Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week's teaser comes from the following book:

Add to Goodreads
Title:  Inbetween
Author:  Tara Fuller
Series:  Kissed by Death #1
Publisher:  Entangled Publishing
Publication Date:  August 28, 2012
Source:  galley from publisher via Netgalley
Purchase:  Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Since the car crash that took her father’s life two years ago, Emma’s life has been a freaky—and unending—lesson in caution. Surviving “accidents” has taken priority over being a normal seventeen-year-old, so Emma spends her days taking pictures of life instead of living it. Falling in love with a boy was never part of the plan. Falling for a reaper who makes her chest ache and her head spin? Not an option.

It’s not easy being dead, especially for a reaper in love with a girl fate has put on his list not once, but twice. Finn’s fellow reapers give him hell about spending time with Emma, but Finn couldn’t let her die before, and he’s not about to let her die now. He will protect the girl he loves from the evil he accidentally unleashed, even if it means sacrificing the only thing he has left...his soul.

My teaser:
Mom leaned against the doorframe looking exhausted and every bit her age.  Without her ususal caffeine buzz, it was easier to read her.  She was worried.  And mad.  "Honey, you're not nine anymore.  You can't be with that boy all hours of the night.  What would the neighbors say if they saw him crawling through your window in the middle of the night?" -- p. 138 of galley
Emma...you got some 'splainin' to do!  Teehee.

I'm so excited to be reading this book, you guys!  It immediately grabbed my interest when I stumbled upon it in February -- I also helped with the first cover reveal around that time -- and all of the reviews I've read so far have been pretty stellar.  Reapers are the new vampires.  I can't get enough of them.  Just ask my worn-out Soul Screamers paperbacks.  :D

Look for my stop on the Inbetween Blog Tour on August 24th...I'll have an excerpt for ya!

Inbetween Blog Tour

Sunday, July 29, 2012

In My Mailbox #41

Sunday, July 29, 2012 with 7 comments

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren.  It's a weekly meme where we all get to brag about the books and swag we got in the mail, for review, won in contests, etc.

Eeek!  This week, I got a book for review that I've been dying to read ever since I finished the first book.  I got some other goodies, too.  Check 'em out:

For Review:

Outpost by Ann Aguirre
My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century by Rachel Harris


The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket from Rachel at Fiktshun - I actually won two copies from Rachel, but I kept one for my Katiebug and gave one to my nephew


Endlessly by Kiersten White - because it causes me pain not to finish a series  :P
Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins - I have to find out what all the hype is about...I was hoping to get the audiobook, but it's not available, so I will have to settle for the paperback and hope I can get to it soon

So, that's my haul.  Be sure to check out all the great giveaways I'm running right now:

Pushing the Limits
Enter to win Pushing the Limitsby Katie McGarry
Ends 7/31!

Vote for Zach!
Enter to win Shine by Jeri Smith-Ready + swag
Ends 7/31!

Lazy Days of Summer Giveaway Hop
Enter to win the entire Paranormalcy series
by Kiersten White
Ends 8/1!

Something Strange and Deadly Blog Tour
Enter to win a SIGNED copy of
Something Strange and Deadly
by Susan Dennard
Ends 8/1!

Best of luck and happy reading!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Today on the blog, I have the pleasure of featuring Susan Dennard's debut novel Something Strange and Deadly, which was just released on Tuesday from HarperTeen.  For my stop on the Something Strange and Deadly Blog Tour, hosted by Shane at Itching for Books, I'm reviewing the book and dream casting the novel for you guys.  There's also a giveaway for a SIGNED copy of the novel at the end of this post!  But first, here's a little about the author:

Susan Dennard is a reader, writer, lover of animals, and eater of cookies. She is a writer turned marine biologist turned writer again. Among the traits she shares with her heroine Eleanor are a weakness for Shakespearean quotes, a healthy appetite for baked goods, and an insatiable curiosity. Sadly, Susan does not get to wear a corset or wave a parasol on a daily basis. She lives in Germany with her French husband and Irish setter, and you can learn more about her crazy thoughts and crippling cookie-addiction on her blog, Twitter, Facebook, or Goodreads. Something Strange and Deadly is her debut novel.

