Sunday, October 31, 2010

In My Mailbox (8)

In My Mailbox was started by The Story Siren and inspired by Pop Culture Junkie.

From the Library: 
Oh. My. Gods. by Tera Lynn Childs 
As You Wish by Jackson Pearce
Paper Towns by John Green

Amy & Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson 

Friday, October 29, 2010

Review: I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak

(summary from goodreads)

Meet Ed Kennedy—underage cabdriver, pathetic cardplayer, and useless at romance. He lives in a shack with his coffee-addicted dog, the Doorman, and he’s hopelessly in love with his best friend, Audrey. His life is one of peaceful routine and incompetence, until he inadvertently stops a bank robbery. That’s when the first Ace arrives. That’s when Ed becomes the messenger. . . .

Chosen to care, he makes his way through town helping and hurting (when necessary), until only one question remains: Who’s behind Ed’s mission?

Review: Before reading this I had heard a lot of good things about Zusak's books, but I didn't have any expectations about I Am The Messenger. After reading this, however, I have very high expectations for his other books. 

The idea behind I Am The Messenger was a very unique one to say the least. It was fun to watch Ed go through different situations that ultimately taught him how to live his life and how to make something of himself. 

I though Ed was a wonderful character. He had true emotions and reactions and didn't seem like a teen aged character created by an adult; he had all the mannerisms of a teenager. Although I also loved Marv, Ritchie, and Audrey I just don't feel like I got to know them. They were each significant, but they felt more like a friend of a friend who you met once and never saw again. 

The plot was driven by finding out who was sending Ed the messages. I felt that the ending (which consisted of an explanation of the aforementioned sentence) was very fast and not very satisfying.*Spoiler alert. Highlight to read.* I just find it hard to believe that someone watched Ed for that long while making a plan and got that many people to cooperate with him. *End spoiler.* 

Overall though, this was a great book and hopefully it is only the first of many Markus Zusak books to come in my TBR pile. 

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Review: My Soul to Keep by Rachel Vincent

(summary from goodreads)


Kaylee has one addiction: her very hot, very popular boyfriend, Nash. A banshee like Kaylee, Nash understands her like no one else. Nothing can come between them. 

Until something does. 

Demon’s breath. No, not the toothpaste-challenged kind. The Netherworld kind. The kind that really can kill you. Somehow, the super-addictive substance has made its way to the human world. But how? Kaylee and Nash have to cut off the source and protect their friends—one of whom is already hooked. 

And when the epidemic hits too close to home, Kaylee will have to risk everything to save those she loves.

Review: This book definitely caused me more problems than it's predecessors did. It was a good continuation of the series and helped to set up the next book, but there were some major problems with the characters, in my eyes. 

Like the first two books, this one had a good, strong plot. But Kaylee and Nash were not as good. My first problem is with Kaylee. How could she not see that something was up with Nash? I could tell something was up before I was even 1/3 of the way through the book. And because it's in first person I assumed that Kaylee was noticing what I was noticing, i.e. Nash being sketchy. 

My second problem was with Nash. I understand why he was doing what he was, but his justification of it and its consequences did not fly with me. Sorry to be vague and confusing, but I don't want to spoil it. 

I was , however, happy to see Kaylee's dad being present more and acting like a dad. Tod is also a character I've grown to like. At first I wasn't too keen on him, but he's one of my favorites now. 

The fact that I saw flaws with this book makes it no less enjoyable. I still think it was a great read, and although the ending wasn't quite a cliff hanger it definitely made me reading for the next one. 

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday (8)

Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill at Breaking the Spine. Summary from goodreads.

Drought by Pam Bachorz
January 11. 2011

 Ruby Prosser dreams of escaping the Congregation and the early-nineteenth century lifestyle that’s been practiced since the community was first enslaved. 

She plots to escape the vicious Darwin West, his cruel Overseers, and the daily struggle to gather the life-prolonging Water that keeps the Congregants alive and gives Darwin his wealth and power. But if Ruby leaves, the Congregation will die without the secret ingredient that makes the Water special: her blood. 

So she stays. 

But when Ruby meets Ford, the new Overseer who seems barely older than herself, her desire for freedom is too strong. He’s sympathetic, irresistible, forbidden—and her only access to the modern world. Escape with Ford would be so simple, but can Ruby risk the terrible price, dooming the only world she’s ever known?


I was not a big fan of Ms. Bachorz's first book, Candor, but this one sounds interesting and I'd like to give her another chance. Plus, this cover's pretty cool.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Review: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne and Wayne Josephson

(summary from goodreads)

Readable Classics gently edits the great works of literature, retaining their essence and spirit, and making them more enjoyable and less frustrating for modern readers. Puritan Boston, 1600's -- Beautiful, defiant Hester Prynne commits adultery, refuses to name the father of her illegitimate child, and is condemned to wear a scarlet A on her breast for the rest of her life. She becomes the first true heroine of American fiction. Nathaniel Hawthorne's 1850 masterpiece was the first American novel to explore the moral struggle with sin, guilt, and pride; the conflict between the heart and the mind; and the deadly consequences of not being able to forgive ourselves and others.

Review: As you can see this review will be a bit different from my usual reviews. It's divided into two separate parts. Since this is a Readable Classics book the original text has been edited to make it easier for the modern reader to read. Therefore, part 1 of the review will be on the story. Part 2 of the review will be on the rewritten aspect of the book.

Part 1: The Scarlet Letter intrigued me from the start. It was astounding to see how people lived in a Purtian society in the 1600's.

The mystery of Hester Prynne and who her secret lover was became clearer the more you read. It wasthis mystery that drove me onward in the book.

The book was written in third person, and this allowed more time for each character to be seen and expressed. I also noticed that this caused quite a decrease in dialogue. There would be chapters where no one spoke at all, but you read what the person was saying internally or what was going on in the town. This, strangely, did not take away, but added to the story. 

Part 2: Mr. Josephson did a wonderful job. After reading his version of The Scarlet Letter I skimmed through a version with the original text and there was a definite difference.

What amazed me was that although it was rewritten it was not completely modernized. I could understand it, but it still had the language and the feel of the 1600's. 

I have seen many a review where people said this would be wonderful for students, but I also think it's great for people like me: people who want to read the classics but aren't totally sure of the language. 

Overall: This was a great story, and it's a classic for a reason. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who hasn't read it. I would also recommend, to both students and the casual reader, to invest in the Readable Classics version, which was very helpful in understanding what was going on.   

Monday, October 25, 2010

Review: City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

(summary from goodreads)

To save her mother's life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters -- never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.
As Clary uncovers more about her family's past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadow-hunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadow-hunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he's willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her new found powers to help save the Glass City -- whatever the cost?

Review: Finally, the ending we've all been waiting on! City of Glass was no less than what I expected it to be. Which is to say it was amazing.

All of the wonderful characters were back and did a wonderful job of concluding the story. The ending was wonderful, too. All the Loose ends were tied up nicely, but not in a way that made it seem like the author was rushing to finish the book.

If you know me then you know that I'm easily irritated by unanswered questions. Thankfully, this book had none. Everything was explained and the questions of who was who were answered.

Overall , this was an amazing wonderful fantastic book, and I'm sooo excited to know that there's more coming. If you have not yet heard about it I STRONGLY encourage you to go here to learn about it.  

Sunday, October 24, 2010

In My Mailbox (7)

In My Mailbox was started by The Story Siren and inspired by Pop Culture Junkie. This week's summary comes from goodreads.

Jane by April Lindner
Forced to drop out of an esteemed East Coast college after the sudden death of her parents, Jane Moore takes a nanny job at Thornfield Park, the estate of Nico Rathburn, an iconic rock star on the brink of a huge comeback. Practical and independent, Jane reluctantly becomes entranced by her magnetic and brooding employer, and finds herself in the midst of a forbidden romance. But there's a mystery at Thornfield, and Jane's much-envied relationship with Nico is tested by a torturous secret from his past.

