Jun 28, 2012

Review: A Want So Wicked by Suzanne Young

A Want So Wicked (A Need So Beautiful #2) by Suzanne Young
June 26th, 2012 from Balzer & Bray

I went into this book with high expectations. I loved A Need So Beautiful so much when I read it last July. I still remember how much I cried after reading that book and how much my heart went out to Charlotte and Harlin. Review HERE if interested. So, when this book came up on my pile I grabbed my giant box of tissues and dove straight in. I came up for air a few hours later with a lot less tissues than I started with.

This time around, we meet Elise, a normal seventeen-year-old girl who is about to have her life turned upside down. When she looks in the mirror, she sometimes sees someone else peering back. She has visions, almost like daydreams, about other worldly people whose skin crumbles and then others who posses an unusual amount of light. Elise can't figure out what it all means, but luckily she has two hot boys hanging on her every word as a distraction. One who is new to us, Abe, and one we love so very much, Harlin. Abe is charismatic and gushes over Elise, but I started to realize that he has a touch of the crazies. Boy, that Abe is possessive. I don't know if it's my mama bear instincts, but I could see his controlling ways early on. I tell you, it doesn't get better but there is a reason for his behavior. A very, very good reason. Harlin on the other hand is hot and cold. He is torn between what he wants and his emotional past. We all know what that was.

Jun 26, 2012

Quick Audio Reviews: The Flint Heart by Katherine Paterson & Unwind by Neal Shusterman

The Flint Heart by Katherine Paterson & John Paterson
September 27th, 2011 from Candlewick on Brilliance Audio

The Flint Heart is a complex fairytale and takes us through several generations where a stone, the flint heart, sucks the goodness out of people. The holder seeks power and wealth and in turn, grows a cold stone heart. I picked this up because of some accolades about the narrator, Ralph Lister. I do admit that his voice is absolutely brilliant and his English accent is coveted. He plays a wide variety of characters - faeries, children, kings, talking dogs - and all had a distinct voices. I was completely impressed with him and I don't think I would have enjoyed the story as much by simply reading. The story gets a little convoluted in places, but if you get lost...just pay attention to that magnificent British accent. This would be a fun family road trip read, but a few violent scenes might concern parents of little ones. 7+

Jun 21, 2012

Review: Something Like Normal by Trish Doller

Something Like Normal by Trish Doller
June 19th, 2012 from Bloomsbury

When Travis returns home from a stint in Afghanistan, his parents are splitting up, his brother’s stolen his girlfriend and his car, and he’s haunted by nightmares of his best friend’s death. It’s not until Travis runs into Harper, a girl he’s had a rocky relationship with since middle school, that life actually starts looking up. And as he and Harper see more of each other, he begins to pick his way through the minefield of family problems and post-traumatic stress to the possibility of a life that might resemble normal again. Travis’s dry sense of humor, and incredible sense of honor, make him an irresistible and eminently lovable hero.

Oh, wow! The blurb from Lauren Myracle is so spot on. I felt all of the things she described and I am telling you, read this book now! I was so excited to read a book with a male point of view, and not just a male, but an older teen male. I can't think of a whole lot of contemporary fiction books with older teen male protagonists. Travis is back for a 30-day leave after he loses his best friend in combat. He comes home to an ish storm and soon realizes that he is a different man and doesn't quite fit in the same way he used to. Travis felt so very real to me. He fights his demons, leftover from the war, and he is so not perfect. I ached every time he made a mistake and then I found myself saying, "Well hell, can you blame the guy?" I wanted to give him so much leeway because of loss, but sometimes I cringed over his decisions.

Jun 19, 2012

Review: Timepiece by Myra McEntire (+Giveaway)

Timepiece (Hourlglass #2) by Myra McEntire
June 12th, 2012 from Egmont

Things pick up pretty much where Hourglass left off. There is one giant difference in this story - it is told from Kaleb's point of view. You remember Kaleb. He fell for Emerson, he can read emotions, his dad needed some major assistance in book one, and his mother has basically had her memory wiped. We meet him when he is just about at his lowest point. Drinking, girls, running away form his feelings - he does it all. Emerson and Michael grow tiresome of his antics, but they understand his hurt. Personally, I liked his point of view. It allowed us to know him better and to see what makes him tick. I'll be anxious to know what POV book three is from. Lily's?

