Sunday, February 27, 2011

In My Mailbox (9)




In My Mailbox is a weekly meme that gives bloggers a chance to share what books they've received in the last week. It's hosted by The Story Siren and you can find out more info about it here.



I will forewarn you that my mailbox was huge this week (for me). It was my birthday on Tuesday, so I got some books and also some gift cards. Basically, I’ve got a lot to showcase in IMM this week. I’ll just hop right to it. Here’s what was in my “mailbox” this week:

Gifted for my birthday:
City of Glass by Cassandra Clare {Goodreads | Book Depository}
Don’t Judge a Girl by Her Cover by Ally Carter {Goodreads | Book Depository}
Matched by Ally Condie {Goodreads | Book Depository}
Haven by Kristi Cook {Goodreads | Book Depository}
Delirium valentines (my roommates picked these up for me at a conference)

Bought using giftcards:
(Hardcopies)
Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton {Goodreads | Book Depository}
The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting {Goodreads | Book Depository}
0.4 by Mike Lancaster {Goodreads | Book Depository}

(eBooks)
The Iron King by Julie Kagawa {Goodreads | Book Depository}
Across the Universe by Beth Revis {Goodreads | Book Depository}

For Review from GalleyGrab
Wither by Lauren DeStefano {Goodreads | preorder from Book Depository}

Such an exciting week for me. I’m reading HAVEN now and loving it so much. I got my own copy of ANGELFIRE, too, which I’m so excited to have because, as you know, I loved it. I wish I could say something about each and every one of these books, but that would make this post very very long. Let me know if you’ve read any of these books and what you thought about them! Or, tell me if you’re interested in reading any of them, too! I’d love to hear from you!

What did you get in your mailbox this week?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (14)





"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that showcases upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating!
I first heard about it from PageTurnersBlog.




My Waiting on Wednesday this week:
City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare
Publication Date: April 5, 2011

Synopsis:
City of Fallen Angels is the fourth book in the bestselling series The Mortal Instruments.


City of Fallen Angels takes place two months after the events of City of Glass. In it, a mysterious someone’s killing the Shadowhunters who used to be in Valentine’s Circle and displaying their bodies around New York City in a manner designed to provoke hostility between Downworlders and Shadowhunters, leaving tensions running high in the city and disrupting Clary’s plan to lead as normal a life as she can — training to be a Shadowhunter, and pursuing her relationship with Jace. As Jace and Clary delve into the issue of the murdered Shadowhunters, they discover a mystery that has deeply personal consequences for them — consequences that may strengthen their relationship, or rip it apart forever. Meanwhile, internecine warfare among vampires is tearing the Downworld community apart, and only Simon — the Daylighter who everyone wants on their side — can decide the outcome; too bad he wants nothing to do with Downworld politics. Love, blood, betrayal and revenge: the stakes are higher than ever in City of Fallen Angels.


I’ve only read the first book, City of Bones (review), from this series and I really enjoyed it and like reading about the world that Cassandra Clare has created. I have City of Ashes on my TBR shelf and am planning to read it ASAP. My sister just bought me City of Glass for my birthday yesterday, so now I have that to read, too. The slight problem is that I lent City of Ashes to my roommate to read and won’t get it back until April, so I have to wait until then to continue with the story! As much as this is a bummer, I’m really happy that I got my roommate to read this series and that she loves it! It’s one of the reasons I love book blogging so much: spreading my love of good books and introducing people to new books that they’ll love.

Unless you live under a rock or something, you’ve probably heard of The Mortal Instruments series and Cassandra Clare. She’s a great writer and has created an awesome world with the Shadowhunters. I’m “waiting on Wednesday” for City of Fallen Angels because I know this series is going to continue to only great things and can’t wait to delve back into Clary’s world and see where it all goes.

