Thursday, August 29, 2013

Review: If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch



Title: If You Find Me
Author: Emily Murdoch
Published: March 26th 2013 by St. Martin's Griffin
Source: Publisher
Synopsis:

There are some things you can’t leave behind… 


A broken-down camper hidden deep in a national forest is the only home fifteen year-old Carey can remember. The trees keep guard over her threadbare existence, with the one bright spot being Carey’s younger sister, Jenessa, who depends on Carey for her very survival. All they have is each other, as their mentally ill mother comes and goes with greater frequency. Until that one fateful day their mother disappears for good, and two strangers arrive. Suddenly, the girls are taken from the woods and thrust into a bright and perplexing new world of high school, clothes and boys. 

Now, Carey must face the truth of why her mother abducted her ten years ago, while haunted by a past that won’t let her go… a dark past that hides many a secret, including the reason Jenessa hasn’t spoken a word in over a year. Carey knows she must keep her sister close, and her secrets even closer, or risk watching her new life come crashing down.

                         My Thoughts


"Words are weapons."



I can't imagine having to live my life as a fifteen year-old and provide for a younger sister and have a mother who just comes and goes whenever she likes. If You Find Me is a very realistic yet melancholic story of Carey and Jenessa and their struggle in the woods and in their own lives. The world outside of the woods is a very strange idea for them, but what if they don't have a choice? 


Sunday, August 25, 2013

The Rocker That Needs Me Tour Stop: Excerpt + Giveaway




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Title: The Rocker That Needs Me
Author: Terri Anne Browning
Purchase Links: Amazon | B & N

Synopsis:
The Demon… 

 I’ve been fighting my own demons for most of my life. The alcohol seems to numb the pain, but it never makes the nightmares go away. All I want in life is a little peace. When I met my angel it felt like I found it, but there is so much standing between us. Why does she have to be so young…? 

 The Demon’s Angel… 

 Meeting Drake was the best thing to ever happen to me. I found my friend, my soul mate. But he lets my age stand between us. There is something that haunts him, and I selfishly want to be the one that helps him conquer his ghosts. If he would just let me in, let me closer, I think I could help him…


*mature content. Not for readers under 17.

                                 Excerpt

          Lana’s POV

Sometime much, much later, my tears finally started to dry and the cold that had numbed me started to thaw enough to make me realize that I should be mad. I was in love with Drake, and after Friday night, I was sure that he was in love with me too, or that he at least cared about me as more than a friend… Now, with him fucking some other girl in his hotel room, unconcerned that I would hear him, I knew that I had been wrong.  
All I would ever be to him was his friend, and I would have to accept that. But there was no way I could carry on the way we had been the last few months. I wasn’t that good of an actress. I sucked at pretending, especially when my feelings were involved. And they didn’t get any more involved than they were right now.  
It would kill me to have to see him day after day, knowing that he had gone from lying in bed with me one night to screwing some other chick the next. Maybe that was how it worked in the rocker world—okay, so I knew that that was how it worked in the rocker world, but I couldn’t deal with that kind of messed up shit.  
As the night dragged on, I realized what I had to do. It was going to be hard. It meant doing things I had promised never to do, but sometimes you had to do what was best for you, not what was best for someone else.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Cover Reveal + Giveaway: Anyone But You

Love re-tellings? Authors Kim Askew and Amy Helmes have put their own spin on Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet in their new Shakespeare-inspired YA novel, Anyone But You! The third book in their Twisted Lit series is being published by Merit Press, Anyone But You will be released in January, and is currently available for pre-order at Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble and Powell’s.
From the authors' website
Authors Kim Askew and Amy Helmes
Last year. I read both Twisted Lit #1 and #2 and enjoyed them very much! Tempestuous - Twisted Lit #1 is inspired by Shakespeare's Tempest and Exposure - Twisted Lit #2 is a modern-day Spin on Shakespeare's Macbeth.
Read my reviews of the books here:
Check out the cover for Anyone but you!
Title: Anyone But You: A Modern-Day Spin on Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet (Twisted Lit #3)
AuthorsKim Askew & Amy Helmes
Expected publication: Jan 18 2014-Merit Press
Synopsis:

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Review: Splintered by A.G. Howard



Title: Splintered (Splintered #1)
Author: A.G Howard
Published: January 1st 2013 by Amulet Books
Format: paperback
Website: Author's Website
Source: Publisher
Synopsis:

This stunning debut captures the grotesque madness of a mystical under-land, as well as a girl’s pangs of first love and independence. Alyssa Gardner hears the whispers of bugs and flowers—precisely the affliction that landed her mother in a mental hospital years before. This family curse stretches back to her ancestor Alice Liddell, the real-life inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alyssa might be crazy, but she manages to keep it together. For now. When her mother’s mental health takes a turn for the worse, Alyssa learns that what she thought was fiction is based in terrifying reality. The real Wonderland is a place far darker and more twisted than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, Alyssa must pass a series of tests, including draining an ocean of Alice’s tears, waking the slumbering tea party, and subduing a vicious bandersnatch, to fix Alice’s mistakes and save her family. She must also decide whom to trust: Jeb, her gorgeous best friend and secret crush, or the sexy but suspicious Morpheus, her guide through Wonderland, who may have dark motives of his own.

                    
                      My Thoughts


When I was a kid, I have seen some Alice in Wonderland shows on TV and I was always fascinated with them because of the beauty of the concept. But I have never read the original story by Lewis Carroll. And I never really had any idea of who the characters were and what their roles were about.  

Alyssa Gardner is a brave, young girl. Even though her mom was put in an asylum and she was always bullied and teased about all things Wonderland, she didn’t care about what others thought of her. She’s also very unique – in a mad, twisted way and I liked it. Of course at first, I thought that it was so odd of her to collect bugs and kill them in order to do mosaics, but hey, she had her reasons.

The retelling of this story through Alyssa’s eyes was so.. captivating. I know that the shows I watched on TV about Alice were always portrayed as this very beautiful other world with friendly and pleasing creatures, but in Splintered, we will see another version – the twisted one, but in a good kind of way. I was on the edge of my seat while I was reading this because it was full of action, suspense and twists and turns!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Authors Are Rockstars Tour & Giveaway: Mary Gray

Today I have author of the upcoming young adult novel The Dollhouse Asylum, Mary Gray here at Say It with Books! I'm totally excited for her debut which will be hitting shelves this November! 
So let me tell you why I think Mary Gray is a rockstar....
  • Dystopian is my favorite genre-If you haven't read the blurb for The Dollhouse Asylum you should do it ASAP. It sounds so frigging creepy(in this totally AWESOME way of course). It sounds like the kinda book that I won't be able to forget even after I close the book! To put it simply, I NEED THIS BOOK NOW.
  • She loves Robin LaFevers’ My Fair Assassins series & Supernatural-Anyone who values the awesome-ness of Ismae, Sybella and Dean Winchester are kickass in my book.
  • She can say 'da bomb' and get away with it without sounding like a total dork. She is da bomb.
See I told ya. Creepy in this totally AWESOME way.
Find Mary Gray on:     Facebook    Twitter    Goodreads    Website
So here's a free-hand interview with Mary Gray where she shares 25 fun facts about herself!
  •  I have a book coming out! In October! It’s called THE DOLLHOUSE ASYLUM and WEEE!!
  • Last year, my husband and I built a pool in our back yard, and it’s the only way to do summers in Texas with little ones. I love my pool. It has a diving board and my husband looks mighty fine diving in or doing his flips.
  • I recently joined the YMCA—all for the kid care, endorphins, brainstorming sessions, and chance to work out (notice how I stated exercise last?)!
  • Vegetables are da bomb!
  • If you ever quote me as saying “da bomb,” I’ll deny it.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Blog Tour: Charmed Vengeance - Suzanne Lazear



Title: Charmed Vengeance 
Author: Suzanne Lazear
Published: Aug 8th 2013-Flux 
Series: The Aether Chronicles #2

Synopsis:
In the Faerie realm, Noli Braddock's relationship with her best friend V has grown into something more. But V's mother, Faerie Queen Tiana, has ruled that they are forbidden to see each other. Returning to the mortal realm, Noli joins the crew of her brother's air-pirate ship, the Vixen's Revenge. There she discovers that her brother has hired the scallywag Faerie huntsman, Kevighn Silver. While serving as shipmates, Kevighn and Noli learn that the Earth Court King plans to find a forbidden artifact--one that will bring destruction to everyone Noli loves.

Although I haven't read a lot of Steampunk books I enjoyed reading Innocent Darkness(The Aether Chronicles #1) last year. You can check out my review HERE (it's one of my earlier reviews). I'm definitely excited for Charmed Vengeance!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Review: A Song for Julia by Charles Sheehan-Miles



Title: A Song for Julia 
Author: Charles Sheehan-Miles
Published: December 5th 2012 - Cincinnatus Press
Source: Received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review
Synopsis:
Everyone should have something to rebel against. 

Crank Wilson left his South Boston home at sixteen to start a punk band and burn out his rage at the world. Six years later, he’s still at odds with his father, a Boston cop, and doesn’t ever speak to his mother. The only relationship that really matters is with his younger brother, but watching out for Sean can be a full-time job. The one thing Crank wants in life is to be left the hell alone to write his music and drive his band to success. 


Julia Thompson left a secret behind in Beijing that exploded into scandal in Washington, DC, threatening her father's career and dominating her family's life. Now, in her senior year at Harvard, she's haunted by a voice from her past and refuses to ever lose control of her emotions again, especially when it comes to a guy. 


When Julia and Crank meet at an anti-war protest in Washington in the fall of 2002, the connection between them is so powerful it threatens to tear everything apart.



                     My Thoughts

This story was very fun to read, and I didn't want to put it down after reading the first few pages. Crank, he really can be a pig, but I like his frankness. Being a too perfect male lead is boring, where is all the fun in that right?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Daria's 25 & The Anatomy Series Giveaway

1) I believe “sexy ugly” is way more attractive than conventionally cute. 
2) I still own, and occasionally wear, slap bracelets. (But not stick-on stones.)
3) Sometimes when I walk into a library or surf the web, my heart fills with dread over how much I’ll never know or understand. But I guess it’s better to acknowledge your ignorance than to feel arrogant. 
4) If I wrote a memoir, each chapter title would be the name of an anti-acne medicine I tried in vain.  The Clearasil Years during middle school were especially brutal.  
5) Don’t shoot me, but I prefer ebooks to hardcovers.
6) I also prefer movies to books. {dodging bullet}
7) I’m much more comfortable with one or two friends than with a big crowd of people. 
8) My new favorite snack is kale chips:  Just de-stem and de-rib the leaves, toss with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt, spread on a baking sheet and bake for twenty.
9) If I were bright enough, I’d go into ovarian cancer research.  
10) I don’t understand the appeal of big stadium concerts. Parking’s a nightmare, everyone stands even though there’re seats (and sometimes they stand on the seats), and the act’s too far away to see anyway so you just end up watching the screen.
11) I used to be able to recite the entire script of When Harry Met Sally… from memory. 
12) I’m grateful to heartbreak for making me more compassionate.
13) My favorite Brontë sister is Anne. 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Author Interview + Giveaway: A Class Apart



Title: A Class Apart
Author: Stephen Henning
Published: October 11th 2011 by Elucidox Ltd
Synopsis:

Teenage twins James and Samantha Blake are caught up in a seemingly random terrorist bombing while on a school trip. Many of their friends are killed. When the twins wake up in hospital, their lives have changed forever. 


The doctors are amazed at the speed with which James and Sam recover from their injuries and, when the twins begin to exhibit extraordinary powers, it is obvious that something incredible has happened.

As James and Sam attempt to overcome their fears and embrace their new abilities, a series of murders and disappearances start plaguing the hospital. The twins aren’t the only ones with special abilities and it becomes apparent that someone is coming for them. 

Will James and Sam be able to survive the nightmare into which they have been plunged? Who, or what, is behind the murders at the hospital? And was that terrorist incident quite so random after all?


                  Author Interview

1. Describe A Class Apart in one sentence and if you can give a tagline for it, what would it be?

OK. Teenage twins James and Samantha Blake are injured in a bomb explosion, wake up in hospital, discover they now have superpowers, but then realize something even more powerful is coming to get them!

A tagline for the Class Heroes series, hmmm, you’ve made me think now! It hadn’t occurred to me to do that before, thank you Rachel. Yes. I know what sums up the ethos of the series:

“Today could be the day that your life changes forever.”

2. What makes the Class Heroes series stand out from the rest of the other YA books out there?

I think the main characters and the general background of the seriesis more grounded in reality than other YA books.

I think what YA books do well is to create a heightened, fairy tale ideal of our world.  Love stories are powerful and all-consuming, main characters are driven by a sense of destiny, the fate of worlds is held in the hands of higher beings. I think that’s great because it fires the reader’s imagination.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Chat Review: Anatomy 1 & 2-Daria Snadowsky

Title: Anatomy of a Boyfriend 
Published: Jan 9 2007 - Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Synopsis: 
Before this all happened, the closest I'd ever come to getting physical with a guy was playing the board game Operation. Okay, so maybe that sounds pathetic, but it's not like there were any guys at my high school who I cared to share more than three words with, let alone my body.
Then I met Wes, a track star senior from across town. Maybe it was his soulful blue eyes, or maybe my hormones just started raging. Either way, I was hooked. And after a while, he was too. I couldn't believe how intense my feelings became, or the fact that I was seeing—and touching—parts of the body I'd only read about in my Gray's Anatomy textbook. You could say Wes and I experienced a lot of firsts together that spring. It was scary. It was fun. It was love.
And then came the fall.


Published: Jan 8 2013 - Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Title: Anatomy of a Single Girl
Synopsis: 
In Daria Snadowsky’s daring follow-up to Anatomy of a Boyfriend, eighteen-year-old Dominique explores the relationship between love and lust, and the friendships that see us through.

Nuzaifa: Hi everyone! Welcome to our third chat review, this time we are doing things a little differently. We are reviewing two books simultaneously, that is both books in the Anatomy Series. This was definitely a challenge for both Rach and me because we had to review the sequel without giving away what happens in the first book. But as challenging as this was it was also interesting because we were able to discuss the protagonist's transition from a 17 year old teen to a pre-med college student.
Rachel: So Nuz, what did you think about Anatomy of a Boyfriend?

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Guys Are Props Club Tour Stop: Excerpt + Giveaway

(click the picture to follow the tour!)

Title: The Guys Are Props Club
Author: Ingrid Seymour
Published: July 15, 2013
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Purchase Links: 
Synopsis:

During her senior year in high school, Maddie Burch promised herself not to ever fall for a cute guy – or any guy – again. Cute guys are players and not to be trusted, a fact she learned the hard way when her first boyfriend ran her heart through a paper shredder. Two years later, her promise is still intact, and she’s determined to make it through college without falling victim to another creep. She has her job, school and The Guys Are Props Club to keep her mind and hormones in check. 

The club was founded by Jessica, Maddie’s best friend. It is a sisterhood of girls who have fallen prey to heartless jerks and who have vowed to turn the tables. Once a semester, Jessica requires members to “do onto others as they’ve done unto you.” Setting the example, Jessica’s next play is Sebastian Capello, a theater major with heartthrob looks and a flair for Latin dance, whose heart she plans to break the way hers was once broken. 

What the friends don’t know is that Sebastian is different. Despite his perfect looks and popularity, he’s not a jerk. He doesn’t play games to get his way. Instead, he keeps it real and goes after what he wants with honest intentions. And what he wants is not a bombshell like Jessica, but a down-to-earth girl like Maddie – even if it causes a riff in the girl’s friendship. Even if it means getting Maddie to break her personal vow. 

*** Due to language and sexual situations this book is recommended for ages 17 and older.

  

                              Excerpt 

 “Isn’t he an absolute caramel?” Jessica asked, following my gaze.

“Who?” I pretended to be looking at Cristina as she instructed Sebastian’s new partner.


“Sebastian, who else?”


“Oh, yeah. He’s . . . good looking.”
“Good looking?” Jessica looked appalled. “That would be like calling the sky blue when it is clearly celestial.”

Monday, August 5, 2013

Review: Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire



Title: Walking Disaster (Beautiful, #2)
Author: Jamie McGuire
Published: April 16th 2013-Simon and Schuster UK
Website: Author's Website
Source: Received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Synopsis:

How much is too much to love? 


Travis Maddox learned two things from his mother before she died: Love hard. Fight harder. 

In Walking Disaster, the life of Travis is full of fast women, underground gambling, and violence. Just when he thought he was invincible, Abby Abernathy brings him to his knees. 

Every story has two sides. In Jamie McGuire's New York Times bestseller Beautiful Disaster Abby had her say. Now it's time to see the story through Travis's eyes.



My Thoughts


Reading the first few pages of this book instantly made me teary eyed. In Beautiful Disaster, I loved the Maddox brothers because they’re easygoing and they always lighten up the mood. So being able to read about that moment when they know that they will already lose their mother is so heartbreaking for me.

“One of these days you're going to fall in love, son. Don't settle for just anyone. Choose the girl that doesn't come easy; the one you have to fight for, and then never stop fighting. Never…” – Dianne Maddox
It had an intense beginning and it also had an intense ending. I seriously can’t wait for the next installment for Abby and Travis’ story.

I had some questions left unanswered in Beautiful Disaster that were answered in Walking Disaster. Say for example, the meaning behind ‘Pigeon,’ (which readers really need to know) and also why Travis is…. well, Travis. What motivates him and what keeps him going.

Believe me, I love reading a story through a guy’s POV because it really shows one side of them that they never let anyone just see. You have to be someone special to witness that so thank you so much to Jaime McGuire for sharing this story through Travis’ eyes. I loved knowing about his feelings when he was with other girls. He knew that it is just a onetime thing and he really didn’t want anything more from them.

BUT, as for the flow of events, there were some scenes that seemed to be cut off or cut short, and some people who did not read the first book can’t really put the pieces together. I didn’t love this book as much as I loved Beautiful Disaster, maybe because I didn’t really see the difference in the execution of Travis’ POV. I expected to see something more through Travis’ eyes, but I didn’t get that. Maybe because I had high expectations, but I have to admit that I was a little disappointed.

Nevertheless, Travis Maddox as a book boyfriend will always have five sizzling stars for me. He cares so much for his family, especially for his brothers and of course for Abby, and he is a great son to his father. Also, when I read the ending, I was kind of surprised because it had a very different feel to it, but I am so excited for the next book.

Walking Disaster will take you to the world of Travis, and reading through his eyes will make readers understand every bit of him. I’m sure all of you can’t wait ‘til the next book comes out too! 

My Rating

Friday, August 2, 2013

Review: Pivot Point - Kasie West


AuthorKasie West
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: Feb 12th 2013
Source: Publisher
Synopsis:
Knowing the outcome doesn’t always make a choice easier . . .
Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.

In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.
My Thoughts
After reading The Distance Between Us last month(and lovin' it!) I could hardly wait to pick up Pivot Point. As excited as I was to find out that Pivot Point focuses on parallel worlds I have to admit that I felt a little apprehensive when I found out that about the super powers part. But all of that vanished when I started reading Pivot Point. This book was good. Like really really good.

All of us make choices on a daily basis, right? 
What if you were to find out that one of these seemingly minuscule decisions has the chance to change your life forever? 
And what if you knew the consequences that came with making one of these seemingly unimportant choice?
Does being aware of these consequences make it any easier to make that decision?