Friday, November 30, 2012

Gotta Have It YA Releases: December 2012

It's that time of the month again for Gotta Have It YA Releases, holiday style. Check out what the month of December 2012 has in store for us in book releases:

Burned (Pretty Little Liars #12) by Sara Shepard  (12/4/2012)
The Almost Truth by Eileen Cook  (12/4/2012)
Poison (Legacy #2) by Molly Cochran  (12/4/2012)
Never Let You Go by Emma Carlson Berne  (12/4/2012)
Kiss Me Again by Rachel Vail  (12/5/2012)
Princess of the Silver Woods by Jessica Day George  (12/11/2012)
Avow (Archers of Avalon #3) by Chelsea Fine (12/11/2012)
Love and Other Perishable Items by Laura Buzo  (12/11/2012)
All the Broken Pieces by Cindi Madsen  (12/11/2012)
Finding Chase (Chasing Nikki #2) by Lacey Weatherford (12/12/2012)
Opal (Lux #3) by Jennifer L. Armentrout  (12/18/2012)
The Girl In the Wall by Daphne Benedis-Grab  (12/18/2012)
Deadly Little Lessons (Touch #5) by Laurie Faria Stolarz (12/18/2012)
The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken  (12/18/2012)
Crimson Frost (Mythos Academy #4) by Jennifer Estep  (12/24/2012)
Full Moon Kisses (Full Moon #3) by Ellen Schreiber  (12/26/2012)
Leave a comment and let me know which ones you're looking forward to!


Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Release Date: October 23, 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Mara Dyer once believed she could run from her past.  She can’t.  She used to think her problems were all in her head.  They aren’t.  She couldn’t imagine that after everything she’s been through, the boy she loves would still be keeping secrets.  She’s wrong.  -

Amazing! Brilliant!  I was really worried that this second installment wouldn't live up to how much I loved the first one, but it did, and then some.  Everything I loved about the first one is still there, only better.  I still love Mara.  I love Noah.  Together, these two are just amazing, and I love how they work together to try and solve these issues.

As bad as I felt for Mara in the first book, I felt even worse for her in this one.  Whereas in the first, her mother and father treat her like she's crazy, in this one, it gets worse.  Noah is still there for her, of course, although there are some chunks of time where, due to the circumstances, she's not able to spend as much time with him.  But I love how devoted he is to helping her.

The big question on everyone's lips might be... do we finally figure out what's going on?  Yes and no.  There's a definite revelation toward the end that makes things become a bit clearer, and we are left with a pretty good idea of what has caused all of Mara's strange issues, but we most definitely don't know the entire story.  It ends with another horrific cliffhanger that had me banging my head on the wall and wishing the next book was already out.  I can't wait to see how this thing ends.

The writing was amazing, fast-paced, and just as engrossing as in the first book.  I'm a huge fine of Michelle Hodkin now.  Not only am I looking forward to the final Mara Dyer book, but I can't wait to see where the author goes from here.  Awesome!


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

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: May 7, 2013
Why I'm looking forward to it:
Bionic-like girl having to train
a guy that just can't get it right.
Sounds awesome!
Buy it on Goodreads.
Leave a comment and let me know what your WoW is this week!


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they post a new Top Ten list complete answers. This week's Top Ten list is:

Top Ten Tuesday - Top Ten Most Anticipated Books For 2013:

1.   Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi.  (Sequel to Under the Never Sky)

2.   Shades of Earth by Beth Revis.  (Last in the Across the Universe trilogy)

3.   Everbound by Brodi Ashton.  (Sequel to Everneath)

4.   Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi.  (Sequel to Shatter Me)

5.   The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead  (Third in the Bloodlines series)

6.   The Goddess Inheritance by Aimee Carter (Final book in the Goddess series)

7.    Tainted Love by Eva Marquez  (Sequel to Sweetest Taboo)

8.   Requiem by Lauren Oliver.  (Final book in the Delirium series)

9.   Apollyon by Jennifer L. Armentrout  (Fourth in the Covenant series)

10. Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire (Sequel to Beautiful Disaster)

Post your links to comments so I can see your lists too!


Monday, November 26, 2012

Sweetest Taboo by Eva Marquez

Sweetest Taboo by Eva Marquez
Release Date: October 1, 2012
Publisher: Terra Mia Press

Isabel Cruz was fifteen years old when she met Tom Stevens. She was 15 when they started dating, and 16 when she lost her virginity to him. By the time she turned 18 and went to college, everything had fallen apart.  This hadn’t been an ordinary love, though. Not a love between two dear friends, or even high school sweethearts. This had been the most taboo sort of love there was: a relationship between a student and her teacher. Isabel started her high school career as a normal student, but set her sights on Tom Stevens as soon as she met him, and pursued him with an intense – and sometimes reckless – fascination. When he finally approached her after swim practice and told her that he shared her feelings, it was the start of a forbidden and dangerous relationship.  Join Isabel as she makes her way through this dark love story, hiding from teachers, lying to her parents, and defying the authorities to make a life with the man she loves. Watch as she discovers the wonders of love and romance, and the terrible betrayal of jealous friends. And cry with her when she learns the hard truth about life and the people in her world. -

I normally take a couple of days after reading a book before I actually write the review.  It could be that I'm lazy at times, or it could be that I want to allow the book's elements to marinate for a little while so that I can give it a truly thoughtful response.  I like option two better...sounds better.  But it's probably a mixture of the two.  All that being said, I just finished reading Sweetest Taboo at 1:35am tonight, and here I am at 1:42am writing the review for it.  This review is also going to hop over several other books and be posted immediately for no other reason than that it had a truly impactful message for me and I absolutely loved it.

I've always had a pretty firmly held opinion about teacher to student relationships...mostly when we're talking about high school.  Once someone's in college, I pretty much feel like they're consenting adults and whether they have a relationship with a professor is something they have the intellect to reason out on their own.  But with high school students, it's more, yes, taboo, because the idea is that a kid in high school is more vulnerable, more easily preyed upon by sexual predators, and that teachers, having a position of authority over them, are able to then exert that authority in an unhealthy way to provoke the student into elicit activities and relationships that they're not mentally equipped to deal with.  Does it always follow that this assumption is true, however?  This is the question thoroughly explored in Eva Marquez story, Sweetest Taboo.

I went into this story knowing exactly what my take on this subject would be.  I've watched multiple new stories, Dateline episodes and other documentaries about teacher-student relationships that were outed and ended up being prosecuted, and I pretty much felt that this was always wrong, despite the fact that I could name at least two such cases where, after the sentence was served, the relationship picked right back up where it left off, and the now "of age" student is still in a relationship with their former teacher.  In this book, Marquez explores the possibility that these relationships don't always have to be criminal, or of a sexually predatory nature.  What if you have a young student, girl or boy, who knows exactly what he/she wants, and a teacher who would never do anything to hurt that student, would in fact protect them, do anything for them, and that the ultimate sex act isn't what the relationship is based on?  What if it was based on nothing but an emotional connection that ultimately leads, instead, to a special love?

I absolutely loved Isabel.  This is a smart girl.  She's mature for her age, despite the fact that there are a couple decisions that she makes early on that are impactful, and that do show her age.  The way she feels about her teacher, Tom Stevens, is firm and deep.  Teenaged kids fall in love with other teenaged kids all the time, and no one has any trouble accepting the fact that it is truly love.  So why, when the person they love is much older, is it not looked upon in the same light?  Isabel's relationship with Tom starts slowly, builds over the course of years, and it takes just about that long for them to even take their relationship into the ultimate physical act.  It is clear that their love is pure for each other.  Is it not possible that there might be times when such relationships are an exception?

Tom's character was sweet, gentle, caring.  There were times that I found him to be a little weak, but even he recognized this in himself, and there are things he does to change that.  The journey these two take over the course of the book was engrossing, and I couldn't help myself as I ended up rooting for them.  You just wanted so badly for them to get to be together as you read.

I have to give props to Eva Marquez.  Her writing of this book was masterful.  To be able to take such a taboo (yes, there it is again) situation and actually make her reader think of it in a new light, takes some talented handling.  People are probably going to either love this book or hate it, depending upon the strength of their convictions.  But I can guarantee, that regardless of their resulting opinion, the book WILL make them think, and it just might change their mind a little.  Bravo to Marquez for taking on such a controversial topic and handling it with such sensitivity and bravery.  It was utterly captivating to read, clearly, as I started it and finished it in one sitting.  I am dying to read the sequel, Tainted Love!


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Renegade by J.A. Souders

Renegade by J.A. Souders
Release Date: November 13, 2012
Publisher: Tor Teens

Since the age of three, sixteen-year-old Evelyn Winters has been trained to be Daughter of the People in the underwater utopia known as Elysium. Selected from hundreds of children for her ideal genes, all her life she’s thought that everything was perfect; her world. Her people. The Law.  But when Gavin Hunter, a Surface Dweller, accidentally stumbles into their secluded little world, she’s forced to come to a startling realization: everything she knows is a lie.  Her memories have been altered.  Her mind and body aren’t under her own control.  And the person she knows as Mother is a monster.  Together with Gavin she plans her escape, only to learn that her own mind is a ticking time bomb... and Mother has one last secret that will destroy them all.  -

Loved it!  This book was just a powerhouse of adventure and it completely swept me away from the very first page.  I loved, loved, loved the characters in this story.  Well, except for the bad ones, of course.  They were really evil.  But Evelyn and Gavin were amazing.

Evelyn was absolutely brilliant, intelligent, and able to reason her way through the various twists and turns of her story, the obstacles in her path, etc.  You really don't expect this from her at the outset because of the way her circumstances started.  You think she's a mousy girl with little in the way of original thought, but this isn't her fault, and of course, you discover that there's a lot more to her initial personality than you might have thought.  How she is able to climb out of that, peeling back layers of her own personality to reveal such a stunning mind, was amazing. 

Gavin was the perfect foil to her.  He's had freedom, had a normal life, and been places that Evelyn thought no longer existed as a civilized world.  He is patient with her, gentle and kind.  Watching the two interact together, with her discovering emotions and her own personality, was gratifying.  Especially considering there's a rift between them that is not of their own making, and they have to figure out a way to surpass it. 

The character of Mother horrid.  I hated this woman and wanted her to get her own in the end.  I can't really go into much beyond that without ruining the story for us.

Bottom line, this was an amazing story filled with suspense.  After the first couple chapters, where things are being set up, this story was just one big adventurous quest!  I was on the edge of my seat for the entire read, right up until the last shocking page.  Wow, amazing.


Saturday, November 24, 2012

Stacking the Shelves

Stacking the shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.

Here's what I got this week!

 Leave a comment and let me know what you got this week!


Friday, November 23, 2012

Feature and Follow Friday

So I decided to give Feature and Follow Friday a try. This is my really my first time to participate, but it seems like fun, and a great way to find new blogs who might know about books I don't, and to meet some new friends. It is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee’s View and Alison Can Read.

Q: What blog are you thankful for?

There are just so many amazing blogs out there that I read and follow, and I like all of them for different reasons.  But, if I had to pick just one, I'd have to say I'm very grateful to Xpresso Reads.  It's just a really well-rounded blog that has great reviews, a meme or two, but also lots of extra stuff like blog tours, cover reveals, and now blog designs.  Also, Giselle, who runs it, is a very helpful blogger too.  If you haven't checked out her blog, try it out.

What are your faves?

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