Thursday, November 29, 2012

Feature and Follow Friday #125

Welcome to the Feature & Follow


Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!

What sets this Hop apart from others, is our Feature. Each week we will showcase a Featured Blogger, from all different genres and areas. Who is our Feature today? Find out below. Just remember it is required, if you participate, to follow our Features and you must follow the hosts (Parajunkee & Alison Can Read) as a courtesy. How do you follow someone? Well, if you have a preference, state it in your #FF post. A lot of blogs are transitioning to Wordpress in which they do not have the luxury of GFC, so an RSS subscription is appreciated or if you choose an email subscription. If you don't have GFC please state in your post how you would like to be followed.

Endlessly by Kiersten White

Endlessly (Paranormalcy #3) by Kiersten White
Release Date:
July 24, 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Library

Summary

Evie's paranormal past keeps coming back to haunt her. A new director at the International Paranormal Containment Agency wants to drag her back to headquarters. The Dark Faerie Queen is torturing humans in her poisonous realm. And supernatural creatures keep insisting that Evie is the only one who can save them from a mysterious, perilous fate.

The clock is ticking on the entire paranormal world. And its fate rests solely in Evie's hands.

So much for normal.(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

Endlessly brings the Paranormalcy series to a fabulous end. With this series, Kiersten created a rich, well-defined world with absorbing plots and lovable, memorable characters. I am sad to see the series end but thrilled that Endlessly does such a good job of finishing it.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Chronicles of Downton Abbey: A New Era by Jessica Fellowes and Matthew Sturgis

The Chronicles of Downton Abbey: A New Era by Jessica Fellowes and Matthew Sturgis

Release Date:
November 13, 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Press

Summary

The Great War has ended, but Downton Abbey is far from peaceful...

As Season 3 of the award-winning TV series opens, it is 1920 and Downton Abbey is waking up to a world changed forever by World War I. New characters arrive and new intrigues thrive as the old social order is challenged by new expectations.

In this new era, different family members abound (including Cora's American mother, played by Shirley MacLaine) and changed dynamics need to be resolved: Which branch of the family tree will Lord Grantham’s first grandchild belong to? What will become of the servants, both old and new?

The Chronicles of Downton Abbey, carefully pieced together at the heart and hearth of the ancestral home of the Crawleys, takes us deeper into the story of every important member of the Downton estate. This lavish, entirely new book focuses on each character individually, examining their motivations, their actions, and the inspirations behind them. An evocative combination of story, history, and behind-the-scenes drama, it will bring fans even closer to the secret, beating heart of the house.

*Today's post is a departure from my typical YA features. I am a huge Downton Abbey fan. It is killing me to wait for the start of Season 3 on PBS, especially when I know that it's already aired in the UK. But I'm being a good girl and have not looked at any spoilers.

I know that I'm far from the only person anxiously awaiting the return of Downton Abbey. In the meantime, check out this great new book showing us tons of details about the story and the making-of Downton Abbey.

Check out this Q and A with one of the authors Jessica Fellowes!



Edwardian fashion has been resurrected on runways and in style magazines. What else has surprised you about the popularity of the show?

I think no one could have anticipated the way it's become such a cultural reference point not just in Britain and America but all over the world. 'Dowager gems' is a well-known Twitter hashtag. I don't think Julian could have predicted that!

Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes' great-aunt Isie is the model for Violet Grantham. Are any of the other characters based on anyone notable or otherwise?

As any writer does, he has drawn on different people he has met or known over the years. O'Brien is based on a particularly mean lady's maid that used to work for a cousin of his grandfather. She was, he says, "as polite as courtier, but she had a black heart, cold and manipulative", driving away all her mistress's friends and family until she alone ruled their Knightsbridge house. Others, are taken more lightly from people he has known – Thomas is based on a dresser from his theatre days; Carson on a wonderful butler, Arthur Inch, who was an advisor on Gosford Park.

What is your favorite episode or scene from the first two seasons of Downton Abbey and why?

Ooh, that's not easy to answer! I'm a blubber – I cry at the readthrough, when I see it on the television, and then again when watching it on DVD! I think the war scenes were striking, and I was pleased, if that's the right word, that current generations would realise what our grandparents and great-grandparents had gone through. But who can possibly forget the final scene of the second series – Matthew and Mary, kissing and happy at last, as the snow fell around them. Aah!

What was the greatest challenge you faced when writing this book? What was the most fun?

The greatest challenge was probably the timing. Both books were not started until January and were at the printers by July. Given that we had to interview actors and production, go on set, research the period, source the images – photography had to be done alongside the filming – as well as actually write it, this was something of a challenge, but one I was happy to rise to. The most fun for me was definitely the research – it's a period that has always fascinated me, so to have the excuse to immerse myself in it completely was wonderful.

Which character do you think has evolved the most during the course of the first two seasons?

Lady Edith for me is the most interesting. She, like a lot of women at that time, was brought up to expect a certain kind of life, which was completely turned inside out by the war. She thought that all her prayers would be answered in the shape of a husband – marriage was what gave Edwardian aristocratic women freedom, independence and a certain kind of power. Without that, she has to find her own way and it's not as if everyone then moves with the times – nearly everything she chooses to do has to be fought for. It's a lesson to us now to be thankful of what we have and to use it in the best way possible.

*Thanks to Jessica and Wunderkind-PR for letting me tell you more about The Chronicles of Downton Abbey!

*Want more information about The Chronicles of Downton Abbey? Check out these links:
Book Preview!
Twitter
Pinterest
Tumblr
Buy It!

Are you a Downton Abbey fan?

What was your favorite episode of Seasons 1 and 2?

My favorite was the last episode of Season 2 - the Christmas episode. Followed closely by a scene in an episode or two before that where Mary and Matthew danced.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Release Date:
August 16, 2007
Publisher: Razorbill
Source: Library

Summary

St. Vladimir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school—it’s a hidden place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Princess. They’ve been on the run, but now they’re being dragged back to St. Vladimir’s—the very place where they’re most in danger...

Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy’s ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi—the world’s fiercest and most dangerous vampires—make Lissa one of them forever.(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

Guess what?! I'm re-reading the Vampire Academy series! When I finished the Twilight series in October 2008, I became obsessed with reading anything and everything about vampires. Vampire Academy was the first book I read. In my Twilight-rose-colored viewpoint, I thought it was decent but a little silly. It wasn't until I got further along in the series that I realized just how fabulous these books are. Once I started the Bloodlines series, I came to respect Vampire Academy even more. I've been wanting to re-read the whole series for a long time and finally got around to it.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Manga Mondays #130: Death Note vol. 1 by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata

Manga Mondays Meme!

I've been doing Manga Mondays every week since I started my blog 2 and a half years ago. It's always been a personal feature, but now I'm going to try turning it into a meme. There are quite a few people who do Manga Mondays. I don't claim by any means that I owned or created the idea of Manga Mondays - it's an obvious choice given the alliteration. I think a meme would be a good way for everyone to publicize their own Manga Mondays and get a little more publicity.

The linky will be below my review.

Death Note vol. 1 by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata


Summary

Light Yagami is an ace student with great prospects - and he's bored out of his mind. But all that changes when he finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue Shinigami death god. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies, and now Light has vowed to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of evil. But when criminals begin dropping dead, the authorities send the legendary detective L to track down the killer. With L hot on his heels, will Light lose sight of his noble goal...or his life?

Boredom
Light tests the boundaries of the Death Note's powers as L and the police begin to close in. Luckily Light's father is the head of the Japanese National Police Agency and leaves vital information about the case lying around the house. With access to his father's files, Light can keep one step ahead of the authorities. But who is the strange man following him, and how can Light guard against enemies whose names he doesn't know?(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

*Warning: Potential spoilers. My manga reviews tend to be more of a summary than a review. I find it hard to review manga in the same way I do regular books.

Starting a new manga series is always a treacherous endeavor. Each series has its own feel, own drawing style, own cast of characters, etc. I often find that the plots are confusing for the first several volumes and it takes me awhile to get invested in the story.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Feature and Follow Friday #124

Welcome to the Feature & Follow


Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!

What sets this Hop apart from others, is our Feature. Each week we will showcase a Featured Blogger, from all different genres and areas. Who is our Feature today? Find out below. Just remember it is required, if you participate, to follow our Features and you must follow the hosts (Parajunkee & Alison Can Read) as a courtesy. How do you follow someone? Well, if you have a preference, state it in your #FF post. A lot of blogs are transitioning to Wordpress in which they do not have the luxury of GFC, so an RSS subscription is appreciated or if you choose an email subscription. If you don't have GFC please state in your post how you would like to be followed.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

What's Your Favorite Twilight Movie?

