Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Ascendant (Killer Unicorns #2) by Diana Peterfreund

Ascendant (Killer Unicorns, #2)Title: Ascendant
Author: Diana Peterfreund
Series: 2nd in Killer Unicorns
Published:  September 28, 2010 by HarperTeen
Pages: 400
ISBN: 9780061490026
Source: ARC from Star Book Tours

Description: Now a fully trained unicorn hunter, Astrid Llewelyn is learning that she can’t solve all her problems with a bow and arrow. Her boyfriend has left Rome, the Cloisters is in dire financial straits, her best friend’s powers are mysteriously disintegrating, and her hope of becoming a scientist seems to be nothing but an impossible dream. So when she’s given the opportunity to leave the Cloisters and use her skills as part of a scientific quest to discover the Remedy, Astrid leaps at the chance. Finally, she can have exactly what she wants—or can she? At Gordian headquarters deep in France, Astrid begins to question everything she had believed: her love for Giovanni, her loyalty to the Cloisters, and—most of all—her duty as a hunter. Should Astrid be saving the world from killer unicorns or saving unicorns from the world? 

I Give This ...

After reading Rampant and enjoying it, I was hoping Ascendant would live up to it.  I was surprised at the direction the author decided to take this one.  I pretty sure anybody that it's an animal lover might have issues with it.  I liked the story but had a hard time stomaching some of the issues the unicorns face.  It's actually kind of heartbreaking.   Plus, there's still the focus on sex and virginity.  It's not in your face, but it's hard to not notice the small paragraphs talking about 15 year-olds losing their virginity just to avoid dealing with the unicorns. 

Astrid grew in leaps and bounds in this one, but yet in some ways remains your typical teenager.  In the beginning you can tell, she's still all about her duty.  I'm not saying she likes killing unicorns, but she doesn't see an alternative.  And she doesn't see what good all of her cousin's lobbying to protect the unicorns is going to do.   But, in her days to day dealings with unicorns at Gordian headquarters, you can tell the direction she's headed.  And this is a way she's a typical teen, she believes she can single-handedly save them all.  

Her relationships in this one are really interesting.  Of course the minute Giovanni lives to go back to the states, she begins to doubt her relationship.  Which of course leads her to do stupid things.  She's also far to trusting.  I also like how her relationship with her cousin changes.  At the beginning of the book, they are in different places.  I think they reach a real understanding of each other in the end.

My only real disappointment is learning the author doesn't plan on writing a sequel anytime soon.  The book wraps up without a real cliff hanger.  But, I don't think the story is over.   


Monday, August 30, 2010

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

What Are You Reading, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week.  It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.  Click on the picture to be taken to Sheila at One Person's Journey Through A World of Books!

As I stated last week, I did end up with mostly rereads this week.  So will just recap those 3.  If your interested in my reviews (well except for Harry Potter), in the right-hand sidebar, click on the link for books read in 2009 Although, I have to warn you, it's almost embarrassing reading those earlier reviews.  My reviews have definitely improved in my opinion.

I read The Hunger Games and Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins.  I actually enjoyed Catching Fire  more this time around.  I was hoping to catch some clues on what might happen in Mockingjay.  No such luck, but I'm sure they will be obvious once I've read the final book.

I also read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling.  I have to admit this is my least favorite of the series.  But, I never skip it. 

Since, I still didn't have Mockinyjay in my hands, I read Kindred In Death by J.D. Robb next.  I love this series, but this book wasn't my favorite.  I did like the way the went about solving the murder.  But, I'm wondering if the series is starting to get redundant (this is #29).  I'll continue reading them I'm sure.

I'm currently reading Arizona by Eden Maguire.  I'm not very far into it, so it's hard to say.  The series intrigues me, but the first book was only so-so.  Hope this one is better.   I also plan on reading Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins (if it ever gets here, which is another story for another time...I'm still not happy about the way Amazon handled this release).  I'll probably read The Season by Sarah MacLean, and The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball by Risa Green.  I also plan on starting Breathe of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon, which will be my ongoing read for the month of September.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren and she was inspired by Alea of Pop Culture JunkieI also want to mention that all my cover pictures link to the description on Goodreads!

