Sunday, August 31, 2014

Stacking the Shelves (2)

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly book meme created and hosted by Tynga at Tynga's Reviews. It is all about sharing the books you've added to your shelves throughout the week. Books can be either physical books or e-books. The books can be books that you've purchased, borrowed, or received for review or as a gift. Basically, it's just a summary of the books you're adding to your shelf during the week.

Okay. I know I promised myself that I was in the middle of a book buying ban because I have way too many books on my TBR pile right now, but I broke it today.

I went to Half Price Books with my sister to get Isla and the Happily Ever After, and I noticed that Flawless (Pretty Little Liars #2) was on clearance for $2. I've been there so much recently that I knew there were a ton of the Pretty Little Liars books in the YA section. So what did I do? I grabbed them all!

Books I Purchased Today:

  • Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins
  • Flawless by Sara Shepard
  • Perfect by Sara Shepard
  • Unbelievable by Sara Shepard
  • Wicked by Sara Shepard
  • Killer by Sara Shepard
  • Heartless by Sara Shepard
  • Twisted by Sara Shepard
  • Dreamland by Sarah Dessen
I feel pretty lucky to have been able to find books two through seven in the Pretty Little Liars series. It gives me some time to find book nine in hardcover before moving on to book nine. I also bought my first Sarah Dessen book. My sister is probably going to take it because she loves Sarah Dessen, but I'll probably read it.

Saturday, August 30, 2014


No comments :
So you might be seeing a few new changes on the blog this week.

  • I just launched my book meme, Soundtrack Saturday. You should check it out, and participate.
  • I've also added the "You Might Also Like" feature. There are some third-party ads, but I am not profiting from them. If you click on one of the third-party ads, the proceeds go to Make-A-Wish.
  • I'm still working on my labels. It annoyed me that when I changed themes, they weren't all in the same case. I hope they will all be in uppercase soon, but it is a very tedious process to change them all, so I only change a few a day.

Soundtrack Saturday (1)


Alright, ladies and gentlemen... I've been at this whole book blogging thing for a little over a month now, and I've really been enjoying the book memes. I enjoy them so much, that I've decided to create my own!

This meme is called Soundtrack Saturday. It features both books and music. I haven't seen a meme like it, so I figured I'd give it a shot.

  • You can use my image or make one of your own
  • Please link me somewhere in your post
  • Create a soundtrack for your chosen book
  • Add your name to the link-up tool so others can find and read your post
  • If you add your name to the link-up, please leave a comment
Okay, so what do you have to do, right?
  • Include a song that you think goes well with the beginning of your chosen book
  • Include a song you think fits a character in your chosen book
  • Include a song that represents a relationship in your chosen book
  • Include a song that fits the ending of the book

Liebster Award (4)

Okay, buy now, it probably seems like my blog has been full of these posts, so if you're annoyed, I do apologize. I love that people are nominating me, and if they take the time to nominate me, I'm going to take the time to thank them.

In case you've lost count, this would be my sixth Liebster Award, and like the rest of the posts, I will only be answering the questions as a thank you. I've already nominated my eleven people. If you missed the list, here they are:

  1.  Lauren @ A Blonde Librarian
  2. Connie @ The YA Book Thief
  3. Ilina @ A Book Lover's Ramblings
  4. Tika @ Fangirl Confessions
  5. Jennie @ A Bookworm Called Jennie
  6. Gloria @ Gloria the Violinist
  7. Sabrina @ Sabrina's Stories
  8. Jessica @ The Psychotic Nerd
  9. Karina @ I, Fat Robot
  10. Olivia @ Little Olive Library
  11. Jess @ My Reading Dress
This time around, I'd like to thank Busy Brunette for nominating me.

Answers to Busy Brunette's Questions:

  1. Q: Are you an early bird or a night owl?
    A: I'm a night owl by default, but it makes it really hard when I have to wake up in the morning to teach, so I'm trying to train myself to be an early bird. So far, it's not working.
  2. Q: Why did you start your blog?
    A: I used to have an education blog for a class, and I liked it, but not being told what to blog about by the professor. I love books, and I'd been getting a lot of praise on Goodreads, so I made the jump.
  3. Q: If you could pick any book character to be your BFF, who would it be? Why?
    A: Hermione Granger because she is one of the best characters ever written. She's smart, but she realizes that you can't just depend on your intelligence to move forward in life. She also learns how to make friends and help them when times are tough.
  4. Q: If you could visit any country, what would it be?
    A: Ireland. My ancestors built castles in Ireland, and one is still standing, so I'd like to see that and learn more about my heritage.
  5. Q: What is your favorite genre of book to read?
    A: Anything YA (just not paranormal) or contemporary Adult Fiction.
  6. Q: What do you think would be more likely to take over the world- zombies or vampires? Justify your answer.
    A: Neither. I don't think that there is ever a chance that zombies will ever become a real thing, and I am just so sick of vampires. They are everywhere in fiction, and it's annoying. Sorry... not sorry.
  7. Q: What book do you think had the most disappointing ending?
    A: The Fault in Our Stars. I hated the book, but the whole time, I really thought that Hazel would die mid-sentence. I think it would have made for a much more powerful book and ending.
  8. Q: What book do you think had the most surprising ending?
    A: We Were Liars, but as promised, I'm supposed to lie about the ending, so nope... it wasn't surprising at all.
  9. Q: Where is the coolest place you have ever visited?
    A: I babysat for a woman who had a rich boyfriend when I was in high school. They took me on many vacations so I could babysit the kids when they went out at night, but I think Atlantis and Disney World were the best. I just wish we could have had more time in Magic Kingdom.
  10. Q: What was the last book you read?
    A: Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
  11. Q: What is your favorite quote?
    A: I have a lot of favorite quotes. I used to have a digital journal of them, but if I have to choose a favorite it would be:
    “Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, when one only remembers to turn on the light.”

