Nov 23, 2010

Scott Westerfeld's Pretties Series Gets a New Look!

I just became a fan of Scott Westerfeld on Facebook, and this is what I found:

(Click on the images to enlarge.)

Aren't they amazing? I really like the old covers, but these ones are so much more mysterious, enticing and appealing. Besides, I love everything white and minimalist and these covers make me go "OOHH!" Too bad I have the old covers, and I don't even know if the new covers will be published in Argentina.

What do you think? Had you seen them before? Do you like these new ones or the old ones better?

Nov 21, 2010

2011 Debut Author Challenge

This year I failed miserably at this, so I'm making it my goal to complete it next year.

To participate you have to read 12 YA or MG books by debut authors, or more, that's up to the reader. I'm aiming to read 12, but if I can read more, I will!

On this post I'll list the books I'll be reading, and I reserve the right to change this list whenever I want, for whatever reason. 
  1. Unearthly, by Cynthia Hand. Published January 4th, 2011, by HarperTeen.
  2. Across the Universe, by Beth Revis. Published on January 11th, 2011, by Razorbill.
  3. Angelfire, by Courtney Allison Moulton. Published on February 15th, 2011, by Katherine Tegen Books.
  4. Populazzi, by Elise Allen. To be published on August 2011, by Harcourt Children's Books. 
  5. Wither, by Lauren DeStefano.  Published March 22nd 2011, by Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing.
As I read the books I'll be linking my reviews here. 
These are all US debuts, but I might add a Latin, Spanish, UK, or Aussie debut to the list.

You can join the challenge on The Story Siren.

Nov 17, 2010

WOW #16: Red Glove (The Curse Workers, #2), by Holly Black

Red Glove (The Curse Workers, #2), by Holly Black
Sequel to White Cat (The Curse Workers, #1).

(No summary yet.)

I won a hardcover of WC, and a little teaser for Red Glove that left me wanting more so much!
I'm guessing this is Lila in the cover, although she doesn's look much like the Lila from my mind. This one is much older.

This cover doesn't match the one I have for White Cat, which is this one:

But it does match this other cover which I hadn't seen until now:

Personally, I like the first one better, the one with the smoke over Cassel's eyes. It gives it more mystery and the font for the title looks so much better than this block-y one in the second cover.

What's your WoW this week? Maybe I'll find something to add to my ever-growing TBR Pile!

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Nov 14, 2010

A quick question

After I read a book, I rush into writing the review, cause I'm afraid I'll forget what my thoughts were if I wait to write it. For instance, I read Delirium, by Lauren Oliver, and immediately wrote the review, pouring all of my thoughts into it. 

But I'd like to know, do you do this too, or wait until the release date of the book to publish your review? 
Delirium comes out next February, should I have waited a bit longer to publish my review? What do you think?


Nov 10, 2010

Beautiful Darkness (Caster Chronicles, #2), by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Release Date: October 12th, 2010
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Age Group: Young Adult
Overall: 4,5 Monkeys
Interest: Series

Summary from Goodreads:

Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he met mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who revealed a secret world that had been hidden in plain sight all along. A Gatlin that harbored ancient secrets beneath its moss-covered oaks and cracked sidewalks. A Gatlin where a curse has marked Lena's family of powerful supernaturals for generations. A Gatlin where impossible, magical, life-altering events happen.

Sometimes life-ending.

Together they can face anything Gatlin throws at them, but after suffering a tragic loss, Lena starts to pull away, keeping secrets that test their relationship. And now that Ethan's eyes have been opened to the darker side of Gatlin, there's no going back. Haunted by strange visions only he can see, Ethan is pulled deeper into his town's tangled history and finds himself caught up in the dangerous network of underground passageways endlessly crisscrossing the South, where nothing is as it seems.
My Opinion:

Another great book by Kami and Margie! I loved it! 

From the beginning there's action and suspense, and it keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout it.

One of the reasons I love this book so much is that it's told from a boy's POV, something very unusual in YA. 

Macon died on Lena's Sixteenth Birthday, or Moon, and Ethan knows how she must be feeling. So he's there for her. Or he tries to be. Because Lena keeps pushing him away, but that's only natural, because she's hurting. She feels it was her fault he died. 

Ethan gives her space and tries to talk to her, but Lena doesn't want him around. 

And oh, oh, Ridley, Lena's Siren cousin, is back. But she's not alone. There's a boy with her, and Ethan has a really bad feeling about him.

He's right, of course. Ridley and Vampire Boy (as Link calls him) convince Lena that she has to leave everything behind, and go someplace where she can't hurt anyone anymore. 

I felt so sad everytime Ethan tried to reach out for her, and she just pushed him away. She really wanted him gone, and it seemed as though John, aka Vampire Boy, was there to fill in Ethan's shoes if Lena so wanted. Ethan has got to be one of the strongest characters I've ever read about. Whatever challenge he was faced with, he did everything he could to overcome it, all to be with the one he loves. And there were those moments when he was feeling broken and miserable, and it made him all the more real. Boys cry too. 

Lena didn't have to Claim herself on her Sixteenth Moon, but she'll have to make a choice now, a choice that could affect the Order of Things forever. 

Link and Ridley are two characters I love in this series, even though Ridley can be a bit bitchy sometimes. Well, practically all the time. Link was still hung up on her, but she didn't have the same effect on him as before, and he was able to make his own choices. We see a little change in Ridley, too. Could she have the ability to care about someone? Really care about them? 

Also, there's a new character: Olivia, or Liv, a British exchange student that'll be working with Marian and who'll be of great help when Ethan and Link will need her. 
I didn't like her getting too attached to Ethan, he belongs to Lena! But she's not half bad. She was very interesting to read about, with her crazy temper and inventions.

And there's an OMG WTH?! revelation that involves Macon and a special someone, that I can't wait to read more about. That made me teary eyed! 

At the end of the book, Ethan will need all the help he can get to get Lena back, whether she wants to or not. 
Who'll be there to help him? And against who is he fighting?

There were some things that left me hanging, like John's development, and they are the reasons I'm not giving this a 5 monkeys rating. But 4,5 is great too!


There's a Q&A with Kami & Margie on Goodreads! If you've read either BC or both, you can ask the girls questions, and join in the discussions about the books.

Nov 8, 2010

Lauren Oliver's Birthday!

Today's Lauren's birthday and we've made a little message for her over on Deliriously Falling.
Stop by and wish her a happy bday! We'll be sending her the link later today, so it's kind of a surprise!
Tell everyone!

Nov 5, 2010

A Message from Lauren! + Giveaway!

Lauren Oliver is awesome. She is. And she recorded a message for us! Which makes her ten times more awesome.

Head on over to Deliriously Falling to watch the video and enter in a very cool giveaway! Tell everyone!

Nov 4, 2010

Delirium (Delirium, #1), by Lauren Oliver

Release Date: February 1st, 2011
Publisher: HarperTeen
Age Group: Young Adult
Overall: 100 Monkeys!
Source: NetGalley
Interest: Series

Summary from Goodreads:
Before scientists found the cure, people thought love was a good thing. They didn’t understand that once love -the deliria- blooms in your blood, there is no escaping its hold. Things are different now. Scientists are able to eradicate love, and the governments demands that all citizens receive the cure upon turning eighteen. Lena Holoway has always looked forward to the day when she’ll be cured. A life without love is a life without pain: safe, measured, predictable, and happy.

But with ninety-five days left until her treatment, Lena does the unthinkable: She falls in love.
My Opinion:

This is going to be a long review!

First of all, let me say WOW.  Second of all, I'm in love with this book! I keep tearing up every time I think about it, so this review is going to be very emotional.

Lauren Oliver is a fantastic author, and I loved the world she created.

Delirium is set in a dystopic USA, where love (everything about it, even saying the word) is banned. Cursed. Forbidden. The amor deliria nervosa is a disease that can seep under your skin, into your bones, and rot your brain. Or at least, that's what people are told. That's what Lena believes.

Lena, our protagonist, can't wait for the day when she'll finally get the treatment that will cure her and make everything OK. Because everyone knows that her family's tainted by the disease. Lena's mother was infected. And she died because of it. Lena wants to show everyone that she is nothing like her mother. She really believes that the cure is the only way to be happy.

The cure works in your brain. It makes you calmer, rationalises your thoughts, takes the pain away. There hasn't been much criminal activity in the world since the discovery of the cure. Everyone lives in harmony.

Because, what is love, but a feeling so strong that can make you go insane, get angry for no reason, and bring nothing but pain?

That's why Lena counts down the days until her procedure. Her, and her best friend, Hana.

Hana is a lovable character, funny, energetic, corageous. She's from a rich family, so her friendship with Lena has always been questioned. Why would a girl like her want to be friends with someone like Lena? But, despite everything, they love each other, or rather, care deeply for the other.

The girls run together almost every day, the run giving them a thrill and bringing them closer together. They talk about everything, but most importantly, about the cure.

Before you can get your treatment, you have to be evaluated. You'll be asked about your hobbies, your family, your favourite colour... And be sure you answer correctly! If you don't there can be serious concecuences. Because your life depends of that single evaluation. It will determine what career you'll be able to follow, to whom you'll be married, even how many kids you'll have.

Lena can't wait to pass the evaluation, and know what her life will be like as an adult.
"After the procedure, [Rachel] said, it would all be coasting, all glide, every day as easy as one, two, three." Lena, page 46.
But of course, not everyone is for the treatment. And some people even get infected before they're cured.
Scientists say you have to wait until you're eighteen to have your procedure done. Before that it's too risky, and many things could go wrong. But there have been cases where it was imperative that infected people had the treatment early.

And then there are those who refused to have their treatment and have escaped to live on the outside of the city, outside the safety of its walls. Those who've gone to live in the Wilds. The Invalids. The infected. You don't want to get caught talking about them. It's as bad as if you're caught talking about the deliria.
Mama, Mama, help me get home
I'm out in the woods, I am out on my own.
I found me a werewolf, a nasty old mutt
It showed me its teeth and went straight for my gut.

Mama, Mama, help me get home
I'm out in the woods, I am out on my own.
I was stopped by a vampire, a rotting old wreck
It showed me its teeth and went straight for my neck.

Mama, Mama, put me to bed
I won't make it home, I'm already half-dead
I met an Invalid, and fell for his art
He showed me his smile and went straight for my heart.

-From "A Child's Walk Home," Nursery Rhymes and Folk Tales, edited by Cory Levinson. 
Page 56.
It is on the day of her evaluation that Lena meets the boy that will change her life forever. Up on the Observation Deck, she sees a boy looking down at her, and thinks she can see him smiling. A few days later, she sees him again. 

Alex is guard at the Labs where the evaluations and procedures take place. Lena and Hana run into him when they make a detour in their running track. From that point on, Lena's life takes a 360 degree turn. 

But she can see his marks, the ones the procedure gives you. So that means he's cured, that means he's safe. Isn't he?

Lena is thrown off balance by all the things Alex tells her, all the things he makes her feel. 

Could it be possible that everything she knew was a lie? That everything she thought was great is actually the most terrible thing humanity has ever created? She thought getting infected with the deliria was the worse thing that could happen to you, but what if it's not? What if it's the best thing that could ever happen to someone? 
"As I head home, I keep feeling paranoid, like someone [...] will be able to tell just from seeing my face that I've crossed over. [...] But no one ever glances in my direction. It's a little before nine o'clock, and most people are just rushing to get to work on time. An endless blur of normal people doing normal things, eyes straight ahead of them, paying no attention to the short, nondescript girl with a lumpy backpack pushing past them. 
The short, nondescript girl with a secret burning inside of her like a fire." Lena, page 213.

Lena finally learns the truth about things, and she also knows that the scientists weren't that wrong.

The deliria can change your appetite, your mood, your sleeping habits. It can make you feel happy, but it can make you very, very miserable. It might even kill you. 

But maybe, death isn't so bad. Because, after you've been infected, life cannot get worse. And you'd rather die on your own terms that live on theirs

Delirium's ending had me crying like crazy (much like Before I Fall's ending) and left a hollow feeling in my chest. But now that I know there are two more books to come, I'm filled with hope! You'll need a box of tissues to read this. Mark my words.
"I love you. Remember. They cannot take it." Page 31.
I love Lauren's books so much, that I've started a Fan Page just for them! Click here to visit the blog, Deliriously Falling, and join in the conversation!

**You read the whole thing? YAY! You're awesome!
***I love that Lena's name is Magdalena Ella Haloway. We have the same name!

Nov 3, 2010

My Not-So-Secret Project is Revealed!

I told you I'd finished reading Delirium by Lauren Oliver yesterday -I still have to write the review- and I've been busy ever since.

Why? Because I just created a Fan Page for Lauren and her work! I'm super excited about it! (I already have one follower, thanks Mundie Moms!) And I hope it continues to grow and become this awesome place where we can talk about everything about Lauren, her books and the upcoming film versions of her work!

It'll be crazy, managing this blog, that one, and doing what normal humans do, but I'm all up for it!

Come and join me in Deliriously Falling, and let's discuss!

There's a Before I Fall Read Along coming up in Fallen Archangel! I'll be there, will you? (I'm already thinking of what we can do for the release of Delirium next February!)

Nov 2, 2010

Between the Sea and Sky cover!

OK, how beautiful is that cover? I'm in love with it, it's so pretty! Look at the little tail coming off of the B in Between! Jaclyn has just revealed it! She's had to keep it a secret until now, and she's finally able to share it with us!
Here's what she said about the book:
I LOVED writing this book so much. As I've described before, I envisioned like Jane Austen meets Miyazaki movie (and had soundtracks to both in heavy rotation while writing it). It's about a mermaid named Esmerine who runs into her old childhood friend winged dude Alan, while looking for her sister Dosinia who ran away with a human man. There is flying, and humor, and a brassy old woman, and a bookstore, and lots of love to literature (of the 18th century variety, at least), and kissing in a vineyard, and relationships between sisters, and Alan is somewhat of an intellectual snot, which I always enjoy, personally. Not so much of an intellectual snot that I wouldn't date him. You know.

It's set in the same world as Magic Under Glass but instead of being Victorian England/America-ish, it's based on Italy around 1800. (And man, I did way too much research on actual Italy for it being a made up Italy...)

So, go ahead and add it to your ever-growing To Be Read pile, like I did, and enter in the contest Jaclyn's holding!
I just finished reading Delirium, by Lauren Oliver. Review's coming up!
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