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Sunday, July 31, 2011

In My Mailbox (4): The Drum Major

IMM is hosted by Kristi (The Story Siren)
A meme where readers show off the stylin new books off (;

Lent Books:
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Amazon / Goodreads)
The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan (Amazon / Goodreads)

40 Love by Madeleine Wickham (Amazon / Goodreads)
The Burning by Jane Casey (Amazon / Goodreads)
Perfect by Ellen Hopkins (Amazon / Goodreads)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Review: Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle by CLAMP

Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle by CLAMP

Release Date: April 27, 2004
Publisher: Del Rey
Series: Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle #1
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 208
Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Manga, Sh┼Źnen, Shojo
Format: Paperback
Source: Borders
Buy This At: Amazon

But they’re not the people you know. Sakura is the princess of Clow—and possessor of a mysterious, misunderstood power that promises to change the world. Syaoran is her childhood friend and leader of the archaeological dig that took his father’s life. They reside in an alternate reality . . . where whatever you least expect can happen—and does. When Sakura ventures to the dig site to declare her love for Syaoran, a puzzling symbol is uncovered—which triggers a remarkable quest. Now Syaoran embarks upon a desperate journey through other worlds—all in the name of saving Sakura.

For all CLAMP fans, this manga is a treat. Really, it's a sweet treat that brings back many CLAMP memories, kind of like watching the CLAMP in Wornderland videos on Youtube. Fans of Cardcaptor Sakura and XXXHolic are surly going to enjoy this. But don't fret those who've never read either or are new to CLAMP, it is totally fine to read Tsubasa without knowledge of any CLAMP works because that's how they roll :)

The one thing that you can always expect from the CLAMP mangaka is the artwork. You can always pick out a CLAMP manga if it was shoved into a giant mess of manga because CLAMP's characters always have the same eye designs, the long appendages, that's how I can spot out their work. Those who have dealt with reading CLAMP's manga know what I'm talking about.

Yes, Tsubasa brings back Sakura and Syaoran but in a different universe as different people. If you have read Cardcaptor you'd recognize the name Clow from the summary above. If you don't that's mighty fine, Clow is but a place in this story and doesn't refer to anything like Cardcaptor. Back to the characters, in this manga you follow Syaoran and two other travelers, one who was banished from his home and the other who is journeying of his own accord, in his search for Princess Sakura. On every journey you watch the characters fight, grow, and change, and with each journey you, the reader, takes a piece of them into your heart and that is really what I did. The characters of Tsubasa really clutch at your hearts at different spots. 

With CLAMP you can always expect quality and that is truly what get out of every story told.

Story: X

Artwork: XS

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Cover v. Cover (Round 1)

A meme hosted by As These Pages Fly

*Ding Ding*  "The Competitors have entered the ring!"

                   US  Cover                                                                          UK Cover


Honestly I love both covers but I must choose one. I like the font more-so on the UK version, its placement is really nice. I also like the lighting, where there's a shade to the face and it gives the cover girl more of a mysterious feel. On the US cover I like the mist/fog/whatever you wanna call it. It makes me think of a graveyard and the scythe... well that's more than self-explanatory. Though bother are nice covers there can only be one winner:

UK Cover

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Notes of Interst (2)

Notes of Interest is a mix of Books to Pine for by Kristi from The Story Siren, Waiting on Wednesday by Jill from Breaking the Spine, and Peek at my TBR by Jen from Makeshift Bookmark. Basically it's books that I have or don't and i'm waiting to read. These are books that have caught my eye or are from authors that have made me coming back for more.

Witch Song by Amber Argyle
Publication Date: September 1, 2011

What really dew me in was the cover, I'm a sucker for a beautiful drawn cover, and this one blew me away. I've also been trying to fill my magical reads gap and a book about witches doesn't sound like a bad idea. I'm just really hoping that this book is as beautiful as its cover because I'll be very disappointed if this is just eye candy. Well, it's really pretty eye candy so i'll only be half as upset.

