Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #170 - Get Dirty by Gretchen McNeil
Get Dirty
(Don't Get Mad #2)
by Gretchen McNeil
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Publication Date:
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
ISBN: 9780062260871

Available for Pre-Order:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble

The members of Don’t Get Mad aren’t just mad anymore . . . they’re afraid. And with Margot in a coma and Bree stuck in juvie, it’s up to Olivia and Kitty to try to catch their deadly tormentor. But just as the girls are about to go on the offensive, Ed the Head reveals a shocking secret that turns all their theories upside down. The killer could be anyone, and this time he—or she—is out for more than just revenge.

The girls desperately try to discover the killer’s identity as their personal lives are falling apart: Donté is pulling away from Kitty and seems to be hiding a secret of his own, Bree is under house arrest, and Olivia’s mother is on an emotional downward spiral. The killer is closing in, the threats are becoming more personal, and when the police refuse to listen, the girls have no choice but to confront their anonymous friend . . . or die trying. (Goodreads)

Have you read Get Even? (Don't Get Mad #1)
Because if you did, (especially if you read the end of the book),
you'll know EXACTLY why I need this sequel in my hands.
Get Even was SO good. I can't wait to get back into this story.

**"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine,
that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.**

Monday, October 20, 2014

Review: Stitching Snow by R.C. Lewis
Stitching Snow
by R. C. Lewis
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Publication Date: October 14th 2014
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Pages: 336
ISBN: 9781423185079
Genre: Young Adult | Retelling | Sci-Fi
Source: Netgalley

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Princess Snow is missing.

Her home planet is filled with violence and corruption at the hands of King Matthias and his wife as they attempt to punish her captors. The king will stop at nothing to get his beloved daughter back-but that's assuming she wants to return at all.

Essie has grown used to being cold. Temperatures on the planet Thanda are always sub-zero, and she fills her days with coding and repairs for the seven loyal drones that run the local mines.

When a mysterious young man named Dane crash-lands near her home, Essie agrees to help the pilot repair his ship. But soon she realizes that Dane's arrival was far from accidental, and she's pulled into the heart of a war she's risked everything to avoid.

In her enthralling debut, R.C. Lewis weaves the tale of a princess on the run from painful secrets . . . and a poisonous queen. With the galaxy's future-and her own-in jeopardy, Essie must choose who to trust in a fiery fight for survival. (Goodreads)
I was really looking forward to reading Stitching Snow as I’ve really enjoyed most of the fairy-tale retellings that I’ve read lately, and I couldn’t wait to see how this story went. The book definitely did not disappoint!

Essie, also known as Princess Snow, is the missing daughter of King Matthias, who will stop at nothing to get Essie back. But that’s proving to be a bit impossible because she’s well hidden on the freezing planet Thanda, where she spends her days coding and repairing drones that work in the local mines, making life a whole lot easier, and safer, for the miners on the planet. But all that changes when newcomer Dane crash-lands near her home, and changes her world completely.

Essie was a really interesting character. I was definitely able to relate to her being a bit of a loner, for the most part. She was also super smart when it came to coding and building her drones and working on computers. I love the work that she did on the drones, and these drones in particular were really awesome as well. She was a very strong-willed, determined and very stubborn, which made me like her a whole lot.

Dane was a really interesting character as well. I appreciated his determination to keep Essie safe, despite the fact that he felt he had to kidnap her to get what he wanted out of her in the beginning. (I know, I know… without this happening, it would have impacted the story differently, but still.) I also appreciated that their relationship wasn’t insta-love in any way. The relationship had a very rocky start and grew over time, but in the end was really cute.

The storyline for the book was very interesting and kept me intrigued as I turned the pages. I enjoyed that while this was a retelling of Snow White, it also had a sci-fi theme to it. It definitely kept me turning the pages.

Overall, I found Stitching Snow to be an enjoyable read. I’m really looking forward to reading more by this author in the future!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #169 - The Devil You Know by Trish Doller
The Devil You Know
by Trish Doller
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Publication Date: June 2nd 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
ISBN: 9781619634169
Genre: Young Adult | Contemporary

Available for Pre-Order: Amazon | The Book Depository

Eighteen-year-old Arcadia Wells just wants to live up to her namesake. She wants adventure.

Cadie, as everyone calls her, is a recent high school graduate, who lives in a tiny Florida town with her dad and four-year-old brother. Since her mom died three years ago, Cadie's spent most of her time working in her dad's grocery store, going to school, taking care of the household, and raising her little brother. Then, one night, Cadie goes to a campfire party at the state park where she meets a couple of cute guys who are on a road trip. They invite her to accompany them—just the adventure she's been craving. But what starts out as a fun, sexy trip turns frightening when she discovers that one of the boys is not at all the wholesome boy she fell for. (Goodreads)

Ummm... Does this book sound intense, or what?
I read Trish Doller's Where the Stars Still Shine last year,
and totally fell in love with the story.
I am super excited to read this book to see what Trish has come up with for us!

**"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine,
that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.**

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Review: My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Stories
My True Love Gave To Me
Twelve Holiday Stories
by Stephanie Perkins and More

Publication Date: October 14th 2014
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9781250059307
Genre: Young Adult | Holiday Stories
Source: Netgalley

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If you love holiday stories, holiday movies, made-for-TV-holiday specials, holiday episodes of your favorite sitcoms and, especially, if you love holiday anthologies, you’re going to fall in love with MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME: TWELVE HOLIDAY STORIES by twelve bestselling young adult writers, edited by international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins. (Goodreads)
I was super excited to read My True Love Gave To Me not only because it was edited by Stephanie Perkins, but also because the book of full of really awesome writers, and I couldn’t wait to read their holiday themed short stories.

A few of my favorite stories from the book came from Rainbow Rowell, Stephanie Perkins, Gayle Forman and Ally Carter. It’s hard to pick between them all, because they were all great stories. Even though these were just short stories, they all would have been wonderful as whole books. The characters were well written and likeable, and I really wanted to keep reading long after the stories ended. (Luckily I was distracted by the next story!) I really enjoyed reading all of these stories.

I also really loved the holiday feel to the book. It put me in the Christmas spirit, and that usually doesn’t happen this early in the year. Now I am itching to read even more Christmas stories!

My only complaint about the book is that the stories weren’t long enough! Yes, I know that these are just short stories, but with each story I started to get attached to the character and storyline, and I didn’t want it to end. But they did. As I mentioned before, all of these stories were well written, and would have made excellent books.

Overall; If you want to read a book of Christmas stories by some really great authors, definitely check out My True Love Gave To Me. It is well worth the read, and will put you in the Christmas Spirit!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Review: Black Ice by Becca Fitzpatrick
Black Ice
by Becca Fitzpatrick
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Publication Date: October 7th 2014
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Pages: 400
ISBN: 9781442474260
Genre: Young Adult | Mystery
Source: Edelweiss

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Sometimes danger is hard to see... until it’s too late.

Britt Pfeiffer has trained to backpack the Teton Range, but she isn't prepared when her ex-boyfriend, who still haunts her every thought, wants to join her. Before Britt can explore her feelings for Calvin, an unexpected blizzard forces her to seek shelter in a remote cabin, accepting the hospitality of its two very handsome occupants—but these men are fugitives, and they take her hostage.

In exchange for her life, Britt agrees to guide the men off the mountain. As they set off, Britt knows she must stay alive long enough for Calvin to find her. The task is made even more complicated when Britt finds chilling evidence of a series of murders that have taken place there... and in uncovering this, she may become the killer’s next target.

But nothing is as it seems in the mountains, and everyone is keeping secrets, including Mason, one of her kidnappers. His kindness is confusing Britt. Is he an enemy? Or an ally?

BLACK ICE is New York Times bestselling author Becca Fitzpatrick’s riveting romantic thriller set against the treacherous backdrop of the mountains of Wyoming. Falling in love should never be this dangerous…(Goodreads)
I was really looking forward to reading Becca Fitzpatrick's Black Ice because I had read the Hush, Hush series in the past, and it’s one of the first series I read that got me hooked on this genre. So I couldn’t wait to see what story Fitzpatrick was going to come up with next with Black Ice. Unfortunately I didn’t love the book as much as I expected to.

I’m going to start off by saying that I currently have a like/hate relationship with Black Ice. My issues are mostly with the characters in the novel. The main character in the story, Britt, was a bit of a disappointing character for me. She made really bad decisions all throughout the story, including going into a decrepit cabin in the middle of nowhere with two strangers who she seemed to automatically trust just because they were cute. Seriously?? Why would she do this? Yes, I understand that she was in the middle of a snow storm and she just wanted to be warm and fed, but these guys were so weird the moment we first met them, they immediately threw up red flags for me. (Yes, I can see how we wouldn’t have a story if this hadn’t have happened. But, as a mom to a teenager, this really bothered me.)

Also, I really, really, really don’t get the whole ‘hating your best friend’ relationship that Britt had with her best friend, Korbie. I’ve seen it in quite a few books that I’ve read lately, and it is super annoying. I just don’t understand why people would choose to be friends with someone that obviously doesn’t like them.

Another thing that really bothered me was that Britt was still so in love with her ex-boyfriend, when it was obvious that he was a super jerk. She spends most of the novel waiting for the ex, her dad, her brother, or any available male to come along and save her, instead of taking advantage of the situation and saving herself. Eventually she does manage to somewhat take control of the situation, but we don’t see this for quite a while.

Then there was Mason/Jude, who was one of Britt’s captors. The term Stockholm syndrome was thrown around in the story quite a few times, but I really don’t feel that Britt ever had this issue with him. It felt like she just wanted male attention so bad, that she pretty much fell in love with whoever was available.  Also, even though he wasn’t a total bad guy like the other captor was, and most of the things that he had done he did for reasons that he thought were right but really weren’t, he never was held accountable for the bad things that he had done. That just felt kind of wrong to me. I really, really wanted to like Mason/Jude, I really did. But he had so many secrets and had done so many things, that I just never felt like I could really trust him, unfortunately.

While I didn’t really care for the characters in the book, there were some things about the book that I did enjoy. The writing style for the book felt very much to Fitzpatrick’s previous books. The storyline was very suspenseful and mysterious; it definitely kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the book. So I did enjoy that part of the book. I think that with a slightly different storyline, and a stronger set of characters, I really would have enjoyed this book more.

Overall; Black Ice is a book that I didn’t love, but I also didn’t hate. I’m sure a lot of people will love the book despite the issues that I had with it, but unfortunately, it just didn’t work all that well for me.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Review: The Jewel by Amy Ewing
The Jewel
(The Lone City #1)
by Amy Ewing
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Publication Date: September 2nd 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 358
ISBN: 9780062235794
Genre: Young Adult | Fantasy | Dystopia
Source: Edelweiss

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The Jewel means wealth. The Jewel means beauty. The Jewel means royalty. But for girls like Violet, the Jewel means servitude. Not just any kind of servitude. Violet, born and raised in the Marsh, has been trained as a surrogate for the royalty—because in the Jewel the only thing more important than opulence is offspring.

Purchased at the surrogacy auction by the Duchess of the Lake and greeted with a slap to the face, Violet (now known only as #197) quickly learns of the brutal truths that lie beneath the Jewel’s glittering facade: the cruelty, backstabbing, and hidden violence that have become the royal way of life.

Violet must accept the ugly realities of her existence... and try to stay alive. But then a forbidden romance erupts between Violet and a handsome gentleman hired as a companion to the Duchess’s petulant niece. Though his presence makes life in the Jewel a bit brighter, the consequences of their illicit relationship will cost them both more than they bargained for. (Goodreads)
I was initially drawn to The Jewel by its stunning cover. What can I say? I’m a sucker for a book with a gorgeous cover! The Jewel has a very intriguing story to go along with its pretty cover as well.

In the center of the city is The Jewel, the place where all Royals live. To live in the Jewel means you have money, beauty, and all the things you could ever want, except for the one thing you can never have; offspring. This is where surrogates come in; children that were born in the Marsh that are auctioned off to the highest bidder continue a bloodline. Violet has been trained for years to be a surrogate for Royal, but once the auction is over and her new life begins, she realizes that nothing in her new world is quite what it seems.

Violet was an interesting main character. By other people’s standards, she should be proud to be a surrogate, to help the royals keep their linage going. But that’s not what Violet wants at all. She longs for her own life, one where she can live free to do what she wants, and to not live in servitude to the royals. She’s a very strong character, and at times we see her rebellious side come out. I know we are going to see great things from this character in the future.

There were some secondary characters in the story that I really loved; the most being Lucien. I really hope that we get to know more about him in the next book.

The storyline and world-building for the book is definitely intriguing and creative. It kind of has a familiar plot to a lot of dystopian novels that I’ve already read, but it also seemed to stand out as well in some ways that were really unique. The book ends with a pretty huge cliffhanger; one that has me wondering what exactly this means for the next book in the series. Regardless, I’m dying to find out what’s going to happen with these characters.

Overall; I thought that The Jewel was an interesting start to what should prove to be a very fascinating series. I can’t wait to read the rest of the books in this series!

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