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Monday, May 27, 2013

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ARC Review: Neptune's Tears by Susan Waggoner

Timedance #1
Author: Susan Waggoner
Publication Date:  June 25, 2013
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.

London, 2218 A.D. Seventeen-year-old Zee is an intern empath. She’s focused on her job, poised for a great career—until one day an attractive patient undoes her hard-earned calm. As an empath, she cannot afford such distractions, but neither can she stay away from David, even when she discovers he’s one of a mysterious alien race. As London comes under attack by anarchist bombings, and as Zee struggles to get a handle on her unusually strong psychic abilities, David starts pulling away. Although Zee’s sure he’s attracted to her, David has secrets he cannot share. But it’s too late for Zee. She’s losing her heart to the gray-eyed alien boy, and she’s determined to follow him—no matter how far it may take her.
Disclaimer: I received an ARC copy of the book from the publisher via Netgalley. My review is not influenced in any way.

     In a futuristic London, England, seventeen-year-old Zee McAdams is an empath – a psychic healer – working at the Royal London Hospital. As an empath, she can't afford distractions getting in the way of her career, such as falling in love or even reading (oh, wait, reading? *squeak of horror*). But then she meets a cute patient who pretty much breaks down her wall of calm that she has earned throughout her career. During that time of anarchist bombings, Zee is also experiencing other psychic abilities relating to the bombings.
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Thursday, May 23, 2013

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Review: The Second Siege by Henry H. Neff

The Tapestry #2
Author: Henry H. Neff
Released Date: September 23, 2008
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers

The Tapestry series continues to weave threads of fantasy, mythology, science fiction, and mystery into a wholly original adventure that appeals to fans of everything from Harry Potter to Lord of the Rings to The X-Men. Genre-blending and fully illustrated, The Tapestry novels have caught the attention of middle-grade and young adult readers alike—and the series is only getting bigger.

In this second book of the series, grave forces are converging to seize control of the Book of Thoth, a hidden artifact whose pages hold the key to creating—or unraveling—the very threads of existence. Max McDaniels and David Menlo embark on a quest to protect the book from the demon Astaroth, who would exploit its secrets with dire consequence. And with Astaroth free after centuries of imprisonment, the world outside Rowan’s gates has already become hostile.

Far from home, cut off behind enemy lines, Max and his allies must journey across Europe, descend into the fabled Frankfurt Workshop, brave the tangled corners of the Black Forest... and cross beyond the veils of our very world.

     In the second book to The Tapestry series, Astaroth has already been released from his confinement and is causing trouble in the outside world with his allies. Max McDaniels and his roommate David Menlo are traveling to different worlds on a quest to acquire the dangerous Book of Thoth before Astaroth gets to it first.
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Tuesday, May 21, 2013

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ARC Review: Twerp by Mark Goldblatt

Author: Mark Goldblatt
Publication Date: May 28, 2013
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers

"A vivid, absorbing story about one boy’s misadventure, heartache, and hope for himself." --Rebecca Stead, Newbery Award-winning author of When You Reach Me

It's not like I meant for Danley to get hurt. . .

Julian Twerski isn't a bully. He's just made a big mistake. So when he returns to school after a weeklong suspension, his English teacher offers him a deal: if he keeps a journal and writes about the terrible incident that got him and his friends suspended, he can get out of writing a report on Shakespeare. Julian jumps at the chance. And so begins his account of life in sixth grade--blowing up homemade fireworks, writing a love letter for his best friend (with disastrous results), and worrying whether he's still the fastest kid in school. Lurking in the background, though, is the one story he can't bring himself to tell, the one story his teacher most wants to hear.

Inspired by Mark Goldblatt's own childhood growing up in 1960s Queens, Twerp shines with humor and heart. This remarkably powerful story will have readers laughing and crying right along with these flawed but unforgettable characters.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC copy of the book from the publisher via Netgalley. My review is not influenced in any way.

     In the 1960s of Queens, New York, 6th grader Julian Twerski takes an incident too far with his group of friends and gets suspended as a result. He's asked by his English teacher to write a journal about the incident just to get out of writing a report. Instead, he writes about other incidents because he isn't really ready to talk about the incident that gets him a suspension.
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Monday, May 20, 2013

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Blog Tour: Horse Charmer - Guest Post + Giveaway

*Horse Charmer is on sale for $.99 (ebook) to celebrate the two year anniversary*
Title: Horse Charmer
Author: Angelia Almos

A gifted princess. A special horse. A quest for the truth.

At sixteen years old, Cassia would rather spend her days in the royal stables than in the royal court. But as the eldest child of King Robet and Queen Sarahann she obediently performs her duties as the Princess of Karah. Her safe world changes forever when her father is murdered in the neighboring kingdom of Vespera. Cassia grapples with his loss as her mother prepares her for her new role as queen. Her first task - she must travel to Vespera to marry a prince she barely knows to fulfill the treaty her father signed just before his death. Nothing is as simple as it seems with political intrigues and unusual powers shadowing Cassia on her search to find out who killed her father and why.
Book Links:
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Friday, May 17, 2013

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Blog Tour: The Photo Traveler by Arthur J. Gonzalez - Review + Giveaway

The Photo Traveler #1
Author: Arthur J. Gonzalez
Publication Date: February 20, 2013
Publisher: Fahrenheit Publishing
Link: Goodreads
Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Seventeen-year-old Gavin Hillstone is resigned to being miserable for the rest of his life. Left alone in the world after his parents died in a fire when he was four, he was placed in foster care, which for him meant ending up in an abusive home with an alcoholic adoptive father.

Gavin’s only escape is in taking and creating images. His camera is his refuge from the unending torture and isolation of daily life in his “family.”

Until he learns by accident that he isn’t alone in the world after all. His father’s parents are still alive and living in Washington DC.

When he takes the plunge and travels 3,000 miles to find his grandparents, he learns that they—and he—are part of something much bigger, and more dangerous, than he could ever have imagined. Something that has always put his family at risk and that will now threaten his own life, while forever changing it.

He learns that he is one of the last descendants of a small group of Photo Travelers—people who can travel through time and space through images. But his initial excitement turns to fear, when he soon discovers that he and his grandparents are being pursued by the fierce remnants of a radical European Photo Traveler cult, the Peace Hunters. What Gavin has, they want!

His adventure will take him to past eras, like The Great Depression and the Salem Witch Trials. Gavin will have to discover who he really is and must make choices that spell the difference between life and death for himself, for the relatives he now knows and loves, and for the girl he will come to love.

For Gavin Hillstone, life will never be the same.
Disclaimer: I received this book from the author for free to review for the blog tour. My review is not influenced in any way.

     Seventeen-year-old Gavin Hillstone has been in foster care with an abusive father since his parents died in a fire at a young age. The only thing that lets him escape the torturous life is taking photos. Just when he thinks that he's going to be miserable for the rest of his life, he finds out that his dad's parents are still alive and enters the dangerous world of a small group of people called Photo Travelers.
     I honest to goodness hate his adoptive family, except for maybe Dina and Leyla. What a nasty temper his adoptive father has. I'm so glad Gavin found his grandparents, because if I could, I would probably say good riddance to Jet (of course, if I actually said it... it would probably get pretty... ugly). Then there's Gavin's adoptive sister. Mel. I was thinking she at least changed a bit when she went after him after he left. I mean, I can see why she would act like that, but still... I'm sad to say I'm disappointed in her. :(
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Blog Tour: Queen & Commander - Guest Post

Title: Queen & Commander (Hive Queen Saga #1)
Author: Janine A. Southard

On a world where high school test scores determine your future, six students rebel. They’ll outrun society as fast as their questionably obtained spaceship will take them.

Rhiannon doesn’t technically cheat the Test. She’s smarter than the computers that administer it, and she uses that to her advantage. She emerges from Test Day with the most prestigious future career possible: Hive Queen.

Gwyn & Victor are madly in love, but their Test results will tear them apart. Good thing Rhiannon is Gwyn’s best friend. Rhiannon can fix this. Queens can do anything.

Gavin is the wild card. Raised off-planet, he can’t wait to leave again... and he’s heard of an empty ship in orbit. The Ceridwen’s Cauldron.

Both Luciano and Alan fit in the system. They don’t need to leave. Only their devotion to Rhiannon spurs them to join the Cauldron’s crew.

Spaceships. Blackmail. Anywhere but here.

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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

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Blog Tour: Gadget Girl - Guest Post + Giveaway

Title: Gadget Girl
Author: Suzanne Kamata
Link: Goodreads


Aiko Cassidy is fourteen and lives with her sculptor mother in a small Midwestern town. For most of her young life Aiko, who has cerebral palsy, has been her mother's muse. But now, she no longer wants to pose for the sculptures that have made her mother famous and have put food on the table. Aiko works hard on her own dream of becoming a great manga artist with a secret identity. When Aiko's mother invites her to Paris for a major exhibition of her work, Aiko at first resists. She'd much rather go to Japan, Manga Capital of the World, where she might be able to finally meet her father, the indigo farmer. When she gets to France, however, a hot waiter with a passion for manga and an interest in Aiko makes her wonder if being invisible is such a great thing after all. And a side trip to Lourdes, ridiculous as it seems to her, might just change her life.

Gadget Girl began as a novella published in Cicada. The story won the SCBWI Magazine Merit Award in Fiction and was included in an anthology of the best stories published in Cicada over the past ten years.
Buy Link: Amazon

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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

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Blog Tour: The Earth Painter - Excerpt + Giveaway

Title: The Earth Painter (Painter #1)
Author: Melissa Turner Lee
Publication Date: February 28, 2013
Word Count: 66,500

When a self-conscious young woman discovers the boy in drama class is actually the immortal who painted the world into being, she becomes the target of another painter who hates humanity.

The Earth Painter is a Young Adult Supernatural Romance set in the small mill town of Chesnee, SC. It revolves around Holly Scruggs, whose family has just moved back to Chesnee after her dad lost his job along with pretty much everything they owned. Her image conscious parents correct her to the point of brokenness until she meets Theo. He is the artist responsible for all the beauty of the land and he thinks Holly is beautiful, too. Together they will fight against Fritz, the water painter, who hates humans and is hiding a secret under the high school.
Book Links:
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Thursday, May 9, 2013


2013 Summer Reading Challenge!

     Happy Summer everyone! Where the flowers go into full bloom and the birds are singing away in the warm sunshine, who wouldn't love summer? Plus, you can't forget about the no homework, either!
     But Summer also means Vacation and going to places of the unknown, whether or not it's in real life. In fact, most are probably book trips. They're always enjoyable. :)
     This year is my first year hosting the Summer Reading Challenge. If you have any tips or ideas, feel free to comment away! Also, if any authors would like to donate any ebooks for the prizes, feel free to do so as well. :)
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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

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Book Blast + Giveaway: The Tale of Mally Biddle by M.L. LeGette

Title: The Tale of Mally Biddle
Author: M.L. LeGette

When Mally Biddle agreed to spy upon the King of Lenzar and his overbearing knights she knew she was heading into danger. She didn't know she'd find a family unlike any other. Posing as a servant in Bosc Castle, Mally serves tea and tends fires for the most dangerous men in the kingdom. Her goal is to learn the truth of what happened sixteen years ago, when the infant princess met her death ... a death that is surrounded by more questions than answers. Along her search for the truth, Mally meets the energized Lita Stump, the strict and matriarchal Meriyal Boyd, and the opinionated Archibald Diggleby. Then of course there are the knights: Leon Gibbs who is slicker than a greased hog, Adrian Bayard, hot tempered and violent, and the worst of the lot: Sir Illius Molick, Captain of the Knights. And then there is Maud, a mysterious woman who just might know everything...

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Monday, May 6, 2013

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Book Blast + Giveaway: The Book Reviewer Yellow Pages

For more information visit:
The Book Reviewer Yellow Pages
  The Book Reviewer Yellow Pages, Fourth Edition 
This is a wonderful resource for any author or publisher that wants to get their book reviewed. There are hundreds of detailed listings, explaining each book reviewer's preferred submission guidelines, contact information, turnaround time, and genre preferences. The book also includes a section in the back with author's services, where an author can find an editor, cover designer, etc. And no one has paid a fee to be listed in the book, so you know that you can trust the information. The PDF is priced at just $9.99, and is DRM-FREE. A must-have for any author, agent, or publicist.  
Purchase: Ebook | Print 
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Saturday, May 4, 2013

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Review: Fury of the Phoenix by Cindy Pon

Kingdom of Xia #2
Author: Cindy Pon
Released Date: March 10, 2011
Publisher: Greenwillow Books

The Gods have abandoned Ai Ling.

Her mysterious power haunts her day and night, and she leaves home--with just the moon as her guide--overwhelmed by her memories and visions and an unbearable sense of dread. For Ai Ling knows that Chen Yong is vulnerable to corrupt enchantments from the under-world. How can she do nothing when she has the skill and power to fight at his side? A dream has told her where he is, the name of the ship he is traveling on, his destination. So she steals off and stows away on board.

The ocean voyage brings with it brutal danger, haunting revelations, and new friendships, but also the premonition of a very real and terrifying threat. Zhong Ye--the powerful sorcerer whom Ai Ling believed she had vanquished in the Palace of Fragrant Dreams--is trapped in Hell, neither alive nor dead. Can he reach from beyond the grave to reunite with Silver Phoenix and destroy Chen Yong? And destroy whatever chance Ai Ling has at happiness, at love?

In this sequel to the acclaimed novel Silver Phoenix, four lives are woven together and four destinies become one, now and forever.

*Warning: May contain minor spoilers from the previous novel*

     Remember the evil sorcerer by the name of Zhong Ye from the previous novel, Silver Phoenix? In Fury of the Phoenix, the sequel to Silver Phoenix, it's been a few months after Zhong Ye's death and Ai Ling receives warning from a dream that Chen Yong is in danger. Knowing that, Ai Ling finds a way to try and find him.
     During Ai Ling's journey, we go through a few flashbacks throughout the book entering Zhong Ye's life when he's just a worker in the Emperor's Palace (I'm not talking about the buffet) trying to climb up in rank to how he came to be in Silver Phoenix. Ai Ling and Chen Yong have also changed a lot and matured a bit (maybe a lot?) since the previous novel.
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Friday, May 3, 2013

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Review: Afterlife Academy by Jaimie Admans

Afterlife Academy
Author: Jaimie Admans
Released Date: March 15, 2013

Even being dead isn’t enough to get you out of maths class.

Dying wasn't on sixteen-year-old Riley Richardson's to-do list. And now, not only is she dead, but she's stuck in a perpetual high school nightmare. Worse still, she's stuck there with the geekiest, most annoying boy in the history of the world, ever.

In a school where the geeks are popular and just about everything is wrong, Riley has become an outcast. She begins a desperate quest to get back home, but her once-perfect life starts to unravel into something not nearly as great as she thought it was. And maybe death isn’t really that bad after all...

Welcome to Afterlife Academy, where horns are the norm, the microwave is more intelligent than the teachers, and the pumpkins have a taste for blood.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. My review is not influenced in any way.

     I honestly thought I was going to silently scream and run in terror from the first few chapters of reading. Not that it was bad, because it wasn't bad, but because I recently finished Dreamland a few weeks before I started and I didn't think I could deal with any romance components added in (er, I don't think I need to tell why either... because it would be long and this review spotlight is shining on Afterlife Academy, not a required reading from centuries ago *innocent face*).
     I think I should now warn of a tad bit of comparing and contrasting between Dreamland and Afterlife Academy throughout. No venn diagrams were created in the process (though I probably did behind the scenes... mentally).
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Thursday, May 2, 2013


Booking Through Thursday: What Else?

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme hosted at Booking Through Thursday.
What’s your favorite hobby OTHER THAN reading?

     Ooo, I have a lot of answers for that! :3 Or so I think... but really, I don't have a lot. I'm pretty limited. :p
  • Graphic Designing - not really... only if it's necessary
  • Journaling - yep. No other comment about that
  • Chess - can't do it now... mother refuses to take me to tournaments. It's not that I'm bad at playing at it, because that's certainly not the case >_< I do play it on my computer...
  • Listening to Music - does that count as a hobby?
  • Browsing YouTube - I don't think it may count as a hobby... but I wouldn't know
  • Doodling - I didn't say drawing because if I did, then I'll be forced to draw perfect human eyes. And I certainly don't want to go through that again... I can only make it as straight as can be. :p
  • Gaming - yes, gaming. Though I'm picky about the games I play. Not family-friendly? *turns away* Oh, and I rarely do it. Only if I'm seriously bored...
  • Singing - er... *turns red and ducks*
  • Blogging - and all the things about it, including patrolling comments for spam.
     Anyhoo, that's pretty much it for me. Not much, but I think I'll survive. I probably also left some hobbies out as well... What are some of your favorite hobbies outside of curling up with books and reading away? Feel free to comment your thoughts below or leave a link to your BTT post! :)

~Happy Thursday!
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Book Blast + Giveaway: Trail of Bones by Chris Salisbury

trail of bones
Title: Trail of Bones
Author: Chris Salisbury
Ready for a new adventure? Are you a fan of fantasy, young adult, science fiction and action stories?
“No mercy, No rules - Welcome to the Trail of Bones!”
Run with Purpose – battle cry of the Shade Wolves
Magnus, the runt of a litter of Shade Wolves, wants nothing more than to be a loyal, strong member of the pack. But when an ancient enemy threatens his friends and family, he faces a choice that could tear him from all he's known and loved.

Born in captivity, the giant panther Kelor knows nothing but suffering and loss. He struggles to find his place in this world of terror, and he battles to protect his family without succumbing to the darkness lurking inside him.

Falling captive to the evil Warden, the two are forced to fight in the battle of the beasts known as 'The Trail of Bones'. How will Kelor and Magnus learn to work together? How will they escape a fate of despair and death? How will their choices affect their comrades? Their enemies? And the forgotten magic that could doom all life of their world?

Let the adventures begin!
A fun, exciting, clean read for teens, young adults, adults and readers of all ages. Pick up your copy of this fantasy adventure today!
Are you a fan of J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Robert Jordan, Orson Scott Card, Jim Butcher and other fantasy and science fiction authors? You’ll feel right at home with Trail of Bones. This fantasy story offers a strong moral message, suspense, action, and mystery, in a world full of magic, unlikely heroes, and devious villains.
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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

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Book Blast + Giveaway: The Newstead Project by Melanie Schulz

Title: The Newstead Project
Author: Melanie Schulz
the giant.
Joel Cranston shouldn’t exist. He just doesn’t know that yet. He’s lived a pretty normal life for the last sixteen years. If you consider being almost seven feet tall and good at about every sport you’ve ever played normal. Normal ends the day Newstead shows up with an invitation to come to their school.
the school.
Newstead is a private high school in Central Vermont by the Green Mountains. It’s a great place to hide a few hundred people who shouldn’t exist while you train them to become tomorrow’s rulers, tomorrow’s dictators, tomorrow’s gods.
the unexpected.
Rachel Newell thinks she’s just passing through. She never stays any place more than four months and with Newstead so close to Weston, she has even more reason to make this her shortest stop ever. The last thing she expects is to have a reason to stay.
Together Rachel and Joel uncover the truth behind what is
the newstead project.
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Waiting on Wednesday: The Testing

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that highlights upcoming book releases that we're eagerly waiting for. :)
This Week's Selection: The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau
Expected Release Date: June 4, 2013
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
From Goodreads:

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Isn’t that what they say? But how close is too close when they may be one in the same?

The Seven Stages War left much of the planet a charred wasteland. The future belongs to the next generation’s chosen few who must rebuild it. But to enter this elite group, candidates must first pass The Testing—their one chance at a college education and a rewarding career.

Cia Vale is honored to be chosen as a Testing candidate; eager to prove her worthiness as a University student and future leader of the United Commonwealth. But on the eve of her departure, her father’s advice hints at a darker side to her upcoming studies--trust no one.

But surely she can trust Tomas, her handsome childhood friend who offers an alliance? Tomas, who seems to care more about her with the passing of every grueling (and deadly) day of the Testing. To survive, Cia must choose: love without truth or life without trust.

What books are you excited for this week?
(feel free to drop a comment or leave a link to your post so I can check it out!)

~Happy Wednesday!
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