Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Bloodlines By: Richelle Mead

The first book in Richelle Mead's brand-new teen fiction series - set in the same world as Vampire Academy.

When alchemist Sydney is ordered into hiding to protect the life of Moroi princess Jill Dragomir, the last place she expects to be sent is a human private school in Palm Springs, California. But at their new school, the drama is only just beginning.
Starting out let me just say that I am a huge fan of the Vampire Academy Series.  If you haven't already read that series read it first then read this book.  She doesn't explain the world or situations that happened in Vampire Academy when mentioned in this book. 


Sydney is our main character for this story.  She has been put on assignment from the Alchemist council to act as a body guard for Jill.  Off she goes to California to spend all day and all night with a vampire.  Most alchemists would not be able to do this because of an extreme hatred for vampires.  Sydney isn't excited about this assignment but at least she has more experience with being surrounded by vampires and their protectors.

Once set up at a private school she mostly deals with minor issues like keeping Jill out of the sun too much and getting a feeding schedule that everyone can work with.  As she gains more friends in the school she hears about these "Magic" tattoos that give you strength or a euphoric feeling.  Concerned that someone must have alchemist information and is using it on the general public she starts an investigation into these tattoos, all while trying to protect Jill, make friends for the first time in her life and don't forget about the needy Adrian and trying to stay on the good side of Alchemist council members. 

I really liked Sydney in the first series and I am glad that we get to see things from her point of view this time.  She has always been home-schooled so her social skills are a bit lacking so it is fun to watch her experience high school for the first time.  She is also very good at what she does for a living and it shows in every action she takes.  She is very organized and precise in class, with school mates and with Jill and the other vampires.

The other vampires and the guardian are all from Vampire Academy as well and I have to say that I am a HUGE Adrian fan.  I fell in love with him in Vampire Academy and my heart broke along with his in Last Sacrifice.  He is a rich, attractive man that hasn't had to do much of anything because of his familial relations to the royal family.  He has a great sense of humor and he is a true friend.  There is really nothing he wouldn't do to help someone out.  I really liked his relationships with both Sydney and Jill. With Jill it felt like he was a perfect big brother kind of character.  He truly cared for her and always tried to listen to her and help her with what she needed.  With Sydney we got to see more of his sense of humor and spunky-ness.  He was quite the tease and at the same time he would act like a complete baby needing help with the smallest of tasks.

This was a great read and I can't wait for book two of this series to be released.  Note:  This book didn't move as fast as Vampire Academy and that took a little time to get used to.

Monday, December 26, 2011

New Books This Week

Love & Leftovers By: Sarah Tregay
When her widowed father dumps 16-year-old Katy Jessevar in a boarding school in Whitfield, Massachusetts, she has no idea that fate has just opened the door to both her future and her past. Nearly everyone in Whitfield is a witch, as is Katy herself, although she has struggled all her life to hide her unusual talents. Stuck at a boarding school where her fellow studens seem to despise her, Katy soon discovers that Whitfield is the place where her mother commited suicide under mysterious circumstances when Katy was just a small child. With dark forces converging on Whitfield, it’s up to Katy to unravel her family’s many secrets to save the boy she loves and the town itself from destruction.
Release Date: December 27, 2011

Kiss Crush Collide By: Christina Meredith
Leah has the life most high school girls would kill for—popularity, glowing grades, a rich, athletic boyfriend. So why does she feel like she can’t breathe? And why can’t she stop thinking about the boy from the country club? The one who isn’t her boyfriend, the one that her mother would never, ever approve of, the one that her perfect older sisters would never, ever look at twice. The one who is always looking back at her. Irresistible attraction, smoldering glances, the bad boy and the good girl—Kiss Crush Collide has everything that a steamy forbidden romance should, and then some.
Release Date: December 27, 2011

The Demon Lover By: Juliet Dark
Since accepting a teaching position at remote Fairwick College, Callie has experienced the same disturbingly erotic dream every night: A mist enters her bedroom, then takes the shape of a virile, seductive stranger who proceeds to ravish her in the most toe-curling, wholly satisfying ways possible. But Callie soon realizes that her dreams are alarmingly real. She has a demon lover and he will seduce her, pleasure her, and eventually suck the very life from her. Then Callie makes another startling discovery: He’s not the only mythical creature in Fairwick.
Release Date: December 27, 2011

Magic of the Moonlight By: Ellen Schreiber (Full Moon #2)
Celeste has more to worry about than a secret romance with a hot guy from the wrong side of town. Brandon, is a werewolf. With gossip and hostility swirling at school, it’s time to find a cure for his nocturnal condition, and perhaps the one person who can help is his scientist father. But what if a “cure” makes things worse and Brandon becomes a werewolf full time? And with rumors circulating that there are werewolves in Legend’s Run, is it possible that there is another among their classmates? To keep Brandon’s secret safe, Celeste must hide her relationship with him from her best friends, but with the Moonlight Ball approaching, she must make a choice.
Release Date: December 27, 2011

Living Violet By: Jaime Reed
He's persuasive, charming, and way too mysterious. And for Samara Marshall, her co-worker is everything she wants most--and everything she most fears. . . Samara Marshall is determined to make the summer before her senior year the best ever. Her plan: enjoy downtime with friends and work to save up cash for her dream car. Summer romance is not on her to-do list, but uncovering the truth about her flirtatious co-worker, Caleb Baker, is. From the peculiar glow to his eyes to the unfortunate events that befall the girls who pine after him, Samara is the only one to sense danger behind his smile.
Release Date: December 27, 2011

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Wishing you a Merry Christmas!  May you have love and peace in your hearts and a pile of books by your bed to read!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Shifting By: Bethany Wiggins

After bouncing from foster home to foster home, Magdalene Mae is transferred to what should be her last foster home in the tiny town of Silver City, New Mexico. Now that she's eighteen and has only a year left in high school, she's determined to stay out of trouble and just be normal. Agreeing to go to the prom with Bridger O'Connell is a good first step. Fitting in has never been her strong suit, but it's not for the reasons most people would expect-it all has to do with the deep secret that she is a shape shifter. But even in her new home danger lurks, waiting in the shadows to pounce. They are the Skinwalkers of Navajo legend, who have traded their souls to become the animal whose skin they wear-and Maggie is their next target.

Magdalene has a secret, she can actually shift shapes to be an animal.  Of course this has caused some problems, she gets caught out late at night with no clothes on.  The foster families she has lived with can't handle her coming home with a police escort and she is on to another new family.  This time it is her social workers relative in New Mexico.  Magdalene quickly falls in love with the older woman who takes her in and treats her like family.  Her secret is also open when it comes to her new mom and together they try to make life normal.  With her life becoming more normal she makes friends and even starts a new job. 

Normal can't last forever and soon she finds out that someone is looking for her and it seems as though they will stop at nothing to get to her.

I liked the characters.  Magdalene is a "broken" girl.  No one has ever really understood her until now and she has had to figure out life all by herself.  She tries hard to stay normal while also trying out her abilities.  At times I found her incredibly reckless and at some times really naive.  She is in danger and still she goes out at night by herself.

Bridger is the popular boy at school and he shouldn't hang out with this new girl that isn't in his social class.  But for some reason he is constantly drawn to her.  I like that he will come by to spend time with her, most of the time they end up weeding the garden, and he is willing to do anything just as long as he is by her.  They do have their rough patches and that is needed in my opinion because honestly what real relationship is 100% perfect from day one. 

This story references a lot of Navajo stories and traditions and it was cool to hear about some of the legends about skin walkers and read some of the superstitions and prayers of the tribe.  I like that there was a definite culture to back up the story instead of making up new legends.

Overall pretty cool book and I would recommend others to read it.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

New Books This Week.

Flyaway By: Helen Landalf
Fifteen-year-old Stevie Calhoun is used to taking care of herself. But one night, her mom, who works as an exotic dancer in a downtown Seattle nightclub, never comes home.  That’s the night Stevie’s life turns upside down.  It’s the night that kicks off an extraordinary summer: the summer Stevie has to stay with her annoyingly perfect Aunt Mindy; the summer she learns to care for injured and abandoned birds; the summer she gets to know Alan, the meanest guy in high school.  But most of all, it’s the summer she finds out the truth about Mom.
Release Date: December 19, 2011

A Touch of Power By: Maria V. Snyder
Laying hands upon the injured and dying, Avry absorbs their wounds and diseases into herself. But rather than being honored for her skills, she is hunted. Healers like Avry are accused of spreading the plague that has decimated the Fifteen Realms, leaving the survivors in a state of chaos. Stressed and tired from hiding, Avry is abducted by a band of rogues who value her gift above the golden bounty offered for her capture. Their leader, an enigmatic captor-protector with powers of his own, is unequivocal in his demands: Avry must heal a plague-stricken prince—leader of a campaign against her people.
Release Date December 20, 2011

Still Waters By: Emma Carlson Berne
Hannah can't wait to sneak off for a romantic weekend with her boyfriend, Colin. He’s leaving for college soon, and Hannah wants their trip to the lake house to be one they’ll never forget.  But once Hannah and Colin get there, things start to seem a They can't find the town on any map. The house they are staying in looks as if someone's been living there, even though it's been deserted for years. And Colin doesn’t seem quite himself. As he grows more unstable, Hannah worries about Colin’s dark side, and her own safety. Nothing is as perfect as it seems, and what lies beneath may haunt her forever.
Release Date: December 20, 2011

Legacy By: Molly Cochran
When her widowed father dumps 16-year-old Katy in a boarding school in Whitfield, Massachusetts, she has no idea that fate has just opened the door to both her future and her past. Nearly everyone in Whitfield is a witch, as is Katy herself, although she has struggled all her life to hide her unusual talents. Stuck at a boarding school where her fellow studens seem to despise her, Katy soon discovers that Whitfield is the place where her mother commited suicide under mysterious circumstances when Katy was just a small child. With dark forces converging on Whitfield, it’s up to Katy to unravel her family’s many secrets to save the boy she loves and the town itself from destruction.
Release Date: December 20, 2011

Monday, December 12, 2011

New Books this Week....

Existence By: Abbi Glines
What happens when you are stalked by Death? You fall in love with him of course. Seventeen year old Pagan Moore, has seen souls her entire life and she started ignoring them. Until she steps out of her car on the first day of school and sees an incredibly sexy guy lounging on a picnic table, watching her with an amused smirk on his face. Problem is, she knows he's dead. Not only does he not go away, when she ignores him he does something none of the others have ever done; he speaks. What Pagan doesn’t realize is that her appointed time to die is drawing near and the wickedly beautiful soul she is falling in love with is not a soul. He is Death and he is about to break all the rules.
Realase Date: December 13, 2011

Death's Leash By: J.D. Stoube
Death is only a man, but one who has control over all living beings. He chooses who will live or die. He commands the fates and gives the order to cut the thread of life. However, Death isn’t alone. Death summoned the tainted souls of the dead and from them created a race of females. They would be the takers of souls, the guardians of the afterlife, and the harbingers of death. Six remain in the veil between life and death, but step through the threshold when Death calls.  Kali has spent her immortal life avoiding attachment. She hides her true self from all but her sisters. When Death gives her an assignment to hunt a rogue angel, she must confront the one man who places her heart in danger.
Release Date: December 16, 2011

