Friday, September 30, 2011

Jenny Pox by JL Bryan



Jenny has a secret. Her touch spreads a supernatural plague.

She devotes her life to avoiding contact with people, until her senior year of high school, when she meets the one boy she can touch, and she falls in love.

But there's a problem--he's under the spell of his devious girlfriend Ashleigh, who secretly wields the most dangerous power of all.

Now Jenny must learn to use the deadly "Jenny pox" she's fought her entire life to hide, or be destroyed by Ashleigh's ruthless plans.

Not recommended for readers under sixteen due to mature content.


You've probably already heard of the third book in this series, Alexander Death. It just recently released and I reviewed it here.
Jenny Pox is the first book in the series and is a great beginning to it.


Jenny has a terrible disease that keeps her from being able to touch people.  If she does, they could die.  JL Bryan does a great job in showing just how lonely and depressing life is for Jenny.  She wears gloves to avoid contact with others for their protection not hers, yet she's ridiculed and picked on, friendless.  All thanks to one girl-Ashleigh Goodling.  


While Jenny can't touch anyone, Ashleigh seems to touch everyone she meets, spreading love and warmth so that everyone loves her and feels good around her.  And she makes sure everyone knows how much she despises "Jenny Mittens".


But this book is more than a mean girl versus the recluse with a hidden power.  Because Ashleigh's touch is a power too.  And there's a boy with a power too.  And when he touches Jenny, he doesn't get hurt.  But, he happens to be Ashleigh's boyfriend.
The novel becomes a power struggle between good and evil, right and wrong and life and death.  The ending is unbelievable!


As noted above, because of mature themes and content it is not recommended for anyone under the age of 16, but highly recommended!


Heather

Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Name of The Star Shade of London #1 by Maureen Johnson

The Name of The Star


Shades of London
By Maureen Johnson
Putnam
September 29 2011
pages 370
$16.99
Reviewed ARC from Library Things
Early Reviewers Program

The day Louisiana teenager Rory Deveaux arrives in London marks a memorable occasion. For Rory, it's the start of a new life at a London boarding school. But for many, this will be remembered as the day a series of brutal murders broke out across the city, gruesome crimes mimicking the horrific Jack the Ripper events of more than a century ago.

Soon “Rippermania” takes hold of modern-day London, and the police are left with few leads and no witnesses. Except one. Rory spotted the man police believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommate, who was walking with her at the time, didn't notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, why has Rory become his next target? In this edge-of-your-seat thriller, full of suspense, humor, and romance, Rory will learn the truth about the secret ghost police of London and discover her own shocking abilities.(From Good Reads)

Okay, here's the truth.  I have written this review about ten times and none of them have come close to saying what I want to say about how I feel about my reading experience of this novel.  The Name of the Star was an absolute out of the ball park WIN as Ashley at the Bookish Brunette would say!  This novel has everything in just the right amounts and there is never a hint about how things are going to turn out.  Or how Rory, the main character got her special abilities.  It's just a brilliantly written novel.

So, here's what I loved.  Rory, the main character.  She's from the deep South, Louisiana, and she has all these crazy aunts and uncles and tells these stories about them to her new schoolmates without any self consciousness.  She doesn't worry if they think she's weird, in fact, she thinks she's the coolest thing in the room because they all may be new and different to her, but she's the only one that's different to them.  So she tells them about the aunt that channels angels and has 800 statues of angels in her house and garden.  She tells them about her uncle who has his room on the second floor filled with freezers, and keeps his money in peanut butter jars in the ground.  She tells them about the other eccentricities of her southern town, but she's smarter than all of them.  This is taken totally out of context and Rory thinks this when the head girl is a bitch to her but it pretty much applies anywhere, anytime, "I decided to deflect her attitude by giving her a long Southern answer.  I come from people who know how to draw things out.  Annoy a Southerner, and we will drain away the moments of your life with our slow, detailed replies until you are nothing but a husk of your former self and that much closer to death."(p24) I so love that!  You just don't know!  Rory is smart, she doesn't go into things lightly, she tries to be careful and her commentary throughout the book is hilarious in a dry humorous way.  When she and her roommate Jazza, get another roommate, Boo (a nickname) and Rory and Boo go to field hockey practice Rory notes, "She ran up and down the field with that stick like a thing born to run up and down the with a stick,"(p149). "Like a thing" because what else would run up and down the field with a stick?

So, yes of course the other thing I love is the humor in the book, dry, sarcastic, witty and at times self deprecating.  How can you not laugh when in the middle of some tense, serious life or death matters Rory thinks, "I was learning all kinds of things in London, mostly about ghosts and flags and disbanded girl groups, but still.  Learning is good."(p 217)  And believe me the humor is needed when the serious stuff starts happening.

"Rippermania" as the papers call it has erupted.  An elusive murderer is recreating the horrific murders of Jack the Ripper and no one sees him.  Not the police combing the area, not the cameras, no one.  But this may not be someone everyone can see.  And that's where the secret ghost police come in.  I won't lie, at first this part confused me a little until they explained to Rory what was going on.  It was a "need to know" basis for a little bit of the story and then it all came spilling out.  But as the real story behind the murders comes out the story becomes more suspenseful and scary and I unfortunately was reading late at night by myself.  I jumped at every noise.  Turned the bathroom and closet light on and sat in the middle of the bed hidden by pillows.  There is nothing scarier than a ghost story in the middle of the night, especially a well written one.

This brings me to the next thing I loved.  I had no idea who would survive and who wouldn't.  Just because Rory is the main character in this novel doesn't mean she would be in the next one.  I didn't see how this one would end.  No escape routes.  No rescues.  No hope.

And the side characters.  Jazza is the first roommate Rory has and will now be known as Mom.  She was the worrier and the caretaker.  She is very protective of Rory and hates Boo I think because she feels threatened by her.  Boo is the cool newbie.  She's new to the group and loves what she does and isn't doing the best job at fitting in.  But she's kind and takes what she does seriously.  Jerome, the boyfriend is sweet, shy and also very protective of Rory.  He also is funny, but he is a little uncertain of himself with Rory.  Stephen takes himself and his duty very seriously, almost too much so, but he also is very protective of Rory.  And then there's Callum.  Callum is a tell it like it is kind of guy who doesn't hold back and would do anything for his friends.

And did I say the plot is phenomenal?  Boarding school, transplant a Southerner to London, Jack the Ripper, paranormal, do I really need to say any more to get you to read this?  Great characters, and MC I could identify with (even though I'm not 16/17 yrs old) suspense, a mean girl, humor, and a little romance.  Oh and did I tell you it's set in London?

So, if I haven't shown the love for this novel, then I just can't do it.  I loved every word from the beginning to the end and can't wait for the sequel!  I love Maureen Johnson's writing style, so easy to read.  I read it in one day, but the plot twists and the entire plot line were fresh.  There are only a few ghost stories out right now that I know of so this one feels like something new and ahead of it's time.  The scary parts are lightened by Rory's humor and observations and as I said, she's not stupid.

I hope I've convinced you somewhere in here that The Name of The Star is a great first book in the Shades of London series.  The set up for the next book is in the last few pages but I wouldn't call it a cliffhanger.  I now have to go out and buy the rest of Maureen Johnson's books so I know what I've been missing!

Heather

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Water Wednesdays Finale



Don't forget to link up your answers to Nic at Irresistible Reads
                                      who is hosting this week!



1.  After Gabi is injured, the doctor gives her a tonic.  Gabi questions the doctor several times what is in it but he refuses to tell.  Would have you taken the tonic in Gabi's situation? 


I probably would have taken it.  I might have questioned it after I saw him talking to Lord Forabosch, but still it made her stop hurting.




2.  Before the games Gabi asks Lia to let Lord Forabosch win in the archery event as people especially Lord Forabosch are becoming suspicious of them.  But during the games Lord Forabosch upsets Lia trying to throw her off her game. So Lia decides to win.  Do you think she did the right thing by not letting Lord Forabosch bully her or do you think she took an unnecessary risk?


No, I think she had to show Lord Forabosch that she wasn't scared of him and that she wasn't going to be bullied by him.


3.  When Gabi is dying and she and Lia decide to return to the tombs so they can get the cure at home but they have to tell Marcello the truth.  Even though Marcello thinks that it is madness that they are from the future he believes in Gabi because he loves her.  Do you think this is believable?  What would you have done if you were Marcello?


I would have thought it was the fever talking or that they were suffering from the same poison.  But sometimes with love you have to take things on faith and Marcello was in love by then waiting by her bedside for her to wake up and getting the best doctor for her.  So I would have trusted her.  Especially after she disappeared!


4.       In the end Gabi and Lia return home.  Do you think Gabi will return to Marcello? Would you go back?



Um, yes. And yes.

5.  Looking back at Waterfall what was your favourite moment?  



Having Gabi come out of the tomb for the first time and realize she was in the middle of an honest to God sword fight where men were bleeding and dying.  


Or, that teenage dialogue she had running in her head and using teenage language in her head.


Or, when Marcello switched with Luca when Luca was teaching Gabi to dance!
I had a lot of favorite moments!!  I loved this book and I can't wait to have a chance to read the others.  I can't believe I actually have waited to read the other two while they are sitting beside me!!  I haven't even met Lord Greco yet!  But, I have truly enjoyed reading everyone's answers to the questions and Waterfall Wednesdays!  Thanks to all the hosts and to Lisa T. Bergren for such a great novel!!


Heather


Monday, September 26, 2011

Damage by Anya Parrish



There was a time when I prayed for Rachel to be real. Until the night I learned she'd always planned to kill me.

When Dani was eight, she fell from a building. No one believed her claim that she was pushed by Rachel . . . her imaginary friend. It took years of therapy to convince Dani that Rachel wasn't real.

Now fifteen, Dani wants to make it as a dancer. But a deadly freak accident sends Dani a terrifying message: Rachel is back, she's real, and she'll stop at nothing to kill Dani.

Complicating matters is Jesse, the school bad boy who's being stalked by his own invisible childhood nemesis. Dani and Jesse join forces to learn why their astral tormenters are back. Their investigation leads to a horrifying discovery—and the terrible experiment that binds them to each other.

Damage is a creepy psychological thriller that will have you wondering about your own sanity when you finish it.  After reading  the prologue (always read the prologue), you will definitely be intrigued but wonder if what you read was just the dreams of a sick child, maybe brought on by fever or drugs or if it really happened like she said it did.  Maybe she wandered up there in a drug induced haze and jumped.  Keep reading!


The day of the school field trip starts out ordinary and turns into a terror filled sprint for their lives as Dani and Jesse find that they have a lot more in common than a shared seat on the bus.  As they struggle to make sense of the day and avoid their childhood make believe "friends" who are no more make believe now than they were when they were children, they become drawn to each other.  Not insta love, maybe life or death situations bring them together, especially as they find they can trust no one, not even family.  Or maybe it's something else even more elemental than that. Keep reading!  Ever chapter gets even better than the last!


This novel had me on the edge of my seat in the couple of hours it took for me to read it, trying to figure out what was going on.  I mean, I understood what was happening, but I needed to know why, and how and more importantly, were my childhood monsters going to come to life and come after me??  This was an incredible read!  It was fun and scary and a psychological thrill ride like I haven't experienced in YA before.  And the cliff hanger ending did not help!  I so wanted 200 pages more.  Even then I may not have been satisfied!  Anya Parrish's writing style is easy to read and the terror and plot she delivers is believable and intricate, like a black widow spider in her web, waiting to trap us.  You do not want to miss this one!  I'm hoping for a sequel that's just as thrilling.  It's great to find such a fresh new voice and chilling idea in the paranormal world of YA!




Heather

Saturday, September 24, 2011

IMM




What is this poor little boy looking for?  Oh, I know!  It's Sunday!  He wants to know what I got in my mailbox!!  Do you want to know?  Well Kristi at The Story Siren started this meme so we could tell each other and any one else that might be looking through the blogs what's new, what might be old that we got, and what we won.  So, if you're interested like that little boy, here's what I got this week!







From Amazon:
Solstice by P.J. Hoover


Piper’s world is dying. Global warming kills every living thing on Earth, and each day brings hotter temperatures and heat bubbles which threaten to destroy humanity. Amid this Global Heating Crisis, Piper lives with her mother who suffocates her more than the chaotic climate. When her mother is called away to meet the father Piper has been running from her entire life, Piper seizes an opportunity for freedom.

But when Piper discovers a world of mythology she never knew existed, she realizes her world is not the only one in crisis. While Gods battle for control of the Underworld, Piper's life spirals into turmoil, and she struggles to find answers to secrets kept from her since birth. And though she’s drawn to her classmate Shayne, he may be more than he claims. Piper has to choose whom she can trust and how she can save the people she loves even if it means the end of everything she’s ever known. 







Sacrifice The Sequel to Crave by Laura J. Burns & Melinda Metz


Gabriel and Shay are convinced that they can make their relationship work. Knowing that Shay is half-vampire, Gabriel thinks that his coven will embrace her as one of their own, but instead they view her as an abomination, a thing that doesn’t belong in either world. And they want her dead. Now Gabriel must make the ultimate decision - watch his love be killed by his coven or defy the people closest to him, the people he has spent centuries with to save her.

















Cold Kiss by Amy Garvey         

“It seemed so right. Danny was mine, I was his, and that wasn’t going to work if he was dead. So I would make him not dead, not anymore. I didn’t think any further than what it would feel like to kiss him again, to wrap my arms around him and bury my head against his shoulder.
That was my first mistake. It also turned out to be the biggest.”


When her boyfriend, Danny, is killed in a car accident, Wren can’t imagine living without him. Wild with grief, she uses the untamed powers she’s inherited to bring him back. But the Danny who returns is just a shell of the boy she once loved.

Wren has spent four months keeping Danny hidden, while her life slowly unravels around her. Then Gabriel DeMarnes transfers to her school and somehow, inexplicably, he can sense her secret. Wren finds herself drawn to Gabriel, who is so much more alive than the ghost of the boy she loved. But Wren can’t turn her back on Danny or the choice she made for him—and she realizes she must find a way to make things right, even if it means breaking her own heart.

Amy Garvey’s transcendent teen debut is perfect for fans of Shiver and Beautiful Creatures. Wren’s unforgettable voice and story will stay with readers long after the last page is turned.



Won from Bibliopunkk and this site has some awesome giveaways which you should check out.  ARC's of books that aren't coming out for months!!  And easy to win.  Just pick a number from 1-300.  You really need to check her site out.


Life Eternal a Dead Beautiful Novel by Yvonne Woon



Renée Winters has changed. When she looks in the mirror, a beautiful girl with an older, sadder face stares back. Her condition has doctors mystified, but Renée can never reveal the truth: she died last May, and was brought back to life by the kiss of her Undead soul mate, Dante Berlin.
Now, her separation from Dante becomes almost unbearable. His second life is close to an end, and each passing day means one less that she will spend with the boy who shares her soul.
Just when Renée has almost given up hope, she learns of the Nine Sisters—brilliant scholars who, according to legend, found a way to cheat death. She can’t shake the feeling that they are somehow connected to her dreams, strange visions that hint at a discovery so powerful, and so dangerous, that some will stop at nothing to protect it.
Renée thought she knew the truth about life and death. But there is a secret woven through history that holds the only hope for Dante and Renée. Unless they find answers soon, their time together is doomed to be cut short.

And for review:  Song of the Nile by Stephanie Dray 
This is the sequel to Lily of the Nile

Sorceress. Seductress. Schemer. Cleopatra's daughter is the one woman with the power to destroy an empire...
Having survived her perilous childhood as a royal captive of Rome, Selene pledged her loyalty to Augustus and swore she would become his very own Cleopatra. Now the young queen faces an uncertain destiny in a foreign land.
The magic of Isis flowing through her veins is what makes her indispensable to the emperor. Against a backdrop of imperial politics and religious persecution, Cleopatra's daughter beguiles her way to the very precipice of power. She has never forgotten her birthright, but will the price of her mother's throne be more than she's willing to pay?





Many thanks to Bibliopunkk and to Stephanie Dray for the books!!


So the little guy up top wants to know what did you get in your mailbox???

  

Friday, September 23, 2011

Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu

Breadcrumbs
By Anne Ursu
 
Walden Pond Press
Release Date 9/27/11
336 pages
$16.99 


Once upon a time, Hazel and Jack were best friends. But that was before he stopped talking to her and disappeared into a forest with a mysterious woman made of ice. Now it's up to Hazel to go in after him. Inspired by Hans Christian Andersen's "The Snow Queen," Breadcrumbs is a story of the struggle to hold on, and the things we leave behind.

**Sigh** I'm in love with a book. No- not a guy in a book- the story, the writing, the characters, the words, everything about it. I just want to curl with it and hug it like an old friend. And Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu is
 an old friend wrapped in new words and around new tellings of favorite old fairy tales I grew  up reading and cherish still.  They were always like a warm blanket to me, familiar, yet slightly different, depending on who wrote them, every one's version just a little different.  There were no Disney versions when I was a child and don't expect the Disney version with Breadcrumbs.  I wouldn't even call it a fairy tale.  It goes way beyond that.

First, there is the heroine. Yes, that's right. no hero here. There is Hazel. Hazel has a best friend named Jack who has been her best friend since they were six. They have crazy incredible imaginations. With Jack, Hazel would mount her scooter and joust with plastic swords like knights. When it was so hot one summer they actually thought they might melt, they filled the baby pool with ice, begging some from neighbors and then lay in it getting numb and pretending to melt with the ice. They even found an abandoned shack near the woods that they called a palace, a fort, even a Shrieking Shack. With Jack, Hazel could be herself. She is brave and strong. She is loyal even when loyalty appears not to be deserved. She is courageous and determined. All of these character traits come in handy when it comes to dealing with a teacher who doesn't appreciate her learning style and classmates who don't understand her. And when she has to find Jack when he stops talking to her one day and then disappears. The word "impossible" is not in her vocabulary. And she is second only to "Evie" from Paranormalcy by Kiersten White as my strongest and favorite female character. No, she doesn't fight, this is MG, remember. She uses her brain. I haven't read enough Middle Grade literature to make a comparison of her to anyone in MG lit but if she had to kick butt, she'd kick any fairy tale princess' butt up and down Happily Ever After Lane and make it home for dinner!

The narrative style is also unique in comparison to the fairy tales I grew up with. No unseen narrator telling the story. Most of it is told through Hazel's point of view, third person. We get to see and feel and hear her think. And her thinking is very interesting. We get to know her early on so we know further on in the story that she isn't going to do what anyone else would do, she thinks outside the box. Here's an example of how she sees things. After seeing the school counselor, Hazel's mother wants to make sure Hazel knows there is nothing wrong with her. "Listen to me. There is nothing wrong with you. Got it?" And Hazel nods and could think "yeah, sure whatever." But instead thinks, "They were plastic flowers of words-but they looked nice on the surface." (p. 142) I know what she means, but not many kids in fifth grade would be smart enough to figure it out. Only the truth is, there isn't anything wrong with her. She's just different and different is good in my book. Other narrations include Jack in third person narrative in a few chapters and then the unseen narrator steps in for a few chapters as well just to move things along.

Anne Ursu's command of the written word is amazing. It's poetic. It's lyrical. It breaks your heart and keeps you going even when you want to stop. The words are so pretty that it actually took me a week to read Breadcrumbs, lulling me to sleep with it's rhythmic phrases and fairy tale images-wolves, woodsmen, dancing shoes, kindly strangers, match girls and cold. To quote the story again, "It was the sort of story your mother told you before she tucked you in at night and you would sigh and think of the...tragedy of it all. It would have been beautiful..." (p. 206)

I read the ARC of Breadcrumbs thanks to the publisher and K. at Walden Pond Press. This in no way influenced my review of Breadcrumbs. That being said, I'll be ordering my own copy of Breadcrumbs when it is published. One, because the ARC has blank pages of promised artwork to come and I definitely don't want to miss that! And two, because this is one of those books that is to be shared. I will put it on my special shelf (the one high in my closet that I have to ask my husband to reach) so that when my kids need to feel like a kid again or I do or when I have grandchildren waaaay down the line, I can share this book with them. It's enchanting, entrancing, and an absolute must read for fairy tale lovers of all ages. It's about growing up, friendship and going on. And it's sure to be a classic!

Heather

There is also a Giveaway!!! Walden Pond Press is giving away a Hardback Copy of Breadcrumbs.  US only.

You can fill out the Form here to enter the giveaway.  But before you do that you might want to Follow Walden Pond Press on Twitter  and on their Facebook Page because they are giving away an iPad with a Breadcrumbs skin on it.  The best place for information would be to start Here on September 27th, but you might want to poke around before then on their website and see what's going on.






Thursday, September 22, 2011

Alexander Death by JL Bryan The Paranormals Series

Alexander Death The Paranormals, Book Three
by JL Bryan
www.jlbryanbooks.com
Sept 2011
Pages 252
ARC being reviewed
Thank you JL Bryan

While Seth searches for Jenny, Dr. Heather Reynard of the CDC unravels Seth and Jenny's secrets.

Alexander opens Jenny's mind to her deep past, and to the full horrific extent of her powers.

Torn between her feelings for Alexander and Seth, and between her past lives and her present, Jenny must prepare to face her enemies in the final, catastrophic battle...
************************************************************************************************
SPOILERS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ JENNY POX AND TOMMY NIGHTMARE DO NOT READ REVIEW BUY BOOKS!!!!!!!
ALSO I'D LIKE TO CAUTION THAT THIS IS FOR OLDER YA READERS DEFINITELY NOT FOR YOUNGER READERS

JL Bryan is a master storyteller and if you don't believe me, then read any of his stories and see for yourself. I'm writing today about the third book in his series, The Paranormals, Alexander Death. If you're up on the story thus far, you will not be disappointed with Alexander Death. It is fast paced and filled with so much energy and character that it is legendary. The characters have powers like none I've seen in YA.

Jenny, tortured throughout two novels is now coming into her own. Jenny Morton, has been through way more than any single character that I've read about in my reading history! She's been tormented by Ashleigh Goodling all her life. She's been unable to touch people because she can give people a deadly disease, "Jenny Pox", her classmates have nicknamed it. She can't even hug her dad or pet the dog. She craved human touch and finally found it with her opposite, Seth. But after the town attacked them and Jenny unleashed herself, after her father was scared of her and after Seth betrayed her trust and she's in danger, the sexy stranger that claims to know her better than anyone and saves her seems like a great idea. So off to Mexico she goes with Alexander, El Brujo. Like the other Paranormals, Ashleigh, Seth, Esmerelda, Tommy and Jenny, Alexander also has his own kind of power. It's an interesting power and Jenny's power enhances it.

But Alexander claims he wants to be with Jenny because they've been together through many lifetimes. He seems to remember all of them, while Jenny has no memory of the lives they've shared. Alexander treats her like no one has ever treated her. She has a servant who becomes her first real friend, Kisa, and her own room.  She goes shopping and buys her own clothes and is actually able to save herself and Kisa from two thugs using her power, for good instead of evil for the first time that she can remember.  And Alexander treats her with respect, he throws her a party and shows her what her power can do.  He treats her like the goddess he says she is.

But, is he really as good as he appears to be?  JL Bryan leads you to think so.  We never really know more than Jenny knows about Alexander.  We know what Seth is doing to try to find her and we know that she isn't safe going back to the United States.  But JL Bryan keeps what's about to happen a closely guarded secret until its thrust upon you and you're left wide open trying to deal with your emotions and the situation, just like Jenny.  Who to believe?  Who to trust?  There is an underlying darkness, but there's always been that.  And what about the Mayans?  And the snakes?  And the zombies?
And the drugs?  And is the CDC and Homeland Security still poking around the Fallen Oak "chemical plant" disaster?

 As I said this is such a fast paced novel I read it in one night.  I sat there and drank in every word and the cautious person in me was saying, "Jenny, don't open the basement door."  While the one that wanted her to finally have some fun and get some revenge was saying, "Go for it!"  I vascillated throughout the entire book.  

And then I got to the last twenty pages and I kept thinking, "No way he can pull it all off in this amount of pages."  And I kept reading and watching the page numbers go down and kept thinking, "No way he can finish this story in this amount of pages."  I was worried about info dump or a neat and tidy bow or something like that.  But the more I said "no way" the better the story got.  That final battle, it was legendary!  I've read some kick ass fight scenes this year and I've read some great fight scenes in this series, the one in Jenny Pox at the end is not to be missed!  But this one, this one has got to be right up there with Buffy when they blow up Sunnydale High at graduation minus the mayor turning into a giant snake.  It is monumental!

By the time I got down to the last few cool down tie up loose end pages, I was so pumped full of adrenaline I was bouncing up and down on the bed.  I felt like jumping on the bed, but the ceiling fan gets in the way.   As it was I used the f-word on Twitter!  That is how great this finale is to this series!
You will not stop to eat or drink or even pee.  You will glare at humans and animals that dare to interrupt you and you will kick yourself if you don't hurry up and read this series.  The real origins of the Paranormals comes out in this book so you need to make sure you've got all three because once you've read the first one, you'll never want to wait for the second one and definitely not for Alexander Death.

I loved every minute of this book.  Every question was answered everything was completed, but not tied up with a bow.  There were a few extras thrown in that I didn't expect and I loved the ending.  Read it!  Enjoy it!  Tell me how much you loved it!

Heather


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Waterfall Wednesdays Read-Along 4







Waterfall Wednesdays is a question and answer session based on the book Waterfall by  Lisa T. Bergren.  Bloggers answer the questions below, this week the questions come from Jenny at Supernatural Snark.  Each week we answer new questions.
There also is a contest going on over at Small Review where you can win signed books, bookmarks and t-shirts.  Hop on over there and sign up for a chance to win and spread the word so that Lisa can write book four in the series!!



DISCUSSION QUESTIONS FOR CHAPTERS 18-23


1. Gabi and Lia both face several life and death situations in these chapters, having to pick up weapons in defense of those they love and experiencing first hand the brutality of close combat. If you had the choice between picking up a weapon and standing on the front lines or staying behind to tend to the wounded as necessary, which would you choose?
I would love to think I was brave enough to pick up a weapon and fight on the front lines.  But I have no fighting skills whatsoever, so I would choose to treat the injured unless my children or the love of my life was fighting.  Then, I might have to get involved because I'd have to make sure my loved ones were okay.  I can yell watch out and be careful just as good as the next person!


2. Both girls get to wear extraordinary gowns to their victory celebration; what would your dream medieval gown look like?


Definitely, deep blue with gold embroidery and trim.  I'd want a quilted like bodice and something that pushes the twins up if you know what I mean.  I'd like to have bell like sleeves, I hate tight fitting sleeves and an empire waist line.  Definitely a filmy overlay for my skirt.  And I love the slippers but I have high arches so I need a little bit of a heel.  And I'd love someone to weave stuff through my hair and make something beautiful out of my plain hairstyle.

3. Gabi has crude stitches put in and must endure both their removal as well as the cauterization of the wound. How is your threshold for pain? Do you think you would have simply gritted your teeth as Gabi does?


No, I'd be screaming like a couple of babies!  They'd hear me all the way to Siena!  I would never be able to endure that pain.  I am the biggest baby in the world.  You should hear me complain about my migraines or sore throats!  Nope, Gabi is way more mature than me!


4. Marcello wants to properly court Gabi after they express mutual feelings of affection, wanting to speak with her mother about his intentions. What do you think is the most romantic aspect of medieval courtship?

The respect that is shown to the women.No makeout sessions, just stolen kisses and hand holding.  I think the innocence is the most romantic aspect of medieval courtship.

5. Gabi and Lia find themselves with conflicting desires toward the end with Lia wanting to return home and Gabi hoping to stay. Do you think that Gabi is being unfair to Lia for wanting to stay, or is Lia being unfair to Gabi for demanding they go? A little of both? 


 A little of both.  Gabi has to go back in the end, but I think they are both a little selfish.  Lia doesn't understand that Gabi can have developed such feelings in such a short amount of time.  Gabi doesn't understand it herself.  Gabi doesn't want to go because of her feelings but understands she must go for Lia to go.  In the end 

they both are a little selfish, but Gabi seems to be more giving.


Great questions Jenny!  Now grab your copy of Waterfall and join us!  Don't forget to link up your answers to Jenny at Supernatural Snark.


Heather

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Guys Read 2 Thriller edited by Jon Scieszka

Guys Read 2 Thriller
Edited by Jon Scieszka
Walden Pond Press
Available 9/20
$16.99
288 pages

A body on the tracks

A teenage terrorist

A mysterious wish-granting machine

The world’s worst private detective

The second volume in the Guys Read Library of Great Reading is chock-full of mystery, intrigue, and nefarious activity. Featuring some of the best writers around, and compiled by certified guy Jon Scieszka, Guys Read: Thriller is a pulse-pounding collection of brand-new short stories, each one guaranteed to keep you riveted until the final page.

Following Guys Read Funny Business, Guys Read 2 Thriller gives us short stories by authors such as MT Anderson, Matt de la Pena, Anthony Horowitz, Walter Dean Myers, Maragaret Peterson Haddix, Jarrett J. Krosoczka, Gennifer Choldenko, Bruce Hale, James Patterson and Patrick Carman. I'm familiar with several of these authors. Some, I've never heard of. But the short stories in Thriller were again great for reluctant readers and reading lovers alike.


I found The Old Dead Nuisance by MT Anderson to be a great bedtime story, not too scary, but just enough to be appealing. It was a story about a little boy stuck on the set of a haunted house where two supposed and feuding psychics are being filmed by Paul's dad, the little boy. Paul has to hide and stay out of the way behind the sofa reading. Then Paul gets wind of a treasure that the dysfunctional family living in the house had, the father of the house hid it from his sons, right under their noses. Ironically, while investigating, Paul is the one that runs into the ghost of the cantankerous old man his children named "The Old Nuisance". The psychics are too busy feuding or being fake to ever see him. And Paul learns some very interesting information about the treasure.


Another story I was intrigued and educated by was Pirate by Walter Dean Myers. I have to claim complete ignorance at knowing the reasons behind the actions of the Somali Pirates. I thought they were just thugs looking to profit from the unfortunate people that get in their waterways. Pirate gave me a look at the reason the Somalis have for attacking and holding for ransom Americans, Europeans, even attempting to attack a cruise ship.  I guarantee you when you read this story you will feel shame and a bit of understanding.  Yes, it's very frightening from both sides of the story, but it gives you pause for thought.  I don't excuse or condone their tactics, but I never gave thought that their might be a real reason this started up.

And lastly, and I'll admit by far my most favorite of the stories was the last in the book, Ghost Vision Goggles by Patrick Carman.  Unique little Kyle loves to spend money on candy, action figures and weird things- like Chia pets, and fart putty (I had to look that one up. According to Amazon, where you can order it, "Work this putty with your finger to produce the hilarious sound of a gaseous explosion-very funny!") and a Magic 8 Ball.  You get the picture.  He's a bit quirky.  And the big kid across the street, Scotty Vincent, likes to steal these things and break them much to Kyle's dislike and misfortune.  Scotty is kind of sly and can sweet talk his way into getting into Kyle's house, past Kyle's mother without too much trouble, terrorizing Kyle in his own house, in his own room!  But then one summer, Kyle's parents buy a cabin on Lake Lenore (the same lake Scotty has a house on) and Kyle finds a stack of comic books with all kinds of  advertisements for weird things.  The kinds of things he loves to buy with his money.  So he counts down the days until they leave the cabin and he can order his weird things.  He spends his days changing his order around but there is one thing he knows he's gotta have, Ghost Vision Goggles!  He orders everything when he gets home and waits for them eagerly to arrive in the mail.  There are setbacks and weird things that happen and Scotty.  But he finally gets the Ghost Vision Goggles and that's when the fun really begins!!

This collection has something for everyone and I promise you won't be disappointed when you pick it up.  Read it straight through or read each story at a time.   It's a great collection!!






Heather





Sunday, September 18, 2011

IMM


This week's IMM brought me a fabulous surprise of which there is a video below for Alexander Death by JL Bryan!  This is the conclusion of The Paranormals Series by JL Bryan and it is awesome!

I also got to other fabulously awesome books that I haven't read yet
one from Amazon:  As I Wake by Elizabeth Scott 
Ava is welcomed home from the hospital by a doting mother, lively friends, and a crush finally beginning to show interest. There's only one problem: Ava can't remember any of them - and can't shake the eerie feeling that she's not who they say she is.

Ava struggles to break through her amnesiac haze as she goes through the motions of high-school life, but the memories that surface take place in a very different world, where Ava and familiar-faced friends are under constant scrutiny and no one can be trusted. Ava doesn't know what to make of these visions, or of the boy who is at the center of them all, until he reappears in her life and offers answers . . . but only in exchange for her trust.

And the fabulous book I've seen all around the blogs that is scary right off the bat in the first chapter, Beautifully Broken by Sherry Soule sent by the author for review.   

They say every town has its secrets, but that doesn’t even begin to describe Whispering Pines. The townsfolk are a superstitious lot and the mystical disappearance of a local teen has everyone murmuring about a centuries old witch’s curse.

Sixteen-year-old Shiloh Ravenwolf is a heritage witch from the Broussard family, a family both destined and cursed. When she takes a summer job at Ravenhurst Manor, she discovers a ghost with an agenda. That’s where she meets the new town hottie, Trent Donovan, and immediately becomes spellbound by his charms.

Finally, Shiloh's met someone who is supercute and totally into her, but Trent may be the next victim on the supernatural hit list. And Shiloh is the only person with the power to save him. Complicated much?


It sucks to have a destiny, especially since Shiloh would rather spend her summer being a normal girl who worries about clothes and boys, not the supernatural. But she’s never been normal and the stranger things become the more her own magical senses awaken.


With cryptic messages from a pesky wraith, she will begin to understand the mysterious significance of the strange mark branded on her wrist and decide how much she's willing to sacrifice to protect the other teenagers in town.


Unfortunately, for Shiloh, not all ghosts want help crossing over. Some want vengeance.


Thanks to JL Bryan for Alexander Death and Sherry Soule  
for Beautifully Broken!

Now, what did you guys get in your mailboxes this week???

Friday, September 16, 2011

Alexander Death!!!!



Take a look at my video on Alexander Death by JL Bryan!!
Another Friday love!!

Heather

My Friday Love

Today my Friday Love is the book currently on tour called Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake!  Below you will see my ridiculous attempt at poetry (I have never claimed to be a poet) to explain the book!  I will write a review, but this kind of reviews the book.


Ode to Anna Dressed in Blood

Anna dressed in blood kills all who dare have entered,
Cas is a ghost killer, about the two, the book is centered.
Cas has killed his share of ghosts none as strong as her,
Anna has killed everyone, yet spare him why? She isn't sure.
Cas knows he must kill her, but he is reluctant to do so,
Anna's a cold blooded killer, and he'd be negligent to let her go.

For the first time in his life, Cas find friends in Thunder Bay,
But working with other people just isn't his way.
He can't seem to shake them no matter what he does
And then he's kind of glad as he'll need then for his cause.
The suspense builds, the horror grows
The more they learn the less they know.
But Carmel and Thomas stay right by his side.
Ready to help in the dangerous creepy ride.
Help comes from unexpected places to try to save them all.
But really is it really over or are they just beginning to play ball?

The pace was fast, Cas was adorable,
Anna was gory, her crimes deplorable,
Carmel was more likable than any "It" girl I've seen
 Thomas was a witch and telepathic not you average teen.
I loved the characters including Anna, the bloody ghost,
But, I'll confess brave, funny narrator Cas I loved most.

If you don't read Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
We'll send something worse than Anna after you to 
at night to keep you awake,
So until its read,
Don't look under the bed!

Don't laugh at my poetry attempt!
Heather

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