Thursday, February 28, 2013

Review: Falling For You

Rae's life isn't perfect. Her home life involves her trying her best to avoid her stepfather. He's mean, nasty, and rude. Rae wonders what her mother sees in him.

As much as her home life sucks, the rest of her life is pretty good. She has a great group of friends. She's just caught the eye of the cute new boy at school. Plus she loves her after school job of working at the flower shop.

Rae starts spending more time with Nathan. At first, she's flattered at his attention. Soon, it starts making her uncomfortable. She doesn't appreciate some of his comments or actions. On top of her relationship drama, things start getting worse at home.

Her stepfather loses his job and doesn't seem to be in a hurry to get a new one. He's angry at the world. Rae tries to minimize her time with him.  With all this drama, something has to change.

My Thoughts: I was surprised at first that this wasn't a novel in verse as Schroeder's previous YA novels. It didn't stop me from devouring this book. There were poems throughout the book, which made up a third story line. I adored the poetry piece of the novel. I really liked the idea of the poetry revolution and how it started and how it evolved. 

I picked it up one morning and couldn't put it down until I was finished. So many emotions kept me turning the pages furiously. I had to know what happened. My heart broke for Rae and all that she had to deal with in her home life and her relationship with Nathan. Honestly, I think every high school student should read this book. It's powerful, emotional, and honest about life. 

Cover Thoughts: It really caught my eye and drew me in.
Source: my Library.
Similar Read: Keep Holding On.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Review: Golden Lily

* Bloodlines book 2*

Since Sydney handled the situation so well, her stock has gone up among the Alchemists. She's praised and her actions have been held up for approval. While Sydney realizes she did well in that one instance, she knows that she doesn't always have the Alchemist's best interests in mind.

She's hanging out with her charges - for fun and not just for the sake of protection. She's dating a boy. She's learning, against her will, about magic.  In short, she's starting to care.

Can she achieve the fine balance between her job and her personal life?

My Thoughts: I really like this series, although my heart still belongs to the Vampire Academy series. The characters are growing on me and showing character development. The action, danger, and the mystery surrounding Jill and Adrian keep the pages turning fast. 

I like Sydney's brains. She's super smart and not afraid to show it. I admire that. She loosens up a little in this book, which is fun to watch. I like getting to know Adrian better -I'm starting to warm up to him a little after watching him deal with his father. My heart went out to him. I also found Angeline more mature and interesting. She provides a bit of humor too! 

I'm curious about Jill's future and the vampire hunters. I think they're going to make the next book very interesting! 

Cover Thoughts: Meh - never been a huge fan of these covers
Source: my Library
Fun Fact: Richelle Mead's books are often my go-to book for adults who read Twilight and come back looking for more vampire books. As a result, they're very popular with the adults at the library.

What's on My Holds List (40)

My Librarian friend Jess from I Read to Relax came up with a great idea.  It's to highlight the books on hold at the library. I usually have 20-40 items checked out at the library and another 20 items on hold.

Killer Librarian: I saw this in a bookstore and it looks right up my alley!

Who Says Women Can't Be Doctors?: I went to college in Geneva, NY with roots back to the Medical College where Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman to graduate medical school at the top of her class.

Courage Has No Color: I love Stone's nonfiction books, they always pull me in as they're very well written.

Miss Moore Thought Otherwise: A book about creating libraries? How perfect!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Tween Tuesday Review: Jealousy

 *  Canterwood Crest Series #17 *

**Tween Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted at GreenBeanTeenQueen to highlight great reads for tweens. Join the fun! **

LT had the surprise of her life at her masquerade birthday bash when an old friend from home showed up. LT wasn't expecting her ex-boyfriend. She certainly wasn't expecting to hear that he's a new student at Canterwood Crest. 

Even though they broke up, Taylor and LT have done their best to remain friends. LT doesn't want to that to change, but neither does she want to make her new relationship with Drew strained.