Masquerade By: Cambria Hebert
Everything was so much better Before. I wasn’t haunted by nightmares, my place at school was secure and my face was flawless. Now, I’m a freak and everything has changed. The worst part is that I can’t remember the night I was sentenced to the shadows. The memory has been stolen from me and I just can’t shake the feeling that someone, something is out there -watching.  Just when I think I have my life handled, Sam, with his intimidating golden stare and shiver inducing voice, makes me realize that I don’t know anything. He makes me see that my scars don’t matter. That they never mattered. I can’t help but fall for him, completely unknowing that he knows exactly how I got this way. Not knowing he was involved.
Release Date: December 16, 2011

Friday, December 9, 2011

Fateful By: Claudia Gray

Eighteen-year-old maid Tess Davies is determined to escape the wealthy, troubled family she serves. It’s 1912, and Tess has been trapped in the employ of the Lisles for years, amid painful memories and twisted secrets. But now the Lisle family is headed to America, with Tess in tow. Once the ship they’re sailing on—the RMS Titanic—reaches its destination, Tess plans to strike out and create a new life for herself.

Her single-minded focus shatters when she meets Alec, a handsome first-class passenger who captivates her instantly. But Alec has secrets of his own. He’s in a hurry to leave Europe, and whispers aboard the ship say it’s because of the tragic end of his last affair with the French actress who died so gruesomely and so mysteriously. . . .

Soon Tess will learn just how dark Alec’s past truly is. The danger they face is no ordinary enemy: werewolves exist and are stalking him—and now her, too. Her growing love for Alec will put Tess in mortal peril, and fate will do the same before their journey on the Titanic is over.

OK, so, the first thing I heard about this book was Werewolves on the Titanic.  I was sold! 
Tess, our main girl, is a servant for a distinguished family in England.  When they book passage to America on the Titanic she is ecstatic that she will be able to go as well. Strange things happen to her.... the night before boarding she is out on an errand and comes face to face with a wolf. In the City!  Luckily an attractive, wealty young man comes to her rescue.   The next day while boarding in the first class area she gets a strange feeling that she is being watched.   She is being followed and now she is on the ship with them and she is in the way of what they want.  Although there is a nice perk, the wealthy, attractive young man that saved her in England is on this ship as well and they seem to have a connection.....

I liked the characters.  Tess has goals and she is working very hard to go out on her own. She knows her station in life and is trying to change it.  Alec is constantly afraid for those around him.  He tries so hard to keep people from getting close so he lives a very lonely life with just his dad.  He tried to stay way from Tess for her safety and found that he couldn't, she did need protecting after all.  :-)  He was able to be himself and actually have fun and even the father mentions how much he is changing when he is around Tess. 

I really liked that at the end of the book there is a little history information about this book.  I liked that Claudia Gray wanted to tell a paranormal historical story but she wanted to maintain the story and didn't want to potentially hurt any memories of actual people on the ship.  I loved that she made up a job for one of the characters so that no one could confuse the fact with the fiction. 

This was a great book and I loved that she put a paranormal spin on a historical event.  I thought that she did a great job and I was actually involved in the story for the entire read.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Cold River By: Liz Adair

Mandy Steenburg thinks her doctorate in education has prepared her to run any school district - until she tangles with the moonshine-making, coon-dog-owning denizens of a tiny district in Pacific Northwest timber country. She's determined to make a difference, but the local populace still looks to the former superintendent for leadership. When Mandy lands in the middle of an old feud and someone keeps trying to kill her, instinct tells her to run. And though she has to literally swim through perilous waters, she finds a reason to stay and chance the odds.

I liked this book.  Mandy gets a job for a SMALL school district and thinks that everything is going to be great.  She has her degree, she worked for a large school district in New Mexico so she knows what she's doing.  Right?   I loved how not everything works out perfect. Luckily she finds a place to stay next to the river and out in nature.  Mandy even finds some friends in the locals.  Although she finds that people there aren't accustom to change and try to keep everything the same.  The last acting superintendent still works with her and people still look to him for decisions and how to react.  

