Sunday, June 27, 2010

Weekly Update (4)

Books Read:

Caleb + Kate by Cindy Martinusen-Coloma
The Emerald Talisman by Brenda Pandos (almost done)

Reviews:


Other Posts:


Comments:

I was supposed to post Caleb + Kate review last week but I had a Bio quiz to review for so I wasn't able to post it. I've had more time to read this week. I'm starting to really adjust to school again. Hopefully, I can start with the Spotted posts soon.

What to expect:

Caleb + Kate Review
Guardian of the Dead Review (Blackbook weekend)


Saturday, June 26, 2010

Black Book Weekend: Review of Whisper by Phoebe Kitanidis

Hi guys! I'm gonna be starting a blog feature called Black Book Weekend. This is gonna run for three weeks or more. Every weekend there will be features on Black Books. Reviews, Interviews with the authors, Guest posts, etc. Me and my affliate, Kirthi from Pages will be posting on Saturdays or Sundays.

Book Description via Goodreads:

I’d love a cup of coffee. I wish she knew how pretty she was. I wish I could drop this kid in the dryer sometimes. I just want her to be happy. I hope she didn’t find out what Ben said about her. I wish I knew how many calories were in a bite of muffin…

Joy is used to hearing Whispers. She’s used to walking down the street and instantly knowing people’s deepest, darkest desires. She uses this talent for good, to make people happy and give them what they want. But for her older sister, Jessica, the family gift is a curse, and she uses it to make people’s lives—especially Joy’s—miserable. Still, when Joy Hears a frightening whisper from Jessica's own mind, she knows she has to save her sister, even if it means deserting her friends, stealing a car and running away with a boy she barely knows—a boy who may have a dark secret of his own.

Source: Phoebe Kitanidis (Thank you!)

My Thoughts:

After years of granting people’s wishes and making the world a happier place, a night of a killer headache and deafening silence, Joy’s gift finally matured. She can now hear whispers that come from a deeper and darker place and manifest the side of humanity that centres on the satiation of wants. Disturbed and terrified, Joy found out that she can’t carry on doing the only thing that defines her: granting wishes. She was wrapped in a cloud of loss, loss for not hearing dark desires, loss of friendships and loss of the things she believed in.

Jessica has always been acknowledged as the evil sister, the one who was always making everyone’s lives miserable with the sharp truth pouring out of her mouth. Joy was convinced that her sister was beyond any point of reasoning with. Joy was about to find out more about her sister as she races to save her.

Phoebe created a world where desires and wishes – both good and bad – are unravelled, giving better judgment and helping people like Joy see the reflection of someone’s soul. Her writing, through Joy’s optimistic perspective found the best in everything and in everyone.

In this debut, the threads that bind and make a strong bond – sisterhood – are scrutinized. Every memory, every intention, every word, every whisper awakened me to the reality of a life with a sibling, a person that I can be friends and enemies with at times. It can be positive and negative depending on what angle you choose to see it through.

Whisper is a novel of realizations and revelations about the truth of familial and friendly relationships and of acknowledgement of the dark part of our souls and the desires that may be egoistic and selfish, and above all human, that dwell inside our hearts.

Rating:
 

5
 
 

Monday, June 21, 2010

In My Mailbox (2)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi of The Story Siren.

I haven't really been able to monitor the notifications for parcels. I'd just be surprised that when I get home, I'd have boxes or bubble wraps on top of my bed or on top of the table. I'm so fortunate to receive these wonderful books. I've only been blogging for a few months after all. Thanks!

ARC of The Julian Game by Adele Griffin (signed)

Thank you Adele!

The Emerald Talisman by Brenda Pandos (signed) + signed bookmarks

Big thank you to Brenda!

Invisible Girl by Mary Hanlon Stone

Thanks to Penguin USA!

The Pack by LM Preston (2 copies - one for review and one for giveaway)

Thanks to LM and Phenomenal One Press!













There are two more parcels that need to be picked up. Hopefully tomorrow, I'll get them.


Fast Forward Monday (17)


Fast Forward Monday is a meme that I will be starting in Fragments of Life. It features books that will be released in the next three months. I have August releases with me today.

Girl Parts by John M. Cusick
Release Date: August 10, 2010

Book Description:
"Hello, David. My name is Rose. It’s a pleasure to meet you. We are now entering minute two of our friendship. According to my Intimacy Clock, a handshake is now appropriate…"



David and Charlie are opposites. David has a million friends, online and off. Charlie is a soulful outsider, off the grid completely. But neither feels close to anybody. When David’s parents present him with a hot Companion bot to encourage healthy bonds and treat "dissociative disorder," he can’t get enough of luscious red-headed Rose — and he can’t get it soon. Companions come with strict intimacy protocols, and whenever he tries anything, David gets an electric shock. Severed from the boy she was built to love, Rose turns to Charlie, who finds he can open up, knowing Rose isn’t real. With Charlie’s help, the ideal "companion" is about to become her own best friend.

In a stunning and hilarious debut, John Cusick takes rollicking aim at internet culture and our craving for meaningful connection in an uber-connected world.
 
Winter Longing by Tricia Mills
Release Date: August 19, 2010
 
Book Description:
 
A plane crash in Alaska takes


Winter’s first love away forever . . .

When Winter's boyfriend is killed in a plane crash in the Alaskan wilderness, she's robbed of the future she'd only just allowed herself to believe might be hers. Winter and Spencer had been destined for one another. And after his death, Spencer's presence continues to haunt her.

But when her next-door neighbor becomes an unlikely friend, Winter begins to accept all that she can't change. Can she open herself to a new future . . . and a possible new love?

You by Charles Benoit
Release Date: August 24, 2010

Book Description:

A note from the author:


It's easy to forget that we spend our early teens afraid. We're afraid of fitting in, standing out, or being ignored. We worry that we'll never get a date, never get into college, and never amount to anything. Just like everyone predicts.

It's also easy to discount these fears. Looking back, it seems impossible that we would have stayed awake all night worrying about what someone else thought of our clothes or that we ever doubted our abilities, our potential. But that's only because we know how the story ends.

I wanted to write a book that started with these fears as givens, bottling them in tight and capping them off with that artificial indifference genetically required of all teens. Kyle Chase is not a bad kid. He's not a good kid, either. He's a typical kid. He's any kid. And, at one point in your life, he was you.

The Candidates (Delcroix Academy) by Inara Scott
Release Date: August 24, 2010

Book Description:

Dancia Lewis is far from popular. And that's not just because of her average grades or her less-than-glamorous wardrobe. In fact, Dancia's mediocrity is a welcome cover for her secret: whenever she sees a person threatening someone she cares about, things just...happen. Cars skid. Structures collapse. Usually someone gets hurt. So Dancia does everything possible to avoid getting close to anyone, belieiving this way she can supress her powers and keep them hidden. But when recruiters from the prestigious Delcroix Academy show up in her living room to offer her a full scholarship, Dancia's days of living under the radar may be over. Only, Delcroix is a school for diplomats' kids and child geniuses--not B students with uncontrollable telekinetic tendencies. So why are they treating Dancia like she's special? Even the hottest guy on campus seems to be going out of his way to make Dancia feel welcome. And then there's her mysterious new friend Jack, who can't stay out of trouble. He suspects something dangerous is going on at the Academy and wants Dancia to help him figure out what. But Dancia isn't convinced. She hopes that maybe the recruiters know more about her "gift" than they're letting on. Maybe they can help her understand how to use it...But not even Dancia could have imagined what awaits her behind the gates of Delcroix Academy.

*book descriptions are from Goodreads.


Weekly Update (3)

Books Read:

Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey
Caleb + Kate by Cindy Martinusen-Coloma (still reading)

Reviews:

Angel Star by Jennifer Murgia - part of Angelic Friday

Other Posts:


Comments:

I am so ashamed. I haven't been as active in blogging as I was last summer. School is keeping me so busy what with all the science subjects that requires so much reading. I've also run out of interviews to post which is why there haven't been Spotted posts. I'm working on it now though. Trying to gather interviews for the
future interview posts.

I really loved Angel Star, as wellas Guardian of the Dead (the review will posted a week from now for a blog event here.)