For Review

Moonstone (Unbidden Magic, #1)Moon Rise (Unbidden Magic, #2)

Moon Spun (Unbidden Magic, #3)The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball
  •  Moonstone by Marilee Brothers
  • Moon Rise by Marilee Brothers
  • Moon Spun by Marilee Brothers
  • The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball by Risa Green


Jumping Off SwingsThe Red Queen's DaughterWarrior (Doppleganger, #1)

Nice Girls Don't Date Dead Men (Jane Jameson, #2)Nice Girls Don't Live Forever (Jane Jameson, #3)

  • Jumping off Swings by Jo Knowles
  • The Red Queen's Daughter by Jacquiline Kolosov
  • Warrior by Marie Brennen 
  • Nice Girls Don't Date Dead Men by Molly Harper
  • Nice Girls Don't Live Forever by Molly Harper


Darkfever (Fever, #1)

  • Darkfever by Karen Moning

    Saturday, August 28, 2010

    Deeply, Desperately (Lucy Valentine, #2) by Heather Webber

    Deeply, Desperately (Lucy Valentine, #2)Title: Deeply, Desperately
    Author: Heather Webber
    Series: Lucy Valentine #2
    Published: August 2010 by St. Martins
    Pages: 336
    ISBN: 9780312946142
    Source: ARC from Romance Book Tours

    Descrtipion: Lucy wants to breathe new life into her family’s Boston-based matchmaking company. But how? Even though she comes from a long line of ancestors blessed by Cupid with psychic abilities, a freak accident left Lucy with only one special skill: finding things. Car keys, socks in the dryer, needles in haystacks...and now, in a stroke of professional genius, lost loves! It’s not long before Lucy’s on a winning streak, helping old flames reunite and create new sparks. Business is booming. But when Lucy finds herself involved in a possible case of murder, she realizes she’s in too deep. Enter Sean Donahue. Lucy’s handsome fire-fighter turned private-eye neighbor, Sean is just the man she needs to help her on the job. Could he also be the man she’s been looking for all along? When it comes to Valentine, Inc., falling in love is always serious business… .

    I Give This ...

    If you like light romance with a bit of mystery, then I highly recommend this series.  With two books to date, I can't help but love the main character Lucy, and the quirky cast that makes up this story.  She's just as fun, smart, and witty in this oneI can see myself becoming a follower of this series for as long as remains true to the initial storyline (or she stops writing them).

    I love how each story seems to include a mystery that involves the family business and a mystery the has Lucy using her powers.  In this book, Lucy helps an older gentleman find his lost love from before he was sent off to war.  I thought this story was very sweet and I loved the closure.  Plus, the mystery that Lucy solves involving a missing person is interesting.  Although, I don't think it brought quite the amount of danger that seemed to be in the first book.

    The romance between Sean and Lucy makes some headway.  Which is a relief, because I was afraid the author might choose to drag it out for a few books.  I really enjoy how intense their attraction seems to be but has a basis of true feelings and not just lust.   I'm looking forward to the next one!

    Friday, August 27, 2010

    Book Blogger Hop and Follow My Book Blog!

    It's time for some networking! Crazy For Books hosts the Book Blogger Hop which is a place just for book bloggers and readers to connect and find new book-related blogs that we may be missing out on!  This weekly BOOK PARTY is an awesome opportunity for book bloggers to connect with other book lovers, make new friends, support each other, and generally just share our love of books!  It will also give blog readers a chance to find other book blogs that they may not know existed!

     Parajunkee hosts Follow My Book Blog!  Happy Follow Friday!

    Do you use a rating system for your reviews and if so, what is it and why?

    Yes, I use a rating system.  I originally just used the standard 2-5 stars (I've never read a 1 star book).  I recently started using 2-5 butterflies.  These can be found on the right sidebar.  Generally, anything 3 and above it a good book.  I rarely give out 5 stars for some reason (I've had 4 so far this year).  I think ratings give a good general idea of what someone thinks of something.  I can't see myself not using one, but admit it's not always perfect.

