Monday, November 29, 2010

She Smells the Dead by E.J. Stevens - Reviewed

She Smells The Dead (Spirit Guide, Book 1)
Author: E.J. Stevens
Release Date: August 2010
Publisher: Sacred Oaks Press
Pages: 184
Target Age: Young Adult
Summary: Shelfari
It's the beginning of senior year and Yuki's psychic awareness of ghostly spirits is threatening to ruin her life. Her ability to sense spirits of the dead isn't glamorous like the ghost hunting on television. SHE SMELLS THE DEAD. The smell impressions are becoming stronger. Yuki is being visited in her dreams, and she suspects that her friend Calvin is involved in something strange. To make matters worse her crush on Garrett is going unrequited, Yuki's friend Emma is on a rampage against bee oppression, and annoying Calvin Miller mysteriously disappears. Will Yuki be able to focus her powers in time to save the lost soul who is haunting her? Meanwhile, who will save Yuki from following the spirits into the light?
I'm going to do this review just a little different.  Why? Cuz I want to!
What I loved:
The characters: Yuki took me the longest to fall in love with, but I was instantly in love with Cal and Emma, her best friends.  I think Cal just might be what every young girl should wish for in a guy, well...except for that one little thing. You'll see. (you know I don't do spoilers)  Emma is amazing!  I love a girl that believes in things that go against the mainstream and trust me Emma walks the walk. Poor Yuki is so overwhelmed at times that she borders on whining occasionally. I have faith that she is going to step it up and be a wonderful heroine.  She was very believable as a character with this flaw and that had me loving her as well.
I loved that there is NO love triangle.  Now don't get me wrong, I love a good triangle as much as the next girl.  However, it's been a bit over done lately and it was refreshing to have a romance that is strong for a change.
I loved the story.  It definitely has the feel of a first book in a series, lots of set up and getting to know the world that is being created and the rules of that world.  It totally worked though.

What I didn't love:
The ending!!! UGH how could you do that to us E.J. Stevens?  I can't wait to read the next book! ( I guess that's a good thing too.)

Reading this book was fun and at the end frustrating (what a cliff hanger).  I would definitely recommend reading She Smells the Dead.  I keep telling people that if you liked Kelly Armstrong's The Darkest Powers Series then I think you would like She Smells the Dead. I'm not exactly sure why I think this.  For some reason I just thought it had that kind of feel to it.  Trust me, coming from me that is a VERY good thing.  So grab a copy of She Smells the Dead get comfortable and enjoy.  You might not be able to get up till you've finished. 

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Hello All!!  I hope you have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving holiday full of happiness.  

I'm thankful for so much.  My wonderful husband, amazing children, great friends, a lovely home, living in a country where I am free to live my life as I see fit, my families health, happiness, and of course books, nooks and libraries. 
May your pie be sweet and your rolls buttery! 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Waiting On Wednesday (11/24/2010) Warped

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we (bloggers) are anxiously awaiting. This week my pick is Warped by debuting author Maurissa Guirord.  This sounds very intriguing and I'm looking forward to having it in my possession. 

Release Date: 1/11/2011 
Summary: Tessa doesn't believe in magic. Or Fate. But there's something weird about the dusty unicorn tapestry she discovers in a box of old books. She finds the creature woven within it compelling and frightening. After the tapestry comes into her possession, Tessa experiences dreams of the past and scenes from a brutal hunt that she herself participated in. When she accidentally pulls a thread from the tapestry, Tessa releases a terrible centuries old secret. She also meets William de Chaucy, an irresistible 16th-century nobleman. His fate is as inextricably tied to the tapestry as Tessa's own. Together, they must correct the wrongs of the past. But then the Fates step in, making a tangled mess of Tessa's life. Now everyone she loves will be destroyed unless Tessa does their bidding and defeats a cruel and crafty ancient enemy. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Lure by Deborah Kerbel - Reviewed

Author: Deborah Kerbel
Release Date: October 2010
Publisher: Dundurn Press
Pages: 200
Target Age: Young Adult

Summary from Barnes and Noble:
A Victorian garden, a fishing lure, and a ghost named John .
Absolutely nothing is going right for Max Green. His parents have just uprooted their family from Vancouver to the bleak suburbs of Toronto, he has no friends, and everybody at his new high school is ignoring him. To make matters worse, he's in love with an older girl who's completely out of his league.
When Max discovers a local library rumored to be haunted by ghosts, he's immediately drawn to it. With the help of some cryptic messages, he begins to piece together the identity of the teenage ghost and the mysterious chain of events that have connected its spirit to the building for over a century. But just who was John, anyway? Why has he chosen to contact Max? And what does an old fishing lure have to do with solving the mystery?

I really liked Lure and enjoyed the way it was written to show two different male point of views.  This was my first novel by Deborah Kerbel and her writing is easy to read and very engaging. One view is from Max in the present, he is drawn to an older girl and of all things a library. The other from John telling his story from the past and what happened to him to cut his life short.  I liked both boy's stories and I loved where the story went at the end.  I honestly think I connected more with John's story, but was never bored by Max.  Definitely recommended if you like ghost stories that aren't too creepy. 

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Saturday Six on Sunday

I like to take stock of what books I have here at the house over the weekend and then try to figure out what books I want to read through the week. Not that I usually get six books read a week, but a girl can hope.  My Saturday was a little crazy what with all the reading and relaxing I was doing, so I decided to take this on today instead. 
 The End of Marking Time by C.J. West
Gifted housebreaker, Michael O'Connor, awakens inside an ultramodern criminal justice system where prison walls are replaced by surveillance equipment and a host of actors hired to determine if he is worthy of freedom. While he was sleeping, the Supreme Court declared long term incarceration to be cruel and unusual punishment and ordered two million felons released. The result was utter chaos and the backlash from law-abiding citizens and police departments reshaped the United States. Felons now enter reeducation programs where they live freely among the population. At least that's what they think. In reality they are enslaved to an army of counselors and a black box that teaches them everything they failed to learn from kindergarten through adulthood. Michael believes he's being tested by the black box, but what he slowly begins to realize is that everything he does is evaluated to determine whether he lives or dies.

The Secret of Ka by Chistopher Pike:
One minute Sara's bored on vacation in Istanbul. The next, she's unearthed a flying carpet that cleverly drags her to the mysterious Island of the Djinn—or genies. By her side is Amesh, a cute guy she has a crush on but doesn't yet trust. When Amesh learns the secret of invoking djinn, he loses control. He swears he'll call upon only one djinn and make one wish. The plan sounds safe enough. But neither Sara nor Amesh are any match for the monster that that swells before them. It hypnotizes Amesh, compelling him to steal Sara's flying carpet and leave her stranded on the island.
Discovering the carpet has sparked a new path for Sara, one that will lead her to battle creatures even deadlier than djinn. In this fight, Sara can save mankind, herself, or the boy she cares for. Who will she be forced to sacrifice?

Delirium by Lauren Oliver
Is love a disease that needs a cure? According to the government in this alternate present, yes.

The Lost City of Atlantis: Traveling Trunk Adventure 2 by Ben Flinders
Reading this one with my six year old son.  Review will be coming soon.

Afterlife by Claudia Gray
Readers have fallen in love with Bianca and Lucas, and they will be thrilled to read this exciting conclusion to their romantic adventure. I know I'm thrilled to have gotten this from netgalley and can't wait to read it.  I think it's next after I finish reading..............

Nightshade by Andrea Cremer
I love, love, yes, LOVE this cover and enjoy sharing it with you whenever I can.  I'm hoping to finish this tonight.  Review coming soon. 

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Waiting On Wednesday (11/17/2010) Where She Went (If I Stay #2)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we (bloggers) are anxiously awaiting. This week my pick is Where She Went by Gayle Forman.  I loved If I Stay, it was such a beautifully written book.  I've been looking forward to reading Where She Went since the moment I heard it was being written.  If you haven't read If I Stay I highly recommend that you add it to your TBR list.

It's been three years since the devastating accident . . . three years since Mia walked out of Adam's life forever.

Now living on opposite coasts, Mia is Juilliard's rising star and Adam is LA tabloid fodder, thanks to his new rock star status and celebrity girlfriend. When Adam gets stuck in New York by himself, chance brings the couple together again, for one last night. As they explore the city that has become Mia's home, Adam and Mia revisit the past and open their hearts to the future and each other.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Teaser Tuesday (11/16/2010) Nightshade

Miz B and Teaser Tuesdays asks you to:
Grab your current read.
Let the book fall open to a random page.
Share with us two (2) sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
You also need to 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!

" Every girl I know says Pride and Prejudice.  Or some other Jane Austen tale of class-obstructed love, conflict, and-insert longing sigh here-marriage."
"I'm not the Jane Austen type." I slowed my steps so he didn't have to work to keep pace with me.

Hope you are all having a wonderful Tuesday!

Monday, November 15, 2010

It's Monday! What are you Reading?

It's Monday! What are you reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Shelia over at Book Journey where we share what we have read in the past week, what we are reading now and what we plan to read for the rest of the week.  Shelia even hosts a contest for this meme, so get on over there and check her out. 
I've had a pretty crazy week here, wait a pretty crazy month so far.  As you may remember my kids and I are homeschoolers and the kids are in a local homeschooling drama group. They are putting on a production of Scrooge at the end of the month and we are having lots and lots and lots of rehearsals.  Usually this would be wonderful for me because I would have lots of time for reading while the kids are rehearsing, however I'm helping out more than I have in the past which actually means less reading time for good 'ol mom. The kids and I have also become fascinated with Veronica Mars and have been staying up late into the night watching the folks of Neptune. Wow that was rambly.
  Sorry onto the books!
Last week I was lucky to get anything read but I managed to find time for a great book by Deborah Kerbel, Lure!  I'll be reviewing this later on in the week.  I'm now reading Nightshade by Andrea Cremer.  I'm only about 60 pages in but I can tell this one is going to be a hard one to put down.  
I'm pretty sure the next book I'll be picking up will be Afterlife by Claudia Gray.
Having become what they feared most, Bianca and Lucas face a terrifying new reality. They must return to Evernight Academy, Lucas as a vampire and Bianca as a wraith. But Lucas is haunted by demons, both personal and supernatural. Bianca must help him fight the evil inside him, combat the forces determined to drive them apart—and find the power to claim her destiny at last.
So what are you planning to read this week?  Inquiring minds want to know, I want to know!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Blog Hop Friday

A fun way to find new bloggers is Crazy-for-Books Book Blogger Hop. She's got the awesome Mr. Linky and her rules over there too. I know I have found a lot of amazing blogs using these links. Most important for Friday, have fun it is Friday after all! This week Jennifer's question is: "If you find a book that looks interesting but is part of a series, do you always start with the first title?"

My answer- I have to start with the very first book.  I've picked up books before and started reading them to find out that it was the third book in a series and I had to stop reading it and go find the first book.  I feel like I'm missing something if I don't read them in order.  

  To join Parajunkee's Follow My Book Blog Friday you need to go to her blog and read the rules and add your blog to the Mr. Linky she's got going on. Another great way to discover new blogs and spread the bloggin love. Jackie aka Insane Hussein aka *angel face* is the featured blogger on Parajunkee's blog today and her question is:

What is your usual monthly book budget?

My Answer: I'm averaging my monthly book spending to be about $30 a month give or take on any given month.  I try to be frugal and shop for books at the Goodwill, library sales, and 

Have a great weekend.  Now I'm off to discover some more wonderful blogs.  


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Waiting On Wednesday (11/10/2010) - The Iron Queen


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we (bloggers) are anxiously awaiting. I KNOW that I'm not the only one waiting for this one, especially since Julie has been teasing us on Tuesdays.

The Iron Queen
Author: Julie Kagawa
Release Date: January 2011
Publisher: Harlequin

In less than twenty-four hours I’ll be seventeen.

Although, technically, I won’t actually be turning seventeen. I’ve been in the Nevernever too long. When you’re in Faery, you don’t age. So while a year has passed in the real world, agewise I’m probably only a few days older than when I went in.

In real life, I’ve changed so much I don’t even recognize myself.

I thought it was over. That my time with the fey, the impossible choices I had to make, the sacrifices of those I loved, was behind me. But a storm is approaching, an army of Iron fey that will drag me back, kicking and screaming. Drag me away from the banished prince who’s sworn to stand by my side. Drag me into the core of conflict so powerful, I’m not sure anyone can survive it.


Monday, November 8, 2010

Cryer's Cross by Lisa McMann - Reviewed

Cryer's Cross
Author: Lisa McMann
Release Date: February 2011
Published by: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Pages: 240
Target Age: Young Adult
Summary: The small town of Cryer’s Cross is rocked by tragedy when an unassuming freshman disappears without a trace. Kendall Fletcher wasn’t that friendly with the missing girl, but the angst wreaks havoc on her OCD-addled brain.
When a second student goes missing—someone close to Kendall’s heart—the community is in an uproar. Caught in a downward spiral of fear and anxiety, Kendall’s not sure she can hold it together. When she starts hearing the voices of the missing, calling out to her and pleading for help, she fears she’s losing her grip on reality. But when she finds messages scratched in a desk at school—messages that could only be from the missing student who used to sit there—Kendall decides that crazy or not, she’d never forgive herself if she didn’t act on her suspicions.
Something’s not right in Cryer’s Cross—and Kendall’s about to find out just how far the townspeople will go to keep their secrets buried.

As a fan of Lisa McMann's Wake Trilogy Series I was very excited to read Cryer's Cross. I am excited to say that I wasn't at all disappointed.  Kendall's OCD is heartbreaking and charming all at the same time.  The relationships between the people in this amazingly small town are so touching.  I absolutely loved the characters.   The story itself kept me pretty spooked out the whole time I read it. I mentioned to a few people that saw me reading it that it reminded me of a Stephen King type story.  Not gory at all just really creepy.  I have to be very careful with this review because I don't want to give anything away.  I highly recommend adding this to your must have list for February. 

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephanie Meyer - Reviewed

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner
Author: Stephanie Meyer
Released:  June 2010
Published by: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Pages: 192
Target Age: Young Adult

Summary:Fans of The Twilight Saga will be enthralled by this riveting story of Bree Tanner, a character first introduced in Eclipse, and the darker side of the newborn vampire world she inhabits. In another irresistible combination of danger, mystery, and romance, Stephenie Meyer tells the devastating story of Bree and the newborn army as they prepare to close in on Bella Swan and the Cullens, following their encounter to its unforgettable conclusion.

 I was able to borrow this from my local library on cd.  I LOVE being able to listen to books in the car.  While I enjoyed this story it definitely wasn't my favorite of the Twilight Saga novels.  True it was a novella but still.  By the end of the story I really liked Bree and hated knowing that she was going to die.  That was really weird for me, the knowing that she was going to die.  I loved Fred(a fellow newborn vampire) and really wish that Stephanie Meyer would write a story about what happens to him after he left Bree.  If you enjoyed the Twilight books then I'm sure you will be wanting to pick this up, cuz I'm pretty sure I am one of the last few people on Earth to read/listen to Bree's story.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The Spooktacular Winner Is !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Winner of the Spooktacular Giveaway is........................................

                                    Jenn S.
I'll be emailing you in just a minute.  Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Virals by Kathy Reichs - Reviewed

Author: Kathy Reichs
Release Date: November 2, 2010
Published by: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Pages: 464
Target Age: Young Adult
Source: Star Book Tours

Tory Brennan, niece of acclaimed forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan (of the Bones novels and hit TV show), is the leader of a ragtag band of teenage "sci-philes" who live on a secluded island off the coast of South Carolina. When the group rescues a dog caged for medical testing on a nearby island, they are exposed to an experimental strain of canine parvovirus that changes their lives forever.
As the friends discover their heightened senses and animal-quick reflexes, they must combine their scientific curiosity with their newfound physical gifts to solve a cold-case murder that has suddenly become very hot-if they can stay alive long enough to catch the killer's scent.
Fortunately, they are now more than friends- they're a pack. They are Virals.
My very first experience with Kathy Reichs was a success. The Virals won me over, completely. Some of the things they did were a little far fetched maybe, but hey it's a book right? Tory was a likable, strong, main character. She was ballsy and wasn't afraid to stand up for what she believed in. A great role model if you can get around the whole breaking the law for good reason stuff. Her friends were entertaining especially Hi, he cracked me up and I really loved him. Ben was so quiet I couldn't get a good read on him but that was his thing, the strong, silent type. Shelton was cute if a little nerdy but totally in a good way. I liked the sci-fi powers from a contagious disease angle as well. Over all a good read with a great mystery. I will definitely be reading the next book in this series.