Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday (13)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish

Top Ten Books That Are Sure to Make You Laugh 

I'm not just talking about books with silly moments that amuse you. I'm talking about books that you literally LOL even in a public place.  At least I know I did!
1. The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare
-Many of the scenes I'm referring to included Jace! He's such a twerp sometimes in the series that I couldn't help but laugh at his sass!
2. Anatomy of A Misfit by Andrea Portes
3. Rule (Marked Men #1) by Jay Crownover
4. Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
5. Hush, Hush Series by Becca Fitzpatrick
6. The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West
7. The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater
8. Payback is Sweet by Kristy Centeno
9. Last Will and Testament by Dahlia Adler
10. Cress (The Lunar Chronicles #3) by Marissa Meyer
-I don't know what it is about Captain Thorne but I spent more time laughing reading this book in the series than any of the others in the series!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Mystique Spotlight


Mystique by Shari Arnold
Publication Date:  November 17, 2016
Genre:  YA Paranormal

Only Bauer Grant can pull off gorgeous while dead. But staying dead is another thing entirely. When he wakes up at his own funeral, the town of Mystique calls it a miracle, until it happens again. Something is bringing the residents of Mystique back to life, but what? Presley Caine finds herself caught up in the mystery when Bauer asks her to visit him. Presley can’t figure out why the most popular guy in school is so drawn to her. And when Bauer is kidnapped soon after, she looks to Bauer’s brooding best friend Sam, whose dad works for the powerful Mystique military base, for answers. In her quest to discover the truth, Presley’s relationship with Sam deepens, her feelings for Bauer are tested, and it becomes clear that her own mysterious past is somehow connected to these strange events. But is she strong enough to handle the truth when it is finally revealed?

Shari Arnold grew up in California and Utah but now resides in Connecticut, with her husband and two kids, where she finds it difficult to trust a beach without waves. She writes Young Adult fiction because it's her favorite. And occasionally she takes photographs.

Website | Twitter |Goodreads

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Friday, April 15, 2016

Fear My Mortality: Spotlight

Happy Release Day to
Fear My Mortality by Everly Frost
Join us in celebrating this new release from Month9Books!
Enter the giveaway found at the end of the post.
Happy Book Birthday, Everly!
Fear My Mortality Cover
In a world where people are invulnerable to illness and death, with lives spanning hundreds of years, a sixteen-year-old becomes witness to the impossible – her brother’s failure to regenerate after death after which she suspects that she too may be mortal.
add to goodreadsFear My Mortality by Everly Frost Publication Date: April 5, 2016 Publisher: Month9Books

Everly Frost wrote her first story when she was nine. She grew up in a country town, lived for a little while in Japan, and worked for several years in Canberra, Australia's capital city. Now, Everly lives in Brisbane, Australia, with her husband and two children. She doesn't speak Japanese so often anymore, has left the cold Canberra winters behind, but has never stopped writing.
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Thursday, April 14, 2016

Joshua and the Arrow Realm Cover Reveal

Welcome to the cover reveal for
Joshua And The Arrow Realm By Donna Galanti
presented by Tantrum Books!
Be on the look out for this upcoming MG title!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
Joshua and the Arrow Realm ebook
Joshua never thought he'd return to the world of Nostos so soon. But, when King Apollo needs his help in the Arrow Realm, Joshua's will and powers will be tested in order to save him.
With his loyalties divided between our world and theirs, Joshua wonders whether he alone can restore magic to the twelve powerless Olympian heirs, or whether he is being tricked into making the one mistake that might cost them all.
JOSHUA AND THE ARROW REALM is the exciting follow up to JOSHUA THE LIGHTNING ROAD which the Midwest Book Review called, "a heart-pounding thrill ride."
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Joshua and the Arrow Realm by Donna Galanti Publication Date: May 31, 2016 Publisher: Tantrum Books
Available for pre-order: Chapters | Amazon | B&N | TBD
Donna is the author of the Joshua and the Lightning Road series and the Element Trilogy. She is a contributing editor to International Thriller Writers the Big Thrill magazine and blogs at www.project-middle-grade-mayhem.blogs..., a cooperative of published middle grade authors. Visit her at www.donnagalanti.com and www.ElementTrilogy.com. Donna wanted to be a writer ever since she wrote a murder mystery screenplay at seven and acted it out with the neighborhood kids. She attended an English school housed in a magical castle, where her wild imagination was held back only by her itchy uniform (bowler hat and tie included!). There she fell in love with the worlds of C.S. Lewis and Roald Dahl, and wrote her first fantasy about Dodo birds, wizards, and a flying ship (and has been writing fantasy ever since). She’s lived in other exotic locations, including her family-owned campground in New Hampshire and in Hawaii where she served as a U.S. Navy photographer. She now lives with her family and two crazy cats in an old farmhouse and dreams of returning one day to a castle.
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Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday (12)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish

Top Ten Books and Series Every Fantasy/Fairy Tale Lover Will Enjoy
With this week's topic being a bit of a freebie I was so excited to make it a combination of two of my favorite genres. For fans of fantasy and fairy tales, these are my top ten picks! Hope you enjoy them as much I do!

1. The Wolves of Mercy Falls Series by Maggie Stiefvater
2. Stardust by Neil Gaiman 
3. Lament by Maggie Stiefvater
4. Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch 
5. Velvet by Temple West
6. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
7. Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
8. Exquisite Captive by Heather Demetrios
9. City of A Thousand Dolls by Miriam Forster
10. The Mortal Instruments Series by Cassandra Clare

Monday, April 11, 2016

Review: Glass Sword

If there’s one thing Mare Barrow knows, it’s that she’s different.

Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control.

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat.

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

The electrifying next installment in the Red Queen series escalates the struggle between the growing rebel army and the blood-segregated world they’ve always known—and pits Mare against the darkness that has grown in her soul.

Rating: 5 Stars

Book Title: Glass Sword (Red Queen #2)

Author: Victoria Aveyard

Release Date: February 9th 2016

Pages: 444

Publisher: HarperTeen

            If there is a Queen of writing killer endings in the YA world I dub thee, Victoria Aveyard, Queen of them all.  Seriously though.  I thought Red Queen’s ending would give me premature signs of aging while waiting for the next book.  The wait felt so long I could almost imagine grey hairs (note: I’m only 22 guys) popping up all over my head.    For those of you who’ve read it, you know exactly what I’m talking about. IT WAS SHOCKING to say the least. Oh just you wait though.  Aveyard’s done it once again in the highly anticipated Glass Sword, and I can promise you you’ll be left with the same feeling as book 1. GIVE ME THE NEXT BOOK ALREADY I CAN’T HANDLE IT.  I digress. 
            Favorite Bits:
o   Getting to see more of Shade: I LOVED the close relationship Shade and Mare have in Glass Sword. Despite all the time and distance they’ve spent away from one another, they still care deeply for the other sibling.  The only thing that’s changed is now they have to learn to understand each other once more.  The experiences Shade and Mare have gone through during their time apart haven’t been easy, so the hardened versions of themselves aren’t the same memories they were left with of one another.  I also thought it was touching just how protective Shade was of Mare and it tugged on my heartstrings quite a bit each time they were in battle and Shade was always running back to save Mare.  Big brothers of the world, you rock.
o   The “Newbloods”: I love books that feature a world with characters and differing powers. One of my favorite things about the Twilight Series (bite your tongue all of you who are currently groaning) was the different power each vampire had and in Glass Sword it was no different for me.  Each rescue mission they go on was exciting because I couldn’t wait to find out which newblood could do what and just how powerful they would all be working together.  I have to hand it to Victoria, some of the powers she dreamt up were incredible and ones that I could never have come up with.  Two of my favorite newbloods were Harrick and Nanny!  
o   The Rescue Missions: I touched briefly on this already, but if you love a good heist/rescue mission (Six of Crow fans I’m looking at you) I think you’ll love Glass Sword.  The rescue missions were so good at some points that I actually had anxiety over what was going to happen (like I said, grey hair guys.  I’m going to have to send my hair bill to Victoria in the near future because it’s all her fault LOL)
o   Maven: SORRY NOT SORRY I CAN’T HELP MYSELF. If you’re new to my blog, I should warn you, I ALWAYS fall for the bad guys: The Darkling (The Grisha Series), Malek (The Dark Caravan Series), and Death (The Arcana Chronicles) just to name a few.  And no matter HOW bad they get, I can’t help but find some redeeming quality in them. Same went for Maven in book 2.  I know he wants Mare back, and possibly for the wrong reasons (Ok ok I know his reasons are wrong) BUT I feel like there’s more to him and reading book 1 was proof of that. So naturally, I kept holding out hope for him, even as the book progressed and his crimes became that much more atrocious.  He is the perfect villain though guys. Victoria Aveyard knows how to write them!

