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A Reader of Fictions: May 2012

A Reader of Fictions

Book Reviews for Just About Every Kind of Book

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Dear Diary - Travis

So Far Away

Author: Meg Mitchell Moore
Pages: 336
ARC Acquired from: Little, Brown and Company via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Description from Goodreads:
Thirteen-year-old Natalie Gallagher is trying to escape: from her parents' ugly divorce, and from the vicious cyber-bullying of her former best friend. She discovers a dusty old diary in her family's basement and is inspired to unlock its secrets.

Kathleen Lynch, an archivist at the Massachusetts State Archives, has her own painful secrets: she's a widow estranged from her only daughter. Natalie's research brings her to Kathleen, who in Natalie sees traces of the daughter she has lost.

What could the life of an Irish immigrant domestic servant from the 1920s teach them both? In the pages of the diary, they will learn that their fears and frustrations are timeless.

So Far Away is an affecting story of mothers and daughters and how solace can be found in the most unlikely places.

First Sentence: "It was a Friday when the girl came into the Archives for the first time, the first Friday after they'd changed the clocks."

I make no secret of my affinity for books about libraries and librarians. If I see that it's about a librarian, I will add a book to my to-read list, except maybe the romance novels, and, should I spot one of those at Goodwill, I would probably by it, later forcing my friends to listen to a dramatic reading, because that's just the kind of person I am. Anyway, I'm pretty sure I requested this because of the word 'archivist' in the description, because I think otherwise I would have let this pass me by. I'm glad I didn't.

The archives scenes were a very small part of the novel, but they were right at the front, so Moore got me nice and hooked. Natalie enters the archives and asks for help with a project for school. She wants to research her family's genealogy. Kathleen gives a little spiel about how hard that can be, and I immediately recommended the book to my mom, because she has been crazy obsessed with doing genealogy for the past couple years.

The book doesn't necessarily focus on that, but it's sort of the frame story. More specifically, So Far Away is about the diary that Natalie found, and is going to use to figure out who her family really is. The diary was written by an ancestor during the 1920s. While I have a huge love of history, and am very interested in that time period, I was really bored by the diary. The rest of the book, while somewhat slow moving, maintained my interest, but I really just did not have any stake in the fate of the bridget named Bridget.

In addition to comments on genealogical and archival work, the other thing I loved was the parts about bullying. Natalie is being bullied by her former best friend, who has found a new, more popular, meaner best friend. They send threatening all caps texts (YOU KNOW THIS IS THREATENING) and even create a website about how much they hate her. Kathleen senses this and tries to help, while Natalie's parents and the school are ignorant and/or unwilling to step in. The story puts forward the idea that modern bullying is a whole different thing than it used to be. I thought this was timely and well done.

The one thing I definitely did not approve of was Lucy, Kathleen's dog. Don't get me wrong; I loved the god. However, Lucy was pretty much Kathleen's only family (since Kathleen's daughter ran away years before). Yet, I am supposed to believe that Kathleen would not notice that her dog was getting perpetually sicker throughout the novel. I just don't buy it. She would have had Lucy to the vet on the second or third day of her not eating. If the dog is basically your replacement child, you're going to be worried, even in the midst of your research and concerns about Natalie. End of story.

So Far Away is a touching story about two troubled souls forming an unlikely bond, and trying to learn how to face the future. The pace is slow and contemplative, and I recommend to those who like a thought-provoking read.

Rating: 3/5

Favorite Quote: "We've all got our own brand of crazy."

"Dear Diary,
What is wrong with me?
'Cos I'm fine between the lines
Be not afraid
Help is on its way

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Cover Reveal Thursday (8)

Oh hey, folks! Here are the cover reveals I noticed during this week. This is by no means comprehensive. I definitely skipped a couple that just weren't interesting to me personally, and I always find ones I missed. :-p

Quantum Coin (Fair Coin #2) - E. C. Myers
 Thoughts: I'm a little thrown off by the orange font and the switch in author name and title placement. TBH, this cover freaks me out, but so did the first one, so that may be a good sign. They definitely look like a set, and are using the same models, which is good. Am I the only person that thinks that male model has the biggest upper lip ever?

 Cover Battle: Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1) - Sarah J. Maas
US vs. UK: I was really disappointed by the US cover. I just feel like they could have done so much better. The UK cover isn't perfect, but it's worlds better. That little dagger on the US one is pretty cool, but that alone doesn't really say 'incredibly badass assassin.' This girl on the UK cover...yeah, you don't want to mess with her.

Rootless - Chris Howard
Thoughts: This cover is really stellar. I like the colors and the artwork. Honestly, I have no idea what it means, even after reading the summary a bit, but I love it anyway. Added this to the tbr pile.

Days of Blood and Starlight (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #2) - Laini Taylor
Thoughts: I actually wasn't a huge fan of the Daughter of Smoke and Bone cover, but I actually like it more when viewed next to Days of Blood and Starlight. I like the colors and the popping face coverings. I also like that this could maybe be the same model, since the eyes look similar. The only thing I'm not sure about is the increase in the size of the title. I think it's taking up too much space.

Weighted (The Neumarian Chronicles #1) - Ciara Knight
Thoughts: I do like the photo, although it does feature another powerless heroine. It does look pretty post-apocalyptic in the background, which is cool. Unfortunately, I have difficulty looking at the good parts, because my eye is drawn in to the clock descending from the sky. I also don't think the font or color thereof is quite right.

Sanctum (Guards of the Shadowlands #1) - Sarah Fine
Thoughts: Ehhhh. Not really sure. I like the city at the bottom, but I'm not sure about the flames and the girl (which is not to say that she's not pretty--she is--I'm just not sure about the placement and, actually, this might work better without a person on the cover).

Cover Battle: That Summer - Sarah Dessen
Original vs. Redesign: They're apparently redoing all (or at least most) of Sarah's books for summer. This first one is a fail for me. When I first saw it, I laughed. The sunglasses at the forefront with a couple canoodling in the background. What is that? I also don't like the pinkness. I love the freedom of the original cover. That picture says vacation and bliss. The new one says popular kids and their issues.

 Someone Like You - Sarah Dessen
Original vs. Redesign: Urgh. I don't really like either of these, especially after reading the summary, which indicates that the book is about death, teenage pregnancy, and friendship. One cover gives me romance on the beach and one gives me butterflies. What? Neither of these seems to be right for the spirit of the book, although I haven't read it. I'm going with the original, mostly just because I think it's dumb that they're doing new covers for summer and they look LESS SUMMERY. What is this noise? 

Marco Impossible - Hannah Moskowitz
Thoughts: Cute. Just so darn cute. Good use of color. Something about the font and art style also makes me think of old school cartoons, like Rocky and Bullwinkle, which is awesome!

Let the Sky Fall - Shannon Messenger
  Thoughts: In and of itself, this cover doesn't especially stand out. It's a little too monochromatic and brown. HOWEVER, it fits the book's description perfectly, so I declare it to be a win! I love when covers match the subject matter, and it doesn't happen enough. Good job, guys!

Cover Battle: The Masque of the Red Death - Bethany Griffin
 US vs. UK: Apparently, folks are very literal in the UK. I don't know why but I find this pretty much endlessly hilarious. I think the US cover has more pizzazz.

Cover Battle: Keeping the Moon - Sarah Dessen
Original vs. Redesign: Much as I do not like what they've done with the new covers, I really don't like the original for this. The crotch shot is just awkward. That cover makes me feel like the book should be about pedophilia or something. Bad. Just bad.

Entice (The Violet Eden Chapters #2) - Jessica Shirvington
Thoughts: I have so many of them. First off, I really don't think these covers work as a series. The model looks incredibly different, as do the wings and the mood. The font is the only thing that matches. Honestly, when I first saw this, I laughed, mostly because of it in relation to the prior book. This is an awesome cover (minus those wings, which I think are awful), but only for an urban fantasy novel. If I didn't know about this book before, I would have though UF, not YA. It would not look entirely out of place as a cover in Richelle Mead's succubus series if you took the wings off. I don't think that really looks like an outfit a teen would be likely to wear. Maybe it makes sense with the story, but I'm hugely skeptical.

 Cover Battle: Dreamland - Sarah Dessen
Original vs. Redesign: You know, I think I finally am able to put my finger on just why I don't like these new covers. They completely trivialize the content. I look at these new covers and I think 'this will be a mindless summer read, light and fluffy.' I've read a couple of Dessen's books and they are so much deeper and better than that. Take Dreamland, for example. I haven't read it yet, but according to the description, this book is about abusive relationships. The original cover conveys a pensive, thoughtful mood, and captures a sort of desolation with the boatless pier and sole figure. Heart in a box just tells me it's about romance. This just makes me so sad. Redesigning a cover is kind of like covering a song: you should only do it if you're going to do better.

 Pitch / Vertigo (Farsighted #3-4) - Emlyn Chand
Thoughts: These covers definitely fit together as a series really nicely, so props on that. I also want to offer mad props on the diversity in the models. I think the Pitch cover is most appealing to me in the series. The model is gorgeous, though I'm not sure about her expression. Vertigo is okay, but I'm not sure why I can see part of his face twice. It probably makes sense in the book, but it's not especially aesthetically pleasing. I also really like how the titles are all in the same font and placement, but look totally unique because of the styling.

Cover of the Week: Let the Sky Fall by Shannon Messenger!


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (10): Let the Sky Fall

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine. Click on the image above to go there!

I really hadn't heard too much about this one, but the cover was revealed this morning (so sorry if 85 other people jump on the bandwagon). Apparently this is about tornadoes and sylphs. I've always been fascinated by tornado stories; Twister was a popular film when I was growing up. The story sounds really original. The focus might be a bit too much on the romance, but I shan't know until I read it, right? Either way, a unique plot line plus an interesting cover = I will be reading this.

Let the Sky Fall

Author: Shannon Messenger
Expected Publication Date: March 2013
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Goodreads Link: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13445306-let-the-sky-fall

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Seventeen-year-old Vane Weston is the only survivor of the category five tornado that killed his parents. Every night since the storm, a beautiful, dark-haired girl has swept through his dreams. She's the only clue to his past, and he clings to the hope that she's real.

Audra is real, but she's also a sylph. An air elemental. She walks on the wind, can translate its alluring songs, and can even twist it into a weapon. She's also a guardian--Vane's guardian--and has sworn an oath to protect him at all costs. Even if it means sacrificing her own life.

When a hasty mistake reveals their location to the enemy who murdered both of their families, Audra must help Vane remember who he is. He has a power to claim--the secret language of the West Wind, which only he can understand. But unlocking his heritage will also unlock a memory Audra wishes could be erased. And as the storm bears down on them she starts to realize the greatest danger might not be the warriors coming to destroy them, but the forbidden romance that's grown between them.

Set amongst the desert airstreams of Coachella Valley in California, and alive with wonderful wind-swept prose, LET THE SKY FALL is about two teenagers broken by their pasts, divided by their futures, and bound by love.


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Top Ten YA Books/Series That I Think Are Highly Overrated

Or, Ten Books I Secretly (Well, Not Anymore) Judge You for Loving

I didn't feel like doing this week's Top Ten Tuesday, and I've been wanting to do this post for a while, so here goes. I tried to stick to really popular books, the ones I see people raving about on Twitter that make me headdesk.There are a lot of bad YA books that I could rant about, but I'm trying to stick exclusively to the inexplicably (to me) popular. I left Twilight out because it's been done to death.

If you're going to feel the need to troll when you see your favorite series maligned, please just don't read. Just because I hate the series, doesn't mean I won't read your blog or think you're an idiot automatically, I promise. You're welcome to defend your favorites, even encouraged, just do so in an intellectual manner, please.

Alright, get ready, because I'm putting my judgmental face on RIGHT NOW.

Dis-Honorable Mention: Possess - Gretchen McNeil
I won't talk about this much, but it was part of the inspiration for getting this posted. I read this recently, and was totally disappointed in it. When I went to post my review on Goodreads, I saw that only like two other people felt the same way. This is always alarming, because you wonder if you're missing something.

10. Beautiful Creatures - Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
In this case, I've only read the first book in the series, so the rest of the books might be better. I will never know, because there's almost no one I would believe enough to want to risk reading another. I thought the romance came straight from the Twilight handbook of cheesiness: a mysterious transfer student, attraction, oh-no-we-can't-be-together-for-your-safety, INSTALOVE. Oy.

The book is told from Ethan's perspective, which is an interesting change, except that he really didn't read like a boy. The plot wasn't anything spectacular, either.

9. Life As We Knew It - Susan Beth Pfeffer
We had to read this for one of my MLIS classes. I was looking forward to it, because one of my friends liked it. Well, I didn't. I wanted to throw it across the room at several points. The writing wasn't great, although that could be Miranda's fault (as it was told in her perspective). Of course, I hated Miranda as a heroine. She was whiny and stupid and selfish. I'm okay with selfish characters, so long as they own it, but Miranda would be selfish (temper tantrum-y and unaware) and then whine about how guilty she felt. Ugh and double ugh.

