Monday, November 28, 2011

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (54) - November 15th to 28th

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? at One Person's Journey Through a World of Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, is a bookish meme hosted by One Person's Journey Through a World of Books, where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It’s a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list. So hop on over to Journey and join in...and leave a comment here so I can check out what you are reading.


Books I Read Last Week:

So...I finished this one! Yay! And I actually finished it in time for class..double yay! On the nay side, it was a meh read for me. While it was much...and I mean, much, better than Oroonoko, I still wasn't a huge fan. I did like the story overall, but I just felt like it dragged on, and the narrative style was a miss for me...plus, I got tired of hearing about Robinson's cats...yes, yes, he has two of them, I know! :P

I liked this one. I especially liked that it was a quick read, so I was able to squeeze it in amongst a super busy time. That being said, this is my least favourite Sarah Dessen book so far. I liked Haven, and I totally supported her freak-out in this book, but I felt like it was so unresolved. I mean, I got how some of it was resolved, but for the most part, it was like she went from being super angry to nothing...nada, she didn't even have any residual anger...and that just confused me. This one also didn't have any actual romance in it, which I guess I've come to expect from Sarah Dessen, but oh well. I still liked it, but I say if you want to read a Sarah Dessen book go for The Truth About Forever or Along For the Ride first. :)

Loved, loved, loved this one! :D I've had an up-and-down relationship with The Immortals series. I've loved some of the books, been so-so with others, really disliked one of them, but this one...this one was my favourite! It was such a satisfying end to the series. There are so many possibilities still open, but with this series I really liked that because it just reinforces the message, that Ever and Damen's story and their love...is "everlasting." Seriously perfect...with this ending I fully recommend this series, it's worth any rough patches you might hit while reading through the other books. :)

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Reading Now:
I'm finally getting around to reading some sequels during my brief moments where I can spare some time to read. This one is my current bath-time read. :P I'm really enjoying it...although, I must say this is my least favourite of the Fallen covers so far, the girl on the cover just looks so skinny...it's kind of off-putting. :S Anyway, I'm really enjoying the story though. :P

This one's for my Canadian Lit class...which I was reading Three Day Road for...and I've kind of stopped reading that one, but I'm hoping that I'll be able to pick it up and finish it before the final, which I think I can manage since it's not until December 14th. :P

Reading this one for my Restoration and the 18th century class...I must add the 18th century part, not all of the titles we've been reading are actually Restoration titles. :P This one's pretty interesting and I was pleasantly surprised to find out that so far it is a much quicker read than Oroonoko and Robinson Crusoe. :P

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Books I Want to Read This Week:

I'm hoping to be able to squeeze this one in during my free moments next week...unlikely, but a girl can dream. :P lol

And what are you reading???

Check out One Person's Journey Through a World of Books to see what other people are reading. :)

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Sunday, November 27, 2011

In My Mailbox (19) - November 14th to 27th

In My Mailbox at The Story Siren

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren, and inspired by her friend, Alea of Pop Culture Junkie. It's a way to share the books that you've received over the past week. They could come from the bookstore, the library, a friend, your mailbox or wherever. It gives us all a chance to showcase the books that we've gotten, and maybe give others an idea for the book they want to read or buy next. :)

Bought:
 Julie and Julia by Julie Powell (University Bookstore)
The Goose Girl (The Books of Bayern #1) by Shannon Hale (Amazon Kindle Store)
The Fallen Star (Fallen Star #1) by Jessica Sorensen (Amazon Kindle Store)
Jenna and Jonah's Fauxmance by Emily Franklin and Brendan Halpin (Amazon Kindle Store)
 Plum Pudding Murder Bundle by Joanne Fluke (Amazon Kindle Store)
 Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen #1) by Joanne Fluke (Amazon Kindle Store)
The Darkest Powers Bonus Pack by Kelley Armstrong (Amazon Kindle Store)
Small Town Sinners by Melissa C. Walker (Amazon Kindle Store)
MetaGame by Sam Landstrom (Amazon Kindle Store)
Leaving Paradise (Leaving Paradise #1) by Simone Elkeles (Amazon Kindle Store)

There were lots of Kindle deals over the last two weeks, obviously...I indulged a bit. :S Julie and Julia was for sale in my University Bookstore and I picked it up on my way to grab a writer's handbook...which cost me way too much...but at least it'll be worth it in the long run. Anyway, I've already read Leaving Paradise and all of the novellas in The Darkest Powers Bonus Pack, but I wanted copies for myself, and they were so cheap that I couldn't resist. I read a bunch of the Hannah Swensen books years ago, but I need to read them again, I've been slowly compiling a Kindle collective of them as they go on sale. ;) haha

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Won:

Loving Emily by Anne Pfeffer (won from Candace's Book Blog)
 Witches of East End (The Beauchamp Family #1) by Melissa de la Cruz (from Hyperion on Facebook - they had a giveaway for anyone who posted a picture with their favourite Hyperion title :D)
Chime by Franny Billingsley (won from Ticket to Anywhere)
Starcrossed (Starcrossed #1) by Josephine Angelini (won from Book Passion for Life)
The Name of the Star (Shades of London #1) by Maureen Johnson (won from Book Passion for Life)
Stealing Phoenix (Benedict #2) by Joss Stirling (won from Book Passion for Life)

I got lots of amazing books that arrived over the last two weeks that I've won! I already have Witches of East End, but I'm going to give this copy to my mom for Christmas...shhhh, don't tell! I hope she'll like it, she doesn't read very often, but I'm trying to change that. ;) lol Anyway, I'm really excited about these ones! I can't wait for my Christmas break...I have so many amazing books to read, and hopefully I'll be able to read tonnes! :D
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Library and Review:


Cold Kiss by Amy Garvey (Library)
Fever (The Chemical Garden #2) by Lauren DeStefano (Simon and Schuster Canada)
Sisters of Isis: Volume 1 (Sisters of Isis #1-2) by (Hachete Book Group Canada)
His Eyes by Reneè Carter (from the author)

I ordered Cold Kiss through the Interlibrary loan system and it finally came, so I'm going to have to read it in between finals, hopefully I can squeeze it in before I have to return it, they don't let your renew Interlibrary loans. I'm excited for Fever...but first I have to read Wither, I've had it sitting on my shelf unread for far too long already. :P I'm so excited for Sisters of Isis, it sounds like an awesome series, and His Eyes also sounds great. It's definitely a unique premise. :D
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As you might have noticed, I didn't post an IMM last week...or a Monday post. I wasn't really feeling like posting, and school's owning me with essays right now, but I made time this week. :) I'd like to thank Candace and Anne for Loving Emily, Hyperion, Gail at Ticket to Anywhere, Donna and Jess from Book Passion for Life, Simon and Schuster Canada, Hachete Book Group Canada, and Reneè Carter. Thanks! :D I hope that your mailboxes were nice and full this week...and hopefully you all managed to show more constraint when it came to Kindle deals...I did not. :P

So, what's in your mailbox?
Feel free to leave a link in the comment and I'll try to stop by and visit...unfortunately because of school I might not have time, but if I spare a moment to procrastinate I just might stop by. ;)

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Exiled Rack Card Winners!

 So, last night the Exiled Rack Card Giveaway ended, and I've drawn the winners, so without further ado, the winners are: 

Vivien
Christina Madison
Dinky
seesen9
Jeanne

I'm about to email the winners, and they have 48 hours to claim their prize before I draw any new winners. The winners were drawn using Random.org. As always, don't forget to check you spam folder in case your winner's email ends up there. Remember that the first 3 people to respond will get an Exiled sticker along with the signed Rack Card. I'm also going to throw in an extra bookmark or two for all of the winners, so don't worry, you'll get a little something extra even if you don't reply before the other winners.

Thanks to everyone who entered! :)

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫Ambur

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Interview with Kersten Hamilton!

Today, I'm lucky enough to have Kersten Hamilton, the author of Tyger Tyger and In the Forests of the Night on my blog for an author interview! :D  I hope you enjoy!

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Hi Kersten! I’m thrilled to interview you on my blog! I loved Tyger Tyger! I was also lucky enough to get my hands on an ARC of The Forests in the Night, and I loved it, too! For the people who haven’t started your series yet, how would you describe it?


Thank you, Ambur! I am really, really bad at describing my own work, so I am going to let some blogger friends describe if for me:

“…a fast-paced adventure with a backbone of Celtic myth and heart of romance.” Pat Esden

“One of my favorite things about your book is Teagan and Finn and they’re relationship. Teagan is smart and brave and doesn’t do dumb things that make you want to pull your hair out. Meanwhile Finn is absolutely sexy and cocky and sexy and brave and sexy… They’ve got great chemistry.” Ello from The Inkpot

“Hamilton is a wizard at creating tension, building on characters’ strengths and weaknesses until the plot really takes off.” Kirkus

“I loved the characters, the dialogs that had that witty and querky feeling I adore, the world-building…. I loved it because it was so utterly different from other YA fantasy novels. It was all at once touching, hilarious, action-packed and fast-paced.” Roxanne, The Honeyed Knot


Google Fionn Mac Cumhail,
and you get images like this ;)
I’m a huge Finn fan...I seriously love him! You’ve written an amazing character, and so I was wondering about the original Finn Mac Cumhaill from Celtic legend. Can you tell us a bit about him? Or about the parts of the legend you brought into your story?
      I love him, too. :) Fionn Mac Cumhaill is the “King Arthur” of Irish Myth and Legend—the good warrior who will rise again when his people need him the most. I imagined what it would be like if he returned today…and Finn was born!

You write such wonderful characters, where do you get the inspiration for them? Are any of them based on actual people?
      Conjuring characters from thin air would take more talent than I have. Ms. Skinner, for instance, is based on several people I have known who abused their power. The first one probably made the deepest impression on me.
      When I was about ten, I befriended an abused dog. He was in bad shape, but I nursed him back to health and named him Joe. He was my best buddy. But because I couldn’t afford a license the dogcatcher took him away. He was a scrap of a dog that had no chance of being adopted by anyone else. The dogcatcher told me I had two weeks to get enough money to buy Joe a license or he would be put down.
      I worked as hard as I could, earning money any way I could think of. My family didn’t have enough money to keep food on the table. There was no one else to help me. I didn’t earn enough.
On the day they killed Joe, I was sitting on a rooftop wishing I was strong enough to fight the world and save him. Smart enough to have thought of some way to earn the money. But I wasn’t.
      That dogcatcher who exercised power with no heart became my personal model of human evil.
Other characters in my books spring from flesh and blood, too. I use little slivers of my own soul to animate some of them…but I’ll let my readers guess which ones!

