30 July 2011

Title: Children of Paranoia
Author: Trevor Shane
Publisher: Dutton, 384 Pages (September 8th, 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Borders, The Book Depository

Synopsis: ALL WARS HAVE RULES

Rule Number One: No killing innocent bystanders.

Rule Number Two: No killing anyone under the age of eighteen.

BREAK THE RULES, BECOME THE TARGET

Since the age of eighteen, Joseph has been assassinating people on behalf of a cause that he believes in but doesn't fully understand. The War is ageless, hidden in the shadows, governed by a rigid set of rules, and fought by two distinct sides-one good, one evil. The only unknown is which side is which. Soldiers in the War hide in plain sight, their deeds disguised as accidents or random acts of violence amidst an unsuspecting population ignorant of the brutality that is always inches away.

Killing people is the only life Joseph has ever known, and he's one of the best at it. But when a job goes wrong and he's sent away to complete a punishingly dangerous assignment, Joseph meets a girl named Maria, and for the first time in his life his singleminded, bloody purpose fades away.

Before Maria, Joseph's only responsibility was dealing death to the anonymous targets fingered by his superiors. Now he must run from the people who have fought by his side to save what he loves most in this world. As Children of Paranoia reaches its heart-in-throat climax, Joseph will learn that only one rule remains immutable: the only thing more dangerous than fighting the War...is leaving it.


Book Trailer:






Where to find Trevor Online:

Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook





*covers are always subject to change.
*I am not compensated at all for any of the links within this post.

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29 July 2011

Title:Between Here and Forever
Author: Elizabeth Scott
Publisher: Simon Pulse, 250 Pages (May 24th 2011)
From: the Publisher, Thank You!

Synopsis: Abby accepted that she can’t measure up to her beautiful, magnetic sister Tess a long time ago, and knows exactly what she is: Second best. Invisible.

Until the accident.

Now Tess is in a coma, and Abby’s life is on hold. It may have been hard living with Tess, but it's nothing compared to living without her.

She's got a plan to bring Tess back though, involving the gorgeous and mysterious Eli, but then Abby learns something about Tess, something that was always there, but that she’d never seen.

Abby is about to find out that truth isn't always what you think it is, and that life holds more than she ever thought it could...

Review: 3.5 Stars - Between Here and Forever by Elizabeth Scott is an emotionally charged story about a teenage girl trying to step out of the shadow of an older sibling. It’s about finding your own voice and growing into your own person.

On New Years Abby’s older sister Tess has a terrible accident and has been in a coma since. In Abby’s eyes her sister is perfect and has everything anyone could ever want. Being in her shadow is the only thing Abby has ever known. Abby and Tess couldn’t be two totally different people, yet Abby finds herself in her sisters’ shadow, even while in a coma.

Abby is a teen girl who’s struggling with many things. Finding out who she really is all the while figuring out what she really wants for herself. It’s more than just about Abby’s life but also the hidden secrets that come out about who her sister really was. As Abby puts together the puzzle pieces of her life and her sisters secret past, Abby starts to change and grow. It’s during these moments that her character shines.

Abby goes about to find a way to wake her sister up and asks for help from the new guy working at the hospital – Eli. She thinks her sister will wake up for him, so she finds a way to have Eli visit with Tess in the afternoons at the hospital.

Both Eli and Abby have more in common then they either understand. It’s not only Abby who has issues, Eli has just as much baggage he’s lugging around as Abby does. Eli was such an endearing character and in the end it was pretty easy for me to feel for the two semi broken teens.

The mystery surrounding Tess and her secrets and the growing pains Abby and Eli face made them all equally intriguing characters. Abby and Eli fit together, though their relationship is often bumpy, they work and as a reader I was able to get an amazingly strong sense as to who she was, even from the coma.

With real characters, an emotional story, truths and mysteries coming to the surface, Between Here and Forever was a quick read that kept my attention from beginning to end. I recommend this book to anyone looking for a contemporary YA with heart. Enjoy.

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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28 July 2011

Title: Betrayed (The Guardian Legacy, #2)
Author: Ednah Walters
Publisher: Self-Published, (August 1st 2011)
From: the Author, Thank You!
Check out my Review: Awakened (The Guardian Legacy, #1)

Synopsis: Lil has come to terms with her life as a Guardian/demon hunter and the wielder of the Nephilim most powerful weapon. She trains everyday to master her growing powers, gets along with her Guardian trainee friends (most of the time) and cherishes her moments with her human friends.

Just when she feels she belongs, her nature-bender father contacts her and warns her about a betrayal by someone close to her. Then Bran, the guy she loves, starts to act strange and one of her human friends acquires a supernatural ability. While Lil struggles find a connection between these three things, she begins to realize that someone is manipulating her and Bran, and will stop at nothing (including hurting those she loves) to lure them to the dark side.

Review: 4 Stars - Betrayed is the exciting second book in the Guardian Legacy series by Ednah Walters. Filled with twists and turns, this thrilling continuation reminded me just why I thoroughly enjoyed the first book and this second only further solidified being a HUGE fan of these characters, this series and the author.

Lil has finally started to get used to things as a Guardian, yet she is still trying to achieve better control over all her powers. She has a loving relationship with Bran, great friends and feels like she’s finally found a place to belong. She’s a pretty amazing female lead who continues to fight for her family and friends and what she feels is right. She has a lot on her plate in this book, dealing with a number of things while trying to master her powers. Throughout it all she’s attending High School and being sent out on missions with her Guardian friends, and she seems to do it all pretty well. That is until things go a little wrong.

Their relationship – Lil and Bran’s – is great; he’s still one of those male characters that I thoroughly love. Their relationship has always had its up’s and down’s and this time they are going to be faced with a HUGE roadblock. Bran’s dealing with his own set of huge messy issues surrounding not only himself, but also with his siblings - I didn’t know what was happening, what was going on or what might be right around the corner for Walters and her characters. I felt for both Lil and Bran, with all they were facing and when everything came to light on what was really going on, I think my heart broke a tiny bit.

Walters has taken this second book and kicked it up a notch. Sometimes when it comes to a second book in a series there’s a lull or it can be a bit on the slow side, setting up for the next book(s) to come and I was extremely elated and can say that this isn’t the case with this one. Its action packed, has many twists and more of these amazing great characters that we were introduced to in the first book – Awakened.

All in all, I’m a huge fan of Walters and her thrilling self published YA series. With characters I love and a thrilling story, I’m eagerly awaiting the next book in the series. I highly recommend this series to all, especially fans of supernatural tales within the YA genre. So, what are you waiting for?

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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27 July 2011

"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: Deadly Cool
Author: Gemma Halliday
Publisher: HarperTeen, 272 Pages (October 11th 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository

Synopsis: Hartley Grace Featherstone is having a very bad day. First she finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her with the president of the Herbert Hoover High School Chastity Club. Then he's pegged as the #1 suspect in a murder. And if that weren't enough, now he's depending on Hartley to clear his name. Seriously? Not cool. But as much as Hartley wouldn't mind seeing him squirm, she knows he's innocent, and she's the only one who can help him. Along with her best friend, Sam, and the school's resident Bad Boy, Chase, Hartley starts investigating on her own. But as the dead bodies begin to pile up, the mystery deepens, the suspects multiply, and Hartley begins to fear that she may be the killer's next victim.

Title: Hades (Halo, #2)
Author: Alexandra Adornetto
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends, 422 Pages (August 30th 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository

Synopsis: Even the love of her boyfriend, Xavier Woods, and her archangel siblings, Gabriel and Ivy, can’t keep the angel Bethany Church from being tricked into a motorcycle ride that ends up in Hell. There, Jake Thorn bargains for Beth’s release back to Earth. But what he asks of her will destroy her, and quite possibly her loved ones as well. Can he be trusted in this wager? And what does Jake have Xavier believing about Beth’s fate that may result in an act of betrayal that will leave Bethany – and readers – wondering if Xavier is so good after all?

Title: A Beautiful Dark
Author: Jocelyn Davies
Publisher: HarperTeen, 320 Pages (September 27th 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository

Synopsis: On the night of Skye's seventeenth birthday, she meets two enigmatic strangers. Complete opposites--like fire and ice--Asher is dark and wild, while Devin is fair and aloof. Their sudden appearance sends Skye's life into a tailspin. She has no idea what they want, or why they seem to follow her every move--only that their presence coincides with a flurry of strange events. Soon she begins to doubt not just the identity of the two boys, but also the truth about her own past.

In the dead of a bitingly cold Colorado winter, Skye finds herself coming to terms with the impossible secret that threatens to shatter her world. Torn between Asher, who she can't help falling for, and Devin, who she can't stay away from, the consequences of Skye's choice will reach further than the three of them could ever imagine.

First off, I love the covers for all three. As for Deadly Cool, I've read it's a bit on the Veronica Mars side of things and since that's one of my all time favorite shows, yeah, it's a MUST READ! As for Hades and A Beautiful Dark, I've read both recently, so keep an eye out for those reviews in the near future. So, what are your thoughts on these titles?

*covers are always subject to change.
*I am not compensated at all for any of the links within this post.

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26 July 2011

Title: Starcrossed (Starcrossed, #1)
Author: Josephine Angelini
Publisher: HarperTeen, 496 Pages (May 31st 2011)
From: the Publisher/Net Galley - Thank You! (eBook)

Synopsis: How do you defy destiny?

Helen Hamilton has spent her entire sixteen years trying to hide how different she is—no easy task on an island as small and sheltered as Nantucket. And it's getting harder. Nightmares of a desperate desert journey have Helen waking parched, only to find her sheets damaged by dirt and dust. At school she's haunted by hallucinations of three women weeping tears of blood . . . and when Helen first crosses paths with Lucas Delos, she has no way of knowing they're destined to play the leading roles in a tragedy the Fates insist on repeating throughout history.

As Helen unlocks the secrets of her ancestry, she realizes that some myths are more than just legend. But even demigod powers might not be enough to defy the forces that are both drawing her and Lucas together—and trying to tear them apart.

Review: 5 Stars - Josephine Angelini, author of Starcrossed has written a thrilling story filled with mythology, romance and characters I loved; with twists that’ll leave you shocked. The absorbing first book in the series was action packed to say the very least and will leave you thinking about more than just the ending and what will happen next.

Helen might feel she’s a bit different then everyone else, going out of her way to lay low, which can be hard to do when living on a small island. She does a good job of it… most of the time that is until Lucas and his family move to the island and then all that trying to lay low goes right out the window! Without understand what’s going on or why she has some seriously strong and very ugly feelings to this new guy and his family, Helen has some very troubling outbursts. And boy, her reaction was huge, shocking to say the least.

The two, at first are like magnets, when fighting against each other. Helen doesn’t understand her pure hatred to the Delos family, nor does she understand the startling dreams she’s having or the scary women who seem to be following her around. It’s up to the Delos family to step in, when things start to get out of hand to help Helen understand exactly what’s going on.

I have to say that Helen and Lucas are two great characters. I loved Starcrossed from beginning to end and it’s these two characters, the Delos family as a whole and the mythology that made this book everything. With Helen’s struggles to come to terms with why she’s different and who she really is, she’s still that insecure teenage girl through and through. It’s personalities like this when you’re dealing with a character with budding supernatural powers that makes them true and real. The introduction to Lucas and his family to Helen’s life was bound to give her many of the answers she was seeking, yet leave many questions still to be answered. And this is where book one ends, setting us up for book two and then future books to follow.

As for Lucas, talk about swoon! He might have been strength for Helen and such an amazing guy, but his family as a whole were a huge highlight for me as well. Lucas has such strength; I don’t know how he manages to survive those first few encounters with Helen. I found myself thinking what he might have been fighting too once we found out the root of what was really going on during that time early on in the book. And while he’s there to teach Helen things, to answer many of her questions he’s the lucky one to have such an amazing family to back him up. It’s not to say that Helen’s dad is a bad guy or parent, he’s not. It’s just that with Lucas, he’s was born into this, always knowing who he is that gives him that strength to help Helen with her new reality.

I did have to say that I gasped and cringed a bit at the end of the book. I was shocked at what some people will do to hurt others when trying to gain something for themselves. However, I have faith that Angelini will address things in the next book and I can’t wait to see what happens next within the whole series.

All in all, this is a new favorite of mine; it’s one of the best books I’ve read in 2011. I highly recommend this to anyone who loves a story with character you will root for and love, filled with mythology and a destiny that only fate knows the outcome. Angelini has me hooked, so common and let’s get you hooked too. Enjoy!

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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25 July 2011

"Just Picked" is a feature here at A Life Bound By Books. This is a place where I'll be spotlighting new (and old) childrens book or picture books for parents and new readers. It's a place to talk about books for a younger group and to try to help create a new generation of readers.

Title: Monsters Eat Whiny Children
Author: Bruce Eric Kaplan
Illustrator: Bruce Eric Kaplan
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's, 40 Pages (August 31st 2010)
Age Range: 4 & Up
From: the Publisher, Thank You!

Synopsis: When Henry and Eve whine too much it only means one thing - the monsters will come to eat them.

Review: 4 Stars - Monster Eat Whiny Children by Bruce Eric Kaplan is a great book that I’d love to share with my nieces and nephews. I mean who wouldn’t want a way to get kids to stop whining. BUT maybe this is one for when they are a bit older and can laugh along with me while reading.

When Henry and Eve give their father a hard time and whine about everything, he gives them fair warning that if they keep it up the monsters will come and take them away and yep, that’s just what happened to these two kids.

While the monsters come together to try to figure out how to eat the kids, the kids have to come together and figure out a way to escape back home again.

I think that this is one of those books that adults will get more out of than kids, well unless you want to chance scaring the you know what out of them. I can totally see parents using this book as a way to get their kids to stop the whining as well.

As for the illustrations, I do love the simplicity of them. I think that anything more detailed would have made this story even scarier. I think that the point of it all is the story itself, so the art fit along great.

In the end, Monster Eat Whiny Children was a book I loved that’s always lingering in the back of my mind when I hear a kid whining. I look forward to sharing it with my nieces and nephews when they are a little bit older, when I know it won’t scare them. I do recommend this book to parents and older kids.

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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22 July 2011

Title: Enclave (Razorland, #1)
Author: Ann Aguirre
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends, 259 Pages (April 12th 2011)
From: the Publisher, Thank You!

Synopsis: WELCOME TO THE APOCALYPSE

In Deuce’s world, people earn the right to a name only if they survive their first fifteen years. By that point, each unnamed ‘brat’ has trained into one of three groups–Breeders, Builders, or Hunters, identifiable by the number of scars they bear on their arms. Deuce has wanted to be a Huntress for as long as she can remember.

As a Huntress, her purpose is clear—to brave the dangerous tunnels outside the enclave and bring back meat to feed the group while evading ferocious monsters known as Freaks. She’s worked toward this goal her whole life, and nothing’s going to stop her, not even a beautiful, brooding Hunter named Fade. When the mysterious boy becomes her partner, Deuce’s troubles are just beginning.

Down below, deviation from the rules is punished swiftly and harshly, and Fade doesn’t like following orders. At first she thinks he’s crazy, but as death stalks their sanctuary, and it becomes clear the elders don’t always know best, Deuce wonders if Fade might be telling the truth. Her partner confuses her; she’s never known a boy like him before, as prone to touching her gently as using his knives with feral grace.

As Deuce’s perception shifts, so does the balance in the constant battle for survival. The mindless Freaks, once considered a threat only due to their sheer numbers, show signs of cunning and strategy… but the elders refuse to heed any warnings. Despite imminent disaster, the enclave puts their faith in strictures and sacrifice instead. No matter how she tries, Deuce cannot stem the dark tide that carries her far from the only world she’s ever known.

Review: 3 Stars - Dystopian title Enclave by Ann Aguirre was interesting on many levels, from the characters to the world underground to the scary truth of topside. It’s was a compelling start to a trilogy giving readers a different take on a popular and ever growing genre.

Living underground is the only option for main character Deuce and the various enclaves trying to make a life, to survive within the tunnels that run under what used to be a bussling city. Sadly, most who live underground don’t know of life above ground, or what life used to be like before they were forced down, deep into the earth. The elders tell the histories and the people live by them and never question anything. Deuce has survived 15 years of being a “brat” without a name and a true purpose. When she finally gets a name, she’s able to put her training to use as Hunter for her people. With scars that tell all what she is, she’s paired up with a partner and sent out into the tunnels for food for the people and protection against the monsters that roam the tunnels – “freaks”.

When Deuce finds herself partnered with Fade, she questions if this pairing is a good thing of a bad thing and why of all people it had to be her. Fade is different from others, he was born away from the enclave and has more knowledge of the tunnels and the world above than anyone knows. He tends to keep to himself and really no one wants to end up working with the strange loner. Deuce is a strong character that has questions she wants and needs answers to but is scared to ask for fear of the ultimate punishment – banishment from her home, but Fade is able to help Deuce more than she would ever know.

Fade made the story for me, which tends to happen somewhat often when a good male character enters into the mix of any good story. He really helped to shed not only light too many of Deuce’s questions, but also continued to further strengthen her as a character, helping her to grow as a person. From their first encounter in the book you could see her changing because of Fade, the questions she had and finding answers she was looking for. They each have their own set of issues that they had to deal with and work through and it’s about to get worse when things go drastically wrong for the two.

This might have been a very different type of dystopian story, but it wasn’t my favorite. I applaud Aguirre for writing something with a different take on the popular genre. It wasn’t bad; but for me it was just a tad lacking. I felt it was slightly flat and maybe that had to do with the drastic difference in the story and characters from underground to topside that kind of threw me. It almost felt like the story peaked a little too quickly however; it’s far from the point where I won’t be interested in reading the next book in the trilogy – Outpost.

All in all, while Enclave fell a little bit flat for me it was still interesting and the action held my interest. With the next book in the trilogy just around the corner, I’m eager to find out more about Deuce, Fade and the rebellion… and what Aguirre has planned for everyone, readers and characters alike next. If you are a fan of dystopian stories and are looking for something new, something far from the norm, then be sure to give this one a try soon.

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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20 July 2011

"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: Daughter of Smoke and Bone
Author: Laini Tayor
Publisher: Little, Brown & Company, 432 Pages (September 27th 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Borders, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository

Synopsis: Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil's supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherworldly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she's prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages—not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.

When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

Title: Glow (Sky Chasers, #1)
Author: Amy Kathleen Ryan
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin, 320 Pages (September 27th 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Borders, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository

Synopsis: What if you were bound for a new world, about to pledge your life to someone you'd been promised to since birth, and one unexpected violent attack made survival—not love—the issue?

