Thursday, May 31, 2012

Cover Reveal: Entice (Embrace, #2) by Jessica Shirvington

Do you remember when I read and absolutely LOVED Embrace by Jessica Shirvington? And do you remember how I mentioned how ecstatic I was that the books were coming out just six months apart from one another?

Well they are...and I'm thrilled to be able to share the cover for ENTICE, book two in the Violet Eden Chapters.
This cover is much darker than the cover for Embrace and this is what Leah Hultenschmidt (Sourcebooks Fire editor) had to say about it: “For Entice, we really wanted to have the cover reflect the darker edge of the story and Violet’s toughness.”

So there you go! A darker cover for a darker story...I can say that, no matter what, I NEED to read it.

About Entice:
Seventeen-year-old Violet Eden’s is back! With a destiny is to protect humans from the vengeance of exiled angels it becomes clear that it won’t be easy as even her partner, Lincoln, is hiding something. And now she has to learn to live with her feelings for him while they work together to stay alive and stop the exiles from discovering the key to destroy all Grigori. It isn’t easy. Especially when the electricity between her and Phoenix ignites and she discovers his hold over her has become more dangerous than ever. Violet's power will be pushed to the extreme with a race halfway across the world to find the one artifact that could tilt the balance of power between Angels and Exiles. And the ultimate betrayal will be exposed.

Check out author Jessica Shirvington's idea of the best reading space, in the video below:


Find Jessica Shirvington online 
Website | Blog

Check out Embrace & Entice online:

Pre-order it online:

Monday, May 28, 2012

Alice Bliss Comes to Paperback!!

Several months (just checked my review and it was almost a year ago! wow) ago I gushed about a book. It was a book that I LOVED, that I recommend to family, to friends, that I got my not-very-readerly mother to read...and LOVE; it's a book that I signed up for on Book Crossing, and passed along to a totally random 15 year old girl in South Carolina (I live in New England). It was a book that took me by surprise, that made me laugh, made me cry (more like bawl my eyes out), and that I will always remember.

It was also the most absolutely perfect book to post about today, Memorial Day.

Because the book happens to follow a teen girl dealing with her father being off in the war.

That book was Alice Bliss by Laura Harrington. And it is being released in paperback tomorrow (May 29th), with a gorgeous new cover and hopefully tons of new readers.
Description (Taken from Goodreads):
"Nothing less than a fully realized vision of a young complicated girl." —Entertainment Weekly
Tomboy Alice Bliss is heartbroken when she learns that her father, Matt, is being deployed to Iraq. Matt will miss seeing Alice blossom into a full-blown teenager: she'll learn to drive, join the track team, go to her first dance, and fall in love—all while trying to be strong for her mother, Angie, and her precocious little sister. But the phone calls from her father are never long enough. At once universal and very personal, Alice Bliss is a profoundly moving story about those who are left at home during wartime and a small-town teenage girl bravely facing the future.

Find Laura Harrington online:

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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Book Review: The List by Siobhan Vivian

Title: The List
Author: Siobhan Vivian
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publisher: Push (Scholastic)
Hardcover, 332 pages
Date Published: April 1, 2012
Source: Friend
Description (Taken from Goodreads):
An intense look at the rules of high school attraction -- and the price that's paid for them.

It happens every year. A list is posted, and one girl from each grade is chosen as the prettiest, and another is chosen as the ugliest. Nobody knows who makes the list. It almost doesn't matter. The damage is done the minute it goes up.

This is the story of eight girls, freshman to senior, "pretty" and "ugly." And it's also the story of how we see ourselves, and how other people see us, and the tangled connection of the two.
The collective PEOPLE always say that high school years are the best ones of your life, but I think we’ve all come to the conclusion that that statement is far from true for most people. For a select few, high school is four years of amazingness, but for most, it’s just a set of years that are good, or okay, or bearable. For others, it’s Hell. Siobhan Vivian’s The List explores a week in the life of eight different high school girls – some popular, some not. Their ages range from 14-17/18 and their social groups come to mean nothing. Absolutely nothing when THE LIST is released and four girls are crowned as being gorgeous and four others are ostracized and deemed the pinnacle of ugly at their high school.

Vivian’s take on such a cruel act is told with realistic voices and saddening honesty. It’s in human nature to feel pain, but it should not be human nature to inflict it upon others…but it seems that it is. High school can be beyond cruel and The List highlights how superficial and judgmental it can be. Vivian presents readers with eight girls and eight different perspectives, so, while quite an ambitious undertaking, it does fall short at times.

It’s impossible to adequately flesh out eight main characters in 300 pages, so I was okay with some characters sticking out more than others. I even felt a connection to some of them, but I wish there was more to the plot. I also wish the adult characters had more of a role in the entire situation; especially the principal who was involved from the moment the list went up. Instead, she has a couple of scenes with some stern glares and empty threats.

Despite all that, The List is still a quick read that shows how hard high school life can be and how objectified women, no girls, can be. The ending is a bit abrupt and leaves so many loose ends, but I still enjoyed the overall story. The ugly girls, the pretty girls, the popular girls, they all have something in common: they’re insecure, they’re self-conscious, and they want to be accepted even when they pretend they don’t. It’s a universal story that all young women can relate to.

Opening line: For as long as anyone can remember, the students of Mount Washington High have arrived at school on the last Monday in September to find a list naming the prettiest and the ugliest girl in each grade. ~ pg. 3

Favorite lines/passages: And while she certainly isn’t happy about it, ugly is something people say about each other, and say about themselves, without even thinking. The word is so generic, it’s almost meaningless.
     Almost. ~ pg. 22
 And another one:
“Something terrible happened to all of you girls. Someone took it upon himself or herself to single you out, give you a label, and present you as nothing more than the most superficial, subjective version of yourselves.” ~ pg. 78-79
3.5
*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it. 
 
Find Siobhan Vivian online:

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Friday, May 25, 2012

AHHHH, It's the Cover for Days of Blood & Starlight by Laini Taylor

EW's Shelf-Life revealed the freaking incredible cover for The Daughter of Smoke & Bone's sequel, Days of Blood & Starlight, by Laini Taylor.

Did I mention it was incredible? Because it is and I love it and I WANT IT RIGHT NOW!!

 Scheduled for release November 6, 2012


Find Laini Taylor online:

Pre-order it online:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository | Indiebound

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Book Review: The Right & The Real by Joëlle Anthony

Title: The Right & The Real
Author: Joëlle Anthony
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publisher: Putnam (Penguin)
ARC, 280 pages
Date Published: April 26, 2012
Source: Publisher
Description (Taken from Goodreads):
Kicked out for refusing to join a cult, seventeen-year-old Jamie must find a way to survive on her own.

Jamie should have known something was off about the church of the Right and the Real from the start, especially when the Teacher claimed he wasn’t just an ordinary spiritual leader, but Jesus Christ, himself. But she was too taken by Josh, the eldest son of one of the church’s disciples, and his all-American good looks. Josh is the most popular boy at school too, and the first boy outside the drama geeks to give Jamie a second look. But getting her Dad involved in a cult was not part of the plan when she started dating Josh. Neither was her dad’s marriage to the fanatic Mira, or getting kicked out, or seeing Josh in secret because the church has deemed her persona non grata.

Jamie’s life has completely fallen apart. Finding her way back won’t be easy, but when her Dad gets himself into serious trouble, will Jamie be ready to rescue him, and maybe even forgive him?
Joëlle Anthony’s sophomore novel is a harsh and severe look into the life of struggling teen Jamie, in the aftermath of her refusal to join a cult. The Church of the Right & the Real looks okay from the outside. Members are religious and kind and care for one another, but in reality, they worship a man who claims he is the Jesus and they give up their life at the drop of a hat. When Jamie’s dad gets sucked in, brainwashed, marries another member, and kicks Jamie to the curb, her life falls apart. But with her dreams of NYC and more determination and strength than most others her age, she manages. Barely.

Jamie is easily one of the strongest female heroines I’ve read. Despite losing everything, she soldiers on and fights to follow her dreams. She suffers, sure, but at one point, she realizes she’s just getting by and that’s not enough. Not to make a life. So she changes that. Readers will be completely taken by Jamie; by her will to move on, but also by her need to do something to save her father. Even though she has so many strengths, Anthony is sure to make her vulnerable, because she is vulnerable. A 17 year old girl, all alone for the first time ever cannot have it easy, and Jamie doesn’t.

But that’s where the big, hulking, scary motel neighbor LaVon comes in. He’s incredible and I love him! LaVon and Jamie almost have that parent/child relationship that’s lacking because Jamie’s dad lost his marbles and joined a cult. LaVon's there for Jamie when no one else is. He's not perfect and he's certainly a little terrifying, but he's there.

The story deals with quite a few issues, but there’s also this deliciously sweet and perfect build-up to a relationship for Jamie. She has a boyfriend who’s a member of the Right & the Real and there’s clearly a lot of struggle for them because of it, but Jamie sticks to her guns when it’s the hardest. She stands up for her beliefs and she grows so much throughout the book because of it. The new guy Trent also sneaks into the story and brings a lighthearted edge to an otherwise serious plot. He is fabulous in so many ways and I want him for myself.

The Right & The Real is one of those books that take you by surprise. You pick it up expecting a good story, but then find yourself unable to put it down. I was reading into the late hours of the night/wee hours of the morning because I had to know how Jamie would survive, if her dad would wake up, whether or not the Right & the Real would win, if she’d dump her somewhat douchey boyfriend, and if she could let the harmless flirting with coffee boy Trent turn into something more. Believe me when I say that the love story aspect plays very little into the plot, but the characters, oh the characters, they are phenomenal. Read it for Jamie. Read it every little thing I said here and for every little thing I had to leave out. You won’t be disappointed.

Opening line: The tight collar of the bridesmaid dress didn’t help my bad mood. ~ pg. 1

Favorite lines/passages: “It said You’ll have to leave everything behind. At the end of the dance, walk me to my car and get in.” ~ pg. 228
cryptic, right?

*This is the ARC version and lines, pages, cover art may differ from final copy
*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it. 
 
Find Joëlle Anthony online:

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Monday, May 21, 2012

In Case You Missed the Cover: Fathomless & The Darkest Minds

Here are two covers for all you BEA goers!! Both titles will be at BEA and even more fun, both authors will be there to sign them :)

Scheduled for release on September 4, 2012

Description (Taken from Goodreads):
Celia Reynolds is the youngest in a set of triplets and the one with the least valuable power. Anne can see the future, and Jane can see the present, but all Celia can see is the past. And the past seems so insignificant -- until Celia meets Lo.

Lo doesn't know who she is. Or who she was. Once a human, she is now almost entirely a creature of the sea -- a nymph, an ocean girl, a mermaid -- all terms too pretty for the soulless monster she knows she's becoming. Lo clings to shreds of her former self, fighting to remember her past, even as she's tempted to embrace her dark immortality.

When a handsome boy named Jude falls off a pier and into the ocean, Celia and Lo work together to rescue him from the waves. The two form a friendship, but soon they find themselves competing for Jude's affection. Lo wants more than that, though. According to the ocean girls, there's only one way for Lo to earn back her humanity. She must persuade a mortal to love her . . . and steal his soul.

Find Jackson Pearce online:

Pre-order it online:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Scheduled for release on December 18, 2012

Description (Taken from Goodreads):
When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something frightening enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have been cursed with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.

Now sixteen, Ruby has spent nearly half her life desperately trying to hide the fact that she’s outwitted the camp’s sorting system—that she isn’t powerless, or safe. She’s one of the dangerous ones… and everyone knows what happens to them.

When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of teens who escaped their own camp, pursued along the way by terrifying bounty hunters. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close to him. Not after what happened to her parents.

When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Before the end, Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living.

Find Alexandra Bracken online:

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Friday, May 18, 2012

Book Review: One For the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt

Title: One For the Murphys
Author: Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Reading Level: Middle Grade
Publisher: Nancy Paulsen Books (Penguin)
ARC, 224 pages
Date Published: May 10, 2012
Source: Author/Publisher
Description (Taken from Goodreads):
A moving debut novel about a foster child learning to open her heart to a family's love

Carley uses humor and street smarts to keep her emotional walls high and thick. But the day she becomes a foster child, and moves in with the Murphys, she's blindsided. This loving, bustling family shows Carley the stable family life she never thought existed, and she feels like an alien in their cookie-cutter-perfect household. Despite her resistance, the Murphys eventually show her what it feels like to belong--until her mother wants her back and Carley has to decide where and how to live. She's not really a Murphy, but the gifts they've given her have opened up a new future.
Carly Connors is a beaten down, jaded, kind of bitter, but truly sweet girl. She’s had a rough life, gone through more than any child should, and starts off the story by heading to a foster home. These are all things that many middle grade readers cannot relate to, but then we see the kind Carly who has a knack for the sarcastic and who loves making the two little boys she moves in with happy.

Throughout Carly’s time with the Murphy’s, we see every side there is to her: She’s young and vulnerable, so we see her cry; she’s tough and has had to grow up far too fast, so she’s smart and independent; she could easily be closed off because how she’s been treated in the past, but slowly, she opens up. Her relationship with Mrs. Murphy is the backbone of the book and incredibly touching. Carly grows to love this mother figure that she never really had before.

Carly’s relationship with her schoolmate, Toni, has all kinds of wonderful parallels to her own life and teaches her more than one lesson, but it never comes off as preachy. There was not one moment in the book that I could imagine a middle grade reader becoming frustrated with. The pace and the tone of the book remain constant throughout and the entire story comes off as realistic. Toni’s obsession with Wicked is also a nice touch.

Any Bostonian will appreciate the little nods to the Red Sox. I know I enjoyed it, along with Mr. Murphy’s true Sox fan attitude toward the Yankees. His reaction to Toni’s taunting help to lighten the mood. Because with such a deep and emotional subject matter, One For the Murphys does have its tearjerker moments. It would be wise to have a box of tissues handy, especially towards the end.

One For the Murphys is a heartfelt, heartbreaking, subtle, and beautifully realistic show of one girl’s journey from broken home to finding out what family means. The characters have so much depth and readers will find themselves thoroughly attached to Carly Connors and the entire Murphy family. Lynda Mullaly Hunt has masterfully taken the subject of fostering and opened it up to a new audience. Carly’s story has its ups and downs (remember those tissues!), but the ending is perfectly bittersweet.

Opening line: Sitting in the back of the social worker’s car, I try to remember how my mother has always said to never show your fear. ~ pg. 1

Favorite line/passages: When we get back to the Murphys’, Michael Eric flashes his crooked baby teeth and throws up his arms. “Carley! You’re my hero!” He leaps.

     In my guts, I leap too. ~ pg. 149 

*This is the ARC version and lines, pages, cover art may differ from final copy  

4.5 for sure!

*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it.

Find Lynda Mullaly Hunt online:

Buy it online:

Monday, May 14, 2012

Author Interview: Lynda Mullaly Hunt

I am an author of MG books for children--which means I have the best job in the world! My debut novel is being released from Nancy Paulsen Books (Penguin Group for Young Readers) on May 10, 2012. I am also the director of the annual SCBWI Whispering Pines Retreat. I live with my husband, two teenagers, impetuous beagle and beagle-loathing cat.

*Bio taken from Lynda's blog

I'm very excited to be hosting Lynda Mullaly Hunt, author of One For the Murphys, today. She has been very generous and is participating in the fun new interview feature, Three Words With...(nifty banner still to come)

A little about One For the Murphys

Description (Taken from Goodreads):
A moving debut novel about a foster child learning to open her heart to a family's love

Carley uses humor and street smarts to keep her emotional walls high and thick. But the day she becomes a foster child, and moves in with the Murphys, she's blindsided. This loving, bustling family shows Carley the stable family life she never thought existed, and she feels like an alien in their cookie-cutter-perfect household. Despite her resistance, the Murphys eventually show her what it feels like to belong--until her mother wants her back and Carley has to decide where and how to live. She's not really a Murphy, but the gifts they've given her have opened up a new future.

Now Three Little Words With...Lynda Mullaly Hunt
In which I torment you by asking you to use ONLY three words to describe the following:

One For the Murphys - Tale of resilience
Source


Carley Connors - She feels real

I definitely agree here!

Boston Red Sox - Bring Tito back
Source
It still makes me sad to know Tito is gone...and to see how bad we play :(

Wicked (the play, the word, whatever) - Sox Defy Gravity???
Source
I really loved how Wicked plays into the story throughout...so good!

Foster kid -- Full of potential
Source
This story made me really feel what it must be like for some foster children

Mrs. Murphy - Maker of miracles (acronym: Mom)
Source
So true! And fitting, for the day after Mother's Day.

New York Yankees (I’m hoping – and expecting – only negative words) - Toni should reconsider
Source
Die-hard Yankee hater, right here!! I think I'd get along splendidly with Mr. Murphy. I'd probably get a little frustrated with Toni though.

Family -- Sometimes in unexpected
Source
These three words could not be truer.

Thank you sooooo much for stopping by and sharing your words, Lynda. 

And to everyone out there, you MUST pick up One For the Murphys!!

GIVEAWAY ENDED - WINNERS NOTIFIED

Find Lynda Mullaly Hunt online:

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Saturday, May 12, 2012

Book Review: Wrecked by Anna Davies

Title: Wrecked
Author: Anna Davies
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
ARC, 321 pages
Date Published: May 1, 2012
Source: Big Honcho Media/Publisher
Description (Taken from Big Honcho Media):
In the wake of a tragic boating accident that killed her friends, 16-year-old Miranda is consumed by guilt. She has no memory of how she managed to survive the crash, only the murky dreams of a strange boy in the dark water. Her only refuge is in the late-night swims she takes alone— until one night on the beach when she meets Christian, a boy who seems eerily familiar, but keeps many secrets.

The more she fights it the faster love pulls her under. Soon she finds herself in over her head when the dangerous true nature of Christian’s secrets rise to the surface.

Wrecked is a seductive contemporary reimagination of The Little Mermaid, with a paranormal twist, from debut author Anna Davies.
Mermaids, mermaids, mermaids…they are everywhere, but I can’t complain. Anna Davies’ new tale with the tagline of ‘some things have to be believed to be seen’ isn’t quite as enchanting as most mermaid stories would seem to be, but that is what makes it stand out and work so well.

From the first page, we meet fun-loving, realistic Miranda. She’s a girl with a great life, despite losing her parents as a child. She lives on the idyllic island of Whym with a wealthy grandma and a great younger brother. She has great friends and a wonderful boyfriend, but small town superstitions run rampant, and when a tragic ‘accident’ causes the death of half of her group, Miranda is devastated.

This mermaid story never truly feels like it’s a mermaid story. Sure, there’s some alluring mermaid and betwitxmen (never heard of them before) lore, but it’s more about Miranda coping in the aftermath of great loss. I could be a little biased here, but I believe the greatest strength that Wrecked has, is that in light of all the fantastical elements, the story comes across as quite realistic; it seems more like a contemporary read than a fantasy read.

All in all, Wrecked has a lot of great things going for it. Miranda is a strong, even though she may see herself as weak; she’s easy to relate to, even though she’s experienced trauma that few ever will. The other, more minor characters are all presented in a very skewed, one dimensional way, but it still works out.

Miranda’s savior and the mermaid element in the story, Christian, doesn’t have quite the depth that is needed to really connect with him; and he brings in that insta-love aspect that so many YA books have, but I got over that easily. Because when he’s around Miranda, he changes her, helping her move past all the terrible things in her life, and I can get behind a guy (or betwixtmen) who can do that.

Wrecked was an easy, enjoyable read, with some new (at least to me) mermaid lore. It’s not the most inventive tale or something full of constant action, but the emotional punch it packed was surprisingly realistic and effective. Regardless of the fact that I really did enjoy it, I have to say that I hated the ended. It felt far too rushed and anticlimactic. Aside from that though, it’s a mermaid story that even fantasy haters will enjoy.

Opening line: In many ways, Whym Island is like any of the hundreds of tiny islands dotting the South Carolina coast. ~ pg. xi

Favorite lines/passages: And she’d never solve the mystery of how the hell the accident had happened. And really, it didn’t matter. Mermaids or not, it had happened, people had died, and now survivors were left to pick up the pieces. It was just one non-enchanting fairy tale. ~ pg. 297

*This is the ARC version and lines, pages, cover art may differ from final copy

 3.5
*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it. 

Curious, but not sure? Check out an excerpt from WRECKED

GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED - WINNERS NOTIFIED

Find Anna Davies online:

Buy it online:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository | Indiebound

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Book Review: The Vicious Deep by Zoraida Córdova

Title: The Vicious Deep
Author: Zoraida Córdova
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
ARC, 370 pages
Date Published: May 1, 2012
Source: Publisher
Description (Taken from Goodreads):
For Tristan Hart, everything changes with one crashing wave.

He was gone for three days. Sucked out to sea in a tidal wave and spit back ashore at Coney Island with no memory of what happened. Now his dreams are haunted by a terrifying silver mermaid with razor-sharp teeth.

His best friend Layla is convinced something is wrong. But how can he explain he can sense emotion like never before? How can he explain he’s heir to a kingdom he never knew existed? That he’s suddenly a pawn in a battle as ancient as the gods.

Something happened to him in those three days. He was claimed by the sea…and now it wants him back.
Mermaids seem like quite the hit nowadays and I can’t help but love it! I never imagined myself as a huge mermaid fan, but The Vicious Deep pulled me under its depths (pun totally intended) and I was so taken by Tristan Hart.

Zoraida Córdova has somehow written a believable, fully formed, wonderfully flawed, and realistic male protagonist in Tristan Hart. He’s cocky and self-sure, flirty and devoted; He’s full of jokes and sarcastic comments, but he’s also a genuinely good guy. He cares for his friends, adores his best friend Layla, but is still a teen guy and can be somewhat of an asshat.

The mermaid, or ‘merdude,’ plotline is kind of awesome. It didn’t exactly remind me of any other story I’ve read before, but it still felt a bit familiar. It’s a story that’s easy to read and fun. It has a touch of wanderlust to it, while keeping the reader (and Tristan) grounded in normalcy. Because Tristan is normal…or he was. His new life as part merman takes some getting used to and it lends to some hilarious jokes.

The story unfolds a little too slowly for my liking though. There’s a great deal of world-building, which is done very well, but it takes a long time for something to happen. The story is made up of a lot of character interaction, with some funny jokes that will have readers loving the characters, but I felt like a good chunk of it could have been cut out and the characters still would have translated well.

Córdova is able to pull off a well formed story all the same. The ending wasn’t exactly my favorite, but it left me wanting to see what happens next. I grew attached to Tristan, Layla, Kurt, Thalia, Tristan’s parents, and all the other random characters Tristan met along the way. I was pleasantly surprised by the male POV and how well Cordova was able to channel a male teen character. The Vicious Deep was a long book, but certainly one that I enjoyed reading.

Opening line: I hear the first wave before I see it – ~ pg. 3

Favorite lines/passages: Why can’t my mom be half powerful genie or like a werewolf, anything that doesn’t look like a ten-year-old girl bedazzled the bottom half of her Ken doll. ~ pg. 79

*This is the eARC version and lines, pages, cover art may differ from final copy  
*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it. 
 
Find Zoraida Córdova online:

Buy it online:

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Author Interview: Zoraida Córdova

Zoraida Córdova was born in Guayaquil, Ecuador, where she learned to speak English by watching Disney’s The Little Mermaid and Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker on repeat. Her favorite things are sparkly like merdudes, Christmas, and New York City at night.

*Bio taken from Zoraida's website

I have the incredible pleasure of hosting Zoraida Córdova, author of The Vicious Deep, here today. She stopped by with a fun new interview feature here, called Three Words With...(nifty banner image to come in time)

First, a little about The Vicious Deep...

Description (Taken from Goodreads):
For Tristan Hart, everything changes with one crashing wave.

He was gone for three days. Sucked out to sea in a tidal wave and spit back ashore at Coney Island with no memory of what happened. Now his dreams are haunted by a terrifying silver mermaid with razor-sharp teeth.

His best friend Layla is convinced something is wrong. But how can he explain he can sense emotion like never before? How can he explain he’s heir to a kingdom he never knew existed? That he’s suddenly a pawn in a battle as ancient as the gods.

Something happened to him in those three days. He was claimed by the sea…and now it wants him back.


Now for Three Words With...Zoraida Córdova
In which I torment you a little by asking you to use ONLY three words to describe the following:

The Vicious Deep - Mermaids, storm, crash
Original cover with creepy mermaid

Tristan Hart - hot - strong - torn

I couldn't think of the perfect person to represent Tristan, so I'm leaving this one without a picture. You can imagine him in all his swimmer glory yourself. :)

Coney Island - freak - thrill - chill 
Source
 Merdudes - sparkle - fast - cocky 

Apparently when you Google merdude, you get some dude from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles...interesting 
Source
 The Sea King - ancient - lament - giant 

Not gonna lie...I was hoping you'd just say King Triton
Source
Vampires - they - don't - sparkle 

What!? You mean they aren't all like Edward Cullen??
Source
The Savage Blue (if you can say anything, that is) - Lost - Love - Betrayal 

Um, I want it now!

I want to send a HUGE thanks to Zoraida for stopping by today and allowing me to pester her a bit. It was awesome :)

GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED - WINNER NOTIFIED

Find Zoraida Córdova online:

Buy it online:

Monday, May 7, 2012

Book Review: Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins

Title: Spell Bound (Hex Hall, #3)
Author: Rachel Hawkins
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publisher: Hyperion
Hardcover, 327 pages
Date Published: March 13, 2012
Source: Publisher
Description (Taken from Goodreads):
Hailed as “impossible to put down,” the Hex Hall series has both critics and teens cheering. With a winning combination of romance, action, magic and humor, this third volume will leave readers enchanted.

Just as Sophie Mercer has come to accept her extraordinary magical powers as a demon, the Prodigium Council strips them away. Now Sophie is defenseless, alone, and at the mercy of her sworn enemies—the Brannicks, a family of warrior women who hunt down the Prodigium. Or at least that’s what Sophie thinks, until she makes a surprising discovery. The Brannicks know an epic war is coming, and they believe Sophie is the only one powerful enough to stop the world from ending. But without her magic, Sophie isn’t as confident.

Sophie’s bound for one hell of a ride—can she get her powers back before it’s too late?
After reading Hex Hall and Demon Glass at a frenetic pace, I was eager to devour Spell Bound; and I did. I flew through Sophie’s story just as I had her previous ones, but I somehow this one just didn’t live up to the others. Don’t get me wrong, there was still plenty of action – maybe too much at times – and plenty of funny – you can never have too much funny – but the story just didn’t click the way it did in Hex Hall and Demon Glass.

Sophie’s thrown into a lot of drama, which is normal for her, but this drama comes to a head very quickly. The action is almost non-stop and that made me miss the little moments so much. I missed Sophie’s relationship with her parents, I missed the sweet, sexy Archer, I missed Cal and his adorably protective nature, and I missed the always hilarious Sophie/Jenna banter. All of that is still there, but there in much smaller doses.

I still enjoyed the book…it would be hard not to considering how quickly I fell in love with Rachel Hawkins story, but I had some issues with it. My biggest issue had to be how convenient everything was. I kind of hated how easily some things worked out; how all of sudden everything was okay. Then there was the romantic aspect that I LOVED before. Some of it was quite stilted this time around and I wasn’t okay with how some things turned out. I’ll go so far as to use that word again: it was convenient.

All in all though, Spell Bound wrapped up a fantastic series fairly well. Readers will get everything they wanted out of it (and some things they didn’t) and can look forward to the spin-off next year to answer those questions that were still scratching our heads about.


Opening line: There are times when magic really sucks. ~ pg. 3


Favorite lines/passages “But honestly, Mom? Right now, I’m so happy to see you that I wouldn’t care if you’re secretly a ninja sent from the future to destroy kittens and rainbows.” ~ pg. 29

 Some might consider this next one a little spoilery, so be warned!

There was so much I wanted to say to him, but didn’t even know where to start. Cal, I think I love you, but I’m maybe not in love with you, even though kissing you was pretty boss was maybe one approach. ~ pg. 182
More like a 3.5
*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it.

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