Monday, October 31, 2011

What has you spooked?


Happy Halloween everyone!

Now, I'm not a seasonal reader - I don't search out books about Christmas in December or beach reads during the summer. 

I do however enjoy a good scare and at this time of year, it's fun to remember past readings that had me spooked! 

In honor of Halloween, I bring to you a sample of books I've read over the last year that got my blood boiling and perhaps lead me to sleep with the lights on!

Lockdown (Escape from Furnace #1) by Alexander Gordon Smith
Futuristic, dystopian world where the young have no say or control over what happens to them, especially after they are sent to Furnace. Gave me chills and ended on a great cliff hanger.
(full review)

Human .4 by Mike A. Lancaster
Technology brought to the extreme...and done right under our noses. What if you woke up one day and everything you thought was true about your world was shattered? This book freaks me out (in a good way!) if I think about it too much.
(full review)

Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
Pictures. Creepy picture of creepy things in creepy situations combined with a fantastic story that left me breathless. A book to read, close, and walk away from slowly...until it draws you in again and you can't help but look one more time.
(full review)

The Eleventh Plague by Jeff Hirsch
Creepy because it just feels so real! This could be our world and that terrifies me. Dystopian like it's meant to be - scary as hell.
(full review)

The House of Dead Maids by Clare B. Dunkle
That cover! I really can't look at it for very long. Fortunately, the story that goes along with it is equally creepy. Gets under your skin kind of creepy. Doesn't let you look away kind of creepy. Just the way I like it :)
(full review)



So, what spooky books have you read this year?

Sunday, October 30, 2011

NetGalley October Twitter Chat Q&A


A HUGE thank you to Lindsey for another wonderful NetGalley Month Twitter Chat on Friday!
Another HUGE thank you to everyone who joined in - I hope everyone had as much fun as I did.

Highlights of the chat:
Sharing of our favorite reads -- among them, The Better Angels of Our Nature by Steven Pinker, Prized by Caragh O'Brien, Butterfly Clues by Kate Ellison, Dearly Departed by Lia Habel, and The Iron Knight by Julie Kagawa

AND!

The announcement that NetGalley January is a go!
Lindsey and I have both committed to making it the best NetGalley Month yet!

I've collected our questions and Lindsey's answers below
(I think I got them all!)

Both questions and answers have been summarized and / or expanded on for clarity but please let me know if anything looks off.

October NetGalley Twitter Chat Questions and Answers

Q: Lindsey, is there a typical response time we could expect when submitting a request?
A: Great question, but tough to answer since each publisher and individual publicist is different. I would say generally publishers go through their requests at least once a week. But remember some publishers get TONS of requests (if it's a super popular title) so it can take longer than others.

Q: Will Review Organizations have opportunities to update stats with you from time to time? 
A: YES! tell us your updated your stats anytime

Q: How would we go about updating our stats?
A: In your NetGalley Bio, you can update that info and if you're listed on our Review Organizations page, email us.

Q: Do publishers set their own guidelines for accepting requests? 
A: Yes, publishers come up with their own requirements/guidelines for approving requests.

Q: Any chance publishers will start putting archive dates on their books?
A: Yes! We urge publishers to include archive dates in title description, and we hope to automate that more in future.
(A lot of us expressed our much we would love it if publishers started doing this! A few of us have had requests approved but then archived right away, giving us little time to download and read).
A: I know, we hate that and tell publishers not to approve right before archiving

Q: Lindsey - is it still true that Kindle books never expire?
A: Yes, NetGalley files that are sent to a Kindle device do not expire, due to Amazon's personal doc service. They (Amazon) apply their proprietary DRM to the files, which doesn't include an expiration date. It is not something NetGalley or the publishers can control.

Q: If a publisher sends a direct link to a book, does it have to go to the same email address as the one associated with your NetGalley account?
A: GREAT question. yes, if you get an auto-approved link for a title from a publisher, it's for that specific email address. If you have your NetGalley account set with a different email, reply and let them know so they can give you a new link. You can ALWAYS email us for help, too.

