21 August 2014

Title: Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares
Author: Rachel Cohn & David Levithan
Publisher: Mira Ink, 260 Pages (October 5th 2012)
From: Purchased at The Works bookstore
Format: Paperback
Add to: Goodreads
Order a copy: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository, Amazon UK

Synopsis: I've left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.

Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favourite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions? Rachel Cohn and David Levithan have written a love story that will have readers perusing bookstore shelves, looking and longing for a love (and a red notebook) of their own.

Review: 4 stars - I saw this book in work for a few weeks and having heard good things about the author’s previous collaboration Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist I decided to give Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares a read.

I will admit; I was drawn to the cover. There’s something about it I absolutely love. I’ve only realised now as I’m writing this review that the snowflakes on the cover are heart shaped. That shows what you can miss when you’re engrossed in a story.

There’s something about the story of Dash and Lily. I don’t know if I can call it naivety; but there’s an air of something I’ve not read before. I’m relatively new to the Contemporary side of YA, so it could just be something associated with that.

Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares tells of 2 teenagers who aren’t looking forward to Christmas. Although Lily loves the holiday season, her parents have left her under the care of her older brother Langston while they travel to Fiji on belated Honeymoon/25th Wedding Anniversary.

Dash is an only child whose parents are divorced. After deciding he doesn’t want to spend Christmas with either parent. Dash lies to them and tells both parents he’s staying with the other; knowing that they won’t contact each other to find out if this is true.

Dash spends his free time mostly at The Strand bookstore. Where on one day while perusing the shelves he discovers a red moleskin notebook.

“I’ve left some clues for you. If you want them turn the page. If you don’t put the book back on the shelf, please”.

Those words intrigue Dash and so ensues a game of dares through the medium of a moleskin notebook.

With the help of family and friends; Dash and Lily send each other on dares across New York. Fighting Christmas shoppers, tourists and even a run in with Santa himself.

The book supplies the right amount of humour, romance and anticipation to keep the reader engrossed and wanting more from every page.

I love that Lily has hope for the future and a positive view of the world. That’s one thing that you don’t see in a lot of YA characters. She shows her emotions, even when she doesn’t mean to- “Shrilly” moments, and I think this only helps to make her more relatable to the reader.

Dash isn’t like Lily. He’s comes across as a bit of a cynic at times and a realist. He’s not like his friends either, and would rather spend time reading and discovering the meaning of words than playing computer games.

I love how both Dash and Lily are in Dash’s words “Bookish”. We can all relate to the feeling of walking into a bookstore; be it for the first time or the hundredth time. So you can imagine Dash’s excitement at the end of the book. To be surrounded by your most coveted item- it must be overwhelming.

I highly recommend this book, to the point I’ve bought 2 copies to give as gifts to friends!
It’s a great quick read. I think I might give it another read nearer Christmas, to help get me into the festive spirit. Definitely a book I can see myself reading more than once.

Recommended for fans of John Green and Stephanie Perkins.


 

Title: Who I Was
Author: Kasidy Blake
Publisher: (August 21st, 2014)
Add to: Goodreads
Order here: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Amazon UK, iTunes

NOTE: This is a Adult novel. Due to mature content this title is recommended for ages 17+

Synopsis: Lillian Jacobson was a very happy four year old. She had two loving parents and an older brother who put all other brothers to shame.

Everything changed one horrible night when her entire world was savagely torn apart. Her parents were brutally murdered in front of her eyes and she was left with a bullet wound in her shoulder as a constant reminder of the tragedy. Now she and her brother are living their lives in constant fear; every day a fight for survival.

After years of relative safety under witness protection, their situation turns from bad to worse. Betrayed by a man who swore to protect them, her brother is taken by the same people who ended her parents lives years before. She is moved to a secure location under the protection of two agents, but a complication arises that she never saw coming. She begins to fall for both men, who are also falling for her. When a letter arrives bearing the ultimatum, “Surrender yourself or your brother dies,” she must find a way to suppress her desires or she may never see her brother alive again.





About the Author:

Kasidy is a pen name, however her identity isn’t that much of a secret.  She has been married for 10 years this year to her high school sweetheart. They have two wonderful children.  Kasidy currently works full and part time but she loves it all.  When she isn’t doing any of those things she is either reading or writing!  Her friends and family are super supportive and she knows she would be nothing without them.  Who I was is her Debut Novel. With Who I Became following shortly behind!

Find Kasidy Online:

Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Facebook Fan Page

 

20 August 2014

"Waiting On" Wednesday is an event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. The purpose of this weekly event is to spotlight a soon-to-be-released book that you are very much anticipating. "Waiting On" Wednesday will also give bloggers an opportunity to share ideas for our TBR lists.


Title: I'll Give You the Sun
Author: Jandy Nelson
Publisher: Dial Books for Young Readers, 384 Pages (September 16th, 2014)
Add to: Goodreads
Order here: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository, Amazon UK

Synopsis: A brilliant, luminous story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

Jude and her brother, Noah, are incredibly close twins. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude surfs and cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and divisive ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as an unpredictable new mentor. The early years are Noah's story to tell. The later years are Jude's. What the twins don't realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant, fully alive, sometimes very funny novel from the critically acclaimed author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.

Title: The Iron Trial (Magisterium #1)
Author: Holly Black, Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Doubleday Children's Books, 295 Pages (September 9th, 2014)
Add to: Goodreads
Order here: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository, Amazon UK

Synopsis: From NEW YORK TIMES bestselling authors Holly Black and Cassandra Clare comes a riveting new series that defies what you think you know about the world of magic.

From two bestselling superstars, a dazzling and magical middle-grade collaboration centering on the students of the Magisterium, an academy for those with a propensity toward magic. In this first book, a new student comes to the Magisterium against his will -- is it because he is destined to be a powerful magician, or is the truth more twisted than that? It's a journey that will thrill you, surprise you, and make you wonder about the clear-cut distinction usually made between good and evil.

Two books this week and both are no brainers for me. Thankfully I have copies of BOTH books that I was able to get while at ALA in June so I'll be reading this soon. 

If you haven't read The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson, you don't know what you're missing. It's one of my all time favorite books and I've reread it numerous times. Everyone should read it!

What do YOU think of my picks this week? And what are YOU looking forward to being released?

*covers are always subject to change.

 

19 August 2014

The Understatement of the Year coverTitle: The Understatement of the Year (Ivy Years #3)
Author: Sarina Bowen
Release Date: (October 1, 2014)
Genre: Contemporary Romance Age category: New Adult
Add to: Goodreads

NOTE: This is a "New Adult" novel. Due to mature content this title is recommended for ages 17+

Blurb: What happened in high school stayed in high school. Until now.

Five years ago, Michael Graham betrayed the only person who ever really knew him. Since then, he’s made an art of hiding his sexual preference from everyone. Including himself.

So it’s a shock when his past strolls right into the Harkness College locker room, sporting a bag of hockey gear and the same slow smile that had always rendered Graham defenseless. For Graham, there is only one possible reaction: total, debilitating panic. With one loose word, the team’s new left wing could destroy Graham’s life as he knows it.

John Rikker is stuck being the new guy. Again. And it’s worse than usual, because the media has latched onto the story of the only “out” player in Division One hockey. As the satellite trucks line the sidewalk outside the rink, his new teammates are not amused.

And one player in particular looks sick every time he enters the room.

Rikker didn’t exactly expect a warm welcome from Graham. But the guy won’t even meet his eyes. From the looks of it, his former… best friend / boyfriend / whatever isn’t doing so well. He drinks too much and can’t focus during practice.

Either the two loneliest guys on the team will self destruct from all the new pressures in their lives, or they can navigate the pain to find a way back to one another. To say that it won’t be easy is the Understatement of the Year.

Warning: unlike the other books in this series, this heartbreaking love story is about two guys. Contains sexual situations, dance music, snarky t-shirts and a poker-playing grandmother.


I LOVED the first two books and the novella, so when I heard about the third book in the Ivy Years series I couldn't wait! Great characters and I am looking forward to reading about some new ones! YAY!!!


Graham Teaser


Excerpt:

       Bella grabbed the front pocket of my Vermont sweatshirt and actually pulled me through the din of the most crowded room, toward a table where Graham sat in a booth, across from Hartley.
       Ugh. I had no idea this would be so cozy. In fact, there was nowhere for me to sit. For a second there I felt like it was seventh grade all over again, and I didn’t know where to sit in class.
       That’s how I met Graham — seventh grade Spanish. We were the two runts in the back row with terrible gringo accents and no friends. The teacher always made the class pair up to practice dialogue. Graham and I were partners.
       Hola, Miguel.
       Hola, Juan.
       Te gusta el futbol?
       Sí, me gusta el futbol.
       The early days of middle school had been awkward. But this? So much more awkward than that.
       “I’ll sit on Graham’s lap,” Bella suggested, grabbing a slice of pizza off the tray.
       “Naw, let me find a chair,” I said, turning quickly into the crowd. And lo, by the grace of God, I found one in front of an ancient pay phone. Setting the chair at the end of their booth gave me some much-needed distance. Bella sat on the end, boxing Graham into the corner. Bella’s hand found its way onto my knee about two seconds after I sat down.
       Someone filled my glass. “Have a slice?” Hartley offered.
       “Thanks, I already ate,” I said quickly. But I sucked back some of the beer. It was pretty wimpy stuff, but I’ll bet the price was right.
       “Tell us about your transfer,” Bella prompted while the others dug in. “You said you’d tell it over beers.”
       Right. Too soon. “Well,” I hedged. The thing was, I’d told people I was gay many, many times. I was actually pretty good at it. But you don’t say it when you’re all trapped at a table. You have to drop the bomb when your victims are free to walk away from you. Because even the people who are going to turn right back around and be there for you often need a minute to digest the idea.
       And the fact that Graham was sitting three feet away, staring at his slice of pizza as if it might reveal the secrets of the universe, made this a particularly bad time. I didn’t want to look vulnerable in front of him. I’d tried that before in my life, and it ended badly. Very badly.
       “Thing is, I haven’t had enough beer yet to tell it.”
       “There you go with the buildup again,” Bella said, nibbling on a slice.
       “Yeah? Well my stories don’t usually disappoint.” That was a bit of pointless bravado. But it was probably true.
       I happened to glance toward Graham then. And even in the low light of the pizza place, I saw him freeze. And I realized just how far a little smack talk about stories I might tell would freak him out. I hadn’t meant it like that. But the effect on him was instant and powerful. His jaw went hard and his fist clenched on the table.
       Easy, boy. “Tell me about the practice schedule,” I said to change the topic.


About the Author:

Sarina Bowen makes her home in the Green Mountains of Vermont, where she lives with her family, eight chickens and a large pile of skis and hockey equipment. She is a graduate of Yale University.

You can find and contact Sarina here:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


GIVEAWAY!!!

There is a tour wide giveaway for the cover reveal of The Understatement of the year. You can win a signed set of paperback books which includes: The Year We Fell Down (Ivy Years #1), The Year We Hid Away (Ivy Years #2) and Blonde Date (Ivy Years 2.5). The giveaway is open international. You can enter the giveaway below, good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
This cover reveal is organized by Lola's Blog Tours.

 

18 August 2014

Title: Boarded by Love (Bellevue Bullies #1)
Author: Toni Aleo
Publisher: (September 8th, 2014)
Add to: Goodreads

NOTE: This is a "New Adult" novel. Due to mature content this title is recommended for ages 17+
Synopsis: Jude Sinclair here, hockey player for the Bellevue Bullies and lover of all ladies. Hockey’s in my blood and, not to sound full of myself, but I’m good at it... really good. The draft is within my reach—it’s mine to take—but that’s not the only reason people know my name. They know me because of my way with woman. They know the score, and I aim to please. I just tend to stay away from repeat performances. In other words, I don’t do relationships above my family and friends. I’m happy with life. However, I should warn you that my story and how I see it playing out is about to change due to a certain redhead on campus.

She’s beautiful. Stunning. Breathtaking.

She’s my game changer.

He’s trouble from the moment I see him. I don’t know what I’m thinking, but from the moment I meet his gaze, I’m his. It’s a scary feeling.

I’ve never trusted anyone outside my aunt and uncle—and even that took months. I didn’t have it easy growing up. My mom was usually strung out, and she didn’t give me a second thought. Drugs and the men who paid her were most important. It was horrible, but I’m stronger today. Because of my past, security is what I need most. Money assures me that I can take care of myself today, tomorrow, and next month. I don’t want to ever be hungry or go without again, so I work hard for every penny.

Oh, by the way, I’m Claire Anderson. I’m a hard-studying sophomore at the University of Bellevue, dancer for the school team, and a burlesque dancer at a club, but that’s my secret.

You may think you know how our story ends, but you have no clue. It’s not easy falling in love, or living happily ever after. At first, it may seem so, but when is anything worth having ever won without a fight?

Especially, when you’re boarded by love.


______________________________________________________

TEASER TIME!

Trouble indeed, but it didn’t matter. He’s pushing and pulling me straight to him, and I am sure he isn’t going to let me go. Not that I want to. There is something about him that has me completely and utterly drawn to him, no pulling needed. While I want to sleep with him, I also want to know him. Really, I have no clue what I want. I just want Jude. All of him and I’m glad he turned down my offer to go to bed. While I want it, I don’t think I would have gone through it, but then with the way he’s looking at me, his hooded green eyes flaring with lust, I’m thinking that previous statement was a total lie. 
I damn well want him more than my next breath.

-Claire 

______________________________________________________

About the Author


Toni Aleo is the author of the Nasvhille Assassins series: Taking ShotsTrying to ScoreEmpty Net, Falling for the Backup, and Blue Lines.

When not rooting for her beloved Nashville Predators, she’s probably going to her husband’s and son’s hockey games and her daughter’s dance competitions, taking pictures, scrapbooking, or reading the latest romance novel.

She lives in the Nashville area with her husband, two children, and a bulldog. Read more about Toni here.
Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads 

 

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"Some of the best things in life can be found in the pages of a good book..." Hi, I’m Lisa and I'm a proud bibliophile. I enjoy reading and reviewing a variety of different books within the Middle Grade, Young Adult and "New Adult" genres. (I occasionally take adult titles to review as well.) If you have any questions or if you are an author or publisher and would be interested in promoting a book, please feel free email.

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