Saturday, November 29, 2008
I just wanted to pop by with a quick note. I'm sorry I've not been here at all this week, but with Thanksgiving and all, I'm sure you all understand. :) I promise I'll try to be better next week, but things are about to get crazy hectic at work. I will tell you that I just read a great YA title that I can't wait to tell you about, but first I gotta get the review for it written up. Keep checking back, there's more to look forward to.
PS, if you write YA, I'm looking for guest bloggers. Pop an email to me at wantmyya at yahoo dot com.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Thanks everyone for stopping by and commenting while Heather was visiting. Keep checking back for more great guest blogs and reviews.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Vampire fiction is hugely popular right now, which is pretty awesome. For old schoolers like me, people that grew up on Bram Stoker and Anne Rice, it means that a lot more vampire fiction is available as of late. As a YA vampire author, I get asked for recommendations of what vampire-fiction-lovers should be reading, so I thought I'd tell you all what it is that I'm loving right now and hopefully, you'll find something to sink your teeth into.
First, as I mentioned before, Bram Stoker's Dracula and Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles are definitely required vampy reading. After that, I'd recommend venturing into Stephen King's Salem's Lot or John Steakley's Vampire$, if you're into the scary side of bloodsucking fiends. If you're into romance, of course, there's Charlaine Harris's Southern Vampire Mysteries or that old standby, Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series. If you 're a reluctant reader—somebody that thinks that vampires are fangtastic, but you just can't get into books—check out Matsuri Hino's manga series Vampire Knight or Darren Shan's Cirque du Freak series.
I'm a big fan of all of these books and more. Rachel Caine's Morganville Vampires is another series not to miss, as are Sunshine by Robin McKinley and Tantalize by Cynthia Leitich Smith. So many fangtastic books and not enough moonlit hours to read them!
Whatever your interests, there are vampire books out there to fulfill them. I promise. If I'm wrong, well…I take my garlic roasted.
If you'd like to win an advanced copy of the third book in my Chronicles of Vladimir Tod series, Tenth Grade Bleeds, just comment below with your favorite vampire book!
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
So we're in week two of my new schedule and I'm already a day late. *sigh* But better late than never, so for your reading enjoyment I give you this week's eyecatchers. :)
Skin Hunger by Kathleen Duey
Sadima lives in a world where magic has been banned, leaving poor villagers prey to fakes and charlatans. A "magician" stole her family's few valuables and left Sadima's mother to die on the day Sadima was born. But vestiges of magic are hidden in old rhymes and hearth tales and in people like Sadima, who conceals her silent communication with animals for fear of rejection and ridicule. When rumors of her gift reach Somiss, a young nobleman obsessed with restoring magic, he sends Franklin, his lifelong servant, to find her. Sadima's joy at sharing her secret becomes love for the man she shares it with. But Franklin's irrevocable bond to the brilliant and dangerous Somiss traps her, too, and she faces a heartbreaking decision.
Centuries later magic has been restored, but it is available only to the wealthy and is strictly controlled by wizards within a sequestered academy of magic. Hahp, the expendable second son of a rich merchant, is forced into the academy and finds himself paired with Gerrard, a peasant boy inexplicably admitted with nine sons of privilege and wealth. Only one of the ten students will graduate -- and the first academic requirement is survival.
Sadima's and Hahp's worlds are separated by generations, but their lives are connected in surprising and powerful ways in this brilliant first book of Kathleen Duey's dark, complex, and completely compelling trilogy.
The Devouring by Simon Holt
"When dark creeps in and eats the light,Bury your fears on Sorry Night.For in the winter's blackest hours,Comes the feasting of the Vours, No one can see it, the life they stole,Your body's here but not your soul..."
THE VOURS: Evil, demonic beings that inhabit human bodies on Sorry Night, the darkest hours of the winter solstice. When Reggie reads about the Vours in a mysterious old journal, she assumes they are just the musings of an anonymous lunatic. But when her little brother, Henry, begins to act strangely, it's clear that these creatures exist beyond a madwoman's imagination, and Reggie finds out what happens when fears come to life.To save the people she loves, Reggie must learn to survive in a world of nightmares. Can she devour her own fears before they devour her?
The Devouring is an engrossing tale of terror that will have you wondering: what if your worst fears became your living nightmare?
Revealers by Amanda Marrone
Jules has a rebellious streak, a massive crush on Connor, and the abilities of a Revealer witch. By day, she and her coven friends seem like typical high school seniors. By night, they have the power to make werewolves, vampires, and ghosts reveal themselves, so they can destroy them. It's not exactly cheerleading, but at least the girls know they're doing the world some good.
One by one, Jules's friends turn eighteen and are initiated into the coven's inner circle. And one by one, they are getting completely freaked out. Jules is the youngest, and though her friends are too scared tell her what's going on, something's clearly not right. As her birthday approaches, Jules realizes she's got to find out what's behind the shadows of her coven before it's too late to save her friends...and herself. But what she discovers may be too powerful for even the toughest witches to defeat.
Gamer Girl by Mari Mancusi
After Maddy’s parents divorce, she’s stuck starting over at a new high school. Friendless and nicknamed Freak Girl, Manga-loving artist Maddy finds refuge in the interactive online game Fields of Fantasy. In that virtual world, she reinvents herself as Allora, a gorgeous elfin alter ego, and meets a true friend in Sir Leo. Maddy can’t hide behind Allora forever, especially as a real-life crush begins edging in on her budding virtual romance. But would anyone pick the real Maddy, gamer girl and Manga freak, over the fantasy?
Evernight by Claudia Gray
Bianca wants to escape.
She's been uprooted from her small hometown and enrolled at Evernight Academy, an eerie Gothic boarding school where the students are somehow too perfect: smart, sleek, and almost predatory. Bianca knows she doesn't fit in.
Then she meets Lucas. He's not the "Evernight type" either, and he likes it that way. Lucas ignores the rules, stands up to the snobs, and warns Bianca to be careful—even when it comes to caring about him.
"I couldn't stand it if they took it out on you," he tells Bianca, "and eventually they would."
But the connection between Bianca and Lucas can't be denied. Bianca will risk anything to be with Lucas, but dark secrets are fated to tear them apart . . . and to make Bianca question everything she's ever believed.
So there you are, these are the five titles that caught my attention this week.
Now it's your turn. As promised Wednesdays are "You Recommend" days, so tell me what you think I should read.
*all book descriptions come from the publishers' websites
Monday, November 17, 2008
It's time to report on last week's bestselling YA titles from my little corner of the book world. :) The first two should come as no surprise.
1. Twilight Saga from Stephenie Meyer (once again I'm only allowing her one slot in the list)
2. Brisingr by Christopher Paolini
3. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne
4. Night World by L.J. Smith
5. Untamed by P.C. and Kristen Cast
Honorable Mentions (let's face it, the only thing keeping these books off the list is the insane popularity of Stephenie Meyer's titles)
Just Listen by Sarah Dessen
Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead
Saturday, November 15, 2008
The China Garden
By Liz Berry
Whenever I think of the best books I've read I usually come up with a list of five that were out of this world. In fact no word in the English language could even begin to explain how phenomenal they are.
So of course when I began thinking of what book I'd like to recommend here I thought of one of those top five, THE CHINA GARDEN.
From Liz Berry's Website:
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Leave your comments and tell me what you think I should read.
Have a great day all!
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Eyecatchers for November 11th are:
Bliss by Lauren Myracle
When Bliss’s hippie parents leave the commune and dump her at the home of her aloof grandmother in a tony Atlanta neighborhood, it’s like being set down on an alien planet. The only guide naive Bliss has to her new environment is what she’s seen on The Andy Griffith Show. But Mayberry is poor preparation for Crestview Academy, an elite school where the tensions of the present and the dark secrets of the past threaten to simmer into violence. Openhearted Bliss desperately wants new friends, making her the perfect prey of a troubled girl whose obsession with a long-ago death puts Bliss, and anyone she’s kind to, in mortal danger.
Frozen Fire by Tim Bowler
When Dusty gets the strange phone call on a snowy winter's night, she knows she can't ignore it. The boy on the other end of the line says he's dying. That's bad enough - but the fact that he seems to know something about the disappearance of her brother, Josh, means that Dusty must find the boy no matter what.
But when she does finally meet him, there's something strange and haunting about him. He seems to be made of snow and fire, he can see people's thoughts, and feels everything - from chilling ice to white-hot pain...and he seems to have a hold over everyone he meets.
