Home       Disclaimer       Criteria       Review Policy       Contact       About       Reviews       An Adventurer's Guide to What to Read!

December 4, 2015

I'm back!

Hey guys! I know its been a while but this semester will be over next week and then I will be back with a bunch of reviews and discussions! Thanks for hanging in there!

September 26, 2015

First & Then blog tour and Giveaway!


Today I have the pleasure of having Emma Mills author of First & Then stop by for the First & Then blog tour which is set up like superlatives. The superlative I got was favorite secondary character! So I asked Emma who some of her favorite secondary characters were and here is what she said!



Sometimes you read a book and the secondary characters are so awesome, you want to read a whole book about them too! To me, secondary characters really serve to cement the world of the protagonist, and to bring more depth or humor or angst or complexity to it.

Some of my very favorite secondary characters in YA are:


- Reagan (Fangirl, Rainbow Rowell) – the best grumpy college roommate you could ask for!

- Wylan (Six of Crows, Leigh Bardugo) – beautiful cinnamon roll too good for this world, too pure.

- Tiny Cooper (Will Grayson Will Grayson, David Levithan and John Green) – a secondary character so legendary, he does indeed get his own book!

- Luna Lovegood (Harry Potter series, J.K. Rowling) – she is just THE BEST. I would love another seven-part series that just follows Luna’s day-to-day adventures!

I love both Luna and Wylan so I definitly agree with Emma! Some of my favorite secondary charcters include:

George Holly from The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater- He just adds so much to the book.

Cilla from The Royal We By Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan- She is an amazig friend and makes great comments. 

Sturmhond from Siege and Storm and Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo- Just yes. Give him his own book!!!

Be sure to check out the rest of this awesome blog tour! Fill out the rafflecopter below to enter to win a copy of First & Then! (U.S. only)


a Rafflecopter giveaway

August 30, 2015

Summer Blogger Promo Tour Wrap-Up!

Hi guys today is the wrap up for the Summer Blogger Promo Tour! I had a lot of fun getting to know some new bloggers and learning more about them! i had some issues but mostly had a blast! It is really hard for me to pick my favorite post but I think Melissa's about Trading Systems in YA was one of my favorites for sure! I hope to be able to participate again!

August 9, 2015

Summer Blogger Promo Tour #6 Melissa from the Reader and the Chef

Week 6 of the Summer Blogger Promo Tour and i'm so excited to have Melissa from The Reader and the Chef stop by and talk about something close to her heart!

Hi guys! I'm Melissa from The Reader and the Chef. I'm thrilled to be here in A Reader's Adventure to share with you my thoughts about the trading systems in YA books! Huge thanks to Mariah for giving me a wonderful topic that sure made me think. (Apologies in advance for the long-ish post. I got excited.) :)


People around me, especially non-readers, are constantly asking me - what do you gain from reading YA books? This is more focused on the fact that I study Foreign Trade & Customs, which means I pretty much know (or am supposed to know) all about how to sell goods, what taxes must be paid when importing or exporting, and also on how to get to know or interact with potential buyers and sellers. So really, what does my career have to do with reading books or book blogging? More especifically, do YA books teach me or help me out with my career?

Why yes, they do in fact. I've learned lots with YA books. Focused on my career, I've learned to understand how places and their diverse culture work, how they survive and get along to satisfy their needs. Even though most cultures in YA literature are fictional, their foundation is not. Aliens or humans, angels or demons, vampires or werewolves, and all other type of beings, are tied down to the same things. No matter what year they are, society in general will always have the same needs too. They have to satisfy hunger, thirst, clothing, etc.

The trading systems in YA books to satisfy these needs actually have an important part in the storyline. For example, the trading system in The Hunger Games. I know, pretty cliché, but it's one of my favorites. In District 12, whenever people want to get ahold of something they desperately need - wether it's food or clothing - they opt in to trade whatever they have with people at The Hob (which is like the black market to them). Even though it's illegal, I like how it works. It's kind of back to basics. You go in, trade game for soap, yarn, or anything else that is a fair exchange. Money is of no use there. Also, you have to know about the people who trade inside The Hob, or even outside, really. Like Peeta's father who has a thing for squirrels and would trade for bread IF his wife isn't around. Best to trade at the back, have to be careful there.

So it all comes down to studying the people. Studying the market. The Capitol's system is a totally different matter. It's a richer economy, though I'm not that familiar with it to be honest. Just nutsy people sponsoring The Hunger Games. Not much to see there. Oh, but Finnick's was interesting! He preferred secrets as a way of payment instead of money. Smart, since he found more use for them than to money.

In historical or fantasy books, it's almost a sure thing that society is ruled by one or more kingdoms. This one is much easier to understand and semi-rudimentary. Gold is generally the "coin" in which people buy their goods, but if we're talking about how to determine wealth, you only have to seek out those who own lots of lands (that is, if they are not the kings, queens or other royalty). In kingdoms, there's usually a famous street in which those of upper class go to buy expensive food, silk and other items. The people who run the stores are middle class, and those who work behind the stores, like hired seamstresses and worksmiths, are lower class.



What I love about the trading system in historical/fantasy books is that you will, at one point or another, come across a scene in which street vendors will yell at you or shove into your face the products they are selling. My inner trading-self squeals every time this happens. It's kind of funny because the same thing happens in real life too. Ever gone to swap-meets? Crazy place where they sell you ANYTHING. Kind of like a mild and legal black market. Ha.

Anyway, this trading system reminds me of the one we read about in The Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa. It's in that time when Ash is trying to get Meghan out of Winter and takes her through a hidden fey market. Instead of coin, here they ask for your full name, firstborn, voice, dreams, and basically your soul if you want something. Word of advice: NEVER bargain with the tricky fey!

As for sci-fi books, and some other dystopian books, it's just a matter of how technologically advanced they are. Like in Beth Revis' The Body Electric. They use these cuffs on their wrists that work as your I.D., money, social media/internet access, and so many other possibilities. My mind gets a bit dizzy just by thinking about it. If you don't wear these cuffs, you can't pay for food or clothes or transit. Society is bound by these little devices and it's usually the way how the government controls them and knows where you are AT ALL TIMES. Let that sink in for a bit if you thought that was cool.

So you see, the trading systems inside of YA books do play a big HUGE part in books. They are always tightly tied to the government, but of course, they can be studied separately as well. Now I wish I had chosen this topic for my thesis! Now excuse me while I go show off this post to my friends and family so they can see yet another reason why YA books are AWESOME and not a waste of time. They sure can expand your horizons!
Big thanks again to Mariah for having me on her blog today! *Hugs*

Thanks for stopping by Melissa! Here is some more about her!

Melissa is a 21 year old book blogger and reviewer, currently studying Foreign Trade and Customs in Mexico. Her favorite genres are fantasy, paranormal, contemporary, and basically all things young adult with a hint of romance. She also enjoys reading new adult books and classic literature from time to time. When she's not reading, she loves to sing out loud, eat sweets, stare at her collection of books and daydream about marrying one of her favorite book boyfriends. You can find her at her book blog The Reader and the Chef, at Kate Tilton, Connecting Authors & Readers, and stalking her author friends and bloggers as @MeliRobles.

August 8, 2015

School for Sidekicks review and giveaway!

Title: School for Sidekicks
Author: Kelly McCullough
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Release Date: August 4, 2015
Received From: Publisher as part of a book tour. Does not effect my review.

Synopsis: Being a hero isn't always what it's cracked up to be in this funny and genuine novel from adult fantasy author Kelly McCullough.
Evan Quick is a GIANT superhero geek who dreams of one day becoming a superhero himself. Every morning he checks to see if he's developed his powers overnight, and every day there's nothing. No flying, no super strength, no invulnerability—that always hurts to check—no telepathy, no magic. Not even the ability to turn off the alarm clock without smacking the switch.
But then Evan somehow manages to survive a supervillian's death ray, and is sent to the Academy for Metahuman Operatives. Unfortunately, his new school is not what he expected, and instead of fighting bad guys, Evan finds himself blacklisted, and on the wrong side of the school's director. If Evan ever wants to realize his dream, he must convince his "mentor" Foxman, a semi-retired has-been, to become a real hero once again.

 Review: Do you remember the movie Sky High? Well if you haven't seen it I recommnd it. But if you liked that movie I think you will enjoy School for Sidekicks.

This is a fun book where a kid who adores superheroes actually beocmes one, and it is nothing like he would have imagined. Evan was funny and you could tell he really wanted to do the right thing. Also I liked the friends he made while at AMO.

The mythology of the superpowers in this book was very interesting. I liekd getting to understand it better and digging deeper into what was going on. I do think that the back of the book gives a little too much away though.

Overall I liked this book, it was fun, fast paced and interesting. If you are a fan of superhero stories then I think this is a book for you!

Enter to win a copy:

US only
ends 8/20/15


a Rafflecopter giveaway

August 2, 2015

Summer Blogger Promo Tour Week 5: Ri from Hiver et Cafe



Today I have the pleasure of having Ri from Hiver et Cafe as part of the Summer Blogger Promo Tour to talk about some of her favorite crime shows!

Hi everyone! I'm Ri from Hiver et Cafe, where I blog about books, places I go and other things like that!

Today on Mariah's blog, I'm going to be sharing about some of my favourite crime shows and also talk about books that I also enjoy that go along with these shows.

WHITE COLLAR is one of those shows that I absolutely adore. It's about Neal Caffrey, a professional con artist who strikes a deal with an FBI agent to be let into their custody and help them solve cases. There's just something about con artist characters that I love. They're charming and intelligent and use their wits to commit their crimes. Neal Caffrey, played by Matt Bomer, is always wearing tailored suits and he's quite easy on the eyes. ;)

The book that I think that matches up well with this show is the HEIST SOCIETY series by Ally Carter. Although there isn't a charming con man in this novel, it is about a family that is well known for their heists from museums and the like. There is a swoony love interest as well though!

Another crime show that I love is CRIMINAL MINDS. I mean, who doesn't love Criminal Minds? It's pretty much a procedural, but it's still very dramatic and exciting. My favourite character in the show is Dr. Spencer Reid, a young genius on the team who can read super fast and he's just adorably awkward.

Instead of a book that relates to the show, I'm choosing a book that sort of relates to Spencer Reid. In one episode, he was given a copy of an Arthur Conan Doyle novel, which made me think of the fantastic YA Sherlock Holmes novel, EVERY BREATH by Ellie Marney! I adore the books in that series and Holmes is definitely kinda swoony. ;)

Another show that I adore is PERSON OF INTEREST. It starts out as a crime procedural, which I love, but then it became a lot about the ethics of artificial intelligence and a whole lot darker. It's SO GREAT. Y'all should really watch it. It's really long since there are several seasons of it already, but it's truly truly worth it.

A book that I'm pairing with this show is PARTIALS by Dan Wells. It's a novel that deals with the aftermath of artificial intelligence and it was a fun novel to read. It's more of a post apocalyptic novel than anything, but it still deals with artificial intelligence and a little bit of the ethics involved though not as deeply as something like Person of Interest.

Thank you so much to Mariah for having me on her blog!

Thanks for coming Ri! I love crime shows so I'm excited to try some of them out!

Here is some more about Ri!


My name is Sabrina, but I go by Ri.

I'm a Canadian teenager who is still studying her butt off in school. I enter my first year of University this year and I couldn't be more nervous. Due to my state of being a student, I try and make time to read as much as I can in between classes and homework and such things.

I've been a heavy reader since I was a child and like my obsessions, books had faded into the background of my life for some time. I was reading, just not as heavily. However, with the discovery of book blogs, I was instantly hooked and created this blog, Hiver et Café in January of 2014. The blog is named after two great loves in my life: Winter and Coffee.

So clearly, two things that I'm interested in are coffee and the winter time. Some other things that I love are crime shows (I have an unhealthy obsession), nail polish, Kpop, makeup, travelling (any chance I have to travel, I'll gladly take it), manga, Disney, graphic design and photography. There are probably other things too, but I am out of ideas at the moment.

July 26, 2015

Summer Blogger Promo Tour Week 4: The Book Bratz


Today is the 4th week of the Summer Blogger Promo Tour and I'm excited to have the hosts of the tour stopping by to talk about blogging with their best friend!

Hey there! We're Amber and Jessica, co-bloggers and longtime friends over at The Book Bratz. Mariah invited us over here today to do a guest post on what it's like to blog as best friends! We've known each other since Kindergarten and have been blogging together for the past two years - so we have a lot of fun experiences that we're excited to talk about.:)

Jessica's Opinion:
I think the fact that Amber and I are friends outside of the internet realm helps the blog tremendously. Our blogging relationship doesn't solely exist through texting and Twitter - every morning, I'll check stuff going on at the blog, and then instead of having to text Amber about it, we can have a discussion about it face to face. We get more done that way. We also get to go to book events such as BookCon together, go shopping for giveaway stuff for the blog, and just grow and learn about blogging with one another! It's a totally different experience when the person you work with is somebody that you know beyond blogging. Being known as "those two nerdy girls who run some sort of internet thing" is always fun, too. xD No matter where Amber and I may be - school, work, out to dinner, a college fair, sitting at home, or even junior prom - we find time to discuss the blog and giveaways and all of that fun stuff. There's never a time where we're together and don't talk about The Book Bratz one way or another.

Amber's Opinion:
I am not a calm person. I get ranty, and pissed off. No one else understands the blog stuff so she talks me down from it. It has bought us closer together as friends and I know that when we go away to college we won't loose contact with each other. with ARCs we just drop them off to each others houses, and now that Jessica drives she likes to scare my brother into thinking she is going to kidnap him. Most of out actually free time is wrapped up in the blog now, so she is always leaving notes on my posts to fix things. She might as well be sitting right next to me. The Book Bratz would not be running if it wasn't for Jess!

So, those are our thoughts on what it's like to blog together! If you're considering finding a co-blogger, it's definitely the way to go. Not only do you have someone on board to help you with the workload, but you get to share fun experiences together, too!

We'd like to thank Mariah for having us today and we hope that you all enjoy the rest of the Summer Blogger Promo Tour! Come stop by our blog sometime and leave a comment - we'd love to talk to you. For now, another huge thank you to Mariah and we hope you all check back here every Sunday to meet more awesome bloggers!

Amber & Jessica are both high school girls and longtime good friends. They started The Book Bratz back in 2014 and spent all of their free time reading and fangirling about books. Some of their favorite activities include reading, writing, sleeping, eating, and texting (duh). Today, The Book Bratz and its followers have grown tremendously and they’re super excited to be the co-hosts of the 2015 Summer Blogger Promo Tour! Drop on by to www.thebookbratz.blogspot.com and say hi - it’s always a good time!

July 19, 2015

Summer Blogger Promo Tour Week 3: Caught Read Handed


It is week 3 of the Summer Blogger Promo Tour! I hope you guys have been having as much fun reading these guest posts as I have been! Today I have Stefani from Caught Read Handed!


Hi, everyone! My name is Stefani, and I’m the blogger behind Caught Read Handed. When Mariah asked me if I’d like to write a post about something I’d love to recreate from a book if I had unlimited resources, my mind went wild with ideas. Should I build my own Hogwarts? My own Batmobile? My own time machine? The possibilities are endless and I could list ideas forever and ever.

But I had to pick ONE. Somehow, I had to pick one. I decided to go with a teleportation device. I haven’t chosen one from a single book, but teleportation shows up in fiction from as far back as the original Aladdin tale (probably even way before that) to now, in books like Harry Potter, Jumper, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Star Trek, and a million other books.

I’ve been lucky enough to be a worldwide traveler; not only have I been to about ¾ of the States, but I’ve also been to Scotland, England, Ireland, Spain, and Italy. Because of this, I have friends from all over the world. How cool would it be to be instantly transported to a pub in Scotland to hang out with my best friend or to that beach in Spain that I loved so much or to Chicago to visit family? It’d be amazing to step onto a platform and find myself in a place I’ve never been before but always wanted to see like Reykjavik or Thailand? I’m a wanderer through and through and I love visiting new places and meeting new people and exploring the world.

If I had unlimited resources, I would hands down build a teleporter. I’d pay the smartest scientists in the world whatever they wanted to develop that technology. Plus, I wouldn’t be stingy with my teleporter. You’d all be able to use it too! Come with me to China or Seattle or Hawaii or wherever. Let’s go!


Thanks so much for having me, Mariah! 

What a cool idea! Here is more about Stefani!

Hi! My name is Stefani, and I’m a mismatched socks, overflowing bookshelves, pot of coffee a day, Sonic Screwdriver, paint all over my fingers, rock-paper-scissors-lizard-Spock kind of girl with alopecia. I have a master’s degree in Publishing Studies from the University of Stirling in Scotland. I am a Youth Services Specialist at a library in Mississippi. I also work remotely as a publicity assistant for a publisher and write reviews of books, comics, and TV shows for WatchPlayRead. When I’m not doing one of those things, I can be found with my nose in a book. If it wasn’t clear enough already: I love books.



Find her on her BLOG, and on TWITTER!

July 12, 2015

Summer Blogger Promo Tour Week 2: Jillian's Books!


Today on the second week of the Summer Blogger Promo Tour I have Jillian from Jillian's Books! Shes here to match some songs to their book soulmate!


3 Songs That Perfectly Match 3 Books
     1)Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson
-- Song: Gale Song by The Lumineers
-- Description: Second Chance Summer is an incredibly heartbreaking book that narrates
    the story of Taylor Edwards. For one summer, she is given a second chance to do every-
    thing right, to fix all the stuff she had left br
oken in the past, to relive the memories of 
    the past…To recreate the relationships she thought could never mend at all.

    But it isn’t also just about those things. Taylor’s father has cancer, and he only has months
    left to live. With those remaining months left, Taylor is not quite sure if she is ready to say
    goodbye with the only summer she has left to make everything right.

    “Gale Song” by The Lumineers perfectly fits the story! This sad song is about letting go out
    of love, and I think it perfectly portrays the relationship between Taylor and her father.

2      2)Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor
-- Song: Faith (When I Let You Down) by Taking Back Sunday
-- Description: Laini Taylor’s book not only showcases its fantasy aspects, but also a brilliant
    and heartwarming relationship between an angel and a devil – namely, Karou and Akiva.
    Throughout, both characters undergo different circumstances that test their belief, faith,
    and love for each other.

    Personally, I find Taking Back Sunday’s song (WHICH I LOVE) a reflection of the crumbl-
    ing faith the two have for each other, and the many personal ways how one would fight
    to maintain their faith and relationship whole once again.
   

     3)T he Fault in our Stars by John Green
-- Song: Dream by Priscilla Ahn
-- Description: In TFIOS, we see two cancer patients fall for each other in spite of their
    health getting in the way. Despite the two’s illnesses, Hazel and Augustus still continued
    to live life as if their days were never numbered at all.

    Priscilla Ahn’s beautiful song truly shows Hazel’s and Augustus’s intentions of living life to
    to the fullest and becoming ready of whatever comes next in life.





ABOUT THE BLOGGER



I'm Jillian, and I'm 14 years old. I come from Manila, Philippines, and I have a huge love for reading and writing. I love making new friends so don't hesitate to talk to me!





CONNECT WITH JILLIAN!

Blog | Twitter | Goodreads |

July 5, 2015

Summer Blog Tour Promo Week 1: Sassy & Dangerous!



Hi guys! This summer I am participating in the Summer Blog Promo Tour! So over the next eight Sundays I will have a blogger stop by and do a post that will give you a little insight into them and their reading habits. Hopefully you will meet some great new bloggers! Also I will be posting on a different blog each Sunday as well so be sure to follow along! 


First I have Talina from Sassy & Dangerous!



Hi everyone! My name is Talina and I am a book blogger over at Sassy & Dangerous. I’m so excited to be participating in this Summer Blog Tour Promo! It’s such a fun way to connect with other bloggers and readers that have the same interests as me…books! But instead of talking about books today, I’m going to talk about the four major places I want to travel to. I’m also very excited that I get to stop by Mariah’s blog because it is absolutely beautiful and will definitely be blog stalking her! So without further a due, here are my top four places I want to visit!





Gruinard Bay, Scotland
Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve always wanted to visit Scotland. It is such a beautiful country and I know for a fact that if I visited there, I would never want to leave. Recently I read a book called Kitty Hawk and the Icelandic Intrigue by Iain Reading and the main character in the book was in Scotland for a few weeks. After reading it, I fell even more in love with the country and I am 100% positive I will go one day!











London
 
Do I need to explain any further? Just look at that gorgeous picture! London has been at the top of my “to travel” list for a long time now. I mean, who wouldn’t want to visit a place where there are hot guys with accents? ;)

Bora Bora

Living in Mexico, I am very accustomed to the ocean and the beach, so when I see pictures like these, my heart aches out of happiness because all I can think about is how one day I will be visiting this beautiful island and will probably never want to leave. Doesn’t it look breathtaking?! Absolutely beautiful!

Ireland
Just like Scotland, I find the country of Ireland to be gorgeous with it’s beautiful castles, the scenery and let’s not forget the hot guys and their accents! I will definitely be in heaven!

That was so much fun! Let’s just say I was stuck on Pinterest for a LONG time trying to find just the right picture and also getting a bit distracted. What can I say? I really love that site! ;) Thank you so much Mariah for having me and to everyone that is reading! Feel free to stop by my blog because I love meeting new readers and connecting!


ABOUT THE BLOGGER:

Ever since she was a little girl, Talina has always had a fascination with books. By the time she turned fourteen, she created her book blog Sassy & Dangerous and has now been blogging for over a year now. When she isn't fangirling about books and Dwayne Johnson, she can be found baking up a storm in the kitchen, on Netflix or writing up ideas for another one of her stories!


July 3, 2015

Summer Blogger Promo Tour!


This year I am participating in the Summer Blogger Promo Tour hosted by The Book Bratz. So for the next eight Sundays I will be promoting a different blog and they will be stopping by with a guest post so we can find out all about them! These are the bloggers I am going to be promoting this summer!


Be sure to follow along with them as well to see more guest posts from them as well as me!
I think this is going to be a lot of fun!

June 24, 2015

Joyride by Anna Banks

Title: Joyride
Author: Anna Banks
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Release Date: June 2, 2015
Received From: Publisher in return for a honest review

Synopsis: A popular guy and a shy girl with a secret become unlikely accomplices for midnight pranking, and are soon in over their heads—with the law and with each other—in this sparkling standalone from NYT-bestselling author Anna Banks.
It’s been years since Carly Vega’s parents were deported. She lives with her brother, studies hard, and works at a convenience store to contribute to getting her parents back from Mexico.
Arden Moss used to be the star quarterback at school. He dated popular blondes and had fun with his older sister, Amber. But now Amber’s dead, and Arden blames his father, the town sheriff who wouldn’t acknowledge Amber's mental illness. Arden refuses to fulfill whatever his conservative father expects.
All Carly wants is to stay under the radar and do what her family expects. All Arden wants is to NOT do what his family expects. When their paths cross, they each realize they’ve been living according to others. Carly and Arden’s journey toward their true hearts—and one another—is funny, romantic, and sometimes harsh.

 Review:
I loved Anna Banks' Syrena Legacy series, so I was really excited when her new book Joyride was announced. Joyride is very different from that series but I enjoyed just the same!

Anna Banks has a big sense of humor and while Joyride deals with serious topics it still has hilarious moments. The main characters have midnight pranking sessions for goodness sake! Arden and Carly's relationship is very different from most relationships I read about. It seemed more realistic in a way. People who don't know each other, to frenimies, to friends, and finally to something more. It was a really realistic progression. Though I wish there had been a little more tension when they got to be friends.

Speaking of serious topics, this book has quite a few. Deportation and immigration are realities for many people and it was nice to see a version in a YA book. I think Carly's parents' expectations of her were a little strong and I think her brother was kind of an ass about it. But I can see why everyone would be so stressed out about getting them back.

Mental illness also plays a role in this book. So trigger warning for suicide. I did think the way that Anna Banks handled the idea of medication and stigma was very good and realistic. I also felt that Arden reacted to Amber's problems in an understandable way. Also his father is the WORST. There is a reveal towards the end of the book that I was not expecting but looking back it should have been obvious. Lets just say I hate Sheriff Moss.

Overall I liked Joyride. Anna Banks did a good job balancing the serious topics with humor. Also I think the topics were handled in a good, responsible way. The only thing I didn't like was I wished there was more in-between in Carly and Arden's relationship, it kind of felt like it came out of left field. Also I felt that Carly's family's expectations seemed a little out there, but that could be reality for all I know.

All that said I definitely recommend Joyride for fans of Sarah Dessen and Jennifer E. Smith. A little less romance, but still very good!


Check out a guest post I did with Anna Banks here
Links to my reviews of  Of Posidon, and Of Triton

June 5, 2015

Love, Fortunes, and Other Disasters by Kimberly Karalius

Title: Love, Fortunes, and Other Disasters
Author: Kimberly Karalius
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Release Date: May 12, 2015
Received From: Publisher in return for a honest review

Synopsis: In the tradition of Alice Hoffman’s Practical Magic, one girl chooses to change her fortune and her fate by falling in love.
Love is real in the town of Grimbaud, and Fallon Dupree has dreamed of attending high school there for years. After all, generations of Duprees have successfully followed the (100% accurate!) love fortunes from Zita’s famous Love Charms Shop to happily marry their high school sweethearts. It’s a tradition. So she is both stunned and devastated when her fortune states that she will NEVER find love.
Fortunately, Fallon isn’t the only student with a terrible love fortune, and a rebellion is brewing. Fallon is determined to take control of her own fate—even if it means working with a notorious heartbreaker like Sebastian.
Will Fallon and Sebastian be able to overthrow Zita’s tyranny and fall in love?

 Review: Love Fortunes and Other Disasters is a cute book that asks the question, what if you knew that you were never going to find love?

In the town of Grimbaud people find out their love fortunes, and they always come true. So what happens when you get a bad one and find that you are going to end up in one of the communities for either Batchelors or Spinsters? Well, one group of high school students wants to take Zita down and prove that her fortunes don't always have to come true.

Fallon is one of those perfect teens. She only wears the nicest clothes (her brother is a  clothing inspector), will only eat the best food (her parents are health inspectors) and always keeps her dorm/apartment spotless. She sometimes came off as a little prissy or like she was a little too good for everyone else, so much so that Sebastian even calls her "Princess" for part of the book. She does have her moments of selflessness, like when she tries to get her best friend's crush to finally notice him. If it wasn't for these moments though she would be a little cloyingly sweet and perfect.

I liked learning about how the charm shop came to be. There is a little back story in the prologue but the whole story doesn't come out until the end. I wish there had been a little more information about the shop and Zita but the ending is a little rushed when it comes to that aspect.

The cast of supporting characters is really fun, Fallon's friends and club mates added to the richness of the story and filled in Grimbaud.

All that being said, I liked this book. It drug at times and rushed at others but when the book was said and done it was a fun, cute read.


May 22, 2015

Joyride Blog tour + Giveway!

Today I have the pleasure of having Anna Banks author of  the Of Poseidon series stop by the blog with a hilarious story of the ultimate April Fool's day. But before that let me tell you a little about Anna's new book Joyride.

Of Triton Anna BanksA popular guy and a shy girl with a secret become unlikely accomplices for midnight pranking, and are soon in over their heads—with the law and with each other—in this sparkling standalone from NYT-bestselling author Anna Banks.
It’s been years since Carly Vega’s parents were deported. She lives with her brother, studies hard, and works at a convenience store to contribute to getting her parents back from Mexico.
Arden Moss used to be the star quarterback at school. He dated popular blondes and had fun with his older sister, Amber. But now Amber’s dead, and Arden blames his father, the town sheriff who wouldn’t acknowledge Amber's mental illness. Arden refuses to fulfill whatever his conservative father expects.
All Carly wants is to stay under the radar and do what her family expects. All Arden wants is to NOT do what his family expects. When their paths cross, they each realize they’ve been living according to others. Carly and Arden’s journey toward their true hearts—and one another—is funny, romantic, and sometimes harsh.

April Fool’s Day on Steroids, Anna Banks Style
A lot of people ask if I’ve ever played any of the pranks I wrote in JOYRIDE. The truth is, I’ve enjoyed employing ALL the pranks in JOYRIDE. I’ve been a prankster for as long as I can remember. But there was this one time, this one April Fool’s day, where I really outdid myself. Here’s the story:
I was thirteen. My accomplice, my niece Jennifer, was twelve. It was April Fool’s eve and we were pre-gaming it; encouraging our parents to drink. Even my mom—who never drank alcohol—consented to having a beer. A beer that would later become her arch nemesis.

As the adults began staggering to bed, and as the snores erupted throughout the house from the master and guest bedrooms, Jennifer and I got out a list. A list that had been weeks in the making.

Our main focus was the bathroom. We wanted to mar the sanctity of the bathroom so that no one would ever feel safe there again. Not even ourselves. We began by lifting the toilet seat and stretching saran wrap tightly across it, so it was this clear porcelain drum. We put the seat back down, and proceeded to paint clear nail polish on the soap bar, rendering it useless. We removed any and all towels from the vicinity. On our way out, we taped the light switch down.
Anna Banks JoyrideFrom there we moved to the kitchen, pouring salt in the sugar dish, food colored water in the dish soap, and dirt in the coffee grounds. We greased the handles of everything in the kitchen that had handles. We set a scary mask inside the freezer for an early morning scream. Again, we painted the bar of soap at the kitchen sink with clear nail polish. Again, we removed all towels from the vicinity.  Since the laundry room was so close, we decided it would be a good idea for one of us to poop in the cat’s litterbox. It looked almost like art.
It the bedroom as my parents slept, I sewed their slippers shut. We sprayed a touch of shaving cream in their hands. We rearranged their closet and froze all their clean underwear. But alas, our pranks had come to an end, because the beer Mom had enjoyed hours before suddenly started pushing
against her bladder. Jennifer and I crept to the living room where we had assembled sleeping bags to watch it all unfold.


Mom came out of the bedroom with a confused expression—she wasn’t wearing her slippers. She was also wiping her hands on her robe, which meant that even in her state of half-slumber, she registered the shaving cream we’d placed there. We crept quietly behind her as she made her way to the bathroom. The light switch was taped down, so Mom would have to navigate in the dark—and she still wasn’t sure what exactly was going on. The moment we heard the pee-drum go off in a sort of liquid staccato, we held our breath, waiting for the reaction. “WHAT THE HELL?” is what we were rewarded with.
It was followed by undignified grunts, the sound of running water and the inevitable “What the hell?” again as she realized her soap would not lather. Then, when she realized there were no towels to be found. Also, another expletive over the realization that the light switch was taped very thoroughly in the “off” position.
Bursting out of the bathroom (by then Jennifer and I had made it safely to the living room and were good little sleeping children) Mom rounded the corner wearing her soaking wet pajama pants halfway down and a scowl that could scare a rabid Sasquatch. We listened as she fumbled through her closet, unable to find a matching pair of pajamas or even a decent shirt. And certainly her underwear drawer was emptied just moments before. What she possibly found to replace her pissy pjs, we couldn’t know. In the process, in the glorious game of dominoes we’d concocted, she had awakened my father, who could never go back to sleep after he woke up.
The kitchen was waiting for his slipper-less self. Salt in his coffee. A scary mask when he opened the freezer to take out his daily serving of bacon—and that’s after several attempts because we greased the handles. He kept walking to the laundry room and sniffing the air. One can only hope he was enjoying the abstract art we’d created for him in the litter box.

Oddly, our parents were too impressed to ground us for our masterpiece. They’d forgotten that it was April Fool’s day—and we certainly hadn’t been reminding them—and so it was shame on them for failing to remember what brilliant children they had raised. Our actions had been fair and just. There was no retaliation, no shouting or hair snatching. Just laughter and salty coffee and frozen underwear.  
Along with a well-deserved nap that afternoon…  

After reading that I can't imagine what kind of pranks the character's in Joyride get up to!
I also have a giveaway for a copy of Joyride! U.S./ Canada only!



a Rafflecopter giveaway



Also be sure to check out Anna on social media because she is hilarious, and I'm sure she has even more awesome stories to tell on the rest of the tour so be sure to check it out!