All good things must come to an end. The cinematic adventures of the Twilight Saga are finished (at least the first incarnation).

There have been five movies, four years, four directors, and two Victorias. The actors grown and changed in their acting abilities, whether you like them or not. Their hairstyles have changed significantly, often for the worse. Each film has a unique feel to it entirely apart from the plot.

Which movie was your favorite?

Twilight - the first movie - is far and away my favorite. In some ways, it's the weakest film. Much of the acting is terrible. Rob couldn't decide whether to speak in a British or an American accent. The CGI was laughable. The script was so cheesy that you could easily spend much of the movie laughing at it.

And yet...

It has a raw energy that none of the other films captured. From watching her other films, I've noticed that Catherine Hardwicke has a distinct style of manic craziness. She really is good at capturing the power of teen emotions on camera. It showed in Twilight. Even with the weakness of the actors and the script, I couldn't help but feel the chemistry between Bella and Edward every second they were together. Her choice of a dark color palate only highlighted the edginess of the film.

However, I think by far the most significant thing Twilight had going for it was the lack of expectations. No one thought it would be a huge hit - not the production studio, the actors, Stephenie Meyer, the director. The low budget hurt the cinematic prettiness of the film, but it was a gift in every other way. 

Catherine was very smart to pick largely unknown actors to star in Twilight. As far as I can tell, there was no drama on set, no egos to contend with. The specter of fame did not hang over anyone's head. It looked like the actors were extremely grateful to be there and were having a lot of fun. It's amazing how much that can affect my enjoyment of a movie. Plus, my perception of the characters was not colored by the gossip I'd read about the actors playing them. That especially affected my view of the last film (Interestingly, I never even thought about Rob and Kristen's personal drama. Ashley/Alice irritated me more).

From an objective standpoint, I think the best films of the series were probably Eclipse and Breaking Dawn Part 1. But Twilight is the movie that I will watch over and over.

How about you? Which was your favorite movie out of the five? And why?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: The Goddess Inheritance (Goddess Test #3) by Aimee Carter

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine!


The Goddess Inheritance (Goddess Test #3) by Aimee Carter
Publish Date: February 26, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen


Movie Review: Breaking Dawn Part 2

I finally got around to seeing Breaking Dawn Part 2. I'd wanted to go on Friday, but I had a busy weekend full of travel, in-laws, and buying a new car! I saw the film this afternoon and am still somewhat in shock.

*I don't consider anything in my review to be a spoiler, but if you're very picky about spoilers, I'd steer clear.

Check out my review of Breaking Dawn the book too!

Overall, I liked Breaking Dawn Part 2, but it is not my favorite movie in the Twilight saga. I'm not entirely sure why this is. Maybe I'll like it better when I see it again. Each of the Twilight movies have had multiple cringe-worthy moments. BD2 is not unusually high in those moments, but they are bothering me more right now. Probably because they're fresh in my mind.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Manga Mondays #129: Dengeki Daisy vol. 10 by Kyouski Motomi

Manga Mondays Meme!

I've been doing Manga Mondays every week since I started my blog 2 and a half years ago. It's always been a personal feature, but now I'm going to try turning it into a meme. There are quite a few people who do Manga Mondays. I don't claim by any means that I owned or created the idea of Manga Mondays - it's an obvious choice given the alliteration. I think a meme would be a good way for everyone to publicize their own Manga Mondays and get a little more publicity.

The linky will be below my review.

Vampire Knight vol. 14 by Matsuri Hino


Summary

After orphan Teru Kurebayashi loses her beloved older brother, she finds solace in the messages she exchanges with DAISY, an enigmatic figure who can only be reached through the cell phone her brother left her. Meanwhile, mysterious Tasuku Kurosaki always seems to be around whenever Teru needs help… Could DAISY be a lot closer than Teru thinks?