What upcoming releases are you looking forward to?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Review: 13 to Life by Shannon Delany


Title: 13 to Life
Author: Shannon Delany
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Publish Date: June 22, 2010
Genre: YA, paranormal
Pages: 308
Series: 13 to Life
1. 13 to Life
2. Secrets and Shadows (Feb 15, 2011)
3. Bargains and Betrayals (August 16, 2011)

Synopsis:
Something strange is stalking the small town of Junction…

When junior Jess Gillmansen gets called out of class by Guidance, she can only presume it’s for one of two reasons. Either they’ve finally figured out who wrote the scathing anti-jock editorial in the school newspaper or they’re hosting yet another intervention for her about her mom. Although far from expecting it, she’s relieved to discover Guidance just wants her to show a new student around—but he comes with issues of his own including a police escort.

The newest member of Junction High, Pietr Rusakova has secrets to hide--secrets that will bring big trouble to the small town of Junction—secrets including dramatic changes he’s undergoing that will surely end his life early.


I am so happy I finally read this book. Once I found time, I flew through it (yay for road trips!). I was a bit concerned that I’d have trouble getting back into a werewolf story after not reading any for awhile, but I was wrong. I think it was probably the fact that the werewolf component isn’t slapping you in the face, and really doesn’t emerge until a lot later in the book. This book was more about character development and setting up the relationships between the characters. I really enjoyed the way Shannon Delany did that.

Jess is just getting over the loss of her mother, and trying to stabilize her life with school and chores on the farm. The last thing she needs (and wants) is to be showing the new boy around school and having him intrude in her life and change everything. Change is the last thing she needs. Pietr is very mysterious and Russian and sexy. Jess can’t deny that there’s something about him that pulls her in, but she tries to keep their relationship platonic. Besides, one of her best friends, Sarah, is really interested in Pietr, so she does her best to back off. She’s the kind of person who thinks of others before herself.

I loved seeing the relationship grow between Jess and Pietr. They have that undeniable attraction to one another that they (well, Jess) try to ignore. Since they are trying to avoid a romantic relationship, they instead become really close friends, the kind that are always there for you when you need them. This isn’t the typical relationship development you see in YA (or any) books because most people just want to get to the romance of it all. I have to say I’m guilty of being one of those people. But Shannon gave me a different outlook, where the characters were made out to be just really good friends, but with that forbidden romance. It was really fun to read.

Having written the book this way, Shannon gives us a chance to see the backstories of the characters. I don’t want to give it away, but Jess’s story of her mom’s death was so heart-wrenching. It made me tear up a bit and I could feel my heart hurting. Pietr’s home life isn’t the best either, and they are able to share stories and sympathize with one another. It definitely makes them closer, better friends, in my opinion.

The secondary characters were all really great, too. I loved Jess’s best friend Amy. She’s the kind of girl who is brutally honest to Jess, which is exactly what she needs. Jess tries to fool herself and Amy smacks her in the face with a big pile of reality. It may be tough for Jess, but Amy does the right thing and she’s always there for her. They have an awesome relationship. I also liked Jess’s sister and Pietr’s sister. They were both cute characters who always added a bit of something to the scene’s they were in.

Overall, I love the way Shannon outlined her story by really developing the characters and their relationships. Allowing us to see into their pasts gives us a better outlook on the characters themselves and why they act the way they do. Everything climaxed perfectly in the end and it was very suspenseful. Because I felt like I knew Jess so personally, I worried about her a lot in those last few chapters. Shannon left 13 to Life on a cliffhanger, which makes me really want to read the next one. Thankfully, Secrets and Shadows just came out last week, so I can go pick up a copy this week!

If you’d like to read 13 to Life, pick up a copy for yourself!
The Book Depository

Saturday, February 19, 2011

On My Wishlist (4)


On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where you list all the books you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. It's also an event that you can join in with too - Mr Linky is always at the ready for you to link your own 'On My Wishlist' post. If you want to know more click here.

On My Wishlist this week:
The Immortals series by Alyson Noel
Publication Dates: 2009-2011


This is a series I've heard a lot about and it seems to be really popular. I think it sounds good and I definitely want to read it. Since I'm not going to post a summary for each book (and because I don't even want to read them and give myself spoilers), I'll give you the synopsis of the first book, Evermore:

Since a horrible accident claimed the lives of her family, sixteen-year-old Ever can see auras, hear people’s thoughts, and know a person’s life story by touch. Going out of her way to shield herself from human contact to suppress her abilities has branded her as a freak at her new high school—but everything changes when she meets Damen Auguste…

Ever sees Damen and feels an instant recognition. He is gorgeous, exotic and wealthy, and he holds many secrets. Damen is able to make things appear and disappear, he always seems to know what she’s thinking—and he’s the only one who can silence the noise and the random energy in her head. She doesn’t know who he really is—or what he is. Damen equal parts light and darkness, and he belongs to an enchanted new world where no one ever dies.


I also thought it was fitting to feature this as "On My Wishlist" today because this week, Alyson Noel uncovered the cover of Everlasting, the sixth and final book in the series! Here's the cover:


I have no idea what it symbolizes, but it really fits with all the others. I think they're all pretty awesome covers. I love the way there's always one item that lights up the faces. It gives it a really neat effect.

If you want more info on the books, here are links to each individual Goodreads page (because I'm awesome like that and love to make your lives easier!):
#1 Evermore
#2 Blue Moon
#3 Shadowland
#4 Dark Flame
#5 Night Star
#6 Everlasting

What's on your wishlist?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Review: Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Title: Beautiful Darkness
Authors: Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
Publisher: Little Brown
Publish Date: October 12, 2010
Genre: YA, fantasy
Pages: 503
Series: Caster Chronicles
1. Beautiful Creatures (mini review)
2. Beautiful Darkness
3. Untitled (pub 2011)
4. Untitled (expected pub 2012)

Synopsis:
Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he met mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who revealed a secret world that had been hidden in plain sight all along. A Gatlin that harbored ancient secrets beneath its moss-covered oaks and cracked sidewalks. A Gatlin where a curse has marked Lena's family of powerful Supernaturals for generations. A Gatlin where impossible, magical, life-altering events happen.

Sometimes life-ending.

Together they can face anything Gatlin throws at them, but after suffering a tragic loss, Lena starts to pull away, keeping secrets that test their relationship. And now that Ethan's eyes have been opened to the darker side of Gatlin, there's no going back. Haunted by strange visions only he can see, Ethan is pulled deeper into his town's tangled history and finds himself caught up in the dangerous network of underground passageways endlessly crisscrossing the South, where nothing is as it seems.


(Warning: minor spoilers if you haven't read Beautiful Creatures)

BEAUTIFUL DARKNESS deals with the aftermath of what happens at the end of BEAUTIFUL CREATURES. Unlike most sequels where they deal with the issue at the end of the first in the beginning of the second, the whole of BD is spent dealing with the issue. Lena is pulling away from Ethan and he doesn’t know why. I sympathized a lot with Ethan in this book and felt bad for him. Lena was basically making him feel like crap and he had no idea what was going on. I think he’s a loveable character who is really sweet and it hurt to see him so upset.

Lena was kinda a bitch on the other hand. I understand that she was going through crap, too, but that doesn’t mean she can be a shitty girlfriend. When Ethan needed her most, she was never there, which irritated me because he’d never do that to her. This whole book is evidence of that. And then when Ethan became friends with a new girl in town, Lena blew up when she saw them together at the fair. Uh, hello?? Of course he’s hanging out with other people because you’re ignoring him. She was really selfish and you could say it’s her way of “protecting him” from herself, but there are nicer ways to do it. And clearly, that way didn't work, so why not try a different tactic? I guess I just didn’t like her much this time around.

As much as I love Ethan and felt bad for him, the plot of this story kind of fell flat for me. Compared to the first book, where it was really fast paced and there was a lot happening, BD was very slow and I find myself looking back, thinking “What really happened?” The whole story is building up to the ending, and for a 500 page book, that can drag on after a little while. There were moments where I found myself flipping the pages quickly in an exciting moment, and then we’d be back down to the slow and laborious.

This book was a lot more of “let’s think and figure this stuff out” as it worked toward the end, rather than “OMG this is so exciting.” Unfortunately, when it was figured out and the ending came, it was really anticlimactic for me. About halfway through the book I realized what was going to have to happen at the end and when it did, it was just kind of like “oh, well I knew that already” because there wasn’t much else to it. Maybe I’m so used to twist endings that, because there wasn’t one here, I didn’t enjoy it as much.

I started this book really excited about what was going to happen. But now I feel like this book was more of a filler book than a real development kind of book. It introduced new characters and set up the perfect place for the third one to start, however, compared to the first, which was heavy on adventure, suspense, and romance, this one didn’t quite fit the bill. Maybe my expectations were too high after the first, but this one was just too low key and slow paced for me to really enjoy it.

The Book Depository

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (13)





"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that showcases upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating!
I first heard about it from PageTurnersBlog.




My Waiting on Wednesday this week is:
The Abused Werewolf Rescue Group by Catherine Jinks
Publication Date: April 4, 2011

I still hadn't fully absorbed the terrible possibility that I might actually be a werewolf. A werewolf. I kept stumbling over that word; it made no sense to me. How could I be a werewolf? Werewolves didn't exist.

When Tobias Richard Vandevelde wakes up in hospital with no memory of the night before, his horrified mother tells him that he was found by the police. At Featherdale Park. In a dingo pen.

As if that isn't weird enough, suddenly a very menacing looking guy and a priest show up at his door.

As the mystery unfolds, Toby finds himself keeping company with some very strange and sickly looking people - members of a suburban vampire support group. And when he's abducted in broad daylight, he will need all their help to break free ... and to come to terms with his own incredibly rare condition.


I like how this werewolf story is from the POV of the werewolf himself. Then there’s the fact that it’s set in Australia, which I think is really neat. I’m also intrigued by the fact that the synopsis doesn’t mention anything about romance, and I wonder if there will be any in this story. If not, then this will definitely be something new to me because I usually flock toward paranormal romances. Either way, I’ve got an eGalley of this from NetGalley and I’ve just started it. We’ll see how it goes…

What are you waiting on this week?

Winner of Angelfire!!


I would like to announce that my first ever contest was a HUGE success! I never imagined that I'd have as many entries as I did. In total, including the added points for spreading the word, there were 156 entries to this giveaway! I would like to THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH for making it so successful and helping me spread the word. Big thanks to Courtney as well for spreading the word by retweeting my tweets and posting my giveaway on her facebook page. That was awesome.

Without further ado, the winner of the copy of Angelfire from The Book Depository is...

seesen9 from Imaginary Whispers!!

Congratulations! The winner has been emailed. If they do not respond within 48 hours, then I will chose another winner.

If you didn't win but would still love to read Angelfire, go grab a copy for yourself from your local indie, your favourite bookstore, or one of these online booksellers:
The Book Depository (free shipping to most countries)
Amazon: US | CAN
Barnes & Noble (US)
Chapters Indigo (CAN)

Thanks again to everyone who participated. I had lots of fun and I hope to be hosting more giveaways in the near future!

Any suggestions? :)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Teaser Tuesday (10)

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme, hosted by MizB of Should be Reading. Just do the following:
Grab your current read
Open to a random page
Share two "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
DO NOT INCLUDE SPOILERS (make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away, so that you don't ruin the book for others)
Share the title and author so that other participants can add the book to their TBR list is they like your teasers!

My teaser this week comes from Shannon Delany’s 13 to Life. I think this is fitting because the second book in the series, Secrets and Shadows, has been released today! I think it’s going to be a really good book (there’s sexy Russian boys, how can it not be?). Here’s my teaser:





The police officer glanced at me, saying slowly to Peter, “Got that Rusakova? Don’t be late.”
Something prickled along my spine at his tone.







I’ve just started this so I don’t really know much of what’s going on. I know that Peter (sexy Russian boy) is very mysterious and all the girls, except Jess, think he’s a beautiful God-send. I know that Jess has a mega huge crush on Derek, and that Peter doesn’t seem to like this (even though they just met). And I know that Peter hates Romeo and Juliet. So far, that’s about it! Haha. But I think I’m really going to enjoy this book.

Feel free to share links to your teasers! I’d love to see what you’re reading.

Monday, February 14, 2011

In My Mailbox (8)




In My Mailbox is a weekly meme that gives bloggers a chance to share what books they've received in the last week. It's hosted by The Story Siren and you can find out more info about it here.



I got a few things in my “mailbox” this week. I’ve been holding back on buying books (successfully, actually which is good, I guess) so I don’t have much this week. I know I won’t get anything next week, so don’t expect an IMM post. BUT the week after that, I’ll have LOTS! I know I will because my birthday will have passed and I’m expecting books, plus I’m going to buy myself at least one (wish me luck with that!). I’ll probably get more than that… Anyway, here’s what I got this week:

Bought from The Book Depository
Delirium by Lauren Oliver {Goodreads}

From Reading for the Love of it Conference
Thunder Bay by William Kent Krueger {Goodreads}
Smiley bookmark

For Review (from Galley Grab)
Possession by Elana Johnson {Goodreads}

I’m so happy I got my copy of DELIRIUM this week! It came last Monday. It is so SHINY. If you haven’t seen this book up close and personal yet, go to the bookstore and just look at its SHINY-NESS. Then buy it because it’s an awesome book. Let me convince you of that here. THUNDER BAY is the seventh book in an adult suspense novel series. My housemates were at a conference in Toronto and picked it up for me at the Simon & Schuster table. I’m not sure if it’s my kind of book, so I might pass it along to my mom, since I think she’d like it. They also got me that cute smiley bookmark :). POSSESSION looks like a great upcoming dystopian novel from a debut author. I'm really getting into dystopian novels. They are so different from our world, yet still relatable. It's weird. And there's a LOT of good ones coming up this year, so keep your eyes peeled. I'm excited!

What was in your mailbox this week?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

On My Wishlist (3)


On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where you list all the books you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. It's also an event that you can join in with too - Mr Linky is always at the ready for you to link your own 'On My Wishlist' post. If you want to know more click here.

On My Wishlist this week:

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Publication Date: December 2, 2010

Synopsis:
Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris—until she meets √Čtienne St. Claire: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he's taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home.

As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near-misses end with the French kiss Anna—and readers—have long awaited?


I have heard SO MUCH about this book. Every review I’ve read has gushed about how awesome the romance is and how the backdrop of Paris is perfect. I love a good romance just as much as the next hopeless romantic. I know that this is one of those books that I can’t miss out on. I put it on my birthday list (which is coming up in about a week!) and I hope it’s one that I get. I can't wait to read it!

What's on your wishlist?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (12)





"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that showcases upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating!
I first heard about it from PageTurnersBlog.




My Waiting on Wednesday this week:
Entwined by Heather Dixon
Publication Date: March 29, 2011

Azalea is trapped. Just when she should feel that everything is before her . . . beautiful gowns, dashing suitors, balls filled with dancing . . . it's taken away. All of it.

The Keeper understands. He's trapped, too, held for centuries within the walls of the palace. And so he extends an invitation.

Every night, Azalea and her eleven sisters may step through the enchanted passage in their room to dance in his silver forest.

But there is a cost.

The Keeper likes to
keep things.

Azalea may not realize how tangled she is in his web until it is too late.


I love the cover to this book. That dress, the castle in the background, the flower design around the edges… it all looks very magical. The story itself seems like it’s going to be very intense, what with the Keeper liking to keep things. I can already foresee a lot of problems and suspense and heartbreak. This book doesn’t seem to be like anything I’ve read before, but I think I’ll like it a lot.  This is also Heather Dixon's debut novel, one that is on my 2011 Debut Author Challenge list.

If you’re interested in this book, check out the Goodreads page. There’s a giveaway for 6 copies of ENTWINED (US only).

What upcoming releases are you looking forward to?

Sunday, February 6, 2011

On My Wishlist (2)


On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where you list all the books you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. It's also an event that you can join in with too - Mr Linky is always at the ready for you to link your own 'On My Wishlist' post. If you want to know more click here.

On My Wishlist this week:

The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting
Publication Date: March 16, 2010

Synopsis:
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 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 dead birds her cat left for her. But now that a serial killer is terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, Violet realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.
Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved by her hope 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.


I chose to do this book for my On My Wishlist this week to honour the fact that the second book in the series, Desires of the Dead, comes out for release on February 15, 2011. I added this to my TBR pile back in November when I first heard about it. I haven’t read any ghost-type stories and this one really intrigues me. That and the fact that the sequel is getting a lot of attention tell me it’s a pretty good book. At least people around the blogosphere think so, and I believe them. Plus, that cover is really amazing, in my opinion. I can’t wait to get my hands on this and see if I like it as much as the rest of the bloggers out there!

