Friday, September 30, 2011

Best of the Bunch Award: September

 

October is almost here (can you believe how quickly September went by??) and that means it’s time for Best of the Bunch again! Best of the Bunch is a monthly award ceremony that was started at Lyrical Reviews and gives bloggers a chance to gush about their absolute favorite book they read during the month. You can learn more about it here.

Without further ado, my Best of the Bunch pick for September is...


LOLA AND THE BOY NEXT DOOR!!
By Stephanie Perkins


Description:

Budding designer Lola Nolan doesn’t believe in fashion… she believes in costume. The more expressive the outfit – more sparkly, more fun, more wild – the better. But even though Lola’s style is outrageous, she’s a devoted daughter and friend with some big plans for the future. And everything is pretty perfect (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the dreaded Bell twins, Calliope ad Cricket, return to the neighborhood.

When Cricket – a gifted inventor – steps out from his twin sister’s shadow and back into Lola’s life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door.



Why I chose it:

I actually didn’t read as much in September as I normally do (it was a busy Real Life month for me), but this pick would have been a no-brainer no matter what. I’d been anticipating this novel for months and months, and when I won a signed copy from Stephanie through a Twitter contest I almost wet myself with excitement. No joke. I LOVED Anna and the French Kiss (read my review), and I was so excited to see what amazingness would come from the companion novel.

And since I had a hard enough time making my review coherent and not just a jumbling mess of happiness, I’m not even going to try to find new words to describe my love for this book. I’m just going to share a paragraph from my review as my explanation for why I’m choosing Lola this month:

“It’s not that I don’t love my paranormals, but sometimes you just want to read a story that could actually HAPPEN. A story where you can shamelessly insert yourself into Cricket’s arms and know that it could be real life. Something sweet, painful, romantic, awkward, heartbreaking, and totally swoonworthy. The joy in reading this book isn’t in the mysterious and brooding love interest, the main character discovering she is a (insert supernatural creature here), or the shocking twist at the end, it’s in the sweet little moments that make you smile and sigh with happiness. It’s in bridges built between windows and conversations with the moon. And it has completely stolen my heart.”

If you’re interested, you can read my full review here!

Honorable Mention this month goes to The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin, which is just incredibly trippy and amazing. My review will be up soon.

What was your favorite book from September? I’m so interested to hear what everyone else has been loving.

Happy October, everybody! :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Review: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

By: Stephanie Perkins
Publisher: Dutton
Release Date: TODAY!!
Genre/Age: YA Contemporary
Pages: 338
Source: Own

Budding designer Lola Nolan doesn’t believe in fashion… she believes in costume. The more expressive the outfit – more sparkly, more fun, more wild – the better. But even though Lola’s style is outrageous, she’s a devoted daughter and friend with some big plans for the future. And everything is pretty perfect (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the dreaded Bell twins, Calliope ad Cricket, return to the neighborhood.

When Cricket – a gifted inventor – steps out from his twin sister’s shadow and back into Lola’s life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door.

This has been by far one of my most highly anticipated novels for the last several months. Ever since finishing Anna and the French Kiss I was ready to jump right back into another Stephanie Perkins masterpiece, and I’m so happy to say that Lola and the Boy Next Door does not disappoint. At all. I LOVE THIS BOOK.

Everything about it is wonderful: the fun and quirky cast of characters (including the reappearance of two of our favorites from Anna and the French Kiss *happy squeal*), the setting of San Francisco (which I was lucky enough to visit for the first time earlier this summer), and a heartwrenching and smile-inducing story of old misunderstandings, teenage longing, and childhood friends finally falling in love (which caused a lot of excited squeaking and happy sighing on my part).

Just like in Anna, the supporting characters are all fantastic and made me wish the book was ten times longer so we could get to know each of them better. Lola’s two dads are such wonderful fictional parents; supportive and loving, yet firm and protective too. Even Calliope, though pretty unlikeable at first, ended up being quite an intriguing character, and I’m really looking forward to the possibility of seeing her (and others!) in the next book, Isla and the Happily Ever After.

Lola herself is fantastic, of course, and her fashion sense is SO FUN. She’s like a young, slightly toned-down Lady Gaga. And even though I could never BE her (the time and effort it must take her to get dressed every day! I’m exhausted already!), I absolutely loved reading about it. We could totally be friends.

Although if we WERE friends, we would definitely get in a fight over Cricket, that’s for sure. Oh my gosh, you guys, THIS BOY. Cricket is quirky and sweet and geeky and awkward and adorable and I JUST LOVE HIM SO MUCH. Watching him long for Lola made my heart hurt (Psst, take me instead, Cricket!). One of the things I loved about Anna was how REAL it was, how realistically Etienne acted and how beautifully their friendship unfolded. Somehow, Stephanie has managed to kick it up a notch in the “real” department with Lola. Cricket is so real. And kind of perfect. He’s the kind of guy I would love to date. He’s the kind of guy I would love my daughter to date (I don’t have a daughter yet, FYI). Plus, he’s TALL. Like, really tall. (Sorry Etienne.)

It’s not that I don’t love my paranormals, but sometimes you just want to read a story that could actually HAPPEN. A story where you can shamelessly insert yourself into Cricket’s arms and know that it could be real life. Something sweet, painful, romantic, awkward, heartbreaking, and totally swoonworthy. The joy in reading this book isn’t in the mysterious love interest, the main character discovering she is a (insert supernatural creature here), or the shocking twist at the end, it’s in the sweet little moments that make you smile and sigh with happiness. It’s in bridges built between windows and conversations with the moon. And it has completely stolen my heart.

Reading Lola and the Boy Next Door was seriously the most fun I’ve had in ages. I literally had to put it down several times while reading so I could get up and do a crazy dance around the room because I was so giddy. I’m pretty sure there were happy squeaking noises coming from my room the whole time.

In addition to the adorableness of Cricket, a considerable amount of these fangirl reactions was thanks to Anna and St. Clair, who are in the book as actual characters, not just cameo appearances (yay!). There were several tiny little references to things from Anna and the French Kiss, which made me sooooo happy, and after casting several adoring glances at my copy of Anna on the shelf, it eventually just moved to the bed with me. Let me tell you, Lola, Anna and I had an AWESOME party.

I absolutely cannot wait for Isla and the Happily Ever After, although having to leave all these fantastic characters for the final time is going to be heartbreaking. If I could live in a fictional series it would totally be this one (except that all the awesome guys are already taken! :P Stephanie, write my life, please? Kay, thanks.).

Oh, and the best thing about Lola and the Boy Next Door? *points upwards* Check out that release date! IT’S OUT TODAY, PEOPLE! What are you waiting for? You don’t want another minute to go by without reading this book.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday #20


“Waiting on” Wednesday is a weekly event hosted at Breaking the Spine that spotlights an upcoming release (or releases) that we’re eagerly anticipating.

My picks this week:

Wander Dust (The Seraphina Parrish Trilogy 1)
By: Michelle Warren
Release Date: November 2011

Description:

Ever since her sixteenth birthday, strange things keep happening to Seraphina Parrish.

The Lady in Black… burns Sera’s memories.

Unexplainable Premonitions… catapult her to other cities.

The Grungy Gang… wants to kill her.

And a beautiful, mysterious boy… stalks her.

But when Sera moves to Chicago and her aunt reveals their family connection to a centuries old, secret society, she is immediately thrust into an unbelievable fantasy world, leading her on a quest to unravel the mysteries that plague her. In the end, their meanings crash into an epic struggle of loyalty and betrayal, and she’ll be forced to choose between the boy who has stolen her heart and the thing she desires most.

Wander Dust is the breathtaking fantasy that will catapult you through a story of time and love.

I got to meet Michelle Warren at the National Book Festival last weekend and it made me even MORE excited to read Wander Dust. It just sounds so cool and mysterious, and I love the time-travel element. And how gorgeous is the cover?? So eager for this one!


Enchanted
By: Alethea Kontis
Publisher: Harcourt Children’s Books
Release Date: May 8, 2012

Description:

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?

This looks like such a fun twist on the princess and the frog fairy tale! I can’t wait to see what she does with it.


Destiny’s Fire
By: Trisha Wolfe
Publisher: Omnific Publishing
Release Date: early 2012

Description (no cover yet):

Sixteen- year-old Dex Harkly is one of the last of her kind – a part of a nearly extinct race of Kythan descended from ancient guardians who protected the pharaohs of Egypt. As Shythe, they must keep their shape-shifting ability and electric power hidden from the humans of their steam-powered world.

It’s the year 2040 and the Shythe Council has lowered their barrier, allowing the Narcolym – the dominant race of Kythan whose Flame ushered in the steam era – to enter their haven. As the Narcolym airships get closer, Dez secretly trains for an attack that her best friend Jace believes is coming despite the Treaty Act. Not only is Dez wary of war, and her growing affection for Jace, but she fears the change her fast-approaching birthday will bring.

When her power rockets out of control, Dez knows she’ll never attend the Shythe Academy with her friends, and worse, her mother’s planning to run. But a Narco named Reese could change her fate… if she can trust him. After Dez discovers why the Narcos have really come to Haven Falls, her guarded world crumbles. She’s forced to choose between the race who’s raised her and the enemy she’s feared her whole life.

Destiny’s Fire is an emotional journey of Dez’s struggle to overcome her fear and embrace her power – her destiny.

SO COOL! Futuristic steampunk combined with ancient Egyptian era? This sounds awesome.

What are you waiting on this Wednesday?

Sunday, September 25, 2011

In My Mailbox #18


In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren that gives bloggers the opportunity to showcase the books they’ve received that week. You can learn more about it here.

FANTASTIC week. That is all.

Won:


Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins (thank you so much, Steph! <3)

For review:







Destined by Jessie Harrell (blog tour)
















Shut Out by Kody Keplinger (thanks to Around the World ARC tours!)












From NetGalley:








Geek Girl by Cindy C Bennett












Signed at the DC Book Festival:

Someone Like You by Sarah Dessen

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

I also may or may not have gotten a book signed by her for an upcoming giveaway. ;)

Also, while standing in line for the Cassandra Clare signing I was lucky enough to randomly run into Michelle Warren, the author of the upcoming Wander Dust. She is super nice and gave me a bunch of bookmarks, which will probably appear in the giveaway later. :)


Well, that’s it! I’m pretty thrilled with my mailbox this week. :D And I’ll be posting about the National Book Festival in a couple of days, so keep an eye out for that!

What’s in your mailbox this week?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday #19

“Waiting on” Wednesday is a weekly event hosted at Breaking the Spine that spotlights an upcoming release (or releases) that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Several picks this week, because I couldn't make up my mind and they all look amazing:


The One That I Want (previously called Double Date)
By: Jennifer Echols
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: December 20, 2011

Description:

Gemma and Addison are high school juniors, best friends, and majorettes in the marching band. Max and Carter are best friends too, and they’re starters for the football team. When Max and Carter start flirting with Gemma and Addison after football practice, the girls can’t believe their luck. But which guy wants which girl? Gemma is into Max, so she’s secretly crushed when he asks out Addison – but then Carter asks her out (making for a double date). Better to spend any time with Max than not at all, right? When it starts to seem that Max may have deeper feelings for her, Gemma must decide who is more important: her best friend or her crush?

I love love LOVE Jennifer Echols, and I’m especially excited because it’s been a while since we’ve had a new romantic comedy from her. Not that I don’t adore her dramas, but her comedies are what I first fell in love with (Lori and Adam! <3).

Also, kind of unrelated but still VERY exciting news, Jennifer Echols now has a deal to write two adult contemporary romances!! I almost fell off my bed when I learned about this, because hello, have you READ the steamy scenes in her young adult stuff?? They are INCREDIBLE. She writes intense sexual chemistry like no other. I feel like any adult novel of hers would just spontaneously combust and I am SO EXCITED.

EDIT: I FOUND THE COVER! Gorgeous, non? Although I have to admit, I do prefer the fun cartoon style of the old Simon RoCom covers.


Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick
By: Joe Schreiber
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
Release Date: October 25, 2011

From Goodreads:

Perry Stormaire is a normal high school senior – he is busy applying to college and rehearsing with his band – until he agrees to go to the prom with the Lithuanian exchange student who is staying with his family. It turns out that Gobi Zaksauskas is not the mousy teenager that she seems but rather an attractive, confident trained assassin. Instead of going to the prom, Perry finds himself on a wild ride through the streets of New York City as Gobi commandeers the Jaguar his father lent him for the prom in order to take out her targets. Perry learns a lot about himself – and ends up with some amazing material for his college application essays.

How cool does this one sound? I can’t wait to read it. Also, I’ve heard that each chapter is written as a response to a college application essay prompt, which just sounds like such a fun and unique way to write a book.


Fated
By: Sarah Alderson
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Childrens Books
Release Date: January 5, 2012

From Goodreads (no cover yet):

What happens when you discover you aren’t who you thought you were? And that the person you love is the person who will betray you? If your fate is already determined, can you fight it?

When Evie Tremain discovers that she’s the last in a long line of Demon slayers and that she’s being hunted by an elite band of assassins – Shapeshifters, Vampires and Mixen demons amongst them – she knows she can’t run. They’ll find her wherever she goes. Instead she must learn to stand and fight.

But when the half-human, half-Shadow Warrior Lucas Gray – is sent to spy on Evie and then ordered to kill her before she can fulfill a dangerous prophecy, their fates become inextricably linked. The war that has raged for one thousand years between humans and demons is about to reach a devastating and inevitable conclusion. Either one or both of them will die before this war ends.

If your life becomes bound to another’s, what will it take to sever it?

I’m sorry, another one with no cover (this post isn’t very visually stimulating, I know), but this book just looks too good for me to wait to feature it. I was seriously hooked just from the intro paragraph. And the forbidden romance?? SIGN ME UP. January, why are you so far away?


Amplified
By: Tara Kelly
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Release Date: October 25, 2011

From Goodreads:

When privileged 17-year-old Jasmine gets kicked out of her house, she takes what is left of her savings and flees to Santa Cruz to pursue her dream of becoming a musician. Jasmine finds the ideal room in an oceanfront house, but she needs to convince the three guys living there that she’s the perfect roommate and lead guitarist for their band, C-Side. Too bad she has major stage fright and the cute bassist doesn’t think a spoiled girl from over the hill can hack it…

In this fresh new novel by critically acclaimed author Tara Kelly, Jasmine finds out what happens when her life gets Amplified.

I’ve been on a recent contemporary kick and absolutely loving it. Sometimes it’s so nice to read a story that could actually happen, you know? Plus… musicians, oceanfront house, and one girl living with three guys? That’s a recipe for awesome, no doubt. I can’t wait for this one. Yay for October being not too far away!


Let me know what you’re waiting on this Wednesday and I’ll come check it out!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Review: Good Girls Don't by Victoria Dahl

By: Victoria Dahl
Publisher: HQN Books
Release Date: August 30, 2011
Genre/Age: Adult Romance
Pages: 384
Source: ARC from NetGalley & Harlequin

Too much of a good thing…

With her long ponytail and sparkling green eyes, Tessa Donovan looks more like the girl next door than a businesswoman – or a heartbreaker. Which may explain why Detective Luke Asher barely notices her when he arrives to investigate a break-in at her family’s brewery. He’s got his own problems – starting with the fact that his partner, Simone, is pregnant and everyone thinks he’s the father.

Tessa has her hands full, too. Her brother’s playboy ways may be threatening the business, and the tension could tear her tight-knit family apart. In fact, the only thing that could unite the Donovan boys is seeing a man come after their “baby” sister. Especially a man like Luke Asher. But Tessa sees past the rumors to the man beneath. He’s not who people thing he is – and neither is she.

Victoria Dahl is one of my favorite contemporary romance writers; it’s pretty much a guarantee that her stories are going to be funny, heartwarming, and of course, incredibly hot. Good Girls Don’t is a great start to her new series, featuring the three Donovan siblings. I love that each sibling gets their own book, because it means that we don’t have to leave the characters right away, plus we get to check up on how old relationships are doing throughout the series.

Tessa is the youngest sibling and only girl, and she was a great introduction into the dynamics of the Donovan family. I absolutely love stories centered around families, and as an only girl with two brothers in my own family, I could definitely identify with her. She’s a total firecracker, which is so fun to read about, and her growth and maturity throughout the novel was really satisfying. Eric and Jamie’s protectiveness did get very annoying though – she’s freaking 27 years old! She’s an adult! Sometimes they treated her like she was still 12. It was a relief to watch the two of them grow up and realize she’s not a kid anymore.

I also really enjoyed getting to go more in-depth into Luke’s situation. Even though this is a series about the Donovans, it just added so much to know where Luke was coming from and what was going on in his life. Luke and Tessa have great chemistry and their scenes together are all so fun to read, whether they’re talking, fighting, or getting up to some sexy sexy shenanigans.

I loved Good Girls Don’t, and I can’t wait to get to know Eric and Jamie better in their stories. If you like your romance with incredible heart, hilarious misunderstandings, and lots of sizzle, I’d definitely recommend checking this one out.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

In My Mailbox #17


In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren that gives bloggers the opportunity to showcase the books they’ve received that week. You can learn more about it here.

So if you saw my mailbox last week, you know that I went to Borders and got a boatload of books. Well, just a couple of days later, I went to yet ANOTHER Borders with some friends and ended up with even more loot. And in addition to the already 70-90% off everything, this Borders had an extra 15% off your entire purchase if you bought 10 or more books, so really, there was no decision. When the sales are that good I pretty much just have no self control. I got some amazing books though, so I’m not too mad at myself. :P

The haul:

Withering Tights by Louise Rennison
Not That Kind of Girl by Siobhan Vivian
The Boy Book by E. Lockhart
Where She Went by Gayle Forman
Ex-mas by Kate Brian
Leaving Paradise by Simone Elkeles
Return to Paradise by Simone Elkeles

I was sooooooo excited when I saw the gorgeous hardcover Where She Went on the shelf. Returning that book to the library was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, and I absolutely LOVE having my own copy. I basically read parts of it every night. <3

A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young
Huntress by Malinda Lo
Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon
Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund
The Poison Diaries by Maryrose Wood
My Soul to Keep by Rachel Vincent

Original Sin by Lisa Desrochers
A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly
The Demon Trapper’s Daughter by Jana Oliver
Unraveled by Gena Showalter
Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder
Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

I originally wasn’t planning to buy Vampire Academy because I want my whole series to have the matching covers, but since I’m planning to read the series soon and it’ll be a lot easier if I own the first one and can just start it whenever I want to, I figured I could go ahead and pay the roughly 2 dollars for this version. And I’m super excited about Chasing Brooklyn; I loved The Day Before and this one sounds amaaaazing.

So my total Borders haul from both days ended up being 41 books. And they were roughly $4 each, which is pretty awesome, especially considering how many of them are hardcovers. I’m really glad bookstores don’t go out of business very often or I’d REALLY be in trouble. :P

What’s in your mailbox this week?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday #18


“Waiting on” Wednesday is a weekly event hosted at Breaking the Spine that spotlights an upcoming release (or releases) that we’re eagerly anticipating.

My picks this week:

Pretty Crooked
By: Elisa Ludwig
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: March 13, 2012
                             
From Goodreads:

Willa’s secret plan seems all too simple: take from the rich kids at Valley Prep and give to the poor ones.

Yet Willa’s turn as Robin Hood at her ultra-exclusive high school is anything but. Bilking her “friends” – known to everyone as the Glitterati – without them suspecting a thing is far from easy. Learning how to pick pockets and break into lockers is as difficult as she’d thought it’d be. Delivering care packages to the scholarship girls, who are ostracized just for being from the “wrong” side of town, is way more fun than she’d expected.

The complication Willa didn’t expect, though, is Aidan Murphy, Valley Prep’s most notorious (and gorgeous) ace-degenerate. His mere existence is distracting Willa from what matters most to her: evening the social playing field between the haves and have-nots. There’s no time for crushes and flirting with boys, especially conceited and obnoxious trust-funders like Aidan.