Part irresistible romance and part darkly engrossing mystery, this contemporary retelling of the beloved classic Jane Eyre promises to enchant a new generation of readers.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Review: City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare

(summary from goodreads)

Clary Fray just wishes that her life would go back to normal. But what's normal when you're a demon-slaying Shadowhunter, your mother is in a magically induced coma, and you can suddenly see Downworlders like werewolves, vampires, and faeries? If Clary left the world of the Shadowhunters behind, it would mean more time with her best friend, Simon, who's becoming more than a friend. But the Shadowhunting world isn't ready to let her go -- especially her handsome, infuriating, newfound brother, Jace. And Clary's only chance to help her mother is to track down rogue Shadowhunter Valentine, who is probably insane, certainly evil -- and also her father.
To complicate matters, someone in New York City is murdering Downworlder children. Is Valentine behind the killings -- and if he is, what is he trying to do? When the second of the Mortal Instruments, the Soul-Sword, is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor arrives to investigate and zooms right in on Jace. How can Clary stop Valentine if Jace is willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?

Review: Maybe it's because this book is in the middle of a series, but it just didn't seem as good as the first one to me. It was still interesting and fun to read, though. 

I don't really like Clary and Simon as a couple. I really did prefer them as friends, because usually (in books) relationships that go from friends to couples end awkwardly and badly. This is a spoiler for book one, and possibly this one too, so highlight to read. I'm not liking the whole Jace and Clary = brother and sister thing. This, however, is a personal thing. As far as the books go I think this twist is genius. But Kathryn's not liking it. It just seems really weird that they still want to be together but can't. I don't want them to be brother and sister yet they are. 'Tis a sad world. Does that make it weird that I'm still rooting for them as a couple?

The other characters are also very enjoyable. I'm really starting to like Isabella and Alec.

The plot, like the first, was very well written. It seemed to go a bit faster in this one because there wasn't as much world building that needed to be done. Overall, a wonderful sequel to an excellent series.  

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Review: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

(summary from goodreads)

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder - much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It's hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing - not even a smear of blood - to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy? 

This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know.... 

Review: The Mortal Instruments was the series that made me absolutely love Cassandra Clare, and as the first in a series, City of Bones was wonderful.  

It took quite a while for me to get into this book, but that was mainly because of the amount of detail in the book and the world building. Which brings me to one of the reasons for this series' awesomeness, it was an incredible and unique would that Clare built beautifully. 

At first, Clary got on my nerves. But after the first few chapters I really started to like her. I think Simon made a good friend and there should definitely be more of him in the future. I loved Jace and his snarkiness, but perhaps he needs to tone down said snarkiness. Also, Church, the cat. I love Church. 

I definitely did not see the end coming, and although I don't necessarily like the twist, it was a good one.

Overall, this book was pretty fantastic. So you should read it. Now.  

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday (7)

Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill at Breaking The Spine. This is the only summary I could find, but it hails from goodreads!

What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen
May 10, 2011

What Happened to Goodbye is about a high school senior who, after her parents’ divorce, has taken up the practice of assuming a new identity in each of the four towns she’s lived in.


Why i'm waiting on it.

Two words. Sarah. Dessen. Nothing more needs to be said. 

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Review: Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her...until Patch comes along. 
With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment, but after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure whom to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is far more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel. 
For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.

Review: Hush, Hush was one of those easy-to-read books. It had a pretty good plot to it, but the cover and the summary pretty much ruin any kind of mystery surrounding Patch. I went into this book already knowing "what" Patch was. That does not, however, make it any less enjoyable.

I thought this book went at a good pace and was happy to see Nora doing some research instead of waiting for answers. I also like that even thought I knew "what" Patch was there was still some mystery about if he was really after Nora. Like many other YA books the romance seemed rushed and was only possible because of some paranormal attraction one character felt or the other. 

Patch was written as the cliche bad boy. And even though he is a cliche, how can you not love him? Nora's friend, Vee, however, is not feeling the love from me. I'm not sure what I think of her yet. At times she made me laugh and then would do something that annoyed me to no end. 

Overall, Hush, Hush was a very entertaining read that didn't take a lot of brain power to figure out, but was fun none the less. My only question: What about the title? I still don't know if it's something that I missed in the book or if it's just supposed to sound cool.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Review: The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

Seventeen-year-old Lennie Walker, bookworm and band geek, plays second clarinet and spends her time tucked safely and happily in the shadow of her fiery older sister, Bailey. But when Bailey 
dies abruptly, Lennie is catapulted to center stage of her own life—and, despite her nonexistent history with boys, suddenly finds herself struggling to balance two. Toby was Bailey’s boyfriend; his grief mirrors Lennie’s own. Joe is the new boy in 
town, a transplant from Paris whose nearly magical grin is matched only by his musical talent. For Lennie, they’re the sun and the moon; one boy takes her out of her sorrow, the other comforts her in it. But just like their celestial counterparts, they can’t collide without the whole wide world exploding. 

This remarkable debut is perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Francesca Lia Block. Just as much a celebration of love as it is a portrait of loss, Lennie’s struggle to sort her own melody out of the noise around her is always honest, often hilarious, and ultimately unforgettable.

Review: I have read many a review in which people said they cried and sobbed their eyes out in this book. Perhaps it's my cold heart of stone, but there was no crying on my part. That is not to say that this book wasn't sad, because it definitely was. 

This incredibly moving book has a very real plot that I think everyone can relate to, because everyone has lost someone or something they love. Through Lennie's descriptions and poems I got an actual sense of what Bailey was like. At first I thought the relationship between Lennie and Toby was very strange, but then I started to understand why it was going on. Possible spoiler so highlight to read. I was happy to see that both Lennie and Toby came to their senses and broke things off, but managed to keep a relationship like that of siblings. 

One of the things that, for me, was different in this story was the "love" between Joe and Lennie. It seemed to happen really fast and I didn't see any real basis for it, yet it still seemed real and believable and like a natural relationship. The only downside to this book is that I would have really enjoyed reading more about Lennie's friendship with Sarah.

In The Sky Is Everywhere, Jandy Nelson set out to serve up a realistic story of a girl dealing with her grief and the love and loss that comes with it, and I believe that she delivered. 

Saturday, October 16, 2010

In My Mailbox (6)

In My Mailbox was started by The Story Siren and inspired by Pop Culture Junkie. And this week I celebrated my first ever book received for review!

For Review:
The Scarlet Letter (Readable Classics) by Nathaniel Hawthorne and Wayne Josephson 

I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak 
Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick

Friday, October 15, 2010

Review: An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

(summary from goodreads)

When it comes to relationships, Colin Singleton's type is girls named Katherine. And when it comes to girls named Katherine, Colin is always getting dumped. Nineteen times, to be exact.

On a road trip miles from home, this anagram-happy, washed-up child prodigy has ten thousand dollars in his pocket, a bloodthirsty feral hog on his trail, and an overweight, Judge Judy-loving best friend riding shotgun - but no Katherines. Colin is on a mission to prove The Theorem of Underlying Katherine Predictability, which he hopes will predict the future of any relationship, avenge Dumpees everywhere, and finally win him the girl.

Love, friendship, and a dead Austro-Hungarian archduke add up to surprising and heart-changing conclusions in this ingeniously layered comic novel about reinventing oneself by Printz medalist John Green, acclaimed author of Looking for Alaska.

Review: This was the first John Green book I have ever read. Trust me, all those good things you here abut John Green are absolutely true!

Now see, I thought the "road trip" was supposed to be covering the entire book. Not just the first few chapters. So that in and of itself was a nice surprise.

Oh how I am in love with these characters. Hassan has to be my all time favorite fictional character. If not because he's funny, then because he loves Judge Judy. In 6th grade I went through a Judge Judy phase, only I outgrew it. Hassan, apparently, did not. Now Colin, there is an enigma for you. does being a prodigy have to make you socially inept? Because I feel like he hated being an outcast but he never really tried to make friends with the non-prodigies. and why did he only date Katherines? That's what I don't get. However, he was also a wonderful comedic relief at times. 

Pretty much, this book has it all. You'll laugh, you'll think, and you'll most likely learn something new!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Review: By The Time You Read This, I'll Be Dead by Julie Anne Peters

(summary from goodreads)

Daelyn Rice is broken beyond repair, and after a string of botched suicide attempts, she's determined to get her death right. She starts visiting a website for "completers"- 

While she's on the site, Daelyn blogs about her life, uncovering a history of bullying that goes back to kindergarten. When she's not on the Web, Daelyn's at her private school, where she's known as the freak who doesn't talk.

Then, a boy named Santana begins to sit with her after school while she's waiting for her parents to pick her up. Even though she's made it clear that she wants to be left alone, Santana won't give up. And it's too late for Daelyn to be letting people into her life. Isn't it?

Review: BTTYRTIBE (my abbreviation, aren't I clever?) was one of those books that I pick up and can't put down (even if it's one in the morning) because I HAVE to know what happens. It's not that there's endless action, it's the lack of action that kept me enthralled. So many questions to be answered! Will she go through with it? Why can't she talk? What caused her to get t this point? 

The characters definitely had a part in making the book as good as it was. It was a constant mystery to me why Daelyn couldn't talk. And even though she was completely silent throughout the book, I still felt that her voice was there through the post on the forums she went on and through her internal narration. While I didn't know much about Santana until the end he did provide a little lightness to the over all sad and almost depressing feel of the book.

The ending, and thus the answers to the above mentioned questions, did not disappoint. In fact, this whole book didn't disappoint. I'm afraid that by giving specifics I may spoil it, so just know that this book was very good.

Now I do have some questions, and like all of my questions the possibility of spoilers is there. So be warned!
(1) How could Daelyn's parents not see what was going on?!
(2) Was Daelyn's feeling contaminated related to her wanting to commit suicide?
(3) Why didn't she talk until the end? 

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday (6)

Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill over at Breaking The Spine. Summary from goodreads!

XVI by Julia Karr
January 6, 2011

In the year 2150, being a girl isn’t necessarily a good thing, especially when your sixteenth (read sex-teenth) birthday is fast approaching. That in itself would be enough to make anyone more than a little nuts, what with the tattoo and all – but Nina Oberon’s life has taken a definite turn for the worse. Her mother is brutally stabbed and left for dead. Before dying, she entrusts a secret book to Nina, telling her to deliver it to Nina's father. But, first Nina has to find him; since for fifteen years he's been officially dead. Complications arise when she rescues Sal, a mysterious, and ultra hot guy. He seems to like Nina, but also seems to know more about her father than he’s letting on. Then there’s that murderous ex-government agent who’s stalking her, and just happens to be her little sister’s dad


Tell me that doesn't sound awesomely intriguing! 

Monday, October 11, 2010

Review: North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley

(summary from goodreads)

Born with a port-wine stain birthmark covering her entire right cheek, Terra Rose Cooper is ready to leave her stifling, small Washington town where everyone knows her for her face. With her critical, reproachful father and an obese mother who turns to food to deflect her father's verbal attacks, home life for Terra isn't so great either. Fueled by her artistic desires, she plans to escape to an East Coast college, thinking this is her true path. When her father intercepts her acceptance letter, Terra is pushed off-course, and she is forced to confront her deepest insecurities. After an ironically fortuitous car accident, Terra meets Jacob, a handsome but odd goth Chinese boy who was adopted from China as a toddler. Jacob immediately understands Terra's battle with feeling different. When Terra's older brother invites her and her mother to visit him in Shanghai, Jacob and his mother also join them on their journey, where they all not only confront the truth about themselves, but also realize their own true beauty. North of Beautiful is the engaging third YA novel by Justina Chen Headley. This is a gorgeously-written, compelling book featuring universal themes of defining true beauty, family bonds, personal strength, and love.

Review: North of Beautiful is an astounding book. I can't put it into words, but something about this book is just amazing. 

Headley has a way of making a plot slow, but not boring. And I don't mean slow in a bad way. The pacing of the lot allows the story to unfold and show us all its complexities. 

The characters also had a different feel tot hem. They were simple yet complex. Both Terra and Jacob have a history of having something that takes away "beauty", and I think this helps readers relate to them. At some point in time we have all felt that there was something ugly about us.

This is a beautiful book that I encourage everyone to read if you haven't already. It really does make you step back and think about what beauty really is. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

In My Mailbox (5)

In My Mailbox was started by The Story Siren and inspired by Pop Culture Junkie. I must say, this week was a pretty good one :)

From the Library:
The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson 
Island Sting  by Bonnie J. Doerr 

Halo by Alexandra Adornetto 
Aces Up by Lauren Barnholdt 

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Review: Girl, Stolen by April Henry

(summary from goodreads)

Sixteen year-old Cheyenne Wilder is sleeping in the back of a car while her mom fills her prescription at the pharmacy. Before Cheyenne realizes what's happening, their car is being stolen--with her inside! Griffin hadn’t meant to kidnap Cheyenne, all he needed to do was steal a car for the others. But once Griffin's dad finds out that Cheyenne’s father is the president of a powerful corporation, everything changes—now there’s a reason to keep her. What Griffin doesn’t know is that Cheyenne is not only sick with pneumonia, she is blind. How will Cheyenne survive this nightmare, and if she does, at what price? 

Review: Before this book I had never read about a blind person. That's what mainly intrigued me about this book. Adding in the fact that the blind person is kidnapped makes it twice as intriguing.

I loved that this book was in third person and Cheyenne and Griffin each had their own chapters. It was really cool to see how Cheyenne deals with her blindness and manages to get around like sighted people. The only problem was I would sometimes get a little confused as to who was talking, but it always righted itself in the end. 

I also liked that Cheyenne told us in little bits and pieces about her history: when she became blind, how she learned to handle it; all were very enlightening. On the down side, these mini stories/histories slowed the plot down and I actually found myself drifting a bit. 

I expected the ending, but I didn't expect how it happened (does that make sense?). My only problem with the end was finding out about Griffin's mom. It seemed abrupt and a bit random. 

Overall, though, this was a wonderful book. It's a quick read (around 200 pages) but packs a good sized punch.   

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday (5)

Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. Summary from goodreads!

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

Anna was 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. So she's less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris — until she meets √Čtienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, √Čtienne has it all . . . including a serious girlfriend.

But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss? Stephanie Perkins keeps the romantic tension crackling and the attraction high in a debut guaranteed to make toes tingle and hearts melt. 


I have heard absolutely wonderful things about this book. And plus, that summary makes it sound very appealing :)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Review: Deception by Lee Nichols

(summary from goodreads)

When Emma Vaile's parents leave on mysterious business trip, it gives her the perfect excuse to be a rebellious teen. Throw some parties, get a tattoo (or maybe just a piercing), and enjoy the first few weeks of her junior year. Then her best friend stops talking to her, the cops crash her party, and Emma finds herself in the hands of a new guardian—her college-age "knight in J.Crew armor," Bennett Stern—and on a plane to his museum-like mansion in New England. 

After enrolling at Thatcher Academy, Emma settles in by making friends with the popular legacy crowd. But she can't shake the strange visions that are haunting her. She has memories of Thatcher she can't explain, as if she's returning home to a place she's never been. Emma doesn't trust anyone anymore—except maybe Bennett. But he's about to reveal a ghostly secret to Emma. One that will explain the visions . . . and make Emma fear for her life.

Review: There were many things that I liked about this book, and, unfortunately, there were also some unlikeable parts.

I'm going to start with the good. This book had some very likable characters and a very good story line. I usually get sick of the whole "girl finds out she has immense unknown power" plot, but this book was different. Although Emma did find out she had immense power she didn't jump in headfirst and save the world with it. She practiced and learned how to control it. 

As for my complaints, they're not really complaints. They're just things that I didn't understand or were left unanswered. Since I'm feeling lazy today I'm simply going to make a list. But be warned, spoilers may be ahead if you haven't read the book.
(1) I didn't see the importance of Abby. She took up maybe 20 pages in the whole book and had virtually nothing to do with the plot.
(2) Were the guardianship papers real or fake? Or am I looking too much into this? Because when Emma asked Bennett about it he never did answer her.
(3) Why didn't her family tell her?! And why are they hiding from her?
(4) Why did Neoss want Emma? Was it because of when she was little or did he want her then too for some reason?

Like all books that are the first in a series I try and give it the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps the author is setting up the next book in which all of my questions will be answered.

Never the less, I encourage those who enjoy a good ghost story to go out and read this. Although there are some questions left unanswered the plot and characters made for a great read!  

Monday, October 4, 2010

Review: Meridian by Amber Kizer

(summary from goodreads)

My name is Meridian Sozu. I am a Fenestra. I have always shared my world with the dead and the dying. But I really didn't understand what that meant until I turned sixteen and glimpsed my own mortality... 

Sixteen-year-old Meridian has always been surrounded by death. As a child, insects, mice, and salamanders burrowed into her bedclothes to die. As she grew, the animals got bigger, and soon they were finding her at school to die in her presence. Meridian became an outcast, labeled by her classmates as Reaper, Gravedigger, and Witch. Each death she witnesses weakens her body, and loneliness weakens her spirit. On her sixteenth birthday, she witnesses a deadly car crash. Though she’s untouched, Meridian's body explodes with the victims’ pain. 

Before she can fully recover, Meridian is told that she's a danger to her family and rushed to her great-aunt's house in Revelation, Colorado. It's there that she learns the secret her mother has been hiding her entire life: that she is a Fenestra, the half-angel, half-human link between the living and the dead. It's crucial that she learn how to transition human souls to the afterlife and preserve the balance between good and evil on earth. But Meridian and her sworn protector and love, Tens, face great danger from the Aternocti, a band of dark forces who capture vulnerable souls on the brink of death and cause chaos. Dark, lovely, and lushly romantic, MERIDIAN introduces a powerful heroine who will entrance readers.

Review: I. Love. This. Book. Meridian was one of the first books I read this year, and so far it has been my favorite. 

Everything about this book was great! The characters were very well written, ad fenestras were a new and very interesting thing to read about. Even the setting of the book was great. 

It didn't really seem like there was a central plot to the story. I think it was just showing Meridian learning about fenestras and dealing with problems as they came.

Tens and Auntie were great, and I'm glad I got to learn about each of there pasts. I'm hoping that in the next book we get to learn more about Tens, though, because I'm still a little confused about him and his power. 

I loved reading all the back stories about the fenestras that Auntie told, but at times it seemed to slow the book down a bit.

Overall, Meridian was a wonderful read. It left me with some unanswered questions, but hopefully the sequel, Wildcat Fireflies, will answer them.  

Sunday, October 3, 2010

In My Mailbox (4)

In My Mailbox was started by The Story Siren and inspired by Pop Culture Junkie.

Torment by Lauren Kate
The Boyfriend List by E. Lockhart 
The Hourglass Door by Lisa Mangum 

From the Library:
North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley          


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