Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine. It's a weekly event that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.

Spell Bound (Hex Hall #3)
by Rachel Hawkins
published by Hyperion
expected release date: March 13, 2012

Summary: Hailed as “impossible to put down,” the Hex Hall series has both critics and teens cheering. With a winning combination of romance, action, magic and humor, this third volume will leave readers enchanted.

Just as Sophie Mercer has come to accept her extraordinary magical powers as a demon, the Prodigium Council strips them away. Now Sophie is defenseless, alone, and at the mercy of her sworn enemies—the Brannicks, a family of warrior women who hunt down the Prodigium. Or at least that’s what Sophie thinks, until she makes a surprising discovery. The Brannicks know an epic war is coming, and they believe Sophie is the only one powerful enough to stop the world from ending. But without her magic, Sophie isn’t as confident.

Sophie’s bound for one hell of a ride—can she get her powers back before it’s too late?

**I enjoyed the first two books of this trilogy and with the way the second ended I definitely want to read this one.

What are you looking forward to reading?

Monday, February 27, 2012

Book Review ~ After Midnight

After Midnight (The Youngbloods #1)
by Lynn Viehl
published by Flux

Summary: Sophomore Catlyn Youngblood is used to her nomadic existence. When they settle down in Lost Lake, Florida, Cat meets the enigmatic, handsome Jesse Raven. As their attraction intensifies, Cat learns that the Ravens are a centuries-old vampire clan, and--worse still--she is a descendent of a world-famous vampire hunter.

My Thoughts: Overall I enjoyed this story. I ended up liking the premise of the series more at the end once everything was explained. Who Cat's parents were and the different gifts the three Youngbloods have.
Cat and Gray worked for me but I'm not sure how much I care for the oldest brother Trick. He just seemed to over the top with his controlling of everything. Even after you find out why it seems like too much.
The romance between Cat and Jesse was OK. I'll wait to see where it goes before I make a final decision. I did like the fact that being around him or thinking about Jesse helped Cat to remember things she was meant to forget.
High school drama didn't work for me. I had that figured out right away but it detract from the book any. I love quirky so my favorite characters were Ego and Kari.
The only problem I had while reading this book, there seemed to be a lot of editing errors. Between missing word, double words and words out of place it became annoying. I'm used to there being a few but it seemed to be happening more often than usual in a finished book.

Rating: 3 I have the 2nd book on netGalley and I'm looking forward to see how Cat remembering everything while the rest of the town has been made to forget works out.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Follow Friday

Follow Friday is now hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of course and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

Q. Activity!!! Take a picture or describe where you love to read the most…
A. I mostly read in M's really old but comfy recliner, if not it's in bed before I go to sleep.

You can either follow by GFC or Linky. Let me know if your a new follower so I can follow back :)

Book Review ~ Darker Still

Darker Still (Magic Most Foul #1)
by Leanna Renee Heiber
published by Sourcebooks

Summary: I was obsessed.

It was as if he called to me, demanding I reach out and touch the brushstrokes of color swirled onto the canvas. It was the most exquisite portrait I'd ever seen--everything about Lord Denbury was unbelievable...utterly breathtaking and eerily lifelike.

There was a reason for that. Because despite what everyone said, Denbury never had committed suicide. He was alive. Trapped within his golden frame.

I've crossed over into his world within the painting, and I've seen what dreams haunt him. They haunt me too. He and I are inextricably linked--bound together to watch the darkness seeping through the gas-lit cobblestone streets of Manhattan. Unless I can free him soon, things will only get Darker Still.

My Thoughts: It took me forever to read this book because I kept putting it down. While I like Natalie and Mrs Northe, I did not feel any connection with Lord Denbury. I had a hard time believing the way every woman that came across his painting seemed to fall madly in love with him. I think I would have understood it more if there had been some kind of spell that was put on the picture rather than the way we were given.
I enjoyed the process of Natalie finding her voice and herself and that was the thing that kept me picking the book back up after setting it aside. She seemed to get stronger as the events going on got weirder and darker.
A couple of things I didn't get. If Natalie could see these other things/beings in her dreams, why didn't her mother just show herself to her instead of going through Mrs Northe? Also, I don't like when scenes have no purpose. Like Maggy trying to do a seance when Natalie shows up to free Denbury. It added nothing, you could take that part out and just had Natalie show up and wait for the devil and had the same outcome.
I ended up liking enough that I will probably give the second book a try. The society and what part Maggy ends up playing has potential to bring me back.

Rating: 3.5

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine. It's a weekly event that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.
The Crimson Crown (The Seven Realms #4)
by Cinda Williams Chima
published by Hyperion 
expected release date: October 23, 2012

Summary: A thousand years ago, two young lovers were betrayed— Alger Waterlow to his death, and Hanalea, Queen of the Fells, to a life without love.
     Now, once again, the queendom of the Fells seems likely to shatter apart. For young queen Raisa ana’Marianna, maintaining peace even within her own castle walls is nearly impossible. Tension between wizards and Clan has reached a fevered pitch. With surrounding kingdoms seeking to prey on the Fells’ inner turmoil, Raisa’s best hope is to unite her people against a common enemy. But that enemy might be the person with whom she’s falling in love.
      Navigating the cutthroat world of blueblood politics has never been more dangerous, and former streetlord Han Alister seems to inspire hostility among Clan and wizards alike. His only ally is the queen, and despite the perils involved, Han finds it impossible to ignore his feelings for Raisa. Before long, Han finds himself in possession of a secret believed to be lost to history, a discovery powerful enough to unite the people of the Fells. But will the secret die with him before he can use it?
      A simple, devastating truth concealed by a thousand-year-old lie at last comes to light in this stunning conclusion to the Seven Realms series.

**I have loved this series from the beginning and am eager to find out how it all ends.

Monday, February 20, 2012

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox is a weekly feature hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren

I was out of town for a family Christmas get together (a little late)and forgot to set this up.

After Midnight (The Youngbloods #1) by Lynn Viehl *I received the 2nd book from netGalley and thought I should start with this one.
BirthMarked (Birthmarked #1) by Caragh M. O'Brien

Th1rteen R3asons Why by Jay Asher *Not my usual type of book but M thought it looked interesting so he bought it and the next for V's Day.
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

That's all for this week. What did you get?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Follow Friday

Follow Friday is now hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of course and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

Q.BeefcakeandBabes Asks: I like unique names for characters and am looking forward to coming up with some when I start writing. What’s the most unique character name you’ve come across?

A. I had trouble with this one. I can't think of one specific name. OK maybe I can, I read a lot of fantasy and sometimes you can look at a name and spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to pronounce it. I like Tavi from Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series and Bitterblue from Kristin Cashore's The Seven Kingdom's.

What's your favorite name?
Please enter the giveaway for Champion of the Sidhe Series here.
Happy Reading and Have a Great Weekend!!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Waiting On Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine. It's a weekly event that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.

Shadow & Bone (The Grisha #1)
by Leigh Bardugo
published by Henry Holt and Co
expected release date: June 5, 2012

Summary: Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near-impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one unlikely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life– a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha… and the secrets of her heart.

**Fantasy and Magic = love in my book...
Don't forget to enter for e-novellas 1-5 of  the "The Champion of the Sidhe" here

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Blog Tour ~ Author Guest Post/Giveaway ~S.A. Archer

Elves Are Awesome

I have loved elves since I was a kid, and not just because they have cool-looking ears. Elves in popular culture and in myths have always been idealized with beauty and grace, not to mention kick-ass fighting skills. The depiction of the elves, especially Legolas Greenleaf, in the Lord of the Rings books and movies, demonstrates all of those qualities. Even the darker version of elves, like Drizzt Do’Urden, the drow hero of several novels for Dungeons and Dragons’ Forgotten Realms campaign setting, spark huge fan followings. Now readers of urban fantasy and paranormal romance are beginning to get a taste of what traditional fantasy fans have always known, with stories ranging from Lauren K Hamilton’s seductive Merry Gentry series to the YA adventures of Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey series.
Elves possess more than beauty and talent in battle. They are the very embodiment of magic. This is especially true for the Sidhe, the noble elves of Celtic mythology. Elves have been credited with magic over almost everything, including the elements, healing, crafts, animals, and even emotions. The legends of the Sidhe in Ireland exulted the more powerful of these elves to the status of deities.
One of the more celebrated of the Sidhe was Lugh, who was worshipped as the god of the sun. He was renowned for his skill in battle, his expertise in craftsmanship, and his leadership in both peace and in war. Because of his skill and dedication to his people, Lugh became known as the Champion of the Sidhe. Even among the Seelie (light) Court, he was known as The Shining One. As a hero among the talented and powerful Sidhe, there were few that could cross purposes with Lugh and win.
The Champion of the Sidhe mini-series follows Lugh in the urban fantasy world of The Sidhe saga. Used to being the hero, Lugh’s heart and pride are decimated when a disaster befalls his people, forcing him from the home he loved in the magical realm known as the Mounds, into to the contemporary world of modern day Ireland. Because of the disaster Lugh’s magic is beginning to Fade, a potentially fatal condition from which he and all of the fey from the Mounds are suffering. Because the fey are weakened, predators such as vampires and human wizards swoop in and start picking them off. Lugh’s self-appointed mission is to restore the magic of the fey and defend his people from extinction.
The first story in the Champion of the Sidhe series is “End of the World,” and it can be downloaded for free from Barnes and Noble, Sony, and Kobo. The Kindle and PDF versions are free from Smashwords.
Giveaway Details:
We are giving away stories 1-5 of the Champion of the Sidhe series. Please leave a comment with a valid email address. 
*Since these are e-books this is open to everyone.
*Must be 13 or older to enter
*following not required but always appreciated
*Author will send out stories 1&2 now and send out 3-5 as they become available
*Giveaway ends on 2/28/12

