Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Review: Masque of the Red Death (Masque of the Red Death #1) by Bethany Griffin

Source: Received an egalley for an honest review from Edelweiss and the publisher.
Publisher: Greenwillow Books.
Release Date: Already Released.
Number of Pages: 319 (Hardcover)

Blurb from Goodreads:
Everything is in ruins.

A devastating plague has decimated the population. And those who are left live in fear of catching it as the city crumbles to pieces around them.

So what does Araby Worth have to live for?

Nights in the Debauchery Club, beautiful dresses, glittery make-up . . . and tantalizing ways to forget it all.

But in the depths of the club—in the depths of her own despair—Araby will find more than oblivion. She will find Will, the terribly handsome proprietor of the club. And Elliott, the wickedly smart aristocrat. Neither boy is what he seems. Both have secrets. Everyone does.

And Araby may find something not just to live for, but to fight for—no matter what it costs her.



I was so excited to read Masque of the Red Death, and it completely lived up to and surpassed my expectations! :D I absolutely loved this story. I loved how it played on Edgar Allan Poe's short story, and how it branched into its own story, too. :)

I think the best part of this book was the way things were described. From the clothes to the people all around Araby (psst...weird, yet great name also :P), it was all described in such fantastic ways. At times things almost seemed surreal, which I felt kind of played into Araby's lifestyle...at the beginning of the book she was quite the party animal. Additionally, I thought that the introduction to Masque of the Red Death was AMAZING! It hooked me right away and I didn't want to stop reading...so I didn't until I finished. :P

I also really enjoyed Araby's character. She definitely has flaws, but she's aware of them, and I think that they give her a lot of room as a character to grow...which I'm really looking forward to seeing! :D Along with Araby, I adored Will! He was, hands down!, my favourite part of the book. I loved that his character went from being so mysterious, to having aspects of his life revealed...and I really, really enjoyed getting to know more about him because he was fantastic!

Continuing with the characters, as mentioned I loved some... and didn't like others. I'm sure once you read the book you can reason out which one I didn't like based on the fact that I've just said I loved Will. :P The one thing I was kind of disappointed with in this book was the love triangle. *sigh* I really wasn't expecting a love triangle, or for the false triangle to blossom into a real one, but of course...it did. I'm actually getting pretty fed up with love triangles personally, especially when it seems like it isn't going to end up being one at all. It's a major disappointment. However, even with the love triangle, I still completely loved this book...I just would've preferred it not having one. Fingers crossed that it's summed up nicely in the next one. ;P

Overall, I loved Masque of the Red Death! It was imaginative, intense, and wonderfully descriptive. Bethany Griffin has crafted a wonderful story, and I really look forward to reading more books, especially the sequel...Dance of the Red Death! I'd recommend this one to fans of Poe because I think they'd like to see how Griffin has brought his short story into Masque of the Red Death. Also, I'd recommend it to fans of realistic narrators with real flaws. ;)

Have you read Masque of the Red Death yet?
Thoughts on it if you have, and even if you haven't?
Also...I'm starting to pick up on a trend --male love interests named Will in YA! Seriously, there are so many of them...and I'm attracted to them all. I'm not sure if it's starting to be because of the name or not, but it is kind of interesting when you think about it. I'm going to start a list. So far, there's this Will, Will from Cassandra Clare's Infernal Devices, Will from Courtney Allison Moulton's Angelfire trilogy, Will from Sophie Jordan's Firelight trilogy...and there's probably more. :P

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Cover Reveal: The Only Exception by Magan Vernon



The Only Exception by Magan Vernon -- Release Date: April 9th, 2013
Fiercely liberal Monica Remy prefers to blend in. Despite her tattoos, piercings, and outspoken personality, she transferred to Central to escape—before she finds out that her next door neighbor is the uber conservative governor son, Trey Chapman.

No matter how hard she tries to avoid Trey, he still finds a way to get under her skin. Monica can’t stand his crisp white shirts or his staunch views on women. But she can’t help counting every freckle on his face and wondering what it would feel like to have him stop talking politics and kiss her.

A class debate project forces the unlikely pair to work together, and the political lines are blurred in late-night make out sessions. But despite their fiery chemistry, Trey’s politics threatens to smother their relationship for good.

----

 
AUTHOR BIO
Magan Vernon is a Young Adult and New Adult writer who lives with her family in the insurance capital of the world. She is in a very serious, fake relationship with Adam Lambert and constantly asks her husband to wear guyliner. He still refuses. She also believes her husband is secretly an alien, disguised as a southern gentleman.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter


Ooooh! I really like this cover! The kissy action and the flag overlay work really well to tell the prospective reader that this book will be about romance...and that it will involve politics of some sort...at least that's what came to my mind when I first saw it. :P I think it's gorgeous though and I definitely think it's an eye-catching cover!

What about you? What do you think of The Only Exception's cover?

Monday, January 28, 2013

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (89)

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? at One Person's Journey Through a World of Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, is a bookish meme hosted by One Person's Journey Through a World of Books, where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It’s a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list. So hop on over to Journey and join in...and leave a comment here so I can check out what you are reading.

Well, it has been a very long time since my last Monday post, but I'm trying to get back into the habit again, so I'm doing one this week! ;D These are from about the last week and half rather than just last week. ;)


Books I Read Last Week:
I went on a bit of a novella kick, and Radiant was one of the ones that I read! I'm actually so glad that I read this one before Boundless because it actually filled in a lot! :D I also liked that this novella alternated between Clara's POV and Angela's...it was interesting! ;D

I absolutely LOVED Breathless! I wasn't sure what to expect from this one since it's after the Firelight trilogy...and it's from Az's POV, but I loved it! I'm actually kind of hoping Sophie Jordan continues with it somehow because it was awesome!

LOVED this one! :D I'm going to keep quiet about all of the details in this one because it'll spoil a big surprise for readers who are new to this series, but I will tell you that it involves Will's parents...and it was AMAZING! I loved Will's mom, Madeleine..so much, and I really enjoyed this novella! I'm so glad that Courtney Allison Moulton decided to tell this story! :D

I'm totally not ashamed to admit that I'm a HUGE Cole fan, so I loved Neverfall! It was also told in alternating timelines, with flashbacks and such like Everneath was, so that was pretty interesting. :) It's nice to get to know more about Cole, and to also get a hint at what I can expect in Everbound...I can't wait until my preoder shows up now!!!!

I received Crushed for review a little while ago, and I am so glad that I read it...it was AMAZING! I absolutely loved Fletch, and I thought that the author did a fabulous job with her male narrator...a lot of the time teenage male narrators can be a huge miss, but Dawn Rae Miller did it perfectly! I'll refrain from saying too much because I'm going to be posting a full review for this one, but I just have to say that I absolutely loved this story. I think Fletch is probably going to stay one of my favourite male narrators for quite some time! I definitely recommend checking this one out! ;D

I loved the first book of Lesley's that I read, Once Every Never, so I've been wanting to read this one for a while, and I loved it! I loved how Lesley Livingston wove different elements of mythology into this story, and how she added a magical element...I also adored the characters! Mason was so awesome, and Fenn...oh my goodness (hehe I almost just wrote "oh my goodreads"...I may just start using that ;D haha)...I loved him!!! So, sexy. ;) I definitely recommend this one too! :D


Reading Now:
I finished the fourth book, A Feast for Crows, over my Christmas break and started on this one and I am LOVING it so far...I finally get my Jon Snow, Daenerys and Tyrion again! ;D This is going to be one I kind of set aside for a while though because it's so long, but I do plan to come back to it whenever I get the chance!

Yup! I totally had to run out and get a copy of Boundless this week! I'm about a third through it already, but I had to start on some school books, so I put it down for a bit. :P Once I finish my school books though...I plan to pick it up again and keep going until I'm finished! :)

I've only read a few chapters of Override so far, but I wanted to get it started before I participate in the Rockstar Book Tours tour in a week or so. I'm going to try and post my review some time around the tour so I wanted to have it finished, especially since this is a sequel I've been really looking forward to! ;D I already have my finished copy ordered, and the last book in the trilogy, too...so obviously I'm a little excited. :P haha Also...just three chapters in and I'm already loving it!

Oh, Jack...I'm reading On the Road for my English class on Reading American Technologies. We're reading things that all have to do with cars. I don't mind it so far actually...I just wish the text were bigger! It always feels like it takes so long to read books with tiny text...and usually all the editions that profs order have tiny text. :P It stinks...but at least the story's good.

Ditto on the tiny text for this one! :P Waste Heritage is a book I'm reading for my Proletarian Literature class. It's a bit dry right now, but I'm hoping that I'll get more interested the further I get into the story.


Books I Want to Read This Week:

NONE! I have to finish some of the ones I'm currently reading first. :P haha

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So, I spent the last little bit getting caught up on some awesome novellas, and I read two amazing books! I've also definitely started quite a few books in the last week....hopefully by next Monday I'll be finished a couple of them. ;P

And what are you reading???

Check out One Person's Journey Through a World of Books to see what other people are reading. :)

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Stacking the Shelves (17)

Stacking the Shelves is Tynga's Reviews' version of In My Mailbox (from The Story Siren and inspired by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie).

Stacking the Shelves is a way to share the books that you're adding to your physical and virtual bookshelves. It's easy to participate. You just make your own post, and link it to the main post over at Tynga's Reviews. Also, in case you're curious, Tynga's post for it goes up on Saturdays, but you can post it any day that you like. :) You can find out more about participating by reading the Stacking the Shelves Launch post.