There's talk in the town - talk of the boy's past and his ability to hurt people. Lynch mobs are baying for blood. Dusty must help the boy and find out what happened to Josh. But when the mob turns on her, it is she, and not the boy, who is in the gravest danger...
Th1rteen R3asons Why by Jay Asher
Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a mysterious box with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers several cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker--his classmate and crush--who committed suicide two weeks earlier. On tape, Hannah explains that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he'll find out how he made the list.
Wake by Lisa McMann
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....
The Order of Odd Fish by James Kennedy
JO LAROUCHE HAS lived her 13 years in the California desert with her Aunt Lily, ever since she was dropped on Lily’s doorstep with this note: This is Jo. Please take care of her. But beware. This is a dangerous baby. At Lily’s annual Christmas costume party, a variety of strange events take place that lead Jo and Lily out of California forever—and into the mysterious, strange, fantastical world of Eldritch City. There, Jo learns the scandalous truth about who she is, and she and Lily join the Order of Odd-Fish, a collection of knights who research useless information. Glamorous cockroach butlers, pointless quests, obsolete weapons, and bizarre festivals fill their days, but two villains are controlling their fate. Jo is inching closer and closer to the day when her destiny is fulfilled, and no one in Eldritch City will ever be the same.So those are my eyecathers for this week. :) Keep checking back with us. You never know when you'll see a full blog on any one of these titles.
*All book descriptions are from either Amazon.com or the Authors' websites
Monday, November 10, 2008
So in an effort to blog more often I've created a schedule for myself. We'll see how long I stick with it, but here goes....
Mondays will be for posting last week's bestselling titles. Where am I getting these titles from? My bestseller list will be specific to the bookstore I work in. So this will give you a snippet of what's hot, or at the very least what's hot in Northern Illinois. :) This was intended to be a Top 5, but last week brought a 3-way tie for 4th place, so this week's list will end at 4.
Top Titles November 2 -8 2008
1. Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer (she only gets one slot otherwise she'd take over my whole list)
2. Brisingr by Christoper Paolini
3. Marked & Untamed both by P.C. & Kristin Cast
4. The Boy in Striped Pajamas by John Boyne
The Giver by Lois Lowry
Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead
Check back next Monday for this week's hot titles, and stay tuned for more fun features.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
It is the day of the big music competition and as usual Deirdre is a bundle of nerves. She knows she'll feel better once she's thrown up, but she's still embarrassed by the necessity. This time is different though; this time there's a strange boy there to comfort her and let her know it will all be fine. Deirdre can't believe her eyes. She dreamed about this boy and now he's right in front of her. He introduces himself as Luke Dillon and offers to help her practice.
While they are practicing Luke pushes Deirdre to abandon safe and see what she's really made of. Deirdre makes music with her harp that she never knew she could. It's more than the music though. Luke's suggestion that Deirdre see what she's made of sets off a chain of events that Deirdre can't walk away from. Luke's sudden presence in her life is just the start of things to come. Everywhere she looks Deidre is seeing Them: Faeries, the Fair Folk, call Them what you will, but They are out there and They want Deirdre.
The more time she spends with Luke the more confused she becomes. Deirdre knows that what she feels for him surpasses anything she's ever felt before. However, she's beginning to suspect that even though he may not be one of Them, Luke knows more than he can say. Deidre is afraid that the answers she needs may come too late. Despite her better judgment, Deirdre can't help but stick by Luke, no matter what she learns of him. Can Deirdre find a way to save herself, her family, and still have Luke by her side?
While I had LAMENT in my hands I tuned out the world. Maggie Stiefvater kept me spellbound in the magical world she's created. I was captivated by the drama and the romance between Deirdre and Luke.They feel like long-lost friends that I can't wait to spend more time with. The love and emotions in this book are so strong you will feel it resonating within your own chest. The treacherous fey added the perfect amount of suspense, fear, and mystery to this story. I am beyond anxiously awaiting more from Maggie Stiefvater. I want to spend time with these characters again. LAMENT is a book that every fan of romance, fantasy, or young adult needs to read immediately, so rush to your nearest bookstore and get it now.
So that's my big recommend for the week. Seriously, you need to read it.