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October 29, 2011


imageTitle: Ashes (Arson #2)
Author: Estevan Vega
Publisher: Stone Gate Ink
Release Date: September 27, 2011
Received From: Publisher via Teen {Book} Scene

Summary:  More than three months have passed since Arson and Emery were taken. Taken and then separated. And experimented on. Salvation Asylum is more like a prison than a psychiatric facility. Unknowingly, Arson has become a vital instrument in a campaign set to genetically alter mankind. Enraged, confused, trapped, and unable to fully manifest his abilities, he wonders if he will ever see Emery again. His new existence is one crawling with questions. Is Grandma alive? Where does the fire come from? Can he become more than a monster? In Ashes, book two of the ARSON series, nightmare and reality collide as Arson must embrace what he is and the haunting realization that there may be others out there, others like him.


This book in a small way reminds me of Possession by Elena Johnson, in that Arson is taken because of his special abilities and they want to use him as a weapon of sorts.

I did like this book it was fast paced and I always wanted to know what was going to happen next. I also liked all of the characters and how seamlessly they were put together. I enjoyed learning about his parents and their trials as well and seeing and understanding the motivations of the scientists.

Overall a good book that I think would appeal to boy and girls alike.









October 28, 2011

Character This or That; Arson

imageToday I have with me Arson from Estevan Vega’s books Arson and Ashes to talk about his preferences for different things.

Handwritten manuscripts or Typed? 

I like handwritten manuscripts because it allows me to see all the scribbles in the margins. You get a sense for how the writer imagines his or her world, where the writer stumbled on thoughts, had run-on sentences, or maybe was getting tired so their handwriting got sloppy. It's like a sketch, you know? It shows the imperfection of the writer. It's actually kinda cool. 

Spring or Fall? 

I'm goin' with fall. I never felt all that comfortable in the spring. I get these crazy allergies and start sniffling like crazy come April. Trust me, so not fun. Not to mention, it's made my ability come out unexpectedly a few times. There was this time when there was too much pollen in the air, so I sneezed, and a snot full of fire singed my nostrils coming out, ended up burning some flowers. And another time during some heavy rains, this old woman stared me down for five godawful minutes because it was causing the heat to literally come off my clothes. In the fall, life's more laid back. You get to see the colors of the leaves changing. There's this smell that enters the air, and you feel, I don't know...free. 

Mountains or Beaches?

Mountains, for sure. I like to get lost sometimes. I live in a cabin on this lake in Connecticut. Sometimes I wander off. Grandma hates it, but I don't care. If it were up to her I wouldn't have a life at all. Trust me, it's real easy to go stir crazy in a cabin if you stay there too long. Truthfully, I've never actually been around any of the crazy high mountains, but there's this park in Hamden called Sleeping Giant. I hiked up there once a few years back, almost fell off the side of the hiking path. The fall might have killed me. Guess I was lucky. I know, the most dangerous thing on a beach is the likely hood that Jaws will come out of the water and chomp on your leg, but being on a mountain just calls to mind so much more of the raw humanity that makes you feel alive. 

Hardcover or Paperback? 

I think in theory, hardbacks are cool. They look all professional and on and on. But they're usually overpriced and you can't bend the books as easily. I have this copy of The Great Gatsby, one from way back, and it's under my mattress at the cabin. It's got tattered pages, and if I squint really hard, I can make out some scribbled out words someone penciled in ages ago. I've read that paperback a thousand times it seems. I know the pages. I can fold the cover and it bends back. Hardbacks just seem like big, dead things to me. 

Rain or Snow?

Snow. I was born in December. The winter gets a bad rap all the time, but I swear it's undeserved. Sure, people tend to get in crazy accidents when it snows, but maybe if theimagey just drove a little more carefully or a little slower, they'd still be alive. Don't blame the weather. Anyway, snow reminds me of my birthday, of Christmas. I mean, it hasn't been all that warm and embracing in the cabin since...well, for a while, but despite the chill, the snow, all white and carefree as it falls, reminds me there's still hope out there, even if you might have to look past the cold. 

Coffee or Tea?

I don't much like either. Over the years, I've learned to tolerate Grandma's tea. She's like an addict. If Starbucks didn't have the market, I swear Grandma would go in someplace big and make a ton of cash selling fancy teas to yuppies and yoga freaks. She always says it cleanses her senses and makes her feel all right. I say, whatever. Iced tea isn't so bad, the sweetened kind anyway. I like sweet stuff, like Birch Beer or Root Beer. And I'll even admit to enjoying the smell of Hazelnut coffee. Just don't ask me to try any...I might puke. 

Thanks Arson!

If you want to learn more about Arson be sure to check out Arson, and Ashes by Estevan Vega. Here is the synopsis of Arson:

Arson Gable feels like a freak. He can create fire. He never asked for it. He never wanted it. But he can't shut it off. Before now, three things were true: he both loved and despised his grandmother; his life was going nowhere; and he was alone. But when a strange girl—who feels more normal behind a mask than inside her own skin—moves in next door, Arson hopes to find something he's never had: purpose. Using what he fears most about himself, Arson must face his consuming past and confront the nightmare that is his present as he walks the fine line between boy and monster. Dark, moody, and breathtakingly relevant, Arson, the chilling chronicle of an isolated boy with unimaginable ability, is sure to ignite the hearts and minds of a new generation.

And be sure to check out my review later this week!






October 19, 2011

The Vision (The Mark 2)

imageTitle: The Vision (The Mark #2)
Author: Jen Nadol
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Release Date: September 27, 2011
Received Via: Teen {Book} Scene

Cassie Renfield knows the mark tells her when someone is going to die and that she can intervene and attempt to change fate. But she still doesn't understand the consequences, especially whether saving one life dooms another. With no family left to offer guidance, Cassie goes in search of others like her. But when she meets Demetria, a troubled girl who seems to have the power of the Fates, Cassie finds the truth isn't at all what she expected. And then there's her heady new romance with bad boy Zander. Dating him has much graver repercussions than she could ever have imagined, forcing Cassie to make choices that cut to the essence of who she is and what she believes.


This series brings up a lot of ethical questions and really makes you think about what you would do if put into that situation. I mean if you knew that someone was going to die that day but if you prevented then from dying someone would die in their place, what would you do? Cassie is put in that situation all the time.

This makes this a sort of morbid book, so if you are looking for something light or fluffy this is not the series to read. But if you want to investigate that part of you and to wonder what you would do then I definitely document it.

I liked the incorporation of Zander into the storyline he really added more mystery as well as another angle to the situation. I also just liked what he added to Cassie’s thought possessed and in some cases making her less stressed and morbid. I felt like he was a better love interest than Lucas in that he actually had a purpose.

I wish the whole Jack storyline had been brought up more and I can’t wait to see what happens with them because I love him!

Overall I liked this book but I wish more had happened, I mean we learn more but I guess I just wish for a little more action and maybe it moving a little faster. It was very thought provoking though!




See what books Cassie would read in her spare time.

Read my review of The Mark






Waiting on Wednesday: The Traitor and the Tunnel

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that I’m eagerly anticipating.
Title: The Traitor and the Tunnel (The Agency #3)
Author: Y.S. Lee
Pub Date: February 28, 2012
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Queen Victoria has a little problem: there’s a petty thief at work in Buckingham Palace. Mary Quinn takes the simple case, going undercover as a domestic servant. But before long, a scandal threatens to tear apart the Royal Family.
One of the Prince of Wales’s irresponsible young friends is killed in disgraceful circumstances. Should the Queen hush things up or allow justice to take its course? Mary’s interest in this private matter soon becomes deeply personal: the killer, a drug-addicted Chinese sailor, shares a name with her long-lost father.
Meanwhile, James Easton’s engineering firm is repairing the sewers beneath Buckingham Palace. Trouble is, there’s a tunnel that’s not on the plans. Its purpose is unclear. But it seems to be very much in use.
These overlapping puzzles offer a perfect opportunity for Mary and James to work together again… if they can still trust one another. This is Mary’s most personal case yet and she has everything to lose.

Why I can’t wait!: I adored the other two books in the series (see my review of the second book, The Body at the Tower http://mariah-readingadventure.blogspot.com/2010/08/body-at-tower.html) And I always love a good mystery!

October 17, 2011


imageTitle: Frost
Author: Marianna Baer
Publisher: Balzer & Bray (Harper Collins)
Release Date: September 13, 2011
Received From: Publisher in return for a honest review

Leena Thomas’s senior year at boarding school begins with a shock: Frost House, her cozy dorm of close friends, has been assigned an unexpected roommate: confrontational, eccentric Celeste Lazar. But while Leena’s anxiety about a threat to her sanctuary proves valid, it becomes less and less clear whether the threat lies with her new roommate, within Leena’s own mind, or within the very nature of Frost House itself. Mysterious happenings in the dorm, an intense triangle between Leena, Celeste, and Celeste’s brother, and the reawakening of childhood fears, all push Leena to take increasingly desperate measures to feel safe. Frost is the story of a haunting. As to whether the demons are supernatural or psychological . . . well, which answer would let you sleep at night?


I received this book right before i went to college. I found this ironic because while I am living in a huge dorm, the whole living with different people and the oddness of living in an old building I could totally relate to. Also I was hoping that my dorm was nothing like Frost House. (It’s not Smile)

This book was creepy, but not overly, I mean if you stopped and thought about what was going on then yeah, but if you just read through it, it’s not scary till the end. (But I’m a huge wimp so take that into account.) It was mostly creepy, like creepy beyond all reason.

The only problem I had with this book was Leena. She was aggravating and dull, in my opinion she had some serious issues that while addressed a little in the book should have been elaborated on. Also it seemed like some of the stuff she did that was wrong she wasn’t called out for enough, like maybe it was mentioned but I feel like it should have been a bigger part of the story.

So basically I liked the plot but the characters with the exception of David who I loved. I did enjoy it but I just couldn't get past Leena.

If you want a creepy book for the Halloween season and don’t mind putting up with Leena then I totally recommend this book!





October 13, 2011

Character book picks, Cassie from The Vision

imageToday I have with me Jen Nadol author of The Mark and The Vision. To talk about Cassie’s favorite books!

Cassie’s a thinker by nature, but faced with the “gift” and decisions she has to make, gravitates toward the dark and serious….

Firestarter by Stephen King. She’s a big fan of Stephen King and this story about a little girl with a dangerous power she doesn’t know how to use would have a special place in her heart.

White Oleander by Janet Fitch – A great story about a young girl forced to grow up too fast when her mother’s choices leave her basically on her own. Like Cassie.

Atonement or Saturday by Ian McEwan. Morose books with themes that would fascinate Cassie - the effect of bad choices and what can happen in a day to completely change a life.

On the Beach by Nevil Shute. Nuclear war has happened on the other side of the globe and it’s only a matter of time before radiation drifts to Australia - where the story is set - obliterating life. The story is about what people do when they know death is imminent.

And finally…

The Boyfriend List by E. Lockhart. Because when you spend a chunk of your time dealing with death like Cassie does, sometimes you just want to lighten up. This book was fun!

Thanks! I love knowing what books different characters would read, it helps me to understand them even better!

To find out more about Cassie be sure to pick up The Vision! Available now, and be sure to check out my review coming soon!






October 7, 2011


So I don’t normally do this, I figure you see the new covers all over the blogosphere but I am just SOOOO excited that I have to share this!




From Kristin Cashore’s website;

“Bitterblue will be released on May 1, 2012 in the USA, Canada, UK, Australia, and New Zealand. It will be released on the same day in a few other countries/languages as well; I'll supply that information when I have it.

A few reasons I love the (USA/Canada) cover above: It feels like Bitterblue (the character) to me. The colors have special significance. The keys are a highly appropriate icon (like Katsa's dagger on the Graceling cover). And, the keys look like weapons. :o)”

“A lot of people have asked me why it took so long for me to finish this book. The answer is simple. It's not because I was distracted; it's not because I wasn't working my ass off; it's simply because Bitterblue is longer and more complicated than the other books I've written, and some books require more time than others. The book decides.”

And from Publisher’s Weekly

“The cover to Kristin Cashore’s eagerly awaited third novel is royal blue – fitting since the title character has blue in her name and is the king’s daughter. But, oooh. What’s with those keys: one gold, one silver, one bronze?  

Dial will publish Bitterblue, a companion to Cashore’s bestsellers Graceling (Harcourt, 2008) and Fire (Dial, 2009) on May 1, 2012 but this first look at the cover ought to tantalize her many fans.

The novel, which has an announced first printing of 200,000 copies and clocks in at a hefty 576 pages, picks up eight years after Graceling,with Bitterblue now 18 and the reigning queen of Monsea. Cashore says the story constitutes more of a companion than a strict sequel. Graceling fans, however, will likely be thrilled to learn that the heroine of that book – the different-colored-eyed Katsa – returns in Bitterblue, as does her lover, Po.

Other characters from Graceling appear, too, most notably (and unavoidably, since he is Bitterblue’s father), the nefarious King Leck, the only character who appears in both Graceling and Fire.

For Cashore, the completion of her third novel allows her to take a deep breath – of relief. “Fire was such an emotionally hard book for me to write that when I started Bitterblue I vowed to write something light and fun,” Cashore said. “I was well into it before I had the realization that if light and fun is what you’re after you probably shouldn’t have a main character whose father murdered her mother.””

I am soooooo excited! I loved Graceling and have been eagerly waiting for this book! I even wondered if it was going to actually come. I’m so happy it finally has a release date! I’m sure it will be worth the wait!