Friday, July 31, 2015

BookTube-A-Thon 2015 TBR

So it is almost time for the BookTube-A-Thon and while I do not make videos, I do follow many BookTubers. I've been in big slump lately but I'm hoping to be successful with this read-a-thon. The readathon is taking place between Aug 3rd and Aug 9th and is being hosted by a bunch of different people including Ariel Bissett. There are 7 "challenges" for this read-a-thon and I'm hoping to complete all of them.

1// Read a book with blue on the cover
2// Read a book by an author who shares the same first letter of your last name
3// Read someone else's favourite book
4// Read the last book you acquired
5// Finish a book without letting go of it
6// Read a book you really want to read
7// Read seven books

Here are my choices:

For the blue book I'm going with Nil by Lynne Matson. I recently got this so I'm looking forward to picking it up.

By far my most ambitious choice is for author who shares same first letter of last name. I'm going with The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson. I really want to read this trilogy and need an excuse to start it.

The hardest one to choose was someone else's favorite book. For this I'm going with a book/companion series that everyone raves about. I loved Anna and the French Kiss and just haven't picked up Lola and the Boy Next Door yet. So I cannot wait to pick up another Stephanie Perkins book.

For the last book I acquired, that would have to be Armada by Ernest Cline. I'm a little worried about this one because they was so much hype, but I have heard it does not live up to Ready Player One. What helps me in this situation, is the fact that I have not read Ready Player One Yet. Hopefully I will enjoy it because the premise is intriguing.

As for the most "ridiculous" challenge of finishing a book without letting go of it, I've chosen a short book in One Thing Stolen by Beth Kephart.

I'm going to read my eARC of Beastly Bones for book I really want to read, since I have been putting it off and it comes out in September.

Finally, for the seventh book to finish up the last challenge, I'm going with The Girl in 6E by A. R. Torre. Shannon from Leaninglights and Lindsey from Lindsey Rey have both read and enjoyed this book, so I'm looking forward to it.

I will be tweeting throughout the read-a-thon and doing daily updates there, along with instagram posts. 

Are you participating? What is your TBR?

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Book Haul #11: Adding to my evergrowing collection!

I have not posted a book haul since late May, so of course I have acquired way too many books since then. The grand total for this haul is 29.

Since there are so many, I'm going to do do the haul in 5 different groups based on when I got the books. Links to Goodreads as always!

Velvet by Temple West, Lux Consequences by Jennifer L. Armentrout, Tempest, Vortex, & Timestorm by Julie Cross, The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd.

When my mom was in London for work, she went to Waterstone's to get me the Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson. I love the British covers so much more than the US, so I was really happy she got them for me. 
I have been collecting Harry Potter books since forever, so I have now acquired the first book (SS) in Italian, and the second book (CoS) in Ukrainian. I won One Thing Stolen by Beth Kephart in a giveaway. I splurged and bought both To All the Boys I've Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han. And finally, I won Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley in another giveaway!
I had previously gotten the second and third books in the Dante Walker Trilogy from book outlet so I finally picked up The Collector by Victoria Scott to complete the trilogy. In that same order I also go Nil by Lynne Matson and Avalon by Mindee Arnett. I won a bunch of giveaways getting, Survive the Night by Danielle Vega, Ask Me by Kimberly Pauley, Last Year's Mistake by Gina Ciocca, and The Stars Never Rise by Rachel Vincent.
Finally, I added some adult books to my collection. I got The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse (this was my sole Prime Day purchase).  From Half Priced Books, I got The Girl in 6E by A. R. Torre, 172 Hours on the Moon by Johan Harstad, and The Invasion of the Tearling by Erika Johansen. Finally, from Penguin Random House, I got Armada by Ernest Cline and Freedom's Child by Jax Miller.

And that is the end of this monstrous book haul.  Unfortunately of these 29 books, I have only read 7 of them not including the HP books that I will never read. My TBR is out of control at 61. In May during my last book haul, my TBR was at 64. So while I'm not increasing, I'm not making any progress on #0by16. 

What books have you gotten recently? Let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Beastly Bones by William Ritter (Waiting on Wednesday #7)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!
“I’ve found very little about private detective R. F. Jackaby to be standard in the time I’ve known him. Working as his assistant tends to call for a somewhat flexible relationship with reality.”

In 1892, New Fiddleham, New England, things are never quite what they seem, especially when Abigail Rook and her eccentric employer R. F. Jackaby are called upon to investigate the supernatural.

