Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wings by Aprilynne Pike


Synopsis: Laurel was mesmerized, staring at the pale things with wide eyes. They were terrifyingly beautiful—too beautiful for words.
Laurel turned to the mirror again, her eyes on the hovering petals that floated beside her head. They looked almost like wings.
In this extraordinary tale of magic and intrigue, romance and danger, everything you thought you knew about faeries will be changed forever.
   This book was extremely strange. I don't think there is any other faerie book like this one. Granted, I haven't read a fair share of fae books in the first place, but I'm pretty certain that no one would take the unique route that Pike took.
   My expectations were low for this book. I'm not a big fan of fantasy and I hadn't heard too many great things about Wings. For the first half of the book, I was right to have my hopes low. The book started off very slow and the main character, Laurel, was so dull. She was very plain, very soft-spoken, very bland. The other characters were just a little bit better. David and Chelsea, Laurel's new friends, were nice and added a bit of flavor, but still, no one really popped out.
   Things slightly picked up when Laurel noticed a rapidly growing bump on her back. Soon, a plant sprouts from the enormous bump. They are large petals that resemble wings. Now, can you tell me that you've read a faerie book in which faeries are highly evolved plants? Hm? I mean, seriously. Plants! That's so unusual. It's creative, but I also had the most difficult time wrapping my mind around it. Although Aprilynne included a lot of science in this book, I didn't really feel like the science backed up Laurel's transformation.
   After Laurel's plant growth, the plot wasn't too bad. It was still a little on the slow side, but I was intrigued. Things got even better when Tamani was introduced. Tamani is a faerie who happens to love Laurel, despite the fact that Laurel doesn't know who he is. Tamani is really sweet and funny, and totally lovable.
   I'm not sure if I'll pick up the next book in the series, considering the fact that Wings wasn't all that impressive. However, it was a quick and interesting read with a creative twist on the faerie myth.
   3 keys.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday: Shooting Stars (13)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly book meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

This week, I am waiting on...
Shooting Stars by Allison Rushby
Publication Date: February 28, 2012

Synopsis: Meet Josephine Foster, or Zo Jo as she’s called in the biz. The best pint-sized photographer of them all, Jo doesn’t mind doing what it takes to get that perfect shot, until she’s sent on an undercover assignment to shoot Ned Hartnett—teen superstar and the only celebrity who’s ever been kind to her—at an exclusive rehabilitation retreat in Boston. The money will be enough to pay for Jo’s dream: real photography classes, and maybe even quitting her paparazzi gig for good. Everyone wants to know what Ned’s in for. But Jo certainly doesn’t know what she’s in for: falling in love with Ned was never supposed to be part of her assignment.

This sounds like SUCH a cute read! Plus, I'm always in the mood for a sweet contemporary. Cannot wait for this one. :) And the cover is just adorable.

What are you waiting on this Wednesday?

Monday, November 28, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday: Books On My Winter TBR List

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly book meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish!

This week's theme...
Top Ten Books on my TBR List for Winter

1. Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare!!! I preordered mine and I cannot even wait. Ah!


2. Dash and Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan - I've been saving this one especially for the Christmas time because it looks like a nice winter read. 

3. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern 

4. A Beautiful Dark by Jocelyn Davies

5. Nightshade by Andrea Cremer


6. Wither by Lauren DeStefano - I've been meaning to get to this one for quite a while now.

7. Where She Went by Gayle Forman

8. City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare - I'm actually not that excited to start this one... I like the ending of CoG and don't want it to be ruined/complicated.

9. Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs

10. Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter - need to catch up on my dose of Hale!

So that's it for me! What's on your Top Ten list? :)

Divergent by Veronica Roth

Synopsis: Beatrice "Tris" Prior has reached the fateful age of sixteen, the stage at which teenagers in Veronica Roth's dystopian Chicago must select which of five factions to join for life. Each faction represents a virtue: Candor, Abnegation, Dauntless, Amity, and Erudite. To the surprise of herself and her selfless Abnegation family, she chooses Dauntless, the path of courage. Her choice exposes her to the demanding, violent initiation rites of this group, but it also threatens to expose a personal secret that could place in mortal danger. Veronica Roth's young adult Divergent trilogy launches with a captivating adventure about love and loyalty playing out under most extreme circumstances.
 *this is my second review for this novel. the first one can be found here*
  I think that if you really love a book, you should definitely reread it, even several times! I sped through Divergent my first time around because I was so hooked and I couldn't keep from tearing through the pages. This time, I took my time, carefully reading every word and really savoring the story itself. Why does it sound like I'm talking about food...
   Again, I am in awe at how Veronica Roth weaves such a fantastic story. I don't think I will ever get tired of reading this book. It was fabulous the first time, and even better the second.
   I realized that I missed quite a few things the first time around. Veronica uses a great deal of foreshadowing that I didn't catch until I was rereading it. I'm slapping myself mentally for not reading carefully the first time. This story is very absorbing and even better when you can guess what's going to happen next by paying attention to Veronica's subtle hints.
   The characters were so lovable and/or hateable. Beatrice "Tris" is just totally awesome. She's insanely strong and I adore seeing her character grow and transform throughout the novel. Tris is independent, very smart and quick on her feet. Four is just as amazing as the first time. My breath still catches whenever I read a particular scene with him in it. The way Veronica Roth makes me feel for her characters is just crazy!
   Although I'm familiar with the plot, I still never got bored. It's fast paced and action packed, with just a few moments to make your stomach fill with butterflies. The only thing that I didn't like was this tiny part in the ending. Four's... confession, per say. And how Tris never said it back. I don't know, that just bothered me.
   Divergent is a thoughtful, quick and extremely addictive debut by a truly talented author. Why is Insurgent so far away? Sob!
   5 keys. This is still and without a doubt my favorite book of 2011. ^-^

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Half-Blood by Jennifer Armentrout

Synopsis: The Hematoi descend from the unions of gods and mortals, and the children of two Hematoi-pure-bloods-have godlike powers. Children of Hematoi and mortals-well, not so much. Half-bloods only have two options: become trained Sentinels who hunt and kill daimons or become servants in the homes of the pures.Seventeen-year-old Alexandria would rather risk her life fighting than waste it scrubbing toilets, but she may end up slumming it anyway. There are several rules that students at the Covenant must follow. Alex has problems with them all, but especially rule #1:Relationships between pures and halfs are forbidden.Unfortunately, she's crushing hard on the totally hot pure-blood Aiden. But falling for Aiden isn't her biggest problem--staying alive long enough to graduate the Covenant and become a Sentinel is. If she fails in her duty, she faces a future worse than death or slavery: being turned into a daimon, and being hunted by Aiden. And that would kind of suck.
   Half-Blood completely blew me away. I didn't really expect much from this book and I was incredibly surprised at how much I loved it. Half-Blood is about a girl named Alex--a half-blood--who's been running with her mother for the past three years, as opposed to living safely in the Covenant. But daimons are chasing her down and her mother gets killed, which means that Alex is taken back to the Covenant.
   From the get-go, I got sucked into Alex's story. This book is very fast-paced and hilarious! The plot was always so spellbinding and the characters were totally amazing.
   Alex is seriously my favorite heroine ever. She is so kick butt and freaking hilarious. I loved her. She was very snarky and stubborn, but also extremely strong and feisty. Alex was basically the epitome of an awesome protagonist.
   Aiden is a pure-blood and Alex's trainer. Him being a pure-blood means that if Alex had a relationship with him, she'd probably get killed. Their attraction was a great one. Together, they were understanding and funny, and a bit steamy. Although I loved Aiden--and believe me, I really love Aiden--I'm not going to lie, I ship Alex and Seth. Although throughout the majority of the book, there's no love triangle, by the end of the book, it seems like there will be as the series continues.
   Sometimes, I felt like this book was a bit predictable, but really, the whole amazing-ness of the book kind of cancels that out. Another thing I didn't really like was the lack of mythology in this book. I assumed from the title that there would be quite a bit of mythology in this book, but there really wasn't. That was a small disappointment.
   I love Jennifer's writing style. It's fun, humorous, and easy to read. It reminded me of Meg Cabot, who happens to be one of my favorite authors. Looks like Jennifer is hopping on to my favorite authors list as well!
   Half-Blood really surprised me with its fabulous characters, witty banter and ridiculously engrossing plot. It also made me shed a few tears. I can't wait for Pure!
   5 keys.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday: Authors I Want At My Thanksgiving Feast (9)

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Broke and the Bookish.

This week's theme...
Top Ten Authors I Want At My Thanksgiving Dinner

1. Veronica Roth - Uh, hello? My favorite book's author. She seems so nice and charistmatic! I love her.

2. Stephanie Perkins - Hilarious and adorable. I think she's the kind of person who just brightens everything up.

3. Lauren Oliver - She's so welcoming and warm. :)

4. John Green - He just seems awesome... Like, seriously.

5. Beth Revis - So nice! She is just so nice! And I'm sure she has super fascinating stories to tell.

6. Meg Cabot - Pretend she's way up on the list. She deserves to be way up there. Meg is the nicest person ever and she's so freaking hilarious.

7. Tina Fey - So maybe I'm cheating on this one... But she has written a book, so yeah!

8. Sarah Dessen - Sarah seems really kind. I'm sure she has tons of advice and makes great conversation. 

9. Cassandra Clare - Given.

10. JK Rowling - Omgomgomg. I think I'd faint if she came to my Thanksgiving dinner.

That's my top ten list! Who's on your list? :)

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Synopsis: Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil's supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she's prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages--not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.

When one of the strangers--beautiful, haunted Akiva--fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

   From the first page, I knew this book was different. From the synopsis, I really had no clue what this book was going to be about, but trusting the opinions of many book bloggers, I picked it up anyway. For those who don't know, Daughter of Smoke and Bone is the story of Karou, a girl who is unknowingly associated with an ancient war between angels and chimaera. Oh, and she might be in love with the enemy.
   The mood of this book was very dark and mysterious. Laini Taylor's writing was fantastic. It's lyrical and poetic, though not similar to the writing of Lauren Oliver. More like Erin Morgenstern. Sometimes, I found that Laini's passages were too descriptive and I'd find myself skimming things. Nevertheless, she is still a brilliant writer. Her writing is kind of open ended. You think that Laini is hinting at this particular thing, but you're never sure, and then you find out later in the story. The story itself is really just many layers woven together to create one book. Laini really makes the story come to life through her writing.
   Karou, the main character, might just be the best protagonist ever. She's very different and unique. She's a fighter and she's curious. She just wants to know all the secrets, and as a reader, I wanted to know as well. Karou was strong and admirable. Although Karou was a character I was fond of, I thought that Laini Taylor's secondary characters fell flat. The chimaera in Brimstone's office, Karou's friend Zuzana, they just didn't really leap off the page.
   Although I highly enjoyed this book, I had several problems with it as well. First off, there was insta-love. Yes, I suppose it's justified later, but I still didn't like it. Also, no matter how unique Daughter of Smoke and Bone was, one thought kept encroaching throughout my reading experience. The thought was this: It was similar to Passion by Lauren Kate. The multiple lives thing and the experiencing past lives... Yep, not the most original thing I've read.
   Speaking of experiencing past lives... I really didn't like reading about Madrigal. I didn't like how big the portion of the book about her was. The first three quarters of the book, I freaking LOVED. But then when it came to around pg 300, I wanted to skip it or maybe just put it down. I couldn't bring myself to care about Madrigal. It was so abrupt and... I don't know. I was just waiting for the story to turn back to Karou.
   The ending was killer. Laini Taylor, whyyy? :(
   So this review is way too long. And it sounds like I didn't like it. But I did. A lot!
   Daughter of Smoke and Bone is an utterly fascinating and very well-told tale that captivates readers, pulling them into Laini Taylor's fantastical, detailed world.
   4.5 keys.



Thursday, November 17, 2011

Ten Things We Did (And Probably Shouldn't Have) by Sarah Mlynowski


Synopsis: 2 girls + 3 guys + 1 house – parents = 10 things April and her friends did that they (definitely, maybe, probably) shouldn't have. 
If given the opportunity, what sixteen-year-old wouldn't jump at the chance to move in with a friend and live parent-free? Although maybe "opportunity" isn't the right word, since April had to tell her dad a tiny little untruth to make it happen (see #1: "Lied to Our Parents"). But she and her housemate Vi are totally responsible and able to take care of themselves. How they ended up "Skipping School" (#3), "Throwing a Crazy Party" (#8), "Buying a Hot Tub" (#4), and, um, "Harboring a Fugitive" (#7) at all is kind of a mystery to them. 
In this hilarious and bittersweet tale, Sarah Mlynowski mines the heart and mind of a girl on her own for the first time. To get through the year, April will have to juggle a love triangle, learn to do her own laundry, and accept that her carefully constructed world just might be falling apart . . . one thing-she-shouldn't-have-done at a time.