Oh boy, it's been a while since I've posted an STS post! I figured the best way to do it would be to just jump right back in! :P So, this is what I've gotten in the past week! :D

For Review:

 Georgetown Academy: Book 3 by
Playing Along by Rory Samantha Green (from the author)
The Next Forever (Pretty Amy #1.5) by Lisa Burstein (from Entangled and Netgalley)
 A Little Bit Cupid by Jennifer Shirk (from Entangled)

I'm pretty excited for all of these ones! :) I'll be participating in a few blog tours for The Next Forever and A Little Bit Cupid, and one of the authors I follow on Facebook mentioned that  the author of Playing Along was providing reviewer's copies, so I jumped at the chance to read it. :) All four of these books sound awesome, and I can't wait to read them! :D

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Bought:

Boundless (Unearthly #3) by Cynthia Hand (Chapters)
Splintered by A. G. Howard (Walmart)
Paper Valentine by Brenna Yovanoff (Walmart)
The Vincent Boys (The Vincent Boys #1) by Abbi Glines (Walmart)
The Mind Thieves (The Mind Readers #2) by Lori Brighton (Amazom Kindle Store)
The Mind Games (The Mind Readers #3) by Lori Brighton (Amazon Kindle Store)

I couldn't resist picking up a few awesome books when I was at Walmart earlier this week...and I just had to stop at Chapters to pick up Boundless! I'm REALLY excited for these ones, and I've already started Boundless...and I'm loving it! I had to take a break to read a couple of books for class, but I can't wait to get back to it! :D

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Thank you to Entangled, Netgalley, Coliloquy, and Rory Samantha Green! :)

So, that's what I got this week...what did you get?
Feel free to leave a link in the comments and I'll check out your STS or Mailbox post. :)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Review: Promised (Birthmarked #3) by Caragh M. O'Brien

 Source: Received an ARC for an honest review from Raincoast books.
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Release Date: October 2, 2012
Number of Pages: 304 (Hardcover)

Blurb from Goodreads:
After defying the ruthless Enclave, surviving the wasteland, and upending the rigid matriarchy of Sylum, Gaia Stone now faces her biggest challenge ever. She must lead the people of Sylum back to the Enclave and persuade the Protectorat to grant them refuge from the wasteland. In Gaia’s absence, the Enclave has grown more cruel, more desperate to experiment on mothers from outside the wall, and now the stakes of cooperating or rebelling have never been higher. Is Gaia ready, as a leader, to sacrifice what—or whom—she loves most?



My friend, Zoe from In The Next Room, originally introduced me to this series, and I'm so glad that she did. :) I've loved getting to experience Gaia's struggles and seeing how she overcomes everything that comes in her way.

This is a series where each book is pretty much distinct on its own. The characters are all there, they all involve power struggles, and they do proceed chronologically, but each of these books are so intense and so full of struggle within themselves that it's almost like they're completely separate...and only come together to tell an even bigger story. That being said, I do think that they've all shown a huge amount of growth for Gaia, and they've shown her coming into herself. The reader also gets to see the way that society around Gaia is shifting and how it changes as she and others make an active effort to make a difference.

Along with the fantastic characters, the biggest thing that I love about this series is how expansive it is. I love that we get a lot of character development, and we also get an extremely defined world. The second book, Prized, takes place in a setting other than the Enclave, and I still felt that Caragh M. O'Brien fully developed the world. She does an extraordinary job at describing the settings in a way where the reader can actually visualize Gaia's surroundings and it feels as if you're really seeing everything as Gaia does.

I was really not expecting Promised to end the way that it did, but I still thoroughly enjoyed the story. It had some extremely sad and desolate moment. While they had me crying and experiencing Gaia's pain, I couldn't help but be moved by it all, especially by Gaia's strength to overcome all that happens to her...including situations that would make most of us crumble in a ball of self-pity rather than fight it. :P While Gaia's ending may not be the happiest one I've ever experienced, it is incredibly realistic for the situation she was in. I also loved that Leon was there for her...she may not have gotten the perfect happy ending, but I still felt that she at least had a semblance of what I wanted for her.

I absolutely loved both this book, and this entire trilogy! I'd recommend the Birthmarked trilogy to dystopian fans who want a realistic depiction of a world very different from our own, and to readers who like dynamic female narrators.

Have you started the Birthmarked trilogy yet?
I tried not to add anything that would spoil in this review...so it's a little vague at times, but does Gaia's story sound like something you'd like to read if you haven't started this trilogy yet?

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Hair Massacure 2013!

Image Copyright of Hair Massacure
 
I've decided to participate in an event called Hair Massacure! It's a great cause, and the money raised goes toward helping children with life-threatening illness. I've also decided to chop off at least 12 inches of my hair and donate it so that it go towards becoming a free wig for a child who has lost their hair.

 To give you an idea...this is how long my hair is now. I'll probably end up cutting it to a length that's about at the middle of my neck, so I think it'll end up being about 15 inches or so. I'm not positive how they bunch it together to cut it so I can't quite be sure, but I'm hoping it'll be enough hair to help make a great wig. ;)

According to their website, here are the top 10 things you need to know about Hair Massacure:

"Hair Massacure:
10. …began as a family-run event, inspired by a four year-old leukemia patient.
9. …is a unique head-shaving event that encourages participants to honour the journey of sick children.
8. …welcomed over 2000 participants in 12 hours last year.
7. …is generously supported by 400 volunteers annually.
6. …collects 60 lbs of hair each year, to be made into wigs for local children.
5. …has hosted Edmonton professional sports teams including the Oilers, Eskimos, Rush, and FC Edmonton.
4. …has used over 10,000 bottles of pink to Paint the City over the past nine years.
3. …has a participant base predominantly made up of youth and families, making Hair Massacure a unique
        event.
2. …has raised over $6 million since 2003.
And the number one fact you need to know about Hair Massacure is that we:
1. …support three outstanding local charities that help children and families with life-threatening illnesses." - Hair Massacure
As previously mentioned, I'm also raising money for the cause. If you want to help support Hair Massacure, here's my participant page: Ambur Hostyn's Participant Page.

Don't feel obliged to donate or anything, but if you think it's a great cause, too, then I would really appreciate it if you did! Also, if you could share my page with anyone who you know that would want to support it, that would be fantastic!

Thanks for reading everyone!

I haven't fundraised since High School, so I have to say this is my first time fundraising where I chose to actively participate myself, so I really appreciate the fact that some of you took the time to read this. :)

Have you fundraised or participated in any great causes lately?
What do you think of Hair Massacure? 

And finally, if you've donated, I really appreciate it, and I just want to say thank you so much! It's going to an amazing cause!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Cover Reveal: Caged (Holloway Pack #3) by J.A. Belfield

Caged
Release Date: August 5, 2013
Target Reader: Adult
Back of the Book
If the meek can become deadly, the strongest can be weak.

For Ethan Holloway, his mission to find a missing werewolf should be simple. Crack a few heads, bust a few chops and the solution always reveals itself. Always.

Not this time.

Ethan’s reputation precedes him, and because it does, someone is ready. Waiting. Unbeknownst to Ethan, he’s about to go down. Hard. Against a foe he never suspected and in a world he never imagined could be real.

What awaits Ethan is a fight not only for his reputation, but also his pack, his female, and his life. If he survives, damage control will become priority number one.

If
he survives.

Because even Ethan’s not sure he’s strong enough to take on an entire race all by himself.

Especially one hell bent on exposing who and what he is in the name of sport.

URL:http://www.jtaylorpublishing.com/books/29

Other Novels in this series include:
Darkn
ess and Light (#1)
Blue Moon (#2)

In-between release novellas include:
Instinct (#0)
Eternal (#.5)
Resonance (#2.5)





*fans self* Well...I don't know about you all, but I've been waiting to read Ethan's story for a long time now...so I am thrilled to see this!!!! :D I'm also thrilled to see the sexy piece of man candy on the cover...Ethan's always been one of my favourite of the guys in this series. Looking at those muscles can you blame me?? :P I also love how quickly he formed a brother-sister bond with Jem, and I'm seriously looking forward to reading a book from his POV!!! :D I can't wait!

This cover is certainly dark, which totally fits the description...and I think we can all tell that Ethan is going to kick some serious butt in this book. He looks fierce and ready to take people down! It's gonna be good!

So, what do you think?

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Georgetown Academy Guest Post and Giveaway!

In honour of Barack Obama's Presidential Inauguration tomorrow, I've got a guest post for you from the authors of the Georgetown Academy, and as I mentioned previously...I've also got a giveaway for you! And if you've been following the series already...Book 3 has just been released so I have some links for you for that one, too! :D

And without further ado...here is the guest post by the lovely ladies who've brought us the Georgetown Academy series! :D

Guest Post By Jessica Koosed Etting and Alyssa Embree Schwartz, authors of Georgetown Academy

Michelle Obama wears a J.Crew sweater and it sells out the next day. Her daughter, Malia, is on her way to becoming a style maven in her own right, especially with the plethora of top designers fighting over dressing her for the Inauguration. Being part of a high-profile political family means facing the fashion spotlight, for better or for worse. Today we thought we’d spin that spotlight over to someone that we consider to be one of the most chic political children out there today…Lauren Bush Lauren.

Don't get us wrong. Lauren Bush Lauren was cool when she was just Lauren Bush, granddaughter of George HW Bush and niece of "W". Whether she was turning burlap sacks into the ultimate fashion accessory (all for the good of feeding the hungry) or gracing the cover of Vogue with her trademark buttery locks, she rocked it. But then she had to go and marry Ralph Lauren's son and now she's just in a different stratosphere.

Once you get past the fact that her name is now essentially Lauren Lauren, you can't help but realize she's ratcheted up the style quotient even more. And don't get us started on those wedding pic at the Ralph Lauren ranch out in Wyoming? (Side note: have you noticed a trend of Bush grandchildren getting married at ranches, because we have!) Stunning. Pure rustic gloss.

We can't figure out if we're obsessed with her or insanely jealous, but in any case, if she’d gone to Georgetown Academy we have no doubt she would’ve been crowned Best Dressed.

Follow us on Twitter! @GTownAcademy
Buy our Book! http://www.coliloquy.com/products/georgetown-academy-one/
Get more Info! www.georgetownacademysseries.com




GIVEAWAY!
- US/Canada Only
- 1 Winner will receive ebooks of all 3 books in the Georgetown Academy series
(in the format of their choice)
- Giveaway ends February 14th 11:59 PM (MST)
- Winner will be chosen using Rafflecopter
and will have 48 hours to claim their prize after being contacted

TO ENTER FILL OUT THE RAFFLECOPTER BELOW:




 Find out more about Georgetown Academy: Book 3!

Coliloquy Website:

Goodreads Link:

Buys Links:


So, what did you think of Alyssa and Jessica's guest post?
Any thoughts about the series? Feel free to share! :D

Friday, January 11, 2013

Georgetown Academy - Upcoming Posts!

In less than two weeks the United State's Presidential Inauguration takes place, and in honour of that I'll be hosting a guest post from the authors of the Georgetown Academy series, Jessica Koosed Etting and Alyssa Embree Schwartz, and I will have a giveaway for you all of all three books! ;D

This post is just to let you all know what you can expect and to tell you a bit about the series if you missed my other posts.

Georgetown Academy is part of Coliloquy's interactive stories line. It follows the narratives of four students at Georgetown Academy, all of them girls, so you know these books are packed full of drama. :P Currently the first two books in the series are already released...and the third will be coming out shortly! ;D

Here are the lovely covers of the books with their Goodreads pages linked below, and I've also provided some other links in case you're curious. One thing that I really like about these covers are the backgrounds. They're each well known monuments in DC, and I think that each girl on the cover also represents the characters...the second one in particular really matches the outfit that one of the characters is wearing during the bigger dramatic scene of that book. :P

Georgetown Academy: Book OneGeorgetown Academy: Book TwoGeorgetown Academy: Book Three
Book 1        | | | | |        Book 2        | | | | |         Book 3

Coliloquy's Website: Georgetown Academy Series | Book 1 | Book 2 | Book 3
Purchase Links: Book 1 - Amazon | Nook | Google Play ; Book 2 - Amazon | Nook | Google Play
Twitter: Coliloquy | Georgetown Academy

I'm a fan of the drama and the whole political element of these books because together they make for a really interesting mix, and I can't wait to get started on the third book. :D 

This post is pretty much just telling you to keep your eyes open for the guest post and giveaway I have coming up (should be up on January 20th ;D), but hopefully some of you will be more excited for the giveaway now that you know it's coming. :) Feel free to leave a comment asking questions about the series if you have any, and I'll try to answer them...hopefully while avoiding spoilers! ;)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

End of 2012 Book Survey!

Banner and Survey Courtesy of The Perpetual Page-Turner

Last year I participated in The Perpetual Page-Turner's End of the Year Book Survey, and I decided to do it again! :) If I'd been on the ball this would have been done before New Years, but oh well. :P haha I skipped the blogging life section which is optional because this thing took me forever to do! I tried to include Goodread links and pictures of most of the book covers for you guys to see...hopefully that won't make it super slow to load. :)

Best In Books 2012

 1. Best Book You Read In 2012? (You can break it down by genre if you want)

I'm just going to cheat and list a couple of my favourites! :P
Crewel (Crewel World #1) by Gennifer Albin
Insurgent (Divergent #2) by Veronica Roth
Everneath (Everneath #1) by Brodi Ashton
  
Okay...I'll stick to those three, but I could go on...and on...and on! I actually had a lot of books that I loved this year. :D haha I just absolutely adored the world created in Crewel and I loved how feisty Adelice was despite how restrictive her world was....just fantastic! Insurgent is my ideal second book in a trilogy book...it was perfect! It answered quite a few of my questions, brought up some more, and left me both satisfied and desperate for the final book! Everneath was one of the first books that I read in 2012 and it stuck with me all year long...I loved Nikki...and I loved Cole. ;D Everneath was one of the few times where I actually preferred the bad boy (Murtagh's still my fav "bad boy" though :P)...although I like to think there's more to him than there seems to be. :P haha

2. Book You Were Excited About and Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

 Team Human by Sarah Rees Brennan and Justine Larbalestier
I just really wasn't a big fan of Mel, and while she grew on me by the end I still just couldn't get over how horrible she was near the beginning of the book. I'm not a fan of mean people...and Mel was mean, she just considered it being funny instead. Considering that she was better by the end of the book though I'm going to continue with the series and I'm going to hope she doesn't get mean again. :P 

