Saturday, April 30, 2011

Mortal Instruments Trilogy by Cassandra Clare


Welcome to a special multi-review of Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments Trilogy!  I recently read all three books back to back, so I thought I would include mini-reviews of each so you can get an idea of how the books worked together.  All three books are already out, so I won't include release dates. 

Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder - much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight?

 
This was one of those trilogies that sucked me in right away.  The action starts almost at the first page, and there are so many paranormal elements in this book that it kept me completed interested throughout.  There's an entirely other world that humans don't know about which includes just about every fairytale-like myth you've ever heard about, including vampires, werewolves, demons, fairies, wizards, and Shadowhunters, which are a sort of police force for their world.  They have their own government, and their own rogue members who want to take control and rule.

Clary is sucked into this world by accident, only to discover that she might actually belong there and never knew it.  Since her mother has disappeared, Clary has to learn to rely on Jace.  Let me just say from the outset that I ADORE Jace.  He was a wonderful character, an intriguing hero, and so honorable.  At the same time, I loved how irreverent he was, how he always challenged Clary.  Clary herself was also an endearing character.  She was brave and sarcastic, and I loved that about her.

Something happens at the end of this book that completely threw me for a loop, and I hated it!  But in a good way.  I figured it would resolve itself in one of the later books but, alas, I had to read the entire trilogy to find out.City of Ashes







Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry

In City of Ashes, Clary and Jace's relationship has changed somewhat, and I found myself liking the change, but also hating it.  It was so frustrating because you wanted one thing, the author gave you something else, but at the same time, you love the characters so much that you couldn't help but root for them anyway, no matter what was going on. 

The action heats up in this one, and Clary finds herself more on the front lines as she starts to learn her place in the Shadowhunter world.  Her relationship with Luke really began to take a large focus in this book, and I loved getting to know Luke's character.  He was one of my favorites. 

Jace is faced with some pretty big struggles in this one due to what was revealed at the end of book one.  Not only that he's the son of someone not so nice, but another detail that I'll leave out so that you can be surprised.  For a while, he spends his time being in trouble with the Shadow world's government due to the revelation of who his real father is.  Clary, of course, wants nothing more than to help him and in typical Clary fashion, throws caution to the wind in order to help him, despite placing herself in danger.


Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry

Finally, everything comes to a head in the final installment of the trilogy.  Although Jace finally thought he knew who he truly was, he finds out that things aren't always what they seem.  All the Shadowhunters, including Jace, have gone to the City of Glass and left Clary at home (Jace wants her to be safe), Clary discovers a way to help her mother and reunite with her.  With the aid of her new powers, she makes a portal and launches herself and Luke into the hidden world near the City of Glass.

The bad guys attack the city, and Jace and his people fight against the evil trying to take power over their world.  Jace and Clary have to fight their enemy to bring safety to those they care about, and to each other.  And I finally get to know the outcome to the thing that happened at the end of book one.  I won't tell you what it was or it would ruin the whole thing.

Suffice it to say, this series kept me on my toes, kept me interested, and kept me agonizing until the very end.  It was easy to suspend disbelief and get completed engrossed in Cassandra Clare's world.  This series was well worth the read.  Vivid, engaging, and action packed!  Also, it's not over.  Cassandra Clare just released a fourth book that will be the start of a new series set in the same world, and with the same characters!

If you liked this book, you might also like:







Thursday, April 28, 2011

Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly

Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly
Release Date: May 24th, 2011
Publisher: Candlewick

In a world where angels are beyond redemption, Alex thinks he's found one that might deserve mercy. Alex is a ruthless assassin - of angels. Forget everything you've heard about them before. Angels are not benign celestial creatures, but fierce stalkers whose irresistible force allows them to feed off humans, draining them of their vitality until there is barely anything left. As far as Alex is concerned, the only good angel is a dead angel...until he meets Willow. She may look like a normal teenager but Willow is no ordinary girl. Half-angel, half-human, Willow may hold the key to defeating the evil angels. But as the hunter and the hunted embark on an epic and dangerous journey and Willow learns the dark and terrifying secrets of her past, Alex finds himself drawn to Willow...with devastating consequences. Eoin Colfer reinvented the fairy, Stephenie Meyer reinvented the vampire, L.A. Weatherly reinvents the angel! This is a heart-pounding, knuckle-whitening, paranormal romance action-adventure for fans of the "Twilight" series. This is the first in a devastating new trilogy.

