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Tuesday, 31 July 2012

500 Follower Giveaway!

Hey everyone! Ok, so I've gotten everything up and running to order from The Book Depository, which means that it is time for my 500 follower giveaway! This is the international one I've been excited about! I can't believe my blog has grown so much in only half a year! I never expected this when I first started it... I am so grateful to all of my followers! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

To properly say my thank you, here is my giveaway! One winner will win a YA book of their choice from The Book Depository, 20$ CAD (Canadian Dollars),  as long as TBD ships to your country for free! (Check HERE)


- Fill in the Rafflecopter below (PLEASE do not leave personal info in the comments!)
 - The giveaway is INTERNATIONAL as long as The Book Depository ships to your country for free (click HERE to check)
- You must be 13 or older to enter. If you are under 13, please ask your parent/guardian for permission first.
- As TBD is sending out the prize, I am not responsible for books lost or damaged in the post
- Giveaway runs for one month, ending on September 1st 2012, 12:01 am EST.
- The winner will be contacted by email and must reply within 48 hours, otherwise an alternate winner will be chosen.
- IF I can get to 750 GFC followers before the end of the giveaway, I will add another winner! (I have no idea if that's even possible, but I thought I'd put that out there!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck everyone! Thank you so much, again!
Happy reading! <3

Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I’d Like To Switch Places With For 24 Hours (16)

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.This week's topic is Characters I’d Like To Switch Places With For 24 Hours. LOVE THIS!!!

1. Sydney from Bloodines by Richelle Mead - I have always been fascinated by boarding school, as well as paranormal creatures! So why not both? Plus Sydney would have access to so much history and chemistry information, (two of my favorite subjects) that it would be like heaven!

2. Hermione from Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling - Who wouldn't want to go to Hogwarts!?!?!?! This is a pretty obvious choice, I think! I'd want to switch with Hermione, just so that I can say I switched with Hermione... :P

3. Kiara from Rules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles - Only because Carlos is freaking gorgeous and hilarious and I love Kiara's family so much!

4. Anna from Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins - I wouldn't want to switch with her on one of her partying nights, but on a day where she can hang out with Kaden, as well as because her power to see auras would be so useful.

5. Juliette from Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi - I'm known as the 'mom' of my group of friends at school and everyone thinks I wouldn't hurt a fly. And it's true, I totally wouldn't! But is it terrible of me to want to know what it would feel like to have everyone terrified of you, even just for a day? Probably... Okay, well then I'd love to hang out with Adam and Kenji, too!

6. Anna from Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins - Boarding School in Paris. Etienne St. Clair. Enough said.

7. Gloria from Vixen by Jillian Larkin - I always say that I was born in the wrong era, and I've always been fascinated by the 20's. Just to see what it was like would be incredible.

8. Kate from The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter - I love Greek mythology, so to hang out with the Gods and Goddesses would be amazing!!!

 That's all I can think of right now! There are probably way more I could have put on here, but I can't think of any at the moment! Leave me a link in the comments to your TTT and I'll check it out!

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, 30 July 2012

Review: The Possession of Cassie Quinn by Kathryn Knutson

 Author: Kathryn Knutson
Publisher: North Star Press of St. Cloud, Inc
Page Count: 200 pages, Paperback
Date Published: June 1st 2012
Find it on Goodreads: The Possession of Cassie Quinn
Source: A copy was sent to me by the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review.

Blurb from Goodreads:

A long, dark driveway towards an old farmhouse. A new stepsister with a nasty streak. A little sister who runs off. Something sinister lurking in the woods. Cassie Quinn's new home comes with . . . complications. Cassie never believed in ghosts before. But now she is receiving strange messages, telling her to stay out of the woods. Are the messages just a ploy by her stepsister? Or are they warning her of an evil that stalks the shadows of the woods beyond her home?

 My Thoughts: The only word I can use to describe this book would be creepy. So very, very creepy. 

When Kathryn first contacted me asking if I'd like to review her book, I was hesitant, only because I have never really read any YA horror books. But as creepy as the cover is, it also drew me in and the synopsis sounded so intriguing. I am so glad I decided to read it. It was so.... creepy! 

The book started off in a way that would be expected for a horror story, slow and with lots of build up. Cassie and her mother, sister, step-father and step-sister are just moving into their new house when the story kicks off. Cassie and Ashleigh (step-sister) begin to notice strange things going on in the house, illusions and cryptic messages on walls, Andie, Cassie's little sister, goes wandering off in the woods and says that Cassie led her into the forest, when really she was waiting for her on the other side. Then they find out that a boy had drowned in the pond. Cassie, Ashleigh, and their new friends all become immersed in a mystery, trying to figure out who or what is haunting them. All they know is something is there, watching them, and waiting for one of them to venture out into the woods alone...

I made the mistake of trying to start reading this at around 1am... It was dark, everyone asleep, and my house is kind of creaky and likes to... settle, at night.  Needless to say, after about 30 pages I had to put it down and read something happy, cause I was getting creeped out. But I picked it up the next day and couldn't put it down. I read it all in one sitting, because it was just so good! Knutson has a great talent for mysterious horrors, and making them feel real to the reader. Even though a lot of the things that happened were things we see in a lot of stories about hauntings, it felt unique and different. I really liked Cassie... She was very rational and I appreciated that she thought of all reasonable explanations before she could even think of something like ghosts. There were a lot of secondary characters in this book, but they all played a role and were never just there. We learn a bit about each of them, so that was nicely done. I never felt confused or wondered why the author wrote that, because it all went with the story, and that's how it's supposed to be, right? I loved Cassie's and Ashleigh's new friends and old friends alike. They were all great, as well as the two adults who helped them with the ghostly activities. Their parents were there too, and played a part, as well as the little sister, Andie. Everyone had a spot and a reason to be in the book. Which I loved.

I think any fan of something freaky would enjoy The Possession of Cassie Quinn. It was written well, with lots of suspense and detail. It was a quick read, and it left on such a huge cliffhanger, I was in shock. I am so excited to see what happens in the next book, which is being released June 2013. I'm sure it will be filled with creepiness and freakishness! 

Happy reading!

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Review: The Eyes of the Desert Sand by Edwin Wolfe

Author: Edwin Wolfe
Publisher: Aauvi House Publishing Group
Page Count: 301 pages, ARC
Date Published: January 11th 2012
Find it on Goodreads: The Eyes of the Desert Sand
Source: A copy was sent to me by the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review.
How many parents would believe their thirteen year old son who told them that two vampires and a hooded stranger had tried to abduct him? Strange thing is, young Ethan Fox is convinced his parents, George and Betsy do believe him. Could it have something to do with the mysterious poem he wrote in his sleep? Or maybe it has something to do with his past, the past he cannot remember before his eighth birthday. Something strange is afoot, and it is about to turn Ethan's world upside down.While vacationing with his parents, to get away from the crazy events of the previous two weeks, Ethan encounters a young girl named Haley Hunt who he is strongly drawn to... and the feeling is mutual. Together, Ethan and Haley are lured to The Residence, home of the Caretakers, an organization of intelligent beings sent to earth to nurture the human race and protect them from un-earthly influences.Armed with special abilities, including the power to evolve any earthly creature, the Caretakers take in their unexpected guests. They have been watching young Ethan Fox, and are curious as to why the Grimleavers, their mortal enemy on earth, would want to abduct a young human child. Together, Ethan and Haley journey to magical worlds, make new friends, and help the Caretakers unravel the stories greatest mysteries. Along the way, they learn that the Caretakers have been here since the beginning of human history and have played a key role in shaping human lore. In their world, vampires, werewolves, trolls, and even Medusa herself really do exist but have been kept hidden from the human world around them. Ethan is the key as they ultimately discover the Grimleavers true intentions, to unlock the four portals to the elemental worlds of the Chrysalis.

My Thoughts: The author has such a fantastic imagination. It's incredible. 

This is a really original story. The author put so much thought and detail into it and it really paid off. But the writing could have used some work. I think this book would be more suited for a younger audience, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. 

Ethan Fox is different from all of his friends.  He's an adventurous kid, who prefers to be outside than inside playing video games. He's close with his parents, but they're very secretive when he tells them he was almost abducted by vampires. He also had no memory from before he was eight years old and wrote a very strange letter in his sleep. When Ethan and his parents go on vacation to the beach, he meets Haley, a girl with amnesia. The begin to walk together and Ethan comes across a strange blue and yellow rabbit. The rabbit leads the two to a rabbit hole and they find a staircase leading in. They take the stairs and suddenly their lives become much more dangerous and exciting as they meet the Caretakers and everyone in this mysterious new world. 

Wolfe's world had a Alice in Wonderland feel to it. It was kind of confusing but it felt like it was supposed to be. The characters were all very unique and interesting. There were so many creatures in this strange world that we've both heard of and haven't. They were all extremely neat and made me want to learn more. There were so many different characters, creatures, inventions and settings and that kept it interesting even when the plot was a little bit slower. Because it's a first book, we have to learn all about the characters and the world but it was so cool and intriguing that I didn't mind if it got a little bit boring. By the end, the book was filled with action and adventure and it kept me hooked. 

The only thing I'd like to mention on a bad note was the writing. I felt the writing to be very simple and at times awkward. But that is almost expected, considering this is a debut novel. I think think this book would have been better suited for younger middle grade readers, as the prose is pretty easy to read and straight-forward. I got past the errors because of the incredible story, but I would have liked to know more about Ethan, as most of his dialogue was explaining the story and setting, not how he was or felt. But the story is intricate and well thought out and I applaud Mr. Wolfe's amazing imagination. I will be looking forward to the next book! If you like books filled with mystery and intrigue, be sure to check out The Eyes of the Desert Sand! Don't let the cover fool you into thinking this isn't a great book, because it is. 

Happy reading!

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Stacking the Shelves (11)

Stacking the Shelves is a book haul meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews -This is a great way for us to share what books we added to our shelves each week!

Hey guys! Ok, so this week was HUGE for me! I got so many books, I can't even.. AGH!!!

For Review:

 Thanks to Elizabeth Wheatley, Bethany House Publishers, HarlequinTeen,  and Random House Children's Books (ARC)!

RandomBuzzers Ambuzzador Book:

I got two ARCs of The Book of Blood and Shadow in the mail as part of the ambuzzadors summer group! My review will be up soon, and there might even be a giveaway!


I got both of these at a used book store and they're in perfect condition!

 I'm so excited to start reading everything! Leave me a link to your haul of the week in the comments below and I'll check it out!

Happy reading!

Review: Raising Wild Ginger by Tara Woolpy

Author: Tara Woolpy
Publisher: Bats in the Boathouse Press
Page Count: 217 pages, Paperback
Date Published: July 1st 2012
Find it on Goodreads: Raising Wild Ginger
Source: A copy was sent to me by the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review.

Blurb from Goodreads

Parenting is hard. That's what Edward Rosenberg has always assumed, although his only experience with children has been as the drunken uncle. Now the love of his life, Sam DaCosta, is yearning for fatherhood. Edward's been sober for years. He and Sam are in a good place. Why rock the boat? On the other hand, how can he deny Sam his dream of a family?

Then they meet Ginger. At twelve she's been through more than either Edward or Sam can imagine. She's seductive, secretive and dishonest. But somewhere between stealing his cash and alienating Sam, Ginger manages to wind herself into Edward's heart. Can the three of them create a family? Or will Ginger blow them all apart?

 My Thoughts: Fantastic. Beautiful. Amazing.

This is an incredible book. I am not normally a huge fan of books not in the YA genre, but this has got to be one of my favorite books I've read in a while. It was so great, filled with a story that made me smile, cry, laugh. I loved the characters and the plot and everything in between. I devoured the book with ease... This is a very special book. 

I have not read the first book in this series, Raising Gillian's Wolves, but I really didn't need to. There were a few details that I was unsure about in the beginning, but it was pretty easy to look past that, considering this is an entirely different story. I have no clue who Gillian is, other than the fact that she lives in Amsterdam and is Edward's best friend, but that doesn't matter. What does matter is this story! The book begins with partners Sam and Edward living together and happily, but Sam is wanting desperately to become a father. Edward, though hesitant, agrees and they take in Ginger as a foster child. Ginger's had a very, very terrible life and a past that is unimaginable. At twelve years old she knows how to seduce men, wears tons of makeup, and is completely, and utterly broken. She steals and lies, but she also worms herself into Edwards heart. Sam's, not so much. Edward and Sam begin having problems, as Ginger is so much to handle, and not what Sam was expecting. But Ginger is a smart girl and knows how to get Sam to warm up to her. But she's also a fragile, hurting little girl who has been abused in the past in a way that will bring tears to the reader's eyes. The book follows Sam, Edward and Ginger's journey to find family and love together, while all healing from their pasts... Especially Ginger. 

I was completely immersed in this book. It was one that had my emotions on a huge roller coaster ride. I laughed, I cried tears of joy, and tears of sadness. I had moments where I wanted to scream and rip my hair out because of the cruelty in this world, as well as moments where I couldn't stop smiling because of how incredible this little family's story was. Ginger was a little girl with a horrific past that makes me tense up in anger each time I even think about it. She will always hold a place in my heart now, for she is a very special character. She is clever and cunning, sad and hurt, and just doesn't really know how to be a twelve year old. But Edward and Sam help her with that and she learns to trust them and love them. I loved all of the characters. Sam and Edward were both a delight. They each had pasts that were a bit traumatic but they had no clue what it would be like to take in Ginger. Edward was probably my favorite character, just because he was so likeable. He was rational and loving and cared so much for both Sam and Ginger. He would do anything to keep the three of them together. 

Another thing I loved about this novel was the fact that the story had so many different aspects to it, but it was never confusing, really. It was just a book about two men, trying to raise their new, twelve year old daughter. Sam and Edward were not a fairytale couple. They had fights and disagreed and they were just a normal, everyday couple. It wasn't all fluffed up. The story was about how their lives went on with Ginger now in it. They had to adjust work and social lives, what with it being summer, she had no school. So she went and worked with a woman in the lab at the university Sam works at, working with rats. Edward continued with his photography, trying to get a book published. They had their synagogue and Sam teaching Hebrew to people for their Bar/Bat Mitzvahs. Ginger had to adjust to being in a Jewish family and making friends with Ora, one of Sam's students. It was just a normal book, about normal people with a daughter that came from a traumatic past. I loved all of the characters in this book, with the small town feeling not too dramatic, but there enough to feel it.

I could continue about this book, but I shan't considering I need to get to sleep. I loved Raising Wild Ginger. It was a fantastic read and I wish everyone could read it. It's a great book about family, healing, love and parenting. If you come across it, please check it out! I'd love to hear what you thought of it, or Woolpy's first novel! If you've read Releasing Gillian's Wolves, let me know what you thought of it!

Happy reading!

Friday, 27 July 2012

TGIF: Do you listen to music while reading?

HAPPY FRIDAY!!! Hello my dear followers! How are you this fine day? It is once again time for a random TGIF post! Today, I want to know: Do you like to listen to music while reading?

I personally love listening to music and reading at the same time. It helps me read better, if that makes any sense at all, considering you'd think the opposite. I, of course, always listen to some Ed Sheeran when I'm reading, because I'm a bit obsessed with him and I could listen to him during any time in my life and be content. I'm also loving Foster the People, Of Monsters and Men, The Wallflowers, and some good ol' Pink Floyd. I've been into a lot of different sorts of music lately, and I find that as long as it's not too loud, if I have music on and I'm reading a good book, I am at my happiest. There are so many amazing artists and bands out there that I am so in love with. I wish I could name all of them!

But enough about me. I want to know your opinion! Let me know in the comments if you enjoy listening to music and reading at the same time, or if you think that's too distracting. I have a friend who can't stand music in the background while she's reading, so once we were just sitting down together with our books and she got up and turned off the radio. So then, I had to go get my iPod, because I needed some background noise. :P Maybe I just don't like silence...

Anyways, let me know what you think, as well as what music you're really into right now! Give me some new bands and singers to YouTube! I love finding great music.

For now, I shall leave you with some of my favorite songs of the moment, in case you haven't heard them! :)

Happy Friday!

This one is from Ed's debut album + and I just love the sound. It is so gorgeous and heartfelt!

This one is another by Ed Sheeran and it is from his EP 'Songs I Wrote With Amy'. One of my favorite songs by him! I wish it was on + so that everyone could hear it!
I am in love with this band! Their music is fantastic!

 This song is so quiet and lovely.. Gorgeous!

Anything by Daughter, I'm in love with! The singer's got a gorgeous voice and the songs are all amazing!

I could just give so many more songs, but since this is a book blog, not a music blog, I shall cut it down to these five! Hope you enjoy! I'd love to hear what you think, as well as your opinion on reading and listening to music at the same time!

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Review: Gilt by Katherine Longshore

Author: Katherine Longshore
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Page Count: 406 pages, Hardcover
Date Published: May 15th 2012
Find it on Goodreads: Gilt
Source: Purchased

Blurb from Goodreads:

In the court of King Henry VIII, nothing is free—
and love comes at the highest price of all.

When Kitty Tylney’s best friend, Catherine Howard, worms her way into King Henry VIII’s heart and brings Kitty to court, she’s thrust into a world filled with fabulous gowns, sparkling jewels, and elegant parties. No longer stuck in Cat’s shadow, Kitty’s now caught between two men—the object of her affection and the object of her desire. But court is also full of secrets, lies, and sordid affairs, and as Kitty witnesses Cat’s meteoric rise and fall as queen, she must figure out how to keep being a good friend when the price of telling the truth could literally be her head.

My Thoughts: I found this book fascinating. It was thrilling, addictive, and sinister... It hooked me up and shipped me away to a time filled with drama and betrayal, romance and friendship.

Although I am a huge historical fiction fan, I always seem to shy away from it and read the books with paranormal twists and cute romances. But Gilt has changed my ways! I've always been fascinated with both English and French history, but have studied more about France and its history than that of England. But the Tudors have been a subject that I've been longing to know more about. I was familiar with the story of Catherine Howard, but this book opened my eyes to so much more. Longshore is quite obviously an open history fanatic and it shows with this novel. She did her research and the story was believable and sinister. The blurb above makes this book sound a lot sweeter than it is. Gilt really gives an insight to court life during the reign of Henry VIII; I think Longshore did an incredible job with that.

AGH I love this story! Kitty was an amazing character, with her steadfast loyalty even when people didn't deserve it, namely Cat. Her voice was an absolute delight to read from. Longshore did an amazing job in keeping the language from that era, making the book that much more believable. I was completely immersed in the book, reading it in only a day because I found it almost addictive. I couldn't tear myself away. Even now, I want to read it again and again. I could relate well to Kitty, with her having a friend that she just couldn't say no to, although this was to a whole other extent. Cat is a very difficult character to like... Actually I didn't like her too much at all. But she wasn't a character that many people would like. She was selfish and arrogant and quite cruel to Kitty. But there were moments where I pitied her and moments where I hated her. I teared up for her (but mostly for Kitty) and I wanted to scream at Cat as well. Then there were the boys. The blurb suggests a love triangle for the ages, but this book involved something quite a bit more dark. She has William, whom she met before she moved to court and Edmund, the man who knows what she saw that one day in the woods... I personally loved William. I thought he was the absolute perfect gentleman, and a character we don't find often in books about this time period. I adored their relationship, and thought it was so sweet. But then there was Edmund, who was someone that I liked at first, but then eventually I grew to absolutely despise. I could understand why Kitty liked him, but then even she came to her senses and I cheered. But he didn't exactly leave in peace... 

I loved how Longshore divided the book into time frames, so that the reader knew which year an event happened in. The story was very interesting and filled with everything from dark, frightening moments, to the happiest and sweetest. The book put a lot of the romance on the back burner though, and that was actually nice. I learned a lot about Tudor life at court and it reminded me so much of everything I know about the royals in France, (I don't know if I've mentioned this, but I am obsessed with Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI). But it was different, too, and that made it so enjoyable. I love history, especially stuff like this, so this was the perfect book to get me out of my reading rut. I wouldn't read this if you're looking for a light, happy read, because the ending is very bittersweet. But if you are a fan of realistic historical fiction, then this would be a fantastic book to read. I will be recommending it for a very long time. I could go on and on about how great this book was, but I think everyone should just go out and read it!

I am so anxious to see what Katherine Longshore comes up with next. I would love to know more about what happens with Kitty, but I'm not sure what the next book's story would have, because of how this one ended. But nevertheless, I will be waiting not-so-patiently for her next book. Don't forget to look for my interview with Katherine on August 30th as part of the Authors are Rockstars tour! I'm really excited!!! Let me know what you thought of this book, I'd love to know!
Happy reading!

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Review: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: McElderry Books
Page Count: 485 pages, Paperback
Date Published:  April 14th 2009 (first published March 27th 2007)
Find it on Goodreads: City of Bones
Source: Purchased
When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder—much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It’s hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing—not even a smear of blood—to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?

This is Clary’s first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It’s also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace’s world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know...

Exotic and gritty, exhilarating and utterly gripping, Cassandra Clare’s ferociously entertaining fantasy takes readers on a wild ride that they will never want to end.

My Thoughts:Well... I finished it. FINALLY! *This review will hold a probably unpopular opinion*

I remember seeing this book for the first time in the sixth grade. I tried to read it and I think I finished it, but I'm uncertain about that fact. The point is that I didn't remember it. When a friend of mine asked if I had read the series a while back, it got me thinking if I should. Everyone seems to love it and so I decided heck, why not!? Yeah... I only just finished it and I started it two or three months ago. Needless to say, it wasn't the book for me. 

Don't get me wrong, I think Cassandra Clare must  have improved considering her fan base, but the story just wasn't for me. I didn't connect well with any of the characters and that is something very important to me while reading! If there is not a single character that I care whether or not they die, it puts me in a bit of a rut. I did like Simon, because he was funny and sweet, but I didn't feel any connection to him! I really didn't like Clary, I felt her to be bland and boring, as well as angry and whiny. To be honest, I didn't feel really anything for Jace. He was the biggest cliche in the history of cliches when it comes to bad-ass, stuck up heroes. Yes, his story did make me like him a little bit more than I would have, but at the same time I couldn't get over the fact that he completely loses all coherent thought and concept after Valentine comes into the picture. I'm sure that the books evolve more and that is why Clary and Jace seem to be one of the most loved couples ever, but in this book, it didn't work. WHY? Because of the crazy twist at the end that made me want to tear my hair out! WHAT!?!?! I'm sure you've read this book and know what I'm talking about, but if not then I'm sorry. But anyways, it was one of the biggest WTH moments I've had in my life. There is obviously a huge twist and turn to the story in the next books, because without it I'm sure these books would cause a lot of controversy towards Jace and Clary being the golden couple. I see so many people saying that they are one of their favorite book couples, so I'm assuming Valentine was lying or is delusional, (both of which are highly possible). 

The other problem I had with the book was the plot. There was so much going on that I had no clue what was going on half of the time! I had to go back and reread too many times and that was a bit irritating. I have never been a huge fan of books that have a ton of different paranormal creatures in it, but this one felt as if it had every creature imaginable and then some! It was too much! This is a fairly long book but I can usually read 500 or so page books in 2-3 days! But with City of Bones, it was much too long. There were too many instances where I was left pondering what was happening in the book, instead of what was going to happen. In some scenes the sentences were all a jumbled-up, incoherent bunch of words that took a while to decipher. The prose was very... Well, I think the author was trying a little too hard to make it original, and it fell flat. For sure there were moments where the writing was better, with more description and detail, but for the most part it didn't work. I didn't really feel anything for any of the characters and I couldn't care less about the plot, other than what happens with Jace and Clary, because that plot twist was nut-so. 

I have the next two books on my shelf, but I'm not sure when I will be reading them, or even if I will be. I would like to one day, but with such a large TBR already, I need to finish my review copies first. I'll most likely read the next one at least, and if that one improves then I will probably continue the series. I'd love to know your opinion on this series... I know so many people love it and I find it fascinating reading contradicting thoughts on books. I am very disappointed that I didn't enjoy it all too much, but hopefully the rest of the series will be a different story!

Happy reading!

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Top Ten Tuesday: Most Vivid Worlds/Settings In Books (16)

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.This week's topic is Most Vivid Worlds/Settings In Books.

1.  The Wizarding World (Harry Potter series - J.K. Rowling) ... As always, do I need to explain? I think anyone who has read these books will comprehend! I still believe my Hogwarts letter hasn't arrived because they used up too many sending them to Harry. Or maybe the owl was intercepted. I dunno, but still. Any Potterhead would understand. :)

2. Panem (The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins) This is probably a pretty obvious choice as well, for good reason. Collins' world is fantastically frightening and vivid.

3. Future Florida (Wither by Lauren DeStefano) I had really no idea what to call it... But anyway, I think Carrie Ryan (The Forests of Hands and Teeth) says it best, "Lauren DeStefano crafts an all too believable future."

4. Tulsa's House of Night (House of Night series by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast) As confusing as these books have gotten, I still can't get over the feeling that the mother-daughter duo creates, making it easy to believe that there are vampires who live among us, going to vampire school. Because honestly, why not?

5. St. Vladimir's Academy (Vampire Academyi by Richelle Mead) This one is pretty much the same as #4. Mead does an incredible job of making it easy to believe that there are Moroi and Dhampirs living among us. To be honest, I wouldn't be complaining it Dimitri really did exist... ;)

6. Gaitlin, South Carolina (Casters Chronicles by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl) I haven't been able to finish the third book in this series yet, but I still remember how I felt while reading the first, Beautiful Creatures and thinking Garcia and Stohl had really captured the essence of a small town and it was very believable.

7. Future Portland, Maine (Delirium by Lauren Oliver) Oliver's world sans love is one that is terribly frightening and sometimes, sadly, all-too believable. It may just be an irrational fear of mine, but sometimes I wonder if our future could parallel the world of Delirium.

8. Futuristic Chicago/ Factions (Divergent by Veronica Roth) This Chicago that is split into five factions is so vividly written and described. It's hard to believe this could be a future for humanity, but Roth writes in a way that makes me think it could be possible.

9. FAYZ, Perdido Beach (Gone by Michael Grant) FAYZ is a world that is almost too believable. After reading Gone, I had the worst feeling that I was going to disappear, POOF!

Annnd that's all I can think of! Of course, there are more worlds that have sucked me in, but for a lot of books  it was more the characters that had me hooked, than the setting. But these nine books each were set in a world that was frighteningly vivid and real. Leave me a link to your TTT in the comments and I'll be sure to check it out - I'd love to find some suggestions for books with captivating suggestions!

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, 23 July 2012

Review: Goddess Interrupted by Aimee Carter

Author: Aimee Carter
Publisher: HarlequinTeen
Page Count: 296 pages, Paperback
Date Published:  March 27th 2012
Find it on Goodreads: Goddess Interrupted
Source: Purchased



Becoming immortal wasn't supposed to be the easy part. Though Kate is about to be crowned Queen of the Underworld, she's as isolated as ever. And despite her growing love for Henry, ruler of the Underworld, he's becoming ever more distant and secretive. Then, in the midst of Kate's coronation, Henry is abducted by the only being powerful enough to kill him: the King of the Titans.

As the other gods prepare for a war that could end them all, it is up to Kate to save Henry from the depths of Tartarus. But in order to navigate the endless caverns of the Underworld, Kate must enlist the help of the one person who is the greatest threat to her future.

Henry's first wife, Persephone.

My Thoughts: Considering I am a huge Greek mythology buff, these books are amazing in my opinion!

I have always found Greek myths fascinating. They explain things in the world and it makes so much sense to me. The story of Hades and Persephone, explaining the change in seasons has always been one of my favorites, so I was immediately drawn towards Carter's series. 

Kate has just returned from a spring/summer vacation in Greece with her friend James, a.k.a. Hermes. She's going back to see her new husband Henry (Hades) and to be crowned Queen of the Underworld. But when she and James enter the Underworld, Kate is automatically drawn into a vision of Henry and his two brothers learning that their 'father' Cronus, King of the Titans, has escaped his prison. Henry pays hardly any attention to Kate as he is preparing for battle with Walter (Zeus) and Phillip (Poseidon) and they are abducted by Cronus and Calliope. Then Kate has to go on a quest to find her husband and save him... But she needs some help from the one person she never thought she would have to face. Persephone. So by this point I was thinking, WOW, so much action! The Goddess Test was a little slow for me and there were many times when I wished the plot would pick up some more. But in this book, it picked up in the second chapter! The book was very fast paced in some instances and in others it lagged on. 

Kate and Henry's relationship was very complicated in this book. Henry completely ignored Kate at times and she was very frustrated! There was a lot of brooding on Kate's part and she thought a lot. Even though everyone tried to tell her that Henry did love her, she didn't/ wouldn't believe them. I did understand that a bit, as he was kind of a jerk to her! It's hard to talk about this book too much without giving it away, so I can't go into too much detail. But let's just say that Kate and Henry had some very heated, angry moments. And I think the author did an incredible job in writing them! I felt Kate's anger and her frustration at Henry, and his confusion and despair, too. He was so in love and obsessed with Persephone and so scared that Kate was going to leave him that he couldn't express to her that he did love her. It was very sad to be honest. 

I'm finding it difficult to write about this book, because honestly there was something about it that made me not love it as much as I had loved the first book, but I don't know what! I loved the book, but I think the angst between Henry and Kate had almost too big of a part in the book. It started off very dramatic and with tons of action, but then it died down and well.. was a bit blah. But then it left off on a HUGE cliffhanger and I am now dying for the next book!!! I apologize for this kind of confusing review... I just don't know how to describe my feelings on this book. I loved The Goddess Test but with this book, I didn't feel a lot for it. I don't know, I'm gonna stop now because I'm rambling and pretty much repeating myself over and over. I'm super excited for the next book, though because Carter left on a huge cliffhanger!

Happy reading!

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Stacking the Shelves (10)

Stacking the Shelves is a book haul meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews -This is a great way for us to share what books we added to our shelves each week!

For Review:

Thanks to Edwin Wolfe and Shari A. Brady!!!



 Those are my new books! I'm super thrilled I finally got Goddess Interrupted! Plus I'm so stoked about Gilt, and the others, too! Let me know what you got this week in the comments below- Leave me a link to your haul!

Have a good day/night!

Friday, 20 July 2012

Authors Are Rockstars Tour!

Authors Are Rockstars Tour

 Hey all! Just wanted to inform you that I will be participating in the 'Authors Are Rockstars Tour' hosted by Fiktshun and Two Chicks On Books! My stop will be on August 30th and A Little Shelf of Heaven will be hosting the fantastic and totally inspiring (at least to me!) Katherine Longshore, author of the new historical fiction, Gilt. So anyways, I'm really excited about that! Let me know if you're participating in the tour and who you're hosting!

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Review: Tiger's Curse by Colleen Houck

Author: Colleen Houck
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Page Count: 512 pages, Paperback
Date Published:  May 1st 2011 (first published January 11th 2011)
Find it on Goodreads: Tiger's Curse
Source: Purchased

Tiger's Curse (The Tiger Saga, #1) Passion. Fate. Loyalty.

Would you risk it all to change your destiny?

The last thing Kelsey Hayes thought she’d be doing this summer was trying to break a 300-year-old Indian curse. With a mysterious white tiger named Ren. Halfway around the world. But that’s exactly what happened. Face-to-face with dark forces, spellbinding magic, and mystical worlds where nothing is what it seems, Kelsey risks everything to piece together an ancient prophecy that could break the curse forever.

Tiger’s Curse is the exciting first volume in an epic fantasy-romance that will leave you breathless and yearning for more.

My Thoughts: Tiger's Curse was hard to get through at times, but has a lot of potential to be amazing.

I had very high expectations for this book. Not gonna lie. I had heard nothing but raving reviews on it and thus expected it to be a fantastic, irresistible book. And yes, it had a lot going for it. But there was something about it that made me have to put it down and wait a day to read it, even though I was almost done. I'm a bit ambivalent about the book, because on one hand, I loved the story and plot, and all that it had going good for it. But on the other, I couldn't stand the protagonist, Kelsey. I found her to be too sarcastic, which is tough, because I'm a pretty sarcastic person, at times facetious, and just plain annoying. I actually did like her at first, but after about 150-200 pages, I couldn't take it any longer. She was really likeable at first, very intelligent and curious about everything. But then at one point she went from totally leading Ren on, to completely shutting him down! WHAT!? I so didn't get it. YOU LIKE HIM. You've even admitted to it! And so, why Kelsey, are you insisting on ignoring him and being extremely rude? I know us girls have very confusing mind sets, but what I didn't get is that she insisted on not being with Ren so that she wouldn't hurt him, except for the fact that she was hurting him in the process of ignoring him and shutting him down! I was so, completely bewildered at that point. I felt so terrible for Ren, didn't like Kelsey, and my head was pounding.

The thing I did like about this book was the fact that the plot and story was fantastic. It's unfathomable to me, how Ms. Houck came up with so much detail and information to create such a wonderful adventure. She did that amazingly, adding so much element. There was plenty of Hindi myth and culture, as well as her own imagination added in there to make this book very unique. If anything, it was the story that kept me reading, simply to see what would happen. I hate to be rude, but I couldn't care less about what happened to Kelsey. I just wanted to know Ren would be okay, as well as Mr. Kadam. They were really the only two characters I cared about, but that was enough. I liked Ren, I thought he was really cool. There was a very confident vibe about him, but he wasn't cocky, (all the time). I do understand some of Kelsey's intentions with cutting off their relationship, but I think she could have done it in a better fashion. Then there was Mr. Kadam, the "boss", you could say. He was a really great parental figure in the book, so sweet and grand-fatherly. Then there was Kishan, Ren's brother. Kishan was... interesting. He was very charming, and though I could like him, I sensed he wasn't all that great. I wish Houck had set in the love triangle a little bit clearer, because I was really confused at one point. I don't want Kelsey to be with Ren, just because I don't particularly like her, but I don't want her to be with Kishan, either. Conflict...

In the end, I think that if this book had gone through a lot more editing, it would have been an incredible story. But for now, it was just ok. I felt the writing could have used more emotion, and perhaps then I would have enjoyed the protagonist, Kelsey, more. I just didn't enjoy her dialogue, because I could never figure out what she was trying to say, in the sense of tone of voice. Was she being sarcastic? Literal? Who knows! The writing just seemed awkward to me. There were many times where I almost quit reading, but I hate not finishing a book. I did love the idea of the story, and I will be reading the next book, but I am not currently dying to read it. If I come across it, I'll probably pick it up, but I'm not going to go hunt it down, right now.

Happy reading!

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Review: A Midsummer's Nightmare by Kody Keplinger

Author: Kody Keplinger
Publisher: Poppy
Page Count: 304 pages, Hardcover
Date Published: June 5th 2012
Find it on Goodreads: A Midsummer's Nightmare
Source: Purchased

Whitley Johnson's dream summer with her divorcé dad has turned into a nightmare. She's just met his new fiancée and her kids. The fiancée's son? Whitley's one-night stand from graduation night. Just freakin' great.

Worse, she totally doesn't fit in with her dad's perfect new country-club family. So Whitley acts out. She parties. Hard. So hard she doesn't even notice the good things right under her nose: a sweet little future stepsister who is just about the only person she's ever liked, a best friend (even though Whitley swears she doesn't "do" friends), and a smoking-hot guy who isn't her stepbrother...at least, not yet. It will take all three of them to help Whitley get through her anger and begin to put the pieces of her family together.

Filled with authenticity and raw emotion, Whitley is Kody Keplinger's most compelling character to date: a cynical Holden Caulfield-esque girl you will wholly care about.

My Thoughts: Funny and cute, with the classic Keplinger style... What's not to love!?

I adore Kody Keplinger's books. They're hilarious, with tons of sass and style to them. They are also very relatable and have great morals to them. Her latest novel, A Midsummer's Nightmare was probably one with the most cringe-worthy, hilarious plots yet. Can you imagine, going to your dad's for the summer, only to find out that he is engaged to a woman who has two kids. One of which, is the guy that you hooked up with on graduation night and promised to never see again. Hello awkward!

I didn't like Whitley all too much to be honest, but I got past the things I didn't like about her character and really enjoyed the story. I just found her attitude to be irritating. I understand that she was upset and lonely, but I believe she could have handled herself differently. The partying and the drinking was not going to help and that's all I wanted Whitley to see.There were many times where I almost had to put the book down because she was being so frustrating! But then when she starts to realize how great of a new family she has, she got a bit better. I loved Nathan, though! He seemed like a guy that any girl would die to have. And, I mean, Whitley knows that. But anyways, Nathan was charming and funny, while also being a huge nerd and a very protective brother. Speaking of, I also really liked his little sister, Bailey. She was just about to start high school, super excited and eager to please. All she wanted was to fit in, and with Whitley as a role model, well... You can see that things may have taken a turn for the worse. But after one incident, Bailey kept to being herself and she seemed like a really cool person. Then there's HARRISON! Agh I loved him! The best friends are always my favorites, and for good reason. Harrison had the biggest crush on Nathan, so while Whitley was trying to flirt with him, he was looking at her once-hookup-future-step-brother. Hehe, oh Ms. Keplinger, the situations you put your characters in crack me up sometimes. Harrison seemed like he was the perfect best friend to have during the summer of your nightmares. I want one. (A Harrison, not a nightmarish summer. :P)

There was tons of humor in this book, and that helped balance out a great, strong message of always trying to see the better in a situation. Also, that too much partying is not a good idea. There were a few instances where the book took on some pretty serious subjects, like rape and cyber-bullying, and that kept the story from being just a fluffy contemporary, to a great book with lots to it. Though it isn't my favorite Keplinger book, (THE DUFF will always be), it most definitely was amazing, in my opinion. It was the first one that I couldn't find much of a double standard, other than Nathan criticizing Whitley's partying and drinking when he was like that too, before. But I could forgive that, after we get an actual explanation for it. Sure, Whitley annoyed me, but for the most part I really liked all of the characters in this book. Except for her dad! He kind of sucked. But he also kind of admitted to that, so that was cool. Whitley and her father just needed to talk more and not treat each other like best friends. This was a great novel filled with family, and a cute romance that gave me book-butterflies. The moral that I got from it had a lot to do with self-worth and that living your life to the fullest, without the use of substances, was the most important thing. Which is great. I loved A Midsummer's Nightmare and I think that any fan of Keplinger's would, too. If you haven't read any of her books, I'd really suggest you do. She's got a fantastic style that will have you laughing until you cry, plus puts a lot of message into her novels that are important lessons for teenagers, and even just people. I am so looking forward to her next book!

Happy reading!

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Top Ten Books For People Who Liked Shatter Me (15)

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.This week's topic is another "if you liked" list, so my topic is: My Top Ten Books For People Who Liked Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi! Surprise, surprise! Again, these are in no particular order!

1. Storm by Brigid Kemmerer - This book is filled with tons of action and a romance, that in the end, you just hate to love.

2. Wither by Lauren DeStefano - This is one of my favorite dystopian novels I've read. It is filled with a realistic, very seemingly possible future.

3. Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins - I LOVE this book! I think any fan of Shatter Me would enjoy it because there's a lot of drama and action, as well as very romantic scenes that make me swoon!

4.  Divergent by Veronica Roth - Well, yeah. I mean, if you're a fan of any dystopian, you'll probably love this book. *probably!*

5. Matched by Ally Condie - Another dystopian, Matched has quite the different world than Shatter Me, but it's really good at the same time!

6. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead - Though it's not a dystopian novel, it is similar to Shatter Me in the fact that both Juliette and Rose are very strong female characters, with a very vulnerable side to them as well. Plus, anyone who doesn't love either Dimitri or Adrian, is a bit nuts.

7. Delirium by Lauren Oliver - Filled with sweet romance, Alex and Lena's secret relationship reminded me a bit of Adam and Juliette's.

8. Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris - This book is filled with action and suspense, just like Shatter Me. I loved it almost as much as I loved Tahereh Mafi's book!

9.Across the Universe by Beth Revis - Sci-fi adventure novel that is too amazing for words. Elder and Amy's relationship is super sweet and they're so likeable.

10. The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting - The Body Finder series has that great suspense aspect to it and tons of sweet romance that we find in Shatter Me!

That is my top ten of the week! Leave me a link in the comments below and I'll check out your list! I'd love to see some recommendations!

Happy reading!

Review: Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles

Author: Simone Elkeles
Publisher: Walker Books for Young Readers
Page Count: 308 pages, Hardcover
Date Published: August 16th 2011
Find it on Goodreads: Chain Reaction
Source: Purchased

Like his brothers, Luis Fuentes is a risk taker; whether he's scaling the Rocky Mountains or dreaming of a future as an astronaut, Luis is always looking for the next thrill. Nikki Cruz lives her life by certain rules -, don't trust a boy who says "I love you", boys lie to get their own way and never date a boy from the south side of Fairfield. Then she meets Luis at his brother Alex's wedding and suddenly she's tempted to break all her rules. Getting Nikki to give him a chance is Luis's biggest challenge, until he finds himself targeted by the head of the gang that nearly destroyed his brothers' lives. Will Luis's feelings for Nikki be enough to stop him from entering a dark and violent world that could prove to be the ultimate risk?

My thoughts: These Fuentes brothers are probably the hottest trio of brothers in the entire book-verse! 

It's no secret that I love the Perfect Chemistry books. They're full of everything a girl can ask for in a book! Action, drama, romance, humor. Everything about them tells me that it's going to be an amazing contemporary. The gang activity and violence is incredibly convincing and at times it gets to the point where you wonder  if all of this really happens. Because it feels so realistic. Then there's the romance. The relationships the Fuentes brothers have are amazingly cliche at times, and yet not annoying at all. There's tons of drama involved and lots of hilarious things that happen as well.

Rules of Attraction features Luis, the youngest Fuentes. He's a huge dare devil who loves danger and adventure. Then there's Nikki who has gone through a huge load of heartbreak in the past and has said a big fat no to boys. But obviously when their paths collide, that 'no' changes. I didn't enjoy this book as much as I had the first two, but trust me, I did like it. A lot. I just enjoyed the other two more. I think it was the characters. I liked Luis, but I felt he was too reckless and never thought rationally. There were a lot of incredible revelations in this book about their family, but Luis acted so rashly on the new information and it kind of made me mad at him. He should have just stopped and thought about what he was doing for a second, instead of turning his back on his family like he did. Then there's Nikki. In the very first few chapters we find out something about Nikki that is a bit shocking. When all of that is over and a few years pass, she suddenly changes from a sweet, innocent girl who is trusting and loving to someone who thinks all guys are going to play her and hurt her. She's way too overly cautious around males and that irritated me a bit. Yes, she got hurt badly, but after a few years, she really has got to loosen up a bit!

I did like their relationship though. Luis helped Nikki be a bit more trusting and Nikki taught Luis to not be so risky with his life. There were a few very hot moments between them that will remind you of why Simone Elkeles is so talented in romance novels. Plus, there was all of the gang activity and drama. It was kind of freaky! There was a lot more openness about the drug dealing and we get to read about that a bit. Plus, there were gun fights and initiation and all that great stuff we dealt with in the first two books! But it was also all new because of this new twist. We do get to see more of Alex, Brittany, Carlos and Kiara which is nice. Brittany and Alex end up getting married, of course, and they have a few kids, so it was really nice reading about that in this book, as well as Carlos coming back from the military and moving his relationship with Kiara forward. Nikki fit right in with the two girls, because even though her parents were from Mexico, she was as rich and polar opposite of Luis as the two girls before her with the other brothers. Even though these books have a pattern and you pretty much always know what's going to happen, there's something about them that is so addicting. There are always tons of twists and turns to keep you guessing and I think any contemporary fans will adore these. Plus, to any one who enjoys books with a ton of action, as well as romance, these books would be perfect for you!

Happy reading!

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