Monday, February 13, 2012

Blog Tour ~ End of the World ~ Review

End of the World (Champion of the Sidhe #1)
by S.A. Archer
published by Ravynheart Publishing

Summary:The day Lugh, Champion of the Sidhe, has long fought for finally manifests; all Sidhe unified under one Court. No more Light versus Dark. No more wars. Brothers, one and all. But on the day that should be celebrated as their greatest triumph, treachery brings his world crashing down, literally. Now if he can’t find a way to stop it no fey will survive.

My Thoughts: S.A. Archer has created a mini series told in a collection of short stories. The story is told from three POVs; The Seelie, The Unseelie, and The Outcasts.

Champion of the Sidhe     Rise of the Unseelie      Touched
End of the World                Aftershock                       Cursed
Champion of the Fey          Scars of Silver                 Addicted

The three series can be read separately from each other but for optimal effect the author suggests the following reading order (there will be a total of 5 stories in each series).

End of the World, Aftershock, Cursed, Champion of the Fey, Addicted, Scars of Silver

**I enjoyed this story of how the All Mother died causing the Mounds to collapse and Lugh finding out there may be a way to save the Fey.

Rating: 4 I think this is going to be better as a whole
Come back tomorrow to find out how to get your own copy of End of the World and enter for a chance to win stories 2-5 of Champion of the Sidhe. Also, S.A. Archer will have a guest post on why Elves are Awesome.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Follow Friday

Follow Friday is now hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of course and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

Q.What would your prefer: reading your favorite book over and over again until you got sick of it OR reading 100s of mediocre books? And why?

A. I sometimes feel I've done both. That being said I would prefer the second because you never know when you're going to find a new favorite. Even nothing you've been reading has been living up to the hype, something can surprise you.
I have the new linky follow option for anyone not on blogger (since GFC will be going away for many) this is a great alternative.
Have a Great Weekend and Happy Reading!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Book Review ~Sweet Venom

Sweet Venom (Medusa Girls #1)
by Tera Lynn Childs
published by Katherine Tigen Books

Summary: Grace just moved to San Francisco and is excited to start over at a new school. The change is full of fresh possibilities, but it’s also a tiny bit scary. It gets scarier when a minotaur walks in the door. And even more shocking when a girl who looks just like her shows up to fight the monster.

Gretchen is tired of monsters pulling her out into the wee hours, especially on a school night, but what can she do? Sending the minotaur back to his bleak home is just another notch on her combat belt. She never expected to run into this girl who could be her double, though.

Greer has her life pretty well put together, thank you very much. But that all tilts sideways when two girls who look eerily like her appear on her doorstep and claim they're triplets, supernatural descendants of some hideous creature from Greek myth, destined to spend their lives hunting monsters.

These three teenage descendants of Medusa, the once-beautiful gorgon maligned by myth, must reunite and embrace their fates in this unique paranormal world where monsters lurk in plain sight.

My Thoughts: I enjoyed this book right up until Greer entered the story. Gretchen and Grace's relationship seemed to be going in the right direction and worked for both of them. I was (still am) intrigued by the guys in their lives. I kept waiting for the author to tell us there was something more about, at least, Nick, Thane, and possibly Milo. When Greer entered she seemed to be your stereotypical rich girl. If the author had kept with this it wouldn't have bothered me as much but two chapters later she is all sister monster fighting and has had a complete personality change. There needed to be more resistance. This story line could have conceivably gone into the second book and still been true to the character.
Overall I liked the story of  Medusa and her descendants. As stated, the guys story has me intrigued to see if there is something more. I will definitely be picking up the next book.

Rating: 3.5

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine. It's a weekly event that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.

Infamous (Chronicles of Nick #3)
by Sherrilyn Kenyon
published by St. Martin's Griffin

Summary: The world has fallen in love with Nick Gautier and the Dark-Hunters. Now Nick’s saga continues in the next eagerly anticipated volume...

Go to school. Get good grades. Stay out of trouble. That’s the mandate for most kids. But Nick Gautier isn’t the average teenager. He’s a boy with a destiny not even he fully understands. And his first mandate is to stay alive while everyone, even his own father, tries to kill him.

He’s learned to annihilate zombies and raise the dead, divination and clairvoyance, so why is learning to drive such a difficulty? But that isn’t the primary skill he has to master. Survival is.

And in order to survive, his next lesson makes all the others pale in comparison. He is on the brink of becoming either the greatest hero mankind has ever known.

Or he’ll be the one who ends the world. With enemies new and old gathering forces, he will have to call on every part of himself to fight or he’ll lose everyone he cares about.

Even himself.

** I love the old funny Nick, so I'm really enjoying this side series to the Dark Hunters

Monday, February 6, 2012

Book Review ~ Shadowcry

Shadowcry (Wintercraft #1)
by Jenna Burtenshaw
published by Greenwillow

Summary: The Night of Souls--when the veil between the living and the dead is thinnest--is only days away.

Albion is at war . . . and losing.

The wardens have descended, kidnapping innocent citizens for their army, but looking for one in particular.

And fifteen-year-old Kate Winters has just raised a blackbird from the dead.

As her home is torn apart by the wardens, Kate's discovery that she is one of the Skilled--the rare people who can cross the veil between life and death--makes her the most hunted person in all of Albion. Only she can unlock the secrets of "Wintercraft," the ancient book of dangerous knowledge. Captured and taken to the graveyard city of Fume--with its secret tunnels and underground villages, and where her own parents met their deaths ten years ago--Kate must harness her extraordinary powers to save herself, her country, and the two men she cares for most. And she'll make a pact with a murderer to do it.

Those who wish to see the dark, be ready to pay your price.

My Thoughts: I liked parts of this book better than I liked it as a whole. The last quarter really saved it.
There was too much time with the capture and transfer of Kate to Fume. It got rather boring when you already knew the outcome just from the summary.
The characters weren't very inspired. I never got the evil feel from Silas. He just seemed tired and I felt sorry for him even before Kate found out the whole story. I did like Kate and saw potential in her character. She was able to take charge and think for herself even in midst of all the strange things that were happening to her.
Da'Ru had the most potential to be the true evil that this story needed. I would rather of had her story throughout the book to add to the suspense and character building, than in some flashes in the last showdown.
Overall the ending saved this for me. I'm curious enough about Wintercraft and Kate's abilities to read the second book.

Rating: 3.5

Sunday, February 5, 2012

In My Mailbox

In My Mailbox is a weekly feature hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren
Not much this week

Dead of Night by Lynn Viehl (Thanks netGalley and Flux Books)

Many Bloody Returns anthology (Tales of Birthdays with Bite)

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs
Darker Still by Leanna Renee Hieber

That's all for this week. Happy Reading!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Follow Friday

Follow Friday is now hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of course and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

Q: Define what characteristics your favorite books share. Do they all have a kick ass heroine or is the hot love interest the Alpha Male?

A: It's a mix for me. There has to be a strong lead character (male or female) that I can get behind but it also has to have excellent world building. If I can't visualize where the characters are then it doesn't matter how great they may be, it still falls flat.

Have a Great Weekend and Happy Reading!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday ~ Bitterblue

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine. It's a weekly event that spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.

Bitterblue (The Seven Kingdoms #3)
by Kristin Cashore
published by Dial
expected release date: May 1, 2012

Summary: Eight years after Graceling, Bitterblue is now queen of Monsea. But the influence of her father, a violent psychopath with mind-altering abilities, lives on. Her advisors, who have run things since Leck died, believe in a forward-thinking plan: Pardon all who committed terrible acts under Leck’s reign, and forget anything bad ever happened. But when Bitterblue begins sneaking outside the castle—disguised and alone—to walk the streets of her own city, she starts realizing that the kingdom has been under the thirty-five-year spell of a madman, and the only way to move forward is to revisit the past. Two thieves, who only steal what has already been stolen, change her life forever. They hold a key to the truth of Leck’s reign. And one of them, with an extreme skill called a Grace that he hasn’t yet identified, holds a key to her heart.

**I've been waiting forever for this book to come out, glad it's finally here. I would definitely recommend this series (book 1, Graceling).
links go to Goodreads