On top of all her relationship drama, she's dealing the pressure of Parents Weekend, horse lessons, Khloe's play, and her own performance. Can't a girl catch a drama free moment?

My Thoughts: I adore this series, it's fresh, funny, and full of relationship and friendship drama. The last book ended on a wicked cliff hanger as does this book. While this installment of the addictive series centers around boy drama, LT and Khloe have their bonding moments. I love how loyal these girls are to each other and how their friendship has become so close in such a short time.  I can't wait to see what happens next when LT's worlds collide.

Cover Thoughts: Charming - as usual
Source: My Library

Top Ten Tuesday

This week's theme is authors you automatically purchase. Since I work in a library, most of my books come from the library. I have dozens of YA authors that I automatically purchase for the library.  Many of them happen to be authors that I gravitate towards, but that's not always the case.

 - meme from The Broke and the Bookish

On Both Lists:
  1. Meg Cabot
  2. Sarah Dessen
  3. Jen Calonita
  4. Jennifer Echols
  5. Susane Colasanti
  6. Ally Carter
  7. Jennifer Lynn Barnes
  8. Tera Lynn Childs
  9. Elizabeth Eulberg
  10. Rachel Caine

For My Patrons:
These are authors that write books that just aren't my thing or some authors, I've read a few of their books, but I don't rush to put their latest book on hold. Either way, but the teens and adult patrons gobble them up! 
  1. P.C. and Kristin Cast
  2. L.J. Smith (which also now includes other writers writing the same series)
  3. Darren Shan
  4. Kate Brian (mostly her series books)
  5. Mike Lupica
  6. Walter Dean Myers
  7. Bluford High series
  8. Simpsons Comics
  9. Christopher Paolini 
  10. James Patterson

Monday, February 25, 2013

Oscar Fashion 2013

Best Dressed - my 2 favorite dresses of the night

Jennifer Lawrence 

Jennifer Aniston
Other Dresses I Liked:
Jennifer Garner

 Amy Adams

Helen Hunt

Amanda Seyfried 

Jaime Foxx's daughter

Little Q

A Few Dashing Men:

Joseph Gordon-Levitt 

Richard Gere

Daniel Radcliff

Fashion trends that I'm not a fan of:
Metallic Dresses
Dresses that Draw Significant Attention to your chest (Anne Hathaway and Naomi Watts, I'm looking at you)

PS: How fun is this?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Book Character Outfits: Dancers Among Us

As long as I can remembers, I've always wanted to be a ballerina. I never look lessons, but it's always looked fun. Over BEA last year, I heard about Dancers Among Us and wanted to read it and soak in the pictures. I finally have a copy. It's a book about ballerinas and dancers posing in the normal world. Of course, if it was me, I'd like to pose in a library reading a book, or in field of flowers, or under the night sky...

Here's my sample outfit:

The pin will also go up on my Library Pinterest Board

Friday, February 22, 2013

Breathless Reads Tour: RJ Julia's

I've been hearing so much about the Breathless Read Books, so I was super excited to see some of the author at RJ Julia's - an independent bookstore that great the most amazing authors.

Waiting for the authors to arrive!

The Authors:
Jessica Spotswood - Born Wicked
Elizabeth Richards - Black City
Beth Revis - Shades of Earth
Fiona Paul - Venom
Morgan Rhodes - Falling Kingdoms

 What I Learned from the Q&A:

Why Write YA:
JS: Gone with the Wind made her want to be a writers. YA books are the ones that stayed with her growing up - the ones she read over and over again for comfort. It was a natural fit.

ER: YA is all about firsts!

BR: YA is the beating heart of literature where teens have a passion for life and aren't jaded.

FP: In YA you can mix genres and readers love it

MR: It's a time for self discover and learning what rules are made to be broken.

When did you know you wanted to write?
JS: Started writing at a young age, Gone with the Wind knock offs with strong girl characters - with horses and Yankee boys.

ER: Influenced by J.K. Rowling

BR: Knew she always wanted to write

FP: Wanted to be a lot of things - but found herself reviewing books, the majority were YA - which influenced her to start writing

MR: Read adventure series by Enid Blyton and made up her own stories about the chracters.

What to you do to combat writer's block:
JS: If the character has made a wrong choice, she goes back to the last right choice and rewrites from that point forward. Also she gives herself Care Bear stickers when she reaches a certain goal (I Love this idea!)

ER: Doesn't write in chronological order - but works backwards from a fun scene.

BR: Blows up something or kills off a character

FP: Outlines the book like crazy beforehand - she always writes two books at the same time. When she's stuck on one, she changes books.

MR: Outlines the book prior to writing. If she gets stuck, she eats ice cream.

Tips for Writers:
JS: Write a book for you that you can write - don't be afraid to write for fun and not for publication

BR: Don't give up (Across the Universe was her 11th novel) and write fearlessly

FP: Read! Also don't get discouraged by criticism.

MR: Trust your gut and find your own twist on an idea.

Books I've Read and Reviewed: 
Falling Kingdoms

Not on the East Coast Tour...but still Breathless Reads
Prodigy (halfway through so far - review coming soon)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Review: Perfect Scoundrels

 *Heist Society #3*

Kat and Hale seem to have finally gotten it right - until in the middle of a heist, Hale leaves Kat hanging - literally! Of course, he has a good reason; his grandmother just died.

She was the only family member who really loved him. Just like that, Hale's sucked out of Kat's world and back into the societal world he thought he left behind.

Before long, Kat realizes that someone inside the family's setting up Hale for the biggest con she's ever seen. She knows that even though things between her and Hale are rocky, at best, she must do everything in her power to help him.

My Thoughts: Talk about a book of perfection! High emotions, high drama, and the highest stakes ever for Kat and Hale! While I loved the idea of Kat and Hale - I loved even more the wrench thrown into their relationship. Kat was put into an impossible position. I loved her interactions with Hale. I love how she dominated her family of thieves, working all the angels. I found the family lawyer slimy, but deliciously evil. My heart broke for Hale as he went through the ringer because of his family. This heist book kept me on the edge of my seat, furiously turning pages to see what happened next! 

Cover Thoughts: Love it! It ties in nicely with other cover - love the reflection in the sunglasses
Source: My library

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Over at Teen Librarian Toolbox

Today I'm talking about my favorite Historical Romances.

What's on My Holds List (39)

My Librarian friend Jess from I Read to Relax came up with a great idea.  It's to highlight the books on hold at the library. I usually have 20-40 items checked out at the library and another 20 items on hold.

 Taste of Home: Bakeshop Favorites - I adore this cookbook series and I'm a dessert person, so this book is perfect combination!

Ashford Affair: I really love the Pink Carnation series - looking forward to Lauren Willig's new book.
Sand Castle Bay: LOVE Sheryl Woods - can't wait to devour her new trilogy! Plus the cover is gorgeous!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Tween Tuesday Review: Triple Trouble

 *5th book in the series*

**Tween Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted at GreenBeanTeenQueen to highlight great reads for tweens. Join the fun! **  
Emma and Payton are no longer the only identical siblings in school. A set of triplet boys show up - causing trouble. The boys dress the same, they finish each other sentences, and they think three is much better than two. The girls hate their smug attitudes. They want to prove that twins rule!

Through an accidental twin switch, the triplets think they have out-maneuvered the girls. They may have won the battle, but Emma and  Payton declare war! The show down is set for a Twins & SuperTwins Festival on location broadcast for VOGS - just before the homecoming dance.

Can the girls prove themselves? 

My Thoughts: I really adore this series. It's funny, sweet, and charming. The twins have each other backs when it counts, especially when boys try to make them feel inferior. Of course, they're sisters and they still get on each others nerves. I like how everything came to a head at the festival where plenty of competitions were available. It feels like the last book in the series, I hope that's not the case. 

