Wednesday, May 28

Waiting on Wednesday


This weeks pick...

Rain (Paper Gods #2)
Amanda Sun

Publisher: Harlequin TEEN (US) / MiraINK (UK)
To Be Released: June 24, 2014
Genre: YA - Paranormal
 photo goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47_zps3cd819f5.png

From Goodreads:
American Katie Green has decided to stay in Japan. She's started to build a life in the city of Shizuoka, and she can't imagine leaving behind her friends, her aunt and especially Tomohiro, the guy she's fallen in love with. But her return is not as simple as she thought. She's flunking out of Japanese school and committing cultural faux pas wherever she goes. Tomohiro is also struggling—as a Kami, his connection to the ancient gods of Japan and his power to bring drawings to life have begun to spiral out of control.

When Tomo decides to stop drawing, the ink finds other ways to seep into his life—blackouts, threatening messages and the appearance of unexplained sketches. Unsure how to help Tomo, Katie turns to an unexpected source for help—Jun, her former friend and a Kami with an agenda of his own. But is Jun really the ally he claims to be? In order to save themselves, Katie and Tomohiro must unravel the truth about Tomo's dark ancestry, as well as Katie's, and confront one of the darkest gods in Japanese legend.

There are no words to explain my excitement to get my hands on this book. I loved and I mean LOVED the first book Ink. It was sooooo good and ever since I read it in October last year I have been dying to get my hands on the sequel. I need it so bad. Roll on June 24th.


Monday, May 26

I Still Haven't Read...


This week's pick...






Arcana Chronicles by Kresley Cole:

#1: Poison Princess
#2: Endless Knight (Haven't Got Yet)
#3: Dead of Winter (To Be Released)

Have you read this series?

 

Thursday, May 22

Review: Because It Is My Blood (Birthright #2)

Because It Is My Blood (Birthright #2)
Gabrielle Zevin

Published By: Macmillan Publishing
Publication Date: August 23, 2013
Date Read: May 17, 2014
Genre: YA - Dystopia
Source: ARC from Macmillan Publishing
Format: Paperback
Pages: 368
 photo goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47_zps3cd819f5.png

From Goodreads:
"Every time I think I'm out, they pull me back in."- Michael Corleone, "The Godfather"
 
Since her release from Liberty Children's Facility, Anya Balanchine is determined to follow the straight and narrow. Unfortunately, her criminal record is making it hard for her to do that. No high school wants her with a gun possession charge on her rap sheet. Plus, all the people in her life have moved on: Natty has skipped two grades at Holy Trinity, Scarlet and Gable seem closer than ever, and even Win is in a new relationship.But when old friends return demanding that certain debts be paid, Anya is thrown right back into the criminal world that she had been determined to escape. It's a journey that will take her across the ocean and straight into the heart of the birthplace of chocolate where her resolve--and her heart--will be tested as never before.

"No, you speak the truth. Love isn't right. It isn't right for me either. Sometimes I hate cacao. You don't love Balanchine chocolate. You are Balanchine chocolate."

I read the first installment of the Birthright series what feels like forever ago. I got an ARC from Macmillan of All These Things I've Done and devoured it in one sitting. Sucked into a dystopic world where Coffee and Chocolate were illegal I just couldn't put it down. It was so unique and I just couldn't fathom a world without coffee and chocolate. It completely captured me and I couldn't put it down. I loved every moment of it.

I have to admit I was a little bit nervous about Because It Is My Blood. The Birthright series is a trilogy and I often find with trilogies we sometimes get 'Middle Book Syndrome' where the second book doesn't live up to the first one and feels like a stepping stone just leading up to the final book. I feared that this would happen with this one... I needn't have feared. Because It Is My Blood completely drew me back into this world and I couldn't stop reading. This is fast becoming one of my favourite dystopia series of all time.

I was drawn back into this dystopic world and Anya's world. I feel so sorry for Anya. She really has been dealt a horrible hand in her life and unfortunately things are not getting much better. After leaving Liberty she is forced to flee the country for Mexico. Here she learns to accept her family business and she learns that chocolate isn't the enemy as she had recently concluded.

What I loved about this book is that we not only get to catch up with our favourite characters but we get to know some new ones too and I love the new characters, especially Theo. He is such fun and I just loved every moment that he was in the book. Anya really goes through a lot in this book and you see her really grow as a character and I loved her even more in this book. She accepts her destiny and she does it in such a noble and amazing way. I adore how independent she is and that even though the romance is there she doesn't let it define her. She makes her own decisions and does what is best for her and her family.

Because It Is My Blood is a heart-stopping race and there are so many shocks and twists and turns that I never saw coming. Gabrielle Zevin most definitely had me staring, jaw slacked at the book many times. I loved every single second of this book and I am dying to get my hands on the final book in the Birthright series. One of my favourite dystopia series of all time. A must read.

"Because there's never been anyone else for me but you. There will never be anyone else for me but you."



Wednesday, May 21

Waiting On Wednesday


This weeks pick...

#scandal
Sarah Ockler

Publisher: Simon Pulse
To Be Released: June 17, 2014
Genre: YA - Contemporary Romance
 photo goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47_zps3cd819f5.png

From Goodreads:
Lucy’s learned some important lessons from tabloid darling Jayla Heart’s all-too-public blunders: Avoid the spotlight, don’t feed the Internet trolls, and keep your secrets secret. The policy has served Lucy well all through high school, so when her best friend Ellie gets sick before prom and begs her to step in as Cole’s date, she accepts with a smile, silencing about ten different reservations. Like the one where she’d rather stay home shredding online zombies. And the one where she hates playing dress-up. And especially the one where she’s been secretly in love with Cole since the dawn of time.

When Cole surprises her at the after party with a kiss under the stars, it’s everything Lucy has ever dreamed of… and the biggest BFF deal-breaker ever. Despite Cole’s lingering sweetness, Lucy knows they’ll have to ’fess up to Ellie. But before they get the chance, Lucy’s own Facebook profile mysteriously explodes with compromising pics of her and Cole, along with tons of other students’ party indiscretions. Tagged. Liked. And furiously viral.

By Monday morning, Lucy’s been branded a slut, a backstabber, and a narc, mired in a tabloid-worthy scandal just weeks before graduation.

Lucy’s been battling undead masses online long enough to know there’s only one way to survive a disaster of this magnitude: Stand up and fight. Game plan? Uncover and expose the Facebook hacker, win back her best friend’s trust, and graduate with a clean slate.

There’s just one snag—Cole. Turns out Lucy’s not the only one who’s been harboring unrequited love...

I am a huge fan of Contemporary Romance books and just seeing the cover of this one I wanted to read it. It sounds so great and different from other contemporary books out there. This is definitely on my To-Buy list.


Tuesday, May 20

Review: Storm (Elementals #1)

Storm (Elementals #1)
Brigid Kemmerer

Published By: Much-In-Little Books
Publication Date: April 17, 2014
Date Read: May 5, 2014
Genre: YA - Paranormal Romance
Source: ARC from Publisher
Format: Paperback
Pages: 320
 photo goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47_zps3cd819f5.png

From Goodreads:
Secrets are hard to keep when your life's at stake.

Becca Chandler is suddenly getting all the guys; all the ones she doesn't want. When she saves Chris Merrick from a beating in the school parking lot, everything is about to change. Chris is different from the guys at school... really different. He can control water just like his brothers can control fire, wind, and earth. The brothers are powerful and dangerous. And now that Becca knows the truth, so is she.

When the mysterious new kid, Hunter, turns up, Becca thinks she can trust him. But when he goes head-to-head with Chris, Becca's left wondering who's hiding the most dangerous truth of all.

"Touch was funny like that. How one movement could choke you and kill you, but another meant nothing more than a caress and an invitation. How sex and rape were just a few motions apart."

After devouring the prequel novella for the Elementals series I couldn't wait to get started on the first book, Storm. Elemental really had me addicted to Brigid's fantastic writing style, her magical world and her addictive characters. I couldn't help but start on Storm right away. I absolutely loved Storm. It has everything you could possibly want in a YA Paranormal book. Romance, magic and danger. Storm took me on a journey through this new magical world and I loved every single moment of it.

Becca just wants a quiet normal year in high school. After her awful experience with her ex-boyfriend she just wants to forget about it all. But when she saves Chris Merrick from a beating in the school car park she doesn't expect that her life will change forever. Suddenly thrown into a magical world that she never expected Becca's life is in danger. Torn between the mysterious Chris and the new guy Hunter Becca doesn't know what to do. Is Hunter as normal as he suggests or is he hiding a deadly secret?

Elemental really gave me a great insight into the series and I feel like reading it really helped me to understand the Merrick family more, especially Michael. Michael really comes across as a jerk in this book and it really helped having read Elemental as it made you understand his perception of the situation more.

Brigid once again blew me away with her writing style. She really grabs your attention and won't let you go. Her writing style really reminds me of that of Jennifer L Armentrout's. It is so easy to just lose yourself in the story. It's so easy to read, doesn't get you confused or make you have to really think about everything in detail. It's easy to just get lost in the book and forget about everything that is happening around you, much like JLA's books.

I really loved Chris and Becca. Our two main protagonists in this book are ones that you love. Becca is such an awesome character to read about and you really go on this discovery with her. You, as the reader, feel like you are experiencing everything with her. Chris is the sweetest most adorable character ever and everyone will fall in love with him. The more I read the book the more I really wanted them both to just get together as it was clear that they were perfect for each other.

One thing I adored about Storm is that although it is a Paranormal Romance novel the romance really takes the back burner. The book is very plot driven and the most important thing is the story is the fact that hunters are coming for Becca and the Merrick's and the romance is really in the background. We still have the hint of a love triangle between Chris, Becca and Hunter but it resolves and doesn't develop into a love triangle, which I loved because I am not a massive fan of them. I loved how the real romance developed so slowly and we don't have anything happen in the first half of the book and it's pretty far into the second half before we see any developing romance. There is no insta-love here and I adored that.

Storm really makes you fall in love not just with Chris but the whole family of Merrick brothers. I fell in love with each and every one of them and I cannot wait to get each of their stories. I want to know what happens with each and every one of them, not just the main guy in this particular book. I also really liked Hunter. I haven't quite decided whether he is a bad guy or a good guy but I really enjoyed reading about him and I'm really looking forward to seeing what happens with him in future books.

Storm is a phenomenal start to a series. It has absolutely everything that you could ever want in a good paranormal book. There is magic and action, romance and danger. I loved every single second of it and I cannot praise this book enough. It is amazing and I am dying to get my hands on the next installment in the Elementals Series.

"Hey, little brother.” Gabriel came back through the door and flopped on the bed, drawing his legs up to sit against the wall. “Girls are more likely to stay if you don’t fight with them.”"

Monday, May 19

I Still Haven't Read...


This week's pick...






On Dublin Street Series by Samantha Young:

#1: On Dublin Street (Already Read)
#1.5: Until Fountain Bridge (Already Read)
#2: Down London Road
#2.5: Castle Hill (Already Read)
#3: Before Jamaica Lane (Don't Have Yet)
#4: Fall from India Place (Not Out Yet)

Have you read this series?

 

Sunday, May 18

Early Review: Take Me On (Pushing the Limits #4)

Take Me On (Pushing the Limits #4)
Katie McGarry

Published By: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: May 22, 2014
Date Read: May 16, 2014
Genre: YA - Contemporary Romance
Source: ARC from Harlequin Teen
Format: E-Book
 photo goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47_zps3cd819f5.png

From Goodreads:
Acclaimed author Katie McGarry returns with the knockout new story of two high school seniors who are about to learn what winning really means.

Champion kickboxer Haley swore she'd never set foot in the ring again after one tragic night. But then the guy she can't stop thinking about accepts a mixed martial arts fight in her honor. Suddenly, Haley has to train West Young. All attitude, West is everything Haley promised herself she'd stay away from. Yet he won't last five seconds in the ring without her help.

West is keeping a big secret from Haley. About who he really is. But helping her-fighting for her-is a shot at redemption. Especially since it's his fault his family is falling apart. He can't change the past, but maybe he can change Haley's future.

Hayley and West have agreed to keep their relationship strictly in the ring. But as an unexpected bond forms between them and attraction mocks their best intentions, they'll face their darkest fears and discover love is worth fighting for.

"She and I are like two separate halves to a whole. Separate in that two of us could live life apart sf be successful, but when we are together - when we are whole - that's when the magic begins."

Having devoured all 3 of the Pushing the Limits books so far I couldn't wait to get my hands on Take Me On, the fourth installment in the series. I fell in love with West in Crash Into You in the small glimpses we got of him and so when I found out that this would be West's story I couldn't wait to read it. Take Me On did not disappoint. It may just be my favourite Katie McGarry book so far. It was phenomenal and I couldn't help but devour it in one sitting.

Haley has sworn that she will never step foot back in the ring. As a champion kickboxer it was her life but after a tragic evening she swears that she will give it up for life. Then West Young walks into her life. West has been kicked out of home and on that eventful evening he stumbles across Haley their lived becoming entertwined. Haley finds herself having to train West for his upcoming fight. Trying to stay professional is becoming harder and harder as the sparks fly between West and Haley and suddenly she is more concerned about keeping West alive than his winning the fight. Is their love worth fighting for?

I love, love, loved this book. I have to admit that I felt like the third book in the Pushing the Limits series, Crash Into You, wasn't as good as the previous two in the series to me and so I was a little bit worried about this one. I really needn't have. Once again Katie has shown that she is the Queen of YA Contemporary Romance. Her writing style is phenomenal and you really end up being so engrossed in this book that you end up devouring it in one sitting. It was just amazing and Katie is officially my favourite contemp author of all time. I just adore everything that she has ever wrote and I can't help but buy everything she writes, regardless of what it is about.

West is such an amazing character. He has grown so much and you really do see the difference in him from the boy we met in Crash Into You to the boy he is at the end of Take Me On. He goes through hell in this book but it makes him a better person and he is able to appreciate that which I loved. He has such a hatred for his sister's boyfriend, Isaiah, at the start and his attitude toward him in the end really shows how much he has grown. I loved that about West and you really won't be able to help but fall for him. I loved West so much and one thing that makes him so different from any of the other Katie McGarry guys so far is that he isn't the one pulling away in the relationship. He knows how he feels, accepts it for love and goes after Haley. He is so noble and self-sacrificing. I just wanted to hug him all the way through the book.

Haley is such a great heroine. She is kick-ass yet vulnerable at the same time which makes her a joy to read about and to follow throughout the story. She has really had such a horrible experience and really believes that her life isn't going to get better. I loved her in the beginning and I love the way she develops when she is with West and the difference not only he has on her life but she has on his life too.

I loved that this book has a professional fighting aspect of it. It's not street brawling. It's professional fighting as a sport and I loved that. As someone who used to do kickboxing when I was at school I could really identify with this part of the story and I loved the importance it had to each of the characters.

Take Me On is one of my favourite books of the year so far without a doubt. I loved every single second of it and as always with a Katie McGarry book I met many characters that I wish would have their own book. I am still holding out the hope for a Chase and Abby book and I would love to read more about Jax. Take Me On was a phenomenal installment of the Pushing the Limits series and I can't wait to see what Katie comes up with next.

"Because you're the girl I've been waiting for. If you want to break up, then you're going to have to do it because I won't. You're it for me and I'm not walking away."


Book Haul



Hardcopies:

For Review:


The Rain by Virginia Bergin
Trial by Fire (Worldwalker Trilogy #1) by Josephine Angelini
The Maleficent Seven by Derek Landy

Bought:


Model Misfit (Geek Girl #2) by Holly Smale
The Elites by Natasha Ngan
Trouble by Non Pratt
A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn
Masquerade (Hevan & Hell #1) by Cambria Hebert

I have already read and reviewed the following. Click on the Title to see the review.

Gifted:


Alice in Zombieland (White Rabbit Chronicles #1) by Gena Showalter
Alice Through the Zombie Glass (White Rabbit Chronicles #2) by Gena Showalter
True Fire by Gary Meehan
Dance of Shadows by Yelena Black
A World Without Princes (School for Good and Evil #2) by Soman Chainani
How to Fall in Love by Cecelia Ahern
Spark (Elementals #2) by Brigid Kemmerer
Be With Me (Wait For You #2) by J. Lynn
White Hot Kiss (Dark Elements #1) by Jennifer L Armentrout
Don't Look Back by Jennifer L Armentrout

I have already read and reviewed the following. Click on the Title to see the review.

E-Books:

For Review:


Cinderella's Dress by Shonna Slayton
The Mean Girl Apologies by Stephanie Monahan
Rules of Survival by Jus Accardo
Take Me On (Pushing the Limits #4) by Katie McGarry
The Stepsister's Tale by Tracy Barrett
The Monster Within by Kelly Hashway

Bought:
I got a Amazon Giftcard for my birthday this weeks so here is what I bought with it.



Dark Frost (Mythos Academy #3) by Jennifer Estep
Crimson Frost (Mythos Academy #4) by Jennifer Estep
Spartan Frost (Mythos Academy #4.5) by Jennifer Estep
Midnight Frost (Mythos Academy #5) by Jennifer Estep
Killer Frost (Mythos Academy #6) by Jennifer Estep


Wednesday, May 14

Waiting On Wednesday


This weeks pick...

Dark Metropolis (Dark Metropolis #1)
Jaclyn Dolamore

Published By: Disney-Hyperion
To Be Released: June 17, 2014
Genre: YA - Fantasy
 photo goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47_zps3cd819f5.png

From Goodreads:
Cabaret meets Cassandra Clare-a haunting magical thriller set in a riveting 1930s-esque world.

Sixteen-year-old Thea Holder's mother is cursed with a spell that's driving her mad, and whenever they touch, Thea is chilled by the magic, too. With no one else to contribute, Thea must make a living for both of them in a sinister city, where danger lurks and greed rules.
Thea spends her nights waitressing at the decadent Telephone Club attending to the glitzy clientele. But when her best friend, Nan, vanishes, Thea is compelled to find her. She meets Freddy, a young, magnetic patron at the club, and he agrees to help her uncover the city's secrets-even while he hides secrets of his own.

Together, they find a whole new side of the city. Unrest is brewing behind closed doors as whispers of a gruesome magic spread. And if they're not careful, the heartless masterminds behind the growing disappearances will be after them, too.

Perfect for fans of Cassandra Clare, this is a chilling thriller with a touch of magic where the dead don't always seem to stay that way.

Now as I've said before I'm not such a massive fan of thrillers but I recently read a YA thriller and loved it and so my mind is more open towards them. This one with the twist of magic definitely appeals to me and I'm really looking forward to it.


Tuesday, May 13

Review: Elemental (Elementals #0.5)

Elemental (Elementals #0.5)
Brigid Kemmerer

Published By: Much-in-Little Publishing
Publication Date: March 20, 2014
Date Read: May 4, 2014
Genre: YA - Paranormal Romance
Source: Free Download
Format: E-Book
 photo goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47_zps3cd819f5.png

From Goodreads:
As an air Elemental, 17-year-old Emily Morgan doesn’t have much power. That’s okay—she knows what happens to kids who do.
Like Michael Merrick. He’s an earth Elemental, one with enough power to level cities. Which makes him sexy, dangerous, and completely off limits. At least according to Emily’s family.
But her summer job puts her in close contact with Michael, and neither of them can help the attraction they feel. When forces of nature like theirs collide, one misstep could get someone killed. Because Emily’s family doesn’t just want her to stay away from him.
They want him dead.

Elementals is a series I have had my eye on for what feels like forever. I have had this prequel sat there on my kindle for what seems like forever, along with the first installment of the series sat on my shelf for forever. I was so excited to find out that they were getting published over here in the UK. I have had the US edition for ages as it was a birthday gift from the awesome Julie @ Bookarooju last year. She loved the series so much and we have very similar tastes so I obviously couldn't wait to read it. Saying that it wasn't until the UK publisher sent me the first book for review that I actually came around to picking up the book and decided to read this short prequel first... and my goodness why did I not read this book before now? It's freaking phenomenal.