Out in the murky nebula lurks an unseen enemy: the New Horizon. On its way to populate a distant planet in the wake of Earth's collapse, the ship's crew has been unable to conceive a generation to continue its mission. They need young girls desperately, or their zealous leader's efforts will fail. Onboard their sister ship, the Empyrean, the unsuspecting families don't know an attack is being mounted that could claim the most important among them...

Fifteen-year-old Waverly is part of the first generation to be successfully conceived in deep space; she was born on the Empyrean, and the large farming vessel is all she knows. Her concerns are those of any teenager—until Kieran Alden proposes to her. The handsome captain-to-be has everything Waverly could ever want in a husband, and with the pressure to start having children, everyone is sure he's the best choice. Except for Waverly, who wants more from life than marriage—and is secretly intrigued by the shy, darkly brilliant Seth.

But when the Empyrean faces sudden attack by their assumed allies, they quickly find out that the enemies aren't all from the outside.

Title: The Name of the Star (Shades of London, #1)
Author: Maureen Johnson
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile, 384 Pages (September 20th 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Borders, Barnes and Noble, The Book Depository

Synopsis: The day Louisiana teenager Rory Deveaux arrives in London marks a memorable occasion. For Rory, it's the start of a new life at a London boarding school. But for many, this will be remembered as the day a series of brutal murders broke out across the city, gruesome crimes mimicking the horrific Jack the Ripper events of more than a century ago.

Soon "Rippermania" takes hold of modern-day London, and the police are left with few leads and no witnesses. Except one. Rory spotted the man police believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommate, who was walking with her at the time, didn't notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, why has Rory become his next target? In this edge-of-your-seat thriller, full of suspense, humor, and romance, Rory will learn the truth about the secret ghost police of London and discover her own shocking abilities.

I love pairing three totally different titles together in my WoW's and here's another set that are so different from one another, I don't think I could have chosen better this week. I am so excited for these three, you have NO idea. Thankfully I have Glow here and should be reading and reviewing soon. As for the other two, they are up pretty high on my every growing wish list. What are your thoughts on each of these books in this weeks WoW?

*covers are always subject to change.
*I am not compensated at all for any of the links within this post.

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19 July 2011

Winners!


I have a couple of winners to announce for giveaways that have recently ended. Also, I wanted to say Hello to all the new and old followers. Thanks to everyone who's stopped by and to all those who have entered.

Here are two lucky winners -

Dead Iron By: Devon Monk

Meadow


Blogfest 2011 - $15.00 to the Book Depository

Stacy Taylor


The winners have been email and have 48 hours to respond. If you haven't received an email from me & believe you are one of the winners, please be sure to check your spam folder or email to claim your prize! Winners were chosen via Random.org.

Thanks again for all who have entered and I'm happy to welcome so many new and old followers back. I have some great things coming up over the next few months, right through the end of the year, so I hope you'll all continue to stop by & comment. I look forward to hearing all of your thoughts on books & reviews, etc that I talk about here, so keep those comments coming!

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Title: Pearl
Author: Jo Knowles
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co., 224 Pages (July 19th 2011)
From: the Publisher, Thank You!

Synopsis: Bean (née Pearl) and Henry, misfits and best friends, have the strangest mothers in town. Henry’s mom Sally never leaves the house. Bean’s mom Lexie, if she is home, is likely nursing a hangover or venting to her friend Claire about Bean’s beloved grandfather Gus, the third member of their sunny household.

Gus’s death unleashes a host of family secrets that brings them all together. And they threaten to change everything—including Bean’s relationship with Henry, her first friend, and who also might turn out to be her first love.

Review: 4 Stars - Author Jo Knowles new title Pearl is an emotional journey from a teen girls point of view. It’s about dysfunctional families and growing. It’s about finding out who you are while learning where you come from.

Pearl aka Bean and Henry both come from highly dysfunctional families. They are each others only friends and it’s during one fateful summer the two go looking for answers that Bean has been asking about for years. When a sudden death in the family brings all the questions to the surface, Bean and Henry will stop at nothing until they know the truth. It’s up to her mother to come clean and Bean won’t stop until she knows what happened between her mother and her grandfather and finally, who her father is.

Henry has his own set of troubles at home and the two are there for each other when no one else was around and when they each needed someone the most. The two are both heart warming and heart breaking as they face being a teen with all the extra crud piled on top of the two within their respective home lives. Since they have known each other from a young age, they’ve grown up together and have witnessed first hand what the other goes through day in and day out.

The relationships between all the characters were bumpy but also the core of the story. I felt for both Bean and Henry and my heart often broke for each of them. I could easily put myself in either of their shoes as Knowles writing made these young adult characters real and honest throughout the major uphill battles they each faced.

Their mothers on the other hand were the root of all the issues that the two had to wade through during their search for Beans truth that I found myself shaking my head and wondering how on earth two adults could be so totally blind to what their kids were going through? It’s a sad reality in that so many kids have to face a vast number of challenges other than just what it means to be a kid. Truly, I was ready to smack the adults in this one a couple of times, let me tell you!

All in all, Pearl was a quick read with two young characters you’ll feel for and some adults you’ll want to scream at. I enjoyed Bean and Henry’s friendship and was happy that the plot wasn’t focused on them falling in love. Their true, honest and deep friendship came blazing through and was the driving force in making this a title I enjoyed. If you are a fan of contemporary YA titles then you won’t want to pass up this latest book from Jo Knowles. Happy reading!

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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18 July 2011

Title: Divergent
Author: Veronica Roth
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books, 487 Pages (May 3rd 2011)
From: the Publisher, Thank You!

Synopsis: In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.

Review: 5 Stars - Divergent by Veronica Roth is hands down the best book I've read so far in 2011. It’s thrilling and unique with an amazing story that will suck the reader in and leave you gripped until the very last page, leaving you begging for more. Roth is without a doubt an amazing new talent within the young adult community and Divergent is the must read book of the year.

Divergent is told from the voice of the female lead character – Beatrice, who lives in a divided society. People are born into one of five fractions – Candor (honest), Abnegation (selfless), Dauntless (brave), Amity (peaceful) and Erudite (intelligent). Beatrice happens to be Abnegation and in a world when you become 16, you are tested and must finally select where you will live for the rest of your life. Stay where you are or become who you feel you’re really, truly meant to be. However, once you choose there’s no going back. If you choose a fraction that’s not what you were raised in, you give up that life and your family forever.

Beatrice or Tris as she calls herself is such an incredible character. I couldn't imagine going through many of things she does, or if I’d have the strength or guts to do even half of the things she came to do. I liked how she was loyal and challenged herself and her beliefs and went after what she felt and knew was the right thing to do. A huge part of the strength she finds in herself comes from the friends she meets and the impact that they have on each others lives. She learns that maybe all isn't as it seems and that somehow, someone needs to make a stand.

It was easy to put myself right into the middle of things in this book. I felt that I was a fly on the wall amid Roth’s dystopian Chicago. Her amazing descriptive writing flowed seamlessly and I found myself quickly becoming emotionally invested and attached to her characters. With the turn of the last page I was extremely tempted to begin from page one all over again and read it straight through, back to back! Everything about this book sticks with you for hours, days, weeks and months after reading, and trust me that’s far from a bad thing.

Divergent is in one word amazing!! If I’m being totally truthful here, amazing doesn't even cover it. It’s epic, it’s a must read and I’ll be pushing this title on others until they pick it up and read it! Roth has it all in this title and then some. With characters you can’t help but become attached to, a story that’ll have you gripping the edge of your seat, a fascinating new take on the dystopian genre, descriptive settings you’ll find yourself sitting right in the middle of, with ease and a romance that’s smoldering hot… I mean what are you waiting for? Seriously, what are you waiting for, go pick it up now, you won’t be disappointed in the slightest, promise. And with that, I’ll be sitting with bated breath for the continuing story in the next book within the Divergent series – Insurgent – May 2012. Enjoy!

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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16 July 2011

Synopsis: Each night when 16 year-old London Lane goes to sleep, her whole world disappears. In the morning, all that's left is a note telling her about a day she can't remember. The whole scenario doesn't exactly make high school or dating that hot guy whose name she can't seem to recall any easier. But when London starts experiencing disturbing visions she can't make sense of, she realizes it's time to learn a little more about the past she keeps forgetting-before it destroys her future.

Part psychological drama, part romance, and part mystery, this thought-provoking novel will inspire readers to consider the what-if's in their own lives and recognize the power they have to control their destinies.

Be sure to check out my review for Forgotten HERE!



How long did it take you to write Forgotten from concept to published book? And did the original idea/story change much along the way?

I got the idea for Forgotten mid-November 2008. I started writing immediately, and submitted the first draft to my agent on February 2, 2009.

Over the next five months, with the help of my agent, I edited the heck out of the novel. I laughed when I read this question because when I was writing Forgotten, my agent teased me that I’d send him a new book every time I did any editing. That’s an exaggeration, but the book did change quite a bit from those earlier drafts. It was always about London’s condition—there was always Luke—but I struggled to find the right mystery angle. When I found it, I got chills. (I won’t say any more on that so I don’t spoil it for readers.)

In August 2009, Forgotten sold at auction to Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. Then there was about six months of editing and copyediting to fine-tune things. So, adding up all that time, it took about 13 months to finish the book (and a few more to do marketing plans and cover treatment, etc.).

Being that this is your first published title, was there anything you were surprised about during your road to becoming published?

I was surprised about how long it takes to publish a book. It’s been two and a half years since I had that book idea eureka moment, and nearly two years since the book sold. It felt like a very long time to wait, mostly because I was so excited to see it on shelves.

What were your favorite part and the hardest part about writing Forgotten?

My favorite part was letting London’s story spill out of me. I’d written a (truly terrible) adult fiction novel years before, and if nothing else, that exercise taught me that I could write something novel length. So, when I got the idea for Forgotten, I didn’t second guess myself—and I didn’t wonder whether I could do it. I knew I could. I really believed in the idea and I just…wrote. It was so fun!

The hardest part was finding time to write, and feeling guilty about doing it. I have twin daughters who are almost three now; I wrote Forgotten before they were one. On one hand, it was an intellectual outlet when I could have given in completely to Mommy Mush Brain, but on the other, time spent in London’s world equaled missed moments with my girls. Ultimately though, I was able to find a good balance, and I truly believe I’m a better mom because of it.

Can you share with us a favorite line or two from Forgotten?

Some of my favorites are from the second half of the book and will give away too much if I share them. So, I’ll choose one from chapter two that I think really points to the dilemma of London’s condition: What would you choose to remember?

“I grit my teeth and grip the pen and do what I have to do. I lie to myself.”

London and Luke are two amazing and unique characters – can you tell us what you’d like everyone to take away from each of them as separate characters and then together as a couple?

Hmm…what we take away from books is so subjective. Perhaps I’ll tell you what I personally take away from “interactions” with them.

From Luke, I’m reminded of how important it is to stand by people you care about, no matter what. London reminds me that I have control over my own future. I make my own choices. If I don’t like something about my life, I can take steps to change it. And from them as a couple? I think Luke and London are a great example of why open communication in any relationship—not just a romantic one—is so critical.

London has a lot to deal with – trying to keep track of a past she can’t remember, that even today she’ll forget while she sleeps – and a future she sees and remembers, but is also bound to forget. If there was one thing you and Luke could each tell her that she wouldn’t forget, what would it be?

Having London’s condition could certainly make anyone feel abnormal: Luke’s reminder might be simply that he loves her as she is.

I’d tell her that no matter how bad her memories seem, she has the power to change them. That’s a gift that is uniquely London’s.

Are there any books you’ve recently read that are must reads? Anything that is yet to be released out into the wild you can’t wait to get your hands on?

I’ve read a lot of books that I really enjoyed recently but my number one must-read is The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I read it a while ago—it’s out in paperback now—and it’s still the one I think of when anyone asks about must-reads.

I’m very excited to read Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor, Crossed by Ally Condie and The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler.

Lastly, can you tell us anything about what you’re currently working on? You mentioned on twitter and on your website your next book will be out in 2012 from Little Brown. What can you tell us about it

Unfortunately, I can’t share much at this point except to say that it’s not a sequel to Forgotten, but please follow me on Twitter/FB or through my blog for news soon!

Thanks so much for chatting with us today Cat! We hope we can do this again sometime soon!

Thank you!


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15 July 2011

Review: Forgotten By: Cat Patrick

Title: Forgotten
Author: Cat Patrick
Publisher: Little Brown, 288 Pages (June 7th 2011)
From: the Publisher, Thank You!

Synopsis: Each night when 16 year-old London Lane goes to sleep, her whole world disappears. In the morning, all that's left is a note telling her about a day she can't remember. The whole scenario doesn't exactly make high school or dating that hot guy whose name she can't seem to recall any easier. But when London starts experiencing disturbing visions she can't make sense of, she realizes it's time to learn a little more about the past she keeps forgetting-before it destroys her future.

Review: 5 Stars - Forgotten by Cat Patrick is hands down one of the best books I’ve read in 2011. From its synopsis, cover to cover this book had me excited and kept drawing me in until I found that I had read it, in it’s entirety in one sitting.

London is a strong female lead character. There’s no other way she can be with what she’s dealing with. She can’t remember her past, even today she’ll forget when she sleeps and a future she remembers but is doomed to forget, which really is all pretty confusing and rough, right? That’s where her strength comes in. To live with this, to function and deal with each day as she does… wow! She is pretty attached to her phone, being able to make notes in it to help remember and then she writes notes to herself each night, I can understand her worry about what’s important forever afraid she might leave something out.

When Luke enters the picture London has some pretty big choices to make, some which are much harder then others. He’s a great guy, mysterious underneath it all. However, he’s one of those good guy characters that’ll leave many readers in a puddle after reading. He’s caring, sweet and is there for London even though he doesn’t really know what all she’s dealing with.

When London start having disturbing dreams that seemed to start right around when Luke came into the picture, she doesn’t know just what to make of it all. With only glimpse, she can only assume the worst is yet to come in these dreams of the future.

The relationship between London and Luke worked when it should have been more than an uphill battle due to London’s affliction. I mean, don’t get me wrong there are some major bumps along the way that I didn’t see coming, but the London really made it all work.

Patrick has masterfully weaved a story so full of mystery and romance that easily made this a favorite for me in 2011. With characters I loved and events that are real a mystery that’ have you holding your breath and twists and turns to keep you on the edge of your seat, Forgotten is bound to find a place on everyone’s favorite’s shelf. I can’t wait to see what Patrick has for us next… she’s one of those authors that whatever she writes, I’ll be eagerly awaiting to read. Enjoy!

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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14 July 2011

Blogfest 2011 Giveaway!


How quickly the time passes, I can't believe it's Blogfest 2011!! Thanks to
A Journey of Books for hosting!!

This is a quick giveaway, so be sure to follow my simple rules
and enter today! And now, on to the good stuff.

This year, I'm giving away something that people tend to love. How about another chance to win $15.00 to the Book Depository??

ONE lucky winner will receive $15.00 to spend as they like at The Book Depository!


Here's the rules and how to enter:

You MUST be at least 13 years old to enter.
You MUST fill out the simple form provided below. No entries in comments will count.
This giveaway is open INTERNATIONAL! If The Book Depository ships to you, feel free to enter!
Giveaway ends: July 17th, 2011 - 11:59 PM (EST)




Be sure to check out some of the other blogs that are participating in Blogfest this year -


Also, be sure to check out A Journey of Books for the master list of all blog links!

Good luck to everyone who entries here and all the other giveaways during this event. As always winners are chosen via random.org. If you have any questions please check out my policy page or feel free to email. Thanks for dropping in and for entering!

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Title: Anathema (Causal Enchantment, #1)
Author: K.A. Tucker
Publisher: Papoti Books, 284 Pages (July 15th 2011)
From: the author, Thank You! (eBook)

Synopsis: Evangeline has spent her teenage years in obscurity. Her foster parents have the emotional aptitude of robots and her classmates barely acknowledge her existence. About to turn eighteen and feeling like a social pariah, she is desperate to connect with someone. Anyone.

When Evangeline meets Sofie after literally stumbling upon her café, she believes she’s found that connection. Willing to do anything to keep it, she accepts a job as Sofie’s assistant and drops everything to fly to Manhattan, where she is thrust into a luxurious world of Prada, diamonds, and limitless cash.

With such generosity and kindness, it’s easy for Evangeline to dismiss certain oddities . . . like Sofie’s erratic and sometimes violent behavior, and the monstrous guard dogs. She’s even willing to dismiss her vivid dreams of mob-style murders, beautiful homeless people living in caves, and white-eyed demons that haunt her each night as figments of her imagination—especially when one of those figments is the gorgeous Caden. When she wakes up with bite marks on her neck, the fairy tale quickly turns into a nightmare. She slowly unravels the mystery surrounding Sofie and friends, and the reality of the bites and the “dreams.” What she discovers is far more mysterious and terrible than anything she could have imagined.

In a world where everyone has motive to lie for personal gain, Evangeline must decide which deception is least likely to get her killed.

Review: 4 Stars - Anathema, the first book in the Causal Enchantment series by self published author K.A. Tucker is utterly unique. Tucker has taken the paranormal genre and twisted it with bits of sci-fi and created a story I found myself submersed in and characters – some I quickly grew to love and some that made my skin crawl right from the get go making this a book that was hard to put down, that I didn’t want to put down.

Evangeline’s been lonely her whole life. Always just on the outside of things. When she was younger she was put into foster care and since has only thoughts of a better life. The loneliness she feels at the beginning of the book makes you instantly feel for her. You want more for her as well so when she by chance meets Sofie she’s eager and excited to take her up on the offer of a job.

Sofie isn’t all that she seems and it’s not until the end of the book that some of those puzzle pieces start to fit together, but you’ll have to read the book to know what I’m talking about. In the beginning Sofie wasn’t the easiest character to get a feel for, I felt she used Evangeline’s loneliness to somewhat trick her into things. One of those things, which set Evangeline’s life down a road she could only dream about, is a quick departure that whisks them off to New York for “business”.

When things and people around her start to drastically change her idea about the world, you follow Eve down the rabbit hole of sorts as she deals with many tests, tries to wade through the crud and can only hope come out better, stronger and with what she wants more than anything in life… friends, family and love.

I had no idea what to expect from this new take on Vampires and witches and let me tell you, when I say it’s a new take, that’s somewhat of an understatement. I had no idea what was happening, but things quickly came to light as many half truths and some truths came out. As a reader you learn more about the people and plans in the story just as Eve does, which only helps her grow up along the way.

Some other characters that I have to mention… I mean there’s just no way you can write a review without mentioning some of the true heart of the story - Caden, Amelie, Fiona, Bishop and Max. They might be part of the supporting cast in Eve’s journey, however I think the key word here is “supporting”. They were there for Eve, she trusted her instincts and finally found what she was looking for. Their relationships all fell into place and while the end is somewhat heartbreaking, we’ll have to wait until the next book to find out just what Tucker has in store for us and her characters.

All in all, Anathema was a welcomed read with characters that were a pleasure to meet and get to know and left me ready for more. This story was a quick read, so be sure you have some time set aside because with all the twists and turns you won’t want to put it down! I know I didn’t. If you are a fan of Vampires and are looking for something that’s so far from the usual vampire story, be sure to pick up or download a copy today! The sequel it set to be released in 2012.
Enter to win an eBook copy of Anathema!! One lucky winner will receive an eBook and 2 runner up winners will receive signed bookmark!

Rules and how to enter:

You must be at least 13 years old to enter
You must complete the form below, no entries in comments will count.
Giveaway is open: INTERNATIONAL!
Giveaway ends: August 5th, 2011



A huge thank you goes out to Kathleen for providing the eBook and bookmarks for the giveaway!

FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.

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Title: Anathema (Causal Enchantment #1)
Author: K.A. Tucker
Publisher: Papoti Books, 284 Pages (July 15th 2011)
From: the Author, Thank You! (eBook)

Synopsis: Evangeline has spent her teenage years in obscurity. Her foster parents have the emotional aptitude of robots and her classmates barely acknowledge her existence. About to turn eighteen and feeling like a social pariah, she is desperate to connect with someone. Anyone.

When Evangeline meets Sofie after literally stumbling upon her café, she believes she’s found that connection. Willing to do anything to keep it, she accepts a job as Sofie’s assistant and drops everything to fly to Manhattan, where she is thrust into a luxurious world of Prada, diamonds, and limitless cash.

With such generosity and kindness, it’s easy for Evangeline to dismiss certain oddities . . . like Sofie’s erratic and sometimes violent behavior, and the monstrous guard dogs. She’s even willing to dismiss her vivid dreams of mob-style murders, beautiful homeless people living in caves, and white-eyed demons that haunt her each night as figments of her imagination—especially when one of those figments is the gorgeous Caden. When she wakes up with bite marks on her neck, the fairy tale quickly turns into a nightmare. She slowly unravels the mystery surrounding Sofie and friends, and the reality of the bites and the “dreams.” What she discovers is far more mysterious and terrible than anything she could have imagined.

In a world where everyone has motive to lie for personal gain, Evangeline must decide which deception is least likely to get her killed.

Top Five Quotes from Anathema
(in no order)

"You know who loves reading as well?" Amelie asked as I mentioned my unhealthy obsession with books. "Caden. There could be a train wreck two feet away and his eyes wouldn't have lifted from the page."

Caden smirked. "For a human, yes. Human desires change with age. People outgrow one another. It's different with us. Every day with Fiona feels like the first day Bishop met her - the sparks, butterflies, all that."
"Butterflies... I thought that was a chick thing," I muttered.

"I'm so sorry, Caden," I said softly. And I was. It pained me to know that he and Amelie had suffered so.
He gazed down at his hands, a haunted smile on his face. "Do you realize that's the first time I've ever heard those words from anyone?"

All four dogs leapt forward to form a wall around me, but not before Viggo had my pendant within his grasp. "You may tear my heart out, Max, but not before I rip this pendant from Evangeline's neck," he said, his eyes locked with mine.

I had no idea what time it was and I didn't care. I only cared that I would have to leave Caden at some point and I dreaded that reality.

There were a bunch I had to choose from and in the end I put the page numbers/location numbers in a hat and drew these. It was just really hard to pick. So many good ones!


Giveaway Details!

Kathleen is giving away a signed, print copy of Anathema to one lucky winner at the end of the blog tour. Anyone can enter by visiting her site at http://www.katuckerbooks.com/ (read giveaway rules posted). Do you want up to 10 extra chances to win? Visit each blog stop for an Anathema Quiz question. Answer it correctly and your name is entered! Simple!


Here's your quiz question for today, Blog Stop #9: Who is the Council?

To submit your answer, click here http://www.katuckerbooks.com/10-days-of-anathema-grand-prize-entry-form.html

And if you haven't read Anathema yet... what are you waiting for?!

Be sure to check back later today for my review and more giveaway details!!


Find Kathleen online:

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Order Anathema Online:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords

*I am not compensated at all for any of the links within this post.

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13 July 2011

"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.



NEW COVER
 Title: The Girl of Fire and Thorns (Fire and Thorns, #1)
Author: Rae Carson
Publisher: Greenwillow/HarperCollins, 432 Pages (September 20th 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Borders, Barnes and Noble,
The Book Depository

Synopsis: Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness.

Elisa is the chosen one.

But she is also the younger of two princesses, the one who has never done anything remarkable. She can’t see how she ever will.

Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king—a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs the chosen one, not a failure of a princess.

And he’s not the only one who seeks her. Savage enemies seething with dark magic are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people’s savior. And he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake.

Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young.

Most of the chosen do.


Old Cover


Note: The cover has been changed for this one. I like the old one better. What do you guys think of the new cover vs. the old cover?

Title: The Power of Six (Lorien Legacies, #2)
Author: Pittacus Lore
Publisher: HarperCollins, 352 Pages (August 23rd 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Borders, Barnes and Noble,
The Book Depository

Synopsis: I've seen him on the news. Followed the stories about what happened in Ohio. John Smith, out there, on the run. To the world, he's a mystery. But to me . . . he's one of us.

Nine of us came here, but sometimes I wonder if time has changed us—if we all still believe in our mission. How can I know? There are six of us left. We're hiding, blending in, avoiding contact with one another . . . but our Legacies are developing, and soon we'll be equipped to fight. Is John Number Four, and is his appearance the sign I've been waiting for? And what about Number Five and Six? Could one of them be the raven-haired girl with the stormy eyes from my dreams? The girl with powers that are beyond anything I could ever imagine? The girl who may be strong enough to bring the six of us together?

They caught Number One in Malaysia.
Number Two in England.
And Number Three in Kenya.
They tried to catch Number Four in Ohio—and failed.

I am Number Seven. One of six still alive.

And I'm ready to fight.

Title: After Obsession
Author: Carrie Jones, Steven E. Wedel
Publisher: Bloomsburry, 320 Pages (September 13th 2011)
Preorder here: Amazon, Borders, Barnes and Noble,
The Book Depository

Synopsis: Aimee and Alan have secrets. Both teens have unusual pasts and abilities they prefer to keep hidden. But when they meet each other, in a cold Maine town, they can't stop their secrets from spilling out. Strange things have been happening lately, and they both feel that something-or someone- is haunting them. They're wrong. Despite their unusual history and powers, it's neither Aimee nor Alan who is truly haunted. It's Alan's cousin Courtney who, in a desperate plea to find her missing father, has invited a demon into her life-and into her body. Only together can Aimee and Alan exorcise the ghost. And they have to move quickly, before it devours not just Courtney but everything around her.


Filled with heart-pounding romance, paranormal activity, and rich teen characters to love-and introducing an exciting new YA voice, Steven Wedel-this novel is exactly what Carrie Jones fans have been waiting for. Meet your next obsession.

I'm excited for all three of these! Some great covers too. So many great books coming out and these are just a couple I'll be adding to my every growing wishlist! Who else is with me looking forward to these titles?


*covers are always subject to change.
*I am not compensated at all for any of the links within this post.

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12 July 2011


Synopsis: Zoë Sorensson is perfectly normal, except she's been told she's destined for great things. Zoë's the one female dragon shapeshifter of her kind. But Zoë is at the bottom of the class when it comes to being Pyr and her powers are AWOL, so she's sent to a Pyr boot camp.

Zoë quickly realizes that she has to master her powers yesterday, because the Pyr are in danger and boot camp is a trap. The Mages want to eliminate all shifters and the Pyr are next in line-unless Zoë and her friends can work together and save their own kind.

Check out my review for
Flying Blind - HERE


How was the switch from being an adult paranormal romance writer to the YA genre for you and what obstacles, if any did you face throughout the process?

The main challenge for me was the chronological timeline of the new series. The Dragonfire series is rooted in real time – because firestorms are linked to eclipses – and Zoë was born in 2008. That meant she’d turn 16 in 2024. I had to think about what the world might be like by then for teenagers – I decided it would not be much different, but that they’d have more powerful gadgets for keeping track of each other, listening to music, etc. I also had to think about the Dragonfire world itself – in that world, the Pyr are locked into a final battle with the Slayers. That war will be over by 2024. I knew who would win (!) but the defeat of the Slayers meant that the Pyr – and Zoë – would need new enemies. Enter the Mages.

Being that your adult series is about dragons, did you know you always wanted to write a cross over of sorts for a younger audience? (NOTE there are some spoilers within Deborahs answer for her adult Dragonfire series, so proceed with caution!)

No. The Dragon Diaries (http://www.thedragondiaries.com/) grew organically out of my Dragonfire series (http://www.deborahcooke.com/). In my Dragonfire world, there is only ever one female dragon shape shifter – she’s called the Wyvern and has special powers. Well, I killed the existing Wyvern in Dragonfire #3 (KISS OF FATE) so the child conceived in that book was a girl (they’re usually boys). I assumed, along with the other Pyr, that Zoë would ultimately become the new Wyvern. It took me a few years to realize that she (like the guy dragon shifters) would come into her powers at puberty, but that (unlike the guy dragon shifters) she’d have no one to tell her what being the Wyvern meant, or even what all of the Wyvern’s powers might be. The last Wyvern is dead, after all. As soon as I thought of a 15 year old girl coming to terms with all of that, plus being in high school, I realized Zoë’s coming of age story would make a fun YA paranormal. Fortunately, my editor agreed.

From the subject of many of your books and also reading that you are fascinated with dragons, when did this start for you and what, originally, was the draw to them?

I think that my interest in dragons began with reading J.R.R. Tolkien. I always really liked Smaug and thought he got a bit of a bum rap.

Is there any other paranormal creature you’d like to write about someday?

I write about lots of paranormal creatures! I’ve written romances featuring other shape shifters – wolves and big cats – as well as a lot of stories featuring fairies. And I did a trilogy with fallen angel heroes, too. Most of these have been published under my pseudonym Claire Delacroix. I have written one vampire short story – “Coven of Mercy” – for an anthology, and if time permitted, I could see myself writing more in that series.

Can you share with us one word that best describes each of the main characters in Flying Blind?

I do think that it’s safe to say that all the dragon shifters are passionate.

Zoë – analytical. (I also think she’s funny.)
Garrett –loyal
Nick – impulsive
Liam – sympathetic
Isabelle – intuitive
Meagan - genius

Can you share with us a favorite line or two from Flying Blind?

I like that Zoë thinks about keeping an “Incinerate Next” list.

What was the hardest part in writing Flying Blind?

I loved writing this series. I think that the hardest part was the schedule, because the house really wanted to release the books at six month intervals. This is great visibility and it was great for the house to be so excited. It’s also terrific for readers because they don’t have to wait as long between books, but it has been a bit manic on my end. I’m going to take a little vacation and catch my breath!

Lastly, being that Flying Blind is part of a trilogy, will you be writing any other books for young adults in the future? And if so, can you tell us anything about it?

I don’t know. Nothing has been decided as yet, although my editor and I have bounced some ideas around. We won’t really talk about it until Zoë’s third book is completely done later this summer. It would be fun, though, so fingers crossed!

Deborah, Thanks so much for stopping by! It was great to have you here on the blog today. Feel free to stop in anytime!

Thanks for inviting me to visit!


The Second book in the Dragon Diaries - Winging It will be released December 6th, 2011 from NAL


Synopsis: Zoë Sorensson yearns to come into her powers as the only female dragon shifter. But being part of two worlds is more complicated than she expected. It’s bad enough that she’s the target of the Mages’ plan to eliminate all shifters—she also has to hide her true nature from her best friend Megan, a human. For her sixteenth birthday, all Zoë wants is one normal day, including a tattoo and a chance to see hot rocker Jared.

Instead, the Pyr throw her a birthday party but ban Megan from attendance, putting Zoë in a tight spot. Things get even worse when Zoe is invited to the popular kids’ Halloween party and Megan’s left out. Zoë knows the party is a trap laid by the host, an apprentice Mage. When Megan gets a last-minute invite, Zoë must save the day—and her best friend—without revealing her fire-breathing secrets . . .

photo credit: Michelle Rowen



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Hi, I’m Lisa and I'm a proud bibliophile.

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