Mandy was a smart woman.  I also think she is brave.  She moved to the middle of nowhere, by herself to start life over and that is definitely something I wouldn't be able to do.  She had plenty of opportunities to quit and go home, especially when her life was in danger and she didn't leave.  Of course I like that she seriously thought about it because any real person would weigh the options so that kept her real for me.  I also liked that she worked so hard.  She had a lot of things stacked against her and she worked overtime to figure things out and take on extra responsibilities in the community.  She is a great role model for girls and women alike.

I really liked the supporting characters.  They all had really fun personalities and I could picture them really easily.  One thing that I really liked was I kept guessing who the bad guy was through out the whole book.  Once I would set my mind to pick one person I would read the next few pages and change my mind again.  I liked that, to me, the ending wasn't completely obvious so it made the book a lot more enjoyable. 

Purchase Link
( if my link isn't working correctly.

Want to find out more about Cold River or the Author, Liz Adair?  Check out her website.

Monday, December 5, 2011

New Books This Week....

Clockwork Prince By: Cassandra Clare
Tessa has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte,. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends.  With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. To unravel the secrets of the past, they journeys from Yorkshire to London to a ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than imagined.
Release Date: December 6, 2011

Eternal Starling By: Angela Corbett
Evie Starling has lived a relatively uneventful life hanging out with friends, gossiping about boys, and driving her 1966 Mustang. All of that changes when she moves to Gunnison, Colorado, to start college and meets two mysterious men.  For centuries, Alex Night and Emil Stone have yearned for Evie—but they each have their own reasons for wanting to be with her. When both men claim to be her soul mate and tell her about an unbelievable past, Evie learns that she’s not the person she thought she was. Soon, Evie finds herself in the middle of an age-old battle between the the soul protectors, and the soul destroyers.
Release Date: December 6, 2011

Obsidian By: Jennifer L. Armentrout
When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I’d resigned myself to a whole lot of boring, until I spotted my hot neighbor. Things were looking up. And then he opened his mouth. Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something unexpected happens. The hot alien living next door marks me. You heard me. Alien. Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities. The only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades. If I don’t kill him first.
Release Date: December 6, 2011

Shattered Dreams By: Ellie James
Trinity wants nothing more than to live a normal life. But Trinity is different, special. She sees visions after it’s already too late. Trinity arrives on her aunt's in New Orleans with virtually no knowledge of her mysterious heritage. She begins settling into life at a new school and even starts making friends. But all too quickly her dreams accelerate; twisted, terrifying visions of a girl locked in a dark room. And when the head cheerleader, Jessica, goes missing, Trinity knows she has no choice but to step forward with what she's seen.  But people believe that Trinity has information about Jessica's disappearance not because of a dream, but because she is involved.
Release Date: December 6, 2011

Meloday Burning By: Whitley Strieber
Beresford doesn’t remember much about his past or how he came to live in the chutes and crawl spaces of the posh high-rise that shares his name. But when rock star and teen sensation Melody McGrath moves to an apartment on the fiftieth floor, he knows he has to be near her. Although she doesn’t realize it, Melody is threatened by more dangerous forces than her manipulative stage mom and the pressures of life in the spotlight. The owner of the glamorous building has been hiding a fatal secret within its walls, and Beresford puts all his plans at risk. Will Beresford and Melody be able to escape with their lives (and love) intact?
Release Date: December 6, 2011

Anew By: Chelsea Fine
Two years ago, Scarlet awoke in the forest alone, afraid, and unable to remember anything. Lost and confused, her life was a mystery...until she met a boy with a familiar voice.  Gabriel Archer has a voice from her past, and Scarlet's determined to remember why. She immerses herself in his life only to discover he has a brother he's kept hidden from her: Tristan Archer.  Upon meeting Tristan, Scarlet's world becomes even more muddled. While she's instinctively drawn to Gabriel, she's impossibly drawn to Tristan--and confused out of her mind. As she tries to piece together her history Scarlet realizes her past...might just be the death of her.
Release Date: December 7, 2011

Shattered Souls By: Mary Lindsey
Lenzi hears voices and has visions - gravestones, floods, a boy with steel gray eyes. Her boyfriend, Zak, can't help, and everything keeps getting louder and more intense. Then Lenzi meets Alden, the boy from her dreams, who reveals that she's a reincarnated Speaker - someone who can talk to and help lost souls - and that he has been her Protector for centuries. Now Lenzi must choose between her life with Zak and the life she is destined to lead with Alden. But time is running out: a malevolent spirit is out to destroy Lenzi, and he will kill her if she doesn't make a decision soon.
Release Date: December 8, 2011

Illuminated By: Erica Orloff
Some loves are not made to last . . . Like Romeo and Juliet, Heloise and Abelard were doomed from the start, and their romance was destined to pass into history. Yet when sixteen-year-old Callie Martin discovers a diary hidden within an antique book, their story,and hers, takes on another life. For the diary leads Callie to the brilliant and handsome August, who is just as mysterious as the secret the diary hides. Their attraction is undeniable. As the two hunt down the truth behind the diary, and that of Heloise and Abelard’s ancient romance. But Callie knows it can’t last, love never does.
Release Date: December 8, 2011

The Breakup Artist By: Shannen Crane Camp
Breaking up with someone is a major pain—-unless you can hire someone else to do it for you! And Amelia demands top dollar for her professional break-up services. Everything's business as usual until David, one of the boys she's been hired to dump, throws her for a loop. Now she must decide if David's intentions are genuine, or if there's something sinister behind his flirting.
Release Date: December 8, 2011

Friday, December 2, 2011

Meridian By: Amber Kizer

Sixteen-year-old Meridian has been surrounded by death ever since she can remember. As a child, insects, mice, and salamanders would burrow into her bedclothes and die. At her elementary school, she was blamed for a classmate’s tragic accident. And on her sixteenth birthday, a car crashes in front of her family home—and Meridian’s body explodes in pain. Before she can fully recover, Meridian is told that she’s a danger to her family and hustled off to her great-aunt’s house in Revelation, Colorado. It’s there that she learns that she is a Fenestra—the half-angel, half-human link between the living and the dead. But Meridian and her sworn protector and love, Tens, face great danger from the Aternocti, a band of dark forces who capture vulnerable souls on the brink of death and cause chaos.

Another book that I really liked...  Meridian is an unusual girl.  Dead things seem to find her wherever she goes.  It started out small like insects and rodents.  As she aged she came to understand the warning signs of death.   When she turns sixteen her parents send her to live with her great aunt in Colorado to learn about what she is.  It turns out that she is half angel and half human and it is her job to help souls to heaven after they die.  She also learns that there are dark angels as well and they are trying to capture souls and kill her kind. 

At her aunts house she meets Tens.  He is her age and has been living with her aunt for a while learning how to be a protector for Meridian.  They have a cute relationship in my mind.  He is adorably cute and he is always trying to do things to help Meridian but at the same time he seems out of his element and kind of awkward.  Who doesn't love a cute/awkward teenage boy as the love interest?  :-) 

Meridian's character has already done a lot of growing up before she turned sixteen.  Dealing with death and pain all the time and trying to not let "normal" people know what she is going through.  She starts out the book very isolated and alone and she has to learn how to deal with people 24/7.   She also has to deal with the personal loss of her family.  For their protection she is unable to speak with her parents or her little brother.  I liked watching her learn to love trust and interact with her aunt and Tens.

This book also has a little bit of action in dealing with the dark angels and town-people.  This book also has a great example of how people react with the unknown and how easily good people can change when fear and faith are brought into their life.  This was a fun book that is a first in what looks like a four part series.