Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday (1) The Bane Chronicles

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating!

I'm waiting for The Bane Chronicles, by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Brennan, and Maureen Johnson.
Expected release date:  November 11 2014.


Ever wondered about the enigmatic, mysterious warlock Magnus Bane? The only character to appear in every Shadowhunter book, Magnus has a past even more shrouded in mystery than his present.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

  I am a huge fan of both of Cassandra Clare's series, The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices.  Once I figured out that she's writing a book about one of my favorite and most unique characters in TMI, I've been excited ever since.  Quite honestly, I'm not sure what to expect, because Sarah and Maureen are also writing the book.  I haven't read anything by Sarah, but I've read The Name of The Star by Maureen, and I can't say it's one of my favorites.
  Either way, I'm super excited for The Bane Chronicles to come out!

  What book are you waiting for?

Monday, October 27, 2014

Book Review - The Iron King, Julie Kagawa

Here's my review of the amazing,
IRON KING by Julie Kagawa

Meghan Chase has a secret destiny; one she could never have imagined.

Insight into the book from GOODREADS:

6644117Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan's life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school or at home.

When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she's known is about to change.

But she could never have guessed the truth - that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she'll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil, no faery creature dare face; and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.

  How do I even begin to sum up this book . . . ?
  As I always do when I'm reviewing a book, I try my best to find the pros and cons of the story.  Once I found my way to the last few chapters, I put the book down and thought, Alright Cambrie.  You better find something remotely not-so-great with this story, because when you review it, you need to say more than, "THIS BOOK IS PERFECTION."  Now that I've completed my first book by Julie Kagawa, I've come to the conclusion that, this book is perfection!  
  The story begins with an ordinary teenage girl, Meghan Chase.  Meghan has lived a normal life, but hasn't felt normal.  Meghan comes home from school one day, finding her mom lying on the ground and her harmless little brother standing over her body.  However, it's not her brother, Ethan anymore.  Ethan has been kidnapped, replaced with a vicious changeling.  Amiss this surprise, Meghan goes on an adventure to find her brother, and realizes that there's a lot more to the human world than meets the eye.  There's this alternate universe, the Nevernever, that houses wondrous scenery, beautiful creatures, and horrible secrets.  
  In the hunt for her brother, Meghan discovers that her best-friend, Robbie, is an ancient, powerful faery, who has been protecting her her whole life.  In addition, her father, whom she assumed was dead, is a faery king.  Meghan meets many interesting characters as she searches for her brother, and runs into many dangers along the way.  

  The magical world Julie Kagawa has created is astounding.  The Nevernever was written so detailed and beautifully I completely fell in love with it.  
  The characters --- ahh!  Puck and Ash both have my heart!  I don't like love triangles, but I really enjoyed this one.  If I had to pick one of them for Meghan, I wouldn't be able to choose.  Puck is certainly more admirable (at least for me), because he's been alive for decades, and is invincible.  Ash came across as more human.  He can be hurt, he can fail, unlike Puck, who I found to be more like this fantastical hero.  Ash is a extremely handsome Prince, with a forbidden love for Meghan.  As for Meghan, I enjoyed her through and through.  I never found her annoying, unlike most protagonists I've been reading about lately.  Her character build was very obvious, and I certainly enjoyed that.

  All in all, I'm so glad I've read something by Julie Kagawa.  Can't wait to read more from her!


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Book signing with Scott Westerfeld!

  I had the amazing opportunity to meet the NY Times Best-Selling author, Scott Westerfeld at my local bookstore!

  Here are some pictures from the fun night . . . 

At the signing he talked about his newest release, Afterworlds (Click here for my review), when he began writing, what inspired him to write Afterworlds, and how YA books have changed from our generation to his.
This was my very first book signing, and it was really great.  Scott is such a funny and entertaining guy, I loved listening to him.
I found it super interesting about how he started Afterworlds, and his thought concept behind it.  How he wanted to create a YA book where you learn about the process of becoming an author, but still get to read the book this author has written.  
I got Uglies, Afterworlds, and Leviathan signed by him!
What a great night, especially since I got to spend it with my best friend.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Book Review - Afterworlds, Scott Westerfeld

Sorry for the inactivity!  I just got back to school this week, so I've been super busy.

Here's a review of AFTERWORLDS by Scott Westerfeld

Insight into the book from GOODREADS:
Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she's made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings… 

Told in alternating chapters is Darcy's novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the 'Afterworld' to survive a terrorist attack. But the Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved - and terrifying - stories need to be reconciled. And when a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most.

  I'm going to begin by stating the main reasons I didn't give this book five stars.
  • It was unnecessarily long.  Both stories, Lizzie and Darcy together could've been summed up into 300 pages, but Scott Westerfeld dragged it out when it didn't need to be.
  • Darcy's character made me feel a little uncomfortable at times . . . ?  Not to mention, I found her part of the story super slow and boring.
  I know, I know, only two things I didn't like about the book, must've been pretty great?  No, these two cons I have shown above really ruined the book for me.
  This story is told from two characters.  Darcy, a young YA author entering the publishing world, becoming accustomed to New York, and meeting other interesting writers like herself.  Darcy finished writing Afterworlds, a story about a girl that has a near-death experience which soon leads to her seeing ghosts.
  The other character this story is told from, is Lizzie.  Lizzie is living the story that Darcy has written, and that is one of the coolest book plots I've ever heard of.  I really, absolutely, positively, enjoyed the story that Darcy wrote with Lizzie. 
  Lizzie is at the airport when there's a terrorist attack, and is frantically running with the crowd of people trying not to get hit by bullets.  When it's obvious there's no way out, Lizzie pretends to be dead.  Basically, this traumatic incident in her life allows her to go to the other side, where she can see ghosts.  There she meets Yama, the love interest of the story.  He can also see ghosts, but chooses to stay in the Afterworld.

  The action was decent throughout the chapters featuring Lizzie, but Darcy - I didn't enjoy her nearly as much.  Don't get me wrong, it was really interesting to read about the journey she went through to get her book published, but sometimes I looked at the pages with wide eyes and thought this wasn't necessary, or this could've been summed up in 5 pages, not 15.  Little things like that started to get on my nerves.  

  All in all, Afterworlds is a good YA book.  I'm looking forward to meeting Scott Westerfeld on Monday!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Book Cake Tag!

Thanks to the lovely Brittany for tagging me to do the Book Cake Tag!  Check out her post. :)

Flour: A book that was a little bit slow to start off but really picked up as it went along.

 I'm going to chose, Daughter of Smoke and Bone, by Laini Taylor.  Even though this book is the start to one of my all-time favorite series, I thought the beginning was slow and somewhat confusing.  However, I later on began to love-love-love it, and I hope you've read it because if you haven't you need too!

Margarine: A book that had a rich, great plot.

 And Then There Were None is one of my top three favorite books.  The plot was scary, intriguing, interesting, and the characters were fantastic.  I can't think of any specific flaws for this book, it definitely had a rich, great plot.


Eggs: A book you thought was going to be bad but actually turned out quite enjoyable.

Born at Midnight is a supernatural book featuring a character that I disliked in the beginning.  I've been somewhat reluctant to read anything supernatural, but when I got this book recommended to me by my best-friend, I figured to give it a go.  The first few chapters seemed almost typical to me, but the pace picked up, and became quite enjoyable.


Sugar: A surgary, sweet book.

I was going through my shelf, and can't find any book more sugary and sweet than, Anna and the French Kiss!  It's light-hearted, fun, and adorable.  Not to mention, it's placed in the most beautiful place I've ever been too, PARIS!  Adorable book :)

Icing - A book that covered every single element that you enjoy about a book (funny moments, action moments, sad moments, etc.)

I'm going to go with, The Fifth Wave, by Rick Yancey.  I love-love-love books that  are apocalyptic, dystopian, and with a touch of fantasy.  Lemme tell you, this book covered everything and more!  There was action at every corner, I adored the characters and their courage, not to mention the well-thought dystopian setting.  Great book, can't wait to get my hands on the second one!

Sprinkles: A book series that you can kind of turn back to for a little pick me up when you're feeling down.

Maximum Ride by James Patterson.  This series is what spiked my interest for reading when I was probably . . . 10 or 11 years old.  I still find myself picking up one of the books in the series, reading a few chapters, and just falling in love with the books again.  I love following the story of Maximum Ride and her friends, as they fight to survive, and save the world.  Also, James Patterson recently released the news that there's going to be a 7th book in the series - can't wait!

The Cherry on Top - Your favorite book this year so far.

I had a hard time choosing this one, because I've read so many great books this year.  I concluded a tie between, The Night Circus, and The Book Thief.  However, after more thought, I'm picking The Book Thief.  How do I even talk about this spectacular book?  There's a rare amount of books that have a lasting effect on me, a kind that I know I'll never forget.  That's how the Book Thief is.


Check to see if you've been tagged!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Book Review - The Coldest Girl in Cold Town, Holly Black

Here's my review of . . . 
The Coldest Girl in Cold Town, by Holly Black

                                                                                    Insight into the book from GOODREADS:
Tana lives in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. The only problem is, once you pass through Coldtown’s gates, you can never leave.

One morning, after a perfectly ordinary party, Tana wakes up surrounded by corpses. The only other survivors of this massacre are her exasperatingly endearing ex-boyfriend, infected and on the edge, and a mysterious boy burdened with a terrible secret. Shaken and determined, Tana enters a race against the clock to save the three of them the only way she knows how: by going straight to the wicked, opulent heart of Coldtown itself.

  Let me start by saying, I haven't read a good vampire book in a very long time.  The last vampire book I read was Vampire Academy, and I didn't really like it.  So I was somewhat wary of purchasing this.
  More about the book . . . 
  Vampires have come out of hiding, showing themselves and scaring humans - no, turning humans 'cold.'  Vampires and infected people who are now "cold," are put in Coldtowns, a place for them to stay where they can't infect more humans.  
  The story begins when Tana wakes up at a party, only to find to her horror, that everyone is dead except for her ex-boyfriend (Aiden) who's been infected.  She barely flees with her life, and rescues Aiden and a mysterious vampire, before their killed with her by the vampires whom killed her friends.  However, as they were escaping, Tana was bit by a vampire, and doesn't know if she's going to go cold.  Frantically, Tana, the mysterious vampire Gavirel, Aiden, and two people they made acquaintances with on the way, head to the nearest Cold town.
  I can't say anything else without giving spoilers, but this book had its ups and downs.  The first few chapters were amazing, and I was thinking that if Holly keeps this up, then this book will  be one of my favorites.  Sadly though, she didn't keep it up.  Once Tana, Aiden, and Gavirel got away from the vampires pursuing them at the party, the book got somewhat boring.  It picked up slightly once they arrived in Coldtown, and was pretty interesting.  After that however, I found myself super-duper tempted to skim, and I think I did a little bit.
  I loved Tana.  She's a great character.  Smart, funny, kick-ass, and really caring.  I didn't care for Aiden at all really.  As for Gavirel . . . Him and Tana's romance throughout the book wasn't well thought out.  I didn't see any real chemistry between them whatsoever.  (SPOILER) in the part when Gavirel randomly starts kissing Tana, I sat there with a frown thinking, where the heck did that come from?  Don't get me wrong, I found Gavriel really intriguing, as Tana did too obviously ;)  But I didn't feel a real connection between the two.

  All in all, I really enjoyed this book.  The story and setting Holly created was great, exciting plot twists, interesting characters, and a great vampire premise. 
  What did you think of this book?

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Bookish Interview with Brittany (Space Between The Spines)

So happy to have Brittany featured on my blog today!

1. What is your favorite book genre?
I tend to pride myself on having a pretty wide taste in books. I've read and enjoyed adult fiction, steamy romances, mysteries, Christian Fiction, and middle grade novels, but I - like many of other bloggers - have a particular love for Young Adult novels. And, if you've followed my blog for any length of time, you'll also realize I have a weird fascination with Amish Fiction as well. What can I say? I'm an eclectic reader. 

2. Top three favorite books? 
Wow, this is like asking someone to choose their favorite children. Haha! I'm going to cheat a little bit and list my top favorite SERIES for the first two - sorry, Cambria! 
1.) Harry Potter - Like many of you, I was obsessed with Harry Potter growing up and it's a book that pretty much defined my generation, so of course it's in the top three!

2.) The Mortal Instruments/The Infernal Devices - Again, this is another popular series that people fell in love with and I'm definitely among the masses. Clare definitely knows how to write memorable characters and her world-building is top notch. And - just so you know - I'm Team Jace and Team Jem!

3.) The Help by Kathryn Stockett - I'm a huge fan of Southern Fiction and this is, by far, my favorite of the genre. With interested characters and a compelling premise, this book will keep you turning the pages. Not only that, but this book has a great film adaptation, too!

3. If you’re stranded on an island, what book character would you want with you?
 I'm going to avoid answering this based on the hottest, swoon-worthy guy I could come up with, because let's face it, there's a lot I would like to spend some quality alone time with. So, I'll choose someone I think would be a great asset when it comes to my survival - and that would have to be Peregrine from the Under the Never Sky trilogy. Having existed outsides the dome and amongst all sort of danger (like aether, murderers, and cannibals), I think I'd definitely have a shot at living long enough to be rescued. And the fact that he's pretty easy on the eyes is a plus, too!

4. If you could live any book, what would it be? And which character would you be?
Well, I think at least the first part of this question is pretty obvious. I mean, who wouldn't want to live in the Wizarding World of the Harry Potter series? After all, I'm still not convinced that I'm a muggle. My letter just got lost along the way! And if I were a character from the series, I'd either like to be Hermione or Luna. I'd like to think that I'd have Hermione's quick wit, but I also love Luna's eccentric nature and the fact that she walks to the beat of her own drum. So, definitely one of those two!

5. If you had the opportunity to have dinner with any author, who would it be and why?
 J.K. Rowling, John Green, Rick Riordan, Beverly Lewis, Cassandra Clare and - Oh? Only one? But, but...! But seriously, if I had the chance to sit down and talk with any of these authors, I'd be one happy girl. 

6. Tris or Katniss?
 This is another hard one. While I like both of them for different reasons, I think I have to go with Katniss. She's the ultimate heroine: smart, courageous, and driven. While Tris had many of these same characteristics, I felt that she was a little too rash for her own good, particularly in Insurgent. She just kept getting into scrapes that Four had to save her from. Katniss never really put herself into a situation that she couldn't get herself out of. 

7. Four or Peeta?
Another impossible question, haha. Again, I think I'm going to have to go with The Hunger Games on this one. Four was hot and swoon-worthy, but I felt like many readers could have a real connection with Peeta, other than him just being "hot." He's sweet, forgiving, and caring - almost too good for Katniss, really. In my opinion, he will always be the ultimate book boyfriend!

8. Most thought provoking book you've read?
 Hmm, this could have a few different answers (for example, I want to say The Help, but I've already listed it, haha), so I think I'll go with The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. It brings to the surface issues that really keep the reader thinking. What is true courage? Can love come in many forms? As well as covering a controversial aspect of history. What kept me thinking the most, though, was that ending. And I think many people who have read it can concur. It's an ending none of us liked, but one that we've come to respect and accept. 

9. Favorite character?
 Again, there could be so many answers to this question, but I'm going to try and ignore the more obvious ones. (Like Hermione, Katniss, Tessa, Tris, and so forth.) So, I think my favorite lesser-known character would be Jo March from Little Women. For anyone who has followed my blog for any length of time, you'll quickly learn that Little Women is my favorite classic. From that book, it's Jo that I relate to and admire most. Alcott actually based Jo off herself and what makes the character so memorable was her fiery spirit and her love for words, books, and writing. As an aspiring author who spent the better part of recess and lunch writing in school, she was certainly a character that I could look up to. 

10. One book you wish was a movie?
  This one is actually pretty easy for me. I'm DYING to see a movie adaptation of the Warrior Cat series, especially considering that they've done some awesome special effects with CGI lately. The Guardians of Ga'Hoole, for example, was absolutely brilliant, cinema wise. I've love to see Firestar come to life and, if it ever became a movie, I'd be first in line to see it!

It was a joy doing this interview with you, Brittany!!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

TBR Book Tag

  Thanks to Francoise from the lovely, My Crazy Bookish World, for tagging me to do the TBR Book Tag!

How do you keep track of your TBR pile?
  I keep all of my TBR books on a separate shelf than my read books.  Not to mention, Goodreads helps me out a lot with organizing and keeping track of my TBR books and read books.

Is your TBR mostly printed or eBook?
  My TBR is completely printed books.  I used to use eBooks, on my NOOK, but after awhile I missed having a physical copy of a book.  Now I only ever use printed, and it sure does take up a lot of space on my shelf!

How do you determine which book from your TBR to read next?
  This is tough question for me, because I never know which TBR book to read next.  Normally, as weird as it sounds, I find myself closing my eyes and randomly choosing one to read ( I can't ever decide on one).  Or, much simpler, I just consider which genre sounds more interesting at the time, and chose the book accordingly!  

A book that's been on your TBR list the longest?
 A book that's been on my TBR list the longest, is Starry Nights by Daisy Whitney My grandma bought it for me for my 14th birthday last November!

A book on your TBR strictly because of it's beautiful cover?
 I'm not really sure . . . Thinking about it  . . . Probably, Love Letters to the Dead, by Ava Dellaira.  Even though the synopsis sounds absolutely awesome for this book, it's probably the cover that intrigues me the most.

A book on your TBR that you never plan on reading? 

  A book on my TBR that I never plan on reading, is  . . . Beautiful Creatures, by Kami Garcia.  This book has been on my TBR list for seriously the longest time, but I just haven't felt like reading it at all. 

An unpublished book on your TBR that you're excited for?
  An unpublished book on my TBR that I'm excited for, is The Seeker, book two in The Host series, by Stephine Myer.  I would add a cover, but it hasn't been released yet!:(  However, I read The Host over a year ago, and remember that I enjoyed it, so I'm definitely excited to get re-accustomed to the series when the second book comes out. 

A book on your TBR that basically everyone has read but you?  
  Ahh this is a hard one!  I'm going to have to pick two.  Shatter Me, by Tahereh Mafi, and If I Stay, by Gayle Forman.  I still can't belieive I haven't read either of these.  I've heard beyond amazing things about Shatter Me, and even though I don't have much interest in reading If I Stay, I know I need to!

A book on your TBR that everyone recommends you?
 I have to go with, The Iron King, by Julie Kagawa.  My best friend and some blogging friends have been recommending it to me, but I haven't picked it up yet (even though it's on my shelf)!

A book on your TBR that you're dying to read?
  A book on my TBR that I'm dying to read, is The Outsiders, by S. E. Hinton.  I seriously need to read this book, and I want too sooo badly.  It's just that, whenever I go to pick it up, I find something else, then forget about it for the time being.  However, I'm planning on picking it up really soon and I'm so excited!

How many books on your Goodreads TBR shelf?
  I don't update my Goodreads TBR shelf often - little to never.  This almost sounds embarrassing, but 30 TBR books in Goodreads as of now!  It's such a small amount and I need to update it, but I never do!

I'm going to tag the following:

Thanks again to Francoise for tagging me!