Elemental is the story of Michael, the oldest Merrick brother. The whole community is just waiting for him to slip up and use his Earth Elemental power. He is determined to just keep his head down and protect his family. But then he meets Emily. Although Emily's family hated Michael he can't help but feel for her and Emily is drawn to him regardless of what her family say. Can they beat the odds and be together or will Emily's family keep them apart?

I really loved this prequel novella. Honestly I didn't know what I would think of this one. I had already decided that regardless of whether I enjoyed the prequel I would still read Storm anyway. I have a history of not really liking prequels as I find them either slow and boring or a bit of information overload. Elemental is nothing like that. If you haven't started the series yet I urge you to read the prequel first as it just introduces you to this world perfectly and honestly completely addicts you.

I found that Elemental wasn't a romance story it was a introduction to Michael, which honestly you need because he's kind of an asshole in Storm so it's nice to read this and get to like him before we see him acting horrible. I loved that we were just introduced nicely to the Merrick family and we get the history between the families that will take a big role in the first novel.

Elemental was not slow or boring and it introduced us without being boring and giving us lots of in-depth detail like happens in other novellas. Brigid got the perfect balence right. It didn't bombard is with history of the elementals, we learn this slowly in the first novel this was just the thing to get you to grips with the paranormal aspects of the series, introduce you to the characters and get you addicted to the series.

Elemental was perfect. I loved every moment of it and the moment I finished it I couldn't help but pick up Storm. Welcome to Elementals, my new YA addiction.


Monday, May 12

Mini-Review: Searching for Beautiful

Searching for Beautiful
Nyrae Dawn

Published By: Entangled Teen
Publication Date: March 4, 2014
Date Read: May 4, 2014
Genre: YA - Contemporary Romance
Source: ARC from Entangled Teen
Format: E-Book
 photo goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47_zps3cd819f5.png

From Goodreads:
Before, Brynn had a group of best friends, a loving boyfriend, a growing talent for pottery. She had a life. And after…she had none.

When Brynn lost the boyfriend who never loved her, the friends who feel she betrayed their trust, and the new life just beginning to grow inside her, she believes her future is as empty as her body. But then Christian, the boy next door, starts coming around. Playing his guitar and pushing her to create art once more. She meets some new friends at the local community center, plus even gets her dad to look her in the eye again…sort of.

But can Brynn open up her heart to truly find her life’s own beauty, when living for the after means letting go of the before?

Searching for Beautiful was my first book by Nyrae Dawn and I was really looking forward to starting it. I had heard amazing things about this author and I adore Entangled Teen books so this one seemed like a good place to start. Honestly I was left a little bit disappointed by this one. As much as I love Entangled Teen books and YA Contemps this one was definitely not the book for me.

Searching For Beautiful had such great potential. I really liked the premise of the book. It sounded so awesome and I set out at the start thinking this is a great storyline. It had me really interested in the beginning. Nyrae is a great writer and her writing style pulled me in and really had me hooked at the start. I loved the use of flashbacks as it was great to see what had happened prior to where we were at the beginning of the book.

Unfortunately even though the premise and writing was good I just didn't enjoy this book. The main character was really annoying and childish. If you know me at all you'll know that I have got to like the main protagonist for me to enjoy the book. And I just didn't. I hated quite a few of the characters and after the first few chapters I was just really bored. Even though I continued and finished the book I found my mind wandering all the time and I was always thinking about what book I would read next and I was looking forward to reading a new book which is never good when you're not even half-way through the current one. I wanted to be taken by this book and engrossed in the storyline and characters but I just wasn't.

I have to say I am very disappointed by Searching For Beautiful. With it being my first Nyrae Dawn book too made it worse as I have heard amazing things about her books. After this one I am unsure whether I will pick up anything else by her.

This is definitely a miss for me.