Sunday, October 31, 2010

Enchanted Ivy by Sarah Beth Durst

This was a fun read for Halloween! It has all the “monsters” you can think of: dragons, unicorns, were-tigers, centaurs, gargoyles, faeries, goblins, the list goes on and on. Lily Carter has always wanted to follow in her grandfathers footsteps by attending Princeton University. She has done all the right things, good grades, lots of extracurricular activities, helped run her grandfathers flower shop, etc. Every year her grandfather attends Reunions Weekend at his Alma mater, only this year he is bring Lily and her mother along. Finally Lily will get to see her dream school first hand and her grandfather promises a big surprise is waiting for her there.

She has been selected to take the super secret Legacy Test. If she passes its automatic admision to Princeton. All she has to do is find the Ivy Key! Only....what is the Ivy Key? Shortly after she sets off on her hunt she is joined by Tye, who claims he is her guard. Soon the trail leads her to things she never imagined existed. There are two Princetons - one she has always known and a magical one. The Ivy Key opens the gate between the two. Just when she thinks she has lost her mind she discovers shocking secrets about her family and her destiny.

This book was full of twists and turns: family secrets, betrayals, and two hot college boys who have more in common then Lily's affections. I really enjoyed reading this and I recommend it to someone looking for a quick fun read.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

New Release Tuesday

I loved Tuesdays! These are the two books that are being released today that I cant wait to go out and buy. Are they on your to read list?? Happy Book Birthday to these amazing authors and happy reading fellow bloggers:)

Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick

Nora should have known her life was far from perfect. Despite starting a relationship with her guardian angel, Patch (who, title aside, can be described as anything but angelic), and surviving an attempt on her life, things are not looking up. Patch is starting to pull away, and Nora can't figure out if it's for her best interest or if his interest has shifted to her arch-enemy Marcie Millar. Not to mention that Nora is haunted by images of her father and she becomes obsessed with finding out what really happened to him that night he left for Portland and never came home.

The farther Nora delves into the mystery of her father's death, the more she comes to question if her Nephilim blood line has something to do with it as well as why she seems to be in danger more than the average girl. Since Patch isn't answering her questions and seems to be standing in her way, she has to start finding the answers on her own. Relying too heavily on the fact that she has a guardian angel puts Nora at risk again and again. But can she really count on Patch, or is he hiding secrets darker than she can even imagine?

Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything--including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Candidates by Inara Scott

What if every time someone you cared about was in danger or threatened strange things happened? What if people got hurt? This is Dancia Lewis's reality. The only way she can keep from hurting people is to avoid getting close to anyone. She gets average grades, has a drab wardrobe, and makes every attempt to blend into the background. So when a recruiter and a student from the prestigious Delcroix Academy come by her grandma's house and offer her a full ride she is left wondering why they chose her.

She does not fit in with the typical student. She is not rich, important, or a genius. In fact she is starting to think even her telekinesis is not all that special compared to some of the other students. Dancia tries to continue with her previous routine and stay under the radar but she cant seem to help making friends.

Then the guy she recently helped escape a persuer shows up at Delcroix, Jack the dark and mysterious trouble maker seems to gravitate to her. Jack was accepted to Delcroix under similar circumstances and unlike Dancia he refuses to let his questions go unanswered. And then there is Cam (her student recruiter) the hottest guy on campus who seems to be going out of his way to make sure Dancia is comfortable at Delcroix. Jack's suspicions are justified when he uncovers the secrets that the Delcroix faculty and even Cam are hiding. Who can Dancia trust? And who will Dancia choose Jack or Cam?

 I thought that this book was good but it could have been better. The characters were interesting but they could have been explored more. I also think that despite the reveal of Delcroix's “secret” there is not much more to the story. I like when a story has many revelations along the way. This one really didnt. BUT....This is a series so I am sure that the next books will provide more background info and develop the characters more (at least I hope). I was torn on my rating but I decided to go with four stars because I was never bored reading it and I read it in a day so it must have kept me interested. I will pick up book 2 The Watchers when it comes out next year.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

New Release Tuesday

It is another big week for YA! These are some of the books that are being released today. Thay are all on my to-read list. Are they on yours?? Happy Book Birthday to these amazing authors and happy reading fellow bloggers:)

Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he met mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who revealed a secret world that had been hidden in plain sight all along. A Gatlin that harbored ancient secrets beneath its moss-covered oaks and cracked sidewalks. A Gatlin where a curse has marked Lena's family of powerful supernaturals for generations. A Gatlin where impossible, magical, life-altering events happen.

Sometimes life-ending.

Together they can face anything Gatlin throws at them, but after suffering a tragic loss, Lena starts to pull away, keeping secrets that test their relationship. And now that Ethan's eyes have been opened to the darker side of Gatlin, there's no going back. Haunted by strange visions only he can see, Ethan is pulled deeper into his town's tangled history and finds himself caught up in the dangerous network of underground passageways endlessly crisscrossing the South, where nothing is as it seems.
Enchanted Ivy by Sarah Beth Durst
What Lily Carter wants most in the world is to attend Princeton University just like her grandfather. When she finally visits the campus, Grandpa surprises her: She has been selected to take the top-secret Legacy Test. Passing means automatic acceptance to Princeton. Sweet!Lily's test is to find the Ivy Key. But what is she looking for? Where does she start? As she searches, Lily is joined by Tye, a cute college boy with orange and black hair who says he's her guard. That's weird. But things get seriously strange when a gargoyle talks to her. He tells her that there are two Princetons—the ordinary one and a magical one—and the Key opens the gate between them. But there are more secrets that surround Lily. Worse secrets.
When Lily enters the magical Princeton, she uncovers old betrayals and new dangers, and a chance at her dream becomes a fight for her life. Soon Lily is caught in a power struggle between two worlds, with her family at its center. In a place where Knights slay monsters, boys are were-tigers, and dragons might be out for blood, Lily will need all of her ingenuity and courage—and a little magic—to unite the worlds and unlock the secrets of her past and her future.
Banished by Sophie Littlefield
There isn’t much worth living for in Gypsum, Missouri—or Trashtown, as the rich kids call the run-down neighborhood where sixteen-year-old Hailey Tarbell lives. Hailey figures she’ll never belong—not with the popular kids at school, not with the rejects, not even with her cruel, sickly grandmother, who deals drugs out of their basement. Hailey never knew her dead mother, and she has no idea who her father was, but at least she has her four-year-old foster brother, Chub. Once she turns eighteen, Hailey plans to take Chub far from Gypsum and start a new life where no one can find them.

But when a classmate is injured in gym class, Hailey discovers a gift for healing that she never knew she possessed—and that she cannot ignore. Not only can she heal, she can bring the dying back to life. Confused by her powers, Hailey searches for answers but finds only more questions, until a mysterious visitor shows up at Gram’s house, claiming to be Hailey’s aunt Prairie.

There are people who will stop at nothing to keep Hailey in Trashtown, living out a legacy of despair and suffering. But when Prairie saves both Hailey and Chub from armed attackers who invade Gram’s house in the middle of the night, Hailey must decide where to place her trust. Will Prairie’s past, and the long-buried secret that caused her to leave Gypsum years earlier, ruin them all? Because as Hailey will soon find out, their power to heal is just the beginning.

This gripping novel from thriller writer Sophie Littlefield blazes a trail from small-town Missouri to the big city as Hailey battles an evil greater than she ever imagined, while discovering strengths she never knew she had.
The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

The Maze was only the beginning...

Solving the Maze was supposed to be the end. No more puzzles. No more Variables. And no more running. Thomas was sure that escape meant he and the Gladers would get their lives back. But no one really knew what sort of life they were going back to.

In the Maze, life was easy. They had food, and shelter, and safety... until Teresa triggered the end. In the world outside the Maze, however, the end was triggered long ago.

Burned by sun flares and baked by a new, brutal climate, much of the earth is a wasteland. Government has disintegrated--and with it, order--and now Cranks, people covered in festering wounds and driven to murderous insanity by the infectious disease known as the Flare, roam the crumbling cities hunting for their next victim... and meal.

The Gladers are far from done running. Instead of freedom, they find themselves faced with another trial. They must cross the Scorch, the most burned-out section of the world, and arrive at a safe haven in two weeks. And WICKED has made sure to adjust the variables and stack the odds against them.

Thomas can only wonder--does he hold the secret of freedom somewhere in his mind? Or will he forever be at the mercy of WICKED?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce

I want to start this review by stating that Scarlett March (Lett) is completely bad ass! I loved her! Sisters Red starts off seven years ago when a Fenris (werewolf) attacks Scarlett and her sister. Scarlett may have defeated the Fenris and saved her sister Rosie's life but she was horribly scared and lost an eye in the process.

Now (seven years after the attack) Scarlett (18) and Rosie (16) have dedicated their lives to hunting down these monsters. Luring the Fenris in with their red cloaks and helpless girl routine. Rosie is deadly with her knives and Scarlett's weapon of choice? A razor-sharp hatchet. Scarlett lives for the hunt but Rosie dreams of a life not committed to eradicating the Fenris.

Silas (21) has returned home after a year in San Francisco with his uncle. Silas grew up with the March sisters and was Scarlett's hunting partner up until he left last year. Now that he is back Scarlett is determined jump right back into hunting with her old partner. And the first order of business? Figure out why the Fenris are converging on the surrounding area. Scarlett has one goal: find who the Fenris are after and use them as bait. Silas and Rosie have other things on their minds...each other.

This story has it all: mystery, romance, action, and even an awesome cover to wrap it up with. I will admit that I had the story figured out pretty early on, but that didn’t make it any less enjoyable. I finished this one in a day so I can safely say that it was well worth reading.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Torment by Lauren Kate

How many lives do you need to live before you find someone worth dying for? I am in love with this catch phrase for this book. It simply screams “This book is amazing. You must read it!” and I must say that I agree. Plus it is one of the best covers I have seen this year! I mean I am in love with that dress! Anyways, Torment is the sequel to the New York Times Best Seller, Fallen. If you have not read Fallen, Torment may be hard to get into. Torment picks up right where Fallen left off. Luce has been removed from Sword and Cross and is going into hiding. Cam and Daniel (fallen angels on different sides of the line) have drawn up a truce lasting 18 days. In this time period both sides will work together toward a common goal, protecting Luce from the Outcasts.

For her own safety Daniel and Cam agree to keep Luce at Shoreline, a school filled with Nephilim, the offspring of fallen angels and humans. Here Luce begins to uncover the truth behind the Announcers (the shadows that have followed her all of her life) and her past lives. Luce is beginning to understand that it is not just her and Daniel who have been hurt by her many deaths. With each life there is a family that is left behind. Is it right for her to keep hurting those she loves? With this knew knowledge it is becoming harder for Luce to overlook Daniels half truths and his insistence that he can not stay with her now. Daniel may be her past and her present but is he really her future? Could Luce be happy with someone else?

Luce is a much stronger character in this book. She is not content with waiting around and just blindly taking orders anymore. More characters are introduced in Torment as well. Miles is a great addition to the series. He will have everyone questioning whether they should ditch their Team Daniel shirts for a shiny new Team Miles one. Shelby (Luce's new roommate) is brash, stubborn, and has a history of her own with Daniel and Luce, but she is also impossible not to love. Most of the characters from Fallen make an appearance in Torment but I was disappointed that there wasn't more Cam. I hope he plays a bigger role in future books.

The one thing that may seem frustrating is that like all series this is a cliffhanger. The next book will be Passion. It is set to release in Fall 2011. Passion will be a sort of prequel to the series. Once you finish Torment you may have a better idea of what exactly that could mean. I don’t want to spoil anything ;) Then Rapture will be released in 2012 to wrap up the series. So expect to be frustrated after turning that last page. :)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

Oh Bleep! I Bleeping loved this book! This was so cute. Evie is a lovably character, she even has a pink taser she named "Tasey" that she uses to neutralize or "neuter" paranormals.  I felt drawn into the story more then some other recent reads. Evie is special, she can see past paranormal glamours (a sort of fake appearance that is projected to the world). It is this ability that has made her an asset to the International Paranormal Containment Agency (IPCA) in their attempt to regulate and contain paranormals. Since Evie is the only one of her kind she is kept on a tight leash by Raquel, her boss/guardian. Evie has always thought of herself as normal but it turns out she is more then she seems and she may be more dangerous then anyone thought possible.

Evie's best friend, Lish (a mermaid) added humor to the story with her computer generated vocabulary. Since she lives underwater she is unable to speak like a human so a computer does her talking for her. Swear words are not translated so anytime Lish uses one it just comes out as “bleep.” Evie picks this up and tends to bleep things a lot. lol

Reth, Evie's ex (a faerie) is alluring but dangerous. He seems to have a hidden agenda that Evie cant quite seem to figure out. On top of all her issues with Reth paranormals start turning up dead and no one can explain why. When a strange shape shifting boy breaks into the IPCA Evie is drawn to him. He has a life on the outside: a family, friends, and even a locker! I must admit it was a little weird to see the attraction of Lend when he is first introduced since she can see under his glamour to what he really looks like. He is described by Evie as looking like water and light.. But my hesitation faded as the story went on and I totally fell in love with Lend right along with Evie. They are perfect for each other. He knows that Evie loves him for who he really is since she can see who he really is and Lend warms Evie's heart (you'll understand that when you read it). Together Evie and Lend will have to uncover a dark faerie prophecy and save all paranormal creatures.

I highly recommend this book. And if you love at much as I do you will be happy to know it is a series!!! Yay!! Supernaturally (Paranormalcy #2) is scheduled to release September 2011!

Casting: The Dark Devine

Bree Despain is holding a contest for casting The Dark Divine movie (just for fun) and giving away great prizes. She provide character descriptions in case you need a refresher. Here are my picks! Hurry over and submit your picks because the contest ends tonight!

Grace: Vanessa Hudgens

Daniel: Alex Pettyfer

Talbot: Jared Padalecki

April: Alyson Michalka

Mrs. Divine: Orla Brady

Pete: Zach Roerig

Jude: Penn Badgley

Pastor Divine: Judd Law

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Orange County Children's Book Festival

Orange County Children's Book Festival was a hit in my book (pun only slightly intended lol). Even though their were a ton of Amazing authors at the event I was especially excited to finally meet Lauren Kate (Fallen Series) and Becca Fitzapatrick (Hush, Hush Series). Both of these authors know how to keep me glued to their pages. 

 Becca was so sweet and personable. She read the last two pages from Crescendo to the audience and let just say that Crescendo isnt even out yet and I am dying to read Tempest (Hush, Hush #3).


I also got a chance to meet Lisa Desrochers (Personal Demons), Heidi Kling (Sea) and Emma Michaels (The Thirteenth Chime).

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