Jul 5, 2012

Figment invites you to a chat w/Justine Larbalestier, Sarah Rees Brennan and Scott Westerfeld!

Don't miss Figment's upcoming all-star chat: Writing with Friends: How to collaborate on a novel while not losing your mind (or your pal)!  
Authors Justine Larbalestier (Liar) and Sarah Rees Brennan (The Demon's Lexicon) recently joined forces to write Team Human. Through emails and iChats, the two writers worked together to write this very funny novel about Mel Duan, a whip-smart high-schooler trying desperately to keep her best friend from falling in love with the wrong guy--a guy who just happens to be a vampire.  
On July 8 at 8:00 pm, the authors are coming to Figment to discuss the tricky task of collaboration. How do two people create one cohesive voice? How do you find the right writing partner? And who gets credit for the best lines? 
Joining them as host of this rousing live web chat is none other than beloved bestselling author Scott Westerfeld (aka Justine's husband)! In the second half of the chat, the three superstar authors will take questions from the audience. And in the meantime, to get ready to talk collaboration (and vampires!), take a voyeuristic peak into one of Justine's and Sarah's writerly iChats and vote in our very scientific vampire showdown poll. [from Figment]
Sounds awesome, right? I don't think I can make it, but I thought you guys might!

Take a look at the trailer, if you haven't seen it already:

Have fun,

Apr 24, 2012

Cover Reveal: The Evolution of Mara Dyer (+ contest on GR!)

The people at Goodreads have just revealed the new cover for Michelle Hodkin's second book in the Mara Dyer series: The Evolution of Mara Dyer! And here it is!

Two days after Mara walks into a police station in Miami at the close of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, she is committed for psychiatric treatment for what her parents believe is a mental breakdown. But what seems like a hallucination to everyone else is a chilling reality for Mara. Someone from her past has discovered her strange, disturbing secret and that someone wants her to pay. But she's about to discover that the price is more than she can bear. [summary from GR]
Goodreads is having a contest with Pinterest too:
We've exclusively revealed the new cover for Michelle Hodkin's upcoming book The Evolution of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer #2) and we now challenge the users of Goodreads.com to PIN the cover at least 500 times!

If this Pinterest goal is met by May 6th we will release an exclusive excerpt on May 7th!

You can find the PIN button on the right hand side of this book page under SHARE THIS BOOK.


If you want to receive a reminder about the excerpt release don't forget to join the COVER/EXCERPT REVEAL event. 
AND, they also have an ARC contest, here. I loved The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer and can't wait for this one. They both have beautiful covers!

Apr 23, 2012

Avatar: The Last Airbender, Volume One: The Promise, #1, by Gene Luen Yang

With: Bryan Konietzko
By (artist): Gurihiru
With: Michael Dante DiMartino
Release Date: January 25th, 2012
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Age Group: Children's
Overall: 4 out of 5 Stars
Categories: Avatar: The Last Airbender, NetGalley, Comics
Goodreads Page 
Read in April 2012 

The wait is over! Ever since the conclusion of Avatar: The Last Airbender, its millions of fans have been hungry for more--and it's finally here!

This series of digests rejoins Aang and friends for exciting new adventures, beginning with a faceoff against the Fire Nation that threatens to throw the world into another war, testing all of Aang's powers and ingenuity!
The continuation of Airbender and the link to its upcoming sequel, Legend of Korra!
My Opinion: 

I love Avatar: The Last Airbender, so when I saw this title in NetGalley, of course I had to have it!

The Promise starts off just where the TV show ended: with the Fire Nation's Lord defeated, Aang victorious and with Katara (YAY!) and Zuko at the Fire Nation's throne. 

It is now Aang's job to ensure that everything goes peacefully with the Harmony Restoration Movement, aimed at bringing the people from the Fire Nation living in their colonies back to their land. But of course, when stuff like this happens, people tend to make roots in the place they're taken to, and that's what the Fire Nation people have done. Now they don't want to leave, and this may bring problems to Aang and Zuko's plan.

Aang is a young boy, playful and loveable like always, as the rest of the characters: they're the same as they were in the TV show. The art was also very faithful, I loved some of their expressions! Especially Toph, love her! 

This was a very short read, at 74 pages, and we'll have to wait until next month for the next installment. Avatar fans, this is a must read, as it works as a link between A:TLA and Avatar: The Legend of Korra (now on TV!) 

Apr 20, 2012

Team Damon? Hell YES. [TVD s03e19]

**SPOILER ALERT: Don't read if you haven't read Dark Reunion or watched episode 19 of the TV show.**

OK, so I've been a TVD fan since reading the books a couple of years ago (look at my old review! LOL), and I've always loved Damon. Even when he was stalking Elena in his crow form (remember that? I wished they'd included it in the TV series! LJ gave drinking human blood a whole new meaning!).

He comes off as a tough bloke, but deep down, he just wants to be loved (queue *awww*). And the fact that he's played by Ian Sommerhalder in the small screen doesn't hurt either. 

My favourite parts would always be when he and Elena would be together in the books. His love for her is so different than Stefan's, so much more intense. He'd always be in the sidelines watching his brother be with the one he loves. 

Book Damon becomes absolutely adorable, even though he doesn't want it to show. And TV Damon is the same. Can you love a character so much? He makes me swoon every time I see him! 

TVD producers: THANK YOU! Thanks for this:

Those abs! They kill me! And his face, so cute! 
Then Elena looks at him with her big, alluring eyes...
...and of course he goes to her!

When Damon tries to take her hand... (I'm going to be a total fangirl now, I don't even care). OMG, SWOON. It made every butterfly in my tummy dance with happiness! But dumb Elena up and leaves.

Seriously? What is wrong with you, girl?!


Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

That was a sexy scene! FINALLY!!! Damn you cockblock-Jeremy!!! 

(Oh, Jeremy finally comes back. I wonder if Steven had to be somewhere else, and that's why he was away?)

All in all, a great episode. Esther, Original Momma, comes back, and dies. Or does she? Tyler's back too. YAY! 

But I just can't take that kiss off my head!
Team Damon, everyone? YES.

Apr 18, 2012

Daughter of Smoke and Bone (DoSaB, #1), by Laini Taylor

Release Date: September 27th, 2011
Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
Age Group: Young Adult
Overall: 5 out of 5 Stars (Unputdownable!)
Categories: Paranormal, Romance, Angels, Reincarnation, Magic
Goodreads Page 
Read in March 2012

Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil's supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she's prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages—not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.

When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?
My Opinion:

I started this book without having read any reviews, so I didn't know what to expect. Laini's world definitely blew me away. I was not expecting that! 

The writing style of this book is so light and at the same time, intense; I couldn't put it down (but there were times when I had to). Taylor's descriptions made my imagination soar through the cities she wrote about, imagining scenes, towns, people, like a good book is supposed to do.

We start out not knowing who Karou is, or where she comes from; we only know that she has a lot of secrets, like her family and Brimstone, the closest thing to a father she has. With her blue hair, she's a rebel that seeks the truth about herself, but at the same time, does not want to disappoint mighty Brimstone. 

Her human friend Zuzana, is an ordinary girl, your typical teenage friend. I'd love to see more of her, see how she progresses in the story. Karou keeps many secrets from her, but she's still loyal to her, and that says so much about her character. She's definitely an anchor for Karou, who's losing touch with everything that means something to her. 

There are so many characters worthy of mentioning, but then this post would be very long. Karou's "monster" family is extremely caring, I started loving them just as much as Karou does. 

The veil between our world and the Other Side (I read the book in Spanish; how do you call Brimstone's world?) is thinner than Karou could know, and she'll soon learn that there's more behind Brimstone's closed doors than she could ever have imagined.

Then there's Akiva. A tortured soul with a heavy bagagge. He's here to destroy Karou's world, but when they meet, sparks fly. He's such a deep character, I loved him from the start, even when he was trying to kill Karou!

A legendary battle is playing our between the monsters that have raised Karou and Akiva's own race, and she's stuck in the middle. But what part does she play?

Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a book filled with hope: hope of a better world, of happy endings, and of sad stories. You'll pick it up and won't want to let it go until you're finished, and then you'll cry because you'll want to know more! 

Is it November already?

Mar 21, 2012

WoW #23: The White Oak, by Kim White

Waiting on: The White Oak (Imperfect Darkness, #1), by Kim White
Expected publication date: April 9th, 2012
Publisher: Story Machine Studio
Summary from Goodreads:
In The White Oak, the first book in the Imperfect Darkness series, Cora Alexander falls through a sinkhole and enters the underworld still alive. Her living presence threatens the tyrannical rule of Minos and the infernal judges who have hijacked the afterlife and rebuilt it, trapping human souls in a mechanical, computer-controlled city that lies at the core of the earth. To survive, Cora must rely on her untrustworthy guide, Minotaur, an artificial intelligence built by Minos. She is helped by a mysterious voice, and by Sybil, underworld librarian and author of each person’s book of life. Sybil’s collection holds the key to humankind’s intertwined life stories. When Cora’s own book is destroyed, Sybil gives her a magical golden pen and sends her to the underworld city to write her own destiny. Along the way, Cora finds the ghost of her dead brother, Lucas, a genius programmer who alone is capable of finding the chink in Minos's armor. But will he be able to get Cora out alive, or will they both fall victim to the underworld trap?
The MC's name is Cora, like mine! I do love this description, it reminds me of Maria V. Snyder's Insider Series, which I love. I've requested it on NetGalley, and I hope I'm approved!

Mar 17, 2012

Books + Cupcakes = Good Times



There we go! See how yummy the bread is!

This was my first attempt at a Red Velvet Cupcake, and I gotta say, they turned out pretty good! The cupcake anyway... cause the frosting (Cream Cheese) was a nightmare. I couldn't get it right, but I'll keep trying! I liked this video tutorial from Joy of Baking, so I'll try to do what she does next time.

You can also see my latest read: The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. (I always try to read a book before watching its film.) It's good so far, nothing major has happened, but I like the pace and the writing.

Oh, and Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Mar 16, 2012

News: Julie Kagawa's eNovellas will be published in Print format

The Iron Fey Series author Julie Kagawa has just announced that her eNovellas, Winter's Passage and Summer's Crossing will be published in an anthology that will also contain a new Novella, titled Iron's Prophecy

The anthology will be titled The Iron Legends and will hit the shelves on August 28th, before the release of her new book. 

Julie said that there'll be some exclusive content in the anthology, so fans, be ready!

New Girl, by Paige Harbison

Release Date: January 31st, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Age Group: Young Adult
Overall: 3,5 out of 5 Stars
Categories: Drama, Romance, Retelling
Goodreads Page
Read in March 2012 
A contemporary young-adult retelling inspired by the classic 1938 romantic suspense bestseller Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.

They call me 'New Girl'...

Ever since I arrived at exclusive, prestigious Manderly Academy, that’s who I am. New girl. Unknown. But not unnoticed—because of her.

Becca Normandy—that’s the name on everyone’s lips. The girl whose picture I see everywhere. The girl I can’t compare to. I mean, her going missing is the only reason a spot opened up for me at the academy. And everyone stares at me like it’s my fault.

Except for Max Holloway—the boy whose name shouldn’t be spoken. At least, not by me. Everyone thinks of him as Becca’s boyfriend…but she’s gone, and here I am, replacing her. I wish it were that easy. Sometimes, when I think of Max, I can imagine how Becca’s life was so much better than mine could ever be.

And maybe she’s still out there, waiting to take it back.
My Opinion:

It took me a while to get into this story. Normally I don't go for contemporary, but I'd read that this had a supernatural twist, so I decided to give it a go.

The first half of the book narrates the New Girl's life in Manderley, the boarding school her parents send her to. That's the school she wanted to go as a little girl, not now that she's a senior and has all of her friends in Florida. But she goes anyway, because she doesn't want to disappoint her parents. 

I loved that the book had two POVs: Becca's and the New Girl (BTW, we don't learn her name until the final chapter, if I remember correctly. When I read her name, I was like, what, this is your name?, and started looking for it in past chapters. Very well played, Ms. Harbison!). Becca's chapters would be in the 3rd person and NG's in the 1st. With Becca's we got to learn more about the why behind her disappearance. 

I only wish the first part of the book would have been faster-paced (yes, I like inventing terms, if they don't already exist). That's the part where you have to engage your reader. I felt like I was constantly reading a new girl's whines about how much she missed her family and home, and why everyone at school compared her to Becca. Becca's chapters, however, were completely engaging. She was a very cool character to read. 

The boys from this book were appealing, and their story with Becca really showed us who they were. I started feeling sorry for them, for how Becca had treated them. Max and Johnny were good characters. Max definitely captured my heart along with NG's!

This school fed on gossip and rumours, and the NG got to be the centre of attention from the start. I liked how her character evolved towards the end, and how the mystery around Becca was finally solved. 

So, my only critique would be: the book should have been more engaging in the beginning, like it is in the end. We can forget about the NG's whines, because they show her character, and she does change in the end. The end of the book definitely makes up for the slow parts.  

I'm giving it 3,5 stars based on my personal enjoyment. 

Mar 6, 2012

Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2), by Cassandra Clare [Audiobook]

Release Date: December 6th, 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Narrators: Ed Westwick, Heather Lind
Age Group: Young Adult
Overall: 5 out of 5 Stars (multiplied by four)
Categories: Paranormal, Drama, Romance
Goodreads Page
Read in February 2012 
In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends. With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move and that one of their own has betrayed them.
Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will; the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?
As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.
My Opinion:

The beginning of the book.
If I thought I'd loved Clockwork Angel, then I'm crazy for Clockwork Prince! I can't even describe this book's greatness, it's too much.

It'd been a while since I'd read C. Angel, so it took me a bit to get back into the story, but oh boy, did I fall for Will all over again!

The middle part.
Will has got to be one of the best characters ever. His life history (which we learn in this book) is so deep, I can't help but feel completely sorry for him. I want to reach into the pages (or sound waves) of the novel and hug him and tell him everything will be ok.

The rest of the cast is amazing as well, and just the whole book is perfect.

This would be me after finishing the book.
That ending! OH CASSIE, HOW COULD YOU! Now I don't know how I'll live until C. Princess comes out. Not one chapter is dull or boring, and they're all essential to the story.

Sexy Eric has a nice voice too.
And then the narrators. Ed freaking Westwick and his sexy voice was too much to handle. Heather was great too, but I just wanted her to finish her parts so Ed could start reading again. His Will voice was beyond swooning! DEAR!

I don't really have anything else to say, other than, GO READ THIS BOOK!

2012 Audio Book Challenge

I've always loved Audiobooks, I listen to a few every year, so I thought this year I'd sign up for this challenge. I tried to do a smiliar one a couple of years ago, and completely failed. I'm hoping I won't this time! Click on the logo to go to the challenge blog.

I'm signing up in the Going Steady level: Listen to 12 Audio Books.

Here's where I'll be keeping track of my progress.

So far, I've listened to:
  1. Clockwork Prince, by C. Clare, narrated by Ed Westwick and Heather Lind.
  2. Die for Me, by Amy Plum, narrated by ? (Still listening to it ;) 
So, are you an AB fan like me?

    Feb 29, 2012

    Re-Opening TCM! (Yeah, that didn't last long.)

    So, lately I've been recieving more review requests than ever, which led me to thinking: was I right in closing down TCM, at what could be called, its prime time?

    I did it because I realised I didn't have the time to manage this blog, Deliriously Falling and my Spanish book blog, besides from my life. But now, having been gone for just one month (but a very sad month), I'm getting second thoughts. Maybe if I'm more organised I can pull it out.

    I know that by re-opening TCM, it's gonna be crazy, but I like crazy.

    So, to those authors and publishers offering me review copies, Q&A, etc., I say OK! I'm back, I could still go again in a while, but for now, I think I'm gonna stick around.

    See ya!

    Jan 31, 2012

    TCM is closing down!

    I've loved blogging here, this was my first blog, where I discovered the magic of book blogging and I'm sad to let it go. 

    But I've had to make a decision, and that is to stop blogging here and fully dedicate my time to my other two blogs: Deliriously Falling, the Lauren Oliver fansite I started over a year ago, and my Spanish book blog, Mi Café Literario. Since Deliriously Falling is now a fully functioning YA book blog, as well as being a fansite, I thought I'd take more advantage of my time if I focused only on that blog.

    That being said, I'll leave this blog open so people (and I) can still see its content. But I won't be blogging here anymore, unless I change my mind in the future. 

    You'll be able to find me over at DF and email me at deliriouslyfalling AT hotmail.com. Anyone, author or blogger, who's had contact with me, please email me at my new email. Any requests I get to review books here will be transferred to DF.

    Followers! I LOVE you all, and if you want, I invite you to follow me at DF, I have a wonderful group of people there, and we've got some new stuff coming soon.

    It's been wonderful! 
    See you later,

    Jan 21, 2012

    Finding the perfect photo for your book cover, getting the photographer's OK on using it...

    ...and three minutes later, being told by the photographer that an editor wants to buy exclusive rights to the photo and use it in a book cover. 

    This is the photo, btw. Raven Heart by (c) curcabeata '11
    That's CORA! That's Insomnia's cover! This picture represents my book so perfectly.
    Argh, I'd already made the cover, and it looked so beautiful, you guys. Curcabeata was so nice to me, apologising for telling me yes first, and then no. She said she'd let me know if the editor did use the cover, because they weren't sure yet. 

    So, be on the lookout for this photo in a cover! I'm sure it'll be a YA title, because of the girl. 

    I do hope they buy the pic from her, because she'd be making some money then. But, then if they don't, this will definitely be Insomnia's cover. 

    Go and see her portfolio, it's awesome!
    *I'll go and silently cry in my room...*

    Jan 19, 2012

    The Alchemy of Forever (Incarnation, #1), by Avery Williams

    Release Date: January 3rd, 2012
    Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
    Age Group: Young Adult
    Overall: 5 out of 5 Stars 
    Categories: Paranormal, Drama, Romance, Reincarnation 
    Goodreads Page - Buy The Book
    Read in January 2012

    After spending six hundred years on Earth, Seraphina Ames has seen it all. Eternal life provides her with the world's riches but at a very high price: innocent lives. Centuries ago, her boyfriend, Cyrus, discovered a method of alchemy that allows them to take the bodies of other humans from jumping from one vessel to the next, ending the human's life in the process. No longer able to bear the guilt of what she's done, Sera escapes from Cyrus and vows to never kill again.

    Then sixteen-year old Kailey Morgan gets into a horrific car accident right in front of her, and Sera accidentally takes over her body while trying to save her. For the first time, Sera finds herself enjoying the life of the person she's inhabiting--and falling in love with the boy who lives next door. But Cyrus will stop at nothing until she's his again, and every moment she stays, she's putting herself and the people she's grown to care about in danger. Will Sera have to give up the one thing that's eluded her for centuries: true love?
    My Opinion:

    A great, fast-paced debut from new author Avery Williams! It seems reincarnation is the topic that's "in", what with Jodi Meadows's upcoming Incarnate.

    I read this last week, in a few hours split into two days. I hadn't read a book that fast in a while! 

    Since this is the first in a series, I'll forgive Avery for not giving us as much backstory as I would have liked. But I'm guessing she's saving the best for later. 

    The book opens with Seraphina going to a ball in Victorian Era's London, and right after that we meet Cyrus, the boy who will change Sera's life forever. She's badly injured, but instead of watching her die, he gives her the life elixir, turning her into an Incarnate. From then on, she'll have to steal other people's lives to stay living. 

    What I loved about this book, was Sera's voice. The way she narrated her story was unique, and I can't wait to read more. 

    Also, Avery's use of alchemy for something other than gold-making was really surprising! I'd love to see what's in Cyrus's book on the subject. The idea of body-hopping to stay alive was great, it gave the MC something to think about: does she want to keep living like this, killing others for her own benefit; or is she ready to let go, and go into the unknown? 

    All in all, I found Sera to be a really strong character, and I can't wait to see what happens to "the boy next door"! That ending was terrible, in a great way! 

    Jan 18, 2012

    TCM Against SOPA

    The Clock Monkey is blacking out today in protest of Internet Censorship.
    Learn more about SOPA, let's fight it together.

    WoW #22: Unraveling, The Treachery of Beautiful Things, Undeadly and Enchanted

    Paranormal, fairy tales, beautiful covers, what more do you need? All of these books sound great, some are being released later in the year, but Undeadly releases in February!
    Waiting on: Unraveling, by Elizabeth Norris
    Expected publication date: April 24th, 2012
    Publisher: Balzer + Bray
    Summary from Goodreads:
    Two days before the start of her junior year, seventeen-year-old Janelle Tenner is hit by a pickup truck and killed—as in blinding light, scenes of her life flashing before her, and then nothing. Except the next thing she knows, she’s opening her eyes to find Ben Michaels, a loner from her high school whom Janelle has never talked to, leaning over her. And even though it isn’t possible, Janelle knows—with every fiber of her being—that Ben has somehow brought her back to life.

    But her reincarnation, and Ben’s possible role in it, is only the first of the puzzles that Janelle must solve. While snooping in her FBI-agent father’s files for clues about her accident, she uncovers a clock that seems to be counting down to something—but to what? And when someone close to Janelle is killed, she can no longer deny what’s right in front of her: Everything that’s happened—the accident, the murder, the countdown clock, Ben’s sudden appearance in her life—points to the end of life as she knows it. And as the clock ticks down, she realizes that if she wants to put a stop to the end of the world, she’s going to need to uncover Ben’s secrets—and keep from falling in love with him in the process.

    From debut author Elizabeth Norris comes this shattering novel of one girl’s fight to save herself, her world, and the one boy she never saw coming.
    Waiting on: The Treachery of Beautiful Things, by Ruth Frances Long
    Expected publication date: August 16th, 2012
    Publisher: Penguin Group USA
    Summary from Goodreads:
    The trees swallowed her brother whole. And Jenny was there to see it. Years later, when she returns to the woods where Tom was taken to say good-bye at last, she finds herself lured into a world where stunning beauty masks the most treacherous of evils, and strange and dangerous creatures await—creatures who seem to consider her the threat. Among them is Jack, mercurial and magnetic, with allegiances that shift as much as his moods. Determined to find her brother, with or without Jack’s help, Jenny struggles to navigate a faerie world where nothing is what it seems, no one is who they say, and she’s faced with a choice between salvation or sacrifice—and not just her own.
    Waiting on: Undeadly, by Michele Vail
    Expected publication date: February 28th, 2012
    Publisher: HarperTeen
    Summary from Goodreads:
    The day I turned 16, my boyfriend-to-be died. I brought him back to life. Then things got a little weird...

    Molly Bartolucci wants to blend in, date hottie Rick and keep her zombie-raising abilities on the down-low. Then the god Anubis chooses her to become a reaper—and she accidentally undoes the work of another reaper, Rath.

    Within days, she’s shipped off to the Nekyia Academy, an elite school that trains the best necromancers in the world. And her personal reaping tutor? Rath. Who seems to hate her guts.

    Rath will be watching closely to be sure she completes her first assignment-reaping Rick, the boy who should have died. The boy she still wants to be with.

    To make matters worse, students at the academy start turning up catatonic, and accusations fly—against Molly. The only way out of this mess? To go through hell. Literally.
    Waiting on: Enchanted, by Alethea Kontis
    Expected publication date: May 8th, 2012
    Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
    Summary from Goodreads:
    It isn’t easy being the rather overlooked and unhappy youngest sibling to sisters named for the other six days of the week. Sunday’s only comfort is writing stories, although what she writes has a terrible tendency to come true.
    When Sunday meets an enchanted frog who asks about her stories, the two become friends. Soon that friendship deepens into something magical. One night Sunday kisses her frog goodbye and leaves, not realizing that her love has transformed him back into Rumbold, the crown prince of Arilland—and a man Sunday’s family despises.
    The prince returns to his castle, intent on making Sunday fall in love with him as the man he is, not the frog he was. But Sunday is not so easy to woo. How can she feel such a strange, strong attraction for this prince she barely knows? And what twisted secrets lie hidden in his past—and hers?

    Jan 16, 2012

    Writing on Monday: Getting the hand of the whole "Showing vs. Telling" thing

    A few months ago, I decided I wanted to write something other than the WIP that I'd been trying to write for over a year. So, I left Insomnia hanging and dived into a completely different world.

    But I missed my characters too much. I knew just where I wanted to take them (or rather, where they were taking me), but back then I lacked the inspiration. Well, that inspiration's back, stronger than before.

    Last year I'd uploaded part of my WIP to inkpop and had a couple of people read it. I also had a couple of betas helping me. They all said the same, that my writing was coming along just fine for a newbie, but that I needed to mature in the sense of  Showing vs. Telling.

    A week ago, I picked Insomnia back up, and re-read those very helpful critiques. I googled "Showing vs. Telling" and read a bunch of articles about the subject. And then I opened my .doc file and started writing/editing my WIP. I feel confident that I'll have it finished in a month or two, and I'm happier about it than ever before. Just thinking that I'll have written a book -ME!- fills me with joy. Even if that book is not National Book Award-winning material (oh, wait, I'm not eligible for that, given where I live and all...). Even if the only people who read it are my friends and family, and maybe you? I'll just be happy to have finished it.

    Last night I hit the 45k mark on my word count, reaching 157 pages on my WIP. From my calculations, I'm 3/4 of the story in, so that means I still have thousands of words left to write. And I love that! Cause it means it'll be the longest piece I've ever written.

    Now I want to show you the first paragraph of the first chapter of the new draft. If I haven't lost you on the way, and you're still reading, thank you! I wanted to show you the old version, but silly me, I edited on it and didn't save the edit as a new .doc. I hope you'll read what's next and let me know what you think. This is how Insomnia begins:
    I wasn’t going to make it. My stomach heaved, bile rose up my throat, its bitter taste filling my mouth. One of my hands shot up to cover it, the other hugged my chest. My lungs struggled to catch a breath, the simple effort of trying to breathe hurt my muscles as they strained to let air in. A loud bang reverberated against the walls as the front door shut closed and the sound echoed in my head, louder and louder. Beads of sweat ran down my face, trickling down to the wooden floor. Each splash ricocheted against my eardrums, as my heightened senses took it all in. The minor headache I’d woken up with this morning had turned into a full scale migraine. 
    Here are some of the articles on S. vs. T. I read:
    And I just read this very illustrating post by Veronica Roth about what goes on behind the publishing biz. 

    I'd love to know what you're writing! Leave me a comment and I'll stop by your blog and read whatever you've posted.

    Jan 12, 2012

    The Way We Fall, by Megan Crewe

    Release Date: January 24th, 2012
    Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
    Age Group: Young Adult
    Overall: 1 out of 5 Stars 
    Categories: Drama, Dystopia, NetGalley, Did Not Finish*
    Read in January 2012

    It starts with an itch you just can't shake. Then comes a fever and a tickle in your throat. A few days later, you'll be blabbing your secrets and chatting with strangers like they’re old friends. Three more, and the paranoid hallucinations kick in.

    And then you're dead.
    When a deadly virus begins to sweep through sixteen-year-old Kaelyn’s community, the government quarantines her island—no one can leave, and no one can come back.
    Those still healthy must fight for dwindling supplies, or lose all chance of survival. As everything familiar comes crashing down, Kaelyn joins forces with a former rival and discovers a new love in the midst of heartbreak. When the virus starts to rob her of friends and family, she clings to the belief that there must be a way to save the people she holds dearest.
    Because how will she go on if there isn't?
    My Opinion:

    I was expecting to love this book -the premise is good and it's categorised as a dystopia, which is a genre I love- but alas, I did not. A lot of other people seem to have liked it, and maybe that's why I was expecting too much from this novel. I'd seen a lot of 5 stars reviews on GR.

    The novel's protagonist, Kaelyn, begins writing a diary for her ex-bestfriend, Leo. It starts out slow, but that's understandable, because that's how you're supposed to write a diary, little by little, not like a normal prose narrative book. But further on, that's exactly what it becomes; the diary transforms into something else, where Kaelyn narrates everything, but still in a slow pace.

    I could not for the life of me relate to any of these characters: Kaelyn, her brother Drew, her cousin Meredith, her father... they were all there, but none (it seemed to me) had enough depth, they didn't seem real to me.

    The way Kaelyn retells the events happening in her island are dull and unsufficient for my reader curiosity. Nothing interesting happened, and I found myself (after reading 157 pages) skipping chapters, that didn't show much promise either. The ending was predictable, too.

    Needless to say is, I was very disappointed. I was truly expecting something different from what I got. I do want to keep reading what Megan writes, though. Maybe I'll like Give Up The Ghost, people say it's funny. 

    *It wasn't that I didn't finish it, more like -like I said above-, I skipped chapters after reaching the middle, only to see how it ended and move on to my next read.

    Jan 11, 2012

    Firelight (Firelight, #1), by Sophie Jordan

    Release Date: September 7th, 2010
    Publisher: HarperTeen
    Age Group: Young Adult
    Overall: 4 Stars 
    Categories: Fantasy, Paranormal, Dragons, Romance
    Goodreads Page
    Other books in the series: Vanish (Firelight, #2) 
    Read in January 2012

    A hidden truth. Mortal enemies. Doomed love.
    Marked as special at an early age, Jacinda knows her every move is watched. But she longs for freedom to make her own choices. When she breaks the most sacred tenet among her kind, she nearly pays with her life. Until a beautiful stranger saves her. A stranger who was sent to hunt those like her. For Jacinda is a draki—a descendant of dragons whose greatest defense is her secret ability to shift into human form.
    Forced to flee into the mortal world with her family, Jacinda struggles to adapt to her new surroundings. The only bright light is Will. Gorgeous, elusive Will who stirs her inner draki to life. Although she is irresistibly drawn to him, Jacinda knows Will's dark secret: He and his family are hunters. She should avoid him at all costs. But her inner draki is slowly slipping away—if it dies she will be left as a human forever. She'll do anything to prevent that. Even if it means getting closer to her most dangerous enemy.
    Mythical powers and breathtaking romance ignite in this story of a girl who defies all expectations and whose love crosses an ancient divide.

    My Opinion:

    Firelight drew me in and didn't let go until I was done! What a good read! It took me a while to read this, but that was because I waited until it was published in Arg, instead of buying it through the internet. But now, I don't know if I'll be able to wait until Vanish is published here, I want to read it now!

    Although I really enjoyed this book, I was a little annoyed at the plot: girl's family has to move for whatever reason (in Firelight it was to save Jacinda from a terrible fate), girl starts new school, doesn't make many friends, and the cutest guy -the one all the girls drool about- notices her among the throng.

    But I get it: sometimes these things -writing about new kids in school and falling for the boy/girl you've dreamed about/seen in your mind/are destined to meet/etc.- are inevitable if we want to make the story work. I know this from experience, I'm writing a book where my female character dreams about a boy whom she later meets, and oh, what a surprise, she meets him because he's new in school. But I've learnt it doesn't matter what others write, it's what you make of your story. Honestly, I don't see any other way for neither mine nor Sophie's story to work: Jacinda's in danger and they have to move. She's the new kid in school -along with her sister, Tamra- and it's there where she meets Will, the hunter who refused to kill her.

    And it's because of that that she wants to be around him (why did he spare her, when he kills her kind for a living?), and also, because without him, her draki (her dragon spirit) will certainly die in the hot desert where her mother took her.

    I love dragons, and this story did not disappoint. Their history was explained very well through Jacinda's voice, which I thought was unique. I loved that the draki have all different abilities, like Jacinda being a fire draki, the last of her kind, and that they live in closed communities. And I also can't wait to learn more about the enkros and the hunters, and Will's story.

    I only wish the love triangle wasn't so strong and present in the book. Sophie created wonderful characters, and while I can tolerate the new girl syndrome, I really dislike a bad love triangle.

    I'd recommend this to Inheritance's fans: while this is nothing like Paolini's series, a) it's got dragons, and b) we've got no more Inheritance books, so we might as well move on to the next series.

    Jan 10, 2012

    Becca Fitzpatrick reveals title for book four in the Hush, Hush saga

    Just moments ago, Becca revealed the final title in the Hush, Hush saga!


    The title is... FINALE!

    Just like she said, that word has a musical tinge to it, which goes great with the series's previous titles.
    Now we'll have to wait for the cover reveal. She also said that she won't be accepting any offers to turn the series into films, and I couldn't be happier with that decision, because lately, we're hearing a lot of authors saying that their books would be made into films, and I don't think the films/producers take the books' essence into consideration enough, and these books turn out to be only a ghost of what the books were.

    The live video chat isn't over yet. Come and join us!

    Happy Book Birthday: The Fault in Our Stars, A Million Suns & Jessica Rules the Dark Side

    Release Date: January 10th, 2012
    Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
    Age Group: Young Adult
    Categories: Contemporary, Illnesses
    Goodreads Page - Amazon - TBD - Barnes & Noble

    Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 12, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now.

    Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault.

    Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind.


    Release Date: January 10th, 2012
    Publisher: Razorbill
    Age Group: Young Adult
    Categories: Sci-Fi
    Goodreads Page - Amazon - TBD - Barnes & Noble

    Godspeed was fueled by lies. Now it is ruled by chaos. It's been three months since Amy was unplugged. The life she always knew is over. And everywhere she looks, she sees the walls of the spaceship Godspeed. But there may just be hope: Elder has assumed leadership of the ship. He's finally free to enact his vision - no more Phydus, no more lies.
    But when Elder discovers shocking news about the ship, he and Amy race to discover the truth behind life on Godspeed. They must work together to unlock a puzzle that was set in motion hundreds of years earlier, unable to fight the romance that's growing between them and the chaos that threatens to tear them apart.
    In book two of the Across the Universe trilogy, New York Times bestselling author Beth Revis mesmerizes us again with a brilliantly crafted mystery filled with action, suspense, romance, and deep philosophical questions. And this time it all builds to one mind-bending conclusion: They have to get off this ship.

    Release Date: January 10th, 2012
    Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
    Age Group: Young Adult
    Categories: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
    Goodreads Page - Amazon - TBD - Barnes & Noble

    It’s one thing to find out you’re a vampire princess. It’s a whole other thing to actually rule. Newly married Jessica Packwood is having a hard enough time feeling regal with her husband, Lucius, at her side. But when evidence in the murder of a powerful elder points to Lucius, sending him into solitary confinement, Jessica is suddenly on her own. Determined to clear her husband’s name, Jessica launches into a full-scale investigation, but hallucinations and nightmares of betrayal keep getting in her way. Jessica knows that with no blood to drink, Lucius’s time is running out. Can she figure out who the real killer is—and whom she can trust—before it’s too late?
    I want them all! I haven't read Across the Universe yet, but it's on my TBR list for this year.

    Jan 8, 2012

    The Curse Workers Series by Holly Black gets a new look

    And while they are beautiful and everything, I still hate it when they change the cover design halfway through. Cause now I'll have books with different cover styles, and I don't like that at all. 

    They could have designed Black Heart's cover like the previous two, and maybe change all of them later.

    Well, there's nothing I can do about it now. I'll just have to buy BH with this new cover and have it stand out because it doesn't blong.

    And, what was so wrong about the old covers? I loved them, I thought they were haunting and dark and reflected the book's essence just fine.
    Compare the new vs the old covers:

    Demon Whisperer (Caden Butcher, #1), by Tawny Stokes

    Release Date: September 28th, 2011
    Kindle Edition
    Age Group: Young Adult
    Overall: 5 Stars 
    Categories: Action, Paranormal, Underworld, Boy's POV, Bewitching Book Tour Review
    Read in December 2011

    Awake a year-long coma, where he literally spent in hell, Caden Butcher, 17, developed a special power. He can speak to demons in their own language. This new trick helps him take over the family exorcism business, from his broken alcoholic father. Having to take care of the finances, Caden makes a decent income getting rid of demons. He’s known as the young whiz-kid exorcist to the stars, obtaining most of his work in Hollywood. But what others don't know is the exorcisms are all staged with the help of his best buddy, a demon he met in hell named Dantalion (Dan).
    When an exorcism goes wrong, Caden discovers the demon inside a teen girl is not the run of the mill malicious entity but an adversary from down under who is hell bent on Caden’s destruction. The International Order of Exorcists, an organization that tolerates Caden at best because of his respected father, starts their own investigation because of his screw up.
    Now with the help of his demon buddy, and Caden’s girlfriend Aspen Spencer, a skilled necromancer, Caden must track down the rogue demon before he can expose Caden as a fraud and destroy everything that matters to him in his life, ending his reign as the one and only Demon Whisperer.
    My Opinion:

    I wasn't expecting to like this book that much, but boy, did I LOVE it! Who doesn't like a book in a boy's POV? And what a voice did Caden have!

    Tawny created a fast paced book that'll leave you wanting more. 

    Caden is a 17 year old boy (19, according to his ID) with a heavy baggage. He's got a secret he's not willing to tell anybody: he's been to Hell and found a way out. During his time inside, Caden learnt how to speak Demon, with which he can talk to demons and make them do his will. He made a friend there too: Dan. 
    I really liked how Caden and Dan's relationship was built: Dan was a good friend to Caden, but he was still a demon, and he acted as such, never saying he was sorry for what he did. Tawny found a great balance there.

    I also liked how she crafted Caden and Aspen's relationship: he was in love with her, and ultimately, he wanted to save her, but it wasn't a lovey-duvey thing and it had a solid basis. I enjoyed reading about them, and how their love progressed, because really, it looked real. Things like that happen in real life (the love thing, not the teen exorcisms and such) and it's good to read about it too, to help you keep your head on the ground and not up in the clouds. 

    Caden's a character that goes through a mayor transformation throughout the book; I loved how much he grew up and realised he couldn't do it all on his own, and that he needed help.

    There were many different things at play here, and they kept me hooked to the book. So much so, that I finished its 228-ish pages in 4 days! I hadn't read a book in that few days in a long time!

    I'll definitely be reading Tawny's other books in the future. 
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