Friday, December 30, 2011

Crave (The Clann #1)

Crave (The Clann #1)Title: Crave (The Clann #1)
Author: Melissa Darnell
Rating: 4/5
SummarySavannah Colbert has never known why she's so hated by the kids of the Clann. Nor can she deny her instinct to get close to Clann golden boy Tristan Coleman. Especially when she recovers from a strange illness and the attraction becomes nearly irresistible. It's as if he's a magnet, pulling her gaze, her thoughts, even her dreams. Her family has warned her to have nothing to do with him, or any members of the Clann. But when Tristan is suddenly everywhere she goes, Savannah fears she's destined to fail.
For years, Tristan has been forbidden to even speak to Savannah Colbert. Then Savannah disappears from school for a week and comes back…different, and suddenly he can't stay away. Boys seem intoxicated just from looking at her. His own family becomes stricter than ever. And Tristan has to fight his own urge to protect her, to be near her no matter the consequences….
My Thoughts: Crave had an interesting concept. Sure, there was the typical forbidden love thing going on, and it was full of secret societies, so it's not like it was a new idea, but the way the Clann worked was interesting. They're the typical dictators, in a way, but they were still different. more interesting. They've told every member of the Clann that they're not supposed to have anything to do with Savannah and because of that, Savannah is subjected to bullying every day.

And then she changes. I thought Savannah bought it a little too easily when her parents explained to her that she was becoming half vampire, half witch. She only thought it was a joke for about ten seconds.

Tristan and Savannah were great characters. Tristan doesn't want to follow in his father's footsteps, and in a way, Savannah is the same way. She doesn't want to be what her father is. And I felt bad for both of them - other people kept trying to control their lives.

Crave switched off between Tristan and Savannah's narration, and I just want to say that Darnell did a great job at making their narrations different. Savannah's was smoother, more beautiful, while Tristan's was much simpler. At the same time, though, I felt like something was missing from Savannah's narration. I think it was just because for the first half of the book, I couldn't relate to her. Once she started having more interactions with Tristan, I started to feel a lot better about her. And Tristan? I loved him. Even when he wasn't talking to Savannah, he was still trying to protect her.
One thing that continually bothered me throughout the book was the fact that they were all holding grudges from FOURTH GRADE, a little unrealistic, don't you think?
Overall, It was a good read, and I would recommend it!

Carrier of the Mark (Carrier Trilogy #1)

Carrier of the Mark (Carrier Trilogy, #1)Title:Carrier of the Mark (Carrier Trilogy #1)
Author: Leigh Fallon
Rating: 3.5/5
SummaryTheir love was meant to be. 

When Megan Rosenberg moves to Ireland, everything in her life seems to fall into place. After growing up in America, she's surprised to find herself feeling at home in her new school. She connects with a group of friends, and she is instantly drawn to darkly handsome Adam DeRÍs. 

But Megan is about to discover that her feelings for Adam are tied to a fate that was sealed long ago—and that the passion and power that brought them together could be their ultimate destruction.

My Thoughts: I’d seen a lot of hype over The Carrier of the Mark and so I was super excited to be able to read this one in advance of its publication date. I started The Carrier of the Mark and sat down to read it in its entirety in an entire day. I even stayed up later than I had intended just so I could finish the book. 
Needless to say that I enjoyed reading The Carrier of the Mark very much; it has a lot of same-ish elements to it that books in the paranormal romance genre have; but at the same time there are a lot of differences too. To me, it’s the differences that really make this book. They stand out far more than those same qualities. 
For starters, the descriptive writing is really amazing. I loved Leigh’s writing style as it was nice and simple yet captured the beauty of what was happening in certain parts of the story. There are some very beautiful scenes in The Carrier of the Mark but I can’t say too much more about them without giving away spoilers. 
The paranormal/supernatural element was quite different to others I’ve come across before and without spoiling anything, no they are not vampires. A lot of it ties back to Irish folklore and so that is very interesting as well.  At times, the powers reminded be of Avatar The Last Airbender (SHOUT OUT TO ALL AVATAR LOVERS).
The characters were all quite interesting. I didn’t really have a favourite although I did like Aíne and Rían and would like to get to know more about Rían in future books. 
I quite enjoyed reading The Carrier of the Mark and fans of paranormal romance will not go amiss in reading The Carrier of the Mark. It’s set in Ireland and features something quite different in the way of paranormal entities. Definitely check it out as it is awesome. 

Kiss Crush Collide

Kiss Crush CollideTitle: Kiss Crush Collide
Author: Christina Meredith
Rating: 3/5
SummaryLeah has the life most high school girls would kill for—popularity, glowing grades, a rich, athletic boyfriend. So why does she feel like she can’t breathe? And why can’t she stop thinking about the boy from the country club? The one who isn’t her boyfriend, the one that her mother would never, ever approve of, the one that her perfect older sisters would never, ever look at twice. The one who is always looking back at her. Irresistible attraction, smoldering glances, the bad boy and the good girl—Kiss Crush Collide has everything that a steamy forbidden romance should, and then some. 
My Thoughts: I started off this book thinking it would be AMAZING, and very similar to Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles (one of my favorite books). However, I was EXTREMELY disappointed!  
I had a really hard time getting into this story. Leah was not a favorite character for me from the first chapter. I just couldn't connect with her. She didn't really feel bad about making out with another boy even though her boyfriend was still in her life. She had annoying family that was at times a little too much. Within the first few chapters we are introduced to so many characters that it left me confused and wishing I was taking notes. The book is also off balance with most of the story revolving around Leah and lacking story from Duffy. The romance was instant -- making out the first time they meet -- and forced for the reader to accept it. This really was one of the MOST boring books I ever read, I literally had to drag myself through it. 
P.S. The amazing cover (although misleading) was enough to add a point to my rating!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Book Wish Contest!

Win a literary agent or acclaimed author's feedback on your unpublished manuscript for young adult or middle grade readers.  This rare opportunity is being offered to the six winners of an essay contest recently announced by the literacy charity Book Wish Foundation.  See for full details.

You could win a manuscript critique from:

  • Laura Langlie, literary agent for Meg Cabot
  • Nancy Gallt, literary agent for Jeanne DuPrau
  • Brenda Bowen, literary agent and editor of Karen Hesse's Newbery Medal winner Out of the Dust
  • Ann M. Martin, winner of the Newbery Honor for A Corner of the Universe
  • Francisco X. Stork, winner of the Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award for The Last Summer of the Death Warriors
  • Cynthia Voigt, winner of the Newbery Medal for Dicey's Song and the Newbery Honor for A Solitary Blue

All that separates you from this prize is a 500-word essay about a short story in Book Wish Foundation's new anthology, What You Wish For.  Essays are due Feb. 1, 2012 and winners will be announced around Mar. 1, 2012.  If you win, you will have six months to submit the first 50 pages of your manuscript for critique (which means you can enter the contest even if you haven't finished, or started, your manuscript).  You can even enter multiple times, with essays about more than one of the contest stories, for a chance to win up to six critiques.

If you dream of being a published author, this is an opportunity you should not miss.  To enter, follow the instructions at

I would definitely recommend joining!

Bleeding Heart (Drake Chronicles #4)

Bleeding Hearts (Drake Chronicles, #4)Title: Bleeding Heart (Drake Chronicles #4) 
Author: Alyxandra Harvey
Rating: 4.3/5
SummaryThe Drakes and friends will be tested when an infestation of deadly vampires threatens Violet Hill. 

Lucy's cousin Christabel has come to live in Violet Hill, and adjusting to the difference between life in a small mountain town and her home in the city is difficult enough. The strict curfew that Lucy's parents enforce is the worst part. Something really dangerous couldn't possibly happen in this tiny town. 
But Christabel has noticed some mysterious happenings, and it seems like Lucy, her boyfriend Nicholas and his brother Connor are all in on a secret that Christabel doesn't understand—one that seems deadly serious. Although she won't admit it, Christabel would love to be in on any secret with Connor Drake. But when she is kidnapped by the ruthless Hel-Blar vampires, Christabel must cause more and more trouble in Violet Hill, Lucy and Connor finally fill Christabel in on all the undead drama. Together, they must find a way to stamp out the Hel-Blar for good.

My Thoughts:This book is about Connor and Christabel. But we got lots of Lucy as well. And that was awesome cause I missed that girl! We actually didn't get a ton of Connor which kind of surprised me. But he was there. The romance seemed a bit on the lighter side for this one, but that's probably cause there just wasn't much room for it there was so much action. I would say that maybe I would have liked more Connor and more romance but it wasn't a big deal, I loved the book the way it is.

Some things are changing in this one. Lucy's parents are back and they now know about vampires (that's not a spoiler, it happens before the book actually starts) but Christabel does not. Lucy is training so she can defend herself and by the end of the book she's made some big decisions because things just aren't working out. Don't worry though, her Nicholas are just fine! 

Christabel is a great new character but for some reason I feel like I still don't know her real well. Maybe that's because so much of the story was Lucy's I feel like I just didn't get the chance, but what I saw I really liked. She's a big reader, so I obviously can relate to her that way, but she's been through a lot so she had some hidden strength inside her to deal with stuff when crap hits the fan.

Okay, so I loved this book but Alyx, girl you are torturing us! There is a cliffhanger at the end of this one that will have you screaming. I want the next book NOW! 

Saturday, December 24, 2011


Unleashed (Wolf Springs Chronicles, #1)Title: Unleashed
Author: Nancy Holder and Debbie Viguie
Rating: 3.8/5
Summary:Katelyn McBride’s life changed in an instant when her mother died. Uprooted from her California home, Katelyn was shipped to the middle of nowhere, Arkansas, to her only living relative, her grandfather. And now she has to start over in Wolf Springs, a tiny village in the Ozark Mountains. Like any small town, Wolf Springs has secrets. But the secrets hidden here are more sinister than Katelyn could ever imagine. It’s a town with a history that reaches back centuries, spans continents, and conceals terrifying truths. And Katelyn McBride is about to change everything. 

Broken families, ageless grudges, forced alliances, and love that blooms in the darkest night—welcome to Wolf Springs.

My Thoughts: Unleashed begins with our main character Katelyn and her mother living a normal and happy life in San Francisco, but when an earthquake kills her mother, Katelyn is sent off to her only remaining relative who lives in the Ozarks in Arkansas. Katelyn and her grandfather don't know very much about each other, so this huge move means starting all over in so many ways. With her grandfather, whom she calls 'Ed', at a new school and also fitting in with new friend and social circles. When Katelyn is assigned a local history project, she begins to try to unravel the town's secrets. There's the warnings to not go outside after dark, the wolf imagery that is everywhere she looks, the unexplained mauling and the deaths of two teenage girls and the weird behaviour of some of the people Katelyn meets. Katelyn is never quite sure who to trust and what to make of this weird and dangerous town she has found herself in. 

There's Cordelia, Katelyn's partner for this history assignment, who seems to blow hot and cold and has a very unusual family dynamic. There's Trick, the hot guy who drives Katelyn to and from school and then there's Cordelia's cousin, Justin who she seems drawn to in this very intense way. 

Unleashed has many different aspects to its story, from the mystery of the werewolves, to Katelyn's fragile relationship with her grandfather, her tenuous friendship with Cordelia and her budding attraction to both Trick and to Justin. And as I was reading the book, I found myself more and more intrigued about each different part to the story. I loved the mixture of mystery, action and romance and I'm so excited to read more in this series!


Obsidian (Lux, #1)Title: Obsidian
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Rating: 4.3/5
SummaryStarting over sucks. 

When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I’d pretty much resigned myself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring…. until I spotted my hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up. 

And then he opened his mouth. 

Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something…unexpected happens. 

The hot alien living next door marks me. 

You heard me. Alien. Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities, and Daemon’s touch has me lit up like the Vegas Strip. The only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades. 

If I don’t kill him first, that is.

My Thoughts: Obsidian is a novel by Jennifer L. Armentrout that I'd been highly anticipating since it's blurb was revealed. I was immediately pulled in by Obsidian's premise, promises of a Young Adult novel filled with something overwhelmingly extraterrestrial. Protagonist Katy was someone I could easily love and identify with. You see, Katy is a book blogger who runs her own little space called "Katy'z Krazy Obsession". It was disheartening, however, to see that she didn't think all that highly of herself, especially in concern to her adoration for reading and reviewing novels, labeling herself as a book crazed nerd. Despite that, though, I found that she was a character that many readers would find themselves easily connecting with, I know I did. Daemon, on the other hand, was undeniably handsome, especially with those piercing emerald eyes. Despite his Greek god looks, Daemon was very provocative, which I loved, and presented a hot and cold attitude, which I didn't love. In addition, I also found myself connecting greatly with Dee, Daemon's twin sister. She was a breath of fresh air, bubbly, outgoing and respectful.
I was overjoyed to find that my favorite things about her writing carried over, and yet the characters and plot were completely different. Armentrout puts a new twist on the alien-next-door storyline, which was refreshing after this year's influx of vampires, angels and wolves. I love the believable characters (even the non-realistic ones), the fast pace, and the fresh, contemporary voice. I also enjoyed that her hottie male character is practically perfect physically, but his personality is flawed. It makes it so much more fun to empathize with Katy as she wrestles with her emotions regarding him.

Let's cut to the chase: I am declaring myself a die-hard fan of Jennifer L. Armentrout. If you favor YA paranormal romance, you will want to read her stuff. All of it.

Deadly Cool

Deadly Cool (Deadly Cool, #1)Title: Deadly Cool
Author: Gemma Halliday
Rating: 3.8/5
Summary:Hartley Grace Featherstone is having a very bad day. First she finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her with the president of the Herbert Hoover High School Chastity Club. Then he's pegged as the #1 suspect in a murder. And if that weren't enough, now he's depending on Hartley to clear his name. Seriously? Not cool. 

But as much as Hartley wouldn't mind seeing him squirm, she knows he's innocent, and she's the only one who can help him. Along with her best friend, Sam, and the school's resident Bad Boy, Chase, Hartley starts investigating on her own. But as the dead bodies begin to pile up, the mystery deepens, the suspects multiply, and Hartley begins to fear that she may be the killer's next victim.

My ThoughtsDeadly Cool starts off as normally as any high school book does - Hartley (I love her name, by the way) finds hears the rumor going around school that her brother is screwing another girl. Like most girlfriends, she goes to investigate, expecting to find Josh in bed with Courtney.

Instead, she finds Courtney's body. 

I really liked Hartley. I felt like her reactions and actions were realistic most of the time, and she was kind of a fun and easy character to read through. She was a bit too naive at some points for me, though - who meets a stranger in the dark football field alone at midnight when there's a killer on the loose? -_- (And also, she didn't seem nearly mad enough at Josh, if you ask me.) But otherwise, I liked how persistent she was in finding the real killer.

I had a problem with the side characters. Sam was hardly developed at all, and I don't think Chase was much better. We don't know anything about him other than he works for the school newspaper. (And he goes commando ;D) He was so vague about his relationship with . . . *blanks on name* Deep Blogger. Whatever her real name was. He said it was "complicated," but we know nothing else about it. Who does he live with? Who is he friends with? I really hope more is revealed about him in the next book, Social Suicide. Otherwise, I just can't buy him as the romantic interest.

I wish there was a way to tell authors that, YES, I DO WANT TO KNOW WHAT THE FREAKING ROOM LOOKS LIKE. AND THE PEOPLE. There was next to no description in this book. It was all just Hartley's thoughts and the dialogue/action. We get a pretty good description of Chase, but that's it. No one else. All I know about Hartley is her hair color. And I don't know what her room looks like, what her mom looks like, what Chase's house looks like . . . I know some people don't like to read paragraphs and paragraphs of descriptions, and neither do I, but I think something could be thrown in there! 
Overall: Deadly Cool is fast-paced, light read that I suggest for anyone who wants to be mildly amused and doesn't want to read something where you have to think about every sentence. The writing style is simple, easy, and Hartley was a refreshing character. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices #2)

Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2)Title: Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices #2)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Rating: 4.5/5
Summary:In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends.
With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move and that one of their own has betrayed them.
Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will; the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?
As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Fans of CLOCKWORK ANGEL will be thrown back into the wondrous world that is the Infernal Devices. In this installment, Clare pulls the reader deeper into the inner workings of Shadowhunter politics as Tessa, Will, Jem, and friends try to hunt down the illusive Magister. This series is so addictive – you don’t want to put it down! 

This book broke my heart. All of these characters are fighting or yearning for something. We get to know each character on a deeper level.

Tessa- wants to know what she is.
Will- wants Tessa.
Jem- wants Tessa. 
Everyone is concerned with Tessa.
The book continues to keep up in suspense as far as Tessa’s origins. But, we do get some shockers as the twists continue to throw you for a loop. Let me state again how much I adore love triangles (only in this series, that is!). CLOCKWORK PRINCE had me twisted up all inside as Tessa tried to understand her feelings for Will and Jem. It’s a good one – that’s all I’m going to say on that! 

It’s amazing that Clare can continue to craft these amazing books filled with lovable characters and great story telling. It always comes down to that last chapter/page. I always dread turning to the last page of these books. I never know what to expect because surely the wait is mind-boggling. I’ve fallen in love with these characters and I can’t wait to continue their journey in the next installment.

Ruthless (Pretty Little Liars #10)

Title: Ruthless (Pretty Little Liars #10)
Author: Sara Shepard 
Rating: 3.8/5
SummaryFor years scandal has rocked Rosewood, Pennsylvania—and high school seniors Aria, Emily, Hanna, and Spencer have always been at the center of the drama. They’ve lost friends, been targeted by a ruthless stalker named A, and narrowly escaped death. And it’s not over yet.
Aria’s love life is on the fritz. Emily’s exploring her wild side. Hanna’s kissing the enemy. And someone from Spencer’s past—someone she never thought she’d see again—is back to haunt her.
But none of that compares to what happened last spring break. It’s their darkest secret yet and guess who found out? Now A is determined to make them pay for their crime, and the only thing scarier than A is the fear that maybe, just maybe, they deserve what’s coming to them.
My Thoughts: It's no secret around here that I adore the Pretty Little Liars series. Yes, the books are not life changing or especially well developed, but I love them nonetheless, and there's little (if anything) that can change that. Therefore, when Ruthless showed up on my doorstep the eve of its release, I dove right in, because I was dying to know what was up next for my four favorite Pretty Little Liars! As it turns out, it was just as scandalous and juicy as the previous ones, especially given the cameos and surprises that were often thrown in. I loved the plot in this one! It was so SCANDLOUS! There was always a new twist or turn with every chapter. In addition, for once every girl got a chance at love in this one, which proved not only some sweet moments but also some big secrets. The ending was also shocking, and given that cliffhanger ending, I can't wait to see what's up next! 

Full of suspense, romance, and lots of secrets, Ruthless is yet another fun addition to the Pretty Little Liars series, one that I'm sure diehard fans of PLL were eagerly eat right up, even if it means waiting for the next one that's sure to leave them with even more questions than answers. 

Catching Jordan

Catching JordanTitle: Catching Jordan
Author: Miranda Kennealy
Rating: 4/5
SummaryWhat girl doesn't want to be surrounded by gorgeous jocks day in and day out? Jordan Woods isn't just surrounded by hot guys, though - she leads them as the captain and quarterback on her high school football team. They all see her as one of the guys, and that's just fine. As long as she gets her athletic scholarship to a powerhouse university. But now there's a new guy in town who threatens her starring position on the team... and has her suddenly wishing to be seen as more than just a teammate.

My Thoughts: I finished this late last night and then went to bed and ending up dreaming about throwing footballs. I can't throw a football and being the lazy girly girl that I am, I know nothing about football except that the guys look good in the uniforms. :) So, it was a shock to me. 

I really liked this book. If you didn't know that the protagonist was a girl then at the very beginning you would swear a boy was telling it. I liked that surprise. Jordan is fun and tomboyish. I like how she spoke like a boy and hung out with boys and they treated her as an equal teammate and captain. I liked how they took her orders without question. I want that kind of control over boys. :) 

Henry frustrated me. I like him but he pissed me off. I just simply wished he'd stop pouting sooner and kiss her. 

I didn't really like Ty. I didn't like how he tried to jump in and boss the team around like he had the authority. I'm glad Henry punched him a few times. :) 

My favorite part is the Henry's a mother at football practice scene. Too funny! I giggled a lot. 

All the other characters were really likeable and funny. I loved the story. I like a protagonist that can hold her own against the best of em. Basically, read it! You will like it.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Fade (Fade #1)

Fade (Fade, #1)Title: Fade (Fade #1)
Author: Kailin Gow
Rating: 3.5/5
Summary: "My name is Celestra Caine. I am seventeen years old, which makes me a senior at Richmond High. I never thought this would happen to me, but it has... I'm one of those people you see every day, go to school with, remember seeing at the supermarket or the mall, and then one day you don't hear about them any longer. They're gone, and eventually, you forget them."
My Thoughts: I have to admit not reading anything like Fade before. It is thrilling, intriguing and original. It reads like a high concept film with characters who take you through a range of emotions and depth. The heroine is a senior in high school and she finds everything changes when she gets a call that says, "Celestra Caine, you are about to fade." Celestra learns she is special and wanted by two organizations. There is the Underground and then there are the Others. One of them will keep her alive, and the other wants her dead. Jack and Gray provide the hotness and romance of the book. The romance is executed well, and like many fans attest, Gow is a master at creating love triangles that leaves you wanting more.

All These Things I've Done (Birthright #1)

All These Things I've Done (Birthright, #1)Title: All These Things I've Done (Birthright #1)
Author: Gabrielle Zevin
Rating: 4/5
Summary:In 2083, chocolate and coffee are illegal, paper is hard to find, water is carefully rationed, and New York City is rife with crime and poverty. And yet, for Anya Balanchine, the sixteen-year-old daughter of the city's most notorious (and dead) crime boss, life is fairly routine. It consists of going to school, taking care of her siblings and her dying grandmother, trying to avoid falling in love with the new assistant D.A.'s son, and avoiding her loser ex-boyfriend. That is until her ex is accidently poisoned by the chocolate her family manufactures and the police think she's to blame. Suddenly, Anya finds herself thrust unwillingly into the spotlight--at school, in the news, and most importantly, within her mafia family.
Engrossing and suspenseful, All These Things I've Done is an utterly unique, unputdownable read that blends both the familiar and the fantastic.
My Thoughts:I was impressed with this. I wasn't quite sure what I was getting into when I picked this up. While the author says this is not a dystopian, it still feels that way. Everything has changed. From things on rations to being illegal because of scarcity (like paper. It's illegal to have it without a permit. Crazy, huh?). And for a lot of girls out there, chocolate being illegal would be a total devastation. 

What I loved about this book was the society was a key component, but it wasn't the main focus. The focus was on Anya (aka Annie) and her mobster family legacy. While other books like this one, the people are fighting to get things back to how they should be, this is more focused on the 'Family'. Just like the Prohibition, Anya's family has a way of getting their hands on certain illegal items. Such as chocolate. I was fascinated by this new world and just what it was that Anya was trying to protect her sister and brother from.

I'm going to have to admit, Leo tugged on my heart strings. I latched onto this character and couldn't let go. I am not sure why, but after all that has happened, this one the one character that my mind kept coming back to after the book was finished. This sounds like there will be another, although I've tried to find out from the author web page, I couldn't find anything to confirm it. But the ending left it open to another book. I hope there is another. This was an awesome read.

Shatter Me

Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1)Title: Shatter Me
Author:  Tahereh Mafi 
Rating: 4.5/5
Summary:Juliette hasn't touched anyone in exactly 264 days. 

The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette's touch is fatal. As long as she doesn't hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don't fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color. 

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war-- and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she's exactly what they need right now. 

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior. 

In this electrifying debut, Tahereh Mafi presents a world as riveting asThe Hunger Games and a superhero story as thrilling as The X-Men. Full of pulse-pounding romance, intoxicating villainy, and high-stakes choices, Shatter Me is a fresh and original dystopian novel—with a paranormal twist—that will leave readers anxiously awaiting its sequel.
 My Thoughts: GAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH this book was (excuse squeels of excitment) awesome!

I wont go into the whole story that would take forever but a lot of people are crushing the beginning for having a poetry feel but I liked that, for me it made the book unique. The whole book is Juliette's POV (point of view) if this is how she wants to express her feelings than she can write as much poetry as she wants. the poetry type writing wasnt horrible, in fact I liked it. It had rhythm and a lot of deep feeling. 

For a girl who hasnt been touched in 264 days she is strong and not broken. 

OK lets start with ADAM *HEART THROB* Oh God I'm not sure how to go about Juliette's love life she has weird X-man type powers that make her almost suck the life energy out of people she touches  (SPOILER) and Adam is immune *cue AWESOME love story* Kenji was a good addition to the cast of characters (also in my opinion hot, but I do not want him in a love triangle situation with Juliette). I liked the humorous element he added he sort of lightened the mood a bit in the more depressing moments.

All in all a must read! 
IM BEGGING you to read this 

The Girl of Fire and Thorns (Fire and Thorns #1)

The Girl of Fire and Thorns (Fire and Thorns #1)Title: The Girl of Fire and Thorns (Fire and Thorns #1)
Author: Rae Carson
Rating: 4/5
Summary:Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness. 

Elisa is the chosen one. 

But she is also the younger of two princesses, the one who has never done anything remarkable. She can’t see how she ever will. 

Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king—a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs the chosen one, not a failure of a princess. 

And he’s not the only one who needs her. Savage enemies seething with dark magic are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people’s savior. And he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake. 

Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young. 

Most of the chosen do.
My Thoughts: Blessed with a Godstone in her belly, Elisa is constantly living under the scrutiny of those around her. Everyone expects great things from her--waiting for her to fulfill her Service. However, so far, she feels like a disappointment. She is not a beauty or well-spoken like her older sister. She finds solace in food and the company of her studies. She is insecure and self-conscious--in other words flawed and human. As a reader, you sympathize with Elisa, but never pity her. You learn early on that she has a sharp wit and an eye for knowledge. Trusting the intuition of the Godstone and praying for guidance, she has the foresight to see how to handle situations and understand people. In sharp contrast to Elisa is her betrothed, King Alejandro. Married as part of an arrangement between their two kingdoms, theirs is not a marriage of love. As much as Alejandro is supposed to be a handsome (and desirable) king, there was always something a bit off about him. I found myself regarding him with distaste and suspicion. Even though his is Elisa's husband, I started rooting for her to find someone more worthy, so I was very pleased to meet Humberto. Even though the book isn't perfect, its really enjoyable. For me it was a one day, non-stop read. Elisa is an unlikely heroine, not a strong warrior, but a doubtful child of Faith who second guesses herself all the time. She's realistic. A pampered princess, a little whiney, who's afraid of her great destiny, yet doesn't want to go down in the history books as a failure. 

Sunday, November 13, 2011


Title: Wanderlove
Author: Kirsten Hubbard
Rating: 4/5
Summary:It all begins with a stupid question: 

Are you a Global Vagabond? 

No, but 18-year-old Bria Sandoval wants to be. In a quest for independence, her neglected art, and no-strings-attached hookups, she signs up for a guided tour of Central America—the wrong one. Middle-aged tourists with fanny packs are hardly the key to self-rediscovery. When Bria meets Rowan, devoted backpacker and dive instructor, and his outspokenly humanitarian sister Starling, she seizes the chance to ditch her group and join them off the beaten path. 

Bria's a good girl trying to go bad. Rowan's a bad boy trying to stay good. As they travel across a panorama of Mayan villages, remote Belizean islands, and hostels plagued with jungle beasties, they discover what they've got in common: both seek to leave behind the old versions of themselves. And the secret to escaping the past, Rowan’s found, is to keep moving forward. 

But Bria comes to realize she can't run forever, no matter what Rowan says. If she ever wants the courage to fall for someone worthwhile, she has to start looking back. 

Kirsten Hubbard lends her artistry into this ultimate backpacker novel, weaving her drawings into the text. Her career as a travel writer and her experiences as a real-life vagabond backpacking Central America are deeply seeded in this inspiring story.

My ThoughtsWanderlove starts the story off with Bria, who has been told by her best friends that it's really not a good time for her to travel while her ex-boyfriend told her that she's just not the type to go out and do it. 
So, naturally Bria does what anyone would do. 
Prove them wrong. 
Only when she gets to Guatemala she realizes that she's on the wrong tour and doesn't want to be so restricted. So when she meets a bunch of backpackers that invite her along she figures out that this may be the only chance she'll get to really live. Bria is a really great character. When her boyfriend Toby breaks up with her she's left broken, confused and lost. 
She stopped doing her art, her one true passion and even changed her whole life perspective. It took some serious guts for her to go out there and do it on her own. It's such a different world out there and while I would never be brave enough, it was really cool to see a character try to define herself, find a better version and come out stronger. Kudos. 
As for Rowan? What's not to like? Here's a guy who's totally free spirited, lives his life by backpacking it place to place. He lives by his own guidelines which are wise and insightful. He makes you think about life and not just yours but how he sees it. The things he says really has a way of effecting you. This was a fun filled adventure, light and entertaining that I definitely recommend. 
It makes me want to run away from home and become a backpacker. 
Well. Maybe. 

Friday, November 11, 2011

The Sweetest Thing

The Sweetest ThingTitle: The Sweetest Thing
Author: Christina Mandelski 
Rating: 3.8/5
In the world of Sheridan Wells, life is perfect when she’s decorating a cake. Unfortunately, everything else is a complete mess: her mom ran off years ago, her dad is more interested in his restaurant, and the idea of a boyfriend is laughable. 
But Sheridan is convinced finding her mom will solve all her problems—only her dad’s about to get a cooking show in New York, which means her dream of a perfect family will be dashed. 

Using just the right amount of romance, family drama, and cute boys,The Sweetest Thing will entice fans with its perfect mixture of girl-friendly ingredients.

My Thoughts: I'm the kind of girl who enjoys dessert, so a book about a girl who decorates cakes is right up my alley. Throw in a bunch of intriguing family issues and the slightest hint of a love story and you've pretty much got yourself a book synopsis that will draw me in. 

I enjoyed reading about Sheridan's cake decorating skills and trying to imagine her creations in the back of her grandmother's bakery, Sweetie's. It was also quite a treat to meet all these interesting secondary characters - her father Donovan Wells, her grandmother Nanny, her best friends Lori & Jack, her grandmother's assistant Mr. Roz. 

Though the romantic aspect of the book was predictable (as in, I guessed right away what might happen), I still thought how and when it happened was rather sweet. I'm definitely rooting for the couple in question because to me, it seemed like the perfect fit. 

Sad to say however, I honestly really did not like Sheridan all that much as a character. I thought she was very immature and very selfish at times, so I got annoyed with her most of the time. I got so annoyed in fact, that I'd occasionally have to put down the book and calm myself down before reading it again. 

All in all, it's an average read for me.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Crossed (Matched #2)

Crossed (Matched, #2)Title: Crossed (Matched #2)
Author: Ally Condie
Rating: 4/5
SummaryIn search of a future that may not exist and faced with the decision of who to share it with, Cassia journeys to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky - taken by the Society to his certain death - only to find that he has escaped, leaving a series of clues in his wake.

Cassia's quest leads her to question much of what she holds dear, even as she finds glimmers of a different life across the border. But as Cassia nears resolve and certainty about her future with Ky, an invitation for rebellion, an unexpected betrayal, and a surprise visit from Xander - who may hold the key to the uprising and, still, to Cassia's heart - change the game once again. Nothing is as expected on the edge of Society, where crosses and double crosses make the path more twisted than ever.
My Thoughts: Crossed, by Ally Condie, is the highly anticipated sequel to Matched. So, I was beyond excited when I got my hands on the book last weekend!
Anyways, my intial reaction upon finishing the book was:
And now for the book:
Crossed, which is told through both Cassia and Ky's POV's, is such a powerful followup to the first book. I say powerful because we not only find out what's going on in the outer provinces, but we really dive into Ky's backstory, which is incredibly moving and heartbreaking. I also didn't realize how invested I would become in these characters. I really felt for them and was on the edge of my seat the entire time!

Readers should know that we also get some free-flowin' romance between Cassia and Ky! 

I know right?!...FINALLY!!

Like any good dystopian novel, this book poses some interesting questions and really makes you think. There are lots of secrets and stories left to unfold and I can't wait to see how it all plays out in the final book. 

The Pledge (The Pledge #1)

The Pledge (The Pledge, #1)Title: The Pledge (The Pledge #1)
Author: Kimberly Derting
Rating: 4/5
SummaryIn the violent country of Ludania, the classes are strictly divided by the language they speak. The smallest transgression, like looking a member of a higher class in the eye while they are speaking their native tongue, results in immediate execution. Seventeen-year-old Charlaina has always been able to understand the languages of all classes, and she's spent her life trying to hide her secret. The only place she can really be free is the drug-fueled underground clubs where people go to shake off the oppressive rules of the world they live in. It's there that she meets a beautiful and mysterious boy named Max who speaks a language she's never heard before . . . and her secret is almost exposed. 

Charlie is intensely attracted to Max, even though she can't be sure where his real loyalties lie. As the emergency drills give way to real crisis and the violence escalates, it becomes clear that Charlie is the key to something much bigger: her country's only chance for freedom from the terrible power of a deadly regime.
My Thoughts:  Wow! I couldn’t put this book down, it was absolutely wonderful and I am grateful for the opportunity to be able to read it prior to the release date.  Caution: SPOILERS ahead! I loved the concept of an evil queen who can’t be killed. Well, she can die of old age but her soul passes on to the next woman of lineage; therefore passing her dictatorship and witchcraft powers to whoever sits in the throne. I also loved the idea of a lost heir who has abilities that were both magical and simple (Charlie’s skills lie in her ability to understand a multitude of language, while her sister Angeline has healing powers). 

I loved that Charlie wasn’t so quick to exchange flirtatious exploits with Max. The attraction was there and given the length of the book, I thought the romance was paced quite well. I’m glad there were no instantaneous combustion between these two when they first met. I was a bit worried there when Xander came into the picture. I would’ve been thoroughly disappointed if there was a love triangle. Mind you, there was a bit of competition between Max and Aron (Charlie’s best friend) but it was not explored. 

The Pledge is a chockfull of surprises – in such a way that Kimberly Derting flexed her writing muscle. There wasn’t a shortage of action and lulls that will render you in a bored stupor. The world building was quite unique in such a way that Ms. Derting combined primitiveness and modern antiquity. I’m a fan of fantasy and most of the books I’ve read in that genre were usually hefty. I wish this book had a couple of hundred more pages. I know I could probably gobble them up easy.