Sunday, November 30, 2014

Stacking the YA Shelves (Nov. 30, 2014)

Tynga of  Team Tynga's Reviews hosts this meme to spotlight the books we receive each week. I guarantee that your TBR pile will grow when you see all the wonderful books everyone gets.

I stocked my review shelves this week.
Since You've Been Gone by Mary Jennifer Payne (Jan. 24)
Darkmouth #1: The Legend Begins by Shane Hegarty (April 21)
Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge (May 5)
The Cost of All Things by Maggie Lehrman (May 12)
Heat of the Moment by Lauren Barnholdt (May 12)
Making Pretty by Carey Ann Haydu (May 12)
The Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak by Brian Katcher (May 19)
A Sense of the Infinite by Hilary T. Smith (May 19)
The Fog Diver by Joel Ross (May 26)
Kissing in America by Margo Rabb (May 26)
Proof of Forever by Lexa Hillyer (June 2)

I'm pretty sure that my review calendar is full through May now. I am eager to read all of these. What did you add to your stack this week? 

Saturday, November 29, 2014

ARC Review: Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay

Princess of Thorns
Author: Stacey Jay
Publication: Delacorte Press (December 9, 2014)

Description: Game of Thrones meets the Grimm’s fairy tales in this twisted, fast-paced romantic fantasy-adventure about Sleeping Beauty’s daughter, a warrior princess who must fight to reclaim her throne.

Though she looks like a mere mortal, Princess Aurora is a fairy blessed with enhanced strength, bravery, and mercy yet cursed to destroy the free will of any male who kisses her. Disguised as a boy, she enlists the help of the handsome but also cursed Prince Niklaas to fight legions of evil and free her brother from the ogre queen who stole Aurora’s throne ten years ago

Will Aurora triumph over evil and reach her brother before it’s too late? Can Aurora and Niklaas break the curses that will otherwise forever keep them from finding their one true love?

My Thoughts: There were many parts of this story that I really enjoyed. I liked the quest and the growing friendship between Aurora and Niklaas. I liked the way they bantered and hid their secret, vulnerable places. There were also things I didn't like about this story. I thought it was slow paced and I got tired of both Aurora and Niklaas constantly misunderstanding each other. I couldn't see how two supremely stubborn people could ever bend enough to have a relationship.

The basic story has Princess Aurora disguising herself as a boy and attempting to rescue her younger brother Jor from his captivity. He is being held captive by the Queen of the ogres. The ogres - especially Illestros - are trying to bring about a prophecy and need briar-born and fairy-blessed Aurora to complete it. In her disguise, Ror meets Prince Niklaas who is determined to meet and marry Aurora to break the curse that dooms him to turn into a swan on his eighteenth birthday. Of course, he doesn't share this information with Ror and tries to convince Ror that his sister will be swept away by his charms.

Aurora knows that her fairy curse forbids her from ever marrying. One kiss from her takes away her groom's free will and leaves a person who exists only to please her. She has her first love Thyne as the example of what happens when someone loves her. These two young people, who are falling in love with each other, are separated by the curses each carries and keeps secret.

Fans of epic fantasy, adventure, and romance, and who can persist through a slow start, will enjoy this tale.

Favorite Quote:
"But that's what searching for love is like. You keep pushing on, breaking and being broken, until you find the person you want to hold safe, the only one who knows how to keep you in one piece."
I got this eARC for review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Friday Memes: Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay

Happy Friday everybody!!
Book Beginnings on Friday is now hosted by Rose City Reader. The Friday 56 is hosted at Freda's Voice. Check out the links above for the rules and for the posts of the participants each week. Don’t dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.


This week I am spotlighting Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay. I got this eARC from NetGalley for review. Here is the description:
Game of Thrones meets the Grimm’s fairy tales in this twisted, fast-paced romantic fantasy-adventure about Sleeping Beauty’s daughter, a warrior princess who must fight to reclaim her throne.

Though she looks like a mere mortal, Princess Aurora is a fairy blessed with enhanced strength, bravery, and mercy yet cursed to destroy the free will of any male who kisses her. Disguised as a boy, she enlists the help of the handsome but also cursed Prince Niklaas to fight legions of evil and free her brother from the ogre queen who stole Aurora’s throne ten years ago.

Will Aurora triumph over evil and reach her brother before it’s too late? Can Aurora and Niklaas break the curses that will otherwise forever keep them from finding their one true love?
Beginning:
Having discovered the secret to eternal life, and jealous of his throne, the immortal king summoned a witch to the castle and ordered her to curse his eleven sons, ensuring that none would live past their eighteenth birthday, the age at which a Kanvasol prince may become king.
Friday 56:
"They sent a lock of hair," Illestros says. "My divinations confirm it belong to one briar-born."

"Then it is the girl." Our relief is tinged with only a hint of fear. "And she is blessed with strength in battle. Will this knowledge be enough?"

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Book Review: Snake Bite by Andrew Lane

Snake Bite
Author: Andrew Lane
Series: Sherlock Holmes: The Legend Begins (Book 5)
Publication: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) (October 21, 2014)

Description: Kidnapped and taken to China, teenage Sherlock finds himself plunged into the heart of a deadly mystery. How can three men be bitten by the same poisonous snake in different parts of Shanghai? Who wants them dead, and why? The answers seem to lie in a message hidden in a diagram that looks like a spider’s web. But solving one puzzle only leads to an even more urgent question: What has all this got to do with a plot to blow up an American warship? To unravel the strands that entangle him, Sherlock must brave terrors greater than any he has faced before.

Sherlock Holmes: Think you know him? Think again.

My Thoughts: This 5th adventure of a teen-aged Sherlock Holmes begins with him on a ship bound for China. He was abducted, drugged, and left on the ship before it sailed. Sherlock is adapting pretty well to his new life and learning lots of things. Through the efforts of the ship's cook Wu Cheng, Sherlock is learning both Cantonese and T'ai chi ch'uan - his first martial art. He misses his brother, his teacher and his friends Matty and Virginia but is making the best of his situation.

The action picks up when Mr. Arrhenius - a passenger with a weird skin condition - boards the ship and when the ship is attacked by pirates in the China Sea. Things get even more intense when they reach Shanghai and his friend Wu Cheng dies of an unexpected and mysterious snake bite. Sherlock has met and been befriended by a young American living with his parents in Shanghai. When his friend Cameron's father also dies from a mysterious snake bite, Sherlock, Cameron and Wu Cheng's son Wu Fung-Yi band together to solve the puzzle and stop an act that could lead to war between China and the United States.

I really enjoy this series because I like finding out how the Sherlock Holmes of the Conan Doyle series came to be. The one difference that I have noted in these novels is that the young Sherlock still knows how to make and keep friends. Somehow, he has lost that ability in the Conan Doyle novels. Maybe the disappointment at the end of this novel is a contributing factor in his disillusionment with other people.

Young readers will enjoy the adventure and should be eager to read the Sherlock Holmes novels by Conan Doyle to learn about what Sherlock did as an adult.

Favorite Quote:
Sometimes, he thought, doing the right thing was much harder than doing the wrong thing. Sometimes, doing the right thing was the hardest thing in the world. 
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

WoW: The Unicorn Hunter by Che Golden

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. She has a linky widget at her site each week for your post and to make it easy to find posts by other people.

The purpose of the meme is to spotlight books that we are eagerly anticipating. It is fun to take a look at what others are waiting for. I have noticed that it has expanded my wishlist though. Be warned!

Coming up on my review stack is The Unicorn Hunter by Che Golden. Here is the description from Amazon:
"Gripping, mystical and adventurous, young readers will be as hooked as Maddy was the minute she set foot inside that creepy as hell old castle," raved," Irish World said of The Feral Child

Maddy's adventures continue in The Unicorn Hunter. The adults of Blarney have always lived in fear. The faeries of Tir na nOg exist on their doorstep, and they could unleash terror on the mortal realm at any time.

But eleven-year-old Maddy is not afraid. The unicorn that holds the key to balance and peace in both worlds is injured, and Maddy knows she is the only one who can track down whoever hurt her.

Can Maddy survive the force and cunning of the Tuatha, who rule Tir na nOg? Or will she end up a mere pawn in their own power games?
Readers will enjoy the frank and bold heroine of Maddy, and will be dazzled by The Unicorn Hunter's evocative rendering of Irish folklore and richly imagined alternate worlds.
This book will be released on January 6. Have you read The Feral Child. Is this one on your wishlist?

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Teaser Tuesday: Snake Bite by Andrew Lane

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Teaser:
For once, Sherlock could see Mycroft's point—the safest way to live your life was just to stay at home all the time. But if you did that, you missed all the adventure. He smiled to himself. Maybe the best thing to do was to make friends with a doctor—that way you would always have treatment close at hand.
This week my teaser comes from Snake Bite by Andrew Lane. This is the fifth book in the Sherlock Holmes: The Legend Begins series. Here is the description of this episode:
Kidnapped and taken to China, teenage Sherlock finds himself plunged into the heart of a deadly mystery. How can three men be bitten by the same poisonous snake in different parts of Shanghai? Who wants them dead, and why? The answers seem to lie in a message hidden in a diagram that looks like a spider’s web. But solving one puzzle only leads to an even more urgent question: What has all this got to do with a plot to blow up an American warship? To unravel the strands that entangle him, Sherlock must brave terrors greater than any he has faced before.

Sherlock Holmes: Think you know him? Think again.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Stacking the YA Shelves (Nov. 23, 2014)

Tynga of  Team Tynga's Reviews hosts this meme to spotlight the books we receive each week. I guarantee that your TBR pile will grow when you see all the wonderful books everyone gets.
Darby Karchut sent me The Hound at the Gate which is the third book about Finn MacCullen and is aimed at a middle school audience. This book will be released in January. I can't wait to read it because I really liked the first two books about Finn.

I bought Jackaby by William Ritter one day this week because it was a Kindle Daily Deal. This one sounded like a great historical mystery.

What did you add to your stack this week?

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Book Review: Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

Afterworlds
Author: Scott Westerfeld
Publication: Simon Pulse (September 23, 2014)

Description: From the #1 New York Times bestselling author Scott Westerfeld comes a smart, thought-provoking novel-within-a-novel that you won’t be able to put down.

Darcy Patel has put college on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. With a contract in hand, she arrives in New York City with no apartment, no friends, and all the wrong clothes. But lucky for Darcy, she’s taken under the wings of other seasoned and fledgling writers who help her navigate the city and the world of writing and publishing. Over the course of a year, Darcy finishes her book, faces critique, and falls in love.

Woven into Darcy’s personal story is her novel, Afterworlds, a suspenseful thriller about a teen who slips into the “Afterworld” to survive a terrorist attack. The Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead, and where many unsolved—and terrifying—stories need to be reconciled. Like Darcy, Lizzie too falls in love…until a new threat resurfaces, and her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she cares about most.

My Thoughts: AFTERWORLDS was a real chunkster. After beginning it, I understood why. This is the story of a young novelist selling her book, deferring college and moving to New York to work on the edits. It is also the book she is writing. Since I was reading the print edition of this book, I could easily tell if I was in Darcy's story or in Lizzie's because the novel Darcy was writing had black banded pages. Both stories have romance but they are very different romances. The novel Darcy is writing begins with a terrorist attack and then quickly becomes a paranormal complete with ghosts.

I liked the chapters from Darcy's point of view because they talk so much about the writing process and the publishing process. We see Darcy working with her editor and revising her work. We see her laboring over her words and struggling to find an ending both she and her publishers can live with. We see her fear of ending of novel, She wants to keep improving it. We see Darcy meeting and interacting with both new and established YA writers. We also see what it is like for authors to go on book tours.

I enjoyed the novel Darcy was writing too though it would have been too scary for me if it had been a standalone novel. Some of the scenes sent chills up my spine and had me checking to see if my doors were locked.

This was a wonderful book for young adults interested in writing.

Favorite Quote:
"Ah, the language of the colonizer." Kiralee's expression brightened. "There are some interesting things you could do with that."

"Right," Darcy said, though she suspected she hadn't done any of them. She'd made Yamaraj speak English for the most practical of reasons, so that he and Lizzie didn't have to mime their undying love. "The hardest thing is making him sound old-fashioned; it just makes him sound unsexy."
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Friday Memes: Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

Happy Friday everybody!!
Book Beginnings on Friday is now hosted by Rose City Reader. The Friday 56 is hosted at Freda's Voice. Check out the links above for the rules and for the posts of the participants each week. Don’t dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.


This week I am spotlighting a recent addition to my TBR mountain. Afterworlds by Scott Westfeld caught my attention recently. Here is the description:
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author Scott Westerfeld comes a smart, thought-provoking novel-within-a-novel that you won’t be able to put down.

Darcy Patel has put college on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. With a contract in hand, she arrives in New York City with no apartment, no friends, and all the wrong clothes. But lucky for Darcy, she’s taken under the wings of other seasoned and fledgling writers who help her navigate the city and the world of writing and publishing. Over the course of a year, Darcy finishes her book, faces critique, and falls in love.

Woven into Darcy’s personal story is her novel, Afterworlds, a suspenseful thriller about a teen who slips into the “Afterworld” to survive a terrorist attack. The Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead, and where many unsolved—and terrifying—stories need to be reconciled. Like Darcy, Lizzie too falls in love…until a new threat resurfaces, and her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she cares about most.
Beginning:
The most important email that Darcy Patel ever wrote was three paragraphs long.
Friday 56:
Oscar made a pfft noise. "My tastes are wider than yours. It's a paranormal romance."

"Are those still being written?" Kiralee was flagging a waiter down. "I thought vampires were dead."

Coleman grunted. "They're exceedingly hard to kill."

Thursday, November 20, 2014

ARC Review: On the Edge by Allison van Diepen

On the Edge
Author: Allison van Diepen
Publication: HarperTeen (November 25, 2014)

Description: From Allison van Diepen, author of Snitch and Street Pharm, comes a sexy, dangerous novel—perfect for fans of Simone Elkeles and Paul Griffin—about a teen who witnesses a murder and gets caught up in the seedy world of Miami's gangs.

Maddie Diaz never should have taken that shortcut through the park. If she hadn't, she wouldn't have seen two members of the Reyes gang attacking a homeless man. Now, as the only witness, she knows there's a target on her back.

But when the Reyes jump her on the street, Maddie is protected by a second gang and their secretive leader, Lobo, who is determined to take down the Reyes himself. Lobo is mysterious and passionate, and Maddie begins to fall for him. But when they live this close to the edge, can their love survive?

My Thoughts: Maddie Diaz is a high school senior attending a magnet school but living in a bad part of town. She has been accepted to the University of Florida with a full tuition scholarship and is eager to get out of Miami. One night walking home from work she sees a couple of gang members attack a homeless man and set him on fire. She identifies them to the police and then becomes a target of gang retaliation.

Luckily, she has also attracted the attention of Lobo who is the leader of a rival group who wants to stop that gang from trafficking in young women and who decide to protect Maddie. When she is attacked and beaten by gang members, the other group saves her.

Meanwhile, she is hanging out with her friends including her overly dramatic best friend Iz who is constantly trying to hook her up with guys. One guy who has caught Maddie's attention is Ortiz who works at a nearby convenience store.

I did really like the romance between Ortiz and Maddie. I was very worried for their future at many points in the story.

This story is for the older young adult. These teens do a lot of drinking. The violence could also be disturbing for younger readers. There is a lot of violence.

Favorite Quote:
I remembered something that Mom had once told me—that there was a difference between being in love with someone and loving someone. Being in love was that wild, exhilarating feeling of needing to be with them every moment. Loving someone was a pledge to care about them forever. To make their happiness as important as your own.
I got this eARC from Edelweiss. You can buy your copy here.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

WoW: Suspicion by Alexandra Monir

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. She has a linky widget at her site each week for your post and to make it easy to find posts by other people.

The purpose of the meme is to spotlight books that we are eagerly anticipating. It is fun to take a look at what others are waiting for. I have noticed that it has expanded my wishlist though. Be warned!

Coming up on my review stack is Suspicion by Alexandra Monir. Here is the description from Amazon:
“There’s something hidden in the maze.”

Seventeen-year-old Imogen Rockford has never forgotten the last words her father said to her, before the blazing fire that consumed him, her mother, and the gardens of her family’s English country manor.

For seven years, images of her parents’ death have haunted Imogen's dreams. In an effort to escape the past, she leaves Rockford Manor and moves to New York City with her new guardians. But some attachments prove impossible to shake—including her love for her handsome neighbor Sebastian Stanhope.

Then a life-altering letter arrives that forces Imogen to return to the manor in England, where she quickly learns that dark secrets lurk behind Rockford’s aristocratic exterior. At their center is Imogen herself—and Sebastian, the boy she never stopped loving.

Combining spine-tingling mystery, romance, and unforgettable characters, Suspicion is an action-packed thrill ride.
This book will be released on December 9. Is it on your wishlist? 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Teaser Tuesday: On the Edge by Allison Van Diepen

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Teaser:
Mom said I should have counseling. That I was suffering from PTSD. That my "faith in humanity had been shattered by witnessing such a horrible crime." It was a pretty impressive diagnosis, and a testament to her faithful watching of Dr. Drew.
This week my teaser comes from On the Edge by Allison Van Diepen. I got this eARC for review from Edelweiss. Here is the description of this November 25 release:
From Allison van Diepen, author of Snitch and Street Pharm, comes a sexy, dangerous novel—perfect for fans of Simone Elkeles and Paul Griffin—about a teen who witnesses a murder and gets caught up in the seedy world of Miami's gangs.
Maddie Diaz never should have taken that shortcut through the park. If she hadn't, she wouldn't have seen two members of the Reyes gang attacking a homeless man. Now, as the only witness, she knows there's a target on her back.

But when the Reyes jump her on the street, Maddie is protected by a second gang and their secretive leader, Lobo, who is determined to take down the Reyes himself. Lobo is mysterious and passionate, and Maddie begins to fall for him. But when they live this close to the edge, can their love survive?

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Book Review: Trust Me, I'm Lying by Mary Elizabeth Summer

Trust Me, I'm Lying
Author: Mary Elizabeth Summer
Publication: Delacorte Press (October 14, 2014)

Description: Fans of Ally Carter's Heist Society novels will love this teen mystery/thriller with sarcastic wit, a hint of romance, and Ocean’s Eleven–inspired action.

Julep Dupree tells lies. A lot of them. She’s a con artist, a master of disguise, and a sophomore at Chicago’s swanky St. Agatha High, where her father, an old-school grifter with a weakness for the ponies, sends her to so she can learn to mingle with the upper crust. For extra spending money Julep doesn’t rely on her dad—she runs petty scams for her classmates while dodging the dean of students and maintaining an A+ (okay, A-) average.

But when she comes home one day to a ransacked apartment and her father gone, Julep’s carefully laid plans for an expenses-paid golden ticket to Yale start to unravel. Even with help from St. Agatha’s resident Prince Charming, Tyler Richland, and her loyal hacker sidekick, Sam, Julep struggles to trace her dad’s trail of clues through a maze of creepy stalkers, hit attempts, family secrets, and worse, the threat of foster care. With everything she has at stake, Julep’s in way over her head . . . but that’s not going to stop her from using every trick in the book to find her dad before his mark finds her. Because that would be criminal.

My Thoughts: This book was pitched as being like HEIST SOCIETY by Ally Carter and I can see some similarities. The female narrator - Julep Dupree - is a self-described grifter who is currently running cons in her exclusive private school. She also begins the book by telling us that she doesn't have a conscience. However, we also have to remember that she is a liar who will tell whatever story she needs to in order for her con to work.

At the story's beginning Julep comes home to find a trashed apartment and a missing father. Her immediate desire is to find him and to keep his absence a secret because fifteen-year-old without adult supervision wind up in foster care. She also has to find a way to make money to afford her rent and private school tuition. The money part isn't too difficult; she begins offering false IDs for sale and quickly has more business at her school that she can handle.

Tracking down her father is considerably harder. She is being followed by a mysterious person in a tricked-out Chevelle and she is also being followed by a guy who says he was hired by her best friend Sam to keep her safe.

It wouldn't be a teenage novel these days if it didn't have a love triangle. In this case, Julep catches the attention of the Big Man on Campus - Tyler Richland. Julep can't read him; all of a sudden her grifter's skills at reading people aren't working so well. They aren't working very well with her best friend Sam either. She and Sam have been friends for years and he has been her willing partner in most of her schemes but she somehow misses that he wants to be more than friends.

The plot was complex but Julep's skills at the con made for a mostly successful operation. There was one quite surprising loss. The emotions got intense and so did the danger as Julep, Sam and Tyler try to follow the clues her father left for her and find out what is going on. Julep has to pull off her biggest con yet to save those who needed to be saved and to survive herself.

I enjoyed the story and hope that more adventures are in Julep's future.

Favorite Quotes:
I step back in surprise and look up, immediately recognizing Tyler Richland, the St. Aggie's demigod/senior Harper name-dropped in the bathroom. He's captain of the fill-in-any-sport-here varsity team, he's popular, and he has a hotness factor that approaches solar levels. You don't go to St. Agatha's and not know Tyler Richland. In fact, you don't live in Chicago and not know Tyler Richland. His dad's a senator.
***
Coincidences are like unicorns—you can believe in them all you want, but that doesn't make them real. 
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Friday Memes: Trust Me, I'm Lying by Mary Elizabeth Summer

Happy Friday everybody!!
Book Beginnings on Friday is now hosted by Rose City Reader. The Friday 56 is hosted at Freda's Voice. Check out the links above for the rules and for the posts of the participants each week. Don’t dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.


This week I am spotlighting Trust Me, I'm Lying by Mary Elizabeth Summer. I decided to buy this one because it was favorably compared to Heist Society by Ally Carter which I really liked. Here is the description of this Oct. 14 release:
Fans of Ally Carter's Heist Society novels will love this teen mystery/thriller with sarcastic wit, a hint of romance, and Ocean’s Eleven–inspired action.

Julep Dupree tells lies. A lot of them. She’s a con artist, a master of disguise, and a sophomore at Chicago’s swanky St. Agatha High, where her father, an old-school grifter with a weakness for the ponies, sends her to so she can learn to mingle with the upper crust. For extra spending money Julep doesn’t rely on her dad—she runs petty scams for her classmates while dodging the dean of students and maintaining an A+ (okay, A-) average.

But when she comes home one day to a ransacked apartment and her father gone, Julep’s carefully laid plans for an expenses-paid golden ticket to Yale start to unravel. Even with help from St. Agatha’s resident Prince Charming, Tyler Richland, and her loyal hacker sidekick, Sam, Julep struggles to trace her dad’s trail of clues through a maze of creepy stalkers, hit attempts, family secrets, and worse, the threat of foster care. With everything she has at stake, Julep’s in way over her head . . . but that’s not going to stop her from using every trick in the book to find her dad before his mark finds her. Because that would be criminal.
Beginning:
I can't say I have much personal experience with conscience. I wasn't born with that particular cricket on my shoulder.
Friday 56:
"So you're following me now?"

He points at a nearby classroom filling with students. "I have Grosky for Spanish seventh period. And yes, I am following you."

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Book Review: The Eighth Day by Dianne K. Salerni

The Eighth Day
Author: Dianne K. Salerni
Series: The Eighth Day (Book 1)
Publication: HarperCollins (April 22, 2014)

Description: In this riveting fantasy adventure, thirteen-year-old Jax Aubrey discovers a secret eighth day with roots tracing back to Arthurian legend. Fans of Percy Jackson will devour this first book in a new series that combines exciting magic and pulse-pounding suspense.

When Jax wakes up to a world without any people in it, he assumes it's the zombie apocalypse. But when he runs into his eighteen-year-old guardian, Riley Pendare, he learns that he's really in the eighth day—an extra day sandwiched between Wednesday and Thursday. Some people—like Jax and Riley—are Transitioners, able to live in all eight days, while others, including Evangeline, the elusive teenage girl who's been hiding in the house next door, exist only on this special day.

And there's a reason Evangeline's hiding. She is a descendant of the powerful wizard Merlin, and there is a group of people who wish to use her in order to destroy the normal seven-day world and all who live in it. Torn between protecting his new friend and saving the entire human race from complete destruction, Jax is faced with an impossible choice. Even with an eighth day, time is running out.

Stay tuned for The Inquisitor's Mark, the spellbinding second novel in the Eighth Day series.

My Thoughts: THE EIGHTH DAY was a very engaging fantasy adventure. Thirteen-year-old Jax Aubrey is recently orphaned and living with a guardian who isn't much older than he is. He is having a hard time adjusting. It gets even harder when he wakes up one morning to find an empty world. He is frightened and confused. There are no people; there is no electricity; the sky looks weird.

When he is awakened by his guardian Riley the next morning, it is as if nothing happened. When it happens again the next week, Riley is there too. Jax soon learns that only certain people are able to live on the eighth day. Transitioners like him and like Riley who are descendants of King Arthur, Merlin and the Knights of the Round table live all eight days. The Kin are trapped there and live only on that eighth day.

Jax meets and befriends a girl who is living next door and who only lives on the eighth day. Evangeline is a descendant of Merlin. Riley is either her protector or jailer depending on your point of view. Jax feels sorry for her and decides to make her his friend. But evil forces among the Kin want to find Evangeline and use her to free themselves from being imprisoned on the eighth day.

This story was a real page-turner. I couldn't put it down. I really liked Jax and Evangeline and got to like Riley more when he started to open up to Jax about what was going on. I can't wait to read the sequel.

Favorite Quote:
"Jax." She gripped the doorknob tightly,  steeling herself. "I want you to leave me alone. No more messages or gifts. No lawn parties, no electricity. Just stop."

He wilted. Evangeline bit her lip. It wasn't his fault, and she owed him an explanation. "Your life goes by so fast for me," she said. "I only catch glimpses of it, and I can't participate."

"Oka-a-ay." he said, his brow furrowed. "But I don't understand why we can't be friends."

"Because it hurts, Jax."
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Teaser Tuesday: The Eighth Day by Dianne K. Salerni

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Teaser:
He had to force himself to eat a cold can of stew and drink a bottle of water. It was rare for Jax to have no appetite, although it had happened the day his dad never came home...and the day they'd found the car in the river...and the day Riley Pendare had brought him here.
This week my teaser comes from The Eighth Day by Dianne K. Salerni. This fantasy is from my TBR mountain. Here is the description:
In this riveting fantasy adventure, thirteen-year-old Jax Aubrey discovers a secret eighth day with roots tracing back to Arthurian legend. Fans of Percy Jackson will devour this first book in a new series that combines exciting magic and pulse-pounding suspense.

When Jax wakes up to a world without any people in it, he assumes it's the zombie apocalypse. But when he runs into his eighteen-year-old guardian, Riley Pendare, he learns that he's really in the eighth day—an extra day sandwiched between Wednesday and Thursday. Some people—like Jax and Riley—are Transitioners, able to live in all eight days, while others, including Evangeline, the elusive teenage girl who's been hiding in the house next door, exist only on this special day.

And there's a reason Evangeline's hiding. She is a descendant of the powerful wizard Merlin, and there is a group of people who wish to use her in order to destroy the normal seven-day world and all who live in it. Torn between protecting his new friend and saving the entire human race from complete destruction, Jax is faced with an impossible choice. Even with an eighth day, time is running out.

Stay tuned for The Inquisitor's Mark, the spellbinding second novel in the Eighth Day series.
I bought this one after I got THE INQUISITOR'S MARK for review.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Stacking the YA Shelves (Nov. 9, 2014)

Tynga of  Team Tynga's Reviews hosts this meme to spotlight the books we receive each week. I guarantee that your TBR pile will grow when you see all the wonderful books everyone gets.

Review Books
Every Last Promise by Kristin Halbrook - I got this eARC from Edelweiss. The book will be released on April 21.

Ferals by Jacob Grey is also an eARC from Edelweiss. This book will be released on April 28.
Archie Greene and the Magician's Secret by D. D. Everest was another from Edelweiss. This book will be released on April 21.

Drive Me Crazy by Terra Elan McVoy was my final Edelweiss find of the week. This book will be released on April 28.

I bought one book for my Kindle this week. 
Alanna by Tamora Pierce was a Kindle Daily Deal. I read this book years ago and will enjoy reading it again on my Kindle.

What did you get this week?