Friday, October 24, 2014

Review: Dead Girl Walking by Ruth Silver

  Dead Girl Walking (Royal Reaper)
Release Date: April 27, 2014
Publisher:  Patchwork Press
Pages: 242
Source: ARC from author (Thanks!)
ISBN-10:  0692202536
Rating: 3 Hearts
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18285437-rites-of-passage

Book Description

"Forget everything you know about grim reapers. Princess Ophelia Dacre sneaks out of the castle to visit her boyfriend in secret. A perfect night cut short when she's brutally murdered. Ophelia is given the rare chance to become a grim reaper. She must become Leila Bele, cut ties with her old life, and follow the rules of the reapers. Her greatest adventure begins with death. Recommended: Ages 14+."

Review

Short and Sweet:

While I really loved the premise for this, several parts of it felt rushed. I'm a bit on the fence about continuing with the series, but leaning towards wanting to.

To Elaborate... 

Princess Ophelia is enjoying sneaking out to meet her secret boyfriend (who thinks her name is Leila), but everything changes when she is murdered. When she leaves her body, she is given the chance to become a grim reaper, someone who finds and touches someone who is about to die so they won't feel pain, and their soul will be released. As she struggles to work through being a reaper, she is faced with challenge upon challenge still leftover from her old life. 

 The first part of this book really captured me. I loved the royalty/paranomal crossover so much, plus a secret/scandalous love interest?  Yes, please. The opening dynamic with Ophelia and her sister is really sweet, and it made me hope for a stronger sister story. The grim reaper aspect, while surprising, was really refreshing and original. 

However, there were so many areas where the story felt rushed. The story would just say how a character felt instead of opening it up to character development where you see their changing feelings instead of being told them. Though I definitely shipped the romance (and it wasn't insta-love, yay!), it had lots of rushing in it as well, especially given what happens to Ophelia's original love interest. 
Overall, I did like the story a lot. I think I like it enough to continue the series, but I'm still a little hesitant. I would still recommend it to anyone looking for a unique twist and premise in a story.  
 3 Hearts! 

Don't miss out on these amazing giveaways! 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

HUGE Giveaway Opportunity: FORBIDDEN by Kimberley Griffiths Little

On November 4th, HarperCollins unveils Forbidden, a seductive YA debut from award-winning middle grade author Kimberley Griffiths Little. Forbidden transports readers back in time to the deadly deserts and sweltering heat of Ancient Mesopotamia for a tale of danger, duty, and forbidden love. Jayden is on the brink of womanhood and betrothed to her tribe’s prince, cold-hearted Horeb. But when tragedy strikes, Jayden meets Kadesh, a mysterious visitor from the south who makes Jayden doubt everything she knows. Torn between loyalty to her tribe and the chance to escape her fate, Jayden must make a choice that will change her life forever.
Kimberley is also offering a HUGE preorder giveaway from October 6th to November 4th (release day!) to celebrate. See below for full details on how to enter. TO ENTER:
  • You must preorder Forbidden through an online retailer or your local bookstore, then email a photo of your receipt to forbiddengiveaway@gmail.com.
  • Fill out the rafflecopter below
  • US/Canada Only
  • Ends at midnight EST on November 3, 2014
  • Optional entries: share the trailer on your own site or social media, follow Kimberley on twitter, and tweet about the giveaway (can be repeated daily for extra entries!)
  • Winners will be announced and contacted November 4th (release day!)
  • If the winner does not respond with their mailing address within one week, a new winner will be chosen.
PRIZES:
(1) GRAND PRIZE WINNER: 1. NEWLY RELEASED Kindle Fire HD6 Tablet with 6" HD Display, Wi-Fi, Front and Rear Cameras, 8 GB -- choose your color! (Black, Magenta, White, Citron, or Cobalt) 2. GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS by Rae Carson 3. CHAOS OF STARS by Kiersten White 4. Satin Belly Dance Skirt 5. Belly Dance 150-Coin Hip Scarf 6. Red Silk Veil (not pictured) 7. Red Middle Eastern Earrings 8. Belly dance DVD: Sensual Belly Dance with Blanca, a professional dancer (technique, choreography, and performances) 9. "Will YOU risk it all?" button (not pictured) 10. Set of 10 Book Club Cards 11. Jeweled bookmark (not pictured)
(1) SECOND PLACE WINNER:
1. GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS by Rae Carson
2. Red Middle Eastern Earrings
3. Red Silk Veil (not pictured)
4. Belly dance DVD: Sensual Belly Dance with Blanca, a professional dancer (technique, choreography, and performances)
5. "Will YOU risk it all?" button (not pictured)
6. Set of 10 Book Club Cards
7. Jeweled bookmark (not pictured)
(13) RUNNERS-UP WINNERS:
1. Red Middle Eastern Earrings
2. "Will YOU risk it all?" button (not pictured)
3. Set of 10 Book Club Cards
4. Jeweled bookmark (not pictured)
Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
About Forbidden: In the unforgiving Mesopotamian desert where Jayden’s tribe lives, betrothal celebrations abound, and tonight it is Jayden’s turn to be honored. But while this union with Horeb, the son of her tribe’s leader, will bring a life of riches and restore her family’s position within the tribe, it will come at the price of Jayden’s heart.
Then a shadowy boy from the Southern Lands appears. Handsome and mysterious, Kadesh fills Jayden’s heart with a passion she never knew possible. But with Horeb’s increasingly violent threats haunting Jayden’s every move, she knows she must find a way to escape—or die trying.
With a forbidden romance blossoming in her heart and her family’s survival on the line, Jayden must embark on a deadly journey to save the ones she loves—and find a true love for herself.
Set against the brilliant backdrop of the sprawling desert, the story of Jayden and Kadesh will leave readers absolutely breathless as they defy the odds and risk it all to be together.
Follow Kimberley:
About Kimberley: Award-winning author Kimberley Griffiths Little was born in San Francisco, but now lives in New Mexico on the banks of the Rio Grande with her husband and their three sons. Her middle-grade novels, When the Butterflies Came, The Last Snake Runner, The Healing Spell, and Circle of Secrets, have been praised as “fast-paced and dramatic,” with “beautifully realized settings.” Kimberley adores anything old and musty with a secret story to tell. She’s stayed in the haunted tower room at Borthwick Castle in Scotland; sailed the Seine in Paris; ridden a camel in Petra, Jordan; shopped the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul; and spent the night in an old Communist hotel in Bulgaria. You can visit her online at www.kimberleygriffithslittle.com.
Share your thoughts on the trailer in the comments!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Review: How We Fall by Kate Brauning

 How We Fall
Release Date: November 3, 2014
Publisher: Merit Press
Pages: 304
Source: ARC for review from author (Thank you!!)
ISBN-10:  1440581797
Rating: 5 Hearts
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18285437-rites-of-passage

Book Description

"Ever since Jackie moved to her uncle's sleepy farming town, she's been flirting way too much--and with her own cousin, Marcus.

Her friendship with him has turned into something she can't control, and he's the reason Jackie lost track of her best friend, Ellie, who left for...no one knows where. Now Ellie has been missing for months, and the police, fearing the worst, are searching for her body. Swamped with guilt and the knowledge that acting on her love for Marcus would tear their families apart, Jackie pushes her cousin away. The plan is to fall out of love, and, just as she hoped he would, Marcus falls for the new girl in town. But something isn't right about this stranger, and Jackie's suspicions about the new girl's secrets only drive the wedge deeper between Jackie and Marcus--and deepens Jackie's despair.

Then Marcus is forced to pay the price for someone else's lies as the mystery around Ellie's disappearance starts to become horribly clear. Jackie has to face terrible choices. Can she leave her first love behind, and can she go on living with the fact that she failed her best friend?"

Review

Short and Sweet:

I loved this book! Swoony romance, murder mystery, and gah! Beautiful. *insert incoherent gushing*

To Elaborate...

I sat down with this book one morning, intending to just read for a while, and I spent the next 3 or so hours unable to put it down. It is exciting, intense, and completely captivating.

Going into this story, I expected to be challenged by the cousin romance, and I was in the best way. It is the perfect combination of taboo, heart-throb, and INSANE swoon that made me ship Marcus and Jackie so hard. I love how the characters deal with their feelings (especially when they handle it badly). It is moving, sweet, torturous, and unforgettable. It makes you think hard about what is socially appropriate and how societal norms play a serious role in relationships.

But beyond the incredible romance, the plot in How We Fall is just breathtaking. The mystery behind the missing/dead Ellie and the new-to-town Sylvia is engaging and builds in a marvelously paced suspense. I love how real the story makes it. It does a wonderful job of showing characters who are dealing with a lot on a big scale (a missing person, a possible stalker, a taboo romance, etc.), but they also have to face everyday challenges like doing homework, babysitting, and attempting to find some sort of balance between everything. 

Overall, I just can't say enough about how much I loved this story. Kate Brauning has a fantastic voice in her writing, and I'm impatiently eager to read more from her.  If romantic suspense is your thing, this would be an excellent read to try. 

5 Big Hearts! 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Bookish Talk: Midterms and Blogging

http://iheartyafiction.blogspot.com/

I know several bloggers who blog while also dealing with college/school of some sort (holla, y'all). Like I'm sure plenty of them have recently, I've been struggling with making it through midterms. So for funsies and just because, I got inspired to do a little bookish talk on blogging/reviewing during times school is particularly stressful (like midterms).
 
"You mean the universe magically gives me not one but TWO excellent reads I'm dying to finish the same week I have 4 tests/projects?!"

 

"I can just test on the books I'm reading right? Or something? If I make a blog post about it, it's testable right? Wait, what?" 

 

"Let's see...classes to study for...Shakespeare- OH LOOK, THIS IS A YA SHAKESPEARE RETELLING, MUST READ IMMEDIATELY BECAUSE IT'S RELEVANT."

 

"Well that didn't work out well...On to the next subject..."

 image

"Ok, American Literature 1- OH LOOK, THIS IS A YA NOVEL BY AN AMERICAN AUTHOR. 400 YEARS DOESN'T MAKE A DIFFERENCE."

image

"Self, stop getting distracted by ALL THE BOOKS!"

 

"Seriously, time to buckle down. Let's do Human Biology- LOOK, THIS BOOK HAZ HUMANS IN IT! HUMANZZZZZ!!!"

image

"Alright, time for a study break. I should probably catch up on some reading...." 

 

Then, somehow miraculously, midterms are over, and you finally have a little extra time to read, but now...


image


I hope everyone who is dealing with school stress and blogging makes it through this semester! Yay bookish love support! <3

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Review & Giveaway: The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters

http://www.rockstarbooktours.com

I am so excited to be a part of this tour promoting the lovely Cat Winter's new book The Cure for Dreaming. Thanks RockStar Book Tours for hosting! I can't recommend Cat's books highly enough! Scroll down to read my review and for your chance to win copies of Winter's books!


https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20702018-the-cure-for-dreaming
Release Date: October 14, 2014
Publisher:  Amulet Books
Pages: 368
Source: eARC for Review
ISBN-10:  1419712160
Rating: 5 Hearts
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18285437-rites-of-passage
"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."

Review

Short and Sweet:

Cat Winters does it again! The Cure for Dreaming was everything I hoped it would be and more! Absolutely stunning!

To Elaborate...

I have been a fan of Winters since her 2013 debut In the Shadow of Blackbirds. So this book easily became one of my most anticipated 2014 releases. All of that expectation can sometimes be detrimental to the actual reading experience, but definitely not in the case of The Cure for Dreaming
 This mesmerizing story begins with Olivia Mead reluctantly taking the stage to be hypnotized. After an intriguing evening, good-looking society boy Percy Acklen has set his sights on Olivia and asks to drive her home. Olivia accepts and when she arrives home her father, local dentist and assumed madman, Dr. Mead decides that Judge Acklen's son is exactly what his wild, suffragette daughter needs to keep her in line.

When Dr. Mead discovers a photo of Olivia under hypnosis featured in the next day's paper he gets the devilish idea to hire hypnotist Henri Reverie to remove her 'unladylike' impulses and thoughts. However, while pretending to comply with Dr. Mead's wishes, Henri instead hypnotizes Olivia to see the world the way it actually is while being unable to voice her anger about the injustices she experiences. Suddenly, she can't help but see the true nature of everyone around her.

Her very first visual of 'the world as it is' is of her own father's true nature: bloody and monstrously evil. Her new sense of sight is terrifying, but illuminating and surprisingly Henri seems to be the person she can trust most. However, while he may not agree with the act of reconditioning suffragettes, he has his own reasons for taking the job and refuses to reverse her hypnosis until her father is satisfied that her unacceptable dreams have been cured.

Meanwhile, the hungry desire to control is horrifyingly personified in men and women everywhere she turns. It becomes clear that those opposed to political equality are mostly interested in exploiting and maintaining the inherent weakness of the way things are for women. Olivia watches the women around her literally disappear into visions of opinion-less vapor and turn into voice-less, invisible ghosts. So, when her father decides to use her as an example of a silent, docile, reformed suffragette to regain his 'good-standing' within high society, Olivia must decide what she's willing to do to change the unacceptable way the world really is.

The Cure for Dreaming is every bit as captivating as it's intriguing synopsis suggests! I cannot recommend it, or it's creative author, enough!

About the Author:

Cat Winters’s critically acclaimed debut novel, In the Shadow of Blackbirds, was named a 2014 Morris Award Finalist, a 2014 Best Fiction for Young Adults pick, a 2013 Bram Stoker Award Nominee, and a School Library Journal Best Book of 2013. Her upcoming novels include The Cure for Dreaming (Amulet Books/Oct. 2014) and The Uninvited (William Morrow/2015), and she’s a contributor to the 2015 YA horror anthology Slasher Girls & Monster Boys. She lives in Portland, Oregon. Visit her online at www.catwinters.com.
Photo by Tara Kelly
Find Cat Online:
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Tumblr | Pinterest

Book Trailer


Giveaway!

1 winner will receive a brand-new paperback edition of IN THE SHADOW OF BLACKBIRDS, a signed THE CURE FOR DREAMING poster, a copy of the CD containing the music that inspired THE CURE FOR DREAMING (Kristen Lawrence's ARACHNITECT), and swag.
US ONLY!


Tour Schedule

Week One:

10/6/2014- Word Spelunking- Interview
10/7/2014- Two Chicks on BooksGuest Post
10/8/2014- Me, My Shelf and IReview
10/9/2014- Falling For YA- Interview
10/10/2014- Crossroad ReviewsReview

Week Two:

10/13/2014- Xpresso Reads- Interview
10/14/2014- Candace's Book BlogReview
10/15/2014- I Heart YA FictionReview
10/16/2014- Rainy Day RamblingsReview and Guest Post
10/17/2014- Bad Bird Reads- Guest Post


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