Friday, October 30, 2009

Familiar Friday

Looking around this week I just thought I could share some similar covers I have come upon. I wonder if the publishers have just stopped taking new pictures.

The Way Life Should Be - Christina Baker Kline
Finding Alice - Melody Carlson

Love is the Higher Law - David Levithan
Pretend All Your Life - Joseph Mackin

Sing Me to Sleep - Angela Morrison
Sharing Sam - Katherine Applegate

Anyone else find any similar book covers this week?

Review: I Can't Keep My Own Secrets: Six-word Memoirs by Teens Famous + Obscure

Where I got it: Library
Rating: 5 stars
Cover Rating: 3 stars (not good not bad.)
Genre: Young Adult non-fiction
Publication Date: September 1, 2009
Publisher: HarperTeen

This book is filled by six word quotes about 600 different teens.

This was a fast and fun little book. At times making you laugh and other times making your eyes well up. Who knew that 6 words could say so much.

Some of my favorites:

"Laughed at all the wrong moments." -Kierra B.

"I never got my Hogwarts letter." -Deanna H.

"The Beatles really said it all." -Mary Kate C.

"Holden caught me in the rye." -Brittany F.

"I lost more than my innocence." -Angela G.

I don't know if I would recommend you buying it, unless you really want a book with fun quotes. Convince your library to buy a couple copies and then check it out. This book is a good choice.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Nina Lacour Interview + Contest

Hey guys,
Hopefully you all stopped by yesterday at Borders in San Francisco or at the Point of View website for the exciting author chat with Nina Lacour. If you couldn't make it however, here's a little mini interview with her...

How was your release day? What did you do?

My release day was incredibly fun. I took the day off and spent it with a group of people who I love, traveling around the Bay Area to different bookstores, going out for coffee and lunch, and then celebrating at my apartment. Seeing Hold Still on the shelves of so many stores was really exciting. I had been waiting so long for that day to come.

What is the most influential book for you? What book hit you the hardest when you read it?

My favorite novel is Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf. Each time I read it I am completely blown away. I find it profoundly sad. But it also captures the beauty and wonder of life in a way that I have not encountered in any other novel.
How was it being inside Caitlin's head?

I'm a lot like Caitlin in many ways, so at times it felt pretty natural. But sometimes I felt trapped in this place of grieving, which was difficult. I wanted her to snap out of it, but at the same time, I had to fully immerse myself in her sadness in order to really feel what I was writing. Later, when I got to write the scenes in which she starts to open up to the world again, being in her head was exhilarating.

Why did you pick the topic of suicide for your first novel?

I didn't intend to write a book about suicide; the story just came to me. When I started high school two people I knew committed suicide--one of my classmates and one of my former teachers--so I guess I still had all these questions and leftover feelings from that time that I felt compelled to explore. But, at least for me, Hold Still is more about grief and recovery than it is about suicide. It's about the life continues in the wake of something terrible, and about how beautiful things can come out of sadness.

What do you think about the cover of your book, honestly?

I feel like I'm taking a lie detector test! Well, at first I was reluctant to have a photograph of a girl on the cover. I never like it when I see a representation of a character because the photograph never matches the image I've created in my head. And, in this case, I have such a clear image of Caitlin because I created her, so no matter how lovely the model is, she doesn't look like Caitlin to me. But I do really like the cover. My friend Mia Nolting drew the leaves and wrote my name and the title and I love the work she did. I also love the spine, which is really important because that's what will face out on people's bookshelves. I find the spine very pretty and delicate. Overall, I think the book turned out beautifully and I'm very grateful to Mia and all of the people at Penguin for all of the care they put into the design. Oh! And there is a hidden embellishment under the dust jacket that you all should check out.

What are you working on now?

I am working on a second YA novel for Dutton. It's very different from Hold Still. I didn't want to write about another tragic event--I needed a break from death for a while--but I tend to write about sad things and this new book is no exception. The narrator is an 18-year-old guy named Colby, and the novel follows him over a one-week road trip he's taking with four girls. Colby has just discovered that his post-high school plans are not going to unfold in the way he had expected them to, and now he has to figure out what he's going to do. The novel involves lots of driving, cheap motels, bad and good music, a mysterious tattoo, unrequited love, and heartbreak.

What is your favorite food?

Figs. Or tomatoes. And coffee, if coffee is a food.

Have you always wanted to be a writer, or did it just happen?

I had always hoped to be a writer. I would write regardless of whether or not I got published, and now I just feel incredibly fortunate that I get to write as one of my jobs.

What do you want to tell the world?

To write someone a letter.

Big thanks
to Nina for taking the time to answer my questions, you can check her out at her blog here.

Okay so I'm really excited guys, because I get to have a contest for you to win a finished copy of Hold, Still by NINA LACOUR (obviously). So to enter just comment with your e-mail address and something you liked about the interview, or if you have read the book, something you liked about that.

This contest is only open to U.S. and Canada... sorry :(

+2 for becoming a follower
+3 if you already are a follower
+2 for each time you link to this post (please leave a link if it's not on your blog)
+2 for every comment you leave or any post after this one before the contest ends.

This contest ends on November 15th. Good Luck!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Waiting On Wednesday #9

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine!

July 13, 2010. That's when this sucker comes out. So quite a wait but I think it will be well worth it. You can pre-order it from Amazon now!

"Since her sister’s mysterious death, Persephone “Phe” Archer has been plagued

by a series of disturbing dreams. Determined to find out what happened to her

sister, Phe enrolls at Devenish Prep in Shadow Hills, Massachusetts—the subject

of her sister’s final diary entry.

After stepping on campus, Phe immediately realizes that there’s something different

about this place—an unexplained epidemic that decimated the town in the 1700s,

an ancient and creepy cemetery, and gorgeous boy Zach—and somehow she’s

connected to it all.

But the more questions she asks and the deeper she digs, the more entangled

Phe becomes in the haunting past of Shadow Hills.

Finding what links her to this town…might cost her her life."

Live chat with Nina Lacour

Nina Lacour is going to be at Borders at 233 Winston Drive , San Francisco , CA 94132
For those of you not in the area you can catch the event here,
you can ask her question and listen to her answer others. So check this out tonight 7:00 pm PST.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Teaser Tuesday #7

This week's Teaser Tuesday is from Rage: a Love Story by: Julie Anne Peter
I'm cheating and adding more than two.... so HA!

Teaser (page: 159)

"'What?' I say again.
'She did it to me too.'
'Did what?'
'Marked me.'"

Teaser Tuesday is brought to us by Should be Reading.
1) Grab your current read
2) Open to a random page
3) Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
4) BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
5) Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Review: Pretty Dead by: Francesca Lia Block

Where I got it: Library
Rating: 3 stars
Cover Rating: 5 stars (This cover is so sexy.)
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Publication Date: September 22, 2009
Publisher: HarperTeen

Charlotte has lost many people over the years and, oh how many years it has been. When she is finally on her own she has to find someone to fill up her emptiness, but who is there? She has everything anyone could want, except a lover, except mortality.

This book was short and sweet, maybe a little too short. Unlike Block's earlier works this book seem to be lacking that poetic edge, that twists your stomach in knots and makes you cry out as if you were one of her tragic characters. This book was simply a small glimpse into the life of Charlotte Emerson. It was a good story for what it was. You got to see how she dealt with a very small section of her very long life. A sneak peak into what could have been a much longer novel. The characters were mostly undeveloped, though it seemed to be on purpose. You didn't really feel for any of them because you never got a chance to connect to them. I was quite excited when I found out that the lovely Francesca was doing a vampire novel but after reading it, I was left feeling disappointed. This is not a novel, it is a snippet; An epic poem without the hero. If you want to tick this one off your list then go ahead and read it but don't add it to your pile.

First Line:
"Teenage girls are powerful creatures."

Favorite Line:
"my darling in the red dress"

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Princess Bookie's Big Box Challenge

This is my entry for Princess Bookie's Big Box Challenge.

Check out the link to find out more about it.

In My Mailbox #14

IMM is brought to you in part by Story Siren

ARC of Ash by: Malinda Lo (also a Beautiful Creatures bookmark and a Bran Hambric one too)
won at Park Avenue Princess from Bookworming in the 21st Century

Hardcover(signed) Donut Days by: Lara Zielin
won at The Bookologist

Hardcover (signed) Candor by: Pam Bachorz
won from the woman herself Pam Bachorz

Almost Perfect by: Brian Katcher

New kitten(wasn't really in my mailbox...)