Tyger Tyger was the first book I ever read with goblins in it, and it definitely made me want to read more of them. They seem to have some amazing folklore (just like Finn ;D). Do you have any recommendations for books with goblins in them?
      My goblins owe a great debt to the creatures and themes in the books of George MacDonald which I read as a child: The Princess and the Goblin and The Princess and Curdie.
      I was also slightly obsessed with poems like Harold Monro’s poem, Overheard on a Salt Marsh:
http://thereaderonline.co.uk/2009/10/19/featured-poem-overheard-on-a-saltmarsh-by-henry-monro/

What word (or several words, if you need them) would you use to describe each of your characters?
Teagan: Smart/loving
Finn: Courageous/haunted
Aiden: Magical/wistful
Abby: Fierce/loyal
Mamieo: Wise/determined

And finally, are you excited for In the Forests of the Night’s release? And does it feel different releasing a sequel compared to the first book in the series?
I am thrilled! And it does feel different. When Tyger Tyger came out, I had wild hopes and dreams for it. But it was very different than most YA that is being published, and didn’t shoot out of the gate like a rocket. It didn’t cause much of a stir…at first. But the people who read it really, really loved it. Their emails and letters were like gifts to me, keeping me going as I wrote the second book. In the Forests of the Night comes out with an established and excited group of fans ready and waiting. Releasing it in November feels like giving my readers a special Christmas present – one that took a year to prepare and wrap up for them. I can’t wait for them to open it!

Thank you for having me on your blog today, Ambur!
- Kersten Hamilton



I've already reviewed both Tyger Tyger and In the Forests of the Night on my blog, and I absolutely loved them both! The Goblin Wars Trilogy is one of my favourites, and I wholeheartedly recommend them! Here are their Goodreads pages: Tyger Tyger | In the Forests of the Night

Did you like Kersten's answers in the interview? I know I did. :D

And in other exciting news...In the Forests of the Night comes out today! Are you going to be going out to get your copy? :D

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫Ambur

Friday, November 18, 2011

Cover Reveal: Battle Scars (Elemental #2) by Cesya MaRae Cuono

Battle Scars, the sequel to Elemental Reality


Teaser Summary for BATTLE SCARS:
How do you carry on fighting for your family when you’re left scarred and broken? When your dreams are plagued by nightmares, how do you strengthen the armor needed to protect yourself again? Callie’s been defeated by the loss of her entire family. With the help of old and new friends, will she build her battle armor up and fight the evil hands of the Demons who threaten to destroy her new home? Or will her battle scars leave her too broken and empty to fight?

Elemental Reality, the first book in the Elemental Series.
  Add the series on Goodreads:

So, what do you think of Battle Scars' cover?

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Exiled Blog Tour: Rack Card Giveaway! - CLOSED.

 
Hey everyone! RaShelle sent me some awesome signed rack cards to giveaway for Exiled's blog tour! :D
I've got 5 of them to giveaway, and three stickers, which I'm going to thrown in with the rack cards to the first three winners who respond.

So, I'm gonna make this giveaway quick. 

DETAILS:
5 Winners (3 get stickers + card, 2 get card)
INTERNATIONAL
Ends on November 25th at 11:59 PM (M.S.T).
Winners will be drawn with Random.org and will have 48 hours to claim their prizes. 

I'm keeping entering super simple. Just fill in your name and email, and there you go. Feel free to tweet or share any other way that you'd like, but I'm gonna avoid extra entries for this one. School's keeping me a bit too busy to count them all up. :P

To enter just fill out this form:

---GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED---

Good luck everyone!

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Review: Exiled (Connected #1) by RaShelle Workman

Source: Bought Kindle copy from Amazon
Publisher: Polished Pen Press
Release Date: Already Released (in Ebook and Paperback)
Number of Pages: 340 (Paperback)

Blurb from Goodreads:
Stubborn, sixteen-year-old Princess Venus of Kelari wants one thing, to become a kelvieri, that is, until someone exiles her to Earth, kills her irrihunter and takes her family.

Now she wants revenge.

First she’s got to get home. But before she can return to Kelari, the Gods have commanded her to help an arrogant boy named Michael find his soul mate. Only she doesn't know the first thing about love.

Rather quickly, her inexperience with human emotion is obscured by other matters—alien-controlled psychotic teens that are out to kill her, and a government group that is set on capturing and dissecting her.

Worst of all, Venus will suffer a painful death-by-poisoning, thanks to Earth’s atmosphere, if she remains on the planet longer than one week. Still, Venus is a Princess and she's got a plan. Surely, with her help, Michael will fall in love with a human.

But time is running out and Michael is falling for the wrong girl—her.



Exiled was a mixed read for me. I absolutely loved the world that RaShelle created. All of the details about Kelari and Kelarians were amazing! I loved the descriptions of Venus's room, the irrihunters, and I loved the whole revenge aspect. Unfortunately, the characters were what fell a bit flat for me. While I loved Zaren, and loved certain aspects of Venus, I couldn't stand Michael and he's such a central part of the story that it kept me from loving it. I think that if you read it and like Michael though you will absolutely love everything else because RaShelle creates one beautiful world.

I've already mentioned a bit about the characters, but I want to get into it a bit more. I thought that Venus was fantastic before she met Michael, but I didn't really like how she started changing, partially because of the way Earth was affecting her and partially because I just didn't believe the appeal she had for Michael. It was so sudden, but not immediate, which made the whole "suddenness" of it later on seem really unbelievable to me. Venus was such a strong character, and coming to Earth weakened her. I loved that she had Zaren for support, and I loved their relationship...however, I'm not a fan of the love triangle at all in this book, but that all comes down to Michael once again. Michael is depicted as a strong and brave character with a good heart, but I just didn't really like him. He'd been through a lot in his past, and I understood that it made him react certain ways towards love and all that, but I just didn't see the "good" side of him. His thoughts were shallow, he was cocky, and considering we actually saw his thoughts I just never really saw that side that Venus did. I wished that I did, but I didn't. Maybe I'll see it more in the following books, but I'm not counting on it. That being said, I loved the villains in this book. There are human ones and Kelarian ones....humans in general came off as pretty evil in this book, but considering Venus is an alien, that made sense to me. :P

Okay, now that I've told you a bit about the characters, and hopefully didn't give too much away, I'll tell you a bit about the world. Venus tells stories to Michael at one point, and while I didn't like Michael, I absolutely loved Venus's stories. I loved the way that she described her people and planet's history, and how she would mention certain details about their technology. It was incredibly interesting and I thought that RaShelle did a fabulous job establishing Venus's world. Their gods, Ith and Aetha were really interesting as well. Their roles in Kelari and the Kelarians past, present and future were intriguing, and I loved how they fit into the story. I think that the world-building, and all of its intricacies are what RaShelle really excels at in Exiled, and because of that I'm looking forward to future books in this series.

Another aspect that I thought was really well done was how Venus reacted on Earth. Her body's reactions, and also how she reacted to different things that she was seeing for the first time seemed incredibly realistic, and I liked that they were given focus. It was a way of showing Venus's alien-ness without making her into a stereotypical alien that stands out because they're green and freaky with big eyes. :P

Overall, I liked Exiled. It's not my favourite story, but I think that it shows a lot of promise, and there were some aspects that I absolutely loved, and those aspects alone make me want to recommend this book. I might be alone in my dislike of Michael, but even if I'm not, I think that this book can be appreciated because RaShelle has created an intriguing and incredibly intricate alien-world that I found to be a pleasure to read about.

Does Exiled sound like kind of story you'd like to read?
Have you read it already? If you have, I'd seriously love to hear your thoughts? In particular...how did you feel about Michael? I'd love to see if I'm the only one who didn't like him, and if you liked him, I'd love to hear what it was that you liked. :)

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Young Adult Novel Discovery Competition

Young Adult Novel Discovery Competition


Serendipity Literary Agency, in collaboration with Gotham Writers' Workshop, is hosting its Third Annual Young Adult Novel Discovery Competition for a chance to win a one-on-one consultation with one of New York's leading YA literary agents!

If you've written a novel for young adults—or have an idea for one that you would like to write—we invite you to enter our contest. Simply submit an enticing title along with the first 250 words from the opening of your original YA novel. http://bit.ly/YAContest

GREAT PRIZES
The Grand Prize Winner will have the opportunity to submit an entire manuscript to YA literary agent Regina Brooks and receive a free, 10-week writing course, courtesy of Gotham Writers' Workshop, plus a collection of gourmet teas from Possibiliteas.co.

The Top Five Entrants (including the Grand Prize winner) will receive a 15-minute, one-on-one pitch session with Regina Brooks, one of New York’s premier literary agents for young adult books. They will also receive commentary on their submissions by editors at Scholastic, Disney, Harlequin Teen, Random House, Viking, Roaring Brook Press, Sourcebooks, and Kimani Tru and receive a one-year subscription to The Writer magazine.

The First 50 Entrants will receive a copy of Writing Great Books for Young Adults by Regina Brooks.

Enter to win at: http://bit.ly/YAContest. Hurry the contest ends November 30, 2011!

Good luck to everyone who enters! :D
Happy Reading (And Happy Writing!)

♪♫ Ambur

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tyger Tyger Special Ebook Price

Tyger Tyger (Goblin Wars #1) by Kersten Hamilton

Goodreads Summary:
    Teagan Wylltson's best friend, Abby, dreams that horrifying creatures--goblins, shape-shifters, and beings of unearthly beauty but terrible cruelty--are hunting Teagan. Abby is always coming up with crazy stuff, though, so Teagan isn't worried. Her life isn't in danger. In fact, it's perfect. She's on track for a college scholarship. She has a great job. She's focused on school, work, and her future. No boys, no heartaches, no problems.

    Until Finn Mac Cumhaill arrives. Finn's a bit on the unearthly beautiful side himself. He has a killer accent and a knee-weakening smile. And either he's crazy or he's been haunting Abby's dreams, because he's talking about goblins, too . . . and about being The Mac Cumhaill, born to fight all goblin-kind. Finn knows a thing or two about fighting. Which is a very good thing, because this time, Abby's right. The goblins are coming.
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Right now Tyger Tyger is only $2.99, and you can get it for Kindle or Nook. :D



I can't seriously recommend this book enough! I love this series, and this is the perfect time to pick it up. This deal's only going to last for a couple of weeks, so don't wait too long! :D

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Promo Stop: Demon Whisperer by Tawny Stokes



Demon Whisperer
By Tawny Stokes
Genre: Paranormal YA

Awake a year-long coma, where he literally spent in hell, Caden Butcher, 17, developed a special power. He can speak to demons in their own language. This new trick helps him take over the family exorcism business, from his broken alcoholic father. Having to take care of the finances, Caden makes a decent income getting rid of demons. He’s known as the young whiz-kid exorcist to the stars, obtaining most of his work in Hollywood. But what others don't know is the exorcisms are all staged with the help of his best buddy, a demon he met in hell named Dantalion (Dan).

When an exorcism goes wrong, Caden discovers the demon inside a teen girl is not the run of the mill malicious entity but an adversary from down under who is hell bent on Caden’s destruction. The International Order of Exorcists, an organization that tolerates Caden at best because of his respected father, starts their own investigation because of his screw up.

Now with the help of his demon buddy, and Caden’s girlfriend Aspen Spencer, a skilled necromancer, Caden must track down the rogue demon before he can expose Caden as a fraud and destroy everything that matters to him in his life, ending his reign as the one and only Demon Whisperer.


Add it on: Goodreads



And if you'd still like to know more, here's a brief excerpt from Chapter 1:
The skin on Alan Bigby’s pock-marked face rippled as if something was alive underneath it. Something big and bad and nasty wanted out to rip something apart. Unnatural black veins popped out on his forehead and temples as he bucked and writhed against the iron shackles chaining him to the chair. The fat rolls of his enormous ass hung over the sides and jiggled with each spasm. If it had been under different circumstance I would’ve laughed at that.

“I’m going to rip out your innards, Butcher, and eat them raw,” he spat at me.

Then he really did spit. Viscous green phlegm spewed from between his thin cracked lips and landed on the toe of my black Doc Marten. Disgusted, I shook it off, and then dug into the beat-up, brown leather bag I had slung over my shoulder and across my chest for the holy water. It was time to get busy. No more messing around. I had to exorcise this guy and be done with it. The money from this one would pay the rent for the condo my dad and I had. Groceries too for a few months.

“Not today, you’re not,” I said as I unscrewed the sliver cap on the bottle of holy water.

I glanced over at Eleanor Bigby standing in the corner wide-eyed, wringing her hands as she watched in horror as her husband twisted and pulled at the restraints I had put on him. He was bound to a metal chair in the middle of a pentagram that I’d inscribed in blessed chalk on the blond hardwood floor of their big expensive house overlooking the Hollywood Hills. I could see the white sign out the front bay windows.

She probably had no idea that when she called the Butchers to exorcize the demon possessing her husband that it would look like this. She probably thought watching her fat husband crab-walk across the ceiling of their bedroom was disturbing enough.

(. . .to be continued.)


Sorry to leave you off on an intense note, but I've got to leave you tempted now, don't I? :P

So, what do you think?
Does Demon Whisperer sound like something you'd like to read?
Do you like the cover?
Any thoughts at all that you'd like to share? :)

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Monday, November 14, 2011

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (53)

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? at One Person's Journey Through a World of Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, is a bookish meme hosted by One Person's Journey Through a World of Books, where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It’s a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list. So hop on over to Journey and join in...and leave a comment here so I can check out what you are reading.


Books I Read Last Week:

:D The final book in the Inheritance Cycle came out Tuesday, and I picked up my copy that day...and my friend and I are going to Christopher Paolini's Edmonton signing in December...I seriously can't wait! I've never had the chance to go to an author signing before this! I did meet Will and Boogie from Big Brother once though...and that was awesome! haha Anyway, I loved Inheritance! It wasn't quite what I expected, and left a lot open for a book that's over 800-pages long, but I still thought it was fantastic! I do kinda wish for more Murtagh though...just saying. ;)

I also finished Exiled this week. :) I liked it, but I did expect to like it more than I did. There was just too much confusion in this one (romance-wise for the most part), but I did really enjoy the whole alien aspect, that stuff was awesome. :D I'll be reviewing this one soon, so I'll save most of my thoughts for then. :)


Reading Now:

Okay...I'm a bad student. I chose to read Inheritance over my long weekend instead of my school books. *hangs head in shame* I'm going to actually try and finish Three Day Road this week...and I seriously mean it this time! :P

We're reading this in my Restorations class...I also need to get my butt in gear for this one. I did start it though, and that's progess.


Books I Want to Read This Week:

I didn't read this one yet, but I will have a promo post on it later this week, and hopefully I'll finish it soon and I can post my review for it, too. :)

Another one that I got from the library, and I'm kind of missing summer right now (first snow fall in Edmonton the other day----latest one in the record books, crazy huh :P), so this one's perfect...of course, I'm going off the name, so contents-wise it might not be. :P haha

And what are you reading???

Check out One Person's Journey Through a World of Books to see what other people are reading. :)

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Sunday, November 13, 2011

In My Mailbox (18)

In My Mailbox at The Story Siren

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren, and inspired by her friend, Alea of Pop Culture Junkie. It's a way to share the books that you've received over the past week. They could come from the bookstore, the library, a friend, your mailbox or wherever. It gives us all a chance to showcase the books that we've gotten, and maybe give others an idea for the book they want to read or buy next. :)

Wings of the Wicked (Angelfire #2) by Courtney Allison Moulton (For Review - Harper Collins Canada)
Everneath (Everneath #1) by Brodi Ashton (For Review - Harper Collins Canada)
Catching Jordan by Miranda Kinneally (For Review - Sourcebooks Fire/Netgalley)
Finding Fiona by Emily Ann Ward (Won on LibraryThing)
Warrior (Dragons of Starlight #2) by Bryan Davis (Bought for Kindle)

I didn't have a crazy full mailbox this week, but I did get some amazing books that made my mailbox feel like it was jam-packed-full! I got Wings of the Wicked and Everneath, and I am so excited to read them! :D I also can't wait for Catching Jordan...plus I had a nice short school week, and got back some awesome marks, so overall, my week was fabulous! :D

Thanks to Harper Collins Canada and Shannon, Sourcebook Fire, Netgalley, and LibraryThing. :)

How about you?
What did you get in your mailbox?
Feel free to leave a link for your IMM if you like. :)

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Kissing Tree Blog Tour: Guest Post by Prudence Bice

For The Kissing Tree Blog Tour, I have Prudence Bice, the book's author, as my guest, and here's her post: 

           First, I'd like to say thank you to Ambur for having me be a guest on her blog to talk about my book and a little about myself. This blog tour has been a neat experience.

          Becoming an author was not actually something I had planned to do. I had other dreams and passions. At one time I fancied myself a famous singer. Sadly, as one of eleven children, my parents could never have afforded to pay for the lessons. So my next choice was to become a famous artist and marry a musician who could both sing and play the piano. I even knew exactly what he’d look like, dark curly hair, green eyes…yum! Unfortunately, though I love to draw and am pretty good at it, I haven’t the patience for it, nor did I have the patience to wait for that dream man to come along. So I floundered around for a while, and while I was floundering, I met and married my husband. The best decision I ever made. He is the hero of my story, for whatever I lack, he makes up for. If it hadn’t been for him, The Kissing Tree would probably have never made it to this point. He’s been my champion and my support, my inspiration and my anchor.

          The Kissing Tree had to be written. I know because I didn’t set out to write. Actually I was absorbed with and frantically writing my first book when The Kissing Tree pushed its way into my head. The first line, exactly how it is written was there immediately and I could see in my mind, Georgiana, peeking out from behind the tree. The experience you get when a story floods into your consciousness is an experience like no other. I am sure other authors can relate.

          Because I was writing my first book, I had to put the story of The Kissing Tree on a shelf for a while. Thankfully, it wasn’t too long before I was able to come back to it. This book was so much fun to write! I wondered sometimes what my children were thinking of their mother when she was laughing out loud while snuggled on a beanbag, hastily scratching out words with a ball point pen or sitting at her office computer hen pecking at the keys.

          Then there were the moments while writing that had me worried I might short circuit my keyboard. Well, maybe I’m exaggerating a little, but as I’ve mentioned in one of my interviews, I feel what my characters feel. When I was writing Charlotte retelling Angus about the day his son died in her arms, my chest ached as though I was there witnessing it. I never realized before I began writing how much an author invests in his/her characters. They sometimes make me feel deeper emotions than I’ve felt in a long time, especially since losing my son. That’s actually a good thing, for me at least.

          Overall, writing The Kissing Tree left me truly feeling eager to write more stories, to experience the satisfaction of writing something I can feel good about all over again. Hopefully there are many more books in my future to bring a smile to someone’s face or just make someone’s day a little brighter. But for now, grab a copy of The Kissing Tree, snuggle up in a warm place, and enjoy the experience.

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Check out the other Blog Tour Stops:

SundayMondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturday


 12345

NovemberGetting Your Read On/
A Casual Reader’s Blog/Bookworm Lisa/
Reviews by Molly/
Debra’s Book Cafe/
6789101112

Nightly Reading/
Imaginary Reads/LDS Women’s Book Review/Burning Impossibly Bright/Place of Reeds/Practical Frugality/
131415






For More Info Check out:http://www.cedarfortbooks.com/

The Kissing Tree Blog Tour: Review



 The Kissing Tree by Prudence Bice
Source: Netgalley for review and for the blog tour.
Publisher: Cedar Fort
Release Date: December 6, 2011
Number of Pages: 272 (Hardcover)

Blurb from Goodreads:
After five long years, Georgiana McLaughlin returns to the only place she’s ever considered home—the same place she stole a kiss from Ridge Carson under the community “kissing tree.” But this time he’s a man, and reconciling their past is just the beginning. You’ll find yourself applauding each new chapter filled with fun, romance, and adventure in this captivating, heartfelt tale of love, friendship, and finding your way back.



I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I first heard the blurb of The Kissing Tree. I thought that it sounded like a sweet story, and when I read it, I was pleasantly surprised because it was even better than I thought it would be. Not only did it have an incredibly sweet and romantic story line, it also had feisty characters with amazing chemistry! I also loved the historical element of the story!

I loved Georgie! She was such a fun heroine and she was so spunky. The only downside to her was that she was too accommodating to society... but I understood why, it was customary to the time period she was in and how she was raised in New York once her family moved there. I loved that for the most part Georgie didn't let what other people thought dictate her actions. Occasionally she did, but usually only because she didn't want to hurt anyone. She's feisty, but she isn't vicious, and I loved that. :) I also loved her Irish temper, as her grandfather calls it, it made me smile every time she would get all worked up!

Ridge...oh, Ridge. Seriously, what an amazing name! With an awesome name like Ridge, you kind of assume he's going to be a sexy and boy was he ever! I loved Ridge! He and Georgie are fantastic together! They're a steamy duo, and boy could you feel the steam of their kisses. ;) The best thing about Ridge though, is that he was more than just a pretty face. He's smart, definitely charming, and he only has eyes for Georgie...so freaking adorable! :D

Along with Georgie and Ridge, my favourite character was Georgie's grandfather. He's awesome! He tries to play matchmaker, and tells about Irish stories, which I loved! :D I also loved his relationship with Georgie, they are so close, and I think that's wonderful to see in a story, especially when contrasted with Georgie's relationship to her Aunt, and even her mother, who is kind and loves her, but is rather closed off emotionally...I won't tell you why though. :P

Now, before you start thinking that this is just an historical romance between two people who are too stubborn to admit that they love each other...I have to mention that it's so much deeper than that! It's about finding your true home, and with that discovering what home really means. It's got some action in it, too, some pretty crazy action I might add involving banks. Also, the whole black and white relationship status between Georgie and Ridge is much more complicated, you add in suitors, the time period, relatives, and other meddling outsiders, and it makes for one complicated relationship.

Overall, I thought that The Kissing Tree was a fantastic story, and I really liked it. :) The characters are fantastic, and I think that it's a refreshing take on an historical romance that's set somewhat to the style of a Western. The Kissing Tree mixes genres, keeps things exciting, and incorporates an Irish story passed down the generations into the local legend of the "Kissing Tree" where Georgie steals her first kiss from Ridge. If you enjoy a teasing romance, with not-too-sweet characters, The Kissing Tree is perfect for you. :)


Check out the other Blog Tour Stops:

SundayMondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturday


 12345

NovemberGetting Your Read On/
A Casual Reader’s Blog/Bookworm Lisa/
Reviews by Molly/
Debra’s Book Cafe/
6789101112

Nightly Reading/
Imaginary Reads/LDS Women’s Book Review/Burning Impossibly Bright/Place of Reeds/Practical Frugality/
131415







For More Info Check out:http://www.cedarfortbooks.com/

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Monday, November 7, 2011

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (52)

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? at One Person's Journey Through a World of Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, is a bookish meme hosted by One Person's Journey Through a World of Books, where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It’s a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list. So hop on over to Journey and join in...and leave a comment here so I can check out what you are reading.


Books I Read Last Week:
 I loved Silence! It's definitely my favourite in the whole series so far! I had my doubts going into it after reading the Chapter 1 excerpt before reading the whole book, but once I started, I was so hooked, and the book just kept getting better and better! And I have one final word to say...Patch ♥ *sigh*
I got this one from the library, and it was a quick read to just take a break from all of my school stuff this week. It was a sweet story, but it didn't wow me or anything, plus the whole "problem" in the story could've been solved so simply that it kept me from loving it, but it was cute. :)

 Loved, loved, loved this one! :D I'm sad that it's taken me this long to read The Mockingbirds, but it was so worth the wait! This book is seriously amazing! I reviewed it on Friday if you want to check that out. :)

This one's a novella from the Restoration, and I had to read it for my one class...although I was supposed to have read it last week...but I did get to it eventually. :P It really wasn't my cup of tea...kind of boring for me actually, which is strange considering it's kind of an action-typed story, but considering action movies bore me...I guess it's not too surprising. :P I suggest that if you want to read something from the Restoration, you go with Alexander Pope or Rochester (John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester ---although, warning, this dude wrote some dirty stuff :P), or if you'd like to read something from a woman during the Restoration, Anne Finch has been my favourite so far. Her poetry is wonderful. :D


Reading Now:
Again, reading this one for class...I still have to make an effort to read this one. Will do it this week, I swear. :P Especially since I have a 4-day weekend, which I will also be using to write my Term Paper for the class I'm reading this in. :P

Just started this one. :) I'm participating in its upcoming blog tour, and I'm definitely thrilled to be a part of it! :D


Books I Want to Read This Week:
I'm doing a promo stop for this one. So, I'll have a promo for this one on my blog coming up, and I'll be trying to review it around the same time. :)


And what are you reading???

Check out One Person's Journey Through a World of Books to see what other people are reading. :)

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Sunday, November 6, 2011

In My Mailbox (17)

In My Mailbox at The Story Siren

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren, and inspired by her friend, Alea of Pop Culture Junkie. It's a way to share the books that you've received over the past week. They could come from the bookstore, the library, a friend, your mailbox or wherever. It gives us all a chance to showcase the books that we've gotten, and maybe give others an idea for the book they want to read or buy next. :)

For Review:

First Day on Earth by Cecil Castellucci (from Scholastic Canada - unsolicited)
iBoy by Kevin Brooks (from Scholastic Canada - unsolicited)
Practice Cake by Dalya Moon (from Author)
Hallowed (Unearthly #2) by Cynthia Hand (Netgalley)
Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi (Netgalley)
The Taming by Teresa Toten and Eric Walters (Netgalley)


Thanks for Scholastic Canada, Dayla Moon, and Netgalley this week for providing me with some awesome review copies. :) I'm most excited for Hallowed, although with how busy school has been and will be in the next bit, I probably won't get the chance to read it for a while, but I have an egalley when I have time at least. :D

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Library:

That Summer by Sarah Dessen
Love on Cue by Catherine Hapka
by Wendy Toliver
At First Sight by Catherine Hapka

I had to take back some library books and pick up That Summer, and I couldn't resist some of these Simon and Schuster mass market romances when I saw them on the YA shelf. haha I've already read At First Sight, and it was cute, I liked it. :) I like these because they're quick reads and that's really nice to have when you don't have too much spare time to read. :P And this is the last Sarah Dessen that I had on hold for the time being, so I've got 2 more to read, and then I'll have to order in the rest of her books that I haven't read yet. :P Which I may do one at a time because they don't have hold lists, don't want them all showing up at once. :P

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Bought for Kindle:
Utterly Charming (Fates #1) by Kristine Grayson
So Now You're a Zombie: A Handbook for the Newly Undead by John Austin

I bought a mass market paperback of one of Kristine Grayson's Fates books, and got it on Kindle while it was free too, and when I saw Utterly Charming on sale, I couldn't resist buying it for my Kindle...same goes with this Zombie handbook. It was the daily Kindle deal the other day, and I figured why not. :P

-------------------------

Thanks again to Scholastic Canada, Dayla Moon, and Netgalley! :D
I had a good mail week. I didn't get much reading done this week though because I was swamped with a few bigger school assignments. I had a 2000-word essay to write on Miley Cyrus for my Music 103 class, and an explication...which takes a lot of analysis and thought. After both of them I was kind of worn out, and I have a midterm next week, and plan on writing a term paper, so hopefully I can squeeze in some reading somewhere, if only to just unwind. :) Oh, but I am going to buy Inheritance next Tuesday, and I can't wait!

What did you get in your mailbox? Feel free to share the link to your IMM in the comments. :)


Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Review: The Mockingbirds (The Mockingbirds #1) by Daisy Whitney

Source: Library
Publisher: Little, Brown Books For Young Readers
Release Date: Already Released.
Number of Pages: 332 (HC)/ 352 (PB)

Blurb from Goodreads:
Some schools have honor codes.
Others have handbooks.
Themis Academy has the Mockingbirds.


Themis Academy is a quiet boarding school with an exceptional student body that the administration trusts to always behave the honorable way--the Themis Way. So when Alex is date raped during her junior year, she has two options: stay silent and hope someone helps her, or enlist the Mockingbirds--a secret society of students dedicated to righting the wrongs of their fellow peers.
In this honest, page-turning account of a teen girl's struggle to stand up for herself, debut author Daisy Whitney reminds readers that if you love something or someone--especially yourself--you fight for it.



Wow....seriously, wow. I was blown away by The Mockingbirds. I knew I would like it, it sounded like a fantastic premise, with an extremely powerful message, but I didn't know how much I would like it. In fact, I loved this book!

Daisy Whitney has a wonderful writing style. It's straight-forward, realistic, and extremely character driven. By the end of the novel I felt like I knew Alex. Her voice in The Mockingbirds is so strong. I think it would be hard to walk away from this book without feeling like you'd just gotten to know her in the most intimate ways possible. That's not to say that everything she thinks makes sense or is clear, but throughout her moments of confusion, she is so real. She exposes everything to the reader. Maybe not her every single thought, but the important ones, the ones that pull you up short and let you get to know a character.

I also have to mention that I love when characters have a passion. Something that weaves into their narrative and becomes a defining trait. For Alex, this trait was her music, her piano-playing. Her passion for the piano wove so intricately into her life that she would actually imagine composers in times of need for their advice. Another character I've read that was similar to this was Chloe in the Darkest Powers Trilogy, she loved movies, so she'd imagine parts of her life as scenes. I love these defining characteristics! They help me get into the mindset of the character, and imagine that I could have the same passion, and I thought that Daisy did a brilliant job weaving Alex's passion into her story.

Well, I can't go this whole review without mentioning the Mockingbirds now, can I? There is so much that I can say about the Mockingbirds, but I don't want to keep us all here forever, so I'll keep it short. The Mockingbirds were inspiring, as was Alex for standing up for herself, but as a group, the Mockingbirds were amazing. In a school where perfection is expected, and any deviation from it (other than actual failing at school) is ignored, they represent something so profound. An organization where students try other students, and punish them for their wrongdoings. I loved that they helped to defend what was right and wrong, and while it seems strange that students would organize this kind of society, in Themis it seems to work. My favourite part about the Mockingbirds was their association with To Kill a Mockingbird. I remember reading it in school, and I really enjoyed it, and I thought it was fantastic that Daisy Whitney used it as inspiration for the Mockingbirds, and her little allusions to the story were fantastic! :D

Above everything else, this book was inspiring. It was hopeful, and I hope that people in Alex's situation can learn from it and realize that it's okay for them to stand up for themselves, and that being raped is not the victim's fault. The inspiration is The Mockingbirds doesn't end with the story though, it continues into Daisy's "Author's Note" where she reveals that, like Alex, she was date-raped, and that she stood up for herself and continued to talk about it and fight for other women in her situation. To me, this note was just icing on the cake, inspiration piled upon inspiration, and I love Daisy for sharing her story and Alex's with us readers. I've never been in their situation myself, but it never fails to impress me when I read stories like this, where someone has the courage to speak. It impresses me because if they could have the strength to speak, so could I, or if it ever happened to someone I knew, I'd be able to stand up for and with them. It lets you know that life goes on after terrible traumas like this, you just have to let it. I also can't wait to read the sequel, The Rivals, to see what happens next at Themis.

Add The Mockingbird's sequel, The Rivals, to Goodreads: The Rivals

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Random Acts of Kindness - November Edition!

Book Soulmates
 
This is now my third month participating in RAK, and I have to say that I love it! And I love the idea of being able to buy someone else a book and maybe get one from someone else in return for no reason at all, just to be nice! :D

The lovely Vanessa and Isalys at Book Soulmates came up with the idea for Random Acts of Kindness. 
 
Here are the rules for R.A.K.:

RULES RE-CAP:
  • Sign up each month that you'd like to participate.
  • Show off your participation by grabbing our RAK button :)
  • Create a wish list (on Amazon, Goodreads, or your blog etc) and post it in the Google Doc located in each R.A.K post for the month.
  • If you choose to do a R.A.K for someone, check out their wish list and contact that blogger for their address.
  • At the end of the month, SHOW US YOUR R.A.K!  Make a post saying 'Thank You' to whoever granted one of your wishes and share it with us :)
OPEN TO EVERYONE!
Let's keep our International bloggers in mind and in our hearts.
Remember, there's always the Book Depository and they offer FREE shipping!


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You can find out even more about R.A.K, and sign up for November HERE.
 
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I've got two different wishlists, one for Amazon and one for the Book Depository: 

The Book Depository Wishlist:  Ambur's TBD Wishlist
And my Amazon/Kindle Wishlist: Ambur's Amazon Wishlist

Go ahead and check it out even if you aren't participating in R.A.K.! You might find a book you want for yourself. ;)
  
(If you want my address to send me something for R.A.K., you can email me at ambiepie_6(at)hotmail(dot)com.)
 
October was a great R.A.K. month for me! I sent 3 and received 3 books! I've definitely loved getting to participate in R.A.K., and I hope that you'll all give it a try, it's an awesome experience! :D
 
Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur