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[Flashback Friday] - #65

Flashback Friday is a weekly event, hosted here, that highlights a past release that we're dying to get our hands on...

See something you like here?
Click the book title to add it to your Goodreads TBR List!



Title: Born of Illusion
   Author: Teri Brown
   Release Date: June 11th, 2013

     Anna Van Housen has a secret.

     A gifted illusionist, Anna assists her mother, the renowned medium Marguerite Van Housen, in her stage show and sĂ©ances, easily navigating the underground world of magicians, mediums, and mentalists in 1920’s New York. As the illegitimate daughter of Harry Houdini—or so Marguerite claims—sleight of hand illusions have never been a challenge for Anna. The real trick is keeping her own gifts secret from her opportunistic mother. Because while Marguerite’s own powers may be a sham, Anna possesses a true ability to sense people’s feelings and foretell the future.

     But as Anna’s powers intensify, she begins to experience frightening visions of her mother in peril, which leads her to explore the powers she’s tried so long to hide. And when a mysterious young man named Cole moves into the flat downstairs, introducing Anna to a secret society that studies people with gifts like hers, she is forced to confront her past and rethink everything she’s ever known. Is her mother truly in danger, or are Anna’s visions merely illusion? And could the great Houdini really be her father, or is it just another of Marguerite’s tricks?

     From Teri Brown comes a world bursting with magic, with romance, and the temptations of Jazz Age New York—and the story of a girl about to become the mistress of her own destiny.

My Stance:

     Frankly I saw this book at one time, or something similar to the name, and while I don't understand or frankly know what the purpose of the story is supposed to be. However at the same time, being the daughter of Houdini tends to give you those sort of illusions and lifestyle. What is the point of all that grandeur though? I mean, with the question of her father in the air, and the assumption that Houdini is that; I wouldn't expect anything else than the illusions and the slight of hands. As well, the underworld and the secrecies are there and expected, however Anna's secret is far greater and much more puzzling than any magic trick.

     Anna's secret is almost of a clairvoyance of nature, however when her visions start to become of her mother and not like she's used to, her view on the normality of the world changes. The boy that moves in under her, Cole, makes that line even more blurred when a society comes into view. A world that she doesn't know about, and frankly I find that hard to believe, I mean if you look and have the access she would have had.

     The story of Anna, makes this unique and while I wish there was more the synopsis, that alone makes me want to read the story and find out about her. I was hesitant to pick up the book because of the topic, and how confused I was to the story. I wasn't sure what to expect out of it, and while I looked at it again, I saw something I didn't see before. I wanted a book that not only piqued my interest, but I was on the fence about. Ultimately I wanted a book that I could change my view on it initially, and enjoy it through and through.

[Book Review] - Legend by Marie Lu

Title: Legend
   Series: Marie Lu
   Series: #1 - Legend
   Format: Hardback
   Release Date: November 29th, 2013
   My Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0

     What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.

     From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.

     Full of nonstop action, suspense, and romance, this novel is sure to move readers as much as it thrills.

My Review:

     Legend, WHY hadn't I read this sooner? I have to say I missed out on a great book and wished I had gotten to this sooner. I enjoyed this dystopia, and while it seems like lately all I am reading is dystopians. However I find that this is getting overcrowded and finding a good dystopian is harder and harder to come by lately. Legend isn't one of those books, and while I will say that it's good, I can understand why some people may not enjoy it as much, and won't like it.

     First of all the characters were great, June and Day share the book alternating their perspectives and their world. Coming from completely different interactions, they are bound to collide after a while, and their world begs for them to. I love their dynamic relationship that forms, but there is a secret they both hold, and while keep those secrets, the tension is almost stifling between the two.

     June is a part of the Republic, a new government trying to control and monitor all of it's people. While the districts of it's town are plagued with a, well plague, they can't provide enough cure to the entire population. I got the purpose of that plague right away (read it if you want to know), I just wish there was a better explanation. June is built into the military, like her brother, and she tries to think just like the rebels threatening their Republic.

     Day is a complete bipolar character to June. He is considered part of the rebels, however he has no affiliation with them. He attacks and steals from the Republic to feed his family, and when his brother becomes sick with the plague he turns desperate. His mother believes he's dead, and doesn't know where the gifts come from, which is sad in itself. When the time comes, he comes face to face with June's brother, and the whole story turns on it's head.

     The first issue with the book came next. After the face to face with June's brother and Day, June's brother ends up dead with one of Day's daggers in his chest. When June is faced with the evidence, she jumps from A to B instantly concluding that Day is guilty. While yeah I would be devastated, Day hasn't killed anyone in the past, why would he start there. There was a reason, or he didn't do it at all. When she actually confronts him about it later in the book, he denies it and she doesn't believe him. I just don't buy it, why doesn't she question anything. It's so hard to believe.

     Next the worldbuilding is a little lackluster, and I am holding out hope for the next novels to pick it up and run with the building. It got better near the end, just wasn't what I was hoping for. There really isn't anything going into the Republic. While I wanted to know more of the city, what was there gave my mind and imagination to fill in the holes and aid in the creative world building. I found that enjoyable, while most may not, I like the free idea to help world build and add my own personal touch to the story.

     While some parts of this book was a bit underwhelming, I found that those were able to be looked past with the great story telling. The writing style was great with the dual perspectives, and is probably one of the better duals I have read lately. I didn't expect this to be as good as it was, I fully expected something different. I can't wait to get into the next book.
     

[Waiting on Wednesday] - #63

     Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted over at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

See something you like here?
Click the book title to add it to your Goodreads TBR List!


Title: Strange and Ever After
   Author: Susan Dennard
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: July 22nd, 2014

     In the conclusion to the trilogy that Publishers Weekly called “a roaring—and addictive—gothic world,” Eleanor Fitt must control her growing power, face her feelings for Daniel, and confront the evil necromancer Marcus...all before it’s too late.