This has to be one of the most unique angel mythologies I've ever read.  The idea that angels are not the sweet, benign creatures we think them to be was a novelty to read.  These angels are ones that you can't stand and want to see defeated. 

This book grabbed me from page one.  The pacing was great, as the story was in almost constant motion.  The action started immediately and just kept going.  Of course, there were down times, but they were appropriate and pushed the story forward.  The pacing made this a very fast read and the story itself made it a pleasure to read.

I loved the characters in this story and cared about them immediately.  Alex was just my kind of guy.  He's an assassin of bad angels, but when he's sent to kill Willow, he's smart enough to notice the difference in her, and smart enough to hold off and not act hastily until he learned a little bit more.  Thankfully!  Willow was half angel, and half human, and she may be the key to defeating the other angels.  These two team up and I loved watching their relationship grow and develop.  This was one of those slow progressions of love that I adore in a book.  It's great watching a relationship develop so carefully rather than hitting a "bam, they're in love" wall.

The ending surprised me, but then again, this is obviously the first of a series.  I am so looking forward to reading the next installment and finding out what happens next.  This was a great kick-off to what is obviously going to be a great trilogy.  L.A. Weatherly's writing was engrossing!

If you liked this book, you might also like:

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday



Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. WoW posts are about books that you can’t wait to get your hands on.

This is one of my favorite posts to read on the blogs that I follow because other bloggers have found so many wonderful books that I had no idea about!  I get most of those from reading Waiting on Wednesday posts. :-)  I urge you to visit other blogs and read theirs to find these great lists!






Release Date: July 19th, 2011
Why I love it: Jennifer Echols.
Enough said.
Buy it on Goodreads.

What books are you looking forward to?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Teaser Tuesday



Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:




  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My teaser this week comes from:
 
 









Hereafter by Tara Hudson
Release Date: June 7, 2011

Small blurb from Goodreads.com:   Can there truly be love after death?  Drifting in the dark waters of a mysterious river, the only thing Amelia knows for sure is that she's dead. With no recollection of her past life—or her actual death—she's trapped alone in a nightmarish existence. All of this changes when she tries to rescue a boy, Joshua, from drowning in her river. As a ghost, she can do nothing but will him to live.
 
Teaser from page 14: "This time things are different, although the dark, twisting scene looked almost the same as it did in each of my horrible dreams.  Almost.  Because this time I wasn't the one drowning.  He was."
 
 
Tease me with your reads this week!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Author Interview: Christina Mandelski of The Sweetest Thing

I am very excited to post an interview with Christina Mandelski, author of The Sweetest Thing, due to be released on May 10, 2011.  Christina graciously took time to answer questions I thought her fans would love to know about her and her upcoming debut novel.   (See my review of The Sweetest Thing here.



Christina Mandelski loves to bring the characters in her head to life on the page. When she isn’t writing, she’s spending time with her family, volunteering, traveling or reading (preferably under an umbrella at the beach). Although she’d love to create amazing cakes like the main character in her book, THE SWEETEST THING, given past experience she’s decided to stick with eating them. Christina lives with her husband and two daughters in Houston. You can learn more about her at www.christinamandelski.com.





Readergirl: How long have you known you wanted to be a writer?
Christina: I was a voracious reader as a kid and was maybe seven or eight when I decided I would be a writer. There was something so magical about books to me – transporting me to another time, another world, placing me in someone else’s shoes. I knew without a doubt that I wanted to make that kind of magic.


Readergirl: What was your submission experience in terms of number of manuscripts written and length of submission time before publication?
Christina: I was very fortunate that within nine months or so of signing with my agency, Egmont USA offered to acquire the manuscript and turn it into a book. Of course, the journey prior to that was long and sometimes bumpy. I wrote three full manuscripts (and started about a gazillion others) before The Sweetest Thing. Now that my pub date is almost here, though, I know it’s true what they say – it is totally worth the ride!

Readergirl: How did you celebrate receiving "the call" that your book was going to be published?
Christina: This is a bizarre story, but I was waiting at home to hear and finally had to leave for a hair appointment. I held my cell phone in my lap through that entire haircut. No call came. A few hours later a voicemail appeared on my phone. It was from my agent, with the good news, left while I was at the salon. Apparently that hair salon was in the deadest of dead zones. So – long story short, I got the message a few hours late – but of course I was just as excited! Next time I expect good news, though, I’m skipping the hair appointment.

Readergirl: How did you get the idea for The Sweetest Thing?
Christina: The story is about a teenage cake decorating prodigy and I love reality cooking shows. One night I was watching Ace of Cakes and I thought, “what if a teenager could make cakes like that?” And that was the initial seed that grew into The Sweetest Thing. 

Readergirl: What made you decide on YA, and have you or do you expect to write in any other genres?
Christina: When I was in college getting my degree in Creative Writing, I assumed I would write for adults, but when I graduated and started working at a desk job, I stopped writing altogether. When I finally got back on track, it was because of a friend who was starting up a Society of Children’s Writers and Illustrators chapter in our hometown. She’s the reason I got into children’s literature. I thought I’d start with picture books honestly because I thought it was probably easy (ha, was I wrong!) but eventually I found my voice writing young adult and middle grade novels. There’s a brevity of language and an extreme honesty in books for children. Kids don’t want flowery language and overwrought descriptions, they want the truth. I love that.

Readergirl: What has been the most challenging thing about writing and publishing The Sweetest Thing?
Christina: By far the most challenging thing has been learning the business of marketing a book. I am not a natural salesman by any stretch, but I’ve really coming out of my shell to promote my baby! My favorite thing to do is talking to kids about reading and writing. I try to convince them that writing is not scary, and that no matter who you are, there’s a book out there somewhere for you to love.

Readergirl: What has been the most rewarding experience?
Christina: Ack, I get all teary-eyed just thinking of it. The most rewarding thing about this experience is that I get to serve as a living example to my daughters that with a little hard work, dreams do come true.

Readergirl: Do you have any favorite authors or stories that have inspired you as a writer?
Christina: Oh yes, so many. I love Katherine Paterson. She’s an inspiring writer who gives back to other writers.  Love Jane Yolen, love Richard Peck, Madeleine L’Engle, just to name a few. 

Readergirl: Will you be taking part in any book tours, signings, or release parties that your fans might like to know about?
Christina: I’m having a book launch on May 14th at Houston’s local indie, Blue Willow Bookshop. And I’m traveling to the BEA conference in New York City in May. I’ll be tooling around town with other members of the Class of 2k11 (we have several events planned which will be posted on our website – www.classof2k11.com). I’ve never been to NYC, so I’m very excited to take my first bite out of the Big Apple!

Readergirl: What will be your next project? 
Christina: For the last few months I’ve been working on a contemporary young adult novel with a paranormal twist. It really is best described as Cinderella meets Dr. Faustus. Angels, devils, movie stars and chicken wings – it’s been a blast!

A special thank-you to Christina Mandelski for consenting, and taking time, to conduct this interview with me.  I'm excited for the rest of the reading world to be able to enjoy The Sweetest Thing as much as I did!


Sunday, April 24, 2011

In My Mailbox (15)



In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.  I love this meme because I wouldn't find half the awesome books I get to read if I didn't read other bloggers' IMM posts and see what they found.  This is how I find the majority of the books I put on my list. 

Here's what I got this week:


Stay by Deb Caletti
Sixteenth Summer by Michelle Dalton





The Day Before by Lisa Schroeder
Blood Valentine by Melissa de la Cruz




What did you get this week?



Friday, April 22, 2011

Between Here and Forever by Elizabeth Scott

Between Here and Forever by Elizabeth Scott
Release Date: May 24, 2011
Publisher:

Abby accepted that she can’t measure up to her beautiful, magnetic sister Tess a long time ago, and knows exactly what she is: Second best. Invisible.  Until the accident.  Now Tess is in a coma, and Abby’s life is on hold. It may have been hard living with Tess, but it's nothing compared to living without her. She's got a plan to bring Tess back though, involving the gorgeous and mysterious Eli, but then Abby learns something about Tess, something that was always there, but that she’d never seen. Abby is about to find out that truth isn't always what you think it is, and that life holds more than she ever thought it could... - Goodreads.com.

I'm in love.  This book was fantastic.  I have always been a fan of this author, and I have never read a book of hers that I did not absolutely love.  But this book is special. 

Aside from the awesome characterization that made the Abby, Claire and Eli so real, their struggles and inner thoughts so vivid, this book was just beautifully written.  The words were poetry and everything fit together so well that it felt like no time at all before I was finishing the book and wishing there was more.

Abby's issues very well could have caused her to come across as whiny and self-pitying, but the way Elizabeth Scott handled this character kept her from becoming that.  She had an inner strength despite her insecurities.  Eli was a beautiful character, both inside and out.  He was described as being a beautiful, gorgeous boy in the book, but as you got to know him, you realized that the surface was nothing compared to the inside.  The way these two interacted was so touching.

I can't wait for this book to come out so that I can buy it and add it to my collection.  This is one I have to own for myself and reread again and again.  Five stars isn't enough.  This book is beautiful.

If you liked this book, you'll need to buy it.  I'm not going to draw any comparisons to other books on this one.  :-)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Leavitt

Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Leavitt
Release Date:  March 1, 2011
Publisher: Bloomsbury

According to her guidance counselor, fifteen-year-old Payton Gritas needs a focus object—an item to concentrate her emotions on. It's supposed to be something inanimate, but Payton decides to use the thing she stares at during class: Sean Griswold's head. They've been linked since third grade (Griswold-Gritas—it's an alphabetical order thing), but she's never really known him.  The focus object is intended to help Payton deal with her father's newly diagnosed multiple sclerosis. And it's working. With the help of her boy-crazy best friend Jac, Payton starts stalking—er, focusing on—Sean Griswold . . . all of him! He's cute, he shares her Seinfeld obsession (nobody else gets it!) and he may have a secret or two of his own. - Goodreads.com

When I first got this book, I thought it would be a light read that would be fun and cute and kinda of romantic.  Well, it was all those things, but it was so much more.  I found myself rooting for these characters so much, that I couldn't wait to get to the end to see how it all turned out for them, but at the same time, I didn't want it to end.

Payton was a typical teenager, and the author makes no apologies for Payton's typical teen behavior, including her reaction to her father's sudden MS diagnosis.  It wasn't that he had MS so much as that her parents had kept it from her for six months.  Everyone knew but her.  So she stops talking to them.  I found
Payton's reactions to events in this book to be so realistic.  Behind her seemingly stubborn and pouty behavior, however, is a much deeper pain that it takes even her a while to see.  Who helps her?  Sean.

Her new fixation on Sean's "head" turns into a full on fixation for Sean himself, and as that fixation puts her into positions where she has a chance to actually get to know him, things really begin to happen.  I fell in love with Sean. You just couldn't help it.  He was great!  He was kind, he was deep, and he helped Payton, almost without realizing it.  I thought this would turn into your typical teenage fixation on a cute guy, but their relationship was so much deeper and interesting.

This was one of those gems hiding behind a cute title that everyone should read.  It was inspiring to see Payton learn herself, and to watch her do such a courageous thing.  I won't give anymore away.  You just have to read it.  It was a pleasure.

If you liked this book, you might also like:

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday



Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. WoW posts are about books that you can’t wait to get your hands on.

This is one of my favorite posts to read on the blogs that I follow because other bloggers have found so many wonderful books that I had no idea about!  I get most of those from reading Waiting on Wednesday posts. :-)  I urge you to visit other blogs and read theirs to find these great lists!






Release Date: December 8, 2011
Why I love it: Romeo and Juliet anyone?
This romance might ring some bells.
Buy it on Goodreads.

What books are you looking forward to?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Teaser Tuesday




Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:




  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My teaser this week comes from:








Angel Burn by L. A. Weatherly
Release Date: May 24, 2011

Small blurb from Goodreads.com:  In a world where angels are beyond redemption, Alex thinks he's found one that might deserve mercy. Alex is a ruthless assassin - of angels. Forget everything you've heard about them before. Angels are not benign celestial creatures, but fierce stalkers whose irresistible force allows them to feed off humans, draining them of their vitality until there is barely anything left. As far as Alex is concerned, the only good angel is a dead angel...until he meets Willow.
Teaser from page 82: "Alex shook his head blankly.  He had to be seeing things.  The angel's face was lovely, serene, a magnified version of the girl's own.  Yet where there should be a halo framing its head, there was simply...nothing.  An angel's halo was its heart; without one, it couldn't survive."
Tease me with your reads this week!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Girl Wonder by Alexa Martin

Girl Wonder by Alexa Martin
Release Date:  May 3, 2011
Publisher:  Hyperian

As if transferring senior year weren't hard enough, Charlotte Locke has been bumped to lower level classes at her new school. With no friends, a terrible math SAT score, and looming college application deadlines, the future is starting to seem like an oncoming train for which she has no ticket. Then Amanda enters her orbit like a hot-pink meteor, offering Charlotte a ticket to something else: popularity. Amanda is fearless, beautiful, brilliant, and rich. As her new side kick, Charlotte is brought into the elite clique of the debate team—and closer to Neal, Amanda's equally brilliant friend and the most perfect boy Charlotte has ever seen. But just when senior year is looking up, Charlotte’s life starts to crumble. The more things heat up between Charlotte and Neal, the more Neal wants to hide their relationship. Is he ashamed? Meanwhile, Amanda is starting to act strangely competitive, and she's keeping a secret Charlotte doesn't want to know. - Goodreads.com

This was a heartfelt debut novel by Alexa Martin that I really enjoyed.  Charlotte Locke has a learning disability that makes her see numbers strangely in math, even while she excels at other classes.  With a university professor mother, and author father, and near genius-like brother, Charlotte's disability turns her into the "odd man out," so to speak.  Her disability becomes less of a nuisance and more of a brand that stamps her as a failure.

And a failure is how she feels.  It was agonizing to watch this girl and see how she looked at herself.  Internally, she spoke to herself so negatively, and saw herself as so worthless, it was sad to see such internal insecurity.  The author did a superb job, however, not making her sound whiny or self-pitying.  It was, instead, believable insecurity that Charlotte displays unconsciously.  It also explains her fascination with Amanda, who is flamboyant and overly confident.  She is the complete opposite of Charlotte, and it was easy to see why Amanda would draw Charlotte, as if, by extention, Amanda's confidence would rub off on her. 

It was also easy to see how Amanda could end up leading Charlotte into some situations that she never would have picked for herself.  Some of these situations are powerfully raw and pitiful to read.  I wouldn't recommend this book for younger readers, but older teens.

Despite her mistakes, Charlotte begins to find herself, begins to find her own worth, and to realize just which guy is worthy of her.  These were very real characters with real issues.  I loved it.

Alexa Martin proves, with her debut novel, that she is an excellent storyteller who knows how to draw a character.  This was an excellent, powerful story.  I look forward to see more from this author.

If you liked this book, you might also like:

Sunday, April 10, 2011

In My Mailbox (14)



In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.  I love this meme because I wouldn't find half the awesome books I get to read if I didn't read other bloggers' IMM posts and see what they found.  This is how I find the majority of the books I put on my list. 

I had a small week this time.  Here we go:


Where She Went by Gayle Forman


What did you get this week?  Leave a comment and let me know!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini

Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini
Release Date:  May 31, 2011
Publisher:  HarperTeen

How do you defy destiny?  Helen Hamilton has spent her entire sixteen years trying to hide how different she is—no easy task on an island as small and sheltered as Nantucket. And it's getting harder. Nightmares of a desperate desert journey have Helen waking parched, only to find her sheets damaged by dirt and dust. At school she's haunted by hallucinations of three women weeping tears of blood . . . and when Helen first crosses paths with Lucas Delos, she has no way of knowing they're destined to play the leading roles in a tragedy the Fates insist on repeating throughout history. As Helen unlocks the secrets of her ancestry, she realizes that some myths are more than just legend. But even demigod powers might not be enough to defy the forces that are both drawing her and Lucas together—and trying to tear them apart. - Goodreads.com

I'd be pre-disposed to like this book before reading it  just for the simple fact that it's based in Greek myth, and I love Greek myth.  That aside, however, the author did a wonderful job bringing something brand new to old myths.

Helen grows up thinking she's a normal girl, when she is the farthest thing from it.  She walks through her life happy to blend into the background and not be noticed at all, despite her beautiful face.  When Lucas comes into her life, at first she has the strangest reaction to him, one of anger and loathing, that she can't explain.  It takes a certain event to lift that aspect of an old curse, and at that point, they can't stay away from each other.  I can't say more without ruining some of the story.

Suffice it to say, I fell in love with these two together.  Their romance was so well developed, it was almost agonizing to watch.  You alternately wanted to wait and savor every development, and also you wanted to hurry them along and tell them to kiss already! 

Helen's relationship with the rest of the Delos family was endearing, and I was so happy to see her suddenly feel like she belonged with a group of people when she had felt so outcast for most of her life.  As they help her learn to fight and help her discover who she truly is, I love watching Helen come out of her shell and really blossom.

This was a fascinating story that kept me completely entertained and sucked in.  It was unique and new, while still melding with traditional Greek myth.  I know a sequel is coming and I find myself unable to wait for it to come!!  Mark your calendars for May 31st.  You will want a copy of this wonderul debut book by Josephine Angelini!

If you liked this book, you might also like:

Friday, April 8, 2011

Blog Hop Friday!


Blog Hop is a weekly meme hosted by Crazy For Books. Answer the weekly question and then, Friday through Monday, hop to see what other blogs are saying.  This is a great way to meet new friends and blogs!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell

The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell
Release Date:  March 7, 2011
Publisher:  Harcourt Children's Books

It’s the summer of 1889, and Amelia van den Broek is new to Baltimore and eager to take in all the pleasures the city has to offer. But her gaiety is interrupted by disturbing, dreamlike visions she has only at sunset—visions that offer glimpses of the future. Soon, friends and strangers alike call on Amelia to hear her prophecies. However, a forbidden romance with Nathaniel, an artist, threatens the new life Amelia is building in Baltimore. This enigmatic young man is keeping secrets of his own—still, Amelia finds herself irrepressibly drawn to him. When one of her darkest visions comes to pass, Amelia’s world is thrown into chaos. And those around her begin to wonder if she’s not the seer of dark portents, but the cause.
This book was unlike the type I typically read.  I'm not much of a historical reader, but I'm glad I tried this one.  It was so interesting to see the historical detail in this story.  The author obviously did her research, and I felt transported by the ambience of the time period and the lush backdrop of old parties and the "society" of the day.  It sucked me in completely.

Amelia's character was intriguing, strong, but still somewhat sad, due to various events that occur in the story.  Amelia's visions, I knew, were going to end up getting her into trouble, which wasn't much of a guess, considering how the story starts, but I still found myself upset for her when the inevitable occurred.

Nathaniel was a sexy character.  It wasn't anything in particular that made me feel that way.  He just was.  And the interactions between these two were hot, but still so sweet.  Their encounters were made even more compelling by the beautiful language of the prose.

Saundra Mitchell's writing was my favorite thing about this story.  It was beautiful, lyrical, poetic.  It was a pleasure to read just to be able to savor its beauty.  There are a few authors like that whom I've read that just make me want to read their work for the sake of the work itself.  Check the teasers I posted this week for a taste of her writing and you'll see what I mean.

I seriously loved this story, these characters, and most especially Saundra Mitchell's writing.  I would highly recommend it to anyone, but especially to those readers that love a beautifully crafted sentence. 

If you liked this story, you might also like:


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday

 
 
Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. WoW posts are about books that you can’t wait to get your hands on.

This is one of my favorite posts to read on the blogs that I follow because other bloggers have found so many wonderful books that I had no idea about!  I get most of those from reading Waiting on Wednesday posts. :-)  I urge you to visit other blogs and read theirs to find these great lists!




Release Date: April 26, 2011
Why I love it: Greek mythology!
I can't get enough of them.
Buy it on Goodreads.

What books are you looking forward to?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Teaser Tuesday



Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:




  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My teaser this week comes from:





Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini
Release Date: May 31, 2011

Small blurb from Goodreads.com:  Helen Hamilton has spent her entire sixteen years trying to hide how different she is. Nightmares of a desperate desert journey have Helen waking parched, only to find her sheets damaged by dirt and dust. At school she's haunted by hallucinations of three women weeping tears of blood . . . and when Helen first crosses paths with Lucas Delos, she has no way of knowing they're destined to play the leading roles in a tragedy the Fates insist on repeating throughout history.

Teaser from page 82: "He looked down at her, and when his icy blue eyes met her warm brown ones, a thrill ran down her legs.  Helen jumped up into a fighting crouch."

I am loving this book!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Monday's Month In Retrospect

MONDAY'S MONTH IN RETROSPECT!

It's that time of the month again!  Time to take a look back at the previous month and see what I considered the Best Ofs for what I read in March 2011.  Remember, these are my best ofs on books I read last month, regardless of release date.  I decided to try making this a monthly meme for others to participate in as well.  I don't have a header image yet, but I did put together a small paragraph you can include on your blog if you decide to participate:

Monday's Month in Retrospect is a monthly meme hosted by Readergirl Reviews a Teen Book to look back at favorites or "Best Ofs" that you read the previous month, including best book, heroine, hero, villain and book cover.  To participate, pick your Best ofs, post them in a MMiR post on your blog, and then add your link to the list at the end of this post. 

Best Book I read last month: 

The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
Release Date:  4/26/2011. 
Why it was my favorite: Greek myth!  I love Greek myth, and this was a great one.
Reviewed:  Yes.  See review here.

Best Heroine:
Rhine from Wither by Lauren DeStefano
Why she's my favorite:  This character was so strong.  It was a pleasure to read about a young girl who was smart, kept her own council and wasn't rash.  She was determined and unwavering.

Best Hero:
Hades from The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
Why he's my favorite:  S-e-x-y!

Best Villain:
The Housemaster from Wither by Lauren DeStefano
What made him a great villain: Pure evil!

Best Cover:

Why it's my favorite: Again with the blue covers.  This one is just gorgeous to me because of the blue, but also the black dress set against that blue of darkness with a pale moon.  I love the contrast of her white skin and how she is looking off into the distance.  Gorgeous cover.
Comment and let me know what your picks would be!


Sunday, April 3, 2011

In My Mailbox (13)



In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.  I love this meme because I wouldn't find half the awesome books I get to read if I didn't read other bloggers' IMM posts and see what they found.  This is how I find the majority of the books I put on my list. 

Here's my haul for this week!





Incredibly Alice by Phyllis Reynolds Nayler
Invasion by Jon S. Lewis
The Magnolia League by Katie Crouch




Red Glove by Holly Black
Shift by Jeri Smith-Ready




Shine by Lauren Myracle
Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Leavitt
Sixteenth Summer by Michelle Dalton


What are your IMMs this week?  Leave a comment and let me know!

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