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Saturday, June 28, 2014

[REVIEW] Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell


Eleanor & Park

Author: Rainbow Rowell
Genre: YA Contemporary Romance
Published: February 26th 2013 by St. Martin's Press
Purchase from: Amazon | Book Depository
Rating:


Two misfits.
One extraordinary love.

Eleanor... Red hair, wrong clothes. Standing behind him until he turns his head. Lying beside him until he wakes up. Making everyone else seem drabber and flatter and never good enough...Eleanor.

Park... He knows she'll love a song before he plays it for her. He laughs at her jokes before she ever gets to the punch line. There's a place on his chest, just below his throat, that makes her want to keep promises...Park.

Set over the course of one school year, this is the story of two star-crossed sixteen-year-olds—smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.
 

Cute and light and romantic. Beautiful and bittersweet and heart-wrenching. Eleanor & Park is one of the best contemporaries I've read. Ever.

Friday, June 27, 2014

[BOOK BLITZ: Excerpt + Giveaway] One, Two, Three by Elodie Nowodazkij

One, Two, Three

Author: Elodie Nowodazkij
Genre: YA Contemporary Romance
Published: June 26th 2014
Purchase from: Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo

When seventeen-year-old Natalya’s dreams of being a ballerina are killed in a car accident along with her father, she must choose: shut down—like her mother—or open up to love.

Last year,seventeen-year-old Natalya Pushkaya was attending the School of Performing Arts in New York City. Last year, she was well on her way to becoming a professional ballerina. Last year, her father was still alive.

But a car crash changed all that—and Natalya can’t stop blaming herself. Now, she goes to a regular high school in New Jersey; lives with her onetime prima ballerina, now alcoholic mother; and has no hope of a dance career.

At her new school, however, sexy soccer player Antonio sees a brighter future for Natalya, or at least a more pleasant present. Keeping him an arabesque away proves to be a challenge for Natalya and his patient charms eventually draw her out of her shell.

When upsetting secrets come to light and Tonio’s own problems draw her in, Natalya shuts down again, this time turning to alcohol herself.

Can Natalya learn to trust Antonio before she loses him—and destroys herself?


The shortcut to the lake from our home is a dirt road that isn’t well lit, but I know the way by heart. I hurry down the path, tuning my iPod to Chopin’s happier music. But I can’t drown out Mama’s voice. It resonates in my head. It’s my fault! I know she’s wrong because she’s not the one who killed him. I did. If only I didn’t get into an argument with him in the car. If only I had warned him about the truck. I bite back a sob and rip off my knee brace to walk even faster. At first, my knee is stiff, but at least I can extend my leg much better now.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

[ARC REVIEW] Blackout by Madeleine Henry

Blackout

Author: Madeleine Henry
Genre: YA Dystopian
Series: Darkness trilogy, Book 1
Publication date: June 21st 2014
Purchase from: Amazon
Rating:


One wall divides life from darkness. After the worldwide Blackout, America built a concrete wall—the Frontier—across the middle of the nation to isolate its precious electricity in the top half. Everyone below the Frontier was forsaken, and now only a few survive in the grim region known as the Dark Zone.

Sixteen year old Phoenix Troublefield endures the dark with his girlfriend, Star Windsong. When America announces that it will trade electricity for immigrants, Phoenix and Star sacrifice themselves for the power that might save her younger brother. On the other side of the Frontier, they find America is not what they expected, and instead they are thrown into a shocking and deeply personal contest that threatens to destroy their love. When the chance comes to escape back into the Dark Zone, it may already be too late.

I received an ARC of the book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Powerful and engaging. Blackout takes dystopia to a new level and gives the readers a story reminiscent of Kiera Cass's The Selection (but with more blood). This is one new series to watch out for.

Friday, June 13, 2014

[COVER REVEAL] Time Shifters by Laura N. Anile

Time Shifters

Author: Laura N. Anile 
Series: Beyond Time #1
Publication date: June 2014
Genres: Dystopia, Young Adult
Cover designed by GlassHouse Publishing

Synopsis:

"My blood runs cold, and I see the horror etched in the boy’s reflection. Anxiety seeps into my chest, making my heart hammer. I don’t know where I am. I don’t know how I got here. But what worries me most is: I don't know who the hell is looking back at me in the mirror."

When you wake up in the wrong body within a futuristic world, being yourself can get you killed.

17-year-old Ryder is on his way to school when he experiences a pain like he has never felt before. He awakes in a mysterious lab to discover that, as a victim of an unauthorized transfer, he has been pulled into the year 2127.

Now Ryder’s life depends on him succeeding in making everyone believe that he is Ziron, the boy that swapped places with him in 2015. If he fails, he will be captured, imprisoned, or worse. Ryder only has to survive two weeks in this futuristic world he doesn’t understand. But two weeks is a long time when you don’t know who to trust, and when you have to keep away from a girl you have sworn to protect.

Kira refuses to stay away, so how can he prevent her from discovering his secret? And how can he be with her when she thinks he’s someone else?

Time is running out for Ryder to unravel the conspiracy and uncover the answer to the biggest question of all: Just why did Ziron risk everything to change places with him? And what exactly has Ryder been pulled into?

In a desperate quest to find his way home, Ryder will stop at nothing to protect the girl of his dreams, and the secret that could destroy everything.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

[BOOK BLAST + Giveaway] Blind Spot by Laura Ellen

Welcome to the official Book Blast tour for Laura Ellen’s 2012 YA Thriller release, Blind Spot releasing June 10th in paperback for the first time!

