Thursday, March 31, 2011

low red moon or City of Fallen Angels

Time for another blog hop!

Thanks to

I'm a reader not a writer


The Bookish snob

for sponsoring the hop.

******Please note that my blog was accidentally added to the hop twice. Currently, I am blog 32 and blog 135. It is one contest. I have already had some duplicate entries but will delete only one of them and not disqualify anyone for it. Sorry about the confusion. ***********

This time you will have a choice of books for the giveaway.

low red moon


Ivy Devlin

Avery just witnessed her parent’s brutal deaths. She doesn’t remember a thing. Well that’s not quite true. She does remember silver moving quickly. What does that mean? Who killed them and why? Avery lived in the forest with her parents. They taught her to love the forest to befriend it. They taught her at home until just the last year or so. She went to high school hoping to make friends but everyone there seemed to think she was different. She was different and it didn’t bother her. Her parents had taught her to be comfortable with who she was. Now she is shunned even by the one friend that she had. Now she is the only survivor of a brutal murder, the only witness. Now she lives with her Grandma, someone her Dad had nothing to do with and she hardly even knows. Enter the new boy, Ben. Ben is gorgeous and hot. Avery immediately feels connected to him. But his eyes, those brown eyes, sometimes flash silver. What is that? Could it be the silver from the night her parents died? Does she trust Ben? She is certainly drawn to him. Is she safe?

My thoughts here

Pre-order from BN for the special edition of City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

“City of Fallen Ange
ls takes place two months after the events of City of Glass. In it, a mysterious someone’s killing the Shadowhunters who used to be in Valentine’s Circle and displaying their bodies around New York City in a manner designed to provoke hostility between Downworlders and Shadowhunters, leaving tensions running high in the city and disrupting Clary’s plan to lead as normal a life as she can — training to be a Shadowhunter, and pursuing her relationship with Jace. As Jace and Clary delve into the issue of the murdered Shadowhunters, they discover a mystery that has deeply personal consequences for them — consequences that may strengthen their relationship, or rip it apart forever. Meanwhile, internecine warfare among vampires is tearing the Downworld community apart, and only Simon — the Daylighter who everyone wants on their side — can decide the outcome; too bad he wants nothing to do with Downworld politics. Love, blood, betrayal and revenge: the stakes are higher than ever in City of Fallen Angels.” (From


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This contest is closed.

Now back to the hop!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Jace Wayland

If you are a Mortal Instruments fan (City of Bones, City of Ashes, City of Glass... City of Fallen Angels due out 4-5), then you have to check out the scene that Cassandra Clair (author) just posted to her website. The scene is from City of Ashes in the Seelie Court before the Queen when Cary and Jace are forced to kiss before the Queen will release Clary. The scene is from Jace's point of view. In the book, the scene was from Clary's point of view. All I can say is WOW! Read it here.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Eighth Grade Bites

Eighth Grade Bites by Heather Brewer

3/5 stars


Vlad is in eighth grade. He’s skinny and pale. The bully’s love to pick on him except when his best friend Henry is around. His parents died three years ago in a house fire and he lives with a family friend who he considers his Aunt. His teacher has disappeared oh and he’s a vampire. Vlad’s parents died before they could really explain about how to be a vampire so he struggles along trying to figure it out on his own. He drinks blood from the hospital blood bank and goes to school like others his age. But he isn’t like others. He can hover in the air and read minds. Being an awkward eighth grader vampire isn’t bad enough though. His teacher has been killed and the substitute seems to know that he is a vampire. And Vlad thinks for the first time that his parents were in fact killed on purpose not in an accidental fire. How will he ever survive this year of school? What about asking the beautiful girl in his first hour to the dance? It’s all very confusing for Vlad.

My thoughts:

This story is a cute look at being a 13 year old boy who doesn’t fit in with the rest. You don’t have to be a vampire to feel that way. But the added paranormal aspects of the book add to the feelings. Being a vampire has advantages for Vlad that help his overcome some of that awkwardness. I liked the world that Vlad lives in. It’s just a normal world only with vampires in our mist. We’ve learned a few things about this world but I’m sure there is more to come as the series follows Vlad through high school. It’s a fast enjoyable read and includes lots of things teens will relate to.

Enjoy the read.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Invasion by Jon S Lewis

Invasion by Jon S Lewis

4/5 stars


Colt is a surf bum living in San Diego with his parents. He has a new car and everything is great until the car accident. His parents killed by a drunk driver are gone and he has to move to Arizona to live with his Grandpa. Only things aren’t that simple. You see, he spent a day this last summer at a secret military training facility only he doesn’t remember. They want to recruit him to fight in a war, a war that is about to invade his 16 year old life whether he is ready for it to or not. It wasn’t really an accident that his parents died, they were murdered. His friend, Oz, isn’t just a friend but someone he met at that secret military facility, the one he doesn’t remember. His best friend, the computer whiz, is now in danger by association. Can Colt find out who killed his parents and save the day? Why him? What is it about him that should make him be capable?

My thoughts:

The story pulls you quickly and keeps you there. I’m not a sci-fi reader but I loved this book. Normally, I read paranormal so I guess there are some similarities. I loved the revisionary history to make this world of aliens work right into our lives. I loved the conspiracy that kept everything a mystery so much of the time. Oz was a perfect side kick. He had the answers but wouldn’t give too much away. He came with great toys to help save the day. Danielle was a mystery. I thought for sure she liked Colt but that didn’t happen. I was surprised who she did like. Yes there are some typical teenage antics going on throughout the whole crazy invasion.

It’s great read that will quickly please. It’s got some video games, some comic books, and some high tech stuff in it. If that’s not enough, things blow up a lot. Even if sci-fi isn’t your thing, you’ll like this one.

Enjoy the read!

And the winner is....

Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop Winner

The winner of playing hurt by Holly Schindler is



An email has been sent to the lucky winner1

Check out my new contest for Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Leavitt here

Sean Griswold’s Head Review and Giveaway

Sean Griswold’s Head by Lindsey Leavitt

5/5 stars


Payton is fifteen and plays basketball. Her life revolves around her. Her best friend Jac, short for Jaclyn, is as outgoing and wild as she is reserved and organized. They make odd friends but are perfect for each other. When Payton accidentally finds out that her Dad has developed MS and has been hiding it from her for months, she loses it. She quits the basketball team; she stops talking to her parents; she loses her brand new leather bound organizer; and she ends up talking to the school counselor against her will. The counselor wants her to find a focus object that will help her think about other things. Although it’s supposed to be an inanimate object, Payton decides on Sean Griswold’s head. He sits in front of her in Biology, it’s an alphabetical thing. As she writes in her journal about Sean’s head, she becomes curious about him. That curiosity leads her to following him and finally talking to him. But Payton has some issues that a new crush isn’t going to fix. Developing feeling for Sean may just make things worse. As Payton tries to find a way to deal with her Father’s disease, she may risk her relationship with her Dad, her best friend and any hope she has with Sean.

My thoughts:

This is a great book. Lindsey Leavitt does a wonderful job of dealing with some hard issues. Payton doesn’t know why she is acting the way she is. She struggles to deal with the major change of her Father’s illness. She avoids. She lashes out. She misbehaves. Her grades drop. She pushes people away. These are typical reactions to a hard situation. Without being a counseling session, the book takes someone through a process of coming to terms with it. I loved how Sean fit into the picture. He was mysterious and interesting. He was complex and he was his own person. I love how focusing on others, Payton actually learns a lot about herself.

It’s a quick and funny read. It’s not depressing or discouraging at all. I read it in an afternoon and really enjoyed it.

Enjoy the read!

This contest is closed

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

playing hurt Review and Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop

Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop

Check out my review for

playing hurt by Holly Schindler

Giveaway follows

5/5 stars


Chelsea Keyes is the star of the high school basketball team in her senior year. She has a gorgeous romantic boyfriend, Gabe, who loves her. Scouted by colleges and on the cover of magazines as the best high school athlete, her life is complete. Then the worst possible thing happens to her, an accident. Her hip is broken and she is done playing basketball. Gone is the college scholarship, the love of her life, and the meaning of her days. Done living in the present. She watches the video of her last game over and over pausing seconds before it happens, wishing she could live there in that moment. Her boyfriend stands by her; his was the first face she saw after waking up from the surgery. Her father seems angry with her and can’t even look at her. Her brother thinks she is losing it. After she graduates, her parents plan a three week vacation, at a Minnesota lake resort, as a graduation gift. Her Dad signs her up for a boot camp to try and get her active again. Clint is her personal trainer trying to coax her into doing something besides hiking. But Clint has some things he won’t do either, like play hockey, go beyond the fishing section of the sporting goods store, or walk through a certain ravine. Can either Chelsea or Clint help the other or will they just end up hurting each other more? Will there be romance or pain? And what about gorgeous Gabe back home?

My thoughts:

I loved this book. It has the strong female character, Chelsea, that has stood on her own two feet just fine. She struggles with adversity and while she melts down she doesn’t end up a puddle to be saved by a guy. Clint is a strong guy who is trying very hard to block out a part of his life that hurts too much to think about. He still stands tall and isn’t wallowing somewhere. Both of them are wounded and struggling. The story is about how they will either help each other through it or create even deeper wounds. I loved the way Holly Schindler takes two strong wounded characters and intertwines them. There is no weak link that has to be rescued by the other. It plays more like real life than most books. Everyone has wounds and strengths. Everyone can either help or hurt others, it’s their choice.

I loved the alternating point of view between Chelsea and Clint. It was fun to try and piece together Clint’s past from the little he would allow to go through his head. While Chelsea dwelt on hers and you knew exactly where she was coming from, Clint avoided his and you had to puzzle it together. There was a complete style change depending on whose POV you were reading. It added so much to the personalities of each. I love that.

My only criticism would be that I wanted just one more chapter. I won’t tell you why but I have decided to write it in my head. That way it will be what I want. Don’t get me wrong, the ending was great; I just wanted a little bit more of the story. I guess that makes it a great book.

Enjoy the read!

And now the giveaway...

This contest is closed

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Guess who is giving away City of Fallen Angels?

Splash of Our Worlds Blog is giving away Cassandra Claire's new book
City Of Fallen Angles

Check it out here!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Cloaked by Alex Flynn

Cloaked by Alex Flynn
5/5 stars

Johnny’s family has run the shoe repair shop in a hotel in South Beach for generations. But his father left them when he was two and his mother struggles to keep them in electricity. Johnny works long hours in the shop to help but it’s never enough. His best friend, Meg, works in the family run coffee shop across the way. Ryan is the lifeguard at the hotel pool. Nothing seems to ever change. That is until the beautiful Princess comes to town. Ryan and Johnny sneak a look when she arrives and they actually get to talk to her. Johnny’s life changes from that moment forward. The Princess wants Johnny to help her find her missing brother. She is willing to marry Johnny if he helps her. She is rich and this could mean everything to his family. But her tale is crazy and it can’t be true until it is. As Johnny tries to help the Princess, he encounters many others that need help including himself. The magic that the Princess tell him about is true and Johnny has to learn some himself if he is every going to succeed. What will happen to all those he meets on the way? What will happen to him? What about his friendship with Meg? She hates the Princess and Johnny doesn’t understand why she is so upset at the idea of him marrying her. Will their friendship last past this quest?

My thoughts:
What a fun story full of so many great fairy tales. The plot includes elements from The Elves and the Shoemaker, Frog Prince, The Six Swans, The Golden Bird, The Valiant Tailor, The Salad, and The Fisherman and his wife. The stories are artfully woven into a story of self discovery and love. I loved how it was clear that no matter how bad your life seems there are things that you are taking for granted if you are willing to look. Seventeen year old Johnny goes from wanting his miserable life to change to wishing he could have it back. As all good fairly tales, this story is full of good messages but it is also a great love story. Alex Flynn does a masterful job of taking these messages and entertaining us with them along the way. After reading a few heavy books, this was refreshing and enjoyable. Absolutely find time to read this one!

Enjoy the read!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Vespertine

The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell

Thanks to for the early look at this book.


Amelia is a seventeen year old young lady from Broken Tooth, Maine. It’s the summer of 1889 and she has traveled to the city of Baltimore to stay with Zora, her cousin. She’s come to find a husband, a proper marriage for a young lady. In the formal etiquette of the time, the two cousins enjoy dances and prospects indeed but Amelia starts seeing visions in the dusk light, visions that are coming true. Soon everyone wants her to visit them and tell their future. Through it all, Amelia is drawn to the very mysterious Nathaniel. An artist, Nathaniel has no respectable rank that would allow him to approach Amelia to court. Nevertheless, Amelia is drawn to him and him to her. When Amelia’s visions turn dark, the excited citizens of Baltimore are convinced that she is causing the events she sees to happen.

My thoughts:

The story was intriguing. I really liked the premise. The paranormal twist to the eighteenth century setting was promising but I struggled with the writing of this book. Saundra Mitchell is painting a story with her brush strokes of words. She rarely describes but instead paints. This may have been my problem. I frequently had to go back and read and reread until I was sure what she was saying. That frustrated me some but I did like her attempts to write as the times would be. It just wasn’t my thing. I probably could look past that if other things didn’t bother me.

The story starts in the autumn of 1889 and then flashes back to the summer. We know immediately that something has gone wrong over the summer and that Amelia has been sent back to her brother in disgrace. These times in the present are short and frustrating because there is a bitter and angry Amelia who offers hints of what happened but nothing that adds to the story. Unfortunately, it distracts from the story. I like to figure things out and make predictions about what will happen in the story as I read. It’s my job as the reader to do this but too much of it was done by the author. The hints were entirely too big. So then we went back to the summer scenes, it was too easy to piece things together. Another characteristic of the writing that caused the same problem was her use of telling us when something important just happened. There was always some foreshadowing comment about how this would come back to haunt her or how she could never forget this simple little thing. It drove me crazy. I want to figure those things out for myself not have the author tell me, oh this is important remember it.

Then there was the lack of Nathaniel. He was the most interesting character in the book and the reason I finished reading it. (It took me much longer to plow through this than it normally would). Nathaniel was mysterious. No foreshadowing comments about him! I wanted so much to get to know him better but he just wasn’t a big part of the story. He turned up at important times and Amelia pined after him but did little about it. Maybe I am too used to modern girls who wouldn’t let social standards keep them from the guy they liked but it was tiresome to watch Amelia do little to be around him.

If you are a big historical novel reader then you will like this book. If you are a modern paranormal reader, you might want to skip this one unless you TBR list is really short.

Enjoy the read!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

4 stars


In this conclusion to the Hunger Games trilogy, Katniss is thrown into being the face of the rebels as she tried to deal with Peeta’s imprisonment in the capital. The twists and turns abound as Katniss tries to stay sane and alive. Will it all ever end?

*Some Spoilers*

My thoughts:

I put off reading this book. I struggled at the end of Catching Fire. The whole series was so emotional for me. Cliffhanger aside, the ending of book two just depressed me. I started Mockingjay when it first came out only to put is down and leave it. My daughter finally got me to finish is. We often share books, but I had never told her about the series. She discovered it on her own and loved it. The twists and turns that came out of nowhere pushed her quickly through all three books in a week. So I reluctantly returned to it. I have to say that I could have put it off a while longer and been okay with it. I admire the plot and the character development. The world that Suzanne creates is compelling and thought provoking. Certainly, there are political statements in the story. But I guess I don’t enjoy fiction that is too serious.

I also had some problems with the Mockingjay herself, Katniss. I was so frustrated with her so many times. She could figure out the twists of the game and understand Haymitch’s strange messages in the arena but she was clueless to the feelings of people around her. I wonder as to what kind of a person is like that? Everyone saw who she loved except her and Peeta. That frustrated me. I know, I know, we had to keep that triangle going but honestly I didn’t buy it. Gayle never stood a chance.

I wish the ideas of mental illness had been handled better. Katniss falls apart. Peeta falls apart. Katniss’s mother fell apart before the book started. Mostly, they were just set aside until they got over it. I guess it adds to the story but I have a hard time believing how Katniss was handled for her final breakdown. Isolation is the worst possible solution.

Anyway, I’ve read it. It was a good read just not one I will ever read again.