     He took her brother, he took her mother, and now, Marcus has taken her good friend Jie. With more determination than ever to bring this sinister man to justice, Eleanor heads to the hot desert streets of nineteenth-century Egypt in hopes of ending this nightmare. But in addition to her increasingly tense relationships with Daniel, Joseph, and her demon, Oliver, Eleanor must also deal with her former friend, Allison, who has curiously entangled herself in Eleanor’s mission.

     With the rising dead chomping at her every move and Jie’s life hanging in the balance, Eleanor is convinced that her black magic will see her through to the bitter end. But there will be a price. Though she and the Spirit Hunters have weathered every battle thus far, there will be consequences to suffer this time—the effects of which will be irreversible. And when it’s over, only some will be able to live a strange and ever after.

     Susan Dennard will leave readers breathless and forever changed in the concluding pages of this riveting ride.

My Stance:

     So while this book came out yesterday, I will wait to see if I can get my hands on a signed copy. I needs it to complete the signed collection. Frankly, if I can't I will still pick it up, Susan Dennard just took my breath away with Eleanor and how she interacted with Daniel. I wanted them to be together and while I haven't read the second I am still in hopes that it'll happen. I need to get to the second book, it's on a high priority since this book is out already!

     Frankly what I love the most about this book is the whole 1900s aspect, old elegant style mixed with zombies and sci-fi. It's a great combination that I wish some people would take and add their own twist to it. It's this originality that I find intriguing and fun to read. Strange and Ever After will be great, and while I anxiously await to see if she's coming to Anderson's sometime, I will fantasize about this book for a while. Is that creepy? I hope not.

[Book Haul] - #2

Book Haul is an event in which Bloggers and Readers alike showcase their weeks/months pickups and purchases. This showcases new books and older books alike. Feel free to share your books with viewers alike by posting in the comment section with your video or blog. Thanks!

BookOutlet #1
BookOutlet #2
Half-Price Books & Meijer
Anderson's Bookshop

        





  
  
  





Half Price Books & Meijer - Book Haul:


    








Anderson's Bookshop - Book Haul:


  


[Book Review] - Not A Drop To Drink by Mindy McGinnis

Title: Not A Drop To Drink
   Series: Mindy McGinnis
   Series: #1 - Not A Drop To Drink
   Format: Hardback
   Release Date: September 24th, 2013
   My Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0

     Regret was for people with nothing to defend, people who had no water.

     Lynn knows every threat to her pond: drought, a snowless winter, coyotes, and, most importantly, people looking for a drink. She makes sure anyone who comes near the pond leaves thirsty, or doesn't leave at all.

     Confident in her own abilities, Lynn has no use for the world beyond the nearby fields and forest. Having a life means dedicating it to survival, and the constant work of gathering wood and water. Having a pond requires the fortitude to protect it, something Mother taught her well during their quiet hours on the rooftop, rifles in hand.

     But wisps of smoke on the horizon mean one thing: strangers. The mysterious footprints by the pond, nighttime threats, and gunshots make it all too clear Lynn has exactly what they want, and they won’t stop until they get it….

     With evocative, spare language and incredible drama, danger, and romance, debut author Mindy McGinnis depicts one girl’s journey in a barren world not so different than our own.

My Review:

     Not a Drop to Drink surprised me at every turn and while each page wasn't action packed or held the immense dystopian feel, it was still a dystopian. While most dystopians struggle to get that end of the world in a blaze of fire and glory, what you don't usually see is the one that's subtle and ever changing. This book takes what everyone sees for granted and pits it in their stomach and twists it into a tale of survival. I enjoyed this book for that subtlety.

     Lynn and her mother live alone, lost from all civilization in a house all of their own. The grass is overgrown, the pond in their backyard is marked, and daily water is skimmed from the bank, grass, and anything possible. Water is their salvation and their death. It's the one things that's questionable in survival, water is a commodity people don't see everyday, and when it comes to it, is life or death. Having grown up together, they are completely different, yet at the same time important to each other.

     When it comes down to it, they both understand that the water is their survival. In order to defend it and their livelihood, it's a shoot first ask questions later mentality. Their isolation causes confusion in just who the enemy is. Animals, monsters in the night, or someone that knows just how to shoot a gun. And in one tragic night the world she sees turns on its head. I understand that choices were to be made, but in that night those weren't available.

     Going forward the book takes a snow miserable journey done a coming of age take of Lynn. Just who she is and the world she chooses to live in. The choice of helping a new found group that lives not that far away, near a river, or live in solitude with a friend, to her and her mother. The friend has a few secrets of his own, but visiting every so often to make sure Lynn is alright. The characters were well balanced and creative. However, I wanted more romance in this book than what was provided.

     The subtlety of this book, the madness of a dystopia it was drove me to enjoy it as much more of a novel than what I expected it to. Lynn was terrific and while I expected much more of a romance out of Lynn. It was tragic and heartbreaking to watch Lynn grow throughout the book. However it left you with that cliffhanger that begs for more. Mindy McGinnis created a debut unlike anything else. Even if you have read a dystopian before, it won't be anything like this. Not a Drop to Drink's story and subtle environment creates a world and story far beyond any expectation.

[Teaser Tuesday] - #21

Hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.
  1. Take your Current Read.
  2. Grab 2 Teaser sentences from the book (please be sure to avoid spoilers)
  3. Post it on your blog with the title and author, so other Teasing Tuesday participants can add it to their To Be Read list.
  4. When visiting other Teasing Tuesday participants, leave a link with your current TT in their comments.

Title: Raging Star
   Author: Moira Young
   Release Date: May 13th, 2014

     Quote: "I dunno, look around, ask Peg, I says. We're in a junkyard, fergawdsake. I managed to find you that necklace in a landfull an I'd say it's pretty fine.