Blind Spot

Author: Laura Ellen
Genre: YA Mystery Thriller
Published: October 23rd 2012 by Harcourt Children's Books
Purchase from: Amazon | B&N | IndieBound

There’s none so blind as they that won’t see.

Seventeen-year-old Tricia Farni’s body floated to the surface of Alaska’s Birch River six months after the night she disappeared. The night Roz Hart had a fight with her. The night Roz can’t remember. Roz, who struggles with macular degeneration, is used to assembling fragments to make sense of the world around her. But this time it’s her memory that needs piecing together—to clear her name . . . to find a murderer.

This unflinchingly emotional novel is written in the powerful first-person voice of a legally blind teen who just wants to be like everyone else.



Laura Ellen writes YA contemporary mysteries and thrillers from her home in Arizona, while also freelancing as a manuscript consultant for aspiring authors. She has a MA in Children's Literature and began her career as a teacher in both Language Arts and special education. Diagnosed with juvenile macular degeneration as a teen, she drew upon her own experiences with vision loss to write her debut YA thriller Blind Spot, an emotional and suspenseful page-turner. Laura is represented by Jill Corcoran at Jill Corcoran Literary Agency and is part of the Sleuths, Spies, and Alibis blog crew. Want to know more about Laura Ellen? Go to www.lauraellenbooks.com or catch her on twitter @lauraellenbooks or facebook.

Giveaway is open to US only.
Must be 13+ to Enter
1 Winner will get: Signed DEAR TEEN ME, Signed BLIND SPOT + Swag Pack.
 

Saturday, June 7, 2014

[REVIEW] We Were Liars by E. Lockhart


We Were Liars

Author: E. Lockhart
Genre: YA Contemporary, Mystery
Published: May 13th 2014 by Random House Inc.
Purchase from: Amazon | The Book Depository
Rating:
A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart.
Read it.
And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE. 


Exceptional. Hauntingly beautiful. We Were Liars is a gripping tale of family, love, friendship and protecting those which are most important. This is one story that will stay with you for a long time.

I couldn't put it down. I was hooked into the story of this beautiful but not-so-beautiful American family of Sinclairs. I loved the clever way it was written. I am aware that some people were not fans of the writing style and found them confusing and annoying. But personally, I think it's unique and different in a good way. It gave a spontaneous and lyrical feel to the book.

I liked the mystery surrounding the Sinclairs. They may seem like a typical wealthy family on the outside but underneath that facade are layers and layers of secrets and lies and pretense and anger that motivated the other family members - the Liars - to take action and try to change things on their own. Speaking of the Liars, I liked their different and colorful personalities. But what I liked most about them is their friendship and love for each other. The cousins Cady, Johnnny and Mirren could have been easily caught on the family politics and turned on each other for personal gains but no. They remained loyal to each other. Even Gat, who was considered an outsider by the adult Sinclairs, helped and stayed with them. And they stayed with him, too. That, for me, was a beautiful friendship that even tragedy could never destroy.

I'm not going to lie. I sort of guessed the truth about the three Liars even before the big reveal. But it did not lessen the impact. It broke my heart and left me dumbfounded. I was a puddle of tears by the time I finished reading We Were Liars.

Yep. That was me while reading We Were Liars.

The ending was kinda vague and I would have wanted to know more about what happened to Cady. But I think it fit the vague and mysterious way the whole thing was written. It was enigmatic through and through and will keep you guessing and at the edge of your seat from beginning to end.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

[BLOG TOUR: Review + Excerpt] Clockworkers by Ramsey Isler


Welcome to my stop at the Clockworkers blog tour organized by Reading Addiction Virtual Book Tours! What I have here today is my 4-star review of Clockworkers by Ramsey Isler and a short excerpt from the book. Enjoy reading, loves!


Clockworkers

Author: Ramsey Isler
Genre: Fantasy, Urban Fantasy
Published: November 20th 2013
Purchase from: Amazon
Samantha Chablon is a self-proclaimed “gadget girl”. She runs the family watch repair shop while her eccentric old father spends his days researching fantastical stories of elves. Sam loves her father, but his odd habits have always been a mystery and a burden on the family. But that all changes after her father dies, and she discovers what he left for her.

Sam has inherited a real elf.

Piv is his name, and he is far older than his boyish face and personality would imply. But he's also wise, and as an elf he is gifted with a preternatural proclivity for making things. Sam's father taught Piv everything he knows about making watches, and he works faster than human hands could ever move. Sam, being much more enterprising than her father, sees opportunity in Piv's talents. Soon Piv is not the only elf working for Sam as she goes about building a luxury watch empire powered by secret elf labor. 

But the elves have remained hidden from humans for good reason, and it's not easy to keep a factory full of territorial elves secret in the middle of a metropolis. One night when someone attempts to break into the factory, the elves take matters into their own hands. The incident gives Sam a glimpse of a dark and twisted side of elves that no fairy tales ever mentioned. Samantha will soon discover that great ambition often comes with great risk, and although her elf partners have agreed to work without pay, there are other costly consequences involved in striking a deal with elves.

Hours passed. The hot chocolate was gone. Samantha was knocked out cold, and lying face-down on her kitchen table. A little trail of drool dangled from her mouth and pooled onto the table. Sam was in perfect, dreamless sleep.

She never would've known someone else was there if Rupert hadn't barked.

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