First, a vicious species of shape-shifters disguise themselves as a litter of kittens, and a day later, their owner is found murdered with a single mysterious puncture wound. Then in nearby Gad’s Valley, now home to the exiled New Fiddleham police detective Charlie Cane, dinosaur bones from a recent dig mysteriously go missing, and an unidentifiable beast starts attacking animals and people, leaving their mangled bodies behind. Charlie calls on Abigail for help, and soon Abigail and Jackaby are on the hunt for a thief, a monster, and a murderer.
Beastly Bones will be released September 22nd, 2015 by Algonquin Young Readers!

I really enjoyed the first book in this series, Jackaby. For me, the characters are the best part. They  are very unique and add to the story in their own way. I cannot wait to get back into the world of Jackaby and Abigail. I also really love the covers for this series, especially the orange of this one!

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #21- The Stars Never Rise

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.
“In third grade, I'd once knelt in the posture of penitence in the middle of the school hall for four hours for turning in an incomplete spelling paper. I'd never failed to finish an assignment again.”
                                       - The Stars Never Rise by Rachel Vincent
The world that Rachel Vincent has constructed in this book is absolutely fascinating. I'm loving how involved the Church is and how the world has changed since the degenerates appeared.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, July 27, 2015

August New Releases

These are the new releases that I'm most looking forward to in August! Again, there are not very many for this month, but I do have two to share.

Title: Court of Fives
Author: Kate Elliott
Publication Date: August 18th, 2015
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
About: I got an ARC of this book and I really enjoyed it. It focuses around this skills course call the Fives that lower class citizens take part in. The main character is part of the upper class but still runs in the Fives.  It is a really good start to the trilogy.
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Title: Legacy of Kings
Author: Eleanor Herman
Publication Date: August 25th, 2015
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
About: There is quite a bit of hype for this book and it is a retelling of Arthur, so it sounds great. From what I have heard, it does a really good job in terms of portraying the time period accurately. I also know Eleanor Herman did a lot of research for this series.
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Did I forget any books that you are looking forward to? Let me know in the comments!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Review: Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

Title: Dorothy Must Die
Author: Danielle Paige
Publication Date:  April 1st, 2014
Publisher: HarperCollins
Source: Won in a Giveaway
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: I didn't ask for any of this. I didn't ask to be some kind of hero.

But when your whole life gets swept up by a tornado - taking you with it - you have no choice but to go along, you know?

Sure, I've read the books. I've seen the movies. I know the song about the rainbow and the happy little bluebirds. But I never expected Oz to look like this. To be a place where Good Witches can't be trusted, Wicked Witches may just be the good guys, and winged monkeys can be executed for acts of rebellion. There's still a yellow brick road - but even that's crumbling.

What happened? Dorothy.

They say she found a way to come back to Oz. They say she seized power and the power went to her head. And now no one is safe.

My name is Amy Gumm - and I'm the other girl from Kansas.

I've been recruited by the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked.

I've been trained to fight.

And I have a mission.
"All you need is a little push sometimes. Sometimes it's a tornado; sometimes it's the kind of right arm that gets you a football scholarship. He had been set to go. Until eight and a half months ago, that is."- pg. 5
I know there is some controversy with this author, along with the publisher, but I don't want to judge this book based on any of that. I went into this book with no expectations, I was just looking forward to reading a book about an alternate Oz. Right off the bat, this book impressed me with its vivid descriptions and its world. I loved the idea of this almost post-apocalyptic Oz, where Dorothy has run rampant and has enslaved the people.

I appreciated that like the Wizard of Oz, we got to see a little bit of Amy in her own world and the hardships she goes through pre-tornado before she is thrown into Oz. Then once she is in Oz, we get this amazing back-story on what happened after Dorothy left and then when she came back.

I really enjoyed our main character, Amy. She was reluctant at first, and slowly saw why she was needed. I appreciate a hero who does not agree to fix everything right away and has to grow into their role. As for the other characters, I have no idea who you can trust and who is on what side, and I really like that. I like that there is the potential for so many twists and turns.

One last thought, I'm beyond peeved by the back cover of this book. It gives away a huge plot detail that you literally do not find out until the last like 10 pages of the book. This was horrible marketing for the book and incredibly disappointing to me that something that is revealed that late in the story is blatantly put on the back. So as an FYI for everyone who wants to read this, do not look at the back of the book (hardcover at least) or you will be spoiled.

Now I really need to get my hands on The Wicked Will Rise after that ending! Have you read the series? What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell (Waiting on Wednesday #6)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!

Rainbow Rowell continues to break boundaries with Carry On, an epic fantasy following the triumphs and heartaches of Simon and Baz from her beloved bestseller Fangirl.

