Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George (January 20th 2009—Bloomsbury)
Grade: 3 stars out of 5
Summary: “A tale of twelve princesses doomed to dance until dawn…
Galen is a young soldier returning from war; Rose is one of twelve princesses condemned to dance each night for the King Under Stone. Together Galen and Rose will search for a way to break the curse that forces the princesses to dance at the midnight balls. All they need is one invisibility cloak, a black wool chain knit with enchanted silver needles, and that most critical ingredient of all—true love—to conquer their foes in the dark halls below. But malevolent forces are working against them above ground as well, and as cruel as the King Under Stone has seemed, his wrath is mere irritation compared to the evil that awaits Galen and Rose in the brighter world above.”
Review: If Princess of the Midnight Ball were to ever turn into a movie, my inner ten year old would be squealing in delight. The princesses, the evil villain trying to rule the world, and the sword fighting, actually twig stabbing [and gun shooting] but I’ll take what I can, gave life to a enthralling fairy tale.
I thought the most interesting aspect to the characters were the names of the princesses. Ordinarily I hated the name Rose but combined with the other eleven flowers, Poppy, Hyacinth, Orchid, it created a vast sensational appeal. I love each of the sister’s traits—the dancer, the musician—and the careful tease and squabbles from sister to sister. It gave a much needed realistic approach to the family dynamics.
I thought the relationship between Rose and Galen was rushed somewhat in the beginning but evened out in the end. His bold flirtation smoothed into gentle courting—as well as charming the very so important sisters.
The main plot itself was nicely planned out and was executed in an almost flawless manner. Despite losing myself here and then under the many names, I found myself strangely captivated in the underground world of the King Under Stone as well as the world above.
What I found the most creative was the instructions on the back instructing the reader how to knit the white shawl, and the black chain. Now that was something extra special.
Overall:Princess of the Midnight Ball was a fun and mystical tale.
Cover A The cover makes me swoon. I adore those type of dresses with the detailed embellishments
Rules are: Write 5 things you are addicted to and then nominate 5 other blogs to pass this award on to!
1. Books (or else I would not have this blog) 2. Baking (how else can I bribe my friends into tolerating me~) 3. Doodling (the only way to battle sleep in class) 4. Sleeping (you guys love it too!) 5. Poking people (I have this friend who squawks whenever I poke her so it's so much fun!)
Fade by Lisa McMann (February 10th 2009—Simon Pulse)
Grade: 4 stars out of 5
Summary: “SOME NIGHTMARES NEVER END.
For Janie and Cabel, real life is getting tougher than the dreams. They're just trying to carve out a little (secret) time together, but no such luck.
Disturbing things are happening at Fieldridge High, yet nobody's talking. When Janie taps into a classmate's violent nightmares, the case finally breaks open -- but nothing goes as planned. Not even close. Janie's in way over her head, and Cabe's shocking behavior has grave consequences for them both.
Worse yet, Janie learns the truth about herself and her ability -- and it's bleak. Seriously, brutally bleak. Not only is her fate as a dream catcher sealed, but what's to come is way darker than she'd feared....”
Review:Fade takes off exactly where Wake ended. I felt that Fade, compared to its predecessor, Wake, did not reach its full potential. While I agree that Fade was still as captivating and hard to put down as Wake, it was way too rushed for my taste and had too many unanswered questions.
For one, while I thought the gateway to Martha, another dream catcher like Janie who passed away in Wake, through Janie’s dreams was innovative and fun, I had some questions. How for example, are they connected? I would have understood it if she happened to be alive and traveled to Janie’s dream, but she passed away even before Janie knew she knew Martha was a dream catcher. Was it a subconscious effect, or somehow the notebook triggered a mysterious dream catcher guidance?
Moving onto Janie’s and Cabel’s relationship. Remember how I stated in my review for Wake that I felt that they were moving too fast? Well, this time they ran a marathon. Maybe it’s just my opinion. Also Cabel is an emotional roller coaster, which if I could, I would have asked for a quick break ever once in a while. He can put Edward Cullen to shame with his angst. I had a strong urge to throw a paper ball at his head and scream, stop ignoring Janie! Take a chill pill!
Onto the plot; like Wake, Fade takes you onto a journey to solve a case. Except this time instead of drug dealers, we are talking about sexual predators. It was a love and distaste relationship between it and me. For one, I love the build up—great details, great clues, and great action. My only complaint had to be the vocabulary. I definitely recommend this to be read by the older teens, some things can get graphic which I do not find to be appropriate. Other than that, it was fine.
If the Wake series ever turned into a television series, I am definitely TiVo-ing it. Seriously. It has all the making to become a smash hit—drama, action, and for those who are interested, sex.
