Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Possessions: The Evil Within - Nancy Holder

WherI got it: ARC from the publisher
Rating: 2.5 stars
Cover Rating: 4.5 stars (MUCH better than the first cover. Very creepy...)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: June 10, 2010 
Publisher: Razorbill
Page Count: 310 p.


Lindsay is now possessed and can feel Celia control her whenever she wants. She knows she must return to Marlwood in order to free herself and get rid of the spirit. When she tries to listen to what the spirit tells her must happen, Lindsay knows she can't do it. Her unwillingness ends up dragging the truth out of the spirits that are fighting for revenge. There may just be someone else that Celia and Belle need to join together in order to free themselves and the girls they have a hold on.

hmm... I'm not sure really what to say about this one. I was really hoping it would live up to the expectations I had for it upon finishing book 1, but it fell short. Again, like in the first one there are far too many people to keep track of that are not relevant to the plot. Even the other spirits of the girls who died seem complete random and don't add to the storyline. Very little happened in this book for me to really appreciate it. Another think that bothered me again, was the fact that she refers to Troy as her "true love". They aren't even officially together and they barely know anything about the other person. So I don't think that she really would call him her "true love".  This book was just okay. Lindsay learned a couple new things about her possession, but there is still no conclusion. This series could have easily been wrapped up with this book if there weren't so many side-tracked story lines that go nowhere. I might read the next one eventually. It doesn't come out until the spring and I won't be eagerly anticipating it, but I might pick it up at some point just so I can find out how this ends. There was nowhere near the level of creepiness that the first book ended on and I was just really disappointed in this novel. 

First Line:
"I had escaped."

Favorite Line:
"Shayna stumbled forward like a Zombie and I had to hurry to keep up."

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Body Finder 2 cover revealed!

ummmm... so I don't know if any of you have seen this yet, but here is the official cover for Desires of the Dead book 2 for Kimberly Derting. Her post about this is here, go tell her how much you love it!

Don't Forget...

to enter my Blog-o-versary contest! It ends tomorrow.

Sneaky Momma Blog Design

Monday, June 28, 2010

Review: Refresh, Refresh - Danica Novgorodoff, James Ponsoldt, Benjamin Percy

WherI got it: Inter-library loan
Rating: 4 stars
Cover Rating: 3 stars (It's provocative)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: September 29, 2009 
Publisher: First Second
Page Count: 144 p.

Three boys whose fathers enlisted are left behind to be the men of the house. So sometimes they fight. They fight as if they have something to prove, to their fathers, to their friends or to themselves. When their lives don’t turn out exactly as planned and they end up pulling some stupid stuff. Enlisting themselves might be the only way for them to save themselves. But then, who is left?

This was a gut-wrenching depiction of war-torn families. The title comes from these boys constantly refreshing their e-mail inboxes trying to get word from their fathers. Boys pounding on each other to vent their frustrations on having life not be the way they want it. Not that everyone gets the life of their dreams, but most don’t have to face their parents’ mortality so suddenly. This was a good graphic novel, with matching illustrations. It was very brief but powerful nonetheless. If you have a chance to pick this up, I suggest you do. Enjoy.

First Line:
"Hit him in the face!"

Favorite Line:
"Hit him in the face!"

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday #26

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine!

This week, I'm waiting on Dark Water by Laura McNeal. I have really enjoyed reading Tom and Laura McNeal's books and am quite excited for this one. This is due out September 14th. Here's a peek at the first chapter from their website:

Chapter One

You wouldn’t have noticed me before the fire unless you saw that my eyes, like a pair of socks chosen in the dark, don’t match.  One is blue and the other’s brown, a genetic trait called heterochromia that I share with white cats, Catahoula hog dogs, and water buffaloes.  My uncle Hoyt used to tell me, when I was little, that it meant I could see fairies and peaceful ghosts.
Then I met Amiel, and for six months it seemed true what he whispered in his damaged voice:  Tu eres de dos mundos.
He was wrong, of course.  You can only belong to one world at a time. 
Now that he’s gone, I try to see things when I’m alone.  I put one hand over my blue eye, and I look south.  With my brown eye I can see all the way to Mexico.  I fly over freeways and tile roofs and malls and swimming pools.  I cross the Sierra de Juarez mountains and the Sea of Cortez to the place where Amiel was born, and I find the turquoise house with a red door.   There are three chairs on the covered patio outside: one for him, one for me, and one for Uncle Hoyt.  I tell myself the chairs are empty because we’re not there yet.  I watch for as long as I can and when my eye starts to water, I remove my hand. 
Tomorrow, I’ll look again.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Review: Paisley Hanover Acts Out - Cameron Tuttle

WherI got it: Inter-library loan
Rating: 3 stars
Cover Rating: 3 stars (It doesn't really look like Paisley, but I like the bright colors.)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: March 5, 2009
Publisher: Dial
Page Count: 344 p. + 82 p. Paisley's Notebook 

Paisley Hanover has a plan, had a plan, a seven point plan to be exact. That went out the window as she spastic jazzed her way out of Yearbook (don’t ask). Now she’s stuck with the popularity-impaired drama freaks. On top of that her best friend is no longer on speaking terms with her after something weird happened at a summer party. Now Paisley has to figure out how to get her life back on track. She has a play performance (with a boy she’s got a below-the-belt crush on); she’s running for student council, trying to get her best-y back and oh yeah, a following of misUNderstood kids. All while trying to live a perfectly normal high school life full of crushes (above and below the belt), friends and popularity.

Paisley Hanover is not very smart. She’s of moderate intelligence which makes her more believable as a misfit stuck in a rah-rah’s body. This was a fun read, reminiscent of the Georgia Nicolson series (except not British and no one is funnier than Georgia. NO ONE!). I found the characters were pretty believable. There were nasty ones and dorky ones, smart ones and jock ones. Some times it seemed a little exaggerated for comic effect, but it is high school so you know…I’m not sure what else to say really. Paisley wasn’t a heroine really, sometimes I found her very na├»ve and full of herself but *shrug* it happens. I definitely want to read the next book in this series because this one ended on a “oh, come on!” kind of note. This was fun and great for sitting outside on a hot day and giggling to.

First Line:
“I took a deep breath outside the door to Yearbook class and then sauntered—yes, I actually sauntered—into the room, doing my best imitation of calm, confident me.

Favorite Line:
“Bentley Jones, Dwight Cashel, and Eric Sobel had turned the corner and were headed in my direction, talking and laughing like the world were made of lollipops and midgets.”

Sunday, June 20, 2010

In My Mailbox #44

In My Mailbox brought to you by The Story Siren
Last week Katie asked where I swapped my books. I swap on Goodreads bookswap because it's pretty darn fantastic.

Graceling - Kristen Cashore
Black is for Beginnings - Laurie Faria Stolarz

For Review:
The Boneshaker - Kate Milford (Thanks Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
Trickster's Girl - Hilari Bell (Thanks Hilari)
Dust City - Robert Paul Weston
Virals - Kathy Reichs
Sapphique - Catherine Fisher
The Replacement - Brenna Yovanoff!!!! (These last four thanks to Penguin)

So what did you all get?

Saturday, June 19, 2010

One Year Blog-o-versary Contest!

So, yes today is my one year blog-o-versary and boy has this year flown by. So much has happened in my life as well as in the blogging community. We stuck together and fought for a cover change for both Liar and Magic Under the Glass. There have also been some not so savory things happening in the blog-o-sphere (but let us not think of such things). This is a day of celebration. I am so excited to still be blogging after 12 long months. I currently have 227 followers and that is amazing. I am so thankful that so many people care about my opinion of books and want to share their opinions with me. I have discovered many amazing new authors and books since I have been blogging, some of which I don't think I would have heard about otherwise. I have met so many amazing people who, like me, share a passion for books and reading and talking about books.
I have seen a lot of people post about some of their firsts during their blog-o-versary post so I guess I could do a few.

First Review: Why I Let My Hair Grow Out - Maryrose Wood
My First Author Interview: Stephanie Kuehnert
My First Giveaway: Ballads of Suburbia with Stephanie Kuehnert
My First Waiting on Wednesday: Going Bovine - Libba Bray
My First Teaser Tuesday: The Nature of Jade - Deb Caletti
and my first In My Mailbox

That's good enough eh? Oh yeah I mentioned a contest didn't I.... hmmm well let's see what we have here.
Books I am thinking of adding: The Replacement ARC, Nightshade ARC, The Body Finder, Hex Hall, Sea, Possessions: the Evil within ARC, Paisley Hanover Kisses and Tells ARC, The Eternal Ones ARC, And Then Everything Unraveled, I Like Him, He Likes Her,  Swoon, Boys, Bears and a Serious Pair of Hiking Boots ARC... and more!

