Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Girl at Sea

GIRL AT SEA- MAUREEN JOHNSON


Description:
Sometimes you have to get lost . . .
_______________
My review:
Girl at Sea is definitely…something.

  While the story line was sort of boring, I did enjoy Clio’s snarky voice. I have read previous books by Maureen Johnson, and while they were cool and funny, this one seemed to lack that spark that draws me into books.
  The story line wasn't all too original, what with being lost at sea and finding love. But I did love the individual elements of the book, so that's a plus.
  Don’t get me wrong, like I said, I enjoyed Girl at Sea, but I wont be rereading it anytime soon. So, if you like stories where the characters are stuck on a yacht in the middle-of-nowhere, you will love this!
But, if like me, you’re more into the ‘backpacking-around-Europe’ thing, then I suggest you pick up Johnson’s 13 Little Blue Envelopes. (I love how this cover is also like Blue Envelopes. Simple and cute, I love that!)

The Girl: Clio Ford, seventeen, wants to spend the summer smooching her art-store crush, not stuck on a boat in the Mediterranean. At least she'll get a killer tan.
The Mission: Survive her father's crazy antics. Oh, and also find some missing underwater treasure that could unlock the secrets of civilization.
The Crew: Dad's wacky best friend Martin, his bizarre research partner Julia, her voluptuous daughter Elsa . . . and then there's Aidan, Julia's incredibly attractive, incredibly arrogant assistant.
What's going on behind Aidan's intellectual, intensely green eyes, anyway?
As Clio sails into uncharted territory she unveils secrets that have the power to change history. But her most surprising discovery is that there's something deeper and more cryptic than the sea—her own heart.
        . . . to find what you're looking for

Deception

DECEPTION- LEE NICHOLS

Description:
When Emma Vaile's parents leave on mysterious business trip, it gives her the perfect excuse to be a rebellious teen. Throw some parties, get a tattoo (or maybe just a piercing), and enjoy the first few weeks of her junior year. Then her best friend stops talking to her, the cops crash her party, and Emma finds herself in the hands of a new guardian—her college-age "knight in J.Crew armor," Bennett Stern—and on a plane to his museum-like mansion in New England.

After enrolling at Thatcher Academy, Emma settles in by making friends with the popular legacy crowd. But she can't shake the strange visions that are haunting her. She has memories of Thatcher she can't explain, as if she's returning home to a place she's never been. Emma doesn't trust anyone anymore—except maybe Bennett. But he's about to reveal a ghostly secret to Emma. One that will explain the visions . . . and make Emma fear for her life



My review:
Bottom line is—if you like secrecy, spine-tingling occurrences, and loves-that-just-can’t-be, Deception is for you.

  The first in the Haunting Emma series, this book sets the bar high, and I mean high, for the next books in the series. What I liked most about Emma was that she is a very rational thinker. She thinks things through. She isn’t the stupid heroine who thinks ‘Omigod, a murderer is in the house! I should scream so he can find me easier!’ She knows what to do, and how to do it. The storyline may remind readers of Kelley Armstrong’s Darkest Powers trilogy, but I assure you, neither one of the novels are much alike. Deception is its own book, a book that stands alone, and shouldn’t be compared to anything else.
  Emma sees ghosts. Her parents seem to have vanished into thin air, and she is thrown into a boarding school under the watch of her MIA brother’s college roommate, Bennet Stern. Weird things start happening, and the things seem to be connected to her parents—mainly, her mother. But Emma knows that her parents are nothing like what Bennet seems to believe they are…and she has to figure out what’s going on, and fast!
  With chapters that fly by, and no idea who to trust, Deception is a perfect novel for anyone who loves a good mystery that will have you leaving the lights on and cowering under your blankets.

Web of Lies

WEB OF LIES- JENNIFER ESTEP

Description:


________________My review:
Gin is back! I unfortunately had to wait a few days (and a few books) before I finally got my hands on Web of Lies. But I gotta say, it was definitely worth the wait! I seriously thought that with the ending of Spider’s Bite, Gin’s retirement would be boring, and she’d be out of action. But, Jennifer didn’t disappoint! Gin was as badass, funny and dirty as before, and I loved her more for it.

 
  When she takes a job pro bono protecting a young college student and her grandfather from a crazy-Texas-obsessed coal miner, danger is lurking just around the corner. On top of this, Detective Donovan Caine is once again meddling in Gin’s affairs, but this time, he’s devoted to his ‘don’t-fall-for-the-assassin’ mentality. Hello, irony! Gin makes it clear that she does—and gets—what she wants, and this mentality could be very bad to our dedicated cop…
I can’t wait for the next chapter in the Elemental Assassin series!

Raven

RAVEN- ALLISON van DIEPEN

Description:
 She wants him....

My review:
Raven was an okay novel. While I like newer works by Allison van Diepen, I can’t say that Raven was one of my favorites. The story line was pretty common, and frankly, the writing could’ve been better. Her characters weren’t well developed, and Nicole (the main character of Raven) seemed kind of…volatile. At some points in the book, she was a clear thinker, and did things rationally. While at other times, she seemed to be barely thinking at all! The story was nice, though. I’ve never read a book in which the characters are New York break-dancers—definitely new!
Zin dances with fire in every step; speaks with a honey sweet voice; and sees with eyes that can peer into your soul. Nicole's friendship with him is the only thing that saves her from the boredom of school and the turmoil of her family life. It's no wonder why Nicole is madly in love with him. But she can't understand why he keeps her at a distance, even though she can feel his soul reaching out for hers.
Zin is like no man Nicole has ever met, and he carries with him a very old secret. When Nicole uncovers the truth, her love may be the only thing that can save him from it.

Bloom

BLOOM- ELIZABETH SCOTT

Description:

There's a difference between falling and letting go.
  Lauren has a good life: decent grades, great friends, and a boyfriend every girl lusts after. So why is she so unhappy?
  It takes the arrival of Evan Kirkland for Lauren to figure out the answer: She's been holding back. She's been denying herself a bunch of things (like sex) because staying with her loyal and gorgeous boyfriend, Dave, is the "right" thing to do. After all, who would give up the perfect boyfriend?
  But as Dave starts talking more and more about their life together, planning a future Lauren simply can't see herself in -- and as Lauren's craving for Evan, and moreover, who she is with Evan becomes all the more fierce -- Lauren realizes she needs to make a choice...before one is made for her.


My review:
Bloom is a charming, beautiful novel about the wonders of first love.

  Lauren’s voice is truly honest and candid; no character is like her. She marches to the beat of her own drum and shines brilliantly. Scott has a very inventive, bold voice in the YA community. Her stories are always perfectly written and charming. Each one is different, and yet they all manage to tug on your heartstrings until you feel you will combust with the pleasurable outcome in each ending.
  Lauren’s seemingly perfect life changes abruptly when an old friend, Evan Kirkland, returns to town. Her perfect (literally), and charming boyfriend, Dave doesn’t seem so perfect next to quiet, mystifying, Evan. She realizes she’s been holding back, because of Dave’s strong beliefs: Beliefs about school, college, and their ‘life’ and ‘future’ together. Lauren realizes that his life, her life, and each one of their beliefs are totally different, and as she starts falling for Evan, she denies herself. She refuses to act on her feelings for Evan, instead opting to be the perfect girlfriend to her perfect boyfriend. But no matter how hard she tries to fit herself into the mold, eventually her true feelings will come into light.
  Recommended for readers who enjoy cute, light novels, and the likes of Sarah Dessen.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Linger

Linger- Maggie Stiefvater

Description:

My Review:
Linger. I think I speak for every teen when I say that we faithfully waited long enough for the sequel to last years’ New York Times bestseller, Shiver.

  In Linger, Sam and Grace have to fight to stay together. While the threat of Sam changing again and leaving Grace has been removed, Grace isn’t so sure that the threat of her leaving Sam has passed.
  Grace starts noticing changes in herself: being overly warm, headaches, nosebleeds. She tries hiding this from Sam. But, Sam being Sam, also knows something is terribly wrong with Grace. And it may just be worse than either of them imagined.
  Enter newbie Cole: The newest wolf in town, a wolf that’s hiding secrets of a troublesome past that he doesn’t want anyone to know about. He’s also embracing his wolf, trying to find out how to stay a wolf.
  Isabel is also struggling with a troubled past; the loss of her brother, when she blames herself for his death. And she is trying to show Cole that his life is worth living. These two damaged souls find each other in their time-of-need.
  Linger is a harrowing tale of love, choices and consequences. Problems that seem to be way to complicated for any teens new to love should have to experience, and a just-plain-beautiful story. Stiefvater is very gifted with words. She has woven a tale that won’t soon be forgotten, and even hours after finishing it, I’m still thinking about its ending… Can't wait for FOREVER!
In Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver, Grace and Sam found each other.  Now, in Linger, they must fight to be together. For Grace, this means defying her parents and keeping a very dangerous secret about her own well-being. For Sam, this means grappling with his werewolf past . . . and figuring out a way to survive into the future. Add into the mix a new wolf named Cole, whose own past has the potential to destroy the whole pack.  And Isabelle, who already lost her brother to the wolves . . . and is nonetheless drawn to Cole.
At turns harrowing and euphoric, Linger is a spellbinding love story that explores both sides of love -- the light and the dark, the warm and the cold -- in a way you will never forget.

Twice Bitten

Twice Bitten- Chloe Neill

Description:
Shapeshifters from across the country are convening in the Windy City, and as a gesture of peace, Master Vampire Ethan Sullivan has offered their leader a very special bodyguard: Merit, Chicago's newest vampire. Merit is supposed to protect the Alpha, Gabriel Keene-and to spy for the vamps while she's at it. Oh, and luckily Ethan's offering some steamy, one-on-one combat training sessions to help her prepare for the mission.

Unfortunately, someone is gunning for Gabriel, and Merit soon finds herself in the line of fire. She'll need all the help she can get to track down the would-be assassin, but everywhere she turns, there are rising tensions between supernaturals-not least between her and a certain green-eyed, centuries-old master vampire.


My Review:
Twice Bitten by Chloe Neill is sexy, powerfully original and just plain kick-ass!

  Ever since Neill’s start with Some Girls Bite, I’ve been an avid reader. The Chicagoland Vampires novels are absolutely awesome, creative, and enticingly potent; I love every word of them. Each book keeps you glued to your seat in anticipation, awaiting the moment when Merit makes you laugh-out-loud, or makes your throat tighten with tears. Neill is a very gifted author, and I really hope she never stops writing!
  Merit is a badass newbie vampire that makes me laugh with each pun, joke and implication. She’s truly riveting, and there isn’t a heroine that I love better than one who kicks butt, tells it as it is, and loves eating. She’s sexy, smart, and beautifully crafted; there is not another character out there that shines with as much potential as Neill’s Merit.
  In Twice Bitten, Merit is thrown to the wolves—figuratively, speaking of course—when her Master vamp, Ethan offers the Shapeshifter’s leader, Gabriel Keene, her services. Someone is defiantly out for the Gabriel, as Merit oh-so-happens to witness when she is put into the line of fire on his behalf. She has to save his ass…to save her own from her Master.
  When said Master, Ethan Sullivan complicates the mostly-platonic relationship between him and Merit, she knows she’s in over her head. And that she’s going to have to hold on tight…for one heart-pounding, crazy ride.
  I must say, I loved Twice Bitten just a little more than Friday Night Bites; with its charm, lust-factor, and remarkable heroine, the Chicagoland Vampires Novels are sure to please older teens and adults alike.

Dark Flame

Dark Flame- Alyson Noel

Description:
At the start of this mesmerizing new installment of the Immortals series, Ever is helping her friend Haven transition into life as an immortal. But with Haven drunk on her new powers and carelessly putting them all at risk, their friendship becomes more and more strained. At the same time, Ever delves deeper into magick in order to get control over her enemy Roman and free Damen from his power. But when the spell she casts on Roman backfires, she’s bound to her deadliest enemy. Frantic to reverse the spell the moment the moon enters a new phase, she finds her efforts are fruitless—there’s a strange, foreign pulse coursing through her, one that propels her toward Roman. Desperate to break free of this terrible curse before Damen or the twins can discover what she’s done, she turns to Jude and delves deeper and deeper into dark magick, ultimately risking everything she knows and loves—including Damen.

My Review:
Dark Flame was not only a satisfying fourth book in the Immortals series, but it was a definite Noel novel! This series is full of suspense, mystery, and love; the perfect combination for all teenage souls.

  In Dark Flame, Ever struggles with a few things, first, a binding spell gone wrong: what was supposed to be a simple spell to bind Roman to her, resulted in binding her to Roman, second, trying to find the antidote to reverse Roman’s spell on her and Damen; a spell that has neither one of them able to touch one another without a shield of magick between them.
  And above all that Ever is also in charge of showing her recently turned BFF, Haven, all the ropes and whistles that go along with her immortality. Haven on the other hand, decides to live her newly ‘undead’ lifestyle to its fullest, causing Ever to be deeply pained and in a bind, not knowing what she should do.
  Amidst all this, Ever knows that her growing obsession with Roman isn’t good. So, she turns to Jude for help. She believes that by not telling Damen, she can avoid major conflict...But will turning to Jude backfire in her face? Will she find the cure to Damen’s tragic spell? And will Ever ever be able to un-bind herself from Roman? You have to read this novel to find out!

The Oracle of Dating

The Oracle of Dating- Allison van Diepen

Description:

______________________
For five bucks, the Oracle of Dating will tell you:
* How to flirt
* If that cute guy you're crushing on likes you, too
* Whether your new romance will last through lunch period
* And much more
What she won't tell you? Who she is.
No one at Kayla's school knows she's the famous Oracle of Dating— the anonymous queen of dating advice. She doesn't even have a boyfriend. Two relationship disasters were enough to make Kayla focus on everyone else's love life.
But then her advice backfires on her own best friend. And Kayla starts to seriously obsess about Jared Stewart—the very cute, very mysterious new guy in school. Suddenly, the teen queen of advice needs her own oracle of dating—and she knows just where to find one….

My Review:
The Oracle of Dating by Allison van Diepen is a quirky, funny novel about friendship, love, and the power of blogging. A very cute and quick read that will entertain fans of Gena Showalter’s Oh My Goth, Sarah Dessen, and Maureen Johnson.

  The Oracle of Dating is about Kayla, who—while hasn’t had much experience in the dating field herself—runs a website/blog for teens: a blog dedicated to dating advice, and your deepest burning questions about dating being answered with either a quick IM or call to Kayla. Kayla’s friends have no idea she’s the Oracle: and why should she tell them? Sure it’d be cool for her friends to be proud in her for it, but honestly? Kayla doesn’t think anyone would take it seriously, especially coming from a girl whose love life consists of two measly boyfriends. One of which can’t even be considered a boyfriend.
  When Kayla becomes friends with cute, artsy, and completely cute, Jared Stewart, she finds herself falling; and falling fast. Jared is completely oblivious to her…or so Kayla thinks. Kayla needs advice, but how can the Oracle herself give advise to…herself?
  Add onto a few cases of advice-gone-wrong (including one with her BFF), and trying to find a perfect, compatible, person for her older sister, Kayla has a lot on her plate!
  The Oracle of Dating is ultimately a very cute novel. A novel that, while short, keeps readers hooked from its first page, well until its last sentence…

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Silver is for Secrets

SILVER IS FOR SECRETS- LAURIE FARIA STOLARZ, the info from Barnes and Noble:


  "I'll make you pay . . .

School is over, and now Stacey, her boyfriend Jacob, and their friends have rented a beach cottage for the summer. No more stress, secrets, or stalkers. But then Stacey's nightmares return—predicting the cruel death of Clara, a mysterious girl with a secret. And now Jacob, the only one who understands Stacey's magic, is keeping secrets, too. Is he betraying Stacey's trust or protecting her from revenge and tragedy?"


MY REVIEW:
Silver is for Secrets is perfectly awesome!

  Normally, in series, after the second book it gets kinda boring. But in the Blue is for Nightmares collection, the books manage to get better and better, each one building up to more and more sweetness. I loved Silver is for Secrets, and I’m dying to crack open the next, and final one, Red is for Remembrance.
  Silver is for Secrets is all about Stacey and the rest of the gang, who have graduated high school and are vacationing by them selves in a cozy little beach-front cottage. Stacey is doomed yet again, with more nightmares about another person who is in danger. This time, it’s about Clara, the fifteen year old who is staying a few houses down. But Clara is the type of girl who chases ‘taken’ men and Stacey has a hard time trying to befriend her long enough to keep her safe—if she wants to keep herself sane.
  Then Stacey’s perfect boyfriend, Josh, starts keeping secrets. Stacey knows she can trust him, but when he starts going off at night and getting quiet around her, Stacie starts having doubts.
  With nothing but sand, sun, and mystery, this book keeps you captivated until its shocking conclusion. A conclusion that left me breathless and literally open-mouthed in shock. I never seen it coming, and I have to hand it to Laurie for catching me by surprise!
  Laurie Faria Stolarz managed to somehow top the last book in the series. When I didn’t think it could get any more weird and mysterious, she managed to raise the bar, far pass what I could ever expect to happen with Stacey and her friends.
  Beautifully written with words woven with mystery, Silver is for Secrets is sure to lure you in until the conclusion.


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Splendor Falls

THE SPLENDOR FALLS- ROSEMARY CLEMENT-MOORE

Description:
Sylvie Davis is a ballerina who can’t dance. A broken leg ended her career, but Sylvie’s pain runs deeper. What broke her heart was her father’s death, and what’s breaking her spirit is her mother’s remarriage—a union that’s only driven an even deeper wedge into their already tenuous relationship.

Uprooting her from her Manhattan apartment and shipping her to Alabama is her mother’s solution for Sylvie’s unhappiness. Her father’s cousin is restoring a family home in a town rich with her family’s history. And that’s where things start to get shady. As it turns out, her family has a lot more history than Sylvie ever knew. More unnerving, though, are the two guys that she can’t stop thinking about. Shawn Maddox, the resident golden boy, seems to be perfect in every way. But Rhys—a handsome, mysterious foreign guest of her cousin’s—has a hold on her that she doesn’t quite understand.

Then she starts seeing things. Sylvie’s lost nearly everything—is she starting to lose her mind as well?



________________________
MY REVIEW:
The Splendor Falls is a book that will entertain fans of Stephenie Meyer, Laurie Faria Stolarz, and the duo Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl. This book is large, but there isn’t one boring or non-important page. The characters are well formed, and mental images are easy to imagine with Rosemary’s sensory skills. This book will stay with you long after the last page, and is sure to entice its readers.

  The Splendor Falls is about former-ballerina, Sylvie, whose career ended with a horrible fall that broke her leg. With nothing to do now that she’s ‘out of the game’, her mom sends her to her deceased father’s cousins house; where she discovers things about her family that she never knew. Things that are both weird and amazing.
  There is where Sylvie meets golden boy Shawn Maddox, and the mysterious, gorgeous Rhys Griffith. Both boys are equally charming and inexplicable, but Sylvie is drawn more to Rhys, even though he seems to be distancing himself from her. Is he hiding something? Sylvie wants to know what.
  But Shawn seems to like Sylvie from the get go. Always showing up, offering his services, being super nice with all that Tom Sawyer charm…but there is something off about him that Sylvie can’t help but notice.
  Then there are the ghosts. The ghosts that haunt the grounds and the house where Sylvie is staying; a baby’s cry she hears late in the night, a girl, running around towards the river, and the Colonial who always seems to be watching the girl. At first, Sylvie thinks she’s loosing her mind, but when townspeople tell her that there are ghosts that people have supposedly seen, she wants to know what’s going on, and so she delves into the past to figure it all out. But she doesn’t expect the secrets that are hidden to be way worse than she imagined.


  All in all, The Splendor Falls was a very fascinating book, a mystery that drew me in from the first page, and had me second-guessing everything that went on. Rosemary Clement-Moore has made a novel that is both beautiful and creepy.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Infinite Days

Infinite Days by Rebecca Maizel

Description:
"Throughout all my histories, I found no one I loved more than you...no one."
  Those were some of Rhode's last words to me. The last time he would pronounce his love. The last time I would see his face.
  It was the first time in 592 years I could take a breath. Lay in the sun. Taste.
  Rhode sacrificed himself so I, Lenah Beaudonte, could be human again. So I could stop the blood lust.
I never expected to fall in love with someone else that wasn't Rhode.
But Justin was...daring. Exciting. More beautiful than I could dream.
I never expected to be sixteen again...then again, I never expected my past to come back and haunt me...


MY REVIEW:
  Infinite Days is a potent, spectacular, and truly incredible new novel from Rebecca Maizel. I had a hard time putting it down, and I can honestly say I haven’t gotten much done since I got it. Enticing, beautifully written and just plain awesome, this book shines above all other vampire novels!

  New author, Rebecca Maizel has defiinitely made a huge imprint on the vampire-lover world. In an era where paranormal books are all the craze, she has managed to separate her book from all the others. Infinite Days stands out. And I know I won’t soon be forgetting it. I can’t wait for the next in the series! Keep shining your brilliance and vampire-individually, Rebecca!


  Lenah Beaudonte isn’t your average ‘vampire queen’. While she was the leader of her own very powerful coven, she takes one of the biggest steps known in the vampire world: She regains her humanity with the help of her first and unyielding love, Rhode; the vampire who turned her.
  When she awakens, she has no idea what this may mean for her. She knows she will be able to do things she couldn’t as a vampire; feel, think like a human, and ultimately, love.
  But she also knows that this doesn’t come without a price. Soon—very soon—the rest of her coven will discover that she isn’t ‘hibernating’ in the ground like she should be, but is gone, and likely human. In coven terms, this is one of the worst betrayals that a vampire can do. They set out to find her, threatening Lenah, the life she has come to love and the people she has come to love; her friends, and the one boy who makes her feel that she is truly living, Justin.
  Once the leader of her pack, Lenah knows what this means for her: That any vampire-turned-human will be led to their demise, or brought back as a vampire as punishment. The rule is simple, and she knows it because she made it. She also knows that if she wishes to protect Justin, she must do as her coven says. Her love for her friends and Justin is strong, but the need to protect them is stronger.
  The man-in-command, Vicken, is bound to Lenah by love: so he cannot physically harm her—but he wants something from her: his own humanity back, with the price being her life. Can Lenah save herself and the ones she loves? Or will this fairytale lifestyle crumble under the impact of her former coven? You have to read to find out!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

White is for Magic

White is for Magic by Laurie Faria Stolarz


Here is the description from Barnes and Noble:


  "A year has passed since Stacey Brown saved her best friend from a horrible death. Now she's having nightmares again, haunted by ghosts of the brutally murdered . . . and by a crazed stalker. As she desperately casts healing spells, a new student named Jacob enters her world. Beautiful and mysterious, he reveals that he is also having dreams. To stop a killer, they must join together. But can Jacob be trusted? Or will this new love cause her darkest dreams to come true?"


My review:
White is for Magic was a pretty interesting book, I liked it better than its former, Blue is for Nightmares.

  I read the first two in this series today, and I must say I was happy that Stacie didn’t carry her ‘bedwetting’ problem into this book. Instead it changes to puking, but hey, I can deal with that. Even though I’ve never been woken up from a nightmare with something as strange as peeing or puking, I can understand Stacie’s dreams and how they help explain future—or past—situations.
  The book focuses on Stacie, a ‘inherited witch’ and she starts getting nightmares again. Except this time, they’re about the little girl she use to babysit—a girl who was murdered when Stacie ignored her dreams. Stacie starts getting gifts from her ‘stalker’, and since this is happening only a year since another student was murdered, and Stacie’s best friend was stalked, some people aren’t so quick to believe that this is all true: or if its just the act of pranksters at the school.
  Enter Jacob, a mysterious boy who is claiming to be having dreams too—about Stacie. But Stacie can’t help but wonder if Jacob’s intentions are true, or if he’s the one sending the packages and making her ‘head-crazed’.
  White is for Magic is beautifully written, and is defiantly a Stolarz novel. Laurie Faria Stolarz has a very prominent voice in the YA community, and I can’t wait until I get the third and forth book in this phenomenal-witchy series.


Happy Reading (:

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Blue is for Nightmares

Blue is for Nightmares by Laurie Faria Stolarz

Just finished this, so here is the review/info from Barnes and Noble:


  "I Know Your Secret . . ."


  Boarding school junior Stacey Brown has nightmares too real to ignore. Her nightmares come true. This time they're about Drea, her best friend who's become the target of one seriously psycho stalker. To try and protect her, Stacey's working with what she knows-candles, cards, incantations, and spells..."


My Review: 
Blue is for Nightmares is the first in a series of four books.
  The book’s main character, Stacie, has inherited the ‘folk magic’ from her grandma, and when she starts getting nightmares featuring her best friend and a crazed stalker, a person who starts calling Drea and sending her “gifts”.
  Stacie knows this isn’t something to ignore. The last time she did, it resulted in the murder of a little girl she use to babysit.
  With nothing to go on but notes, phone calls, and her own dreams, Stacie has to figure out who—and what’s—going on before it’s too late.
  While this book was interesting and I’m a huge fan of Laurie Faria Stolarz, I disliked the bedwetting thing. It was weird, since Stacie is a junior in high school. But when you figure out why she was wetting the bed, it all makes sense.
  I just hope she doesn’t carry her little ‘problem’ in any of the next books.


If you like mysteries, some cool witchcraft, and a main character that is both level headed and ‘witchy’, be sure to check out this awesome series.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Spider's Bite

I also just so happened to read this yesterday. I started it, and honestly didn't put it down until I was done with it. It was that good. (It is an Adult book, so if your parents care what you read, maybe you shouldn't read it.) here is the info from Barnes and Noble:


  "My name is Gin, and I kill people.
 They call me the Spider. I'm the most feared assassin in the South — when I'm not busy at the Pork Pit cooking up the best barbecue in Ashland. As a Stone elemental, I can hear everything from the whispers of the gravel beneath my feet to the vibrations of the soaring Appalachian Mountains above me. My Ice magic also comes in handy for making the occasional knife. But I don't use my powers on the job unless I absolutely have to. Call it professional pride.
Now that a ruthless Air elemental has double-crossed me and killed my handler, I'm out for revenge. And I'll exterminate anyone who gets in my way — good or bad. I may look hot, but I'm still one of the bad guys. Which is why I'm in trouble, since irresistibly rugged Detective Donovan Caine has agreed to help me. The last thing this coldhearted killer needs when I'm battling a magic more powerful than my own is a sexy distraction...especially when Donovan wants me dead just as much as the enemy."


My Review:
Spider's Bite is the first in the Elemental Assassin series, and it was awesome. It kept me entertained and entranced from cover-to-cover. If you pick this book up, I guarantee that you won't want to put it down! 
  The main character, Gin, is a pretty kick-ass kind of girl. There is honestly nothing I like more than a female assassin, one who is tough, scary, and isn't afraid to get a little bloody.
  After a botched hit, Gin finds her handler, the man who's taken care of her since she was 13 murdered; Gin sets out for his killer. What she doesn't expect is Detective Donovan Caine to be helping her out. Well, it’s more of a quid pro quo in this scenario. The Spider will help the nice Detective, if the nice Detective will help the Spider.
  Detective Caine has made it apparent to Gin that he dislikes her--what else should she expect, she did kill his partner, and he knows it. He tells her that when he's done helping her, he is going to track and kill her. Kind of a mute point when they seem to be very attracted to each other.
  Will Gin find the bitch that double-crossed her and kill her? And will Gin and Detective Caine share something a little more than professional? I recommend you read this book. It is the only way you'll ever find out, after all.
 
  This is an adult read, recommend for mature readers for the sexual content and language.

Raised by Wolves

I finished Raised by Wolves (by Jennifer Lynn Barnes) yesterday morning, so, here is the review. (Description, again, from Barnes and Noble)


  "Adopted by the Alpha of a werewolf pack after a rogue wolf brutally killed her parents right before her eyes, fifteen-year-old Bryn knows only pack life, and the rigid social hierarchy that controls it. That doesn't mean that she's averse to breaking a rule or two.


But when her curiosity gets the better of her and she discovers Chase, a new teen locked in a cage in her guardian's basement, and witnesses him turn into a wolf before her eyes, the horrific memories of her parents' murders return. Bryn becomes obsessed with getting her questions answered, and Chase is the only one who can provide the information she needs.
But in her drive to find the truth, will Bryn push too far beyond the constraints of the pack, forcing her to leave behind her friends, her family, and the identity that she's shaped?"




My Review:
  Raised by Wolves, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes was one of the best YA book's I've read this month. (That’s saying a lot, since currently I'm up in the twenties of books read in July alone).
  Bryn is your typical teenager. If you call typical being raised by a pack of wolves after her parents' brutal murder, a murder that seems to be very sketchy to Bryn, and she questions why it happened throughout the book.
  When Bryn discovers a 'teen wolf' in the basement of her Alpha's home, Bryn makes it her personal objective to talk to, and get to know the boy, Chase.
  There are rules and orders laid down that Bryn and Chase must follow, and Bryn can't help but wonder: Why? Why is everyone acting this way?
  As the book unravels, you learn more and more about Bryn and the people--excuse me, I mean, Wolves--she lives with, and you wonder along with her if everything is as fairytale perfect as she once believed.
  Raised by Wolves was definitely not my first werewolf book, but it was by far the best one out there. If you're looking for something edgy, mysterious, and just plain awesome, pick it up. Because these wolves kick some serious butt.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud

Or simply, Charlie St. Cloud -Ben Sherwood
The description, courtesy of Barnes and Noble:


"The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud tells the haunting story of a young man who narrowly survives a terrible car wreck that kills his little brother. Years later, the brothers’ bond remains so strong that it transcends the normal boundaries separating life and death. Charlie St. Cloud lives in a snug New England fishing village. By day he tends the lawns and monuments of the ancient cemetery where his younger brother, Sam, is buried. Graced with an extraordinary gift after surviving the accident, he can still see, talk, and even play catch with Sam’s spirit. But townsfolk whisper that Charlie has never recovered from his loss.
  Into his carefully ordered life comes Tess Carroll, a captivating, adventuresome woman training for a solo sailing trip around the globe. Fate steers her boat into a treacherous storm that blows her back to harbor, to a charged encounter with Charlie, and to a surprise more overwhelming than the violent sea itself. Charlie and Tess discover a beautiful and uncommon connection that leads to a race against time and a desperate choice between death and life, between the past and the future, between holding on and letting go."


MY REVIEW:
Charlie St. Cloud was just plain beautiful.

  Charlie can see ghosts. Mainly, his younger brother who died in a car accident that Charlie was also in, but he survived. The boys play catch and talk, mostly because of a promise to never leave each other. So Charlie makes it his brotherly duty to be home and with Sam at sunset, if he misses it once, he believes he will never be able to see his brother again. And what kind of life will he have then?
  The story line itself is what drew me into the book. The pages kept flying, and I soon figured out what was going on with the relationship between Charlie and Tess. It was amazing, and yet tragic all the same.
  I'm not going to lie and say I didn't cry during this book. At least twice I cried, once because of something heartbreaking, and another time because it was heartwarming.
  Every page had some new realization that makes the reader want to keep reading. I guarantee you won’t be bored in this book. It’s literally impossible.
  The ending was shocking, and I loved every word of it.
  Ben Sherwood definitely outdid himself. And I can't wait to see the movie.

Heartbreak River

HEARTBREAK RIVER -TRICIA MILLS info from Barnes and Noble:


  "Hailey Abbott’s Summer Boys takes a weepy turn in this story of one girl’s attempt to tell her childhood friend how she really feels about him. Alex thought she’d be spending the summer focused on her family’s rafting business, burying the memories of her father’s death last year, and leaving behind all the messes she made in its wake. But when Sean returns to town, she is forced to reckon with her mixed-up crushy feelings for him—more powerful than ever before. It takes another tragedy to make Alex realize Sean has loved her, and forgiven her, all along."




MY REVIEW:
Heartbreak River is a very fast-paced book, a book that keeps you reading until the end.
I don't think I was bored at all in the time I was reading this book. The characters are very real, and the author makes it easy to imagine yourself in this kind of situation: rather than in the more popular 'vampire/werewolf/faeire' situation that seems to be the center of all books this year.
  I liked how Hailey had to struggle to find herself, and accept her father's death as something more. I also liked the relationship she had with her cousin and the boys she works with at work. Within the first chapter I was laughing out-loud; well, at least until I stopped when Sean comes back.
  Sean, Hailey's ex-boyfriend and BFF returns to work at Hailey's family's business. Can she deal with the relationship being platonic? Or will this relationship change into something more? Those are the questions I was wondering throughout the book. And I have to say that the ending was pretty satisfactory. Pick it up if you want a light, quick YA romance.

Hourglass Door

 THE HOURGLASS DOOR -LISA MANGUM deets from Barnes and Noble:


 "His past. Her future. Can love bring them together in time? Abby's senior year of high school is going according to plan: good friends, cute boyfriend, and college applications in the mail. But when Dante Alexander, foreign-exchange student from Italy, steps into her life, he turns it upside down. He's mysterious, and interesting, and unlike anyone she's ever met before. Abby can't deny the growing attraction she feels for him. Nor can she deny the unusual things that seem to happen when Dante is around. Soon Abby finds herself drawn into a mystery whose roots reach into sixteenth-century Florence, and she uncovers a dangerous truth that threatens not only her future but the lives of those she loves." 





MY REVIEW: 
The Hourglass Door was fantastic.
The book may seem long, but I breezed through it in just a few hours. I loved the relationship between Abby and Dante, it was very different and confusing; in a good way.
  Abby's quickly drawn into something that she isn't use to: her current relationship with her boyfriend is safe, normal, and not-so-exciting. But when she meets Dante, her world turns into something fun and crazy, experiencing things she's never even dreamed of.
  On top of all of the romance there is something building, something that Abby never new existed. As the description says, she's thrown into a whirlwind of unusual things and secrets that may affect her future and the ones she loves.
  There are a few Italian phrases that Dante says that the book doesn't translate, so if you do not know Italian, I suggest you find a translator online, because some of the things that Dante says to Abby without her knowing what they mean are so darn sweet.
  At some parts I was smiling like crazy, and a few times I may have even shed a few tears. I can't wait to pick up the sequel, The Golden Spiral.
  This is a book that draws you in from the first page, and keeps you attached to your seat until the shocking conclusion.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Riding the Universe

Riding the Universe by Gaby Triana

"Chloé Rodriguez values three things above all else—her family; her best friend, Rock; and Lolita, her Harley-Davidson 1200 Sportster. With a black body, blue airbrushed flames, and perfect sloping ape hangers, Lolita is Chloé's last connection to her beloved uncle, Seth, who left her the bike when he died last summer. So when a failing chemistry grade threatens to separate Chloé from her motorcycle, she vows not to let that happen . . . no matter what.


Enter Gordon. Ridiculously organized, übersmart, and hot in a casual, doesn't-know-it kind of way, Chloé's peer tutor may have a thing or two to teach her besides chemistry. But she has to stop falling for Gordon . . . and get Rock to act mature whenever he's around . . . and pass chemistry so she doesn't lose Lolita forever. Just when Chloé thinks she's got it all figured out, a bump in the road comes out of nowhere and sends her skidding."
-FROM Barnes and Noble-




My review:
Riding the Universe was definitely a different kind of read for me.


One: I've never read a teen book in which the main character rides a Harley. That's pretty kick ass right there.
And Two: Starting a relationship with the geeky tutor was kinda refreshing from the endless books on the 'smart-girls' who've never kissed a kid in their life.


I enjoyed this book to no end. Once I started it, I had a hard time stopping. I was interested in how Chloé would make her choices: Would she bring her grade up? Stay with Gordon? Or will she and Rock have something more than friendship? The book never made me bored or wish to have picked up another book in its place. It was beautifully written and heartwarming. I recommend it tremendously!

Never Cry Werewolf

Never Cry Werewolf by Heather Davis:

From Barnes and Noble:


"Moonlight can totally change your life.
And it all starts so simply.
You. Him.
The moon.
You're toast.


Okay, so maybe Shelby has made a few mistakes with boys lately (how was she supposed to know Wes had "borrowed" that Porsche?). But her stepmother totally overreacts when she catches Shelby in a post-curfew kiss with a hot senior: Suddenly Shelby's summer plans are on the shelf, and she's being packed off to brat camp. It's good-bye, prom dress; hello, hiking boots.


Things start looking up, though, when Shelby meets fellow camper (and son of a rock star) Austin Bridges III. But soon she realizes there's more to Austin than crush material—his family has a dark secret, and he wants Shelby's help guarding it. Shelby knows that she really shouldn't be getting tangled up with another bad boy . . . but who is she to turn her back on a guy in need, especially such a good-looking one? One thing's for sure: That pesky full moon is about to get her into trouble all over again."




My review:  


Okay, the initial idea behind the book was...sorta original, I will give the author that. But, the wolf thing is just like most other books that are flying off the shelves these days. 'The strange, sexy kid who has a secret but needs the help of the most unexpected girl’ kind of book. But, it was very good!


Shelby is shipped off to some remote, god-knows-where location because of a minor mishap in her curfew. That right there screams the works of an evil stepmother.


Soon though, Shelby meets Austin, the son of a rock star who is also attending the camp, and Shelby wants to know why. Is it drugs? Other issues? What she didn’t expect is what she learns soon into their friendship.


When Shelby and Austin become quick friends, there is nothing weird going on. Until he spills the secret that he is a Lycan, and needs her help keeping the secret, and stealing back his ‘serum’ from the counselor of the school, or BIG SURPRISE! he’ll go all furry on her butt.


I loved the way this book was written. While Shelby whined a little too much for my taste, the book was beautifully crafted and well written. So, if you like your werewolves H.O.T and your heroine's equally interesting, pick up this book.

Sisters Red

SISTERS RED- JACKSON PEARCE
Description from Barnes and Noble:


"Scarlet March lives to hunt the Fenris--the werewolves that took her eye when she was defending her sister Rosie from a brutal attack. Armed with a razor-sharp hatchet and blood-red cloak, Scarlett is an expert at luring and slaying the wolves. She's determined to protect other young girls from a grisly death, and her raging heart will not rest until every single wolf is dead.
Rosie March once felt her bond with her sister was unbreakable. Owing Scarlett her life, Rosie hunts ferociously alongside her. But even as more girls' bodies pile up in the city and the Fenris




My review:  Sisters Red was one amazing read!


It follows two sisters--Scarlett and Rosie--who are totally different and yet say to "share the same heart".
When they were kids, Scarlett protected her younger sister from a Fenris attack, and in the process lost her right eye and is now marred with scars.


Enter Rosie, who believes to owe her life to her sister by helping kill off the evil Fenris. But is Rosie as dedicated as she is leading her sister to believe?
And Silas, who is a childhood friend of the sisters. Do he and Rosie have something more than a small attraction to each other?


Sisters Red is the perfect read if you want another story of the evil werewolves...minus those annoying vamps. There is no comparing this amazing read to Twilight! It is original all on its own, and is perfect to read late at night, when no-one is home to cushion the suspense, aside from the sounds of the house settling and the occasional tree-branch-scratch-against-the-window to scare you into oblivion.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Anxious Hearts

Anxious Hearts- Tucker Shaw
Synopsis from Barnes & Noble:


 "Eva and Gabe explore the golden forest of their seaside Maine town, unknowingly tracing the footsteps of two teens, Evangeline and Gabriel, who once lived in the idyllic wooded village of Acadia more than one hundred years ago. On the day that Evangeline and Gabriel were be wed, their village was attacked and the two were separated. And now in the present, Gabe has mysteriously disappeared from Eva.

A dreamlike, loose retelling of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s famous love poem “Evangeline,” Anxious Hearts tells an epic tale of unrequited love and the hope that true love can be reunited."






My review: Anxious Hearts is the story of four people--Eva and Gabe in the present, and Evangeline and Gabriel in the past. The book is told in alternating views. Eva's voice in the present tense and Gabriel's in the past. On the day of their marriage, Gabriel and Evangeline are separated, newly weds who were wed only moments before losing each other. Throughout the story, readers read the tale of Gabriel's journey to finding his beloved Evangeline once again, while Eva ventures herself in the "real world" trying to find her Gabe. This book was intense. Normally, I dislike books that have alternating views, but Tucker Shaw made both points interesting. I was as entranced by Eva's tale as I was Gabriel's. This book doesn't disappoint! It kept me guessing-will Gabriel find Evangeline? Will Eva find Gabe?-until I closed the book after the last page. Will these four lovers be reconnected? You'll have to read Anxious Hearts to find out.
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