Monday, January 31, 2011

IMM 1/31

Last of the month! Here is my library haul of the week:

The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff
Tyger, Tyger by Kersten Hamilton
Five Flavors of DUMB by Antony John

Also, from NetGalley: Delirium by Lauren Oliver and Here Lies Bridget by Paige Harbison

I'm halfway through both The Vespertine and Tyger, Tyger - loving both so far!

Review: Three Quarters Dead

Title: Three Quarters Dead
Author: Richard Peck
Publisher: Dial (October 28, 2010)
Source: library

Summary: Kerry is chosen by the coolest clique in school and so she thinks life has finally begun. But then it seems all over when her three friends are killed in a shocking car accident. Or are they? Only weeks after the accident, Kerry receives a text from one of the girls: We're all 3 here at my aunt's in the city. Take the 3:50 train. B there.

Exhilarating, terrifying suspense is crossed with a thought-provoking examination of peer pressure in Richard Peck's return to his contemporary teen- and ghost-story roots. This is a master author's gift to the Gossip Girl/Twilight generation: his own smart, stylish, and fun take on the paranormal.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Follow Friday and Book Blogger Hop 1/28

 "What book are you most looking forward to seeing published in 2011?  Why are you anticipating that book?"

After pondering this question for quite a while, I think the answer must be Red Glove by Holly Black. I so completely adored White Cat and the crazy world she created that I am giddy at the thought of returning to it. Hurry up April!


What is/was your favorite subject in school?

I know this may be shocking, but... I really liked school. I still miss the excitement of a new semester beginning, and it isn't only because I love buying school supplies. So favorite subject is hard for me! I loved Biology - took 3 different courses in HS but not a single one in college - I had to drop Anatomy because I couldn't stomach dissecting a cat. I really loved PreCal, but to the despair of my teacher I didn't take Calculus because I had enough math credits to graduate and could be a teacher's assistant instead. And I really really loved history - especially AP European History - the teacher for that class is one of my friends on facebook, as is my HS French teacher. I actually didn't love English that much - I had clashes with a couple of English teachers in HS. But, yes. Yay school! 

I didn't discuss college and grad school because I was picking subjects so of course they were awesome! 

I sometimes torment myself with wondering how I will deal if my kids don't like reading or school. Still not sure, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it!

Thursday, January 27, 2011


I usually try to post reviews Monday and Thursday. But this week is kicking my butt! So instead, I am posting a cute baby. Yup. Shameless.

 *Yes, she is a girl, and yes, that was once her brother's outfit... but I really love this onesie - it has a guitar and says "Rock me to sleep" and she looks really cute in it! I'll be the one paying for her therapy later anyway - I might as well dress her as I please.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday 7

Steel by Carrie Vaughn
Release date: 3/15/11

Summary: When Jill finds a rusty sword tip on a Caribbean beach, she is instantly intrigued—and little expects it will transport her through time to the deck of a pirate ship. Will a dark enchantment, salty kisses, and a duel with an evil pirate captain leave her stranded in the eighteenth century forever?

Drawing on piratical lore and historical fact, Carrie Vaughn creates a vivid world of swaying masts and swelling seas, where blood magic overrules the laws of nature, romance is in the air, and death can come at the single slip of a sword.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Talk to me Tuesday #4

This week's question: Do you have any specific literary pet-peeves in the genres you read and why?

In YA, I get really frustrated by love-at-first-sight, we'll be together forever love stories. That's one of the reasons that Amy and Roger's Epic Detour was on my best list for last year - such a realistic and likable love story!

And in series, I despise when love triangles are dragged out beyond all semblance of reason because they want to write more books. Case in point - the Janet Evanovich books. Dude. It is utterly ridiculous that we are supposed to care about who Stephanie ends up with after 16 books. It drives me nuts.

Talk to Me Tuesday is hosted by Melissa at i swim for oceans.

Review: Always a Witch

Title: Always a Witch
Author: Carolyn MacCullough
Publisher: Clarion Books (August 1, 2011)
Source: NetGalley

Summary: Since the gripping conclusion of Once a Witch, Tamsin Greene has been haunted by her grandmother’s prophecy that she will soon be forced to make a crucial decision—one so terrible that it could harm her family forever. When she discovers that her enemy, Alistair Knight, went back in time to Victorian-era New York in order to destroy her family, Tamsin is forced to follow him into the past. Stranded all alone in the nineteenth century, Tamsin soon finds herself disguised as a lady’s maid in the terrifying mansion of the evil Knight family, avoiding the watchful eye of the vicious matron, La Spider, and fending off the advances of Liam Knight. As time runs out, both families square off in a thrilling display of magic. And to her horror, Tamsin finally understands the nature of her fateful choice.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

IMM 1/23

Not too much this week - snow and sick toddlers have kept me from a library trip. However, it isn't completely barren thanks to the wonder of NetGalley!

Received through NetGalley - 

Always a Witch by Caroline MacCullough
The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell

Whoo! So excited about Always a Witch, I was giddy when I saw it listed. It takes me longer to read the e-versions, since I have to be at my computer*, but with books like these to tempt me I know I'll stick with it.

*Yes, I could get an e-reader, but judging by my track record with mp3 players it would be utterly destroyed within 3 months. I'm a bit absentminded and it is hard on electronics!

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Review: Beatle Meets Destiny

Title: Beatle Meets Destiny
Author: Gabrielle Williams
US Publisher: Marshall Cavendish Children's Books (October 2010)

Summary: Imagine your name is John Lennon, but everyone calls you Beatle. And then you meet your dream girl, and her name is Destiny McCartney . But you meet her on the world's most unlucky day-Friday the 13th-and you're very superstitious. Not to mention that you're already dating the perfect girl, who happens to be your twin sister's best friend. . . . Beatle can't imagine ever leaving Cilla, who supported him after the stroke that changed his life and left him with a limp. Still, he knows that the only thing worse than staying with the wrong person is missing the chance to be with the right one.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Follow Friday 1/21

This week's question: Who do you cheer for?

I love sports! I grew up in a family of sports fans and still have my brother over to my house most Sundays to watch football together. Sports are awesome. So...

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals (Painful, but true.) As a Bengals fan, I'm obligated to despise the Steelers (eew) so I'm cheering for the Jets to make it to the Super Bowl, where they'll be defeated by the Bears.
NHL: Columbus Blue Jackets
MLB: Cincinnati Reds (but not very closely, baseball is boring unless you're there live.)
NCAA football and basketball: University of Louisville Cardinals! I went to UofL for undergrad, and met my husband there to boot. 2 of my sisters also graduated from UofL (and met their husbands there, it's a good place!) so I have family members to help me gang up against other, lesser siblings who root for the University of Kentucky Wildcats. Ew. Unfortunately, I live in the city where UK is located. Blech.

I'll watch just about any game that comes on, except NBA. Yay, sports!

Well, that was a refreshing change of pace from book-talk. Hopefully there will be a review posted later today!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday 6

The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong
Release date: 4/12/11

Summary: Strange things are happening in Maya's tiny Vancouver Island town. First, her friend Serena, the captain of the swim team, drowns mysteriously in the middle of a calm lake. Then, one year later, mountain lions are spotted rather frequently around Maya's home—and her reactions to them are somewhat . . . unexpected. Her best friend, Daniel, has also been experiencing unexplainable premonitions about certain people and situations. 

It doesn't help that the new bad boy in town, Rafe, has a dangerous secret, and he's interested in one special part of Maya's anatomy—her paw-print birthmark. 

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Talk to me Tuesday #3

This week's question: Do you have a preference between male and female MCs, and why?

I do find that in general I gravitate towards books with female main characters. It isn't a conscious prejudice against male characters, but I do find it happening. It may be because books that are marketed towards males tend to have covers that are not my style, and I am totally guilty of judging books by their covers. I'll admit it.
That said, I have tried recently to increase my range of book reading so that I can provide better Readers' Advisory at work, and have read some wonderful books with male main characters, such as Drums, Girls and Dangerous Pie and others by the same author. 

On the whole, though, I think I have a preference for female main characters because I relate to them better. I have still loved plenty of male main characters, but they have to work harder!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Review: Revolution

Title: Revolution
Author: Jennifer Donnelly
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (October 12, 2010)

Summary: Two girls, two centuries apart. One never knowing the other. But when Andi finds Alexandrine’s diary, she recognizes something in her words and is moved to the point of obsession. There’s comfort and distraction for Andi in the journal’s antique pages—until, on a midnight journey through the catacombs of Paris, Alexandrine’s words transcend paper and time, and the past becomes suddenly, terrifyingly present.

Jennifer Donnelly, author of the award-winning novel
A Northern Light, artfully weaves two girls’ stories into one unforgettable account of life, loss, and enduring love. Revolution spans centuries and vividly depicts the eternal struggles of the human heart. 

IMM - From My Library

This week: Beatle Meets Destiny by Gabrielle Williams, Looking for Alaska by John Green, The Unwritten Rule by Elizabeth Scott and Three Quarters Dead by Richard Peck.

Yes, I'm revealing my secret shame - I've never read a John Green novel! I've even seen him speak in public. He was great, very smart and funny, and a couple library school buddies were slightly in love with him, so I have high hopes.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Follow Friday & Book Blogger Hop

Here we go! This week's hop question:

 "Why do you read the genre that you do?  What draws you to it?"
Well, I read a lot of genres, so I'm not really sure how to answer! I don't really classify YA as a genre - it's just a designation that covers books of all genres, such as fantasy, romance and mysteries. As I mentioned in last week's Follow Friday post, I read fantasy because I stole my older brothers' books from their room. I also read mysteries because those are the books my mother read, so they were around the house! Turns out my literary preferences are totally based on proximity. Although my dad read biographies and historical non-fiction and that never caught on. Heh. But truly, I'll read any genre if a book catches my fancy. Fantasy draws me because of the infinite possibilities and creative worlds, mysteries draw me because of the puzzles involved and the satisfaction of wrongs being righted, and romances draw me because there are few things more interesting that how and why people meet and fall in love. People are amazing, and good romances are in-depth examinations of two people! 

A personal question for the Follow Friday fun today:

What makes up your non-human family??


I've always had cats as pets. Growing up we always had two together, but now that I have full responsibility for vet appointments and litter box cleaning, we've downsized to one. Azriel is gray and very quirky and sweet. He startles ridiculously easily, he hides from thunderstorms and small children, and he is very funny. He has transitioned very well to a world with little kids around, and put up with it very well when Malcolm's favorite game became chasing him around the house while shrieking like a banshee. He's never scratched or bitten and has been a saint while we teach Malcolm the meaning of the words "gentle pats."

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

"Waiting On" Wednesday 5

Divergent by Veronica Roth
Release date: 5/3/11

Summary: One choice.

One choice decides your friends, defines your beliefs, and determines your loyalties . . . forever. 

Or, one choice can transform you. 

In Veronica Roth's debut novel, Divergent, a perfect society unfolds into a dystopian world of electrifying decisions, stunning consequences, heartbreaking betrayals, and unexpected romance. 

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Talk to Me Tuesday #2

This week's question: Do you prefer series or stand-alone novels and why?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Review: Hold Me Closer, Necromancer

Title: Hold Me Closer, Necromancer
Author: Lish McBride
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (10/12/10)

Sam leads a pretty normal life. He may not have the most exciting job in the world, but he’s doing all right—until a fast food prank brings him to the attention of Douglas, a creepy guy with an intense violent streak. 

Turns out Douglas is a necromancer who raises the dead for cash and sees potential in Sam. Then Sam discovers he’s a necromancer too, but with strangely latent powers. And his worst nightmare wants to join forces . . . or else.  

With only a week to figure things out, Sam needs all the help he can get. Luckily he lives in Seattle, which has nearly as many paranormal types as it does coffee places. But even with newfound friends, will Sam be able to save his skin?

Friday, January 7, 2011

Book Blogger Hop

Book Blogger Hop

"What book influenced or changed your life? How did it influence/change you?"

Well, this is a really hard question for me to answer, really. I've read pretty much constantly for as much of my life as I can remember. Through the years, there have been a lot of books that influenced me, and many that I loved madly. The one that springs to mind today, is Alanna: the First Adventure by Tamora Pierce. I had started reading fantasty quite young, by stealing my older brother's Belgariad series books (by David and Leigh Eddings) but this was different! It had a female main character, who was strong and brave and stubborn, and was marketed directly to me, as a girl who read fantasy. It helped shift me away from the male-dominated, swords-and-sorcery fantasy and into the path of other awesome female characters who, I like to believe, have helped me be a little braver and more awesome myself. Also, looking for the sequels led me to begin exploring the YA section of my childhood library! I still read every Tamora Pierce book as soon as I can get hold of it. The sentimental value is high.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Review: Pegasus by Robin McKinley

Title: Pegasus
Author: Robin McKinley (my hero)
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile (11/2/10)

Summary: Because of a thousand-year-old alliance between humans and pagasi, Princess Sylviianel is ceremonially bound to Ebon, her own Pegasus, on her twelfth birthday. The two species coexist peacefully, despite the language barriers separating them. Humans and pegasi both rely on specially-trained Speaker magicians as the only means of real communication.

But its different for Sylvi and Ebon. They can understand each other. They quickly grow close-so close that their bond becomes a threat to the status quo-and possibly to the future safety of their two nations.
New York Times bestselling Robin McKinley weaves an unforgettable tale of unbreakable friendship, mythical creatures and courtly drama destined to become a classic. 

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: Hold Me Closer, Necromancer


"You want waffles?" I tried to keep the skepticism from my voice. "No firstborn or a pot of gold?"

"I'm not a leprechaun, Sam. And what would I do with a baby?"

In My Mailbox aka From My Library

But keep it on the down low -  these aren't from the library where I work, they might come after me! I'm on maternity leave, I can't be driving 40 minutes for a library trip. Sorry ladies! 

We have: Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly; Firelight by Sophie Jordan; Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride; The Keepers' Tattoo by Gill Arbuthnott; Food, Girls, And Other Things I Can't Have by Allen Zadoff

They all look amazing - and the title Hold Me Closer, Necromancer made me laugh out loud in the middle of the library. Love it!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Despite listing 3 things to post before the end of the year, I completely failed to post even one. But I request internets-forgiveness on this, since we were, shortly after that post, struck down by the dread holiday flu. My husband, toddler and teeny-tiny baby were all struck down with the bleurgh, all full of congestion and feverish and requiring the attention of the one healthy person in the house. Oh, how lucky I am.

But we are mostly on the mend here, and I frankly think I deserve a medal for not getting sick but instead I will just pat myself on the back and not stress about blog posting.

So! Here is a quickie version of my Top 5 of 2010 post that never was!

While you can clearly see my fantasy roots showing, this year I fell in love with some contemporary YA as well, as my librarian job led me to expand my horizons. Happy New Year to you all, and I'll hope to get back to regular posting now that we're healthy!