Friday, December 30, 2011

Winner of A Million Suns and The End of 2011

First up the randomly selected winner of the ARC of A Million Suns by Beth Revis and Across the Universe poster is...

Tiffany
Congrats! The winner has been notified.

Thank you for all of the entries! If you didn't win still make sure you get your hands on a copy of this book when it comes out!

Finally 2011 is coming to an end but I wanted to briefly say thank you to all of the followers who have become a part of my blog this year. 2011 has been an amazing year for me and I can't thank everyone of my followers who visit and comment on my blog enough! I love having a place to finally share my passion for books. I hope all of you choose to stick around because 2012 is going to be an even better year. I have some really exciting stuff coming up that I can't wait to share with you all. Happy New Year! =)

Also check out my post of my top favorite books of 2011: here

Legend by Marie Lu

Legend
By: Marie Lu
Released: November 29, 2011
Source: Purchased
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Marie Lu's Legend is the dystopian story of June and Day who live in the Republic which was once California. The Republic is at war with its neighbors the Colonies. June is from a wealthy sector and is being trained for the military. Day is from a poor sector and is one of the Republic's most wanted criminals. When June's brother Metias is murdered, Day is the number one suspect. June wants revenge for her brother's murder and begins to hunt down Day.  

I loved Legend and finished this book in one day. I am a huge fan of dystopian stories and I couldn't put Legend down. The characters of June and Day are both well written and strongly developed. June is being trained to become a part of the Republic's military after receiving the highest score on her trial exam. June makes an excellent heroine. She is smart, tough, and more than capable of taking care of herself. Day is the most wanted criminal by the Republic and lives on the street. Day is also smart and tough just like June. He is desperate to help take care of his family though and will do anything for them. When June believes that Day murdered her brother, she wants revenge. However, June and Day uncover secrets about the Republic. They also discover that they share much in common. Another great character that I wish I could learn more about is Tess, who lives on the streets with Day.  

I am so mad at myself for not reading Legend as soon as it came out. The plot is exciting and has a couple of unexpected twists. The action scenes are great, especially the ending. I loved that the chapters alternated between June and Day. It provided a clearer insight into how differently they grew up. It also gave a deeper understanding into their motives and choices. Lu creates a fascinating world and I loved the setting in California as well as learning more about the Republic. Legend is a great start to what will sure be a great series. I will be highly anticipating the sequel. I strongly recommend Legend, it is a captivating and interesting dystopian story.  

My Rating:

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Favorite Books of 2011

As 2011 is coming to an end I thought I would do a post about my top eleven favorite books that were released in 2011. I read so many great books this year so it was difficult to narrow it down to just eleven.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Kiss Crush Collide by Christina Meredith

Kiss Crush Collide
By: Christina Meredith
Released: December 27, 2011
Source: Purchased
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"Leah has the life most high school girls would kill for—popularity, glowing grades, a rich, athletic boyfriend. So why does she feel like she can’t breathe? And why can’t she stop thinking about the boy from the country club? The one who isn’t her boyfriend, the one that her mother would never, ever approve of, the one that her perfect older sisters would never, ever look at twice. The one who is always looking back at her. Irresistible attraction, smoldering glances, the bad boy and the good girl—Kiss Crush Collide has everything that a steamy forbidden romance should, and then some." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Christina Meredith's Kiss Crush Collide is the story of Leah who is living a somewhat perfect life. She gets good grades and has the perfect athletic boyfriend. Leah isn't happy though because she is living the life that her two older sisters have already lived. Everything changes the night she meets Porter at the country club. Porter is everything that her mother and sisters disapprove of but Leah can't stop thinking about him.
  
I liked Kiss Crush Collide and read the book in one sitting. Leah is living a perfect life that her mother and sisters have planned out for her. I felt a bit bad for Leah because she doesn't have much say in what she wants for herself. I was also somewhat terrified of her intimidating mother and sisters, Freddie and Yorke. I enjoyed finally seeing Leah slowly change and break away from the mold of the perfect daughter and sister.