    What is the first book that you remember reading?

    I'm really not sure.  I was an avid reader from an early age.  I remember devouring the newest Babysitters Club books, and then Sweet Valley High (my mom bought me books 1-50 at a garage sale and I got them as a birthday present), and gradually on to the likes of Mary Higgins Clark, Stephen King, and Dean Koontz.  I wish the YA genre was as huge then as it is now!


    Thursday, August 26, 2010

    Rampant (Killer Unicorns, #1) by Diana Peterfreund

    Rampant (Killer Unicorns, #1)Title: Rampant
    Author: Diana Peterfreund
    Series: 1st in Killer Unicorns
    Published: August 2009 by Harper Teen
    Pages: 402
    ISBN: 9780061490002
    Source: purchased copy

    Description: Forget everything you ever knew about unicorns... Real unicorns are venomous, man-eating monsters with huge fangs and razor-sharp horns. Fortunately, they've been extinct for a hundred and fifty years. Or not. Astrid had always scoffed at her eccentric mother's stories about killer unicorns. But when one of the monsters attacks her boyfriend—thereby ruining any chance of him taking her to the prom—Astrid finds herself headed to Rome to train as a unicorn hunter at the ancient cloisters the hunters have used for centuries. However, at the cloisters all is not what it seems. Outside, the unicorns wait to attack. And within, Astrid faces other, unexpected threats: from the crumbling, bone-covered walls that vibrate with a terrible power to the hidden agendas of her fellow hunters to—perhaps most dangerously of all—her growing attraction to a handsome art student ... an attraction that could jeopardize everything.

    I Give This ...

    I have to admit, I thought this book sounded interesting, but couldn't help but think of really bad horror movies.  Killer unicorns just sounds so cheesy!  But, actually the author does a great job of actually making them seem very terrifying.  I liked how this takes place in the real world but ordinary people can't see unicorns.   Although, I really wonder what people thought was killing all the animals (and occasionally people) in the area.

    Astrid was fun.  She really doubts the stories her mom tells her, even after she witnessed the attack on her boyfriend.  And when she does start to believe, she fights what others tell her she was born to do.  But then really who would believe they were born to be a virgin hunter of unicorns.  If the story wasn't so serious with the job the hunters are suppose to do, it would be almost comical.   I liked the other hunters as well.  Most of them are background characters, but they all have very distinct personalities.   I especially liked Astrid's cousin Phil.  I don't think she ever took her position seriously and she was a bit careless (not that what happens to her is in any way her fault).  But she was fiery and didn't let anybody tell her what to do.

    I loved the myths worked in about the unicorns throughout history.   The entire story seems entirely believable.  I did think the sex stuff was a bit over the top.  I got a little tired of hearing about the requirement of being a virgin to be a hunter (although the test of determining virginity raised my eyebrows lol).   Plus I didn't like the scene with Astrid basically throwing herself at Giovanni.  I know she was desperate to get out of her role as a hunter, it just seemed slightly out of character.  So in that aspect, I think I would recommend this to older teens and those of us young at heart!

    Wednesday, August 25, 2010

    Crescendo (Hush, Hush, #2) by Becca Fitzpatrick

    Crescendo (Hush, Hush, #2)Title: Crescendo
    Author: Becca Fitzpatrick
    Series: 2nd in Hush, Hush series
    Published: October 19, 2010 by Simon & Schuster
    Pages: 432
    ISBN: 9781416989431
    Source: ARC from Around The World Tours

    Description:Nora should have know her life was far from perfect. Despite starting a relationship with her guardian angel, Patch (who, title aside, can be described anything but angelic), and surviving an attempt on her life, things are not looking up. Patch is starting to pull away and Nora can't figure out if it's for her best interest or if his interest has shifted to her arch-enemy Marcie Millar. Not to mention that Nora is haunted by images of her father and she becomes obsessed with finding out what really happened to him that night he left for Portland and never came home. The farther Nora delves into the mystery of her father's death, the more she comes to question if her Nephilim blood line has something to do with it as well as why she seems to be in danger more than the average girl. Since Patch isn't answering her questions and seems to be standing in her way, she has to start finding the answers on her own. Relying too heavily on the fact that she has a guardian angel puts Nora at risk again and again. But can she really count on Patch or is he hiding secrets darker than she can even imagine?