Friday, August 29, 2014

The Friday 56 (4)

The Friday 56 is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Freda at Freda's Voice.

It is quickly becoming one of my favorite memes because I love sharing a little bit of what I read with people. This book meme gives me the chance to share something from the books I'm reading with people other than just my friends.
If you want to participate, all you need to do is link your post to Freda's blog. (She posts a linky when she posts her Friday 56.) Then you open the book closest to you (or the one you're currently reading) to page fifty-six (or 56% on your e-reader). From there, you find a sentence or two that you want to share that will make someone who hasn't read the book want to read it. Just try not to spoil anything. We don't want to give away any major plot details.

This Friday, I'm reading the third book in Marissa Meyers' The Lunar Chronicles series. By now, I'm probably sure that you're sick of seeing stuff from The Lunar Chronicles posted all over my blog. I really haven't had a lot of time to fly through this series like I wanted to, but I'm glad to be reading them for the All About YA group. The books are fun and entertaining. I really feel like Cress might be my favorite once I've finished them. I kind of love "Rapunzel" stories.

"'We've extended an invitation to Her Lunar Majesty to join us via netscreen, but our offer was not accepted.'"
So obviously, this is a spoken line in the book. I don't think it really spoils anything, but it does show us how rude Queen Levana can be. It's not like Emperor Kai is asking her to fly down to Earth for a meeting. It's just a netscreen conversation.
So what is everyone reading this Friday? As always, feel free to let me know in the comments or leave a link to your Friday 56 post.

Have a great weekend, and happy reading!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Liebster Award (3)

So more good news - I've been nominated two more times for Liebster Awards! If you've lost count, it brings my total to five, and that's a little bit overwhelming for me. Like wow. I'm so touched that you are all passing these awards along to me, especially since I've only been blogging for a little bit more than a month. It is truly a special thing to feel so welcomed by the book blogging community. In case you missed the original post, you can go here to read it. And here is the link for the second post about my Liebster Awards.

So what is a Liebster Award? It's kind of like a chain letter, but it's all about recognizing new bloggers. To be nominated, you must have two hundred or fewer followers.

This time around, I've been nominated by Talina and Jess and Kell. Now I don't know if this is considered cheating, but I'm not making any more nominations. I feel like asking someone to nominate fifty-five people is a bit much, but look forward to Follow Friday events and similar things.

Alright... Now for the questions.

Answers to Talina's Questions:

  1. Q. What do you like most about blogging?
    A. I really like the community of bloggers. They are very kind and so many of them have created so many cool things to do on blogs when you aren't reviewing.
  2. Q: Where is your favorite place to read?
    A: My bed. I love reading in my bed. It has so many pillows, and I have access to my desk from my bed, so it makes for a good place to read.
  3. Q: What is your favorite book/series?
    A: I'm going with Harry Potter.
  4. Q: Do you have any books that you disliked or hated?
    A: Ummm... I actually have an entire Goodreads shelf dedicated to books that I hate. Go ahead and click the link. It's okay.
  5. Q: What is your favorite TV show/movie?
    A: I have a few favorite TV shows. They are Friends, Gilmore Girls, and Pretty Little Liars. My favorite movies include Titanic, The Breakfast Club, the Harry Potter movies, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and The Hunger Games and Catching Fire.
  6. Q: How many books do you own in physically and in e-book?
    A: This is embarrassing, but I don't really know. I don't keep count of the physical books I own. I'm not really an e-reader person, so I have very few of those.
  7. Q: What is/was your favorite subject in school?
    A: English. That's probably why I became an English teacher.
  8. Q: Who is your favorite author?
    A: Oh man... I have quite a few favorite authors. J.K. Rowling, Lauren Oliver, Sarah Ockler, Rainbow Rowell, Veronica Roth...
  9. Q: If you were stranded on an island, what three things would you bring with you?
    A: Sunscreen because I am super pale and would need it, some books, and my medicine because my body hates me.
  10. Q: Who is your favorite actor/actress?
    A: Emma Watson
  11. Q: If you could date any fictional character in any book, who would it be?
    A: Levi from Fangirl

Answers to Jess and Kell's Questions:

  1. Q: What was one of your favorite childhood stories?
    A: A Little Princess
  2. Q: Would you rather be able to buy as many books as you could but only read one month out of the year? Or read as many books as you want but you could only buy one book a year? Why?
    A: Read as many as I want with the purchasing limit. I could always learn to love the library again.
  3. Q: Do you have free standing bookshelves or wall mounted book shelves?
    A: Free-standing.
  4. Q: How do you organize your books at home?
    A: They are a hot mess right now, but they are organized by author.
  5. Q: Who is an inspirational author to you?  Why?
    A: J.K. Rowling because she made something of herself and became one of the greatest authors of all time. How can you not admire her?
  6. Q: What is hands down, in your opinion, one of the best books ever written?
    A: Just one? OMG. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
  7. Q: Tea or coffee?
    A: Coffee, although I do enjoy a spot of hot and iced raspberry tea.
  8. Q: What is your favorite genre of books? Least favorite?
    A: I love YA, but I can't stand paranormal anything.
  9. Q: What started you with book blogging?
    A: I posted a ton of reviews on Goodreads, and more and more authors were approaching me to review their books. And I had an education blog that I enjoyed.
  10. Q: Do you have a favorite place to read? If so, where?
    A: My bed.
  11. Q: Do you book binge or choose selectively when at the bookstore?
    A: I binge. I sometimes have a list of books I want, but I often deviate from that list and buy whatever looks good.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Extra! Extra!

