Top Ten Tuesday: NEED to Read More

Top Ten TuesdayI skipped last week. Didn’t have time to post much of anything last week. This week’s topic is one I want to write enough to make the time for it! ;)

Top Ten Authors I’ve Only Read One Book From but NEED to Read More

I know there are quite a few on this list. Of course, no one pops into mind as of yet, but I know there are a bunch. Thank God for Goodreads, which can help me figure it out! ;) As always, these are listed in no special order.

  1. Laurie Halse Anderson: I’ve only read Speak. I have been wanting to read much more of hers, just haven’t found the time. Wintergirls is the first that comes to mind. Maybe eventually …
  2. Jay Asher: I read The Future of Us and loved it. I have Thirteen Reasons Why sitting on my shelf. GOTTA READ IT!
  3. Jennifer Lynn Barnes: I LOVED Raised by Wolves. Haven’t gotten around to continuing the series. Nor to reading anything else she’s written.
  4. Jennifer Brown: Ever since reading Bitter End, I’ve wanted to read other books she’s written. Hate List comes to mind, but I know there’s more.
  5. Patrick W. Carr: I loved A Cast of Stones. I want to finish out the series, but haven’t yet. It hasn’t been for lack of trying.
  6. Cassandra Clare: I know, I know. What the heck? ;) I read Clockwork Angel and LOVED it. I have the other two on my shelf, waiting. And, yes, I have most of Mortal Instruments waiting to be read. (I think all but the last.)
  7. Elizabeth Haynes: Into the Darkest Corner was fantastic. I must read more of her books!
  8. Giles Kristian: Loved Blood Eye. Definitely want to continue the series.
  9. Donita K. Paul: I read Two Tickets to the Christmas Ball a long time ago. But I know she has a series about dragons or something along those lines. MUST check them out!
  10. Travis Thrasher: An awesome, very underrated author. I absolutely loved Solitary, and have the others around for reading — eventually.

I could’ve gone on and on and on … for miles with this list! There are just SO MANY!

So, how about you? Who do you NEED to read more from?
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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

It’s been a rather dull week here on the blog. That’s because it has most definitely NOT been dull in my everyday life. Still, I must be consistent. So here’s my Monday post! ;)

Last Week’s Reviews:

The Fine Art of Pretending by Rachel Harris | Skin Game by Jim Butcher (I didn’t post a review here, so the link will take you to where I shared brief thoughts on Goodreads.)

Other Post:

Trial by Fire by Josephine AngeliniWinner of Trial By Fire by Josephine Angelini

What I’m Reading Now:

Talon ~ Just getting started | Crash the Chatterbox ~ Session 4 | Dangerous Women ~ Renewed, so I have it for THREE more weeks, if I need that long … | Beyond the Bake Sale

On Deck This Week:

Now, if only life would slow down for me to get through all of the kids’ books at least! ;)

So, how about you? What’s your week in books look like?

If you’re here as part of this meme, please make sure to let me know — especially if you’re new. I’d love to return the visit. (Oh, and be careful. My comments have been a bit wonky. If your comment doesn’t appear right away, please shoot me an email so I can make sure it’s not in spam!)
~*~

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WINNER: Trial by Fire

I am excited to announce Anita Y. as the winner of Trial by Fire by Josephine Angelini!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congratulations!
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Review: The Fine Art of Pretending

The Fine Art of Pretending by Rachel HarrisTitle: The Fine Art of Pretending
Author: Rachel Harris
Series: The Fine Art of Pretending #1

About: According to the guys at Fairfield Academy, there are two types of girls: the kind you hook up with and the kind you’re friends with. Seventeen-year-old Alyssa Reed is the second type. And she hates it. With just one year left to change her rank, she devises a plan to become the first type by homecoming, and she sets her sights on the perfect date — Justin Carter, Fairfield Academy’s biggest hottie and most notorious player.

With 57 days until the dance, Aly launches Operation Sex Appeal and sheds her tomboy image. The only thing left is for Justin actually to notice her. Enter best friend Brandon Taylor, the school’s second biggest hottie, and now Aly’s pretend boyfriend. With his help, elevating from “funny friend” to “tempting vixen” is only a matter of time.

But when everything goes according to plan, the inevitable “break up” leaves their friendship in shambles, and Aly and Brandon with feelings they can’t explain. And the fake couple discovers pretending can sometimes cost you the one thing you never expected to want.

My Thoughts: Cute, fun, and sweet. That was my first response upon finishing. My other thought? Brandon is so book boyfriend material. He might, just might, be the top contender this year.

So, I’ll be honest. The premise of this book, especially as I was reading, bothers me. It speaks to the innocence of teen girls, that they’d name a makeover project Operation Sex Appeal and want to be on the Casuals (as opposed to Commitments) list. As an adult well past her teen years, when Brandon told her about the lists and which one she was on … he tried to tell her it was a good thing to be a Commitment. And he’s so right. It implies some respect, and that the girls on that list are more than a conquest. But what she sees is that no one will date her because she’s not an easy target. What I see is that the Casuals are the love-‘em-and-leave-‘em type. A conquest to be discarded once the objective has been obtained: you know, sex. Why any girl, teenager or not, would want that status is beyond me. Because of my issue with the whole idea of what this book is based on, I really didn’t want to like it. But ..

Despite my misgivings about the whole premise, the book was a great read. As I mentioned above, it’s cute, fun, and sweet. Despite his fear of commitment (which is explained), Brandon is a swoon-worthy guy. Despite his reputation, it’s clear to see there’s a sweet guy with a good heart.

Yes, the story was pretty par for the course for this type of tale: Boy and girl pretend to date. In doing so they discover their true feelings for each other. Both are afraid of ruining the friendship (or afraid of commitment in general), and try to get things back to the way they were — only to discover how futile that is. Everyone around them can see that they’re nuts for each other, and they’re the only ones who can’t see it. On down to the smile-on-your-face, warm-fuzzy ending. But, it was fun. The characters are great. Aly, despite her obvious immaturity and naiveté, is a sweet girl with a good heart. And perfect with Brandon. ;)

If you enjoyed Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins, as well as other similar stories, then this is a must-read. I will definitely be reading subsequent books in the series.

4.5 Stars]Source: Received through Around the World Tours for review.

Read It: The Fine Art of Pretending is scheduled for release around September 30, 2014. You can pre-order your own copy via Amazon or Book Depository(These are affiliate links, and purchase through either link will result in my receiving a small commission at no cost to you. Your support is appreciated!)

Find me on Goodreads.com >>
~*~

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It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Monday! What Are You Reading?Here we go!

Last week’s reviews:

Ghost House by Alexandra Adornetto | The Vault of Dreamers by Caragh M. O’Brien | The Heaven of Animals by Nancy Tillman

Other posts:

August review | Top Ten Tuesday

Current giveaway:

Trial by Fire by Josephine AngeliniThis is the last week to enter for a chance to win Josephine Angelini’s Trial By Fire.

What I’m reading now:

The Fine Art of Pretending ~ Hoping it’s a fast read; gotta mail it tomorrow! | Crash the Chatterbox ~ Session 3 is underway. I’m learning a lot. | Dangerous Women ~ It’s due this Saturday. Will I get it done? I hope so, but I do have one renewal if needed … | Beyond the Bake Sale ~ I have every intention of reading it, I swear!

On deck this week:

Will I get to them all? Honestly, no. But I’m gonna try. I get points for trying, right? ;)

So, how about you? What’s your week in books look like?

If you’re here as part of this meme, please make sure to let me know — especially if you’re new. I’d love to return the visit. (Oh, and be careful. My comments have been a bit wonky. If your comment doesn’t appear right away, please shoot me an email so I can make sure it’s not in spam!)
~*~

 

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Review: The Heaven of Animals

The Heaven of Animals by Nancy TillmanTitle: The Heaven of Animals
Author: Nancy Tillman
Series: n/a

About: With all of my heart, I believe it is true
that there is a heaven for animals, too.

The heaven of animals is a magical place. Angels know every dog’s favorite game; cats bask in their own rays of sunshine; horses thunder across the sky. The loss of a pet is heartbreaking. But in the heaven of animals, the love you have for your animal friends lives on.

My Thoughts: This is a cute book that might offer some comfort to a child who’s lost a pet. They can think of the animal as having a lot of fun and being very loved (by an angel) after they pass away. The rhymes are nice, but the rhythm is off sometimes. And for me that was distracting. Honestly, young kids probably won’t even notice it. The illustrations are colorful and vibrant. I’m not sure how I feel about angels being depicted as children with wings, but it fits the story.

2.5 StarsSource: ARC sent by publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Read It: You can order your own copy via Amazon or Book Depository(These are affiliate links, and purchase through either link will result in my receiving a small commission at no cost to you. Your support is appreciated!)

Find me on Goodreads.com >>
~*~

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Review: The Vault of Dreamers

The Vault of Dreamers by Caragh M. O'BrienTitle: The Vault of Dreamers
Author: Caragh M. O’Brien
Series: Untitled #1

About: The Forge School is the most prestigious arts school in the country. The secret to its success: Every moment of the students’ lives is televised as part of the insanely popular Forge Show, and the students’ schedule includes twelve hours of induced sleep meant to enhance creativity. But when first-year student Rosie Sinclair skips her sleeping pill, she discovers there is something off about Forge. In fact, she suspects that there are sinister things going on deep below the reaches of the cameras in the school. What’s worse is, she starts to notice that the edges of her consciousness do not feel quite right. And soon, she unearths the ghastly secret that the Forge School is hiding—and what it truly means to dream there.

My Thoughts: This book held so much promise. And it got off to a great start. Awesome middle. But very unsatisfying end.

I thought this book sounded like a great premise, and it is. Most of the time, it’s excellent. It’s fast-paced, engaging, and something I fully expected to give 5 stars while reading most of it. Rosie is a pretty good character, although I always found myself shocked when we’re reminded just how young she is (15). She definitely seems older, but then some of her dumb choices can be explained away as her just plain being so young. Naive. Inexperienced. Pick your word that encompasses youthful stupidity.

The last 50-100 pages is when I felt the book fell apart. It went from intriguing and gripping to whacked out and farfetched. From mildly creepy to way too far out there for my tastes. Unfortunately. I know this is the start to a series, but there were way too many rather large questions left WIDE open for me to close the book feeling anything other than disappointment, frustration, and annoyance. And maybe some confusion, too. Too much is revealed too quickly in a huge, poorly explained crash course of WTF! that I just simply was stunned upon completion.

Linus. What is up with him? I can’t figure it out. Is he genuine? Is he a pawn (yes) — more importantly, is he a willing pawn, a scheming pawn? I can’t decide whether to love him or hate him. And his fate is left unknown — completely unknown — by the end of the book. Not cool. So not cool.

Will I read the next book? Probably, if only to get some big questions answered and to hope to make sense out of the story. Although, I don’t know that I’d seek out the rest of this series. If it presented itself to me (offered for review, I stumble upon it at the library, something like that), I’d pick it up (but, no, I wouldn’t buy it). Either way, I don’t think I’ll be reading this one again. Unless the next book surprises me … that might do the trick.

3.5 StarsSource: Sent by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Read It: The Vault of Dreamers is scheduled for release around September 16, 2014. You can pre-order your own copy via Amazon or Book Depository(These are affiliate links, and purchase through either link will result in my receiving a small commission at no cost to you. Your support is appreciated!)

Find me on Goodreads.com >>
~*~

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