Overall: A great sequel! I am immediately counting down the release of Gone, the third installment to this awesome series!
For seventeen-year-old Janie, getting sucked into other people's dreams is getting old. Especially the falling dreams, the naked-but-nobody-notices dreams, and the sex-crazed dreams. Janie's seen enough fantasy booty to last her a lifetime.
She can't tell anybody about what she does -- they'd never believe her, or worse, they'd think she's a freak. So Janie lives on the fringe, cursed with an ability she doesn't want and can't control.
Then she falls into a gruesome nightmare, one that chills her to the bone. For the first time, Janie is more than a witness to someone else's twisted psyche. She is a participant....”
Review: Lisa McMann, you have just found yourself another fan girl. I started to read Wake last night and finished it the following morning. After chatting with Carol yesterday night regarding my disappointment with Chasing Boys, I decided to seek some guidance with choosing my next book to read/review. I wanted something in my currently reading pile, killing two birds with one stone, which consisted of fifteen (now thirteen) books. She chose Wake and Triple Shot of Bettys. I decided to start the Wake series. And. I. Loved. It!
My expectations for Wake were moderate, I read some good reviews but the summary did not draw me in. And the cover as well (I’m a cover whore). So imagine my surprise when I was half way in and an hour past my curfew, not to mention my lack of interest in preparing for the test the next day; or the fact that I dragged the book to school to read during advisory when I should have been studying just to finish the book. And let’s not forget the fact that I am going all fan girl mode here, typing this review up and ignoring my upcoming quiz tomorrow.
What I loved about Wake was the fresh idea! Finally, something other than faeries and vampires! Now we have dream catchers, which that idea itself was new. I read somewhere that someone had issues with the many fragment sentences. I, however, found the sentence structure fun and lyrical. It was like little mini poem verses, small breaks from the extensive details. Despite the details, Wake can hide little details along the story and catch you in surprise! This kept the excitement going and the action not too predictable.
The characters were amazing! I like how each and every character had a certain set of traits, one was the strict leader, and the other was the flirty cheerleader and so forth. And the relationship with Janie and Cabel had me swooning and squealing like a pig being fed a five course dinner.
Of course, there were some issues. The ending was rather rushed. I had some questions about the police force that employed Janie. And I felt that the relationship with Janie and Cabel, while great, was too fast paced and too soon. I guess a bit of more build up would have been nice.
Overall: I needed this book after going through a not so pleasant stream of novels. Wake was a fascinating read that will keep the reader entertained even after finishing the book. I just could not help myself but to reread some sections after sighing with satisfaction.
Cover B+ EDIT: Fade review should be up shortly. I read it this afternoon and haven't found time to review it quite yet.
Chasing Boys by Karen Tayleur (January 6th 2009—Bloomsbury)
Grade: 1.5 stars out of 5
Summary: “El Marini just isn't fitting into the new life she's been forced to create without her dad. Her mom and sister have accepted his absence and moved on, but El is convinced things will get back to normal if she just keeps her feelings of loss to herself and waits it out.
Life at her new public school would have been unbearable if weren't for Eric Callahan. As her crush grows to epic proportions, she'll do anything to be more like the popular girls he notices, even buying the first pink top she's ever owned. But then she meets Dylan, a quiet artistic-type who is both unnerving and annoying as he shines a light on El's misguided attempts to attract Eric. El's need for acceptance will hit home with teens as she finally sees that chasing boys has distracted her from making peace with the past and finding herself.”
Review: As you surely tell from my grade, this book really, really, disappointed me. It should only take the reader a couple of hours to finish this book from beginning to end. Why? Because despite that it is 64 chapters and 256 pages long, the font is like size 20. Huge! I really wanted to like this book; I had such high hopes for it! I mean, look at the title! I was craving for a sweet and cliché book so I picked this up. And I have no words…okay maybe some.
So onward to the plot, which I seem to have trouble finding. I understood that it was about El (Ariel) chasing after Eric Callahan and trying to win his heart. But after three-quarters of the entire way through I still could not believe that the plot did not developed! I’m going to try summarize the entire story to leave it to the readers if it sounds good.
So I feel in love with Eric when I first transferred to Blair. I’ve been pining for him for ages, but he’s going out with Angelique, who’s only the most popular girl in school. Oh wait [!] there seems to some animosity between them. It’s my turn to shine. But, I kind of like his girlfriend, I should not be doing this…Hold up! You, my best friend that knows that I love Eric, like him too! And holy crap! Did Dylan just kiss me!? Where the heck did that come from!? Turns out Eric is just some crappy boy whose ego is too large for his head. Oh, Dylan, do ever come back! It turns out I really like you! Margot [my best friend], I forgot, it’s my dad’s birthday and I’m sorry that I yelled at you. Friends?
So I am just going to it there. As you can see, I ended it with a question. It corresponds to the true ending of the story. It leaves the reader frustrated because it was not even an ending! Where did the part about her father being dead come from!? I knew somewhere that her father left; I had assumed that he abandoned the family, so imagine my surprise that the ending was at the cemetery. Besides that I had questions about Dylan, his scar which the author leaves you hanging when she brings it just pages before the book ended? Angelique? Eric? Angelique with Eric? Desiree, El’s other best friend]? I craved for more information. Actually, I demand more!
Speaking of characters, El, was monotone. She was an one tracked album. A weeping flower in a arid desert. Need I say more? Dylan was…nonexistence. He appears every once in a while and his amazing kiss scene (one paragraph long!) and nothingness. I felt that none of the characters really developed or stood out.
Overall: I feel like a) pulling my hair out, b) crying from frustration or c) tossing this book into a fire. I’ll leave that decision up to you, my readers. So leave your comments after this review and I’ll take a picture of the winning choice.
EDIT: So C isn't really a good option, I know. I probably won't ever burn a book, it's just against my book loving nature. Cover B-
Exclusively Chloe by Jonathon Yang (April 16th 2009--Puffin)
"Chloe-Grace can't help it—she's spectacular. How could she not be with celebrity parents who have been the queen and king of Hollywood for years? And Chloe is a celebrity all unto herself as well— she's the first celebrity-adopted kid in Hollywood. But now Chloe's sixteen, and she is tired of every undesired moment of the world's attention. She wonders what it would be like to be a "normal" kid in a regular school. To really understand it, though, she would need to go undercover. So after getting a "make-under" at the hands of her mother's fabulous stylist, she enters the "real" world. But she soon finds out that there is just as much drama there as there is in Hollywood...."
So I kind of want to read this mainly because it's an Asian author featuring a Chinese girl. Yeah, superficial I know, sue me...
Everything Is Fine by Ann Dee Ellis (March 1st—Little Brown)
Grade: 2 stars out of 5
Summary: “Stuck at home caring for her severely depressed mother and abandoned by her father, Mazzy has only the day-to-day dramas of her neighborhood to keep her busy. But between flirting with the boy next door and worrying about the fact that she's flat-chested, Mazzy has to face the fact that her mom is emotionally paralyzed by a family tragedy. As readers delve into the story, they'll eventually discover what it was that tore Mazzy's family apart, and they'll see what it takes to put it back together.”
Review:Everything Is Fine is told in verses which creates a quick and interesting read. It reminded me a bad performance, hard to keep your eyes away but leaves an uncomfortable feeling in the pit of your stomach. Or the tryouts for American Idol. You just can’t help but feel embarrass for the person but the urge to change the channel is non existence. That was how I felt about Everything Is Fine. It’s awkward, and disjointed, but it’s undeniably hard to put down.
Mazzy was an on and off character for me. Sometimes I can relate to her feelings, and sometimes I feel that she needs to grow up. It was hard for me to pinpoint her exact age—she stuffed oranges down her shirt and yet she wears lacy underwear. Her relationship with her mother is where you can understand her depth. The way she is actually the one taking care of her mother instead of the other way around, the most simple of actions forces her to hate her mother. Maybe it’s the way that she [the mother] used to act before she fell into depression that causes her to hate her. Or maybe it goes deeper than that as we read the ending.
The ending I felt was satisfactory. In the middle of the story, the author mentions Olivia. I spent a good amount of time trying to remember who she was which might have worked in the author’s favor—trying to keep the readers on their toes. As the story progresses, the small bits of missing information begins to fill until we understand the actual reasoning behind everything.
There are also captions after every poem, like for example “Pencil on paper”. And underneath that, there will be a picture. I was not too sure the exact meaning behind each one, sometimes I did, sometimes it drew a blank stare, but I thought it was creative.
Overall: Mazzy was an odd character but she was interesting to read to say the least. Everything is Fine was a fun and quick read that is a library borrow if you enjoy verse novels.
Dead Girl Walking by Linda Joy Singleton (September 1st 2008—Flux)
Grade: 3.5 stars out of 5
Summary: “I am so dead. Now, was I supposed to go left or right at the Light?
Seventeen-year-old Amber Borden has a lousy sense of direction - so lousy that she takes a wrong turn when returning from her near-death experience. She ends up in the body of the most popular girl in school, who has just tried to commit suicide. Can a girl who can't even navigate the halls of Halsey High discover the secrets of her new identity and find her way back to her own life?”
Review: Girl Dead Walking completely astonished me. Based off of the summary I was a little put off of how clichéd it sounded. But once Sharon read it and reviewed it, with 5 purrs no less, I just had to read this book!
What I loved was the transition scenes. The way how they switched was realistic, well as realistic as one can get with switching bodies. Everyone has off moments, and heading in the wrong direction is something that everyone has been bound to do. And the fact that Linda created a scenario before the big switch that Amber has a direction problem made it all more plausible. I’m just relieved that it wasn’t some type of lightening that struck them both at the same time that makes them switch souls—completely played out.
I guess I also have to mention Amber. She was a great character—lovable, kind, and welcoming of new strangers—sounds like some people I know of. I think this is an important element, there are some characters that are so kind to the point they annoy the readers.
There were moments that made me squeal, with a huge stupid grin on my face, and moments that had me giggling. Honestly though, rocks inside her tankini!? Not to mention that she didn’t even notice the discomfort with the surgical enhanced breast—it made me cackle in a somewhat disturbed way.
The ending! What a huge shock! And what a huge cliffhanger! All I know is that I need to get the second book as soon as possible!
Overall: Read it! This was such a magnificent beginning to a, hoping to be, fantastic series!
So my friend is extra hyper about watching this movie! What do you guys think? I got her the book since she wanted to read it so badly and now she's even more excited for the movie to come out! It comes out 03-06-09! Are you planning on watching it? What are your expectations?
Special thanks to said friend (Judy) for emailing me the trailer link. I got too lazy to do it myself...
Shelter Me by Alex McAulay (January 6th 2009—MTV Books)
Grade: 4 stars out 5
Summary: “Maggie Leigh just wants to be a normal teenager, but when German bombs tear apart London during World War II, her ultra-religious mother sees the destruction as divine punishment. She sends Maggie to a remote boarding school in coastal Wales, supposedly to keep her safe, but also to keep her in line. The school is creepy, the headmistress is a lunatic, and the students range from spoiled rich girls to speechless trauma victims. But when a tragic accident happens on the beach, Maggie and three friends are forced to flee the school, plunging into the nightmarish world of Europe during wartime. Now every decision Maggie makes is fraught with danger, and living to see another day depends on how quickly she can think and act...and how far she's willing to go.”
Review: I have to say, when I first started reading Shelter Me, I had a vague reminiscence of The School for Dangerous Girls except it was for religion rather than violent girls. It completely baffled me and shocked me once I got into it. Underneath it all, there’s a diabolical plan that you would have never figured it out until the ending. It was so intricate, so completely well done that it took me a few minutes to wrap my head around it. The ending itself, however, was dull but it didn’t take away from the overall greatness of the book.
The beginning was amazing though! It pulled the reader right in—background, plot, and action, all in short amount of time.
I love the complexity of the character. Eileen and Kate were people that have so much depth to them. They each have their moments, their faults, whether that I want to hug them or smash their heads to the ground. Yes, that’s what I call dynamic there (the characters, not me).
What I found the most enjoyable was Maggie’s voice. It had the child like innocence but also brutally honest. There’s neither sugarcoating nor obsessively amounts of descriptions to the story. I’ve read books that had about half of the entire novel covered in pretty little words that does not do anything except dragging it on longer than necessary.
Overall: This small book packs a whole of action, adventure, and entertainment. Trust me, I had my doubts about this book since it was set during a war-time but really, it barely contained anything about it. So pick this book up! You’ll either love it or hate it, but you have to at least try it!
Shadowed Summer by Saundra Mitchell (February 10th 2009—Delacorte Press)
Grade: 2.5 stars out of 5
Summary: “Summer in Ondine, Louisiana, is always predictable: hot and boring.
Not this one.
This summer, Iris is fourteen. This summer, she doesn’t have to make up spooky stories for excitement. Because a real one falls right in her lap.
Years ago, before she was born, a teenager named Elijah disappeared. All that remains of him are whispers. Until this summer. A ghost begins to haunt Iris, and she’s convinced it’s the ghost of Elijah.
What really happened to him?
And why, of all people, has he chosen Iris?”
Overall: Shadowed Summer lived up to the expectations as being a true ghost story: bone chilling, attention grabbing, and blanket huddling. And it was just that. I felt that the focus should have been completely on the mystery. This is where Saundra excels in—telling a fabulous ghost story that leaves the reader in goose bumps. I felt that adding the extra drama with the friendship and the boy trouble was a tad bit too much. Yes, it does work in some parts but the sections where they just try to solve the mystery were golden. The ending was a love and hate for me. Love because it was completely unexpected and hate because it was also out of nowhere. Saundra tried to justify it through the little hints throughout the tale but it was still fairly awkward for me.
So was Shadowed Summer a good read? Yes. Was it something that I’ll one day reread? I’m not exactly sure. There were mundane areas but overall it was a chilling tale.
P.S. I know I’m being redundant…I'm just completely out of it right now...
I had to end up doing this twice seeing as how for the first time, I gave a certain person an extra entry. So people, I DO check if what you say is legit. Any way, congrats Lenore! You have 48 hours to email me with your address!
Torn from her native New York City and dumped in the land of cookie-cutter preps, Candice is resigned to accept her posh, dull fate. Nothing ever happens in Swoon, Connecticut...until Dice's perfect, privileged cousin Penelope nearly dies in a fall from an old tree, and her spirit intertwines with that of a ghost. His name? Sinclair Youngblood Powers. His mission? Revenge. And while Pen is oblivious to the possession, Dice is all too aware of Sin. She's intensely drawn to him—but not at all crazy about the havoc he's wreaking. Determined to exorcise the demon, Dice accidentally sets Sin loose, gives him flesh, makes him formidable. Now she must destroy an even more potent—and irresistible—adversary, before the whole town succumbs to Sin's will. Only trouble is, she's in love with him."
Remember when I said I was going to watch it then review it? Well I got lazy. I blame it mostly on my essays and test. I'm still glaring at my English essay in hopes that it'll spontaneously burst into flames. So far, nada.
But Khy was amazing to take my word and watch the entire movie! She even talked about! Just go here to read her response! And Khy, it is too jazz hands! Spirit fingers move while doing the jazz hands. Blame the movie Bring It On for making me know this...
Something, Maybe by Elizabeth Scott (March 24th 2009—Simon Pulse)
Grade: 3 stars out of 5
Summary: “Everyone thinks their parents are embarrassing, but Hannah knows she's got them all beat. Her dad made a fortune showing pretty girls--and his "party" lifestyle--all over the Internet, and her mom, who was once one of her dad's girlfriends, is now the star of her own website. After getting the wrong kind of attention for far too long, Hannah has learned how to stay out of sight...and that's how she likes it.
Of course, being unknown isn't helping her get noticed by gorgeous, confident Josh, who Hannah knows is her soul mate. Between trying to figure out a way to get him to notice her, dealing with her parents, and wondering why she can't stop thinking about another guy, Finn, Hannah feels like she's going crazy. She's determined to make things work out the way she wants....only what she wants may not be what she needs.”
Review:Something, Maybe had a uniquely interesting start. I mean what other book have you read that includes naked moms!? But I felt that the delivery was too short to fill the reader wholly satisfied. It’s the type of feeling that you get after reading a book that was good, but you needed and wanted more from it. You expected more, whether it may be in the plot or in the characters. For me, it had to be the characters…okay and some of the plot as well. Again, nothing really off, just wanted a lot more.
There were certain traits that I love from the separate characters. Josh was the typical “perfect boyfriend” and I love how the author played on that, especially the ending. Huge shock, I’ll just leave it there. There were small hints and foreshadowing, but who really notices it all until the end? Definitely not I.
Finn was also another sweet and adorable character for me. He just made me want to go aw every page. From his blushes to his fallback topics, Finn was delightfully fun to read.
Ms. Scott’s definite strong points are her male characters. The lead female characters are typically boring, one dimensional, and sometimes annoying. Not to say they are all awful and hateful to read. Not in the least. It’s just that comparing to the other characters, I expect more from the main star.
Family dynamics, another reoccurring theme in her work. Once again, this is definitely one of her stronger assets. You can tell how the conflict between parents afflicts on Hannah’s traits, how she portrays certain topics, and her actions to certain problems. This can be applied to almost of Ms. Scott's books, not just Something, Maybe. The family conflict can also affect the mother, whom of course the female character has strong bonds to. Back and forth they play on each others emotions and actions.
Overall:Something, Maybe was a pleasant read. And I hate to admit this, but I’m starting to see a correlation between Sarah Dessen and Elizabeth Scott. Well, I sort of did before but I try my best to not compare authors.
You heard it right people! I just watched Spectacular! I'll go into a greater depth tomorrow, for now I have to pass out!
EDIT: Okay so I'm dead tired and I really don't feel like doing this whole comparison thing of High School Musical and Spectacular like what I was hoping to do...I just have one thing to say. There has to be a limit to how tight a guy's jeans can be. That's it.
Click here for the full article about this delicious delicacy! And scroll down where I said that there indeed was a restaurant in China that served this, so ha! I was not lying or exaggerating when I said that~
I won't be posting tomorrow because I'll be too busy watching...
Doesn't this look just AMAZING (I'm being sarcastic of course...). I know the trailer has been out for the long time but I just wanted to let you guys know that it'll premier tomorrow! So get your TiVo set up and watch this "Spectacular" movie!
p.s. I'm totally getting a déjà vu experience with HSM...and I apologize for the terrible quality.
This was a collaborative interview with Carol! We happen to get a tad bit bored today...
What is your favorite animal? Personally I love Koalas. It’s the nose, you gotta love the nose.
What stuffed animal do you own? Three-horn, Penguin, two bears, CinnamonRoll, Domo-kun, a bunny, and a pig.
Your most memorable zoo experience? When I almost threw up on my friend at the tiger cage. But really there was this one time, a kid (a senior) from my school arrived at the zoo drunk and choked a goose (you had to arrive to the zoo yourself). Our school was forever banned to visit them ever again. The kids at the school even got it on camera and broadcast live on the school television network!
If you could be what animal what would you be? An eel. Especially an electric one! *Zap!*
Which animal are you like the most? It’s a cross between a pig and a sloth.
Do you have a bear fetish or a shoe fetish? I have a bear fetish. Shoes aren’t my thing seeing as how I only own like 1 pair of chucks, 1 pair of regular sneakers, 1 pair of flip-flops, and the random pair of high heels for formal occasions. Bears are just awesome! They can be cute (stuffed animals!) or be vicious like eating you alive!
Are you a cannibal? Do you prefer babies or toddlers? I like babies. They’re easier to eat since they won’t bite or kick me once I start cooking them.
What didn't you like about eating adults? Is it true that their meat is too chewy? They nag too much. “The temperature’s too high!”, “I’m not done cooking yet”, “You need more salt!” and all that jazz. The meat isn’t exactly chewy; it’s more of a slimy consistency. I guess it mostly depends on the method of cooking.
What do you do with the bones? Do you make a broth? Or do you soften it up and make it into jelly? I like to pick my teeth with them. For the big ones though I play fetch with Fido. The broth idea sounds delicious though and the jelly one is…odd.
Do you eat the eyeballs and organs as well? I just love sucking on eyeballs! Grab all the juices from them! Organs, depends on which ones. The stomach sure, but the liver is ick!
D you save the hair to make a sweater? Too itchy. But I’ve been known to pass them around for Christmas.
What about the male genitals? What do you do with them? You eat them! There’s this fabulous restaurant in China that only serves penises and testicles! Definitely try it. (I’m not lying you guys...go to Google if you don’t believe me.)
What about the mammary glands? Do you squeeze them for milk then eat what's left over? I feed it to the babies to make them plump! Yum!
Do you prefer to eat cats or dogs? Gasp! I will never eat Fido! Sharon, I’m coming to get Lily and Sabrina~
I hope you guys had fun getting to know me better! You can now read Carol's answers here!
Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey (January 1st 2009—Harcourt)
Grade: 3.5 stars out of 5
Summary: “The undead can really screw up your senior year . . .
Marrying a vampire definitely doesn’t fit into Jessica Packwood’s senior year “get-a-life” plan. But then a bizarre (and incredibly hot) new exchange student named Lucius Vladescu shows up, claiming that Jessica is a Romanian vampire princess by birth—and he’s her long-lost fiancé. Armed with newfound confidence and a copy of Growing Up Undead: A Teen Vampire’s Guide to Dating, Health, and Emotions, Jessica makes a dramatic transition from average American teenager to glam European vampire princess. But when a devious cheerleader sets her sights on Lucius, Jess finds herself fighting to win back her wayward prince, stop a global vampire war—and save Lucius’s soul from eternal destruction”
Review: First things first I have to point out that I love Lucius’s character. He had depth, volume, and area! Granted, I just made two of those things up…but really! He actually developed, a lot! I love his original attitude. He had the whole haughty European sex vibe going on; “I know I’m hot and sexy, so back off commoners, you’re breathing my air” type of presence. Even after he sheds his arrogance, his character still remains amazing. Jessica, however, fell flat at some points.
The love that grew between them also nicely developed. In the beginning they both couldn’t stand each other, and day by day it blossomed until they actually tolerated each other. And of course, fall in love.
The alternating points of views were a nice touch. It gave a deeper connection and a better understanding to their motives. I love how Lucius’ point of view was through letters to his uncle. It was just plain laugh out loud funny. But within the letters, it gave the true plotline and conflict. Which I have to say was creative and original.
Speaking of original, I thought that there were some vampire characteristics that were unique. The trait that only female vampires can only become full vampires by getting a male vampire to bite you was something that I have never read before. Apparently, never reading a vampire book in your life helps. A lot actually.
The ending, however, left more to be desired. There were some open-ended questions left to me. What happened back in the United States? Her friends? Her parents? Those type of questions.
Overall:Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side was a funny yet dark tale of love. It was a magnificent read from start to finish!
I hope everyone is having a splendid day today! To celebrate this loving day I'm going to be sharing the love by giving away an extra entry point to anyone who comments on this post!
The rules are simple: comment below telling me what you are planning to do to celebrate this holiday or have already done OR what is one thing that you love and explain why.
I'll only be giving these entries for today! So anything past 12 AM EST will not be counted for!
These entries will be included to the next giveaway that you enter. So if you decide to skip my next giveaway and participate in the following one, I'll add the entry there. However, you can not use this entry for my Chinese New Year celebration.
Zombie Queen of Newbury High by Amanda Ashby (March 5th 2009)
Grade: 3.5 stars out of 5
Summary: “Quiet, unpopular, non-cheerleading Mia is blissfully happy. Rob—super hot football god—has asked her to prom! Life couldn’t get any better Enter Samantha—cheerleader queen and Miss Popularity—who has made it quite clear that Rob should be her prom date. Mia is desperate to make sure she doesn’t end up dumped in front of the whole school. So with prom in just a few days, she turns to Candice—her holistic, hypochondriac best friend—and decides to try a love spell to make Rob stay with her. Unfortunately, she ends up inflicting a zombie virus onto her whole class, and she is their leader! At first she loves all the attention. But when she learns from zombie hunter hottie Chase that her classmates will actually try to eat her in a dew days, she’s not too thrilled. She’s sure she and Chase can figure something out, but in the meantime, she’s suggesting that no one wear white to prom, because things could get very messy.”
Review: There comes a book every once in a while that you just happen to like, but can’t seem to pinpoint the exact details. Zombie Queen of Newbury High is one of those types of books. I just like it okay, plain and simple. What else do you want to know!? Fine, fine, I’ll try to squeeze the amazing-ness of this book out of me…
My favorite aspect of this book was definitely the character and character relationship. Mia was such a relatable person. She’s the type of person that everyone knows at one point in their lifetime, the type of person that everyone wants to sign her yearbook. Not Miss Head Cheerleader but the one that always lending out a hand to a fellow student. You just can’t help but adore her.
The friendship between Mia and Candice was also an honest one with no hidden daggers waiting to be plunged. After reading so many backstabbed friendships, it was quite refreshing to read this. The teasing tone and the concern they showed one other felt real. It wasn’t too overly the top or sugarcoated sweetness.
I also thought that it was fun that Amanda had us believing that the everyone was cured by half the book, I was shell-shocked that it was over that quick, but of course, there’s always a surprise. Keeping the readers on their toes is always a plus for me!
Overall:Zombie Queen of Newbury High was a fun and simple read. With small bits of humor mixed in between, this book will entertain the reader for hours.
P.S. The hero’s name was Chase and all I could think about was Chase Crawford while I was reading…
The Anatomy of Wings by Karen Foxlee (February 10th 2009)
Grade: 1.5 stars out of 5
Summary: “Jennifer Day lives in a small Australian mining town full of secrets. After the sudden death of her teenage sister [Eliza]Beth, Jennifer uncovers a blue cardboard box of her sister’s processions—a black rubber-band bracelet, a silver necklace with a half-a-broken-heart pendant, an address written in a leftward-slanting hand on a scrap of paper, and ballets slippers wrapped in their laces.
Why couldn’t Jennifer—or anyone else—save Beth? Their parents blame Beth’s friends and themselves, and Jennifer’s eccentric grandmother is convinced that Beth had been communing with angels. Jennifer isn’t sure what to believe. With the help of her best friend, she tries to piece together the final months of her sister’s life using the clues found in the box. But what she finds are mysteries, miracles, and more questions.”
Review: Told in a melancholy mood throughout, The Anatomy of Wings had an almost lyrical tone. It wasn’t quite hard to imagine it as a poem, with its short and powerful sentences. Beautifully written to say the least.
The transition of Beth’s utter demise and total breakdown was well crafted, the clues helping to move along the story. When I first read the novel, nothing made sense; it was too much to handle all at once. But after settling down for a few minutes and recollecting my thoughts, I found myself actually enjoying it somewhat.
What had forced me from giving this a higher grade was the fact that it had too much going on at the same time. It was much too random, too confusing to completely stay focus to the main plot, which to this point I’m still not sure what is was. It started out with Beth’s funeral, then it moved to Jenny losing her singing voice and trying to reclaim it, next came the boy’s anatomy, which was also random within itself, and finally to the stories behind each member of the community. Stir and repeat. However, I have to admit, some of the stories were captivating and engrossing.
I just have to mention that Beth’s character developed wonderfully. I just can’t seem to explain why…Also, Jenny sounds so much older than she actually is. She's supposedly 10 but sounds to be in the later teens.
Overall: This book I have a feeling was written to be re-read. The first time everything was too disjointed, but I believe that the second read will be much more pleasant. So would I recommend this book? I’m not too sure actually. The best I can say is that whenever you have some free time, just try to reach to the two hundredth page. Take small intervals time to time to help you keep interest in this story because it was quite hard to continue reading.
Crash Into Me by Albert Borris (July 21st Simon Pulse)
"Owen, Frank, Audrey, and Jin-Ae have one thing in common: they all want to die. When they meet online after each attempts suicide and fails, the four teens make a deadly pact: they will escape together on a summer road trip to visit the sites of celebrity suicides...and at their final destination, they will all end their lives. As they drive cross-country, bonding over their dark impulses, sharing their deepest secrets and desires, living it up, hooking up, and becoming true friends, each must decide whether life is worth living--or if there's no turning back."
This is what I've been craving for the past 2 months! *drool*
P.S. Does anyone own Tattoo by Jennifer Lynn Barnes? If you do, can you email me please.
So Laura of Laura's Review Bookshelf needs some help! She needs someone to join her blog! So go here and tell her that I recruited you (please!). Trust me, you won't regret it! And for everyone that enters, I'll throw in another entry to a giveaway of your choice from my Chinese New Year celebration! (okay...maybe I won't, but I'll remember that you did and you'll receive some type of reward later on :] )
"In celebration of the Feb. 10 release of Eternal (Candlewick), author Cynthia Leitich Smith is giving away several prize packages, some including signed copies of the novel, tie-in T-shirts, finger puppets, stickers, guardian-angel tokens, and more! See details here."
EDIT: Hopefully, the link works now. EDIT 2: So I fixed the title link last time and I hadn't realize that you guys were trying to click on the "here" link, which I just fixed. The other two links for the author and the book I'll fix later on hopefully.
So after many pokes from me, Sharon finally sent me some interview questions!
1. Have you ever traveled out of the United States? Yes I have through many, many books. Okay so that doesn’t really count. My real answer is no, but my family has been planning to head back to China for quite awhile now, and I think my both my parents deserve it.
2. Where do you see yourself in 10 years? In a pleasant house with electricity and running water. I aim small as you can see, but I try not to plan so far ahead. It makes the road there not so exciting or fun anymore.
3. If you could switch places with any book blogger who would it be and why? No comment, but the amount of followers that Kristi has would be nice (Sharon, you’re way ahead of me now lol). But I think I’m fine with where I am now. Considering that I just started blogging about less than 2 months I think I’m doing exceptionally well...or not. I like to jump head first rather than skim the surface with my toe.
4. How do you decide which book to read next? Publication date first. But whenever I’m in a pinch (like I can’t seem to pick up a single book) I just grabbed whatever calls out to me.
5. Long does it take you to typically write a review? It ranges from 30 minutes to 2 weeks. On average it takes about less than an hour, including the actual posting. The 2 weeks are these special cases where I can't explain why I enjoyed the book or when I know why I didn't enjoy the book but somehow I have write something positive about it at least.
If you guys want to anything else about me just leave the question in the comment section and I'll answer it to my fullest potential!
P.S. So how do you guys like the layout change? I've been dying to do a 3 column layout.
Summary: “Zin dances with fire in every step, speaks with a honey-sweet voice, and sees with eyes that can peer into your soul. It's no wonder Nicole is madly in love with him. Their friendship is the only thing that saves her from the boredom of school and the turmoil of her family life. But she cannot understand why he keeps her at a distance, even though she can feel his soul reaching out for hers. Zin carries a very old secret. When Nicole uncovers the truth, her love may be the only thing that can save him from it.”
Review:Raven was an emotional roller coaster since the very beginning. It’s a never ending ride that won’t leave you bored.
What I greatly found enjoyable about Raven was the history of the characters. I found how they came to be interesting and captivating. Not only that, but how that defined them later on.
The dancing was fabulous! The battling was entertaining to read especially if the reader was able to visualize the stunts and tricks. Impressive terminology of the various moves to breaking and the description as well! While I was able to get the gist of many of the dances, after many television shows previously watched, I found that it might be a bit hard to understand for others. A glossary in the back going into further details would have been a bit helpful.
In addition there were some areas where I felt that it faltered. Throughout the entire novel, spells were mentioned but never in detail. I wanted to know more about it, the concept, the way it was used, how it was used!
The ending itself was another issue for me. What happened to the others characters after the group split up? Did they travel somewhere else, did they die?
Overall: An addicting read from start to finish no matter the flaws. A 24 episode drama compacted into a simple 300 or so paged book.
The copy that I have doesn’t have the bold colors which makes me sad.