I've decided that every once in a while, I'll provide some news on the things going on with the blog.

Now that school is back in session (I'm a substitute teacher), I'll be working more and more, especially after Halloween, so things might be slowing down just a tiny bit on the blog.

A lot of the posts you see, especially book memes, will probably be done ahead of time so the blog remains active. I will log on when I get home and reply to your comments. I won't be gone; I just won't have as much time to update.

 Other Blog News:

  • I've been contacted by Susan Srikant, and I'll be reading and reviewing three of her books. Expect reviews in the next two months.
  • I'm also going to be participating in an ARC tour for Damsel Distressed by Kelsey Macke. The tour is hosted by Brittany at The Book Addict's Guide, and there are a few of us involved. I'll let you know when I get the book (I'm second in line), and then a review will be posted about a week later. If it goes well, I'll probably participate in more in the future.
  • I'm also working on re-labeling all of my posts because I changed my template, so if you notice anything that looks weird, that's probably why.
  • I'm in the process of creating my own book meme, so expect a launch for it in the near future.
  • I've been nominated for a Liebster Award two more times! That brings my Liebster total to five awards. I will work on answering the questions and making a master-post as soon as I can, but I won't be doing any more nominations. I think asking someone to nominate fifty-five people is a bit much.

Waiting on Wednesday (4)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly book meme hosted by Breaking the Spine. On Wednesdays, we get to share a book (or two) that aren't released yet, but we can't wait to get our hands on them. Get it?

This is a leap of faith for me this week, but I'm curious about a certain book by a certain author who I didn't really enjoy the last time I read her books. I know this is probably going to end badly, and that I should just stop. I'm just a terribly curious person. Are you confused? It's okay because I'm still confused about actually wanting to try this book with the terrible reading behind me.

The book I'm waiting on is Atlantia by Ally Condie. For those of you who have read my review for the Matched trilogy, I assure you that I am not crazy! The synopsis actually makes this book seem interesting, so I am willing to give it a fair chance. I've also seen a decent amount of positive reviews from advance readers, so I think it's safe to say that I'll be picking this book up. And if I hate it, I can always sell it to Half Price Books.

Atlantia is due to hit shelves in bookstores on October 28, 2014.

I'll be sure to post a review of it. I really hope it's good. I really want to like Ally Condie.

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Can you hear Atlantia breathing?

For as long as she can remember, Rio has dreamt of the sand and sky Above—of life beyond her underwater city of Atlantia. But in a single moment, all her plans for the future are thwarted when her twin sister, Bay, makes an unexpected decision, stranding Rio Below. Alone, ripped away from the last person who knew Rio’s true self—and the powerful siren voice she has long hidden—she has nothing left to lose.

Guided by a dangerous and unlikely mentor, Rio formulates a plan that leads to increasingly treacherous questions about her mother’s death, her own destiny, and the complex system constructed to govern the divide between land and sea. Her life and her city depend on Rio to listen to the voices of the past and to speak long-hidden truths.

So what are  you waiting on this week? Let me know in the comments or leave a link to your post. I'll check them out. Who knows... Maybe I'll add some more books to my TBR list.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday (5)

Top Ten Tuesday (TTT) is a weekly meme hosted by the ladies over at The Broke and Bookish.

Each week, there is a different topic, and all you need to do is give your answers in the form of a top ten list. They love making lists. I love making lists. It's a win for them, and it's a win for me. And it's a win for you because there is always the chance that you'll discover a new book that you want to read. And who doesn't love discovering new books?

Top Ten Books I Really Want To Read But Don't Own Yet

  • The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler - It won't be released until next year, but I want it now. The book is based on "The Little Mermaid." I love a good fairytale, and a retelling of one is always something that interests me. And I really love Sarah Ockler's writing style. It is fun, even when she writes about very realistic and serious subjects.
  • The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey - This is another book that's not yet released, although it's due out next month. There was a lot of hype about The 5th Wave, and rightfully so. The book was amazing, so I am excited for the rest of the series. I think I can wait until release day for this one because it's so close, but I will probably drive to Target right after work to buy it.
  • The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige - The cover was just recently released, and I am in love with it! I loved Dorothy Must Die almost as much as the odd looks I got from older folks while reading it in public, so I can't wait to get my hands on a copy of it. I need to find out what happens next.
  • Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick - I've been wanting to read this for a while, but I always put it back on the store's shelf because of the price tag. One of these days I'll get around to purchasing a copy of it, but for now, it remains on my TBR list of books I don't own.
  • Flawless by Sara Shepard - I read the first Pretty Little Liars book, and I really want to read the rest of them. But I own a hardcover of the first one, so I want a hardcover of this one so they look good on my shelves together. And of course, the TV show makes me more curious to see how they adapted these books. I know people have said the show and the books are very similar, but I want to see for myself.
  • The List by Siobhan Vivian - The Young Adult literature class the year after mine got to read this book because Ms. Vivian was supposed to come in and speak with them. From what I heard, she never did, but the book seemed interesting, so I want to read it. I'll probably grab a paperback from Target soon.
  • Poetry 180: A Turning Back to Poetry by Billy Collins - This is set up to give students a new poem each day during the school year, so as a teacher, I want to see if it's worth using one day in my classroom.
  • The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot - I still haven't read The Princess Diaries, and I feel like I should have in elementary school. These books have been around for a while now, but I just never bought them. To be honest, I didn't know the existed until right before the movie was released. 
  • Rooms by Lauren Oliver - It's not out yet, but it's her adult debut and I really think it'll be a great read. I do try to read as much adult fiction as I can because I'm twenty-five, and the synopsis of this book had me sold. I am probably going to pre-order it in the very near future.
  • Hard Choices by Hillary Rodham Clinton - I've always been interested in politics, and I've admired Hillary since I was twelve years old. This book appeals to me because I love to learn about the more recent things in the United States, and she witnessed quite a lot first hand.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Review: Scarlet

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Title: Scarlet
Series: The Lunar Chronicles
Author: Marissa Meyer
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Publication Date: February 5, 2013
Format: Hardcover, First Edition
Source: Purchased from Amazon
Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She's trying to break out of prison--even though if she succeeds, she'll be the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive. Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit's grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn't know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother's whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

My Review

So I've had a bit of time since finishing Scarlet to think about my review, but it doesn't really make writing it any easier. While I am truly enjoying the series, I felt like Scarlet lacked some of the key energy that Meyer had in Cinder. I never wanted to stop reading Cinder, but I had a harder time reading Scarlet. It's not that I didn't like this book; it's just that this one felt a little slower. It wasn't as intense as Cinder for me.

Picking up where Cinder left off, Scarlet continues the tale of Cinder. She escapes from prison and takes another prisoner with her, and together, they are outlaws on the run from the Commonwealth. We are also introduced to two new characters, Scarlet Benoit and Wolf, and their attraction to one another does drive a lot of their part of the story, but there is a little bit more than just romance with these two characters. They each have stories of their own, and figuring them out makes reading this one fun.

While I would say that this book is more romantic than Cinder, I also found it to have a bit more action. There are some battle scenes, and I think they were okay. They certainly could have been written better and with more enthusiasm. I lost interest in many of them, even though I know that the fighting and the rebellion is an important part of this series.

Remember that picture that Kai was shown in Cinder? It's an integral part of this novel, and I was kind of angry with myself for being so distracted and missing it right away. Because of it, Kai is forced to make a decision that could change the history of the world yet again. Like how awesome is it for Meyer to have these young characters making so many important decisions? I love it! But I couldn't help but find myself angry with the choice that Kai makes. I know he is making it for what he thinks are all the right reasons, but he is being naive. It bothered me because at the end of Cinder, I really thought that he would grow to be the great leader that he's supposed to be, but it looks like he still has some growing up to do, and I'm fine with that. I'm sure things will change, but the choice just didn't sit well with me when I read it. I think he could have done something else to calm things.

All in all, I didn't think the book was terrible, but I just wanted a little bit more out of it. There is another cliffhanger, so I grabbed Cress, and I hope to see some things become resolved.

Review: How to Love

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Title: How to Love
Author: Katie Cotugno
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date:  October 1, 2013
Format: Hardcover, First Edition
Source: Purchased
Reena Montero has loved Sawyer LeGrande for as long as she can remember: as natural as breathing, as endless as time. But he's never seemed to notice that Reena even exists until one day, impossibly, he does. Reena and Sawyer fall in messy, complicated love. But then Sawyer disappears from their humid Florida town without a word, leaving a devastated-and pregnant-Reena behind.

Almost three years have passed, and there's a new love in Reena's life: her daughter, Hannah. Reena's gotten used to being without Sawyer, and she's finally getting the hang of this strange, unexpected life. But just as swiftly and suddenly as he disappeared, Sawyer turns up again. Reena doesn't want anything to do with him, though she'd be lying if she said Sawyer's being back wasn't stirring something in her. After everything that's happened, can Reena really let herself love Sawyer LeGrande again?

My Review

At just sixteen years old, Reena is ready to explore the world. She's ready to go to college after graduating high school earlier than most of the kids in her grade. She's ready to become a travel journalist. She's ready to actually leave home and travel the world. She's not ready to have a baby, but that's what's happening to her, and there is nothing she can do to change that.

Told from a before and after perspective, How to Love is the bittersweet tale of Reena, a very bright young girl who finds herself in a troubling situation after graduating high school a year early. She has to deal with the fact that her boyfriend has left town. She keeps remember the night when they first got together, which just so happened to be the night that her best friend and Sawyer's then girlfriend, Allie, died.

That night isn't the greatest of nights for Reena, and she has many regrets because of what she did that night. The night also wasn't the best night for Sawyer, but the two young people have to deal with what happened and grow as people.

I was really impressed with this book. It's a great story about falling in love, falling out of love, finding a new love, and finally falling in love with the one you're meant to be with. Reena learns how to deal with life and what's become of her when her old flame, Sawyer, comes back to town. If you are a fan of books about second chances, do yourself a favor and read this book right now.

The story of Reena, Hannah, and Sawyer is so real that it hurts. It will break your heart and put it back together again. You'll want to reread this as soon as you finish the book because the story is so emotionally satisfying.

Reena is a character that I liked from the minute I started reading. She's struggled since graduating high school, but she tries so hard to make her family proud, even if she knows they look down on her for getting pregnant out of wedlock. I couldn't help but feel badly for Reena because of the way that her parents treat her. It would be agonizing to live with all of the guilt that her parents make her feel.

Sawyer is a character that grew on me, and I mean he really grew on me because he starts out as an unlikeable character but matures and becomes someone that I would be proud to call a friend. Trust me on this... There were so many times that I wanted to jump into the pages and smack him for Reena and Hannah, but with everything that happened to him, all of his flaws make sense. He tries hard to earn the respect of the people he hurt, so I really ending up liking him. 

There is a lot of drama in this book, so if you are a fan of Lifetime movies or dramatic TV shows, I really think this is the kind of book for you. It's entertaining, but there are real-life situations in the book that could happen to anyone.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (4)

Okay... so I know that not a lot of people enjoy Mondays, but this book meme makes Mondays just a little more bearable. I don't know about you, but Mondays, especially Mondays when I actually have to work, could use a little cheer. I'm babysitting three kids today, so a little reading while they are playing is just the trick to make the day go by a little bit faster.

For those of you who might start school today, Happy First Day of School! I personally always loved the first day of school, even though it meant less time to read what I wanted to read. Just remember that it's a new year, and everything is fresh again. There is so much to learn, so go out there, and try your best.

Everyone else, Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend.

Mondays are starting to become a favorite of mine because of It's Monday. It's a really cool book meme that's hosted by BookJourney. Each Monday, you get to share the book or books that you are reading during the week.

This Monday, I've decided to continue reading the books in The Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer. The Goodreads group I'm a mod for is reading the series starting next month, and because I'm in charge of the BOTM and Series Reads, I decided to get ahead on the reading so I could be better prepared when people start posting on the discussion boards. (If you're interested in joining us, the link to the group is on the left column of my blog.)

I finished Scarlet last night, so today, I'm going to read Cress. The cliffhanger ending in Scarlet was enough to make me want to jump in the pages again. I need to find out how Cinder is going to act on her promise to Iko and basically the rest of the world, even though they don't know about her yet.

I'm also excited to meet Cress. From what I've seen, Cress is based on Rapunzel, and I already think we've met her, just not officially. I can't wait to see how Cinder, Thorne, Scarlet, and Wolf work together to overthrow Levana. And obviously I need to know that Kai is not insane! I hope he figures out a way to save the planet without sacrificing himself. He seems like he is going to be such a great emperor.

I've also noticed that Cress has a very high average rating on Goodreads, so of course, I am excited to start it. If you've read it, I'd love to hear your thoughts, but maybe after I finish. I don't want to spoil myself because this is a series that no one has spoiled for me, and it's really made it an enjoyable series to read.

In this third book in the Lunar Chronicles, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.

Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl imprisoned on a satellite since childhood who's only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Review: Side Effects May Vary

Title: Side Effects May Vary
Author: Julie Murphy
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: March 18, 2014
Format: Hardcover, First Edition
Source: Purchased
What if you'd been living your life as if you were dying—only to find out that you had your whole future ahead of you?

When sixteen-year-old Alice is diagnosed with leukemia, her prognosis is grim. To maximize the time she does have, she vows to spend her final months righting wrongs—however she sees fit. She convinces her friend Harvey, who she knows has always had feelings for her, to help her with a crazy bucket list that's as much about revenge (humiliating her ex-boyfriend and getting back at her arch-nemesis) as it is about hope (doing something unexpectedly kind for a stranger). But just when Alice's scores are settled, she goes into remission.

Now Alice is forced to face the consequences of all that she's said and done, as well as her true feelings for Harvey. But has she caused irreparable damage to the people around her—and to the one person who matters most?

Julie Murphy's Side Effects May Vary is a fearless and moving tour de force about love, life, and facing your own mortality.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Cover Reveal: The Wicked Will Rise

I've been waiting for this day for like four months now, and it's finally here. Danielle Paige and HarperCollins have revealed the cover for The Wicked Will Rise, which is the second book in the Dorothy Must Die series. While it won't be released until March 30, 2015, we can look at this cover and begin to imagine what happens to Amy next.

I love it! I was expecting something similar to the cover of Dorothy Must Die, so I am as happy as a kid in a candy store right now. It's just so perfect.

Check it out!

I love the simplicity of it, and I love how the green pays homage to the original books. I can't wait to get my hands on a copy of this so it can sit next to its sister.

What do you think? Have you read Dorothy Must Die? Are you excited for the sequel?

In this dark, high-octane sequel to the New York Times bestselling Dorothy Must Die, Amy Gumm must do everything in her power to kill Dorothy and free Oz.
To make Oz a free land again, Amy Gumm was given a mission: remove the Tin Woodman’s heart, steal the Scarecrow’s brain, take the Lion’s courage, and then Dorothy must die....

But Dorothy still lives. Now the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked has vanished, and mysterious Princess Ozma might be Amy’s only ally. As Amy learns the truth about her mission, she realizes that she’s only just scratched the surface of Oz’s past—and that Kansas, the home she couldn't wait to leave behind, may also be in danger. In a place where the line between good and evil shifts with just a strong gust of wind, who can Amy trust—and who is really Wicked?

Liebster Award (2)

I received a third Liebster Award from Jennie. She runs the blog A Bookworm Called Jennie. I wanted to make sure that she also receives the proper amount of thanks! Thank you so much for the nomination, Jennie! It truly was an amazing feeling to see another one!

These are the answers to the questions that Jennie asked:

  1. Q: Why did you start blogging?
    A: I had an education blog for one of my education classes, and I really enjoyed it. I had already wanted a book blog at that point, but I didn't think I had the time. When I started posting reviews more often on Goodreads, I decided to make the jump.
  2. Q: What film(s) do you love that have been adapted from books?
    I love the Harry Potter movies. I also really enjoyed the adaptation for The Perks of Being a Wallflower and both The Hunger Games and Catching Fire.
  3. Q: What is/are your favorite book blog(s)?
    A: Effortlessly Reading and The Perpetual Page-Turner 
  4. Q: What's your favorite book(s) so far this year?
    A: To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han, The One by Kiera Cass, and Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira 
  5. Q: What's your favorite book/series of all time?
    A: I'm going to go with the Harry Potter series as my favorite series. The books are just completely perfect. My favorite book is The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
  6. Q: If you were shipwrecked on a desert island which 1 series would you want with you?
    A: I'd have to take the Harry Potter books with me. There is so much in them that I know I'd be entertained for quite a while.
  7. Q: Any book turn-offs?
    A: Paranormal books are a book turn-off for me. I really just don't like the ones I've read, so I'm afraid to try more of them. They leave me completely confused because I feel like the authors never really explain the paranormal things in their books. I'm also less likely to read a book if it's compared to The Fault in Our Stars. I really, really hated that book, so I'm skeptical of books that are compared to it.
  8. Q: What do you eat while blogging/reading?
  9. A: Well I usually always have my water bottle with me when I'm reading and blogging. It is a Camelbak, so it's pretty hard to spill on a book or my laptop. I'd cry if water landed on either. I try not to eat when I read, but because I have a keyboard skin on my Mac, I'll eat whatever is around if I'm hungry.
  10. Q: Book pet hates?
    A: I'm hoping a pet hate is the same thing as a pet peeve. I'm getting tired of love triangles.
  11. Q: Do you read books more than once?
    A: I sometimes books more than once, especially if I really liked the book. 

Okay, so I've already nominated eleven people, and I'm just waiting to see their posts. In case you missed it, you can find my original Liebster Award post here.  And here is the list of my eleven nominees if you want to check out their blogs, which you totally should:
  1. Lauren @ A Blonde Librarian
  2. Connie @ The YA Book Thief
  3. Ilina @ A Book Lover's Ramblings
  4. Tika @ Fangirl Confessions
  5. Jennie @ A Bookworm Called Jennie
  6. Gloria @ Gloria the Violinist
  7. Sabrina @ Sabrina's Stories
  8. Jessica @ The Psychotic Nerd
  9. Karina @ I, Fat Robot
  10. Olivia @ Little Olive Library
  11. Jess @ My Reading Dress

Stacking the Shelves (1)

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly book meme created and hosted by Tynga at Tynga's Reviews. It is all about sharing the books you've added to your shelves throughout the week. Books can be either physical books or e-books. The books can be books that you've purchased, borrowed, or received for review or as a gift.

This is my first time participating in Stacking the Shelves. I hope to be able to participate often, and when I do, my Stacking the Shelves posts will be posted on Saturdays or Sundays.

I added a lot of books to my shelves this week. A lot. Okay... well maybe not a lot, but quite a few books were added to my shelves this week. I placed book orders through Book Outlet and Amazon, and both packages arrived on my porch this week.

These are the books that I've added to my shelves this week:
  • Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
  • Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
  • The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
  • Girls in White Dresses by Jennifer Close
  • Every Day by David Levithan
  • Dash and Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
  • Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt
  • The F- It List by Julie Halpern
  • Meant to Be by Lauren Morrill
  • Midnight Thief by Livia Blackburne

Friday, August 22, 2014

The Friday 56 (3)


The Friday 56 is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Freda at Freda's Voice.

If you want to participate, all you need to do is link your post to Freda's blog. Then you open the book closest to you (or the one you're currently reading) to page fifty-six (or 56% on your e-reader). From there, you find a sentence or two that you want to share that will make someone who hasn't read the book want to read it.

This Friday, I'm working my way through Scarlet, the second book in The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. So far, I'm really enjoying it. I just wish I had a little more free time to read it.

"She called up the blueprint of the jail's interior structure to check the direction while she waited for Thorne to clamber up behind her. Switching on her built-in flashlight, Cinder started to crawl."

 So what is everyone reading this fine Friday? As always, you can either let me know in the comments or leave a link to your "Friday 56" post for the week. I'll be sure to check them out!

Friday Finds (2)

Friday Finds is a weekly event hosted by Should Be Reading. Each Friday (or sporadically as I'm doing),  you write a new post about all the books that you've discovered during the week. They can be a new book that you discovered through a recommendation or a book that you ordered and are now ready to devour. It's all up to you and what you've found that you want to read.

I won't lie to you. I ordered a bunch of books recently, so I have quite a few books that I could share with you. Instead, I'm going to focus on a book giveaway that I won because the book wasn't really on my radar, even though I had it on my Goodreads TBR shelf.

I recently started following Chick Lit Chickadees, and I saw that they were doing a giveaway for their one month anniversary. I love entering to win things. I really do, so I entered thinking that it would be cool to win. Well... I won their mystery book giveaway. I wouldn't know what the prize was until it got to my house and I could unwrap it. Can you imagine how much wondering I did? Let me tell you... it was a lot.

The book I won is called Midnight Thief (Midnight Thief #1) by Livia Blackburne. I'm excited to read it, although it might be some time before I get around to it. It seems interesting, and I'm always willing to give fantasy a chance. I'll review it here to let everyone know what I think of it.

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Growing up on Forge’s streets has taught Kyra how to stretch a coin. And when that’s not enough, her uncanny ability to scale walls and bypass guards helps her take what she needs.

But when the leader of the Assassins Guild offers Kyra a lucrative job, she hesitates. She knows how to get by on her own, and she’s not sure she wants to play by his rules. But he’s persistent—and darkly attractive—and Kyra can’t quite resist his pull.

Tristam of Brancel is a young Palace knight on a mission. After his best friend is brutally murdered by Demon Riders, a clan of vicious warriors who ride bloodthirsty wildcats, Tristam vows to take them down. But as his investigation deepens, he finds his efforts thwarted by a talented thief, one who sneaks past Palace defenses with uncanny ease.

When a fateful raid throws Kyra and Tristam together, the two enemies realize that their best chance at survival—and vengeance—might be to join forces. And as their loyalties are tested to the breaking point, they learn a startling secret about Kyra’s past that threatens to reshape both their lives.

In her arresting debut novel, Livia Blackburne creates a captivating world where intrigue prowls around every corner—and danger is a way of life.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Liebster Award

Hey everyone! I'm so excited to announce that just under a month into book blogging, I've been nominated for a Liebster Award. I've been seeing these on my BlogLovin feed, so when Anna nominated me, I was super giddy. If you've been nominated, you've already won a Liebster Award! After this post went live, I received a second nomination from A.M., and I was floored! Two nominations in one day? I can't believe it, but I'm very happy to be welcomed by the book blogging community.

In case you're new to book blogging like me or just unfamiliar with the award, here's a brief description:

Basically, it's a blog award that you receive from another book blogger. In order to be nominated, you must be a newer book blogger. After you've been nominated, you get to nominate other book bloggers.

The award also comes with some rules:

  1. Link and thank the person who nominated your blog.
  2. Answer the eleven questions that they asked you.
  3. Pick eleven bloggers with less than two hundred (200) followers to nominate.
  4. Ask them eleven questions.
  5. Let them know that you've nominated them by commenting on one of their posts.

My answers to Anna's questions:

  1. Q: Why did you start blogging?
    A: I used to have an education blog for a college class. I really enjoyed it, but I wanted to do something more than just blog for my classmates or share things I like on Tumblr. I've always been a huge reader, and I love posting reviews on Goodreads, so I decided to give book blogging a try.
  2. Q: What's your favorite experience related to blogging so far? 
    A: I'm really enjoying the weekly memes because they give me something to write about when I'm in the middle of a book. It's fun to share my top ten lists and books that I'm currently reading with my blog's followers.
  3. Q:What is/are your favourite book blog(s)? Excluding Enchanted by YA of course ;)A: Effortlessly Reading and The Perpetual Page-Turner
  4. Q: What's your favorite book(s) so far this year?
    A: To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han, The One by Kiera Cass, and Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira 
  5. Q: What's your favorite book/series OF ALL TIME?
    A: Even though I read it just recently, I'm going to go with the Harry Potter series as my favorite series. My favorite book is The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
  6. Q: If you were shipwrecked on a desert island which 1 series would you want with you?
    A: I'd have to take the Harry Potter books with me. There is so much in them that I know I'd be entertained for quite a while.
  7. Q: Any book turn-offs?
    A: Paranormal books are a book turn-off for me. I'm also less likely to read a book if it's compared to The Fault in Our Stars.
  8. Q: What do you eat while blogging/reading?
  9. A: Well I usually always have my water bottle with me when I'm reading and blogging. I try not to eat when I read, but because I have a keyboard skin on my Mac, I'll eat whatever is around if I'm hungry.
  10. Q: If you lived in a book and could have the love interest for yourself with the female protagonist out the way, what book and who would you choose?
    A: I want Tobias.
  11. Q: Do you read books more than once?
    A: Sometimes I do read books more than once. Some of them I read and sell, but I do keep a lot of my books around because I know I'm going to re-read them.

My answers to A.M.'s questions:

  1. Q: Has your reading changed since you started blogging? If so, how?
    A: My reading hasn't really changed since I started blogging. I read some of the same things, and I try the things that I've wanted to.
  2. Q: How did you choose the name of your blog?
    A: When I was a really huge Nicholas Sparks fan, my grandma told me it would be best to own the books I really liked in hardcover because they last longer. I already liked hardcovers better, but I go out of my way to find a hardcover of a book.
  3. Q: What is your favorite book and why?
    A: The Perks of Being a Wallflower for many reasons. I really feel like Charlie is a great character. I felt myself living through him, and that is always a great thing for a book. I also love that it's set in my hometown.
  4. Q: What is your dream job?
    A: Teacher
  5. Q: What do you think makes someone brave?
    A: I think being afraid but doing something anything makes a person brave.
  6. Q: If you could move anywhere in the world on a whim, where would you go and why?
    A: Ireland because I am Irish. My ancestors built a castle that is still standing, so I want to learn more about them and my heritage.
  7. Q: What is your favorite movie of all time?
    A: Titanic
  8. Q: If you had one vital piece of advice to give to someone else, what would it be?
    A: It's okay to regret things in life but learning from the things you regret is what helps you grow as a person.
  9. Q: Are you an early bird or a night owl?
    A: Night owl.
  10. Q: If you could meet three people, dead or alive, who would they be?
    A: J.K. Rowling, Marilyn Monroe, and Jane Austen
  11. Q: Do you have any weird pet peeves?
    A: I hate when people mix up words. It literally makes me cringe.


And now for the list of people I am nominating for a Liebster Award:

  1. Lauren @ A Blonde Librarian
  2. Connie @ The YA Book Thief
  3. Ilina @ A Book Lover's Ramblings
  4. Tika @ Fangirl Confessions
  5. Jennie @ A Bookworm Called Jennie
  6. Gloria @ Gloria the Violinist
  7. Sabrina @ Sabrina's Stories
  8. Jessica @ The Psychotic Nerd
  9. Karina @ I, Fat Robot
  10. Olivia @ Little Olive Library
  11. Jess @ My Reading Dress

These are the eleven questions for my nominees to answer:

  1. Why did you decide to start blogging?
  2. Are there any books set in your hometown? If so, what one(s)?
  3. Who are some of your auto-buy authors?
  4. What is your favorite series?
  5. Do you like fantasy or dystopia better? Why?
  6. Have you ever written a book?
  7. What are some of your favorite book blogs?
  8. What is your favorite book you had to read for school?
  9. What are you currently reading?
  10. Are there any books that you just know you won't read even though everyone tells you that they are great?
  11. What is your favorite thing about the book blog community? Why?

Book Review: The Fault in Our Stars

Title: The Fault in Our Stars
Author: John Green
Publisher: Dutton Books
Publication Date: January 10, 2012
Format: Hardcover, Barnes & Noble Collector's Edition
Source: Purchased
Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.
Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning author John Green's most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.

My Review

Okay... I'm going to warn you that my review of this book is very critical. I did not enjoy this book, but I would appreciate that you respect my opinion. If you really loved this book and might get offended by a negative review, please feel free to stop reading. I won't mind. I didn't know if I actually wanted to publish my review of this book on my blog, but I have decided to publish it.

When I first decided that I wanted to read this book, it was because the synopsis was interesting. A lot of people were talking about it too. And not just the people on Goodreads. I literally heard about this book all the time. Then I started reading, and I realized that the kind of cancer that Hazel originally had is the kind I am most likely to get. It intrigued me enough to keep reading. I mean why not, right? I kept thinking that maybe I could learn something about it in case it were to happen to me.

Unfortunately, that was where my interest in the book stopped. The Fault in Our Stars was very predictable. I pretty much knew what was going to happen as soon as a new character was introduced. The only thing that really surprised me was the characterization of Caroline. Other than that, I really don't know. I couldn't stand it.

I really thought it would be this great book because I have heard and read many great things about it, but I just don't think it's that great. So many people told me to read it, and I wanted to smack them in the head with the book upon completing it. 

It was so easy to read that it was almost boring. Actually, I think it was boring, even the short chapters, which I feel are just included to speed along the plot. I read this book so slow because of how boring it is, and I am not a slow reader. That is one reason why it was not an enjoyable read for me.

Augustus and Hazel are two characters who angered me. They were overly annoying. I've met a lot of teens, and not one of them talks like that. I can't even imagine someone with cancer, especially a teenager with cancer, speaking so beautifully all of the time. Don't get me wrong... some of what they said was awesome, but it wasn't realistic.

Also, I was quite offended by how Green romanticized cancer. I'm sure he didn't do it on purpose, but that's how it comes off to me. I've actually seen and heard kids wish that they had cancer because of this book. I'm sorry, but we can't live in a world where people want cancer because cancer is not the kind of disease that one should wish on themselves.

I understand that the book is not supposed to be a cancer book. I guess it is a book about living with cancer. If you ask me, Green failed. I just felt like it was another book about a kid with cancer. It made me angry to see cancer presented this way because I've seen quite a few of my brother and sister's friends die of childhood cancer and this book was not a realistic depiction of the suffering I've seen.

I honestly just don't understand all of the hype about the book. It seems like it gets bigger and bigger by the day. It's not going away. While I'm sure people will say that it's an amazing book, it's definitely not the most amazing book on the planet. There are better realistic fiction books out there, and I'm only sorry that I didn't stop reading this book. I could have saved myself some time.


TBR Thursday (2)

TBR Thursday is a meme that was started by Sarah (Words with Sarah). All that's done is you pick a book that's been on your TBR list for three or more months that you plan on reading during the week or weekend.

This Thursday, I've decided to go with a classic that I'll probably be reading for a while because it is over seven hundred pages.

It's not that I am a slow reader; I just like to make sure that when I read a classic, I take my time because I don't want to miss anything. Besides, I'm an English teacher, so I always want to find out just why people love some of these books. It's an odd habit of mine.

I'm also reading a little bit of this at night before I go to bed. The chapters are short, and only reading one or two chapters a night for a while will cause me to take a while with this book. Oh well. It's not about how long it takes to read a book; it's about reading it and the love of literature.

Okay, so without further ado, my choice for TBR Thursday is Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy. I've been wanting to read it since high school, but I never had the time. A few years ago, the movie was released, so I got the itch to read it again. (I still haven't seen the movie.) I probably still don't have the time to read it, but I started it a few days ago, and I'm ready to find out what happens. I'm going to make the time.

I'll try to keep everyone updated on this one. I'll be reading it while reading a few other books, but I'm really excited to finally add this to my read shelf.