are rarely ever simple.

First there's Aunt Grace: high strung, scary and...off. Then there's Ethan and Kimber. Ethan, with his gorgeous fae looks and the ego the size of a football field. Even Dana can't withstand his charm. And Kimber, so cold and guarded on the outside and at the same time, down to earth and a great friend, when she wants to be. The thing is, they all have their own motives and it's up to Dana to figure out what they are.

What I loved about this book is the details the author puts into every little thing. From the setting to the characters and events, the reader is setup for one heck of an adventure. At times, the pacing can be a bit slow, but when this happens, the author throws in a random, hilarious joke or two. Something to keep you on your toes.

Now, on to swoon-worthy boys. The first one (the one the synopsis speaks of) is Ethan. Yes he's good looking, sweet yet arrogant, but he doesn't think before he acts. This will get him into deep waters quick. Teenage boys, what ya gonna do? Now, Finn. I liked him most out of all the guys. The thing is, I think he's probably around 1000 years old and not at all interested in being anything but Dana's body guard. Still, Finn is made of win! And the last of the boys I'd like to mention is Keane. There really isn't a lot of information on Keane. Just the basics. He's a good fighter, Finn's son and dresses very goth. Hopefully the sequel will go further into details about this mysterious love muffin.

I would recommend Glimmerglass to any reader who enjoys novels about faeries. It's a quick summer read I'm sure you'll enjoy. Plus, the cover? Gorgeous. And it comes in paperback! Considering a lot of books are coming out in hardback nowadays, it's refreshing to find a good read without paying the usual $17.99.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Review : Angel Star


Title: Angel Star
Author: Jennifer Murgia
Published: May 18th 2010 by Lands Atlantic Publishing LLC (first published 2010)
Details: Paperback, 256 pages
Source: arc courtesy of Around The World Tours

Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old Teagan McNeel falls for captivating Garreth Adams and soon discovers that her crush has an eight-point star etched into the palm of his right hand-the mark of an angel.

But where there is light, dark follows, and she and Garreth suddenly find themselves vulnerable to a dark angel's malicious plan that could threaten not only her life, but the lives of everyone she knows, and now, she is torn between one angel's sacrifice and another angel's vicious ambition.

Divinely woven together, Angel Star takes readers on a reflective journey when one angel's sacrifice collides with another angel's vicious ambition in a way that is sure to have readers searching for their own willpower.


Thoughts: Angel Star offers an interesting take on Guardian Angels and the battle between good vs. evil. Unlike many angel novels out there, this isn't about fallen angels battling other fallen angels. This is about one Guardian's struggle to not only protecting his charge, but his feelings for her as well.

Teagan is your typical-but-not-so-typical high school girl. She has a best friend, but doesn't really fit in. It probably doesn't help that the most popular girl in school likes to use Teagan as her own personal punching back. And, oh yeah, and she sees shadows no one else can see.

Then she meets the new kid in school, Garrett. He's gorgeous and already has the entire female population drooling over him. Funny thing is, he only has eyes for Teagan. Weird. Teagan is instantly drawn to Garrett and soon discovers he's not your ordinary boy. Garrett is actually Teagan's Guardian Angel, and is "human-ish" for 8 days. He's there to protect her from an evil keen on destroying her. Why? Well, I guess you'll have to read it to find out.

From the reviews and raving fans, I couldn't wait to read Angel Star. Maybe my expectations were too high or I got caught up in the hype, but I didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would. In other words,I liked it, but I didn't love it.

All the elements for a great novel are present: relatable protag, swoon-worthy male, history, suspense, action, romance, etc. To me, it was still missing that za za zoo. I needed some kind of push, just a little something more to transform it from "It was good, but I liked (insert book title here) better" to "awesome, must read."

Don't take my word for it. As I previously stated, there are ton of fans out there who rave and rave about Angel Star. I'll probably pick it up later down the line and give it another go. For now, I'm going to move on in hopes of finding something better suited for my taste.

Rating: 3/5 stars

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday



Title: Freefall
Author: Mindi Scott

Synopsis: How do you come back from the point of no return?

Seth McCoy was the last person to see his best friend Isaac alive, and the first to find him dead. It was just another night, just another party, just another time where Isaac drank too much and passed out on the lawn. Only this time, Isaac didn’t wake up.

Convinced that his own actions led to his friend’s death, Seth is torn between turning his life around . . . or losing himself completely.

Then he meets Rosetta: so beautiful and so different from everything and everyone he's ever known. But Rosetta has secrets of her own, and Seth will soon realize he isn’t the only one who needs saving . . .


Why I Can't Wait: Yum! I love these kinds of books. And the cover? LOVE IT! Simple, but speaks louder than words. And it seems to setup the persona for the book. Dear Time, speed up! Please? :)

Release date: October 5th, 2010

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I Can't Help Myself



Visit her at tessagratton.com!


Forget the contest. Tell me that is not the funniest thing ever? Love it!

Teaser Tuesday : Infinity by Sarah Dessen


Teaser Tuesday is weekly meme hosted by Mizb at Should Be Reading.
The rules are simple:

-Grab your current read
-Open to a random page
-Share 2 “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!(make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

-Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Originally, I wanted to share a quote from The Eternal Ones. Unfortunatey, my brain did not function and instead of copying the quote I wanted before I sent it off, I completely forgot.

That's okay. Instead, I'll give you a teaser from one of Sarah Dessen's short stories called Infinity. I originially found it in an anthology called Sixteen: Stories About That Sweet and Bitter Birthday by Megan McCafferty . I think Sarah has a book out now with this short story as well as excerpts from some of her other books. I'd recommend getting the anthology instead. It has short stories from other great writers such as David Levithan, Carolyn Mackler and Sarah Mlynowski. Anywho, onto the teaser:

"There was music then, too, but it was softer, soothing, as was his voice, in my ear, or against my neck.

'I love you. I love you,' he'd whisper, and I'd feel that same hot flush, traveling up from my feet, the adrenaline rush that was a mix of fear and longing."

Monday, June 14, 2010

Review: Forgive My Fins


Title: Forgive My Fins (arc)
Author: Tera Lynn Childs
Published: May 19th 2010 by Katherine Tegen Books (first published 2010)
Final Copy: Hardcover, 293 pages

Synopsis: Lily Sanderson has a secret, and it’s not that she has a huge crush on gorgeous swimming god Brody Bennett, who makes her heart beat flipper-fast. Unrequited love is hard enough when you’re a normal teenage girl, but when you’re half human, half mermaid like Lily, there’s no such thing as a simple crush.

Lily’s mermaid identity is a secret that can’t get out, since she’s not just any mermaid – she’s a Thalassinian princess. When Lily found out three years ago that her mother was actually a human, she finally realized why she didn’t feel quite at home in Thalassinia, and she’s been living on land and going to Seaview high school ever since, hoping to find where she truly belongs. Sure, land has its problems – like her obnoxious, biker boy neighbor Quince Fletcher – but it has that one major perk – Brody. The problem is, mermaids aren’t really the casual dating type – when they “bond,” it’s for life.

When Lily’s attempt to win Brody’s love leads to a tsunami-sized case of mistaken identity, she is in for a tidal wave of relationship drama, and she finds out, quick as a tailfin flick, that happily-ever-after never sails quite as smoothly as you planned.


Thoughts: If I could give this book a slogan, it'd be "Underwater fun for all ages!" Forgive My Fins offers readers a fresh look at life above and below the sea. This is definitely a great beach read you don't want to miss.

So, the synopsis offers you just the right amount of description where you have an idea of what it's going to be like, but still doesn't spill over to the spoilery side. Lets do a little bit of a rundown anyway. The story starts off 3 years after Lily decides to spend time in the human world (her mother's world), and hopefully find out more about that part of her life fate striped away from her so many years ago. She wasn't expecting to stay long, but then she meets Brody, school hottie and swim team god. Lily decides this is the year where she'll confess her feelings for Brody and share the secrets of her mermaid life.

But what kind of book would this be if there weren't any twist and turns? Twist: Quince, her obnoxious and very annoying neighbor. He seems to always be in the way when it comes to Lily and Brody. Turn: Mistaken identities and accidental use of mere-magic. Thus, the real adventure begins.

When I first read the synopsis, I'll admit I wasn't sure if this would be something I'd enjoy. I read some reviews (all of them great) and thought I'd give it a go. I'm so glad I did because I ended up really enjoying this book. Lily is the type of character where you'll love her one minute and want to strangle her the next. She's loyal, brave and such a sweetheart, but also only sees what she wants to see. The truth could be waving a huge red flag in front of her, and she would walk right past it. Something that did bother me about her character were some of her childish behaviors, one of which is in regards to her father. While I understand she's very much a "daddy's little girl," I still found it inappropriate for a 17-almost 18 year old teenager to sit on her father's lap and call him daddy. Those are things a 4 year old does, not a young adult. It was strange to see how she can be mature in certain aspects, but yet childish in others. I guess it's part of her charm.

As far as swoon-worth boys go, Quice is definitely a great catch. He's funny, laid-back, loyal, apparently very muscular, and just a straight up good guy. I loved the way he adored Lily. I missed him when he wasn't in a scene. Oh, and the way he called Lily Princess without knowing who she really was? It just made my heart squeal with joy.

Then there's Brody. If I could use a metaphor to describe him, I'd go with "A house with all the lights on, but no one's home." I get the appeal. He's popular, hot, and a great swimmer, but I like my guys with a little depth. A pretty face will only get you so far.

Forgive My Fins is a great summer read I'd recommend checking out. It just released this past week, and I already can't wait for the sequel, Fins Are Forever, to come out. Grab a copy, go to the beach, read it and let me know what you think!

Rating: 4/5 stars

Sunday, June 13, 2010

In My Mailbox


In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren.

I had a great week!

*The Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller (arc tours)
*Friend Is Not A Verb by Daniel Ehrenhaft (arc tours)
*Fire by Kristin Cashore (UK edition)
*Delirium by Lauren Oliver (arc)
*Red Glove (chapter 1) by Holly Black (Cursed Workers 2)
*Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready

I also got a postcard signed by Lisa Schroeder and a bookplate signed by Maggie Stiefvater.

Special thanks to Around The World Arc Tours, Sherry at Flipping Pages For All Ages, Chick Lit Teens,Simon Pulse,The Eager Readers, BYE and Holly Black.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Review : Winter Longing


Title and Author: Winter Longing by Tricia Mills
Published: August 19th 2010 by Razorbill (first published 2010)
Details: Paperback, 256 pages

Synopsis: A plane crash in Alaska takes
Winter’s first love away forever . . .

When Winter's boyfriend is killed in a plane crash in the Alaskan wilderness, she's robbed of the future she'd only just allowed herself to believe might be hers. Winter and Spencer had been destined for one another. And after his death, Spencer's presence continues to haunt her.

But when her next-door neighbor becomes an unlikely friend, Winter begins to accept all that she can't change. Can she open herself to a new future . . . and a possible new love?


Thoughts: I cannot tell you how emotionally driven this book is. Within the first 40 pages, I was literally in TEARS! Throughout the book, I kept having to pull back soft sobs.

After the death of her boyfriend, childhood friend, and first love, Winter tries to cope the best she can. It's hard for her to get out of bed, go to school and live a normal life. But she tries. Like a zombie, Winter roams the halls at school not fully understanding why this had to happen to her and Spencer. Her parents don't understand her, and at times, it feels like her best friend doesn't understand her either (even though she was best friends with Spencer too).

Out of the blue, her next door neighbor Jesse begins to show a sudden interest in her. He's one of the popular kids, and lets just say their groups don't exactly mix. But yet, there he is. They begin to talk and really connect. Just when Winter begins to move on and they begin to cross that thin line between friendship and more, she starts receiving signs of Spencer's presence. Whether it's a forgotten picture or lost letter, she feels him there. Thus, she pulls away from Jesse. How can she betray Spencer like that?

Though at times difficult to read, I still managed to stay up all night and finish this book. I loved the characters, especially Jesse. When they felt pain, I felt pain. When they laughed, I laughed. Just like Winter, I kept hoping and praying somehow Spencer would return. But also like Winter, I knew better. And I must admit, I was rooting for her and Jesse to work out.

My favorite moments are the flashbacks. They are so adorably sweet yet so heart wrenching. I loved how the author transitions from past to present. And oh, the quotes. Can't forget the quotes. Though I was sad when the memories ended, I still believe the quotes made a touching impact.

Winter Longing is all about grieving. It's also about continuing to live your life and move on even when you feel frozen inside. This is one of those books that will linger in your thoughts long before the last page.

Rating: 4.5/5

Sidenote: Be sure to check out my June Contest where I will be giving away your choice of Winter Longing, Glimmerglass or Forget You. CLICK HERE.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday


Title and Author: Infinite Days by Rebecca Maizel
Release date: August 3, 2010

Synopsis: When Lenah Beaudonte, a 500-year-old vampire queen, wakes up a human teenager at an ultra-cliquey prep school, she must choose between embracing the humanity she’s always craved and saving her new friends from her vicious coven. The first in a sizzling new YA series.

Lenah Beaudonte is, in many ways, your average teen: the new girl at Wickham Boarding School, she struggles to fit in enough to survive and stand out enough to catch the eye of the golden-boy lacrosse captain. But Lenah also just happens to be a recovering five-hundred-year-old vampire queen. After centuries of terrorizing Europe, Lenah is able to realize the dream all vampires have -- to be human again. After performing a dangerous ritual to restore her humanity, Lenah entered a century-long hibernation, leaving behind the wicked coven she ruled over and the eternal love who has helped grant her deep-seated wish.

Until, that is, Lenah draws her first natural breath in centuries at Wickham and rediscovers a human life that bears little resemblance to the one she had known. As if suddenly becoming a teenager weren’t stressful enough, each passing hour brings Lenah closer to the moment when her abandoned coven will open the crypt where she should be sleeping and find her gone. As her borrowed days slip by, Lenah resolves to live her newfound life as fully as she can. But, to do so, she must answer ominous questions: Can an ex-vampire survive in an alien time and place? What can Lenah do to protect her new friends from the bloodthirsty menace about to descend upon them? And how is she ever going to pass her biology midterm?


I first read the synopsis on the author's website and instantly thought "can't wait." I think the first chapter/sneak peak is up on her site as well. I'll have to look that up for you. EEP! August cannot get here sooner!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Review: Linger by Maggie Stiefvater


Published: July 20th 2010 by Scholastic Press (first published July 2010)
Details: arc, 357 pages
Final Copy: Hardback, 368 pages
URL: http://www.maggiestiefvater.com/linger.php

Synopsis: In Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver, Grace and Sam found each other. Now, in Linger, they must fight to be together. For Grace, this means defying her parents and keeping a very dangerous secret about her own well-being. For Sam, this means grappling with his werewolf past...and figuring out a way to survive into the future. Add into the mix a new wolf named Cole, whose own past has the potential to destroy the whole pack. And Isabel, who already lost her brother to the wolves...and is nonetheless drawn to Cole. At turns harrowing and euphoric, Linger is a spellbinding love story that explores both sides of love--the light and the dark, the warm and the cold--in a way you will never forget.

Thoughts: Wow, 357 pages of pure poetry. Much like Shiver, Linger does not offer a lot of action. The main characters don't go running around, killing all things supernatural. It's about raw emotions. The "what if" situations each character must face in order to survive.

The story takes place right where Shiver leaves off. It's been a couple days since Sam and Grace have reunited. While Sam has Beck's house all to himself, he much prefers the comfort of Grace's bed. During the day, Grace attends school while Sam works at The Crooked Shelf.

After they're both done with the day, they begin to discuss New Year's resolutions. Sam realizes he finally has a chance at a real future. A future for himself and a future with Grace. Unfortunately, fate has different plans from them.

One day, Grace and Isabel discover a dead wolf in the back of Isabel's house. The wolf is obviously a werewolf, but the blood marks on his/her face indicates something different. She/He wasn't attacked, but her/his death wasn't exactly normal. What neither Grace nor Isabel realize is from that moment on, everything will change.

From the very first sentence, the author draws the reader in and compells them to keep reading. "This is the story of a boy who used to be a wolf and a girl who was becoming one." The reader will instantly question what the author means by this. What will happen to these characters we've grown to love? Only time will tell.

Linger offers the same key players (Grace and Sam), but it also intruduces two new voices. There's Isabel, who was originally introduced in Shiver as a secondary character. And you also have Cole, a newcomer and one of the wolves Beck recruited. When Isabel and Cole first meet, they're instantly drawn to one another. BUT, you also must remember that Isabel is still dealing with the death of her brother. It hasn't exactly been the best year for her. And you also begin to question Cole's motives. What kind of person would voluntarily choose to become a werewolf, knowing the circumstances? You got to love an extra bit of mystery.

Honestly, I could go on and on about Linger. Sadly, if I do, I might end up leaking spoilers, and I am not that kind of blogger. Just know everything is not exactly as it seems. Right when you think you know the outcome, Maggie Stiefvater throws in a twist or two. Linger will break your heart, mend it and break it all over again. In the end, you're left with a bit of loss and hope. Bittersweet, indeed.

Linger is the perfect middle book in a trilogy. It answers some questions, leaves others unanswered and has you craving for more. Dear sweet Maggie, please try to bump up the release date for Forever. My appetite for the Wolves of Mercy Falls has yet to be sated.

To all the fans of Shiver, you will not be disappointed. I might want to recommend a box of tissues though. The last 20 pages are a bit of a doozie.

Rate: 5/5

Teaser Tuesday: Forgive My Fins


Teaser Tuesday is weekly meme hosted by Mizb at Should Be Reading.
The rules are simple:

-Grab your current read
-Open to a random page
-Share 2 “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!(make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

-Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week's Teaser Tuesday comes from Forgive My Fins by Tera Lynn Childs.

"Tell him! That's why you're here. Open your mouth, form the words, and-

His hand cups the back of my neck, and before I can think, he dips down and our mouths meet." Page 64.

Monday, June 7, 2010

In My Mailbox


In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren.

*Forgive My Fins (arc) by Tera Lynn Childs
(Traveling Arc Tours)

*Nightshade (arc/signed) by Andrea Cremer
(Special thanks to my homie Karen at FWIW.)

*Angel Star (arc) by Jennifer Murgia
(Around The World Arc Tours

*Aubrey, Wait by Robin Benway

Friday, June 4, 2010

June Contest

If you haven't heard, Wickedlovey.com is hosting an event called The Marr Awards. It's where you can vote for your favorite Wicked Lovely characters, fanfic/art and Rath members (forum members). Not only am I participating in hosting this, I'm also nominated for an award. Funniest Rath Member. Imagine that.

I know what you're wondering. "Sweet Lena, what does this have to do with the June giveaway?" I'm getting to that.

I'm a competitive person. It's in my nature, and dang it! I want bragging rights as the Funniest Rath-er. Thus, the June Contest:

What you'll win: Your choice of one of these books. I've read them all, and they're FABULOUS!



Glimmerglass (Faeriewalker #1) by Jenna Black



Forget You by Jennifer Echols (preordered)



Winter Longing by Tricia Mills (preordered)

Rules (Updated 06/09):

1. You must be a Follower to enter

2. The Marr Awards voting process has changed. Due to some scandals with cheating (DOWN WITH CHEATERS!), you must now register with WickedLovely.com in order to vote. I know a lot of people hate registering for stuff (*raises hand*), so I decided to make it an option.

BUT, if you do vote for me as Funniest Rath Member (Lena Beana), you get 10 extra entries. For those who have already voted, I added your extra entries into your total. CLICK HERE TO VOTE!

The added bonus (see below) still applies.

3. You must fill out THIS FORM.

Since voting ends June 30th, this contest will as well. And since I'm ordering the books from the Book Depository, it's INTERNATIONAL (provided they deliver to you).

**ADDED BONUS**

If I win, I'll add another winner. I win, you win! SWEET!

While you're voting, be sure to check out the other categories and nominees. The character ones are hilarious. And if you're a KEENAN fan, I'll love you forever!

Get voting!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Review : Amy and Roger's Epic Detour


Title and Author: Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson
Published: May 4th 2010 by Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing (first published 2010)
Details: Hardcover, 352 pages

Synopsis: Amy Curry thinks her life sucks. Her mom decides to move from California to Connecticut to start anew--just in time for Amy's senior year. Her dad recently died in a car accident. So Amy embarks on a road trip to escape from it all, driving cross-country from the home she's always known toward her new life. Joining Amy on the road trip is Roger, the son of Amy's mother's old friend. Amy hasn't seen him in years, and she is less than thrilled to be driving across the country with a guy she barely knows. So she's surprised to find that she is developing a crush on him. At the same time, she's coming to terms with her father's death and how to put her own life back together after the accident. Told in traditional narrative as well as scraps from the road--diner napkins, motel receipts, postcards--this is the story of one girl's journey to find herself.

Thoughts: You know how a studio will advertise "So And So" movie as this summer's big hit? That's how I feel about this book. Amy & Roger's Epic Detour is the perfect summer read. It's fun, romantic, heartfelt and touching. All I can think about is going on a road trip with a Roger of my very own.

Amy just endured the hardest year of her life. Her father passed away, her brother's in rehab and her mother moved to Connecticut, leaving Amy alone in California for the rest of the month. The school year's over now and Amy must drive cross country to join her mother.

No one expects a 16 year old girl to endure this journey alone. Enter Roger. He is Amy's mother's best friend's son. I know, a mouthful. Amy doesn't really know him, but why should that matter? She hasn't really spoken to anyone this month and expects it'll be the same with Roger.

While exploring the route Amy's mother has prepared, they both realize this isn't exactly the grand roadtrip they were hoping for. Instead of following the plan, they both decide what they really need is to take is a little detour. As long as they get to Connecticut in 5 days, it really shouldn't matter. Right?

Along the way, they soon discover the other has alterior motives for this roadtrip. As they slowly break one another down, secrets begin to spill. Neither was expecting such an intense journey. And neither expected to find romance along the way.

This book is more than just a stereotypical teen romance. There's lost, grief, heartbreak and truth. Amy must come to terms with her father's death and Roger with his broken heart. What I loved about this book is how detailed all the secondary characters are. Whether they ran into them on the way or remembered them from a flashback, the author obviously put a lot of thought into each individual person. More so with the details about Amy's brother and father. Those memories were the most heartwrenching, but also the most real.

Now, I know you can download this onto your Kindle, nook, computer, whatever. Don't! I highly recommend getting the actual book instead. TRUST ME. Amy and Roger both scrapebook their journey throughout the book. We're talking moments, photos, playlists, drawings, the works. That's something an ebook cannot fully capture, and you don't want to miss it!

I highly recommend this to EVERYONE. It'll make you want to pack a bag, find a Roger and explore America the way it was meant to be explored. Don't forget to stop at a couple diners and random fast food places along the way!

Rating: 5/5

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Review: A Little Wanting Song


Title: A Little Wanting Song
Author: Cath Crowley
Published: June 8th 2010 by Knopf Books for Young Readers (first published April 2005)

Synopsis: A summer of friendship, romance, and songs in major chords. . . .

CHARLIE DUSKIN loves music, and she knows she's good at it. But she only sings when she's alone, on the moonlit porch or in the back room at Old Gus's Secondhand Record and CD Store. Charlie's mom and grandmother have both died, and this summer she's visiting her grandpa in the country, surrounded by ghosts and grieving family, and serving burgers to the local kids at the milk bar. She's got her iPod, her guitar, and all her recording equipment, but she wants more: A friend. A dad who notices her. The chance to show Dave Robbie that she's not entirely unspectacular.

ROSE BUTLER lives next door to Charlie's grandfather and spends her days watching cars pass on the freeway and hanging out with her troublemaker boyfriend. She loves Luke but can't wait to leave their small country town. And she's figured out a way: she's won a scholarship to a science school in the city, and now she has to convince her parents to let her go. This is where Charlie comes in. Charlie, who lives in the city, and whom Rose has ignored for years. Charlie, who just might be Rose's ticket out.

Told in alternating voices and filled with music, friendship, and romance, Charlie and Rose's "little wanting song" is about the kind of longing that begins as a heavy ache but ultimately makes us feel hopeful and wonderfully alive.


Thoughts: My 15 year old self would have loved this book. I think I'm a bit too old for it, but it's still a great read.

Charlie spends every summer at her grandparent's house in the country. Her family life has been extremely rocky. Her mother died when she was a little girl, her dad has been distant ever since and her grandmother has just died, leaving her grandfather grieving. Luckily, Charlie turns to the one friend who always seems to be there: music. She cranks up her ipod, plays her guitar and sings a song. Maybe one day, she'll find the courage to sing in front of people.

Rose has lived in the house next to Charlie's grandparents her whole life. She wants nothing more than to run away to the city and attend a science school. Unfortunately, her parents are not ones for change. Her only chance of leaving this place is befriending Charlie. Ever since they were kids, Rose has deliberately left Charlie out and openly made fun of her. So, if Rose befriends Charlie now, she can move in with her AND Charlie will have a friend. Win-win, right? Eeeh, not so much.

As you can see, the POVs alternate from Charlie to Rose and back again. Both voices are distinctive and so are the girls. My favorite POV happens to be Charlie's. Her voice felt more raw, therefore more real. I love the lyrics she writes. They're clever and sweet. And the scenes with her and Dave are adorable.

I still liked Rose's story as well. She shows the reader what it's like to live in a small town and desperately want to escape. While, at times her actions are selfish, she still ends up redeeming herself and becoming a better person for it. Plus, her boyfriend Luke is hilarious! He is the true definition of "teenage boys."

A Little Wanting Song is a great read for younger-middle aged teens. There's a handful of profanity and a kiss or two, but nothing raunchy. To all tweens out there, add this to your summer reading list. There's friendship, romance, music and of course, beet burgers!

Waiting on Wednesday



Matched by Ally Condie

Synopsis: In the Society, Officials decide. Who you love. Where you work. When you die.

Cassia has always trusted their choices. It’s barely any price to pay for a long life, the perfect job, the ideal mate. So when her best friend appears on the Matching screen, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is the one . . . until she sees another face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. Now Cassia is faced with impossible choices: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path no one else has ever dared follow—between perfection and passion.

Matched is a story for right now and storytelling with the resonance of a classic.


Release date: November 30, 2010

First off, the cover? WOW! Plus, I keep hearing AMAZING things about this book. I'm extremely jealous of those who went to BEA and snagged an arc. This is definitely one of the books I'll snag right when it hits the shelves!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Teaser Tuesday: Glimmerglass


Teaser Tuesday is weekly meme hosted by Mizb at Should Be Reading.
The rules are simple:

-Grab your current read
-Open to a random page
-Share 2 “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!(make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

-Share the title & author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week's Teaser Tuesday comes from Glimmerglass (Faeriewalker 1) by Jenna Black. It's one of the funnier moments I enjoyed. Here we go:

"'The wagon is spelled to be soundproof,' he continued. 'I borrowed it from a friend of mine who swears it's much more comfortable than the backseat of a car, if you know what I mean.'

Eww. Yes, I knew what he meant. And I hoped the straw had been changed since the last time Ethan's friend had gotten lucky." Page 40