Sunday, November 16, 2014

Stacking the Shelves #87


Stacking The Shelves is a hosted by Tynga's Reviews. Come join the fun and share all the book you received this week. 

For Review:




Soulprint
Soulprint by Megan Miranda

         


Alina Chase has been contained on an island for the last 17 years—whether that’s for the crimes of her past life, or for her own protection, well, that depends on whom you ask. With soul-fingerprinting a reality, science can now screen for the soul, and everyone knows that Alina’s soul had once belonged to notorious criminal, June Calahan, though that information is supposed to be private. June had accomplished the impossible: hacking into the soul-database, ruining countless lives in the process.

Now, there are whispers that June has left something behind for her next life—something that would allow Alina to access the information in the soul-database again. A way to finish the crimes she started.

Aided by three people with their own secret motivations, Alina escapes, only to discover that she may have just traded one prison for another. And there are clues. Clues only Alina can see and decipher, clues that make it apparent that June is leading her to something. While everyone believes Alina is trying to continue in June’s footsteps, Alina believes June is trying to show her something more. Something bigger. Something that gets at the heart of who they all are—about the past and the present. Something about the nature of their souls.

Alina doesn’t know who to trust, or what June intends for her to know, and the closer she gets to the answers, the more she wonders who June was, who she is, whether she’s destined to repeat the past, whether there are truths best kept hidden—and what one life is really worth.









Captive (The Blackcoat Rebellion, #2)The ForgettingDenton Little's DeathdateZeroboxerThe Merit BirdsAll the Bright PlacesInherit MidnightWhen Reason Breaks



Audio:





Zac and MiaA Thousand Pieces of You (Firebird, #1)Stone Cove Island




Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Review: The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters

The Cure for DreamingTitle:  The Cure for Dreaming 
Author: Cat Winters
Publisher: Amulet Books
Publishing Date: October 14th 2014
Pages: 638
Genre: Paranormal Historical Fiction
Series: Stand Alone
Source: Audio


  

Olivia Mead is a headstrong, independent girl—a suffragist—in an age that prefers its girls to be docile. It’s 1900 in Oregon, and Olivia’s father, concerned that she’s headed for trouble, convinces a stage mesmerist to try to hypnotize the rebellion out of her. But the hypnotist, an intriguing young man named Henri Reverie, gives her a terrible gift instead: she’s able to see people’s true natures, manifesting as visions of darkness and goodness, while also unable to speak her true thoughts out loud. These supernatural challenges only make Olivia more determined to speak her mind, and so she’s drawn into a dangerous relationship with the hypnotist and his mysterious motives, all while secretly fighting for the rights of women. Winters breathes new life into history once again with an atmospheric, vividly real story, including archival photos and art from the period throughout.



I was super excited to get to this book. I was even more excited to see it was available on audio. I read In the Shadow of Blackbirds earlier this year and totally loved it, so I was excited to read another Cat Winters book. This book did not disappoint. I loved it from the beginning to the end. The only thing the book was missing for me as a whole was the take my breath away factor. It was good really good, but there wasn't any wow moments for me. So that is they only think that kept my rating down one heart. No other complaints honestly it was wonderful. 

Olivia lives in Oregon in 1900. Women are meant to be seen not heard. Meant keep children and a household not a job or even an opinion. Olivia lives with her father after her mother abandoned them a while back for show business. This leaves Olivias' father strict and determined to have a very obedient daughter. Olivia is pretty obedient but her father's tight restraints keep her from fully breathing and she starts to spread her wings little but little. Her father finds out and hires a hypnotist to cure Olivia's ideas, dreams, and defiance. Well needless to say it all goes wrong from there. Things backfire and Olivia learns to be her own person. 

This book was pretty wonderful. I have many great things to say and many favorite things to discuss. I love historical fiction and when its told so lively and so vivid as this one, it just gives the past a life of its own.  This book had many good things but one of the most wonderful things was the history of woman's rights and what women had to go through to get their right to vote. I think its very important for us women to remember such things. I listened to this book right at voting time and it just made everything more extreme for me when  I discovered how many of my fellow female co workers don't vote. OK don't shoot me but I have to say it.... Women fought hard to get the right to vote, They were beaten, abandoned, disowned, jailed, and even killed for the right to vote, we should honor that and vote. OK tangent over. Back to the book.  I would have never just read a book about women's right and their fight in the 1900's. An important subject yes, but an exciting one, not really. This book made it exciting but adding in some fantasy and of course some pretty darn cool characters. So great story and great history wrapped together with great forces and great characters makes an excellent book. 

I absolutely loved the entire plot of the hypnotist, the gift of seeing one's true nature, and of course the sweet building romance of Olivia and the hypnotist, Henri. It was all good. It was written extremely well and it was very well paced. I could put the book down when needed but I still thought about it when I wasn't reading. The story really got under my skin, believe me. I am pretty sure I dreamed about it. It was one of those mind altering books. It stuck to me and I am very glad I read. The only and I say only thing I would have loved to see more was some wow moments. Everything was just right, flowed nicely, and worked together perfectly, but I didn't have any jaw dropping moments. The romance was sweet, very very sweet. Slow building but still passionate but was never extreme. Which I am find with if there are other extremes. There just wasn't so I rated a 4 instead of 5. I want to explain this because I have nothing but wonderful things to say about this book and I didn't want my blogger friends to wonder about the rating. 

So on to the wonderful cast of characters. Olivia was just powerful. She was lived in a world of complete obedience for all women but she had dreams, dreams that would make her defiant in the eyes of so many. She fought urges, she hid many things, and she was never fully true to herself. That was until she met Henri, which oh was so swoony. I would have fallen for him instantly but it took Olivia a bit longer than that. Cool and collected, sure of himself but still humble. Sweet and strong, caring and loving. He was definitely one worth caring about. Olivia would have made a wonderful best friend and Henri... well more than a best friend. Both characters very well developed and very well written. 

The main characters were awesome and so were the secondary characters were pretty spectacular too. Even Olivia's father who was a total douche was a very well developed character. Her best friend and Henri's sister. They all played a part and the part was played perfectly. Whether they were heroes or villains they were the best of best and it made it all so good. 

I don't know what else I can say to sing praises for this book. If you like historical fiction read it. If you are wanting to try out historical fiction, read it. If you don't think you would like historical fiction, read it. If you are into paranormal of any kind read it. If paranormal scares you a bit (In the sense of scared to read it not scared as in this book is creepy) read it. Just read the book and when you are done read In the Shadow of Blackbirds. That one rocks too. I think this author is just genius. 

The narrator did a wonderful job too. I think of course narrators can break or make a book and this narrator did a great job. I felt every character fully and that is one way into my heart. I need to know the characters and with the help of the narrator and the writing of the author, I knew these characters like I had known them my entire life. 

A very great read that was worth every moment. 











Cat Winters
Cat Winters’s critically acclaimed debut novel, IN THE SHADOW OF BLACKBIRDS, was named a 2014 Morris Award Finalist, a School Library Journal Best Book of 2013, a 2014 Best Fiction for Young Adults pick, and a 2013 Bram Stoker Award Nominee. Her second novel, THE CURE FOR DREAMING, has been nominated for the American Library Association's 2015 Amelia Bloomer Project. Her upcoming books include THE UNINVITED (William Morrow/Summer 2015) and THE STEEP AND THORNY WAY (Amulet Books/Spring 2016), and she's a contributor to the 2015 YA horror anthology SLASHER GIRLS & MONSTER BOYS.

Cat lives in Portland, Oregon, with her husband and two kids. Visit her online at www.catwinters.com.


Thursday, November 6, 2014

Delightful Discoveries #83



Delightful Discoveries are books that I have discovered recently... old, new, just released... from blogs, Goodreads, libraries, friends, or bookstores. 


InvincibleInvincible by Amy Reed 

  


Evie is living on borrowed time. She was diagnosed with terminal cancer several months ago and told that by now she’d be dead. Evie is grateful for every extra day she gets, but she knows that soon this disease will kill her. Until, miraculously, she may have a second chance to live.

All Evie had wanted was her life back, but now that she has it, she feels like there’s no place for her in it—at least, not for the girl she is now. Her friends and her parents still see her as Cancer Girl, and her boyfriend’s constant, doting attention is suddenly nothing short of suffocating.

Then Evie meets Marcus. She knows that he’s trouble, but she can’t help falling for him. Being near him makes her feel truly, fully alive. It’s better than a drug. His kiss makes her feel invincible—but she may be at the beginning of the biggest free fall of her life.



