Sunday, July 31, 2011

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. I'm super excited about the goodies I got this week!

For Review:
*Circle of Fire (Prophecy of the Sisters #3) by Michelle Zink

*Wintertown by Stephen Emond

*Sirensong by Jenna Black
*Wicked In Your Arms by Sophie Jordan

***Special thanks to Little Brown and Kate from I Just Want To Sit Here And Read***

Feel free to leave links to your IMMs below. I promise I'll try to comment on each of your blogs!

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Friday, July 29, 2011

Blog Tour/Review: Small Town Sinners

Title: Small Town Sinners
Author: Melissa C. Walker
Published: July 19th 2011 by Bloomsbury
Source: ARC courtesy of Bloomsbury for review

Summary: "Lacey Anne Byer is a perennial good girl and lifelong member of the House of Enlightenment, the Evangelical church in her small town. With her driver's license in hand and the chance to try out for a lead role in Hell House, her church's annual haunted house of sin, Lacey's junior year is looking promising. But when a cute new stranger comes to town, something begins to stir inside her. Ty Davis doesn't know the sweet, shy Lacey Anne Byer everyone else does. With Ty, Lacey could reinvent herself. As her feelings for Ty make Lacey test her boundaries, events surrounding Hell House make her question her religion.

Melissa Walker has crafted the perfect balance of engrossing, thought-provoking topics and relatable, likable characters. Set against the backdrop of extreme religion, Small Town Sinners is foremost a universal story of first love and finding yourself, and it will stay with readers long after the last page."

Thoughts:I have been looking forward to reading Small Town Sinners for a very long time. What I didn't expect was how religion would play such a huge role in this novel and instead of it taking away from the story, it actually adds more depth to it. Small Town Sinners is a story about faith, growth and figuring how whether what to do when what you believe and what you think conflict.

I'll be the first to admit that Small Town Sinners is not exactly a light and easy read. At some points in the novel, I actually wanted to jump in the story and slap some all of the characters silly. But the thing is, you have to keep in mind that this book is about SMALL TOWN SINNERS. It's not an action packed, fast paced book, but the writing style, the character growth and the potential for romance will keep you reading.

One thing I loved about this book is Lacey's own personal growth. In the beginning, her faith was everything. And though she quickly begins to develop feelings for Ty, she's still very true to herself, even though she does not understand why he doesn't believe in the things she believes in. Then, things begin to get a bit rocky as people she knows begin to fall in the sinner category. From the events at the Hell House, to the church itself, to her friends, family and everything in between, Lacey soon begins to realize that not everything is black and white. Does that make you a saint or a sinner or something else completely?

Now, for those who fear that this book may be a little too much for you, I must tell you it does not cram religion down your throat. In fact, it does what everyone has done at one point in their life. It makes you question things you once thought were unquestionable. Isn't that part of growing up? And though a lot of the characters are incredibly closed minded and just, for lack of a better word, pains, just know that the ending is well worth the journey spent.

I recommend checking out Small Town Sinners just for the writing and story telling alone. It really is a beautiful story. Don't believe me? One of my favorite quotes comes from the very last page. "He says I can't be certain of anything, that everything changes. Even things we once thought were unquestionably true. And I know that he's right." If that doesn't make you want to rush out and read this book, then I don't know what will.

Rating: 4/5

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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Review: Wolfsbane

Title: Wolfsbane (Nightshade #2)
Author: Andrea Cremer
Published: July 26th 2011 by Philomel

Summary: "When Calla Tor wakes up in the lair of the Searchers, her sworn enemies, she’s certain her days are numbered. But then the Searchers make her an offer—one that gives her the chance to destroy her former masters and save the pack—and the man—she left behind. Is Ren worth the price of her freedom? And will Shay stand by her side no matter what? Now in control of her own destiny, Calla must decide which battles are worth fighting and how many trials true love can endure and still survive."

Thoughts: One of my absolute favorite reads in 2010 was Nightshade, so needless to say, I was dying to get my hands on a copy of Wolfsbane. As far as sequels go, this one is a keeper. While I enjoyed Nightshade more, I still found Wolfsbane to be a fast paced, action filled read. Hold on tight kids. You're in for one wild ride!

First off, I want to talk about the cover. There has been a lot of controversy between whether or not people like this one or the previous one more. Personally, while I think this one is nice (I love the colors), I must say that I liked the old ones more. These make the series seem like an adult series, while the other screamed paranormal YA! Plus, the other one (in my opinion) was more attractive. If I passed both this cover of Wolfsbane and the last one at a bookstore, I would pick up the previous one first.

Now, onto the story. I forgot how much I love and missed Andrea Cremer's writing/story telling. Boy, is it addicting. The story just flows naturally and starts off right where Nightshade ends. Remember how Calla was taken hostage by the Searchers? Well, it turns out they need her for a task, to which she begrudgingly agrees to. It's the only way for her and her pack to have true freedom, something Calla has wanted for so long. But, like most things in life, Calla will have to fight for it, betray everything she's ever known and possibly risk it all.

I must say, I wanted to love Wolfsbane as much as I love Nightshade, but for some reason I didn't. It's not that it's not good (it's wonderful), and it's not a great sequel (it is!), but it didn't quite do it for me the way Nightshade did. For example, before I couldn't decide whether I was Team Shay or Team Ren. Now, I'm definitely a Team Ren kind of girl. I can't quite pinpoint it but somewhere in this book, Shay began to get on my nerves. I felt like he was trying to control Calla. Yes, he cares about her safety and yes he wants what was best for her, but she's a very strong woman, capable of taking care of herself, AND she's an alpha. His jealously in this book also became very tiresome. Though Calla does get wishy washy with the whole "Do I love Shay or do I love Ren" situation, it's clear where her heart lies. I have a feeling by the end of it all Calla will choose Shay, but still hope for Ren.

Now, the action/fight scenes. Those are pretty freaking awesome. At times, I had to remind myself I was reading a book and not watching some kick butt movie. The descriptions are so vivid, I felt like I was there (but am glad I wasn't!). What made this book for me, though, was all the history between the Keepers and the Searchers. In Nightshade, it talks a lot about how the guardians are not allowed to really know or read the infamous War of All Against All book. Finally, you get to know about what Shay is and why he's so important. All the pieces begin to fall together and really, who doesn't love putting a good puzzle together?

Overall, I really enjoyed reading Wolfsbane and found it to be better than most sequels out there. New characters will be introduced, but don't get too attached to anyone. There will be many tragedies. Ahh, the casualty of war! What a troubled web we weave, eh? While the chemistry between the three young love birds was lacking a bit, the action and history make up for it. For fans of Nightshade, you will not be disappointed. And with what I'm assuming is Andrea Cremer's personal form of torture, there will be a cliffhanger in the end that will have you screaming for more. When does Bloodrose come out? Not soon enough.

Rating: 4.5/5

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine. It showcases each blogger's most anticipated books. This week, my pick is Try Not To Breathe by Jennifer Hubbard.

Summary: "A dark and provocative novel
from the author of The Secret Year
Ryan spends most of his time alone at the local waterfall because it’s the only thing that makes him
feel alive. He’s sixteen, post-suicidal, and trying to
figure out what to do with himself after a stint in
a mental hospital. Then Nicki barges into his world,
brimming with life and energy, and asking questions about Ryan’s depression that no one else has
ever been brave enough—or cared enough—to ask.
Ryan isn’t sure why he trusts Nicki with his darkest
secrets, but that trust turns out to be the catalyst
that he desperately needs to start living again.
Jennifer R. Hubbard has created a riveting story
about a difficult but important subject"

Why I Can't Wait:If you know me, you know how much I love Jennifer Hubbard's The Secret Year. It's breathtakingly heartbreaking and beautiful. This sounds just as amazing. Will I need another box of tissues? I guess I won't know till next year (curse you, Viking!).

Expected publication: 2012 by Viking

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Sunday, July 24, 2011

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. I'm super, duper, RIDICULOUSLY stoked about the books I got this week. Check it out:

For Review:
*Fins Are Forever by Tera Lynn Childs (already read; adored!)
*Dead Rules by Randy Russell
*A Beautiful Dark by Jocelyn Davies
*Fateful by Claudia Gray
*Dark Eden by Patrick Carman
*The Power of Six by Pittacus Lore
*Small Town Sinners by Melissa Walker

***Special thanks to HarperTeen and Bloomsbury for a)their awesomeness and b)their generosity!***

Feel free to link your IMMs in my comments below. I promise I will visit each and every one of them! *huggles*

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Friday, July 22, 2011

Review + Giveaway: Forgotten

Title: Forgotten
Author: Cat Patrick
Published: June 7th 2011 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Summary: Each night at precisely 4:33 am, while sixteen-year-old London Lane is asleep, her memory of that day is erased. In the morning, all she can "remember" are events from her future. London is used to relying on reminder notes and a trusted friend to get through the day, but things get complicated when a new boy at school enters the picture. Luke Henry is not someone you'd easily forget, yet try as she might, London can't find him in her memories of things to come.

When London starts experiencing disturbing flashbacks, or flash-forwards, as the case may be, she realizes it's time to learn about the past she keeps forgetting-before it destroys her future.

Thoughts:I have been struggling to write this review for weeks now. How do I piece together a book that not only confused me, but also intrigued me with it's unconventional concept? Well, I guess I better give this a whirl!

Forgotten is a story about London, a girl who remembers the future instead of the past. Each night, she must make a list of the day's events, what she'll need to bring for school, and what she needs to remember because when morning comes, it will be like the day never happened. If anything, her condition is a curse. While it's fun to know where all her classmates and friends will end up in the future, she can't share it with anyone. In fact, her best friend Jamie tells her on several occasions not to share.

On top of all this, London begins having disturbing dreams of a funeral. The catch is, she doesn't know who's funeral it is. That's where the mystery factor comes in.

For the first 100 pages or so, I spent most of my time confused. While I had an idea of what was going on and know why the author was writing the way she was, the style still confused me. That's probably the point since London spends most of her time confused. While it added flare to the story, I think it also took away the emotional connection factor, since instead of book bonding with the main character, I spent most of my time wondering what the french was going on. Sa la vie!

When I was about to give up on the book, a dear friend told me to stick with it. "It will get better" she said. And she's right, it does. I honestly think that what made the book for me was Luke. The Luke scenes were my favorite scenes. His kindness and overall goodhearted nature is a breath of fresh air considering the book world is filled with brooding, standoffish, arrogant love interests. A nice guy? Really? They exist? You bet!

I recommend everyone giving Forgotten a try. It may not be my favorite book, but it's still an interesting one. And please, if you are like me, struggling with the first half of the book, I promise you that it does get better. Stick with it and a treat will be in store for you!

Rating: 3/5

I am giving away a final hardback copy of Forgotten. Just comment below, leaving a way for me to contact you (i.e. email address).

This will be open to US participants only. If you are an international participant, but have a US address I can ship to, feel free to enter!

+1 for spreading the word.

And last but not least, the giveaway will end August 3rd. Go forth, enter, and may the odds be ever in your favor.

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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Ultimate Reviewer's Challenge- August Edition

Welcome back to the 3rd Ultimate Reviewer's Challenge! I'm co-hosting this event with my wonderful friends Karen from For What It's Worth Reviews and Tiger from All-Consuming Books.

What is the Ultimate Reviewer's Challenge?

For the month of August you can link your reviews on each of our blogs (our Ultimate Reviewer's Challenge posts will be up with a linky on August 1st) For every review you link you will be entered to win an one of three prize packs.

This year we're doing something a little different. Instead of one huge prize, there will be three winners on each of our blogs. At Addicted 2 Novels, the 1st Prize Pack winner receives 6 books, an Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly bag and swag, 2nd Prize Pack is 5 books and swag, and 3rd place gets 3 books and swag.

More prize packs means more winners, for a total of 9 prizes for the ultimate reviewers. :-)

Read the rules and link your blog below if you would like to participate in the challenge!

*You must have a book review blog

*These must be real reviews, meaning more than just a couple of sentences describing the book. We'll be checking to make sure you're posting legitimate reviews!

*All reviews must have been posted for the first time during the month of August 2011. You can't just enter all your old reviews.

*No one review can be entered twice on the same blog. That doesn't mean you can't post the same review on each one of our blogs (for a total of 3 entries per review), just not the same review twice on one blog.

*This contest will be US only for All Consuming Books and Addicted 2 Novels, US and international on For What It's Worth

*The challenge ends on August 31st, midnight, CST.

*Rules and regulations are subject to change depending on current situations. Don't worry, you'll be informed.

*There will be 3 winners per blog for a total of 9 winners.

Better Know a Blogger:

Better Know a Blogger is a fun feature we have during the challenge. We interview and introduce you to all your favorite bloggers! If you were featured before please feel free to sign up again this year! The questions are new. :-)

If you would like to be a featured blogger here at Addicted 2 Novels, you can email me at addicted2novels(at)gmail(dot)com by Friday August 5 and I'll send the interview questions your way!

And now, the prize packs!

Prize Pack #1:

*Signed copy of What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen
*ARC of Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs
*ARC of Liesl & Po by Lauren Oliver
*ARC of Legend by Marie Lu
*ARC of Dark Eden by Patrick Carman
*ARC of How To Save A Life by Sara Zarr
*Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly bag

Prize Pack #2:

*ARC of Shut Out by Kody Keplinger
*ARC of The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
*ARC of (The) Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon
*ARC of The Betrayal of Maggie Blair by Elizabeth Laird
*Signed copy of Where She Went by Gayle Forman

Prize Pack #3:

*ARC of Vanish (Draki #2) by Sophie Jordan
*ARC of The Princess Curse by Merrie Haskell
*ARC of Fateful by Claudia Gray

***Special thanks to Sandy from Scribing Shadows for designing our banner and button***

Grab a button and sign up for the URC below!

Note: PLEASE DO NOT LINK YOUR REVIEWS HERE. This is for sign ups only and all reviews linked here will not count as an entry. You must link your reviews HERE!


Participants as of August 21:

1 Julie@My5monkeys

2 StuckInBooks

3 Cara @ Chasing Words

4 Tegan not your faerytale

5 Anni @ Stuff Young People Read

6 Where the Wolves Read

7 The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia

8 The Zealous Reader

9 Books That Spark

10 Lisa @ The Garden of Books

11 Jasmine @ A Room with Books

12 What Book is That?

13 Teri C @ Snarkymamma

14 Jen @ What's On the Bookshelf

15 Proud Book Nerd

16 Book Sake

17 Linda @ Most Important Letter

18 Kate@ I Just Wanna Sit Here and Read!

19 Myranda @ My{reads}da

20 Annabell @Annabell's Book Nook

21 My humble blog @ Tamara's Book Ramblings

22 Rachel @ Rachel Reads

23 Westlake Book Reviews

24 Beth's Blog

25 Cade @ Braintasia Books

26 Pepa @ Anonymous Reads

27 Amanda @ Letters Inside Out

28 Heise Reads & Recommends

29 Marjie @ A Reelfoot Hoodrat's Thoughts

30 Unabridged Andra

31 Words Like Silver
Grace @ Words Like Silver

32 Becky @Bibliognome

33 A Book Obsession..

34 A Spark of Interest - Books for Teens

35 Aimee @ Coffee Table Reviews

36 Starcrossed

37 Raelena @ Throuthehaze Reads

38 Karthy @ Hiding in the Stacks

39 Dawn @ Read Love

40 Storybound Girl

41 Leila @ Within Pages

42 Melissa @ Mel's Books and Info

43 Priscilla @ Popping the Bubble Wrap!

44 Natalie @ Mindful Musings--Forever

45 Books are Precious Gems

46 Keturah @ Bubble Gum Book Reviews

47 Keturah @ Bubble Gum Book Reviews

48 CTR: Beginning of After Review

49 A Book Obsession.. (Juliet Immortal)

50 A Book Obsession.. (Past Midnight)

51 Logan E. Turner

52 CTR: Twisted Review

53 A Room with Books: Cryer's Cross

54 Starry Sky Books (Silver Phoenix)

55 Angel C @ Mermaid Vision Books: Cryer's Cross

56 Angel C @ Mermaid Vision Books: Forgotten

57 Angel @ Mermaid Vision Books: Darkness Becomes Her

58 Kaity @ Bitten Books

59 Review: The Marked Son by Shea Berkley

60 Angel C @ Mermaid Vision Books: Divergent

61 CTR: Uncommon Criminals Review

62 A Room with Books: The Game of Sunken Places

63 Review: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

64 Scoot @ See Scoot Read

65 Leslie @ Working for the Mandroid

66 Novel Review (DNF) – Messenger by David Arnett

67 Wolfsbane StuckInBooks

68 The Clair Witch Project StuckInBooks

69 Wolf Storm StuckInBooks

70 Alyssa @ Mostly Books.... - Kiss Me Kill Me Review

71 Hippies Beauty and Books Oh My!

72 Where the Wolves Read (Moon Called)

73 Angel C @ Mermaid Vision Books: Haunting Violet

74 A Room with Books: You Eish

75 Unabridged Andra-Ten Miles Past Normal

76 Unabridged Andra-The Forest of Hands and Teeth

77 Unabridged Andra-Smokin' Seventeen

78 Unabridged Andra-At Grave's End

79 Unabridged Andra-The End of Days

80 Unabridged Andra-Sean Griswold's Head

81 Unabridged Andra-Cryer's Cross

82 Hippies, Beauty & Books (Catalyst)

83 Julie@my5monkeys-dark parties

84 Hippes Beauty and Books (Pearl)

85 Kapri (Book Fanatics)

86 Angel C @ Mermaid Vision Books: Anastasia's Secret

87 Hippies Beauty & Books (Sharks & Boys)

88 Angel C @ Mermaid Vision Books: Darkest Mercy

89 Water Wars(Fiction State Of Mind)

90 titania86 @ Fishmuffins of Doom

91 titania86 @ Fishmuffins of Doom - The Lantern

92 My 5 monkeys-haley twitch

93 CTR Legacy Review

94 IJWSHAR - In The Dead Volume 1

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Reena Jacobs
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Andrea T
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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine. It showcases each blogger's most anticipated books. This week, my pick is Under The Never Sky by Veronica Rossi.

Summary: "Exiled from her home, the enclosed city of Reverie, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland—nicknamed The Death Shop—are slim. If the cannibals don’t get her, the violent, electrified energy storms eventually will. In this dystopia, even the very air she breathes could kill her. Then Aria meets an Outsider named Perry. He’s wild, dangerous—a savage. He’s also her only hope.

Perry needs Aria, too. She alone holds the key to his redemption. And their unlikely alliance will determine the fate of all who live under the never sky.

Debut author Veronica Rossi is accumulating fans from all over the globe—the book has already sold to more than twenty countries. It’s not surprising that foreign rights for this title have been flying off the shelf. It’s a tantalizing romance in any language."

Why I Can't Wait:I am a huge fan of dystopia. It's quickly becoming one of my favorite genres, so when I first saw Under The Never Sky on Goodreads, I immediately added it to my To Be Read list. Then I saw the release date. Wow, that's a long ways away. But the summary sounds amazing, and the cover is simple yet gorgeous. Why can't this come out sooner?

Expected publication: February 7th 2012 by HarperTeen

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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: The Near Witch

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, my Teaser Tuesday comes for The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab. Enjoy!

"Before I know it, I am pressing myself against the window, fingers reaching for the latch to throw it open, to speak, to call the form back, when he moves. He turns his face toward the house and the window, and toward me."-Page 5

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Monday, July 18, 2011

Review: Love Story

Title: Love Story
Author: Jennifer Echols
Expected publication: July 19th 2011 by MTV Books

Summary: "She's writing about him. He's writing about her. And everybody is reading between the lines..

For Erin Blackwell, majoring in creative writing at the New York City college of her dreams is more than a chance to fulfill her ambitions--it's her ticket away from the tragic memories that shadow her family's racehorse farm in Kentucky. But when she refuses to major in business and take over the farm herself someday, her grandmother gives Erin's college tuition and promised inheritance to their maddeningly handsome stable boy, Hunter Allen. Now Erin has to win an internship and work late nights at a coffee shop to make her own dreams a reality. She should despise Hunter . . . so why does he sneak into her thoughts as the hero of her latest writing assignment?

Then, on the day she's sharing that assignment with her class, Hunter walks in. He's joining her class. And after he reads about himself in her story, her private fantasies about him must be painfully clear. She only hopes to persuade him not to reveal her secret to everyone else. But Hunter devises his own creative revenge, writing sexy stories that drive the whole class wild with curiosity and fill Erin's heart with longing. Now she's not just imagining what might have been. She's writing a whole new ending for her romance with Hunter . . . except this story could come true."

Thoughts:I have to confess, I have been looking forward to reading Love Story since Jennifer first annouced about her latest book on her blog. There's just something about Jennifer's writing that immediately draws me to the story and doesn't let me go till the end. And let me tell you, Love Story does not disappoint. From the setting to the chemistry between the characters and even the short stories, it will leave you gasping for more.

First off, lets talk about the characters. Erin is snarky, clever and brilliant, everything a main character should be. I love how she stood up for herself and studied Creative Writing even though her grandmother wanted her to study business. She might have been cut off from the family fortune, but knows her future is in writing. The fact that she works hard for every cent of her education makes me respect like crazy.

Now, on to Hunter. I loved how he was always there for Erin when she needed him. His intentions may have been questionable, but deep down, he's still a good guy. I think what made me fall for him, though, were all the things that happened between Erin and Hunter before they got to New York. I love their history with all it's complications and everything. And who can blame Erin for writing a story about Hunter? What is it about a country boy in the city that makes my heart leap? Le sigh!

While the characters are great (even the roommates and writing partners), what makes this book outstanding are the stories written by Erin and Hunter. Geez, I can't even describe them. They're so cute and so sexy. Plus, I love the concept behind a story within a story. And I can't even tell you how many times I reread those stories over and over again. Oh, romance writers. How I adore you guys!

Overall, Love Story is a fantastic addition to the YA contemporary field. Who knew characters could write such fabulous stories? Whether you're looking for a fun beach read or maybe a winter book that will keep you warm through the night, I recommend checking out Love Story. While Going Too Far is still my favorite of Jennifer Echol's books (my love for John is undying), that doesn't mean this one isn't worth the read. What can I say, Jennifer knows romance, and I love her for it!

Rating: 4/5

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Sunday, July 17, 2011


First off, special thanks to everyone who participated in any of the giveaways. I'm just sad I can't send each and every one of you a little something. Now, off to some winners.

The July YA Book of Choice Winner...

out of 277 participants and 693 entries, the winner is...

Daisy from Between The Pages!

The Winner of The Near Witch and Daughter of Smoke and Bone...

with 73 entries is...


Congrats to all the winners. I have emailed you both. You will have approximately 72 hours to respond or a new winner may be selected. If you did not receive my email, feel free to email me at addicted2novels(at)gmail(dot)com

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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine. It showcases each blogger's most anticipated book. This week, my pick is When The Sea Is Rising Red by Cat Hellisen.

Summary:"A girl fakes her own suicide to escape from the strict confines of her aristocratic family and a likely arranged marriage, only to be confronted with the harsh realities of living in the slums with the working class and the ultimate discovery that the boy she’s fallen in love with is plotting a rebellion to destroy her family."

Why I Can't Wait: Oh my freaking goodness. First off, isn't the cover beautifully morbid? I don't know why, but I am in LOVE with it. Secondly, the summary is absolutely amazing. It's so different from everything out there. I'm sitting here, reading it over and over and DYING to actually sit down and read the book. I hope they release a more detailed summary. Heck, I hope they release the book sooner. I don't want to wait till next year!!!

Expected publication: February 28th 2012 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Review : Forever

Title: Forever (Wolves of Mercy Falls #3)
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Published: July 12th 2011 by Scholastic Press

**May contain minor spoilers. Read with caution!**

Summary: "The thrilling conclusion to #1 bestselling Shiver trilogy from Maggie Stiefvater


When Sam met Grace, he was a wolf and she was a girl. Eventually he found a way to become a boy, and their love moved from a curious distance to the intense closeness of shared lives.


That should have been the end of their story. But Grace was not meant to stay human. Now she is the wolf. And the wolves of Mercy Falls are about to be killed in one final, spectacular hunt.


Sam would do anything for Grace. But can one boy and one love really change a hostile, predatory world? The past, the present, and the future are about to collide in one pure moment - a moment of death or life, farewell or forever."

Thoughts:First off, I have to tell you what a HUGE fan I am of Shiver. The top question people tend to ask most readers and bloggers is, "What's your favorite book?" Such a simple, yet complicated and loaded question. When people ask me this, I tend to give them a list of about five books. Some of the books have changed though out the year(s), but Shiver? Always on that list. Shiver was one of the first books I read before I became a blogger. It's a book I've recommended to so many people and THE book that got me back into reading. Now, with that said, I can't help but express my utter disappointment after reading Forever.

The story starts off roughly three or so months from where Linger ends. I will say that the story starts off with a bang. Shelby's back and more fierce than ever. Not the good kind of fierce either. That girl could scare zombies back to the grave.

Grace is dealing with the consequences and inconvenience of being a wolf. Remember that "I can't hold on to my skin because it's still cold outside" thing Sam dealt with in Shiver? Now it's Grace's turn to deal with it. Poor dear. For the first 140 or so pages, it was about Grace transitioning over and over and neither Sam nor Grace catching a break. Other than that, during this time, Isabel expressed her concern for the other wolves. Her father is arranging to have all the wolves in the woods assassinated and the only people that can stop him are also the ones that have more on their plate than they can deal with as is.

The main issue I had with the first half of the book is it felt like everyone was spending all their time worrying rather than doing anything. Even Isabel was annoyed by this but still did not do anything. It all seemed a bit counterproductive. I think the reason for this was so the reader could be scared for each of the characters. Suspense! I just wish something else would have happened rather than this.

The last half of the book felt really rushed. The funny thing is, I thought I'd be more invested in Sam and Grace's story (yay, they're together but for how long?), but I ended up caring more about Cole and Isabel. I still hoped for all the best things when it came to S & G. Please let someone find a freaking cure! PLEASE! But their story wasn't half as interesting as Isabel and Cole's. I love their dynamic and intense relationship/non-relationship. Honestly, it's what kept me reading.

Also, the emotional roller coaster factor. I bawled like a baby in Shiver. I shed many tears in Linger. But Forever? I didn't cry once. I couldn't. For some reason, the connection I felt with the characters drifted somewhere between pages 200 and the end.

Oh, the ending. The ending wasn't an ending at all. I felt like some things were resolved but the main thing was still left hanging in the air. I guess it's so each reader can picture what happens and end it the way they want to, but it was just too abstract for me. I needed an answer. I needed facts, a conclusion, not "what do you think happened?". I think that's where my main problem with Forever takes place. I'm sorry, but I have issues with the last book not feeling like the last book. Will there be a short story some time in the future, letting us know what happened? I sure hope so because otherwise, I am less than satisfied with what I was hoping to be the epic conclusion to one of my favorite trilogies. Part of me wishes Shiver was a standalone rather than a trilogy. Shiver had an ending. Forever doesn't.

Now, I will say that there are many, many people out there who enjoyed, LOVED Forever. I'm sad to say I was not one of them. I think maybe my hopes were too high. Maggie still writes with the same finesse, charm and grace that only Maggie can write. That I loved. I just wish I loved the book as much as I wanted to.

Rating: 2.5/5

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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Review: Witches of East End

Title: Witches of East End
Author: Melissa De La Cruz
Published: June 21st 2011 by Hyperion

Summary: "The three Beauchamp women--Joanna and her daughters Freya and Ingrid--live in North Hampton, out on the tip of Long Island. Their beautiful, mist-shrouded town seems almost stuck in time, and all three women lead seemingly quiet, uneventful existences. But they are harboring a mighty secret--they are powerful witches banned from using their magic. Joanna can resurrect people from the dead and heal the most serious of injuries. Ingrid, her bookish daughter, has the ability to predict the future and weave knots that can solve anything from infertility to infidelity. And finally, there's Freya, the wild child, who has a charm or a potion that can cure most any heartache.

For centuries, all three women have been forced to suppress their abilities. But then Freya, who is about to get married to the wealthy and mysterious Bran Gardiner, finds that her increasingly complicated romantic life makes it more difficult than ever to hide her secret. Soon Ingrid and Joanna confront similar dilemmas, and the Beauchamp women realize they can no longer conceal their true selves. They unearth their wands from the attic, dust off their broomsticks, and begin casting spells on the townspeople. It all seems like a bit of good-natured, innocent magic, but then mysterious, violent attacks begin to plague the town. When a young girl disappears over the Fourth of July weekend, they realize it's time to uncover who and what dark forces are working against them.

With a brand-new cast of characters, a fascinating and fresh world to discover, and a few surprise appearances from some of the Blue Blood fan favorites, this is a page-turning, deliciously fun, magical summer read fraught with love affairs, witchcraft, and an unforgettable battle between good and evil."

Thoughts:Parents, beware! This is definitely not a Young Adult novel so before you let your kids read it, be sure to check it out yourself. With that said, Witches of East End is everything an adult novel should be. It's fun, witty, wicked, and soooo sexy! For older fans of Blue Bloods, this really is a treat.

Witches of East End is told through each of the three witches' point of view. While they have their own story (past and present) to share, there is still an overall story to tell. Due to their past, the three witches are not allowed to practice their magic openly. In this world, however, whenever the witches die, they are reborn. Joanna is Freya and Ingrid's mother and when her daughters die, she becomes pregnant and has to raise them again. Their overall age is determined by their personality. Since Freya is the most youthful, she appears to be the youngest.

Now, what kind of story would this be if there wasn't any conflict? So begins the troubled path that all witches seem to follow. One by one, each of the three girls begins to perform their magic. And soon, each girl must pay for the consequences of their crime.

I have to say that out of the three girls, Ingrid was my favorite. Freya jokes, calling Ingrid frigid, which isn't necessarily wrong. The thing is, when Ingrid loves, she really LOVES. Besides, who doesn't love a brilliant girl?

And you know how Melissa likes to add bits and pieces of history into her books? Well, this one is no different. Instead of the colonial time set, she actually uses Nordic mythology. This aspect of the story, in my opinion, is what made the novel so interesting. What can I say? I'm a girl who loves all sorts of mythology!

In all fairness, I have to admit that the first half of the novel moves fairly slowly. It's a lot of world building, character development and background information. The book is actually broken down into three separate stories. The first two were good but not great. The last one, though, wow. That one made the book worthwhile. Oh, and there is a cameo from a couple Blue Blooders I'm sure fans will in enjoy.

Overall, I found Witches of East End to be a great addition to the fantastic world Melissa has already built. Would I have liked it as much as I did had I not been a Blue Bloods fan? I don't know. The one thing I know is this: It's making me not only crave the next book in this series (The Serpent's Kiss), but also the next book in the Blue Bloods series. Luckily, I don't have to wait that long for Lost in Time. Unluckily, I'll be waiting over a year (ACK!) for The Serpent's Kiss.

Rating: 4/5

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In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. I only got one book this week, but I'm super, super excited about it!

*The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton (SIGNED!!!)

Special thanks to my awesome, amazing, Austin buddy, Jen, for snagging me this book AND getting it signed. FYI, Jen has an awesome blog I highly recommend checking out. Right now, she's hosting two separate giveaways where you can win an arc of Forever, Die For Me, Hereafter, and Fateful. And lets just say that in the near future, Jen may be hosting a giveaway involving a girl named Lola and a certain boy next door (*wink wink*).

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Friday, July 8, 2011

Farewell To Harry Potter (Video w/ Cast and Crew)

I don't know about you guys, but I cannot believe this whole Harry Potter journey is almost over. When I was in seventh grade, my mom mum bought me a copy of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. Back then, they only came in those giant hardbacks that cost a million dollars. She told me they were the latest trend and that I'd really like it. Being the rebellious preteen I was, I didn't read it until about 6 months later. Freakin' fell in love with the story, the characters, the world, everything. I think I even drooled in my book a little, too. My mum continued to buy me the next installment of each Harry Potter until I turned 16 and couldn't wait for her to get off work and make time go to the bookstore and pick it up for me. I had to go to Barnes and Noble and buy them at midnight on the release days. Remember those midnight release parties? The games? The costumes? Having to get there ASAP to grab a number or else you'd have to wait till 2am to get your copy? Oh and staying up the ENTIRE night to finish it? SOOOO much fun!

The books turned into movies and now, I can't even believe the journey is coming to an end. Nothing, absolutely NOTHING, can nor will ever compare to Harry Potter. I'm sorry, but it's true.

And in case you've missed seeing the speeches at the World Premier and watching the cast and crew say their goodbyes, here's your chance. I posted the youtube videos below.

Oh and if you don't shed at least ONE tear, then you don't understand the magic. Enjoy!

Part 1:

Part 2:

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Thursday, July 7, 2011

Review: Starstruck

Title: Starstruck
Author: Cyn Balog
Expected publication: July 12th 2011 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Source: ARC courtesy of Around The World Tours

Summary: "Gwendolyn "Dough" X doesn't think she has much going for her—she carries a few extra pounds, her family struggles with their small bakery in a town full of millionaires, and the other kids at her New Jersey high school don't seem to know that she exists. Thank the stars for her longtime boyfriend, Philip P. Wishman—or "Wish." He moved away to California three years ago, when they were 13, but then professed his love for her via e-mail, and he's been her long-distance BF ever since.

At the beginning of her junior year, though, Wish e-mails that he's moving back to Jersey. Great, right? Well, except that Dough has gained about 70 pounds since the last time Wish saw her, while Wish—according to his Facebook photos—has morphed into a blonde god. Convinced that she'll be headed for Dumpsville the minute Wish lays eyes on her, Dough delays their meeting as long as she possibly can.

But when she sees Wish at school, something amazing happens. He looks at Dough like she's just as gorgeous as he is. But Wish is acting a little weird, obsessed with the sun and freaked out by rain. And the creepy new guy working at the bakery, Christian, is convinced that there's more to Wish's good looks than just healthy eating and lots of sun. He tells Dough that a mark on Wish's neck marks him as a member of the Luminati—an ancient cult of astrologers who can manipulate the stars to improve their lives. Is Wish and Dough's love meant to be—or are they star-crossed?"

Thoughts:For any of you who know me, Fairy Tale is one of my all time favorite reads. Ever since then, no matter what the story is about, I always look forward to Cyn Balog's latest book. When Starstruck was first announced, I jumped for joy! Cyn! New story! Awesome synopsis! Excitement! And while the story is very unique, especially considering that sometimes it feels like every possible story line in YA literature has already been touched, I still couldn't help but feel like this story just fell a little flat.

First of all, I could never relate to Dough. While I'm sure everyone (yes, everyone) at some point in their lives have felt left out, alone or lonely, I just couldn't stand Dough's constant self deprecation. Yes, we are our own worst critique but oh my goodness, it just got so tiresome and well, honestly, annoying. Even when she spoke, it was nothing more than a mumble or one word answer. Maybe it's just me, but if I don't like the main character, I can't like the book. To be fair, Dough does grow a lot in the novel, and I appreciated that. If anything, I liked her wit and humor.

After 100 pages, I was about to give up on the whole book, when out of no where, Cyn throws in this curve ball that throws me back into the game. What is this miraculous twist you ask? Well, it's a paranormal element that (as far as I know of) has yet to be breached. I was immediately intrigued in the concept behind the stars and how the author used all the elements surrounding us against us. I'm trying really hard to explain it without ruining it. I guess I could flat out tell you, but that would ruin the whole story, and it's really something you should see for yourself. Let's just say that after finishing the book, I wanted to go check my horoscope and see if the stars were in my favor.

And lastly, the romance. It wasn't sizzle, sexy nor swoon worthy, but it was sweet. I guess I wouldn't necessarily categorize what Wish and Dough have as romance. I felt like Wish and Dough had more of a "brother-sister" relationship. I wanted chemistry, heat, fire, something, but instead got bro-hugs and high fives. A little disappointing, but at least it wasn't insta-love!

All in all, Starstruck just wasn't the book for me. Before completely losing hope on it, definitely check out other reviews out there. I'm in the minority. In fact, the majority of my friends on Goodreads, who have read Starstruck, gave it 4 or 5 stars. I still think Cyn Balog is an amazing author and will still continue to read and look forward to her future books. Some books are just hits or misses with certain people and sadly, in my case, Starstruck was a miss, a strike and an out.

Rating: 2.5/5

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Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine. It showcases each individual blogger's most anticipated reads. This week, my pick is Wintertown by Stephen Emond.

Summary:Every winter, straight-laced, Ivy League bound Evan looks forward to a visit from Lucy, a childhood pal who moved away after her parent's divorce. But when Lucy arrives this year, she's changed. The former "girl next door" now has chopped dyed black hair, a nose stud, and a scowl. But Evan knows that somewhere beneath the Goth, "Old Lucy" still exists, and he's determined to find her... even if it means pissing her off.

Garden State meets Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist in this funny and poignant illustrated novel about opposites who fall in love.

Why I Can't Wait:I love the summary! There's just something about a good guy, trying to save a bad girl and/or childhood friend that intrigues me. Plus, Garden State meets Nick and Norah's? Umm, winning?! That's like offering me pizza AND ice cream! Needless to say, I'm definitely looking forward to this book!

Expected publication: December 5th 2011 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (Nice, just in time for Christmas!)

Feel free to comment below and leave links to your WoWs. I'll try to comment on as many as possible!

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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Book Sale/Trade

Hey guys!

So I have TONS of books that I need to get rid of. Some recent, some not, some arcs, some not, lol. Since I'm in the US, I prefer to only deal with US peeps. If you're buying a book, you'll have to pay the shipping costs, but if we're trading, than we'll both cover our own shipping costs (but please make sure to get a delivery confirmation, and I'll do the same). Priority will go to larger orders, then first come, first serve.

You can find my list HERE.

Please note that ARCs are for trade only!

I'll only keep the list up till Thursday. For all the books that were sold/traded, I'll mail them out then. Otherwise, I'll be posting the rest of the books on PBS, giving them to random friends or donating them. :)

Thanks, guys!

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Haunting Violet Blog Tour- Review + Giveaway

Title: Haunting Violet
Author: Alyxandra Harvey
Published: June 21st 2011 by Walker Childrens

Summary: Violet Willoughby doesn't believe in ghosts. But they believe in her. After spending years participating in her mother's elaborate ruse as a fraudulent medium, Violet is about as skeptical as they come in all matters supernatural. Now that she is being visited by a very persistent ghost, one who suffered a violent death, Violet can no longer ignore her unique ability. She must figure out what this ghost is trying to communicate, and quickly because the killer is still on the loose.

Afraid of ruining her chance to escape her mother's scheming through an advantageous marriage, Violet must keep her ability secret. The only person who can help her is Colin, a friend she's known since childhood, and whom she has grown to love. He understands the true Violet, but helping her on this path means they might never be together. Can Violet find a way to help this ghost without ruining her own chance at a future free of lies?

Thoughts:Haunting Violet is a beautifully written, well crafted novel that's part historical fiction, part ghost story and part romance.

Violet does not believe in ghosts. Why would she? Ever since she was a child, she has helped her mom scam people into believing that her seances are real, when they're nothing more than mere parlor tricks. And now that she's older, her mother wants to showcase her as a lady, hoping to snag Violet a nice rich lord. But the thing is, Violet isn't interested in any lords, not even the wealthy, handsome Xavier. Though Violet knows (especially with the class differences) Colin is off limits, she can't help herself from stealing kisses from him. They've grown up together, her mother has taken him under her wing and Colin has always been there for Violet. How could she not fall in love with him?

As if romance, relationships and potential wealth isn't enough to deal with, Violet begins to see ghosts. No, not the fake spirits her mother creates, but a real, actual ghost. And apparently, where one appears, others will follow. Violet must then begin to figure out why these spirits are here, how they got there and help them in any way she can. Worst of it, if these spirits were murdered, then she has to figure out who the culprit is before the killer strikes again.

I'll be perfectly honest. I've never been a huge fan of historical fiction, nor ghost stories in general. What first drew me to Haunting Violet was the cover. I mean, it's beautiful but also adds a sort of hint that something cryptic yet enticing may be in store. Well, kudos to the cover designer because she/he nailed it! From the pacing to the plot, every little piece of the story fits perfectly together and weaved this story that I ended up liking more than I thought I would.

One thing I loved is the fact that while the story is set in the 1800s, it doesn't READ like a historical fiction novel. Even the dialogue read like actual people talking rather just the fancy "this is how the people in the 1800s speak." I think the way historical fiction is written is what normally draws me away, but luckily, this wasn't the case with Haunting Violet.

I adored Violet as the main character. So many female characters nowadays make such silly, idiotic decisions that make me want to scream and pull my hair out. Not Violet. She's strong, has morals, and while she knows that what her mother does is wrong, she also knows that family is important.

Also, I think I'm a sucker for forbidden love, especially when it involves something like class. From the minute Colin was a child, I was immediately drawn to his character. His kindness, quirkiness, charm and overall presence is just a breath of fresh air. And the relationship he builds with Violet? Wow. Every time they kissed, I felt like my heart melted into a pile of goo. Swoon? You betcha!

Overall, I found the Haunting Violet to be a fun, different read that I really enjoyed. At times, the pacing can be a bit slow, but that never lasts long. If you're a fan of a good mystery novel, with a beautiful Victorian yet Gothic setting, and well developed characters, I would recommend checking out Haunting Violet. It's so much more than just a pretty cover!


Giveaway Time:

*To win a copy of Haunting Violet, leave a comment below and tell me one of your favorite ghost story/novels is.
*Be sure to leave a way for me to contact you (i.e. email address).
*You must be 15 and up.
*Open to US participants only (unless you have a US address I can ship the book to).
*+1 for tweeting, spreading the word, etc.
*Ends July 19th.

Good luck! :)

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Sunday, July 3, 2011

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. I'm really excited about some all of these books. Ch-ch-check it out!

For Review:
*The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab
*Putting Makeup On Dead People by Jen Violi
*Fateful by Claudia Gray
*Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake

*Jessica Rules The Dark Side (signed!) by Beth Fantaskey

I also got a really cool water bottle, which I'm definitely taking with me to the gym, and a couple decks of UnRequired Reading Cards (giveaway!).

That's it for me. Special thanks to Disney Hyperion, HarperTeen and Tor. You guys rock my socks off! Feel free to comment below and leave links to your IMM posts. I'll try my very best to comment on each one!


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