Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #164: Stay With Me


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


Stay With Me
By: J. Lynn
Release Date: September 23, 2014

"At 21, Calla hasn’t done a lot of things. She’s never been kissed, never seen the ocean, never gone to an amusement park. But growing up, she witnessed some things no child ever should. She still carries the physical and emotional scars of living with a strung-out mother, Mona—secrets she keeps from everyone, including her close circle of college friends. But the safe cocoon Calla has carefully built is shattered when she discovers her mom has stolen her college money and run up a huge credit card debt in her name. Now, Calla has to go back to the small town she thought she'd left behind and clean up her mom’s mess again. Of course, when she arrives at her mother’s bar, Mona is nowhere to be found. Instead, six feet of hotness named Jackson James is pouring drinks and keeping the place humming. Sexy and intense, Jax is in Calla’s business from the moment they meet, giving her a job and helping her search for Mona. And the way he looks at her makes it clear he wants to get horizontal . . . and maybe something more. Before Calla can let him get close, though, she’s got to deal with the pain of the past—and some very bad guys out to mess her up if she doesn’t give them her mom" (Summary from goodreads.com)


Monday, July 28, 2014

Let's Get Lost by Adi Alsaid

Let's Get Lost
By: Adi Alsaid
Released: July 29, 2014
Source: ARC from BEA
Purchase the Book: Amazon
*A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

"Five strangers. Countless adventures. One epic way to get lost. Four teens across the country have only one thing in common: a girl named LEILA. She crashes into their lives in her absurdly red car at the moment they need someone the most. There's HUDSON, a small-town mechanic who is willing to throw away his dreams for true love. And BREE, a runaway who seizes every Tuesday—and a few stolen goods along the way. ELLIOT believes in happy endings…until his own life goes off-script. And SONIA worries that when she lost her boyfriend, she also lost the ability to love. Hudson, Bree, Elliot and Sonia find a friend in Leila. And when Leila leaves them, their lives are forever changed. But it is during Leila's own 4,268-mile journey that she discovers the most important truth— sometimes, what you need most is right where you started. And maybe the only way to find what you're looking for is to get lost along the way" (Summary from goodreads.com)

I was really excited about Let's Get Lost because I just love road trip stories and this book turned out to be even more than just a road trip book. It's the story of how one girl came into the lives of four different strangers. 

Leila is on a road trip to Alaska to see the northern lights. On her way she meets Hudson, Bree, Elliot, and Sonia. First we meet Hudson who works in his dad's mechanic shop. He isn't sure if he really wants to leave his small town for college next year. Next we meet Bree who ran away from home. Bree has been living on the road for some time now and avoiding what she left back at home. Then there is Elliot who wants his prom night to end like in the movies. However, it seems like everything just keeps going wrong for him. Lastly there is Sonia who is afraid to fall in love again after losing her boyfriend. She is torn about being honest with herself or to continue to spare the feelings of the family she has become a part of.

I really enjoyed how the book was broken into five sections. Each section is told in a different perspective and the last section is told in Leila's. We briefly get to know each of these strangers and see the impact that Leila has on each of them. Then when we get to Leila's chapter, we see how each of these strangers has in turn impacted Leila on her journey. My favorite sections were definitely Leila's and Bree's.

The plot was paced well and I enjoyed how with each new section, we saw how Leila came into these stranger's lives. It kept the story moving. I liked that she only spent about a day with each of these characters because this isn't their story, it's Leila's. There were a lot of funny situations that arose though on her adventures with them. There were several times where I couldn't believe what they were getting themselves into. There were also really sweet and heartbreaking moments too. 

Overall I really enjoyed this book. Alsaid did a wonderful job bringing each section together. I definitely recommend this to fans of contemporary books who are looking for something different.

My Rating:

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #163: A Thousand Pieces of You


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

A Thousand Pieces of You
By: Claudia Gray
Release Date: November 4, 2014

"Marguerite Caine’s physicist parents are known for their radical scientific achievements. Their most astonishing invention: the Firebird, which allows users to jump into parallel universes, some vastly altered from our own. But when Marguerite’s father is murdered, the killer—her parent’s handsome and enigmatic assistant Paul—escapes into another dimension before the law can touch him. Marguerite can’t let the man who destroyed her family go free, and she races after Paul through different universes, where their lives entangle in increasingly familiar ways. With each encounter she begins to question Paul’s guilt—and her own heart. Soon she discovers the truth behind her father’s death is more sinister than she ever could have imagined. A Thousand Pieces of You explores a reality where we witness the countless other lives we might lead in an amazingly intricate multiverse, and ask whether, amid infinite possibilities, one love can endure" (Summary from goodreads.com)


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #162: Famous Last Words


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

Famous Last Words
By: Katie Alender
Release Date: September 30, 2014

"Hollywood history, mystery, murder, mayhem, and delicious romance collide in this unputdownable thriller from master storyteller Katie Alender. Willa is freaking out. It seems like she's seeing things. Like a dead body in her swimming pool. Frantic messages on her walls. A reflection that is not her own. It's almost as if someone -- or something -- is trying to send her a message. Meanwhile, a killer is stalking Los Angeles -- a killer who reenacts famous movie murder scenes. Could Willa's strange visions have to do with these unsolved murders? Or is she going crazy? And who can she confide in? There's Marnie, her new friend who may not be totally trustworthy. And there's Reed, who's ridiculously handsome and seems to get Willa. There's also Wyatt, who's super smart but unhealthily obsessed with the Hollywood Killer. All Willa knows is, she has to confront the possible-ghost in her house, or she just might lose her mind . . . or her life." (Summary from goodreads.com)

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Four: A Divergent Story Collection by Veronica Roth

Four: A Divergent Story Collection
By: Veronica Roth
Released: July 8, 2014
Source: Purchased
Purchase the Book: Amazon

"Two years before Beatrice Prior made her choice, the sixteen-year-old son of Abnegation’s faction leader did the same. Tobias’s transfer to Dauntless is a chance to begin again. Here, he will not be called the name his parents gave him. Here, he will not let fear turn him into a cowering child. Newly christened “Four,” he discovers during initiation that he will succeed in Dauntless. Initiation is only the beginning, though; Four must claim his place in the Dauntless hierarchy. His decisions will affect future initiates as well as uncover secrets that could threaten his own future—and the future of the entire faction system. Two years later, Four is poised to take action, but the course is still unclear. The first new initiate who jumps into the net might change all that. With her, the way to righting their world might become clear. With her, it might become possible to be Tobias once again. From #1 New York Times bestselling author Veronica Roth comes a companion volume to the worldwide bestselling divergent series, told from the perspective of the immensely popular character Tobias. The four pieces included here—The Transfer, The Initiate, The Son, and The Traitor—plus three additional exclusive scenes, give readers an electrifying glimpse into the history and heart of Tobias, and set the stage for the epic saga of the Divergent trilogy" (Summary from goodreads.com)

I was really excited when I first heard that there would be short stories from Tobias's perspective released because not only would I get more Four, but I would also get to read more about his past. I was definitely not disappointed by these stories and I felt like it just added to the series as a whole. 

Four is broken up into four short stories and follows Tobias from his choosing ceremony up until he meets Tris during her initiation into Dauntless. I loved that we got to meet Four before he was even in Dauntless. I really enjoyed seeing how he became the person we meet in Divergent. These are really short quick stories, but Roth really packs a lot into them. Getting more inside Tobias's head definitely helped explain some of his actions and choices throughout the rest of the series. I also enjoyed seeing how different the initiation process was for him compared to Tris' initiation. Then I loved seeing how some of the other characters were interacting before we even met them in Divergent. I especially loved seeing more of Tori.

I read this book in one sitting because it just immediately hooked me in. I'm happy I chose to wait for all of the stories to be released and then reading it all together. I was just fascinated to also read more on the whole structure of this amazing world that Roth created through the eyes of a different point of view. 

Overall I loved Four! I'm certainly sad to say goodbye to this series and these characters. However, I felt like this book gave me the closure I was looking for with this series. I definitely recommend this to any fans of the series!


