Thursday, December 31, 2009

Sorry about the last post

Sorry my post, Best Books of 2009, is a little screwed up. Blogger isn't working for me right now, but I'll keep trying to fix it.

Best Books of 2009

Alrighty. Here are my top 25 books I've read this year. 2009 has been an amazing year for books, and I'm already pumped for 2010! Here goes:

1. The Hunger Games/Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
-I waited to read The Hunger Games because the concept (kids killing each other?) didn't really appeal to me. My friend convinced me of its amazingness, and I read it this summer, just in time to read Catching Fire! Now I'm super excited for the third book, out August 24, 2010

2. The Mortal Instruments Series by Cassandra Clare

-Again, my friend gave these to me. They are definitely one of my favorite series EVER. If you haven't read them, go get them. Now. You won't be sorry. The fourth is due out in 2011, so you've got some time if you're a procrastinator, though this is not a series I would wait to read!

3. Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen
-Sarah Dessen is one of my favorite authors, and I'm surprised she isn't mentioned more in the blogosphere. She has the ability to write what might be considered "chick lit", except her books go so much deeper than romance. Her latest book is no exception. I'm currently listening to the audiobook; review to come when I've finished it.

4. Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

- I only read this book less than a week ago but it deserves this top spot. As you read in my review, this book is one of my all-time favs. Mystery, romance, fear--what could be better?!

5. Swoon by Nina Malkin

-This book is another all-time fav. More romance and fear, plus a hot guy, really? Is there any question?

6. Don't Judge a Girl by Her Cover by Ally Carter

-This is the third and most recent book in Ally Carter's Gallagher Girls series. I won her writing contest and received an ARC of this book--my first ARC ever! I finished it in about a day. A whole new twist has been put on the series! I am so excited for Only the Good Spy Young, the fourth GG book, out June 15, 2010.

7. A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray
-Yes, this book came out about what, 7 or 8 years ago, but I just read it this year. I fell in love with the characters and the magic of their life. I also loved the historical setting, which really affects the story. I'm in the middle of Rebel Angels right now.

8. Fire by Kristin Cashore

-Amazing. I loved this book more than Graceling I think, hence its higher rank. I loved Fire as a character, and I loved the plotline.

9. Graceling by Kristin Cashore

-Another amazing book I read just this year. I love a kick-butt girl protagonist. Girl power all the way!

10. Pretties by Scott Westerfeld

-I really really liked this book, but I didn't like it as much as Uglies. Maybe because I loved David. Ah well. I got Specials and Extras for Christmas, but I have yet to start either of them.

11. Eyes Like Stars by Lisa Mantchev

-I wish I could get this book in the top 10, but I've just read so many great books this year! I am so excited for Act II, Perchance to Dream. I don't know whether to be team Ariel or Team Nate. I thought Ariel really showed his good side at the end of the book, but Nate is such a sweetheart. I guess I'll just have to wait for the curtain to rise!

12. Wings by Aprilynne Pike

-I wasn't sure if I'd like this book, because I feel like this was the year of the faerie. However, I LOVED it. I am super excited for Spells, out May 4, 2010!

13. Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

-This book was a lot better than I wrote it off to be initially. I expected it to be a fluffy romance novel, and it definitely wasn't. It went far beyond my expectations, and I can't want for Sarah's next book, Fixing Delilah Hannaford, out Fall 2010.

14. The Summoning/The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong

-We really need to thank my friend, because she recommends the best books. I read these books in about 2 days--absolute awesome. I'm eagerly anticipating the third book in the trilogy, The Reckoning, out May 1, 2010

15. Two-way Street by Lauren Barnholdt

-another great "chick lit" book. I should mention, I do not say chick lit in a demeaning way. It's my favorite genre. The writing of this book was phenomenal; the storyline was intriguing. I want to read Reality Chick next!

16. The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

-It's Sarah Dessen. Need I say more?

17. Kiss My Book by Jamie Michaels

-This was another book that took me by surprise. I read it on a snow day, and I absolutely loved it. I love books about writers and readers, and this was both! also, the love interest has mohawk. Sweetness!!! haha

18. When It Happens by Susane Colasanti
-I believe in true love. I believe there is one person who is just for me, I just have to find him. That's why I loved this book. It was a sweet story about true love, and I really really really want to read her other books, Waiting for You, Take Me There, and Something Like Fate (out May 18, 2010)!!!

19. Prophecy of the Sisters by Michelle Zink
-Loved it. I wish I could put it higher up, but I read so many good books!!!!! I have two sisters, so I love reading about sister dynamics. I would be the good one, of course! Can't wait for The Guardian and the Gate, out April 1, 2010.

20. Beautiful Americans by Lucy Silag
-So good! I love all things French/Parisian, so I adored this book. I loved the intertwined plots. Can't wait to read Wanderlust!!!!

21. The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han
-Everyone wants that one summer where everything is different. Isabelle got that wish. Excited for It's Not Summer Without You, out next summer!!!

22. Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway
-I read this book in a few hours, one night when I couldn't sleep. Amazing!!! I loved how it was the side of the breakup you don't usually hear. Very original.

23. One Trick Pony by Daniella Brodsky
-Very, very good. Recommended by the teen librarian at my library, who pretty much rocks.

24. The School for Dangerous Girls by Eliot Schrefer
-I got this book for my friend for her birthday, and I was lucky enough to have her loan it to me. It was amazing! Dark, yet funny, scary and compelling. I know the paperback is sold only at Target, so go check it out!

25. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult
-Again, I know this book was out a while ago, but I just got around to reading it this year. I laughed, I almost cried, and I adored Jodi's writing. I really want to read her other books!!! I hear the movie sucks though....

There you have it! I haven't read Beautiful Creatures or Shiver yet, which I hear are both amazing and I know have made the rounds on the blogosphere. That's why they aren't on my list, if you were wondering.
I'll post my New Year's Resolutions either later tonight or tomorrow. Happy New Year everyone!!!


Kristen at Bookworming in the 21st Century has reached 600 followers! Woot! She totally deserves it; her blog is AMAZING! And she's helped me out with my blog too :). Now she's holding a contest to celebrate the occasion, and you can enter here. The more followers she gets the more winners she'll add! So go check out the contest, and her blog while you're at it!!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Teaser Tuesday: many!

Teaser Tuesday was started by MizB at shouldbereading
* Grab your current read.
* Let the book fall to a random page.
* Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
* Share the title of the book that you're getting your teaser from... That way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you've given!
* Please avoid spoilers!

I'm in the middle of a few books right now, so I figured I'd give you a teaser from each:

From page 88 of The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman:
"I see. And who are your people?"
Again Lyra had to wonder what she meant before replying.
"They were a count and countess," she said. "They both died in an aeronautial accident in the North."

So far this one's pretty good. I've heard lots of good things about this book and its movie companion. I'm reading it for school, as part of a final project for one of my English classes.

From page 159 of The Red Tent by Anita Diamant:
My mother saw my confusion. "You cannot understand all of this yet, Dinah," she said. "But soon you will know, and I will make sure that you are welcomed into the woman's life with ceremony and tenderness. Fear not."

This one is also good. I'm about halfway through, and I'm enjoying it. This one's also for school, the final project of another English class.

From page 7 of Rebel Angels by Libba Bray:
"I-I thought I had things well in hand."
"And did you?"
"No." My answer hung in the air like so much smoke from the candles.
"No, you did not. And now the realms have been breached. The unthinkable has happened."

This is the sequel to A Great and Terrible Beauty. I started it briefly last night, but already I have been sucked in. Hopefully I will have time to read more, what with all my school reading and all.

Okay, so I shared more than two sentences. Oh well.
What are you reading? Leave me a teaser!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Riding the Universe

Title: Riding the Universe

Author: Gaby Triana

Pages: 266

Rating: ***

Summary (from Goodreads): 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.

Review: This book was pretty good. It was your standard chick lit--love triangle between girl-best friend-new guy and all--but I still enjoyed it. Chloé is a good protagonist with her own spirit and true problems. She is adopted, and along with her love life, faces the struggle of whether or not to look for her birth parents, for she fears hurting her family. This part of the story is quite touching, and while some readers may predict the resolution, it isn't too cheesy. I also liked her motorcycle--I've never ridden one, but this book made me want to. In the book, Lolita was Chloé's solace, the one she went to when she was confused or hurt. I loved Lolita.

The love triangle however? Oozing with cheese. I predicted the ending after about thirty pages in. However, I still enjoyed hearing Chloé's story and read out to see how the ending would be reached, which is often the case with chick lit. Rock was the guy you'd want as your best friend, though I don't know how he'd be as a boyfriend. I liked how this was addressed though. What wasn't too great was how Gordon flip flopped between the fun, loving boyfriend and the aloof, condescending tutor.

All in all, Riding the Universe was a light, quick read. Not for the realists, but still a good read.

Recommended for: romance lovers, ages 14+

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Merry Christmas!

I hope you all had a very merry Christmas. I sure did--I got ten new books! Along with the two I am currently reading for school, I think I'll be plenty busy for the next few weeks. Look forward to plenty of new reviews!!!

As my gift to you, I give you one of the best books I have ever read:

Title: Hush, Hush

Author: Becca Fitzpatrick

Pages: 391

Summary (from Amazon): For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her. Not until Patch came along.
With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment.
But after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure who to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is way more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.
For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and, when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.

Review: Oh. My. Freakin'. God.

This book blew me away. I read the last 3/4 of it on Christmas Eve, I was so into it. I hadn't even been planning on reading it, but other blogs' reviews were so complimentary that I had to check it out. And it's a good thing I did! The story kept me on the edge of my seat. I had a pretty good idea of what Patch was, but I was still intrigued and wanted an explanation. The end has a fantastic twist maybe I should have seen, but didn't. Patch was the dream male protagonist--hot, strong, mysterious, and totally dangerous. Nora was a protagonist--while most girls would immediately fall for a guy who flattered them as Patch does, she holds strong and doesn't let her guard down. I found myself waiting for Patch to come in, because I knew wherever Nora was, he'd show up. This book gave me chills down my spine. It was probably the spookiest book I've ever read. It was also original--I mean, how many books about fallen angels have YOU read recently? If any, let me know because they are some of my new favorite paranormal creatures.

This book is a definite page turner. It may appear long, but it'll suck you in. It was over before I even realized it! The sequel, Crescendo, comes out Fall 2010. I can't wait!!!

Recommended for: Paranormal readers, ages 15+

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Teaser Tuesday: Riding the Universe

Teaser Tuesday was started by MizB at shouldbereading

* Grab your current read.
* Let the book fall to a random page.
* Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
* Share the title of the book that you're getting your teaser from... That way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you've given!
* Please avoid spoilers!

From page 125 of Riding the Universe by Gaby Triana
"The truth is, I've been needing to feel crazy-happy for some time now, and he does have some kind of crazy-happy power over me."

I have about 60 pages left of this book! Review to come shortly!!!

What are you reading? leave your own teaser in the comments!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Favorite Couple of 2009

Alexa at Not Enough Bookshelves is having a countdown of her favorite couples of 2009. She is also holding a contest! You can enter it here.

My favorite couple this year would have to be Jace and Clary from The Mortal Instruments Trilogy. Jace is a witty, butt-kicking hottie who should totally be played by Alex Pettyfer in the movie *ahem*. Does that tell you a little something about how awesome he is? Oh yeah, and clary's pretty cool too.

Anyway check out her awesome contest! If she gets over 50 entries she'll give away even MORE stuff! So enter before 12/24/09!!!

Saturday, December 19, 2009


Title: Fire

Author: Kristin Cashore

Pages: 352

Rating: ****

Summary (From Goodreads): Fire, Graceling's prequel-ish companion book, takes place across the mountains to the east of the seven kingdoms, in a rocky, war-torn land called the Dells. Beautiful creatures called monsters live in the Dells. Monsters have the shape of normal animals: mountain lions, dragonflies, horses, fish. But the hair or scales or feathers of monsters are gorgeously colored-- fuchsia, turquoise, sparkly bronze, iridescent green-- and their minds have the power to control the minds of humans. Seventeen-year-old Fire is the last remaining human-shaped monster in the Dells. Gorgeously monstrous in body and mind but with a human appreciation of right and wrong, she is hated and mistrusted by just about everyone, and this book is her story. Wondering what makes it a companion book/prequel? Fire takes place 30-some years before Graceling and has one cross-over character with Graceling, a small boy with strange two-colored eyes who comes from no-one-knows-where, and who has a peculiar ability that Graceling readers will find familiar and disturbing...

Review: I LOVED this book, possibly more than I loved Graceling. You don't have to have read Graceling to understand Fire, but there are some connections. I liked the fact that Fire was so moral and strong despite having such power. She was beautiful, but her beauty was a curse, which is a change from most books. I hated how she was treated--like a sex object by men and a whore by women, as if she chose her stunning beauty. I empathized with her pain as a child, when children hated her becasue their parents feared her father. I liked the romance element to it (you're probably sensing a trend...), but I loved the twist added! It was the type of predictability where you know what is going to happen, but you read on to know how they reach that ending.I loved Fire. I sympathized with her contradicting emotions about her father--a terrible man, but her father none the less. The ending was not what I expected. Kristin Cashore's writing was impecable, as it was in Graceling. I highly recommend this book, as well as Graceling! (review to come for the latter)

Recommended for: fantasy and romance lovers, fans of Graceling

Bloody Bookaholic's Contest!

This contest is awesome! She's giving away tons of books to tons of winners! Check it out!

If you head on over, please include my name/blog as the one who referred you! Thanks so much!

Contest ends 12/25/09!!!!!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Awesome Contest!

Princess Bookie is giving away a BUNCH of AMAZING books! check it out!!!

Contest ends 12/31/09!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

One Lonely Degree

Title: One Lonely Degree

Author: C.K. Kelly Martin

Pages: 256

Rating: ***1/2

Summary (from Goodreads): Anything is possible.... Finn has always felt out of place, but suddenly her world is unraveling. It started with The Party. And Adam Porter. And the night in September that changed everything. The only person who knows about that night is Audrey—Finn’s best friend, her witness to everything, and the one person Finn trusts implicitly. So when Finn’s childhood friend Jersy moves back to town—reckless, beautiful Jersy, all lips and eyes and hair so soft you’d want to dip your fingers into it if you weren’t careful—Finn gives her blessing for Audrey to date him. How could she possibly say no to Audrey? With Audrey gone for the summer, though, Finn finds herself spending more and more time with Jersy, and for the first time in her life, something feels right. But Finn can’t be the girl who does this to her best friend...can she?

Review: This book was a quick read. I enjoyed the plot and Finn as a character. I thought it was fairly realistic for a romance novel--I really liked the ending. Audrey is the perfect best friend, the type of friend I would love to have. Jersy is the best guy friend you could hope for. Finn, despite having them by her side, is still struggling because of what happened with Adam Porter. That part of the story wasn't drawn out--I liked that the author explains it early on so you can connect it to Finn's current actions. It also wasn't the cliche you might expect it to be. Overall, a pretty good read. I recommend it as a summer beach read, because it isn't too complex and it reads easily.

Recommended for: Romance lovers, older teens (mature party scene)

Sorry for the short reviews--any suggestions? Is there anything you'd like to hear about the book that I don't include?

Sunday, December 13, 2009


Title: Uglies

Author: Scott Westerfeld

Pages: 448

Rating: ****

Summary (From Amazon): Playing on every teen’s passionate desire to look as good as everybody else, Scott Westerfeld projects a future world in which a compulsory operation at sixteen wipes out physical differences and makes everyone pretty by conforming to an ideal standard of beauty. The "New Pretties" are then free to play and party, while the younger "Uglies" look on enviously and spend the time before their own transformations in plotting mischievous tricks against their elders. Tally Youngblood is one of the most daring of the Uglies, and her imaginative tricks have gotten her in trouble with the menacing department of Special Circumstances. She has yearned to be pretty, but since her best friend Shay ran away to the rumored rebel settlement of recalcitrant Uglies called The Smoke, Tally has been troubled. The authorities give her an impossible choice: either she follows Shay’s cryptic directions to The Smoke with the purpose of betraying the rebels, or she will never be allowed to become pretty. Hoping to rescue Shay, Tally sets off on the dangerous journey as a spy. But after finally reaching The Smoke she has a change of heart when her new lover David reveals to her the sinister secret behind becoming pretty. The fast-moving story is enlivened by many action sequences in the style of video games, using intriguing inventions like hoverboards that use the rider’s skateboard skills to skim through the air, and bungee jackets that make wild downward plunges survivable -- and fun. Behind all the commotion is the disturbing vision of our own society -- the Rusties -- visible only in rusting ruins after a virus destroyed all petroleum. Teens will be entranced, and the cliffhanger ending will leave them gasping for the sequel.

Review: Okay, so it took me a while to finally read this book. I heard about how great the series was, but I didn't read it until about a year ago, when I finally picked it up--and put it down, finished, a day later. For those readers who think they can't handle 400 pages--trust me, it does not feel like 400 pages. It was a page turner. I like Tally; she's tough, rebellious, and daring. I don't know if I'd be as daring as she is if I lived in her world. The other characters of the book are great and the plot is fast-paced. And hoverboarding? Epic! There are several twists that you can't see coming, and the cliffhanger? It'll kill you until you pick up...

Title: Pretties

Author: Scott Westerfeld

Pages: 384

Rating: ***1/2

Summary (from Amazon): Tally, the protagonist of the first book, has forgotten all that she did as an Ugly and has completely embraced the mindless life of a New Pretty, going to parties, drinking heavily, and thinking of nothing more than the next bit of entertainment. It is not until one of the Uglies from New Smoke comes and delivers a message for her that leads her to two pills, that she begins to remember the real reason she is Pretty: to see if the cure will work. Tally and her new boyfriend, Zane, each take one of the pills and both begin to stay focused for longer periods of time. When he has a bad reaction to the pill, Tally has to make a desperate attempt to get him to the only doctors who can help him–the ones outside the city. Westerfeld has built a masterfully complex and vivid civilization. His characters are multidimensional, especially Tally, who wrestles with what she has done in the past and what she will be forced to do in the future.

Review: An great sequel. I read this while on vacation, and it may have been the distracting ocean, but I didn't find it as gripping as Uglies until the last few chapters. It was still good, of course--Tally and her new boyfriend Zane, along with their clique, are still rebellious--they are trying to stay "bubbly", the feeling the operation took away. This book gives readers the inside world of Pretties--on the surface, most people would probably love this operation. I know I did at first! Who hasn't envied the looks of celebrities? But after seeing what it does to you, less-than-stunning outer beauty doesn't seem worth losing yourself. This book has another horribly amazing cliffhanger, making me super excited for Christmas--Specials and Extras are high on my list!!!

Recommended for: Sci-fi readers; action lovers; anyone who has ever hated their looks or envied the beauty of someone else.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill at Breaking the Spine

Title: Heist Society

Author: Ally Carter

Summary (from Ally Carter) :When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her on a trip to the Louvre…to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria…to steal the crown jewels. When Kat turned fifteen, she planned a con of her own—scamming her way into the best boarding school in the country, determined to leave the family business behind. Unfortunately, leaving “the life” for a normal life proves harder than she’d expected.
Soon, Kat's friend and former co-conspirator, Hale, appears out of nowhere to bring Kat back into the world she tried so hard to escape. But he has a good reason: a powerful mobster has been robbed of his priceless art collection and wants to retrieve it. Only a master thief could have pulled this job, and Kat's father isn't just on the suspect list, he is the list. Caught between Interpol and a far more deadly enemy, Kat’s dad needs her help.
For Kat, there is only one solution: track down the paintings and steal them back. So what if it's a spectacularly impossible job? She's got two weeks, a teenage crew, and hopefully just enough talent to pull off the biggest heist in her family's history--and, with any luck, steal her life back along the way.

I LOVE Ally Carter's Gallagher Girl books (check them out at her website, reviews to come), and I am so excited fo ehr new book!

Release Date: 2/9/10

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Interview with Laura Ruby and Bad Apple Giveaway!

Interview with Laura Ruby and Bad Apple Giveaway!

Another awesome book contest. I can't wait to read it.

Contest ends 12/13!!!

SWOON Six-Month Anniversary Event & Contest!

SWOON Six-Month Anniversary Event & Contest!

Check out this awesome contest! The Book Butterfly is giving away a signed copy of Swoon, one of my FAVORITE books! I highly recommend it. Read my review for further proof.

Contest ends 12/17!

Monday, December 7, 2009


Wow two posts in one day! I'm gettin the hang of this blogging thing!

So there's an AWESOME contest being held by Katie at Katie's Book Blog. Here's the post:

She's giving away TWELVE books! How cool is that?! Contest ends 12/26/09!

A Great and Terrible Beauty

Title: A Great and Terrible Beauty

Author: Libba Bray

Pages: 432

Rating: ****1/2

Summary (from Amazon): A Victorian boarding school story, a Gothic mansion mystery, a gossipy romp about a clique of girlfriends, and a dark other-worldly fantasy--jumble them all together and you have this complicated and unusual first novel.
Gemma, 16, has had an unconventional upbringing in India, until the day she foresees her mother’s death in a black, swirling vision that turns out to be true. Sent back to England, she is enrolled at Spence, a girls’ academy with a mysterious burned-out East Wing. There Gemma is snubbed by powerful Felicity, beautiful Pippa, and even her own dumpy roommate Ann, until she blackmails herself and Ann into the treacherous clique. Gemma is distressed to find that she has been followed from India by Kartik, a beautiful young man who warns her to fight off the visions. Nevertheless, they continue, and one night she is led by a child-spirit to find a diary that reveals the secrets of a mystical Order. The clique soon finds a way to accompany Gemma to the other-world realms of her visions "for a bit of fun" and to taste the power they will never have as Victorian wives, but they discover that the delights of the realms are overwhelmed by a menace they cannot control. Gemma is left with the knowledge that her role as the link between worlds leaves her with a mission to seek out the "others" and rebuild the Order.

Review: Awesome. Amazing. Incredible. This was one of the (many) books I read on my vacation, so it holds an even more special place in my heart. This book was adventure, mystery, secrets, drama, and a beautiful Victorian setting. Though it is "paranormal", the book doesn't have that unrealistic feeling to it that most supernatural books do. Right, realistic visions...anyway, what I really did like about this book was how realistic it was. There wasn't the protagonist who is perfect and the good person who is always right, like in most novels. Gemma has her faults. She falls victim to the hype of cliques, even when she is hurt and scorned by the popular crowd. She, along with the other girls, still desire to be a part of Felicity and Pippa's clique. I found this really refreshing. The end got a little confusing, but nothing too major. It was still an excellent book!

Recommended for: Historical fiction junkies, mystery lovers.

So I am getting a cold. Yeah, it sucks. Life is go-go-go and all I want to do is sleep. I'll fit in as MANY posts as possible in the upcoming weeks, because trust me, I of all people know the magic of a good book, and the desire to share that magic by giving a book as a gift! So! Be sure to keep looking around the blog; I'm still working on adding more features. Sadly my computer fails to be up to par with what I need/want done, but I'm wearing it down. Thanks for reading!

Friday, December 4, 2009

I have returned! New feature!

Sorry for my absense. Due to technical difficulties and a family vacation, I have been without access to the internet for a few weeks.

I have been thinking about ways to perk up my blog. I've decided the first Friday of the month's post will be "Curl Up With a Classic". So as my first official CUWAC post, I give you...

Title: Jane Eyre

Author: Charlotte Brontë

Pages: 374 (varies by edition)

Rating: ****

Summary (from Goodreads): Orphaned into the household of her Aunt Reed at Gateshead and subject to the cruel regime at Lowood charity school, Jane Eyre nonetheless emerges unbroken in spirit and integrity. She takes up the post of governess at Thornfield Hall, falls in love with Mr. Rochester, and discovers the impediment to their lawful marriage in a story that transcends melodrama to portray a woman's passionate search for a richer life than that traditionally allowed women in Victorian society.

Review: Though it can be difficult at times, there is definitely a reason Jane Eyre is a classic. It is full of real characters and lush descriptions. Jane Eyre is a strong-moraled, independent young woman-a very uncommon creature during this Victorian era. Her independence and ability to love will capture any reader. Do not be deceived however--there are dark undertones to this otherwise-romance novel. There is language to get through in some areas, but for the most part the plot moves quickly and comprehensibly. Jane Eyre is a classic you should curl up under the covers with.

Recommended for: romance lovers, "star-crossed lovers" diehards

Yes I realize I said Wide Sargasso Sea was next, but I thought Jane Eyre should come before its spin off.
In other news, I will start participating i Waiting on Wednesday as well. I have a lot of books to review from my family vacation, so expect more posts soon!

Friday, November 20, 2009

A Kiss in Time

Title: A Kiss in Time

Author: Alex Flinn

Pages: 370

Rating: ***1/2

Summary (from Amazon): Jack is on a European tour mandated by his parents ("What they don't tell you about Europe is how completely lame it is") when he breaks an ancient curse by kissing the slumbering Princess Talia. Instead of rejoicing, she and other awakened members of their magical kingdom are confused and perturbed to find themselves in the 21st century. In order to escape the wrath of her father, who blames her for causing the curse, Talia flees with Jack to his home in Florida. While acclimating to the modern world-cell phones, television, Jell-o shots-the princess manages to charm everyone she meets and help Jack sort out his life. Alternating between the teenagers' distinctive points of view, Flinn skillfully delineates how their upbringings set them apart while drawing parallels between their family conflicts. Fans of happily-ever-after endings will delight in the upbeat resolution, which confirms the notion that "love conquers all."

Review: I liked this book. Sleeping Beauty was my favorite Disney princess, so I was psyched to read this book. I also enjoyed Alex Flinn's other fairytale retelling, Beastly, so that played a part as well. Meryl was definitely my favorite character, but I liked Talia as well. This novel was pretty cheesy, but what else can you expect from a fairy tale? I really liked the new twist Alex adds to the story--just a hint, it's perfect for hopeless romantics like myself. So if you love a good romance novel and just want to live happily ever after, definitely check out this book.

Recommended for: romance lovers

A review for Alex Flinn's novel Beastly will come in the near future (hopefully). As of now, next on the list is actually a book a just read for school: Wide Sargasso Sea

Friday, November 13, 2009

Eyes Like Stars and Twenty Boy Summer

Wow so I officially fail as a blogger. Here are my most recent reads:

Title: Eyes Like Stars

Author: Lisa Mantchev

Pages: 352

Rating: ****1/2

Summary (from Goodreads): Enter Stage Right All her world's a stage. Beatrice Shakespeare Smith is not an actress, yet she lives in a theater. She is not an orphan, but she has no parents. She knows every part, but has no lines of her own. Until now. Welcome to the Théâtre Illuminata, where the characters of every place ever written can be found behind the curtain. They were born to play their parts, and are bound to the Théâtre by The Book—an ancient and magical tome of scripts. Bertie is not one of them, but they are her family—and she is about to lose them all and the only home she has ever known. Lisa Mantchev has written a debut novel that is dramatic, romantic, and witty, with an irresistible and irreverent cast of characters who are sure to enchant the audience. Open Curtain

Review:This book was phenomenal. I feel very repetitive, because I keep saying how amazing books are. I've read a lot of great books recently! Most of them have been recommended by other bloggers. ANYWAY this book was another original. I've never read anything like Eyes Like Stars before. Swoon was original, but there were some parts that reminded me of Twilight. This novel should have its own genre. Everything from the plot to the setting to the characters was pure originality. And they were all great! Lisa Mantchev created a new world, one most people would never have imagined. Bertie is a strong female protagonist who doesn't let the "Managers" boss her around. I was a little confused about Ariel--what is he exactly? (That's right, Ariel's a he) But otherwise it was comprehendable, which is important for fantasy books. Though I'm not sure if this book can be categorized as fantasy...anyway, GREAT read. I can't wait for Perchance a Dream (Theatre Illuminata Act II)!!

Recommended for: Fantasy-lovers, play-goers, and readers who like a little mystery and action with a splash of romance.

Title: Twenty Boy Summer

Author: Sarah Ockler

Pages: 290

Rating: ****

Summary (from Goodreads):"Don't worry, Anna. I'll tell her, okay? Just let me think about the best way to do it.""Okay.""Promise me? Promise you won't say anything?""Don't worry." I laughed. "It's our secret, right?"According to her best friend Frankie, twenty days in Zanzibar Bay is the perfect opportunity to have a summer fling, and if they meet one boy ever day, there's a pretty good chance Anna will find her first summer romance. Anna lightheartedly agrees to the game, but there's something she hasn't told Frankie---she's already had that kind of romance, and it was with Frankie's older brother, Matt, just before his tragic death one year ago.Beautifully written and emotionally honest, this is a debut novel that explores what it truly means to love someone and what it means to grieve, and ultimately, how to make the most of every single moment this world has to offer.

Review: I totally misjudged this book. I wrote it off as another light, fluffy romance novel. WRONG! This book, while yes is mainly about romance, goes a lot deeper. Anna deals a lot with her heartbreak, loss, and the fact that she is keeping such a huge secret from her best friend. Anna isn't your typical romance novel heroine whose love comes riding in on his white horse to make her life complete. She is her own person, as she is realizing as Frankie becomes someone she can barely recognize sometimes and by the fact that Matt is gone forever. The writing is beautiful and Sarah Dessen-esque (a compliment I do not give lightly). I almost started crying at some points, which is very uncommon for me. Another great read--perfect for summer, though it was nice to have a little sun in this dreary Midwestern November.

Recommended for: Romance lovers

Again, sorry (if anyone is even reading this). I'll try to post more frequently. Next up: A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Girlfriend Material by Melissa Kantor

Title: Girlfriend Material

Author: Melissa Kantor

Pages: 256

Rating: ***1/2

Summary (from Amazon): If Kate were Lady Brett Ashley, the devastating heroine of Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises, she'd spend her summers careering around the Riviera in her coupe, breaking hearts by the dozen--because why not? In reality, Kate's never even had a boyfriend, and she'll be spending the summer abetting her mom's lame ploy to make her dad jealous: running off to Cape Cod and crashing at the seaside home of her wealthy friends, the Cooper-Melnicks. To add to the shame, the Cooper-Melnicks' gorgeous daughter Sarah is a bit like Lady Brett, and she seems less than thrilled to hang out with her new houseguest. Any dreams Kate once had of a perfect summer are ruined.That is, until Sarah's cute, witty friend Adam starts drawing Kate into the fold--and seems intrigued. With Adam around, Kate feels like she just might have a bit of heartbreaker potential after all. But when a breezy summer romance quickly grows more complicated can Kate keep pretending her relationship with Adam is just a carefree fling? Or will she take the risk and tell him her real feelings? Suddenly Kate is asking herself a question she never thought she'd stoop to: Is she girlfriend material?

Review: I was surprised by this book. I was expecting your typical, run-of-the-mill romance novel about a summer romance. While it was a summer romance with a fairly predictable plot, I really enjoyed the writing. Melissa Kantor's style didn't make the story cheesy or sappy, like so many romance novels are (not that that's a bad thing! Don't get me wrong, I live for romance novels). Overall, a good read.

Recommended for: YA romance readers

*Don't forget to comment! I am always looking for feedback :)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Swoon by Nina Malkin

Title: Swoon

Author: Nina Malkin

Pages: 425

Rating: *****

Summary (From Goodreads): Sin is Coming...Prepare to Swoon! Torn from her native New York City and dumped in the land of cookie-cutter preps, Candice is resigned to accept her posh, dull fate. Nothing ever happens in Swoon, Connecticut...until Dice's perfect, privileged cousin Penelope nearly dies in a fall from an old tree, and her spirit intertwines with that of a ghost. His name? Sinclair Youngblood Powers. His mission? Revenge. And while Pen is oblivious to the possession, Dice is all too aware of Sin. She's intensely drawn to him—but not at all crazy about the havoc he's wreaking. Determined to exorcise the demon, Dice accidentally sets Sin loose, gives him flesh, makes him formidable. Now she must destroy an even more potent—and irresistible—adversary, before the whole town succumbs to Sin's will. Only trouble is, she's in love with him.

Review: This was seriously one of the best books I have read in a long time. It was original, seductive, romantic, horrifying, and mysterious all at once! The story was so creative! There were a few points that I thought "Oh! That reminds me of Twilight!" but nothing major. Sin is a totally different male protagonist than your average romance story--he's both the love interest and the antagonist. I HIGHLY recommend this book to EVERY reader over the age of 14. There are some very *ahem* inappropriate scenes for younger readers. Even if you aren't that into fantasy, pick up this book. It appeals to all! Really! Read it! Now!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Breathless by Jessica Warman

Title: Breathless

Author: Jessica Warman

Pages: 352

Rating: ****

Summary (from Amazon): When Katie Kitrell is shipped off to boarding school by her distant father and overbearing mother, it doesn’t take her long to become part of the It Crowd. She’s smart, she’s cute, and she’s an Olympic-bound swimmer who has a first class ticket to any Ivy League school of her choice. But what her new friends, roommate, and boyfriend don’t know is that Katie is swimming away from her past, and from her schizophrenic older brother, Will, who won’t let her go. And when he does the unthinkable, it’s all Katie can do to keep her head above water.

Review: I really enjoyed this book. Not for younger readers, there was quite a bit of smoking, drinking, and drugs. I didn't really like how she acted as if "all teenagers do this, this is average high school stuff". However, I did find it easy to relate to Katie, even though my life is nothing like hers. I loved her roommate, Mazzie. Their relationship was hilarious and loving, even though they were constantly insulting each other! Overall, a great debut novel.

Recommended for: YA readers 12+

Now it's time for your review! Suggestions or comments about my first review? Like I said, this is my first time doing anything like this, so it will (hopefully) improve as I review more books. I'll update as often as possible, and I'll start reviewing past books I've read as well. Please let me know what you think!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

New blogger!

Hello there, cyber world.
This is my first test in blogging. I am a huge bookworm, as you probably can tell. I'll be posting about the books I read, and maybe some personal stuff if I feel the need. Almost all the books I read are YA books, but I also enjoy classics and some adult books. Alright, so this is basically my introduction. Next post will be my first review, of mymost current read: Breathless, by Jessica Warman.