What loot did you all get this past week?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Review: Hush, Hush by: Becca Fitzpatrick

Where I got it: Simon & Schuster
Rating: 4 stars
Cover Rating: 5 stars (beautiful and shimmery I love it)
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Publication Date: October 13, 2009
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing

Every girl is secretly drawn to the beautiful bad boy. Why should Nora be any different? After Coach changes the seating arrangement in Biology Nora gets her own bad boy Patch to cuddle up with. Everyone seems to think that Patch is bad news, even Nora. So why can't she seems to stay away? Weird things keep happening to Nora that she can't seem to explain. She can't even bring herself to tell her best friend Vee about what's been going on. She seems to only be able to confide in Patch, even against her better judgment. When a new transfer student, Elliot, and his friend Jules befriend the girls even stranger things start to happen including them being attacked. When Nora pries into Elliot's past a little she finds out some things he definitely didn't want her to know. Is Patch the bad guy Nora and everyone thinks he is or is he the only one who can save them?

Though there were things I didn't like about this book, I was consumed by it. I loved the story and I loved pushing through the words to the end. Patch is the guy you fall in love with in books. He always looks like your perfect man, despite his actual appearance. While reading you sort of forget his rudeness and arrogance and just kind of get lost staring into his eyes (well, you know...). So it's hard not to love a character like that. However, one thing that did get me riled up is why Patch and Nora seemed to trust each other so much. I mean, a fallen angel is going to trust some mortal girl he knows next to nothing about? And Nora is going to trust this guy that gives her bad vibes, she will just go off alone with him no questions asked? That seemed weird and unrealistic, even with all those intense pheromone induced moments it seems they were still way too trustworthy. Patch was kind of rude and boyish for having been around so long, he really should have been more mature (I would assume) but boys will be boys I guess. Another thing I didn't get was how Nora stopped him from doing what he wanted to do(vague, but spoiler free), I mean what power does she have over him really? The ending was weird and out of character for the whole book. It was too froofy. I have hopes that the sequel will remedy this. The writing itself was very descriptive and enjoyable. It was like watching the movie while you read. All in all I recommend this to anyone who wants a good dark romance, even if the romance doesn't seem to really make sense. It was a really quick and exciting read. A great debut book, I am looking forward to getting my hands on a copy of Crescendo.

First Line:
"Chauncey was with a farmer's daughter on the grassy banks of the Loire river when the storm rolled in, and having let his gelding wander in the meadow, was left to his own two feet to carry him back to the château."

Favorite Line:
"This whole night felt like a dark fairy tale I'd strayed into and couldn't find my way back out of. A fairy tale with fallen angels, human hybrids, and sacrificial killings."

Support your read-a-thonners

and win some prizes. Cindy over at Princess Bookie is having many cool contests including one to win ARC's of Unwritten Rule, Dark Divine, Bleeding Violet and Voices of Dragons. I know I want to read Elizabeth Scott's new one because who doesn't love her? Also with the other three hasn't everyone been drooling about these books since they heard about them, I know 'm dying for December 22nd! So go enter this contest here.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Anyone in the Oakland CA area should check this out.

Oakland - Nina LaCour Book Launch Party for "Hold Still"

Fri, 10/23/2009 - 7:00pm

oakland events

nina lacour

Diesel, Bookstore in Oakland is pumped to present former Diesel employee and local high school English teacher Nina LaCour in celebration of her first novel, Hold Still, on Friday, October 23rd, at 7 p.m.

Nina LaCour grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her first job was at fourteen in an independent bookstore, and she has since worked in two others. She has tutored and taught in various places, from a juvenile hall to a private college. She now teaches English at an independent high school, and lives in Oakland, California.

Diesel, A Bookstore Oakland
5433 College Ave.
Oakland, California 94618

Hold Still (Hardcover)

By Lacour, Nina
ISBN-13: 9780525421559
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Dutton Books, 10/01/2009

An arresting story about starting over after a friend's suicide, from a breakthrough new voice in YA fiction.
"dear caitlin, there are so many things that i want so badly to tell you but i just can't."
Devastating, hopeful, hopeless, playful . . . in words and illustrations, Ingrid left behind a painful farewell in her journal for Caitlin. Now Caitlin is left alone, by loss and by choice, struggling to find renewed hope in the wake of her best friend's suicide. With the help of family and newfound friends, Caitlin will encounter first love, broaden her horizons, and start to realize that true friendship didn't die with Ingrid. And the journal which once seemed only to chronicle Ingrid's descent into depression, becomes the tool by which Caitlin once again reaches out to all those who loved Ingrid--and Caitlin herself.

Originally posted at

Copyright © DIESEL, A Bookstore

Awesome video for Girl in the Arena

Found this gem over at Zoe's Book Reviews

Monday, October 19, 2009

The amazing Hold Still trailer....

So maybe I'm a little slow on the uptake but this trailer is so amazing. The book comes out October 20th, so if you like what you see you can go pick it up tomorrow!

Review: Say the Word by: Jeannie Garsee

Where I got it: Library
Rating: 4 stars
Cover Rating: 2 stars (meh.)
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Publication Date: March 17, 2009
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's Books

Shawna tries to always be "Perfect Shawna" not "Evil Shawna" or "Pathetic Shawna". It doesn't always work out that way. When Shawna's mother leaves her without a goodbye to be with her lesbian lover Fran, Shawna feels totally abandoned. Years later Fran gives her a call saying to come quickly because her mother's in the hospital and probably won't make it much longer. After her father catches wind of what is going on he intervenes, and between her mother's outdated will and her father's controlling decisions, every one's lives are being thrown out of control. Will "Perfect Shawna" prevail or will "Evil Shawna" need to make an appearance in order to straighten things out and make things right?

I enjoyed this book. I wish Shawna was never "Pathetic Shawna", but that's kind of how she seems throughout this book. She just seems very whiny and self centered. Even near the end when it seems like she's being selfless and still all seems to be about her. The characters were very well developed and they seemed real. I really enjoyed watching the relationships change and grow throughout this novel, it was stunningly realistic. This wasn't necessarily a GBLT book although it was mentioned throughout with many different characters being gay. This was a really great book though and I don't know what else to say that wouldn't spoil some of the surprises. It was a really great novel with growing characters that grow on you.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

In My Mailbox #13

IMM is brought to you in part by Story Siren

The Other Side: A Teen's Guide to Ghost Hunting and the Paranormal by: Marley Gibson, Partrick Burns, Dave Schrader.
Crash Into Me (ARC) by: Albert Borris
and Anastasia's Secret (ARC) by: Susanne Dunlap
These were all won at Bookworming in the 21st Century, who by the way is getting married in four days, so go send her congrats.

Cathy's Ring by: Sean Stewart, Jordan Weisman, Cathy Brigg
Wringer by: Jerry Spinelli
Hope Was Here by: Joan Bauer

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Review: Lessons from a Dead Girl by: Jo Knowles

Where I got it: Inter-Library Loan
Rating: 4 stars (a dark twisted ride)
Cover Rating: 3 stars (Interesting, but not necessarily great.)
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Publication Date: October 9, 2007
Publisher: Candlewick

Leah Greene is dead. Laine knew what the phone call her mom received was about; she knew that Leah was dead. All Laine can think about now is all the hard lessons that Leah forced her through. And as Laine says; "What good are lessons from a dead girl?"

I loved how this book was set up, with the actual death being mentioned first then working up to it and passing it. Each chapter is also labeled as a different lesson, each chapter is that lesson. This was about Leah who was sexually abused by an older family friend, and in turn sexually abused Laine and held it over her head, almost as a threat. Leah constantly teased Laine about it, saying that she liked it and likes girls. This story is an excellent look into the lives of two child victims, and the damage sexual abuse can cause. This book was amazing. It showed Leah as a downward spiral, boyfriend after abusive boyfriend. It showed Laine trying to get by, trying to figure out how to define herself without Leah there. Leah controlled Laine's life, without her, Laine had no friends. Leah wasn't really a friend though, and eventually Laine figures this out. I think that this is an amazing glimpse into two teens lives, and I think that someone who is a victim of abuse might benefit from reading this. Maybe they could find the courage to speak out: to be able to tell someone trusted about what happened. Even though it might be painful, I think this book was a raw and honest portrayal of what it means to be a victim of something you can't really control. It can be hard to talk about and I think this book may be a great teen counselor resource. This book could be used as a book discussion piece, then the kids would be talking about Laine and how she feels and the pressure could be off of them. I plan to use this book in a new teen group we are starting at the library. This book was very dark but it was interesting to see how both girls handled their situation and how the lessons were taught and learned.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Waiting On Wednesday #8

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine!

This book has an amazing cover and a fascinating new story... hopefully.

You only hurt the ones you love.

Logan Witherspoon recently discovered that his girlfriend of three years cheated on him. But things start to look up when a new student breezes through the halls of his small-town high school. Sage Hendricks befriends Logan at a time when he no longer trusts or believes in people. Sage has been home schooled for a number of years and her parents have forbidden her to date anyone, but she won’t tell Logan why. One day, Logan acts on his growing feelings for Sage. Moments later, he wishes he never had. Sage finally discloses her big secret: she’s actually a boy. Enraged, frightened, and feeling betrayed, Logan lashes out at Sage and disowns her. But once Logan comes to terms with what happened, he reaches out to Sage in an attempt to understand her situation. But Logan has no idea how rocky the road back to friendship will be.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Winner of my 50 Followers contest!

And the winner of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is.....

Brooke Reviews!
You have been e-mailed and have 48 to respond or a new winner will be chosen.


Hey, everyone else, stay tune, I'll be back with a few new contest. Including one that wins you a free book that debuts on December 1st.....hmmm wonder what it is?

Teaser Tuesday #6

This week's Teaser Tuesday is from Say the Word by: Jeannie Garsee

Teaser (page: 148)

"Tovah glides over, shining in layers of colorful, mismatched patterns, chopsticks poking out of the mind-boggling mass of curls piled on top of her head. On anyone else this might induce shrieks of horror."

Teaser Tuesday is brought to us by Should be Reading.
1) Grab your current read
2) Open to a random page
3) Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
4) BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
5) Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Anyone Want to win some great books?

Faye over at Ramblings of a Teenage Bookworm is having a +100 post 172 follower contest and you get to pick 4 of the following books if you win.

The Mark by Jen Nadol(ARC)
The Den of Shadows Quartet by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes(PB)
Soulless (Parasol Protectorate, #1) by Gail Carriger (PB)
Never Cry Werewolf by Heather Davis(HB)
Shiver By Maggie Stiefvater(HB)
Lament by Maggie Stiefvater(PB)
Hush Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick(HB)
Give Up the Ghost by Megan Crewe(HB)
The Hollow by Jessica Verday(HB)
Generation Dead by Daniel Waters(PB)
Never Slow Dance with a Zombie by E Van Lowe (PB)
You are So Undead to Me by Stacey Jay(ARC)
Intertwined By Gena Showalter(HB)
Devoured by Amanda Marrone(PB)
Prophecy of the Sisters by Michelle Zink(HB)
Reign or Shine (Demon Princess, #1) by Michelle Rowen(PB)

So head on over and enter to win right now, contest ends November 15th.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Review: Give Up the Ghost by: Megan Crewe

Where I got it: ARC from 1 ARC Tours
Rating: 2.5 stars (Not for me)
Cover Rating: 3 stars (Doesn't really seem look like an outfit Cassie would wear, although I do appreciate the ghostly whisperer)
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Publication Date: September 15, 2009
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.

Cassie's sister Paige drowned, ever since then Cassie has been able to see ghosts. She 's even made friends with a few at school, who spy on people and give her all the dirt. When someone starts to catch on, that she might be able to help them reach a dead relative, Cassie is hesitant at first because no one really talks to her. She ends up helping them but does that really change her? Do people start to see that she might not be so bad?

I really wanted to like this book more. It was an interesting premise and who wouldn't want all that dirt on people? But, Cassie was a hypocrite. She kept talking about how much people are backstabbers and snotty and not good people, when really she's just the same as them. The voice did seem accurate though, like a whiny girl who doesn't fit in because she is trying too hard to be different. I really just couldn't get over Cassie's thoughts though, she was very irksome and it made me just dread listening to her. She gets this really great dirt on her ex-best friend's boyfriend and when faced with confronting her she balks. It was a disappointment, if she really didn't want to be excepted by them and really disliked them she would have been fine with gushing out. The story was decent though, it was eventful and honest, the emotions rang true. The ending was awful though, especially the last line. " A night when I could share a table with a student council VP, and my dead sister, too, not to bargain or to prove a point but simply because I wanted to." Ick. So if you wanted to read it go for it. I won't recommend it to someone who wasn't already planning to read this.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

In My Mailbox #12

IMM is brought to you in part by Story Siren

From The Library: Say The Word by: Jeannie Garsee
Rage: a Love Story by: Julie Anne Peters
Pretty Dead by: Francesca Lia Block
Lessons from a Dead Girl by: Jo Knowles
Won: Not Like You by: Deborah Davis Won from Cynthia Leitich Smith she also sent me the bear stickers, the bat stickers and a signed bookplate. THANKS.

For Review: Hush, Hush by: Becca Fitzpatrick

What did you all get?

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Reviews by Title

By Author                                      By Title                        By Year of Review



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