Q: Do publishers look at how many active requests you have outstanding when reviewing a request?
A: Publishers can see how many reviews you've submitted across all publishers, but not how many are pending.

Q: So, some publishers might take into account how many request you have made?
A: Not how many requests, but how many reviews you've submitted, how many approves/declines you got.

Q: Are there any common frustrations publishers have expressed with us reviewers/bloggers? 
A: Publishers want to know that you're spreading the word about a title, not just reading for free. So remember to always send a notification of your review back to the publishers, and update your bio.

Q: Is there anyway we could let publishers know we are spreading the word aside from posting our reviews to NetGalley? 
A: You can use the email publisher button to contact them, or tweet w/them, sure!

Q: Would publishers rather a negative review posted or a decline to review?
A: I can't answer for all publishers, best to ask them! Some might want you to post negative review, some might not.

Q: Will a 'negative' review affect future chances of getting approved? Up to pubs to decide?
A: Right, totally up to publisher to decide. Some feel that even a negative reviews can attract readers so it's always best to ask the publishers.

Q: What do publishers look for most for auto approval?
A: Usually publishers auto-approve people who they always approve-- it's a time saver for them, if that makes sense.

Q: Are the galleys finished copies?
A: Nope! Galleys are NOT finished copies--so ignore any typos, etc. most galleys have disclaimer at beginning...

Some Friendly Reminders from Lindsey:
Publishers want to work with you, so submit your reviews back to them and ask how you can promote more. For instance, ask if you can post the full size cover along with your review, interview the author, etc. - Just some ideas!
And remember - I'm always around to answer questions, so email or tweet me :)

For more questions and answers, check out NetGalley April and NetGalley July's Q and A transcript.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

NetGalley Twitter Chat


Hi guys! 
Can  you believe October is almost over!? 
I hope everyone has had a fantastic NetGalley October (so far :)
I know I have!

But it's not over yet ;)

Join me and the Lovely Lindsey from NetGalley, 
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28th at 5PM EST for a NETGALLEY MONTH TWITTER CHAT!!

Lindsey will answer any NetGalley question you have, we can all talk about the NetGalley books we've read this month and a good time will be had by all :)

I'll be using TweetChat to join along - this link: http://tweetchat.com/room/NetGalleyMonth should work for you as well but however you chose to join in be sure to use the hashtag #NetGalleyMonth when tweeting

If you have a question by don't think you can join in, leave it in the comments below and I'll ask Lindsey for you :)
I'll be posting a Q and A after the chat for those that missed it.

Hope to talk to you all soon!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

YA Spooktacular!


YA Spooktacular has come to Red House Books!
Hosted by Nikki of Wicked Awesome Books and Danielle of Frenzy of Noise, YA Spooktacular combines choose your own adventure stories AWESOME authors and TONS of fabulous prizes. 

Today I have for you, a piece of story 2, Party Time, written by Heidi Kling

Heidi R. Kling writes young adult novels and contributes to anthologies about hot vampires, theatre geeks and Firsts. She blogs here about life, lattes and all things in between. WITCH'S BREW the first of ten-books in her SPELLSPINNERS OF MELAS COUNTY series debuts October, 2011, and is about an estranged witch and warlock fighting to save their magic, and their forbidden love. Her first book, SEA (Putnam,2010), Heidi's debut novel about the aftermath of the Indonesian tsunami was an IndieNext Pick, Goodreads Mover & Shaker, an International Teachers Association Best Pick of 2010 and a finalist for Northern California Independent Booksellers Book of the Year.
Find Heidi: Twitter / Blog / Goodreads
Buy her books: Amazon / Barnes and Noble / The Book Depository

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Party Time starts at Reading Teen so be sure to click over there if mine is the first piece of the story you've found!