The Warlock (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel) by Michael Scott
Publication Date: May 24, 2011

I am a HUGE fan of the Nicholas Flamel series and it killed me inside that I didn't have enough money to purchase this beautiful book. When I finished The Necromancer, the fourth book of the series, I was so frantic that I hadn't the book on hand to keep reading. Once I read this I'll be in a coma due to waiting for the last book to come out... NEXT YEAR. /arrow through my heart

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Publication Date: May 1, 2012

New John Green book?! Where's the button to pre-order!!!! I love John Green's humor and his writing style from An Abundance of Katherines to Looking for Alaska. John Green knows how to make me laugh and how to make me cry like a baby. I'm upset that the wait is long for this book, but it will be worth the wait, I'm sure of it because John Green never disappoints!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Review: Wake by Lisa McMann

Wake by Lisa McMann

Release Date: March 4, 2008
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Series: Dream Catcher #1
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 210
Genre: Fantasy, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance
Format: Paperback
Source: Borders
Buy This At: Amazon

For seventeen-year-old Janie, getting sucked into other people's dreams is getting old. Especially the falling dreams, the naked-but-nobody-notices dreams, and the sex-crazed dreams. Janie's seen enough fantasy booty to last her a lifetime. She can't tell anybody about what she does they'd never believe her, or worse, they'd think she's a freak. So Janie lives on the fringe, cursed with an ability she doesn't want and can’t control. Then she falls into a gruesome nightmare, one that chills her to the bone. For the first time, Janie is more than a witness to someone else's twisted psyche. She is a participant.

Another good read that i had heard about from a friend and I never put the book down. It was a quick read in my eyes due to the riveting events that happen to takes place through the entire novel.

Having the ability to enter the dreams of others is Janie's curse that she can't control. Ever since she was eight she has been thrown into the dreams of others against he will. Escaping a dream is challenging for Janie and once she's sucked in most modern activities enable her to be dangerous when she performs them.

Alcoholic mother, poverty stricken, Janie's life fuels the character she has become: Strong, dependent, and determined. She has been in control of her life (with the minus of dreams) from a young age. Her only friend is a girl names Carrie who happens to be a childhood friend. But Janie keeps her secret to herself...

...Until she meets Cable.
The actions that Janie is forced to go through and the reactions that occur because of them, it showed me the strength that Janie withholds and it made me adore her character even more. I also really enjoyed the thrilling pace of this book, though I wish I didn't read it so quickly! But, to make up for that, there's two more books to read! Yahoooo! 

First Line: Janie Hannagan's math book slips from her fingers.

Story: A

Cover: B

Monday, July 25, 2011

Review: Battle Royale by Koushun Takami

Battle Royale by Koushun Takami

Release Date: Feburary 26, 2003
Publisher: VIZ Media LLC
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 624
Genre: Dystopian, Horror, Thriller, Fiction
Format: Paperback
Source: Amazon
Buy This At: Amazon

Koushun Takami's notorious high-octane thriller is based on an irresistible premise: a class of junior high school students is taken to a deserted island where, as part of a ruthless authoritarian program, they are provided arms and forced to kill one another until only one survivor is left standing. Criticized as violent exploitation when first published in Japan - where it then proceeded to become a runaway bestseller - Battle Royale is a Lord of the Flies for the 21st century, a potent allegory of what it means to be young and (barely) alive in a dog-eat-dog world. Made into a controversial hit movie of the same name, Battle Royale is already a contemporary Japanese pulp classic, now available for the first time in the English language.

I wish my English class had read this book, not going to lie. We read 1984, Lord of the Flies, Animal Farm, Fahrenheit 451, some even read The Hunger Games. I wish my English class read this book when discussing dystopian novels. Koushun Takami really hit home with Battle Royale. 

To all of The Hunger Games worshipers, this book is right up your alley. 42 Japanese students brought to a deserted island to fight to the death. Morbid? Yes. Gruesome? Totally. Intersting? Hell yeah! Oh, did i mention that it's a game show? Battle Royale is a book unlike any other. A true Lord of the Flies via the 21st century. 

Even though there are 42 students, Takami really nails the characters and makes you feel for all of them, even those who don't stand a chance in the dog-eat-dog. He brings you into the book and has you rooting for each character to stay alive, to not give up nor give in! I had gotten so attached to each character it was hard to stop myself from crying after a death. This book is truly sad but memorable. 

Hunger Games fans, I do reccomend this book to you. Don't like Japanese culture? Who cares, that's not what makes this book great. So there are some confusing names, there are confusing names in English novels as well. Don't knock it until you try it. The translation has been revised, the characters make you want to keep their story alive, and who doesn't like a fight scene or some gore? I guarantee  you won't be let down.

First Line: What? Battle Royale?

Story: XS 

Cover: A

Sunday, July 24, 2011

In My Mailbox (3): Home At Last!

IMM is hosted by Kristi (The Story Siren)
A meme where readers show off the stylin new books off (;

Killer Heat by Linda Fairstein (Amazon / Goodreads)
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole (Amazon / Goodreads)

Fallen by Lauren Kate (Amazon / Goodreads)
Inside Out by Maria V. Snyder (Amazon / Goodreads)

Hunger by Michael Grant (Amazon / Goodreads)
Lies by Michael Grant (Amazon / Goodreads)

Second Grave on the Left by Darynda Jones (Amazon / Goodreads)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Review: Blood Red Road by Moria Young

Released: June 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Series: Dustlands #1
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 464
Genre: dystopian, fantasy, post-apocalyptic 
Format: Online
Source: Pulse It 
Buy This At: Amazon

Saba has spent her whole life in Silverlake, a dried-up wasteland ravaged by constant sandstorms. The Wrecker civilization has long been destroyed, leaving only landfills for Saba and her family to scavenge from. That's fine by her, as long as her beloved twin brother Lugh is around. But when a monster sandstorm arrives, along with four cloaked horsemen, Saba's world is shattered. Lugh is captured, and Saba embarks on an epic quest to get him back. Suddenly thrown into the lawless, ugly reality of the world outside of desolate Silverlake, Saba is lost without Lugh to guide her. So perhaps the most surprising thing of all is what Saba learns about herself: she's a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent. And she has the power to take down a corrupt society from the inside. Teamed up with a handsome daredevil named Jack and a gang of girl revolutionaries called the Free Hawks, Saba stages a showdown that will change the course of her own civilization.

In all honesty I didn't think i would get into this one at all. The description of the book was what drew me in but when I began to read the preview for this on "Pulse It" a site by Simon  & Schuster, the language was slightly appalling. But, reading more into the story and learning about the post-apocalyptic background and thinking about how society would revert to common time-place and lose the ever growing language, i started to step into the pages and get comfortable with Saba's story and her voice.  

When I started to read Blood Red Road, I'm going to be honest once more, I read every word with a southern accent, haha! I guess reading this book in North Carolina doesn't really help me much there now does it?

The thoughts, the descriptions, and the entirety of Saba kept me reading this book. Her rough, stubborn, storm like tendencies are vividly enhanced in the beginning of the book, but I always find characters that go though life's journeys and slowly change, not for the worse, but they change as a person: they mature. And that is what happens to Saba. 

I have to say though, when Jack was introduced, i loved him. Later on in the story i disliked the constant bickering between him and Saba but in the end I loved their whole relationship. I guess I'm a sucker for love.

Definitely a book to give a chance, it won't steer you wrong. Especially if you enjoy character growth, because Saba has a lot of growing to do and it's an enriching experience to watch as she progresses through the journey to find her brother, Lugh.

First Line: Lugh got born first.
Story: S 
Cover: A

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Notes of Interest (1)

Notes of Interest is a mix of Books to Pine for by Kristi from The Story Siren, Waiting on Wednesday by Jill from Breaking the Spine, and Peek at my TBR by Jen from Makeshift Bookmark. Basically it's books that I have or don't and i'm waiting to read. These are books that have caught my eye or are from authors that have made me coming back for more.

The Future of Us by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler
Publication Date: November 21, 2011

I love Jay Asher's work so I'm extremely excited to read this new story. I have never read anything from Carolyn Mackler so once I read this book it will be my first from her. After reading Thirteen Reasons Why i've been extremely impatient with another Jay Asher book, so after seeing that's he's done a collab book, I was extremely interested in how this story was going to develop. So exctied!

Ten Things We Did (and Probably Shouldn't Have) by Sarah Mlynowski
Publication Date: June 7, 2011

I have heard nothing but good things about this book so i've been tempted to read this book for ages since I had first heard about it a few months ago. Sometimes i just want to read those teenage books that talk about sex and drugs and alcohol and just read about it. I don't do such things but to read about them keeps me aware and alert. And sometimes it's just fun to read about and hopefully i'll enjoy reading this book too :)

Perfect by Ellen Hopkins
Publication Date: September 13, 2011

I'm extremely excited to read this book. I'll be receiving this ARC in the mail soon and you don't know how exhilarated I am to read this. I've been a big fan of Ellen Hopkins' Crank and when I heard that this was the sequel to Impulse, well I knew that I needed to get my Impulse back from the neighbor girl down the street! But I am truly excited to see what Ellen has in store after the ending to Impulse. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Review: The Hourglass Door by Lisa Mangum

The Hourglass Door by Lisa Mangum

Released: May 2009
Publisher: Shadow Mountain
Series: Hourglass Door (book 1)
Pages: 400
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
Buy It Here: Amazon

Abby's senior year of high school is going according to plan: good friends, cute boyfriend, and college applications in the mail. But when Dante Alexander, foreign-exchange student from Italy, steps into her life, he turns it upside down. He's mysterious, and interesting, and unlike anyone she's ever met before. Abby can't deny the unusual things that seem to happen when Dante is around. Soon Abby finds herself drawn into a mystery whose roots reach into sixteenth-century Florence, and she uncovers a dangerous truth that threatens not only her future but the lives of those she loves. 

