Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Teaser Tuesday: Defiance by C.J. Redwine

Happy Tuesday to you all! This week's teaser comes from C.J. Redwine's thrilling debut, Defiance available August 28th/12!!!
I don't know how much time passes before he turns over on his side to face me.
"You gonna live?" he asks, and I see my pack is still strapped to his back.
My throat burns as I answer. "I'm fine."
Defiance, p.220

Happy Reading!!!

Monday, July 30, 2012

ARC Review: Skylark by Meagan Spooner

Skylark by Meagan Spooner
Release Date: August 1st/12
Publisher: Carolrhoda Lab
Source: ARC won from author
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
Sixteen year-old Lark Ainsley has never seen the sky.

Her world ends at the edge of the vast domed barrier of energy enclosing all that’s left of humanity. For two hundred years the city has sustained this barrier by harvesting its children's innate magical energy when they reach adolescence. When it’s Lark’s turn to be harvested, she finds herself trapped in a nightmarish web of experiments and learns she is something out of legend itself: a Renewable, able to regenerate her own power after it’s been stripped.

Forced to flee the only home she knows to avoid life as a human battery, Lark must fight her way through the terrible wilderness beyond the edge of the world. With the city’s clockwork creations close on her heels and a strange wild boy stalking her in the countryside, she must move quickly if she is to have any hope of survival. She’s heard the stories that somewhere to the west are others like her, hidden in secret – but can she stay alive long enough to find them?

My Thoughts:
This book was a complete mystery to me. Upon winning an ARC I wasn't aware of much of the plot and the cover threw me a little- seemed a bit SciFi. But once I started reading, I was sucked in, I honestly just couldn't stop.

There were so many things I loved about Skylark: the mystery, the adventure, THE ROMANCE (always a favourite :)).  Skylark starts off as a "Dud" or an unharvested freak, struggling to find herself in a society that clearly has no place for her. But then her day comes when her "Resource" is ready to be harvested, this is what she's been waiting for her whole life, it's everything she wanted- or is it? Suddenly Lark is being locked away and fed on strict schedules behind the Wall, while the "Machine" continues to suck her Resource dry. Her only companion behind the Wall is Kris, but can she truly trust him?

All this comes together within the beginning of the book! The adventure and intrigue lasts throughout. As Lark runs for her life, literally she becomes acquainted with Oren, a mysterious young man surviving out in the wild. Romance blossoms as these two travel through the wild together. I really liked Oren and was rooting for him (but this could very well have to do with the fact that his name is close to Oreo haha). But don't rule out Kris just yet! I think Spooner has much more in store for him, I hope.

Skylark is an action-packed YA read, that will have you questioning everyone's motives and leave in awe of the atmosphere/world that Spooner has penned. The romance was sweet and the ending left an opening for further development and much more adventure in book 2. I'm very eagerly awaiting the next installment.

I'm recommending Skylark to all those who enjoy YA because it has a perfect mixture of all the typical elements- Adventure, Love triangle, Mystery, Dystopian society,  I really  could go on, but I think you get the point. I'm so glad I won this book- Thank you Meagan!!!

Go out and it grab a copy- it releases TOMORROW!!! :

Happy Reading!!!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Stacking the Shelves: The OMG ARCs Galore! Edition

Wow, just wow, these last two weeks were EPIC! Just look at the goods (I apologize for lack of general photos, but my Camera's battery was dying :))
and the covers!
Traded with Wendy Darling!
Hidden by Sophie Jordan HarperTeen(ARC) - Available Sept'12
Glass Heart by Amy Garvey HarperTeen(ARC) - Available Sept'12
For Review!
Debutantes by Cora Harrison Macmillan(ARC) - Available Aug'12
The Bridge by Jane Higgins Tundra Books(ARC) - Available Oct'12
Who I Kiss by Janet Gurtler Sourcebooks Fire(ARC) - Oct'12
Heaven by Alexandra Adornetto Feiwel and Friends(ARC) - Aug'12
Defiance by C.J. Redwine Balzer and Bray(ARC) - Aug'12
Breathe by Sarah Crossan Greenwillow(ARC) - Oct'12
Starling by Leslie Livingston HarperTeen(ARC) - Aug'12
The Peculiar by Stefan Bachmann Greenwillow(ARC) - Sept'12
Tiger's Destiny by Colleen Houck Splinter(ARC) - Sept'12

That's all for me this week. Special thanks to HarperCollins Canada, Wendy Darling, Splinter, Raincoast Books and Random House Canada! 
What are you stacking your shelves with this week?