Friday, April 8, 2016

Cover Reveal: Fighter Girl

Welcome to the cover reveal for
Fighter Girl by Kathryn James
presented by Swoon Romance!
Be on the look out for this upcoming New Adult title!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
It began three days ago with a fight. Seems that for me, everything begins with a fight..."
Sammy Jo may be strong, fast and tough, even in heels, but she gets into trouble when she fights some local thugs to save a rich boy named Gregory. Now bad guy McCloud is after her - and he's even more dangerous than her forbidden love for Gregory. Fighter Girl was published in the United Kingdom under the title GYPSY GIRL. "Full of action, romance, humour and fighting for what is important in your life. I read this in one sitting and couldn't turn the pages fast enough. Loved every minute of it!" - Sabah's Amazon review
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Fighter Girl by Kathryn James Publication Date: May 17, 2016 Publisher: Swoon Romance
Available for Pre-Order: Amazon
Kathryn James
Kathryn lives in Leicester with her family, writing full time (and loves that!) Kathryn always wanted to become an author and wrote her first story at age eight. But it took quite a while and lots of different jobs before she got published.
She's worked with gypsy and traveller children, working from a converted bus with a rainbow on the side, doing video and photography projects, and documenting travelling lives. Mist draws on and is influenced by her work with this community. She's also written scripts for a local video production company, many of them for children and teenagers.
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Thursday, April 7, 2016

Review: Becoming Jinn

One of the Best Science Fiction, Fantasy, or Horror of 2015 by VOYA Magazine

Harry Potter meets Twilight in debut novelist Lori Goldstein’s magical tale of sixteen-year-old Azra, a teenage girl whose Jinn ancestry transforms her into a modern-day genie. With the power to grant anyone’s wish but her own, Azra pretends to be human, spending her days at the beach, enjoying a budding romance, and evading her Jinn destiny. But when she discovers she may not be like the rest of her circle of Jinn, will her powers save or endanger them all?





Rating: 3.5 Stars

Book Title: Becoming Jinn (Becoming Jinn #1)

Author: Lori Goldstein

Release Date: April 21st 2015

Pages: 384

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends

I’m a genie in a bottle baby, you got to rub me the right way honey
I’m a genie in a bottle baby, come, come, come on and let me out

…. Oh wait. Wrong kind of genie. And no bottles. Thanks anyhow Christina Aguilera!

Fret not friends! There’s still plenty of wishes, magic, and fun to be had! Becoming Jinn (Becoming Jinn #1) had all the promise of being a fantastic YA book on jinn/djinn lore, and in some ways it was.  Although I was a little disappointed with its execution at times, I am still crossing my fingers that the next book will pick up for me and that I will fall in love with the series.  Here’s the bits I loved, and the not-so-fantastic parts.

Favorite Bits:
o   The Sisterhood: Lack of female friendships in YA is something that’s been heavily discussed for a while now.  When I was at a book signing in Naperville a few months back for the release of Passenger by Alexandra Bracken and Truthwitch by Susan Dennard, they touched on this briefly.  Did you know there are VERY few YA books published each year that have scenes that involve women talking about things other than men?  In almost all instances the only conversations that take place revolve around men and relationships, as if a woman’s whole purpose in life is centered around finding their significant other. How sad! And then BAM! I read Becoming Jinn and in very few scenes DID the girls focus solely on boys and their dating lives.  Sure, Azra’s sisters talk about the human boys they’ve met and how adorable they are, but a lot of the dialogue involves discussing their future and their powers.  They lean on one another for support and even though Azra may not love (or understand) all of her Zar sisters, she realizes just how important it is to have them and why her mother has so heavily stressed the significance of this bond all her life.  I loved the female representation in this book and the closeness of the Jinn females.  Left on earth to fulfill the wishes of humans, Jinn women are on their own after the Afrit (the governing body of Jinn in their world) sent all husbands and men back to their world. 
o   The Ending: The last 100 or so pages of the book is what really saved me from giving this book a lower rating than what I did.  The plot got REALLY good all of a sudden and all of the confusing parts of the story finally started to come together and make more sense.  I loved that the book left off in the middle of a wish (don’t worry I won’t say whose) because now I feel obligated to get the next book when it comes out despite my initial reservations about book one. 

