Sunday, December 25, 2011

Happy Holiday Super Giveaway Winners

I thought that there would be more entries for these contests, but none of them got over 50 entries.  Anyway, here are the winners. I'm sorry that they're a little late, but I was at my Grandparent's house and then it was Christmas, but the winners are here now. 

The winner of the book pendant is isabella who wanted the Catching Fire pendant.
The winner of the personalized pendant is Susan Light.
The winner of the 2012 ARC is Tristen Calnan who wanted Under the Never Sky.

Thanks to all who entered and hopefully I'll do another contest like this soon.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Review-Under the Never Sky

I recently made friends with the amazing author of this amazing book so I decided that since the book is coming out in 11 days, YES ELEVEN, I should read it because I received it for review.  This book has been pitched for people who loved both Graceling and The Hunger Games, neither of which I have actually read (although I've started them both) but now I might need to give them a second chance.  Veronica's book was so good, the world building was amazing, and what made it even more amazing was the fact that she managed to make a whole new world and most of the story took place in a space that wasn't like the world we live in today.  I admire her great skill at the art she has ended up calling her profession.  This book had it all, adventure, danger, some blood thrown in, a cute boy, a strong girl, a super power or two (you'll understand what I mean when you read it), some kissy scenes, and cannibals (and you all know how much I love that last one!).  There's a clear villain in the book, even though he's not in play most of the time, and the choices Aria has to make are life changing.  There have been mixed reviews about this book, and I can understand that because some people could say it starts out slow.  I think for me it wasn't that it started out slow but that we were thrown into the story with no background so I was rather confused, but I just pushed through it (with a little help from Veronica every now and then).  So to clear this up a little for those of you who read the book (so you don't give up and miss out on the awesomeness) there is the sun and then there is the Aether.  The Aether, according to Veronica is "a new layer of atmosphere that sort of acts like electricity, but it moves like water, up in the sky."  And those are her words, not mine, so now you know why they sound so much better then anything I could have come up with.  Be warned, there are a few hot scenes in the book so it's probably not a good gift for someone under the age of 14 (probably a lot like The Hunger Games, which some people say are good for 5th graders, but really, I don't think so.).  If you like dystopian novels definitely give this one a try, and keep in mind, the future may be closer then you think.  Also, GOD that tag line, isn't it great!?

Released January 3, 2012

4.5/5 dust spirits

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

In Which I Talk About Books (3)

More lists of 5 books, not 10 (so I don't cause your eyes too much harm)!  Yeah, I stole some of these but I also made up a few all by myself! (Well, just because I made them up doesn't mean they haven't been done before, it just means I haven't SEEN them before, okay? Okay.)

FIRST; Books I want to find in my stocking/under the tree/etc.
1. Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Leavitt. This book just sounds so me, which kind of makes me sound pathetic, but that's okay. I'm one of those people who fixates on one part of a person (who generally doesn't know I exist) and basically I become all swoony over them.  Yeah, I admit it's dorky but I AM a dork, and you can't tell me this book doesn't sound like fun.
2. Ashes by Ilsa Bick. Michelle Hodkin says this book scared her, and because I LOVE Michelle's book and I LOVE to be scared I don't see any reason why I shouldn't want this book.
3. You Against Me by Jenny Downham.  I read Jenny's first book years ago and it was really good, so when I learned she was writing another book I was interested in that book as well.
4. Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally. Although I'm a tomboy I love books with sappy love stories, and I love them even more when Simmone Elkeles says that she loves them, because I love Simone Elkeles.
5. The Dark And Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan. I read the first two books in this series by her and now I really need to finish it up.  I've also heard that this is the fan favorite of the three, so I'm very excited to read it!

SECOND; Sequels I need NOW.
1. Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare.  I just finished Clockwork Prince and now I need to know how it all ends. I'm sure because it is Cassie the last book will end up with at least one dead shadowhunter that we all know and love, but I just NEED to know what happens.
2. City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare.  The ending of CoFA?  MAJOR CLIFFHANGER!!!  I hate cliffhangers, and this one was HUGE.  I need to know what happens NOW because I sense MORE bad things in store for Jace and Clary. I mean really Cassie, just leave them alone!
3. The sequel to The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin. This doesn't have a title yet, which is okay, but hopefully it will have the words "Mara Dyer" in it, cause I feel that would fit well.  But to the point, another book with a HUGE cliffhanger.  Yeah, you learn major things in the book but just when you think you know everything, BAM, you're left dangling.
4. The sequel to Legend by Marie Lu. This book also doesn't have a title yet, but it comes out net year.  The end of Legend, not really a cliffhanger at all, but I just really want to see what happens!  Lu has such a great writing style that you can't help but want to read the whole thing once you actually start reading.  And I want more kissing, because there wasn't enough kissing in this book, so I hope that gets fixed in book 2!
5. The Last Echo by Kimberly Derting. This isn't actually the last book in the Body Finder series, contrary to some belief, the title is just misleading.  But, you all know how much I love Kim and her books, and she said this was the first book where she actually scared herself while writing a scene, so BRING IT ON!

THIRD; Teen books that will most likely end up being modern classics.
1. Looking for Alaska by John Green. If you've read this book you have to know that it's good.  It makes you think, it makes you cry, and it makes you thankful for the people you have in your life.
2. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher.  Teen suicide is a HUGE issue, and even though this book is a NYT best seller and rights have been sold in many many countries it's still not a book that people go, "oh yeah, I've heard of that" like To Kill A Mockingbird.  As times change the books that will be remembered do too, and this one should be remembered for a long time, because this will always be an issue.
3. The Harry Potter book by J. K. Rowling.  There are very few modern classics that are fantasy in genre, but this one will sure to be one of the few that make it there.  I have no doubt this book will go down in history for more then one reason.
4. Will Grayson, Will Gryason by John Green and David Levithan. Okay, this one is really just me HOPING it will end up as a modern classic, but I mean, who says classics can't be fun?  I think this book has something to teach every one of us, and isn't that classics are really for in the end, to teach us, inspire us, and make us think?
5. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I haven't read this book and it hasn't actually come out yet, but if you've read something by John Green you know what a genius he is, and if you know what the book is about you probably already know it's gonna be on the best seller list.

FOURTH; If you haven't read these books you must go forth and do so.
1. Anything by Cassandra Clare. Her world is just so magical, and her writing is perfect, and her kissy scenes are oh so swoon-worthy.
2. Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan.  This book is just so funny, and it's great, and it's mind blowing, and it's just...there are no words for this book.
3. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher. This book is heartbreaking and wonderful and insightful and thought provoking all in one.  A true gem in the teen literary world.
4. Beauty Queens by Libba Bray. I'm sure this one is making you go "wait, what, how is this book one that I NEED to read?"  But I think that this is one of the most important books you could read, because it gives you a whole new look on the way we as Americans see so many things.  As a girl who takes little heed in the way she looks when she goes outside and is rather disgusted at all of the things we value now it was really great to see I'm not the only person with this opinion.
5. The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson. This book deals with loss, which, unless you are VERY VERY lucky, you have delt with or will deal with at one point or another in your life.  Nelson somehow manages to make loss beautiful in a way.

FIFTH; Books with swoon-worthy boys.
1. Anything by Cassandra Clare.  Jace, Alec, Jem, Will, Magnus, ALL of her guy characters are SO swoon-worthy.  They are badass, they have a sweet-side, and man are they ripped! ;)
2. The Hush, Hush Saga by Becca Fitzpatrick. Patch is just, yum.  We all love a cute guy with a bad boy side but Patch has such a soft side too. I mean, who doesn't want the ultimate bad boy devoted to them?
3. The Wolves of Mercy Falls by Maggie Stiefvater. Sam is one of those rare boys in YA literature that isn't a bad boy but still makes us all swoon.  He's so sweet and so in love with Grace (which happens to be my name, but I've yet to find a Sam who's crazy in love with me).  Sometimes we just need one of those boys that loves you no matter what and doesn't end up breaking your heart because of something stupid he says/does trying to be "cool"
4. The Perfect Chemistry Series by Simone Elkeles. The Fuentes boys are just SO great.  They're bad, they're passionate, they're Latino (okay, that really doesn't have anything to do with anything), and they're good looking.  They're also very protective about their girls, but they understand that their girls can totally hold their own.
5. Anything by Stephenie Perkins. Gosh are her boys swoon-worthy or WHAT!? And the best part, they're just ordinary boys!  They have flaws!  The other great thing, they fall for girls that are just like us, nothing magical about it.  Yeah, they're a little infuriating because they're sometimes blind, but what boy isn't?
EXTRA; The Body Finder Series by Kimberly Derting. Kim can write some great guys, she really can!  I've always been one of those girls who wants to fall in love with their best friend and live happily ever after, although Rafe isn't half bad either.

SIXTH; Books with kick-ass girls.
1. Anything by Cassandra Clare. You guys, let me just say it now, Cassandra Clare is a great writer and all her characters are great.  Clary, Tessa, Isabelle, they all hold their own and all of them could kill you without help.  And they're all very fashionable to boot.
2. The Body Finder Series by Kimberly Derting. Violet may not know how to fight or carry a sword or anything like that, but she is fearless because she doesn't worry about herself.  She senses an echo and goes to help whoever or whatever it is that is dead.  That, to me, is just as good as a person who goes out and fights demons.
3. The Nightshade Series by Andrea Cremer. Calla Tor is fierce and she takes crap from nobody!  There are so many YA books out there right now that have people torn between two guys, and yes, that's the way it is for us now, but as Andrea said, Calla might end up not picking either Ren OR Shay, because she's independent!  She sought the truth even when it meant destroying her standing in her home and she's not afraid to fight for what she thinks is right.
4. Legend by Marie Lu. June reminds me of the girl version of Patrick Jane (The Mentalist).  She can hold a gun, she's fast, she's smart, she does what's right, she loves her family so much, and even though it could mean her death she stands up for what she KNOWS is right and fights against what is wrong. 
5. Beauty Queens By Libba Bray. All of the girls in this book kick ass. They're stranded on a deserted island (or so they think) and have to survive the hardships of surviving by themselves.  And did I mention they are beauty pageant girls? Yeah, I think you have to be pretty kick ass just to survive in that situation, but to be a pampered girl for your whole life and then have to stop a conspiracy, that is bad-ass.

SEVENTH; New books you might ask for for the holidays.
1. Legend by Marie Lu. So much fun, told from the point of view of the two main characters (a boy and a girl) and it's dystopian.  And half the print is in gold!  Fancy.
2. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi. A dystopian debut that's different then pretty much anything else out there to this point.  It's full of action and kissing (and who doesn't love both!?) and the story is really original.
3. The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater.  Here's a book with a kick-ass girl and man-eating horses.  The thing that really got me was the man-eating horses.  Also very different then anything else out there.
4. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. This is a beautiful book with an intricate story line and it's pretty much the only thing out there of it's kind at this moment in time.  She's not a debut author, but this is a book that's on pretty much everyone's radar for 2012.
5. Shattered Souls by Mary Lindsey. Another book that's different (and it also needs a sequel) that has a nice air of Victorian England even though it's set in the modern day US. A unique idea that's beautiful and somewhat chilling at the same time. And the boy is pretty cute too.

EIGHTH; Lesser known creatures.
1. The Monstumologist by Rick Yancy. How many of you have heard of a Anthropophagi? Enough said.
2. The Replacement by Brenna Yavanoff. Changelings are sort of like faeries, but for the point of this post we'll say they're different.
3. The Need series by Carie Jones. Pixies!  Now that's different. No, not faeries, Pixies. And they're not small little things that help you fly with their dust.
4. Zombies Vs. Unicorns Edited by Holly Black and Justine Larbalestier. Zombies AND Unicorns? Now that's weird.
5. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi. I'm not really sure what Juliette is, but whatever it is it's different.  Something like a mutant.  That counts as a creature, right?  I mean that in the best way possible.

NINTH; Top contemporary books of the year (in no particular order).
1. The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson.  I loved the inserts in the book, for me those were the best part! But I liked the actual page parts too, that part was good as well.
2. The Pull of Gravity by Gae Polisner. A cute indie book about the lengths one boy would go for his best friend (and a girl that he may or may not have a crush on). 
3. Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephenie Perkins. Loved Anna, loved Lola more! Cricket is mine! Enough said.
4. Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles.  Luis may be my favorite Fuentes boy of the three. Probably because he's the smart one that takes some risks.  I like smart boys.
5. Beauty Queens by Libba Bray.  A quirky, funny read that made me thrilled that I'm not the only one who thinks American advertising has gone just a LITTLE too far.  And that beauty isn't really the most important thing in the world.

TENTH; Top dystopian/sci-fi/magic/etc books of the year (in no particular order) The 10 book version!
1. Across the Universe by Beth Revis. Yay for space travel, murder mysteries, and space ships!  Can you tell I'm a Star Trek nerd? ;)
2. Delirium by Lauren Oliver. This book BLEW MY MIND. It was just so beautiful and perfect and lyrical and...and...yeah, it was amazing.
3. Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma.  I'm not really sure what category this book falls in, but because it has a few parts in it that could never be real (or that we have yet to discover) it will be in this category.  For some reason I just loved this book.  I'm not sure what it was, maybe the writing style, maybe the characters, maybe just the story idea.  Although I have a sneaking suspicion it was Ruby with her Ruby ways.
4. Hourglass by Myra McEntire. Finally a time travel book that didn't confuse me!  And the whole idea of the book, even though part of it was time travel was still cool and new!
5. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin. It was spooky, it was sexy, it was a little confusing, and it was all good.  And Noah, WOW Noah.  Also, Mara, she's a bad-ass, watch out for her if you're evil!
6. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor.  A fresh book that took my breath away and left me pretty much speechless.  My favorite parts may have been the little sections before each part and the first few chapters. ;)
7. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi. I loved it. So different, but not in a bad way!  I kinda wish I could write like this!  Actually, I REALLY wish I could write like this.
8. The Pledge by Kimberly Derting. Because we all know I kinda stalk Kim and I basically love ALL of her books.  This one was pretty cool.  Also, Klingon on the sticker, that is an EPIC WIN!
9. Legend by Marie Lu. Oh goodness, this was such a thrill ride and so much fun!  The sad thing, I could actually see things like this happening in the future.  Beware!
10. Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare. *Swoon* Goodness. So much happened in such a short amount of time in that book, and some of those kisses, WOW. We also learn SO much about SO much and it's was beautiful. 

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Review-Clockwork Prince

First off, I love Cassie's books. She's one of my favorite authors and there is not a book she has written that I don't like.  People have said many things about this book, that it left them heart-broken, it made them cry, it was the best book she's ever written, and while these all may be true to some people only one of them is true for me.  This is, by far, the best book Cassie has ever written.  I can see how some people might cry and how some people might be left heart-broken, because Cassie writes in such a way that plays with your emotions, like a roller coaster of feelings shoved at you in such a way you just have to hold on to them for the time being.  People are also steadily on a side, Team Jem or Team Will, and to begin with I was Team Will, but now I'm Team "Cassie Break My Heart and You Will Die".  I think there's a good way to end the series, a reasonable way to end the series, and a way that will leave half of us broken for the rest of our lives, and based on this book I'm guessing it will be the last one that ends up being written.  The book only takes place between a two week period but I feel that so much is squished into that two weeks, so much happens, we learn so much, and it's just so magical.  Dare I say that this series is shaping up to be BETTER then the Mortal Instruments (although I am still rather partial to Jace).  I wish I could say that the reason I took so long to read this book was because I was savoring every moment of it, but I was sick, and didn't want to read when I was sick, but once I got better it was SO good.  Somehow I just seemed to find myself in Tessa's London, and I was worried for all of the character's safety, even the main ones, because we all know Cassie isn't afraid to kill of a main character.  If you haven't read the first book in this series I highly recommend you pick it up, then grab this one.  If you haven't read anything by Cassie at least pick up ONE of her books, either of her series will do, but this one really does stand out against other books in the genre at this time.  Bravo Cassie, Bravo.

5/5 dust spirits

Friday, December 16, 2011

Happy Holiday Super Giveaway!

I've been terrible at keeping up the blog. No reviews, no posts, no giveaways, bad me!  So let's fix that. I will have a review up by Monday at the latest and here's a giveaway!  This giveaway has 3 parts, because...well, it's better then one, and two is just an odd number for giveaways in my mind. Let's start with rules, because, well, we all hate them, but they make up our society and keep things in order.  One entry per person per each contest. You MUST be a follower in some way, aka blog or facebook, to enter.  If you want to tweet/facebook/blog about the contest feel free to do so, but for the sake of my sanity one entry per person (that means no extra entries).  Now, I'm sure you're all wondering what you can win, right? Right.  So, three prizes, three winners (or in the case someone is REALLY lucky two winners, or just one [I want to be that person right there]) and they're ALL book related. Shocking right, I mean, this is a BOOK blog, but a giveaway for book related things (books included), CRAZY!  So, prizes.

Prize #1: 1 Pendant (Necklace not included)! It has to be one of these covers, but please note that not all of them are available.  This contest is INTERNATIONAL
*Please note that these are not specific ones, although if you want one of these I would be happy to make you one with one of these images on it.  This one may also take a few days (a week or so) to create, seeing as I have to make them by hand.

Enter here

Prize #2: A pendant with a picture of your choice on it (Necklace not included). But please note that you might have to give me a few options because the pictures have to fit on these small tiles, and not all pictures can do that without looking weird. (see above pictures only you can put whatever you want on them).  This contest is INTERNATIONAL.
Enter here

Prize #3: A 2012 ARC.  You can choose one ARC that comes out in 2012 that I have an extra copy of.  Some of the choices include the following;
*Please note that this contest is for US residents only because the ARCs are all US ARCs.

Enter here

Winners will be announced later today or early tomorrow morning!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Review-12 Things To Do Before You Crash and Burn

I saw this book in an indie bookstore I went to because I thought they had Clockwork Prince out early (they didn't) and for some reason it reminded me of Gae Polisner's The Pull Of Gravity so I just had to pick it up.  I read it in less then a day (mostly at Costco. Man that store is HUGE) and although it wasn't amazing by any means it was a cute quick read.  There were a few laugh out loud moments (which I'm sure earned me a few odd glances at the store) and it was also a great book for guys.  There aren't a lot of books out there that appeal to guys, especially in the YA genre, and even fewer that have male narrators, but this one does.  Although it's a little crude in some places, and there is some language that's a little harsher then what may be in other YA books I still think it's a book that everyone could enjoy.  I myself am not a teenage boy, but seeing as I do have to put up with many of them in school, and I used to have many guy friends I can tell you this is a pretty accurate portrayal of the average teenage guy.  It's also got a whole adventure thing going on, and even though it's not life and death (although there is a scene with some pretty mean dogs, and then a crazy linebacker) it's amusing and enjoyable.  Basically this is a short read that has no profound statements in it that will change your life, but it will make you chuckle once or twice and is a good light read.  I do suggest caution for those of you under the age of 15 though, there are choice words and some various sexual parts referenced.

4/5 dust spirits


With dystopian novels becoming the new trend in YA there are bound to be some flops out there, but Legend is not one of them.  As a debut novel Lu knocks the socks off my feet, and I'm so glad that she is a new edition to the YA world.  Her characters are fierce and her plot is nothing short of awesome.  The world she created is completely new, but I could see it happening one day.  The images in her books are so startling, and the interaction between characters is so perfect that it makes you not want to put the book down when you pick it up.  With some of these books everything is packed into the very end, and while it's true the end is a good punch to the gut there are also some good jabs in the middle and the very beginning.  And there's a plague in the book, which, if I would have known sooner I would have been ALL OVER it the moment I got it in the mail.  If dystopian is the new vampire I can't say I'm upset with the trend.  Legend is fast paced and well written, and the fact that Day's chapters are in gold print makes it that much cooler.  Day is also now one of my favorite dystopian boys because, I mean, who doesn't want a boyfriend who would do anything for his family, is really smart, incredibly agile, and the corrupt government's number one enemy?  And I secretly wish I could be June sometimes too, because even though she's been through so much she's still so strong, and even though she could easily become a bad guy, she has the courage to do what's right in the end, even though it costs her so much.  If you are a fan of any dystopian novel out there, or if you just want a change you should definitely pick up this debut. I'm sure that by the time you finish you'll want the second one just like me.  And just so you know, I want the second one now. ;)

5/5 dust spirits

Thursday, December 1, 2011

December Book Giveaway

So you all said that a monthly giveaway would be a good idea, so here's how it's going to work. There will be six books you can choose from that come out during the month the contest is for, so because it's September the book you choose will have come out in December, not in November, or January, or any other month, just December. The book will be shipped at the beginning of the next month, so if you're looking to get the book right when it comes out you're out of luck, because that's not going to happen. Winners will be announced on the first of the month and a new giveaway will be posted then as well. You can only enter ONCE, if you enter more than that you will be disqualified. The contest will be international as long as the Book Depository ships to your country for free (want to know if it does? Check here). All you have to do is fill out the form and press "send" or whatever it is at the end of the form, and then wait. You have until December 31st at 12:00 Midnight Pacific Standard Time to enter. Good luck.

Note, the reason CP isn't on the list this month is because I'm sure we ALL want to get it the moment it comes out, and if not, we will all be asking for it for the holidays! You can change your book later if you win and happen to have gotten the book for Christmas/ect.

November Book Winner

Again there were 6 books to choose from, and this time 57 people entered .  There were 192 entries, but again there can only be one winner.

That winner is Kristi S. who wanted The Pledge, which is AMAZING!   Congrats Kristi S. and I hope you enjoy your book.  If you didn't win don't worry, there will be another giveaway up shortly for December!!!