Cover Thoughts: Super cute - but doesn't exactly match the book
Source: my Library

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Favorite Characters In Action Genre. I'm a huge fan of action/adventure books. In honor of the newest Die Hard release, here are my favorites. - meme from The Broke and the Bookish

Jade and Rich from Sure Fire
Alex Rider 
Dan and Amy from 39 Clues
Luke, Theo, and Callie from Wildfire Run 
Chase and Nicole from Storm Runners
Max from Devil's Breath
Toby from Killer Pizza
Aidan and Meg from On the Run
Danny from Traitor
Jonah from Thieves Like Us

Monday, February 18, 2013

Mini Review: Double Crossed

 * After GG 5 and HS 2 *

At a party, Macey meets a boy. He's different than most boys she meets at these type of functions. Neither are happy about attending the gala - that is until everything changes.

Men with guns come bursting into the room. Their studies make them aware of the situation moments before it happens. Together they escape the room where they come to the conclusion that the other isn't normal and s/he has a unique set of skills that just might allow them to get out of there unharmed.

My Thoughts: I LOVE the idea of Gallagher Girls and Heist Society characters crossing paths. While I'm a strictly read in order of the series reader, I think a reader new to Ally Carter could pick this up and instantly want to read both series! A perfect novella - just enough action and danger to keep me hooked - with just a dash of romance. I hope more Spies and Thieves stories are in the works!!!

Cover Thoughts: Love it! blends the jewels from the Heist books with the plaid from the Spy books.
Source: Free Download.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Teen Character Book Outfit: Sydney Sage

I adore Richelle Mead and her Vampire Academy series. I just finished The Golden Lily, part of the spin off series Bloodlines. Sydney is pretty conservative - here's something I picture her wearing. 
The pin will also go up on my Library Pinterest Board

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Mysterious Saturday Review: Killer Crust

*5th Pizza Lovers Mystery*

Eleanor and her sister have the opportunity to enter into a pizza contest. They could win $25,000, which they would use to fix up Slice of Delight. However, the contest is being held by an old acquaintance of Eleanor's. The last time Eleanor saw Luigi, he was trying to buy her pizza joint - right after the death of her husband. He didn't take no very well.

Still, Eleanor doesn't hesitate, she signs the paperwork, entering the contest. Now she and her sister are heading to the local hotel hosting the contest. Four pizza places compete for the top prize.

Soon, Eleanor learns that the contest is fixed. Animosity builds between the contests and she's not surprised to learn that Luigi's been murdered. He died in an area limited to hotel staff and the contestants, which place Eleanor and her sister in a unique position. They can cozy up to the contestants and figure out which one killed Luigi. Can they wrap up the contest and find the murdered before it's too late?

My Thoughts: I love the premise of this book - it blends the food reality TV shows with murder perfectly. It read like a crime show, very visual and keeping me glued to the book. I love the sister team and their quirks. They're funny, serious, sweet, and loyal. I love their closeness. I liked the difference in setting for this book, it allowed for a whole new set of characters along with some old favorites. 

Cover Thoughts: Fun
Source: Library

Friday, February 15, 2013

Review: Crystal Cove

 *4th in the Cedar Cover series*

Justine knows that there's something wrong, she desperately craves the love and affection she sees her in friends' relationships. She begins to wonder why her relationships don't work.

It isn't until she discovers that someone put a curse on her that it starts to make sense. Justine's been raised Wiccan, but she rarely practices. She hasn't joined the local coven - a coven of women who are like family to her, despite her mother's pleas.

When a man rents out her inn, she begins to feel drawn to him. He's a loner. The more times she spends with him, she realizes she could fall for him. He's only there for a few days. Is that long enough to give her heart to someone?

My Thoughts: I love this romantic series set in Friday Harbor. I loved reading more about Justine. Her story was a little darker than the others. I really enjoyed the addition of wicca. All of the books seem to have a touch of magic, but I loved how Justine could create magic - and the consequences that happened because of her spell casting. I enjoyed Jason - reading about his faults and his strengths. It's great to see some of the characters from the previous books. I'm so happy that the series will be continuing with Lightning Bay!

Cover Thoughts: Dreamy
Source: my Library
Similar Read:  Cedar Cove books by Debbie Macomber

A tribute to Judy Blume

As Wednesday was Judy Blume's birthday, I wrote up a tribute to her at my other blog.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Cover: New Tera Lynn Childs

Have you seen the new cover for SWEET LEGACY - the 3rd book in this kick butt series by Tera Lynn Childs? Looks great right? I can't wait to read it!!!!

Review: The Essence

 * Sequel to The Pledge*

Months have past since Charlie changed her world. She's now the Queen - learning etiquette as well as horse riding and hand to hand combat. She's not sure which she's worst at learning.

While laws have been changed for the benefit of her people, there are moments when Charlie wishes everything was back to normal. Things won't ever be normal for her again - and not just because she's now the Queen.  It's because Sabara and her legacy. She's keeping Charlie from being at peace, from resting, from finding confidence in her new role.

Not everyone's pleased with Charlie as the leader. After a riot, it becomes quite clear that something needs to be done with the rebels. It's also clear there's a traitor in Charlie's camp. Can she and her team uncover the identity before it's too late?

My Thoughts: I really liked the sequel to the Pledge. I did have a hard time keeping track of all the Queens (probably just like Charlie). I liked the multiple perspectives with Brooklyn, Charlie, and other minor characters. There were so many emotions in this book.  

I felt horrible for Charlie and her restlessness, horrified at some of her behavior, and my heart ached for her at times. The tension surrounding Charlie made for a fast read. I wanted to find out what happened next, who had it in for her, and what the rebels were going to do next. The action and the danger heightened all the other emotions.  I can't wait to see how everything turns out.

Cover Thoughts: I like how it ties into the first book
Source: My Library

Teen Romance Book Favorites

On the HUB today, myself and other bloggers are talking about our favorite teen romance books!

Happy Valentine's Day.
Enjoy a great book!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Books I'm DYING to Read: April edition

Here's a round up of all the books I can't wait to get my hands on come April!

Maid of Secrets: Spies and Romance in Elizabethan Court
Taken: Boys who turn 18 vanish at midnight, Gray could wait for this time to come or try to change everything.

WARP: Time travel - Victorian London - FBI - a brand new series from Eoin Colfer
House of Secrets: co-authored by Chris Columbus - yeah - that guy!

Grass is Always Greener: The end of the trilogy - that reminds me the O.C. and Gilmore Girls
How Zoe Made her Dreams Come (Mostly) True: Life in a fairytale theme park which does not represent real life - not your typical Cinderella story is the tagline!

 Boyfriend App: Audrey needs money for college - designs an App - and becomes a megastar
Jane Austen Goes to Hollywood: Jane Austen freak in me is sold! (I just got an ARC of this and can't WAIT to read it!)

Corner of White: Loved Year of the Secret Assignments! - happy about the start of a new trilogy.
Elite: I read the ARC and LOVED it!!!

Hollywood Dead Ahead: 5th book in this awesome ghostly funny series
Hide and Seek: Just read Capture the Flag - can't wait to see what happens next

Dark Triumph: sequel to Grave Mercy!
Vengeance Bound: It's all about REVENGE!

Tea Rex: Looks SUPER cute!

Going Going Ganache: 5th in this delicious cozy adult series feature two BFFs and their cupcake bakery
Oak and Dagger: An insider's view to the White House from the gardener's point of view  the 3rd book in this fun cozy adult series.
Good, the Bad, and the Witchy: An 80th birthday celebration goes terrible wrong in this witchy addition to the series.

Ashford Affair: A family secret leads Clemmie across continents - from the author of the Pink Carnation series
Bridgertons Happily Ever After: More on one of my favorite families in literature!

Wind Chime Point: The 2nd book in an upcoming series by a favorite author. The first one comes out in March.
Someday, Someday Maybe: Lauren Graham - yes that one!