Thursday, February 27, 2014

Book Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Laini Taylor

418 Pages

September 27th, 2011

Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.
In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.
And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.
Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real, she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands", she speaks many languages - not all of them human - and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.
When beautiful, haunted Akiva fixes fiery eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?
You know when you discover a series way later than everyone else? When a book is already so hyped up that you're afraid to just sit your ass down and read it? That's what happened to me with Daughter of Smoke and Bone, though I really wish I had read it sooner so I could have been raving about it right along with everyone else. This book is amazing you guys, truly amazing!

Laini Taylor is now one of my favorite authors. Her writing tone and personality is unlike anyone else's, and that is something I've come to appreciate over my years as a bookworm. The words flow across the page like water, like an ocean on a calm, clear day. Each word brought meaning to the story and I found myself lost in the streets of Prague, feeling like I was the one running errands in other worlds for Brimstone.

Brimstone.. he seemed pretty shady at first, but it really didn't take long for me to love his character.  It's clear he had many secrets, but he really hides them for Karou's sake, to keep her safe from his world. He cares about her so much, it's hard to think he's 'evil" or "bad" in any way, shape or form.

Karou.. god I love her name! She has always had an inkling that something was off with herself, though she can't put her finger on what. She doesn't know where she comes from, and I was surprised she didn't ask more questions. She was strong when she needed to be, but still very.. eh.. human I suppose. I loved her snarkiness and how she had a sarcastic sense of humor that I could definitely relate to.

I loved the world of the Chimera and the Serephim (spelling?!) The setting and imagery was so vivid that I couldn't put the book down. The romance between Karou and Akiva was a bit fast paced, but you understand why later on in the story, so it wasn't truly insta-love. Even if it had been, these two were the perfect couple, even though they come from different worlds and really.. never should have met.

With secrets lurking around every corner, Daughter of Smoke and Bone was a thrilling read that kept me guessing until the end. I'm sure I'll be picking up the sequel in the next few weeks!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday

The Taking

Kimberly Derting

368 Pages

Expected Publication: April 29th, 2014

A flash of white light . . . and then . . . nothing.

When sixteen-year-old Kyra Agnew wakes up behind a Dumpster at the Gas ’n’ Sip, she has no memory of how she got there. With a terrible headache and a major case of déjà vu, she heads home only to discover that five years have passed . . . yet she hasn’t aged a day.

Everything else about Kyra’s old life is different. Her parents are divorced, her boyfriend, Austin, is in college and dating her best friend, and her dad has changed from an uptight neat-freak to a drunken conspiracy theorist who blames her five-year disappearance on little green men.

Confused and lost, Kyra isn’t sure how to move forward unless she uncovers the truth. With Austin gone, she turns to Tyler, Austin’s annoying kid brother, who is now seventeen and who she has a sudden undeniable attraction to. As Tyler and Kyra retrace her steps from the fateful night of her disappearance, they discover strange phenomena that no one can explain, and they begin to wonder if Kyra’s father is not as crazy as he seems. There are others like her who have been taken . . . and returned. Kyra races to find an explanation and reclaim the life she once had, but what if the life she wants back is not her own?
Time travel.. an abduction... governmental conspiracies? What the hell is going on here?! One thing is for sure: I have to find out. Come on April!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Perfectly Messy by Lizy Charles Cover Reveal!!

Perfectly Messy
Release Date: May 2014

Summary from Goodreads:

Popularity isn't everything it's cracked up to be. Justin Marshall knows this better than most. For the captain of the basketball team, small business owner, and son of Minnesota's next governor, life can get pretty overwhelming. But Justin can handle anything as long as he has Lucy, the girl who fell for the man he’s trying to be.

But for Justin and Lucy, finding time together proves challenging. Stolen kisses and whispered promises just aren't enough. That is, until scandalous photos of the couple are leaked to a press intent on creating a juicy scandal during Justin's dad's gubernatorial campaign. And when Lucy becomes fair play for the tabloids and gossip pages, Justin does the only thing he can to protect her: he breaks her heart.

For Lucy, junior year is everything she hoped it would be: new friends, second chances, and a boyfriend she can’t stop kissing. That is, until the boy she’s pretty sure she loves chooses the life his family wants for him, over her.

Now it’s up to Lucy to teach him what it really means to have everything. Because for Justin, being who everyone needs him to be just might cost him the one person he can’t live without.

Book One:
(linked to Goodreads)

About the Author
When Lizzy Charles isn’t scrambling to raise her two spunky toddlers or caring for premature and sick babies as a neonatal intensive care nurse, she’s in a quiet corner writing or snuggled up with a novel and a few squares of dark chocolate. Black tea keeps her constant and she loves guacamole. She married her high school sweet heart, a heart-melting musician, so it’s no surprise she’s fallen in love with writing contemporary YA romance novels.

Author Links:
 photo iconwebsite-32x32_zps1f477f69.png  photo icongoodreads32_zps60f83491.png  photo icontwitter-32x32_zpsae13e2b2.png  photo iconfacebook-32x32_zps64a79d4a.png

Cover Reveal Organized by:

Desire by P.T. Michelle Cover Reveal!!

Release Date: 04/01/14

Summary from Goodreads:
Now that Nara and Ethan are working together to uncover the Corvus’ secrets, they’re confident nothing can stop them.

But while they’ve learned to anticipate dark, outside forces gunning for them, neither is prepared for the insidious evil that slithers its way into their lives, nor the new challenges that surface so close to home.

Despite all the chaos and turmoil around them, the one constant they can depend on is their devotion and loyalty to each other. But as their relationship moves into deeper territory, sometimes the toughest battles are the ones waged within.

While the hunt for answers unravels more layers in the Corvus world, Ethan and Nara uncover new truths about themselves and their intricate connection to the powerful raven spirit.

When boundaries are suddenly redrawn and control shifts, Ethan and Nara will be forced to make choices that could bring them closer together or rip them apart forever.

Books in this series:
(covers linked to Goodreads)
 photo ethan_zps856392e5.jpg  photo brightestkindofdarkness_zps37595052.jpg  photo lucid_zpsd02b0538.jpg  photo destinypt_zpscec99147.jpg

About the Author
P.T. Michelle is the young adult and new adult pseudonym of Patrice Michelle, author of fifteen romance novels and novellas. When P.T. isn’t writing, she can usually be found reading or taking pictures of landscapes, sunsets and anything beautiful or odd in nature.

Author Links:
 photo iconwebsite-32x32_zps1f477f69.png  photo icongoodreads32_zps60f83491.png  photo icontwitter-32x32_zpsae13e2b2.png  photo iconfacebook-32x32_zps64a79d4a.png  photo iconpinterest_zps6fcf02a7.png

Cover Reveal Organized by:

Monday, February 24, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday (Rewind) Sequels That I Need to Read!!

For my Rewind topic I've decided to go with: Top Ten Sequels I Need To Read/Get My Hands On. I have a HUGE problem with starting, and never finishing series... and here are just a few I need to get to:

Book Review: Starters by Lissa Price


Lissa Price

352 Pages

Published March 13th, 2012

Callie lost her parents when the Spore Wars wiped out everyone between the ages of twenty and sixty. She and her little brother, Tyler, go on the run, living as squatters with their friend Michael and fighting off renegades who would kill them for a cookie. Callie's only hope is Prime Destinations, a disturbing place in Beverly Hills run by a mysterious figure known as the Old Man.
He hires teens to rent their bodies to Enders—seniors who want to be young again. Callie, desperate for the money that will keep her, Tyler, and Michael alive, agrees to be a donor. But the neurochip they place in Callie's head malfunctions and she wakes up in the life of her renter, living in her mansion, driving her cars, and going out with a senator's grandson. It feels almost like a fairy tale, until Callie discovers that her renter intends to do more than party—and that Prime Destinations' plans are more evil than Callie could ever have imagined. . .
Starters takes place in a strange society with some serious issues. As a citizen you are either extremely poor and live a life full of hardship, always running from authorities, or you're rich and have access to everything you ever could have wanted. Our main character, Callie is a minor in the first category, always running from place to place looking for shelter with her younger brother Tyler and good friend Michael.

When the situation grows worse for the trio, Callie knows she will do anything to keep those she loves safe and secure. She turns to Prime Destinations, a shadily run operation that allows rich seniors to "rent" out the bodies of unfortunate minors who have no family and no other way to make money to live. She agrees to 3 rentals.. and the first two go off without a hitch, almost too easily. Callie begins to gain hope, thinking that this is their way out of the streets and extreme poverty they have been subjected to for years. However, the third rental makes things.. interesting.

Callie was a strong character with a big heart. She puts her brother in front of all else, subjecting herself to something she is terrified of doing. Even when things go awry and she wakes up during the third rental, able to communicate with her renter, her thoughts still stray to her brother. She had a strength about her that you don't usually see in these types of novels, and she thinks for herself, not easily swayed by the actions of others.

The mysteries behind Prime Destinations for so shady that it was a bit spooky. I found myself shivering at times, disgusted at others. The drive for power and money behind the Old Man (leader of the organization) was so strong that he'd do anything to get what he wants, even promising young children a bright future and then ensuring that they never wake up again. The Old Man was mysterious, never showing his true identity. I have a few suspicions as to who he is, but the author has done a good enough job masking him that I'm not certain in my suspicions in any way.

Starters was a great beginning to this duo-logy. The story had me on the edge of my seat for a good portion of the pages, always trying to figure out what the hell was going on, and why. so many questions were asked, and though many were answered, I'm still left with so much I need to find out. I can't wait until my next trip to the bookstore so I can pick up Enders and dig right in!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday

Sweet Unrest

Lisa Maxwell

336 Pages

Expected Publication: October 8th, 2014

Lucy Aimes has always been practical. But try as she might, she can’t come up with a logical explanation for the recurring dreams that have always haunted her. Dark dreams. Dreams of a long-ago place filled with people she shouldn’t know…but does.
When her family moves to a New Orleans plantation, Lucy’s dreams become more intense, and her search for answers draws her reluctantly into the old city’s world of Voodoo and mysticism. There, Lucy finds Alex, a mysterious boy who behaves as if they’ve known each other forever. Lucy knows Alex is hiding something, and her rational side doesn’t want to be drawn to him. But she is.
As she tries to uncover Alex’s secrets, a killer strikes close to home, and Lucy finds herself ensnared in a century-old vendetta. With the lives of everyone she loves in danger, Lucy will have to unravel the mystery of her dreams before it all comes to a deadly finish.
Ooh, this one sure sounds mysterious! For some reason it reminds me of Beautiful Creatures, which I personally really enjoyed. Only time will tell how awesome this one will be!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday

Faking Normal

Courtney C. Stevens

336 Pages

Expected Publication: February 25th, 2014

Alexi Littrell hasn't told anyone what happened to her over the summer. Ashamed and embarrassed, she hides in her closet and compulsively scratches the back of her neck, trying to make the outside hurt more than the inside does.
When Bodee Lennox, the quiet and awkward boy next door, comes to live with the Littrells, Alexi discovers an unlikely friend in "the Kool-Aid Kid," who has secrets of his own. As they lean on each other for support, Alexi gives him the strength to deal with his past, and Bodee helps her find the courage to finally face the truth.
A searing, poignant book, Faking Normal is the extraordinary debut novel from an exciting new author-Courtney C. Stevens.
This year I'm really ramping up my efforts to read more contemporary novels since I spend so much time on fantasy and dystopian. This one sounds raw and edgy, something that would keep my attention.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Blogging Slowdown Due To New Baby!!

So.. you might not have seen me around lately, but there's a great reason why. At 40.5 weeks pregnant I finally had my sweet baby boy, Kayden Joseph. He is so adorable, born with a full head of blonde hair. He nurses around the clock and takes up quite a bit of my time. It'll take me a few weeks to adjust, so don't expect too many posts in the next few weeks. Thanks!