Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (77)

Waiting on Wednesday is, of course, brought to us by the lovely Jill at Breaking the Spine.


Wrapped by Jennifer Bradbury - To be released May 24th, 2011

Agnes Wilkins is standing in front of an Egyptian mummy, about to make the first cut into the wrappings, about to unlock ancient (and not-so-ancient) history.

Maybe you think this girl is wearing a pith helmet with antique dust swirling around her.

Maybe you think she is a young Egyptologist who has arrived in Cairo on camelback.

Maybe she would like to think that too. Agnes Wilkins dreams of adventures that reach beyond the garden walls, but reality for a seventeen-year-old debutante in 1815 London does not allow for camels—or dust, even. No, Agnes can only see a mummy when she is wearing a new silk gown and standing on the verdant lawns of Lord Showalter’s estate, with chaperones fussing about and strolling sitar players straining to create an exotic “atmosphere” for the first party of the season. An unwrapping.

This is the start of it all, Agnes’s debut season, the pretty girl parade that offers only ever-shrinking options: home, husband, and high society. It’s also the start of something else, because the mummy Agnes unwraps isn’t just a mummy. It’s a host for a secret that could unravel a new destiny—unleashing mystery, an international intrigue, and possibly a curse in the bargain.

Get wrapped up in the adventure . . . but keep your wits about you, dear Agnes.

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want this: Egypt! You say Egypt to me and I'm more likely to be interested than if you had said Paris. I've been weird like that ever since second grade when I read Mummies in the Morning. Even with everything going on over there, I still think the culture and history is fascinating. And man, I want that cover slapped up on my wall.

Oh, also. That time period, if it's the one I think it is, is one that a lot of romance novels are set in, but not so much as many YA books, so that's quite neat, too.


Hourglass by Myra McEntire - To be released May 24th, 2011

Since the age of fourteen, Emerson Cole has seen strange things – dead things – swooning Southern Belles, soldiers, and other eerie apparitions of the past. She’s tried everything to get rid of the visions: medication, counseling, asylums. Nothing’s worked.

So when Emerson's well-meaning brother calls in yet another consultant from a mysterious organization called the Hourglass, Emerson’s willing to give it one last try.

Michael Weaver is no ordinary consultant. He's barely older than she is; he listens like no one she's ever met before; and he doesn't make her feel the least bit crazy. As Emerson ventures deeper into the world of the Hourglass, she begins to learn the truth about her past, her future--and her very life. 

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want to read this: Okay, confession time. Chances are, I probably have this by the time this posts. (I don't when I'm typing this, but I'm scheduling pretty far ahead. And I want to gush over this one SO much that I really can't resist. I mean, hello, ghosts (fascinating, even if they are one of the only things that freak me out), and look at that cover! She's walking on the wall INTO the FLOOR. It's got a very Alice In Wonderland feel to it, doesn't it?

(Okay. I have this one. But I HAD to write about it. And I didn't to want to delete it from this post.)

Okay, so, what are you guys waiting on this week?

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.

Monday, March 28, 2011

YA Review: Wintercraft by Jenna Burtenshaw


Wintercraft by Jenna Burtenshaw (Wintercraft #1)

Published: May 13th, 2010 by Headline
Genre: YA Fantasy
Binding: ARC
Page Count: 278 in my copy, but the hardcover might have more
Part of a series? Yeppers. I think the second one is coming out in... April! (Wow. This review is LATE. I'm sorry!!)
Amazon link. 
(Also called Shadowcry.)

Summary (from goodreads): Ten years ago Kate Winters' parents were taken by the High Council's wardens to help with the country's war effort. Now the wardens are back...and prisoners, including Kate's uncle Artemis, are taken south on the terrifying Night Train. Kate and her friend Edgar are hunted by a far more dangerous enemy.

Silas Dane -- the High Council's most feared man -- recognises Kate as one of the Skilled; a rare group of people able to see through the veil between the living and the dead. His spirit was damaged by the High Council's experiments into the veil, and he's convinced that Kate can undo the damage and allow him to find peace. The knowledge Kate needs lies within Wintercraft -- a book thought to be hidden deep beneath the graveyard city of Fume.

But the Night of Souls, when the veil between life and death is at its thinnest, is just days away and the High Council have their own sinister plans for Kate and Wintercraft. To help Artemis, Edgar and herself, Kate must honour her pact with a murderer and come face to face with the true nature of death.

Review: I was so excited about Wintercraft. I WoWed it, and I couldn't have been happier when I got an email saying a copy was on its way to me. (Which... is kinda awesome, isn't it?) Well... I wasn't as amazed as I wanted to be, but I did enjoy it. I'm looking forward to the second book and hoping that some of the issues I had with this one are resolved.

Plot: There's war and kidnapping and magic and a whole heckka lot packed into 278 pages and MAN I hate writing about plot.

Characters: I liked Kate. I thought she was clever and gutsy, but I wished that more of her voice had come through. The third person narration wasn't as deep as it could have been, or as I'm used to it being, and at times it felt a bit removed. Sometimes I just wished I knew a little bit more WHY she made some of the choices she made. But Kate was ballsy and I like ballsy characters.

This is a little strange, but I really liked Silas. Well, you know, not liked him exactly seeing as he was sort of evil and all, but I found him very interesting. The narration from his POV was great, too.

Cons, complaints, bad stuff, etc.: I had some issues, like I said before, with the third person not being as deep as it could have been. I didn't always like Edgar, even though he was a good character. If we'd had moe scenes from his POV earlier, it would have helped, but I like him more towards th end of the book.

PG-13 stuff: No language, but ya know, war and stuff. No particularly graphic violence, even.

Cover comments: Well, my ARC didn't have the final cover, so I haven't seen it in real life, but I like how the cover looks on the screen. It's pretty and suiting for the genre.

Conclusion: All in all, I liked Wintercraft. I had a problems with a few things, but I definitely want to read the second book. I'm hoping that, like CDs, if I like the first one, I'll like the second one even more. I'd recommend Wintercraft to fans of Patrick Carman's Land of Elyon series who are maybe looking for something a little older, along with general fantasy fans, of course. Three and a half roses.


Other notes:

- "I just got ice cream on my nose." I was eating an ice cream sandwich. That's talent.
- "I like books about cities in walls."
- "BUGS."
- "Lots of world-building." <-- This was a legitimate pro, but I couldn't seem to make it fit in the review.

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Sunday, March 27, 2011

In My Mailbox (35)

In My Mailbox is brought to us by The Story Siren and was inspired by Alea.

Things received for review:

Scars by Cheryl Rainfield - Hardcover

Kendra, fifteen, hasn't felt safe since she began to recall devastating memories of childhood sexual abuse, especially because she still can't remember the most important detail-- her abuser's identity. Frightened, Kendra believes someone is always watching and following her, leaving menacing messages only she understands. If she lets her guard down even for a minute, it could cost Kendra her life.

To relieve the pressure, Kendra cuts; aside from her brilliantly expressive artwork, it's her only way of coping. Since her own mother is too self-absorbed to hear her cries for help, Kendra finds support in others instead: from her therapist and her art teacher, from Sandy, the close family friend who encourages her artwork, and from Meghan, the classmate who's becoming a friend and maybe more.

But the truth about Kendra's abuse is just waiting to explode, with startling unforeseen consequences. Scars is the unforgettable story of one girl's frightening path to the truth.

(Summary from goodreads.)

Cheryl is one of the nicest authors I've ever met. She sent me bookmarks, too, and signed it and how awesome that??

The Wizard of Dark Steet by Shawn Thomas Odyssey - ARC

Oona Crate was born to be the wizard's apprecntice, but she has another destiny in mind. Despite possessing the rare gift of natural magic, Oona wants to be a detective.

Eager for a job to prove her crime-solving skills, Oona never expected her first case would be this challenging. Someone has murdered her uncle - the Wizard of Dark Street. Now it's up to our precocious heroine to solve the murder mystery.

(Summary from goodreads.)

Isn't that cover absolutely adorable? I love the artwork on it. You know, I actually typed up the copy from the back cover and put it on goodreads because there were no summaries anywhere (that I could find). Yay for Goodreads librarian privilages!!

Hourglass by Myra McEntire - ARC

One hour to rewrite the past...

For seventeen-year-old Emerson Cole, life is about seeing what isn’t there: swooning Southern Belles; soldiers long forgotten; a haunting jazz trio that vanishes in an instant. Plagued by phantoms since her parents’ death, she just wants the apparitions to stop so she can be normal. She’s tried everything, but the visions keep coming back.

So when her well-meaning brother brings in a consultant from a secretive organization called the Hourglass, Emerson’s willing to try one last cure. But meeting Michael Weaver may not only change her future, it may change her past.

Who is this dark, mysterious, sympathetic guy, barely older than Emerson herself, who seems to believe every crazy word she says? Why does an electric charge seem to run through the room whenever he’s around? And why is he so insistent that he needs her help to prevent a death that never should have happened?

Full of atmosphere, mystery, and romance, Hourglass merges the very best of the paranormal and science-fiction genres in a seductive, remarkable young adult debut.

(Summary from goodreads.)

I am so excited to get this one. I *cough* might be breaking a couple of my rules and WoWing it. But only because I type WoW posts WAY far in advance and I didn't have it when I typed it. So, yeah. We'll just pretend I don't have it for that.

The Sweetest Thing by Christina Mandelski - ARC

In the world of Sheridan Wells, life is perfect when she's decorating a cake. Unfortunately everything else is a complete mess: her mom ran off years ago, her dad is more interested in his restaurant, and the idea of a boyfriend is laughable.

But Sheridan is convinced finding her mom will solve all her problems - only her dad's about to get a cooking show in New York, which means her dream of a perfect family will be dashed.

Using just the right amount of romance, family drama, and cute boys, The Sweetest Thing will entice fans with its perfect mixture of girl-friendly ingredients.

(Summary from goodreads.)

I've been noticing lately that I don't really have a ton of "light" books. So this arrived at a good time!!

Family by Micol Ostow - ARC

i have always been broken.
i could have. died.
and maybe it would have been better if i had.

It is a day like any other when seventeen-year-old Melinda Jensen hits the road for San Francisco, leaving behind her fractured home life and a constant assault on her self-esteem. Henry is the handsome, charismatic man who comes upon her, collapsed on a park bench, and offers love, a bright new consciousness, and—best of all—a family. One that will embrace her and give her love. Because family is what Mel has never really had. And this new family, Henry’s family, shares everything. They share the chores, their bodies, and their beliefs. And if Mel truly wants to belong, she will share in everything they do. No matter what the family does, or how far they go.

Told in episodic verse, family is a fictionalized exploration of cult dynamics, loosely based on the Manson Family murders of 1969. It is an unflinching look at people who are born broken, and the lengths they’ll go to to make themselves “whole” again.

(Summary from goodreads.)

I LOVE the way this one sounds. I've only read a couple books in verse, so I think that'll be cool, too.

Notes From The Blender by Brendan Halpin and Tricia Cook - ARC

Declan loves death metal--particularly from Finland. And video games--violent ones. And internet porn--any kind, really. He goes to school with Neilly Foster and spends most of his classroom time wondering what it might be like to know her, to talk to her, maybe even to graze against her sweater in the hallway. Neilly is an accomplished gymnast, naturally beautiful, and a constant presence at all the best parties (to which Declan is never invited). She's the queen of cool, the princess of poker face, and her rule is uncontested-- or it was until today, when she's dumped by her boyfriend, betrayed by her former BFF Lulu, and then informed she's getting a new brother--of the freaky fellow classmate variety. Declan's dad is marrying Neilly's mom. Soon. Which means they'll be moving in together.

(Summary from goodreads.)

Have you guys ever heard of Life With Derek? The summary of this one kinda reminds me of that show. A little, anyways.

The Accidental Genius of Weasel High by Rick Detorie - ARC

A book for the Wimpy Kid who has grown into a Wimpy Teen

Larkin Pace desperately wants a new camcorder. How else is he going to become the next great filmmaker? But his dad won’t give him any money, his sister is determined to make his life miserable, and his nemesis Dalton Cooke is trying to steal his girlfriend. Now this height-challenged aspiring director must chronicle his wacky life for a freshman English assignment.

(Summary from goodreads.)

In the catalogue that I got from Egmont, they had a sample page of this and I thought it was an interesting idea. This is a really neat mixture of text and comics, like webcomic comics, not so much Spider-Man or Superman comics.

Bought:

The Mark by Jen Nadol - Hardcover

Cassandra Renfield has always seen the mark—a glow around certain people reminiscent of candlelight. But the one time she mentioned it, it was dismissed as a trick of the light. Until the day she watches a man awash in the mark die. After searching her memories, Cassie realizes she can see a person’s imminent death. Not how or where, only when: today.

Armed with a vague understanding of the light, Cassie begins to explore her “gift,” seeking those marked for death and probing the line between decision and destiny. Though she’s careful to hide her secret—even from her new philosophy-obsessed boyfriend—with each impending death comes the temptation to test fate. But so many questions remain. How does the mark work? Why is she the only one who sees it? And finally, the most important of all: If you know today is someone’s last, should you tell them?

(Summary from goodreads.)

I got this for 3.77 on Amazon. Even with shipping, it was less than 7 dollars for a hardcover book. How *awesome* is that??

Killer Cruise by Jennifer Shaw - Paperback

Onboard facilities:

Pool 1, Caribbean Deck
Met hot crewmember while soaking up the sun!

The Santorini Restaurant, Olympia Deck
Heard about last year's mysterious disappearance on board. What could have happened?

Movie Theater, Fiesta Deck
Still can't stand horror flicks. Too scary.

Paris Boutique, Panama Deck
Then again, so was my near-death fall overboard last night...

Glamorama Spa, Bermuda Deck
Must relax. No one's trying to kill me—I'm just being paranoid.

Club Paradise, Diablo Deck
But what if someone does want me dead? 

(Summary from goodreads.)

The summary is really random on this one... I think it's like a checklist or something on the back cover, but it doesn't translate so well to online and I'm too lazy to go get the book. It was like 4 bucks at the drugstore, so I bought it on a whim.

Won:

Eleventh Grade Burns by Heather Brewer - Hardcover

It’s another awful year at Bathory High for Vladimir Tod. Joss, a professional vampire slayer and Vlad’s former friend, has moved back to town. The powerful vampire Dorian has an overwhelming desire to drink Vlad’s blood. And his archenemy, D’Ablo, has brought Vlad’s Uncle Otis to trial for crimes against vampires. So much for dating. When the tables turn on Vlad, he has just enough time to return to Bathory for his final good-byes.

(Summary from goodreads.)

Won this in a contest. It's the only one I own in the series, but there's always the library, right? :D

So, this is about... well, it's all the books I've gotten since my LAST In My Mailbox post and who the heck remembers the last time I did one of those?

What did you guys get this week/recently?

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Friday, March 25, 2011

Fun Friday: Give Me Something to Sing About! (62)

Fun Friday: Give Me Something to Sing About! is where you guys get to see a song or two I like or that I want to talk about each week. Thanks as always goes to J.J. at Random Musings for help with the title.



(Kids by MGMT)

So whenever I listen to this song, I always hear, "Enjoy yourself," instead of "Control yourself." I have no problem with, "A family of trees wanting to be haunted," however. Which sounds very strange when you sing it out loud.

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (76)

Waiting on Wednesday is, of course, brought to us by the lovely Jill at Breaking the Spine.


My Not-So-Still Life by Liz Gallagher - To be released May 10th, 2011

Vanessa is wise beyond her years. She's never really fit in at school, where all the kids act and dress the same. She's an artist who expresses her talent in the wacky colors she dyes her hair, her makeup and clothes. She's working on her biggest art project, and counting the days until she's grown up and can really start living. That adult world seems closer when Vanessa gets her dream job at the art supply store, Palette, where she worships the couple who runs it, Oscar and Maye. And she's drawn to a mysterious guy named James, who leads her into new, sometimes risky situations. Is she ready for this world, or not?

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want this: I like the sound of the MC. (Says the girl with the blue streaks.) I'm also kinda wondering if I could recreate the look on the cover and pull it off.


Die For Me by Amy Plum - To be released May 10th, 2011

DIE FOR ME is the first of three books about Kate, a sixteen-year-old American who moves to Paris after the death of her parents. She finds herself falling for Vincent, who she discovers is not the typical French teenager he appears: he is something else entirely.

DIE FOR ME presents a new supernatural mythology presented in a city where dreams are sometimes the same as reality.

(Summary from goodreads.)


Why I want this: Well, the summary is a bit shorter on this one, but I think it sounds really good. Paris! And the cover is gorgeous.


So what are you guys waiting on?


Peace and cookies,
Laina


Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Fun Friday: Give Me Something to Sing About! (61)

Fun Friday: Give Me Something to Sing About! is where you guys get to see a song or two I like or that I want to talk about each week. Thanks as always goes to J.J. at Random Musings for help with the title.



(Come on Get Higher by Matt Nathanson.)

Another one I heard on Vampire Diaries. Seriously hot song. Vampire Diaries has the BEST music, don't you think?

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

February 2011 Picture Book List

(Happy Saint Patrick's Day!)

February:

1. Favorite Nurserry Rhymes from Mother Goose by Scott Gustafon
2. The Great Nursery Rhyme Disaster by David Conway
3. Here Comes Mother Goose by Iona Opie
4. Mary Engelbreit's Mother Goose Favorites by Mary Engelbreit
5. Tomie dePaola's More Mother Goose Favorites by Tomie dePaola
6. Mother Goose and Friends by Ruth Sanderson
7. The Book That Jack Wrote by Jon Scieszka
8. The Frog Prince Continued -//-
9. Grumpy Badger's Christmas by Paul Bright
10. If Snow Falls by Jan Agee
11. Henry & the Buccaneer Bunnies by Carolyn Crimi
12. A Pirate's Night Before Christmas by Philip Yates
13. Captain Abdul's Pirate School by Colin McNaughton
14. Don't Mention Pirates by Sarah McConnell
15. The Night Pirates by Peter Harris
16. Pirate Girl by Cornelia Funke
17. This Little Pirate by Philemon Sturges
18. Pirate Piggy Wiggy by Christyan and Diane Fox
19. Happy Birthday to You! by Dr. Seuss
20. Angelina's Birthday by Katherine Holabird
21. Angelina's Birthday Surprise -//-
22. Backbeard and the Birthday Suit by Matthew McElligott
23. Mr. Wolf and the Three Bears by Jan Fearnley
24. Flower Garden by Eve Bunting
25. The Birthday Box by Leslie Patricelli
26. Happy Birthday, Biscuit! by Alyssa Satin Capacilli
27. The Birthday Presents by Paul Stewart
28. Birthday Mice by Bethany Roberts
29. Happy Birthday to You, Blue Kangaroo! by Emma Chichester Clark
30. Monster's Birthday Hiccups by Virginia Mueller
31. Froggy Bakes a Cake by Jonathan London
32. Birthday Monsters by Sandra Boynton
33. The Boy Who Wouldn't Go To Bed by Helen Cooper
34. The Squiggle by Carole Lexa Schaefer
35. A Mouse Told His Mother by Bethany Roberts
36. Not a Box by Antoinette Portis
37. It Looked Like Spilt Milk by Charles G. Shaw
38. The House Across the Street by Jules Feiffer
39. Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by Roni Schotter 
40. And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street by Dr. Seuss
41. Meeow and the Big Box by Sebastien Braun
42. Harvey Potter's Baloon Farm by Jerdine Nolen
43. Simon's Disguise by Gilles Tibo
44. Jessica by Kevin Henkes
45. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
46. Cows Can't Fly by David Milgrim
47. Go to Sleep, Russell the Sheep by Rob Scotton
48. Little Bo Peep Can't Get to Sleep by Erin Dealey
49. Hickory Dickory Dock by Keith Baker
50. Lyle and the Birthday Party by Bernard Waber
51. Gotcha! by Gail Jorgensen
52. Alphabet Ice Cream by Nick Sharratt
53. Ice Cream at the Castle by Anne Love
54. Ice Cream Cones for Sale! by Elaine Greenstein
55. Garth Pig and the Ice Cream Lady by Mary Rayner
56. Simply Delicious by Margaret Mahy
57. Spike & Cubby's Ice Cream Adventure Heather Sellers
58. Ice Cream Larry by Daniel Pinkwater
59. Sunday Love by Alison Paul
60. Curious George Goes to an Ice Cream Shop by Margaret Rey
61. Dora and the Stuck Truck by Phoebe Beinstein
62. Trucks by Patricia Hubbell
63. My Dad's a Wizard! by Hannah Roche
64. Wemberly's Ice-Cream Star by Kevin Hhenkes
65. The Best Restaurant in the World by Michelle Schwarz
66. Isaac the Ice Cream Truck by Scott Santoro
67. Ice Cream Bear by Jez Alborough

Holy wow, that was a big month. I don't know why it was so long this month!! Considering it was such a short month... weirdness.

If you want to see the full list of books I've read this year, check out this post.

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (75)

Waiting on Wednesday is, of course, brought to us by the lovely Jill at Breaking the Spine.

I have a theme this week! I've been seeing a lot of upcoming mermaid/siren books. Mermaids/sirens are the new vampires/werewolves/angels? So since I had like 5 books that fit this, I figured I'd do them all in one post, and since it was the 75th WoW I've done, it seemed right.

(But, hey, did you know that traditionally sirens were bird-women, not fish-women? Like seagulls. Thanks @AmaliaTD for clearing that up.)


Tempest Rising by Tracy Deebs - To be released May 10th, 2011

Tempest Maguire wants nothing more than to surf the killer waves near her California home; continue her steady relationship with her boyfriend, Mark; and take care of her brothers and surfer dad. But Tempest is half mermaid, and as her seventeenth birthday approaches, she will have to decide whether to remain on land or give herself to the ocean like her mother. The pull of the water becomes as insistent as her attraction to Kai, a gorgeous surfer whose uncanny abilities hint at an otherworldly identity as well. And when Tempest does finally give in to the water's temptation and enters a fantastical underwater world, she finds that a larger destiny awaits her — and that the entire ocean's future hangs in the balance.

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want to read this: It looks really, really good, the cover is gorgeous (like, seriously, the back tattoo!), and I'm so saying mermaids/sirens are the new vampires.

Between the Sea & Sky by Jaclyn Dolamore - To be released June 7th, 2011

For as long as Esmerine can remember, she has longed to join her older sister, Dosinia, as a siren--the highest calling a mermaid can have. Then Dosinia runs away to the mainland, and Esmerine is sent to retrieve her. Using magic to transform her tail into legs, she makes her way unsteadily to the capital city. There she comes upon a friend she hasn't seen since childhood--a dashing young man named Alandare, who belongs to a winged race of people. As Esmerine and Alandare band together to search for Dosinia, they rekindle a friendship . . . and ignite the emotions for a love so great it cannot be bound by sea, land, or air.

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want this: The names are really interesting, which suggests to me that this is more fantasy than paranormal. Gorgeous cover, too!!


Lost Voices by Sarah Porter - To be released July 4th, 2011

What happens to the girls nobody sees—the ones who are ignored, mistreated, hidden away? The girls nobody hears when they cry for help?

Fourteen-year-old Luce is one of those lost girls. After her father vanishes in a storm at sea, she is stuck in a grim, gray Alaskan fishing village with her alcoholic uncle. When her uncle crosses an unspeakable line, Luce reaches the depths of despair. Abandoned on the cliffs near her home, she expects to die when she tumbles to the icy, churning waves below. Instead, she undergoes an astonishing transformation.

(Summary from goodreads, more there.)

Why I want this: It sounds haunting, gorgeous. Side note: The cover above this is a lot difference, but doesn't it kinda look like they were shot in the same photoshoot?


Ripple by Mandy Hubbard - To be released July 21st, 2011

Lexi is cursed with a dark secret. Each day she goes to school like a normal teenager, and each night she must swim, or the pain will be unbearable. She is a siren - a deadly mermaid destined to lure men to their watery deaths. After a terrible tragedy, Lexi shut herself off from the world, vowing to protect the ones she loves. But she soon finds herself caught between a new boy at school who may have the power to melt her icy exterior, and a handsome water spirit who says he can break Lexi's curse if she gives up everything else. Lexi is faced with the hardest decision she’s ever had to make: the life she's always longed for - or the love she can't live without?


(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want this: Mandy Hubbard is one of the nicest people I've ever met and I can't wait to get my hands on this one. I can't wait to find out what the terrible tragedy turns out to be. Also, gorgeous cover!


Siren's Storm by Lisa Papademetriou - To be released August 9th, 2011

Nothing has been the same for Will ever since what happened last summer. One day, on an ordinary sailing trip with his brother, there is a strange accident. When Will wakes up, he learns his brother has disappeared, presumed drowned. Worst of all, Will can't remember what happened—his family finds him unconscious, with no memory of the accident.

Now Will and his best friend and neighbor, Gretchen, are starting a new summer. Gretchen seems troubled—her sleepwalking habit is getting worse, and she keeps waking up closer and closer to the water. Will is drawn to Asia, the exotic new girl in town. Nobody knows where she's from—all Will knows is that her beauty and her mesmerizing voice have a powerful effect on people.

Then there is another mysterious drowning, and Will and Gretchen begin to wonder: Is Asia just another beautiful, wealthy summer resident? Or is she something entirely more sinister . . . and inhuman?

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want this: I really like books with from boy's POVs, and I feel like there aren't as many of those in paranormal. (Not fantasy.) (And I could be wrong.) Plus, hello, gorgeous cover.

So what do you guys think of this trend?

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.

Monday, March 14, 2011

YA Review: Tyger, Tyger


Tyger Tyger by Kersten Hamilton (Goblin Wars #1)

Published: November 15th, 2010 by Clarion Books
Genre: Fantasy / High fantasy (maybe)
Binding: ARC
Page Count: 304 in my ARC, but I think the hardcover has more
Part of a series? Thankfully, yes. The second comes out in October 2011, I believe.
Amazon link. (That's a pretty good price, too.)

Summary (from goodreads): Teagan Wylltson's best friend, Abby, dreams that horrifying creatures - goblins, shape-shifters, and beings of unearthly beauty but terrible cruelty - are hunting Teagan. Abby is always coming up with crazy stuff, though, so Teagan isn't worried. Her life isn't in danger. In fact, it's perfect. She's on track for a college scholarship. She has a great job. She's focused on school, work, and her future. No boys, no heartaches, no problems.

Until Finn Mac Cumhaill arrives. Finn's a bit on the unearthly beautiful side himself. He has a killer accent and a knee-weakening smile. And either he's crazy or he's been haunting Abby's dreams, because he's talking about goblins, too . . . and about being The Mac Cumhaill, born to fight all goblin-kind. Finn knows a thing or two about fighting. Which is a very good thing, because this time, Abby's right. The goblins are coming.

Review: I cannot say how AWESOME this book was. Told in third person past tense, it's stepped in Irish mythology, subtle humour blended brilliantly with the tension. (If you have a copy, pages 49, 156, 176 are my favourite funny moments.) The longer I read it, the more my notes disintergrated into, "This book is so cool," and "I love this book," type of notes.

Plot: Well, the summary is pretty awesome already. So, yeah, we'll stick with that. I really ought to just get rid of this section...
Characters: Teagan kicked BUTT. She was smart, focused, protective of her family, and just plain awesome I loved how tough she was when she needed to be, and, of course, how smart she was. Smart girls rule! She reminded me a lot of Claire from the Morganville Vampires books (and we all know how much I love those books). I found her interest in animals very interesting, though. You don't (at least, I don't) see that often.

And Finn. *sigh* Oh my gosh, but that boy is... yum. Gorgeous Irish accent. A tattoo and a scar. (Scars are hot sometimes...) Wild. And that smile... and you disregard that total fangirling moment. But, wow, I loved him. He was sweet and nice to Teagan's little brother, protective, gorgeous.

Yeah. *fans self*

Now, if you think I just focused on the cute boy, I didn't. Teagan's younger brother was a really great character, not the usually annoying little brother fare you often find. I really liked him, along with so many of the other characters. They were almost all wonderful, quirky and interesting.

Cons, complaints, bad stuff, etc: The only thing I can really think of was that at a couple points in the book, it skipped again a few months and there wasn't a marker or subtitle saying something. It was confusing for a couple minutes. But they could have changed that in the hardcover, and even if they didn't, not the biggest deal in the world.

PG-13 stuff: Well, there's obviously "mature content," due to the nature of the book, but language-wise, it's pretty mild. 12 and up seems totally appropriate.

Cover comments: I really, really like it. It's different from what's trendy right now and very suitable for the genre. The details on the tree are gorgeous, aren't they?

Conclusion: Tyger Tyger reminds me some of A Wrinkle in Time - in the best possible way. It's different and sweet, scary and sexy. I highly recommend this one. 4 and a half roses.



Other notes:
- They live near Lake Michigan, and that was cool to me because I used to live in that area (on the Canadian side, of course.)
- "Bring on the Irish accents!"
- I decided I want a pet hedgehog. Then I had a sad moment later in the book.
- I liked that Finn called Aidan, "boyo," and Teagan, "Tea."
- "SHINY TRUCK."
- "I. Want. The. Next. One." (Seriously.)

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Friday, March 11, 2011

Fun Friday: Give Me Something to Sing About! (60)

Fun Friday: Give Me Something to Sing About! is where you guys get to see a song or two I like or that I want to talk about each week. Thanks as always goes to J.J. at Random Musings for help with the title.

I don't think I've posted this song before...



(Here We Go by Mat Kearney.)

This was on Vampire Diaries, which is where I heard it. Such a pretty song. Love his voice!

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (74)

Waiting on Wednesday is, of course, brought to us by the lovely Jill at Breaking the Spine.

The Cellar by A. J. Whitten - To be released May 2nd, 2011

Meredith Willis is suspicious of Adrien, the new guy next door. When she dares to sneak a look into the windows of his house, she sees something in the cellar that makes her believe that Adrien might be more than just a creep—he may be an actual monster.

But her sister, Heather, doesn’t share Meredith’s repulsion. Heather believes Adrien is the only guy who really understands her. In fact, she may be falling in love with him. When Adrien and Heather are cast as the leads in the school production of Romeo and Juliet, to Heather, it feels like fate. To Meredith, it feels like a bad omen. But if she tries to tear the couple apart, she could end up in the last place she’d ever want to be: the cellar. Can Meredith convince her sister that she’s dating the living dead before it’s too late for both of them?

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want to read this: One word: ZOMBIES!!!! I am totally Team Zombie. :D


Girl Wonder by Alexa Martin - To be released May 3rd, 2010

As if transferring senior year weren't hard enough, Charlotte Locke has been bumped to lower level classes at her new school. With no friends, a terrible math SAT score, and looming college application deadlines, the future is starting to seem like an oncoming train for which she has no ticket.

Then Amanda enters her orbit like a hot-pink meteor, offering Charlotte a ticket to something else: popularity. Amanda is fearless, beautiful, brilliant, and rich. As her new side kick, Charlotte is brought into the elite clique of the debate team—and closer to Neal, Amanda's equally brilliant friend and the most perfect boy Charlotte has ever seen.

But just when senior year is looking up, Charlotte’s life starts to crumble. The more things heat up between Charlotte and Neal, the more Neal wants to hide their relationship. Is he ashamed? Meanwhile, Amanda is starting to act strangely competitive, and she's keeping a secret Charlotte doesn't want to know. 

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want to read this: Well, I love the cover, but I think the book sounds really good, too. As much as I love paranormals, I like a good contemporary sometimes, too.

What are you guys waiting on?

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Things I Talk About on Twitter (7)

Nail polish. I've done fake nails like this:


But my true love is nail polish.


Yeah. There are actually a couple missing from

How do I store that? In a box. (With a fox. And some lox.)


Some of my favourite nail looks (be warned, some of these are weird pictures. It's hard taking pictures of your nails with your webcam!):


Neon orange. It's SO bright in real life.


Black and white striples. This was one of my favourite looks. It made me feel like Cruella de Vil. Only... you know, without the puppy killing part.


And most recently - ladybugs!

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Friday, March 4, 2011

Fun Friday: Give Me Something to Sing About! (59)

Fun Friday: Give Me Something to Sing About! is where you guys get to see a song or two I like or that I want to talk about each week. Thanks as always goes to J.J. at Random Musings for help with the title.

This is one of the most random songs I have on my playlist.



(Lollipop by The Chordettes, Squeak E. Clean and Desert Eagle remix.)

I think I heard it on the Whip It soundtrack. And how AWESOME was that movie???

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Michelle Moran Contest Winner

The winner of the book and earrings is... *drumroll*

Gintare!

I've emailed the winner and they have one week to reply to me or I'll have to choose another.

Thanks for entering!
Peace and cookies,
Laina

Waiting on Wednesday (73)

Waiting on Wednesday is, of course, brought to us by the lovely Jill at Breaking the Spine.

I'm Not Her by Janet Gurtler - May 1st, 2011

“For the first time in my life, I didn’t feel envy...”

Tess is the exact opposite of her beautiful, athletic sister. And that’s okay. Kristina is the sporty one, Tess is the smart one, and they each have their place. Until Kristina is diagnosed with cancer. Suddenly Tess is the center of the popular crowd, everyone eager for updates. There are senior boys flirting with her. Yet the smiles of her picture-perfect family are cracking and her sister could be dying. Now Tess has to fill a new role: the strong one. Because if she doesn’t hold it together, who will?

Janet Gurtler tests the bonds of sisterhood in this moving debut that readers of Jodi Picoult and Sarah Dessen will savor.

(Summary from goodreads.)

Why I want this: This had a different title/cover before, The Weight of Bones, but it was changed. This cover stands out a little bit more, and seems a bit more... hopeful, I guess. From the description, it seems like a real heartbreaker, but incredible.

Future Imperfect by K. Ryer Breese - To be released April 26th, 2011

Ade Patience can see the future and it's destroying his life. When the seventeen-year-old Mantlo High School student knocks himself unconscious, he can see days and decades into his own future. Ade's the best of Denver's "divination" underground and eager to join the heralded Mantlo Diviners, a group of similarly enabled teens. Yet, unlike the Diviners, Ade Patience doesn't see the future out of curiosity or good will; Ade gives himself concussions because he's addicted to the high, the Buzz, he gets when he breaks the laws of physics. And while there have been visions he's wanted to change, Ade knows the Rule: You can't change the future, no matter how hard you try. 

(Summary from goodreads - more there.)

Why I want to read this: I think the idea of being addicted to seeing the future is really, really interesting, and I always like the whole psychic thing. Plus the cover font reminds me of something. Drought, a bit, but another book, too. Any ideas what book I mean? Just the font, not the rest of the cover (which I love).

Okay, that's everything.

Peace and cookies,
Laina

Links to material on Amazon.com contained within this post may be affiliate links for the Amazon Associates program, for which this site may receive a referral fee.