My Rating:

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #161: Salt and Storm


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

Salt and Storm 
By: Kendall Kulper
Release Date: September 23, 2014

"Sixteen-year-old Avery Roe wants only to take her rightful place as the witch of Prince Island, making the charms that keep the island’s whale men safe and prosperous at sea. But before she could learn how to control her power, her mother, the first Roe woman in centuries to turn her back on magic, stole Avery away from her grandmother. Avery must escape from her mother before her grandmother dies, taking with her the secrets of the Roes’ power. When Avery awakens from a dream foretelling her own murder, she realizes time is running short—for her and for the people of her island, who, without the Roes, will lose their ships and the only life they know. With the help of Tane, a tattooed harpoon boy from the Pacific Islands, Avery plots her escape from her mother and unravels the mysteries of her mother’s and grandmother’s pasts. Becoming a witch may prevent her murder and save her island from ruin, but Avery discovers it will also require a sacrifice she never expected—one she might not be able to make" (Summary from goodreads.com)

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Bookish Vacations

Happy Summer! :)
In honor of summer I'm dedicating this whole post to bookish vacations. When I go away on vacation I always try to visit at least one book related place. So I thought I'd share some of my photos of the book related places that I've visited in the past few years:


City Lights Bookstore - San Francisco, CA
Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg are two of my favorite writers so it was incredible to explore this bookstore.

 
 Mark Twain's House - Hartford, CT
 This house was so beautiful inside.



Sleepy Hollow - NY
I visited during the month of October and they have so many fun activities going on for Halloween that include hayrides and cemetery tours at night. 


 Bart's Books - Ojai, CA
It's an outdoor bookstore.


The Last Bookstore - Los Angeles, CA
The book tunnel upstairs is a must see!


Warner Bros Studios - Los Angeles, CA:
There is a whole floor dedicated to Harry Potter props including a set of signed first edition books.


I would love to hear all about the book related places you have visited. I have many more on my list that I would love to see (most of them are in Europe). So what book related places have you been to or would love to visit one day?

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #160: Trial by Fire


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

Trial by Fire
By: Josephine Angelini
Release Date: September 2, 2014

"Love burns. Worlds collide. Magic reigns. This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying many of the experiences that other teenagers take for granted...which is why she is determined to enjoy her first (and perhaps only) high-school party. But Lily's life never goes according to plan, and after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class Lily wishes she could just disappear. Suddenly Lily is in a different Salem - one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruellest of all the Crucibles is Lillian . . . Lily's identical other self in this alternate universe. This new version of her world is terrifyingly sensual, and Lily is soon overwhelmed by new experiences. Lily realizes that what makes her weak at home is exactly what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. It also puts her life in danger. Thrown into a world she doesn't understand, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can't hope to shoulder alone, and a love she never expected. But how can Lily be the saviour of this world when she is literally her own worst enemy?" (Summary from goodreads.com)

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Landline by Rainbow Rowell

Landline 
By: Rainbow Rowell
Released: July 8, 2014
Source: ARC from BEA
Purchase the Book: Amazon
*Note this is an Adult Fiction book
*A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

"Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it’s been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply — but that almost seems besides the point now. Maybe that was always besides the point. Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer, and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her — Neal is always a little upset with Georgie — but she doesn’t expect to him to pack up the kids and go home without her. When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s finally done it. If she’s ruined everything. That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It’s not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she’s been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts . . . Is that what she’s supposed to do? Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?" (Summary from goodreads.com)


I loved Landline! It was amazing and possibly now my favorite Rainbow Rowell story. I absolutely loved these characters and the plot. I already can't wait to reread this book again. 

Landline is the story of Georgie McCool who is a TV writer and married to Neal. However, her marriage has been in trouble for sometime now. When she is supposed to go with Neal and her kids to visit his family for Christmas, Georgie chooses to stay behind and work on her new show instead. Georgie is upset when Neal and the kids actually leave and she is left home alone. That is when she finds that her old rotary phone at her mom's house gives her a way to communicate with Neal in the past. 

One of my favorite aspects of this story was the character development. Georgie, Neal, and Seth (Georgie's best friend and writing partner) all felt so real. The side characters were also fantastic. I loved Georgie's sister and mom. I love that there were these flashbacks and you saw how all of these characters met and got to know each other. I also loved reading the good moments in Georgie and Neal's marriage and also where it began to take a turn. Georgie was a great protagonist because she is real and she isn't perfect. She makes mistakes and she also doesn't want to change who she is or what she wants. I also appreciated how Georgie and Neal's relationship wasn't perfect. It was a realistic portrayal of an actual relationship.

Once I picked this book up, I couldn't put it down. As I mentioned earlier, I really enjoyed the whole past and present storytelling. It worked really well for this story and helped explain the characters motivations.

Overall I loved Landline! It has great realistic characters and an interesting storyline to go with it.  This book made me laugh, brought tears to my eyes, and made my heart beat faster. I definitely recommend this to the older Rainbow Rowell fans.

  My Rating: