Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Wordlover Wednesday: Petrichor

It's time for another segment of "Wait, There's a Word for That!" Where I'll share crazy words for things you never would of dreamed existed. 
So this weeks word is...

Petrichor- the smell of rain on dry ground

Monday, February 27, 2012

Breathtaking Book Cover: Out of Reach

Todays Breathtaking Book Cover Is...

Out of Reach
Carrie Arcos

Click Here To Add This Book On Goodreads =)
So simple, yet so stunning. This book doesn't come out until October but with a cover like that I'm sure its only a matter of time before people start talking about it.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Book Review: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

Title: The Statistical Probability
      of Love at First Sight
Author: Jennifer E. Smith
# Of Pages: 256
Publisher: Poppy
Publication Date: January 2, 2012
Level: Young Adult
Rating: 4 Hearts



Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?

Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. She's stuck at JFK, late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon to be step-mother that Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's in seat 18C. Hadley's in 18A.

Twists of fate and quirks of timing play out in this thoughtful novel about family connections, second chances and first loves. Set over a 24-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it.

My Verdict

Reading this book was like watching a romantic comedy.  It was cute, sweet, and funny, and thoroughly enjoyable.

Don’t let the idea of love at first sight deter you from reading this book. I am no fan of insta-love myself but that is not the case here. Yes, Hadley and Oliver fall in love in just a short amount of time but it does not feel forced or rushed at all.

The story starts out with Hadley missing her flight to London and having to wait at the  airport for hours before the next flight. This is where she meets sweet, funny, British Oliver. It only takes a matter of minutes before these two strike up a friendship. Although, they lose each other in the airport, fate brings them together again on the plane. They spend almost the whole flight talking; their conversations were fun and humorous leaving a smile on my face every time. 

I found Hadley and Oliver to be very likable characters. There wasn’t a thing about them that bothered me, They were both totally down to earth. Although I would consider this a light and fun read, both the main characters are dealing with some tough family issues, so the story isn’t all just a walk in the park.

The main downfall of this book for me was the writing style. It was written in a narrative style, Hadley walked to the counter. Hadley never felt like this before. I found this to be a very detached method and I felt as though I didn’t get to know the characters as deeply as I would have liked. 

Just like you re-watch your favorite chick flick over and over, I can see myself returning to this book again in the future. 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Blog Segment: Author News

I'm sure you've all heard about a book called The Selection by Kiera Cass, highly-anticipated dystopian, set for an April 24th release date. I've been lucky enough to have already read the book and let me just say IT. IS. AMAZING! 

Well I just found out that it has been picked up by the CW to film a pilot episode. AHHHH! I'm so excited =D

They've even already announced the leading lady who will be playing the role of America Singer. It's none other than Friday Night Light's Aimee Teegarden (pictured above).  I must admit Aimee doesn't fit the image of America I had in my mind while reading the book, however I'm a HUGE Friday Night Light's fan and have no doubts that Aimee will turn out to be a great America! 

To read more check out these links:

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Wordlover Wednesday: Pandiculation

It's time for another segment of "Wait, There's a Word for That!" Where I'll share crazy words for things you never would of dreamed existed. 
So this weeks word is...

Pandiculation- Stretching and yawning before going to bed or after waking up

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Book Review: The Pledge by Kimberly Derting

Title: The Pledge
Author: Kimberly Derting
# Of Pages: 336
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Publication Date: November 15, 2011
Level: Young Adult
Rating: 3 Hearts



In the violent country of Ludania, the language you speak determines what class you are, and there are harsh punishments if you forget your place—looking a member of a higher class in the eye can result in immediate execution. Seventeen-year-old Charlaina (Charlie for short) can understand all languages, a dangerous ability she’s been hiding her whole life. Her only place of release is the drug-filled underground club scene, where people go to shake off the oppressive rules of the world they live in. There, she meets a beautiful and mysterious boy who speaks a language she’s never heard, and her secret is almost exposed. Through a series of violent upheavals, it becomes clear that Charlie herself is the key to forcing out the oppressive power structure of her kingdom….

My Verdict

Unfortunately, this one was a bit of a letdown from what I had heard and was expecting from it. I still enjoyed it, just not as much as I thought I would. I am in love with the concept of the world that Derting created,  I just think it had some holes in it that could have been filled to make the story stronger.

Each class had their own language, but there was also a universal language, known as Englaise, that everyone was aloud to speak. This just kind of confused things and made me wonder why the classes even existed. Why didn’t everyone just speak Englaise all the time?  So if someone from another class spoke to you in Englaise, you could respond. But if they spoke in their language, you had to bow your head. If you didn’t it could result in immediate execution.

The book was mostly told from Charlie’s point of view with occasional chapters thrown in from others. I found these chapters to be kind of random, although I did enjoy getting a peek into the minds of other characters, even if they were just tiny glimpses!

I liked Charlie, she’s smart, strong, tough, and had a good heart. The only thing that bugged me about her was how easily distracted she was by Max. From the moment they met he consumed her every thought! As for Max, he really didn’t have much of a personality. He was nice enough, but so unoriginal. I felt the same way about their romance; it was just kind of blah.

Two of the other main characters were Charlie’s best friends, Brooke and Aron.

Brook was so annoying; I don’t know why Charlie ever put up with her!

Aron was so sweet and didn’t get nearly enough attention, if you ask me. He and Charlie knew each other since they were kids. They walked to school together everyday where he would carry her bag, and bring her scraps of silk from his father’s fabric shop so she could make new clothes. You could tell he was totally in love with her and she never even seemed to acknowledge this fact. She was to busy swooning over Max.

For a dystopian, the action was pretty disappointing. Stuff happened, it just wasn’t as exciting as it could have been. The action was either too quick or just lacking luster.

This book is number one in a series, which you would never know by the ending. I thought things were tied up nicely and it could have definitely stood on its own. I honestly have no idea where the author is going to go with another book…

Friday, February 17, 2012

Foreign Cover Friday: Hush, Hush

Foreign Cover Friday is a weekly meme hosted by The Reading Fever, where foreign covers of the books we know and love are spotlighted and discussed. To join, either pick your favorite foreign cover or pick many foreign covers, and start discussing!

This week's featured cover is:
Hush, Hush
Becca Fitzpatrick

(US Hardcover & Paperback)
I think this is a very dynamic cover and it fits really well with the book and it's descriptions. 
I find a lot of the time when real people are on the cover they don't match up with the character descriptions at all, which drives me nuts! This guy fits Becca's description of Patch and it also illustrates his fall.

(US Graphic Novel)
I wouldn't want this to be the cover of the regular version but I think it works fine for a graphic novel.

(United Kingdom)
This one is pretty much the same as the US version except instead of pure black&white we get a little color. I must say I really like the blue. 

This one has a lot of the same elements as the US version but still very different. I don't like the positioning of Patch very much, the way he's standing with his arms open, I feel like he's waiting to be beamed up to heaven or something. 

Loving the blue!

I can see where they got the ideas for this one. Feathers, from angel wings of course and then I assume that's the gate from the Delphic Amusement Park? So it's illustrating things that are actually in the book I just think it's kinda boring. 

This one is so completely different from all the rest its fun to see but it doesn't really tell you anything about the book. That bright fuchsia color with all the hand drawn hearts everywhere make it look like more of a middle grade cover. 

I think it's funny that the only thing different about this one is that Patch is facing in the opposite direction but it completely changes the look. His position looks more abnormal this way and doesn't flow like the others.

This one is my favorite other than the US one. It's so simple but with the strong contrast between the white feather and the black background it really makes the feather jump out at you. 

This one would have to be my least favorite. Again with the fuchsia, it doesn't work well at all. Plus the boy whom I assume is supposed to be Patch looks like a child. 

So what does everyone think? Which ones do you love? Which ones do you hate?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Wordlover Wednesday: Qualtagh

All right you guys are probably like enough with the phobias already! So this week I've decided to start a new theme called "Wait, There's a Word for That!" It's pretty self explanatory but this is where I'll share crazy words for things you never would of dreamed existed. 
So the first word is...

Qualtagh- the first person you see after leaving your house.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Breathtaking Book Cover: Rain Song

Todays Breathtaking Book Cover is...

Rain Song
Alice J. Wisler

Click Here To Learn More About This Book =)

Randomness: Link Up Your February Reviews

It's that time again! Time to link up any reviews you've written as part of the novels in verse reading challenge! =)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Book Review: Mini Books, Mini Reviews

These past couple weeks have been brutal for homework! I've barely had time to pick up a real book, which is devastating. (Especially with the giant TBR pile on my floor calling out my name.) However, I have been able to sneak in a few short stories. Hope is not lost! Hahaa.

Eleven Minutes 
by Megan Miranda

Fracture is told from Delaney's perspective, and if you've read the first two chapters, you know that she falls through the ice in chapter one, and she waked up 6 days later. And what happens in between- well, that's Decker's story.

This is the story of those eleven minutes, and the six days that follow, from his perspective. Because while it must be terrifying to be trapped under the ice, it's a different kind of terror seeing you best friend trapped... 

Especially if it's your fault.

(This one is available for FREE through Megan's facebook page! All you have to do is share the link on your wall and vwalla it downloads!)
My Rating:

Tomorrow Is Today
Julie Cross

The year is 2009. Nineteen-year-old Jackson Meyer is a normal guy... he's in college, throws lots of parties, is interested in a girl he can't have, and oh yeah, he can travel back through time. But it's not like the movies- nothing changes in the present after his jumps, there's no space-time continuum issues or broken flux capacitors- it's just harmless fun.

(This one is available as a FREE download on amazon!)

My Rating:

by Gwen Hayes

Lucky has a secret- if he doesn't bring Beth to the "dog dinner" party his roommates are having, he's off the team. The soccer scholarship is paying his college tuition- he HAS to stay on the team. But if Beth ever finds out she's his entry in the contest for ugliest date, he stands to lose even more.

(Only 99 cents on Amazon)

My Rating:


Friday, February 10, 2012

Randomness: Awards & Campaign

Thanks to Jen from YA Romantics for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award!! =D
Sorry it took me so long to pass it on! 

Okay so, here are the rules if you're nominated for the award. In one post:
1. Nominate 15 5 fellow bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award.
2. Add an image of the Versatile Blogger Award.
3. Thank the blogger who nominated you  with a link back to their blog.
4. Share 7 completely random facts about yourself.
5. Include this set of rules.
6. Inform each nominated blogger of their nomination by posting a comment on each of their blogs.

Seven Random Facts About Myself:
  • I love snow (except when I have to drive in it).
  • I was homeschooled my whole life. Until college of course. 
  • I've held a baby kangaroo
  • I'm afraid of heights
  • I have a giant sweet tooth (I can eat a 8oz bag of sour patch kids in one sitting. Wait that's supposed to be 5 servings?!? HA!)
  • I want to own a pair of converse sneakers in every color.
  • I couldn't do a cartwheel if my life depended on it.

Thanks to Pat from Children's Books Heal for giving me the Kreativ Blogger Award! Thanks Pat!! =D

The rules for this award are to list 10 things about myself and award the blog to six other deserving bloggers.

I'm sure your already bored with my seven facts above but here are ten more:

  • I drive a punch buggy named Herbie. Unique huh?
  • I LOVE MUSIC and have been to over 50 concerts in my life. 
  • I prefer a home cooked meal to fast food.
  • My favorite movie is A Walk To Remember, which I own in both VHS & DVD format just in case ;) 
  • When I was little I wanted to grow up to be an author. 
  • I hate drinking juice. I live on milk, water, and soda.
  • I'm terrified of public speaking.
  • I love the cartoon Phineas & Ferb!!! (I may or may not admit to owning four shirts with their picture on it that I had to buy in the boys section of Walmart...)
  • I like to lounge around the house and wear my happy feet slippers (pictured below)
  • I can't possibly think of another fact about myself!

Now for the nominations!

Versatile Blogger Award:
Hilda from Catch the Lune
Juhina & Fara from The Maji Bookshelf
Carina from Carina's Books

Kreative Blogger Award:

April from Books 4 Juliet
Elene from Novel Sounds

Last but not least, I wanted to mention that I just joined the Fourth Annual Platform-Building Campaign! I'm so excited to get my blog out there and also meet some new bloggers! If you want to learn more about the campaign or join yourself click here.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Wordlover Wednesday: Xanthophobia

Its time for another Wordlover Wednesday phobia edition.
Todays phobia is...

Xanthophobia- Fear of the color yellow

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Author Interview: Caroline Starr Rose

As part of the Novels In Verse Reading Challenge I'm going to be doing an author interview each month with an author in this genre. I got the challenge started a little late so this is the first interview so far. 

Please welcome debut novelist...

Caroline Starr Rose author of the new middle grade novel May B! 
If you haven't heard about Caroline or her book you can read a quote and synopsis below, and click HERE if you want to read my review.

"I've known it since last night:
It's been too long to expect them to return.
Something's happened."

May is helping out on a neighbor's Kansas prairie homestead—just until Christmas, says Pa. She wants to contribute, but it's hard to be separated from her family by 15 long, unfamiliar miles. Then the unthinkable happens: May is abandoned. Trapped in a tiny snow-covered sod house, isolated from family and neighbors, May must prepare for the oncoming winter. While fighting to survive, May's memories of her struggles with reading at school come back to haunt her. But she's determined to find her way home again. Caroline Starr Rose's fast-paced novel, written in beautiful and riveting verse, gives readers a strong new heroine to love.

Okay, lets get started!

Born Bookish: What is your favorite novel in-verse?

The first I ever read, Karen Hesse’s OUT OF THE DUST.

Born Bookish: May B is your first novel; how does it feel to see it on store shelves?

Thrilling and surreal, especially when friends have sent photos of May in bookstores elsewhere.

Born Bookish: I read an interview with you where you said you had only read two novels in verse before you wrote May B. That’s not very many. What made you want to write your book this way?

May B. didn’t start out as a verse novel. My first few attempts at writing the story felt distant and lifeless. It wasn’t until I returned to my research (and specifically a book called READ THIS ONLY TO YOURSELF: THE PRIVATE WRITINGS OF MIDWESTERN WOMEN, 1880-1910) that I saw the patterns these women’s writings had in common: terse language, stark circumstances, a matter-of-fact tone in all things -- whether talking about laundry or the death of a child. It was if the heavens had opened for me, and I was able to climb inside May’s world, using the voices of the women I’d encountered through research.

Having read only two verse novels beforehand both terrified and liberated me. I didn’t let myself anywhere near OUT OF THE DUST while writing, for fear of crumbling into a heap of worthlessness (though I felt I understood for the first time why Karen Hesse told her story this way -- the immediacy verse brings speaks volumes, especially in trying times). On the other hand, I wasn’t bound by patterns or rules. Several readers have said May B.’s pacing reads more like prose (swifter than the typical verse novel), which ultimately served the story.

Born Bookish: Do you think you’ve found your niche with books in verse, and will your future books be written this way as well?

I certainly have more stories I want to tell this way!

Born Bookish: With May B being set in a Kansas prairie setting, did it take a lot of research to make sure it was historically accurate?

Yes! At first, all I knew was I wanted to write about the frontier but hadn’t homed in on Kansas specifically. My first attempt at writing had been historical fiction, and I learned from that disastrous manuscript that regardless of the history, the story had to belong to the character; I couldn’t beat historical facts into my readers’ heads. I went into May B. trusting that if I kept my protagonist’s perspective and understanding of her world, enough history would organically seep in.

A blizzard plays a key part in May’s story, so I needed her somewhere where weather extremes weren’t uncommon. I also was enamored with sod houses, which also limited in what part of the country May could live.

One special challenge was locating exactly where May’s sod house stood. There’s a reference in May B. to Tom Sawyer, so the book had to take place in 1876 or later. I wanted her in a part of western Kansas that wasn’t very developed and was semi-close to a railroad. It was also necessary to have wolves around. The first place I located May was outside of Dodge City, where she would have been smack dab in the middle of the Chisolm Cattle Trail -- not exactly the solitude I was looking for (I also wasn’t interested in telling the sort of rowdy cowboy story that Dodge City brings to mind). The story couldn’t take place much beyond 1880 because in order to have wolves, buffalo still needed to be prevalent; by 1880 these animals were widely wiped out. Gove County, Kansas became a good location: the railroad (and therefore surrounding communities) was still relatively new but old enough to have been there before 1880; the short-grass country of western Kansas supported sod houses; and wolves, while not spotted everyday, would have still roamed in packs at this time.

Born Bookish: I read that you were a big Laura Ingalls fan growing up. Which of her books was your favorite?

My favorite Laura books often change. Right now I’d say ON THE BANKS OF PLUM CREEK and THE LONG WINTER.

Born Bookish: Do you find it hard to throw obstacles in your characters way or make life difficult for them?

I’ve had this problem with other manuscripts, though it wasn’t too difficult with May. (Of course, my editors gave me some specific ideas, making the process easier). The thing about May Betterly is she’s so very brave and strong -- she just doesn’t know this early on. I knew she could withstand what was coming her way, so while I sometimes felt sad she had to go through certain things, I was so proud to see her fight and come to understand how capable she is.

Yes, I’m talking about May in the present tense, as if she’s real. It’s hard not to think of my characters this way.

Born Bookish: Do you have any other books in the works that you can tell us a little bit about?

I’m working on a picture book about the Louisiana Wetlands and another historical verse novel.

Born Bookish: Here at Born Bookish I have a segment called Breathtaking Book Covers where I post the cover image of a book that I think is stunning. Is there a book cover that has ever taken your breath away? If so, what book? 

I adore Tess Hilmo's WITH A NAME LIKE LOVE.

THANKS for the interview Caroline! =) 

Check back soon for a May B related giveaway! And if you haven't joined the challenge yet, don't worry you still can! Just click HERE

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Guest Review: Where She Went by Gayle Forman

This lovely review was written by my mom, who enjoys reading YA just as much as me. You can find her over at Out on a Limb: Shy Writer Goes Social. Thanks Mom! =) 

Title: Where She Went
Author: Gayle Forman
# Of Pages: 208
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Publication Date: April 5, 2011
Level: Young Adult
Rating: 5 Hearts


(From Amazon)

It's been three years since the devastating accident . . . three years since Mia walked out of Adam's life forever.

Now living on opposite coasts, Mia is Juilliard’s rising star and Adam is LA tabloid fodder, thanks to his new rock star status and celebrity girlfriend. When Adam gets stuck in New York by himself, chance brings the couple together again, for one last night. As they explore the city that has become Mia's home, Adam and Mia revisit the past and open their hearts to the future-and each other.

Told from Adam's point of view in the spare, lyrical prose that defined If I Stay, Where She Went explores the devastation of grief, the promise of new hope, and the flame of rekindled romance.

 Her Verdict

I just finished reading this book for the second time, despite the fact that I have a substantial TBR pile of books that I’ve yet to read once. There are so many reasons to love Where She Went. Here are mine:

  1. Authentic male POV.  I love the fact that the first book, If I stay, is told from Mia’s perspective, and the sequel is written from Adam’s. What’s not to like about getting an unguarded glimpse at the depth of Adam’s feelings for Mia?

  1. Emotion. This story is packed with it. We get to see Adam’s vulnerability as he struggles with the stress associated with fame, the heartache of losing Mia, and the guilt from the request he made of her when she was in a coma.

  1. Time Frame. The story unravels during a twenty-four hour period, at the end of which, both Adam and Mia will have to go their separate ways, adding an urgency and energy that kept me turning pages, unable to put it down.

  1. Setting. The “here and now” part of the book takes place in New York City, and the author describes it with such detail that it’s like a living, breathing addition to the plot. I’ve never been to NYC myself, but after reading this book, I feel like I have.

  1. Flashbacks fill in the gaps adding some of the history between Adam and Mia, as well as what’s taken place in the three-year-gap between the time Mia left for Julliard and the present when their paths finally cross again.

  1. Lyrics.  The album that catapults Adam and his band, Shooting Star, to super stardom is the one that was born of his heartache over losing Mia. The way a snippet of the lyrics is used at the head of several chapters adds another layer of interest to the story.

  1. The ending.  I love that the ending is actually the ending. No cliffhangers here. 

Friday, February 3, 2012

Book Review: There You'll Find Me by Jenny B. Jones

Title: There You’ll Find Me
Author: Jenny B. Jones
# Of Pages: 320
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: October 4, 2011
Level: Young Adult
Rating:  Hearts



Grief brought Finley to Ireland. Love will lead her home.
Finley Sinclair is not your typical eighteen-year-old. She's witty, tough, and driven. With an upcoming interview at the Manhattan music conservatory, Finley needs to compose her audition piece. But her creativity disappeared with the death of her older brother, Will.
She decides to study abroad in Ireland so she can follow Will's travel journal. It's the place he felt closest to God, and she's hopeful being there will help her make peace over losing him. So she agrees to an exchange program and boards the plane.
Beckett Rush, teen heartthrob and Hollywood bad boy, is flying to Ireland to finish filming his latest vampire movie. On the flight, he meets Finley. She's the one girl who seems immune to his charm. Undeterred, Beckett convinces her to be his assistant in exchange for his help as a tour guide.
Once in Ireland, Finley starts to break down. The loss of her brother and the pressure of school, her audition, and whatever it is that is happening between her and Beckett, leads her to a new and dangerous vice. When is God going to show up for her in this emerald paradise?
Then she experiences something that radically changes her perspective on life. Could it be God convincing her that everything she's been looking for has been with her all along?

My Verdict

It was nice to read a Christian YA book where I wasn’t rolling my eyes every two seconds from the cheesiness of it all. This book was actually realistic the way author, Jenny B. Jones portrayed relationships, faith, and hardship.

The main character, Finley, broken hearted and lost after her brother’s death, decides to take a trip to Ireland. With her brothers travel journal in hand Finley plans to retrace his steps and hopefully heal her relationship with God, who she thinks has forgotten about her.

On the plane ride she is seated next to teen movie star Beckett Rush. He barley opens his mouth before Finely shuts him down, claiming to know his type (bad boy, partier, player). They part ways after the flight only to find out that Beckett is staying at the B&B her host family owns, throwing them together once again.

I liked Finley, she was a really believable and realistic main character. She has a strong personality and is not afraid of speaking her mind, whether it be to the school bully, Beatrice, or heartthrob, Beckett. Finley is flawed and real. I think anyone could relate to her in one way or another. I was able to relate to her in more than one. I really liked how whenever she was nervous or had to do something hard she would recite the same Bible verse to herself, “In all these things, I am more than victorious.” I loved this because I do the same exact thing, with the same verse! The version I know is “I can do all things through him who gives me strength.”

Beckett is a real charmer. I can see why Finley doubted him at first but it didn’t take long to see that he really was a genuine, sweet guy. It took a lot of convincing for Finley to believe that. Even after they’d hung out and spent hours upon hours together Finley still doubts him, which was a little annoying, but she comes around in the end.

This was a great story about finding out that one is never lost with God. He is always there, with his arms wide open, waiting for us to find him.