What I really couldn't get over, though, were a couple of inconsistencies I noticed in the narrative. One I remember was that she wanted to be asked to a dance by some guy she had a crush on, and he asked her. Later, she was mad at him for not asking. Lol whut? This could be an editor fail, but whatever. If you want to try dystopias, definitely don't start here.

8. Firelight - Sophie Jordan
An awesome concept guarantees that I'm going to want to read your book. Dragon shifters? Hell to the yes. Unfortunately, the way they were done didn't make any damn sense. I complained about this in my Firelight review. It's weird that Jacinda would start shifting while making out with Mr. Sexypants. Wouldn't he notice that her mouth was no longer human. I mean, dragon facial anatomy is REALLY different.

For some reason, I read book two, Vanish, as well. It didn't get better. The whole series is love triangle-tacular. The book isn't really about the fantasy aspects, which may be why they're not especially well thought out; it's about romance. Jordan is a romance novelist turned YA author, and it's very apparent from her writing. Plus, Jacinda's another should-be powerful heroine who ends up thinking about boys all the time.

7. Anything by Cassandra Clare
Okay, I freely admit that I have enjoyed everything I've read by Cassie Clare to varying degrees. I've read five of her books, and they were all fun. Even though, I think on them with distaste, I still really want to read more of them. This is why she's prominently featured in my list of books that are like crack. However, I do not think her books are good or that they deserve anywhere near the fandom they have. I do not get why people are so obsessed with a ship that was possible incest for like two and a half books. Also, why did they not just get a damn blood test? I have wondered this time and again.

What really irritates me is the crazy fandom. I mean, in and of itself, I'm not bothered by the fact that people enjoy her books. I get why they do. The scale of obsession with her books, though, is excessive to the nth degree. TMI, an appropriate abbreviation for this series, is constantly trending on Twitter, because there are so many damn fans. Jace and Clary, the worst characters in the series imo, are so many people's OTP (One Time Pairing, or ultimate ship). I'm pretty sure that if for her next book, there were only one ARC available, you could seriously offer it up as a prize in a battle royale and people would go for it.

I would also like to point out again that her second series is pretty much identical to the first, although set in steampunk England. Despite my judging, I do ship Alec and Magnus a lot. And, to be honest, I do really want to finish reading the series I've started, but I will not be doing so. Since all this plagiarism stuff, I'm taking a firmer stance.

6. Lisa McMann's YA Fiction
I've read five books by Lisa McMann, and I do not plan to read any more of her young adult books. I actually liked The Unwanteds, her MG title. My main issue with Lisa McMann is her writing. In her YA books, finding a complete sentence is really difficult. She writes almost entirely in fragments, because, apparently, this is how she thinks teens think. I know that people do not always think in complete sentences, but I still think this is exaggerated. I also think it's complete b.s. that the writing is more complex in the MG book than in her YA fiction.What does this say about Lisa McMann's opinions of teens?

I actually liked the first book in the Wake Trilogy, which is why I read all of it, but I really don't think it went anywhere. I totally drew the line after reading Cryer's Cross, though. That was a big ol' pile of WTF. Seriously. It was about a magic desk. Just no.

5. The Iron Fey - Julie Kagawa
Before I get ripped to shreds by Kagawa fangirls, I want to preface this by saying that I did love The Immortal Rules, largely because it was a complete departure from the tropes of The Iron Fey. If you read my reviews of the Iron Fey series (I got through three books and a novella), you'll watch me progressively getting more and more annoyed with the series.

If you look at my review of The Iron King, I actually enjoyed it. I thought it was cute and funny, and I enjoyed the Shakespeare references. Meghan was a bit of a weak character, but she just learned she had crazy powers, so, surely, she was going to step up in the next books. Unfortunately, no. Despite having enough power to easily vanquish most of the enemies she comes across, it never occurs to her to use her strength until she has no choice. Because, clearly, it much better to be saved by a man if you can.

I also loathe the love triangle with every fiber of my being. From book one, it was exceedingly, embarrassingly obvious that Meghan was going to choose Ash. Broody ice prince will beat out the funny, sarcastic, supportive guy who's always been there for you any day, obviously. I think Ash is boring and has a big stick up his butt. Puck has his issues, mostly because he really is rather like his namesake, but he has a personality, and does not deserve to be used by Meghan the way that he is. I also think that in the real world, he would have gotten over her since he didn't stand a chance.

4. Wolves of Mercy Falls - Maggie Stiefvater
My experiences with Maggie Stiefvater have all been pretty much the same. I've read 4 of her 6 books that are currently published, and, though, by and large I haven't enjoyed them much, I will keep reading them. I'm a masochist, you say? Well, that may be true. Her concepts are just so mind-blowingly amazing. I can't help reading them.

My issue is with her characters. In both Linger and Lament, the heroine made me insane. She's one of those bored, cold girls that every dude wants. In the case of Lament's heroine, she also has a sassy, sarcastic best friend with a crush on her; book two of that series was my favorite of Stiefvater's books because it was from his perspective. Grace was just so boring. I could not handle it. Sam too. They were made for each other, in that they both make me want to take a nap. Put them together and they're so disgustingly happy I want to barf on everything. They have ZERO internal issues in their relationship. I hated them so much I was happy whenever something happened to wrench them apart. The only reason I made it through two books in Wolves of Mercy Falls was that Cole and Isabel were much more interesting in Linger.

3. Hereafter - Tara Hudson
I read this one almost a full year ago, and I still can't get over what a steaming pile of dreck it is. I'm sorry if you liked it, but I hated every single thing about it, except, maybe, the cover. What completely destroys me is that so many people loved it. Pretty much every review I've seen of it has been four stars or more. What I want to know is what book they read.

Since I have a review up for this one, I don't think I need to reiterate why so much, but I just want to mention again the cheesiness of the writing and that Joshua regularly made out with his invisible girlfriend in public. What what what.

2. The Maze Runner - James Dashner
Everyone loved book one and talked it up so much that I borrowed it from the library and read it. While I wasn't over the moon about it, I did enjoy it and, had I been blogging at the time, probably would have rated it 3 stars. My main issue with it was that it seemed a bit like mindless action and we weren't getting any DETAILS on why things were happening.

Enter the next two books, The Scorch Trials and The Death Cure. I got progressively more pissed off as I kept reading. Nothing happened plot-wise in book two really, other than that the MC found a new lady friend. The only reason I kept reading was to see if Dashner would ever really offer any explanations. short answer: NOPE.

1. The Forest of Hands and Teeth - Carrie Ryan
While I was in library school, I read The Forest of Hands and Teeth, because everyone was fangirling over it everywhere. There was pretty much only one thing I liked about it, which was the fact that the Mary realized that crushes don't necessarily transition to love. The zombies and plot line didn't strike me as anything special, and Mary, other than her lack of romanticism annoyed me a lot. So, I didn't like it much (I would probably have rated it 2.5), but it was okay.

Then I read book two, in which I learn that Mary fell in love with guy one of the love triangle who she super wasn't into, which was ANNOYING. What makes me so angry about The Dead Tossed Waves is that it is, in essence, precisely the same book. And most people did not notice. Needless to say I didn't read further in the series, but I did read a short story she wrote for Zombies vs. Unicorns, set in the same universe of course, and was not impressed.

I find her books to be needlessly melodramatic, love triangle overdose, and wholly unoriginal (even amongst themselves).

Note 1: Can we talk about how dismayed I am that The Maze Runner series and The Forest of Hands and Teeth series show up on so many best dystopias lists?

Note 2: Carrie Ryan and James Dashner have both written a book for the same upcoming middle grade series. If I go to hell, I'm pretty sure reading that series would be part of my punishment.

To sum up,

What books/series do you dislike that everyone else in the world seems to love?


Angel's Eye - Aerosmith

Angel Eyes
Angel Eyes Trilogy, Book 1

Author: Shannon Dittemore
Pages: 311
ARC Acquired from: Thomas Nelson via NetGalley

Description from Goodreads:
Once you’ve seen, you can’t unsee. Everything changes when you’ve looked at the world through . . .


Brielle’s a ballerina who went to the city to chase her dreams and found tragedy instead. She’s come home to shabby little Stratus, Oregon, to live with her grief and her guilt . . . and the incredible, numbing cold she can’t seem to shake.

Jake’s the new guy at school. The boy next door with burning hands and an unbelievable gift that targets him for corruption.

Something more than fate has brought them together. An evil bigger than both of them lurks in the shadows nearby, hiding in plain sight. Two angels stand guard, unsure what’s going to happen. And a beauty brighter than Jake or Brielle has ever seen is calling them to join the battle in a realm where all human choices start.

A realm that only angels and demons—and Brielle—can perceive.

First Sentence: "The knot in my throat is constant."

Yet again, I must preface this review by saying that I myself am not religious. I'm an agnostic that doesn't have any religious background. I've had a lot of really close friends who are very religious, but I still have trouble with Christian fiction, which is mostly tied in to my hatred for proselytizing. Religious views can be conveyed subtly in novels, but usually it feels like I'm being whopped over the head with the Godly gavel, which leaves a rather nasty headache.

I've read a couple of other Thomas Nelson titles recently, Halflings and Swipe, and neither was too religious for me, even though Halflings was also about angels. Angel Eyes, though, definitely pushed a little too hard. I actually really liked the book until about halfway through, and then it perpetually made me roll my eyes more and more as the religious elements became steadily more heavy-fisted.

I'm going to start with the good stuff. First off, the writing is excellent. Told from Brielle's perspective, I can feel her pain. At the opening, she is broken, unable to cope with her friend Ali's murder, and the fact that she could possibly have prevented it. The writing conveys her brokenness and you can feel how cut off from others she is. You can also feel her warming up, literally, and recovering as she meets Jake.

The darkness of the story, not the sugary lightness of the usual inspirational fiction, was definitely a big plus. Dittemore tackles the big issues of death, grief, and why God would allow good people to die. Unfortunately, there's just not really any new ground or new answers she can, or at least does, provide to those issues. Still, I liked that she at least tried.

What I didn't like was the way the religion worked in the book. Brielle is not a believer at the start, because of her mother's and friend's deaths. Then she meets Jake, who stalks her (this only freaks her out for like five seconds) and he heals a broken bone for her. After that, he promises to tell her everything, but has to go on a trip with his dad, Canaan, so he leaves her a gold 'cuff,' which the girl does not recognize as a halo. Really?

My issues are twofold. Brielle doesn't have a choice but to believe. When she puts the halo on, she sees the celestial realm. She now knows angels on a first name basis. A big part of Christian faith, as I understand it, and this is even mentioned in the book, is based on faith without proof, but she gets to have proof. That's not fair! Her choice to be a non-believer has been taken away from her. And yet other people aren't told. If faith is the key to Heaven, and some people are shown the truth and others are left to believe in something they see no evidence of, that's a rigged system. Does He really want particular people to fail and some to go to Heaven?

This book also suffers from another problem I see in a lot of Christian fiction, namely that God and his forces do everything. Brielle, and even Jake, are mostly useless as far as the confrontations with evil go. For all that God isn't supposed to intervene to protect people, his angels sure do all of the defensive work. This is inconsistent and also makes me wonder why we're even following these teens, when they're clearly just being lead around by God's plan. The book says there's a choice, but there's not.

If I enjoyed Christian fiction, I think I would have liked this. If you agree with the view point being conveyed here, then you'll probably enjoy it, as the novel is well-written. I would have liked to see more of the heroine (particularly, why have her be a ballerina if she only dances once for like two pages?) and I'd like to see her more empowered. I will not be reading the second book, but I do recommend this book to people who aren't turned off by God as a character.

Rating: 2.5/5

Favorite Quote: "There is something so attractive about a man who is able to laugh shamelessly."

"What ya gonna do when the Angels come?
What ya gonna do when you come undone?

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Monday, May 28, 2012

On My New Arrivals Shelf (5)

Without any ado, here are the things I got this week. To learn more about a book, click on the title to be taken to its Goodreads page!

Thanks so much to both Susane and Penguin Teen for this beauty!
So Much Closer - Susane Colasanti (signed)

Thanks, Bookperk! I really never thought I would win one of their giveaways!
 Sacre Bleu - Christopher Moore (signed audiobook)

 For My Stop on the TLC Book Tour:
Dead Beautiful - Melanie Dugan

Won from Free Book Friday - After I won, I read my e-galley and didn't like it, so I'll be giving this away during Dystopian August!
Struck - Jennifer Bosworth (signed w/ swag)

Unsolicited Review Copy from Penguin - I've been wanting to read Boyle, so why not start here, right?
When the Killing's Done - T.C. Boyle

Thanks for these gorgeous books, HarperTeen!
Die for Me - Amy Plum
Until I Die - Amy Plum

Won in spam-ridden historical fiction chat on Twitter - Thanks, Leanna!
Darker Still - Leanna Renee Hieber (signed)
Assorted swag, which is going to a librarian friend for summer reading

Thanks, Hilary Weisman Graham! I love all the songs I know on the CD, so I'm sure I'll enjoy the others too.
Reunited Road Trip Mix + Swag

From NetGalley:
 Claws - Mike and Rachel Grinti (Thanks, Scholastic!)
Time Between Us - Tamara Ireland Stone (Thanks, Disney-Hyperion!)