Not So Favorite Parts
o   The Restrictions: There’s a few rules that are instated in the world of the Jinn in this book, and that’s probably what made this book so confusing for me at times.  I felt like the construction of the rules by the Afrit wasn’t explained enough and Azra’s mom and her Zar sisters only explained bits and pieces to their daughters, which made it more complicated as a reader to understand.  Perhaps the most confusing part of the book for me was the last two wishes she made.  The process she goes through with these wishes differs from the beginning of the book when she first gets her powers and is assigned a human.  I had to reread these chapters a few times which was frustrating because I felt like there was a change in the rules/structure of the wish-granting ritual. 
o   The Foreshadowing: In hindsight I realize just how much foreshadowing there really was in this book, but at the time it just felt like random and unnecessary bits of information thrown into the book that didn’t make sense at the time.  Like at the beginning they mentioned Henry’s sister a lot and her relationship with Azra (which gets explained as the book progresses) and initially it just felt like information overload.  Then there were other small moments that they would be in the middle of a scene and all of a sudden it was like “Oh I’m going to look outside my window and hey! A random dog barking-that’s odd,” and return to current scene.  *scratches head. What just happened?

So where does that leave me? Well, for starters, up in the air about the potential of this series.  I didn’t hate this book at all, but it wasn’t one I flew through.  If I wasn’t such a big fan of jinn/djinn lore though, there’s a good chance I would have DNF’d after the rocky start Becoming Jinn had.  If we’re comparing it to other djinn/jinn series though I will say it’s not on the top of my list.  I recently finished reading the first two books in the Dark Caravan Series by Heather Demetrios and if I had to recommend a good series in this genre, that’s the first one that I’ll tell my friends about.  All things considered though, the book finished on a high note and I’ve heard good things about the next one in the series, which comes out in a month, so I’m still going to read that one. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday (10)

Waiting on Wednesday is a featured post hosted by Breaking the Spine that discusses upcoming releases that bloggers are excited about. 

This week's book I am looking forward to in 2017 is:
So I KNOW this is premature but Howard is one of my favorite authors (if you haven't checked out her Splintered Series you need to!) and I was SO excited to hear about her new series!

Author: A.G. Howard
Expected Release Date: January 10th, 2017
Publisher: Abrams
Pages: 400

In this modern day spinoff of Leroux’s gothic tale of unrequited love turned to madness, seventeen-year-old Rune Germain has a mysterious affliction linked to her operatic talent, and a horrifying mistake she’s trying to hide.

Hoping creative direction will help, Rune’s mother sends her to a French arts conservatory for her senior year, located in an opera house rumored to have ties to The Phantom of the Opera. At RoseBlood, Rune secretly befriends the masked Thorn -- an elusive violinist who not only guides her musical transformation through dreams that seem more real than reality itself, but somehow knows who she is behind her own masks.

As the two discover an otherworldly connection, a soul-deep romance blossoms. But when Thorn’s dark agenda comes to light, he’s forced to make a deadly choice: lead Rune to her destruction, or face the wrath of the phantom who has haunted the opera house for a century, and is the only father he’s ever known. Slated to launch January 2017.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday (11)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish

Ten Bookish People You Should Follow On Social Media!
-In all honesty I'm going to try to keep it short because I could seriously write an ode to all my favorite bookish friends but I love them all so much! If you're not already following these rockstars, you  need to! I will try to include all the links to their platforms! 

1. Missie

Instagram: missiet
Twitter: @missiet

2. Tanya
Instagram: tanyaatkinson
Twitter: @BookwormTanya 

3. Nicole
Instagram: nicolemoy
Twitter: @nicolemoy

4. Kristen

Instagram: bookgoil
Twitter: @bookgoil

5. Tammy

Instagram: tamgeo2
Twitter: @tammygeo

6. Alyssa
Instagram: lifeofabookenthusiast
Twitter: @lifeofbookenthu

7. Brian
Instagram: bookishbrian
Twitter: @bookishbrian

8. Tabitha
Instagram: pabkins
Twitter: @Pabkins

9. Ari

Twitter: @ari_ryyan 

10. Brittany
Twitter: @bookaddictguide
Instagram: bookaddictsguide

Monday, April 4, 2016

Review: Reign of Shadows

Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

With lush writing and a star–crossed romance, Reign of Shadows is Sophie Jordan at her best.

Rating: 5 Stars

Book Title: Reign of Shadows

Author: Sophie Jordan

Release Date: February 9th 2016

Pages: 304

Publisher: Harper Teen

            Survival of the fittest doesn’t even come close to describing the world Luna lives in.  It’s harsh, unforgiving, and completely changed since the way it used to be before she was born.  Thrust into a world right as chaos and darkness descended, Luna’s life from the time she’s a baby until she becomes a teenager closely resembles that of Rapunzel.  Although not locked away in a tower with an evil witch watching over her, Luna does live in a tower with the only family she’s ever known: her guardians Sivo and Perla.
            Favorite Bits:
o   Luna: This is honestly the first YA book (or any book for that matter) that I’ve read that featured a protagonist who cannot see. Not only that, but Reign of Shadows proves just how wrong our society views people with disabilities. Despite our better judgement, I think many of us can admit to viewing those with disabilities as being helpless and frail.  Luna is a wonderful representation of just how capable a person can be in spite of the hand they’ve been dealt.  And for Luna, who was born without sight, it’s not as if this hinders her in any way.  In fact, one of my favorite aspects about Reign of Shadows was that Luna’s inability to see actually fared better for her in this world.  It made her other senses stronger, such as her ability to hear and smell things from far away.  In a dark forest full of dangerous creatures, such as the dwellers that eat humans alive or take them underground, Luna’s heightened senses save her (and those with her) on more than one occasion. 
o   Fowler: Even though their initial encounter is anything but pleasant, I knew Fowler and Luna would grow to become friends over time (and I might have hoped for even more, but that could just be the hopeless romantic in me).  Fowler’s protective nature over Luna was endearing and I couldn’t help but swoon during a few of the scenes when he’s fighting to save the two of them. At first Fowler feels obliged to watch over her based on a promise he made and he believes Luna to be helpless because she’s blind, but he quickly realizes just how wrong he may have been.  From there on though, his protectiveness begins to stem from entirely different reasons for looking after her (yes there might be some romance in the making but you’ll have to read to find out).  I have to say though, Fowler should never have misjudged Luna from the start. After all, their first introduction to one another ends with Luna saving them all so CLEARLY girl could handle herself just fine but I’ll cut Fowler some slackJ
o   Ortley: A city built in the treetops; this is what fairy tale dreams are made of.  Although the denizens of Ortley aren’t the friendliest lot, they do what they can to survive and that means being creative.  They built this city off of the forest ground in order to stay hidden from the dwellers.  I think fans of Tiger Lily will love Reign of Shadows for this element alone and Ortley also reminded me of Robin and Scarlet’s adventures in A.C. Gaughen’s series. I couldn’t help but wish for more time spent in Ortley in the book because of the setting alone. Side note: If you’ve never heard of Treehouse Point in Washington you need to google it! Staying in a treehouse there one day is on my bucket list and Ortley only furthered my desire to do so.
o   The Ending: One word: PHENOMENAL.  If an author manages to tug on my heartstrings with the close of their book it’s typically a win in my opinion.  Short of giving away just how emotionally charged this ending was, I will say the last scene bears remarkable resemblance to a certain scene in a movie featured on a boat and my reaction to the finish of Reign of Shadows was the same as it was for the movie.  WATERWORKS

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