What to Expect:

I'll be posting the review of Caleb + Kate as soon as I finish it. And Black Book Weekend will start this weekend, with a review of Whisper by Phoebe Kitanidis.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Angelic Friday: Angel Star by Jennifer Murgia


Angelic Friday is back! As you all know, I've ran out of angel books. They're hard to find. So I'm gonna make this post once every two weeks from now on. Today, I will be posting my review of Angel Star - one of the most anticipated angel books of 2010.

Angelic Friday is a new Meme started by me, that features books that explore the lives of angels, nephilims and fallen angels.

Book Description:



Seventeen-year-old Teagan McNeel falls for captivating Garreth Adams and soon discovers that her crush has an eight-point star etched into the palm of his right hand-the mark of an angel.

But where there is light, dark follows, and she and Garreth suddenly find themselves vulnerable to a dark angel's malicious plan that could threaten not only her life, but the lives of everyone she knows, and now, she is torn between one angel's sacrifice and another angel's vicious ambition.

Divinely woven together, Angel Star takes readers on a reflective journey when one angel's sacrifice collides with another angel's vicious ambition in a way that is sure to have readers searching for their own willpower.

Source: Jennifer Murgia (Thank you!!)

My Thoughts:

Teagan is a normal teenager with normal wants: to fit in, to hangout with her bestfriend Claire and of course, to be with Garreth – the transfer student. She always had nightmares at night. She never knew that some nightmares are real - real enough to cause damage and real enough to make her stronger.

The relationship of Garreth and Teagan starts with an irresistible pull. The unfolding of the truth tying their lives and hearts together was smooth and superbly written, connecting the past and present. And like the octogram, it follows a pattern, a definite line that will complete what Garreth set out to do and what Teagan wants to finish.

Never ceasing to be interesting, Angel Star presents social, psychological and belief issues that added a significant depth the story. Ethereal elements merged with the workings of the human mind, holding a stronger influence over decisions, actions, thoughts and even dreams. This one really made me think. The possibility of pure creatures working in our minds was really fascinating and intriguing.

Jennifer Murgia has a unique interpretation of heaven and angels that is both intriguing and refreshing while keeping to the parameters of the common knowledge about these celestial beings. Through the thorough incorporation of symbolism, this story was transformed into a remarkable one that didn’t forget to include the tiniest details. Her angel mythology is one of the reasons why Angel Star is a must read for angel fans. You will never find this uniqueness in other angel books.

Angel Star is a like beautiful painting that captures both light and dark, setting balance and coordination amongst the elements of fate and life, weaving together a fresh take on guardian angels, reincarnation and heaven, and showing the collision of the purity of heart and intentions against the sinister, dark ambitions and goals of two angels.

Rating:


5



Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Fast Forward Monday (16)


Fast Forward Monday is a meme that I will be starting in Fragments of Life. It features books that will be released in the next three months. I have September releases with me today.

Monster High by Lisi Harrison

Release Date: September 7, 2010

Book Description:

From Lisi Harrison, the New York Times bestselling author of The Clique and Alphas, comes a new series with a fresh twist on high school, romance, and the horrors of trying to fit in.


They prefer to call themselves RADs, but some call them monsters. So far, the "monster" community has kept a low profile in Salem, Oregon, but this year two new girls enroll at Merston High School, and the town will never be the same.

Created just fifteen days ago, Frankie Stein is psyched to trade her father's lonely formaldehyde-smelling basement lab for parties and friends. But with a student body totally freaked out by rumors of monsters stalking the halls, Frankie finds that life in the "normi" world can be rough for a chic freak like her.

She thinks she finds a friend in fellow new student Melody Carver--but can a normi be trusted with her big secret?


Dark Water by Laura McNeal
Release Date: September 14, 2010


Book Description:

Fifteen-year-old Pearl DeWitt and her mother live in Fallbrook, California, where it’s sunny 340 days of the year, and where her uncle owns a grove of 900 avocado trees. Uncle Hoyt hires migrant workers regularly, but Pearl doesn’t pay much attention to them . . . until Amiel. From the moment she sees him, Pearl is drawn to this boy who keeps to himself, fears being caught by la migra, and is mysteriously unable to talk. And after coming across Amiel’s makeshift hut near Agua Prieta Creek, Pearl falls into a precarious friendship—and a forbidden romance.


Then the wildfires strike. Fallbrook—the town of marigolds and palms, blood oranges and sweet limes—is threatened by the Agua Prieta fire, and a mandatory evacuation order is issued. But Pearl knows that Amiel is in the direct path of the fire, with no one to warn him, no way to get out. Slipping away from safety and her family, Pearl moves toward the dark creek, where the smoke has become air, the air smoke.

Laura McNeal has crafted a beautiful and haunting novel full of peril, desperation, and love.

Grace by Elizabeth Scott
Release Date: September 16, 2010

Book Desciption:

A fable of a terrifying near future by critically acclaimed author Elizabeth Scott.


Grace was raised to be an Angel, a herald of death by suicide bomb. But she refuses to die for the cause, and now Grace is on the run, daring to dream of freedom. In search of a border she may never reach, she travels among malevolent soldiers on a decrepit train crawling through the desert. Accompanied by the mysterious Kerr, Grace struggles to be invisible, but the fear of discovery looms large as she recalls the history and events that delivered her uncertain fate.

Told in spare, powerful prose, this tale of a dystopian near future will haunt readers long after they've reached the final page.

Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon
Release Date: September 21, 2010

Book Description:

A haunting love story about desire, danger, and destiny.

After Renee Winters discovers her parents lying dead in California’s Redwood Forest in what appears to be a strange double murder, her grandfather sends her off to Gottfried Academy in Maine, a remote and mysterious high school dedicated to philosophy, “crude sciences,” and Latin: the Language of the Dead. It’s here she meets Dante, a dark and elusive student to whom she feels inexplicably drawn. As they get to know each other better, Dante can’t seem to control his attraction either, and their desires gradually deepen into a complex and dangerous romance. Dangerous because Dante is hiding a frightening secret. A secret so terrible, it has him fearing for Renee’s life.

Dante’s not the only one with secrets, though. Turns out Gottfried Academy has a few of its own… Like, how come students keep disappearing? Why are the prefect-like Monitors creeping around campus during the night? And what exactly are the Headmistress and Professors really up to? Renee is determined to find out why.

Dead Beautiful is both a compelling romance and thought-provoking read, bringing shocking new meaning to life, death, love, and the nature of the soul.

*Book descriptions and covers are from Goodreads.


Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Review: Wind Warrior by Cynthia Roberts + Trailer

Book Description:

Leslie Michaels is a visionary, and only those close to her know of her special gift and the visions that come when her mind and body surrender to sleep. Fate has a way of righting many wrongs, and for Leslie it is a destiny that changes her life dramatically. But not before she is forced to flee into the wilderness to escape a murderous trapper bent on claiming her for his very own. Faith and a strong will to survive are her only companions, until she encounters Winnokin, the handsome Seneca war chief who first came to her in her dreams. Not only does he prove to be her rescuer and protector, he teaches her that tragedy can breed happiness and the passion to live and love deeply once again.

Wind Warrior plunges readers into the intimate depths of a relationship that unfolds like a live drama before their eyes while painting an insightful and intriguing portrait of Native Indian life in the 1800s. It is a story of longing, of a wanton need to survive all odds, and a love so strong it conquers human evil. Wind Warrior expresses with cunning words the simple, raw human emotions that hold readers spellbound and captivate their hearts.

Source: Cynthia Roberts (Thanks!)

My Thoughts:

This is the first non-YA book that I’m gonna be reviewing here in my blog. It has a paranormal element which caught my interest. It’s been a long time since I read historical fiction, so I was glad when I got this in the mail!

Pain, suffering, grief and danger combine and lash at Leslie and prove to be a part of a bigger plan where she plays a role. The visions claim that she’s supposed to walk the path before her, the one leading her out of Hollow Pass and into a world that’s so much different from hers. The amount of hardship she’s gone through was enough to make someone break down a hundred times. This illuminates the essence of strength and hope in the trials of life. Two different people meet and connect through a phenomenon, tying their lives and hearts together as they start a mission bestowed upon them by a Supreme being, overcoming all obstacles.

Cynthia Roberts writes incredibly with attention to detail. Her lines were pulsing with so much life. It wasn’t plain. Expressive and poetic at times while still grasping that aged style that exists in historical fiction, her lines create such vivid imagery that injects life into the story. The characters mirrored the time and the culture well. The plot was colored with a wide range of emotions that were startlingly savage and violent at times and burning and passionate at others. I found myself unable to put it down.


Wind Warrior has this Pocahontas vibe for me, with the characters switched races. With a culture that is connected with nature and intensely faithful to the Great spirit, this novel is a breath of fresh air, a break from the modern lit that lets readers catch a glimpse and experience a life untainted by the modern negativity that surrounds us and a life that revolves around challenges and longing.

Rating:


There's a newly made trailer for Wind Warrior. Watch this:





Fast Forward Monday (15)


I'm sorry! This a late post! I finalized stuff for school yesterday and I got home really late. Anyway...here it goes!

Fast Forward Monday is a meme that I will be starting in Fragments of Life. It features books that will be released in the next three months.

Glimpse by Carol Lynch Williams

Release Date: June 22, 2010


Book Description:

In one moment
it is over.
In one moment
it is gone.

The morning grows
thin, grey
and our lives-
how they were-
have vanished.
Our lives have
changed

when I walk in
on Lizzie
my sister
holding a shotgun.

Twelve year old girl Hope's life is turned upside down when her older sister Lizzie becomes an elective mute and is institutionalized after trying to kill herself. Ever since their dad died Hope and Lizzie have relied on each other from a young age. Their mother is a reluctant and unreliable parent at best, who turns tricks to support the family. Throughout the course of this lyrical and heartbreaking narrative readers and Hope discover that the mother is prostituting Lizzie and it’s up to Hope to bring the truth to light to save her sister.

With raw and haunting writing reminiscent of Ellen Hopkins and Elizabeth Scott, Carol Lynch Williams is a promising new YA voice.

Thresholds by Nina Kiriki Hoffman
Release Date: August 5, 2010


Book Description:


Maya’s family has just moved from Idaho to Spores Ferry, Oregon. She’s nervous about starting middle school and making new friends, but soon that’s the last thing on her mind. First, a fairy flies into her room. Then it turns out that the kids in the apartment building next door do magic, and their basement is full of portals to other worlds. She’s bursting with new experiences and delight . . . and secrets, because she can’t breathe a word to her family, not even when she winds up taking care of an alien!

Imagine the family in Ingrid Law’s Savvy seen through the eyes of a young Ray Bradbury. Cross the Threshold!

Halo by Alexandra Adornetto
Release Date: August 31, 2010


Book Description:


Nothing much happens in the sleepy town of Venus Cove. But everything changes when three angels are sent from heaven to protect the town against the gathering forces of darkness: Gabriel, the warrior; Ivy, the healer; and Bethany, a teenage girl who is the least experienced of the trio. They work hard to conceal their true identity and, most of all, their wings. But the mission is threatened when the youngest angel, Bethany, is sent to high school and falls in love with the handsome school captain, Xavier Woods. Will she defy the laws of Heaven by loving him? Things come to a head when the angels realize they are not the only supernatural power in Venus Cove. There′s a new kid in town and he′s charming, seductive and deadly. Worst of all, he′s after Beth.

Firelight by Sophie Jordan
Release Date: September 7, 2010


Book Description:

With her rare ability to breathe fire, Jacinda is special even among the draki—the descendants of dragons who can shift between human and dragon forms. But when Jacinda’s rebelliousness leads her family to flee into the human world, she struggles to adapt, even as her draki spirit fades. The one thing that revives it is Will, whose family hunts her kind. Jacinda can’t resist getting closer to him, even though she knows she’s risking not only her life but the draki’s most closely guarded secret.

*Book descriptions are from Goodreads and the Simon and Schuster website!

Halo <3 Angel love. Glimpse sounds so haunting!


Saturday, June 05, 2010

Weekly Update (2) + New Affliate

Another week, another update. Here it goes...

Books I've Read:

Wind Warrior by Cynthia Roberts
Angel Star by Jennifer Murgia (currently reading)

Reviews:


Other Posts:


Updates:

I have a new affliate! She is Erika from Erika Breathes Books, a fellow blogger from the Philippines and she's 18 too. Like me. She reviews YA too and has an interesting meme called Casting Characters.


Comments:

This is a slow week. Really slo-o-o-ow. I've been out for three days, busy with enrollment at the university and I've been asleep almost all the time this weekend. I did manage to post the review of Inside Out - which was prepared a long time ago. I'll try harder, okay? And I'm really sucked into Angel Star right now.

What to Expect Next Week:

Reviews of Wind Warrior, along with the wonderful trailer, and Angel Star (which will posted on Friday). I'm reviving the meme I created - Angelic Friday. But I'll be posting only once every two weeks now. I have two more angel books here - Heavenly by Jennifer Laurens and Branded by Keary Taylor and I'll be looking for more.


Review: Inside Out by Maria Snyder

Book Description:

Keep Your Head Down.

Don't Get Noticed.

Or Else.

I'm Trella. I'm a scrub. A nobody. One of thousands who work the lower levels, keeping Inside clean for the Uppers. I've got one friend, do my job and try to avoid the Pop Cops. So what if I occasionally use the pipes to sneak around the Upper levels? The only neck at risk is my own…until I accidentally start a rebellion and become the go-to girl to lead a revolution.

Source: Won from Shweta (Thanks!)

My Thoughts:

Trella can’t resist a challenge. A prophet tells her that he has something that contains the location of the Gateway hidden in the pipes. As a natural risk-taker, Trella sets out to prove the prophet wrong, only to find something to spike her hopes up and to start disaster.

The world of Inside Out was choked with the strong restraining of the Pop Cops and broken with the miscommunication between the scrubs and the Uppers. The squares and rectangles of Inside are filled with everything they need to survive – water, air, food and other needs. Most people assume there’s no such thing as Outside. No liberation from the enclosure that is Inside and forever shackled to what is predestined for them. The scrubs are born to labor, to have no more freedom than what little they have and to have no choice. Crowded below and spacious above, the space between them is the only thing stopping them from realizing the startling truth about the Inside and about the Pop Cops.

Maria Snyder writes incredibly well. The plot was rich with twists and turns that unearthed the real picture underneath the one painted by the people who control Inside. I loved the hope that propelled the cast to move forward despite the risk and danger.

Inside Out is a gripping escape from reality that zooms into a future that is painted with the blood of those who fought and rebelled. This echo of domination and rule reflects the same hunger for power that lies within most people today.

Rating:



Tuesday, June 01, 2010

In My Mailbox (First Ever) + Affliate + Updates

In My Mailbox was started by The Story Siren and inspired by Pop Culture Junkie.

This is my first IMM ever. I'm fortunate to have won at contests online and to receive books for review from lovely authors/publishers! Here's what I got:

Bought:


The Hollow by Jessica Verday
Thanks to...Mom! Lol

Ebooks from Authors:


Branded by Keary Taylor
Thanks!


Heavenly by Jennifer Laurens
Thanks!

For Review:


Angel Star by Jennifer Murgia (signed!!)
From Jennifer (Thank you!!)


Caleb + Kate by Cindy Martinusen-Coloma
From Thomas Nelson (Thanks!)


Whisper by Phoebe Kitanidis (signed!!)
From Phoebe (Thanks!)


Wind Warrior by Cynthia Roberts (signed!!)
From Cynthia (Thanks!!)

Won:


Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey (signed!!)
From Deadline Dames and Karen Healey (Thank you!)


The Evernight Series by Claudia Gray
From June at Writing is a Blessing (Thanks!)


Inside Out by Maria Snyder (signed!!)
From Shweta at Book Journal and Maria (Thanks!)

And today...I officially announce Kirthi from Pages is my new and first affliate!




Kirthi is a wonderful and friendly blogger who is one of the youngest bloggers that I know. She likes to know about different cultures and that liking works for us! Her words radiate with so much enthusiasm and booklove. I keep telling her to try sweet spaghetti. :)

Update: I'll be busy for quite a while. Tomorrow is the scheduled preenlistment for my school. This whole week I'll be roaming around campus, running from building to building and trying to read when I get the chance. But don't worry! I've read ahead and have upcoming reviews for you.

I can't wait to get my hands on Angel Star!! Happy reading guys!