Saturday, December 31, 2011

Shelf Candy Saturday (19)

Shelf Candy is a meme hosted by Five Alarm Book Reviews and every Saturday, bloggers choose a book whose cover really catches their eye. I know you're not supposed to judge a book by it's cover, but I always do, so I'm choosing books whose cover alone made me pick it up. So I hope you enjoy my shelf candy!

I saw this cover for the first time in someone's Waiting On Wednesday post and I was just in awe. The dress that all of these girls are wearing is just so pretty and the cover goes so well with the whole mirror, identical people aspect. It's so weird how one girl out of 35 is "selected" to be treated like a princess while the others are forced to live a pre-planned life. It's like they're all the same except for the one chose in the selection, which is exactly what the cover portrays. The dress is gorgeous, but it's not really that special when 34 other girls are wearing the exact same thing. The cover is just so eery, mysterious, and gorgeous all in one. I can't wait until this one comes out in April because it looks so good! 

Friday, December 30, 2011

2012 TBR Pile Reading Challenge

As a goal for 2012, I have decided to make a dent in my TBR pile and challenge myself to reading more of them! To do this, I am joining the TBR challenge! I will be doing the "Friendly Hug" stage where I need to read 11-20 books from my bookshelf in 2012. I may increase to the next stage later this year depending on how I do in the first couple of months. 

So I'm SUPER excited for this challenge! If you want to see how I'm doing, stop by near the end of each month to check my wrap-up post! Here is some information about this wonderful challenge: 

Welcome to 2012 TBR PILE Reading Challenge!!!
We all have those books. We buy them, win them, they're gifted to us.. Then we put them up on a bookshelf and there they stay, collecting dust, waiting for the time when we'll finally decide to pick them up..

Join us on a quest to dust off your TBR Pile and read all the books you've been telling yourself you'll read next time you'll get a chance.. This is your chance! And we've got PRIZES!!! :D

Challenge guidelines: 
  1. This challenge will run from Jan 1, 2012 - Dec 31, 2012.
  2. As we would like to see quality reviews linked up to our monthly wrap-ups, only bloggers can enter. Sorry about that!
  3. Any genre, length or format of book counts, as long as it is a book that's been sitting on your shelf for some time now. Only books released in 2011 and earlier! NO ARCs and 2012 fresh-off-the-press releases allowed!
  4. You can list your books in advance or just put them in a wrap-up post. If you list them, feel free to change them as the mood takes you.
  5. When you sign up in the linky, put the direct link to your post about joining the 2012 TBR PILE Reading Challenge (You need to include the info + host list + challenge button. You can also grab the button code and add it to your sidebar!)
  6. You can move up levels, but no moving down.
  7. Sign-ups will be open until Dec 15, 2012, so feel free to join at any time throughout the year.
  8. At the end of each month one of the hosts will post a wrap-up. Every wrap-up will have it's unique theme, a mini-challenge, a giveaway and place for you to link up your reviews from this monthFor each review you link up, you will get one entry in a drawing of one book of choice from Book Depository. It's open to INTERNATIONALS. For participating in the mini-challenge you will get +1 entry.
  9. If you miss a wrap-up post + giveaway, you can link up your reviews next month. Do not, however, try to link up one review twice - we will be checking ;)
  10. December is a wrap-up for the whole year. All the book reviews you linked up January-November + the ones you'll link up in December will be entered into a HUGE giveaway - 12 books, 12 winners, INTERNATIONAL. 
  11. You don't have to follow all the hosts to join the challenge, but you do have to follow all of us to be entered in giveaways!
1-10 - A Firm Handshake
11-20 - A Friendly Hug
21-30 - A Sweet Kiss
31-40 - Love At First Sight
41-50 - Married With Children

Evie from Bookish - @SeoEvie
Nicole from All I Ever Read - @Nicoleabouttown
Bonnie from Hands and Home - @HandsHomeBlog
Donna from Book Passion For Life - @BookPforLife
Caitlin from WatchYA Reading @caitlingss
Rie from Mission To Read @missiontoread
Vicky from Books, Biscuits & Tea - @alouetteuette 
Christa from Hooked On Books @ChristasBooks
Jenna from Fans Of Fiction @fansoffiction
Angel from Mermaids Vision @mermaidvisions

Wrap-up POST Schedule:

January - Donna (Theme: Let It Snow + Book Cover Challenge)
February - Nicole (Theme: Un-requited Love/Love Gone Wrong + Advice Column Challenge)
March Rie (Theme: Green or Pinched + Green Cover Challenge)
April -  Bonnie (Theme: Easter + Mini Challenge)
May - Christa (Theme: MayDay - Disaster Books! + Cover Disaster Challenge)
June Jenna ( Theme: Camping + Sentence Challenge)
July Rie (Theme: International Day + Cover Comparison Challenge)
August - Angel (Theme: Summer Memories + Send Your Fav Character On Vacation Challenge)
September - Nicole (Theme: Life Changing Books + Mini Challenge)
October - Caitlin (Theme: Thanksgiving Theme + Share-A-Book Challenge)
November - Vicky (Theme: Spooky Halloween + Book Puzzle Challenge)
December - Evie (Theme: Xmas Bliss + Book Bachelor Challenge)

Follow My Book Blog Friday (21)

This is a meme hosted every Friday by Parajunkee, where book bloggers answer a question each week and check out how others answered it. It's a cool way for bloggers and viewers to connect and learn more about each other!

Question: The New Year is here- and everyone wants to know your New Years Blogging resolution! What are you going to try to revise, revamp, and redo for 2012 on you blog? 

Answer: It's a whole new year, that means an entire new list of New Year resolutions! Let me get excited for a second....

All right, not that that's out of my system, let's get to my reading/blogging resolutions of 2012. The first one is to take part in the TBR 2012 challenge. I have SO many books on my bookshelves, yet I haven't read a majority of them. So, I want to read at least 20 books from my bookshelf in 2012. 

As for my reading goal, I am increasing it from this year to be 130 books. This year's goal was 120 and right now I'm beating it by 15. I would make my 2012 goal even higher, but this year is going to be busy, with me away at school and getting a job over the summer, so I won't have as much to to read as I did this year. Hopefully I can reach 130 by this time next year!

My next goal is to plan ahead on my posts more and try not to miss any memes for that week. Some weeks I get way ahead with my WoW posts or Shelf Candy posts, but other weeks I miss it because I just don't have time. So this year, whenever I find myself with down time, I will try to get ahead on my posts so that I can hopefully have a post published everyday. 

And that's it! I have a feeling 2012 is going to be a very good year, so hopefully I can keep all of these resolutions! Also, I will have been blogging for an entire year in May! Woo hoo!! Anyways, I hope everyone has a very happy new year! 

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Happy New Year Giveaway!

As a way of celebrating the new year, I am participating in the giveaway hope hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer. For this giveaway, one winner will get to pick from the list of some of my favorite books and authors! It is open to anywhere the book depository ships, so don't hesitate to enter if you know you qualify! Here are the books you can choose from: 

Just fill out the rafflecopter below! If you want to enter more awesome New Year's giveaways, check them out right here! And I how everyone has a very happy New Year :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Movie Review: 50/50

Summary: Adam is a 27 year old writer of radio programs and is diagnosed with a rare form of spinal cancer. With the help of his best friend, his mother, and a young therapist at the cancer center, Adam learns what and who the most important things in his life are.

Review: I actually did not want to see this movie, but my sister dragged me to the dollar theater to go with her. The reason I didn't want to see it was because I was in the mood for a happy, funny movie, not one that would make me cry. And boy did this one make me cry.

The first half of the movie was funny, revolving around Adam's kind of sad life and his hilarious and strange best friend (Seth Rogen). When the funny parts ended though and Adam realized he had cancer, this movie became a cry fest for both me and my sister. Near the end I was literally covering my mouth so that no one would hear me crying in the back of the theater. Though it was very sad, it was such a good movie! Adam's character was so lovable that the reason I cried was because I liked him so much. Anna Kendrick was awesome as the young, inexperienced therapist and Seth Rogen was the PERFECT person to play the best friend. Basically the entire cast was really great, including the one and only (and very handsome) Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Now I'm not going to give away the ending, but the entire movie was so worth watching, even though I probably looked like a wreck when I walked out of the theater. I don't even know what to think regarding the fact that this movie is based off of a true story, but it definitely reflects an event in life that happens to soooo many people around the world. This movie was so amazing and you should definitely see it, but go in knowing you'll need a few (or a lot) of tissues to get to the end.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (22)

This is a meme hosted by Breaking the Spine where every Wednesday bloggers highlight a book that they are eagerly anticipating the release of! 

By Jill Hathaway 
Release Date: March 27th
Summary: Vee Bell is certain of one irrefutable truth—her sister’s friend Sophie didn’t kill herself. She was murdered. 

Vee knows this because she was there. Everyone believes Vee is narcoleptic, but she doesn’t actually fall asleep during these episodes: When she passes out, she slides into somebody else’s mind and experiences the world through that person’s eyes. She’s slid into her sister as she cheated on a math test, into a teacher sneaking a drink before class. She learned the worst about a supposed “friend” when she slid into her during a school dance. But nothing could have prepared Vee for what happens one October night when she slides into the mind of someone holding a bloody knife, standing over Sophie’s slashed body. 

Vee desperately wishes she could share her secret, but who would believe her? It sounds so crazy that she can’t bring herself to tell her best friend, Rollins, let alone the police. Even if she could confide in Rollins, he has been acting off lately, more distant, especially now that she’s been spending more time with Zane. 

Enmeshed in a terrifying web of secrets, lies, and danger and with no one to turn to, Vee must find a way to unmask the killer before he or she strikes again.

This one sounds sooooo creepy! I'm normally not one for scary books, but I just can't resist with this one. It's so interesting that Vee slips into other peoples minds random times in the day and how she sees someone die during an episode. What does she do without sounding completely crazy? And it sound like a love triangle is going to be added to the mix, which is something that always makes a book more enticing to me. Hopefully this one doesn't scare me out too much when it comes out! 

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Book Review: Falling For Hamlet by Michelle Ray

Summary: Meet Ophelia: a blonde, beautiful high-school senior and long-time girlfriend of Prince Hamlet of Denmark. Her life is dominated not only by her boyfriend's fame and his overbearing family, but also by the paparazzi who hound them wherever they go. As the devastatingly handsome Hamlet spirals into madness after the mysterious death of his father, the King, Ophelia rides out his crazy roller coaster life, and lives to tell about it. In live television interviews, of course.
Passion, romance, drama, humor, and tragedy intertwine in this compulsively readable debut novel, told by a strong-willed, modern-day Ophelia.
Review: The first thing that drew me into this book was the cover. Then, I read the summary and really wanted to read it because of how it had to do with Shakespeare's Hamlet. I have never read the play, but I love reading modern day adaptations of classics, so I couldn't wait to start this one. The story ended up being a lot different than I expected it to be, but definitely in a good way. 

The whole story is told from Ophelia's point of view, changing from her interview on a talk show to her retelling of what happened to the reader to her interrogation with the police in each chapter. It was really interesting to see what versions she told to what audience, with it all coming together in the end. The beginning is so cute with Ophelia and Hamlet being madly in love with each other. But that "madly" turns into madness real soon and the rest of the book is full of crazy moments, murders, and secrets. Because of all of the craziness, there was barely ever a dull moment in the story. 

I really liked Ophelia and felt for her when everything in her life crumble to pieces. She is such a passionate person and it's so sad when she is helpless when it comes to the events in her life. I also like Hamlet in the beginning, but once he turned mad, I just couldn't like him anymore (which I guess is inevitable because who would like a mad person?). The modern day adaptation, though, was great and made the story much more enjoyable to read than it would have been reading the original. I was intrigued to figure out what happened next and everything that happened made sense. Michelle Ray did a great job in turning a classic play into an enjoyable young adult novel so that teens won't fear reading Shakespeare anymore. I'd say if you're in the mood to read a romance gone awry with secrets and murders sprinkled in, give Falling For Hamlet a chance.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Book Review: All I Want Is You by Sherrill Bodine


Vintage boutique owner Venus Smith is stunned to realize her newest acquisition comes with a larcenous legend. Stolen years ago, the antique mermaid brooch belongs to the Clayworth family. The right thing to do would be to return it, but that means facing Connor Clayworth O'Flynn, the sexy department store heir Venus has had an unrequited crush on since childhood-and the man who helped ruin her father. 


Connor knows that Venus has never forgiven him for what happened between their families. But business isn't personal, even though Venus's father's betrayal still cuts him like a knife. So when Venus proposes a deal-she'll return his family's brooch if he helps clear her father's name-he reluctantly agrees. As action-packed days turn into flirtatious fall nights, it isn't long before old memories resurface . . . and new desires ignite. Can two young lovers leave the past behind? Or must they first admit that all they've ever really wanted . . . is each other?

