Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. (:

Today's pick:
White Cat by Holly Black

description (from goodreads):

Cassel comes from a family of curse workers -- people who have the power to change your emotions, your memories, your luck, by the slightest touch of their hands. And since curse work is illegal, they're all mobsters, or con artists. Except for Cassel. He hasn't got the magic touch, so he's an outsider, the straight kid in a crooked family. You just have to ignore one small detail -- he killed his best friend, Lila, three years ago.

Ever since, Cassel has carefully built up a façade of normalcy, blending into the crowd. But his façade starts crumbling when he starts sleepwalking, propelled into the night by terrifying dreams about a white cat that wants to tell him something. He's noticing other disturbing things, too, including the strange behavior of his two brothers. They are keeping secrets from him, caught up in a mysterious plot. As Cassel begins to suspect he's part of a huge con game, he also wonders what really happened to Lila. Could she still be alive? To find that out, Cassel will have to out-con the conmen.

Holly Black has created a gripping tale of mobsters and dark magic where a single touch can bring love -- or death -- and your dreams might be more real than your memories.

---

With a premise this good, I don't know how this book can't be awesome. Plus, it's by Holly Black so it HAS to be good.

And look at this fabulous trailer:



LOVES IT.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Ooh, shiny.

Now this is a book trailer done right:



It looks like a video game, but it's much better than the trailers made up of solely pictures, I think. I love the music. And the part that says "or else" is very ominous and AWESOME.

The website for the book is pretty spankin' too. I've already done the puzzle a few times, trying to beat my time record (so far my best is 1:48 but my mouse is RA). Why don't more book sites have puzzles? Puzzles are fabulous. Plus, I took the quiz and got Shepherd. Except I don't know what that is, so I will definitely have to read the book to find out (and because the book sounds awesome).

Monday, March 29, 2010

Invisible Girl Giveaway


Since yesterday my internet decided not to work and I am forced to be on the family desktop (AKA the computer I hate with every fiber of my being), I cannot type up the reviews I was planning to write. So instead, I thought I'd have a giveaway.

I was accidentally sent two copies of Invisible Girl by Mary Hanlon Stone, so I decided I'd pass one of my ARCs along to one of my lovely readers.

Here's a book description for you, straight from goodreads:

When poor Boston girl Stephanie is abandoned by her abusive mother and taken in by Annie’s Beverly Hills family, she feels anything but home. Her dark complexion and accent stick out like a sore thumb in the golden-hued world of blondes and extravagance. These are girls who seem to live life in fastforward, while Stephanie is stuck on pause. Yet when a new rival moves to town, threatening Annie’s queen-bee status, Stephanie finds herself taking sides in a battle she never even knew existed, and that feeling invisible is a wound that can only be healed by standing up for who she is. Brilliant newcomer Mary Hanlon Stone delivers a compulsively readable insider’s view of growing up in a world where money and privilege don’t always glitter.

---

I haven't read the book yet but it sounds great.

Please note that the book is an ARC and officially comes out on May 27. The above cover is the final one, but the ARC that someone will win features this cover:


Fill out the form to enter!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox was started by The Story Siren and inspired by Pop Culture Junkie. (:

Descriptions and such from goodreads.

For review:

The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman

Elizabeth has a new job at an unusual library— a lending library of objects, not books. In a secret room in the basement lies the Grimm Collection. That’s where the librarians lock away powerful items straight out of the Brothers Grimm fairy tales: seven-league boots, a table that produces a feast at the blink of an eye, Snow White’s stepmother’s sinister mirror that talks in riddles.

When the magical objects start to disappear, Elizabeth embarks on a dangerous quest to catch the thief before she can be accused of the crime—or captured by the thief.

Polly Shulman has created a contemporary fantasy with a fascinating setting and premise, starring an ordinary girl whose after-school job is far from ordinary— and leads to a world of excitement, romance and magical intrigue.

---Sounds quite interesting! Excited to read it.


The Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller

What if love refused to die?

Haven Moore can’t control her visions of a past with a boy called Ethan, and a life in New York that ended in fiery tragedy. In our present, she designs beautiful dresses for her classmates with her best friend Beau. Dressmaking keeps her sane, since she lives with her widowed and heartbroken mother in her tyrannical grandmother’s house in Snope City, a tiny town in Tennessee. Then an impossible group of coincidences conspire to force her to flee to New York, to discover who she is, and who she was.

In New York, Haven meets Iain Morrow and is swept into an epic love affair that feels both deeply fated and terribly dangerous. Iain is suspected of murdering a rock star and Haven wonders, could he have murdered her in a past life? She visits the Ouroboros Society and discovers a murky world of reincarnation that stretches across millennia. Haven must discover the secrets hidden in her past lives, and loves¸ before all is lost and the cycle begins again.

---This book sounds like it has a lot going on, so I'm curious to see how it is.

The Julian Game by Adele Griffin

Raye Archer, a high school sophomore whose friendship with the diabolical class It Girl quickly escalates to a knock-down, drag-out war on privacy, loyalty, and reputation.

---Summary fail! And I am too lazy to find another. But this book involves the internet, so obviously I am interested.

I also got Dust City by Robert Paul Weston, which I can't find a summary for, and second copies of The Shadows by Jacqueline West and The Evil Within by Nancy Holder.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Why Contemporary Sucks

A follow up to yesterday's post, "Why Contemporary Fiction Rocks." The genre is probably my favorite, but man do some things suck about it. List time!

  • Someone is always dead. Could be a best friend, parent, family member, but usually someone is dead. Or gone or missing or somehow absent from the main character's life. I realize that the author is trying to create conflict or blah blah blah, but must we always kill someone to cause problems?
  • For me, the fact that school does not often play a large part in novels set during any season but summer is really annoying. I don't want to read about nothing but school, but books set in the school year never seem to take into account homework and stuff. Do the characters not have homework? Do the teachers not care? Are the characters too busy grieving over their dead best friend/parent/sibling to do homework? Seriously, I don't get it. Then again, I'm the person who always has a bajillion hours of homework a night and so every time characters do something outside school, I think "Do you really have time to do all that? You don't have to write a paper? Or work on a group project for 7 hours?"
  • There seems to be a lack of "normal" in "normal people" fiction. It always seems like all the contemporary I read has grieving people, drug addicts, or nomadic kids. Where are the school problems? The family relationship problems? The friendship problems?
  • My goodness this stuff is usually slow. Then again, most books are slow to start, but I always notice it more in contemporary because I don't have any world-building stuff to focus on.
Here is where I would put a somewhat witty/humourous/whatever conclusion, but I am about to fall asleep at my computer.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Why Contemporary Fiction Rocks

I mention my love for contemporary fiction in like every post on this blog, but I've never talked about the genre in depth. And since I don't have a review for today, I thought I'd talk a little bit about why contemporary fiction rocks and try to find answers as to why some people don't like it as much.

And just a disclaimer-ish thing, I personally define contemporary fiction as set in the present, no vampires or other supernatural creatures, no magic, world hasn't ended yet, etc. Normal people doing normal things. Can also be called "realistic fiction."

List time!
  • I like seeing what an author can do without being able to change the rules. Sure, you can bend the rules a little by adding a possible-ghost or something like that, but you can't just add a magical council or giant monster to create conflict. I like seeing how authors can create problems while sticking to the Rules of Real Life.
  • I can get in to them more easily. I don't have to remember all sorts of crazy names or ancient mythology or things like that. Trying to remember who is who and who used to be evil but now is good and who used to be good and is now evil gets difficult, especially when you throw in ancient magic and runes and wizards and junk. Remembering all that takes some serious effort and I am quite lazy.
  • David Levithan writes contemporary fiction. This is a perfectly valid reason.
  • How often do you read a paranormal novel with a musical in it? That's what I thought.
  • They're often much funnier than other books. Not saying that paranormal/fantasy/whatever aren't funny, but they're usually a bit dark and serious. I like funny stuff and I never seem to read enough of it, so whenever I come across a funny book I'm always super happy.
  • I can usually relate to the characters more. I can't really relate to girls with supernatural boyfriends.
...well now I am out of ideas. I blame the fact that Mean Girls is on TV and it's distracting me. If you have any reasons to add to my list, tell me! :D And I think tomorrow I may do a "why contemporary sucks" post because complaining is fun.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Squee!

This video excited me much more than it should have, and I felt compelled to share it with the internets:



Even though the narrator dude makes me want to punch things, the promo has made me even more OMGEXCITED about the show. Squee!

Don't Know Where, Don't Know When by Annette Laing


[description from goodreads]

What a nightmare.

Hannah Dias, California Girl with Attitude, and Alex, her laid-back brother, have moved from exciting San Francisco to boring Snipesville, Georgia. Life doesn't improve when they meet Brandon, a dorky kid who is plotting his escape from the Deep South, and the weird Professor, who has a strange secret. Suddenly, the kids are catapulted thousands of miles and almost seventy years to England during World War Two. They fall into a world of stinging nettles, dragon ladies, bomb blasts, ugly underwear, stinky sandwiches, painful punishments, and non-absorbing toilet paper. They learn so much more than they could ever learn in a history class. Not that they want to learn it. But they can't go home unless they find George Braithwaite, whoever he is, and whatever it is that he has to do with Snipesville.

Review:

Don't Know Where, Don't Know When is a cute, light read- not the best historical fiction I've read, but it was still pretty good. I appreciated that it started off relatively quickly and that the children had a realistic reaction to their new environment. The kids not only acted surprised in the beginning, but throughout the book they never quite got used to being in another century, which I find much more realistic. Their never-quite-used-to-it view also added a bit of humor to the book, because whenever they would become confused and say something wrong and the "normal" people around them would respond. It made the book a bit more entertaining and distracted from my confusion. For a while it seemed like there was no clear goal, that the children were just running around and encountering different people. Which is not necessarily a bad thing, since the people they met were quite interesting, but it made me wonder when the real plot would emerge. It took a while for the character of George Braithwaite to play a larger role but once he did, the book was much more mysterious.

I enjoyed the three main characters' personalities very much. All three of the main characters were distinct and quite realistic even if they were a tad cliche. Hannah was delightfully snarky and humorous; Alex was a typical, but endearing, annoying little brother; and Brandon was the typical smart kid who figures things out easily, but he did help move the plot and mystery along.

Don't Know Where, Don't Know When is a book that I don't have much to say about (which is why it's taken me so long to review it oops) but I did find it to be a light read with a nice mystery and entertaining characters. Plus, I love history so all the little details about the setting made it much more interesting to read.

Book details: Confusion Press/Paperback/$11.99

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. (:

Today's pick:

Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

description from goodreads:

Sixteen-year-old Evie's job is bagging and tagging paranormals. Possessing the strange ability to see through their glamours, she works for the International Paranormal Containment Agency. But when someone--or something--starts taking out the vamps, werewolves, and other odd beasties she's worked hard to help become productive members of society, she's got to figure it out before they all disappear and the world becomes utterly normal.

Normal is so overrated.

---

Khy, I thought you weren't a big paranormal fan, you might be thinking to yourself (probably not but whatever). I'm not a huge paranormal person, but this one actually has a unique premise! Score! It sounds most excellent and the last line of the summary is so very true. Want!

And isn't the cover pretty? Though it does make the book seem very darker than the premise has lead me to believe. Sadly, I will have to wait until September 21 to find out if the cover is lying to me about the dark-ness.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

[description from goodreads]

Violet Ambrose is grappling with two major issues: Jay Heaton and her morbid secret ability. While the sixteen-year-old is confused by her new feelings for her best friend since childhood, she is more disturbed by her “power” to sense dead bodies—or at least those that have been murdered. Since she was a little girl, she has felt the echoes the dead leave behind in the world . . . and the imprints that attach to their killers.

Violet has never considered her strange talent to be a gift; it mostly just led her to find dead birds her cat had tired of playing with. But now that a serial killer has begun terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he’s claimed haunt her daily, she realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.

Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet on her quest to find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved to find herself hoping that Jay’s intentions are much more than friendly. But even as she’s falling intensely in love, Violet is getting closer and closer to discovering a killer . . . and becoming his prey herself.

Review:

The Body Finder is a book I was looking forward to for months before I read it and I'm happy to report it did not disappoint.

The book is much more plot driven, so I was able to get into it more quickly than some other things I've been reading lately. Though at times the book shifted its focus to the romance, things relating to the serial killer happened relatively often, making the book much more exciting. Whenever a new clue popped up, the tension would rise and I became even more eager to find out what would happen next. The few chapters from the serial killer's point of view really helped with the suspense too- they were so delightfully creepy and revealed just enough information about what may happen next that I was kept on the edge of my seat.

However, I do wish the romance played a bit of a smaller role. Both Violet and Jay are great characters and fun to read about (Violet is strong, interesting because of her ability, but still easy to relate to because of how normal she is when she's not finding dead bodies; Jay is so sweet that you can't help but love him) but I'm the kind of weirdo who would prefer to read more from the psycho's point of view. Though they had some charming and very believable moments, I saw half of the romantic bits coming from a mile away. I did like that the romance provided some light relief among all the dark elements of the story, but I just wish that it didn't provide so much light. I wanted a little more blood.*

Though I personally wish there was more creeper guy and murder in the story instead of romance, I still found The Body Finder to be an intense, suspenseful read with a delightful protagonist and thrilling conclusion.

*I did not intend for that to sound as vampire-like as it does.

Book details: HarperTeen/Hardcover/

Links: Kimberly's site/blog/twitter

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Unwritten Rule by Elizabeth Scott


[description from goodreads]

Everyone knows the unwritten rule: You don't like your best friend's boyfriend.

Sarah has had a crush on Ryan for years. He's easy to talk to, supersmart, and totally gets her. Lately it even seems like he's paying extra attention to her. Everything would be perfect except for two things: Ryan is Brianna's boyfriend, and Brianna is Sarah's best friend.

Sarah forces herself to avoid Ryan and tries to convince herself not to like him. She feels so guilty for wanting him, and the last thing she wants is to hurt her best friend. But when she's thrown together with Ryan one night, something happens. It's wonderful...and awful.

Sarah is torn apart by guilt, but what she feels is nothing short of addiction, and she can't stop herself from wanting more...

Review:

Oh, Elizabeth Scott. You can do no wrong in my eyes. The Unwritten Rule, while not my favorite Elizabeth Scott book, is another winner. Not the most original plotline, but Elizabeth Scott put her signature spin on things and made the book positively lovely.

It was nice to read a contemporary novel where no one dies and where things are just so normal. The normal situation might not make for the most action-packed or exciting book, but it sure is refreshing. The normal situation and the fact that The Unwritten Rule starts off quickly made it a complete breath of fresh air. The "wonderful and awful" thing the summary promises happens early on, and from there it's an awkward, adorable, frustrating, realistic read. It's not OMGEXCITING! but the whole time I was on my toes, wondering what would happen to Sarah and Ryan, and if Brianna would ever find out. Although I was sometimes frustrated and wished Sarah would stop whining and stand up for herself, I totally got why she was so guilty and scared, and I ended up just hoping for a happy ending for her. And by the end, I was completely satisfied with the end of Sarah's story because of how realistic it was, though I'm sure it will upset a few people.

Because the books isn't so action-packed, much more time is spent on developing the characters. And now that I think about, I realize that the characters in The Unwritten Rule are dang good and super realistic. These are the characters I love and hate to read about; half the time I want to punch them, and other times I felt sorry for them. Brianna is such a pain and the vast majority of the time I wanted to slap her, but there were moments that I felt sorry for her. Her living situation and her ignorance were just so sad that I would temporarily forget that she was a bossy witch; I knew where she was coming from, but I still got frustrated by her. Similarly, I spent half my time wishing Sarah and Ryan would grow a backbone and tell Brianna, but then they would have a sickeningly cute moment and I would start cheering for them again. I completley understood them and they made the book really fun to read. I wish Sarah's parents were included more because they were quirky-cute and could have made the book even more enjoyable, but I can see why they weren't there that much.

Though The Unwritten Rule lacks the spark that other Elizabeth Scott books had for me, it's definitely another winner. And now I have to wonder: when do I get another new Elizabeth Scott book?

Book details: Simon Pulse/Hardcover/$16.99

Links: Elizabeth's website/blog/twitter

Sunday, March 21, 2010

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox was started by The Story Siren and inspired by Pop Culture Junkie. (:

Descriptions and such from goodreads.

For review:

The Absolute Value of -1 by Steve Brezenoff

The absolute value of any number, positive or negative, is its distance from zero: |-1| = 1

Noah, Lily, and Simon have been a trio forever. But as they enter high school, their relationships shift and their world starts to fall apart. Privately, each is dealing with a family crisis—divorce, abuse, and a parent's illness. Yet as they try to escape the pain and reach out for the connections they once counted on, they slip—like soap in a shower. Noah’s got it bad for Lily, but he knows too well Lily sees only Simon. Simon is indifferent, suddenly inscrutable to his friends. All stand alone in their heartache and grief.

In his luminous YA novel, Steve Brezenoff explores the changing value of relationships as the characters realize that the distances between them are far greater than they knew.

---This one sounds most excellent, so I am very excited to start it! Even if it does have math in the title. Math is ew.

The Ghost and the Goth by Stacey Kade

After a close encounter with the front end of a school bus, Alona Dare goes from Homecoming Queen to Queen of the Dead. Now she’s stuck here in spirit form with no sign of the big, bright light coming to take her away. To make matters worse, the only person who might be able to help her is Will Killian, a total loser/outcast type who hates the social elite. He alone can see and hear her, but he wants nothing to do with the former mean girl of Groundsboro High.

Can they get over their mutual distrust—and this weird attraction between them—to work together before Alona vanishes for good and Will is locked up for seeing things that don’t exist?

---I hadn't heard anything about this before it came in the mail, but now I'm seeing it everywhere. It sounds pretty good, so I can't wait to start!

The Light by DJ McHale

Marshall Seaver is being haunted. In the first installment of this chillingly compelling trilogy, sixteen-year-old Marshall discovers that something beyond our world is after him. The eerie clues pile up quickly, and when people start dying, it’s clear whatever this isit’s huge.

Marshall has no idea what’s happening to him, but he’s soon convinced that it has something to do with his best friend Cooper, who’s been missing for over a week. Together with Coop’s sister, Marsh searches for the truth about what happened to his friend, ultimately uncovering something bigger than he could ever have imagined

---This came randomly in the mail, but it sounds interesting.


Shade by Jeri Smith Ready

When her boyfriend dies a most untimely death, Aura--who can see ghosts--is forced to reconsider her relationship with the living and dead in SHADE.

---This came randomly too, but it also sounds pretty good even if that summary sucks (I don't feel like finding another one. I am lazy and working on a paper.)

Also, I totally thought that it was a leg on the cover, not an arm. I didn't realize it was an arm until I saw the girl on the back cover.

Gift:

How Beautiful the Ordinary

A girl thought to be a boy steals her sister's skirt, while a boy thought to be a girl refuses to wear a cornflower blue dress. One boy's love of a soldier leads to the death of a stranger. The present takes a bittersweet journey into the past when a man revisits the summer school where he had "an accidental romance." And a forgotten mother writes a poignant letter to the teenage daughter she hasn't seen for fourteen years.

Poised between the past and the future are the stories of now. In nontraditional narratives, short stories, and brief graphics, tales of anticipation and regret, eagerness and confusion present distinctively modern views of love, sexuality, and gender identification. Together, they reflect the vibrant possibilities available for young people learning to love others—and themselves—in today's multifaceted and quickly changing world.

---Zoe gave this to me when we hung out at B&N the other day (which was awesome, by the way, except for when three people I go to school with came to the YA section. That was awkward, especially since I didn't know their names even though they are in one of my classes.) I'm reading this right now, and it's alright so far. David Levithan's story is my favorite so far, obviously

Bought:

Dirty Little Secrets by CJ Omololu

Everyone has secrets. Some are just bigger and dirtier than others.

For sixteen years, Lucy has kept her mother's hoarding a secret. She's had to -- nobody would understand the stacks of newspapers and mounds of garbage so high they touch the ceiling and the rotting smell that she's always worried would follow her out the house. After years of keeping people at a distance, she finally has a best friend and maybe even a boyfriend if she can play it right. As long as she can make them think she's normal.

When Lucy arrives home from a sleepover to find her mother dead under a stack of National Geographics, she starts to dial 911 in a panic, but pauses before she can connect. She barely notices the filth and trash anymore, but she knows the paramedics will. First the fire trucks, and then news cameras that will surely follow. No longer will they be remembered as the nice oncology nurse with the lovely children -- they'll turn into that garbage-hoarding freak family on Collier Avenue.

---I'm a bit obsessed with the TV show Hoarders, so this one sounds super awesome to me. Plus, I've heard excellent things about it.

Contest winners!

Sorry it took me so long to get these up. Here's winners for a whole ton of contests:

Winners, please email me your addresses ASAP (khyrinthia@gmail.com) so that I don't have to hunt you down. Because I don't like doing that.

Dark Divine Nail Polish: Audrey (brizmus), Tasha (andanotherbookread), Jennifer (yabooknerd), Kelsey O.

The Line: TeenageReader

Vlad Tod: Dahlia

Little Miss Red: Darcy O

Incarceron: Wrighty

Hex Hall T-shirt: Steph Su

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Author Appreciation Week: David Levithan


Author Appreciation Week was started by the lovely Heidi R. Kling, author of the upcoming awesome novel Sea (And Sarah from Novel Novice made the awesome banner). Author Appreciation Week runs from March 15-19, and basically anyone who wants to can post about authors that they, you know, appreciate.

It's March 20th, so technically AAW is over. But do I care? No! Because the person I am posting about today is so amazing that he breaks the rules and can be posted about after AAW is over. He's that amazing.

And so, here's a list of reasons why David Levithan (who has written Boy Meets Boy, Wide Awake, Are We There Yet?, The Realm of Possibility, Love is the Higher Law, Marly's Ghost, How They Met and is the cowriter of Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist, Naomi and Ely's No Kiss List, and the upcoming Will Grayson, Will Grayson) is amazing:
  • Have you read any of his books? My goodness, they are all amazing. The writing is beautiful, the characters are insanely realistic (well, maybe not realistic, like Infinite Darlene, but definitely well-developed), the plotlines are sweet and sad and hopeful and gah. Amazing.
  • Even after I reread one of his books, I sigh with joy. They are still as beautiful as they were the first time I read them.
  • His books have made me cry on numerous occasions.
  • His writing is so lovely that I have a bajillion quotes from his books on my wall so that I may read them constantly and be put in a happy mood.
  • If you've ever heard him read aloud from one of his books, you know that he is AMAAAZING at reading. Usually I hate the reading part of author events because it's usually really boring, but I could listen to him read for hours. (Wow, I sound like a creeper.)
  • He is not only an author, but an editor, teacher, and super-organizer of events in NYC. He also takes a photo every day (stop looking at me like I'm crazy because I know this) and has fabulous taste in music, as you can see on his website. He also finds time to be the most amazing person ever. How does he do it? I have no idea, but I will not question it.
  • I love him so much and Zoe from Zoe's Book Reviews loves him so much that we have weekly conversations about how awesome he is. Not on purpose; no, these conversations just pop up randomly because he is that amazing.
  • I've met him twice on two different coasts, and both times after I met him I was like "omgomgomg *dies*" The thrill never wears off.
  • He once complimented me on my Salvatore jacket (you would understand that reference if you've read/seen Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist.) This compliment still makes me squee with joy.
  • Every time his name is mentioned, I immediately pay attention and ask what is going on. I'm dedicated like that.
  • He is INSANELY nice. Like, he just is.
  • Just writing this post has made me all happy. *sigh*

Friday, March 19, 2010

Author Appreciation Week: Sarah Ockler


Author Appreciation Week was started by the lovely Heidi R. Kling, author of the upcoming awesome novel Sea (And Sarah from Novel Novice made the awesome banner). Author Appreciation Week runs from March 15-19, and basically anyone who wants to can post about authors that they, you know, appreciate.

This week I've written about Elizabeth Scott, Courtney Summers, Cindy Pon, Julie Kagawa, Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl, and Chelsea Campbell. Today I'm writing about Sarah Ockler, author of Twenty Boy Summer.

And because lists are fun, let's do this in list form:
  • Twenty Boy Summer was so good that it made me cry. And her next book, Fixing Delilah Hannaford, seems even better.
  • She is the nicest person EVER.
  • She's super smart! Back when Chelsea's book club was still alive, Sarah would join us and talk smartly about all the books, while I mostly just nodded along.
  • She always makes time to talked to her crazed fangirls like me.
  • She's just super awesome. What other reasons do I need? (:

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Author Appreciation Week: Chelsea Campbell


Author Appreciation Week was started by the lovely Heidi R. Kling, author of the upcoming awesome novel Sea (And Sarah from Novel Novice made the awesome banner). Author Appreciation Week runs from March 15-19, and basically anyone who wants to can post about authors that they, you know, appreciate.

This week I've written about Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl, Cindy Pon, Julie Kagawa, Elizabeth Scott, and Courtney Summers, and today I'm writing about the totally awesome Chelsea Campbell. Chelsea is the author of The Rise of Renegade X, which comes out in May, so chances are you haven't been lucky enough to read it yet. But you're definitely going to.

And because I feel like UGH at the moment, I'll do my ~appreciating~ in list form:
  • Her book is awesome. It just is. I will not go in to ~detail~ since it's not out yet, but it's seriously fabulous
  • She writes about superheroes. Fact: everyone who writes about superheroes is cool.
  • She knows Latin and Greek. Or got a degree in them. Something like that. BUT IT'S STILL SUPER COOL.
  • She likes Friday Night Lights and Skins. Another fact: people who like those shows are cool. (And bonus: Chelsea says her the person she would can see playing her main character in a potential movie would be Nicholas Hoult, who was Tony on Skins and is British and awesome. Doesn't he totally look like he could play a supervillian in this picture?)
  • She loves Georgia Nicolson! She even did the Viking Bison Disco Inferno dance:

  • She was the first Tenner I ever emailed, back when her website had a different flower and before she was officially signed up as a Tenner. And she emailed me back and was positively lovely, even though I probably seemed like a creeper in my email. Therefore she holds a ~special place in my heart.~
  • She is much slower than I am, somtimes. Whenever I see her in a chatzy I sometimes manage to say "I SEE YOU CHELSEA" before she can say "I SEE YOU KHY." I usually say it first, but occasionally, on my off days, she beats me. But I usually win.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Author Appreciation Week: Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl


Author Appreciation Week was started by the lovely Heidi R. Kling, author of the upcoming awesome novel Sea (And Sarah from Novel Novice made the awesome banner). Author Appreciation Week runs from March 15-19, and basically anyone who wants to can post about authors that they, you know, appreciate.

The last two days I wrote about the amazing Elizabeth Scott, Courtney Summers, Julie Kagawa, and Cindy Pon. Today I'm writing about two awesome ladies: Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, authors of Beautiful Creatures. And if you haven't read BC, you totally need to. It's most excellent and full of history but not like boring school-like history, romance, and magic and it is just really original and lovely. I loved it!

There are many reasons why Kami and Margie are awesome, and these are just a few:
  • They are hilario! Both on their own and together. They finish each other's sentences and often talk about random things, and they are just wonderfully entertaining.
  • They have great taste in books.
  • They are as fangirly as we non-authors. When I saw them meet Megan Whalen Turner, I seriously thought they were going to die from joy.
  • No matter how many times I show up at their events, they both still seem happy to see me (and my mom).
  • They are super enthusiastic about everything, whether it be pie, Diet Coke, or The Forests of Hands and Teeth.
  • One time they let me go help them witht their Comic-Con signing and I not only had a lot of fun there, but I also got to miss a day of school.
  • Because they photograph really well:

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Author Appreciation Week: Julie Kagawa


Author Appreciation Week was started by the lovely Heidi R. Kling, author of the upcoming awesome novel Sea (And Sarah from Novel Novice made the awesome banner). Author Appreciation Week runs from March 15-19, and basically anyone who wants to can post about authors that they, you know, appreciate.

Yesterday I wrote about Elizabeth Scott and Courtney Summers, and today I wrote about Cindy Pon and now the lovely Julie Kagawa (yes, you all be subjected to 2 of these posts daily this week. enjoy~).

There are so very many reasons as to why Julie is awesome, but we'll start with the obvious: her book rocks. The Iron King is about faeries, something that everyone has read about probably numerous times. The faery thing has been done a million times in a million different ways, but The Iron King still stands out because it's more fantasy and magical than edgy. It's more fun and full of humourous characters instead of ~edgy~ ones. I definitely appreciate that she created the awesome character of Grimalkin, a chesire-like cat, and Puck, who is just fantastic and way better than Ash.

Other reasons why I appreciate Julie include:
  • She introduced me to all sorts of...lovely, interesting, bizarre 80s fantasy movies like Labyrinth.
  • She always has awesome stories to tell, like about how one time she met Orlando Bloom and he told her that he liked her dog!*
  • Her obsession with sushi is entertaining, but also slightly painful when it encourages you to try a piece of tuna sushi (ew).
  • She likes puppies, therefore she is awesome.
  • I loved her book so much that I find the need to pester her about the sequel often with my buddy Gail. And she is strong enough not to crack and give us info. (:[)
*Totally wrote that to make Mean Girls obsessors think of "One time, she met John Stamos on a plane and he told her she was pretty."

Author Appreciation Week: Cindy Pon


Author Appreciation Week was started by the lovely Heidi R. Kling, author of the upcoming awesome novel Sea (And Sarah from Novel Novice made the awesome banner). Author Appreciation Week runs from March 15-19, and basically anyone who wants to can post about authors that they, you know, appreciate.

Yesterday I wrote about the fabulous Elizabeth Scott and Courtney Summers, and today (one of the people) I'm writing about is Cindy Pon, who wrote Silver Phoenix.

There are many reasons why Cindy is awesome, and rather than try to put those reasons in paragraph form, I'll go with a list:
  • Because her book is fantasy and I actually really liked it! Usually I do not enjoy high fantasy at all, but Silver Phoenix is totally awesome.
  • Because she writes descriptions of food, both in her book and her blog, so well that they make me want to go raid my kitchen (but I'm not sure that's something I necessarily appreciate, but still! AWESOME!).
  • Because she is also a fabulous artist. Seriously, go look at her brush paintings. SO PRETTY!
  • Because one time she let me stalk her and FILM IT!

  • Because she's so cool that she dresses up at conventions:
  • Because every time I meet her, she is INSANELY nice. Like, it's crazy how lovely she is.
  • Because she made me a new friend at school! One day I was talking to the girl I sit behind in math class and she mentioned that she read Silver Phoenix and I was like "I HAVE READ THAT TOO" and we both fangirled the book. Now this girl and I constantly talk about how we need the sequel and how sad we are that it's not out yet. :(


Monday, March 15, 2010

Author Appreciation Week: Courtney Summers


Author Appreciation Week was started by the lovely Heidi R. Kling, author of the upcoming awesome novel Sea (And Sarah from Novel Novice made the awesome banner). Author Appreciation Week runs from March 15-19, and basically anyone who wants to can post about authors that they, you know, appreciate.

Earlier today I wrote about the fabulous Elizabeth Scott, and today I'm writing about the equally fabulous and ~*sparkly*~ Courtney Summers.

Courtney is the author of Cracked Up to Be and Some Girls Are, and if you haven't read either of them you need to. And you need to read both of them, because they are both amazing. Both have received 5 star ratings from me and if you know me you know that I only give like four books a year 5 stars. Both of Courtney's books are ones I love to read because they aren't about loser girls who obsess over their supernatural boyfriend or things like that; they're much more unique. Parker, the narrator of Cracked Up to Be, and Regina, narrator of Some Girls Are, both deserve punches in the face at the beginning of the books. They start off rude, mean, and slightly obnoxious, but by the end I felt sorry for them. I was still frustrated by them, but I felt bad. I hated what they did in the past but I wanted them to have a happy ending anyway. Most of the time, characters that make me mad I don't really care about, but that's not the case in either of Courtney's books. It takes some mad skillz to make me feel so conflicted about about one character, let alone two, and Courtney makes it look easy.
Speaking of Parker and Regina, I still don't know how Courtney managed to make them so mean. Same goes for supporting characters in both books; people like Anna in Some Girls Are are just plain nasty. Some of the pranks and events that happen are cruel and unusual. If you read Courtney's blog or twitter, you know that she's not mean or nasty at all (except when it comes to werewolves). She's insanely nice and hilario! I still haven't figured out how she writes such evil people. And really, I don't care how she does as long as she keeps the mean people books coming and stays her awesomely nice self because seriously, she is crazy nice to everyone but werewolves.

She is also crazy entertaining, especially on the twitter. She often tweets about Lady Gaga (I ~appreciate~ anyone who likes Gaga), Survivor (even though we disagree about JT, I still ~appreciate~ her), and other funny and random things. I think most of my favorited tweets come from her.

Let's examine some of the ones I've favorited:
courtney_s @khyrinthia just every time Lady Gaga releases a video it is my autobiography, it is safe to assume.
---HOW AWESOME IS THAT? I wish my life was a Lady Gaga video, minus being chased by paparazzi and being in jail and being kidnapped by supermodels. I couldn't handle being kidnapped by supermodels, but Courtney sure can:
courtney_s @khyrinthia I was like I may be kidnapped by supermodels, but I have something to @ to khy!!!!!! just so you know.
Even in dire situations, she makes time to communicate with her fangirls.

She also makes room for us in her zombie apocalypse surviving posse:
courtney_s @khyrinthia omg I am trying to wrap my head around this. YOU GUYS ARE IN MY ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE SURVIVING POSSE. @Sarahbear9789 @zoealea I don't like to brag but survival is GUARANTEED with me. Unless you like werewolves and then I guarantee nothing.
No one else has ever invited me into their zombie apocalypse surviving posse. I am HONORED by Courtney's invitation. I know that when the zombie apocalypse happens, I will survive. How can I not appreciate someone who will help protect me in such a situation?

Author Appreciation Week: Elizabeth Scott


Author Appreciation Week was started by the lovely Heidi R. Kling, author of the upcoming awesome novel Sea (And Sarah from Novel Novice made the awesome banner). Author Appreciation Week runs from March 15-19, and basically anyone who wants to can post about authors that they, you know, appreciate.

I thought I'd do this because it seems fun and it gives me a excuse to post about David Levithan. But I'm saving the David post for last, and today I'm writing about the amazing Elizabeth Scott, who wrote Bloom; Perfect You; Stealing Heaven; Living Dead Girl; Something, Maybe; Love You Hate You Miss You; and The Unwritten Rule, which comes out tomorrow! Yay!

If you haven't read any of her books, get off the computer and go get one. Doesn't matter which. They're all great. And that's part of the reason why I appreciate her- everything she writes is completely different but still awesome. Living Dead Girl is about a girl being abused by her kidnapper and it's completely nauseating but compelling; Something, Maybe is about a totally sweet and cute romance; Stealing Heaven is about a girl and her mom, who are both thieves; Love You Hate You Miss You is an emotional and very sad book about a girl dealing with the death of her best friend. Most of her books contain familiar plot lines but she adds a new spin on each of them and makes them unique and fabulous. I don't know how she does it.

Plus, her book Grace, according to her website, is about:
Grace was raised to be an Angel, a herald of death by suicide bomb. But she refuses to die for the cause, and now Grace is on the run, daring to dream of freedom. In search of a border she may never reach, she travels among malevolent soldiers on a decrepit train crawling through the desert. Accompanied by the mysterious Kerr, Grace struggles to be invisible, but the fear of discovery looms large as she recalls the history and events that delivered her uncertain fate.

This one sounds like the most original of all her books and I bet it will be just as good (and probably better because dude, doesn't that book sound amazing?) than her older books. How does she come up with these ideas?

Another reason I appreciate her: have you read her blog? She always has helpful and fun posts with links to awesome articles. I also think that she must have a book making factory or something at her house because she gives away books ALL THE TIME. Practically every post contains a contest for more than one book. She is so very generous.

But I the reason I most appreciate her is because one time at an event, she walked by me and some other people, and when I saw her name tag I squealed like a crazy person and I don't think she was TOO frightened. She still spoke to me after my fangirl moment, which is totally awesome. She even took a picture with me!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Thoughts On: Titles

I've been noticing more things I like/dislike about book titles recently and thought I'd make a post about it just because I don't have an In My Mailbox for today.
  • I like pun-y titles, like Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy and Scones and Sensibility. Whenever a familiar phrase or whatever you want to call it is changed, I chuckle a little to myself because I'm lame like that.
  • I like when the title is an actual line in the book, like What They Always Tell Us, because when I find the line when I'm reading I feel a bit triumphant. Feel free to add this fact to your "Khy is strange" file.
  • This is similar to the above bullet point, but I like when a line from poem or something is the title, like The Sweet Far Thing.
  • I hate when a book is referred to as its series name and actual title. Like Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. That takes too long to write out. Why can't I just call it The Lightning Thief? Am I supposed to just call it The Lightning Thief or am I supposed to leave the series title? I DON'T KNOW! It's much too confusing.
  • I hate when a bunch of books with similar titles come out all at once. Off the top of my head, I can think of 2009/2010 books with the word "after" in the title: After about the dumpster baby, After with the pink cover, Never After, After the Moment, The Everafter (which was originally titled The After, I believe), and After Ever After. And I'm probably missing some. THAT'S TOO MANY! I can handle two or three with the same word, but six? Ag.
  • This new trend of "___,___, and ___" titles is getting on my nerves. I'm lazy. I don't have enough motivation to write that all out.
I think this post is half "Khy is lame" and half "Khy hates things," which is pretty much how most of my posts end up.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Hex Hall T-Shirt Giveaway!

Today I'm giving away a lovely shirt based on the novel Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins, which I reviewed here!

Here's the front of the shirt:



And the back:


Fill out the form to enter!


Friday, March 12, 2010

Rachel Hawkins's Top Ten "Southern Books"


Rachel Hawkins is the fabulous author of the recently released Hex Hall. She is also hilarious, as you can see from her blog and twitter, where she often updates about random things and the TV show 10 Things I Hate About You.

I reviewed Hex Hall here, but if you don't want to look at the review, here's the book description straight from goodreads for you:

When Sophie Mercer turned thirteen, she 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 Hecate Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward prodigium, a.k.a. witches, fae, 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, tag-along ghost; and a new roommate, who happens to be the most-hated person and only vampire on campus. Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her friend Jenna is the number one suspect. Meanwhile, Sophie has a more personal shock to grapple with. Not only is her father the head of the prodigium council, he's the most powerful warlock in the world, and Sophie is his heir. 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.

---

And without further ado, here are Rachel's top ten books set in the South:

I'm a lifelong Southerner, so it's no surprise I write books set in the South. I think there's something about this region that's inherently magical and spooky and very much "other," so it's also no surprise that so many other authors choose to set their books here! Today, I thought I'd give you my Top Ten Southern Books (And Short Stories.)

In no particular order:

10) BEAUTIFUL CREATURES, Margaret Stohl and Kami Garcia: I love the way this book plays on very common Southern tropes (the plantation house, the crazy family, the small, sleepy town with seeeecreeeetttsss), but gives all those familiar elements a twist. Also, Ethan is hawt. ;-)

9) THE UNVANQUISHED, William Faulkner: A series of connected short stories about the COMPLETELY INSANE Sartoris family, this is probably my favorite Faulkner novel. Yes, even more than THE SOUND AND THE FURY or A LIGHT IN AUGUST.

8) ONE WRITER'S BEGINNINGS, Eudora Welty: This is a non-fiction book, but I love Eudora, so I had to mention her! Besides, this is probably one of the best books on writing ever!

7) OTHER VOICES, OTHER ROOMS, Truman Capote: To me, this book is THE Southern Gothic novel. Decaying plantation home, transvestites, a girl named Idabel...come on.

6) A ROSE FOR EMILY, Willima Faulkner: You probably read this short story in high school. Crazy old woman, sleeping with the dead body of a dude she straight up murdered. Creepiest. Thing. Ever. (And therefore, awesome.)

5) FAY, Larry Brwon: I lurve this book about a young girl from Mississippi who gets involved in all sorts of tragedies. And my lurve, I mean it made me want to curl up in a ball and die. But, you know, in the good way.

4) EVERYTHING FLANNERY O'CONNOR EVER WROTE: Self-explanatory. If my Small Son had been a Small Daughter, I wanted to name her Flannery.

3) LOCKED IN TIME, Lois Duncan: Once again, I sing the praises of Lois Duncan on the internet. A girl goes to New Orleans to visit her dad and his new wife. New wife is a witch who's performed a ritual that makes her whole family immortal. Scary stuff ensues. Love.

2) THE WITCHING HOUR, Anne Rice: Quite possibly my favorite book ever. Huge (1000 pages), twisty (incest and witchcraft ahoy!), and practically dripping with atmosphere (read it, and tell me you can't see the mute Deirdre Mayfair sitting in her rocking chair on that dilapidated porch.)

1) TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, Harper Lee: Do I even have to explain this one? One of the best novesl of the 20th century, and written by my Alabama Homegirl, Harper Lee. Not that Harper Lee is actually my homegirl. I'm working on it! ;-)


---

So I kind of haven't read 8/10 of these, but I do love Beautiful Creatures and To Kill a Mockingbird!

Thanks so much, Rachel! :D

Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins


When Sophie Mercer turned thirteen, she 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 Hecate Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward prodigium, a.k.a. witches, fae, 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, tag-along ghost; and a new roommate, who happens to be the most-hated person and only vampire on campus. Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her friend Jenna is the number one suspect. Meanwhile, Sophie has a more personal shock to grapple with. Not only is her father the head of the prodigium council, he's the most powerful warlock in the world, and Sophie is his heir. 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.

Review:

Witches are one of the few paranormal beings I'm not sick of (yet), mainly because I think Hex Hall is the only witch book I've read since the 6th grade, excluding Harry Potter. However, if all witch books are as good as this one, bring them on! I'm totally ready for more.

Hex Hall definitely starts out more lighthearted and cutesy, with many of Sophie's problems revolving around her roommate; the trio of mean girls; and Archer, the bad boy who just so happens to have a girlfriend who totally hates Sophie. Sounds cliche, right? In the beginning, at least, it kind of is. The beginning is mainly introductions to the wide variety of species and people that populate the school. The truly interesting, darker, more mysterious stuff is revealed slowly but wonderfully. Once the initial exposition is over, Sophie begins to find all sorts of crazy stuff around the school and as time goes by her discoveries get creepier and way more exciting. Some of the plot twists were completely unexpected, especially at the end, and I had a blast reading about Sophie's wacky adventures.

I definitely prefer my fantasy and paranormal novels to be more funny than epic quest-y, and Hex Hall definitely delivered the funny. Sophie is quite a humorous narrator and is even a little sassy at times. I loved seeing her reactions to everything around her because all of them were realistic. Her feelings about the trio of mean girls, Archer, her family, and her natural curiosity about the world around her all rang true and made complete sense. I wish I could say the same about the behavior of the minor characters though. Many of them didn't gain a lot of depth until the end when Sophie makes big discoveries about them. I kind of hate the mean girl trio cliche in general, so seeing it in this book was a bit ugh-worth, and Archer is a typical bad boy with a secret past. Some of the characters that show up later on are much more interesting, and I kind of wish they were there more.

Hex Hall is a bit uncomfortably Harry Potter at a few points (a groundskeeper? really?)* and contains a few cliches, but that doesn't make its twists any less exciting or its narrator any less endearing.

*Then again I am emotionally attached to Harry Potter and anything with even a few similarities angers me.

Book details: Hyperion/Hardcover/$16.99

Links: Rachel's blog/twitter

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson


[description from goodreads]

Seventeen-year-old Lennie Walker, bookworm and band geek, plays second clarinet and spends her time tucked safely and happily in the shadow of her fiery older sister, Bailey. But when Bailey dies abruptly, Lennie is catapulted to center stage of her own life—and, despite her nonexistent history with boys, suddenly finds herself struggling to balance two. Toby was Bailey’s boyfriend; his grief mirrors Lennie’s own. Joe is the new boy in town, a transplant from Paris whose nearly magical grin is matched only by his musical talent. For Lennie, they’re the sun and the moon; one boy takes her out of her sorrow, the other comforts her in it. But just like their celestial counterparts, they can’t collide without the whole wide world exploding.

This remarkable debut is perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Francesca Lia Block. Just as much a celebration of love as it is a portrait of loss, Lennie’s struggle to sort her own melody out of the noise around her is always honest, often hilarious, and ultimately unforgettable.

Review:

This is another book that sounded like it was totally my thing, but I ended up being underwhelmed even though everyone else seems to adore it. Perhaps it's because I've read way too many "someone died and now the rest of us have to deal grieve and deal with all our other problems" books, but I never felt a need to finish the book. I put it down easily and wasn't totally invested in the story, but I did end up enjoying it.

I appreciated that instead of flashbacks, Lennie and Bailey's relationship was revealed in a more subtle way. Instead of the million flashbacks other dead-people-and-grief books use, their relationship was discussed in poems, very short memories, and through other people. Though I felt at times there was so much more to their relationship than what was shown, I was glad the book focused more on what Lennie was going through now and didn't get stuck in the past. It makes the book stand out a bit among all the other dead-people-and-grief books.

I never really understood what the whole Lennie/Toby thing was. Toby wasn't in the book THAT much and therefore I never really knew what his deal was. I knew why he was sad, why he did some of the things he did, but he always seemed so emotionless. (But perhaps that was intended since he is grieving and all.) To me, it just seemed like he would show up, stir up trouble, then go away again. His actions did provide some interesting plot twists and action, but I never really fully understood him. I did, however, like Lennie and Joe. Joe was sweet yet easily stubborn, endearing yet annoying, and made complete sense. He was incredibly realistic and provided many laughs. I was often frustrated by Lennie because she was so freaking impulsive; she knew she shouldn't do some of stupid things she did but she did them anyway. I wanted to hit her with something, but I also saw what her motivations were, which made my angry feelings not SO bad.

The writing and most of the characters in The Sky is Everywhere were lovely, but it felt a bit emotionless at times, and I think I've read too many other books with similar premises to really appreciate it.

(See, this is the problem with liking contemporary books more than fantasy. Most contemporary books have to have a dead person, so I end up really not caring about "grief" books. Give me more Paisley Hanover and Georgia Nicolson!)

Book details: Dial/Hardcover/$17.99

Links: Jandy's website

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Numbers Giveaway


(Another giveaway, Khy? yes, deal with it.)

I'm giving away three copies of Num8ers by Rachel Ward (or Numbers, as I like to call it because typing numbers in the middle of a word is difficult. And because I'm not really sure what I'm supposed to call it.)

Here's a book description case you need one:

Ever since she was child, Jem has kept a secret: Whenever she meets someone new, no matter who, as soon as she looks into their eyes, a number pops into her head. That number is a date: the date they will die. Burdened with such awful awareness, Jem avoids relationships. Until she meets Spider, another outsider, and takes a chance. The two plan a trip to the city. But while waiting to ride the Eye ferris wheel, Jem is terrified to see that all the other tourists in line flash the same number. Today's number. Today's date. Terrorists are going to attack London. Jem's world is about to explode!

---

Details and such are on the entry form!

Feel free to judge.*~

You may have heard that Hilary Duff - yes, THE Hilary Duff- is writing a YA series.

In case you don't want to read the linked article, here's a quote from it:

"Actress and musician Hilary Duff inked a multiple-book deal with Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers today. The first novel is Elixir, scheduled to be published in hardcover October 2010...The series will focus on a photojournalist named Clea Raymond, the celebrity offspring of a politician and a doctor. In Da Vinci Code fashion, she chases a dashing boy "in a race against time to unravel a centuries-old mystery that could unlock the key to her soulmate's true identity."

Not going to lie, I am excited and I will be DEVOURING this series, even it does end up sucking. The Lizzie McGuire fangirl in me will not die, and this announcement has only made my love stronger.

I was so happy that I listened to this song (multiple times) today, which was totally my 8 year old jam:



I know that many of you may not be excited by this news. Other books by celebrities (like LA Candy by Lauren Conrad) have supposedly sucked. Most of the time the celebrities don't even write the book. Usually I care and avoid celebrity books at all costs. But this time, I do not care because it's HILARY DUFF. Lizzie McGuire, guys. LIZZIE. MCGUIRE.

(I'm so good at separating actresses from their characters, aren't I? In this case, fiction and reality are the same thing.)

I'm not going to start talking about how much I love Lizzie McGuire and how many times I listened to Hilary Duff's first CD when I was 8, but I'll just say I still love Hilary Duff (my inner 8 year old won't let me dislike her. It's just not going to happen) and I still die from joy whenever I see this scene in the last-day-of-middle-school episode:


LIZZIE/GORDO FOREVER!!!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Vladimir Tod Giveaway

Last giveaway for the day! This one is for the Vladimir Tod series by Heather Brewer. I've had the first one in my TBR pile for a while and haven't read it yet, but I'm thinking I need to soon.

To find a bit about the series, feel free to watch the trailer for the third book in the series, Eleventh Grade Burns:




Or you could check out the series website or read the goodreads description for the first book, Eighth Grade Bites:

Junior high really sucks for thirteen-year-old Vladimir Tod. Bullies harass him, the principal is dogging him, and the girl he likes prefers his best friend. Oh, and Vlad has a secret: his mother was human, but his father was a vampire. With no idea of the extent of his powers, Vlad struggles daily with his blood cravings and his enlarged fangs. When a substitute teacher begins to question him a little too closely, Vlad worries that his cover is about to be blown. But then he faces a much bigger problem: he's being hunted by a vampire killer.

the prizes! --->

Fill out the form to enter!


Little Miss Red Giveaway

Contest #2 of the day! This one is for Little Miss Red by Robin Palmer, which sounds super cute.

To find out about the book, here's a video of the author talking about it:



Or you can read the goodreads description:

Sophie Greene gets good grades, does the right thing, and has a boyfriend that her parents— and her younger brother—just love. (Too bad she doesn’t love him.) Sophie dreams of being more like Devon Deveraux, star of her favorite romance novels, but, in reality, Sophie isn’t even daring enough to change her nail polish. All of that changes when Sophie goes to Florida to visit her grandma Roz, and she finds herself seated next to a wolfishly goodlooking guy on the plane. The two hit it off, and before she knows it, Sophie’s living on the edge. But is the drama all it’s cracked up to be?



(If clicked the image doesn't work, click this. :])

Fill out the form to enter!





The prizes: