Monday, May 31, 2010

Happy Memorial Day!

For those of us in the good ole US of A, let's remember why we get a day off from work today. Thank you to all of those who serve our country and who have served our country today and in the past. Regardless of what you think about politics, these men and women fight to preserve our freedoms and the freedoms of others every day --including the freedom of speech, that we should ALL appreciate as book lovers. Thank you!

In my life I have been touched by veterans, my uncle and my father-in-law, among many numerous friends. "Thank you" cannot express my gratitude for you!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

In My Mailbox (13)

Sorry this is so late today. This week I didn't get anything from publishers but I did go shopping! Here's what I got:

There are so many more books I want to read/own, but I have to try to limit myself somehow!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Following Survey Results

Thanks to all of you who took the time to take the survey, I thought it was pretty interesting.

The reason I did this was because as a blogger, there is something magical about that "Followers" number and bar. When people take the time to follow, it makes you feel like you're loved. So I wanted to see what you all thought it meant. I kept your suggestions private, so enjoy the results.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


Today is the last day to fill out the "following" survey before I post the results tomorrow. Thanks so much!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Cupcakeathon! Mini Candy Cupcakes!

Here is my day's activities participating in the cupcakeathon for the release of PERCHANGE TO DREAM by Lisa Mantchev!!!

First I gathered my ingredients. I couldn't keep it a secret any longer, the second the fairies heard I was pulling out the devil's food cake mix they were right there!

Here I am doing a little batter licking...notice the hair, I added my green hair Bertie style! ;) It was fun to channel her.

Piping them into Mini-muffin tins!

Oh, what is the candy for you ask?

With the help of the fairies we "smashed them with a hammer!"

Yeah when all was said and done there were 85 cupcakes! YES EIGHTY FIVE!!!

The fairies didn't let me have the frosting batters to myself. They swarmed!

All of them..mostly, it was so hard to get them ALL in one shot!

And they stood watch....

Cause I covered EVERY one of those 85 cupcakes with home-made butter cream frosting and crushed candy of some sort. These are the butterfinger ones! Mmmmm.

The tower of mini-candy-cupcakes. There are Reeses Peanut Butter Cup, Heath Bar, Oreos, Butterfinger and mini chocolate chips!!!

Taste testing!

Then I had to go find PERCHANCE TO DREAM out in the wild! Good thing I went when I did, they are near extinction in the wild up here in Utah! I got the LAST copy at my B&N!


My book accompanied by all those cupcakes and fairies!

I am so excited to sink my teeth into this book....and even more excited to let the fairies and some of my friends sink their teeth into those cupcakes! Oh yes, and my FB is on Pirate Mode in honor of Nate! Go team Nate! Let's see if I will still be team Nate after this book... ;)

The Day of Book Releases!

Today is a BIG day of Book Releases! Check out the list below! And go get to your local bookstore ASAP!

Do you know of others that you are excited for? Maybe ones that came out recently that we need to check out while we're at the bookstore? Add them in the comments!

by Lisa Mantchev

by Jessica Day George

by Michelle Rowan

by Kristina McBride

Later today I will be posting my involvement in the Perchance to Dream Cupcake-a-thon! Check out Lisa Mantchev's website for details!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Review PRINCESS OF GLASS by Jessica Day George

by Jessica Day George
Published May 25th 2010 by Bloomsbury USA Children's Books
Hardcover, 288 pages

Placement in the Pile: Top Picks!

The engrossing companion novel to Princess of the Midnight Ball, with a wicked twist on Cinderella.

Hoping to escape the troubles in her kingdom, Princess Poppy reluctantly agrees to take part in a royal exchange program, whereby young princes and princesses travel to each other’s countries in the name of better political alliances—and potential marriages. It’s got the makings of a fairy tale—until a hapless servant named Eleanora is tricked by a vengeful fairy godmother into competing with Poppy for the eligible prince. Ballgowns, cinders, and enchanted glass slippers fly in this romantic and action-packed happily-ever-after quest from an author with a flair for embroidering tales in her own delightful way.

First off I'd like to remind all of you that this book comes out tomorrow! Along with a bunch of other books on my much desired list! (Like the second Eyes Like Stars). So go support all of our YA faves and go buy books tomorrow! And definitely add this one to your list!

PRINCESS OF GLASS is told with that magical tone of Jessica Day George. Reading the book I can almost hear her telling it to me in my head. Her phrasing and plotting create magical words that are perfectly fitting her fairy tale worlds.

Poppy is simply a delight to read about. She is spunky and dealing with a lot of pressures since their last adventure with the King Under Stone. Rumors of her family follow her wherever she goes, and it is hard to be a Princess, attending balls and masquerades when you hate dancing.

Then there is Ellen. Ripped from her previous life and forced to be a servant, there is something not right with this girl. Honestly I didn't like her. Not at all, for most of the book.

And of course there is the Prince, and a host of other characters that you come to love. In the end each plays their role, each is needed and this new fairy tale twist on a story we all thought we knew.

My only complaint? I felt like the scene where they are trying to fight their way from the "bad guy" was a little anti-climactic. It's only 3 1/2 pages long...

Other than that this was a fabulous, fast read, and I could not put it down!

Oh, and for all of you knitters, there is a knitting pattern at the back of this one, just like PRINCESS OF THE MIDNIGHT BALL.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

In My Mailbox (12)

As always, thanks to the StorySiren for hosting IMM.

From Author:

by Cat Adams
Published June 8th 2010 by Tor Books
Paperback, 384 pages

"Celia Graves has three days to save the world, her sanity, and her soul."

SIREN SONG (I couldn't find an image of the cover online)
by Cat Adams
Goodreads lists the pub date Sept. 28, 2010 by Tor Books
Paperback, 384 pages
"Celia Graves has more than one enemy. Some of them want her blood. Some of them want her soul. All of them want her dead."

From Publisher:

by Mette Ivie Harrison
Published May 1st 2010 by HarperTeen
Hardcover, 320 pages

"From the author of The Princess and the Hound and The Princess and the Bear comes a companion novel that stands alone, filled with romance and captivating fantasy."

Friday, May 21, 2010

Review for JEKEL LOVES HYDE by Beth Fantaskey


by Beth Fantaskey

Details: published May 3rd 2010 by Harcourt Children's Books

Hardcover, 288 pages

Placement in Pile:

Hmm... Reaching new heights


Jill Jekel has always obeyed her parents’ rules – especially the one about never opening the mysterious, old box in her father’s office. But when her dad is murdered, and her college savings disappear, she's tempted to peek inside, as the contents might be key to a lucrative chemistry scholarship. To better her odds, Jill enlists the help of gorgeous, brooding Tristen Hyde, who has his own dark secrets locked away. As the team of Jekel and Hyde, they recreate experiments based on the classic novel, hoping not only to win a prize, but to save Tristen’s sanity. Maybe his life. But Jill’s accidental taste of a formula unleashes her darkest nature and compels her to risk everything – even Tristen’s love – just for the thrill of being… bad.


The summary of this book was somewhat misleading, so I went into this book expecting it to be a little different than it was. I figured it would be darker than anticipated after reading JESSICA'S GUIDE TO THE DARK SIDE (which was much darker than I thought it would be, but I loved it!); however, this one was much, MUCH darker than I even prepared myself for it to be. I don't want to be spoilery, but let's just say the main character's last names are much more important than you'd think from the summary, and the plotline is very intense and dark. Anyone remember that song from Jekyll and Hyde the musical? "Murder! Murder!" Just be warned. ;-)

I couldn't put it down, and recommend it for older readers who aren't disturbed by mature themes including death, murder, sex (nothing too explicit), and the dark side of humanity. For such a light, fun last name, Beth Fantaskey sure does write some intense books! Read it and let me know what you think of it!

Thursday, May 20, 2010


by Janette Rallison
Published May 13th 2010 by Putnam Juvenile
Hardcover, 265 pages

Placement in the Pile:
Reaching New Heights


Her whole life, Alexia Garcia has been told that she looks just like pop star Kari Kingsley, and one day when Alexia’s photo filters through the Internet, she’s offered a job to be Kari’s double. This would seem like the opportunity of a lifetime, but Alexia’s mother has always warned her against celebrities.

Rebelliously, Alexia flies off to L.A. and gets immersed in a celebrity life. Not only does she have to get used to getting anything she wants, she romances the hottest lead singer on the charts, and finds out that her own father is a singing legend. Through it all, Alexia must stay true to herself, which is hard to do when you are pretending to be somebody else!


Janette Rallison delivers again! If you like the light-hearted, romantic comedies, than this book is for you. And like me, I'm sure your attention will be captured from page one. (Seriously, it's a dang funny first page).

When Lexi accepts a position as a celebrity double her life changes drastically. Rallison tackled this challenge by providing a believable character with struggles and conflicting thoughts similar to what any teen girl would have if placed in the same situation.

Stakes run high in this novel and Lexi is faced with unbelievable difficulties. Rallison's razor sharp wit will keep you or your teen daughters reading till the last page.

Overall I thought this book was a great break from the heavier, moodier books I've been reading. If you've never read a Rallison novel, then this one won't disappoint. It's a quick, easy read that's delightful.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Are you a Follower?

Okay, I don't necissarily mean a follower of my blog (but chances are if you are reading this you follow my blog). But I have been thinking a lot about "followers" of blogs and I had a few questions. Take the survey below and I will post the results next Thursday. This will be open for a week, so please take the survey!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Teaser Tuesday! (2)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
  • Feel free to add links to your teasers in the comments.

I am reading PRINCESS OF GLASS by Jessica Day George.
To Be Published May 25th 2010 by Bloomsbury USA Children's Books

Teaser: "She looked down at her gown, at the rubies on her wrist and finger, and straightened her spine. It would be worth it, to dance in this gown, these jewels. To win a prince's love and leave drudgery far behind.

"And her godmother would never hurt her." Princess of Glass ARC, pg. 85

Monday, May 17, 2010

Review INK EXCHANGE by Melissa Marr

Ink Exchange (Wicked Lovely, #2)

by Melissa Marr
Published May 1st 2008 by HarperTeen
Hardcover, 325 pages
It is also out in paperback and on AudioBook

Placement in the Pile: Middle of the Stack

Unbeknownst to mortals, a power struggle is unfolding in a world of shadows and danger. After centuries of stability, the balance among the Faery Courts has altered, and Irial, ruler of the Dark Court, is battling to hold his rebellious and newly vulnerable fey together. If he fails, bloodshed and brutality will follow.

Seventeen-year-old Leslie knows nothing of faeries or their intrigues. When she is attracted to an eerily beautiful tattoo of eyes and wings, all she knows is that she has to have it, convinced it is a tangible symbol of changes she desperately craves for her own life.

The tattoo does bring changes; not the kind Leslie has dreamed of, but sinister, compelling changes that are more than symbolic. Those changes will bind Leslie and Irial together, drawing Leslie deeper and deeper into the faery world, unable to resist its allures, and helpless to withstand its perils. . . .

I really did enjoy this one but it was a lot more dark than the first. Leslie lives in a much darker place in this tough urban world that Marr created than Aislinn did/does. And some of the things she had to deal with were a bit disturbing.

I think one of the common issues with this book is Aislinn's story was more romantic and more fun to read about than Leslie's. And if I had been reading these when they came out I would have wanted more about Aislinn and Keenan and Seth specifically, than jumping into someone else's story.

I did enjoy, however, that this book delved deeper into the faery world and we got to see the dark court. I have always liked this type of story, the juxtoposition of the dark and light (of the summer court that Aislinn and Keenan rule). But delving into the dark means there was a lot that was difficult.

Irial was honestly just creepy. Niall was intoxicating though. I love characters that are complex, have depth and have made decisions in their lives that put them on a path that they never expected to be on. Really, I think Niall's story is what saved this book for me.

All in all it was worth reading, more language than the first, more violent content (but none of it was too explicit either). Overall, a good read that makes me want to read the next ones even more.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Book Signing Report: Aprilynne Pike!

Last night I was lucky enough to attend a local book signing with author Aprilynne Pike for her books SPELLS which is the sequel to WINGS and has debuted at #4 on the New York Times Bestseller list!

What I learned:
(This picture is Aprilynne fighting her way to the top! It was the funniest, and only non-blurry shot I got of her while she was talking to us!)
  • Being an author is an ego roller coaster, you go from imagining how much money you're going to make and what you're going to do with it, to feeling like giving up.
  • Aprillyne told us, "I learned what every author knows -- writing is hard!"
  • She also told us how much she LIKES querying...really! She said it is like gambling or playing the lotto. Send out 10, maybe get 1 response. Next time send out 10 and get 3 positive responses. 30% return! Woot!
  • Editing like crazy BEFORE you send your stuff out is a lot smarter route than sending out your stuff fresh from your brain.
  • Lots of authors work and work and work, and get to the point where there really is nothing left they can do, so they give up on said WIP or give up all together, and THEN they get the call. It's the dark before the dawn idea.
  • There will be lots of kissing in book 3 - she called it the "kissing book"
  • Book 3 in the series comes out next May, sigh a whole year.
  • The cover and title for Book 3 will be revealed in November.
(This is me and Aprilynne. Authors are such cool people!)
  • The title for SPELLS was originally WINTER SPELLS but they took the seasons out of all the titles, so they just kept SPELLS. Of all the titles, she said SPELLS fits the least. Aprilynne called it the found peg shoved into the square hole.
I am VERY much looking forward to having time to read SPELLS!

It was such a fun night!

Afterwards I was able to go out to dinner with some other amazing author friends and chat books and writing. I am such a groupie! Someday I hope to be one of them, until them I am so pleased that they let me in their little groups, even if just for a little bit!

Here is Natalie Whipple, Sara B. Larson and Jenn Johansson, check out all their blogs, they are amazing women!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Review GONE by Lisa McMann

By, Lisa McMann


published February 9th 2010 by Simon Pulse (first published January 2010)

Hardcover, 214 pages

Placement in Pile:

Middle of the Stack


Janie thought she knew what her future held. And she thought she’d made her peace with it. But she can’t handle dragging Cabel down with her.

She knows he will stay with her, despite what she sees in his dreams. He’s amazing. And she’s a train wreck. Janie sees only one way to give him the life he deserves: She has to disappear. And it’s going to kill them both.

Then a stranger enters her life — and everything unravels. The future Janie once faced now has an ominous twist, and her choices are more dire than she’d ever thought possible. She alone must decide between the lesser of two evils. And time is running out....


Hmm... this is the final book of the WAKE trilogy. I was intrigued by WAKE (although for anyone who hasn't read it, be warned that it has language and sexual content, and the sequel FADE is even more disturbing IMO). But they were well done and held my attention. GONE, while still good, unforunately fell flat for me. It was too much in Janie's head. The whole book felt like one big drawn out thought process. Should I do this, or this? It was good, but not great. It ended pretty well, all things considered. After the intensity of the previous two books though, this one just felt really different.

If you've read it, what did you think?

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Volume 1 Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Volume 1
by Stephenie Meyer
Published March 16th 2010 by Hachette
Hardcover, 224 pages

Placement in the Pile: Middle of the Stack

When Isabella Swan moves to the gloomy town of Forks and meets the mysterious, alluring Edward Cullen, her life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn. With his porcelain skin, golden eyes, mesmerizing voice, and supernatural gifts, Edward is both irresistible and impenetrable. Up until now, he has managed to keep his true identity hidden, but Bella is determined to uncover his dark secret... Beautifully rendered, this first installment of Twilight: The Graphic Novel is a must-have for any collector’s library.

This was my first graphic novel ever. I honestly was never really interested in them. I don't have issues with kids reading them, because I know they can be a good transition for reluctant readers, and help kids learn to visualize scenes. And it takes a lot of imagination to know what is going on in one of these if you haven't read the more detailed book.

That being said, because I enjoy the story of TWILIGHT, I thought I would give it a try.

The pictures were actually really beautiful. It was nice to get away from the images of the actors from the movies again. (Although I don't think Emmet was big enough in this graphic version). I like that it stuck closer to the book in a lot of ways.

My biggest issue? I found myself skimming pretty quickly since I had already read the novel. I didn't take my time to figure it all out since I knew what was going on, and in the end I don't think I appreciated the experience of reading a graphic novel that is purely a graphic novel.

Also, it kind of bothered me that the book ends at the meadow. It was kind of a disappointment to build up to that moment and not go on. Much the way people felt about the whole MIDNIGHT SUN manuscript.

All in all it was enjoyable, and if graphic novels are something you enjoy, give it a try!

Friday, May 7, 2010

My First Witer's Retreat

Hi all!

I wanted to update you all on me and my writing if you wouldn't mind the shift from reading to writing books. ;)

I am currently on my first writer's retreat. For those who aren't sure what that is, a group of writers and authors go away from the world for a while (in this case just a weekend) and inspire eachother and write, write, write!

We are currently in the mountains of Utah, gorgeous and green this time of year, in a huge, beautiful 3 story condo. It is beautiful and has been so good for me.

I was super nervous at first because I only know one of the girls here as an aquantance, but I couldn't be more thrilled that she invited me. Everyone here is awesome. I am never ever dissappointed with the people I meet in the YA book world. Whether it is a fellow book lover, reviewer, author, agent, editor etc. There is something that runs deep within us, a shared love of the written word that connects us all.

I wrote just shy of 3000 words last night which is huge for me as I had a goal to write 3000 words in the entire month of May!

I am off to write. I hope you are all reading or writing lots and doing well!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Contest Love

I don't usually post a lot about other people's contests...there are just too many to keep you updated on them all. But I wanted to spread the love for my good friend Sara B. Larson! She is a newly agented author and is throwing a really awesome contest for following her new author blog. Want to win some free signed books? All ya gotta do is follow! Click the link below for more info.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Review WICKED LOVELY by Melissa Marr

by Melissa Marr
Published May 31st 2007 by HarperTeen
Hardcover, 328 pages (also out in paperback and audiobook)

Placement in the Pile: Reaching New Heights!

Rule #3: Don't stare at invisible faeries.
Rule #2: Don't speak to invisible faeries.
Rule #1: Don't ever attract their attention.

Suddenly none of the rules that have kept Aislinn safe are working anymore, and everything is on the line: her freedom; her best friend, Seth; everything.

Faery intrigue, mortal love, and the clash of ancient rules and modern expectations swirl together in Melissa Marr's stunning twenty-first-century faery tale.

WICKED LOVELY is a gritty "faery" tale that kept me captivated. The characters were fun and really drew me in. The faery lore was a throw back to more classic fey mythology (each chapter also quotes an old lore book such as Celtic lore, about faeries). I really like these stories that think of faeries as feirce creatures rather than the sweet "Tinkerbell" types. (Which if you know the real Tinkerbell from the original story you might not think she's so innocent either...)

The narration was true to this urban teenager's life, as well as the other characters whose perspectives we see. I couldn't help but get pulled in the the love triangles, squares, the faery lore, the unique abilities of Aislinn (pronounced ASHlinn, etc.). I think having multiple POVs is my favorite way to have a story. I like seeing more than one character's internal thoughts and how it all plays together in the end. Revealed in the right order, it makes for a riveting read. I thought it was written well and was a really good read. I am excited for the rest of the series but dissapointed in a way that it doesn't necessarily continue Aislinn's story.

Content wise, there is one part that made me go "Oh!". It isn't described in depth, but it was enough to know there was some very sexual behavior going on. The romance can be intense in this one, so I would recommend it only for older readers.