Heidi Kling – Run to the garage

You do the only logical thing you can do. You dash outside to the garage. That must be where Michael is. His candle burned all the way down and whoever this psycho voice stalker guy is—he’s letting Michael burn.


You have to stop him.


You run, letting your thoughts wander momentarily into the humor zone and think:  hope this a-hole is afraid of zombified French maids, because I’m looking pretty badass. There is no way you’re going to play damsel in distress and let your friends be killed by some nut job.


To complete the ensemble, you grab a weed-wacker from Dad’s tool shed, and light that sucker up. Its roaring zip rings through the night. As you stand there wielding it like whatshisname’s chainsaw, heart throbbing, pulse on fire, you feel energized. Until you hear Michael scream.


“I’m coming!” you yell. “Hang on!”


The garage door is locked. Quickly, you move an egg crate under the small, square window and bash in the glass with the handle of the weed-wacker. Glass shatters like dangerous snow, and you shield your face the best you can. Billows of smoke leak from the window. You heave yourself up.

....continue to the next part of the story at I Like These Books!

And make sure you visit Lisa M. Potts tomorrow to enter to win the prize pack for story 2!

AND! Make sure you visit Wicked Awesome Books or Frenzy of Noise on the 31st to enter the Grand Prize Giveaway for a ton of books and ton of swag!

My 'Treat'

Enter NOW for a chance to win a copy of Dick and Jane and Vampires
Open internationally, wherever The Book Depository ships. 

Thanks guys!!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Book Review: The Iron Knight (The Iron Fey #4) by Julie Kagawa

*** Spoiler Free***

Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication Date: October 2011
Pages: 386
Series: 4th and final in the Iron Fey Series
Acquisition: NetGalley

Summary:
See Goodreads Page

My thoughts:
A fantastic end to a fantastic series!

Told from Ash's point of view and I couldn't be happier. Honestly, Meghan is my least favorite character and the fact that we get Ash's voice and not hers? Loved this!

Have to say, I wasn't a huge fan of Ash before reading The Iron Knight but wow! It might have taken me longer to fall in love with him but man was it powerful! He's such a dynamic character and there is so much going on under his cold exterior.

Also - tons of Puck! I loved his interactions with Ash - such tension and raw emotion. And pretty much every time Puck opened his mouth with some wise ass remark I smiled. So, I was pretty much smiling throughout the entire book. Or trying not to cry. Or yelling in frustration. Or gasping in surprise. Seriously! My emotions were all over the place and it was great.

The Fey world that Julie has created is very much the faerie world I imagine in my head when I think of our Good Neighbors. It's very much real to me - not fantasy and I feel very much a part of every story and every character.

If you haven't had a chance to read The Iron Fey series, I highly recommend you start. Fantasy and faerie magic and lore mixed together perfectly with characters you'll be thinking about long after you turn that last page of that last book.

Just downright awesome :)

Overall Rating:
5 / 5 Stars

Books in The Iron Fey Series:
1.0 The Iron King (My Review)
1.5 Winter's Passage
2.0 The Iron Daughter (My Review)
3.0 The Iron Queen (My Review)
3.5 Summer's Crossing
4.0 The Iron Knight

Linkage Love:
Harlequin Teen
Author's Website

Monday, October 24, 2011

Contest! Win Beautiful Chaos by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl


Beautiful Chaos, book 3 in the Caster Chronicles by Kami Garcia and Margaret Sthol

About the Books: Sometimes there isn't just one answer or one choice. Sometimes there's no going back. And this time there won't be a happy ending. 
Ethan and Lena’s mesmerizing romance continues in the highly anticipated new Beautiful Creatures novel, on shelves now!

Check out the Beautiful Creatures website and if you haven't heard it already, you NEED TO listen to Sixteen Moons - I absolutely love this song :)

Giveaway Details:
*Two winners, 13 years and older, from the US will win a copy of Beautiful Chaos
*Contest ends November 7, 2011 at 11:59am EST
*Fill out the form below to enter



Week 4 NetGalley October Tips: Submitting Your Review

Welcome to Week 4 of NetGalley October!
Our last full week (can you believe it?!) of this month long read-a-thon. 