Jun 14, 2012

2013 Lone Star Reading List - Nominations

The Texas Lone Star list is a recommended reading list developed by public and school librarians from the Young Adult Round Table. The purpose of the list is to encourage students in grades 6, 7, or 8 to explore a variety of current books. The Lone Star list is intended for recreational reading, not to support a specific curriculum. Due to the diversity of this age range, Texas librarians should purchase titles on this list according to their individual collection policies. Each book on the list has been favorably reviewed for grades 6, 7, or 8 in a professional review source.

Below is the list of current titles which have been nominated for 2013. The public is welcome to suggest titles for consideration. To be considered for nomination to the 2013 list, a book must have been published in 2011 or 2012. The nomination period ends October 1, 2012. To suggest a title, please complete the form at this link: http://tinyurl.com/79zvetq 

Bewitching Flinn, Alex 
The Boy on Cinnamon Street Stone, Phoebe 

Jun 11, 2012

Happy Blogiversary To Me! (+Giveaway)

Three years ago today, I published my first post on this blog, I Read Banned Books! I originally started this blog as a requirement for library school in 2009 and kept up the reviews ever since. Blogging all by my lonesome is a lot of work, but so very rewarding. I see the blog as an extension of library service and hope you have enjoyed reviews, interviews, and the giveaways over the past three years. I hope you stick around for three more years.

To celebrate today, I have a giveaway for you. Thanks to HarperTeen, one lucky US winner will win an ARC of Ten Things We Did But Probably Shouldn't Have by Sarah Mylnowski. Good luck!

Jun 8, 2012

Quick Reviews: Cinder by Marissa Meyer & Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Cinder by Marissa Meyer
January 3rd, 2012 from Feiwel & Friends

Futuristic, modern day Cinderella story with an Asian fantasy twist. Linh Cinder has the cruel stepmother, the two stepsisters (although one is actually quite nice), and the desire to be more than what she is. She daydreams of getting out of New Beijing and paving her own path even though she is seen as an outcast because she is not exactly entirely human. Things look helpless until Prince Kai steps in and asks her to fix one of his beloved gadgets. Doing so, Cinder uncovers a plot again the Prince and the entire kingdom. She juggles her horrid home-life, her longings to escape, and yes - the advances of the Prince. There isn't a glass slipper, but there is a ball! This story loosely follows the original fairy tale we all know and love. There are many variations that keep this story moving and it almost seems completely original. Totally interesting, captivating, and teens will love this retelling!

Add to Goodreads

Jun 5, 2012

YALSA's Teens' Top Ten - 2012 Nominations

YALSA (Young Adult Library Services Association) announced their Teens' Top Ten! These titles are chosen and voted on by teens as the best of the best for the year. Take a look and make note to read these! I have read quite a few and think they picked some great stories!

All Good Children
 Catherine Austen, (2011).
Max, his sister Ally and their mother return home to Middleton to find Ally’s classmates acting strange. It is the future, and the government has created a “vaccine” to make kids easier to teach- they are less rowdy, less likely to question, and willing to obey any direction. Max’s family has a choice: to be “vaccinated”, to flee their home, or stay and fight.

Ilsa Bick, (2011).
Alex, Tom, and Ellie join forces after an electromagnetic pulse sweeps through the sky. The pulse kills most of the world’s population and destroys all computer devices, but it also turns some who remain into zombies or gives them superhuman senses.

Meg Cabot, (2012).
Pierce has experienced deathbefore and barely escaped. When she moves from her old town to a town called Isla Huesos - Island of Bones - for a new start, she realizes that death wants her back. Canshe escape death once again?

Jun 4, 2012

Blog Tour - Real Mermaids Don't Hold Their Breath - Summer Essentials (+Giveaway)

Real Mermaids Don't Hold Their Breath (Real Mermaids #2) by Hélène Boudreau
May 1st, 2012 from Sourcebooks 

Find out what it was like for Hélène to grow up on an island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean! Salty sea smells every day? I’ll take it!

Okay, so not exactly in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean but I grew up on a very small island off the coast of Canada and it may as well have been the middle of nowhere because looking back, it sure felt like a different world.

First, you have to take a causeway, then a drawbridge, then another bridge before finally arriving to my little slice of island paradise called Petit de Grat. Petit de Grat is not a tropical utopia but it was a pretty unique place to grow up in that: