Thursday, June 28, 2012

Canada Day Blog Hop Giveaway



Well, it's that time of year again! That's right, it's almost Canada Day! In honour of Canada Day (July 1st), Stitch Read Cook, Snowdrop Dreams of Books, and Rabid Reads are all hosting the Canada Day Blog Hop, and I'm participating! :D

So, today I'm having an awesome giveaway for you guys! :D There will be one winner and that winner will get to choose a book written by a Canadian author worth up to $15 Canadian on The Book Depository! :D 

Here are some examples of my favourite Canadian authors:
Kelley Armstrong, Lesley Livingstone, and Genevieve Graham. :)

Now, onto the
Giveaway Details:

- INTERNATIONAL (As long as The Book Depository ships to you, you can enter! :D)
- 1 Winner (will get their choice of book)
- Winner will be chosen using Rafflecopter and will have 48 hours to claim their prize
- You must be a follower to enter, but don't worry, you don't need to be Canadian...although if you are, you are awesome. ;D
- You can receive extra entries through commenting, tweeting, Facebook likes, and more

TO ENTER USE THE RAFFLECOPTER WIDGET BELOW: 




Here is your next stop on the Canada Day Blog Hop: Wag the Fox: a den for dark fiction

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You can find the rest of the blogs on this hop here: 



Thanks for entering, and Good Luck! :D 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Big Sky Country Blog Tour: Excerpt and Guest Blog

http://booktrib.com
BIG SKY COUNTRY BLOG TOUR

Big Sky Country Excerpt: 

“Would you mind stopping by the office once or twice, just in case someone drops in wanting to look at a property? Slade Barlow has a habit of coming over to ask if the Kingman place has sold.”
The name registered in an instant, like a sharp dart to the esophagus, and Joslyn had to swallow before she could nod. As kids, she and Slade had lived in different worlds, her rich, his poor. Back then, she’d been his brother Hutch’s girl, which hadn’t helped, either. Although Slade had never actually come out and said as much—he’d barely spoken to her at all, in fact—she’d known what he thought of her: that she was spoiled, self-centered and shallow.
Worse, he’d been right.
When the financial roof had caved in and all those honest, hardworking people realized they’d been cheated out of their savings by the town’s onetime favorite son—Joslyn’s stepfather, Elliott—her charmed life was over.

Tomorrow's excerpt will be at: Tammilee Tips (on June 28)

...and if you missed it, yesterday's excerpt was at: Books That Leave You Breathless (on June 26).
 


Guest Blog: Do you prefer Slade or Hutch? - Linda Lael Miller


Well, heck, that’s a hard one, because I’m crazy about both of them.  Slade is the strong, silent type, physically patterned after a young Rob Lowe (I had his shirtless Vanity Fair cover framed and kept it on my desk throughout.)  He’s big on honor and integrity, and he’s really gun-shy because of a love gone wrong.  Hutch is strong, too, but he’s outspoken and reckless.  Where Slade will examine an issue from all angles, Hutch tends to jump right in and worry about the details later.  Because they’re both LLM heroes, they have certain qualities in common: they want a woman who is an equal, and a partner, they love kids, they love animals, and they will always try to do the right thing.  Like “real” people, they sometimes get it wrong, despite all their good intentions.  They both have a sense of humor, Slade’s being dry and understated, while Hutch’s is more wisecrack dependent.  They never look for a fight, but they never run away from one, either.  I’m often asked if I wish real men were like my heroes—truth be told, I think there are a lot of very fine men out there, doing their jobs, loving their women, raising their children to be good citizens.




About Big Sky Country:
The illegitimate son of a wealthy rancher, Sheriff Slade Barlow grew up in a trailer hitched to the Curly-Burly hair salon his mother runs. He was never acknowledged by his father…until now. Suddenly, Slade has inherited half of Whisper Creek Ranch, one of the most prosperous in Parable, Montana. That doesn’t sit well with his half brother, Hutch, who grew up with all the rights of a Carmody—including the affections of Joslyn Kirk, homecoming queen, rodeo queen, beauty queen, whom Slade has never forgotten.
But Joslyn is barely holding her head up these days as she works to pay back everyone her crooked stepfather cheated. With a town to protect, plus a rebellious teenage stepdaughter, Slade has his hands full. But someone has to convince Joslyn that she’s responsible only for her own actions—such as her effect on this lawman’s guarded heart.

You can find all of the tour stops here on Booktrib's Tour Page.  

So, what do you think??
Does Big Sky Country sound like a book you'd want to read? Are you a fan of Swoon-worthy Cowboys (as the series is named ;D)?

Review: Big Sky Country (Swoon-Worthy Cowboys #1) by Linda Lael Miller (Big Sky Country Blog Tour)

Source: Received an ARC to participate in the blog tour and for an honest review.
Publisher: HQN Books
Release Date: Already Released.
Number of Pages: 384 (Paperback)

Blurb from Goodreads:
The "First Lady of the West," #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller is back with a new series about Parable, Montana-where love awaits. The illegitimate son of a wealthy rancher, Sheriff Slade Barlow grew up in a trailer hitched to the Curly-Burly hair salon his mother runs. He was never acknowledged by his father-until now. Suddenly, Slade has inherited half of Whisper Creek Ranch, one of the most prosperous in Parable, Montana. That doesn't sit well with his half brother, Hutch, who grew up with all the rights of a Carmody. Including the affections of Joslyn Kirk, homecoming queen, rodeo queen, beauty queen-whom Slade has never forgotten But Joslyn is barely holding her head up these days as she works to pay back everyone her crooked stepfather cheated. With a town to protect-plus a rebellious teenage stepdaughter-Slade has his hands full. But someone has to convince Joslyn that she's responsible only for her own actions. Such as her effect on this lawman's guarded heart.



Once I started Big Sky Country, I devoured it! I couldn't get enough of this story, and I absolutely loved Slade and Joslyn. I live in an area where there are definitely a lot of farms, and I'm sure there are some cowboys around...but none have really caught my fancy. Not that I was even really looking, but still. :P After reading Big Sky Country, I definitely see the appeal. ;D

Big Sky Country actually had a much slower build romance-wise than I thought it would, but I actually really enjoyed that. It allowed for the characters to actually develop, and for the story to have a lot more substance than it would have had otherwise. It also opened up side-plots which I'm sure will lead to the main plots in the following books of this series. :) I love when sequels are set up like that, and when you get to see how the couple, or couples, you met in previous books are doing! :D

The characters were what I loved that most about Big Sky Country! The point of view alternated between Slade, our cowboy and resident Sheriff, and Joslyn, who was returning to Parable after leaving in a hurry when her stepfather scammed most of the town out of an awful lot of money. I loved the whole alternating POVs, and I loved both Slade and Joslyn. They were both fantastic characters, and while they were both stubborn as heck, I loved that in the end that didn't stand between them...and the sparks between these two...wowza! I loved it! :D I also was just a sucker for Slade; blue eyes, deep chuckle, dark hair, tall, muscles but not too muscle-y...he definitely sounded like a stud, and I could totally understand his appeal. I could also understand both of their initial reluctance too, and their nerves just made me root for them even more! :D Along with Slade and Joslyn, I loved Slade's stepdaughter, Shea, his mother, Callie, Joslyn's best friend, Kendra, and I especially loved the dog, Jasper...I'm a sucker for dogs! :D The characters were fantastic, even the smaller ones, and that makes me really eager to read more of this series so that I can get to know even more of the characters! :D

Overall, I loved Big Sky Country! :D It was an wonderful story with a slow-building, yet seriously chemistry-filled romance, and it wasn't over-the-top at all. I think that even readers who love romances, but don't like a lot of overtly described passion scenes would still enjoy this, and it had enough banter and chemistry between the characters to keep those who do enjoy more steamy parts along for the ride. :) I for one can't wait to read the next book, Big Sky Mountain, and I look forward to finding out what happens in Parable next! :D

If you're following Big Sky Country's Blog Tour, you can find all of the posts here at Booktrib's Blog Tour Page.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Review: The Vicious Deep (The Vicious Deep #1) by Zoraida Córdova

Source: Received an egalley from Raincoast, Sourcebooks and Netgalley for an honest review.
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: Already Released.
Number of Pages: 384 (Hardcover)

Blurb from Goodreads:
For Tristan Hart, everything changes with one crashing wave.

He was gone for three days. Sucked out to sea in a tidal wave and spit back ashore at Coney Island with no memory of what happened. Now his dreams are haunted by a terrifying silver mermaid with razor-sharp teeth.

His best friend Layla is convinced something is wrong. But how can he explain he can sense emotion like never before? How can he explain he’s heir to a kingdom he never knew existed? That he’s suddenly a pawn in a battle as ancient as the gods.

Something happened to him in those three days. He was claimed by the sea…and now it wants him back.


I'm of The Little Mermaid generation...meaning I watched the movie at least once a month (in some cases a week :P) throughout my childhood, and ever since I have absolutely loved mermaids. The Vicious Deep takes it to a whole new level though, and the male narrator is certainly one of the reasons for that. :)

In most stories about mermaids...or rather merfolk, the mermaid is a girl and she's the narrator, but this one is totally different. I loved that, and I really enjoyed Tristan. He was pretty cocky and a jerk at times, but I actually really liked him. He was straightforward and he knew he could be a prick...which was kind of refreshing. It also helped that he was hilarious, and that most of the other characters were really funny too. :D I'm a sucker for great chemistry between characters, and for lots of jokes and The Vicious Deep had tonnes of both of those! I also really loved Tristan's best friend, Layla. I'm gonna keep mum about my feelings towards Tristan and Layla, but I totally loved the two of them together. Read into that however you like. :P

I also really loved the descriptions, and the way that the different species of creatures: mermaids, fairies, vampires, and an abundance of others were incorporated into our world. When Zoraida Córdova described things, I almost felt like everything was in technicolor and super vibrant. I think that finding theperfect balance with how you describe something is an art, and Córdova is excellent at it! :D There are so many times where you read something and it's so descriptive that you almost get bored with all the adjectives, but not with The Vicious Deep. Instead, you feel as if you've been submerged in the same world as Tristan, and you're just as mesmerized and overwhelmed with it as he is. I also love that Tristan's reactions are realistic. He's so confused, and he acts like a snarky and sarcastic teenager, which I found pretty amusing.

Along with the awesome descriptions, and characters, I loved the whole story in general. It was such an interesting plot, and while the story was very character-driven, it was also full of action. There was always something going on, or something to be figured out, and because of that, The Vicious Deep constantly keeps you on your toes! :D

Overall, I loved this one! So much! It's definitely on the top of my favourite reads this year, and I'm counting down the days until I can read the next book, The Savage Blue! :D I would recommend this to someone who loves mermaids, or even someone who isn't a mermaid fan. This book is so versatile with its male narrator and the action throughout, I think it would appeal to a lot of readers. It would also be great if you're a YA fan and are looking for an awesome story with a male lead. I know I personally like to mix it up and read a story with a male narrator every once in a while and there aren't too many YAs out there with them. :D

Have you read The Vicious Deep yet?
Are you a mermaid fan?
Does this sound like a book that you'd enjoy?

Purchase Links:
Book Depository: UK / US
Amazon: UK / US / Canada
Barnes and Noble

Monday, June 25, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (79)

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.

I got tonnes of reading done earlier this week! :D I might actually catch up to my Goodreads reading challenge at this rate. ;D haha

Books I Read Last Week:
I loved this one so much! :D I'll be participating in the blog tour at the beginning of next month, so I'm going to post my review then. :) I definitely recommend checking it out. It was funny, had great characters, and an awesome mix of mystery thrown in! :D

 
I didn't like this one as much as I expected that I would. I think that's more because it's a bit dated now. The dialogue is really formal, but I did still enjoy it, just not as much as I thought I would. :P Are You There God, It's Me Margaret is still on the top of my Judy Blume list. I love that one, it's so funny! ;D

This is the last book in the Vampire Kisses series, and I absolutely loved it! :D What a fantastic ending to a fun series. :)

I don't read Graphic Novels very often, but I really liked this one. :) It was funny, had some great art, and some seriously awesome puns! ;D

Dreamland is so different from Sarah Dessen's other books, but I still liked it. This one is pretty dark though, and it left me a little conflicted after reading it, but it really moved me. I was in tears during a few parts of the book, and by while I don't think I would ever actually be in Caitlin's position, I felt a lot of compassion for her, and for girls like her.

This one was awesome! :D I really enjoyed the musical aspect, and like reading from Orion's point of view...plus he has such an awesome name! It also had some really cool extra details, like blog updates with comments and everything. :D

This was my favourite book all week! I absolutely loved it, and I really liked the main character, Tristan. He was a bit of a cocky jerk at times, but he was really upfront about it, and I loved that. :) I also liked reading from a male POV for mermaids...or should I say merfolk. :D It was awesome! :D


Reading Now:



I'm still reading these two, but they kind of got pushed to the side for a bit last week since I was trying to catch up on a few review titles. Hopefully I'll get back to them soon. :)
The Kobo Vox finally got the Google play store, and so I just had to buy this one! :D I read the first couple of chapters and really like it so far. I'm looking forward to getting to the interactive parts. :D

Cowboys...that is all. :P Just kidding, but I am liking this one so far. :D I'm participating in the blog tour for this one, so I'm gonna be focusing on this one for the next couple days. :)


Books I Want to Read This Week:
I've been meaning to start this one for a while, and I'm hoping to get to it this week. :) It's a novella so it's not very long, but I'm psyched to get another taste of the Holloway pack! :D


And what are you reading???

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

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Stacking the Shelves (5)

Stacking the Shelves is Tynga's Reviews' version of In My Mailbox (from The Story Siren and inspired by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie).

Stacking the Shelves is a way to share the books that you're adding to your physical and virtual bookshelves. It's easy to participate. You just make your own post, and link it to the main post over at Tynga's Reviews. Also, in case you're curious, Tynga's post for it goes up on Saturdays, but you can post it any day that you like. :) You can find out more about participating by reading the Stacking the Shelves Launch post.

So, here's what I got this week!

For Review:

A Matter of Life and Death or Something by Ben Stephenson (from D and M Publishing)
 Rage Within (Dark Inside #2) by Jeyn Roberts (from Simon and Schuster Canada)
The Blessed (The Blessed #1) by Tonya Hurley (from Simon and Schuster Canada)
Rootless by Chris Howard (from Scholastic Canada)
Devine Intervention by Martha Brockenbrough (from Scholastic Canada)
Grim by Anna Waggener (from Scholastic Canada)

I had a few surprises from Scholastic this week and they all sound amazing! :D I'm really looking forward to them. A Matter of Life and Death or Something also sounds fantastic, as do the titles from Simon and Schuster. I hadn't heard of The Blessed yet, but it seems really intense! :D

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Gifted:

 Huntress by Malinda Lo (from my awesome friend, Zoë, at In the Next Room!)

Zoë ordered me some books for my birthday, and this one was a pre-order! :D I can't wait to read it! :D Thanks again, Zo!!!

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Bought: 

Rapture (Fallen #4) by Lauren Kate
Forever by Judy Blume
Immortal Hearts (Vampire Kisses #9) by Ellen Schreiber

I already finished Forever and Immortal Hearts. I loved Immortal Hearts! It's the last book in its series, and I loved how it all turned out. Forever was okay, but it didn't really wow me. I can't wait to read Rapture though! :D I'm hoping to get to it soon! :D

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So, that's what I got this past week! What about you, what did you get??
Feel free to leave a link to your mailbox, book haul, or stacking the shelves related post in the comments. :)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Sound Bites Blog Tour: Review


Source: Received an ebook to participate in the AToMR Blog Tour 
Release Date: Already Released

Blurb from Goodreads:
Renee Evans has a knack for trouble. After walking in on her best friend and boyfriend in bed together, twenty-five year-old Renee flees sunny Los Angeles and her dream job as a music journalist and returns to her hometown of Boston – only to meet Dylan Cavallari, the mysterious, aspiring musician who lives in her apartment building. Dylan’s piercing gaze and womanizing demeanor make him exactly the type of guy that Renee should steer clear of – which is most likely the reason she falls for him. But when Renee’s troublesome ex comes back and threatens to drive her and Dylan apart, Renee is forced to face her past and save her relationship with Dylan before it's too late.

Sound Bites dramatizes what happens when Renee finds herself caught between a painful past and an uncertain future. Happiness turns out to be within her grasp, but it all depends on whether she can trust herself enough to make the right decisions. Sound Bites is a novel about love, friendship, betrayal, forgiveness, and the power of music to help you find your way.



I'm gonna start off this review by talking about the music. :) I absolutely love music! You can pretty much always find me listening to music, or doing something with music playing in the background, so I always love to check out books revolving around a musical element, and I absolutely loved the music aspect woven throughout Sound Bites! :D I loved both Dylan's and Renee's passions for music, and I loved how music brought them together. :D I also always love hearing about songs that other people are absolutely crazy for...it makes me want to listen to them. ;D haha

Along with their musical connection, I just loved Dylan and Renee together. They had some amazing banter. I only wish that there had been more actual romantic scenes between them. It was the one element that I kind of felt was missing. I felt like these two had so much buildup, and that their chemistry and banter rocked, and then it was like I was only given a tiny piece of the major spark between them. I would've loved more kissing personally, and more scenes after their romance bloomed, but other than that, I totally loved their whole relationship. I just wanted more. :P

Along with Dylan and Renee, the characters were great. :D I especially loved Renee's friends. :) Sound Bites is full of sound characters, and packed full of passion for music. I also just loved Renee herself. I liked her as a narrator. She seemed very genuine, and I loved that she was so real. She had doubts, and fears, too. I love my butt-kicking heroines, but I also love when they show that they aren't perfect and that they actually are afraid sometimes. It makes them extremely easy to like, and makes it easy to empathize with them. I felt for Renee, and I really enjoyed reading her story. :)

Overall, I thought that Sound Bites was a great story. While I would've loved more of the romance, and especially would've loved to see more romantic moments, I still thoroughly enjoyed reading it. I think that Rachel K. Burke has crafted a wonderful story, with some fantastic characters, and I look forward to reading more of her books in the future. I'd recommend Sound Bites to anyone who loves music and loves to get caught up in the passions of others (the romantic and musical variety especially ;D).

 Sound Bites is available on Amazon: UK / US
(Note: This is not an affiliate link, it's just here to get you there if you're interested.)

And if you're following this Blog Tour, you can find the rest of the posts, here on AToMR Book Tour's Site.

Is anyone else a huge music fan??
Does Sound Bites sound like something you'd like?
Has anyone else read this one?
If you have, what did you think? And if you haven't, any thoughts?

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Review: Dark Companion by Marta Acosta

  Source: Received an egalley from the author for an honest review.
Publisher: Tor/Macmillan
Release Date: July 3, 2012
Number of Pages: 

Blurb from Goodreads:

When foster teen Jane Williams is invited to attend elite Birch Grove Academy for Girls and escape her violent urban neighborhood, she thinks the offer is too good to be true. She's even offered her own living quarters, the groundskeeper's cottage in the center of the birch grove.

Something's not quite right about the school -- or is it Jane? She thinks she sees things in the birch grove at night. She's also beginning to suspect that the elegant headmistress and her sons are hiding secrets. Lucky is the gorgeous, golden son who is especially attentive to Jane, and Jack is the sardonic puzzling brother.

The school with its talented teachers and bright students is a dream for a science and math geek like Jane. She also loves her new friends, including hilarious poetry-spouting rich girl, Mary Violet. But the longer Jane stays at Birch Grove, the more questions she has about the disappearance of another scholarship girl and a missing faculty member.

Jane discovers one secret about Birch Grove, which only leads to more mysteries. What is she willing to sacrifice in order to stay at this school...and be bound to Birch Grove forever?



Dark Companion is not a typical story. Even after just reading the blurb, I had expectations for it, and soon figured out I couldn't have been more wrong. While my assumptions weren't quite right, I actually wasn't disappointed that I was wrong. Instead I found a story that was a blend of mystery, paranormal, with a smidge of romance thrown in. I was also pleasantly surprised with the supporting characters, especially one that seemed to come to life and jump right off the page.

The main character, Jane, is actually pretty plain, or at least she seems to be. She also has a mysterious past, one that's unknown even to her. I liked her, but sometimes she got on my nerves. Then there are Jack and Lucky, the headmistress's sons...right away, I was instantly drawn to Jack. He was awesome, but Jane constantly was thinking about how gorgeous Lucky was, and Lucky this and all that. I never really saw the attraction towards him, he was kind of a douche, but to be honest, I think that's how you're supposed to feel. You're told Lucky's all that, then Jack's always popping up, being awesome, sweet and funny, and Jane never really notices, or at least doesn't acknowledge that she's noticing it. Jane seems to be blinded by Lucky, and is lured into the mysteries of Birch Grove...blinded by the things that she is offered.

I'm trying to be aloof about most of the story so that I don't ruin anything, but I will say that when you read it, you will love Mary Violet, or at least I hope you do because I sure did. She was such a character, so hilarious, and so over-the-top! She contrasted excellently with Jane, and helped bring Jane out of her shell. :) Once Jane opened herself up to her friends she became so much more likeable, and once she started listening to her instincts and trusting herself, she was even better. :)

Overall, I really enjoyed Dark Companion. It kept me on my toes, and I loved trying to uncover the secrets of Birch Grove...it's always fun to try and figure things out before the big reveal, and Dark Companion keeps you guessing. I'd recommend it to those who like to see characters develop, and for people who enjoy their stories with a dash of everything, from humour, to paranormal, to romance, and finally, to mystery. Dark Companion has a little bit of them all, and will keep you intrigued until the very last word.

So, does Dark Companion sound like your type of story?

Monday, June 18, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (78)

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:
Awe! I loved this one so freaking much! I'm actually sad that I finished it because I'm done and now I'll have to wait for what feels like forever for the sequel! Seriously, this book was amazing, and I definitely can't wait to read the next book...even though this one isn't actually released yet. I'm definitely going to be picking up a finished copy of this one once it's out! :D

I read this one for a blog tour later this week, and I really liked it. I only wish that the romance, which I really enjoyed, was described more. I'm a big fan of kisses, feelings, and just overall awesome couple moments, and I just wish there were more of them in Sound Bites. Don't get me wrong, I really liked it, but I wanted more of Dylan and Renee, which really isn't necessarily a bad thing. :P lol My review will be posted later this week though, so I'm gonna refrain from saying anything else. :P


Reading Now:
I'm actually almost finished this one, and may be done this one early this morning...I haven't decided if I'll go to sleep or keep reading after posting this. :P Anyway, I'm loving it! I absolutely love Ellie, and I'm definitely cheering for Seth...let's hope he isn't really a serial killer. I have my suspicions about who is though...and I have a pretty good feeling that I'm right...I'm not telling you all what my suspicions are though. ;) I'm sure you'll get to read more raving comments next week on my Monday post though, so I'll stop for now. haha


**I'm also still reading A Clash of Kings, and Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder, but I'm feeling lazy and don't want to add pics and links. :P

Books I Want to Read This Week:
I've been wanting to read this one for so long! I'm gonna try to get to it this week, and hopefully I love it as much as I think I will! :D


And what are you reading???

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

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Stacking the Shelves (4)

Stacking the Shelves is Tynga's Reviews' version of In My Mailbox (from The Story Siren and inspired by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie).

Stacking the Shelves is a way to share the books that you're adding to your physical and virtual bookshelves. It's easy to participate. You just make your own post, and link it to the main post over at Tynga's Reviews. Also, in case you're curious, Tynga's post for it goes up on Saturdays, but you can post it any day that you like. :) You can find out more about participating by reading the Stacking the Shelves Launch post.

So, here's what I got this week!

For Review:

Sound Bites by Rachel K. Burke (for Book Tour with AToMR Book Tours)
Surrender (Mimics of Rune #2) by Aimee Laine (from J. Taylor Publishing)
The Assassin's Curse by Cassandra Rose Clarke (from Netgalley)
Poltergeeks by Sean Cummings (from Netgalley)
Love and Other Perishable Items by Laura Buzo (from Netgalley)
League of Strays by L. B. Schulman (from Netgalley)

I'm really excited for all of these ones! :D Especially for Surrender! I loved the first book in the series, Little White Lies! :D The rest of these are also ones that I'm really excited for! :D

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Bought:

Stay by Deb Caletti (Chapters)
Cryer's Cross by Lisa McMann (Chapters)
Darkness Becomes Her (Gods and Monsters #1) by Kelly Keaton (Chapters)
Darkness Before Dawn (Darkness Before Dawn #1) by J. A. London (Book Depository)
The Selection (The Selection #1) by Kiera Cass (Wal-mart)
That Boy (That Boy #1)  by Jillian Dodd (Amazon Kindle Store)

So...I stopped at Chapters after work the other day and couldn't resist some of the deals I found! :D I got myself a copy of Stay, Cryer's Cross, and Darkness Becomes Her...all in hardcover, for less than $15! :D My copy of Darkness Before Dawn also finally came in the mail, and I saw The Selection at Walmart the other day and couldn't resist! :D Also, That Boy was only like $2.99 and since the last time I checked it was almost $10, I just had to get it! :D I can't wait to read all of these ones! :D

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That's what I got this week, what about you?
Feel free to leave a link to your mailbox, book haul, or shelf-related post. :)

Armchair BEA Giveaway Winners!


The winners of my Armchair BEA Giveaway who will received their choice of one pre-order are: 

laceyblossom

and 

Zemira

Congratulations! :D You two are the winners of this giveaway! I'll be contacting you shortly so that you can claim your prize and let me know which title you would like. Each winner will have 48 hours to claim their prize. Winners were chosen using Random.org. If you're one of the winners and don't receive an email, you can contact me at [ambiepie_6@hotmail.com].

Thank you to everyone who entered! I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one who is seriously excited for the titles I chose, and I also heard about some awesome new titles that I didn't know of yet! :D

Thanks again! :D

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Review: City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments #5) by Cassandra Clare

 Source: Bought/Personal Library
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Release Date:Already Released.
Number of Pages: 534 (Hardcover)

I haven't included the description from Goodreads because I don't want to spoil anyone who doesn't want to read the description...if you do want to read it, it can be found on the book's Goodreads page.



I was extremely torn after I finished the book before this one, City of Fallen Angels, so I was going into CoLS just hoping that I would love it like I'd loved the first three books...and thankfully, I did! :D I am super happy to be able to say that I absolutely loved City of Lost Souls, and I'm extremely excited for the final book, City of Heavenly Fire now...and we have to wait until 2014 for it! It's gonna be a long wait, but at least now if I decide to reread the series, I know it'll end for the time being on a note I'm happy with...so yay for that! :D

One big difference between CoFA and CoLS from the first three books, is that that there are way more narrators! Instead of just being more Jace and Clary centric, these ones include lots of Simon, some of Alec, and in CoLS's case, even some of Maia (and some other characters who shall not be named to avoid spoilers :P)! I like that there are more sides to the story now, but it's definitely a big shift from the earlier books. Hopefully it's one that most fans will adapt to, and like. :)

The biggest thing I'm going to stress in this review is the fact that even if CoFA left you conflicted and kind of tormented (like it did for me :P), then you can still enjoy City of Lost Souls! I seriously was kind of nervous about going into this one because I was just so out of it after I read CoFA. I didn't even know how to react. I knew I loved the writing, but the story as a whole left me just so sad, and so broken up inside...so when I read CoLS I was just hoping and hoping that this one would end on a better note for me...and it did! Yes, it had a cliffhanger, like most of Cassandra Clare's books, but this one wasn't nearly as brutal as CoFA, and it left me content and excited for CoHF rather than feeling all jumbled! What I'm trying to get at here is that I think if CoFA wasn't necessarily a hit for you, you shouldn't be afraid to keep going with CoLS because if you don't read it, you might just miss out on one amazing story! :D

I think by now we all know the characters in this series, but I'll mention some just because. I've read some reviews where people said Clary annoyed them, but I've always loved Clary...I don't care what anyone says. I think Clary is a great heroine. She's strong, determined, and always stands up for what she believes in. She may be impulsive, and doesn't always consider her own safety, but she does it for the people she loves, and I can't help but admire her for that. Yes, maybe she mopes around about Jace and misses him...but seriously? Wouldn't you?! Honestly, I think some people forget that characters are supposed to be people too, and that they're supposed to behave as if they have feelings. :P Anyway, I think Clary is awesome, and I think that she's grown a lot over this series, and in CoLS she really shows it. She shows off some of her awesome Shadowhunter moves, and proves as always that she is willing to do whatever she can for what she believes in and to help those she loves. I'm going to avoid talking about my number one YA heartthrob, Jace, because I really don't want to ruin anything for you all...but I will say that he is in the book, so don't worry, he shows up. :P

So, if you've been afraid to start CoLS because you were unsure after CoFA, I'm going to encourage you to give it a shot! Also, if you've been waiting to read the final three books in this series until they all come out to avoid cliffhangers...I say go for it now! CoLS ends on a great note...one I was seriously okay with it ending on, so I think if you're waiting, it's time to pick it up. :)


Have you read City of Lost Souls?
Are you waiting to read the last three books until they're all out (I actually know someone who's doing this, which is why I'm asking in case you were wondering :P)?
Did you read City of Fallen Angels? Were you torn like I was?
Anything else you'd like to share? Haiku's about Jace? Rants about Clary (or should I say counter-rants since my comment turned into a bit of a rant :P)?
Whatever it is, feel free to discuss. :)

Purchase Links:
Book Depository: UK / US
Amazon: UK / US / Canada
Barnes and Noble

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Review: Being Jame Baker by Kelly Oram

 Source: Own Kindle Version and won Paperback from Author
Publisher: Bluefields
Release Date: Already Released.
Number of Pages: 353 (Paperback)

Blurb from Goodreads:
An accident that should end in tragedy instead gives seventeen-year-old Jamie Baker a slew of uncontrollable superhuman abilities. To keep her secret safe Jamie socially exiles herself, earning the title of Rocklin High's resident ice queen. But during a supercharged encounter with star quarterback Ryan Miller she literally kisses anonymity goodbye. Now the annoyingly irresistible Ryan will stop at nothing to melt the heart of the ice queen and find out what makes her so special. Unfortunately, Ryan is not the only person on to her secret. Will Jamie learn to contain her unstable powers before being discovered by the media or turned into a government lab rat? More importantly, can she throw Ryan Miller off her trail before falling in love with him?



Just reread this one yesterday and today in anticipation for Serial Hottie, Kelly Oram's next book, and I loved it probably even more than I did the first time. :D

I just love this story. :) Jamie isn't the most likeable person at times...at least not in public, but as a reader, we know a little more than they do. She's been through so much, and she's turned herself into an Ice Queen to protect herself and others. I loved getting to see Ryan help crack the ice she'd encased herself in, and seeing her open up to him and others. I also loved getting to know Jamie as a reader. She's an amazing heroine, and she's so well-rounded. She's definitely one of my favourite heroines...and I meant that in the actual heroic sense. ;D

Plus, I just plain loved Ryan! He's adorable, and such an amazing guy. It's so nice to see a love interest who's sweet, and caring, and always positive...optimism is very attractive, especially on Ryan. ;) haha I also loved when he and Jamie were together. They're such an amazing pair. :D

Overall, I think that Being Jamie Baker is an amazing story, and it's one that I would definitely recommend! :D It's also available as an ebook now, so it's super easy to get a copy! If you like fun stories with amazing characters, you'll love this one, especially if you're a sucker for sweet and charismatic love interests that just won't give up. ;D

Links: Book Website | Author's Twitter | Facebook | Excerpt

Purchase Links:
Book Depository: UK / US
Amazon: UK / US / Canada
Barnes and Noble
Smashwords
Kobo Store

I won a copy of this one a couple years ago and absolutely adored it, and then I saw it recently for sale on Kindle and I couldn't resist buying a digital copy since it was only $2.99! So worth it, now I can read it wherever my Kindle goes. :P lol

Have you read this one?
If you haven't, do you want to? :)

Monday, June 11, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? (77)

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.

So, I haven't posted this meme in a few weeks because I haven't been reading much, but I thought I'd get back to it this week since I actually managed to finish a book. :P lol

Books I Read Last Week:
I actually reread this one a few weeks ago, but hadn't posted about it yet, and I love it too much to not give it some love! :D I also couldn't forgive myself if I didn't try and encourage you all to check it out. ;) Bianca isn't your conventional heroine, and Wesley Rush is most definitely not your conventional hero, but I still love them, and I think you will too....especially Welsey. ;)


This is another reread, and I read it last week, but skipped my Monday post since I was doing aBEA, so I figured I'd talk about it this week. I'm also posting a review for it later this week, and in July I'm participation in the blog tour for Kelly Oram's next book. :) I love this book though. It's a quick and quirky read...it's not really that short, but you'll love Jamie, and Ryan so much that it will be a fast read...you seriously won't want to put it down. I haven't either time that I read it. ;) haha It's also really cheap for ebook right now, so I couldn't resist getting a Kindle version...and that totally incited a reread, which I loved! :D

Look what I finally finished on Saturday night! :D It's taken me a while, but I finally finished A Game of Thrones, and now I can move on to A Clash of Kings! :D I liked this one, but I think I might've liked it better if I hadn't already watched the show. The first season is based on the contents of the first book, so I never really had the urge to keep reading like I would have if I hadn't already watched the show. I knew what was going to happen so I didn't really have a desperation to know what cam next...except during Jon Snow's parts...I just love that boy. ;) haha That being said, I'm really looking forward to reading the books that haven't been made into episodes of the show yet, and hopefully I can get through them all before next season starts...pretty likely since the next season won't be for a while. *sigh* I miss the show already. :P


Reading Now:
 I read the first few books in this series years ago, but I'm finally trying to get through the whole series now, starting from the beginning. Joanne Fluke has an awesome sense of humour, so I'm looking forward to it. Really enjoying the reread of this already, especially since I don't remember much. :)

I've only just started the Prologue of this one, and the Prologue's a bit dry, so I'm looking forward to the first actual chapter. :P lol I'm definitely excited to read this one. I think the second season of the show only goes to the halfway point of this one too, so it should be some fresh stuff too! Plus, more Jon Snow, and Dany, I like her too! :D

This was supposed to be my next buddy read with Zoë, but we both kind of got off schedule. She already finished, and I'm only just starting. Hopefully I can finish soon and we can move on to a new one. I am enjoying this one though...but some of the characters are really unlikable. :P


Books I Want to Read This Week:
I kind of pushed this one to the side, so I'd like to get back to it this week and hopefully finish it! :)

And what are you reading???

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

Friday, June 8, 2012

Armchair BEA: Day 5 - Ask the Experts.

Design credit: Nina of Nina Reads.
It's the last day of Armchair BEA, and today the suggested topic is "Ask the Expert" (click the link to go to aBEA's linky post).

Here's what aBEA had to say for today's prompt:
It's the final day of Armchair BEA and we want you to keep your passion for books and blogging about them going long after we've closed the event. Today we'll be sharing tips on keeping book blogging exciting and unique to your vision for your blog. Our suggested post for today is "Ask the Experts". If you have any burning questions for your fellow participants about book blogging now is the time to ask and if you don't we'd love for you to share your own personal tips about book blogging! Again, we'll have a link-up post for you on the day of the event. What else do we have in store for you, take a look:
  • A guest post from Pam at Bookalicious about the future of blogging.
  • Some interesting statistics you'll love!
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 Well, I wouldn't call myself an expert, but I'm sure I can think of a few tips at least. :)

1. Don't be afraid to break from a schedule or to miss a day or two during the week. I think one of the biggest problems I've had with blogging is feeling like I need to post every single day, and you really don't. It's okay to have a week where you don't post daily. Posting once a week might be too infrequent, but definitely don't feel obliged to post daily, and you don't have to have a schedule. It's okay to post whatever you want on whatever day you want. The only posts I generally keep on the same day are memes, and that's usually because it helps me keep track of them or because the day of the week is in the name...having my "It's Monday, What Are You Reading?" posts on a different day would be kind of silly, don't you think? :-P

2. Drafting and scheduling things within blogger is always a good thing! I don't know about you guys, but I can be forgetful, so scheduling or even making a draft of the posts that I need to post for blog tours, or even for memes help me remember that I need to get something finished. They also help me keep track of what I'm posting and when so I don't end up scheduling multiple posts on one day.

3. Don't be afraid to ask for help. If you're unsure of something when you're starting out, don't be afraid to ask other blogger's for help. If you know a blogger who uses Netgalley a lot and you want to know more, ask them? If you're writing your review policy and want some advice, ask other bloggers? -- I asked someone about their review policy when I was starting out and they were incredibly helpful, so don't be intimidated by a high follower count or by a blogger who's been blogging for a long time. Most bloggers would love to help you, don't be afraid to ask. Also, the same goes for making friends. If you follow a blogger and think they seem like an awesome person, get in touch. I'm sure you'd make their day by telling them you think they're awesome. :)


And I also have a few questions/things I'd like to discuss. :)

1. Features. I've been toying around with ideas for features, but can't think of any that I want to actually do. How did you come up with features for your blog? And what kind of research did you do before you started doing it? Did you scour the web to see if it'd been done? Anything else?

2. Original Content. I never know what to post about when I'm not already posting reviews. How do you come up with topics for posts like discussions and such? And do you think it would be a good idea to try and see what kind of posts your followers would be interested in first?

3. Review Requests. I'm sure I'm not the only one, but I get quite a few review requests, and since my review queue is already pretty full, I don't accept many. So, what's your advice on replying to review requests that you don't want to accept? Do you just ignore? Do you reply and say you're not interested? And if you do the latter and the requester keeps emailing about additional things like guest posts, interviews, or giveaways, what do you do? I usually just ignore them because I have replied and then received additional requests, but when you ignore them sometimes people continue to email thinking it wasn't received, so I'm just curious about what other people do.


 Okay, so those are some tips and some questions that I have. 

Feel free to leave your own questions in the comments, or the links for your own aBEA posts.
I'd also love some answers or comments to my own questions if you have them. :)

Thanks for stopping by! I've really enjoyed spending this week with your all through aBEA! I'll definitely be attending next year (if I can't make it to BEA---which may or may not happen :P). 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Armchair BEA: Day 4 - Beyond the Blog

Design credit: Nina of Nina Reads.
Today on Armchair BEA it's time to talk about "Beyond the Blog". 

You can find the Linky list to everybody's posts here at Armchair BEA's Beyond Your Blog.

Here's the prompt that the lovely folks at aBEA gave us and some additional info on what's going on today:

So, you enjoy writing do you? Would you like to be involved elsewhere on the interwebs or possibly start writing for your local paper? Perhaps you'd simply like to start drawing an income from your blog? Today we will be sharing tips that will help you move your blog forward or perhaps your own personal goals of writing and making an income from what you love to do. Today we'd love you to share your top tips for getting beyond your blog! Have you done any freelance writing? Are you monetizing your blog and how so? How do you make connections outside the book blog community on the internet? If none of these apply we'd love for you to share a fun aspect about your blog or life that may be completely separate from books! We'll have another link-up this day as well. You can also look forward to this as well:
  • Twitter Party number three!
  • Guest post on freelance writing and how to find it from Florinda at The 3 R's Blog.
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 I don't really have any advice for monetizing your blog. I tried the one that Google has right in blogger, and it just wasn't for me. The ads were so random and so it just wasn't really worth it. Mostly because I wasn't a big fan of what was being advertized and neither were my readers. I've been emailed about advertizing on my blog, but I'm not sure I really want to do it. I already feel like my sidebar can get cluttered, and that's with things I actually want to have on there. Although I'm sure someone could probably convince me to advertize...who knows maybe after reading some people's posts today I'll change my mind. :P

The only other real connections I make outside of the book blog community pertain to fanfiction (edit: in case you're curious here's my profile on Fanfiction.net). I've been into fanfiction since before I started blogging, and I've made a few really good friends on there, so I definitely connect with that. I'm not much of a writer. Mostly because I just never really sit down and write, but I have written a few fanfics, and I like to think they're not totally terrible. :P lol

I've never really tried to make goals for my blog beyond the whole catch up on reviews that are saved as drafts. :P lol But, I would love to use my blog to connect in even more ways. I have considered doing stuff for my University newspaper, so perhaps I should actually try it one day. :) Today for me is about learning. I don't really have any tips of my own to share, but I would love to learn some, and hopefully I'll have some tips for you all once I try some stuff out on my own. :)

What about you? 
Do you do anything beyond your blog, like writing or even in relation to your blog with monetizing? 
Have any tips that you'd like to share?

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Armchair BEA: Day 3 - Networking...In Real Life?

Design credit: Nina of Nina Reads.

Armchair BEA is all about Networking today!

You can get to Armchair BEA's post with the links for Networking: here.

Here's the prompt that aBEA had on their agenda for today:
Have you ever wondered how bloggers get so involved outside the nuts and bolts community of book blogging? Well, now's your chance to learn from the experts! From partnering with their local indie bookstores to coordinating events at their local libraries, we've got tips to share with you to help you become more involved with your local bookish community. Today's suggested writing topic...we'd love for you to share a positive "real life" experience with books! Either by way of your own partnerships in your community, a book signing you went to or possibly even a get together with fellow book bloggers. Tell us all about it! Also today we'll have the following:
  • Twitter Party number two!
  • Guest post from top bloggers (Emily from Emily's Reading Room, Tif from Tif Talks Books and Pam from Bookalicious) about how they were able to work together with their local bookish community to benefit everyone involved.
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I've never really done any real life Networking, but I'm starting to think that I should try to. It would be so fun to get involved with local bookstores and libraries. :D I've thought about trying to do something with the elementary school I went to, but I'm not in my hometown as often as I used to be so that one would be tougher. I think I'm going to try and figure something out with them one of these days though because I'd love to share a love of reading with kids in my community...especially since I have young cousins still at that school. :)

I'm definitely going to have to check out these tips because real life networking sounds intimidating...but so fun! :D 

I do always have fun talking about books when I go to Chapters though! :D I love meeting people who love books too, and talking about them! I've also met people through my classes that love books, too, which is always fun! It's definitely one of the perks of being an English major...generally everyone loves to read! ;D haha 

What about you? 
Have you done any real life networking? 
Any tips you'd like to share? :)
And if you're like me and you haven't done any, what's holding you back?

Personally, I'm kind of intimidated by real life networking. I'm also not sure where to begin and how to start up a new real life connection. So, I can't wait to check out everyone's real life tips. I'm sure they'll be really helpful. :)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Armchair BEA: Day 2 - Giveaway!

Design credit: Nina of Nina Reads.

Well, I'm not in New York right now for BEA, but I can still get excited about all the amazing titles that are going to be available there right now! :D

Since I'm participating in Armchair BEA, I've decided to host a giveaway of my own and I'm going to be giving away a pre-order from the Book Depository of one of the books at BEA that I'm most anticipating. I picked these four books from the list of Children's Galleys to Grab: BEA 2012 on Publisher Weekly's website.You'll have the choice between one of four titles, and I'm going to pick two winners! It's International and will end on June 15th at 11:59 pm. That way you'll have a little over a week to enter. :)

Okay, and here are the titles I've picked:

Eve and Adam by Michael Grant and Katherine Applegate
Crewel by Gennifer Albin
Fathomless by Jackson Pearce
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Giveaway Details: 
- International 
- 2 Winners
- Each winner will pick 1 out of the 4 books and will receive a pre-order of it
- Ends June 15th at 11:59 pm
- Winner will be chosen using Rafflecopter and will have 48 hours to claim their prize

To enter just fill out the Rafflecopter widget: 


Good luck to everyone who enters and thanks for entering! :D