Lindsey has given us lost of great tips so far and she has a few more to share.



Submitting Your Review

Now, you’ve read the title and you loved it. Or hated it. Either way, you did your part by writing a review and posting it on your blog or whatever other review outlet you use.

Remember, NetGalley members are under no obligation to finish reading a title or write a review—but it is strongly encouraged, and publishers will be more inclined to give you access to future titles if you review.

If you do choose to write a review, you can use NetGalley to send the review to the publisher. Your review is shared with the publisher as a courtesy — but the content and publishing rights for that review belong solely to you. NetGalley does not post or publish your review — instead, we are providing an “electronic tear-sheet.” Most publishers will appreciate if you also include a link or other information with the review that says where the review will be published. You can also use NetGalley to let the publisher know that you are declining to review.

Login to your account, go to MY REVIEWS, and press the pencil icon (“write”) to send your review to the publisher. Make sure to select the REVIEW COMPLETED button, include the link to your review, the date it was published, and anything else relevant. Then hit SAVE!

*****************************************************************************

Have questions about Week 4's tips?
Comment below and I'll be sure to ask Lindsey THIS FRIDAY during our TWITTER CHAT!
All are welcome!
Begins at 5pm EST on this Friday the 28th.
Use the hashtag #NetGalleyMonth to join in

Haven't declared yourself yet?
Yes, there is still time to read at least 1 NetGalley book by the end of the month :)

Missed past week's tips? Check them out:

Thursday, October 20, 2011

On My Nook: eBook additions to my TBR pile

I'm pretty good at including all the physical books in my In My Mailbox posts BUT I do a horrible job highlighting any e-books I might have gathered over the week.

These On My Nook posts are a way to try and rectify that!
I do feel the need to point out that MOST of these books are on my Nook - a few might be on my iPad or still sitting on my computer :)

Recently, from NetGalley (and for this first post, 'recently' really means the last 5 months or so!)


Deviantby Adrian McKinty - Abrams / Amulet Books -- October 1, 2011

Spellbound by Cara Lynn Shultz - HarlequinTEEN -- June 28, 2011

Flyaway by Helen Landalf - Houghton Mifflin / Harcourt -- December 19, 2011 *read - review to post soon*


Calli by Jessica Lee Anderson - Milkweed Edition -- September 6, 2011 *read - review to post soon*

The Iron Knight by Julie Kagawa - HarlequinTEEN -- October 25, 2011 *read - review to post soon*

The Way We Fall by Megan Crewe - Disney / Hyperion -- January 14, 2012


Every Other Day by Jennifer Lynn Barnes - Egmont USA -- December 27, 2011

Crave by Melissa Darnell - HarlequinTEEN -- October 25, 2011

Cinder by Marissa Meyer - Macmillian / Feiwel and Friends -- January 3, 2012


Dearly, Departed by Lisa Habel - Random House -- October 18, 2011

On a Dark Wing by Jordan Dane - HarlequinTEEN -- December 27, 2011 *read - review to post soon*

Drowning Instinct by Ilsa J. Bick - Lerner / Carolrhoda Lab -- February 1, 2012 (no cover yet)


The Wednesdays by Julie Bourbeau - Random House / Alfred A. Knopf -- August 14, 2012

Precious Bones by Mika Ashley-Hollinger - Random House / Delacorte -- May 8, 2012

The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman - Random House / Alfred A. Knopf -- April 4, 2012


May B. by Caroline Starr Rose - Random House / Schwartz and Wade -- January 1, 2012

Fracture by Megan Miranda - Walker -- January 1, 2012

Ashfall by Mike Mullin - Tanglewood -- October 14, 2011


The Butterfly Clues by Kate Ellison - Egmont USA -- February 4, 2012 *read - review to post soon*

Wherever You Go by Heather Davis - Houghton Mifflin / Harcourt -- November 14, 2011

Bought

Dream Dark by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl *read - review to come soon*

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Book Review: Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly

Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication Date: May 2011
Pages: 449
Series: 1st in the Angel trilogy
Acquisition: NetGalley

Summary:
Willow knows she’s different from other girls, and not just because she loves tinkering with cars. Willow has a gift. She can look into the future and know people’s dreams and hopes, their sorrows and regrets, just by touching them. She has no idea where this power comes from. But the assassin, Alex, does. Gorgeous, mysterious Alex knows more about Willow than Willow herself. He knows that her powers link to dark and dangerous forces, and that he’s one of the few humans left who can fight them. When Alex finds himself falling in love with his sworn enemy, he discovers that nothing is as it seems, least of all good and evil. In the first book in an action-packed, romantic trilogy, L..A. Weatherly sends readers on a thrill-ride of a road trip - and depicts the human race at the brink of a future as catastrophic as it is deceptively beautiful.
They’re out for your soul . . . and they don’t have heaven in mind. (from Goodreads)

My thoughts:
Angel Burn's take on angels is very different. They are paranormal creatures but not heavenly. They aren't from our world, at least I don't think they are, and the world they come from isn't explained very much. I don't really know what this world is but it's not heaven and God doesn't live there. And angels are really more like life-force sucking demons then harp playing embodiments of all that is good.

So! From the very beginning, Angel Burn, like I said, is different! I happen to like this. I liked the evil angels aspect, I liked the characters and I enjoyed the story.

The complete lack of mainstream thoughts on God or religion did confused me a little. There is no talk of heaven or God in Angel Burn and for a book focused solely around the existence of angels that was a little weird. And it's not like the term angel was given to these creatures and they are in fact something else paranormal. They are presented as being actual angels. The same angels that humans have been writing about and believing in forever.

Then there is the romance between Willow and Alex. Have to say - it wasn't what I expected. It actually wasn't love at first sight, I can't possibly live without you even though I just met you love. It was more then 300 pages into the book before they admitted to even liking each other. So, that was refreshing. But then, things progressed a little fast. I didn't mind because I really liked Willow and Alex as characters and I thought they were actually very sweet together. AND! No love triangles!

Angel Burn was hard to put down at times and I have to say, I didn't quite see that ending coming. As the first in a trilogy, I'm very excited to see what happens to Willow as she discovers more of her past and tried to make a future for herself. I'm a big fan of fantasy and paranormal angel stories and I wasn't disappointed with Angel Burn. A great YA paranormal read and I wouldn't have any problems recommending.

Overall Rating:
4 / 5 Stars

Books in the Angel Series - US Editions:
Angel Burn
Angel Fire (January 2012)
Angel Fever (October? 2012)

Linkage Love:
Candlewick Press
Author's Website
Goodreads

Tidbits:
*Originally published in the UK. Book 1 was titled Angel and book 2, Angel Fire was published in October 2011
*L.A. Weatherly is the pseudonym for Lee Weatherly who also writes under the pen name Titania Woods

Monday, October 17, 2011

Week 3 NetGalley October Tips: Downloading and Devices

Welcome to Week 3 of NetGalley Ocotber :)

We've talked about setting up your bio and requesting titles, now the Lovely Lindsey is back with some more great tips on what comes next.



Downloading & Devices

You got the glorious “you’re request has been approved” email, and you’re ready to start reading! Login to your NetGalley account, and go to MY REVIEWS to see a list of all the titles you’re approved to view. Press on a title name to go to the title details page—which has shiny orange reading options buttons on the right. Those buttons are what you’ll use to download the title.

Be sure to check the Device Guide to learn how best to transfer to your favorite device! You can read on your Android, iPad/iPhone, Kindle, Kobo, Nook, Sony Reader, and more. And of course, there’s always your computer.