     He grabs hold of it. The little green glass circle on a leather string that I gave him fer our last birthday. Eighteen year. He gives me a hopeful look as he says, Maybe I could-

     You are not givin that to her, I says. Ungrateful swine. An don't go givin her yer spare bootlaces neether."

--- Page 152


[Stacking the Shelves] - #66

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga’s Reviews and is all about sharing the books you are adding to your bookshelf, be it the physical one or your digital one!

     Good Morning and beginning of the week. Hope you all had a great weekend, and you managed to pick up better books than I did. I kinda ran a bit tight and didn't have many options to pick through. What I have this week is a few books from my older stash, there wasn't anything new released this week that I managed to pick up, or anything in this year. Some of these books are from a BookOutlet shipment I got recently (first four) so at least those are current-ish. I hope you all enjoy this. I will have another BookHaul later today possibly. Keep an eye out.

     So without further adieu:

Flame
The Severed Tower
The Fallout
Don't Look Now
Lies
The Body Finder
Hourglass
The Sacrifice

Shelf Additions:

Title: Flame
   Author: Amy Kathleen Ryan
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: January 7th, 2014

     In the thrilling conclusion to the Sky Chasers series Waverly, Kieran, and Seth struggle to survive on-board the New Horizon—and take down their enemies before it's too late.

     Waverly and the other members of the Empyrean have scattered, and their home ship has been destroyed. Their mission to rescue their parents didn't go as planned, and now they're at an even greater disadvantage: trapped with their enemies on the New Horizon, trying to find a way to survive. Kieran has been pulled under Anne Mather’s wing, but is she really trying to make peace, or just using Kieran to build her own power? Meanwhile, Waverly is taken in by a mysterious old man who wants to help her bring Anne Mather down—but the more Waverly cooperates with him, the more dangerous her position is, and the more at odds with Kieran she becomes.

     Seth's situation is even worse. After setting out from the Empyrean on his own, with only a vague strategy to guide him, he is a fugitive aboard the New Horizon. He's doing what he can to challenge the power of Anne Mather, but he's badly hurt, and getting sicker.

     Will Seth ever see Waverly again? Will his health hold out long enough to help her topple their enemies? And will Waverly find a way to unite with her friends before they all fall? Nothing is sure and every moment is a risk in this explosive finale of the Sky Chasers series.






Title:  The Severed Tower
   Author: J. Barton Mitchel
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: November 19th, 2013

     In the thrilling conclusion to the Sky Chasers series Waverly, Kieran, and Seth struggle to survive on-board the New Horizon—and take down their enemies before it's too late.

Waverly and the other members of the Empyrean have scattered, and their home ship has been destroyed. Their mission to rescue their parents didn't go as planned, and now they're at an even greater disadvantage: trapped with their enemies on the New Horizon, trying to find a way to survive. Kieran has been pulled under Anne Mather’s wing, but is she really trying to make peace, or just using Kieran to build her own power? Meanwhile, Waverly is taken in by a mysterious old man who wants to help her bring Anne Mather down—but the more Waverly cooperates with him, the more dangerous her position is, and the more at odds with Kieran she becomes.

Seth's situation is even worse. After setting out from the Empyrean on his own, with only a vague strategy to guide him, he is a fugitive aboard the New Horizon. He's doing what he can to challenge the power of Anne Mather, but he's badly hurt, and getting sicker.

Will Seth ever see Waverly again? Will his health hold out long enough to help her topple their enemies? And will Waverly find a way to unite with her friends before they all fall? Nothing is sure and every moment is a risk in this explosive finale of the Sky Chasers series.






Title: The Fallout
   Author: S.A. Bodeen
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: September 18th, 2013

     In this long-awaited sequel to The Compound, Eli and his family can run but they can't hide.

     After barely escaping from the compound where Eli’s dad kept his family for six years, they’re learning to acclimate to “normal” life—whatever that is for them. It seems like the entire world wants to know what happened to this high profile family.

     Slowly they begin to make their way back into the world, but Eli can’t escape the creeping feeling that they’re being watched everywhere they go. But by who?

     Eli’s anxiety is heightened as unnerving information continually surfaces about Eli’s dad’s company. Not to mention the sketchy new friend his twin brother Eddy has. Nothing seems to be “normal” anymore. New people are entering their lives—but who can Eli and his family trust?






Title: Don't Look Now
   Author: Michelle Gagnon
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: August 27th, 2013

     Noa Torsen is on the run. Having outsmarted the sinister corporation Pike & Dolan, Noa and her friend Zeke now move stealthily across the country, protecting runaways before they become test subjects for P&D's horrific experiments. Noa knows all too well what that feels like: Whatever they did to her has left her exhausted and scared.

     Back in Boston, Peter anxiously follows Noa's movements from his computer, using his hacker skills to feed her the information she needs to stay alive. But he's desperate to do something more, especially when he learns what P&D has done to his ex-girlfriend Amanda.

     Then, in an explosive confrontation, Noa and her team are trapped in the one place they thought was safe. It will take everything Noa and Peter have to bring down the corporation before it gets them first. And with no one to trust and enemies hiding at every turn, they may be the only people alive who can.

     This stunning second book in the critically acclaimed Don't Turn Around trilogy raises the stakes to their absolute limit and will leave readers begging for the exciting conclusion, Don't Let Go.






Title: Lies
   Author: Michael Grant
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: May 4th, 2010

     It's been seven months since all the adults disappeared. Gone.

     It happens in one night. A girl who died now walks among the living; Zil and the Human Crew set fire to Perdido Beach; and amid the flames and smoke, Sam sees the figure of the boy he fears the most: Drake. But Drake is dead. Sam and Caine defeated him along with the Darkness—or so they thought.

     As Perdido Beach burns, battles rage: Astrid against the Town Council; the Human Crew versus the mutants; and Sam against Drake, who is back from the dead and ready to finish where he and Sam left off. And all the while deadly rumors are raging like the fire itself, spread by the prophetess Orsay and her companion, Nerezza. They say that death is a way to escape the FAYZ. Conditions are worse than ever and kids are desperate to get out. But are they desperate enough to believe that death will set them free?






Title: The Body Finder
   Author: Kimberly Derting
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: March 16th, 2010

     Violet Ambrose is grappling with two major issues: Jay Heaton and her morbid secret ability. While the sixteen-year-old is confused by her new feelings for her best friend since childhood, she is more disturbed by her "power" to sense dead bodies—or at least those that have been murdered. Since she was a little girl, she has felt the echoes that the dead leave behind in the world... and the imprints that attach to their killers.

     Violet has never considered her strange talent to be a gift; it mostly just led her to find the dead birds her cat had tired of playing with. But now that a serial killer has begun terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, she realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.

     Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet on her quest to find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved to find herself hoping that Jay's intentions are much more than friendly. But even as she's falling intensely in love, Violet is getting closer and closer to discovering a killer... and becoming his prey herself.






Title: Hourglass
   Author: Claudia Gray
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: March 9th, 2010

     Bianca will risk everything to be with Lucas.

     After escaping from Evernight Academy, the vampire boarding school where they met, Bianca and Lucas take refuge with Black Cross, a fanatical group of vampire hunters. Bianca must hide her supernatural heritage or risk certain death at its hands. But when Black Cross captures her friend—the vampire Balthazar—hiding is no longer an option. Soon Bianca and Lucas are on the run again, pursued not only by Black Cross, but by the powerful leaders of Evernight. Yet no matter how far they travel, Bianca can't escape her destiny. Bianca has always believed their love could survive anything...but can it survive what's to come?






Title: The Sacrifice
   Author: Charlie Higson
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: June 11th, 2013

     The Sacrifice picks up after Small Sam and The Kid arrive at the Tower of London at the end of The Dead. Though Sam finds safety and friendship at the Tower with Jordan Hordern's crew, he can't settle down. The only thing he wants is to be reunited with his sister, Ella. Despite Ed's protests, Sam and the Kid strike out westward, through the no-go zone.
Meanwhile, Shadowman is tracking Saint George across north London, watching him build up his army. Shadowman knows that Saint George is an extremely dangerous threat, but no one will take his warnings seriously.

     Some answers to the questions we've been wondering about--What is the Disease? Where did it come from? Is there a cure?--are addressed by an unexpected source: a diseased adult nicknamed Wormwood who has the ability to speak, though his ravings are difficult to decipher.

     Unspeakable horror, edge-of-the-seat suspense, and stomach-churning plot twists continue in Book 4 of Charlie Higson's masterful Enemy saga.

[Flashback Friday] - #64

Flashback Friday is a weekly event, hosted here, that highlights a past release that we're dying to get our hands on...

See something you like here?
Click the book title to add it to your Goodreads TBR List!



Title: Five Summers
   Author: Una LaMarche
   Release Date: October 12th, 2010

     Four best friends, five summers of camp memories.

     The summer we were nine: Emma was branded “Skylar’s friend Emma” by the infamous Adam Loring...
     The summer we were ten: Maddie realized she was too far into her lies to think about telling the truth...
     The summer we were eleven: Johanna totally freaked out during her first game of Spin the Bottle...
     The summer we were twelve: Skylar’s love letters from her boyfriend back home were exciting to all of us—except Skylar...
     Our last summer together: Emma and Adam almost kissed. Jo found out Maddie’s secret. Skylar did something unthinkable... and whether we knew it then or not, five summers of friendship began to fall apart.

     Three years after the fateful last night of camp, the four of us are coming back to camp for reunion weekend—and for a second chance. Bittersweet, funny, and achingly honest, Five Summers is a story of friendship, love, and growing up that is perfect for fans of Anne Brashares and Judy Blume's Summer Sisters.

My Stance:

     This is a book that I have seen everywhere. I can't seem to escape it, and while I am not a girl I like this genre at the moment. The whole character growth and watching as problems seem to work themselves out and the people deal with their situations and hardships just get my blood going. I know it sounds lame and almost too chick-oriented, but hey guys can enjoy chick lit too. Granted it's probably one of my more preferred genres, some of the others are just lacking at the moment (I haven't found one I can sink my eyes into).

     Five Summers seems like a great novel of four girls whose whole world starts to crumble summer after summer. It makes me wonder what comes between the four. It can't be boys, I mean that'd be too easy and predictable. I can see it being part, but not the whole thing. The premise seems sound, I am worried that the part that drove them all apart is going to be so weak that I'm not going to buy into it. I hope to find out sometime.

[Book Review] - If I Lie by Corrine Jackson

Title: If I Lie
   Series: Corrine Jackson
   Format: Hardback
   Release Date: July 9th, 2013
   My Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0

     A powerful debut novel about the gray space between truth and perception.

     Quinn’s done the unthinkable: she kissed a guy who is not Carey, her boyfriend. And she got caught. Being branded a cheater would be bad enough, but Quinn is deemed a traitor, and shunned by all of her friends. Because Carey’s not just any guy—he’s serving in Afghanistan and revered by everyone in their small, military town.

     Quinn could clear her name, but that would mean revealing secrets that she’s vowed to keep—secrets that aren’t hers to share. And when Carey goes MIA, Quinn must decide how far she’ll go to protect her boyfriend…and her promise.

My Review:

     This was one of those books that I bought on a while, because I was looking for something to just break me wide open and make me crumble. I didn't think Corrine Jackson had it in her ith the synopsis, at least to the degree that happened. Oh my word this book is immense, and there is one fault I couldn't look past, but other than that the book was sound and great.

     First of all Quinn is part of a nuclear military family, in a community that is primarily all military. They all bind together and when something happens to one of their own they bind together. Quinn's mother is one of those that the community rallies around to kick out. She divorces her husband (Quinn's dad) and leaves with his brother. Her dad is quite and doesn't have much to do with Quinn at all. He doesn't seem to know anything about her, what she eats or what she enjoys. He's extremely strict and doesn't let anything she does get away without something.

     So when Quinn is caught kissing a boy who isn't her boyfriend Carey. Carey is a Marine and shortly after the incident gets sent off to Afghanistan. The story starts with him being reported as MIA and the whole community reeling in agony. However as much as Quinn wants to feel sorry and question what is going on with her ex-boyfriend Carey she can't because of the backlash of the community.

     The story is so relatable, because of the secret that Quinn is keeping for Carey. The reason this is relatable, is everyone keeps secrets for their friends even if the backlash is tremendous. However this is the part of the book that I don't understand. Quinn's family life, her friends, the whole community flat out bullies her and doesn't ask her what happened, they just assume what went on. I don't see how Quinn put up with the abuse for so long. If it was me I would have said something sooner than her.

     The romance in the book, even if it takes a backstory to Quinn and her overall growth makes me enjoy the book that much more. Blake was great, the boy she was caught kissing, and while she does care about him she can't date him because it solidifies the community assumptions. However, if she does care about him that much she should have said something to someone. She has the options to more than just once, and it just boggled my mind why she didn't.

     If you want a quick read, something that will take your mind and heart and rip them both open, I suggest this book. It's great, and it's maybe 280 pages so it's a short quick read. I guarantee that by the end of this book you will need a box if tissues or something to wipe the tears away. Jackson created a beast in this book, and it's wrapped up so nice and cuddly Do not underestimate this book, it's worth it!

[Update] - 7/16/2014

   So lately I have been releasing two book reviews a week. I fell behind on my reviews and I want to catch up to get to some of the more current books I have recently read as well. This will take some time, further when I get to the current books I have been reading I will go back to releasing one book review per week. At the same time I know I need to update my Goodreads review pages, as well as Amazon. I will probably do Goodreads and get it up to date, than when I get around to it I will update Amazon.

     So I have been getting a bunch of e-mails from people reading my Amazon reviews. I appreciate that you all take the time and read the reviews and what I personally think of the books. That's why I do them. However, 90% of what the e-mails are inquiring is the typical: "Will you read my book? I will send it to you in a PDF?" I am sorry, but frankly this is getting more annoying than what I thought it would be. I am not sure what I am going to do about it, but I want to keep posting my reviews to Amazon. I want to post and give people I don't normally reach some insight into the book and what I think. If it helps, I am grateful and that's why I am here.

     I have been looking at reworking some of the page design again. Frankly the whole only 8-10 posts on the main page is bugging me. I have been trying to work with a friend to figure out the script and work around it, but it's just not working and we're both confused. If you have any suggestions on different designs feel free to drop me an e-mail.
     Thanks!

[Featured Discussion] - Wrong Book/Wrong Place

Featured Discussion is a random discussion, hosted here, that highlights different book topics, random ideas, and overall point of view of the young adult community...

Want to join in?
Feel free to make a post and post a link back to it here.

Featured Discussion:

     I thought about doing this, but at the same time this is a question I want to ask the book universe. Frankly I found the matter funny and while I was shopping at Meijers. When I was looking through their YA section I found this Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan book. However if you look at it, it clearly came from Sam's Club. My question is is this book even their to sell, or do they have the ability to sell books from another store? I mean if a special edition book from Barnes and Noble ends up on Walmart's shelves, does that give them the right? Now don't get the wrong idea by this topic, I bought the book, and didn't question it there, because frankly they will of course say they can sell it.



     Wrong Book/Wrong Place?
     So the meat and potatoes of this story is, is Meijer allowed to sell me a book that for a lack of better words came straight out of Sam's Club. The picture is there, I took the sticker off cause frankly I hate the damn sticky sons of ... Now my first question is is this technically considered stealing? I mean I bought the book, but what if someone left it there and they didn't know any different. Well the cashier commented on it, but went about her job as normal like nothing was happening.

steal [steel]

verb (used with object), stole, sto·len, steal·ing.

  1. to take (the property of another or others) without permission or right, especially secretly or by force: A pickpocket stole his watch.
  2. to appropriate (ideas, credit, words, etc.) without right or acknowledgment.
  3. to take, get, or win insidiously, surreptitiously, subtly, or by chance: He stole my girlfriend.
  4. to move, bring, convey, or put secretly or quietly; smuggle (usually followed by away, from, in, into, etc.): They stole the bicycle into the bedroom to surprise the child.
  5. Baseball. (of a base runner) to gain (a base) without the help of a walk or batted ball, as by running to it during the delivery of a pitch.


     I don't consider it stealing, I mean I didn't walk out with the book. I legitimately paid for the book. However I believe that something is amiss in this case. I mean I don't believe they should have been allowed to sell me the book in this case. If you think about in a reverse case, they just stole the sale from Sam's Club. Now don't get me wrong I am not trying to get either of them in trouble. I am curious to see what some others would have done.


      First of all, I could have bought the book at another case, so maybe I am to blame just as much (But it's Rick Riordan!). I found it rather funny buying a Sam's Club book at a Meijer. I should have scanned the receipt (minus all the personal information and such). I am curious if I did the right thing, should I have been able to buy the book or not?

     The options for this are simple:
  1. I shouldn't have been able to
  2. I should have been able to
  3. I should have but at a discount
  4. I should have brought it up, and questioned the cashier
      I am not sure what I should have done looking back on it. I mean buying the book as a consumer is beyond a doubt the right answer, but morally should I have stood up for Sam's Club and brought it to the attention of the Meijer's employee? I don't believe it's my responsibility for that, but what if it was it was the book of some child that was left behind? How would I have known, and no one questioned me about it, not even the cashier. Frankly I don't believe I am at all at fault, I don't think there was any way to know anything else other than try to buy the book at a foreign store. I just laughed.

      Feel free to comment and berate if you feel like it. I want to know what you think and ultimately to see if what I did was overall morally correct. I can't get past how hilarious it was.

[Waiting on Wednesday] - #62

     Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted over at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

See something you like here?
Click the book title to add it to your Goodreads TBR List!


Title: Dissonance
   Author: Erica O'Rourke
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: July 22nd, 2014

     Delancy Sullivan has always known there’s more to reality than what people see. Every time someone makes a choice, a new, parallel world branches off from the existing one. Eating breakfast or skipping it, turning left instead of right, sneaking out instead of staying in bed ~ all of these choices create an alternate universe in which an echo self takes the road not travelled and makes the opposite decision. As a Walker, someone who can navigate between these worlds, Del’s job is to keep all of the dimensions in harmony.

     Normally, Del can hear the dissonant frequency that each world emits as clear as a bell. But when a training session in an off-key world goes horribly wrong, she is forbidden from Walking by the Council. But Del’s not big on following the rules and she secretly starts to investigate these other worlds. Something strange is connecting them and it’s not just her random encounters with echo versions of the guy she likes, Simon Lane.

     But Del’s decisions have unimaginable consequences and, as she begins to fall for the Echo Simons in each world, she draws closer to a truth that the Council of Walkers is trying to hide ~ a secret that threatens the fate of the entire multiverse.

My Stance:

     I found a new enjoyment for Erica O'Rourke when I finished the Torn Trilogy. I kept her on my watch list for future books and frankly I am glad to add her to my Wish list. She's got a great potential in this synopsis. The idea that Delancy can navigate between all the different reality or alternate universes to reality is great. It reminds me of Fringe, and while I didn't watch or enjoy the show, I liked the premise.

     Del strikes me as a girl who is like Mo in Torn, stubborn, independent, and wants to explore and experience the world for herself and not take as much advice from others. Not that she doesn't take advice, but rather the experience of doing it that frames her view. The part that gets me is the whole why doesn't the Council of Walkers want her to journey between the different universes and keep them in line. What does she fear or what is she causing?

     The synopsis is great and while it doesn't give too much away it keeps me aware and interested in this book. I just hope I can see Erica again to get this book signed!

[Book Review] - 3:59 by Gretchen McNeil

Title: 3:59
   Series: Gretchen McNeil
   Format: Hardback
   Release Date: September 17th, 2013
   My Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0

     Josie Byrne's life is spiraling out of control. Her parents are divorcing, her boyfriend Nick has grown distant, and her physics teacher has it in for her. When she's betrayed by the two people she trusts most, Josie thinks things can't get worse.

     Until she starts having dreams about a girl named Jo. Every night at the same time—3:59 a.m.

     Jo's life is everything Josie wants: she's popular, her parents are happily married, and Nick adores her. It all seems real, but they're just dreams, right? Josie thinks so, until she wakes one night to a shadowy image of herself in the bedroom mirror – Jo.

     Josie and Jo realize that they are doppelgängers living in parallel universes that overlap every twelve hours at exactly 3:59. Fascinated by Jo's perfect world, Josie jumps at the chance to jump through the portal and switch places for a day.

     But Jo’s world is far from perfect. Not only is Nick not Jo's boyfriend, he hates her. Jo's mom is missing, possibly insane. And at night, shadowy creatures feed on human flesh.

     By the end of the day, Josie is desperate to return to her own life. But there’s a problem: Jo has sealed the portal, trapping Josie in this dangerous world. Can she figure out a way home before it’s too late?

     From master of suspense Gretchen McNeil comes a riveting and deliciously eerie story about the lives we wish we had – and how they just might kill you.

My Review:

     3:59 was supposed to be this overwhelming thriller and I fully expected it to be, having read Ten. However what I got was a sci-fi book with an underwhelming sense of thrill wrapped around it. I let go of the thriller expectation and just read the book as a new unique novel. Overall the book was great and with a multiverse, time-space continuum aspect it propelled this book forward. I enjoyed it, and I think how different it was compared to what I thought it was going to be is why I enjoyed this book.

     Josie is a typical girl with her normal high school friends, however in the beginning of the story we understand that her whole world is turning upside down. Her parents are separated, her mother is completely distant, her job is on the line and because of a train she loses it, and her boyfriends cheats on her with her best friend. She is lonely, desperate and seeking any companionship, so when she realizes that her mothers research opens a hole to another universe, she jumps at the chance to switch places.

     Josie and Jo are the same girl however there are two completely different aspects to their worlds. In Jo's world her mother is deemed psychotic and is placed in a ward of sorts. Further her "boyfriend" in her world isn't at all interested and for a lack of better words hates her in Jo's world. With the notion that maybe she can spend some time and be with Nick (under the impression that they are best friends, and Jo blatantly lies to her), she jumps across universes.

     On the other side, Josie finds out that everything Jo has said is frankly completely false and while I love how Josie tries harder to get back to her life that's falling apart, than what she gains in this life. However at the same, the world at night is ravaged by giant black monsters that fly and eat anything that's not in some sort of spot light. Further Jo's father is some powerful official that keeps lights on to families who can afford it, and Jo has been using her way to the top with that power. "Do what she says or my father will turn your lights off."

     The characters were great and while the Nick in Jo's world is far more interesting and a better man than Josie's ex-boyfriend, I found him to be the highly next to Josie. The romantic undertone through the thriller part to a next third aspect. However the times when the monsters did show up, the thrill and suspense picked up and it was done really well. Just how the genres were switched between made this book great and kept me reading. There isn't a time in which there won't be a page with something to grab your eye and make you want to keep reading and into the next chapter.

     Now there was times in the romance that the thriller and romance spilled over. As for instance near the end there was a bit or romance between Nick and Josie and they for a lack of better words made out. Afterwards it was rudely interrupted by a mutilated foot. Yea it's gross and while it would staunch any teenage hormones, it frankly puts into focus the disparity of that second world. I enjoyed it, however I can see why some people would think this is unbelievable and unrealistic. I viewed it as a aspect of that world, people are constantly dying; while Josie may not be used to it, the people of that world may be.

     Further the friends in that second world that Josie has and how she gained their trust, are all flat out geniuses including Josie. How does a town do that? I mean who knows quantum physics in high school. That's the biggest downfall. I don't think you need to explain why the universes happened in the detail that was done in this novel and frankly ruined the suspense or halted some of the action/thrill. I didn't buy into it. It's just useless information to me, and while I understand it was used to figure a way back, it just wasn't needed in the end. I hate to say it.

     In conclusion the book was great, but going into it thinking it's going to be this immense thriller will leave you with a salivating expectation that's left hungry. Think of it more as a new take on Fringe. The romance and the sci-fi bits in this novel are what made it great. Further Josie's growth and understand how great her life was previously compared to the world it could be was great (and YAY! for the ending conversation with her ex-boyfriend Nick). I enjoyed it and while I didn't expect this sort of a novel, I was able to get past those expectations and enjoy a great unique take on a romance in multiple universes. It was great.

[Teaser Tuesday] - #20

Hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.
  1. Take your Current Read.
  2. Grab 2 Teaser sentences from the book (please be sure to avoid spoilers)
  3. Post it on your blog with the title and author, so other Teasing Tuesday participants can add it to their To Be Read list.
  4. When visiting other Teasing Tuesday participants, leave a link with your current TT in their comments.

Title: Faking Normal
   Author: Courtney C. Stevens
   Release Date: February 25th, 2014

     Quote: " 'I took running. He never woke up that early. Never. God Lex, She was screaming like crazy, so I grabbed a broom from the porch. It was the only thing I could find, and I was gonna kill him.' Bodee stares past my shoulder and relives it. 'She saw me at the door and waved me off and I was just frozen . . . like I'd been Krazy-Glued to the porch. I couldn't go in, and I couldn't leave the way she wanted me to."

--- Page 147


[Stacking the Shelves] - #65

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga’s Reviews and is all about sharing the books you are adding to your bookshelf, be it the physical one or your digital one!

     Well I hope you all had a great Happy Fourth of July. I spent it with my family watching a few fireworks. Further I want to thank everyone for the support I have gotten the last week. My visitors are up, compared to previous weeks/months, I appreciate the support and hope to continue more. I went through some of my goodreads TBR pile and cleaned up a lot of duplicates, I urge you all to follow that To Read list, I haven't had time to update the one I have on my blog at the moment, I will get around to it though. That's mostly what I plan on doing this week, editing a lot of my side pages to update and keep them current (if you want to stay active and follow me, Goodreads and Pinterest are better ways to stay on top, but that's up to you). I hope to do a Featured discussion this week, I have a few topics in mind, but I am still looking for more ideas and whatnot. Let me know if you have any suggestions.

     On a side note I didn't get anything drastically new this week, as in anything released in the last month or two. I did get another shipment from BookOutlet with a few new books, I will post the newest ones I got from them. As well I intend to try to take BookHaul photos and post those to twitter. I am not sure if I am going to make that a new feature, or replace Stacking the Shelves with that. It's something I am going to have to debate and think about.

     So without further adieu:

Beautiful Oblivion
Avalon
Four
House of Hades
The Fall of Five
The Uprising
The Book Thief
Angel Fever

Shelf Additions:

Title: Beautiful Oblivion
   Author: Jamie McGuire
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: July 1st, 2014

     The Beautiful Disaster and Walking Disaster phenomenon continues in the first heart-pounding new adult romance in The Maddox Brothers series.

     Fiercely independent Camille "Cami" Camlin gladly moved on from her childhood before it was over. She has held down a job since before she could drive, and moved into her own apartment after her freshman year of college. Now tending bar at The Red Door, Cami doesn’t have time for much else besides work and classes, until a trip to see her boyfriend is cancelled, leaving her with a first weekend off in almost a year.

     Trenton Maddox was the king of Eastern State University, dating co-eds before he even graduated high school. His friends wanted to be him, and women wanted to tame him, but after a tragic accident turned his world upside down, Trenton leaves campus to come to grips with the crushing guilt.

     Eighteen months later, Trenton is living at home with his widower father, and works full-time at a local tattoo parlor to help with the bills. Just when he thinks his life is returning to normal, he notices Cami sitting alone at a table at The Red.

     As the baby sister of four rowdy brothers, Cami believes she’ll have no problem keeping her new friendship with Trenton Maddox strictly platonic. But when a Maddox boy falls in love, he loves forever—even if she is the only reason their already broken family could fall apart.

     In the first installment of the Maddox Brothers books, readers can experience the rush of reading Beautiful Disaster for the first time, all over again.






Title:  Avalon
   Author: Mindee Arnett
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: January 21st, 2014

     A ragtag group of teenage mercenaries who crew the spaceship Avalon stumble upon a conspiracy that could threaten the entire galaxy in this fascinating and fast-paced sci-fi adventure from author Mindee Arnett.

     Of the various star systems that make up the Confederation, most lie thousands of light-years from First Earth-and out here, no one is free. The agencies that govern the Confederation are as corrupt as the crime bosses who patrol it, and power is held by anyone with enough greed and ruthlessness to claim it. That power is derived from one thing: metatech, the devices that allow people to travel great distances faster than the speed of light.

     Jeth Seagrave and his crew of teenage mercenaries have survived in this world by stealing unsecured metatech, and they're damn good at it. Jeth doesn't care about the politics or the law; all he cares about is earning enough money to buy back his parents' ship, Avalon, from his crime-boss employer and getting himself and his sister, Lizzie, the heck out of Dodge. But when Jeth finds himself in possession of information that both the crime bosses and the government are willing to kill for, he is going to have to ask himself how far he'll go to get the freedom he's wanted for so long.

     Avalon is the perfect fit for teens new to sci-fi as well as seasoned sci-fi readers looking for more books in the YA space-and a great match for fans of Joss Whedon's cult hit show Firefly.






Title: Four: A Divergent Story Collection
   Author: Veronica Roth
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: July 8th, 2013

     Two years before Beatrice Prior made her choice, the sixteen-year-old son of Abnegation’s faction leader did the same. Tobias’s transfer to Dauntless is a chance to begin again. Here, he will not be called the name his parents gave him. Here, he will not let fear turn him into a cowering child.

     Newly christened “Four,” he discovers during initiation that he will succeed in Dauntless. Initiation is only the beginning, though; Four must claim his place in the Dauntless hierarchy. His decisions will affect future initiates as well as uncover secrets that could threaten his own future—and the future of the entire faction system.

     Two years later, Four is poised to take action, but the course is still unclear. The first new initiate who jumps into the net might change all that. With her, the way to righting their world might become clear. With her, it might become possible to be Tobias once again.

     From #1 New York Times bestselling author Veronica Roth comes a companion volume to the worldwide bestselling divergent series, told from the per-spective of the immensely popular character Tobias. The four pieces included here—The Transfer, The Initiate, The Son, and The Traitor—plus three additional exclusive scenes, give readers an electrifying glimpse into the history and heart of Tobias, and set the stage for the epic saga of the Divergent trilogy.






Title: The House of Hades
   Author: Rick Riordan
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: October 8th, 2013

     At the conclusion of The Mark of Athena, Annabeth and Percy tumble into a pit leading straight to the Underworld. The other five demigods have to put aside their grief and follow Percy’s instructions to find the mortal side of the Doors of Death. If they can fight their way through the Gaea’s forces, and Percy and Annabeth can survive the House of Hades, then the Seven will be able to seal the Doors both sides and prevent the giants from raising Gaea. But, Leo wonders, if the Doors are sealed, how will Percy and Annabeth be able to escape?

     They have no choice. If the demigods don’t succeed, Gaea’s armies will never die. They have no time. In about a month, the Romans will march on Camp Half-Blood. The stakes are higher than ever in this adventure that dives into the depths of Tartarus.






Title: The Fall of Five
   Author: Pittacus Lore
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: August 27th, 2013

     The Garde are finally reunited, but do they have what it takes to win the war against the Mogadorians?

     John Smith—Number Four—thought that things would change once the Garde found each other. They would stop running. They would fight the Mogadorians. And they would win.

     But he was wrong. After facing off with the Mogadorian ruler and almost being annihilated, the Garde know they are drastically unprepared and hopelessly outgunned. Now they’re hiding out in Nine’s Chicago penthouse, trying to figure out their next move.

     The six of them are powerful, but they’re not strong enough yet to take on an entire army—even with the return of an old ally. To defeat their enemy, the Garde must master their Legacies and learn to work together as a team. More importantly, they’ll have to discover the truth about the Elders and their plan for the Loric survivors.

     And when the Garde receive a sign from Number Five—a crop circle in the shape of a Loric symbol—they know they are so close to being reunited. But could it be a trap? Time is running out, and the only thing they know for certain is that they have to get to Five before it’s too late.

     The Garde may have lost battles, but they will not lose this war.

     Lorien will rise again.






Title: The Lord of Opium
   Author: Lisa M. Stasse
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: August 6th, 2013

     In this dystopian sequel to The Forsaken, Alenna has survived the brutality of life on the wheel—and now she’s going back for more.

     Alenna escaped. It was expected that she would die on the wheel, the island where would-be criminals are sent as directed by the UNA—the totalitarian supercountry that was once the United States, Mexico, and Canada. But Alenna and her boyfriend, Liam, made it to safety. Except safety, they will soon learn, is relative.

     In order to bring down the UNA, they must first gain control of the wheel. If the mission succeeds, the wheel will become a base of revolution. But between betrayals, a new Monk leading a more organized army of Drones, and the discovery of a previously unknown contingent, Alenna, Liam, and their allies might be in over their heads. One thing Alenna knows for sure: There will be a reckoning. And not everyone she loves will make it out alive.






Title: The Book Thief
   Author: Markus Zusak
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: March 14th, 2006

     It's just a small story really, about, among other things, a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery.

     Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist: books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids - as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

     This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.






Title: Angel Fever
   Author: L.A. Weatherly
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: November 26th, 2013

     As half-angel Willow strives to save the world from her parasitic otherworldly kin, romance and tension heat up to a climactic finale.

In the devastated remains of the world, millions of people live in "refugee" camps provided by the angels who have all but enslaved humanity. As this angelic stranglehold tightens, Willow and Alex are recruiting and training new Angel Killers while struggling to hold ground on the celestial battlefield. But Willow continues to have feelings for Seb, and her love and resolve are tested as a shattering revelation sends Alex on a separate journey. Now that the final battle versus the angels is about to begin-and the fate of the world hangs in the balance-each of them must face the consequences of their own choices. Will love endure? Will the human race survive?
 
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