Friday, July 28, 2017

Friday Memes: Just Friends by Tiffany Pitcock

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.

Beginning:
The classroom door swung open.

Every head in the class turned to see a boy with messy blond hair walk in.
Friday 56:
She looked out the windshield, less than thrilled. "Thank you for sharing your run-down barn with me."
This week I am reading Just Friends by Tiffany Pitcock. I got this ARC from Macmillan. Here is the description from Amazon:
A new spin on the classic smart-girl-and-bad-boy setup, this witty contemporary romance shows how easily a friendship – even one built on an elaborate lie – can become so much more.

Jenny meets Chance for the very first time when she is assigned as his partner in their Junior Oral Communications class. But after they rescue a doomed assignment with one clever lie, the whole school is suddenly convinced that Little-Miss-Really-Likes-Having-A’s and the most scandalous heartbreaker in school have been best friends forever. It’s amazing how quickly a lie can grow―especially when you really, really want it to be the truth.

With Jenny, Chance can live the normal life he’s always kind of wanted. And with Chance, Jenny can have the exciting teen experiences that TV shows and movies have always promised. Through it all, they hold on to the fact that they are “just friends.” But that might be the biggest lie of all.

Debut author Tiffany Pitcock delivers a spot-on depiction of first love and the high school rumor mill in Just Friends, chosen by readers like you for Macmillan's young adult imprint Swoon Reads.


Thursday, July 27, 2017

ARC Review: The Countdown Conspiracy by Katie Slivensky

The Countdown Conspiracy
Author: Katie Slivensky
Publication: HarperCollins (August 1, 2017)

Description: Ambassador, you are go for launch in T- minus 5…4…3…2…. Get ready to blast off with this high-action, high-stakes middle grade adventure that’s perfect for fans of Chris Grabenstein and Peter Lerangis!

Miranda Regent can’t believe she was just chosen as one of six kids from around the world to train for the first ever mission to Mars. But as soon as the official announcement is made, she begins receiving anonymous threatening messages…and when the training base is attacked, it looks like Miranda is the intended target. Now the entire mission—and everyone’s lives—are at risk. And Miranda may be the only one who can save them.

The Martian meets The Goonies in this out-of-this-world middle grade debut where the stakes couldn’t be higher.

My Thoughts: In this near future science fiction story, six kids from around the world are chosen to train for an up-coming mission to Mars. The kids and the space program to get them to Mars is an effect of a fragile peace that exists. Not everyone is happy with the peace or happy that Miranda has been chosen from the United States. Many people feel that she was chosen as a political gesture rather than for her talents.

When Miranda learns this, it causes her to doubt herself and he constant low ranking among the six trainees reinforces her doubts. Her most persistent rival is Anna. She and Anna tied in a previous science competition and Anna hasn't gotten over not being first. Miranda underestimates herself though. She is a talented engineer who has built her own supercomputer robot that she calls Ruby. She doesn't give up but decides that she will just work harder to learn what she doesn't already know.

When disaster strikes on a training mission, the kids have to all work together and use all their skills to get back to Earth and defeat the villain that engineered the disaster. Each of the kids had distinct personalities and talents which added to the excitement of this story.

The story is very realistic. The author's note talks about the author's research and the author's interest in spaceflight and space exploration.

Favorite Quote:
I stiffen. "Why are you telling me this?"

"Because you have a right to know what the evidence is piling up to suggest," Lizzie replies. "You aren't a baby. You're thirteen, you're training to be an astronaut, and you're one of the smartest people on the planet."
I received this one for review from Edelweiss. You can buy your copy here.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Teaser Tuesday: The Countdown Conspiracy by Katie Slivensky

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker. 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:
"Hello, Esteban." I reach forward to shake his hand.

"Isn't this exciting?" Without warning, Esteban takes my hand and yanks me in for a hug. "It's like we're family already!"
This week I am reading The Countdown Conspiracy by Katie Slivensky. I got this eARC from Edelweiss. Here is the description from Amazon:
Ambassador, you are go for launch in T- minus 5…4…3…2…. Get ready to blast off with this high-action, high-stakes middle grade adventure that’s perfect for fans of Chris Grabenstein and Peter Lerangis!

Miranda Regent can’t believe she was just chosen as one of six kids from around the world to train for the first ever mission to Mars. But as soon as the official announcement is made, she begins receiving anonymous threatening messages…and when the training base is attacked, it looks like Miranda is the intended target. Now the entire mission—and everyone’s lives—are at risk. And Miranda may be the only one who can save them.

The Martian meets The Goonies in this out-of-this-world middle grade debut where the stakes couldn’t be higher

Saturday, July 22, 2017

ARC Review: The Danger Gang and the Pirates of Borneo! by Stephen Bramucci

The Danger Gang and the Pirates of Borneo!
Author: Stephen Bramucci, illustrated by Arree Chung
Series: Danger Gang (Book 1)
Publication: Bloomsbury USA Childrens (August 1, 2017)

Description: Ronald Zupan is a daring master adventurer! But he actually hasn't experienced any grand adventures . . . YET! When his world-traveling parents are kidnapped on his twelfth birthday, Ronald seizes the chance to prove himself with a dazzling, danger-defying rescue operation.

Teaming up with his trusty butler Jeeves, his quick-witted fencing nemesis Julianne Sato, and his pet cobra Carter, Ronald sets course for the jungle of Borneo where his parents were last sighted. If they can crash-land a plane and outrun a hungry snow leopard, surely they can find the secret lair of Zeetan Z, the world's most ruthless pirate! But as their adventure becomes more and more dangerous, can Ronald and his companions muster enough courage to see this adventure through?

My Thoughts: Ronald Zupan is primed and ready to be a master adventurer like his famous parents. He has a pet Cobra named Carter and a dashing, and very realistic, mustache. On the morning of his eleventh birthday, he wakes to find that his parents, who promised to return to help him celebrate, are not there.

Ronald, his pet cobra, his reluctant butler Jeeves and his fencing rival Julianne Sato are off to find them. During their adventures they fly and crash land an airplane, deal with a giant, outwit poop slinging orangutans and their trainer Three-fingered Jack, and chase down the dreaded pirate Zeetan Z. Each page is filled with outrageous adventure told by Ronald who is quick to make himself an extraordinary hero. At the end of each chapter, Jeeves, who is really Tom Halladay, adds some notes about errors in Ronald's telling of the story.

I enjoyed this story and think it will be a hit with upper elementary and middle grade students. They will enjoy getting to know Ronald and watching him grow and change through the course of this story. 

This book will be illustrated though my advanced reader copy has only sketches of what is to come. The illustrations look like they will enhance the story and the adventure.

Favorite Quote:
"Who do you think kidnapped your parents?" Julianne asked as I tried to pry Carter off her shoulder.

"A soulless villain," I said. "A dastardly dog, a spineless rogue, a --"

"So, no idea then?"
I received this one for review from Bloomsbury. You can buy your copy here.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Friday Memes: The Danger Gang and the Pirates of Borneo! by Stephen Bramucci

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.

Beginning:
Hello Friend,

Are you ready for a dazzling tale of grand adventure? A tale of swordfights and disguises? Of pirates and stolen relics?
Friday 56:
"Elexander," I began, "how long has this spectacular research station been here?"

The mechanic grabbed the base of the lightbulb and angled it so it cast a warm glow on the map.
This week I am reading The Danger Gang and the Pirates of Borneo! by Stephen Bramucci, illustrated by Arree Chung. I got this ARC from Bloomsbury. Here is the description from Amazon:
Ronald Zupan is a daring master adventurer! But he actually hasn't experienced any grand adventures . . . YET! When his world-traveling parents are kidnapped on his twelfth birthday, Ronald seizes the chance to prove himself with a dazzling, danger-defying rescue operation.

Teaming up with his trusty butler Jeeves, his quick-witted fencing nemesis Julianne Sato, and his pet cobra Carter, Ronald sets course for the jungle of Borneo where his parents were last sighted. If they can crash-land a plane and outrun a hungry snow leopard, surely they can find the secret lair of Zeetan Z, the world's most ruthless pirate! But as their adventure becomes more and more dangerous, can Ronald and his companions muster enough courage to see this adventure through?

Saturday, July 15, 2017

ARC Review: The Emperor of Mars by Patrick Samphire

The Emperor of Mars
Author: Patrick Samphire
Series: Secrets of the Dragon Tomb (Book 2)
Publication: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) (July 18, 2017)

Description: A missing Martian. A sinister plot. A Napoleonic spy. . . Boundless adventures await in Book 2 of The Secrets of the Dragon Tomb middle grade sci-fi series!

If Edward thought life was going to be easy in Lunae City, he was very, very wrong. The moment he intercepts a thief escaping from Lady Harleston’s town house, he is caught in a terrible scheme that threatens all of Mars. Soon he’s fighting off vicious sea serpents, battling a small army of heavily armored thugs, and trying to unpick an impossible mystery. Edward doesn’t know whom he can trust. Will he make the right choice? Or will his family―and his entire planet―fall victim to the treacherous Emperor of Mars?

My Thoughts: In the second book of the Secrets of the Dragon's Tomb series, Edward has given up being the protector for his family since he has finally realized that they can take care of themselves. However, this leaves him at rather loose ends as he tries to decided what he should do with himself instead.

He soon finds himself involved in another mystery when he spots a young thief slipping from a neighbors house and is soon accused of the crime himself. He and his genius younger sister Putty are also on the case of a missing Martian and find themselves facing their old nemesis Dr. Blood who has his own sinister plot in mind.

This story is filled with adventure, steampunk gadgets, dangerous Martian wildlife, and a large assortment of villains all after Edward and his family. Edward feels that he is the only non-genius in his distinguished and eccentric family but he is underestimating himself. He is brave and bold and cares very much for doing the right thing.

Fans of adventure with a science fiction and alternate history twist will enjoy this exciting middle grade series.

Favorite Quote:
There is a particular kind of exhaustion that comes over you when you realize that every one of your siblings is a genius and you are not. Especially when the sister you've always thought was empty-headed and silly solves a problem that has stumped generations of scholars.
I received this one for review from Macmillan. You can buy your copy here.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Friday Memes: The Emperor of Mars by Patrick Samphire

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.

Beginning:
Mars, 1817

I was twenty feet underground, surrounded by glowing blue sandfish crystals, with my head jammed in a beetle-vine warren, when I realized that vine-mining wasn't for me.
Friday 56:
"Parthenia will do no such thing while in my charge," Miss Wilkins said coldly. She was sitting as straight as a rod opposite Putty. "She might have been allowed to run wild while under the care of others, but I am quite a different proposition."
This week I am reading The Emperor of Mars by Patrick Samphire. I got this ARC from Macmillan. Here is the description from Amazon:
A missing Martian. A sinister plot. A Napoleonic spy. . . Boundless adventures await in Book 2 of The Secrets of the Dragon Tomb middle grade sci-fi series!

If Edward thought life was going to be easy in Lunae City, he was very, very wrong. The moment he intercepts a thief escaping from Lady Harleston’s town house, he is caught in a terrible scheme that threatens all of Mars. Soon he’s fighting off vicious sea serpents, battling a small army of heavily armored thugs, and trying to unpick an impossible mystery. Edward doesn’t know whom he can trust. Will he make the right choice? Or will his family―and his entire planet―fall victim to the treacherous Emperor of Mars?


Thursday, July 13, 2017

ARC Review: Amid Stars and Darkness by Chani Lynn Feener

Amid Stars and Darkness
Author: Chani Lynn Feener
Series: The Xenith Trilogy (Book 1)
Publication: Swoon Reads (July 18, 2017)

Description: A high-stakes space opera that combines science fiction and romance, this debut novel features plenty of action and a heroine whose unique brand of humor and tenacity make her easy to root for.

Delaney’s entire world is thrown into chaos after she is mistaken for Lissa Olena, an alien princess hiding out on earth in order to escape an arranged marriage. Kidnapped by the princess’ head bodyguard, Ruckus, and imprisoned in an alien palace, Delaney is forced to impersonate the princess until Olena can be found. If she fails, it will lead to an alien war and the eventual enslavement of the entire human race.

No pressure or anything.

Factor in Trystan―the princess’ terrifying betrothed who is intent on unraveling all her secrets―and her own growing feelings for Ruckus, and Delaney is in way over her head.

Chosen by readers like you for Macmillan's young adult imprint Swoon Reads, Chani Lynn Feener’s debut novel Amid Stars and Darkness is a thrilling space adventure complete with perfectly detailed alien planets and a super sexy secret romance.

My Thoughts: This book was an old-fashioned science fiction romance. Here's the scenario: a teen is kidnapped by aliens because she looks like their missing princess. She's brought back to the alien planet where she needs to keep impersonating the missing princess to keep two countries from going to war and incidentally conquering Earth.

Delaney isn't a big fan of the aliens who visit Earth unlike her roommate who is something of an alien groupie. One night she accompanies her roommate to a dance club where she can meet an alien she'd been talking to online. Just before Delaney decides to leave she runs into a girl who zaps her with an alien invention that turns her into a duplicate of the missing princess.

When the princess's bodyguard spots her, he captures her and takes her to his alien spaceship determined to bring her back home so that she can do her duty, pledge herself to her betrothed, and keep the countries from going to war. Delaney can't convince Ruckus that she is not the girl they are looking for.

So Delaney finds herself dropped into an alien world with a fiance she doesn't like and who really doesn't like her and the target of assassination attempts because neither of their countries want the two to marry either. Her only source of strength and information is Ruckus who she falls in love with. But once the real princess is found, Delaney will be returned to Earth and will have to leave Ruckus behind.

I liked Delaney who was a smart-mouthed, independent character who has a real problem with authority. She hid her very real fears behind a mask of bravado. I liked Ruckus too. He had guarded his princess out of duty because she wasn't really a likeable person but he falls in love with Delaney too. I even liked the princess's fiance Trystan despite the fact the he wanted her dead and was a really scary guy.

I can't wait to read the next book to find out what happens next.

Favorite Quote:
She thought about whether her own mother would make that choice, if she'd sell her to the highest bidder if it meant keeping their town together. What if an outside threat came and wanted to destroy it all and all the people she'd grown up with? What would she do?
I received this one for review from Macmillan. You can buy your copy here.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Teaser Tuesday: Amid Stars and Darkness by Chani Lynn Feener

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker. 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:
"Being our Lissa, Olena knew when she left that staying on Earth was never really an option for her, but she'd convinced her parents to allow her to take the right anyway. Last week marked the end of her denzeration, and she was supposed to meet me and come back home."

"Let me guess," she said, stopping him. "She never showed."
This week I am reading Amid Stars and Darkness by Chani Lynn Feener. I got this ARC from Macmillan. Here is the description from Amazon:
A high-stakes space opera that combines science fiction and romance, this debut novel features plenty of action and a heroine whose unique brand of humor and tenacity make her easy to root for.

Delaney’s entire world is thrown into chaos after she is mistaken for Lissa Olena, an alien princess hiding out on earth in order to escape an arranged marriage. Kidnapped by the princess’ head bodyguard, Ruckus, and imprisoned in an alien palace, Delaney is forced to impersonate the princess until Olena can be found. If she fails, it will lead to an alien war and the eventual enslavement of the entire human race.

No pressure or anything.

Factor in Trystan―the princess’ terrifying betrothed who is intent on unraveling all her secrets―and her own growing feelings for Ruckus, and Delaney is in way over her head.

Chosen by readers like you for Macmillan's young adult imprint Swoon Reads, Chani Lynn Feener’s debut novel Amid Stars and Darkness is a thrilling space adventure complete with perfectly detailed alien planets and a super sexy secret romance.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

ARC Review: What Goes Up by Katie Kennedy

What Goes Up
Author: Katie Kennedy
Publication: Bloomsbury (July 18, 2017)

Description: Rosa and Eddie are among hundreds of teens applying to NASA's mysterious Interworlds Agency. They're not exactly sure what the top-secret program entails, but they know they want in. Rosa has her brilliant parents' legacies to live up to, and Eddie has nowhere else to go--he's certainly not going to stick around and wait for his violent father to get out of jail. Even if they are selected, they have no idea what lies in store. But first they have to make it through round after round of crazy-competitive testing.

And then something happens that even NASA's scientists couldn't predict . . .

From the author of the acclaimed Learning to Swear in America comes another high-stakes adventure that's absolutely out of this world.

My Thoughts: WHAT GOES UP was an exciting science fiction story filled with great characters and lots of adventure. NASA is looking for the best and the brightest high school juniors to become part of an Interworlds Agency team. They start with 200 but will be weeding it down to 2.

The main characters in this story are Rosa who is the child of scientists and who feels she needs to live up to their accomplishments; Eddie who was raised by his physicist grandmother while his violent father has been in prison; Theo who is the son of medical professionals; and Brad whose father can buy or sell NASA and thinks he deserves special privileges because of it.

After a series of tests both normal and abstract, the two hundred are narrowed down to Rosa, Eddie, Theo and Brad. They are being mentored by Reg who is recovering from a plane crash. Barely into training, something happens that puts them right on the front line when aliens appear.

I enjoyed the all the characters but my favorite was definitely Eddie. He was smart but dealing with lots of difficulties in his life. He was used to being distrusted just because of who is father is. He also is essentially on his own and aware of his own loneliness.

Fans of adventure and science fiction will enjoy this story.

Favorite Quote:
"What am I hearing?" Reg demanded. "Are you kissing? Damn it, we have two more ships to scuttle."

"In the movies, romantic scenes have a better soundtrack," Eddie said. It came out a little muffled, because she was still attached to his lower lip.
I received this one for review from Bloomsbury. You can buy your copy here.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Friday Memes: What Goes Up by Katie Kennedy

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.

Beginning:
NASA stored the future in a hangar in Iowa.
Friday 56:
He leaned forward, angry, invading her space. "You invite the brightest high school students in the country to go through all this testing, and when you've found the best ones you mash their brains to pulp? That's counterproductive. It's illogical."
This week I am reading What Goes Up by Katie Kennedy. I got this ARC from Bloomsbury. Here is the description from Amazon:
Rosa and Eddie are among hundreds of teens applying to NASA's mysterious Interworlds Agency. They're not exactly sure what the top-secret program entails, but they know they want in. Rosa has her brilliant parents' legacies to live up to, and Eddie has nowhere else to go--he's certainly not going to stick around and wait for his violent father to get out of jail. Even if they are selected, they have no idea what lies in store. But first they have to make it through round after round of crazy-competitive testing.

And then something happens that even NASA's scientists couldn't predict . . .

From the author of the acclaimed Learning to Swear in America comes another high-stakes adventure that's absolutely out of this world.


Thursday, July 6, 2017

ARC Review: Ash and Quill by Rachel Caine

Ash and Quill
Author: Rachel Caine
Series: The Great Library (Book 3)
Publication: Berkley (July 11, 2017)

Description: The unforgettable characters from Ink and Bone and Paper and Fire unite to save the Great Library of Alexandria from itself in this electrifying adventure in the New York Times bestselling series.

Hoarding all the knowledge of the world, the Great Library jealously guards its secrets. But now a group of rebels poses a dangerous threat to its tyranny....

Jess Brightwell and his band of exiles have fled London, only to find themselves imprisoned in Philadelphia, a city led by those who would rather burn books than submit. But Jess and his friends have a bargaining chip: the knowledge to build a machine that will break the Library’s rule.

Their time is running out. To survive, they’ll have to choose to live or die as one, to take the fight to their enemies—and to save the very soul of the Great Library....

My Thoughts: This is the third book in the Great Library series but not the last as evidenced by its cliffhanger ending.

Jess Brightwell and his fellow escapees from the Archivist Magister find themselves in the Burner city of Philadelphia. Philadelphia is under siege by the forces of the Library. They find themselves in the middle of a war and both sides want them dead.

Jess and Thomas bargain for their survival by agreeing to build a printing press that Thomas has invented - again. The printing press had been invented many times over the years and, each time, the Library has suppressed it and killed or imprisoned the inventor. The printing press and many other inventions threaten the power that the Library has amassed over the centuries. The head of the Library will do anything to hold on to his personal power. If that means killing Thomas, he is more than willing to do that.

All of the group are wanted by the Magister for their various offenses. All of them also want to restore the Library to the glory it had before the Archivist Magisters began to value power over the role the Library was supposed to serve.

I really enjoy the world building in this series which rewrites the contributions and inventions of famous scientists through history. Just a few mentioned in this one are Gutenberg, Archimedes, and Heron of Alexandria. I also like the political landscape of the series with the Library taking over so many countries. I liked that the United States was a country in rebellion to the aims of the Library.

This one has a fast-moving plot as Jess tries to out think and out plan the many forces against them including his own father and other book smugglers.

Fans of the series will enjoy this episode and be eagerly waiting for the next.

Favorite Quote:
"Very well. Lock them up --"

"There's the good Burner welcome I was waiting for," Wolfe said sourly.

"-- and see that they are well treated," Beck continued. But he glanced at Wolfe, and behind the artifice of good humor, there was something far darker. He was the leader of a city that was fighting a war, and worse than that, he was a true believer. A fanatic who didnt' hesitate to kill, maim, and destroy in his attempts to make the world in his image.
I received this one for review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Teaser Tuesday: Ash and Quill by Rachel Caine

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker. 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 (from 10% in the eARC):
Jess heard footsteps then, and the scrape of the lock turning to the outer door, and was on his feet and at the bars so quickly me might have been spring-loaded.
This week I am reading Ash and Quill by Rachel Caine. This is the third book in the Great Library trilogy. I got my copy from NetGalley. Here is the description from Amazon:
The unforgettable characters from Ink and Bone and Paper and Fire unite to save the Great Library of Alexandria from itself in this electrifying adventure in the New York Times bestselling series.

Hoarding all the knowledge of the world, the Great Library jealously guards its secrets. But now a group of rebels poses a dangerous threat to its tyranny....

Jess Brightwell and his band of exiles have fled London, only to find themselves imprisoned in Philadelphia, a city led by those who would rather burn books than submit. But Jess and his friends have a bargaining chip: the knowledge to build a machine that will break the Library’s rule.

Their time is running out. To survive, they’ll have to choose to live or die as one, to take the fight to their enemies—and to save the very soul of the Great Library....

Saturday, July 1, 2017

State of the Stack (July 1, 2017)

This is my monthly State of the Stack post. It is my way to keep track of my review books and to hopefully reduce the stack that I have waiting for me. I take a look at my review commitments on or near the first of the month. Please feel free to join in and let me know the state of your stack.

Here is my Review Books Spreadsheet I list them in publication order and sort them by month. I can quickly see how many books I have for each date. Ideally, this keeps me from over-committing to review books. Check my spreadsheet to find out where I got each book.

I also do this post because sometimes (frequently) review books sit on my stack for a while before I read and review them. I try to read and review books within two weeks of publication date. Sometimes I can't, though, if too many books are releasing on the same date or if the book arrives too near its publication date and my calendar is already full.

I am very grateful to the authors and publishers who support my reading habit.

My Review Pile

July
Shallow Grave by Brian Thiem (July 11)
The Emperor of Mars by Patrick Samphire (July 18)
Amid Stars and Darkness by Chani Lynn Feener (July 18)
The Hunting Grounds by Katee Robert (July 25)

August
A Wedding Tail by Casey Griffin (August 1)
The Danger Gang and the Pirates of Borneo! by Stephen Bramucci (August 1)
 Just Friends by Tiffany Pitcock (August 1)
The Countdown Conspiracy by Katie Slivensky (August 1)
 Among the Dead by J. R. Backlund (August 8)
Dead Man's Bridge by Robert J. Mrazek (August 8)
Hunting Hour by Margaret Mizushima (August 8)
In Some Other Life by Jessica Brody (August 8)

September
A Conspiracy in Belgravia by Sherry Thomas (Sept. 5)
The Bronze Skies by Catherine Asaro (Sept. 5)
On the Chase by Katie Ruggle (Sept. 5)
Her Dark Half by Paige Tyler (Sept. 5)
Body on Baker Street by Vicki Delany (Sept. 12)
All the Secret Places by Anna Carlisle (Sept. 12)
The Equals by Daniel Sweren-Becker (Sept. 12)
Nyxia by Scott Reintgen (Sept. 12)
The Great Shelby Holmes Meets Her Match by Elizabeth Eulberg (Sept. 12)
Stolen Secrets by L. B. Schulman (Sept. 19)
Murder, Magic, and What We Wore by Kelly Jones (Sept. 19)
A Poison Dark and Drowning by Jessica Cluess (Sept. 19)
The Hunt by Chloe Neill (Sept. 26)
Archangel's Viper by Nalini Singh (Sept. 26)

October
The Exact Location of Home by Kate Messner (Oct. 3 Sept. 12)
Ally by Anna Banks (Oct. 3)
Satellite by Nick Lake (Oct. 3)
A Cajun Christmas Killing by Ellen Byron (Oct. 10)
Death Overdue by Allison Brook (Oct. 10)
Berserker by Emmy Laybourne (Oct. 10)
The Breathless by Tara Goedjen (Oct. 10)
The Innocence Treatment by Ari Goelman (Oct. 17)
The Wicker King by K. Ancrum (Oct. 31)

November
City of Lies by Victoria Thompson (Nov. 7)
Much Ado About Murder by Elizabeth J. Duncan (Nov. 7)
Unholy City by Carrie Smith (Nov. 7)

January
Death Below Stairs by Jennifer Ashley (Jan. 2)
A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn (Jan. 16)

I Read This Month

These are listed in the order I read them. Links go to my reviews for all that have been posted already. Otherwise, the date the review is scheduled for is listed.
  1. We Come Apart by Sarah Crossan & Brian Conaghan (June 10)
  2. The Last Place You Look by Kristen Lepionka (June 14)
  3. More of Me by Kathryn Evans (June 14)
  4. Indigo by Charlaine Harris et. al. (June 15)
  5. UNSUB by Meg Gardiner (June 21) 
  6. City of Angels by Kristi Belcamino (June 21)
  7. The Waking Land by Callie Bates (June 22)
  8. Stillhouse Lake by Rachel Caine (June 28)
  9. The Reluctant Queen by Sarah Beth Durst (June 29)
  10. A Panicked Premonition by Victoria Laurie (July 1)
  11. Bannerless by Carrie Vaughn (July 5)
  12. Some Kind of Hero by Suzanne Brockmann (July 6) 
  13. Ash and Quill by Rachel Caine (July 6) 
  14. Murder in Mayfair by D. M. Quincy (July 8)
  15. What Goes Up by Katie Kennedy (July 8)
Read Previously, Reviews Posted This Month
  1. The Sandcastle Empire by Kayla Olson
  2. A Merciful Truth by Kendra Elliot
  3. What I Lost by Alexandra Ballard
  4. Silver Silence by Nalini Singh
  5. Run to Ground by Katie Ruggle
  6. Want by Cindy Pon
  7. The Fallen Kingdom by Elizabeth May
  8. Bad Housekeeping by Maia Chance
I Added These Books

These are listed in the order I received them. Links go to Amazon. Date published is listed in parentheses.
  1. Stillhouse Lake by Rachel Caine (July 1)
  2. The Hunting Grounds by Katee Robert (July 25) 
  3. Archangel's Viper by Nalini Singh (Sept. 26)
  4. Her Dark Half by Paige Tyler (Sept. 5)
  5. On the Chase by Katie Ruggle (Sept. 5)
  6. A Wedding Tail by Casey Griffin (August 1)
  7. Unholy City by Carrie Smith (Nov. 7)
  8. Death Overdue by Brooke Allison (Oct. 10)
  9. Much Ado About Murder by Elizabeth J. Duncan (Nov. 7)
  10. All the Secret Places by Anna Carlisle (Sept. 12)
  11. A Cajun Christmas Killing by Ellen Byron (Oct. 10)
  12. Body on Baker Street by Vicki Delany (Sept. 12)
  13. A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn (Jan. 16, 2018)
  14. The Bronze Skies by Catherine Asaro (Sept. 5)
  15. A Conspiracy in Belgravia by Sherry Thomas (Sept. 5)
  16. Death Below Stairs by Jennifer Ashley (Jan. 2, 2018)
  17. City of Lies by Victoria Thompson (Nov. 7)
  18. The Hunt by Chloe Neill (Sept. 26)
Next Month's Plan

Retiring and moving really messed up my reading plans. I am uncomfortable unless I am at least three weeks ahead on my blogs as far as reading and writing reviews for books from my review stack. I really like being able to change things up by reading something from my own massive TBR mountain. However, until I get my three week cushion again, I will be reading only review books. I should be able to rebuild my cushion in July unless something else comes up that keeps me from reading. Since I have two houses on the market and lots of little details to take care of with one of them, something may well come up.

Wish me luck,