Sunday, February 28, 2010

Celebrities read childrens books

My awesome sister found a cool site for me to put on here. It is a site where celebrities read childrens books. Some of the celebrities that read are Elijah Wood, Amanda Bynes, Camryn Manheim, and James Earl Jones.

Here is the site:

Friday, February 26, 2010

Black Magic Sanction by Kim Harrison

Black Magic Sanction by Kim Harrison
published by EOS
Genre: Adult paranormal
$25.99 (hardcover)

FTC: I bought this book and will not be receiving compensation for reviewing this book

**Note** While I normally review mostly YA, this is an Adult book.

What it's about (from the book sleeve):
Rachel Morgan has fought and hunted vampires, werewolves, bandshees, demons, and other supernatural dangers as both witch and bounty hunter--and lived to tell the tale. But she's never faced off against her own kind...until now. Denounced and shunned for dealing with demons and black magic, her best hope is life imprisonment--at worst, a forced lobotomy and genetic slavery. Only her enemies are strong enough to help her win her freedom, but trust comes hard when it hinges on the unscrupulous tycoon Trent Kalamack, the demon Algaliarept, and an ex-boyfriend turned thief.
It takes a witch to catch a witch, but survival bears a heavy price.

My thoughts:
You can never go wrong with a Kim Harrison book. It is just not possible.

This is the 8th book in Harrison's Hollows series and it is by far the darkest, strangest, most exciting book in the whole series.

Rachel's character always seems to be in so much trouble. The second she finally gets out of a little trouble, she lands in even more. This book is all about Rachel and no one else. I don't think that has ever happened in any of the other books in the series. Rachel's character grows and developes more in this book than she has in all the other books combined.
I love Harrison's writing style. She's very descriptive but in a way that actually makes sense. I am always able to completely picture what all the characters and places look like and what is happening. I can't say that about all the authors I read. Harrison's writing is fun and imaginative. She adds in little things you wouldn't expect characters to say.
This book had everything in it: action, horror, laughter, sorrow, and love. I couldn't have asked for a better book.

my rating: 11/10. Yes, that's right, I loved it that much.

**Side Note** to anyone living around the Portland Oregon area, Kim Harrison will be doing a book signing at the Powells in Beaverton on March 25th. More information on her site.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Gone by Michael Grant

Gone by Michael Grant
published by Harper Teen
Genre: YA
$9.99 (paperback)

FTC: I'm not receiving compensation for reviewing this book

What it's about from the back of the book:
In the blink of an eye. Everyone disappears. GONE. Everyone except for the young. Teens. Middle schoolers. Toddlers. But not a single adult. no teachers, no cops, no doctors, no parents. Gone, too, are the phones, internet, and television. There is no way to get help.

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 and war is imminent.

The first in a breathtaking saga about teens battling each other and their darkest selves, Gone is a page-turning thriller that will make you look at the world in a whole new way.

My Thoughts:
I can't decide if I like this book or not. I've thought about it and can not fully decide how I feel about it.

Most of the main characters I liked fairly well. This however does not include the best friend, Quinn. This character drove me nuts and most of the time I was hoping something would happen to him. He had his moments, but most of the time he was a frustrating character.

This book was not for the faint of heart. There was violent deaths, babies dying, kids having their arms sawed off, and so on. There was some parts of the book that I actually felt physically nauseous reading it. The book was so intense and horrifying during most parts.

I am extremely curious to why everyone disappeared and why the barrier was put up, but I am afraid that by the end of the book, it took a nasty turn into something I didn't like. While I want to know what happens, I am not willing to read six books (yes, the series is going to be six books long) at over 600 pages per book to find out the answer. I don't know if I will even continue the series past the first book or not.

My rating: 7/10?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Reincarnation by Suzanne Weyn

Reincarnation by Suzanne Weyn
Published by Scholastic Inc
Genre: YA
$8.99 (paperback)

FTC: I borrowed this book from a friend who did not receive it from a publisher.
Product Description:
From prehistory to the present, theirs was a love for the ages. It starts with a fight in a cave over an elusive green jewel...and then travels over time and lies to include Egyptian slaves, Greek temples, Massachusetts witch trials, Civil War battlefields, Paris on the eve of World War II, America in the 1960's... and a pair of modern-day teenagers. For readers who believe that love is stronger than time or death, this is an unforgettable novel from a wonderful storyteller.

My thoughts:
The first thing that comes to my mind when I think about this book is "wow." some of the characters past lives were very strange, like the cave men. There were many times that I was confused to what was going on in the story. This was mostly after a death and before a reincarnation. The letters from people could be confusing and not needed. There were also some time framing errors in these letters as well. some of the life cycles that were there did not seem very important at all, but were there to fill up for longer periods of time. What I really did like about the story is how little pieces of what happened in past lives would affect the next life. Like how the boy always had headaches and the girl had a bad ankle and a fear of fire. having all the lives connected by simple things like the love of emeralds or a pair of earrings was precious. I would have liked to see the ending go on for alittle while longer. I felt that it was rushed and was disappointed that there wasn't any narration from the boys perspective.

My rating: 6.5/10

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey

Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey
published by Graphia
Genre: YA
$8.99 (paperback)

FTC: I'm not receiving compensation for reviewing this book

What it's about from the back of the book:
Marrying a vampire definitely doesn't fit into Jessica Packwood's senior-year "get a life" plan. But then a bizarre (and incredibly hot) new exchange student named Lucius Vladescu shows up, claiming that jessica is a Romanian vampire princess by birth and he's her long-lost fiance. Armed with newfound confidence and a copy of Growing Up Undead: A Tenn Vampire's Guide to Dating, Health, and Emotions, Jessica makes a dramatic transition from average American teenager to glam European vampire princess. But Jessica has never even been kissed--how can she possibly commit herself to a long-term relationship? Or an eternal relationship, for that matter?

My thoughts:
This book was...special.
It took me until about half way through the book, if not longer, for me to even like Jessica's character. Her character acted like most teenage girls would, but it didn't mean that it didn't annoy the crap out of me. Lucius's character wasn't much better.

While I did root for Jessica and Lucius to get together, I never really did feel the love between them. It was more like Fantaskey was telling me they were in love, but never really showed it. One second Jessica hates Lucius, and the next she is madly in love with him. It was odd.

Another part that I wasn't buying was Frank "thick head." It was too easy for the bully of the school. Let's just say, I don't think his character could do the things he did and the vampires would not have made it so easy for him.

Jessica's Guide was pretty much a mix between Wuthering Heights and Dracula. I find that the mix of those two books did not really make a compelling story.

One thing I could not get over was all the vegan bashing this book did. It was a little over the top and something that Fantaskey does not seem to fully understand. Me being an ex vegan clouded my views on this and I took part of it personally.

My Rating: 6/10

Friday, February 12, 2010

Percy Jackson and the Olympians: the Lightning Thief Movie

Percy Jackson and the Olympians the Lightning Thief
The Movie

Directed by Chris Columbus
Some of the cast:
Percy Jackson: Logan Lerman
Grover: Brandon T. Jackson
Annabeth: Alexandra Daddario
Luke: Jake Abel
Zeus: Sean Bean
Chiron: Pierce Brosnan

I am a huge fan of the of the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan and couldn't believe how excited I was for this movie. Was the excitment worth it? Very much so. Did the movie stick very close to the book? No. I would give it about a 50% for sticking to the book.

Couple main things that are different:
1) Percy's age. In the book, Percy is 12 years old. In the movie he is in high school.
2)How Percy, Annabeth, and Grover get across the country.
3)Character descriptions. Besides the age difference, Annabeth does not have blonde hair, and the most obvious difference is that Grover is black.
I personally loved the people they picked to play the characters. Logan as Percy was the perfect pick along with Brandon as Grover. They really seemed to understand their characters and had fun with them.

While I was a little upset about a few of the things left out, I couldn't deny that they were not necessary for the movie. The movie probably wouldn't have worked as well if they had tried to keep everything in it. Chris Columbus seemed to be going for the main feel of the book without keeping it at the same age level. This is a movie that is both enjoyable for a younger audience just as much as it is enjoyable for an older audience.

I recommend that before seeing the movie, read the book. Everything will make more sense. Plus, the book is amazing and everyone should read it anyways.

here is the official trailer for the movie.

The Demon's Librarian by Lilith Saintcrow

The Demon's Librarian by Lilith Saintcrow
published by Imajinn books
Genre: Adult paranormal
$14 (paperback)

FTC: I bought this book blah blah blah, not getting money for my review, blah blah blah.

What it's about from the back of the book:
Demons are preying on schoolchildren in her city, so Francesca Barnes does what any red-blooded librarian would do--she does some research and goes hunting. But the books she finds in a secret cache don't tell her the whole story. Chess has no idea what she's just stepped into or just how special she is.
Orion is Drakul, part demon, and a loyal servant of the Order. he doesn't expect a motorcycle-riding librarian to be messing around with demonic forces, and he doesn't expect her to smell so damn good. But Ryan's got bigger problems. His partner has disappeared, and the forces of Darkness are rising.

Now Chess is Ryan's only hope of finding his partner, and Ryan is Chess's only hope of survival because the demons now know Chess exists and that she is the heir to a long-lost power that could push back their dark tide. If Ryan can keep her alive long enough, she just might be the key to destroying the demons completely. But Ryan doesn't know he's been betrayed by the very Order he serves. And if Chess does, by some miracle survive, he won't ever be able to touch her again...

My Thoughts:
After typing up what the book is about, I just realized it gives away almost everything.

The last thing I thought I'd say about this book is that it is cute, but it really is. It was totally adorable. The way Chess and Ryan are so protective of each other is gut renchingly cute. Their relationship is an odd one born from fear and forbiddenness.
I have read Lilith Saintcrow's YA series, Strange Angels, and had a hard time following what was going on. She would jump around and all the sudden a character would be somewhere and you'd be going "wait, I thought they were still at the mall?" and would have to reread the whole section. That was not a problem in this book. For the most part it was pretty easy to follow. I did have some trouble understanding why the Inkani wanted her, and why the Order doesn't want Drakul to be around women, but it wasn't that bad and I could still move on with the story. I think my not fully understanding those things was due to me reading the book too fast and not from the writing itself.

I loved the inner monologes the characters would say and the fact that the story was both from Ryan's and Chess's point of views. It would not have worked as well if it had only been from one of the characters point of views. After being in Ryan's head and moving to Chess's, it was hard not to yell at her character and say "what are you doing? He obviously loves you! kiss him for god's sake!"

I really enjoyed this book and wish that it was a series, but alas, it is not.

My rating: 9/10

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Dark Divine by Bree Despain

The Dark Divine by Bree Despain
published by Egmont
Genre: YA
$17.99 (hardback)

FTC: I'm not receiving compensation for reviewing this book.

What it's about from the book sleeve:

Grave Divine--daughter of the local pastor-- always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared and her brother Jude came home covered in his own blood.
Now that Daniel's returned, Grace must choose between her growing attraction to him and her loyalty to her brother.
As Grace gets closer to Daniel, she learns the truth about that mysterious night and how to save the ones she loves, but it might cost her the one thing she cherishes most: her soul.

My thoughts:
This book was intense! I literally read it in one sitting, only getting up to get something to drink.
Grace was a pretty fantastic character. She's not strong in the physical sense, but she wants to save the world.

I'm not going to say a whole lot about this book because knowing me, I'd give something away and I DON'T WANT TO DO THAT. I had no idea what was coming and I loved that about the book. That was honestly the best part of this whole book was the fact that I didn't know what to expect.

I'm just going to say that it was fabulous and everyone should read it.

My rating: 10/10!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

My Rating System

Today I thought I'd post how my rating system works.

10/10: If you like the genre (YA, Romance, etc.) then you HAVE to read it.

9/10: Absolutely loved it but there was one small thing that bothered me, but still a great book

8/10: Liked it, had a few small problems, but I'd still recommend reading it if it sounded good to you.

7/10: Not at the top of my list of books to recommend

6/10 -0/10: Don't really bother reading it unless you really want to

New books out today

Gone by Lisa McMann
$16.99 (hardback)
What it's about:
Janie thought she knew what her future held. And she thought she'd made her peace with it. But she can't handle dragging Cabel down with her.
She knows he will stay with her, despite what she sees in his dreams. He's amazing. And she's a train wreck. Janie sees only one way to give him the life he deserves--she has to disappear. And it's going to kill them both.Then a stranger enters her life--and everything unravels. The future Janie once faced now has an ominous twist, and her choices are more dire than she'd ever thought possible. She alone must decide between the lesser of two evils. And time is running out...
First Drop of Crimson by Jeaniene frost
$7.99 (paperback)
What it's about:
Denise MacGregor knows all too well what lurks in the shadows – her best friend is half-vampire Cat Crawfield – and she has already lost more than the average human could bear. But her family’s dark past is wrapped in secrets and shrouded in darkness – and a demon shapeshifter has marked Denise as prey. Now her survival depends on an immortal who craves a taste of her.
He is Spade, a powerful, mysterious vampire who has walked the earth for centuries and is now duty-bound to protect this endangered, alluring human – even if it means destroying his own kind. Denise may arouse his deepest hungers, but Spade knows he must fight his urge to have her as they face the demon nightmare together…
Because once the first drop of crimson falls, they will both be lost.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Moon Called by Patricia Briggs

Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
published by Ace books
Genre: Adult paranormal
$7.99 (paperback)

FTC: I am not receiving compensation for reviewing this book.

What it's about from the back of the book:
Werewolves can be dangerous if you get in their way, but they'll leave you alone if you are careful. They are very good at hiding their natures from the human population, but I'm not human. I know them when I meet them, and they know me, too.
Mery Thompson's sexy next-door neighbor is a werewolf.
She's tinkering with a VW bus at her mechanic shop that happens to belong to a vampire.
But then, Mercy Thompson is not exactly normal herself...and her connection to the world of things that go bump in the night is about to gget her into a whole lot of trouble.

My thoughts:

I had tried reading this book once before and couldn't get past the first chapter. It wasn't grabbing my attention. Months later I tried it again and loved it! It is a much different look on werewolves as what is becoming normal. They are dangerous, controlling, territorial and not to mention a little sexiest. That makes them sound horrible, yet the wolves are characters that you can't help but love. It is a very new way of looking at werewolves and I enjoyed every minute of reading about them.

Mercy's character is a pretty cool woman. For not being too powerfull, she holds a lot of control. She knows what she wants and goes for it. For seeing the things that she has seen, she is still very trusting, if not foolish. Her character is very unique because of what she is and this creates a very complicated love triangle that is worthy of creating "team Sam's" or "team Adam's"

While Briggs introduces other creatures besides werewolves, she does not focus on those characters...yet. This first book in the series mostly tried to establish how life is for the werewolves and introduces the other characters such as the fae, witches, and vampires.
It is a very interesting world that Patricia Briggs has created and I look forward to reading the rest in the series.

I'd recommend this series to anyone who is a fan of The Hollows series by Kim Harrison.

My rating: 9/10

Friday, February 5, 2010

Tallulah Falls by Christine Fletcher

Tallulah Falls by Christine Fletcher
published by Bloomsbury
Genre: YA
$7.95 (paperback)

FTC: I bought this book and will not receive compensation for reviewing it.

What it's about from the back of the book:

When Debbie "Tallulah" Addy sets out on an impulsive cross-country trip to rescue her best friend, Maeve, she doesn't anticipate getting stranded in rural Tennessee without a dime. Nor does she guess that rescuing a dog will land her a job in the local veterinarian's office, a pull-out couch to sleep on, and a friendship (and perhaps more) with Kyle, the young assistant whose tongue-tied ways conceal a more complicated heart. But under the wary eye of ornery Dr. Poteet, Tallulah will work harder than ever, tending to animals of all shapes and sizes--and unexpectedly, to wounds long buried in herself. Tallulah swears she'll leave the first chance she gets, but when that chance finally comes, will it be Maeve or the eccentric group of strangers who has the bigger claim on Tallulah's heart?

My thoughts:

Wow. That's my thought. After I finished this book, I had to sit there for a few minutes and think the ending.

This was definitely a coming of age story. In the beginning, Tallulah is a very naive girl who feels like her family doesn't understand her so she lashes out. She really does not seem to understand how the world works at all. She's bossy, controlling, and angry. She doesn't understand what is happening around her and how her friend Maeve is having a bipolar episode.

All the characters had such realistic personalities. You could actually imagine knowing them, being in that vet office and working with them every day.

This book made me feel so many different emotions. Hopelessness, happiness, depression, love, and all kinds of others. You never really knew what was coming next.

While it did not end the way I was hoping it would, I very much enjoyed this book. It was a very "me" book.

My Rating: 8.5/10

Monday, February 1, 2010

Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder

Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder
published by Simon Pulse
Genre: YA
$15.99 (hardcover)

FTC: I bought this book

What it's about (from the book sleeve):
Restless souls and empty hearts. Brooklyn can't sleep. her boyfriend, Lucca, died only a year ago, and now her friend Gabe has just died of an overdoes. Every time she closes her eyes, Gabe's ghost is there waiting for her. She has no idea what he wants, or why it isn't Lucca visiting her dreams.

Nico can't stop. He's always running, trying to escape the pain of losing his brother, Lucca. But when Lucca's ghost begins leaving messages telling Nico to help Brooklyn, emotions come crashing to the surface.

As the nightmares escalate and the messages become relentless, Nico reaches out to Brooklyn. But neither of them can admit that they're being haunted. Until they learn to let each other in, not one soul will be able to rest.

My thoughts:
LOVED IT! Lisa has done it again. She wrote a book that I thought I wouldn't like because it sounds so depressing, but I ended up adoring it. Just like with her book I Heart You, You Haunt Me, I was crying a few pages into the book. It being written in verse allows the book to cut out all the small things and get right to the point. You get all the raw emotions without being dragged down.

I especially loved how she entwined her first book, I heart you, into this story. Having Ava help Brooklyn out was a nice little treat.

The book is written from two different perspectives and lets you hear the whole story. How everyone is affected by a death of a loved one. Family, friends, a whole school. Throughout the book, she kept mentioning the band, The Killers. This was perfect. Their first cd gives exactly the right mood for the book. After finishing the book, I immediately went and found my copy of that cd and listened to it.

The whole book is filled with perfect lines. Ones that you sit there and think, "wow, I should write this down because that is an amazing line."

I would recommend this book to anyone who has felt the loss of a loved one.

my rating: 10/10!