Twelve ARCs hmmm well that's good...for now. So this is how it all goes down.
As of right now I will have three winners.
Winner #1 receives 2 books pictured above(they pick) and maybe one or two (still undecided) prints from Marta Bevacqua (also your pick, as long as she has them for sale).
Winner #2 receives 1 book pictures above and a print from Marta (you pick both)
Winner #3 receives 1 book from above

Now to enter go to Marta's website here and comment below with the title of your favorite picture(the titles are above the picture on the right) and leave a way for me to contact you. That is all you need to do to gain entry.
Extra entries:
+1 link this somewhere and leave me the link
+1 become a new follower
+2 already being a follower
+3 grab my blog-o-versary button(lovely photo by Marta) and stick it on your sidebar
+5 making a post about this contest and leaving a link
+10 writing me a book love poem/song (silly I know, but fun!)
+10 if you upload a video of you poem/song

So, I have also decided that as I get more followers I will add more books and more winners(maybe I'll even post what books I'm adding as I add them! GADZOOKS!). I may also add a winner for my favorite song/poem?!?! Who knows?!?!? Maybe I'll think of other great prizes(if you look at my IMM tomorrow you'll see one of the great prizes I'm thinking of giving away).
So please, check out Marta's beautiful photography and come back here and enter my contest! It will end... 6/30.Oh yeah and of course this contest is open to all!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Review: Possessions - Nancy Holder

WherI got it: Inter-library loan
Rating: 3.5 stars
Cover Rating: 2.5 stars (eh... I don't like how shiny, shiny the girl looks. This cover is simply not creepy enough.)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: September 3, 2009
Publisher: Razorbill
Page Count: 296 p. 

After Lindsay's big breakdown she decides to get out of San Diego and out of her old life. She decides to go to boarding school in upstate California. As soon as she arrives however she witnesses something she can't explain. As all the unexplainable things start to add up, Lindsay knows something has got to give. What she doesn't realize is that maybe what's going on may have less to do with the present and more to do with something grizzly in Marlwood's past. Now she has to fight to figure out who she can trust as spirits that had remained dormant are back to seek revenge.

I did not like this book at first. There was too much description. I know I always usual love descriptions, but at times there was just too much. "My gaze rested on a thin girl with a retro beehive and large hoop earrings, wearing a charcoal-gray sweater that was even baggier than my sweatshirt, a wrap-around indigo sarong, then another one of wheat-colored fabric over that, leggings, and some kind of floppy boots." Now this is a great description and I can vividly picture the girl but when every sentence is like this it gets to be too much and there is very little room for imaginative freedom. So you do have a very visual setting, but sometimes I think it goes above and beyond. Another thing that was kind of odd was Lindsay and Julie's (her dorm-mate)friendship. Now, I have never shared a room with someone I didn't know, so maybe I am just blind to this. It just seemed like all of a sudden they both decided to be best friends and then they were. Okay for seven-year-olds, a little strange if you are fifteen. That's how I feel at least. I wish something had happened to make them bond into "best friends", late night tell-all, hanging out more, something. Still they seemed to get on well enough to be friends if not "best friends". So, like I said I did not like this book at first, maybe I was moody when I started it or whatever. Nearer the second half however, I started to really enjoy this book and even get a bit creeped out. They are some spooky things going on at Marlwood and I am glad I don't have to be there. At times I really admire Lindsay's bravery/stupidity when she does things like go in the creepy attic. Not something I see myself doing especially after all the other spookiness going on. There was an interesting crush-y fling thing with a gorgeous (of course, have you noticed there are rarely sub-par looking guys in books) boy from across the lake. I don't want to spoil this too much but I am certainly looking forward to cracking open my ARC of book #2 and finding out what happens next. This book ended with quite the "oooooo I want to know what happens next" moment.

First Line:
"Fog had crawled up the mountain, like a wounded animal on pine-tree claws, and bled all over the campus."

Favorite Line:
 "The slit grew, as if someone--Mandy--had carved a jack-o'-lantern mouth into its dead-white skin."

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Teaser Tuesday #31

This week's Teaser Tuesday is from Possessions - Nancy Holder

(page: 154)

"And something stopped me. I looked into her ashen, hungry face and it was almost like an actual voice inside my head warning me, Don't trust her."
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, June 14, 2010

Review: I Heart You, You Haunt Me - Lisa Schroeder

WherI got it: Inter-library loan
Rating: 4 stars
Cover Rating: 4 stars (It's a little weird but fitting.)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: January 8, 2008
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Page Count: 226 p.

"Ava + Jackson = true LOVE 4ever"
Except not anymore.
Not now, he's...       gone.
But what if love knows no bounds?
What if love can prevail no matter what stands between them?
Could love survive even 
Well, Ava and Jackson seem to think so. 
Though Ava doesn't know that it's right for them to hold on.
It can never be the same
can never be
Will Ava be able to let Jackson go?
Will Jackson ever leave?

This was a wonderfully heartbreaking work. I love books in prose poetry, they can just hold so much emotion in those carefully chosen words. Ava was heartbroken over her boyfriend, Jackson's death and she blamed herself for it. This story tells of the true raw heartbreak, but it also tells of freedom from guilt. It tells that maybe at fifteen-years-old a relationship may not be as serious. Maybe you truly did love him, but only in those moments. It seemed like Ava did love Jackson, but she was also young (NOT to say all young people don't know what love is) and she had lots of other choices to make. This book was certainly sad but in a good relief-filled way. It tells of letting go and making peace. It was a wonderful book and I think everyone should read it. I'm sure you will not be able to put it down or take a breath until the end. 

First Line:
"I've never been
to a funeral
until today."

Favorite Lines:
"When I take a drink,
it tastes
sweet and sour
like it should be.

My heart feels 
sweet and sour too.

Is that how it should be?"

Sunday, June 13, 2010

In My Mailbox #43

In My Mailbox brought to you by The Story Siren

The Boy Book - E. Lockhart
Fly on the Wall - E. Lockhart
Fire Will Fall - Carol Plum-Ucci
 School of Possibilities - Seita Parkkola
 What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know - Sonya Sones
Sweethearts - Sara Zarr
 Oh. My. Gods. - Tera Lynn Childs
LoveSick - Jake Coburn
Prada & Prejudice - Mandy Hubbard
The Other Boy - Hailey Abbott
Cut - Patricia McCormick
Jay's Journal - Anonymous
Margaux with and X - Ron Koertge
Heart is Not a Size - Beth Kephart
The Nature of Jade - Deb Calletti (my review)
The Boyfriend List - E.Lockhart
Nightlight - Harvard Lampoon
Wild Roses - Deb Caletti
Twisted - Laurie Halse Anderson
A Map of the Known World - Lisa Ann Sandell
Janes in Love - Cecil Castelluci
The Plain Janes - Cecil Castelluci
 Boy Toy - Barry Lyga

For Review:
Sunshine - Robin McKinley (Thanks Penguin)
This Means War - Ellen Wittlinger (Thanks Simon & Schuster)
Stalker Girl - Rosemary Graham
These last two my dad brought up for me from a book store near him.

What did you all get?

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Review: The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Mysterious Howling - Maryrose Wood

Where I got it: Library
Rating: 4 stars
Cover Rating: 5 stars (I love these illustrations and the cover just makes me giggle.)
Genre: Middle Grade
Publication Date: February 16, 2010
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Page Count: 267 p.

Penelope Lumley acquires a job at Ashton Place. The accommodations and pay are quite good, but they seem nervous to introduce her to the children. When she hears the sounds of dogs in the barn she goes to investigate and finds the children. The children act like animals they don't know how to speak or put on clothing. Penelope sees this as a great challenge and is excited to take it on. However, with a Christmas party approaching she doesn't know if the children will be ready in time. With some odd things happening and someone in the house trying to thwart Penelope's efforts to civilize the children, Penelope's is in for a bigger challenge than she originally thought.

This was an amusing book with and interesting concept. Children raised by wolves is an outrageous idea. Though I feel as though these children were very quick to warm up to humans. I was surprise that Penelope seemed to take everything in stride and it didn't seem too strange for her to meet the children. This was an enjoyable book and fans of The Willoughbys will enjoy this. The illustrations by Jon Klassen are thoroughly excellent too. One thing that did bug me were all the sentences that were along the lines of "how you say nowadays" and would then relate something that was happening to something more modern. It happened entirely too much. Especially in chapter 11. All in all this was a great read and I look forward to the next installments of the Incorrigibles.

First Line:
"It was not Miss Penelope Lumley's first journey on a train, but it was the first one she had taken alone."

Favorite Line:
"Next time you see me, I will have wasted away to skin and bones---oh, look who is lurking here among the foliage."

Friday, June 11, 2010

Review: The Agency: A Spy in the House - Y.S. Lee

Where I got it: Library
Rating: 4.5 stars
Cover Rating: 5 stars (Very Victorian.)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: March 9, 2010
Publisher: Candlewick
Page Count: 335p.

Mary Quinn was but twelve when she was rescued from the gallows and brought to Miss Scrimshaw's Academy for Girls. Here they made her a new life filled with learning and education instead of panhandling and thievery. However, when Mary asks one day if maybe there's more for her than just teaching the younger girls, she gets enlisted into the Agency. The Agency is a secret female spy group that uses the school as a front. They send her to be a lady's companion for the daughter of a man they are investigating. She is only to observe and not interfere. When things start to seem out of place though Mary can't help herself and the Agency may find out there are more secrets than they had originally thought.  

Awesome. That is what this book was. At times, it did seem very slow going, but it was amazingly realistic. For a spy novel it was quite tame and didn't have outrageous explosions or high speed pursuits. I love the time period (1853) and this novel shows that Y.S. Lee's PhD is being put to good use. This book reminded me a lot of A Great and Terrible Beauty just without the magic. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this and am super excited for The Body at the Tower. Mary's character was not completely developed (certainly on purpose) because we know little about her past. It seems like there are many things Mary herself doesn't know, but nevertheless it's exciting to imagine what she may find out. I found myself excited as each new development, or at least each piece of the puzzle, was presented. It was very intriguing to try and race the characters in order to figure out what was what. The love interest in this novel is excellent. The relationship strains and is awkward and great and sweet and true. It's a real romantic-tension sort of deal. So definitely pick this up if you enjoy Victorian Fiction with a strong female lead and a cute but stubborn love interest. 

First Line:
"She should have been listening to the judge."

Favorite Line:
"He lifted a glass of punch out of a surprised guest's hand and scooped the bits of crushed ice into his handkerchief."

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Winners of National Pants Week!

So I have finally declared two winners of my Georgia Nicolson Pants Week! They are...
Sara won a copy of Are These My Basoomas I See Before Me and Buddyt won Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging. I hope they will help spread the Georgia love(because honestly[I mean come on])!

So thanks everyone who entered. And by the way my one year Blogoversary is coming up on the 19th so look out for a giant superb marvelous extraordinary contest extravaganza(it probably won't be as cool as I just made it sound).

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Teaser Tuesday #30

This week's Teaser Tuesday is from
A Spy in The House (The Agency) - Y.S. Lee

(page: 30)

"Sewage, both human and animal. All rotting."

 Can I just say I'm really enjoying this book. It reminds me of A Great and Terrible Beauty a bit but with a much stronger lead and minus the magic.
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!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

In My Mailbox #42

In My Mailbox brought to you by The Story Siren
So I haven't done IMM in the last two weeks, in case you didn't notice. I just wasn't feeling up to it. So this is what I got the last two weeks and this week.

Okay these will be grouped in their categories instead of the order in which they appear in the pictures.

For Review:
Half in Love - Linda Gray Sexton (signed)
(these last three were gotten for me but some of my co-workers when they went to a librarian conference)
**From Phenomenal Press (thanks)

(I won this and those bookmarks from Teens Read and Write Blog)
You Wish giant postcard and My Little Pony stickers from Mandy Hubbard

Wildthorn - Jane Eagland (finished paperback copy)

So that's what I got this past month or so. What did you all get?
Also I have not forgotten about my National PANTS week contest. I have been waiting to have money and I should be announcing the winners this week so keep an eye out!

***I did not and do not have an eating disorder. Not that having an eating disorder is something to be ashamed of. I just thought this might be useful to read along with all the YA eating disorder books.


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