Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: The Essence by Kimberly Derting

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly Meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine. It is an opportunity for us to show books we can't wait to get our hands on.

This week, my pick is:

The Essence by Kimberly Derting
The Pledge #2
January 2013
Margaret K. McElderry
Poor child. Poor, wretched child. You have no idea what you’re up against. No idea how to stop me, do you?

Though it has been months since Charlaina—Charlie—defeated the tyrant Sabara and took control of the Ludanian crown, Sabara has not disappeared. The old queen’s Essence has fused itself to Charlie’s psyche and is viciously fighting to overpower Charlie.

Balancing her new duties as Queen and battling both Sabara’s voice and a growing resistance to her rule push Charlie to the brink of exhaustion. She wants to be the same old Charlie she has ever been but now she is Your Majesty.

As Charlie journeys to an annual summit to meet with the leaders of nearby Queendoms—an event where her ability to understand all languages is the utmost asset—she is faced with the ultimate betrayal. And the only person she can turn to for help is the evil soul residing within.

I had absolutley loved The Pledge, so of course I can't wait for the sequel. I just think it's a really great world, and I can't wait to find out what will happen next!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Review: Spark by Brigid Kemmerer

Spark by Brigid Kemmerer
Elemental #2
Release Date: August 28th, 2012
Number of Pages: 432
Publisher: K-Teen
Source: NetGalley
Gabriel Merrick plays with fire. Literally. Sometimes he can even control it. And sometimes he can’t. Like the fire that killed his parents. Gabriel has always had his brothers to rely on, especially his twin, Nick. But when an arsonist starts wreaking havoc on their town, all the signs point to Gabriel. Only he’s not doing it. More than Gabriel’s pride is at stake -- this could cost him his family, maybe his life. And no one seems to hear him. Except a shy sophomore named Layne, a brainiac who dresses in turtlenecks and jeans and keeps him totally off balance. Layne understands family problems, and she understands secrets. She has a few of her own. Gabriel can’t let her guess about his brothers, about his abilities, about the danger that’s right at his heels. But there are some risks he can’t help taking. The fuse is lit…
Let me start by saying I was a little scare to start this book. After all, I absolutely LOVED Storm, was charmed by the Merricks, but mostly by Chris. Now in Spark, we are following Gabriel, who wasn’t really a character I was that interested in first. Still, once I started this book, I just couldn’t put it down. Gabriel’s story is simply as addicting as Chris’ was.

In Spark, we are following mostly Gabriel, but also Layne, who was of course a love interest for our fire boy. If you thought Becca and Chris’ story was full of drama, be prepare for a lot more in this sequel. Arsonist, fire, family drama, school drama, and of course, criminal drama. There’s a little of everything, since Gabriel is the bad boy of the family. This makes the book addicting and fast-paced, since there is a lot waiting to happen. In the book though, we get to see that Gabriel is more than the bad boy he appears to be. Things go deeper than simply wanting to do bad things. You get to see his good side, his more vulnerable side. One of the main reasons we get to see that is Layne, the nerdy girl who ends up piercing Gabriel’s shield. Layne, the girl whose life was forever changed by a fire that destroyed her home when she was a child.

Brigid Kemmerer knows pretty well how to captivate her audience, something we also saw in Storm. She created four amazing guys, four brothers so different yet so alike. She knows how to make readers fall for her characters; she knows how to makes us want more and more.  She knows how to make the emotions her characters are living come through the pages, making us feel what they are feeling. You simply can’t stop reading.

Yet, the one thing I was scared of when I first started this book happened. There simply wasn’t enough Chris and Becca. I mean, you make me fall for this water boy, and you leave me with only a few scenes with him. So cruel. That’s the only thing I was a little sad about. Other than that, I simply loved this book!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Review: Speechless by Hannah Harrington

Speechless by Hannah Harrington
Release Date: August 28th, 2012
Number of Pages: 288
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: NetGalley 
Everyone knows that Chelsea Knot can't keep a secret Until now. Because the last secret she shared turned her into a social outcast—and nearly got someone killed. Now Chelsea has taken a vow of silence—to learn to keep her mouth shut, and to stop hurting anyone else. And if she thinks keeping secrets is hard, not speaking up when she's ignored, ridiculed and even attacked is worse.
But there's strength in silence, and in the new friends who are, shockingly, coming her way—people she never noticed before; a boy she might even fall for. If only her new friends can forgive what she's done. If only she can forgive herself. 
I had fallen in love with Hannah Harrington’s writing in Saving June, probably one of my favorite book last year. Of course, when I heard she had another book coming out this year, I was dying with anticipation. Maybe all that anticipation affected my view of book, maybe I was expecting this new book to be even better than Saving June, but I wasn’t left Speechless by her new book (yes, it was easy. I’m not sorry.) This doesn’t mean I didn’t love the book. There was simply a little something missing, for this book to be really unforgettable.

One thing for sure with Hannah Harrington, she seems to know how to write that you simply can’t put down. I read it in a matter of hours, simply because her characters really get you into the story. You need to know how everything will end for the characters you love, or even those you love to hate. My biggest problem with the book was that I felt like an action that Chelsea seems to be all about the consequences of her words, and how what she said affected people around her. Yet, I found that her vow of silence was a little more selfish than that. I felt like her reaction was brought by how her ex-best friend and all her old gang start treating her after she told the police the truth. That’s probably the one thing that bugged me in the book. Doesn’t mean I didn’t like Chelsea as a main character. I actually loved her, and loved the interaction she has with Sam and Asha.  I really was glad to see Chelsea grow and learn from her mistake, and mature from all she went through. That was part of the good stuff about the book.

Once again, Hannah Harrington’s writing doesn’t fail to impress. This book may not have been as amazing as her debut, but it is still a hell of a book. To me, the one thing that slightly irked me was the feeling I got like I was supposed to see Chelsea’s vow as selfless. Maybe I’m the only one who saw it that way, but I still got that little voice in my head, even days after I’m done, telling me I missed something in the book, because I shouldn’t feel like she was selfish. Yet, I do, and I’ll probably still do in a couple of days. Am I still making sense?

Overall, Speechless was worth reading. If you still haven’t read her debut, you should also check it out, because Hannah Harrington is simply an amazing writer. 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Review: Confessions of an Angry Girl by Louise Rozett

Confession of an Angry Girl by Louise Rozette
Confessions #1
Release Date: August 28th, 2012
Number of Pages: 272
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: NetGalley
Rose Zarelli, self-proclaimed word geek and angry girl, has some confessions to make1. I'm livid all the time. Why? My dad died. My mom barely talks. My brother abandoned us. I think I'm allowed to be irate, don't you? 
 2. I make people furious regularly. Want an example? I kissed Jamie Forta, a badass guy who might be dating a cheerleader. She is now enraged and out for blood. Mine. 
 3. High school might as well be Mars. My best friend has been replaced by an alien, and I see red all the time. (Mars is red and "seeing red" means being angry—get it?)  
Here are some other vocab words that describe my life: Inadequate. Insufferable. Intolerable.  
(Don't know what they mean? Look them up yourself.)  
(Sorry. That was rude.) 
Confessions of an Angry Girl wasn’t the kind of book I thought I would read in one sitting. Yet, once I had started this book, I simply couldn’t put it down. There is something about the story, about Rose that left me wanting more. Maybe it’s because I know to a certain extend what’s rose is going through, maybe it is simply because you cannot not like Rose. All I know it that I’m already dying for the sequel to come out; to know what will happen next to rose.

Louise Rozett created characters that you could easily feel their emotions, here mainly Rose. It was easily to feel what she was feeling, easy to understand (at least to me) why she was feeling the way she was. What really blew my mind with this book was how well I could recognize all those feelings that come with losing a parent, how real they felt. That’s probably one of the reason why I really liked Rose the way I did, why I couldn’t put down this book. To me, it’s probably one of the books that portrayed the grieving process the most similar to the way I had grieved (not with the Jamie back story and everything, but mostly in all her feeling regarding the world and her family).

I’m seriously having trouble putting words on what I’m feeling, so soon after having read that book. Louise Rozett did an amazingly awesome job at creating this story. Her writing was simply perfect for the story, leaving me only begging for more. I’m already counting the days until Confessions of an Almost-Girlfriend comes out, because this book was that amazing. A book I would certainly recommend to any contemporary lover, or anyone looking for a breathtaking and captivating novel. Personally, this book took my breath away, because it really spoke to me, and it simply rang true to me.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: Mila 2.0 by Debra Driza

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly Meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine. It is an opportunity for us to show books we can't wait to get our hands on.