Add to Goodreads
Title:  Something Strange and Deadly
Author:  Susan Dennard
Series:  1st book in the Something Strange and Deadly series
Publisher:  HarperTeen
Publication Date:  July 24, 2012
Source:  ARC from publisher
Purchase:  Amazon | Barnes & Noble

The year is 1876, and there’s something strange and deadly loose in Philadelphia…

Eleanor Fitt has a lot to worry about. Her brother has gone missing, her family has fallen on hard times, and her mother is determined to marry her off to any rich young man who walks by. But this is nothing compared to what she’s just read in the newspaper—

The Dead are rising in Philadelphia.

And then, in a frightening attack, a zombie delivers a letter to Eleanor…from her brother.

Whoever is controlling the Dead army has taken her brother as well. If Eleanor is going to find him, she’ll have to venture into the lab of the notorious Spirit-Hunters, who protect the city from supernatural forces. But as Eleanor spends more time with the Spirit-Hunters, including their maddeningly stubborn yet handsome inventor, Daniel, the situation becomes dire. And now, not only is her reputation on the line, but her very life may hang in the balance.

I love zombie novels, be they scary and gory or just tragic and sad.  Even better if you combine all of those elements.  And that's exactly what Susan Dennard accomplished with Something Strange and Deadly.
Dennard has combined the elegance and industrialization of the Victorian era with the grotesqueness of the walking dead to create a world that was both frightening and intriguing.  The first-person narrative allowed me to explore the streets of 19th century Philadelphia right along with Eleanor as she searched for her missing brother.  The story was fast-paced and well-evolved, and though it was not suspenseful in the way that I had hoped, there were plenty of zombie-killing sequences to keep me entertained.
Characterization can make or break a novel for me.  If I don't feel at least some connection to the characters and what they are going through, I'm more likely to have a less than favorable opinion of the story as a whole.  The opposite is also true.  Sometimes the characters are so solidly written, so meticulously developed, that I'm able to overlook other elements of the story that might have otherwise bothered me, such as the lack of mystery and suspense.  The characters in this novel are in the latter category.
Take Eleanor Fitt of the Philadelphia Fitts, for example:  she's a young, well-bred society woman who is to be married off to the first available man who comes along so that her mother may avoid the poor house.  But no one asks Eleanor if this is what she wants.  She bites her tongue and obeys her mother, biding her time till her brother returns and saves her from this plight.  Assuming he does return.  The underlying motivation for nearly every one of Eleanor's misguided actions and indiscretions is finding her brother.  Elijah makes her feel normal and whole in a world where she does not quite belong.  Eleanor has always known she didn't quite fit with high society, but after deep reflection and upon hearing "Miss Fitt" one too many times, the realization of just how much she doesn't belong really hits her.  Miss Fitt = misfit.  Such a clever moniker for such a clever girl.  Quick-witted and sharp-tongued -- "I could keep quiet.  But that didn't mean I would." (p. 89 of ARC) -- Eleanor is the kind of person I want beside me when the Zombie Apocalypse arrives.
In keeping with the theme of ostracism, Eleanor enlists the help of the Spirit-Hunters in her search for Elijah.  The band of outcasts is hesitant to help Eleanor until they learn that Elijah's disappearance is somehow involved with the reawakened Dead.  Joseph, the leader of the Spirit-Hunters, is a gentleman who handles himself with dignity and grace.  Daniel, his right-hand man, is the opposite.  He may be hot-headed and callous, but he is quite the inventor.  (And quite dashing, too!)  Jie is a Chinese girl, slightly older than Eleanor, who dresses as a boy, not only so that she may work with the Spirit-Hunters, but also to avoid suffering dresses and corsets and the oppression that comes with being a young women, in her society or in Eleanor's.  Together, the three have followed a powerful Necromancer from Chicago to Philadelphia.  Tracking down the Necromancer and stopping him is their primary objective, but seeing as how Eleanor has proven herself helpful and her brother does seem to be involved somehow, they agree to assist her in her search.
A slew of bad decisions, a heaping helping of zombie attacks, and a bittersweet romance all make for one exciting read.  But the decisions aren't of the cringe-worthy variety, the zombie attacks aren't terribly disgusting, and the romance takes a backseat to the real action.  It's really quite good and artfully told, considering this is the author's debut novel.  And what a sensational debut it is.  I almost wish I had time to re-read it now so that I could pick up on the nuances and details I missed on my race to the finish line the first time around.  It's a zombie novel, but it's not of the grossly exaggerated and vomit-inducing type…at least I didn't think so.  So, if you can handle a little descriptive grossness and prefer a story that doesn't focus primarily on romance, this book might be for you.

Rating:  Photobucket 1/2

Okay, so, I don't usually dream cast novels myself.  Honestly, I don't want the books I love to be turned into movies, so while I'm reading, I'm not envisioning any actors portraying the characters I'm reading about.  But I thought it would be fun to give this a try, anyway, so I headed over to IMDb to start sorting through headshots.  (It wasn't all work...I did get to search for the perfect Daniel, after all.  :D)

Mia Wasikowska
(Alice in Wonderland)
Name: Eleanor Abigail Fitt
Age: 16
Position: Young Lady of High Society
Favorite Food: Buttered toast
Weapon of Choice: Parasol
Favorite Book: The Complete Works of William Shakespeare
Strengths: Brave, Clever
Weaknesses: Curiosity, Impulsiveness

 (Alternates:  Teresa Palmer, Anna Sophia Robb)

Benjamin Stone
(TV's The Nine Lives of Chloe King)

Name: Daniel Patrick Sheridan
Age: 19
Position: Inventor for the Spirit-Hunters
Favorite Activity: Experimenting with new inventions
Favorite Book: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
Strengths: Resourceful, loyal
Weaknesses: Short-tempered, secretive

(Alternates:  William Moseley, Max Irons)

Ellen Wong
(Scott Pilgrim vs. The World)
Name: Jie Chen
Age: 19
Position: Bodyguard and “muscle” for the Spirit-Hunters
Favorite Activity: Beating up the Dead
Weapon of Choice: Baseball Bat
Strengths: Fearless, Agile
Weaknesses: Quick to judge, Gruff

(Alternate:  Jessica Lu)


Anthony Mackie
(Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter,
The Adjustment Bureau)
Name: Joseph-Alexandre Boyer
Age: 24
Position: Leader of the Spirit-Hunters
Favorite Activity: Blasting the Dead back to the spirit realm
Favorite Accessory: Top hat
Strengths: Dependable, Strong leader
Weaknesses: Unyielding

(Images courtesy of IMDb, character descriptions from book website.)

So, if you've read the novel already, what do you think about these picks or any of the alternates I have listed?  I just think Mia would be fantastic as Eleanor, don't you?!?

Alright, alright.  I know what you're really here for.  :)  THE GIVEAWAY!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck and happy reading!


Thursday, July 26, 2012

Lazy Days of Summer Giveaway Hop

Thursday, July 26, 2012 with 7 comments

Welcome to The Starry-Eyed Revue's stop on the Lazy Days of Summer Giveaway Hop, co-hosted by Colorimetry & I Am a Reader, Not a Writer!  Not many lazy days around these parts, but when I do have a moment to spare, you'd better believe there's a book in my hand.  :D

I'm feeling extra generous today, partly because I just reached 1000 followers (squeeeeee!!), so I'm giving away the complete Paranormalcy series by Kiersten White:

I've read the first two books but not the last -- which just released on Tuesday, the 24th -- so don't anyone ruin it for me.  I'm hoping for a Reth-fest.  :0)

  • US residents only, sorry, unless you can provide a US shipping address.
  • One entry per household.
  • All entries will be verified.  Any entry found to be falsified will result in disqualification of all entries for that participant.
  • Winner will be notified via email.  Winner will then have 48 hours to respond before another winner will be selected.
  • I am not responsible for lost packages, but I do use delivery confirmation via USPS, so this should not be a problem.
And now on to the fun stuff!  You only have to follow my blog to enter, but all other entries/follows are appreciated!  :D

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now that you've entered to win here, be sure to check out all the rest of the stops on the Lazy Days of Summer Giveaway Hop:

Awhile on the Pile/From the Review Pile is a meme hosted by Stepping Out of the Page every Thursday but was also inspired by Rachel at My Reading Pile/Fiktshun. The aim of this meme is to showcase books that you've received for review -- or any book that you own and really want to read/review -- but haven't yet got around to reading in order to give the book some extra publicity.

Here's the book I chose to give some extra love this week:

Add to Goodreads
Title:  Fever
Author:  Lauren DeStefano
Series:  The Chemical Garden trilogy, Book #2
Publisher:  Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Publication Date:  February 21, 2012

Rhine and Gabriel have escaped the mansion, but danger is never far behind.

Running away brings Rhine and Gabriel right into a trap, in the form of a twisted carnival whose ringmistress keeps watch over a menagerie of girls. Just as Rhine uncovers what plans await her, her fortune turns again. With Gabriel at her side, Rhine travels through an environment as grim as the one she left a year ago - surroundings that mirror her own feelings of fear and hopelessness.

The two are determined to get to Manhattan, to relative safety with Rhine’s twin brother, Rowan. But the road there is long and perilous - and in a world where young women only live to age twenty and young men die at twenty-five, time is precious. Worse still, they can’t seem to elude Rhine’s father-in-law, Vaughn, who is determined to bring Rhine back to the mansion...by any means necessary.

In the sequel to Lauren DeStefano’s harrowing Wither, Rhine must decide if freedom is worth the price - now that she has more to lose than ever.

This is another one of those that I was dying to get my hands on but once I did, I got behind and never got to.  I loved Wither when I read it last year and I'm really excited to continue Rhine's story and see if she ever reunites with Rowan.  I may end up listening to this one so I can get to it sooner rather than later.  Thank goodness for Audible!  :D

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Today's the day, people!  #TeamKilt needs your help if our beloved Zachary Moore is to have any chance of advancing to the next round of the 2nd Annual YA Crush Tourney.  To sweeten the deal, I'm adding a little giveaway, too.  Read on to find out what's up for grabs!

But first, some reasons why you should vote #TeamKilt and prove to the world what we already know in our hearts:  Zachary Moore is the sweetest, sexiest, most crush-worthy boy in YA.  He deserves every heart he's won over since he first stepped onto the scene.  And in the words of the ladies over at Fictitious Delicious, he's the "crushiest crushing crush in YA".  :D

Allow me to show you:

photo courtesy of Fictitious Delicious
 So what are you gonna do?

I can't hear you!!!  I said, what are you gonna do?

That's a little better, but try again!  WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO?

YES!  And do you know WHY you're going to support #TeamKilt and VOTE FOR ZACH, aside from the obvious?  Here's why:  I'm giving away a copy of SHINE plus signed swag!

  • US residents only, sorry, unless you can provide a US shipping address.
  • One entry per household.
  • All entries will be verified.  Any entry found to be falsified will result in disqualification of all entries for that participant.
  • Winner will be notified via email.  Winner will then have 48 hours to respond before another winner will be selected.
  • I am not responsible for lost packages.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

That is all.  :D

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's WoW selection is...

Add to Goodreads
Title:  The Madman's Daughter
Author:  Megan Shepherd
Series:  1st book in The Madman's Daughter trilogy
Publisher:  Balzer + Bray
Publication Date:  January 29, 2013

London, 1894. Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself—working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father’s gruesome experiments. But when she learns her father is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations were true.

Juliet is accompanied by the doctor’s handsome young assistant and an enigmatic castaway, who both attract Juliet for very different reasons. They travel to the island only to discover the depths of her father’s madness: he has created animals that have been vivisected to resemble, speak, and behave as humans. Worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island’s inhabitants. Juliet knows she must end her father’s dangerous experiments and escape the island, even though her horror is mixed with her own scientific curiosity. As the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father’s genius—and madness—in her own blood.

Why I'm waiting:  Never read The Island of Dr. Moreau but I saw the movie, and it was great.  But that really has no bearing on why I want to read The Madman's Daughter.  I love historical fiction.  I love that cover.  And that synopsis sounds so awesome.  It reminds me a little of Dearly, Departed, but what book nowadays doesn't remind me of another?

So, what are you waiting on this week?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...