But when the cops start investigating the string of thefts at Valley Prep and the Glitterati begin to seek revenge, could Aidan wind up being the person that Willa trusts most?

This one looks so fun!  A modern-day Robin Hood, a conceited and obnoxious love interest (I have a thing for initially obnoxious boys in fiction, even though I’d never date one in real life), and just look at that cover! It’s so PRETTY. And it comes out on my birthday!


Why We Broke Up
By: Daniel Handler (art by Maira Kalman)
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Release Date: January 2, 2012

From Goodreads:

“I’m telling you why we broke up, Ed. I’m writing it in this letter, the whole truth of why it happened.”

Min Green and Ed Slaterton are breaking up, so Min is writing Ed a letter and giving him a box. Inside the box is why they broke up. Two bottle caps, a movie ticket, a folded note, a box of matches, a protractor, books, a toy truck, a pair of ugly earrings, a comb from a motel room, and every other item collected over the course of a giddy, intimate, heartbreaking relationship. Item after item is illustrated and accounted for, and then the box, like a girlfriend, will be dumped.

I’m so excited for this one, it sounds incredible. I can’t wait to find out the story behind each item in the box. And it’s illustrated! How cool will that be?


What are you waiting on this Wednesday?

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

My Fall 2011 TV Lineup

It’s that time of year again! The time when favorite old shows return and promising new ones start up (and hopefully aren’t canceled after half a season). I’ve loved seeing what shows other bloggers are looking forward to and I’ve had some great conversations about how exciting past seasons have been (as well as having fun live-tweeting while catching up on old episodes, something I think I might do more of during these new seasons since it was such a blast).

So what will I be watching? Here’s a snippet of my fall 2011 TV schedule:

Old Returning Favorites:

The Vampire Diaries
Season: Three
Network: The CW
Premiere: THIS THURSDAY AT 8/7C!!
  
Glee
Season: Three
Network: FOX
Premiere: Tuesday, September 20 at 8/7c 

Modern Family
Season: Three
Network: ABC
Premiere: Wednesday, September 21 at 9/8c 

 Nikita
Season: Two
Network: The CW
Premiere: Friday, September 23 at 8/7c

Happy Endings
Season: Two
Network: ABC
Premiere: Wednesday, September 28 at 9:30/8:30c

(I can't find a promo for season 2, so you'll just have to trust me that this show is hilarious and you should watch it.)


New Shows I’m Looking Forward to Checking Out:
(Keep in mind that I’m watching these tentatively at first, and if I’m not impressed within the first few episodes then they’re getting booted off the list. :P)

Ringer
Network: The CW
Premiere: TONIGHT AT 9/8C!! 

The Secret Circle
Network: The CW
Premiere: This Thursday at 9/8c! (but you can download the pilot for free on iTunes!) 

The New Girl
Network: FOX
Premiere: Tuesday, September 20 at 9/8c 

Pan Am
Network: ABC
Premiere: Sunday, September 25 at 10/9c 

 Terra Nova
Network: FOX
Premiere: Monday, September 26 at 8/7c 

Hart of Dixie
Network: The CW
Premiere: Monday, September 26 at 9/8c 

Grimm
Network: NBC
Premiere: Friday, October 21 at 9/8c


They all look pretty awesome!! And I know it’s a lot, but who needs a life, right? :D What’s on your TV schedule this fall? Did I miss anything good? I’m open to recommendations. :)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

In My Mailbox #16


In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren that gives bloggers the opportunity to showcase the books they’ve received that week. You can learn more about it here.

Although I technically didn’t get any books in my actual mailbox this week, it was still a pretty fantastic book week, all thanks to Borders closing and having sales where everything is 70-90% off. 70% off all young adult books! How was I supposed to resist? I bought soooooo much, you guys, it’s kind of ridiculous.

From Borders:

Overbite by Meg Cabot
Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly
The Poison Eaters and other stories by Holly Black
Another Pan by Daniel & Dina Nayeri
Welcome to Bordertown edited by Holly Black & Ellen Kushner
Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen
Blood Red Road by Moira Young

 Last Sacrifice (Vampire Academy 6) by Richelle Mead
Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy 5) by Richelle Mead
Intertwined by Gena Showalter
Shadow of the Moon by Rachel Hawthorne
Rampant (Killer Unicorns 1) by Diana Peterfreund
Forgiven by Janet Fox
Glimmerglass by Jenna Black

Iron Queen by Julie Kagawa
Personal Demons by Lisa Desrochers
My Soul to Save by Rachel Vincent
Dangerous Angels (The Weetzie Bat Books) by Francesca Lia Block
The Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg
Real Live Boyfriends by E. Lockhart
Chalice by Robin McKinley


I also saw some Vampire Diaries related items (one board game, one card game, and a puzzle), and since they were so cheap I figured why not? (Judge all you want, I’ve already started the puzzle and it’s hilarious.)



I also got a couple titles from NetGalley:





Saving June by Hannah Harrington










The Sweetest Thing by Christina Mandelski








That’s my mailbox! This should keep me set for the next couple of months. :P What goodies did you get?

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday #17


“Waiting on” Wednesday is a weekly event hosted at Breaking the Spine that spotlights an upcoming release (or releases) that we’re eagerly anticipating.

My picks:

The Catastrophic History of You & Me
By: Jess Rothenberg
Publisher: Dial
Release Date: January 17, 2012

Brie’s life ends at sixteen: her boyfriend tells her he doesn’t love her, and the news breaks her heart – literally.

But now that she’s D&G (dead and gone), Brie is about to discover that love is way more complicated than she ever imagined. Back in Half Moon Bay, her family has begun to unravel. Her best friend has been keeping secrets about Jacob, the boy she loved and lost – and the truth behind his shattering betrayal. And then there’s Patrick, Brie’s mysterious new guide and resident Lost Soul… who just might hold the key to her forever after.

With Patrick’s help, Brie will have to pass through the five stages of grief before she’s ready to move on. But how do you begin again, when your heart is still in pieces?

Aside from the obvious melodrama of a sixteen-year-old actually dying of a broken heart when her boyfriend breaks up with her (I’m hoping there’s more to it than that, honestly), this looks like it could be really good. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing where Jess goes with it. And I love the cover, isn’t it cool?!


Dragonswood
By: Janet Lee Carey
Publisher: Dial
Release Date: January 5, 2012

Wilde Island is in an uproar after the recent death of its king. The uneasy pact between dragons, fairies, and humans is fraying, and a bloodthirsty witch hunter with a hidden agenda whips villages into frenzies with wild accusations. Tess, a blacksmith’s daughter from a tiny hamlet near the mysterious Dragonswood, finds herself caught in the crosshairs of fate when she is accused of witchery and has to flee for her life along with her two best friends.

Not even Tess’s power to see the future can help the girls as they set off on their desperate journey, but she keeps having visions of a man wielding a sword. And when she finally meets him, Tess has no idea how to handle the magnetic attraction she feels for him, or the elusive call she hears from the heart of the Dragonswood.

In this epic romance, an ancient prophecy comes true in a way neither dragon, fairy, nor human would have predicted.

Oh, I am SO excited for this one. It’s been such a long time since I’ve read a good high fantasy and this one sounds fantastic. Fairies and dragons and witches and ancient prophecies and epic romance… how could it not be great?


Tempest (Tempest #1)
By: Julie Cross
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Release Date: January 3, 2012

The year is 2009. Nineteen-year-old Jackson Meyer is a normal guy… he’s in college, has a girlfriend… and he can travel back through time. But it’s not like the movies – nothing changes in the present after his jumps, there’s no space-time continuum or broken flux capacitors – it’s just harmless fun.

That is… until the day strangers burst in on Jackson and his girlfriend, Holly, and during a struggle with Jackson, Holly is fatally shot. In his panic, Jackson jumps back two years ago to 2007, but this is not like his previous time jumps. Now he’s stuck in 2007 and can’t get back to the future.

Desperate to somehow return to 2009 to save Holly but unable to return to his rightful year, Jackson settles into 2007 and learns what he can about his abilities.

But it’s not long before the people who shot Holly in 2009 come looking for Jackson in the past, and these “Enemies of Time” will stop at nothing to recruit this powerful young time-traveler. Recruit… or kill him.

Piecing together the clues about his father, the Enemies of Time, and himself, Jackson must decide how far he’s willing to go to save Holly… and possibly the entire world.

This is one of those books that I’ve seen around a lot, but for some reason I never properly read the description. Which is dumb of me, I know. I don’t know why I do that. But anyway, now that I have finally read it and actually know what it’s about, I am even MORE eager to read it, because it sounds awesome! A little bit like the movie Jumper, but still awesome. Also, I love how the last paragraph randomly mentions “clues about his father,” that made me laugh. Of course he has a mysterious father. Haha. Oh, and last thing, I’m pretty excited about the fact that Jackson is a) a guy (male perspective!), and b) in college (older protagonist, whoo!).


That’s it for me, let me know what you’re waiting on and I’ll come check it out!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Review: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

By: Stephanie Perkins
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Release Date: December 2, 2010
Genre/Age: YA Contemporary
Pages: 372
Source: Own

Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris – until she meets Étienne St. Clair: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he’s taken, and Anna might be too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home.

As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near-misses end with the French kiss Anna – and readers – have long awaited?



For the past few months I’d been seeing reviews of Anna and the French Kiss everywhere I looked, and everyone was absolutely raving about it. Maybe I’m just cynical, but I kept thinking ‘There’s no way it can be THAT good, come on, it’s just another YA contemporary chick lit.’ BUT HOO BABY I WAS SO SO WRONG.

This book is SO GOOD. I am absolutely officially on the Anna and the French Kiss bandwagon, waving my hat and hollering at the top of my lungs. Everyone needs to go out and read this NOW.

On the surface (as evidenced by my earlier cynicism), there’s nothing particularly original or special about the storyline. But the thing is, it doesn’t even matter, because Stephanie Perkins pulls it off SO well that it doesn’t feel like anything you’ve read before.

It’s funny, sweet, romantic, and heartbreaking, and the characters are all incredibly wonderful and fleshed out and you just want to be best friends with all of them. Anna’s voice is so realistic and fun to read, and Étienne St. Clair is pretty much the perfect real boy, with perfect real boy flaws. He isn’t one of those brooding and mysterious types, he’s REAL. And lovely. So so lovely.

My absolute favorite thing about Anna and the French Kiss is the evolution of Anna and Étienne’s relationship. Although Anna immediately has a crush on him, they end up becoming friends first, and not just friends, but best friends. And that trumps everything, even her interest in being with him romantically. I LOVE that. It’s such a refreshing change from so many novels where the love interests experience “love at first sight” and everything is so intense and all-consuming right from the beginning. This is slow and gradual and their friendship is so beautiful that the fact that they do eventually get together is just the cherry on top. (Although I will admit, heads would have been rolling if they HADN’T ended up together. Haha.)

This book is like the perfect YA contemporary romance. I was giddy and grinning the entire time I was reading it, and then when I finished I just lay there for a while clutching the book to my chest and sighing in happiness. And then I proceeded to go back and reread all my favorite parts. It is just SO WONDERFUL.

I realize that this review is only somewhat coherent, but when you read the book you will understand. Trust me. Go read it. Now. It’s one of my favorite books of all time and I will be rereading it forever.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

In My Mailbox #15


In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren that gives book bloggers the opportunity to showcase the books they’ve received that week. You can learn more about it here.

Not much new this week, just a few titles from NetGalley and one book that I ordered from Barnes & Noble (although I am ridiculously excited about that one). Also, I recently relocated to a new place for a few months, and one of my first stops was the library (of course), so I also have a new library card! Whoo!

From NetGalley:





Pilgrims Don’t Wear Pink by Stephanie Kate Strohm









The Game of Love by Jeanette Murray
Look, sometimes you’re just in the mood for a romance, okay?










The Last Rising (Curse of the Phoenix 1) by Rachel Firasek








Bought:





Divergent by Veronica Roth
FINALLY!








That’s it for me, what did you get this week?
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