Review: I've been reading some really great books this week, and All I Want Is You happened to be yet another fantastic read. I knew it was going to be a cute, fluffy romance just by looking at the cover (which is super pretty) and reading the synopsis on the back. And you know what? Cute and fluffy romances are exactly what I love to read. 

Venus was a likable enough main character. I really liked how she owned her own antique shop and had a knack for jewelry design. She was a very strong-willed woman and knew how to get things done. I guess there are more books before this one having to do with her family, but this book held it's own pretty well. I wish there was more time when Venus hated Connor, who ended up being the object of her affection in this book, because according to the references to their past, she had really hated him at one point, including the beginning of the book. I didn't really get the sense of hate from her, so when she was so surprised by how she felt when she was close to him, I was like, really you're surprised? Because I wasn't surprised at all. 

Connor seemed a little too perfect, but hey, who am I to complain? He was a very successful businessman and lawyer, had perfect looks, and was a complete gentlemen. It was cute how he softened up a bit whenever he was with Venus, but I wish there was some kind of flaw that could end up making him even more lovable. Other than that, the rest of the story was adorable and a quick read. If you're looking for a nice, light romance this holiday season, then give this one a chance.

Shelf Candy (18)

Shelf Candy is a meme hosted by Five Alarm Book Reviews and every Saturday, bloggers choose a book whose cover really catches their eye. I know you're not supposed to judge a book by it's cover, but I always do, so I'm choosing books whose cover alone made me pick it up. So I hope you enjoy my shelf candy!

I don't remember where I first saw this cover, but I remember how cool I thought it looked. The wispy ribbon-like things coming from his arms look cool and mysterious, which really fit what this book's about. The guy listens to voices in his head, but the one time he doesn't he ends up saving one girl while letting another drown. That's pretty much all the summary says, so it leaves me with SO many questions. Like are the voices "fate" and telling him how life should be carried out? I don't know, but it seems really interesting. The font of the title and author really fit the cover too and the faded images in the background add even more mystery. This book doesn't come out until August of 2012, but I'm intrigued to figure out how it's going to turn out. 

Friday, December 23, 2011

Follow My Book Blog Friday (20)

This is a meme hosted every Friday by Parajunkee, where book bloggers answer a question each week and check out how others answered it. It's a cool way for bloggers and viewers to connect and learn more about each other!

Question:  If you had to spend eternity inside the pages of a book which book would you choose and why? 

Answer: I know everyone is going to say Harry Potter, which is the obvious choice here, so I'm going to try and think of a different book. So I would have to say Vampire Academy 

They live in a world so much different than ours with so many new species, like Dhampirs, Moroi, and Strigoi. Not only that, but if I were to live in these pages for eternity, I'd be able to live longer than normal because they live pretty long lives. I'd probably want to be a Moroi because only Rose can really pull off being a kick-butt Dhampir. So living in these books would be awesome. And having a very attractive vampire friend like Dimitri or Christian (I always had a soft spot for him) wouldn't hurt either :) 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Book Review: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Summary: Budding designer Lola Nolan doesn’t believe in fashion . . . she believes in costume. The more expressive the outfit -- more sparkly, more fun, more wild -- the better. But even though Lola’s style is outrageous, she’s a devoted daughter and friend with some big plans for the future. And everything is pretty perfect (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the dreaded Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, return to the neighborhood. 

When Cricket -- a gifted inventor -- steps out from his twin sister’s shadow and back into Lola’s life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door.

Review: Going in, I knew I would love this book because I loved Anna and the French Kiss. But gosh darn it, I really LOVED this book! No seriously. This book was amazing. 

The first reason I loved this book was Lola (aka Delores). She is such a spunky character who wears outrageous outfits. I'm so jealous of her style and how she is comfortable wearing whatever she wants. Her bedroom sounds amazing, with it's glitter, glitz, and organized chaos. I wasn't a big fan of Max and didn't really understand what Lola saw in him AT ALL, but I guess she only wanted to feel wanted. Besides her terrible taste in men (in terms of Max that is), Lola is such an amazing character and made me wish I was kind of like her. Her dads were awesome too (she was adopted by her Uncle and his boyfriend), and you could really tell they cared about her. Lola is surrounded by so many great people that I just wanted to jump in and live her life. 

But let's get to the real reason I loved this book. Cricket. I mean seriously, why can't someone as perfect as him move next door to me and fall madly in love with ME? He's cute, funny, caring, and he dresses well. He's always there for Lola, even if it means missing out on friends or projects. Cricket was just so patient when it came to waiting for Lola to get over her problems, but he never left. Yeah, he's perfect. PERFECT. 

You know what else added to this already amazing book? The fact that Anna and St. Clair were in it (from Anna and the French Kiss). They were SO adorable and helped Lola and Cricket figure out their own relationship throughout the book. We were able to see Anna and St. Clair actually together for an entire book and it was so gosh darn cute! 

So this book was over all amazing. If you haven't yet, READ IT NOW. And Anna and the French Kiss. If Stephanie Perkins writes another one, Lola and Cricket better be in it (sorry I spoiled that they get together but come on, you know you already knew it was going to happen, you just don't know how). What are you doing? Go pick this book up now! 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (21)

This is a meme hosted by Breaking the Spine where every Wednesday bloggers highlight a book that they are eagerly anticipating the release of! 

The Catastrophic History of You and Me
By Jess Rothenberg
Release Date: February 12th
Summary: Dying of a broken heart is just the beginning.... Welcome to forever. 

BRIE'S LIFE ENDS AT SIXTEEN: Her boyfriend tells her he doesn't love her, and the news breaks her heart—literally. 

But now that she's D&G (dead and gone), Brie is about to discover that love is way more complicated than she ever imagined. Back in Half Moon Bay, her family has begun to unravel. Her best friend has been keeping a secret about Jacob, the boy she loved and lost—and the truth behind his shattering betrayal. And then there's Patrick, Brie's mysterious new guide and resident Lost Soul . . . who just might hold the key to her forever after. 

With Patrick's help, Brie will have to pass through the five stages of grief before she's ready to move on. But how do you begin again, when your heart is still in pieces?

We always hear of people breaking their hearts, but I've never imagined someone literally dying from one. I'm intrigued to see how this happens with Brie and how her family reacts to her dying. I really want to know what the big secret her best friend was keeping from her about Jacob and what the big deal with I'm is. The story of a ghost falling in love with their "guide" is a little cliche, but I've never thought cliche love stories were a bad thing :) The cover is really pretty too, with her body floating kind of ghost-like. This one sounds like a great read, so hopefully I can get my hands on a copy when it comes out! 

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Book Review: Awake At Dawn by C.C. Hunter

Summary: Now that she’s settled in at Shadow Falls Camp, Kylie Galen’s determined to discover the extent of her supernatural abilities.  But with a ghost insisting someone Kylie loves is about die, a rogue vampire on a murdering rampage, and her sixth sense telling her someone is watching her, Kylie’s quest for answers is quickly put on hold. 
To make matters worse, just when she’s about to give her heart to Derek, a half-fairy, he starts pulling away.  When Lucas, a werewolf with whom Kylie shares a secret past, returns, Kylie’s feels more conflicted than ever. Her weekend with her mom should have been the just the break Kylie needs, but it turns out to be her breaking point.  Someone from the dark side of the supernatural world has plans for Kylie--and it'll take all her resources to get back to Shadow Falls alive...
Review: I was so happy that I didn't have to wait to read this book once I finished the first book, but now that I've finished it I have to wait until April to read the next one. it's going to be hard to wait because this book was SO good. 

Kylie is still figuring out what she is while dealing with her feelings for two very attractive supernatural beings. I have finally decided which of the two guys I like best, but I'll let you guys decide for yourselves when you read this series. There's more mystery, including murders, kidnappings, and unexplainable new powers. From reading emotions and erasing memories, to healing sicknesses and having super strength, it's impossible to get bored when new powers are popping up everywhere. 

The second book in the Shadow Falls series holds much more action and kept me on my toes, especially within the last 50 pages of the book. Kylie's best friends, Miranda and Della, are even more lovable and always have Kylie's back. Holiday and Burnett are still at each other's throats but work together to get the camp to be an official boarding school. After all of the excitement in this book, I can't wait until the next one comes out! And if you haven't read these, do it now so you can finish them in time of the third book coming out!

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