31 December 2012

New Releases: January 1 - 7, 2013

Happy New Year everyone! Have a great night!
This is about a girl and a bunch of genetically altered boys. Awesome!
This is about a kingdom and demons and a badass female warrior. YES!

This is the prequel to the Pretty Little Liars series.
I read this last month and... bleh.

So, what book are you most looking forward to? I can't choose between Altered and Prophecy to be honest! 

30 December 2012

Monthly Wrap Up: December 2012

As you can see, December was an AMAZING month for reading. This is the most amount of books I have ever read in a month. Ever. I'm amazed with myself. I have to thank Lani from Read It, Reviewed It for forcing me to read the Lux series, because without her book pushing I wouldn't have read this fantastic series for a long while. The month isn't over yet, but I doubt I'll be finishing any other books so here they all are:
Books Read in December:
1. Burning Blue by Paul Griffin (Enjoyable)
2. Ironskin by Tina Connolly (Bland)
3. The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien
4. Mystic City by Theo Lawrence (Essential)
5. Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi (Essential)
6. Variant by Robison Wells (Essential)
7. Gravity by Melissa West (Enjoyable)
8. The Disappeared by C. J. Harper (Essential)
9. Life of Pi by Yann Martel
10. Paper Valentine by Brenna Yovanoff (Bland)
11. Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi (Essential)
12. Revolution 19 by Gregg Rosenblum (Enjoyable)
13. A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
14. Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes (Bland)
15. Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout (All Time Favourite)
16. Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout (All Time Favourite)
17. Opal by Jennifer L. Armentrout (All Time Favourite)
18. Infinite Sky by C. J. Flood (Bland)
19. The Prey by Andrew Fukuda (Essential)
20. Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally (Enjoyable)
Book of the Month:
I'm sorry, I couldn't pick just one! I have fallen in love with this series. Everything about it is perfect, from the characters to the dialogue, and Jennifer's writing style in general is just FLAWLESS. I cannot express how much I have enjoyed reading this series so far. I read all three books in under a week! And now I have to wait seven months for the fourth book *cries* Luckily JLA has another YA series that I can get into!
In 2012 I read 132 books! Not bad at all, considering in 2011 I 'only' read ~106! I'm only setting my reading goal at 100 books for 2013, because I'm hoping to get a job, and that will probably cut into my reading time. Unless anyone wants to pay me to read? 

Happy New Year, everyone! 

29 December 2012

Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi

Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
Ship Breaker #1
Release Date: May 1, 2010
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Source: Bought
Goodreads Stars: 4
Rating: Essential

In America's Gulf Coast region, where grounded oil tankers are being broken down for parts, Nailer, a teenage boy, works the light crew, scavenging for copper wiring just to make quota--and hopefully live to see another day. But when, by luck or chance, he discovers an exquisite clipper ship beached during a recent hurricane, Nailer faces the most important decision of his life: Strip the ship for all it's worth or rescue its lone survivor, a beautiful and wealthy girl who could lead him to a better life...
In this powerful novel, award-winning author Paolo Bacigalupi delivers a thrilling, fast-paced adventure set in a vivid and raw, uncertain future. - Goodreads

Ship Breaker is a book that I've been meaning to read for the longest time. I bought it either at the beginning of this year or the end of last, and I have only just found the time and motivation to read it. It certainly wasn't what I was expecting. I don't even know what I was expecting, but this was definitely not it.

The opening of this book gripped me. Nailer's getting copper out of a ship, when he nearly dies, only to be saved by a Lucky Strike. Then there's a huge storm which almost kills him - and does actually kill some of his friends - and everything is just AMAZING. I love it when the characters' lives are at risk!

Nailer and his crew were THE BEST. Crew is closer than blood. I may have cried or almost cried at a few points because I just can't take it when people look out for each other. It makes me very emotional! And in this instance, where without your crew you're as good as dead, looking out for one another was especially important.

I wanted to mention that this book had a wide range of characters, and lots of them were POCs. There was no whitewashing here, and Nailer, the main character, was also dark skinned. I want to hug the author for this, because there needs to be a wider range of POC characters in YA.

Nailer's dad was an ARSE. And I kinda loved it. Abusive parents is a subject rarely touched upon in YA, but when it is I really enjoy reading about it. Not because I'm some sort of evil witch, but because I enjoy seeing what effects it has on the characters involved, their relationship, and the characters around them. And then I love it when the abusive parent is cut off, maimed or hit by a truck.

I feel a bit meh about the romance, but at least there was build up and it wasn't rushed at all. In fact, the two hated each other a little bit in the beginning and I cheered them on. I love love/hate or hate/love relationships!  And they didn't actually do much else other than declare their feelings - at least, one side did, I don't think the other said anything - which was EXCELLENT. Because that meant that the focus was on the plot and not on a romantic subplot. A+!

I can't wait to read the companion, The Drowned Cities, which is already out. I don't know if Nailer makes an appearance in that, but I'm hoping for a cameo. If you've read it, then please don't tell me if he turns up or not! I'm hoping to find out more about the half-men in the next book, because they're what really interested me.

I would compare Ship Breaker to The Knife of Never Letting Go and Blood Red Road. I think if you enjoyed those two books then you'll like this, even though it doesn't have the unique writing style that those two books do!

28 December 2012

2012 End of Year Book Survey

This is the annual End of Year survey which was created by the very creative Jamie over at The Perpetual Page-turner. I do this survey every year, because I love filling in questions and I love reading other people's answers. If you've done this yourself then feel free to leave your links below! And thanks to Jamie for hosting this again for a third year!

Best in Books 2012
1. Best Book You Read In 2012? 
I had to break this up into genre, because I had quite a few favourites this year!
Paranormal - The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin Along with the sequel, but I can't cheat too much!
Contemporary - Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson I sobbed. So. Hard.
Dystopia - Unwind by Neal Shusterman EEP! I'm so glad I was told to read this.
Apocalyptic - Poison Princess by Kresley Cole AWESOME! This is also kind of paranormal, but shhh.

2. Book You Were Excited About and Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
Outpost by Ann Aguirre. I thought I would love it because I really liked the first book, Enclave, but unfortunately this was terrible.

3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012?
The Ivy by Lauren Kunze and Rina Onur, and Poison Princess by Kresley Cole. I was expecting The Ivy to be a light read to feed my contemporary craving, but instead I ended up adoring it. And as for Poison Princess, I had never read anything by Kresley Cole before and I ended up loving her writing style. It read like an adult urban fantasy (which I love) but in YA form.
4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012?
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin because it was my first All Time Favourite of the year and it was AMAZING.

5. Best series you discovered in 2012?
Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin, and Unwind by Neal Shusterman. Love them both, and their sequels are flawless!

6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2012?
Neal Shusterman, Michelle Hodkin, Kresley Cole, and Morgan Matson. All the ones mentioned in my Best Books list, basically! And also Patrick Ness because he is FABULOUS.

7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. It's not a new genre, but I don't read adult fiction all that much since this blog primarily focusses on Young Adult. Nevertheless, I really liked this one and ended up finishing it in just a few hours.
8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012?
Variant by Robison Wells, and The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin. Variant was sent to me by Daph from Loving Books, and she had told me it was an amazing book... I just didn't realise that I wouldn't be able to stop reading it! Same goes for the Mara Dyer books, but the second was even more thrilling than the first.

9. Book You Read In 2012 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin, and the sequel. I want to reread them both before I read the third book in the trilogy, so that I can look for clues and refresh my memory!

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2012?

11. Most memorable character in 2012?
Mara Dyer! She's been through so much in the books, and she's a complete BAMF.

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2012?
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson. I can't remember the last time I cried so much over a book.
13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012?
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson. As above, really. I cried, I laughed, and this book was just able to make me feel so much in the short time I was reading it. Come to think of it, I might give it a reread next year!

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read?
Percy Jackson! I had been meaning to start the series for ages, and I finally got to it in January of 2012. I haven't finished the series yet, but I've read the first three books and loved them. Thanks again, Daph!

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2012?
I'm gonna be really vague with this one, and just say the ending of Second Chance Summer. No spoilers!

16. Shortest and Longest Book You Read In 2012?
Shortest - The Thorn and the Blossom by Theodora Goss, which was tiny.
Longest - The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan, which was an epic 800 pages.

17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It?
Variant by Robison Wells. WHAT EVEN. I went straight to Twitter to talk to Daph when there was a reveal. Also, The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer had a lot of OMGWTF moments, especially the ending. Before I Wake by Rachel Vincent had a couple too!
18. Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2012?
Noah and Mara from the Mara Dyer series. I love them so much! Also, Sydney and Adrian from The Golden Lily, and Gregory and Callie from The Ivy series.

19. Favorite Book You Read in 2012 From An Author You Read Previously
Before I Wake by Rachel Vincent, and Storm Born/Thorn Queen by Richelle Mead. I love both of these authors so much, and was very excited to read new books from them. Before I Wake only came out this year, but the Dark Swan series was released a while ago and it's honestly one of the best adult series I have read. Well, the first two books that I mentioned above are AMAZING, the last two are just great.

20. Best Book You Read That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else?
I don't know if there was one! I mean, I've read books that have been recommended to me, but all of them have been on my to-read list as well. I'm gonna go with Variant by Robison Wells, and the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan, because Daph has pushed me to read them!

Looking Ahead
1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2012 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2013?
A Game of Thrones! I need to finish that damn book. As well as the second and third in the series, but let's just focus on the first for now.

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2013?
The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead, and With All My Soul by Rachel Vincent. The first is the third in a six book series, but the latter is THE FINAL BOOK in one of my all time favourite series! *cries* I'm sure there are lots more... but I'm having a mind blank right now. Oh! The third Mara Dyer, and the third Unwind!

3. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2013?
My three year blogoversary! I've never stuck with a proper hobby for this long before, let alone reach three years! So come October I'm going to be ecstatic because it'll mean that I've been doing this for nearly a third of a decade. Crazy stuff!

27 December 2012

Splintered by A. G. Howard

Splintered by A. G. Howard
Release Date: January 1, 2013
Publisher: Amulet Books
Source: Netgalley
Goodreads Stars: 3
Rating: Enjoyable

This stunning debut captures the grotesque madness of a mystical under-land, as well as a girl’s pangs of first love and independence. Alyssa Gardner hears the whispers of bugs and flowers—precisely the affliction that landed her mother in a mental hospital years before. This family curse stretches back to her ancestor Alice Liddell, the real-life inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alyssa might be crazy, but she manages to keep it together. For now.

When her mother’s mental health takes a turn for the worse, Alyssa learns that what she thought was fiction is based in terrifying reality. The real Wonderland is a place far darker and more twisted than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, Alyssa must pass a series of tests, including draining an ocean of Alice’s tears, waking the slumbering tea party, and subduing a vicious bandersnatch, to fix Alice’s mistakes and save her family. She must also decide whom to trust: Jeb, her gorgeous best friend and secret crush, or the sexy but suspicious Morpheus, her guide through Wonderland, who may have dark motives of his own. - Goodreads

Guys, I'm disappointed. Given the hype surrounding this book, I was expecting a retelling of epic proportions. But that's not what happened at all, and I ended up getting ridiculously bored halfway through and I was so close to just skimming it.

Things I Liked:

- Howard's writing style. There's no denying that the author has a great writing style. The descriptions of the setting were amazing, and they really made me feel as though I was there with Alyssa, both in the real world and in Wonderland. It was vivid, and I adored it.
- The beginning. Captivating, enticing, fairly unique... The first third of the book was everything you could want. It captured me from the very first page. I remember thinking "YES, I am going to LOVE this" after I had finished the first chapter. Howard introduced the world and the mystery surrounding Alyssa's heritage really well, and I couldn't wait to find out more. The initial scenes in Wonderland were also awesome, and I loved how the author mixed up the characters a little bit to make them unique to this story.

Things I Hated:

- The love interests. Nooooooooooope. To begin with, Jeb is a complete idiot. In the beginning of the book he decided to hide his feelings from Alyssa and date a girl who bullied her. I can't remember his reasoning for doing this, but what the heck kind of reasoning could that be? And to add to that, he's controlling. He kept telling Alyssa what to do, and it annoyed me to no end. No, Jeb, let this FMC be badass and tell YOU what to do! 

And then there's Morpheus, who is so freakin' manipulative that I don't even know why Alyssa spoke to him, or even acknowledged him. He kept things from her, and it was obvious that he was out to manipulate her from the start. He's also really creepy, and there was a point where he and Alyssa had some weird orgasm thing by touching their birthmarks together. Yeah, I don't even know. 

But this didn't stop Alyssa from kissing both guys. Why would it? It's not as if she's a strong, independent female after all.
- CHEESE. Reading this book felt like I was watching a Stelena scene at times. The lines, the characters' actions... "Be my skater girl again." Really?
- Boring last two thirds. I struggled to get through it, I really did. After Alyssa and Jeb reached Wonderland, I was ready for some awesomeness. I mean, the Queen of Hearts, the Mad Hatter and the Caterpillar must all be there in some shape or form, right? But no. After Alyssa spoke to the talking flowers and met up with Morpheus everything went downhill. If only it was all as good as the beginning.

So... yeah. I didn't love it. Splintered is bordering on Bland for me, but since I enjoyed the writing style and the beginning so much, I decided to rate it as Enjoyable. But... yeah, it was dull.

23 December 2012

Gravity by Melissa West

Gravity by Melissa West
The Taking #1
Release Date: October 30, 2012
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Source: Bought
Goodreads Stars: 3
Rating: Enjoyable

In the future, only one rule will matter:
Don’t. Ever. Peek.

Seventeen-year-old Ari Alexander just broke that rule and saw the last person she expected hovering above her bed — arrogant Jackson Locke, the most popular boy in her school. She expects instant execution or some kind of freak alien punishment, but instead, Jackson issues a challenge: help him, or everyone on Earth will die.

Ari knows she should report him, but everything about Jackson makes her question what she’s been taught about his kind. And against her instincts, she’s falling for him. But Ari isn’t just any girl, and Jackson wants more than her attention. She’s a military legacy who’s been trained by her father and exposed to war strategies and societal information no one can know — especially an alien spy, like Jackson. Giving Jackson the information he needs will betray her father and her country, but keeping silent will start a war. - Goodreads

ALIENS! Does anyone else love aliens?! Because I do. A hell of a lot. My love for aliens is what drove me to get this book in the first place, and that part of the novel definitely didn't disappoint. Unfortunately, I wasn't a fan of the main characters.

Ari, the main female protagonist, was kinda slow and kinda dumb. She didn't have that spark that I like to see in YA female leads, and as a result I found her boring. Ari was really slow on the uptake, making her look unintelligent and also lacking the basics of common sense. It was really disappointing, because I LOVE strong females in the novels I read. Alas.

Then there's Jackson, the arrogant alien spy turned love interest. This is going to sound weird, but he wasn't arrogant enough for me. I mean, if you're going to pitch a love interest as an arrogant bad boy, at least give him some witty dialogue and some funny scenes. Instead, he kept secrets from Ari to the point that I wished she had the balls to punch him in the face. In some scenes he was really sweet, and in others he was just sort of there. There was no substance.

The world building and the political dispute were my favourite parts of the novel. I loved the idea of World War IV ruining the Earth and aliens having to swoop in to save the day, and then one side not keeping up their end of the bargain. I wish we could have seen more of the alien planet, and also more explosions. I love explosions!

There was one twist in the novel, and it wasn't that shocking. I had been expecting something like that to go down, and so when it happened I rolled my eyes. It didn't help that this twist involved Jackson and, well, I've made my feelings for Jackson pretty clear!

Overall, Gravity was an enjoyable, although pretty average read. I love the aliens and all that jazz, and I was really pleased with that aspect of the novel. I'll be reading the sequel to see where it goes, and I'll be hoping that the characters improve.
I love the covers of this series! Here's the cover for Hover, book two in the trilogy:
GORGEOUS, right?

22 December 2012

Cover Reveal: The Emerald Ring by Dorine White

The Emerald Ring by Dorine White 

Sara Bogus's life turns upside down when she discovers an emerald ring that once belonged to Cleopatra. The fun of discovering the ring's unique abilities turns to fear when she finds out a dangerous cult bent on restoring Rome to power is after the ring. Forced to choose between keeping the ring and saving her friends, Sara learns the price of bravery in this electrifying read!
The Emerald Ring is being published by Cedar Fort Books in May 2013. Love the cover! It goes well with the story, and you tell it's a middle grade novel. It sounds great, right? I'm really interested in both Ancient Egypt and Rome, so this sounds like something I'd really enjoy!

20 December 2012

Mystic City by Theo Lawrence

Mystic City by Theo Lawrence
Mystic City #1
Release Date: October 9, 2012
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads Stars: 4
Rating: Essential

Aria Rose, youngest scion of one of Mystic City's two ruling rival families, finds herself betrothed to Thomas Foster, the son of her parents' sworn enemies. The union of the two will end the generations-long political feud—and unite all those living in the Aeries, the privileged upper reaches of the city, against the banished mystics who dwell below in the Depths. But Aria doesn't remember falling in love with Thomas; in fact, she wakes one day with huge gaps in her memory. And she can't conceive why her parents would have agreed to unite with the Fosters in the first place. Only when Aria meets Hunter, a gorgeous rebel mystic from the Depths, does she start to have glimmers of recollection—and to understand that he holds the key to unlocking her past. The choices she makes can save or doom the city—including herself. - Goodreads

On the whole, I was pleasantly surprised by Mystic City. I had heard that it was pretty average before going into it, and I put it off for two months before finally picking it up. I want to slap myself, because Mystic City was AWESOME. I couldn't believe how much I ended up enjoying it!

The main character, Aria, is pretty awesome. She's awfully judgemental in the very beginning, but I think it works well with her character development. She comes from a rich and powerful family, so of course she's been conditioned to think that the poor folk are beneath her. She changed a lot throughout the novel, and her personal journey was one that I loved reading about. I liked how she didn't know anything that was going on around her, and her family were the ones that were really pulling the strings. Reading about Aria discovering what her family were up to, and what the world was really like was fantastic.

I also really liked Hunter, the love interest. I mean, he was cheesy and came out with the silliest things, but he was protective and powerful and still great. And the fact that he had powers was like the cherry on the perfectly iced cake, because OH MY GAWD I love people with powers!

Another character I really liked was Aria's dad. He was probably my third favourite, next to Aria and Hunter. He was sly, dominating, threatening and just... an awesome character. He was totally horrible, but that doesn't mean I can't like him.

The world building was... wow. I adored the city, and the different sections to it. The fact that mystics had to be drained to keep them from becoming more powerful than the regular humans was really interesting, and I found myself hoping for a giant rebellion. Which, by the way, I do believe is coming in the next book/s in the series. The mystics were by far my favourite things to read about. Each mystic has different powers, although almost all of them can heal and... kind of manipulate energy? Or something. I don't know how to explain it.

The action scenes were amazing. Shivers everywhere. I feel the need to point out how much I love reading about/watching people with some sort of superhuman ability. It makes for great entertainment, and it gives me goosebumps when it's written well, like it was in Mystic City. When the characters fought using their abilities, or just simply used them in an exciting scene and not necessarily on anyone, I got really excited. I LOVE IT SDHFLSHDGLIR *keyboard smash* Seriously, my heart was racing as I read some of the scenes, particularly the final action scene.

Okay, there were two things that I didn't like about this book. Seriously, only two things. The first is that Mystic City was very predictable. Now, I'm not sure if it was just me, but I knew what twists were coming before they actually did. Nothing shocked me. I felt like I was just waiting for my theories to be proven right. I would normally say that this might be because I read so many books, and have learnt to read the signs, but I just finished another book (Variant by Robison Wells, in case you were wondering) and I didn't know what was going to happen in that AT ALL. So yeah, it's predictable.

And the second thing I hated was the cheesy love letters. NOOOOPE. Aria and Thomas exchanged love letters before she lost her memory, and while I was reading them I felt really uncomfortable because they were just so... awkward. And they also called themselves Romeo and Juliet to keep their identities a secret. I hate it when people romanticise Romeo and Juliet, and so when I saw they were using that couple as code names in love letters I was rolling my eyes.

Despite those two things, I adored Mystic City. I wish I could rate it as All Time Favourite, but the damn love letters (curse you, R & J) and the predictability are holding me back. Definitely pick this up if you like books about people with powers, light dystopia, crime families, and the Elemental series by Brigid Kemmerer :) I'm gonna be buying the paperback so I can bookmark my favourite parts!
The Mystic City series: 
1. Mystic City
2. Renegade Heart

19 December 2012

18 December 2012

Top Ten Books I Read in 2012

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

This list wasn't as hard to put together as I thought it would be! After reading over one hundred books, I was expecting to have a tough time picking out favourites. Instead, I was able to come up with a top ten list that I am pretty happy with! These are in no particular order, though. I couldn't force that upon myself!

I had been told that this was good, but I wasn't expecting it to be THAT good. This was my first All Time Favourite of the year. I loved every second of it!
Second Chance Summer was beautiful and heart wrenching. I cried throughout the last fifty pages. So good! 
Unwind had been recommended to me by several people in the blogosphere, so I bought it months and months ago. I finally got around to reading it in August, and I fell in love. Shusterman is an awesome writer!
Kresley Cole was a new author to me when I picked this up. I hadn't read any of her adult books, but now that I've read and adored this I think that I just might! Love the characters and mythology in this one.
Anyone following me on Twitter or Goodreads will know that it took me ages to get into this one. There were no speech marks! But I soldiered on and ended up loving it. I really need to make some room to read Rebel Heart!
I wasn't going to include sequels but I just had to with this one. Mara Dyer #2 is every bit as good as the first book, if not a tinsy bit better!
I picked this one up on a total whim. I thought, "Hey it's set in college, let's just read it for some fun" and I eneded up LOVING it. I've read all three books in the series this year, and I can't wait to get to the fourth! 
As always, I couldn't make a list without including a book by Ms. Vincent. I love her books! Soul Screamers is one of my favourite series, so... yeah. Can't believe it's ending next year!
This one has received a lot of mixed reviews, but I really liked it. I loved the twist that was in there, and how everything connected together in the end!
This was recommended to me ages ago by Daph from Loving Books, and I finally got to it this year. IT WAS AMAZING. I'm gonna be reading the rest of the trilogy in 2013, once I've bought Monsters of Men. EEP!

17 December 2012

New Releases: December 18 - 24, 2012

All links go to Goodreads.

I LOVVVVEEEE THIS SERIES! It's the fourth book in The Ivy series, and it's set in college and I FLOVE IT.
Another series I'm really enjoying! This is a fantasy and it's book two.

I haven't started this series yet. This is the fifth book.
EVERYONE has been featuring this one in their WoW posts, so I feel I must get it!

Everybody should read The Ivy series, I am just saying!

14 December 2012

Sneak Peek: Prodigy by Marie Lu - First Chapter and Trailers

Prodigy is the sequel to Legend, which was published earlier this year.
Release Date: January 29, 2013 (UK)
Publisher: Penguin

Here's the first chapter for you guys to read! I hope you like it. The usual warning for spoilers applies here ;)
Prodigy by Marie Lu FIRST CHAPTER

Here is the book trailer for both books, which makes it look freakin' exciting! I can't wait! And below that, there is the teaser trailer for the official game. I had no idea that there was going to be a game for this, did you? SUCH a good idea!

I am soooooo excited for this book! I loved Legend (despite the slightly rushed romance, blah) so EEP!

Stacking the Shelves (7)

Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by the lovely people over at Tynga's Reviews.
This is a huge haul since I haven't done one in over a month. I think I've covered all the books, and I've gone through my older hauls, but I have a feeling I've missed a couple.

- Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally
I've been wanting to read this one for AGES, and I'm so happy I finally got around to buying it. I'm hoping to read it by the end of the year!
- Academy 7 by Anne Osterlund
This has been on my wishlist since I first started blogging!
- Insignia by S. J. Kincaid
I've been told that this is awesome by so many people. I have no idea what it's about, but still. EEP!

My friend, Tatum, bought two books for me, one for my birthday and one for Christmas. Amazon packed them both in the same box, so I couldn't leave one as a surprise, unfortunately!
- Life of Pi by Yann Martel
LOOK AT THIS COVER! Tatum read this a couple of weeks ago and loved it, so I'm sure I will too.
- The Last Werewolf by Glen Duncan 
I've been told by two people that this is amazing. Can't wait to read it! I'm gonna have to wait until after Christmas, though, since this was the intended Christmas present.

Daph from Loving Books bought me these for my birthday back in November! I cannot thank her enough. She has AMAZING taste in books, y'all!
- Variant by Robison Wells
I've already read this and I ADORED IT. Such a great, shocking, mind-bending book. I need the sequel in my life.
- Pleasure Unbound by Larissa Ione
This is clearly not YA ;) The Demonica series is one of Daph's favourites, so I think I'm gonna love this!

For Review
- Infinite Sky by C. J. Flood
This is about a family who have travellers move in close by. I can't wait to read it, since there are a lot of travellers near to where I live and I'm really interested in reading about them.
- The Disappeared by C. J. Harper
I read this this week! My review won't be up until the end of January, though.
- Beyond by Graham McNamee
I wasn't able to finish this, but some people have really enjoyed it! It's about ghosts and is meant to be quite creepy!
- Quantum Drop by Saci Lloyd
This sounds action packed! Can't wait to get to it.
- Dance of Shadows by Yelena Black
Isn't the cover gorgeous? I got a copy of this from NetGalley, and am really looking forward to reading it.
- Pivot Point by Kasie West 
I'm so happy I got approved for this on Edelweiss! 
- Taken by Erin Bowman
I'm SOOOOO excited to read this debut!
- Right of Way by Lauren Barnholdt
I loved Lauren's other book, Two-Way Street, so I'm really looking forward to reading this when the weather gets a bit warmer!
- Hysteria by Megan Miranda
I enjoyed Megan's Fracture, so I think I might like this one! Can't wait to find out.
- The Madness Underneath by Maureen Johnson
EEP! I can't wait to see where this one goes.
- Sister Assassin by Kiersten White
AKA Mind Games. Not sure why they changed the title, but whatever. I am excited!
- Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi
I've been wanting to read this since I finished the first book back in 2011!
- Requiem by Lauren Oliver
- Revolution 19 by Gregg Rosenblum
This is one of my most anticipated debuts of 2013! I can't wait to get stuck in.
- Paper Valentine by Brenna Yovanoff
This will be my first book by Brenna! I'm excited. And I love this UK cover, it looks a lot more sinister than the US one.

And there are more coming! But this is it for now because this is ridiculously huge. Feel free to leave links to your hauls below! 

13 December 2012

Scent of Magic by Maria V Snyder

Scent of Magic by Maria V Snyder
Healer #2
Release Date: December 18, 2012 (UK)
Publisher: Mira Books
Source: Netgalley
Goodreads Stars: 4
Rating: Enjoyable

As the last Healer in the Fifteen Realms, Avery of Kazan is in a unique position: in the minds of her friends and foes alike, she no longer exists. Despite her need to prevent the megalomanical King Tohon from winning control of the Realms, Avery is also determined to find her sister and repair their estrangement. And she must do it alone, as Kerrick, her partner and sole confident, returns to Alga to summon his country into battle.

Though she should be in hiding, Avery will do whatever she can to support Tohon’s opponents. Including infiltrating a holy army, evading magic sniffers, teaching forest skills to soldiers and figuring out how to stop Tohon’s most horrible creations yet; an army of the walking dead—human and animal alike and nearly impossible to defeat.

War is coming and Avery is alone. Unless she figures out how to do the impossible ... again.
 - Goodreads

Anyone who's been reading my reviews and tweets for a significant amount of time will know that I am a huge fan of Maria V Snyder's books. I've read all of them apart from the Glass trilogy and have really liked to loved them. Scent of Magic is no exception.

That said, I did find the beginning of this novel quite boring. The first two thirds were dull, and nothing really happened to make me excited to continue reading. It was my love of the author's other works that kept me going. In the first part of the book the characters just went around doing one thing and then onto the next, with no real action or any heart racing moments.

Scent of Magic is a little different from Touch of Power, in that it is told from both Avry's and Kerrick's points of view. I found Kerrick's parts to be a lot more interesting than Avry's, probably because there was more happening and more to be discovered in his adventure. Despite really not liking the guy for hitting Avry in Touch of Power, I really enjoyed getting inside his head. His scenes were more interesting than Avry's by far. That doesn't mean I like Kerrick, though. I'm one to hold a grudge on someone for hitting a woman.

The pacing and excitement picked up when Tohon reappears. His wit and his overall insanity was hilarious. I love him a lot, and he's definitely my favourite character out of all of them. I like psychos in fiction, okay?

My favourite scene was definitely the big one towards the end with Avry, Tohon and other characters. Without giving spoilers, I will tell you that I found it funny and exciting and quite thrilling. I can only wish the whole book had been this good!

Despite not liking the majority of this novel, I'll definitely be continuing with this series. I love Maria's writing style too much not to!

12 December 2012

11 December 2012

Ironskin by Tina Connolly

Ironskin by Tina Connolly
Ironskin #1
Release Date: October 2, 2012
Publisher: Tor Books
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads Stars: 2
Rating: Bland

Jane Eliot wears an iron mask. 
It’s the only way to contain the fey curse that scars her cheek. The Great War is five years gone, but its scattered victims remain—the ironskin. 

When a carefully worded listing appears for a governess to assist with a "delicate situation"—a child born during the Great War—Jane is certain the child is fey-cursed, and that she can help. 

Teaching the unruly Dorie to suppress her curse is hard enough; she certainly didn’t expect to fall for the girl’s father, the enigmatic artist Edward Rochart. But her blossoming crush is stifled by her own scars, and by his parade of women. Ugly women, who enter his closed studio...and come out as beautiful as the fey. 

Jane nows Rochart cannot love her, just as she knows that she must wear iron for the rest of her life. But what if neither of these things is true? Step by step Jane unlocks the secrets of her new life—and discovers just how far she will go to become whole again. - Goodreads

This was disappointing. I had heard good things about Ironskin before it was released, but once it came out the rating on Goodreads started to slowly decline. I ignored that - mostly - and was quite excited when I finally got to it this month, given the enticing premise. Alas, it fell flat.

Jane was a great character in the beginning of the novel. She was determined, bordering on stubborn, and very hard-working. Unfortunately her romance/weird obsession with Mr Rochart brought down her character. Their 'relationship' was too rushed, and dull, and I didn't understand why she felt so drawn to him considering he was hardly even there! And despite him being a father, he barely said two sentences to his daughter, and I don't understand how Jane would have found that to be an attractive or intriguing quality in a guy. I OBJECT. 

I thought that the fey part of the story was interesting, though. To begin with, anyway. I wanted to learn about the war, Dorie's powers, and what exactly Jane could do. However, around half way through, I started to lose interest since it felt like nothing was progressing. I wasn't interested in anything Mr Rochart did, and I spent the latter half of the novel completely bored out of my skull. I began to skim, and as a result I didn't pay attention to what was going on. I tried to find something that would grab my attention again but there just wasn't anything there, not even the ending could draw me back in.

Wouldn't recommend it. Meh. I've not read Jane Eyre, so I can't say how it compares. You'll have to check other reviews for that!

10 December 2012

New Releases: December 11 - 17, 2012

All links go to Goodreads.

This is the third book in the Princess series... I have no idea what it's about!

Everyone - and I mean EVERYONE - is waiting for this one. I AM EXCITED!

This sounds quite cute!

Everyone's looking forward to Falling Kingdoms, Y/Y?