What’s on your wishlist?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Review & Giveaway!: Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton

Title: Angelfire
Author: Courtney Allison Moulton
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publish Date: February 15, 2011
Genre: YA, paranormal
Pages: 291 (Kindle edition)
Series: Angelfire Trilogy
1. Angelfire
2. Wings of the Wicked (expected pub 2012)
3. Hymns to the Fallen (expected pub 2013)

Synopsis:
This debut, the first novel in a trilogy, is achingly romantic, terrifying, and filled with blistering action.

When seventeen-year-old Ellie starts seeing reapers - monstrous creatures who devour humans and send their souls to Hell - she finds herself on the front lines of a supernatural war between archangels and the Fallen and faced with the possible destruction of her soul.

A mysterious boy named Will reveals she is the reincarnation of an ancient warrior, the only one capable of wielding swords of angelfire to fight the reapers, and he is an immortal sworn to protect her in battle. Now that Ellie's powers have been awakened, a powerful reaper called Bastian has come forward to challenge her. He has employed a fierce assassin to eliminate her - an assassin who has already killed her once.

While balancing her dwindling social life and reaper-hunting duties, she and Will discover Bastian is searching for a dormant creature believed to be a true soul reaper. Bastian plans to use this weapon to ignite the End of Days and to destroy Ellie's soul, ending her rebirth cycle forever. Now, she must face an army of Bastian's most frightening reapers, prevent the soul reaper from consuming her soul, and uncover the secrets of her past lives - including truths that may be too frightening to remember.


I’ve had this title sitting on my computer for awhile now, and it wasn’t until I started following Courtney on Twitter and she started posting doodles from her book that I finally decided I needed to read this book (check out her Twitpic to see said doodles). Some of the doodles were so funny and accompanied by quotes, and it just drew me in. Angelfire was moved up to the top of my TBR list. I’m so glad I did that. I thought this book was amazingly well written, with characters that were more than just a name on the page. They have depth and feelings and I fell in love with all of them.

Ellie's Audi A4 (and my dream car!)
Ellie is a rich, spoiled girl with rich, spoiled friends. She lives in a big house in a rich neighbourhood, her friends get DJs for their parties, and she gets an Audi A4 for her birthday. However, this doesn’t make Ellie a character that is stuck up or whiny, and she doesn’t have the perfect white-picket-fence family. Courtney gives her characters depth, regardless of what the stereotype may be. Ellie really is a strong, female character and it’s wonderful to see that in YA. Then there’s Will, who is my new character crush. I just think he’s so great. You have to read this book just so you can fall in love with Will and his bad-assness-that-really-is-only-a-cover-for-his-sweetness.

Courtney really knows how to write some damn good fight scenes, too. They were so detailed and thought out that I could see them playing out in my mind easily. They really got my pulse going as I read and waited anxiously to see who would come out of the battle alive. Not only did she write good fight scenes, she wrote good one-liners, too! I loved some of the lines she gave to Ellie (see my Teaser Tuesday post). There was more than one occasion where I burst out laughing or snickered and got funny looks from around me (sometimes, I’d be on the bus and just start smiling like an idiot because I was trying to hold in the giggles).

One other that thing I really liked was the detail that Courtney included when explaining all the inner workings of the world that Ellie had become a part of. To someone like me, who really isn’t religious in any way, shape, or form, it was really useful to get a good, detailed explanation of all the concepts Courtney included in her story. Her way of interpreting angels and demons is really different from the other angel stories I’ve read, and I really like that. It’s an angel story that doesn’t centre on the angel aspect, I guess.

I think it’s really important the way Ellie is trying to keep up her relationship with her mom and her friends. It sets a good example for girls who either get a new boyfriend, or start a new hobby, or whatever it is they do that may separate them from their friends. Even though Ellie is trying to save the world and her own life, she knows that her friends and family are important parts of her life and she doesn’t want to give that up.

Overall, this is one book I really enjoyed. It wrapped up nicely (the last line was perfect), but you can also tell that it’s leading up to more. I’m really interested to see where Courtney takes Ellie and Will to next and how Ellie is going to manage her newfound life with her old one. I think it’ll be pretty exciting. Book 2, Wings of the Wicked comes out in 2012!

Thanks so much to NetGalley and HarperTeen for the eARC!

GIVEAWAY!!
So I’m really excited to be hosting my first ever giveaway!! I loved Angelfire so much, that I want to share that love with someone else. Here’s the rules:

  • One person will win one copy of Angelfire, shipped from The Book Depository.
  • You don’t have to be a follower, but I’d appreciate it if you took a look around. You might find something you like.
  • This is open INTERNATIONALLY to anywhere The Book Depository ships (Check here)
  • Must be 13 years of age or older.
  • If you spread the word, it will gain you one extra entry (Twitter, Facebook, sidebar, etc.)
  • This giveaway runs until February 15 (release day!)

The winner will be chosen randomly by random.org. He/she will be contact on February 16 by email and will have 48 hours to respond. If they haven’t responded by this time, I will choose another winner.
GOOD LUCK!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Title and Cover Reveals

There’s been a few things happening around the blogosphere recently in the YA department. Things I’m very excited about. Like cover reveals and names of sequels to books I love being released. It’s all very exciting. Trust me. I’m going to showcase a few things that made me do a little squeal this week, so be prepared.

For starters, Becca Fitzpatrick announced the title of the third book in her Hush, Hush trilogy. I really like these books. When I read the first one, HUSH, HUSH (review here), I absolutely fell in love with it and with angel stories. It was my first angel story so it gets partial credit for all the ones I read after it. I wasn’t as crazy about the second one, CRESCENDO (review here), but it ended really well and set it up for the third book, which I’m really excited about. Becca had originally called the third book TEMPEST, but later decided it didn’t fit right. So, earlier this week, she announced on FallenArchangel.com that the name of the third book will be….

SILENCE

If you’ve read the first two, well, you’ve probably already heard about the title, but you also know that it fits perfectly. Even if you just put those three together: HUSH, HUSH - CRESCENDO - SILENCE, they fit. It’s eerie in a way… I don’t know how to describe it except that it’s perfect. You can check out Fallen Archangel to read what Becca had to say when she revealed the title. She also announced that it is due for release on October 25, 2011. Mark your calendars. You’ll want to get it ASAP.

**********
Second on the order of business is another title release! If you happened to read my review of Unearthly by Cynthia Hand in late November, you know that I loved it (review here). And Tucker. But that’s another story. The thing that’s now got me all excited is that Cynthia released the title of the second book in her series!! Just yesterday she released on her Twitter that the name of the book will be….

HALLOWED

Cynthia describes the word as something holy and revered. She also says that it’s the title she originally wanted and that she’s so excited HarperTeen agrees with her because it fits the book perfectly. You can check out her blog post here, where she talks about the title and some songs that she connects with the book! Also, she said the cover reveal is due for May 2011. Not much longer, now!

**********
Lastly, Jennifer L. Armentrout is the author of the upcoming novel Half-Blood, due for release on September 15, 2011 (see my Waiting on Wednesday about it here). It looks like a really great book and I’m super excited for it. I also learned yesterday that Half-Blood is part of a series and that Jennifer wrote the first two books simultaneously. The second one is to be called Pure, which I think fits perfectly after Half-Blood. Her big news yesterday came when she “revealed” the cover for Pure! I was actually really surprised it was out already because Half-Blood isn’t due out for another 8 months and Pure isn’t due until sometime in 2012! Either way, the cover is stunning, just as is the one for Half-Blood.

And if you want to compare the covers, here’s the one for Half-Blood (you can click on it to see it larger).
 I honestly think they’re both so beautiful. Definitely some of my favourites covers. You can check out Jennifer’s blog here where she mentioned the new cover.

I hope you like how I feature new covers and titles that I hear about in the blogosphere. I figure that most people have already seen the new covers or heard about new titles by the time I make these posts, but I still like to sum them up at the end of the week and give my thoughts. Let me know what you think of these new reveals!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (11)





"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that showcases upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating!
I first heard about it from PageTurnersBlog.




My Waiting on Wednesday this week:
Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton
Publication Date: February 15, 2011

When seventeen-year-old Ellie starts seeing reapers - monstrous creatures who devour humans and send their souls to Hell - she finds herself on the front lines of a supernatural war between archangels and the Fallen and faced with the possible destruction of her soul.

A mysterious boy named Will reveals she is the reincarnation of an ancient warrior, the only one capable of wielding swords of angelfire to fight the reapers, and he is an immortal sworn to protect her in battle. Now that Ellie's powers have been awakened, a powerful reaper called Bastian has come forward to challenge her. He has employed a fierce assassin to eliminate her - an assassin who has already killed her once.

While balancing her dwindling social life and reaper-hunting duties, she and Will discover Bastian is searching for a dormant creature believed to be a true soul reaper. Bastian plans to use this weapon to ignite the End of Days and to destroy Ellie's soul, ending her rebirth cycle forever. Now, she must face an army of Bastian's most frightening reapers, prevent the soul reaper from consuming her soul, and uncover the secrets of her past lives - including truths that may be too frightening to remember.


I'm actually reading an eGalley of this right now from NetGalley and loving it. I know I'm going to have to pick up my own copy when it comes out in a couple weeks. Check back around the weekend (hopefully) for my review!

Since I feel like I cheated you out of a real "Waiting on" Wednesday, I give you a second today!

The Iron Thorn by Caitlin Kittredge
Publication Date: February 22, 2011

In the city of Lovecraft, the Proctors rule and a great Engine turns below the streets, grinding any resistance to their order to dust. The necrovirus is blamed for Lovecraft's epidemic of madness, for the strange and eldritch creatures that roam the streets after dark, and for everything that the city leaders deem Heretical—born of the belief in magic and witchcraft. And for Aoife Grayson, her time is growing shorter by the day.

Aoife Grayson's family is unique, in the worst way—every one of them, including her mother and her elder brother Conrad, has gone mad on their 16th birthday. And now, a ward of the state, and one of the only female students at the School of Engines, she is trying to pretend that her fate can be different.


The Iron Thorn is a book that I can add to my 2011 Debut Author Challenge list. I haven't read any steampunk, but I definitely want to. And I know I like dystopian. Then there's this book, that's a mix of both steampunk and dystopian! I have to try it out. The cover is also really interesting... it's kind of creepy actually, but in a good way. The one thing I'll have to get used to is the main character's name. I'm not even sure how I would pronounce that...

What upcoming releases are you looking forward to?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Teaser Tuesday (9)

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme, hosted by MizB of Should be Reading. Just do the following:
Grab your current read
Open to a random page
Share two "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
DO NOT INCLUDE SPOILERS (make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away, so that you don't ruin the book for others)
Share the title and author so that other participants can add the book to their TBR list is they like your teasers!


My teaser this week is from Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton. I am currently reading an eGalley from NetGalley and I’m loving it so far. Some of the lines Courtney gave to Ellie, the main character, are just to die for. I’ve found myself laughing quite a bit in this story. I want to share some of the funny with you, so my teaser tuesday this week includes a few different lines. Here’s my teasers:


“I’m going to get tetanus in there,” I grumbled.
“Don’t go rolling in piles of dirt and rusty nails and you’ll be fine.”
“You’re an ass.”

pg. 69

“It was just Nathaniel, anyway.”
“Oh, that’s so cute,” I said, pinching his cheek. “He shopped for you. You’re, like, biffles.”

pg. 97

Click to see larger

That last one had me cracking up. Do people actually use the word “biffles” in real life?? It’d be funny if they did. I've also added a doodle that Courtney posted to her TwitPic a little while back illustrating that very scene. It's so cute. You should check out her other doodles, too!

These are only a couple of the lines that had me laughing. I feel like I can hear Ellie’s sarcasm in my head, and that makes it so much better. Another thing that I love is how Ellie keeps calling Will different names, such as Batman and a ninja. She also names her car, Marshmallow. Are you curious? Intrigued? I hope so. Angelfire comes out on February 15, 2011 and you have to get a copy. I know I will.

Feel free to share links to your teasers! I’d love to see what you’re reading.