I really disliked Leah's boyfriend Shane. He was way too grabby with her throughout the book. I didn't initially like the character Valerie, who is working hard to become better than Leah at school. However, towards the end she definitely grew on me. Porter was an interesting character but I wish I could have learned more about him. He works at the country club and that is where he first meets Leah. Porter and Leah can't seem to stay away from one another and continue to meet in secret. I wish I could have read some more about them spending time getting to know each other though.

The plot moves quickly and held my attention which is why I finished this book so fast. The relationship between Leah and Porter didn't feel fake but it did feel a bit rushed to me. The ending closes up the storyline but I was left with wanting more still. Besides wishing for some more character development, I liked Kiss Crush Collide.   


My Rating:

Waiting on Wednesday #30: Arise

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases.

Arise (Hereafter #2)
By Tara Hudson
Released: June 5, 2012

"Amelia—still caught between life and death—must fight for every moment of her relationship with the human boy Joshua. They can hardly even kiss without Amelia accidentally dematerializing. Looking for answers, they go to visit some of Joshua’s Seer relatives in New Orleans. But even in a city so famously steeped in the supernatural, Amelia ends up with more questions than answers…and becomes increasingly convinced that she and Joshua can never have a future together.Wandering through the French Quarter, Amelia meets other in-between ghosts, and begins to seriously consider joining them. And then she meets Gabrielle. Somehow, against impossible odds, Gaby has found a way to live a sort of half-life...a half-life for which Amelia would pay any price. Torn between two worlds, Amelia must choose carefully, before the evil spirits of the netherworld choose for her." (summary from goodreads.com)

I am looking forward to Arise because I really enjoyed Hereafter and I am excited to see what will happen next. I also love the cover for this one!


*Also don't forget to enter to win an ARC of A Million Suns by Beth Revis and poster

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Sometimes It Happens by Lauren Barnholdt

Sometimes It Happens
By: Lauren Barnholdt
Released: July 12, 2011
Source: ARC from Asher at Paranormal Indulgence
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"This novel opens on the first day of Hannah’s senior year, but the story really starts on the last day of her junior year. That’s when Hannah not only gets dumped by her boyfriend, Sebastian, but she also finds out her best friend, Ava, is going to be gone for the entire summer. But Ava’s boyfriend, Noah, is definitely around—and such a good guy that he snags Hannah a job at the diner where he works. Hannah and Noah move from coworkers, to friends….and one night, to something more. Now it’s back to school, where Hannah will see Sebastian, Ava, and Noah all in one place. Over the course of the day secrets and betrayals are revealed, and alliances are broken and reformed. In the end, Hannah will learn a lot about love, friendship…and herself." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Lauren Barnholdt's Sometimes it Happens is the story of Hannah as she begins her first day of senior year. At the end of her junior year, Hannah's boyfriend, Sebastian, cheated on her. Also her best friend, Ava, left to spend the summer working at a camp. Ava's boyfriend, Noah, is around though and he helps Hannah get a summer job. As the summer passes Noah and Hannah start to become more than just friends. However, when school starts Hannah must face seeing Sebastian, Ava, and Noah again. 

I really enjoyed Sometimes it Happens and finished this book quickly. Hannah is beginning her senior year of high school but is worried because of the events that occurred over the summer. Hannah begins her summer depressed because her boyfriend cheated on her and her best friend makes last minute plans to leave for the entire summer. Hannah was definitely a relatable character for me at times. She grows up a great deal through the story and she learns a lot about herself.  

I really disliked Hannah's best friend Ava from the very beginning. Ava was controlling and not a good friend to Hannah at all. She gave her bad advice more than once and just treated her terribly. I loved Lacey who became Hannah's friend over the summer at the diner. Lacey is a hypochondriac though and panics over the smallest signs that she could possibly be sick. Although a bit crazy at times, she is a good friend to Hannah. Then there is Noah who I fell in love with over the course of the book as well. I must add that Noah has an excellent taste in music. I loved how the relationship between Hannah and Noah slowly and realistically develops. I questioned though why Noah was ever with Ava in the first place.

I loved how each chapter alternated between Hannah's first day of senior year and the events that occurred over the summer. I liked how everything that happened during the summer was slowly revealed and the reader could see how it directly affected Hannah in the present day. This was the first book that I read by Barnholdt but I will definitely be reading more now. I recommend Sometimes it Happens, it is a quick and realistic story.     

My Rating:

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

The Scorch Trials
By: James Dashner
Released: October 12, 2010
Source: Borrowed
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"Solving the Maze was supposed to be the end. No more puzzles. No more variables. And no more running. Thomas was sure that escape meant he and the Gladers would get their lives back. But no one really knew what sort of life they were going back to. In the Maze, life was easy. They had food, and shelter, and safety . . . until Teresa triggered the end. In the world outside the Maze, however, the end was triggered long ago. Burned by sun flares and baked by a new, brutal climate, the earth is a wasteland. Government has disintegrated—and with it, order—and now Cranks, people covered in festering wounds and driven to murderous insanity by the infectious disease known as the Flare, roam the crumbling cities hunting for their next victim . . . and meal. The Gladers are far from finished with running. Instead of freedom, they find themselves faced with another trial. They must cross the Scorch, the most burned-out section of the world, and arrive at a safe haven in two weeks. And WICKED has made sure to adjust the variables and stack the odds against them. Thomas can only wonder—does he hold the secret of freedom somewhere in his mind? Or will he forever be at the mercy of WICKED?" (Summary from goodreads.com)

James Dashner's The Scorch Trials is the sequel to The Maze Runner and picks up immediately where The Maze Runner left off. The boys are being put to test in another trial. This time they must make it across the Scorch in two weeks. The Scorch is the part of the world that is the most damaged from the sun flares. The boys must not only survive the unbearable heat but they must fend off the Cranks who are like zombies driven to insanity by the disease called the Flare.

Once again this series has left me speechless. I really enjoyed The Scorch Trials almost as much as I enjoyed The Maze Runner. The characters definitely grew on me even more in this book, especially Thomas. The boys are being put through another deadly trial and they still don't give up.  Minho is one of my favorite characters in this series and I was happy to see much more of him. I enjoyed meeting the new characters Aris and Brenda. I also loved the flashbacks because it gave me a bit more of an understanding to not just the plot but also to who Thomas and Teresa were before.

I was little hesitant that The Scorch Trials wouldn't be as good as The Maze Runner but this sequel definitely delivers. Once again Dashner uses countless shocking twists throughout the story that I never expected. I was never entirely sure of which character I could trust. I loved that the plot picked up instantly because it immediately captured my attention. The plot also moved along much faster than The Maze Runner which is why I finished this book quickly. Another thing I loved about The Scorch Trials is the setting. I like the setting in the Scorch much more than the maze in The Maze Runner because they were out in the real world. The ending leaves on a cliffhanger again so I can't wait to begin reading the final book in the series, The Death Cure. I strongly recommend The Scorch Trials and the rest of The Maze Runner series, it is an exciting and surprising story.  

My Rating:

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday #29: Underworld


Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases.

Underworld (Abandon Trilogy #2)
By: Meg Cabot
Release Date: May 28

"Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back. Seventeen-year-old Pierce Oliviera isn’t dead. Not this time. But she is being held against her will in the dim, twilit world between heaven and hell, where the spirits of the deceased wait before embarking upon their final journey. Her captor, John Hayden, claims it’s for her own safety. Because not all the departed are dear. Some are so unhappy with where they ended up after leaving the Underworld, they’ve come back as Furies, intent on vengeance…on the one who sent them there and on the one whom he loves. But while Pierce might be safe from the Furies in the Underworld, far worse dangers could be lurking for her there…and they might have more to do with its ruler than with his enemies. And unless Pierce is careful, this time there’ll be no escape." (Summary from goodreads.com)

I really enjoyed Abandon and I am looking forward to where the story will go next.


*Also don't forget to enter to win an ARC of A Million Suns by Beth Revis and poster

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Book Trailer: Switched by Amanda Hocking


Switched
By: Amanda Hocking
Release Date: January 3, 2012
Pre-order the Book: Amazon
UK Trailer: Youtube

"When Wendy Everly was six years old, her mother was convinced she was a monster and tried to kill her. It isn't until eleven years later that Wendy discovers her mother might have been right. With the help of Finn Holmes, Wendy finds herself in a world she never knew existed - a world both beautiful and frightening, and Wendy's not sure she wants to be a part of it." (Summary from Amandahocking.blogspot.com)

I am a huge fan of the Trylle Series and all of Amanda Hocking's other books. I first read Switched during the summer of 2010 after accidentally discovering it in the Amazon Kindle store. I immediately fell in love with the story and the world in which the book is set in. I later read Hocking's My Blood Approves series and Hollowland.  I can't recommend these books enough and I am so happy that Hocking is being published, she completely deserves it! I will definitely be running out on January 3 to pick up a copy for my bookshelf. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

A Million Suns by Beth Revis

A Million Suns
By: Beth Revis
Release Date: January 10, 2012
Source: ARC from NYCC
Purchase the Book: Amazon
*An advanced reader's copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

"Godspeed was fueled by lies. Now it is ruled by chaos. It's been three months since Amy was unplugged. The life she always knew is over. And everywhere she looks, she sees the walls of the spaceship Godspeed. But there may just be hope: Elder has assumed leadership of the ship. He's finally free to enact his vision - no more Phydus, no more lies. But when Elder discovers shocking news about the ship, he and Amy race to discover the truth behind life on Godspeed. They must work together to unlock a puzzle that was set in motion hundreds of years earlier, unable to fight the romance that's growing between them and the chaos that threatens to tear them apart. In book two of the Across the Universe trilogy, New York Times bestselling author Beth Revis mesmerizes us again with a brilliantly crafted mystery filled with action, suspense, romance, and deep philosophical questions. And this time it all builds to one mind-bending conclusion: They have to get off this ship." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Beth Revis' A Million Suns is the sequel to Across the Universe and picks up three months later. The ship is in complete chaos and Amy still doesn't fit in amongst the passengers. Elder is now leader and has taken everyone off of Phydus. However, Elder learns more secrets about the ship that past leaders have been hiding for decades.

I loved A Million Suns even more than I loved Across the Universe. I loved Across the Universe and Revis wrote a sequel that does more than live up to my expectations. I never wanted this book to end. The characters, especially Amy and Elder, are much more deeply developed. Amy grows a great deal over the course of the story and becomes much stronger. Her life is in danger now that the ship is off Phydus. However, Amy doesn't let this stop her and she refuses to stay hidden away in her room. I admire Amy because she is in a completely different world from the one she has grown up in but she doesn't give up.

Elder grows a great deal over the course of this book as well now that he has the tough responsibilities of being a leader. He must make the decisions that are best for the passengers on the ship. However, he is also learning that the past leaders have been keeping even more secrets than he imagined. It is interesting how different everything is on the ship now that Elder is leader. Another great aspect of A Million Suns that I enjoyed is learning a bit more about Elder's past and what it was like growing up on the ship. The relationship between Amy and Elder continues to realistically and slowly develop as well.

I finished A Million Suns in one day because I did not want to put this book down for even a minute. The fascinating plot picks up immediately on the first page and doesn't slow down once. There are so many unexpected twists throughout the book. Revis does an excellent job once again with surprising me right when I think I have it all figured out. The mystery that Amy and Elder must solve this time is not only affecting the people who are frozen but everyone on the entire ship. I already loved the setting of the ship from Across the Universe so, I enjoyed that in A Million Suns I learned even more about the ship and its history. The ending leaves on a pretty huge cliffhanger but I still loved it because it is setting up for the final book in the trilogy, Shades of Earth. I will be anxiously awaiting for the final book but while I do wait, I will definitely be rereading Across the Universe and A Million Suns several more times. I loved absolutely everything about A Million Suns and I don't think it is possible for me to rave about this book enough. I strongly recommend A Million Suns, it is an exciting and mysterious book that you will have trouble putting down.

My Rating:

Friday, December 16, 2011

Across the Universe by Beth Revis

Across the Universe
By: Beth Revis
Released: January 11, 2011
Source: Paperback from NYCC
Purchase the Book: Amazon
*A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

"Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules. Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone - one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship - tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn't do something soon, her parents will be next. Now, Amy must race to unlock Godspeed's hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there's only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Beth Revis' Across the Universe is the story of Amy who is frozen along with her parents and put onto the spaceship Godspeed. Amy is expecting to wake up three hundred years later on a new planet. However, someone attempts to murder her and she is woken up fifty years early. Amy is desperate to find the murderer before they get to her parents next. She is also trying to fit in on a ship that follows rules that are very different from the ones she knew on earth.

I loved Across the Universe and I am mad at myself for not reading this book sooner. From the first page the story completely pulled me in and I was reluctant to put this book down. Amy loves her parents and just wants to stay with them which is why she joins them on the ship to the new planet. She is upset when she is woken up fifty years earlier than her parents. However, Amy is tough and she doesn't give up easily. She even stands up to the leader of the ship, Eldest. Amy also becomes determined to discover who tried to kill her.

Elder is being trained by Eldest to become the next leader of the ship. He is questioning some of Eldest's action though and he grows even more suspicious of Eldest once he meets Amy. Elder becomes fascinated by Amy because she is so different from everyone else on the ship. He also decides to help her on her hunt for the murderer. I loved that the point of view alternated between Amy and Elder for each chapter. It showed just how different life is on the ship for Elder compared to Amy's life growing up on earth. Another character I instantly loved was Harley who is Elder's friend that lives in the mental hospital.

I wasn't entirely sure what to expect from this book but I was pleasantly surprised. I loved the dystopian setting on the ship because it was so interesting and different from what I have read before. Revis describes it all in great detail which made me feel as though I was on the ship with Amy. The plot is filled with exciting and unexpected twists that I never saw coming. I also loved trying to solve the murder alongside Amy and Elder. I can't wait to read the next book in this trilogy, A Million Suns. I am excited to see where Revis will take this story next. I strongly recommend Across the Universe, it is an exciting and mysterious story.  

My Rating:

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Blogoversary Giveaway Winners

The randomly selected winners of the Blogoversary Giveaway are ...

Lauren G. (Prize Pack #1)
and
Caitlin (Prize Pack #2)
(Congrats and I have emailed the winners)

Thank you for all of the entries! I loved reading what everyones favorite book of 2011 has been so far. My TBR list has definitely got much longer now since I wrote down all of the great suggestions. Thanks again and I hope all new and old followers stick around. I will be posting about my favorite books of 2011 during the last week of December. I will also be having more giveaways in January for a few more of the ARC's I got from Comic Con.   

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday #28: Pure

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases.


Pure
By: Julianna Baggott
Release Date: February 8 2012
 
"We know you are here, our brothers and sisters . . . Pressia barely remembers the Detonations or much about life during the Before. In her sleeping cabinet behind the rubble of an old barbershop where she lives with her grandfather, she thinks about what is lost-how the world went from amusement parks, movie theaters, birthday parties, fathers and mothers . . . to ash and dust, scars, permanent burns, and fused, damaged bodies. And now, at an age when everyone is required to turn themselves over to the militia to either be trained as a soldier or, if they are too damaged and weak, to be used as live targets, Pressia can no longer pretend to be small. Pressia is on the run. Burn a Pure and Breathe the Ash . . . There are those who escaped the apocalypse unmarked. Pures. They are tucked safely inside the Dome that protects their healthy, superior bodies. Yet Partridge, whose father is one of the most influential men in the Dome, feels isolated and lonely. Different. He thinks about loss-maybe just because his family is broken; his father is emotionally distant; his brother killed himself; and his mother never made it inside their shelter. Or maybe it's his claustrophobia: his feeling that this Dome has become a swaddling of intensely rigid order. So when a slipped phrase suggests his mother might still be alive, Partridge risks his life to leave the Dome to find her. When Pressia meets Partridge, their worlds shatter all over again." (summary from goodreads.com)
 
I love dystopian books and Pure sounds really interesting.


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Notes To Self by Avery Sawyer

Notes To Self
By: Avery Sawyer
Released: November 20, 2011
Source: E-book from Author
Purchase the Book: Amazon
*A copy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review

"Two climbed up. Two fell down. One woke up. In the aftermath of a traumatic brain injury, Robin Saunders has to relearn who she is and find out what happened the night everything changed." (Summary from goodreads.com)
Avery Sawyer's Notes to Self is the story of Robin who survives a bad fall. She fell after climbing a ride with her best friend Emily but, Emily still hasn't woken up. Robin wakes up but is suffering from a traumatic brain injury and can't remember what exactly happened that night.

Notes to Self instantly captivated me and I finished the entire book in one sitting. My heart completely broke for Robin when she wakes up and tries so hard to remember what happened. She feels guilty for waking up when her best friend Emily still hasn't. Robin's brain injury is causing her to struggle to remember past events and she is also mixing up some of her words. She writes little notes to herself to remember how to perform certain tasks or what she likes and dislikes. Robin is strong though and doesn't give up even when she goes back to school and her classmates bully her.

Robin does have her mother and friend Reno to help her get through as well. The relationship with her mother is a bit complicated at times but Robin lets her in more and more as the story progresses. Reno has been her friend for years and I especially loved the story of how they met when they were little.  

The plot picks up on the very first page and although I finished it rather quickly, the story never felt rushed. The reader is trying to solve the mystery of the night of accident alongside Robin. The flashbacks to Robin's past gave a clearer understanding into her life and also emphasized how much Robin develops and grows through the course of this story. This story is not just about a traumatic event but also about growing up. I strongly recommend Notes To Self, it is a quick and heartfelt story.

My Rating:

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Maze Runner by James Dashner

The Maze Runner
By: James Dashner
Released: October 6, 2009
Source: Borrowed
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his first name. His memory is blank. But he’s not alone. When the lift’s doors open, Thomas finds himself surrounded by kids who welcome him to the Glade—a large, open expanse surrounded by stone walls. Just like Thomas, the Gladers don’t know why or how they got to the Glade. All they know is that every morning the stone doors to the maze that surrounds them have opened. Every night they’ve closed tight. And every 30 days a new boy has been delivered in the lift. Thomas was expected. But the next day, a girl is sent up—the first girl to ever arrive in the Glade. And more surprising yet is the message she delivers. Thomas might be more important than he could ever guess. If only he could unlock the dark secrets buried within his mind" (Summary from goodreads.com)

James Dashner's The Maze Runner is the dystopian story of Thomas who wakes up in the Glade with no memory of his life except his name. The Glade is filled with several other boys who have no memory of their life or how they got into the Glade. Every morning the gates that surround them open up to a deadly maze and every night those gates close. For two years a new boy arrives once a month but, things begin to change when Thomas arrives because the next day a girl arrives.

I'm not sure where to even begin this book has completely messed with my mind. These kids are taken and put into this deadly maze with no memory of who they are or where they are from but, they are surviving. They have set up a system and code to live by. Thomas is a selfless and strong protagonist who, as soon as he gets there, starts trying to figure a way out. Thomas is also pretty impatient though and immediately demands some answers. Teresa is the only girl amongst the boys but she is tough and more than capable of taking care of herself. I also loved the characters of Chuck, Newt, and Minho. I especially liked the friendship that developed between Chuck and Thomas.

It did take me some time to get into the story and get used to the Glader's slang. I was just as confused as the boys on what was going on. However, only a couple of chapters in and I did not want to ever put this book down. I became just as impatient as Thomas for some answers. I never knew what to expect and there are so many twisted and shocking surprises that I never saw coming. This is definitely a book that I will be thinking about for months to come. The ending leaves on a major cliffhanger and I can't wait to begin reading The Scorch Trials. I highly recommend The Maze Runner, it is an intense read with a great balance of mystery and horror.

My Rating:

Friday, December 9, 2011

Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices Book 2)
By: Cassandra Clare
Released: December 6, 2011
Source: Purchased
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends. With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move and that one of their own has betrayed them. Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will; the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do? As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Cassandra Clare's Clockwork Prince is the sequel to Clockwork Angel and picks up a shortly after Clockwork Angel left off. Charlotte is in danger of being replaced as head of the Institute. While Tessa, Will, and Jem are working to uncover the Magister's next plan against the shadowhunters. Tessa is also still seeking the truth about who she is and who her parents were.

I loved Clockwork Prince and did not want to put this book down but I also never wanted it to end. The series is filled with so many great characters that are strongly developed. Tessa is one my favorite female protagonists of all time because of her strength. Tessa is capable of taking care of herself. She continues to grow a great deal though as she continues her search for the truth about who she is. Tessa is also beginning training to become a better fighter.

I am a huge Will fan and loved that I saw another side to him as he grew a great deal through the course of the story. I enjoyed learning more about his family and past as well. Jem definitely grew on me much more in this book. I like Jem a lot and I think he is so sweet but, I am still team Will. I really enjoyed seeing more of the bond between Jem and Will which is one of my favorite aspects of this series. They would do absolutely anything for one another. Another character that grew on me much more in this book is Sophie. She is beginning to train and learn to defend herself. Then of course there is Magnus who I always find entertaining. I love seeing a different side to him than I see in The Mortal Instruments series.

I loved Clockwork Prince more than Clockwork Angel which I didn't even think was possible. This book had me laughing out loud at moments while my heart was torn at other moments. The plot flows from the first page to the last and there are unexpected surprises throughout. Clare's writing is beautiful as always and she creates a detailed world that you completely lose yourself in. Once again I love the quotes that begin each chapter and some are from my personal favorite poems. I will definitely be rereading this book again very soon. The ending left me speechless and I am dying for Clockwork Princess. I can't recommend this exciting and captivating series enough!

My Rating:




*Also you can read my recap of the Clockwork Prince release party/signing here



Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Recap of Clockwork Prince Release Party


For those who don't know I am a huge Infernal Devices and Mortal Instruments fan which is why I was super excited to go to the release party/signing on December 6.

The event was pretty packed and began with a very special appearance by Ed Westwick (Chuck Bass on Gossip Girl and voice of audiobooks for City of Fallen Angels and Clockwork Prince). Ed talked briefly about recording the books in the studio and then introduced Cassandra Clare.

Cassandra came on stage where she read a bit from Clockwork Prince and then attempted to throw Clockwork Prince t-shirts into the audience but that didn't go to well. The Q & A began next and she answered questions about the series, movie, and writing. Cassandra discussed how she came up with the ideas for both City of Bones and Clockwork Angel. She found her inspiration for City of Bones while visiting a friend who owns a tattoo shop in NYC and also does rune tattoos. She spent two years thinking about ideas though. She was inspired to write Clockwork Angel after a trip to London. Another question was, which character Cassandra would like to be trapped with in an elevator? Cassandra replied with a hilarious story of a time she got trapped in an elevator and then chose Magnus as the character she would like to be trapped with because he could probably use magic to get her out. Someone also brought up the cannibal ducks and Cassandra told a hilarious story about the true story of the cannibal ducks. 

Cassandra briefly discussed The Mortal Instruments movie and said that the script has now been rewritten. The previous script was not very close to the book but now the new script is much closer to the book and even includes direct quotes. The last question of the night was, out of Jem, Will, and Tessa who would she shag, marry, or toss of a cliff? Her answer was that she would have to toss Tessa off the cliff, marry Jem because he is marriage material, and shag Will.

Next was the signing, Cassandra is so sweet in person and took her time speaking to every individual. As she was signing my book I told her how The Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices are my top favorite book series and she asked me who my favorite characters were. I replied that I love Jace from The Mortal Instruments and I am a fan of Tessa from The Infernal Devices. She then asked whether I was team Will or Jem and when I replied that I was team Will, she laughed because I chose the bad boy again. She suggested that I should convert to team Jem though because he is a much sweeter boy.

Overall, I had a great time at the event and so far I am loving Clockwork Prince so expect my review to be up very soon!

Waiting on Wednesday #27: The Alchemy of Forever


Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases.

The Alchemy of Forever (Incarnation #1)
By: Avery Williams
Release Date: January 3, 2012

"After spending six hundred years on earth, Seraphina Ames has seen it all. Eternal life provides her with the world’s riches, but at a very high price: innocent lives. Centuries ago, her boyfriend, Cyrus, discovered a method of alchemy that allows them to swap bodies with other humans, jumping from one vessel to the next, taking the human’s life in the process. No longer able to bear the guilt of what she’s done, Sera escapes from Cyrus and vows to never kill again. Then sixteen-year-old Kailey Morgan gets into a horrific car accident right in front of her, and Sera accidentally takes over her body. For the first time, Sera finds herself enjoying the life of the person she’s inhabiting—and falls for the human boy who lives next door. But Cyrus will stop at nothing until she’s his again, and every moment she stays, she’s putting herself and the people she’s grown to care for in great danger. Will Sera have to give up the one thing that’s eluded her for centuries: true love?" (Summary from goodreads.com)

I am excited for The Alchemy of Forever because the summary sounds like it is going to be a good book.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally

Catching Jordan
By: Miranda Kenneally
Released: December 1, 2011
Source: Purchased E-book
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"What girl doesn't want to be surrounded by gorgeous jocks day in and day out? Jordan Woods isn't just surrounded by hot guys, though - she leads them as the captain and quarterback on her high school football team. They all see her as one of the guys, and that's just fine. As long as she gets her athletic scholarship to a powerhouse university. But now there's a new guy in town who threatens her starring position on the team... and has her suddenly wishing to be seen as more than just a teammate." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Miranda Kenneally's Catching Jordan is the story of Jordan who is the captain and quarterback of her high school football team. Jordan loves football and is working hard to get a scholarship to a college to play football. The guys on the team treat Jordan as if she were one of the guys but that all begins to change when a new boy moves to town.

I loved Catching Jordan and finished this book in a day. The character Jordan is tough, determined, and funny. She is struggling to prove that she can play football to her father and her dream college. She is also struggling with the feelings she is developing for the new boy in town who threatens to take her position on the team. Jordan develops a great deal through the course of the story though. I could strongly relate to her because I also love to watch and play football.
  
Catching Jordan is filled with so many great characters. One relationship that I particularly enjoyed was the one Jordan shares with her older brother Mike. Mike supports his little sister's dreams and is there for her when she needs him. I also loved the friendship and loyalty that Jordan shares with her teammates Sam Henry, JJ, and Carter. The friendship they share is sweet and funny. The team is like a family to her and they all have one anothers back. I especially loved Sam Henry who has been best friends with Jordan since they were little kids. 

Catching Jordan is not all about football but also tackles many other realistic issues. Once I started reading, I was reluctant to put this book down for even a second. This story had me laughing out loud at moments but I also felt my heart breaking for Jordan at other moments. I will definitely be rereading this book again sometime soon. I can't recommend Catching Jordan enough, it is a fun, sweet, and realistic story.


My Rating:

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Remembrance by Michelle Madow

Remembrance
By: Michelle Madow
Released: July 27, 2011
Source: Purchased E-book
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"New Hampshire high school junior Lizzie Davenport has been reincarnated from Regency Era, England ... but she doesn't know it yet. Then Drew Carmichael transfers into Lizzie's school at the beginning of the year, and she feels a connection to him, almost like she knows him. She can't stop thinking about him, but whenever she tries talking with him about the mysteries behind her feelings, he makes it clear that he wants nothing to do with her. Reaching him is even more difficult because she has a boyfriend, Jeremy, who has started to become full of himself after being elected co-captain of the varsity soccer team, and her flirtatious best friend Chelsea starts dating Drew soon after his arrival. So why can't she seem to get him out of her mind? Even though Lizzie knows she should let go of her fascination with Drew, the pair of them soon find that fighting fate isn't going to be easy." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Michelle Madow's Remembrance is the story of Lizzie who immediately feels a connection with the new boy in school, Drew. Lizzie can't shake the feeling that she has met Drew before though. However, Drew wants nothing to do with her and she has her own boyfriend who she should be spending her time with.

Remembrance is a captivating romance that I read in one sitting. Lizzie is a character that I instantly could relate to. She is living a comfortable life but then her boyfriend begins to get an ego and she can't stop thinking about the new boy Drew. I found myself fiercely cheering on Lizzie and Drew immediately. I especially enjoyed when she finally stood up for herself. The chemistry between Drew and Lizzie is evident from the moment they first meet and their relationship doesn't feel rushed.

I immediately knew I had to read Remembrance when I heard that it was inspired by Taylor Swift's Love Story music video. I like the interesting twist that Madow put on the story from the video and I was pleasantly surprised. The plot moves along smoothly and there are a few unexpected twists. I loved the flashbacks to Lizzie and Drew's past lives but I do wish there were more. I especially enjoyed the ending and although it doesn't leave on a cliffhanger, I am anxiously anticipating the next book. I recommend Remembrance it is an enjoyable and romantic story.

My Rating: