Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #131 - Let's Get Lost & Blackbird

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating. Be sure to post a link to your Waiting on Wednesday below!

This week's pre-publication "We can't wait to read it!" selections are...

Author: Adi Alsaid 
Release Date: July 29, 2014
Published by: Harlequin Teen

Five strangers. Countless adventures. One epic way to get lost.

Four teens across the country have only one thing in common: a girl named Leila. She crashes into their lives in her absurdly red car at the moment they need someone the most.

There's Hudson, a small-town mechanic who is willing to throw away his dreams for true love. And Bree, a runaway who seizes every Tuesday--and a few stolen goods along the way. Elliot believes in happy endings...until his own life goes off-script. And Sonia worries that when she lost her boyfriend, she also lost the ability to love.

Hudson, Bree, Elliot and Sonia find a friend in Leila. And when Leila leaves them, their lives are forever changed. But it is during Leila's own 4,268-mile journey that she discovers the most important truth--sometimes, what you need most is right where you started. And maybe the only way to find what you're looking for is to get lost along the way. (Summary from Goodreads)

Stories about self-discovery and growth can be so powerful. Can't wait to see if this one enriches my life.

Author: Anna Carey
Release Date: September 16, 2014
Published by: HarperTeen

A girl wakes up on the train tracks, a subway car barreling down on her. With only minutes to react, she hunches down and the train speeds over her. She doesn't remember her name, where she is, or how she got there. She has a tattoo on the inside of her right wrist of a blackbird inside a box, letters and numbers printed just below: FNV02198. There is only one thing she knows for sure: people are trying to kill her.

On the run for her life, she tries to untangle who she is and what happened to the girl she used to be. Nothing and no one are what they appear to be. But the truth is more disturbing than she ever imagined. (Summary from Goodreads)

This sounds like such a thriller! I'm in! what do you think?

What are you waiting on this week?

Review: Breathe, Annie, Breathe by Miranda Kenneally

Breathe, Annie, Breathe 
Author: Miranda Kenneally
Release date: July 15, 2014
Published by: Sourcebooks Fire
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Received from NetGalley as an ARC for review.

This was an emotionally powerful story. I started it and finished it in one day because I was anxious for Annie to achieve her goal and find peace for herself.

Annie is a senior in high school, and this story follows her as she works through the death of Kyle, her longterm boyfriend, and the transition from high school to college.

My heart ached for her as she went through her grieving process, facing the guilt that often goes along with death. She uses training for a marathon as a way to escape her thoughts and honor the memory of her boyfriend who was training for a marathon when he died. The only problem: Annie has hated running since elementary school.

I love Annie’s tenacity in this story, her willingness to push through and achieve something she never thought she could do. You will find yourself cheering her on, just as I did!

I also appreciate that while Jeremiah, an amazing runner and love interest, plays a role in the story--and it is a steamy, romance role--his romance plot-line doesn’t take over the main plot-line, instead it works to support and challenge Annie as she goes through her grieving process.

Overall, I enjoyed this story.I probably won’t put it on my classroom bookshelf because I teach freshmen, and I feel like there are some more mature elements to this story that would lead me to save my recommendation for my more mature or older teens.

View all my reviews

Monday, July 21, 2014

Review: Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

Ignite Me 
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Series: Shatter Me, Book 3
Release date: February 4, 2014
Published by: HarperTeen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Juliette's worst fear has happened...Omega Point has been destroyed and all of the rebels have been destroyed along with it. She is the only one left. She hopes they aren't right...she hopes there are survivors. With Warner by her side, Juliette is fueled for revenge against The Reestablishment and she will take it down no matter what it takes even if it means sacrificing herself...

My thoughts: This is an explosive and epic ending to an absolutely brilliant trilogy! I don't really know if I can gush enough about this series. It truly has it all for me: super hero abilities, girl power, good v. evil, romance, great friends, family drama...there's just so much!

I love Warner and Juliette! I've been team Warner since he showed up and WOW I'm I excited that he's stuck around until the end! YAY! I don't want to tell too much about what happens in this one because I don't want to spoil things for anyone. I started writing things and then realized that I was completely spoiling things for people! Oops! Delete! LOL!

Sooo...I think I'll just say that this really was a great finish to a fantastic series. If you like the X-Men or Avengers saving the day + the thriller of V for Vendetta...then THIS IS FOR YOU! :) This is a series I will be rereading over and over again!

View all my reviews

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Review: The Strange Maid by Tessa Gratton

The Strange Maid 
Author: Tessa Gratton
Series: The United States of Asgard, Book 2
Release date: June 10, 2014
Published by: Random House Books for Young Readers
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Signy Valborn dared to climb into the highest branches of The New World Tree when she was a young girl just to rage against it about the death of her parents...and who should be there but Odin Alfather himself. He told her that if she could solve his riddle she would become one of his fierce Valkyrie forevermore. Signy trains with all her might from one Valkyrie to another around The United States of Asgard, until she strikes out on her own once again raging against all that she knows because she cannot find the answer to her riddle. Along the way on her journey she meets Ned the Spiritless and even Soren Bearstar who each in their way help her...or she hopes they can because they are on an impossible task to hunt down the mother of all trolls an claim her destiny.

My thoughts: I liked this dark character of Signy so much. I like Soren in the first book, but I got very impatient with him and his Astrid very quickly and felt like I was just dragging myself through it all at times. With this one it wasn't like that at all! I was hooked on Signy's story from the beginning to the very end! And I had to know the ending once I started the book!

The whole system of the Valkyrie and how The United States of Asgard are broken up along with Canadia was so fascinating. It's funny when you're reading this story because Tessa has you so wrapped up in this mythical land that she's created but it's actually taking place in modern times! It's just a great concept!

The thing I truly enjoyed about this book was that I had a really hard time predicting what was going to happen next! I really appreciated that! I was right there with Signy in her journey of discovery. And the ending...WOW! I loved the ending. All of it.

Last thoughts: I really enjoyed this one and hope that whomever the next book is about I like just as much next time! If you like Beowulf in any way you will LOVE this! 

Does anyone know how many there will be of these? Just curious.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #130 - Dissonance & Mortal Heart

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating. Be sure to post a link to your Waiting on Wednesday below!

This week's pre-publication "We can't wait to read it!" selections are...

(Dissonance, Book 1)
Author: Erica O'Rourke
Release Date: July 22, 2014
Published by: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Delancy Sullivan has always known there's more to reality than what people see. Every time someone makes a choice, a new, parallel world branches off from the existing one. Eating breakfast or skipping it, turning left instead of right, sneaking out instead of staying in bed ~ all of these choices create an alternate universe in which an echo self takes the road not travelled and makes the opposite decision. As a Walker, someone who can navigate between these worlds, Del's job is to keep all of the dimensions in harmony.

Normally, Del can hear the dissonant frequency that each world emits as clear as a bell. But when a training session in an off-key world goes horribly wrong, she is forbidden from Walking be the Council. But Del's not big on following the rules and she secretly starts to investigate these other worlds. Something strange is connecting them and it's not just her random encounters with echo versions of the guy she likes, Simon Lane.

But Del's decisions have unimaginable consequences and, as she begins to fall for the Echo Simons in each world, she draws closer to a truth that the Council of Walkers is trying to hide ~ a secret that threatens the fate of the entire multiverse. (Summary from Goodreads)

Oh my! Doesn't this sound so cool? I own the movie Sliding Doors because I love the concept of alternate worlds where our alternate choices play out, so I'm down for this story.

Author: Robin LaFevers
Release Date: November 4, 2014
Published by: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Annith has watched her gifted sisters at the convent come and go, carrying out their dark dealings in the name of St. Mortain, patiently awaiting her own turn to serve Death. But her worst fears are realized when she discovers she is being groomed by the abbess as a Seeress, to be forever sequestered int he rock and stone womb of the convent. Feeling sorely betrayed, Annith decides to strike out on her own.

She has spent her whole life training to be an assassin. Just because the convent has changed its mind doesn't mean she has.

But across Brittany, the tides of war are drawing ever nearer, with France pressuring the beleaguered duchess from all sides. Annith's search for answers threatens to rip open an intricate web of lies and deceit that sit at the heart of the convent she serves. Yet to expose them threatens the very fabric of her existence and risks an unforeseen chance at love, one that she can no longer deny. Annith must carefully pick a path and, gods willing, effect a miracle that will see her country--and her heart--to safety. (Summary from Goodreads)

I don't know if I can even explain how AMAZING this series is! W-O-W! The girl power is amazing along with the intrigue and adventure...there's just so much. How does she keep track of all of these characters!? So far I've loved each book's main character, and I cannot wait to get to know another one. Robin's writing is just off the charts!
Check out my reviews of:
Book 1: Grave Mercy
Book 2: Dark Triumph 

What are you waiting on this week?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Review: Burn Out by Kristi Helvig

Burn Out 
Author: Kristi Helvig
Series: Burn Out, Book 1
Release date: April 8, 2014
Published by: EgmontUSA
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Tora Reynolds has been on Earth by herself for some time now as the last survivor. The sun is close to dying, and just before her family fled to their sanctuary her father had created the most deadly guns ever made on Earth keying them just to her energy only. The problem is that her father didn't hand over his creations to government he made them for...he instead hid them all in their bunker after making sure they were only keyed to her alone and combat training her with them just before going to his very last meeting with them which he never returned from...and now they're coming for her...

My thoughts: This was so different from the normal books I read. I haven't read a book about space in so long that I'm just not sure I can remember when I did honestly. I loved this! Now I saw that others didn't, but I did! LOVED!!! It felt so real. The brokenness of the world. She had lost everything...her father, mother, sister, and every single person she knew! WOW, that is serious pain. I was completely in within minutes. The danger, the adventure, the characters, the idea of the plot...I just loved it all. I even like the cover which probably had nothing to do with the author at all. LOL!

Th characters were a very interesting mixture from the beginning of just being our MC, Tora, & Markus to later crating a full time of crew on the ship which totally reminded me of Firefly!!! And honestly anything that reminds me of Firefly is a WIN!!!

Last thought: I CANNOT WAIT for the next book so I can find out what happens next to Tora! AHHH! Kristi, how could you do this to me and make me wait SO LONG!!!???

View all my reviews

Thursday, July 10, 2014

B&N Author Event: Maggie Stiefvater

She's doing a tour across the country to promote her newest book, Sinner, which is a companion novel to The Wolves of Mercy Falls series. A good book pal of mine and I headed to Madison to catch the tour at the local B&N! It was a great crowd! We were SO pleased to see so many there when there didn't seem to be a ton of advertising for the event. Maggie told lots of fun stories about her days from her Irish band, about Cole and Isabel, about meeting Susan Cooper, and living in LA. She also answered lots of questions, including some about Stonehenge that shall remain secret! LOL! :P

Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Series: The Wolves of Mercy Falls, Book 3.5
Release date: July 1, 2014
Published by: Scholastic Press

Everybody thinks they know Cole St. Clair's story. Stardom. Addiction. Downfall. Disappearance. But only a few people know Cole's darkest secret--his ability to shift into a wolf. One of these people is Isabel. At one point, they may have even loved each other. But that feels like a lifetime ago. Now Cole is back. Back in the spotlight. Back in the danger zone. Back in Isabel's life. Can this sinner be saved? (Summary from Goodreads)

Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Series: The Raven Cycle, Book 2
Release date: September 17, 2013
Published by: Scholastic Press

Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same.

Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life.

Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle into Gansey is after... (Summary from Goodreads)

I had to get both of these for my shelves since I only had an ARC of Dream Thieves, and only an eGalley of Sinner. So YAY! Plus, for the tour only Maggie had these GORGEOUS book covers that she drew and Scholastic printed. She signed one for you if you bought a Sinner. 

All in all it was a lovely evening! I wish they had more fantastic signings like this at B&N at this Madison store. I truly do NOT understand why when it's in such a big city, and such a huge store when little bitty places like Anderson's are bringing in HUGE names all the time! How do they do it!? The problem is that driving there cost SO MUCH I just cannot justify it. :(

Anywho...had a great time with GREAT company! :) 
My pal Amber who came with last night! We had such a great time! 

To learn more about the tour Maggie is doing, check out her recent post here!

Follow Maggie here...