I truly enjoyed reading this novel. I had me hooked from the words "Italian exchange student"! How could I pass up the offer to read a story of an Italian and even learn some phrases of my heritage.

Besides being enthralled with Dante Alexander, our sexy, mysterious, Italian boy, Lisa Mangum really brought out a wonderful story as her first book. Now, there is one thing that is a confusing subject and that is Time, but time is also one of the most mysterious and alluring subjects to dive into. And that is what really made me enjoy this book.

The Hourglass Door is story of Abby Edmunds. It's her senior year and things are going well for her: best friend, cute boyfriend, and waiting for college to come to her. Enter: Dante Alexander, our sexy foreign exchange student from Italy, and he beings to spice up her life a little more than she would like it to be.

I was grateful that his wasn't just a love story with the works (though it really was) but I would choose Dante Alexander over an "Edward Cullen" any day, any time, anywhere. I'm a sap for romantic Italian dialect used to woo me over (;

First Line: It is the counting that saves him.

Story: X

Cover: A 

Review: Exit Here by Jason Myer

Exit Here by Jason Myer

Released: May 2007
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 464
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Buy It Here: Amazon

Travis is back from college for the summer, and he's just starting to settle in to the usual pattern at home: drinking, drugging, watching porn, and hooking up.
But Travis isn't settling in like he used to; something isn't right. Maybe it's that deadly debauch in Hawaii, the memories of which Travis can't quite shake. Maybe it's Laura, Travis's ex, who reappears on the scene after a messy breakup and seems to want to get together — or not. Or maybe it's his suddenly sensing how empty and messed up his life is, and wanting out.
But once you're at the party, it's tough to leave...

This young adult book is more for the older readers or those who are alright with reading some graphic and adult related subjects because that's a reoccurring theme in Jason Myers "Exit Here"

This book didn't appeal to me as I thought it would. It was different. I liked the twists. But it was another sex, drug, bad boy/girl kinda book. I mean, its down the alley of Ellen Hopkins so that's one of the main reasons that it appealed to me. The other was the first line of the story. Those one line hooks, man did it draw me in. 

Travis was a teenage boy who had everything going for him (as most people usually do before the addiction hits) and now we read about his story and wondering what actually happened on that day in Hawaii that Travis came back from changed and scared. We read of the difficulties he faces when trying to combat his demons and how he goes about his day with drugs, sex, and whatever else he does.

Again, i recommend this book for those who enjoyed Ellen Hopkins' books or those who have read "Go Ask Alice" and "Jay's Journal" because then this book would be right up your alley. Me? Well it took me a while to get into the book and it was more towards the end because I was really waiting to figure out what really happened with Travis in Hawaii and I'm sure that's what Jason Myers was wanting me to do too: stick with the book to find out. And I did. And I'm glad i did because the twists that happened, I wasn't expecting them so I say bravo :)


Story: B 

Cover: B

Monday, July 18, 2011

Borders Adventures episode 1: Tale of a Coffee Hater!

Part 1:

Part 2:

Sorry for the long vlog guys :( 
I didn't intend to have it be this long but it's borders! And i got sucked up in the literature 
; o ;

Sunday, July 17, 2011

In My Mailbox (2) Case of: Not Near Home!

So due to me not being home in New York, spending my lovely vacation time in good ol' North Carolina, and me being a lazy ass and sleeping till two in the afternoon... I was going to take a Border's Adventure today but it will be put off till tomorrow!

some of the books that I have been reading are available online as advanced readers copies thanks to Simon & Schuster on Pulse It!

Blood Red Road by Moria Young
Possession by Elana Johnson
Sixteenth Summer by Michelle Dalton

I'm in the middle of reading Blood Red Road and it's so good! Review will be up soon :)
happy reading everyone!