Simon Snow just wants to relax and savor his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, but no one will let him. His girlfriend broke up with him, his best friend is a pest, and his mentor keeps trying to hide him away in the mountains where maybe he’ll be safe. Simon can’t even enjoy the fact that his roommate and longtime nemesis is missing, because he can’t stop worrying about the evil git. Plus there are ghosts. And vampires. And actual evil things trying to shut Simon down. When you’re the most powerful magician the world has ever known, you never get to relax and savor anything.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story — but far, far more monsters.
Carry On will be released October 6th, 2015 by St. Martin's Griffin!

Fangirl is one of my favorite books of all time, so I cannot wait to read about Simon and Baz in their own book. I'm also really hoping this becomes a series, so we get lots of Simon and Baz.

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #20- The Madman's Daughter

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.
“Dead flesh and sharpened scalpels didn't bother me. I was my father's daughter, after all. My nightmares were made of darker things.”
                              - The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd
The writing in this is absolutely amazing. I'm not very far into the plot or the characters, but I am loving the style of writing.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Review: Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

Title: Magonia
Author: Maria Dahvana Headley
Publication Date:  April 28th, 2015
Publisher: Harper
Source: Won in Giveaway
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: Aza Ray is drowning in thin air.

Since she was a baby, Aza has suffered from a mysterious lung disease that makes it ever harder for her to breathe, to speak—to live.

So when Aza catches a glimpse of a ship in the sky, her family chalks it up to a cruel side effect of her medication. But Aza doesn't think this is a hallucination. She can hear someone on the ship calling her name.

Only her best friend, Jason, listens. Jason, who’s always been there. Jason, for whom she might have more-than-friendly feelings. But before Aza can consider that thrilling idea, something goes terribly wrong. Aza is lost to our world—and found, by another. Magonia.

Above the clouds, in a land of trading ships, Aza is not the weak and dying thing she was. In Magonia, she can breathe for the first time. Better, she has immense power—and as she navigates her new life, she discovers that war is coming. Magonia and Earth are on the cusp of a reckoning. And in Aza’s hands lies the fate of the whole of humanity—including the boy who loves her. Where do her loyalties lie?
“I know people die. I know that when people die, the people they leave behind always think something insane happened, because death, by its nature, feels insane. It's part of how humans have always dealt with dying, as though it's somehow special, as though every person who dies is a hero. We want to die spectacularly, not just "perish"” - pg. 80
I heard a lot of good things about this book, especially with respect to the writing. Personally, I have conflicting thoughts. On the one hand, the writing of this book was absolutely stunning. Maria Dahvana Headley crafted this amazing world using beautiful writing. From the beginning of the book I was pulled in and want to see what happened. I also really appreciated how informal the writing style was and how the book added certain styles and text to add to the storyline. That being said, I was also incredibly disappointed by how much this story dragged. I loved the first third or so of the book, but then I was completely bored with it and did not care as much about what was happening. I still enjoyed the writing, but did not care for the story at all.

Obviously, I have two very polarizing thoughts about this book. But for me, it is the writing that continues to amaze me. Even though I was not a huge fan of the plot, I still greatly appreciated how the story was told. There were many times where I would forget that this was a fantasy world with this made up world of ships in the air and birds and singing. Then I would be reminded about just how different this world is from our own. I think one of my main problems plot wise with this book other than the dragging was the lack of answers. A lot of time was spent explaining this world and what it meant to be Magonian, but I had so many other questions about the world and the outcome of the events that unfolded.

I think I also I struggled to relate to the characters. I was pleasant surprised that this was a dual-perspective of both Aza and Jason. I appreciated the added knowledge we gained from Aza's perspective with Magonia and Jason's perspective still on land. But other than that, I felt no attachment to the characters and what they were going through.

Luckily, it looks like there will be a sequel to this book so hopefully all of my lingering questions will be addressed. I look forward to this sequel because of how much I loved the beautiful writing and the style of the story. Hopefully with another book the plot will be stronger since less world building will be necessary.

What are your thoughts on the book?

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Review: Zom-B by Darren Shan

Title: Zom-B
Author: Darren Shan
Publication Date:  October 16th, 2012
Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
Source: Bought it
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: When news reports start appearing of a zombie outbreak in Ireland, B's racist father thinks it's a joke-- but even if it isn't, he figures, it's ok to lose a few Irish.

B doesn't fully buy into Dad's racism, but figures it's easier to go along with it than to risk the fights and abuse that will surely follow sticking up for Muslims, blacks, or immigrants. And when dodging his fists doesn't work, B doesn't hesitate to take the piss out of kids at school with a few slaps or cruel remarks.

That is, until zombies attack the school. B is forced on a mad dash through the serpentine corridors of high school, making allegiances with anyone with enough gall to fight off their pursuers.
“Life's complicated. Answers rarely come wrapped up nice and simple. There are plenty of people out there ready to tell us what we should and shouldn't believe. We always need to be skeptical, to look for the sting in the tale.” - pg. 46
This book, while it had really intriguing writing and I loved the artwork, was very slow. I feel like way too much time was spent setting up the zombie attack and then once the zombies did attack it seemed rushed. There were only about 20-30 pages of actual zombies. For a "zombie" book that was disappointing. I also loved the black and white pictures throughout the book and how chapters started with the white text on black background. It was a small thing, but it was unique and fit in with the story. And that prologue was fantastically done. That scene is clearly important to the series as a whole, but it threw you right into the zombie attack and had you on edge.

I know that the book is written so that we hate B. B is not supposed to be a protagonist we cheer for or even one we want to be like. B has basically been brainwashed by an absolutely deplorable father. He is racist, abusive, manipulative, and down right nasty to everyone. I hated all the interactions between Mom, Dad, and B. They were horrible to read as B's Dad abused and forced his beliefs on everyone else. And I hated B for not standing up to Dad and not doing the right thing. B was constantly second guessing actions based on what Dad had said or would do as a result.

As for the action, once the plot picked up, I was utterly engrossed. This is a very quick read between the short, succinct writing style, the short chapters, and the short length of the novel as a whole. I have so many questions about the zombies and what this means for the future. That ending has left me with even more questions and I definitely need to get my hands on the 2nd book to find out what happens next.

That being said, this book definitely intrigued me to the point of wanting to continue with the series and find out what happens to London after the zombie attack. 

Have you read this series? What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin (Waiting on Wednesday #5)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!
Code Name Verity meets Inglourious Basterds in this fast-paced novel from the author of The Walled City.

The year is 1956, and the Axis powers of the Third Reich and Imperial Japan rule the world. To commemorate their Great Victory over Britain and Russia, Hitler and Emperor Hirohito host the Axis Tour: an annual motorcycle race across their conjoined continents. The victor is awarded an audience with the highly reclusive Adolf Hitler at the Victor's ball.

Yael, who escaped from a death camp, has one goal: Win the race and kill Hitler. A survivor of painful human experimentation, Yael has the power to skinshift and must complete her mission by impersonating last year's only female victor, Adele Wolfe. This deception becomes more difficult when Felix, Adele twin's brother, and Luka, her former love interest, enter the race and watch Yael's every move. But as Yael begins to get closer to the other competitors, can she bring herself to be as ruthless as she needs to be to avoid discovery and complete her mission?
Wolf by Wolf will be released October 20th, 2015 by HarperTeen!

This book has been on my radar for awhile, because there is something about an alternate WWII outcome that has me really intrigued. Plus I really like the idea of this motorcycle race aspect that our main character goes through. This looks like it will be an action-packed adventure and I'm really looking forward to getting my hands on this one.

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Review: Freedom's Child by Jax Miller

Title: Freedom's Child
Author: Jax Miller
Publication Date:  June 2nd, 2015
Publisher: Crown
Source: Through BloggingForBooks
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: Freedom Oliver has plenty of secrets. She lives in a small Oregon town and keeps mostly to herself. Her few friends and neighbors know she works at the local biker bar; they know she gets arrested for public drunkenness almost every night; they know she’s brash, funny, and fearless.

What they don’t know is that Freedom Oliver is a fake name. They don’t know that she was arrested for killing her husband, a cop, twenty years ago. They don’t know she put her two kids up for adoption. They don’t know that she’s now in witness protection, regretting ever making a deal with the Feds, and missing her children with a heartache so strong it makes her ill.

Then, she learns that her daughter has gone missing, possibly kidnapped. Determined to find out what happened, Freedom slips free of her handlers, gets on a motorcycle, and heads for Kentucky, where her daughter was raised. As she ventures out on her own, no longer protected by the government, her troubled past comes roaring back at her: her husband’s vengeful, sadistic family; her brief, terrifying stint in prison; and the family she chose to adopt her kids who are keeping dangerous secrets.

Written with a ferocious wit and a breakneck pace, Freedom’s Child is a thrilling, emotional portrait of a woman who risks everything to make amends for a past that haunts her still.
After reading the summary for this book I was really excited about it, but I honestly was unable to finish the book. It was way darker than I felt it needed to be and it struck bad cords with me.

I was looking forward to a book about survival and preserving in the face of adversity and doing whatever you could for your family. But this book did not appear to have this in terms of what I initially was looking for. It seemed to be filled with unnecessary gore and cruelty.

I only got about a third of the way through this before I had to put it down. I just was not enjoying the story and did not care enough about the characters to finish the book. I think this book has the potential for people who are prepared for just how dark the book is. I just was not one of those people and it did not live up to my expectations.

*I received a copy of this book through BloggingForBooks in exchange for an honest review*

Teaser Tuesday #19- The Collector

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.
“I'll never understand the friendships Charlie has. Friendships where it doesn't take cash or hookups, or saying the right things to stay in the circle. No, Charlie's friendships are different."
                                                       - The Collector by Victoria Scott

While at times this book can be ridiculous and the main character obnoxious, I could not help but fall in love with Dante and Charlie in this book.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, July 13, 2015

Guest Review: All The Rage by Courtney Summers

Title: All The Rage
Author: Courtney Summers
Publication Date: April 14th, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Source: From the publisher
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: The sheriff’s son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of town, the truth about him has cost her everything—friends, family, and her community. Branded a liar and bullied relentlessly by a group of kids she used to hang out with, Romy’s only refuge is the diner where she works outside of town. No one knows her name or her past there; she can finally be anonymous. But when a girl with ties to both Romy and Kellan goes missing after a party, and news of him assaulting another girl in a town close by gets out, Romy must decide whether she wants to fight or carry the burden of knowing more girls could get hurt if she doesn’t speak up. Nobody believed her the first time—and they certainly won’t now — but the cost of her silence might be more than she can bear. 

With a shocking conclusion and writing that will absolutely knock you out, All the Rage examines the shame and silence inflicted upon young women after an act of sexual violence, forcing us to ask ourselves: In a culture that refuses to protect its young girls, how can they survive?
“I don't believe in forgiveness. I think if you hurt someone, it becomes part of you both. Each of you just has to live with it and the person you hurt gets to decide if they want to give you the chance to do it again. If they do and you're a good person, you won't make the same mistakes. Just whole new ones.”
This review is from my friend, Sara, who also wrote a review on Looking for Alaska, earlier this summer. I also have reviewed All The Rage which you can find here. Sara has very different book tastes than me so I always enjoy her take on books that I really enjoyed! So here is Sara's review:

This book was not a page-turner. It did not have to be. It is not the type of book you should read in one sitting. The complex issues dealt with are so important that it should not just be another book. Upon reading the synopsis, I immediately made the connection to the book Speak, by Laurie Halse Anderson, a book I had read in high school. There is an issue with the fact that the only other book that comes to mind that deals with this topic in the same way is 16 years old. Society has changed. Social networks create a whole new arena for public shaming that did not exist 16 years ago.

This is why All The Rage is so important. Courtney Summers not only deals with the serious issue of rape, but also does so in a way that covers all aspects of the struggle, both internal and external, in today’s society. She highlights the harsh reality of the culture that surrounds victims of rape. My hope for this book is that it reminds people that rape is not a light issue; it is a real issue that is still associated with shaming of women instead of standing up for them, and it needs to change. For girls who are victims, this book may come as a sort of haven, of someone else experiencing what they may be going through.

From a writing standpoint, it will be remembered for its message. It is an easy read, which is good for a younger preteen audience. Summers does a decent job of giving the main character, Romy, relatable qualities that are realistic. Romy is not your picture perfect hero, she is scarred and it affects her actions. No event in this story was implausible in today’s society. For as good as the main character development was, the supporting characters lacked a bit, with the exception of Leon, the love interest, who got more character development than the characters surrounding the event that drove the second half of the book.

The event, which breaks the timeline up between the before and after, almost felt forced as another example of how much of an issue rape is in young society. It could have been done better. It was too much of the story with too little information. There was not enough background on the other characters for me to build up a real sense of whether I liked them or not. I felt more connection with her coworkers at the diner who had nothing at all to do with the event than I did with her classmates. They were all just self-obsessed teenagers with which Romy used to be friends with, but you do not really get a true sense of how close they were, or really any flashback to before her rape other than a sentence or two here or there. I do not even have a sense of who Romy was before it happened other than “I’m not her anymore”. If you are going to cover the struggles after, I feel it is important to have something to compare to the after, like a before, rather than just getting her side of the story on the after.

The most important part, the actual description of what happened when she was raped, was amply placed and powerful, as it should have been. So kudos to Summers for that. This book is an important read for any young teen in today’s society, mostly because it is the only book I can think of in recent times that deals with this issue, for that it gets an extra half star from me. Maybe if we start talking about rape more, more would be done to prevent it, as well as providing a platform for which girls can freely come forward and admit what has happened to them without being shamed and shunned.

*Sara received a copy of this book from the publisher through a giveaway* 

So there you have another take on this great book by Courtney Summers. Let us know your thoughts on the book in the comments!

Friday, July 10, 2015

Review: I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga

Title: I Hunt Killers 
Author: Barry Lyga 
Publication Date:  April 3rd, 2012
Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
Source: Bought it
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: What if the world's worst serial killer...was your dad?

Jasper "Jazz" Dent is a likable teenager. A charmer, one might say.

But he's also the son of the world's most infamous serial killer, and for Dear Old Dad, Take Your Son to Work Day was year-round. Jazz has witnessed crime scenes the way cops wish they could—from the criminal's point of view.

And now bodies are piling up in Lobo's Nod.

In an effort to clear his name, Jazz joins the police in a hunt for a new serial killer. But Jazz has a secret—could he be more like his father than anyone knows?
"He wondered about a puppet that can see its strings. He wondered... What if a puppet could cuts its own strings? Physics and logic dictated that the puppet would collapse, lifeless." - pg. 251
I have no idea what I expected wit this book, but it was so much darker than I ever imagined it would be. This is considered a YA novel because Jasper is only 17, however, his life is anything but typical. He was raised by a serial killer and with that comes gory details related to the murders. Barry Lyga was not afraid of diving into the gritty details in this book. There are vivid details relating to the murders and thoughts Jasper has.

I was not at all bother by the darkness of this novel, but kind of wish I had been forewarned about how graphic it actually is. I also think you need to be prepared if you want to read this series. While this book was gory and graphic, I was also fascinated by it. Serial killers and how they are caught has always been of interest to me. So seeing how Jasper went through the clues and his experience to piece together information about the murders and the serial killer were fascinating to me.

As for the actual characters and plots, I really enjoyed Jasper as the protagonist. He is dealing with a lot with his father being a convicted serial killer. Add to this Jasper's upbringing and his tendencies toward violent thoughts and you have a very complex layered character. We saw the struggle that Jasper goes through with trying to distance himself from his father and his actions. Jasper is also surrounded by people who believe in him in Howie, Connie, and G. Williams.

As for plot, I was engrossed in finding out who was this new killer and what his motivations were. This book had me anticipating and trying to guess what was going to happen. And I can happily say, I was still surprised by the end. Certain aspects I was able to predict, but overall I was left shocked at the outcome. This book also ended in a way that makes me mad I do not have the next book in the series to pick up and see how Jasper and Company deal with the new developments. 

How do you feel about gory books, especially when you do not know they will be that bad? Let me know in the comments.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Review: Silver in the Blood by Jessica Day George

Title: Silver in the Blood
Author: Jessica Day George
Publication Date: July 7th, 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Source: eARC via NetGalley
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: A New York Times bestselling author brings dark secrets to life in a lush new YA perfect for fans of Libba Bray or Cassandra Clare.

Society girls from New York City circa 1890, Dacia and Lou never desired to know more about their lineage, instead preferring to gossip about the mysterious Romanian family that they barely knew. But upon turning seventeen, the girls must return to their homeland to meet their relatives, find proper husbands, and—most terrifyingly—learn the deep family secrets of The Claw, The Wing, and The Smoke. The Florescus, after all, are shape-shifters, and it is time for Dacia and Lou to fulfill the prophecy that demands their acceptance of this fate . . . or fight against this cruel inheritance with all their might.

With a gorgeous Romanian setting, stunning Parisian gowns, and dark brooding young men, readers will be swept up by this epic adventure of two girls in a battle for their lives.
After finishing this book, I’ve decided that this book just wasn’t for me. I was really intrigued by the premise and the idea of this historic Romania. There was a lot of secrecy and suspense in this book, however, I feel like it went too far. It got to the point where I was more annoyed with the slow pace and the lack of answers than anything else. I normally do not mind slow world building, but in this case it did not work for me.

The writing style of this book was also really interesting. We follow Dacia and Lou as they travel from New York to Romania where their moms grew up. The story centers on them finding out their family secrets and what it means to be a woman in their family. I loved the alternating perspectives, plus the diary entries from both characters. It really gave further insight into their characters and it helped to break up the story. I really enjoyed the relationship between Lou and Dacia. It was almost sister-like and I really appreciate that in books. However other than those two, I did not care for any of the other characters and what they added to the story.

As I said, the plot and the story were just not for me in this book. It took a really long time for this to even become a fantasy novel. I swore I was reading a historical fiction novel for the majority of this book. And I will admit, I’m not a huge fan of historical fiction. I think the major problem I had with this book was that I was expecting fantasy and that is not really what I got. While there is a definite fantasy element to this book, it took awhile for the story to actually get there.

*I received an eARC of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray (Waiting on Wednesday #4)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!

Just an FYI, this is a sequel so the summary could be considered a little spoilery. 

Ever since she used the Firebird, her parents' invention, to cross into alternate dimensions, Marguerite has caught the attention of enemies who will do anything to force her into helping them dominate the multiverse—even hurting the people she loves. She resists until her boyfriend, Paul, is attacked and his consciousness scattered across multiple dimensions.

Marguerite has no choice but to search for each splinter of Paul’s soul. The hunt sends her racing through a war-torn San Francisco, the criminal underworld of New York City, and a glittering Paris where another Marguerite hides a shocking secret. Each world brings Marguerite one step closer to rescuing Paul. But with each trial she faces, she begins to question the destiny she thought they shared.

The second book in the Firebird trilogy, Ten Thousand Skies Above You features Claudia Gray’s lush, romantic language and smart, exciting action, and will have readers clamoring for the next book.

Ten Thousand Skies Above You will be released November 3rd, 2015 by HarperTeen!

I have so many thoughts about this trilogy. First, the books have the most amazing covers. I love this one with Paris and San Fransisco. I also love how the titles complement each other with the first book being A Thousand Pieces of You. I absolutely loved A Thousand Pieces of You and am now eagerly awaiting diving into the next installment. 

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #18- Ensnared

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.
"Morpheus lowers a wing and shades his cheek along with the transparent glimmer of his jeweled markings. “Well”—his shrill voice cracks slightly—“contrary to my preferences for lace and velvet, I’m not the queen. So I can cry all I like.”"
                                                            - Ensnared by A. G. Howard

After finishing Ensnared, the Splintered Trilogy may just be my favorite trilogy! I loved this world and the characters, especially Morpheus and all his sass.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Review: Naked by Stacey Trombley

Title: Naked
Author: Stacey Trombley
Publication Date:  July 7th, 2015
Publisher: EntangledTeen
Source: eARC from EntangledTeen
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: The best place to hide is in a lie…

I could never fit in to the life my parents demanded. By the time I was thirteen, it was too much. I ran away to New York City…and found a nightmare that lasted three years. A nightmare that began and ended with a pimp named Luis. Now I am Dirty Anna. Broken, like everything inside me has gone bad.

Except that for the first time, I have a chance to start over. Not just with my parents but at school. Still, the rumors follow me everywhere. Down the hall. In classes. And the only hope I can see is in the wide, brightly lit smile of Jackson, the boy next door. So I lie to him. I lie to protect him from my past. I lie so that I don’t have to be The Girl Who Went Bad.

The only problem is that someone in my school knows about New York.

Someone knows who I really am.

And it’s just a matter of time before the real Anna is exposed…
There were so many facets to this book that left me with so many different emotions. Yet again I have read a book about a difficult subject. However difficult the subject may be, it is still an incredibly important one. One that I think Stacey Trombley did a good job of conveying. There were many parts of this book that disgusted me to read and parts that made me so angry, but I'm glad for those emotions because they reinforce how important this book is.

This book follows Anna who is going back to her "normal" life after spending three years in NY as a prostitute. This book is about how she copes and deals with this "homecoming". And I loved how complex and intricate this story was. There was not just one aspect of this change that Anna had to cope with. There were so many different areas and obstacles that arose. While this is a shorter novel, it has so many important pieces to the story.

This is truly a story about surviving and surviving in the face of adversity and I really appreciated that. I also really appreciated that there was not an emphasis on romance in this book. Yes there was a love-interest, but it was not a major aspect of the book at all. This book focused on the important part of Anna and her life and how she became a stronger and better person after what she had experienced.

*I received an eARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review*

Friday, July 3, 2015

July New Releases

These are the new releases that I'm most looking forward to in July! There are not as many this month that I'm dying to get my hands on but I still have got three to share.

Title: The Heart of Betrayal
Author: Mary E. Pearson
Publication Date: July 7th, 2015
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
About:While I have not actually read Kiss of Deception, I hear nothing but good things about it. Once the 2nd one is out, I will probably pick up both and marathon them. This series sounds like another great fantasy world with really compelling characters.
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Title: Go Set a Watchman
Author: Harper Lee
Publication Date: July 14th, 2015
Publisher: Harper
About: I do not think I need to say much except sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird. While the "finding" of the manuscript for this book is a slight controversy, I'm still looking forward to reading something else Harper Lee has written.
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Title: Every Last Breath
: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Date: July 28th, 2015
: Harlequin Teen
About: I've only read, White Hot Kiss, but I really enjoyed the demons and gargoyles. Now that the 3rd is coming out, I will again marathon the rest of the series. Of the books I have read of Jennifer L. Armentrout, I have loved each one. So I'm sure this one will be no different. Also I really do not care for the cover change. I thought the original covers were bad, but these new ones are even worse...
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Did I forget any books that you are looking forward to? Let me know in the comments!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

July 2015 TBR

Normally I pick books out of my TBR jar to determine what I'm going to read in a given month. However I recently put all my TBR books on a single shelf in rainbow. Doing this made me realize that I have a lot of series to read, both ones that I've started and ones that I have not. So I decided that for July, I want to complete all the books I have for series I have started and any standalones I may own. This got me to 12 books. Which is beyond ambitious, but it is the number I'm going with. Links to Goodreads as always!

  1. P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han
  2. Ensnared by A. G. Howard
  3. In a Handful of Dust by Mindy McGinnis
  4. Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
  5. Lux: Opposition by Jennifer L. Armentrout
  6. Four by Veronica Roth
  7. One Thing Stolen by Beth Kephart
  8. Lux: Consequences by Jennifer L. Arementrout (I only need to read Origin)
  9. Untamed by P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast
  10. Chosen by P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast
  11. Finale by Becca Fitzpatrick
  12. The Queen of Zombie Hearts by Gena Showalter
And there you have it. The goal with this is to finish all the series I currently in the middle of before I start the new ones on my TBR. I also still have Under the Dome, 11/22/63, and S. which would be considered standalones, but those were taken out of this TBR due to their size. I did not put this on the list because I don't have it yet, but Go Set a Watchman will also be read once it comes out!

What are you planning on reading in July? Let me know in the comments!

June 2015 Wrap Up

So if you did not notice, this month I'm splitting up my June Wrap Up and July TBR into two separate posts. The posts were getting so long that I decided it was time to split them up. As for reading, I had a really good month. I participated in two different readathons, the #TBRTakedown and the #rainbowthon. Both these helped me read consistently, but I also had a lot of time to read since it is the summer. In terms of following my TBR from last month, that was an epic fail. I did good with my TBR jar picks, but I did not even start Under the Dome, nor did I finish the eARCs I wanted to. That being said I still read 17 books this month, plus a graphic novel, which is crazy good! As always, links to full reviews if I did them.
  1. Sekret by Lindsay Smith (4 Crowns)
  2. Allegiant  by Veronica Roth (2 Crowns)
  3. Through the Zombie Glass by Gena Showalter (4 Crowns)
  4. The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen (4 Crowns)
  5. A Letter to My Mom by Lisa Erspamer (3 Crowns)
  6. Velvet by Temple West (3.5 Crowns)
  7. I Was Here by Gayle Forman (4 Crowns)
  8. Tiger's Curse by Colleen Houck (4 Crowns)
  9. The Isle of the Lost by Melissa de la Cruz (3.5 Crowns)
  10. Naked by Stacey Trombley (4 Crowns)
  11. Zom-B by Darren Shan (3.5 Crowns)
  12. A Court of Fives by Kate Elliott (4 Crowns)
  13. Lullaby by Amanda Hocking (3 Crowns)
  14. Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley (3.5 Crowns)
  15. Broken Hearts, Fences, and Other Things to Mend by Katie Finn (4 Crowns)
  16. Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige (4 Crowns)
  17. I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga (4 Crowns) 
  18. Locke & Key: Volume One Welcome to Lovecraft by Joe Hill and
And with all those books, I read a total of 6,345 pages this month! I starting keeping track in the middle of May just as a way to see how much I read on average each day.
#0by 16 is currently a mess, I'm acquiring way too many books. But I can happily say for the first time all year my TBR is in the 50s. It currently sits at 56!!! I'm not sure how it is going to get all the way down by the end of the year, but I'm still convinced I can do this.

Look for my July TBR later today. How did you do in June? Let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness (Waiting on Wednesday #3)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!

What if you aren’t the Chosen One?

The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death?

What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.

Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

Even if your best friend is worshiped by mountain lions.

Award-winning writer Patrick Ness’s bold and irreverent novel powerfully reminds us that there are many different types of remarkable.

The Rest of Us Just Live Here will be released October 6th, 2015 by HarperTeen!

I've never read a Patrick Ness book, even though I always hear great things about them. That being said the synopsis of this one has me beyond intrigued. I love the idea of telling a story about that "ordinary" person who is living among all these people who are saving the world. I also really love the cover (and it will glow in the dark)!

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?