    I Give This

    It's been awhile since I read Hush, Hush.  But, I remember really enjoying the story and wanting more.  The author has done a great job creating a story were you can't wait until the next one.   Crescendo was everything Hush, Hush was and more!   In fact, I've been struggling with myself on giving it 5 or 4 butterflies.  I truly loved this book.  

    I feel for Norah immensely in this one.  She's struggling with finding the truth about her father's death.  She struggles with her relationship with her mom.  But, most of all she struggles with her relationship with Patch.  And this I really identified with.  Fitzpatrick has done an amazing job making this feel very real.  In fact, I think all the relationships in the book are one of the things that make this story fantastic.  Take away the supernatural elements of this story an it could be about any teenager anywhere.

    But the supernatural also adds to this story.  I loved learning about Patch and his  problems with being a guardian angel.  There were so many times I thought he was just being an a$$, but there were actual reasonings behind all of his actions.  He was trying to protect himself and Norah.  By the end of the book, I was in love his character.  I was floored by the ending.  I never suspected for one minute what was really going on (although I also didn't believe what the story was trying to make you think either).

    So, I highly recommend Crescendo to those who have read Hush, Hush.  And if you haven't...maybe you should.  I think you might be missing out on a great series (and PATCH!)!!

    Tuesday, August 24, 2010

    Hunger (Horsemen of the Apocalypse, #1) by Jackie Morse Kessler

    Hunger (Horsemen of the Apocalypse, #1)Title: Hunger
    Author: Jackie Morse Kessler
    Series: 1st in Horseman of the Apocalypse series
    Published: October 10, 2010 by Harcourt Graphia
    Pages: 180
    ISBN: 9780547341248
    Source: ARC from We Love YA Tours

    Description: Lisabeth Lewis is no stranger to starvation. Her life revolves around counting calories, constant exercise, denying herself even the strongest cravings. Lisa is in a constant battle with hunger for control over her body. When, in a moment of desperation, she almost gives up that control completely, she is visited by a wisecracking messenger who turns out to be Death. He offers Lisa a rare opportunity: to become one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse—Famine. As Famine, Lisa travels the world on her black steed, visiting parts of the world where hunger is a painful part of everyday life. She’s horrified to see her own power destroy crops and turn food to dust. But when she finds a way to harness her power as Famine and use it for nourishment rather than deprivation, Lisa finally gains the courage to face her own problem. 

    I Give This ...

    I have to admit this book was completely original.   I loved how the author has taken a biblical reference and made it into something modern.  All 4 of the horseman are included in this book, but we only get a real look at Famine (although Death plays a pretty good role as well).  By the end of the book I truly wondered if Death choose Lizabeth as Famine because she was anorexic.  It was a way to help her see past her problem and see people who were really hunger.  I think it helped put her eating disorder in perspective.  I liked how the supernatural played into this story.  Horses that no one can see, traveling huge distance in the blink of an eye, and the awesome power to create hunger.  I thought it was impressive that Lizabeth managed to find away to use her power for good.  In turn I thought this created an awesome showdown with War.   I was impressed with how the author handled the delicate issue of an easting disorder.  It showed Lizabeth vulnerable.  I liked how the author was able to show that even those who you think are total control of themselves are likely putting on a show.  And sometimes, the ones who care about you the most are saying something you don't want to hear.

    So, why the 3 butterflies?   There's two main reasons.  First, I really think the book could have been longer.  At under 200 pages, I just wasn't satisfied.  I know everything ties up nicely, but I wanted more.  I think the author could have expanded on some things.  Second, I hate nitpicking, but when something still stands out in my mind 2 weeks after I read the book, I have to mention it.  I dislike talk about bodily functions.   There's a passage describing Lizabeth's struggle to have bowel movement.  Now maybe this is a real problem with eating disorders, but I just didn't like the way the author presented it.  And, it didn't add to the story.  There's also a part with a very detailed description of Lizabeth's friend and her bulimia.  While, I do think this helped show something important to Lizabeth, it was just really hard to read (I think this might be partly due to my own aversion to throw-up).

    I will be continuing this series though.  The author has something to offer her and I want to see were the series goes!


    Monday, August 23, 2010

    It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

    What Are You Reading, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week.  It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.  Click on the picture to be taken to Sheila at One Person's Journey Through A World of Books!

    Wow!  I got through 5 books again this week.  When I say that, I feel like all I've done is read and I know that's not true.  But still, it feels good to get some of those book out of my to read pile!

    I started off the week with The Secret Bride by Diane Haeger.  In the end I was just so-so with it.  I did enjoy reading about Princess Mary (King Henry VIII's little sister).  I knew nothing about her before this.

    Next, I read If I Stay by Gayle Forman.  This was a powerful book.  I wonder if I'm the only one that didn't realize what the book was really about from just the description.  I learned she's writing a sequel and can't wait!

    I then read Deception by Lee Nicholas.  I have to admit this wasn't on my radar initially, but I won it in a contest.  I'm always surprised when a YA managed to pull off a little bit of horror convincingly.  I ended up really enjoying this one.

    I read a tour book next.  Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund was interesting...in a good way.  I wasn't expecting the author to take it in the direction she did.  I liked it though.  I was disappointed to read that the author doesn't plan on writing another book anytime soon.  I hope that's not true because I don't think the story is over!

    I also finished Fallen by Lauren Kate.  I have to admit, I was a little disappointed with this one.  The first half seemed to be about nothing.  The second half was packed full of action without really explaining anything.  I have Torment  coming on tours in a few weeks and I hope things get explained better.

    I think this week is going to be a reread week.  I'm reading The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins and also plan on reading Catching Fire!  This way I can remember the details when I have Mockingjay in my hands.  I also will reread Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling.  If there's time, I will also read Kindred in Death by J.D. Robb.

    Sunday, August 22, 2010

    In My Mailbox!

    In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren and she was inspired by Alea of Pop Culture JunkieI also want to mention that all my cover pictures link to the description on Goodreads!

    For Review:

    Ascendant (Killer Unicorns, #2)Arizona (Beautiful Dead, #2)

    • Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund (Star Book Tours)
    • Arizona by Eden Maguire


    Generation Dead (Generation Dead, #1)Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy, #3)
    • Generation Dead by Daniel Waters
    • Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead

    Saturday, August 21, 2010

    Rhode from Infinite Days be Rebecca Maizel

    For those of you who have read Infinite Days by Rebecaa Maizel, you know that we don't get to know Rhode very well.  I  thought he was a fascinating character.  So, I decided to ask Rebecca about Rhode so maybe we could learn a little bit more about him!

    Can you remember much about your human life?  Such as when you were born, were did you live, etc?

    I was born in England outside what is now contemporary London. The date of my birth is not something I share though I will tell you I was a knight under Edward the III when I was only a young man. The black death was ravaging England and Europe. I'd never seen such death, such unforgiving death. 

    When were you made into a vampire and who created you?
    I became a vampire in the early 1400s - this is a story I cannot tell.  Though I will tell you that I feared the Black Plague. I did not fear battle, I was an excellent swordsman. I feared death - and the Black Plague took many that were dear to me. 

    What has been your favorite time period?
    The early 1700s. When it was just Lenah and me. 

    What has been the hardest thing for you as a vampire?
    Leaving Lenah to find the ritual - watching her mind decay and knowing the only way to save her was to find the ritual. 

    What attracted you to Lenah and made you decide to turn her?
    Her essence. The way she looked at her world. I loved the way she touched things with her finger tips and admired the many objects in her life. I took touch away from her when I made her a vampire but I needed her with me. I wanted to show her just how much I loved her - I wanted her to appraise my world. 

    What led you to sacrifice yourself for Lenah to become human again?
    Love. Simple but true.

    What did you do for the 100 years while Lenah slept?
    I travelled and researched the nuances of the ritual. There were no texts I could access easily in England so I went to remote parts of the world to find the truth. And I hoped that we would succeed. 

    Do you agree with Lenah’s choices in the end?
    Her choice to be human? Absolutely. She would have become something else, something dark, she would have not been the Lenah I loved had she remained a vampire for much longer. There are darker, worse creatures than vampires and Lenah would have become one of those, I'm sure of it.

    Infinite Days (Vampire Queen, #1)Infinite Days - A Vampire Queen Novel

    “Throughout all my histories, I found no one I loved more than you…no one.”
    Those were some of Rhode’s last words to me. The last time he would pronounce his love. The last time I would see his face. It was the first time in 592 years I could take a breath. Lay in the sun. Taste. Rhode sacrificed himself so I, Lenah Beaudonte, could be human again. So I could stop the blood lust. I never expected to fall in love with someone else that wasn’t Rhode.  But Justin was…daring. Exciting. More beautiful than I could dream.

    http://rebeccamaizel.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/IMG_0014copy.jpgRebecca Maizel graduated from Boston University and the Rhode Island College master’s program. She teaches community college in Rhode Island and is studying to receive her MFA from Vermont College.

    Friday, August 20, 2010

    Infinite Days (Vampire Queen, #1) by Rebecca Maizel

    Infinite Days (Vampire Queen, #1)Title: Infinite Days
    Author: Rebecca Maizel
    Series: 1st in planned series
    Published: Available by St. Martin's Griffin
    Pages: 310
    ISBN: 9780312649913
    Source: ARC from Goodreads

    Description: After centuries of terrorizing Europe, Lenah Beaudonte, with the help of the handsome Rhode, has been able to realize the dream of all vampires - to be human again.  Now, as a raven-haired, sixteen-year-old, Lenah believes her greatest challenge is fitting in at her new school.  But the challenges have only begun.  The vicious coven Lenah once ruled is threatening the new found pleasures of her human life, including the one guy who makes her feel most alive, Justine.  Can this ex-vamp survive in an ancient time and place or will her past come back to haunt her ... forever? 

    I Give This ...

    I was immediately drawn to this novel.  The idea of a vampire turned human again really had my interest.  I especially like the idea of a ruthless vampire that has lived for hundreds of years becoming a teenager in the 21st century.    Maizel managed to do this flawlessly.  I really liked this story.

    Lenah is an interesting character.  I loved the flashbacks of her life as a vampire.  I think these just skim the surface of how terrifying she really was.  Her first few days as a human again were fascinating.  Maizel really draws you into how Lenah feels, thinks, and acts during this time.  I liked listening to her internal struggle.  Some of her vampire instincts are still intact for awhile and she knows how she would have reacted had she still been a vampire.  I also really loved how she struggles with the new things of the 21st century.  I can't imagine the shock of all the things that have occurred in the past 100 years.  I loved the part were she heard the opera on CD in the listening room of the library.  I thought it was very touching.

    The other characters fill out the story nicely.  I really liked Tony and for awhile I wished Lenah would have chosen him.   But, Justin grew on me.  I thought it was interesting that Lenah felt she would have been drawn to him as a vampire as well.  I do wish we would have gotten more of Rhode.  He seems like a very deep and complex person.  The coven was an interesting group.  Aside from Vicken, they seemed like one entity.  But, I don't think we are suppose to see them as individuals.  I can't wait to get more of Vicken in future books.  

    The story flows nicely as Lenah adapts to being a human and learning what typical teenagers do.  It's great getting the viewpoint of all the things we consider normal for the viewpoint of someone who has been around for over 500 years.   I wasn't prepared for what happened when the coven caught up with Lenah, but I thought the ending was appropriate.  I can't wait to see what happens in the next book of the series.


    Thursday, August 19, 2010

    A Living Nightmare (Cirque Du Freak, #1) by Darren Shan

    A Living Nightmare (Cirque Du Freak, #1)Title: A Living Nightmare
    Author: Darren Shan
    Series: 1st in Cirque Du Freak
    Published: April 2004 by Little Brown
    Pages: 272
    ISBN: 9780316905718
    Source: Library

    Description: In the tradition of Stephen King's 'Salem's Lot, Cirque Du Freak is the frightening saga of a young boy whose visit to a mysterious freak show leads him on a journey into a dark world of vampires. Filled with grotesque creatures, murderous vampires, and a petrifying ending, Cirque Du Freak will chill, thrill, and leave readers begging for more. 

    I Give This ...

    Honestly, there's nothing really wrong with this book.  I think it's just one of those that might not cross over to the adult population as well as others.  I really do think it's perfect for pre-teen boys.  The voice is perfect, and I think that age range will really identify with the characters.  And it's just grotesque enough that I think boys will love it, but parents won't object.  The interactions with the spider were enough for me (my mother's is terrified of spiders, so I'm not to overly fond of them).  I liked the Freak Show.  It was just so over the top but seemed to fit right in with what I know about them.  Plus, I think it gives the book just enough horror without actually being really scary.  The events after the show are actually pretty fast paced and interesting.  The story is just a little simple for my taste.  I think I might recommend it to my 9 year old cousin when he's a little older.  I think he might like it!  I'm not sure about the rest of the series.  Maybe occasionally if the the library has them.


    Wednesday, August 18, 2010

    The Fiery Cross (Outlander, #5) by Diana Gabaldon

    The Fiery Cross (Outlander, #5)Title: The Fiery Cross
    Author: Diana Gabaldon
    Series: 5th in Outlander Series
    Published: October 2002 by Delta
    Pages: 976
    ISBN: 9780385336765
    Source: Personal Copy

    Description: The year is 1771, and war is coming. Jamie Fraser’s wife tells him so. Little as he wishes to, he must believe it, for hers is a gift of dreadful prophecy — a time-traveler’s certain knowledge.
    Born in the year of Our Lord 1918, Claire Randall served England as a nurse on the battlefields of World War II, and in the aftermath of peace found fresh conflicts when she walked through a cleftstone on the Scottish Highlands and found herself an outlander, an English lady in a place where no lady should be, in a time — 1743 — when the only English in Scotland were the officers and men of King George’s army.  Now wife, mother, and surgeon, Claire is still an outlander, out of place, and out of time, but now, by choice, linked by love to her only anchor — Jamie Fraser. Her unique view of the future has brought him both danger and deliverance in the past; her knowledge of the oncoming revolution is a flickering torch that may light his way through the perilous years ahead — or ignite a conflagration that will leave their lives in ashes....

    I Give This ... 

    I can see were others would begin to fall out of love with the Outlander series at this point.  They are tedious and heavy books that take awhile to read.  But, I still thoroughly enjoyed this one. I do wonder about some of the details.  It's almost like the editors were afraid to tell Gabaldon that she needed to take some things out.  And, it also feel like not a lot happens.  At the end, I came to conclude that it's a setup book.  It's preparing to you for things to come.  While the overall content of the book is basically day to day living on the ridge, there are events that happen that are important to the future.  I was completely dumbfounded with what happens to Roger.  There are some tense moments with the local wild life (including a snake and a buffalo).  I wish we could have gotten so more closure with Stephen Bonnet, but have come to accept that it isn't time yet.  I loved the interactions between the characters.  I loved what happens with Ian at the end.  But, most of all, this particular book just made me think.  I began to wonder if it's truly possible for a time traveler to change what happens?  And if they do, what might the consequences be?  


    Tuesday, August 17, 2010

    The Warrior Heir (The Heir Chronicles, #1) by Cinda Williams Chima

    The Warrior Heir (The Heir Chronicles, #1)Title: The Warrior Heir
    Author: Cinda Williams Chima
    Series: 1st in Heir Chronicles
    Published: April 2007 by Hyperion
    Pages: 426
    ISBN: 9780786839179
    Source: Library

    Description:  Jack thought his life was normal.  Until one day his Aunt Linda takes him on a trip to research genealogy.  What he discovers is a buried sword behind the headstone of a long forgotten relative.  This leads to a startling confession.  Jack is a Weirlind, and more specifically a Warrior.  The sword is his by birthright.  Warriors are a dieing breed and the vying houses of the Roses will do anything to keep him from competing in the Tournament for the opposing team.  Jack begins training in secret and discovers his powers are much harder to control than he thought and soon becomes a target.  He must compete in the tournament for a new house and win or be constantly hunted.  If he wins, a new rule of wizards will be established.  But, his opponent is way more than he bargained for.  

    I Give This ...

    I'm not sure what I was expecting for this book, but I still enjoyed the set up immensely.  It was a little confusing at times, because I don't think the author does a great job explaining the characters and some of the history.  But, in the end it all makes sense.  I loved how the story takes place in an our world with characters that are trying to blend in.  Occasionally, magic has to be performed so the regular humans don't become suspicious.  It sort of reminded me of Harry Potter in a way.  

    Jack was fun.  He has such a heavy burden placed on his shoulders when he learns the truth about himself.  And he gets absolutely no say in anything that happens to him.  I'm surprised he doesn't revolt against it all.  He is a teenager after all.  He seems pretty level headed about it all and you can tell he hates keeping secrets from his mom and his friends.  It makes him likable.  I thought his decision to play in the tournament was admirable.  And his actions when he learned who his opponent was made him brave.  His friends provide the comic relief.  They're like the two side-kicks that don't realize the danger they're putting themselves in.  

    The ending seemed to neat for me.  I don't think the tournament needed to end in death, but expected a little more than I got.  It seemed a little anticlimactic after all the buildup and I was a little disappointed.  I know the battle isn't over though.  I will be reading the next one to see what happens next. 

    Monday, August 16, 2010

    It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

    What Are You Reading, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week.  It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.  Click on the picture to be taken to Sheila at One Person's Journey Through A World of Books!
    I had an interesting reading weekI some how managed to fit in 5 books again.  I really enjoyed most of them, so when you're picking them up at odd times of the day, it really makes them go by fast.I had 3 tour books come in that had to be fit into my reading schedule.  I was expecting one of them, one I didn't realize how fast it would get here, and the other caught me by surprise.

    I started off the week with Dark Flame by Alyson Noel.  It was not bad and better than the last, but still had it's annoying moments.  I don't think I'm going to give up on the series yet, mainly because there's only 2 books left and I get them from the library.

    I read Hunger by Jackie Morse Kessler for tours next.  I really liked this book and it's topic.  But, there was some things I really would have preferred be cut from the book.  It possible, since it's not due for release until October.  I hate it when something sticks in my mind and distracts me from the story.

    Next I read Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick, which was also for tours.  I loved this book.  It didn't dazzle me like most books that I give 5 stars, but I'm still tempted to give it a 5.  I found myself picking it up every spare minute I had.

    My surprise tour book was Deeply, Desperately by Heather Webber.  I really loved the first in this series and was really looking forward to this one.  It did not disappoint.  The series have really impressed me and can't wait for the next one!

    I also finished Songs for a Teenage Nomad by Kim Culbertson.  This story was great.  I loved the inclusion of music throughout the book and how Calle connects with it.  It also has a little bit of a mystery element to it that I really enjoyed.

    I'm currently reading The Secret Bride by Diane Haeger.  I'm not very far into it, but enjoying it so far.  I love historical fiction set in Tudor England!  I also plan on reading If I Stay by Gayle Foreman and Deception by Lee Nichols.  If there's time, I will also read Fallen by Lauren Kate

    Sunday, August 15, 2010

    In My Mailbox!

    In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren and she was inspired by Alea of Pop Culture JunkieI also want to mention that all my cover pictures link to the description on Goodreads!

    For Review:

    Hunger (Horsemen of the Apocalypse, #1)Crescendo (Hush, Hush, #2)Deeply, Desperately (Lucy Valentine, #2)
    • Hunger by Jackie Morse Kessler (We Love Ya Book Tours)
    • Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick (Around The World Book Tours)
    • Deeply, Desperately by Heather Webber (Romance Book Tours)


    Lessons from a Dead Girl
    • Lessons From a Dead Girl by Jo Knowles


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