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Friday, July 29, 2011

"The Demon's Lexicon" by Sarah Rees Brennan

Nick and his brother, Alan, have spent their lives on the run from magic. Their father was murdered, and their mother was driven mad by magicians and the demons who give them power. The magicians are hunting the Ryves family for a charm that Nick's mother stole -- a charm that keeps her alive -- and they want it badly enough to kill again.
Danger draws even closer when a brother and sister come to the Ryves family for help. The boy wears a demon's mark, a sign of death that almost nothing can erase...and when Alan also gets marked by a demon, Nick is des-perate to save him. The only way to do that is to kill one of the magicians they have been hiding from for so long.
Ensnared in a deadly game of cat and mouse, Nick starts to suspect that his brother is telling him lie after lie about their past. As the magicians' Circle closes in on their family, Nick uncovers the secret that could destroy them all.
This is the Demon's Lexicon. Turn the page.

This book took a little while for me to get into it, it started off slow for me, but by the end I was definitely enjoying myself with this story. It's not like anything I've been reading lately and I really like the fact that it wasn't too sappy or cliched. Don't get me wrong, I love paranormal books that have a solid romance throughout as long as its well written, but I liked the fact that this book focused on the characters more than who was kissing who. I will definitely be reading the next book in this series :0)

Thursday, July 28, 2011

"Misfit" by Jon Skovron

Jael has always felt like a freak. She’s never kissed a boy, she never knew her mom, and her dad’s always been superstrict—but that’s probably because her mom was a demon, which makes Jael half demon and most definitely not a normal sophomore girl. On her sixteenth birthday, a mysterious present unlocks her family’s dangerous history and Jael’s untapped potential. What was merely an embarrassing secret before becomes a terrifying reality. Jael must learn to master her demon side in order to take on a vindictive Duke of Hell while also dealing with a twisted priest, best-friend drama, and a spacey blond skater boy who may have hidden depths.
Author Jon Skovron takes on the dark side of human nature with his signature funny, heartfelt prose.

When I read that the premise of this book was about a girl who's mother was a demon and father was a priest, my first thought was "I am so in!"

This story has so many different things going for it. The main character, Jael, likes to blend in and not make a lot of waves. Her and her father have been moving around her entire life, so she adapts well. They've been in their current location a couple of years and Jael would give anything to stay there until high school is over. She has her best friend, Britt, who is superficial, has a naughty reputation, and is majorly catholic. There is definitely more going on under there, she just doesn't want anyone to see it. Then there is Rob, the cute skater boy, who also happens to be a math and science genius. He's easygoing, understanding, and ultimately just wants to be there for Jael.

I love the mythology and history we get on the demons and hell. It's a new take on it all and so different from things I've read before. We get some flashback chapters that help explain some of the characters motivations. Especially Jael's father, who otherwise doesn't really express much of anything. I really liked the explanations of magic and how it ties to science and the earth. It was so unique and intriguing, I almost believe it could be true.

Jael's uncle Dagon was probably my favorite character. He was just so darn funny and cool :0) I even liked the villian, too. Not in the "I want to hang out" way, but he was seriously convincing and totally wicked. I wouldn't want to run into him in a dark alley.

Overall this was a fantastic read! It's take on demons was fresh and fun. Definitely recommended :0)

* ARC received via NetGalley

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

"Hex Hall" and "Demonglass" by Rachel Hawkins

Three years ago, Sophie Mercer discovered that she was a witch. It's gotten her into a few scrapes. Her non-gifted mother has been as supportive as possible, consulting Sophie's estranged father--an elusive European warlock--only when necessary. But when Sophie attracts too much human attention for a prom-night spell gone horribly wrong, it's her dad who decides her punishment: exile to Hex Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward Prodigium, a.k.a. witches, faeries, and shapeshifters.
By the end of her first day among fellow freak-teens, Sophie has quite a scorecard: three powerful enemies who look like supermodels, a futile crush on a gorgeous warlock, a creepy tagalong ghost, and a new roommate who happens to be the most hated person and only vampire student on campus. Worse, Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her only friend is the number-one suspect.
As a series of blood-curdling mysteries starts to converge, Sophie prepares for the biggest threat of all: an ancient secret society determined to destroy all Prodigium, especially her.

This was a fun read. The author's writing style is so witty, and most definitely appealed to my sarcastic sensibilities. The story moves along really well and I didn't find myself getting bored with the characters or their personalities. I really liked Rachel Hawkins version of werewolves, I always laughed when picturing them in my head :0)

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a fun and funny read!

Sophie Mercer thought she was a witch.

That was the whole reason she was sent to Hex Hall, a reform school for delinquent Prodigium (aka witches, shapeshifters, and fairies). But that was before she discovered the family secret, and that her hot crush, Archer Cross, is an agent for The Eye, a group bent on wiping Prodigium off the face of the earth.

Turns out, Sophie’s a demon, one of only two in the world—the other being her father. What’s worse, she has powers that threaten the lives of everyone she loves. Which is precisely why Sophie decides she must go to London for the Removal, a dangerous procedure that will destroy her powers.

But once Sophie arrives she makes a shocking discovery. Her new friends? They’re demons too. Meaning someone is raising them in secret with creepy plans to use their powers, and probably not for good. Meanwhile, The Eye is set on hunting Sophie down, and they’re using Archer to do it. But it’s not like she has feelings for him anymore. Does she?

I really, really liked 'Hex Hall', but I really, really loved 'Demonglass'!! I'm feeling a little fangirly here, but that's okay with me.

I liked the setting of the school in 'Hex Hall', but I definitely preferred the setting of London and the mansion in 'Demonglass'. It just felt like this setting gave the characters more room to BE, if that makes any sense to anyone other than me. Not to mention the cool, creepy new demons! SQUEE! I just love the idea of demons in books. Of course I adore Cal, and have since the first book, but this book I actually came to like Archer as well. I wasn't really fond of him in the first book, he just never felt sincere to me. He grew on me in this one, but I still don't know if I can trust him completely, yet. I really liked Sophie's dad, something about him charmed me. And wholly crap, what the heck is really going on up in this world!! I have to say, though, I wish the end wasn't so cliffhanger-y. I wants the next book NOW, please? K thanks :0)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

"Unearthly" by Cynthia Hand

In the beginning, there's a boy standing in the trees . . . .

Clara Gardner has recently learned that she's part angel. Having angel blood run through her veins not only makes her smarter, stronger, and faster than humans (a word, she realizes, that no longer applies to her), but it means she has a purpose, something she was put on this earth to do. Figuring out what that is, though, isn't easy.
Her visions of a raging forest fire and an alluring stranger lead her to a new school in a new town. When she meets Christian, who turns out to be the boy of her dreams (literally), everything seems to fall into place—and out of place at the same time. Because there's another guy, Tucker, who appeals to Clara's less angelic side.
As Clara tries to find her way in a world she no longer understands, she encounters unseen dangers and choices she never thought she'd have to make—between honesty and deceit, love and duty, good and evil. When the fire from her vision finally ignites, will Clara be ready to face her destiny?
Unearthly is a moving tale of love and fate, and the struggle between following the rules and following your heart.

I loved this book. I loved the characters, the world, the mythology...And boy did I love Tucker :0) I'm the type of person who will sit down and finish a book in one night, but I liked living in this world so much I made myself be patient. I'm glad I did, because I would have regretted rushing through this one.

This book was so full of great characters. Clara was awesome, of course, but so were her friends. I loved how they weren't relegated to the background with nothing much going on. Angela reminded me of friends I had in highschool, in your face, but a little mysterious. I can't wait for the next one, so I can find out more about Clara's mom. There is obviously so much more going on there, over a hundred years of history just waiting to be told :0) And the boys...both of them were great in their own ways, but I'm definitely partial to a cowboy! I especially liked how the relationship grew, it wasn't just instant. I like Christian, too, but I don't really feel like we know much about him yet. And it seems like what we've learned so far is pretty superficial. Bah! Typing this out just makes me want the next book more!

Oh, for Christmas this year I'd like wings please, Thanks :0)

Monday, July 25, 2011

"Ten Things We Did (and probably shouldn't have)" by Sarah Mlynowski

2 girls + 3 guys + 1 house – parents = 10 things April and her friends did that they (definitely, maybe, probably) shouldn't have.
If given the opportunity, what sixteen-year-old wouldn't jump at the chance to move in with a friend and live parent-free? Although maybe "opportunity" isn't the right word, since April had to tell her dad a tiny little untruth to make it happen (see #1: "Lied to Our Parents"). But she and her housemate Vi are totally responsible and able to take care of themselves. How they ended up "Skipping School" (#3), "Throwing a Crazy Party" (#8), "Buying a Hot Tub" (#4), and, um, "Harboring a Fugitive" (#7) at all is kind of a mystery to them.
In this hilarious and bittersweet tale, Sarah Mlynowski mines the heart and mind of a girl on her own for the first time. To get through the year, April will have to juggle a love triangle, learn to do her own laundry, and accept that her carefully constructed world just might be falling apart . . . one thing-she-shouldn't-have-done at a time.

This book had a fun premise. What teenager doesn't dream about living on their own with a best friend? It opens with a "Hangover"-esque scene, but then goes back to the beginning to give you a full retelling of the girls misadventures. I liked the main character April, but I thought she was too oblivious and naive at times. She was a fun storyteller and I enjoyed reading from her point of view. From the beginning I wasn't a huge fan of her boyfriend Noah, his character was just really uninteresting to me. I think my favorite character was Dean. He was cracking me up everytime he was on the page! Hudson was swoony and sweet, and his secret job was a fun twist. There was a little more focus on all things sex than I might have liked, but it wasn't enough to stop me from reading and enjoying the rest of the story. I found the emails between the "parents" completely amusing. I think that is due, in large part, to the fact that I don't believe any pair of teenagers could ever get away with this for as long as these girls did. That didn't mean it wasn't fun, though :0)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Cool Bookish Stuff!

I stopped into my local Books-A-Million today, to check out the bargain books, and scored an awesome deal on "Slice of Cherry" by Dia Reeves. Only $3.97! And my best friend got me this really pretty bookmark :0)

"A Need So Beautiful" by Suzanne Young

We all want to be remembered. Charlotte's destiny is to be Forgotten...

Charlotte’s best friend thinks Charlotte might be psychic. Her boyfriend thinks she’s cheating on him. But Charlotte knows what’s really wrong: She is one of the Forgotten, a kind of angel on earth, who feels the Need—a powerful, uncontrollable draw to help someone, usually a stranger.

But Charlotte never wanted this responsibility. What she wants is to help her best friend, whose life is spiraling out of control. She wants to lie in her boyfriend's arms forever. But as the Need grows stronger, it begins to take a dangerous toll on Charlotte. And who she was, is, and will become--her mark on this earth, her very existence--is in jeopardy of disappearing completely.

Charlotte will be forced to choose: Should she embrace her fate as a Forgotten, a fate that promises to rip her from the lives of those she loves forever? Or is she willing to fight against her destiny--no matter how dark the consequences.

With all of the angel books out in YA right now, this one definitely had the most unique take on an angel type creature. I really liked the idea of the forgotten and I am very interested to see where the author takes the story in future books. The main character in this one was named Charlotte. I liked Charlotte okay, but at times I felt she was a little to dependant on her boyfriend and the feelings she had for him. It just got a little tiresome having her say over and over how much he meant to her, and how she needed to be around him. I liked Harlin okay, but he wasn't really given much to do in this book. I don't know if he will be a bigger part in the future, or if he is meant to be small and in the background.

I really liked the parts where she was following her Need. I wish there had been more of them included in the book, or maybe just more details into the ones we did get to see. The one with the older man was my favorite. After reading the last page, I think there was a little clue in that part with him, as to what might be truly going on. I'm definitely intrigued enough to check out the next one on the series.

Friday, July 22, 2011

"Shift" by Jeri Smith-Ready

Aura’s life is anything but easy. Her boyfriend, Logan, died, and his slides between ghost and shade have left her reeling. Aura knows he needs her now more than ever. She loves Logan, but she can’t deny her connection with the totally supportive, totally gorgeous Zachary. And she’s not sure that she wants to.
Logan and Zachary will fight to be the one by her side, but Aura needs them both to uncover the mystery of her past—the mystery of the Shift.
As Aura’s search uncovers new truths, she must decide whom to trust with her secrets…and her heart.

I am in love with the first book in this series, "Shade", so I couldn't wait to get my hands on this one and dig in! I'm fascinated by ghosts and am totally into the idea that they are here with us roaming around the earth. I love Aura's character. Considering her situation, she could have been a whiny and annoying main character, but instead she's got some spunk and I love her attitude. We got to know more about the history of the Shift in this one and about Aura's parents. All I have to say is, Wow! We learned a little more about what is so special with Aura and Zachary, and I can't wait to find out exactly what's going on there.

I loved spending time with Logan's little brother, Dylan, this time around. We got some more insight into his character and he's a cool kid. Logan and Zachary are both around, too, but they both did things this book that irritated me a little. I forgive them, of course, but geez. All in all this book was superb. I can't wait to get my hands on the next one :0)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

August releases I can't wait to get my hands on...

Every month I spend so much time wishing it was the next month, so I can finally read all the new books I've been waiting for. Here's my can't wait list for August!
The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab
I love, love, love a good fairy tale, mix that with some mystery and I'm on board!

Bloodlines by Richelle Mead
It's Richelle Mead. Enough said!

Misfit by Jon Skovron
Just got this from NetGalley, can't wait to start in on it!

Epic Fail by Claire LaZebnik
I can't help myself, I really like reading modern day retellings of Pride and Prejudice.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Pretty Little Liars...TV crack at it's finest :0)

Despite all of my proclamations that I would not keep watching this show, once the new season started, I am still watching this show. And despite some of it's obvious plot holes and cheesy storylines, I love it. I'm far too old to spend so much time watching a show about 17 year old girls, let alone discussing with friends who the mysterious "A" might be. Still, tomorrow morning I'm sure my bestie and I will be talking about how Caleb's hair made him look a little skeevy on tonights episode, while Jason's everything was totally jumpable :0) Considering "A" knows every move these girls make and always knows the exact moment to text, no matter where they are or if they are even in the same place, I am convinced that the entire town of Rosewood is "A" and the only ones not in on it are our 4 main girls. And Toby, because hasn't he been the bad guy long enough? Team Toby!

"He's So Not Worth It" by Kieran Scott

Ally Ryan, come on down to the Jersey Shore and forget your troubles!
Have you recently been humiliated in front of your friends and family at your former best friend's birthday party? Was your almost boyfriend partly responsible for that humiliation by withholding some vital information about where your estranged father is? Did you come home to find said estranged father sitting on your stoop?
If so, then it sounds like you could use a vacation! The Jersey Shore is the place to be. Your mother may be living with her boyfriend of only a few months, but at least the stunt Shannen pulled has put some of your friends back in your court. Even so, you're still angry and what better way to get over Jake than to blow off some steam with local guy, Cooper? People will hardly recognize your new attitude, but the old one wasn't getting you anywhere, so who cares!
Jake Graydon, an exciting opportunity is waiting for you in the service industry!
Are your grades so low your parents have grounded you for the summer? Did you the girl you really like unceremoniously leave you behind? Would you rather eat dirt than see your friends again? Then a job at the local coffee shop is just the ticket! Surprisingly, Ally's father is the new manager so you get to be reminded of her nearly every day. Maybe it's time to start flirting with your best friend's ex or even taking school a bit more seriously. Especially when you finally see Ally and she's hanging around with some loser and it's couldn't be more clear that she is over you.
Have a great summer!

I really enjoyed the first installment in this trilogy, "She's So Dead to Us", so I was really looking forward to reading this one. While I also really enjoyed this one, and boy was that one heck of a cliffhanger, this one didn't captivate me quite as much as the first. I absolutely loved Annie's observations throughout the book, she is a hoot and half! For the most part I really enjoyed reading Jake's part of the story as well, though he did a few things to piss me off, mainly not calling Ally to apologize. It's not like it's obvious that he owed her one. I really liked the parts when he was at work, those cracked me up. I think my main beef with this installment was Ally. She was too whiny, too stubborn, rude and a little obstinate. It was pretty obvious from the jump, that the townies she was spending her time with, weren't really all that great. Overall, though, with some minor skimming through some Ally parts, I really did like this book. I can't wait for the third, I'm dying to know what that cliffhanger is really all about! :0)

Friday, July 15, 2011

Bargain books are my new BFF :0)

So I've pretty much converted all of my reading to my Nook these days, but I still like to go to the bookstores from time to time, for nostalgia's sake. And bookstores are like crack for my nerdy, bookish self. I ventured into my local Books-a-Million last week and made out like a bandit. I have a pretty decent TBR list of new and soon to be released books, but I have an even bigger list of books I've been meaning to read for quite some time and just haven't gotten to, because of all of the new books coming out. Well, my thrifty, bargain-hunter self was able to snag a handful of those for $4 a piece, in hardcover. Pretty sweet deal. In no particular order, here are the titles I got:
"White Cat" by Holly Black
"Cryer's Cross" by Lisa McMann
"Claire de Lune" by Christine Johnson
"The Demon's Covenant" by Sarah Rees Brennan
I also bought my best friend a really pretty, lenticular, hummingbird bookmark, but it wasn't on sale and therefore not as noteworthy :0) I just got a coupon from good old Books-a-Million today, so I might have to venture back and see what other awesome steals I can grab!

Friday, July 1, 2011

"Popular" by Alissa Grosso

Meet the clique that rules Fidelity High: Olivia, Zelda, Nordica, and Shelly, each one handpicked by ├╝ber-popular Hamilton Best. You know you're "in" when you make the guest list for one of Hamilton's parties. And in the thralls of senior year, everyone wants to get noticed by Hamilton.
But Hamilton's elite entourage is coming apart at the seams. Olivia fantasizes about finally having a boyfriend, Zelda dreams of ditching high school, Nordica wants to be alone with her photography, and Shelly's plotting to dethrone Hamilton. Lies and secrets are ripping away the careful ties that have kept them together for years. But Hamilton has the biggest secret of all, one that only her boyfriend Alex knows. If the truth got out, it would shock everyone and destroy Hamilton's fragile world—and she'll do anything to protect her secret and keep her clique together.

I didn't really know what to expect when I started this book, but I really liked what I got. Sometimes books about high school popularity can come off really shallow, but that is definitely not he case with this one. I really liked Alex in this book. I like how we get to see him through all of the girls eyes and how they all saw him so differently in the beginning. I liked the girls in the clique, as well, but I think it was really Alex's character that kept me reading. And the twist was a good one. Completely original, at least for me, although not entirely shocking. I had guessed it pretty early on, but that definitely didn't stop me from wanting to read and find out exactly where the story was going to take me. I would definitely recommend this ome, it's not what you would expect, but in such a fantastic way :0)


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