A powerful organization that was after Kurosaki’s “Jack Frost” virus suddenly falls apart, but Kurosaki can’t rest easy since Akira was somehow involved. Furthermore, Akira tells Kurosaki that Teru is still a target! Can Kurosaki protect Teru from Akira’s menacing schemes?(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

*Warning: Potential spoilers. My manga reviews tend to be more of a summary than a review. I find it hard to review manga in the same way I do regular books.

I wonder if Motomi-san's contract requires her to make a manga series with a specific number of volumes. Probably not, but it feels like the series is stagnating. After so many volumes where the plot took important leaps forward, the last volume or two have been the same thing again and again.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Feature and Follow Friday #123

Welcome to the Feature & Follow


Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!

What sets this Hop apart from others, is our Feature. Each week we will showcase a Featured Blogger, from all different genres and areas. Who is our Feature today? Find out below. Just remember it is required, if you participate, to follow our Features and you must follow the hosts (Parajunkee & Alison Can Read) as a courtesy. How do you follow someone? Well, if you have a preference, state it in your #FF post. A lot of blogs are transitioning to Wordpress in which they do not have the luxury of GFC, so an RSS subscription is appreciated or if you choose an email subscription. If you don't have GFC please state in your post how you would like to be followed.

Book Review: Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer

Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
Release Date:
August 2, 2008
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Source: Purchased

Summary

Can true love be forgotten?

WHEN YOU LOVED THE ONE WHO WAS KILLING YOU, IT LEFT YOU NO OPTIONS. How could you run, how could you fight, when doing so would hurt that beloved one? If your life was all you had to give, how could you not give it? If it was someone you truly loved?

To be irrevocably in love with a vampire is both fantasy and nightmare woven into a dangerously heightened reality for Bella Swan. Pulled in one direction by her intense passion for Edward Cullen, and in another by her profound connection to a werewolf Jacob Black, she has endured a tumultuous year of temptation, loss, and strife to reach the ultimate turning point. her imminent choice to either join the dark but seductive world of immortals or pursue a fully human life has become the thread from which the fate of two tribes hangs.

Now that Bella has made her decision, a startling chain of unprecedented events is about to unfold with potentially devastating and unfathomable consequences. Just when the frayed strands of Bella's life - first discovered in Twilight, then scattered and torn in New Moon and Eclipse - seem ready to heal and knit together, could they be destroyed...forever?(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

*This review is more a reflection than a typical review. I'm assuming you've read the book and as such, it is full of spoilers.

Since Breaking Dawn 2 is out in two days, I thought it fitting to re-read the book. I first read all four Twilight books in a mad dash in October 2008 and re-read them all as soon as I finished. Since then, I have re-read the other three books numerous times, but I have never re-read Breaking Dawn in its entirety. Bits and pieces quite often, but not the whole thing.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine!

Look at me - doing Waiting on Wednesday two weeks in a row! I had such fun participating in the meme last week that I'm doing it again.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry
Release Date:
July 31, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: BEA

Summary

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with "freaky" scars on her arms. Even Echo can't remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal.But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo's world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.

Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she'll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

One of the worst feelings (well, worst feelings on the scale of stubbed toe not house burning down) is when all your friends love a book and you're left feeling "meh." That sums up Pushing The Limits for me. I liked it, don't get me wrong, but it didn't set my heart a flutter like it did everyone else.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Manga Mondays #128: Vampire Knight vol. 14 by Matsuri Hino

Manga Mondays Meme!

I've been doing Manga Mondays every week since I started my blog 2 years ago. It's always been a personal feature, but now I'm going to try turning it into a meme. There are quite a few people who do Manga Mondays. I don't claim by any means that I owned or created the idea of Manga Mondays - it's an obvious choice given the alliteration. I think a meme would be a good way for everyone to publicize their own Manga Mondays and get a little more publicity.

The linky will be below my review.

Vampire Knight vol. 14 by Matsuri Hino


Summary

Cross Academy is attended by two groups of students: the Day Class and the Night Class. At twilight, when the students of the Day Class return to their dorm, they cross paths with the Night Class on their way to school. Yuki Cross and Zero Kiryu are the Guardians of the school, protecting the Day Class from the Academy's dark secret: the Night Class is full of vampires!

The Vampire Hunter Society has imprisoned Aido in order to interrogate him about Kaname’s connection to Sara Shirabuki. Meanwhile, Yuki wants a fresh start with Kaname, but circumstances arise that may force them apart.(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

*Warning: Potential spoilers. My manga reviews tend to be more of a summary than a review. I find it hard to review manga in the same way I do regular books.

Some manga series are pretty simple. You can step away from it for months, finally pick up a volume, and feel like you never left. Vampire Knight is not one of those series. But I respect it for being one of the more complex and serious series that I've read.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Feature and Follow Friday #122

Welcome to the Feature & Follow


Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!

What sets this Hop apart from others, is our Feature. Each week we will showcase a Featured Blogger, from all different genres and areas. Who is our Feature today? Find out below. Just remember it is required, if you participate, to follow our Features and you must follow the hosts (Parajunkee & Alison Can Read) as a courtesy. How do you follow someone? Well, if you have a preference, state it in your #FF post. A lot of blogs are transitioning to Wordpress in which they do not have the luxury of GFC, so an RSS subscription is appreciated or if you choose an email subscription. If you don't have GFC please state in your post how you would like to be followed.

Dreamless by Josephine Angelini

Dreamless (Starcrossed #2) by Josephine Angelini
Release Date:
May 29, 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Library

Summary

Can true love be forgotten?

As the only scion who can descend into the Underworld, Helen Hamilton has been given a nearly impossible task. By night she wanders through Hades, trying to stop the endless cycle of revenge that has cursed her family. By day she struggles to overcome the fatigue that is rapidly eroding her sanity. Without Lucas by her side, Helen is not sure she has the strength to go on.

Just as Helen is pushed to her breaking point, a mysterious new Scion comes to her rescue. Funny and brave, Orion shields her from the dangers of the Underworld. But time is running out--a ruthless foe plots against them, and the Furies' cry for blood is growing louder.

As the ancient Greek world collides with the mortal one, Helen's sheltered life on Nantucket descends into chaos. But the hardest task of all will be forgetting Lucas Delos.

Josephine Angelini's compelling saga becomes ever more intricate and spellbinding as an unforgettable love triangle emerges and the eternal cycle of revenge intensifies. Eagerly awaited, this sequel to the internationally bestselling "Starcrossed" delivers a gritty, action-packed love story that exceeds all expectations.(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

Do you ever have a book that you really want to read, but you're just not in the mood for? Dreamless was that kind of book. Even though I'd been anticipating it for months, when it finally arrived from the library, it didn't interest me. Still, I figured that I might as well read it and opened up the first page. Less than 24 hours later, I closed the book after 487 pages rearing with exciting and dreading the months wait for the third book. Dreamless was a thrilling ride and kept up with the fascinating plot and great romance of Starcrossed.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: 2013 Titles I'm Dying For

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine!

It's been a very, very long time since I've done Waiting on Wednesday. There are several books that I'm drooling over that are coming out in early 2013.

Here we go:


The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead
-Bloodlines #3. Cannot wait!!!!!


Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
-I loved Cinder. I can't wait to read more from Marissa.


This Is What Happiness Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith
-After reading The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, I'll read everything Jennifer writes.


Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt
-Love Lindsey's books.


If I Should Die by Amy Plum
-One of my favorite series in the past few years.


Just One Day by Gayle Forman
-Gayle writes such incredible, emotional books.


The Archived by Victoria Schwab
-I really enjoyed Victoria's book The Near Witch. I want to see what she does next.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

The Golden Lily (Bloodlines #2) by Richelle Mead
Release Date:
June 12, 2012
Publisher: Razorbill
Source: Library

Summary

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets—and human lives.

Sydney would love to go to college, but instead, she’s been sent into hiding at a posh boarding school in Palm Springs, California–tasked with protecting Moroi princess Jill Dragomir from assassins who want to throw the Moroi court into civil war. Formerly in disgrace, Sydney is now praised for her loyalty and obedience, and held up as the model of an exemplary Alchemist.

But the closer she grows to Jill, Eddie, and especially Adrian, the more she finds herself questioning her age–old Alchemist beliefs, her idea of family, and the sense of what it means to truly belong. Her world becomes even more complicated when magical experiments show Sydney may hold the key to prevent becoming Strigoi—the fiercest vampires, the ones who don’t die. But it’s her fear of being just that—special, magical, powerful—that scares her more than anything. Equally daunting is her new romance with Brayden, a cute, brainy guy who seems to be her match in every way. Yet, as perfect as he seems, Sydney finds herself being drawn to someone else—someone forbidden to her.

When a shocking secret threatens to tear the vampire world apart, Sydney’s loyalties are suddenly tested more than ever before. She wonders how she's supposed to strike a balance between the principles and dogmas she's been taught, and what her instincts are now telling her.

Should she trust the Alchemists—or her heart?(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

Richelle Mead knows how to deliver. In Bloodlines, she created a fascinating backdrop where vampires masquerade among humans at a boarding school. A prominent Moroi royal is in danger and is being hidden here in Palm Springs. Sydney the Alchemist is tasked with concealing the identities Jill and the other moroi and dhampirs. It makes for some great plot lines, but who am I kidding? Why am I really reading this series? Two words: Sydney. Adrian.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Manga Mondays #127: Afterschool Charisma vol. 1 by Kumiko Suekane

Manga Mondays Meme!

I've been doing Manga Mondays every week since I started my blog 2 years ago. It's always been a personal feature, but now I'm going to try turning it into a meme. There are quite a few people who do Manga Mondays. I don't claim by any means that I owned or created the idea of Manga Mondays - it's an obvious choice given the alliteration. I think a meme would be a good way for everyone to publicize their own Manga Mondays and get a little more publicity.

The linky will be below my review.

Afterschool Charisma vol. 1 by Kumiko Suekane


Summary

History repeats itself... Or does it? St. Kleio Academy is a very exclusive school: all of the students are clones of famous historical figures such as Beethoven, Queen Elizabeth I, Napoleon, Mozart, and Freud. All of them, that is, except for Shiro Kamiya. As Shiro struggles to adapt to this unusual campus, St. Kleio's first graduate, the clone of John F. Kennedy, is killed. Are the clones doomed to repeat the fate of their genetic progenitors, or can they create their own destinies? And how does a normal boy like Shiro fit in? (courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

*Warning: Potential spoilers. My manga reviews tend to be more of a summary than a review. I find it hard to review manga in the same way I do regular books.

Can you imagine a school made up entirely of clones? Not just any clones, but the clones of infamous historical figures. From the revered (Florence Nightingale) to the talented (Mozart and Marie Curie) to the hated (Hitler). St. Kleio Academy has them all. Except for Shiro. He's the son of the academy director and the only non-clone in school.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Feature and Follow Friday #121

Welcome to the Feature & Follow


Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!

What sets this Hop apart from others, is our Feature. Each week we will showcase a Featured Blogger, from all different genres and areas. Who is our Feature today? Find out below. Just remember it is required, if you participate, to follow our Features and you must follow the hosts (Parajunkee & Alison Can Read) as a courtesy. How do you follow someone? Well, if you have a preference, state it in your #FF post. A lot of blogs are transitioning to Wordpress in which they do not have the luxury of GFC, so an RSS subscription is appreciated or if you choose an email subscription. If you don't have GFC please state in your post how you would like to be followed.

Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins

Spell Bound (Hex Hall #3) by Rachel Hawkins
Release Date:
March 13, 2012
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH
Source: Library

Summary

Hailed as “impossible to put down,” the Hex Hall series has both critics and teens cheering. With a winning combination of romance, action, magic and humor, this third volume will leave readers enchanted.

Just as Sophie Mercer has come to accept her extraordinary magical powers as a demon, the Prodigium Council strips them away. Now Sophie is defenseless, alone, and at the mercy of her sworn enemies—the Brannicks, a family of warrior women who hunt down the Prodigium. Or at least that’s what Sophie thinks, until she makes a surprising discovery. The Brannicks know an epic war is coming, and they believe Sophie is the only one powerful enough to stop the world from ending. But without her magic, Sophie isn’t as confident.

Sophie’s bound for one hell of a ride—can she get her powers back before it’s too late?(courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

In a world crowded with paranormal romance, an author has to work really hard to stand out. Rachel Hawkins does just that with her Hex Hall series. How? Humor. Snark. Like many well done paranormal romances, the Hex Hall series features a well developed world, a surprising plot, likable characters, and an enticing romance. But the use of dry wit alongside life threatening scenarios in a way that complements the tension rather than seeming out of place makes the Hex Hall series special.
 
Template: Blog Designs by Sheila