Enshadowed (Nevermore #2) by Kelly Creagh
Awe man...I wanted to love this book sooooo much, and I did love some aspects, but overall I was just so disappointed. I felt like Enshadowed just took me in circles. The writing was beautiful, just like it was in Nevermore, but this book just fell flat for me. Nothing really happened....in fact, it seemed like Isobel was in a worse position than she was after Nevermore. I know a lot of people dislike middle books in trilogies, but I'm usually not one of them...and this is actually the first middle book I haven't liked in a long, long time...so I was pretty sad. I'm still going to read the next book, but I seriously felt ripped off after reading this one. It was like I read 400-and-some pages for NOTHING, like it was written just as filler,....and you barely even get to see Varen which made it even worse. *sigh*

3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012? 
Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles #1) by Margaret Stohl and Kami Garcia
When this one first came out I remember seeing it at Walmart (where I seriously used to get ALL my books :P), and I'd just been burned by a series that I'd bought there and didn't like, so I was very hesitant to get it and decided to skip this one. Then when I started blogging I heard a lot of mixed things about it...but after my fellow Edmonton Blogger, Rola (who I'll mention later in this post), told me that I needed to read this series...so I started it, and I loved it! :D Now I'm not even sure why I waited....Ethan is awesome and I love it's such a different perspective. First, as far as I know...he's human, and it's a male narrator, which I think we all know is pretty rare in YA. :P I'd totally recommend checking this one out guys, and after I get around to reading the rest of the series I'm sure I'll still be encouraging you to read it. :P

4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012?
Hmmm, I didn't recommend a lot of books in 2012 (I'll have to work on that this year :P), but I did encourage a few of my friends to read Divergent, and like I have since I read it...The Hunger Games. :D Okay, while answering #5 I realized I lied...I totally recommended Jaci Burton's Play by Play series to several people....and now I'm recommending it to anyone who reads this...if you enjoy sexy athletes that is. ;)

5. Best series you discovered in 2012?
Jaci Burton's Play by Play series! :D Oh, sports romances....I am sooooo glad that I've gotten into this genre. I just love it, and Jaci Burton's Play by Play series is my favourite!!! I love that her characters are genuine, and I love that they're all intertwined through the Riley family...it's great seeing characters from the previous books show up! :D

6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2012?
Jaci Burton, Brodi Ashton, Gennifer Albin, and Elizabeth Richards! I've already professed my love for Jaci Burton's series, but I also absolutely adored Everneath by Brodi Ashton, Crewel by Gennifer Albin, and Black City by Elizabeth Richards....and I can't wait for their sequels!!! :D
 
7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?
Touching the Void by Joe Simpson
I took a travel lit class last Winter semester, and this was one of the books we read...it was my favourite out of all of them and I thoroughly enjoyed it! The fact that this book is a true story made it even more amazing! The story was riveting, intense...and I just was seriously on edge through a huge chunk of this book just wondering how he could go through it all! I recommend this to absolutely everyone...even if you don't typically read nonfiction because I don't either. This one's considered creative nonfiction, so aspects, like the other character, Simon's POV are added along with creative elements like tone and stuff like that, but the story itself is nonfiction...it's amazing, honestly...so good!
 
8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012?
Insurgent (Divergent #2) by Veronica Roth
Just like Divergent, Insurgent was full of action, and the characters were amazing! Tris went through so much in this book that it almost felt like you got enough action for two books! I pretty much read this one nonstop...I only took the necessary breaks...you know: food, bathroom, water...necessary to survival stuff. :P
 
9. Book You Read In 2012 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year:
 
The DUFF by Kody Keplinger
This one was already a reread in 2012, and I'm thinking that I'll reread it again in 2013...maybe I'll make it a yearly thing. After all, a girl needs her Wesley Rush fix. ;D 

 

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2012?
 
I'm totally picking two for this one! :P The first one is Taking a Shot (Play by Play #3) by Jaci Burton, which I just find super sexy and couldn't resist putting on here! :P And the second is Masque of the Red Death (Masque of the Red Death #1) by Bethany Griffin! I just find this cover gorgeous! I love the silhouette of the girl behind the umbrella and the red mist...it's just so pretty! :D
 

11. Most memorable character in 2012? 
Logan Lerman as Charlie
I'm going to go with Charlie from The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky...which I'm going to mention a few questions down again. He's such a unique character, and he's easily to write off...but I really respected him, and I just had so much compassion for him. He's one of those characters that makes you think, and his story opens your eyes to things that you sometimes just try to pretend don't exist...but they do, and they do matter...just like Charlie matters even if he doesn't always think that he does.

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2012?
This one is hard!! I'm going to go with Identical by Ellen Hopkins...any Ellen Hopkins book would do actually, and I did read the Crank trilogy, too, but Identical REALLY stuck with me...it was so intense and the story was so messed up, but it was told in such a beautiful way...seriously, soooo goood!

13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012? 
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson
I won't lie...I'm totally a daddy's girl, so Second Chance Summer really struck a chord with me...just like Matson's first book, Amy and Roger's Epic Detour. This book made me think about my conversations with my dad and just how we are together...it made me realize just how much I appreciate the fact that I still have my dad and that he's there for me when I need him. It also made me realize that I need to tell him that I love him more often (I know he probably won't ever read this...but if by some bizarre chance you are dad, I love you). It didn't just make me appreciate my dad though, but rather everyone I love. I'm going to appreciate my loved ones a lot more after reading this book, and I'm going to make sure that I have plenty of memories of everyone that matters to me because in the end, that's what you have to hold on to.

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read? 
The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
A few of the Edmonton Bloggers (myself included) got the chance to see an advanced screening of the movie adaptation, so I just had to read the book first....and I can't believe I waited that long! I loved Charlie. I loved how his story was told, and I loved how despite having his own issues, he was one of the kindest and most thoughtful characters I've ever had the experience of meeting through the written word. He's easily misunderstood, but if you give him the chance and go into this book with an open mind, you will love Charlie. He's 

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2012? 
Just like 2011...I didn't really keep track of quotes in 2012. I need to start doing that...by the end of this year hopefully I'll have some favourites. ;)

16. Shortest and Longest Book You Read In 2012? 
Shortest: Forever by Judy Blume - 176 pages
Longest: A Storm of Swords by George R. R. Martin - 1,178 pages

Forever was actually kind of a disappointment for me, too, but oh well, at least it was short...and A Storm of Swords was CRAZY! I loved that one....so much...oh man (I've just recently let myself get back into this series...my fangirl is showing isn't it? :P). 

17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc. etc.) Be careful of spoilers! 
Pretty much all of Insurgent...and strangely enough I still haven't talked about it with anyone! I think I'm going to have to fix that and talk to somebody about it!!! :D I might just have to use talking about this book as an excuse to reread it. :P

18. Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2012 (be it romantic, friendship, etc).  
Caroline and Simon from Wallbanger by Alice Clayton! I read this one when it was originally a Twilight fanfic, and I loved the relationship then, but I enjoyed it even more so when they become Caroline and Simon. They started off as enemies of sorts and their relationship morphed into friendship...with a tinge of domesticity and a tonne of sexual tension involved. I loved the growth of their relationship and how it developed into a romantic relationship. While the other relationships in the book aren't as well developed, Caroline and Simon's is fanastic...and they have amazing banter. Loved this book and these two! :D

19. Favorite Book You Read in 2012 From An Author You Read Previously
 Black Heart (Curse Workers #3) by Holly Black
Insurgent could totally fit here, too, but I also absolutely LOVED Black Heart! It was one of the most satisfying conclusions to a trilogy that I've ever read, and I loved every single minute of it! :D I'm definitely going to have to reread this series because I'm going to miss Cassel! :D


 
20. Best Book You Read That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else:
Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles #1) by Margaret Stohl and Kami Garcia
Rola from xo'reads is a HUGE fan of this series, and she really encouraged me to check the Caster Chronicles out. I've only read BC so far an I loved it...so I'm extremely glad that she told me to read it because if she hadn't I don't think I would've...this was one of those series that I wasn't sure about. I'd heard mixed things, so I was mixed about it too, but Rola pushed me over-the-edge to reading it and I'm so glad! Now I just need to read the rest of the series!!! :D

Looking Ahead…

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2012 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2013?
The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
I REALLY wanted to read this one...and I still do, but with school I never really got the chance to read it...but this year, I will! Even though it's nothing like Harry Potter, I'm still seriously excited for it, and I hope that I love it. :D
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2013?
Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices #3)
by Cassandra Clare
I've mentioned it several times, but Clockwork Prince DESTROYED me...seriously, I was a mess. A MESS. I was so torn up after reading that book...I was sobbing and I was mumbling incoherently to myself...it was bad. But, I LOVED it...yes, I loved CP even though it left me in a seriously messed up state...and it left me absolutely desperate for Clockwork Princess...and the wait is almost over...we are so close to this book guys....so close! Only a couple more months! I even preordered my book from Chapters this time because last time my Book Depo book didn't have any specific edition stuff...and I am NOT missing out on that family tree...no siree bob! Also, I'm so excited for this book, but also soooo nervous. I think Will fans and Jem fans alike are all a bit worried...it's not looking good for anybody! I just want Will to be happy...is that so much to ask? Okay...I'm going to stop now or this is going to go on for forever. :P
  ...and I just have to mention the still untitled third book in the Divergent triology by Veronica Roth! :D I can't wait to learn the name, see the cover...and get my hands on it! It will be awesome, I just know it!
3. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2013?
Well as I've already mentioned, I'm going to try and keep track of some quotes this year. It's always been something I wanted to do, but for some reason I never do it. I'm kind of an in-the-moment reader, so maybe that's why. The only time I stop reading if I'm really into a book is when I stop for a moment to try and figure things out, so now I'm going to try and pay more attention to specific passages, and hopefully I'll find some that I love. :D I also hope to just keep steadily reading throughout the year, and I'm going to try not to slow down during the summer when I'm working. That seemed to be when I slowed down in 2012, so this year I'm going to try and go steady all year! For blogging, I'm going to try and get caught up on reviews...and hopefully stay caught up! Hopefully I can manage that. ;P So, I kinda did more than one...but it's always good to have things that you hope to accomplish...right? :P


Did you participate in the survey? 
If you did, leave a link and I'll check it out! 
If you didn't, feel free to pick out a question and answer it in the comment section. I'd love to hear about the books you read in 2012!
Also, feel free to comment on my answers. I'd love to hear your thoughts. :)

Monday, January 7, 2013

J. Taylor Publishing Blogger/Reviewer Appreciation Month! :D

J. Taylor Publishing
You all might have noticed that I review quite a few of J. Taylor Publishing's books, and that's because I'm a member of their blogger program. :D

This month, J. Taylor is showing their appreciation to their current bloggers and reviewers, and they're also trying to attract more!

I personally love being a member of their program. They send you the books as soon as review copies are available and you don't have to request anything. Also, you have the option to receive updates about new book covers, and you can sign up to be a part of their blog tours...it's a pretty sweet deal, especially since I'm totally smitten with most of their series. ;)

Is your interest piqued? (I hope so :P) Well, even if it isn't, there are a lot of perks.
Here they are: 
  • Free ebooks with immediate access to the novels and novellas (at the pre-release stage) — No asking to be considered on a book by book basis!
  • Reduced cost print books (when/where available)
  • Free (or reduced cost) marketing materials about our books (media kits, cover images, bookmarks) where available
  • Priority for future back-of-the-book quotes with your name on them (for printed novels)
  • Priority for blog tours and interviews with our authors
  • Promotion of your website on our blog (link back)
  • Potential inclusion of your review in our authorʼs media kits, marketing tools, etc
  • Priority reviews of any query submitted to us for publication consideration
  • Personal feedback on the above submissions
  • There are absolutely no costs to this program and never will be.
Also...you get to make friends with some pretty awesome authors. ;)

Do you need more incentive??? Well, this month they're also running a giveaway for their Blogger/Reviewer Appreciation month! If that isn't an awesome incentive I don't know what is. :P

If you're interested in becoming a member of their blogger/reviewer team, just want more information, or are already a member and want to enter their giveaway, you can find all of the details HERE.

If you do decide to become a member of J. Taylor's team, tell them Ambur from Burning Impossibly Bright sent you. :D

So, are you interested??
Do you need any further convincing?...because I can totally provide it. ;)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Bringing YA to You!!!


Have you ever wished that a big YA book tour would make a stop in your hometown? Well, here's your chance for that wish to come true! YA2U is a program that features five award-winning and best-selling authors who are holding a contest to see what city they should visit in an exclusive tour stop!

The authors are collecting votes from January 1 to February 15, and any city in the continental US or any Canadian city that has an international airport can win an exclusive visit from all five authors, including an author panel and book signing! Entering is super easy--and if you help spread the word about the contest, you can also enter win a signed copy of all of their books (TEN signed books in total!)--and the book contest is open internationally!


And they want to have an event in your home town! To participate, just got to the YA2U website and let them know what city you want them to come to. And while you're there, help spread the word about the contest and you can be entered to win all of their books--TEN signed books in total! 

Here's why the YA2U Team should come to MY hometown! 

I'll be voting for Edmonton for this event because it's the closest city to me...my actual hometown is tiny and wouldn't be an ideal place for this kind of event, but Edmonton would be fantastic! :D

I think the YA2U Team should come to Edmonton, or even another Western Canadian city like Calgary, because we don't get very many events here! In Canada they usually only stop in Ontario and maybe BC, so it would be awesome it we got the chance to experience a great tour like this, plus with the Smart Chicks Kick It Tour I think we showed that we can definitely bring in readers! :D We had one of the biggest turnouts for the whole tour. :) 

Even if Edmonton isn't one of the stops for this tour, I still just have to say that I'm extremely grateful for this opportunity at all! It's great to see authors being so proactive about their tours, and it makes me feel really appreciated as a reader...they really care about what we think! Isn't that awesome? :D

Why should the YA2U Team come to your hometown? Why not join in the fun today and share with others about this program and your hometown. The more votes your town gets, the closer you are to having your very own personal tour stop! Vote for YOUR town here!

And if you help spread the word, you can also participate in the book giveaway. Tell them that you learned about YA2U from me and we both get extra entries in the contest! 

Note: To make it easier on you, here's the contest entry form to enter your city
 
Sorry that this post is a day late guys! I've got a pretty nasty cold right now so my brain's processing things pretty slowly at the moment. :P But, I wanted to make sure you all got the chance to get involved with the YA2U event! So, get your votes in, and maybe you'll get lucky and your city will get a spot! :D 

Don't forget to mention my name if you participate...we both get extra entries then! ;D