Court of Fives
Court of Fives by Kate Elliott 


A teenage girl secretly competes in her city's prestigious athletic competitions in this high-fantasy adventure that can be pitched as Game of Thrones meets The Hunger Games meets Little Women.

In this imaginative escape into an enthralling new world, World Fantasy Award finalist Kate Elliott's first young adult novel weaves an epic story of a girl struggling to do what she loves in a society suffocated by rules of class and privilege.

Jessamy's life is a balance between acting like an upper class Patron and dreaming of the freedom of the Commoners. But at night she can be whoever she wants when she sneaks out to train for The Fives, an intricate, multi-level athletic competition that offers a chance for glory to the kingdom's best competitors. Then Jes meets Kalliarkos, and an unlikely friendship between a girl of mixed race and a Patron boy causes heads to turn. When a scheming lord tears Jes's family apart, she'll have to test Kal's loyalty and risk the vengeance of a powerful clan to save her mother and sisters from certain death.







Scarlett Undercover
Scarlet Undercover by Jennifer Latham



A voice-driven mystery perfect for fans of Veronica Mars.

Meet Scarlett, a smart, sarcastic, kick-butt, Muslim American heroine, ready to take on crime in her hometown of Las Almas. When a new case finds the private eye caught up in a centuries-old battle of evil genies and ancient curses, Scarlett discovers that her own family secrets may have more to do with the situation than she thinks -- and that cracking the case could lead to solving her father's murder.

Jennifer Latham delivers a compelling story and a character to remember in this one-of-a-kind debut novel.









Breaking Sky



Breaking Sky by Cori McCarthy 



  
In this high-flying, adrenaline-fueled debut thriller, America's best hope is the elite teen fighter pilots of the United Star Academy

Chase Harcourt, call sign "Nyx," is one of only two pilots chosen to fly the experimental "Streaker" jets at the junior Air Force Academy in the year 2048. She's tough and impulsive with lightning-fast reactions, but few know the pain and loneliness of her past or the dark secret about her father. All anyone cares about is that Chase aces the upcoming Streaker trials, proving the prototype jet can knock the enemy out of the sky.

But as the world tilts toward war, Chase cracks open a military secret. There's a third Streaker jet, whose young hotshot pilot, Tristan, can match her on the ground and in the clouds. Chase doesn't play well with others, but to save her country she may just have to put her life in the hands of the competition.







Unleashed
Unleashed by Rachel McClellan



Seventeen-year-old Claire Williams’ tough upbringing has taught her how to throw a punch or two to survive, especially when it involves a man’s unwanted attention. But her strength waivers when she visits Bodian Dynamics, a medical research facility, and stumbles upon classified information—someone has stolen a drug that not only changes a person's appearance, but also unleashes the darkest, most evil part of their inner psyche. 

After an intimidating security guard threatens the lives of her friends if she speaks to anyone about the incident, Claire pretends the drug never existed. But when she finds a dead girl in her school and is attacked herself, she thinks the events are connected. Especially when she meets Gage, a teenage boy who doesn’t seem to have a conscience and who is hell-bent on making her just like him by unleashing her dark side. 

The police try to catch Gage, but his increased strength and speed, a side effect from the drug, make him impossible to kill. But Claire knows a secret—he can only die while in his normal state. And since Gage knows personal information about her, Claire thinks she knows who it is: either her best friend or her recent boyfriend. But this doesn’t change Claire’s resolve. Gage has backed her into a corner so Claire does what she does best: fights. And once she figures out which boy Gage is hiding behind, she’s going to kill him, even if it breaks her heart.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Review: Fiendish by Brenna Yovanoff

FiendishTitle:  Fiendish 
Author: Brenna Yovanoff
Publisher: Razorbill
Publishing Date: August 14th 2014
Pages: 341
Genre: YA Gothic Horror
Series: Stand Alone
Source: Audio



  

Clementine DeVore spent ten years trapped in a cellar, pinned down by willow roots, silenced and forgotten.


Now she’s out and determined to uncover who put her in that cellar and why.


When Clementine was a child, dangerous and inexplicable things started happening in New South Bend. The townsfolk blamed the fiendish people out in the Willows and burned their homes to the ground. But magic kept Clementine alive, walled up in the cellar for ten years, until a boy named Fisher sets her free. Back in the world, Clementine sets out to discover what happened all those years ago. But the truth gets muddled in her dangerous attraction to Fisher, the politics of New South Bend, and the Hollow, a fickle and terrifying place that seems increasingly temperamental ever since Clementine reemerged.


I was really excited for this book. I read Paper Valentine last year and loved it. Brenna Yovanoff has a twisted way for telling stories and it amazes me. This book as good but not as good as I was hoping, expecting, or wanting. I felt it was a bit too strange for my taste and the pacing lacked a bit for me. What really made the book good for me were the characters. If it weren't for the character development, this book would have been a star lower for me. But alas the characters and the romance saved the day. 


Clementine was buried a long long time ago in a house that was set fire to. She was just a bity girl at the time and now its quite a few years later and she is now a teenager. She is found by a boy and is set free. Strange thing, only a very few and I mean very few know who she is or that she ever existed. The curse that was put upon her was strong. Clementine is determined to find why she was buried, cursed, and never killed. She doesn't know if she was cursed to save her life or to get rid of her. Along the way she falls in love, learns secrets, and figures it all out. 



So this book wasn't at all what I was expecting. I'm really not sure how to put many of my thoughts down. This book was strange, not a bad strange and not a good strange, just an out there strange. One thing for sure it was original, it was creative, it was it's own story. I have never read anything else remotely like it before. So if you are looking for a strange and mysterious gothic horror. This would be the book for you. 

I normally love strange. The more strange, the more original, the better. But I felt this one was a bit to much for me because at times I felt confused. I would get lost easily and have to reread or rewind a part of the book. I think I may have been better off reading and not listening to this book. 

Part of the problem with me getting lost was the pacing. This played a huge part in the strange and slow parts of the book that would send me in a vicious circle of confusion. The book may have not seemed as slow in parts, but on audio I would tend to get distracted during the slow part and get lost in the abyss. So if you tend to get distracted and lost easily, read the book, don't listen to it. 

Another issue that had me confused at times, there is no real explanation of why there is magic in this town, where it came from who all has it and why. Sometimes that seems add to my confusion. The story wasn't about why there was magic as much as why the magic has to hide. So it didn't make a difference to the story just to me. 

The story was just amazing. I loved the plot it was so dark and beautiful and wicked. I really can't express how different this book was from anything I have ever read. I really do think this authors mind is off the charts on the brilliance scale. The story was good and the romance was even better. I adored the romance. 

The romance was sweet and even though it was a bit fast it didn't feel too fast. It wasn't over the top romantic or passionate, just sweet. First love kind of sweet. Something I wish more  YA books would have. I fell for it, I believed it, I felt it. 

The book did have some amazing characters. The main character, Clementine was just so lovable. She was a good kid who just wanted to learn the truth. The fact that she lost most of her life and that she was trapped in a house of ruins, didn't seem to bother her, anger her, or frighten her. She just wanted to know what the heck happened. She loved her cousin strongly and she bonded well with those she came to know. She was sweet and kind and gave everyone the benefit of the doubt. I liked her very much. 

Fisher is just amazing too. A scared boy living in a frightening world where his gifts are not accepted and he has to hide them all the time. Clementine makes that difficult and makes him stronger. This is what initially brings them together and strengthens their bonds but their romance is also just the normal teenage first love sickness and he makes it easy to accept. He was very easy to love. 

There were some pretty dark and gloomy moments in the book but nothing too hard to handle. There is lots of magic, witch hating, and just plain out judgy kind of behavior that was just enough to set me on fire at the right times but there wasn't anything to graphic or extreme. So even though I consider this a gothic horror, its not overly horrifying. There is the huge mystery of Clementine and what happened to her and that seemed to tone down the horror to a bearable fright. 

I think mystery lovers, strange read lovers, and horror lovers will like this book. 

If you are in for wild ride, give it a try.











Website/GoodreadsHere are some things about me (not book-related):
I’m good at soccer, violent video games, and making very flaky pie pastry.
I’m bad at dancing, making decisions, and inspiring confidence as an authority figure. I suspect this is because I am short, and also terrible at sounding as though I have any idea what I’m talking about.


 
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