(In My Mailbox hosted by The Story Siren)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Review: Gone by Michael Grant

Gone by Michael Grant

Released: July 2008
Publisher: HarperCollins
Series: Gone (book 1)
Pages: 558
Genres: Supernatural, YA Fiction, Horror
But This At: Amazon

In the blink of an eye. Everyone disappears. GONE.
Except for the young. Teens. Middle schoolers. Toddlers. But not one single adult. No teachers, no cops, no doctors, no parents. Just as suddenly, there are no phones, no internet, no television. No way to get help. And no way to figure out what's happened.
Hunger threatens. Bullies rule. A sinister creature lurks. Animals are mutating. And the teens themselves are changing, developing new talents—unimaginable, dangerous, deadly powers—that grow stronger by the day.
It's a terrifying new world. Sides are being chosen, a fight is shaping up. Townies against rich kids. Bullies against the weak. Powerful against powerless. And time is running out: On your birthday, you disappear just like everyone else...

Such an interesting story that drew me in and Michael Grant blew me away. I had first heard about this story from a few friends of mine who happened to snag them at the opening day at my local bookstore, when I was given the book after they finished I didn't want to give it back, I wanted it to be mine!

First you're sitting in class listening to the teacher talk and then the next minute: GONE. Poof, syonara, Arrivederci, not a hide nor hair of them left. And it's not just the teachers, it's everyone who happens to be considered an "adult". They've all disappeared. Not just that, all the children remaining are experiencing "weird" adaptations, and the worst parts... you can't leave town and food is going to become scarce.

It's wilderness living but in their own town. They're lost and can't be found. Gone is the first in a series of the survival and trying to understand the strange mutations beginning to react within the children and those who are trying not to "poof" away themselves once they reach a certain age. You will follow Gone with Sam, Agnes, Little Pete, Quinn, Lana, Edilio, Caine, and Dekka. All who are fighting to survive and figure out what has happened to their home and all who had dwelled within it.

Grant leaves his readers off with the biggest cliffhanger, having you stay tuned for the next book, Hunger, which i need to get my fingers on :)

Sunday, July 10, 2011

In My Mailbox (1) Post Borders Roundup!

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren

Beastly by Alex Flinn  (Goodreads / Amazon)
Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater (Goodreads / Amazon)
The Hourglass Door by Lisa Mangum (Goodreads / Amazon)

Review: Wildefire by Karsten Knight

Release Date: July 26, 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 393
Genre: fantasy, mythology, thriller, fiction
Ashline Wilde is having a rough sophomore year. She's struggling to find her place as the only Polynesian girl in school, her boyfriend just cheated on her, and now her runaway sister, Eve, has decided to barge back into her life. When Eve's violent behavior escalates and she does the unthinkable, Ash transfers to a remote private school nestled in California's redwoods, hoping to put the tragedy behind her. But her fresh start at Blackwood Academy doesn't go as planned. Just as Ash is beginning to enjoy the perks of her new school—being captain of the tennis team, a steamy romance with a hot, local park ranger—Ash discovers that a group of gods and goddesses have mysteriously enrolled at Blackwood…and she's one of them. To make matters worse, Eve has resurfaced to haunt Ash, and she's got some strange abilities of her own. With a war between the gods looming over campus, Ash must master the new fire smoldering within before she clashes with her sister one more time… And when warm and cold fronts collide, there's guaranteed to be a storm.
I could not, and i repeat COULD NOT, stop reading this book. I rooted, i laughed, i enjoyed the characters and their snarky comments towards one another. This book was fantastic and always had me devouring every word on every page. And  i must say i love when male authors have their protagonist female because it takes a lot to enter the inner mind of the opposite sex but Karsten has Ashline Wilde, one of my top favorite characters because he can really pump out a kickass protag! :D

I felt like the story was a tad slow in the beginning but the characters made up for it with their sarcastic and witty gestures, and the narration just kept me intrigued. Ashline's personality was one of my favorite things about this whole book! Sarcasm for the win with this book. And Karsten does use it to the maximum and I could not say that I wasn't enjoying it, because the use or sarcasm happens to make me laugh. And Karsten is a genius with it.

Okay i need to get this out of the way now: COLT IS SO GODDAMN SEXY AND CUTE AND AMAZING. okay....teenage-girl-hyper-caps-lock-squeal-mode is over. But man i got so pissed when the narrator made me think Ash was going to kiss him but only "slug him on the shoulder" i was like, NOOOOOOOOO!!!! what a tease! And you know what another thing is a tease... THE ENDING!!! KARSTEN WHYYY!!!!! /regains composure.

I really didn't expect myself to like this book, and it turns out that I absolutly adore it! I never wanted to stop and was so conflicted when the book came to a close! I hope for a sequal soon because i need my Ashline Wilde sarcasm in daily doses!