Thursday, October 28, 2010

Awakened by Ednah Walters

For Lil, life has always been a little different. Growing up with her gypsy Grandpa she moved constantly and had very few friends. Just recently settled, Lil has just turned 16 and her powers are just beginning to emerge. Believing she has the ability to speak to ghosts, Lil is surprised when a mysterious voice calls inside her head asking for help. When Lil goes out to meet the voice she can’t help but be surprised when the voice is not a ghost by a very hot boy. What she never realized was this boy belongs to a world she has never known, one she is now part of. As Lil is dragged into a world of telepathy and teleporting she must confront everything in her past since most of what she knows is a lie.

Things are a little backwards today because this is a more logical order for this review.

The Bad: I must start with saying this cover is horrible. It’s a boy partially animated. It doesn’t give any hints that it’s a YA book. It is very unattractive. And while most of us don’t judge a book its cover, the cover is what draws us in. To be honest if I saw this in a store I probably wouldn’t even pick it up. Anyway, Awakened also lacked an aura of sophistication. At times I felt I was reading something on Fiction Press. It was polished writing that deserved to be high on the NY Times Bestsellers list. There were also several similarities to Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments. It was barely shorter than the appropriate amount.

The Good: All that being said, I still really enjoyed this book and would still recommend it. It was active and interesting throughout. It didn’t drag on or bore me. All the characters were enhancers of the story. I really like Lil’s Grandpa. He had this whole cool, sophisticated BA attitude and could kick some serious butt. But he was also loving and understanding towards Lil. He was most definitely not your snoring-in-his-recliner, yelling-“WHAAT?!”-every-time-you-utter-a-word kind of grandpa. It was a nice quick read with an interesting back story. And I will be reading the sequel. 

Ugly Updates: Awakened is Walters' first novel and it's out buy it via Amazon and add it to your Goodreads to-read list.  The sequel, Betrayed, does not have a publication date right now. I would assume it will be at least a year, putting  it around Fall 2011. Add Betrayed to your Goodreads list. Also check out Walters' site for amazing information on the world of Awakened. There is really great explinations on the people, mythology behind the story, and much more. You can find Walters' at her Blog, Facebook, Myspace, and Twitter.

Keep Reading, 


Saturday, October 23, 2010

IMM (7)

In My Mailbox is a meme started at The Story Siren with some inspiration from Alea of Pop Culture Junkie.
This week was a good one for me. Here's what I got...(Links to Goodreads)

Here's an up close of the signed book and swag (2 postcards & 2 bookmarks!):

What did you get this week? Comment :)

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Friday, October 22, 2010

Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia & Maraget Stole

Sequel to Beautiful Creatures

After the birthday from hell Ethan and Lena are trying to pick up the pieces and put their lives back together. But that’ s easier said than done. Lena is trying to get over the death of Macon, the only father she’ s ever known but she is racked with guilt because she had a hand in her death. As Lena is dealing with an inner struggle of defining herself, Ethan tries to help. He and Lena are growing farther apart every day and Ethan is having trouble finding his place in Gatlin without Lena. When Lena starts hanging out with her Dark Caster cousin Ridley and a mysterious man who is neither Incubus or Caster, Ethan is worried. Ethan feels that Lena is under their influence somehow and making her do things that are unlike the Lena he fell in love with. And when the song that haunted him in the previous months starts singing “ Seventeen Moons…” Ethan must find away to get the old Lena back before she makes a decision that could kill half her family.

The Good: The dynamic duo has done it again. Garcia and Stohl have delivered another great installment in this incredible series filled with dark magic, mysterious books, and endless tunnels. With a cast of character including Amma and Link, you will be forced to smile. Ethan is also a fantastic narrator. He comes off as an average teenager without the I’ m-already-an-adult vibe many YA novels have or the whiney preteen vibe. The ending of the novel is incredible Garcia and Stohl do not disappoint in the twists and turns of a fantastic plot. After page 350 you won’ t be able to put it down.

The Bad: Talk about a slow start. I felt this book just dragged and dragged at the beginning. If it wasn’ t for the fact I was on a deadline for this book I wouldn’ t have been able to get through it so quickly. The beginning was just very boring and if I look back I thought Beautiful Creatures had a slow start too. But I think this one might be worse. I was also kind of disappointed in how it set up a sequel so perfectly, which probably doesn’ t make much sense. It was like the last couple pages said here’ s the next book’ s conflict all laid out for you…Too bad you have to wait a year to find out what happens. I felt like these pages should have waited till the first pages of the next book rather that at the end of this one.

Ugly Updates: Beautiful Darkness is out. Order it via Amazon here and the first book in the series, Beautiful Creatures here. The untitled third book in the series is set to be published in fall 2011. Add it on Goodreads to keep up to date on title, cover, and specific publish date. And check out Garcia and Stohl's site here.

Rating: B+

Monday, October 18, 2010

Virals by Kathy Reichs

Tory’s life has drastically changed. With her mom dead, she is living literally in the middle of nowhere with her newly found dad. Her dad works as a bio researcher on a very small town of the coast of South Carolina. Living on the one square mile island adjacent to the research facility, she befriends other bio researchers’ children who are equally as nerdy as her: Hi, Shelton, and Ben. The four of them love to make trouble especially on Loggerhead Island, the island of the research facility. When the crew discovers old military dog tags they are instantly curious as to how they could have gotten to an island that was uninhabited before the research facility was built. Their curiosity may have been the worst thing to happen to them. They are pulled into a big mystery with secret labs, hybrid wolf dogs, a cold missing person case, and the popular kids from school.  And Tory, Shelton, Ben and Hi’s lives are in danger.

The Good: Virals was such a refreshing change to all the books I’ve been reading. You hardly ever see just a plan mystery novel in the YA genre. I can’t tell you how long it’s been since I read a mystery. And Virals was incredible one at that. It was high on edge of your seat suspense and low on romance, which I didn’t mind. With a small amount of biology it gave it a science-fictiony feel. All the characters gave the story some extra bonus points. Told from Tory’s point of view,  she was funny, a witty, and had the ability to surprise me even towards the end of the book. She was very intuitive and made me want to study more biology, a subject in which I hate.

The Bad: I was a little disappointed by the ending. While it was surprising, it wasn’t as twisty as I was expecting. Also Hi’s name confused me somewhat. As I am a skim reader, which is my term for you read very quickly that you almost assume what word should be there, I kept skimming over his name and then I would get myself confused as to who was talking. So that was my fault not Reichs but it was kind of annoying. 

The Ugly Updates: Virals is out November 2nd. This is Reichs first novel for YA though she has written several Adult books starring Tory's aunt. The TV show Bones on Fox is also based from her adult novels. Visit her site here.

Keep Reading, 

Sunday, October 17, 2010

IMM (6) - Breast Cancer Awareness Addition

In My Mailbox is a meme started at The Story Siren with some inspiration from Alea of Pop Culture Junkie.
This week I went pink in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Although I have not personally been affected or known anyone who has had it, it is such an saddening situation the survivors are one of the greatest role models out there. So those of you who have been affected by it my prayers go out to you. Look to my sidebar for more information on how you can give to this amazing cause.
Now onto the books...
What did you get this week? Leave a comment. Also, if you have a Breast Cancer Charity that you would like to promote, because unfortunately I can not link to all of them, feel free to leave a comment.

    Name That Feature Contest Winner!

    After a long hard deliberation (there were so many great entries! I wish I could have chosen them all) I have chosen my new feature name. For those you who don't know about it, the new feature will showcase adult books that are appropriate and interesting to YA readers. I can't wait to review some great adult titles! Any way the winner is Cathie with
    Congrats Cathie, I sent you an email so you can choose your FREE FALL PRE-ORDER! Thanks for everyone who entered and spread the word about the contest. 

    Comment with the book you think Cathie should pick or the one you would pick in her case. Look at the bottom of THIS POST to get some ideas.

    Wednesday, October 13, 2010

    The Other Side of Dark by Sarah Smith

    Every since Katie Mullins' mother died she's been going crazy. She talks to her dead father every night and she sees a young boy at the park who no one but dogs see. But Katie still doesn't believe she sees ghosts, just that she's making these people up. Because people don't really see ghosts. If she did that would just make her crazier. When she meets a boy from her school named Law, who can look past the fact that she might be crazy, they begin to work together to save a house in their local park:  Pinebank. The house is more than it looks: an abandoned, burnt, cruddy old house. The house is hiding some secrets about who owned it, how it was paid for, and what mysterious box is hidden in the basement. So Law and Katie must work together to save the house and deal with the romance, race, and ghost-seeing obstacles in their way.

    The Good: So I am going to begin with the ending. This books last 50-60 pages or so made the book. Without them this book would probably be down to a C. So try and stick with it I promise it will be worth it. Now back to the beginning, this book was absolutely not what I was expecting. As some of you may know, I hate summaries on the backs of books. They are way to spoilery for me; it’s the reason I write my own. So when I decide to read a book it is usually based on what other people have said about the book or I will read a bunch of book summaries at once that way when I go to read the book I don’t really remember what it’s about, only the basics. So anyway, all I remembered of this book is a crazy girl who sees ghosts falls in love with a boy. Boy, was I surprised. But this book is definitely worth reading if your interested in a very unique blend of romance, supernatural, real life, and history.

    The Bad: I am going to be right up front and say this book is dark. It’s depressing. It’s even a little disturbing. It is no happy, bubbly summer romance; it’s quite the opposite. So be prepared to read it slowly, maybe take a break from it for a while. It is really going to make you think so tread carefully. That said, another big problem in this book is some sentences made no sense. I would read them over and over and still be so confused and this happened a lot. I’m not sure if I was just being spacey or there was something different about Smith’s writing but it was somewhat annoying to not know what was going on.

    Ugly Updates: Smith has written several mystery novels and one historical novel for adults. The Other Side Of Dark is her first and only book for teens. I do not believe there will be any sequel to this book. The Other Side of Dark comes out November 2nd. Pre-order it here. And check out Smith's site here

    Keep Reading, 


    Monday, October 11, 2010

    IMM (5)

    In My Mailbox is a meme started at The Story Siren with some inspiration from Alea of Pop Culture Junkie.
    What did you get this week? Don't forget to enter my Name That Feature Contest!!

    Keep Reading,

    Sunday, October 10, 2010

    Nevermore by Kelly Creagh

    Note: This is not a review. I did not finish Nevermore.

    "Cheerleader Isobel Lanley is horrified when she is paired with Varen Nethers for an English project, which is due—so unfair—on the day of the rival game. Cold and aloof, sardonic and sharp-tongued, Varen makes it clear he’d rather not have anything to do with her either. But when Isobel discovers strange writing in his journal, she can’t help but give this enigmatic boy with the piercing eyes another look.
    Soon, Isobel finds herself making excuses to be with Varen. Steadily pulled away from her friends and her possessive boyfriend, Isobel ventures deeper and deeper into the dream world Varen has created through the pages of his notebook, a realm where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life.
    As her world begins to unravel around her, Isobel discovers that dreams, like words, hold more power than she ever imagined, and that the most frightening realities are those of the mind. Now she must find a way to reach Varen before he is consumed by the shadows of his own nightmares.
    His life depends on it."(Amazon)

    I got about half way through this book and I couldn’t finish it. Here are the reasons why. 

    It just took so long to get started. You know how most books have that sort of lull at the beginning where you get to know everyone and it’s super boring but you put up with it because you have to set up the book. Well Nevermore’s lull was 250 pages. I was just fed up. Not to mention, the whole beginning was very cliché. Rich popular girl meets weird gothic guy and everyone knows what happens next. And, well, if you don’t know you probably don’t want to know because it is the most boring story ever. So overall this book was boring, annoying, and very cliché. This book had a little bit of potential  in the fact that it’s supernatural, mystery thing had to do with Poe and as a admirer it was kind of interesting.

    Don't forget to enter my Name That Feature Contest. It ends Friday (10/16) and I need some more entries, so spread the word as well!

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