   A lot of bloggers loved this book, claiming it was a perfect fluffy read. I disagree, particularly strongly. This book did not wow me and it certainly didn't make me feel like smiling throughout the entire book. In fact, I found this book to be annoying.
   I expected a light and carefree book when I started reading. I did not expect it to be revolved around sex, girls running around in their underwear during the winter, lying, drama and other teen catastrophes. Maybe this is realistic to some teens, but definitely not to any teens I know. However, this book was mildly entertaining. It bugged me, yes, but it also made me laugh at times. Plus, this book was very short and a quick read, which makes it easier on my part.
   The main character, April, was probably the most idiotic girl ever. She didn't know a thing about anything and most of the time, I just wanted to shake her shoulders and scream at her. She was rash and foolish. Although she is a few years my senior, I felt like she was a baby. She complained, she lied, she misunderstood things... I understand that teenagers feel that way, but April seemed to be the epitome of it. Gosh, I feel like I'm just putting down this book, but this is honestly how I felt.
   The secondary characters weren't much better. Vi was very controlling and annoying, not to mention cocky. Marissa was far too passive. I felt that Noah, April's boyfriend, did not even have a personality.
   The plot was very quickly paced, which is one of the few things I enjoyed. This book was a very fast read. I finished it in a day. It was fast and funny. The humor was another thing I liked. I felt like Sarah was a teen as well because of the jokes in this book. They were funny and realistic. I found myself giggling despite some annoying passages.
   Now that I have finished the book, I realize that there was a subtle message throughout, but it was too subtle. It fell short and in the end, I barely even noticed the message.
   In total, Ten Things We Did was an amusing and quick read that may be good for those who are searching for a teen book filled with parties, drinking and sex. Sadly, this book was not for me.
   1.5 keys.



Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday: Revived (11)

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine!

This week I am waiting on...
Revived by Cat Patrick
Publication Date: May 8th, 2012

Synopsis: As a little girl, Daisy Appleby was killed in a school bus crash. Moments after the accident, she was brought back to life. 

A secret government agency has developed a drug called Revive that can bring people back from the dead, and Daisy Appleby, a test subject, has been Revived five times in fifteen years. Daisy takes extraordinary risks, knowing that she can beat death, but each new death also means a new name, a new city, and a new life. When she meets Matt McKean, Daisy begins to question the moral implications of Revive, and as she discovers the agency’s true goals, she realizes she’s at the center of something much larger — and more sinister — than she ever imagined.



So, this book is still far in the future, but it sounds absolutely fantastic!! Sci-fi and much other goodness. Can't wait!!

Thanks for stopping by. While you're here, you can enter my 100 followers/birthday giveaway HERE.

What are you waiting on this Wednesday?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Pledge by Kimberly Derting

Synopsis: In the violent country of Ludania, the classes are strictly divided by the language they speak. The smallest transgression, like looking a member of a higher class in the eye while they are speaking their native tongue, results in immediate execution. Seventeen-year-old Charlaina has always been able to understand the languages of all classes, and she's spent her life trying to hide her secret. The only place she can really be free is the drug-fueled underground clubs where people go to shake off the oppressive rules of the world they live in. It's there that she meets a beautiful and mysterious boy named Max who speaks a language she's never heard before . . . and her secret is almost exposed.  
Charlie is intensely attracted to Max, even though she can't be sure where his real loyalties lie. As the emergency drills give way to real crisis and the violence escalates, it becomes clear that Charlie is the key to something much bigger: her country's only chance for freedom from the terrible power of a deadly regime.


   Oh, no! I was planning on reading only contemporaries this month, but I guess that'll change. I couldn't help but read this quickly before it expired on Galley Grab. For the most part, I enjoyed this novel. I haven't read Kimberly Derting's Body Finder series, but I might after this book.
   Although The Pledge is a dystopian, I felt like it was a fantasy. Queens and magical powers... Yep, definitely a fantasy. I'm not a fan of fantasy on most occasions, but I thought it was okay for this book. For the first three quarters, I loved this book. It was so mysterious and dark and I loved it.
   Charlaina (Charlie), our main character, is a Vendor girl who has a special secret: she can understand all languages of her world. She doesn't know why or how, but she does know that it would be dangerous if someone knew. Max is the mysterious boy that seems to show up out of nowhere and Charlie is intrigued by him. I was intrigued as well. I tend to love dark male leads, although his name was a bit of a turn off. Max reminds me of a dog's name. I though Charlie was a pretty nice protagonist, although I do feel like she was bland at times. Too plain and too predictable.
   As stated previously, I loved the first three quarters. It reminded me of Delirium by Lauren Oliver in a way. The last quarter I wasn't so crazy about. The climax fell short for me and I thought things were rushed. It was predictable and very cheesy.
   One thing I really liked, though, was Kimberly's writing style. It was easy to read and I loved the words she chose. Although her plot wasn't too great, I still loved the writing itself which is why I'm thinking of looking into the Body Finder series. It wouldn't hurt if that series had a hottie like Max in it either.
   That said, I still liked The Pledge. It was an entertaining and unique read that held my attention.
   4 keys.


Monday, November 14, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday: Unread Books That Have Been On My Shelf For The Longest Time (8)

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish!

This week's theme...
Ten Books That Have Been on my Shelf for the Longest Time But I've Never Read

This week's prompt is embarrassingly easy for me, as I am terrible at reading books that are already on my shelf.

1) The Second Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares

2) The Emerald Atlas by John Stephens

3) Insatiable by Meg Cabot

4) The Host by Stephenie Meyer

5) The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

6) Songs of the Humpback Whale by Jodi Picoult

7) Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella

8) Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce

9) Love Story by Jennifer Echols (this one is actually pretty recent... but oh well)

10) Bright Young Things by Anna Godberson

Yep, I've had these books for foreverrrr, and still haven't gotten to 'em. Sigh. 
What's on your top ten? :)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

This girl is EVERYWHERE!

I've been noticing how similar YA book covers are looking lately. And then when I was at HEB, I saw something pretty strange...

I've noticed that there's this ONE picture of this ONE girl who happens to be EVERYWHERE!

Example 1) Taurus Eyes by Bonnie Hill

Gorgeous cover, right? BUT THEN. AT HEB....

Example 2) Splat Rebellious Colors-Hair Dye-Luscious Raspberries
Familiar, huh? And then, when browsing through bloggers' IMMs...

Example 3) Private by Kate Brian-paperback edition

UPDATE: Example 4) After Midnight by Lynn Veihl

Example 5) What I Wore to Save the World by Maryrose Wood

These three FIVE examples aren't the only times I've seen this picture of this girl either. There are several other times. Have any of you seen this girl before? To me, she seems to be everywhere!

Are there times where you feel like you keep having deja vu? Comment with links or make your own post! I'd love to check them out.

Hope you're having a great week. :)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Synopsis: In a single moment, everything changes. Seventeen year- old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck...  
A sophisticated, layered, and heartachingly beautiful story about the power of family and friends, the choices we all make -and the ultimate choice Mia commands.


   This book gave me a rush of emotions. This book is thoughtful and captivating, emotional and moving. It's a very enjoyable read that I liked a lot.
   The book starts with Mia and her family deciding to take a trip to see her parents' old friends. But when a huge truck hits the passenger side of their car, Mia is suddenly looking at all the damage. But Mia is not in her human body. This book follows Mia's actions and flashbacks throughout the 24 hours the human her is in a coma.
   The concept of this novel is not completely original. I'm almost certain that I've seen several movies or other books based on the same kind of idea. But If I Stay pretty much blew me away. It was interesting and I really loved the flashbacks... well, most of them.
   Mia is an intense and pleasant protagonist who is confused and gifted. The story is told from her point of view and there are also many flashbacks weaved into her thoughts. I liked her personality and I really loved that she played the cello. As a musician myself, I found that her stories relating to her and her cello were more interesting to me. I also loved the scenes between her and Adam.
   Mia's relationship between her and Adam is incredibly delicate and fragile, as well as strongly romantic. At times, I was upset by the awkward silences and undeniable tension, but at other times, my heart was fluttering, my stomach doing somersaults. Adam is a nice character and although he and Mia are in love, I, as the reader, didn't feel a super strong connection. They're relationship seemed awkward and forced for many scenes, which was the intention.
   What I truly loved about this book was the writing. Gayle Forman has an incredible way with words. She crafts them to form beautiful and intriguing sentences. Her writing is easy to read and her transitions are smooth. It was poetic in a sense and made me turn the pages quickly.
   What I didn't like was some of the flashbacks. I thought some were unnecessary and only there to fill some space up. I found that the ones about her parents and their music history were boring and I slightly skimmed through them to get to the next scene.
   If I Stay is a breathtaking and riveting tale that combines the elements of tragedy, love, sacrifice and friendship into one thought provoking novel. I highly recommend it.
   4.5 keys.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (11)

Jill @ Breaking the Spine hosts WoW!

This week, I am waiting on...
The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
by Jennifer E. Smith
Publication Date: January 2, 2012

Synopsis: Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?


Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. She's stuck at JFK, late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon to be step-mother that Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's in seat 18B. Hadley's in 18A. 



Twists of fate and quirks of timing play out in this thoughtful novel about family connections, second chances and first loves. Set over a 24-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it.


My goodness, TITLE LUST. It's such a great title. I can't quit saying it over and over in my head. The book itself sounds so cute and fun. Plus, Oliver is British. Hello? Swoooooon!

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?


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