Happy Reading!!!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday:

This one looks like a sexy read! Can't wait to get my hands on a copy :)
Release Date: August 28th/12.
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
Mysterious lights have flickered above Crownsville for as long as Mia can remember. And as far as she's concerned, that's about the only interesting thing to happen in her small town.

That is, until Sol arrives. Mia's not one to fall for just any guy, but she can't get Sol--or the brilliant tattoo on his back--out of her mind.

Then Mia's brother goes missing, and Mia's convinced that Sol knows more than he's sharing. But getting closer to Sol means reevaluating everything Mia once believed to be true. Because Sol's not who Mia thought he was--and neither is she.

What titles are you waiting on this week? 

Happy Reading!!!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Teaser Tuesday: Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter

Happy Tuesday!!! This week's teaser is brought to you by the AMAZING Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter - A seriously epic read!
"I've asked you twice, but you haven't said. So tell me. Teach me. What did we just fight?"
Only a single beat of silence this time. Then he uttered one word. Just one. But that one word forever changed my life, as feared. "Zombies."

Alice in Zombieland, p.175

Happy Reading!!!

Monday, July 23, 2012

ARC Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry
Release Date: July 31st/12.
Publisher: HarlequinTEEN
Source: ARC from Publisher
Synopis courtesy of Goodreads:
"I won't tell anyone, Echo. I promise." Noah tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did. Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins? His dark brown eyes shifted to my covered arms. "You didn't do that-did you? It was done to you?" No one ever asked that question. They stared. They whispered. They laughed. But they never asked.

So wrong for each other...and yet so right.

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with "freaky" scars on her arms. Even Echo can't remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal. But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo's world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she'll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.

My Thoughts:

This read was a roller-coaster of emotions. McGarry does a great job of blending conventional drama plot-lines with a certain edge, in her debut, told from the duel perspectives of Echo an Noah. This book deals with many conflicts: personal identity, family, loss, while blending in a steamy romance from an unconventional couple. Definitely not a read for the faint of heart, I, myself, cried two or three times while reading Pushing the Limits.

Echo has many physical and internal scars that she carries around with her each day. She can't remember how she got these scars, but she knows her parents are hiding something- adding a certain blend of mystery to this read. Her relationship with her father and step-mother (who happens to be her old baby-sitter) is strained to say the least. She feels lonely, replaced and unloved.

Enter Noah, the bad boy from the wrong side of the tracks. But don't let his "I couldn't care less" attitude fool you. He has the capacity to care very deeply, and this is showcased through his interactions with his younger brothers and his willingness to be the shoulder, that Echo needs, to lean on. Like Echo, Noah has many familial issues and has experienced a great loss. I cried at the injustice he faced on a daily basis, and must applaud McGarry for forcing such strong emotions out of me while reading Noah's narratives. 

The romance blossoms between these two is filled with sexual tension and excitement. Readers will definitely be rooting for them. Although I feel the need to warn younger readers that there is some mature scenes, nothing graphic though. I personally, couldn't get enough of these two and would love a continuation should McGarry decide to write one.

Overall, I would recommend this read to fans of Simone Eckles or those who enjoy well-written contemporary YA with some heated romance!

Happy Reading!!! 

Friday, July 20, 2012

ARC Review: The Girl with Borrowed Wings by Rinsai Rossetti

The Girl with Borrowed Wings by Rinsai Rossetti
Release Date: July 19th/12.
Publisher: DIAL
Source: ARC from Publisher
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
A stunningly written tale of an isolated girl and the shape-shifting boy who shows her what freedom could be--if only she has the courage to take it.

Controlled by her father and bound by desert, Frenenqer Paje’s life is tediously the same, until a small act of rebellion explodes her world and she meets a boy, but not just a boy--a Free person, a winged person, a shape-shifter. He has everything Frenenqer doesn’t. No family, no attachments, no rules. At night, he flies them to the far-flung places of their childhoods to retrace their pasts. But when the delicate balance of their friendship threatens to rupture into something more, Frenenqer must confront her isolation, her father, and her very sense of identity, breaking all the rules of her life to become free.
My Thoughts:
This book was a pleasant surprise!

I have an awful confession to make- I judge a lot of books based on their covers, and this one, wasn't doing it for me, but than I read the synopsis and my interest was piqued.

Frenenqer is a truly unique character, as is, the world that Rossetti has created. I'll let Frenenqer explain her distinctiveness:
       "I am unlike most other people because I began, not in the body of my mother, but in the brain of my father. He invented me you see. He sat down one day and dreamed me up."
 The Girl With Borrowed Wings, p. 1  

This is the opening narrative she gives us and it foreshadows the patriarchal dominance that she must face on a daily basis. She must live, submissively, in the small white box that her father deems appropriate. And Frenenqer has been following the rules, with only her books as a source for escape (a practice I'm sure many readers can relate to :)). That is, until she meets a rambunctious feline.

Enter Sangris, I fell so hard for this man. He's Free person (or a Winged-person) if you will. The way Rossetti describes him, I can always picture this sexy smile that never leaves his face and he's fiercely protective and loyal to Frenenqer. The romance that blossoms between these two was heartwarming and had me smiling from ear to ear, even though there were times when I felt the need to slap Frenenqer in Sangris honour haha.

I feel as though this is a book with many layers that could be discussed in great detail in University lecture/tutorial. I continue to think about Rossetti's choices and would love to know how The Girl With Borrowed Wings was conceived.

The tone of the book at the beginning is depressing and suffocating, to say the least, but the ending will leave you with hope, a warm heart and a breath of fresh air.

I don't believe that this is a read for everyone because it definitely doesn't stick to the popular story-plots surrounding YA right now, but if you're looking for a fresh paranormal YA, with a sweet romance and a completely un-heard-of world, than The Girl with Borrowed Wings may be just what you're looking for.

Happy Reading!!!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: Falling for You by Lisa Schroeder

This one looks intense and HOT! Can't wait! :)

Falling For You by Lisa Schroeder
Release Date: July 1st/12.
Publisher: SimonPulse
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
Rae's always dreamed of dating a guy like Nathan. He’s nothing like her abusive stepfather—in other words, he’s sweet. But the closer they get, the more Nathan wants of her time, of her love, of her...and the less she wants to give.

As Rae’s affection for Nathan turns to fear, she leans on her friend Leo for support. With Leo, she feels lighter, happier. And possessive Nathan becomes jealous.

Then a tragedy lands Rae in the ICU. Now, hovering between life and death, Rae must find the light amid the darkness…and the strength to fight for life and the love she deserves.

What titles are you waiting on this week?

Happy Reading!!!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Teaser Tuesday: Cursed by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Happy Tuesday!!! This week's teaser brought to you Jennifer L. Armentrout's Cursed- Available September 2012. Enjoy! :)
Release Date: September 2012
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press

"Don't ever touch her again," Hayden growled.
Kurt looked up, eyes wide. "Are you threatening me- over her? I'm like your brother, Hayden!"
"Not anymore."
Cursed, p. 74
Happy Reading!!!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Review: So Close to You by Rachel Carter

So Close to You by Rachel Carter
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: ARC from Publisher
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
Lydia Bentley has heard stories about the Montauk Project all her life: stories about the strange things that took place at the abandoned military base near her home and the people who've disappeared over the years. Stories about people like her own great-grandfather.

When Lydia stumbles into a portal that transports her to a dangerous and strange new reality, she discovers that all the stories she's ever heard about the Montauk Project are true, and that she's in the middle of one of the most dangerous experiments in history.

Alongside a darkly mysterious boy she is wary to trust, Lydia begins to unravel the secrets surrounding the Project. But the truths behind these secrets force her to question all her choices--and if Lydia chooses wrong, she might not save her family but destroy them . . . and herself.

My Thoughts:
Diana Gabaldon for teens!

I loved this book! It kept me up all night with it's romance and suspense.

The first few chapters were a bit slow, but once Wes entered the picture, I couldn't stop! 

Remember sitting down and listening to your Grandma or Grandpa recount stories from their early years? Ever wonder what it would be like to go back and experience those moments with them? Well that's exactly what Lydia gets to do in So Close to You. She's given the unique opportunity to go back  in time and meet her ancestors (and become besties with her great-aunt)- I loved this premiss, it was as entertaining as Back to the Future, minus the creepiness.

I enjoyed reading from Lydia's perspective, she's a strong heroine trying to do the right thing for her family. I mean, come on, how many of us can say we'd stick it out through World War II to solve the mystery of our Great-grandfather's disappearance? She's got strong morals and a great relationship with her parents and Grandfather, which is established in the first few chapters. 

Mary (Lydia's great-aunt) was adorable! She's a huge girlie girl, always wanting to chat about boys and clothes and she's loyal and trusting. You'll have a hard time not like this character.

And let's not forget my favourite part of any read- The Boy. Lydia actually has two men vying for her attention in this read, but it's the mysterious Wes that everyone will be rooting for. In Lydia's words, 
         "...when I think handsome, I think of someone untouchable-the kind of guy you never meet in real life.
         Guys like Wes.  p.99
Cue the *swoon* and we're back, haha. Wes is a great guy, he's sexy, understanding, protective and has that added bit of intrigue to keep you guessing. The romance between these two is bittersweet and will have you smiling as little butterflies dance around your stomach.

Be warned! Once you've finished reading So Close to You, you'll be eager for its sequel- total cliffhanger ending, that definitely raises the myth of "The Butterfly Effect".

This book is full of mystery, we the reader, get to follow Lydia as she solves the mysteries that have been surrounding the town she grew up for many years. What is the Montauk Project? What happened to her great-grandpa, Dean and what/how much, exactly, does Wes have to do with all of it? Some of these questions are answered within this first installment, but I'm not going to tell you which- way to spoilery! :)

Overall, a great debut that I would recommend to all Young Adult fans, who enjoy romance and time-travel in their read. Lydia and Wes are the Claire and Jaime of YA!

Bring on Book #2!

Happy Reading!!!

Order your copy of So Close to You:
HarperCollins Canada
Book Depository

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: The Shattered Dark by Sandy Williams

I LOVED The Shadow Reader, so I really can't wait for it's sequel. You must check out this series- it's Urban Fantasy at its best- and a steamy romance to boot! :)

The Shattered Dark (Shadow Reader #2) by Sandy Williams
Release Date: Oct. 30th/12.
Publisher: ACE
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
McKenzie was a normal college student, save for one little twist: she’s a shadow reader, someone who can both see the fae and track their movements between our world and the Realm. It’s a gift for which she has been called insane, one for which she has risked family and friends—and one that has now plunged her into a brutal civil war among the fae.

With the reign of the king and his vicious general at an end, McKenzie hoped to live a more normal life while exploring her new relationship with Aren, the rebel fae who has captured her heart. But when her best friend, Paige, disappears McKenzie knows her wish is, for now, just a dream. McKenzie is the only one who can rescue her friend, but if she’s not careful, her decisions could cost the lives of everyone she’s tried so hard to save.

What titles are you waiting on this week?

Happy Reading!!!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Teaser Tuesday: A Want So Wicked by Suzanne Young

Happy Tuesday all you book lovers! My teaser, this week, is brought to you by Suzanne Young's follow-up to A Need So Beautiful, A Want So Wicked. It's an amazing read and I will be posting my review next week, so stay tuned! :) This title is now available where ever books are sold.
"I won't ruin you, Elise. I know how innocent you are."
"Ruin? Well, glad to hear it," I respond, smiling at his choice of words. "That would probably make for an awkward silence later."
A Want So Wicked p. 74

Happy Reading!!!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Stacking the Shelves

Hey Everyone!!! What a week I had for books, so stoked! :)

From Macmillan:
Scarlet by Marissa Meyer (ARC) - Out in Feb'13!
Shadow and Bone (ARC) - Now Available! - I actually already have an ARC of this title so this copy is going in the birthday box for next month! :)

From Scholastic:
The Encyclopedia of Me by Karen Rivers (ARC) - Sept'12
Undead by Kirsty McKay (ARC) - Sept'12
Wings of Fire by Tui T. Sutherland (ARC) - Jul'12
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (ARC) - Sept'12
Magisterium by Jeff Hirsch (ARC) - Oct'12

From Spencer Hill Press
Deity by Jennifer L. Armentrout (ARC) - Nov'12
Cursed by Jennifer L. Armentroug (ARC) - Sept'12
I also received some awesome swag from Spencer Hill Press- thanks so much guys!

I did also buy some books this week but I didn't get a chance to take a picture of them so I'll add them to next week's pile. Thanks so much to Macmillan, Spencer Hill Press, and Scholastic for an amazing week!

What are you stacking your shelves with this week?

Happy Reading!!!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Review: Chasing Magic by Stacia Kane

Chasing Magic by Stacia Kane
Publisher: Del Rey
Source: E-ARC from Publisher
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
Magic-wielding Churchwitch and secret addict Chess Putnam knows better than anyone just how high a price people are willing to pay for a chemical rush. But when someone with money to burn and a penchant for black magic starts tampering with Downside’s drug supply, Chess realizes that the unlucky customers are paying with their souls—and taking the innocent with them, as the magic-infused speed compels them to kill in the most gruesome ways possible.
As if the streets weren’t scary enough, the looming war between the two men in her life explodes, taking even more casualties and putting Chess squarely in the middle. Downside could become a literal ghost town if Chess doesn’t find a way to stop both the war and the dark wave of death-magic, and the only way to do that is to use both her addiction and her power to enter the spell and chase the magic all the way back to its malevolent source. Too bad that doing so will probably kill Chess—if the war doesn’t first destroy the man who’s become her reason for living.

WARNING!!! Before you read this review, please note that this is a review of Book #5 in the Downside series, and as such, may contain some spoilers for books 1-4. YOU'VE BEEN WARNED!!! :)

My thoughts:
I love this series! It only gets better with each installment.

Kane has created such a unique world with Downside.The dialogue and environment is so violent and depressing, but I never feel depressed while reading this series, because the characters and their interaction are truly what make this series stand out. Downside truly is a fitting name, because those who live and work there are basically scraps from the bottom of the barrel as Chess claims (addicts, criminals, dealers etc.) 

Chess has got to be one of the most interesting female characters currently in the Urban Fantasy genre. She's a protagonist and the antagonist of the plot. She's brave in the sense that she constantly puts herself in danger for the greater good, fighting criminals at every turn. HOWEVER, she also selfish and commits A LOT of crimes herself, the biggest being her drug addiction. Of course, she rationalizes her abuse by stating that she needs them to keep her sane so she can continue to do her duty to the Church (not the Church you're thinking of though :)) . I guess what I'm trying to say is- Chess straddles the line between of good and bad. Ultimately it's a question of whether or not the means justify the ends, but I believe that Chess does always have good motives behind her actions. She's definitely a self-destructive character with many bad habits, but as the reader, you can't help but root for her as she struggles with dilemma after dilemma.

Now on to who I believe is the true hero of this series- TERRIBLE! Don't let the name fool you folks, Terrible is all the best parts of this series. He's the glue that holds Chess and the Downside series together. I seriously would hate to think of a Downside in which Terrible didn't exist! He's strong and brutal with his enemies, but he's also gentle and caring with Chess (seriously I think I swoon with every "Chessiebomb" he utters :)). While he may not be the most well-educated man, what he lacks in book smarts he more than makes up for in street smarts and he's always there when Chess needs him. I hope to find a man as devoted to me, as Terrible is to Chess. He's like a gentle giant- lethal when necessary but has a big heart. And I must mention, the romance between this two while sweet is also steamy! A couple scenes in this book had me blushing haha.

I also loved seeing Lex in this installment, although I feel that there is still a lot of unresolved feelings between him and Chess. I hope we get to see some clarity between these two in future books!

If you're into Urban Fantasy with unique characters, an exciting environment and an epic romance, than pick up Kane's Downside series- you won't be disappointed!

Overall, great continuation to a stellar series! Bring on book 6 PLEASE!!!

Happy Reading!!!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: Everbound by Brodi Ashton

I can't wait for this one, I read a quick snippet off of Ashton's website and it looks AMAZING!!! :)

Everbound (Everneath #2) by Brodi Ashton
Release Date: Jan. 22nd/13.
Publisher: HarperTeen
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
Two months ago, the Tunnels of the underworld came for Nikki Beckett. That night, Nikki's boyfriend, Jack, made the ultimate sacrifice. All Nikki wants is to save Jack before it's too late. All Cole wants is to find his queen - and he thinks Nikki is the one. Both determined, both desperate, Nikki and Cole form a tense alliance, leading them on a dangerous journey to The Heart of The Everneath.

What titles are you waiting on this week?

Happy Reading!!!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Teaser Tuesday: Ten by Gretchen McNeil

Happy Tuesday Everyone!!!
This week's teaser is brought to you by Ten from Gretchen McNeil, hitting shelves September 2012! Prepared to be creeped out! :)
There was a massive explosion, along with matching sound effects, then a single line of text faded into view.
Vengeance is mine.
The screen went black.

Ten, p. 61

Happy Reading!!!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Happy Canada Day and Winner Announcement!

Happy Canada Day Everyone!!! I'll be at work for the better part of the day, but I plan to go for a swim  in the pool and enjoy the fireworks tonight! :)

I also have a winner for the Between the Lines ARC contest

Drumroll please....

#13 Ricky Marking!!!

Congrats Ricky, please email me at hgillis15(AT)gmail(DOT)com with your shipping information so I can get you your prize :)

If I don't hear from Ricky within 48 hours I will be adding this ARC to a box I have going for a special birthday giveaway this Summer!

Happy Reading Everyone!!!