Author Links/Info
 Full Blog Tour Schedule
May 12- Xpresso Reads
May 13- WhoRU Blog
May 19-Fiktshun
May 27-Dana Square
May 29-Paper Riot
May 30-Mundie Moms

May 14, 2015

So You Want to Be A Princess Blog Tour


I am so excited to be a part of the tour for From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess. Meg Cabot's new middle grade princess book about Mia's sister Olivia! So first here's a little bit about From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess

Olivia Grace Clarisse Harrison has always known she was different. Brought up by her aunt's family in New Jersey, book-and-music-loving Olivia feels out of place in their life of high fashion and fancy cars. But she never could have imagined how out of place she really was until Mia Thermopolis, Princess of Genovia, pops into her school and announces that Olivia is her long-lost sister. Olivia is a princess. A dream come true, right? But princesses have problems too.
In FROM THE NOTEBOOKS OF A MIDDLE SCHOOL PRINCESS a new middle grade series, readers will see Genovia, this time through the illustrated diaries of a spunky new heroine, 12 year old Olivia Grace, who happens to be the long lost half-sister of Princess Mia Thermopolis.

Sounds fun right?! Well as part of this blog tour they asked us to write about what we would do if we woke up and found out we were a princess:

If I woke up one day and found out I was a princess i would of course be super excited. I would tell all of my friends and maybe tell all the people who hadn't been very nice to me either. Then I would probably freak out a little and wonder if I was going to have to move, and what were my responsibilities going to be and who was going to teach me what to do?! (I have a tendency to freak out a little) 

But once I got that all figured out I would try to experience some of the fun stuff of being a princess. Like makeovers, and cool clothes. That's not to say I would be completely shallow. I would like to visit sick kids in hospitals and donate some money to organizations that would help sick kids. 

So that is what I would do if I found out I was a princess! Leave a comment down below and fill out the form for a chance to win a copy of From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess as well as a snazzy paper crown! (US only sorry)



a Rafflecopter giveaway

May 4, 2015

All Fall Down by Ally Carter

Embassy Row
Title: All Fall Down
Author: Ally Carter
Publisher:Scholastic Press  
Release Date: January 20, 2015
Received From: Library  
Synopsis:   A new series of global proportions -- from master of intrigue, NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Ally Carter.
This exciting new series from NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Ally Carter focuses on Grace, who can best be described as a daredevil, an Army brat, and a rebel. She is also the only granddaughter of perhaps the most powerful ambassador in the world, and Grace has spent every summer of her childhood running across the roofs of Embassy Row.
Now, at age sixteen, she's come back to stay--in order to solve the mystery of her mother's death. In the process, she uncovers an international conspiracy of unsettling proportions, and must choose her friends and watch her foes carefully if she and the world are to be saved.

Review: I love Ally Carter's books. She writes such amazing, smart, strong female characters. If you liked Heist Society series' Kat or the Gallagher Girls' Cammie you will find a new favorite in Grace.

Grace is smart, spunky, and a risk-taker. She is taking the death of her mother really hard and makes some mistakes along the way, but those mistakes just make her more and more relatable.

I am a huge fan of mystery books, so reading about Grace and the other Embassy Row kids try and solve the murder of Grace's mother was really fun. There are twists and turns, as well as some suspenseful moments. But there is also lots of jokes and humor.

I really liked the setting of Embassy Row. It is such a cool idea because it adds more levels of politics and what Grace can and can't do. It also adds variety and diversity to her cast of friends and enemies. Also important people like the President of the United States dropping by is all ways good for more suspense.

Overall I really like this new book of Ally Carter's and I think Grace will be added to the list of strong feisty female characters. I also can't wait for the next book in the series!


April 16, 2015

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

Title: Cruel Beauty
Author: Rosamund Hodge
Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Release Date: January 28, 2014
Received From: Library
Synopsis:  Graceling meets Beauty and the Beast in this sweeping fantasy about one girl's journey to fulfill her destiny and the monster who gets in her way-by stealing her heart.
Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny.
Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.
With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she's ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.
But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle-a shifting maze of magical rooms-enthralls her.
As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex's secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.  
 Review:
I am always hesitant to read books that are really hyped up. This is one of the reasons that I took so long to read Cruel Beauty. I was worried that it wouldn't live up to all of the hype and I was going to be disappointed. I shouldn't have worried though because Cruel Beauty was even better than I could have ever imagined.

I am a sucker for Beauty and the Beast retellings ever since I read Beauty by Robin Mckinley when I was younger. Cruel Beauty isn't a complete retelling of Beauty and the Beast but it has a similar arc to the classic story.

Overall I LOVED Cruel Beauty but I did have some small issues that I want to get out of the way so I can gush. I felt like the ending was a little rushed. I wish it had more of a slow burn rather than a fast a furious finale. I also had a few issues with the lust at first sight aspect to this book but neither of these things dampened my love of this book even a little.

The world building in this book was incredible. I am huge fan of fantasy and I love seeing how a world is developed.  This book was exquisitely crafted. No huge info dumps or anything like that. Just a slow release of information when the time called for it.

Nyx was a great character. She undertook the situation as I could see a real teen dealing with it. She had actual feelings and didn't just go along with what was happening to her. I like when a character gets angry and has real reactions to the things that are happening around her.

I think everyone who likes fairy tales should read this amazing retelling!