Monday, January 31, 2011

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!

If your the praying type (or just think positive thoughts), my family could use extra prayers this week!  My grandma is currently is ICU.  The doctors think she either had a stroke or a TIA yesterday. They think she's going to be ok, but it's still scary.  On top of that, my husband's aunt is having a kidney transplant tomorrow and another family member (her sister) is donating the kidney. 

Read Last Week:

  • Forgotten by Cat Patrick
  • Misguided Angel by Melissa de la Cruz
  • Where She Went by Gayle Forman
  • XVI by Julia Karr
Currently Reading:
  • Tempest Rising by Nicole Peeler
  • The Flash of A Firefly
Up This Week:
  • Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton
  • Darkness Becomes Her by Kelly Keaton
  • Water Wars by Cameron Stacher

Sunday, January 30, 2011

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 Goodreads!

For Review:

Where She Went (If I Stay, #2)XVIAngelfire (Angelfire, #1)
  • Where She Went by Gayle Forman (Star Book Tours) 
  • XVI by Julia Karr (Around The World Tours)
  • Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton


The Shadow of Your Smile
  • Shadow of Your Smile by Mary Higgins Clark

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Summer Son by Craig Lancaster

The Summer SonTitle: The Summer Song
 Author: Craig Lancaster
Series: Stand Alone
Pages: 304
Published: Available now from Amazon Encore
ISBN: 9781935597247
Source: sent for review

Description: He owed a lot of people, but I was the only one left to collect. I told myself that I didn’t care about him, only about what he owed me, whatever that was.  I even tried to believe it.  When Mitch Quillen’s life begins to unravel, he fears there is no escape. His marriage and his career are both failing, and his relationship with his father has been a disaster for decades. Approaching forty, Mitch doesn’t want to become a middle-aged statistic. When his estranged father, Jim, suddenly calls, Mitch’s wife urges him to respond. Ready for a change, Mitch heads to Montana and a showdown that will alter the course of his life. Amid a backdrop of rugged peaks and valleys, the story unfolds: a violent episode that triggered the rift, thirty years of miscommunication, and the possibility of misplaced blame.

I Give This ...

Lancaster's debut novel 600 Hours of Edward was one of my favorite books of 2009.  So, needless to say, I was more than happy to review his sophomore effort. 

Lancaster creates characters that you can identify with.  Mitch is no exception.  I really felt his struggle with is wife and his battle to try to figure out the best way to save his marriage.  I also felt his struggle with himself and the things he's burried so deep even he's not sure what exactly they are.  But most of all, I really felt his struggle with his father.  And really it's the basis of the entire story because it's affected Mitch's entire life.

I like the Lancaster tackled such a delicate subject as family rifts.  My own family is pretty tight as is my husband's.  But, I can see how they could happen.  And, I'm sure it's very common.  The book explorers a summer when Mitch was young when the initial rift occurred and the present (well 2007 but could be the present).  His father has reached out to him and they must overcome that summer that stands between them.

Reading about Mitch's father and you can see why he's a hard man to like.  When Mitch was young, he was never the father he needed him to be.  And now that he's an adult, he's a man he wishes could change but accepts that maybe that's not possible.  As the events of both summers are laid out in the book we come to really understand what's going on.  Mitch's father has been hiding things for so long that I'm not even sure he can let them go them.   I was surprised at Mitch's father's upbringing.  It was dark and unpleasant and I think accounted for a lot of how he acted as a man, husband, and a father.  I wasn't fully surprised at the events that ended that summer when Mitch was young or at what caused him to reach out to his son when he did.

Overall, this was an enjoyable read.  I liked the dynamics of the story.  And, while the subject matter could be depressing, the story didn't really have that tone.  It was more about hope, letting go, and that sometime relationship are the most important things of all! 

Friday, January 28, 2011

Entice (Need #3) by Carrie Jones

Entice (Need, #3)Title: Entice
Author: Carrie Jones
Series: 3rd in Need Series
Pages: 264
Published: Available now from Bloomsbury
ISBN: 9781408810446
Source: Library

Description: Zara and Nick are soul mates, meant to be together forever.
But that's not quite how things have worked out. For starters, well, Nick is dead. Supposedly, he's been taken to a mythic place for warriors known as Valhalla, so Zara and her friends might be able to get him back. But it's taking time, and meanwhile a group of evil pixies is devastating Bedford, with more teens going missing every day. An all-out war seems imminent, and the good guys need all the warriors they can find. But how to get to Valhalla? And even if Zara and her friends discover the way, there's that other small problem: Zara's been pixie kissed. When she finds Nick, will he even want to go with her? Especially since she hasn't just turned...she's Astley's queen.

I Give This ...
This series have really been a quick light read.  But, there isn't much substance.  If the library didn't have them, I'm not sure I would even bother.

I do have to say, that I think this might be the best in the series.  I think Zara is finally starting to understand and accept her fate.  She's part pixie and nothing can change that.  Since she's made the sacrifice of becoming Astley's queen and pixie kissed, she's had to know that things aren't going to be exactly the same.  I like how Astley treats her.  He's trying to show her the ropes and what being a queen means, without really overwhelming her.  Plus, it's got to be hard for him to know that she only did this to get Nick back.

 Which actually brings us to the part of the story I really enjoyed.  I'm not always for love triangles, but I think it works well in this one.  Zara has made the choice she swore she wouldn't just to save Nick.  But, because of that it ties her to Astley.  She's really trying to deny her feelings for him, but I can tell they are there.  

I got a little tired of them trying to get to Valhalla.  It seemed way to tedious and too many people out to get them.  And, I'm not sure I fully understood why those pixies kept trying to stop them.  Everyone keeps saying what a weak king Astley is, but yet they all seem afraid of what he can do.   I was also very disappointed to learn this wasn't the last one.  I'm not sure if the next will be, but I'm sure I will read it just because. 


Thursday, January 27, 2011

The Iron Queen (Iron Fey #3) by Julie Kagawa

The Iron Queen (Iron Fey, #3)Title: The Iron Queen
Author: Julie Kagawa
Series: 3rd in Iron Fey
Pages: 384
Published: February 1, 2011 by Harlequin Teen
ISBN: 9780373210183
Source: Publisher/Netgalley

Description: My name is Meghan Chase.  I thought it was over. That my time with the fey, the impossible choices I had to make, the sacrifices of those I loved, was behind me. But a storm is approaching, an army of Iron fey that will drag me back, kicking and screaming. Drag me away from the banished prince who's sworn to stand by my side. Drag me into the core of conflict so powerful, I'm not sure anyone can survive it.  This time, there will be no turning back.

I Give This ...

I was really looking forward to this book.  For a series that I was initially unsure of, it's become one that I crave.  It's a mix of a lot of things that I believe make a story good!

I loved what Meghan goes through in this book.  She truly steps up to the plate and acknowledges who she is and what she can do.   She admits when she's scared, and when she lacks the knowledge at what to do next.  I really admired that.  She may take on more than she thinks she can handle, but she also believes she's the only one who can do it.  She still makes decisions a little carelessly.  And I think the hardest thing to watch is how her words effect others.  She forgets sometimes that the Fey can take a different meaning that what she intended.

Which brings us to Ash.  He's an interesting character.  You can really tell how deeply he loves Meghan, but sometimes the Unseelie Prince is to ingrained in him.  I actually liked watching him get all icey towards her, because I always loved the make up scene that comes next.  I loved watching him make the knight vow to Meghan.  It truly showed how far he's come from the soulless prince.  

I've also always loved Puck.  For most of the series, he's always been the lovable sidekick/best friend to me.  But, in this book I actually could feel how he also felt about Meghan.  It was more genuine this time around.  I knew it would always be Ash, but I could see it being Puck as well.  I also liked that he would do anything for Meghan whether she wanted him to or not.

I enjoyed how the story seems to have come full circle.  The conflict seems to be over, but the story isn't done.  There's a lot of heartache at the end of the book, which really crushed my spirits.    I'm hoping it's all resolved in the next book, The Iron Knight, which I will be early awaiting.

SPOILER:  I didn't agree with Meghan's choices regarding Ash in the end.  I think she was right to release him of his vow, even though he might think of it as an insult.  But, using his true name to get him to do something he didn't want to do wasn't the right way to do it either.  I don't think it was acknowledging what Ash wanted.  He had the right to choose as well.  But, without that choice, we wouldn't be looking forward to a book from Ash's point of view!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Night Star (The Immortals #5) by Alyson Noel

Night Star (The Immortals, #5)Title: Night Star
Author: Alyson Noel
Series: 5th in the Imoortals
Pages: 302
Published: Available now from St. Martins Griffin
ISBN: 9780312590987
Source: Library

Description: Haven still blames Ever for the death of her boyfriend Roman, no matter how hard Ever’s tried to convince her it was an accident. Now she’s determined to take Ever down…and destroy Damen and Jude along the way. Her first step is to tear Ever and Damen apart—and she has just the ammunition to do it. Hidden in one of Ever’s past lives is a terrible secret about Damen—a secret that illuminates new facts about her relationship with Jude, but that’s so dark and brutal it might be enough to drive her and Damen apart once and for all. As Ever faces her greatest fears about the guy she wants to spend eternity with, she’s thrust into a deadly clash with Haven that could destroy them all. Now it’ll take everything she’s got—and bring out powers she never knew she had—to face down her most formidable enemy. But in order to win, she must first ask herself: is her own survival worth dooming Haven to an eternity of darkness in the Shadowland? And will learning the truth about Damen’s past hold the key to their future?

I Give This ...

I was a little hesitant with reading this one.  The back and forth in the story was really starting to get to me.  Not to mention some of the choices that Ever has made along the way.  I had hope that the author could redeem the story little.

I was both right and wrong in that aspect.  Of course Ever still has some trust issues with Damen.  She's horrible at jumping to conclusions and assuming the worst.  I also don't really like her attitude towards her aunt.  I wonder if she realizes that she sounds a bit like Haven when she stars spotting off that her aunt doesn't know what's really going on and refuses to accepts things she's been told.  Damen was ok.  I wish he would stop hiding things from Ever because you know a lot of this heartache could be avoided.  Plus, its weird how he rushed to the defense of everyone else.  And  I knew it was coming, but she's a really violent character.  I'm glad we have some resolution there, because I don't think I could have stood another book with the same theme.

I was so HAPPY to finally see some resolution with some story lines.  Ever finally choose, and I think it's a good choice and she fully understands what she's doing.  Plus, I think we have a better understanding of Damen and all their past lives together.  Damen was sugar coating a lot of it. 

I thought this book was ok, even though it had a lot of the things I was hoping might happen.  I'm also hoping that the next book in the series is the last.  There's not much left to do!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Clarity (Clarity #1) by Kim Harrington

ClarityTitle: Clarity
Author: Kim Harrington
Series: 1st in planned series
Pages: 256
Published: Available March 1, 2011 by Scholastic
ISBN: 9780545230506
Source: Book It Forward Tours

Description: When you can see things others can't, where do you look for the truth? This paranormal murder mystery will have teens reading on the edge of their seats. Clarity "Clare" Fern sees things. Things no one else can see. Things like stolen kisses and long-buried secrets. All she has to do is touch a certain object, and the visions come to her. It's a gift. And a curse. When a teenage girl is found murdered, Clare's ex-boyfriend wants her to help solve the case--but Clare is still furious at the cheating jerk. Then Clare's brother--who has supernatural gifts of his own--becomes the prime suspect, and Clare can no longer look away. Teaming up with Gabriel, the smoldering son of the new detective, Clare must venture into the depths of fear, revenge, and lust in order to track the killer. But will her sight fail her just when she needs it most?

I Give This ...

I really had no expectations going into this book.  The cover intrigued me and the description sounded like it might have something new to offer.  I was so glad to get a chance to review it for Book It Forward Tours.

I really enjoyed Clare's fresh voice.  She's only 16, but I seriously had to remind myself of that constantly.  It's not that she acted older than she is, because there's is definitely some teenage moments.  It's all about her attitude and her sense of self.  She's had to deal with everyone else thinking her family are freaks.  It's made her a stronger person and it shows.  I love her witty comebacks.  Her family may be strange, but I actually really loved how each of them has their own talent.  It made each of their personalities unique and how they functioned together as a whole really interesting.

I also really enjoyed the who done it mystery.  It was really well played out.  I liked how the official investigation was different than the one going on behind the scenes.  It had that Nancy Drew mystery feel with the teenagers being the ones to figure it out.  Add in the paranormal elements, and it was just a lot of fun.  I had no idea who the real killer was until the end, so that's always a plus!  

My only problem (and it's such a tiny complaint)... I wish it was longer!  I didn't want it to end.  So, fantastic and fun debut for Kim Harrington.  I can't wait to read more!

Monday, January 24, 2011

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!

 It was a really good reading week for me.  4 books were new to me authors, with  2 of those being debut author's for 2011, and 1 was the second in a series that I recently started.  I liked every single one of them!

Read Last Week: 
  • Clarity by Kim Harrington
  • Intrinsical by Lani Woodland
  • Cryer's Cross by Lisa McMann
  • First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones
  • Hexbound by Chloe Neill
Currently Reading:
  • Forgotten by Cat Patrick
Up This Week:
  • XVI by Julia Karr
  • Misguided Angel by Melissa de la Cruz
  • The Flash of a Firefly by Amber Riley

Sunday, January 23, 2011

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 Goodreads!

For Review:

Hexbound (Dark Elite, #2)Clarity
ForgottenThe Flash of a Firefly
12.21.12Unearthly (Unearthly, #1)
  • Hexbound by Chloe Neill (Around The World Tours)
  • Clarity by Kim Harrington (Book It Forward Tours)
  • Forgotten by Cat Patrick
  • The Flash of A Firefly by Amber Riley
  • 12.21.12 by Killian McRae
  • Unearthly by Cynthia Hand (I've already read this!  Sent a finished copy)

My Soul to Keep (Soul Screamers, #3)
  • My Soul To Keep by Rachel Vincent

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Entwined by Heather Dixon

EntwinedTitle: Entwined
Author: Heather Dixon
Series: Stand Alone
Pages: 480
Published: Available March 29, 2011 from Greenwillow books
ISBN: 9780062001030
Source: ARC from Around The World Tours

Description: Azalea is trapped. Just when she should feel that everything is before her . . . beautiful gowns, dashing suitors, balls filled with dancing . . . it's taken away. All of it. The Keeper understands. He's trapped, too, held for centuries within the walls of the palace. And so he extends an invitation. Every night, Azalea and her eleven sisters may step through the enchanted passage in their room to dance in his silver forest. But there is a cost. The Keeper likes to keep things. Azalea may not realize how tangled she is in his web until it is too late. 

I Give This ...

I really wanted to like this book.  But, I found it long and at times boring.  And for some reason, I had the thought that it was a Cinderella type story.  I should have realized it was the 12 dancing princesses (especially since it's one of my oldest daughter's favorite Barbie movies). Thankfully, I found it a fast read despite it's almost 500 pages.

Thankfully with 12 princesses, it's only told from one point of view.  Azalea is the oldest.  When her mother passed away, she was made to promise to care for her 11 younger siblings (including the baby who was born the night her mother died).  I found it odd that outside the next 2 oldest (Bramble and Clover) that the other sister's didn't have much of a personality.  I also had a hard time with their Father.  He was such an odd character.  I think he wanted the girls to see him as their father and not the King, but had a hard time switching between roles.  He would do something sweet, and then turn around and yell and bark orders.  I really thought it was strange that they are royalty, but poor royalty.  How does that happen?  They ruled people who had more money than they did.  It was an odd fit to the story.

I liked the 3 different love interests for the 3 older sisters.  They were so vastly different.  Especially when it took time to sort out which sister they were actually interested in. Turns out the 3rd older sisters were easily confused (another point in the story I disliked).  I think my favorite was Lord Teddie.  He brought some humor to the story that was desperately needed.  I would have liked to know more about Lord Bradford.  Considering how important he is to the story and who he would become, you would think his character would have more depth.

The magic in the story was interesting.  I liked the dark history that causes Keeper to be trapped within a dimension of the palace.  He seemed so sweet and first, but I could tell there was something much more sinister lurking beneath.  I wasn't surprised to learn who he really was.  I like how he trapped the girls into making a bargain they didn't realize they were making.  I enjoyed the ending and how the magic takes over the castle. 

Overall, I'm not sure what to think.  It had it's high point and low points.  Despite being slow and boring at times, I'm not what you could cut out of the story.  And since it was a fast read, I'm not sure it really matters.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Vixen (Flappers #1) by Jillian Larkin

Vixen (Flappers, #1)Title: Vixen
Author: Jillian Larkin
Series: 1st in Flappers series
Pages: 421
Published: Available now from Delecorte Books
ISBN: 9780385740340
Source: ARC from Around The World Tours

Description:  Jazz . . . Booze . . . Boys . . . It’s a dangerous combination.  Every girl wants what she can’t have. Seventeen-year-old Gloria Carmody wants the flapper lifestyle—and the bobbed hair, cigarettes, and music-filled nights that go with it. Now that she’s engaged to Sebastian Grey, scion of one of Chicago’s most powerful families, Gloria’s party days are over before they’ve even begun . . . or are they?  Clara Knowles, Gloria’s goody-two-shoes cousin, has arrived to make sure the high-society wedding comes off without a hitch—but Clara isn’t as lily-white as she appears. Seems she has some dirty little secrets of her own that she’ll do anything to keep hidden. . . .
Lorraine Dyer, Gloria’s social-climbing best friend, is tired of living in Gloria’s shadow. When Lorraine’s envy spills over into desperate spite, no one is safe. And someone’s going to be very sorry.  

I Give This ...

For the most part this story was ok.   I'm not familiar with the roaring 20's and such, so that was an interesting aspect of the story for me.  

The characters are what I had the most trouble with.  Gloria was ok, and since most of the story seems to be about here, the book wasn't as exciting as I think it could have been.  I didn't really understand her fascination with the speakeasy's.   Was it the environment, the singing, or something else?  I got the impression that it was all about Jerome.  He became an obsession for her that she couldn't let go.  

I actually liked Clara best.  I enjoyed that she had done the whole flappers scene and was trying to make the best of her life by moving on.  I think she enjoyed proving to herself and her family (the ones who knew) that she was ready for her change.  I also liked how she enjoyed watching Gloria cut lose.  

I was most surprised by Lorraine.  I could see the jealousy building in her, but I had no idea that she would take it as far as she did.  I would be curious to see were the series takes her character next.  She's going to become more wrapped up with people she shouldn't I think.

The story felt a lot like The Luxe Series by Anna Godbersen.  So many of the elements are very similar just set in a different time period.  Which I find also ironic when you think about the fact that Godbersen has a new series set in the 20s as well.  Overall, I liked the story but there was just some things off for me.  I will probably read the next one though just to see what happens with the characters.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

B & K's Reading Daze

Since I have a bunch of new followers, I thought I would explain what this is.  I have two girls who love to read as much as I do.  Granted they are 5 and 3, so reading isn't exactly what they do.  I'm so excited that this love of mine seems to be passing on to them.  So B & K's Reading Daze highlights some of the books they have enjoyed over the past month.  These books are usually books we find at the library, although occasionally I will showcase some favorites that we own or whatever else they really enjoy.

K's Books (5):

Night WalkTitle: Night Walk
Author: Jill Newsome
Flute the cat and Daisy the dog are friends. Daisy loves to go out, while Flute likes to stay at home. But one night, when Daisy needs help during a visit to the park, Flute discovers she can be brave. She also discovers that some things—including her preference for a quiet house—will never change.

If You'll Be My ValentineTitle: If You'll Be My Valentine
Author: Cynthia Rylant
What kind of valentine would you send to a puppy or a kitten or your mother or big brother?
Enjoy and be inspired by a young boy's special way of making cards that no loved one can resist!
With friendly, buoyant rhymes and cheery pictures, Cynthia Rylant and Fumi Kosaka have created the perfect family valentine -- warm, funny, and utterly fresh.

B's Books (3):

Caterpillar's Wish (Toddler Story Books)Title: Catepillars Wish
Author: Mary Murphy

Caterpillar wants to fly away with her friends Bee and Ladybug--and she does after she becomes a butterfly.

Toddler Story Book: Rory and the Lion 

Title: Rory and the Lion
Author: Jane Cabrera

When Rory tell his friends that one night he heard a real lion roar, they don't believe him. The "lion" that Rory finds will bring a smile to every reader's face.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Huntress by Malinda Lo

HuntressTitle: Huntress
Author: Malinda Lo
Series: Prequel to Ash
Pages: 384
Published: Available April 5, 2011 by Little Brown
ISBN: 9780316040075
Source: Book It Forward Tours

Description: To solve the crisis, the oracle stones are cast, and Kaede and Taisin, two seventeen-year-old girls, are picked to go on a dangerous and unheard-of journey to Tanlili, the city of the Fairy Queen. Taisin is a sage, thrumming with magic, and Kaede is of the earth, without a speck of the otherworldly. And yet the two girls' destinies are drawn together during the mission. As members of their party succumb to unearthly attacks and fairy tricks, the two come to rely on each other and even begin to fall in love. But the Kingdom needs only one huntress to save it, and what it takes could tear Kaede and Taisin apart forever.Nature is out of balance in the human world. The sun hasn't shone in years, and crops are failing. Worse yet, strange and hostile creatures have begun to appear. The people's survival hangs in the balance. 

I Give This ...

I really enjoyed Lo's debut book Ash.  So, when I saw this one, I knew I had to read it.    I knew it was a prequel, and I was excited to step back in the world that had been created.

The time frame is a bit odd.  I don't think I was able to every pinpoint exactly when this story was taking place in regards to events in Ash.  It was just safe to assume, it was a number of years (if not centuries) before.  The world felt the same though.  Only we learn that they fey don't have much of a presence in the human world.  They're a legend told that no one is really sure to believe.  Until an invitation comes from the Fairy Queen that the human King can not ignore. 

Enter in Kaede and Taisin.  What's funny, is these to girls actually reminded me a lot of Ash and Kaisa.  I wish we actually learned more of Taisin.  She seems like a very powerful girl who is just learning how to harness her powers.  Because of this, I think we as the readers are never fully able to understand what she can do.  She's quiet, but the Fey especially never underestimate her.  I also liked Kaede.  I don't think she fully understand herself.  All she knows, is that she refuses to be a pawn in her father's political schemes.  She doesn't want to accept the role presented to her.  Which was another point of the story I found interesting.  Typical female/male roles aren't really seen.  The guards sent on the mission aren't all male, the cook is male instead of female, the prince is in love with the guard.  And most important, marriages aren't always arranged between males and females.  It's just the way of the world.

I actually found the story to be slow moving but beautifully constructed.  We spend half the book journeying to the Fairy Queen's castle.  The descriptions of the journey, the woods, and the Fairy city itself was great.  But, I had a really hard time changing pace when we reached this point.  All of a sudden we're off on an assassination mission to the ice island.  Which is the source of all that is off in both the human and the fairy worlds.  And then we're back in the fairy city, but things have gone from bad to worse and we need to go hunt down a unicorn.  It was way to fast after the slow build up.  But, I really enjoyed how Kaede's involvement is what lead to the creation of the Fairy Queen's Huntress.  She was the first.  

I'm curious to see if the story can continue from here.   I would like to see what happens to Kaede and she becomes the hunterss.  It seems she's had to give up a lot to get there.  Which brings us to the last point.  Lo is know for the LGBT tone in her novels, and this is no exception.  It doesn't feel out of place at all, but almost like a point she's trying to make.  That the herione of the story doesn't need to fall in the love with the prince to make a picture perfect ending.  And, I'm totally ok with that!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Dreaming of Books Giveaway Winner

Grats2 Pictures, Images and Photos

Wow! I don't think I've ever had so many entries in a contest, or so many new followers! I hope you all stick around and see what my blog has to offer. So with out further ado....the winner is

Melissa R.

Melissa wins my paperback copies of both Pretty Little Liars and Flawless.  She has already been emailed and has 48 hours to get back to me.

Wither (Chemical Garden #1) by Lauren DeStefano

Wither (Chemical Garden, #1)Title: Wither
Author: Lauren DeStefano
Series: 1st in Chemical Garden
Pages: 356
Published: March 22, 2011 by Simon & Schuster
ISBN: 9781442409057
Source: ARC from Around The World Tours

Description: What if you knew exactly when you would die? Thanks to modern science, every human being has become a ticking genetic time bomb—males only live to age twenty-five, and females only live to age twenty. In this bleak landscape, young girls are kidnapped and forced into polygamous marriages to keep the population from dying out. When sixteen-year-old Rhine Ellery is taken by the Gatherers to become a bride, she enters a world of wealth and privilege. Despite her husband Linden's genuine love for her, and a tenuous trust among her sister wives, Rhine has one purpose: to escape—to find her twin brother and go home. But Rhine has more to contend with than losing her freedom. Linden's eccentric father is bent on finding an antidote to the genetic virus that is getting closer to taking his son, even if it means collecting corpses in order to test his experiments. With the help of Gabriel, a servant Rhine is growing dangerously attracted to, Rhine attempts to break free, in the limted time she has left.

I Give This ...

For the most part I really enjoyed this book.  It's a stunning work of dystopian fiction that I think lots of readers will enjoy.  

I like the world that has been created. The sense of terror and urgency is very prominent throughout the book.  The idea of a genetic malfunction seems very plausible.  I liked the idea of a perfect generation that spawns the future catastrophic generations.  The separation between financial classes is so  pronounced and it adds to the despair in the story.   With all people except the first generation dieing at the ages of 20 or 25, there are too many children left without parents and homes.  It a situation that something big is going to happen soon.

I enjoyed Rhine overall.  Her background makes her different that the typical teenagers her age.  She was raised by her first generation parents who were working hard to find a cure of the genetic mutation.  When they were killed, her twin brother and her manage to live on their own.  Her brother is constantly worried that Rhine will attract unwanted attention.  When she's lured into a trap, kidnapped, and forced into a marriage with a very rich House Governor who also has 3 other wives (one is dies soon after she marries him).  She's constantly looking for a way out though.  She never accepts that this is the way things have to be, even though she knows she's lucky to be wear she is.

The one thing that made the story feel off for me was that I never really felt like Rhine really hated Linden.  I felt like she was misdirecting her hatred for his father.  Linden's father was downright creepy and deserving of the hate.  He would stop at nothing to find a cure, even as far a kidnapping girls and telling his son a different story.  While Linden may have been oblivious to all of this, I felt like he wasn't deserving of the hatred that was directed at him.  I'm not saying that Rhine should have given in to the lifestyle.  I just think Linden wasn't the bad guy here.  I did like her relationship with Gabriel.  He was a really sweet guy, but completely understood what was at stake.

I'm curious to wear the story will go next.  The idea is an interesting concept and I hope a cure if found before Rhine reaches 20!

Monday, January 17, 2011

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!
It's been a week of recovery in this household.  Which means lots of relaxing and reading time.  And then to top off the weekend, my brother's fiance and I went to see Grease as part of the Broadway across American tour.  It was wonderful.  I love stuff like that and just don't have the chance to see them anymore.  Plus, it was fun to get away just us two girls for the night!  Now that I have someone to drag along instead of my husband (who hates that stuff), I'm hoping to be able to see a lot more!

Read Last Week: 
  • Huntress by Malinda Lo
  • The Iron Queen by Julie Kagawa
  • Entice by Carrie Jones
  • My Soul To Save by Rachel Vincent
Currently Reading: 
  • Clarity by Kim Harrington
Up This Week:
  • Intrinsical by Lani Woodland
  • Cryer's Cross by Lisa McMann
  • First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones

Sunday, January 16, 2011

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 Goodreads!


Gemini Night (Star Crossed, #3)Deadly Little Secret (Touch, #1)Deadly Little Lies (Touch, #2)
  • Gemini Night by Bonnie Hearn Hill
  • Deadly Little Secret by Laurie Faria Stolarz
  • Deadly Little Lies by Laurie Faria Storarz


Misguided Angel (Blue Bloods, #5)
  • Misguided Angel by Melissa De La Cruz


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