This week, my pick is:

Mila 2.0 by Debra Driza
March 2013
Katherine Tegen Books

Pitched as a "Bourne Identity"-type sci-fi thriller about a teenage girl who discovers that she is a Mobile Intel Life-like Android, an experiment in artificial intelligence created by the U.S. government, and her scientist mother, who kidnapped her when she was found to have human emotions.

It's not much to go on, but who could resist this! It simply sounds like the kind of book you can't put down once you start it. Can't wait to read it!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Review: Send by Patty Blount

Send by Patty Blount
Release Date: August 1st, 2012
Number of Pages: 291
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Source: NetGalley
To keep his secrets, all he has to do is listen to the voice in his head and just walk away...
 On his first day at his new high school, Dan stops a bully from beating up a kid half his size. He didn't want to get involved. All he wants out of his senior year is to fly under the radar. But Dan knows what it's like to be terrorized by a bully-he used to be one. Now the whole school thinks he's some kind of hero, except Julie Murphy, the prettiest girl on campus. She looks at him like she knows he has a secret. Like she knows his name isn't really Daniel.
Send was one of those books I didn’t really know much about before starting it. I had seen it on NetGalley, and found it to sound interesting. Yet, by the time I was approved, I had completely forgotten about it. Still, if there is one thing I can say for sure, it’s that I’m really happy I requested it, because it was really worth reading. It was a breathtaking story that will remind many of the impact one mistakes can have on one’s future and entourage.

If there’s one thing for sure, it’s that Patty Blount really knows how to portray the human complexity. I was amazed that she could show so easily that the world is far from being black and white. She proves through Dan, and also through Julie in some way, that people can’t be define by one mistake. Dan did one stupid thing; one thing that will be on is conscience forever. His mistake pushed one young teenager to far. It gave him the last push to kill himself. Our first reaction when we hear about a teen killing himself is to look for someone to blame. Here, Dan was the one everyone decided to blame, because he took one picture, and decided to send it to everyone. One small mistake he will regret all his life. One mistake that will mark him in the eyes of many as a murderer.

I absolutely loved the growing relationship between Julie and Dan. I love seeing them learn to know each other, learn to trust someone else. I also love to see Dan deal with his past, with Kenny still present in his mind. It shows how you can’t run from your past; you can’t run from his mistakes.

Overall, I have to say that I really loved this book. It was an amazing and captivating tale of a teenager learning to live with his mistake, learning from them. This is a book I would definitely recommend to fan of this kind of gripping contemporary novel. This is a book that will definitely stay on your mind after you put it down.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Review: A Tale Dark & Grimm by Adam Gidwitz

A Tale Dark & Grimm by Adam Gidwitz
A Tale Dark & Grimm #1
Release Date: October 28th, 2010
Number of Pages: 252
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Source: Bought
In this mischievous and utterly original debut, Hansel and Gretel walk out of their own story and into eight other classic Grimm-inspired tales. As readers follow the siblings through a forest brimming with menacing foes, they learn the true story behind (and beyond) the bread crumbs, edible houses, and outwitted witches. Fairy tales have never been more irreverent or subversive as Hansel and Gretel learn to take charge of their destinies and become the clever architects of their own happily ever after. 
Okay, I have to be honest, I didn’t really know much about A Tale Dark & Grimm. I had picked a copy of its sequel (or companion novel, I’m not that sure) at BEA without knowing much about it, except it was about Grimm’s Tales. If there’s one thing that is true about me, it’s that I love the original (I have a bilingual version of the German version of the tales, with the English translation included.) This made me pretty excited to read this version of the tales.

The thing is, there were a little thing that really annoyed me in the book, which made it really hard for me to get into the story: The narrator’s addition to the story. The thing is I found it to make me unable to really get into the story. Every time the narrator stopped the story of Hansel and Gretel, I had trouble getting back into it, which made it harder for me to really enjoy the book.

The story itself was a great, but I would have preferred to have it on its own, without the interruption of the annoying narrator. I feel like I didn’t get as much as I wanted from the book, remembering mostly how annoyed I was by the interruption every few pages, instead of remembering Hansel and Gretel. I lost everything to that small element, and I personally couldn’t get over it, which is really sad. Because, I feel like if I reread it without stopping for his comments, I would really enjoy it. I’m actually tempted to do that for book two, because I still want to read it. And I’m not sure if knowing about that narrator will make it easier for me to get into the story, or if I should simply just ignore it and be safe.

Overall, it was far from love. I still know that many have loved it, and I think if you don’t mind the interruption (or if you can easily ignore it), you will enjoy it. Maybe in the future, I’ll be able to enjoy it if I reread it. Still, something I would recommend you check out if you enjoy this kind of books. Some will like it, others won’t. 

Bout-of-books 5.0: Wrap-up

Bout of Books Read-a-Thon
The Bout of Books read-a-thon is over, and I have to say I'm quite happy with the result. Here it is:

-Read at least one book every day. (Check! 8 books read!)
-Read at least 2 ARCs from BEA. (
-Read at least 1 eARC form NetGalley
-Listen to at least one audiobook

Here is the list of books I've read:

After Hello by Lisa Mangum (BEA)
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (BEA)
Who I Kissed by Janet Gurtler
A Tale Dark & Grimm by Adam Gidwitz
The Edge of Nowhere by Elizabeth George
Send by Patty Blount (NetGalley)
Gilt by Katherine Longshore (Audiobook)
Henry Frank by Peter Adam Salomon (BEA)

Considering I have been working pretty much all week (My only day off was Saturday...) , I'm really happy with the result. I read 7 books, and I listened to one audiobook. This means I've met all my goals. Yay! The only thing I wish I had done was write more reviews, but I guess I'll have to do a review-a-thon at some point before the back to school.

About Bout of Books 

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal.  It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 13th and runs through Sunday, August 19th in whatever time zone you are in.  Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week.  There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional.  For all Bout of Books 5.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. -From the Bout of Books 5.0 team

How did you guy do this time? Link your own Wrap-up post!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Review: Every Day by David Levithan

Every Day by David Levithan
Release Date: August 28th, 2012
Number of Pages: 336
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Source: ARC from BEA
Every day a different body. Every day a different life. Every day in love with the same girl.
 Every morning, A wakes in a different person’s body, a different person’s life. There’s never any warning about where it will be or who it will be. A has made peace with that, even established guidelines by which to live: Never get too attached. Avoid being noticed. Do not interfere.It’s all fine until the morning that A wakes up in the body of Justin and meets Justin’s girlfriend, Rhiannon. From that moment, the rules by which A has been living no longer apply. Because finally A has found someone he wants to be with—day in, day out, day after day. With his new novel, David Levithan has pushed himself to new creative heights. He has written a captivating story that will fascinate readers as they begin to comprehend the complexities of life and love in A’s world, as A and Rhiannon seek to discover if you can truly love someone who is destined to change every day. 
What would you do if you woke up in a different body every day?

What would you do if you fell in love with someone, but was never able to be with her completely?

David Levithan really blew my mind with his new book. At first, the summary slightly reminded me of me of Mercy by Rebecca Lim, but I couldn’t be more wrong. We are gifted with a heart-breaking story. There is simply something unbelievably breath taking about the struggles A is facing, simply to be with the girl he fell in love with. It is really hard for me to find the right words to describe how I felt about this book, simply because I feel like it made me go through so much.

A is taken into so many different lives. We get to see glimpse of different kinds of personality, different kinds of life. After all, A wakes up in a different body every day, and the only things those people have in common is that they are the same age as him.

It is hard to not feel a little sad for A. He has no home. Before meeting Rhiannon, he had no kind of relationship with anyone. He has no parents, no friends, and no lovers for more than 24 hours. He has to live everything: depression, heartbreak, pain, and addiction… Of course, I can’t stop myself from loving the ending, simply because it is the most amazing and logical ending this book could have. I have to say, I didn’t think Levithan would end the novel that way, but after reading it, I can’t imagine a different ending.

I have to say, David Levithan is a master of words and emotions. There is something so beautiful about this book, something that will make you want to read more.  I have to stop here before I stop rambling. All I can add is that this book is worth every minute I spent reading it, as it completely sucked me in from the beginning. It was simply beautiful.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Review: Embrace by Jessica Shirvington

Embrace by Jessica Shirvington
The Violet Eden Chapters #1
Release Date: March 6th, 2012
Number of Pages: 369
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Source: Bought
It starts with a whisper: "It's time for you to know who you are..." On her 17th birthday, everything will change for Violet Eden. The boy she loves will betray her. Her enemy will save her. She will have to decide just how much she's willing to sacrifice.
 Dangerously exciting and darkly romantic, EMBRACE is a compelling novel of good and evil, seductive desires and impossible choices. A centuries old war between fallen angels and the protectors of humanity chooses a new fighter. It's a battle Violet doesn't want, but she lives her life by two rules: don't run and don't quit. If angels seek vengeance and humans are the warriors, you could do a lot worse than betting on Violet Eden.
 LINCOLN: He's been Violet's one anchor, her running partner and kickboxing trainer. Only he never told her he's Grigori--part human, part angel--and that he was training her for an ancient battle between Angels and Exiles.
 PHOENIX: No one knows where his loyalties lie, yet he's the only one there to pick up the pieces and protect her after Lincoln's lies. In a world of dark and light, he is all shades of gray.
 Two sides: Angel or Exile.Two guys: Lincoln or Phoenix.The wrong choice could cost not only her life, but her eternity...

Embrace had been on my To-Be-Read list for a while now, but I never got around to read it. When I got my hands on an ARC of Entice, I knew I had to get it and read it as soon as I can. That was probably one of my good ideas. I may not have that many theses days, but I can clearly say I didn’t regret picking this book.

I have to say, it wasn’t love at first sight with this book. There’s a love triangle, and this one slightly annoys me because one of the love interest really get on my nerves. Phoenix, the one character in this book I really, really wanted to kick ass. And because I didn’t like him, the love triangle got on my nerves. Because of Phoenix, Violet got on my nerves. I don’t know how many times I got mad at Violet, at all the stupid choices she made. I just wanted her to be stronger, to be willing to give Lincoln a chance at forgiveness, but instead she decided she should trust the strange angel she just met. Yep, she prefers the mysterious stranger instead of the guy she had known (and had a crush on) for a while. I just wanted her to give him a better chance at explaining himself, before being pushed completely aside…

The thing that made me really happy to have read the book is that despite all I’ve said above, the more I read, the more I wanted to know what would happen to Violet, and of course who she really was. The more I read, the more I understood why Violet acted the way she did, and because of that, I could in a way forgive her. Embrace simply build the roots of a story I think will only be getting better. This was the kind of book that really made me want to go and pick up the sequel right away, because I had so many things I wanted to know. I had so many questions that I do think will be answered in the next books, which only make me want to pick it up even more!

Overall, I was charmed by the overall story. I wasn’t blown away, since I wanted to whack some sense into some characters for most of the book. Yet, the world Jessica Shirvington created really makes me want to know more.

About the Author
Jessica Shirvington lives in Sydney with her husband of ten years, FOXTEL presenter and former Olympic sprinter Matt Shirvington, and their two daughters. She has previously founded and run a coffee distribution company, Stella Imports, in London, and been involved in managing the restaurants Fuel Bistro, Tow Bar and MG Garage in Sydney.
She is currently a full-time mum, author and co-director in the company MPS Investments Pty Ltd.
To Find Out More

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Bout of Books 5.0: My Goals

Bout of Books Read-a-Thon

I've once again decided to participate in Bout of Books Read-a-thon. I won't be as productive as I was last time, since I'm working all week, but I'm still gonna try to read at least one book every day. I don't know if I'll succeed, but here is my Goals list:

-Read at least one book every day.
-Read at least 2 ARCs from BEA.
-Read at least 1 eARC form NetGalley
-Listen to at least one audiobook

Here is my list of potential books:

Send by Patty Blount (NetGalley)
The Stone Girl by Alyssa Sheinmel (NetGalley)
Spark by Brigid Kemmerer (NetGalley)
Tempest by Julie Cross (Audiobook)
Dark Kiss by Michelle Rowen (Audiobook)
Gilt by Katherine Longshore (Audiobook)
A Tale Dark & Grimm by Adam Gidwitz
The Edge of Nowhere by Elizabeth George
Who I Kissed by Janet Gurtler
Henry Frank by Peter Adam Salomon (BEA)
Entice by Jessica Shirvington (BEA)
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (BEA)
After Hello by Lisa Mangum (BEA)
In A Glass Grimmly by Adam Gidwitz (BEA)

What I'm reading depends of my mood, so that's why I have that many books on my list. I don't plan on reading everything, but at least, I have choices. Most of my updates will be made

About Bout of Books 

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal.  It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 13th and runs through Sunday, August 19th in whatever time zone you are in.  Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week.  There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional.  For all Bout of Books 5.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. -From the Bout of Books 5.0 team

Are you guys participating? If so, do link your own Goals!

Review: Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake

Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake
Anna #2
Release Date: August 7th, 2012
Number of Pages: 336
Publisher: Tor Teen
Source: eARC from publisher
It's been months since the ghost of Anna Korlov opened a door to Hell in her basement and disappeared into it, but ghost-hunter Cas Lowood can't move on.

His friends remind him that Anna sacrificed herself so that Cas could live—not walk around half dead. He knows they're right, but in Cas's eyes, no living girl he meets can compare to the dead girl he fell in love with.
Now he's seeing Anna everywhere: sometimes when he's asleep and sometimes in waking nightmares. But something is very wrong...these aren't just daydreams. Anna seems tortured, torn apart in new and ever more gruesome ways every time she appears. 
Cas doesn't know what happened to Anna when she disappeared into Hell, but he knows she doesn't deserve whatever is happening to her now. Anna saved Cas more than once, and it's time for him to return the favor.
I had read Anna Dressed in Blood when it first came out last year. It was one of those books I had enjoyed, but hadn’t been completely in love with, despite its incredibly interesting plot. In Girl of Nightmares, we are taken back to Cas, who still hasn’t moved on after Anna’s sacrifice. Worse, she haunts him; convincing him he needed to bring her back out of hell.  When I read the summary, I was curious to see where it would go, and especially how it would end. Would it be completely predictable? Would it be believable? Would the plot make sense? One of the things I really loved about Girl of Nightmares is that the story line flows easily, making it possible for you to simply get captivated by Cas quest to save Anna.

Now, when it comes down to the characters, I was really hoping to see some changes in them. After all, they went through some pretty extreme things in Anna Dressed in Blood. I was actually terrified that we wouldn’t see a difference, an evolution after six months. Fortunately, they did change, especially Carmel who is kind of new to all of this. It made it so much more believable, as I don’t think someone could go through all of that without seeing things a little differently. Of course, we can’t forget about Cas, who is going through some really crazy stuff to save the ghost he loves. He is ready to risk his life for her. Yet, even though his life is in danger, he still can take the time to be funny, something I love about his character. Cas had some really good line that made me laugh. Thomas charmed me again, with his determination to do about everything in his power to help Cas, even if he knows it may not be the safest idea. He is simply an amazing friend.

Once again, Kendare Blake charmed me with her character et her unique ghost story. She gives you enough twits to keep you hooked, amazing characters to make you beg for more. I can’t wait to read more form her, doesn’t matter if it’s from Cas world or not. She simply knows how to charm me!


About the Author:

KENDARE BLAKE holds an MA in Creative Writing from Middlesex University in northern London. She lives and writes in Lynnwood, Washington.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Review: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
Throne of Glass #1
Release Date: August 7th, 2012
Number of Pages: 416
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Source: ARC from BEA
After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.
 Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king's council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she'll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom.
 Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she's bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her... but it's the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.
 Then one of the other contestants turns up dead... quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.
If there’s one thing I can say for sure about Throne of Glass, it’s that I freaking LOVED it. It didn’t take me long to get captivated by the world Sarah J. Maas created. This book has everything I would ever want in a fantasy novel. Amazing story telling? Check. Great characters? Check. Captivating plot? Check again! It was quite hard for me not to get caught in the story from page one. The world Sarah J. Maas created was really well presented to the reader, making it really easy for me to imagine the world the story was set in, without slowing the story down.

Now, when it comes down to the characters, I have to say I was extremely pleased with what I got. Celaena was simply fun to follow. I liked the fact that she was beautiful, and she kind of knew it. She had an attitude, was sometimes a little full of herself, but that’s what made her that interesting to me. These days, we get so many shy, unconfident characters. It was fun to see someone be so confident. Many would be scared to fight so many warriors, in order to win her freedom. Yet, she never seemed really scared. Of course, I can’t not talk about the two male interests. They were both quite interesting, and I have to say it is hard to me to find a favorite for Celaena. Chaol and Prince Dorian were both really interesting, and both quite swoon-worthy. I do have a small preference for Prince Dorian, but for most of the book, I was simply hoping she would FREAKING KISS ONE OF THEM!!! They both brought something different to Celaena, and I really liked that.

I have to say; Sarah J. Maas really got me dying for more from her. Her book really had everything I could have asked for, and even more. I can’t wait to know what will happen next. Throne of Glass is definitely a book I would recommend. Loved every second spent reading it. 

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Review: Innocent Darkness by Suzanne Lazear

Title: Innocent Darkness by Suzanne Lazear
The Aether Chronicles #1
Release Date: August 7th, 2012
Number of Pages: 408
Publisher: Flux
Source: ARC from BEA
Wish. Love. Desire. Live. Sixteen-year-old Noli Braddock's hoyden ways land her in an abusive reform school far from home. On mid-summer's eve she wishes to be anyplace but that dreadful school. A mysterious man from the Realm of Faerie rescues her and brings her to the Otherworld, only to reveal that she must be sacrificed, otherwise, the entire Otherworld civilization will perish. 
Was I the only one disappointed with this book? I mean, it wasn’t that bad, it just wasn’t what I had expected. The thing is, I was expecting a real Steampunk novel, but instead, I found that it was more a faerie book with a touch of Steampunk (which we mostly see at the beginning. Most of the book is spent in the fairy world…) I would probably have enjoyed it more if I had been sold this book as a fairy book, but I was sold to it because it was Steampunk, and I LOVE a good Steampunk. This probably is the main reason why I was disappointed with Innocent Darkness.

When it comes down to the characters, I have to say that I liked them, but none of them really blew my mind. Noli wasn’t a bad main character. I just couldn’t connect with her at all. She wasn’t the most interesting character in the book. I found Charlotte to be a lot more enjoyable to follow, even if we didn’t her that much in through the book. Noli simply was too much of a contradiction to me. She just seems to be against the way society treats women (like she can’t drive), but seems so shock of a sleeveless dress so shock of her feeling for V. Other than that, the characters didn’t really leave any long lasting memory of them. I just wish we could have seen Charlotte some more.

Now, I’m quite curious to read more from Suzanne Lazear, even if I didn’t love this book. I feel like I could have enjoyed this book a lot more if I had known what it was really about. The feeling I was left with once I finished this book was that I was cheated, since it was so different from what I had been promised (Okay, I hadn’t completely read the summary of the book, since I often skip that NOT to have some kind of opinion on the book already, but, everything pointed to a Steampunk novel. You can’t blame the girl for being disappointed for that. I just didn’t get as much Steampunk elements as I felt I should have been given. 

Waiting on Wednesday: Mind Games by Kiersten White

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly Meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine. It is an opportunity for us to show books we can't wait to get our hands on.

This week, my pick is:

Mind Games #1
February 2013

Fia was born with flawless instincts. Her first impulse, her gut feeling, is always exactly right. Her sister, Annie, is blind to the world around her—except when her mind is gripped by strange visions of the future. 

Trapped in a school that uses girls with extraordinary powers as tools for corporate espionage, Annie and Fia are forced to choose over and over between using their abilities in twisted, unthinkable ways…or risking each other’s lives by refusing to obey.

In a stunning departure from her New York Times bestselling Paranormalcy trilogy, Kiersten White delivers a slick, edgy, heartstoppingly intense psychological thriller about two sisters determined to protect each other—no matter the cost.

How can I not be excited for a new book by Kiersten White. Her other series was simply amazing, and I'm simply dying to read more from her! It sounds intense and addicting.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Review: Wake by Amanda Hocking

Wake by Amanda Hocking
Watersong #1
Release Date: August 7th, 2012
Number of Pages: 309
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Source: ARC from Raincoast Books
Fall under the spell of Wake—the first book in an achingly beautiful new series by celebrated author Amanda Hocking—and lose yourself to the Watersong. Gorgeous. Fearless. Dangerous. They're the kind of girls you envy; the kind of girls you want to hate. Strangers in town for the summer, Penn, Lexi and Thea have caught everyone's attention—but it’s Gemma who’s attracted theirs. She’s the one they’ve chosen to be part of their group. Gemma seems to have it all—she’s carefree, pretty, and falling in love with Alex, the boy next door. He’s always been just a friend, but this summer they’ve taken their relationship to the next level, and now there’s no going back. Then one night, Gemma’s ordinary life changes forever. She’s taking a late night swim under the stars when she finds Penn, Lexi and Thea partying on the cove. They invite her to join them, and the next morning she wakes up on the beach feeling groggy and sick, knowing something is different. Suddenly Gemma is stronger, faster, and more beautiful than ever. But her new powers come with a terrifying price. And as she uncovers the truth, she’s is forced to choose between staying with those she loves—or entering a new world brimming with dark hungers and unimaginable secrets.
Wake was an interesting book, despites its flaws. When I first heard of the book, I thought is sounded intriguing, and I really liked the concept. Yet, there was a little something missing for me to really like it. One of the things I did enjoy about the book was the romance. People, rejoice: There is no love triangle in this book. That’s one of the thing I really found fun. Both sisters have their own love interest, and only one.

The thing with this book is that I just couldn’t get into the story, there was something stopping me from being captivated by the world Amanda Hocking created. I can’t really define what this was, because most of the things that annoyed me with this book aren’t aspects that usually stop me from being captivated if the story is addicting. Another flaw that got slightly on my nerves is the narration. I found it to be sometimes confusing. It is third person, but it still changes between both sisters through the novel, even sometimes really in the middle of everything. I had trouble knowing who was thinking what.  It made it harder for me to follow the story easily.

If we talk about the characters, I have to say I can’t really tell you much about them. They were slightly flat, and a little unmemorable for me. Sometimes characters make a really big impression on you, but with this book, none of them did. I find it hard to really remember more than just who they were in the story. I actually needed to lock back in the book and in my notes to really be able to do this review, and even then, I don’t have much to say.

I do hope the book will go through some editing before being release, because there are a few things that could make it easier to read for me. Overall, I guess it simply wasn’t the book for me. It was a great concept that simply didn’t catch my attention well enough.

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Review: Rift by Andrea Cremer

Rift by Andrea Cremer
Nightshade Prequel #1
Release Date: August 7th, 2012
Number of Pages: 448
Publisher: Philomel
Source: BEA 
Chronicling the rise of the Keepers, this is the stunning prequel to Andrea Cremer's internationally bestselling Nightshade trilogy! Sixteen-year-old Ember Morrow is promised to a group called Conatus after one of their healers saves her mother's life. Once she arrives, Ember finds joy in wielding swords, learning magic, and fighting the encroaching darkness loose in the world. She also finds herself falling in love with her mentor, the dashing, brooding, and powerful Barrow Hess. When the knights realize Eira, one of their leaders, is dabbling in dark magic, Ember and Barrow must choose whether to follow Eira into the nether realm or to pledge their lives to destroying her and her kind. With action, adventure, magic, and tantalizing sensuality, this book is as fast-paced and breathtaking as the Nightshade novels.
I have to start by saying that I absolutely love the Nightshade series (even though I was slightly sad over the ending of Bloodrose). When I heard there would be a prequel, I was both excited and scared. I was excited to read more of Andrea Cremer, as I think she is amazing, but I was also scared that this prequel would simply be Nightshade set in another time. Do not fear! It isn’t the same story, far from it. The book is actually about the Keepers, even though they are never really named that way.

The story was a little slower to me, and I have to say that I did have trouble getting into the story at first. The main reason I believe is the various descriptions that are needed for us to understand the world that we are taken into. It may be slightly similar to the Nightshade, but there is still so many things that we need to know, things we hadn’t been told before about the Keepers.  We have to understand how the Conatus works, how the Guard works and how the world in general works.

Once again, Andrea Cremer gives us strong characters, both in the main character Ember and other character such as Barrow (BARROW <3. We can see who is my favorite). It was quite interesting to follow Ember. Yet again, Cremer created a strong and independent female character, a young woman who isn’t scared to fight for what she think is right. Still, to me, that where the comparison ends with Calla. They are really different, mainly because they have been raised differently in different times. Ember was a noble woman, one that wanted to fight like men do, but raised to hopefully be someone’s wife by her father. It was so interesting to then see her learn to fight, learn to be a soldier when she had been raised to be the complete opposite. That’s one of the biggest reasons why I found her really interesting.

I have to talk about Barrow, one of my latest book crush. There is something so swoon worthy about him. He is strong, charming and amazingly good to Ember. I have to say that an other reason why I adore him is the way things developped between Ember and Barrow. Things starts slowly between those two, grows into friendship and more. That to me is the best way for thing to go between two characters. It helps you falls for him as she does.

I have to saythat fans of the Nightshade series will enjoy this book. It is as amazing, but it is so different at the same time The historical twit adds a little something to this series that leaves me begging for more.