NOTE: Most of the galleys in NetGalley are protected with DRM (Digital Rights Management). These security settings are entirely up to the publisher, but many opt to protect their galleys since it is pre-published content. That means that you won’t be able to print, copy, or share the files. And, the file will expire.

There are two kinds of expiration dates on NetGalley:

  • One type applies to any protected galley you download: the file expires a set number of days (usually 60, though publishers may choose other lengths of time) after you first open it in Adobe Digital Editions. You can see how many days remain until a file expires by looking at the upper right corner of the book’s cover in Adobe Digital Editions’ Library view. However, you can download another 60-day copy of the file from your NetGalley account if you need more time to finish reading, until the publisher archives the title. Just log back into your NetGalley account, click on My Reviews, find the title, and then press the orange Download Galley button again.
  • Some publishers also list an expiration date in the book description. This is the date the publisher plans to remove the galley from NetGalley’s catalog. After this date, you will not be able to download another copy of the file, or access the galley through NetGalley at all. Any copy downloaded to your computer, iPad, or Adobe-compatible reader will be available until you reach the Adobe Digital Editions expiration date, as described above. If you have used the Kindle option to send a copy of the file to your Kindle, that file will not expire, and will continue to be available to you.

If you wait too long to download the galley, you might run into this: “the publisher has archived this title.” What does it mean if I was approved to view a title but publisher has archived it? Once a publisher archives a title, it is no longer available for readers to download. Most publishers archive titles around the pub or on-sale date, but it is entirely up to each publisher when they choose to archive each title. Some publishers have a note in the title description that says the date they plan to archive the title, so that you’ll know ahead of time. For the sake of your own organization, you may wish to press the Archive button on your MANAGE MY REVIEWS page, so that you don’t see the title in the list of your other active galleys.

*****************************************************************************

Have questions about Week 3's tips?
Comment below and I'll be sure to share them with Lindsey when we Twitter Chat on the 28th. OR join us at 5pm EST and ask her yourself :)

Haven't declared yourself yet?

Missed Past week's tips? Check them out:

Coming next week: Submitting your review

Sunday, October 16, 2011

From Blogger to Book Writer: Stasia Ward Kehoe Shares Her Story

Today it is my great pleasure to welcome Stasia Ward Kehoe to Red House Books
Stasia is sharing with us today her journey from Blogger to Book Writer

*********************************************************

It can be hard to admit that you want to be a writer.  Over the years, I occasionally summoned the courage to reveal my ambition, and discovered four common reactions.  People would either:
     (a)    Smile while their eyes glazed over
     (b)   Tell me it’s nearly impossible to get published
     (c)    Tell me they’re thinking about writing a book, too
     (d)   Say, “You’re a wonderful writer—you can do it!” (okay, that was my mom)

So, I spent years writing my fiction quietly, while sharing my love for YA literature on my appropriately-titled blog, Writer on the Side.  I offered insights from my day job in book marketing, discussed novels I admired, and posted photos of my dog in reading glasses.  Then, it happened: In 2010, I got an agent and sold a book.  I kind of wasn't expecting it.  I had planned to keep my dream on hold until my youngest son was in kindergarten and my house was clean, but you know what they say about the best laid plans…

There are many surprises that come with getting published.  One I did not expect, however, was that my sense of identity as a blogger would grow shaky. Could I still call myself a writer ON THE SIDE now that writing was squarely in the middle of my life?  I didn't want my blog to become the story of me-me-me, yet I was learning so much through my own publishing process that I wanted to share.  Could my convivial relationships with other bloggers remain the same as my pub date approached?  When bloggers started writing about my own book’s cover, what was I supposed to do?  Finally, my agent, other writers, and pretty much everyone else kept telling me that I should maintain my online presence BUT NOT NEGLECT WRITING THE NEXT BOOK.  What they couldn't explain was how to add about six hours to every day!

I’d like to tell you that I did some research, learned to live without sleep, and found my way, but I haven’t.  What I have discovered is that the writer-blogger community is as kind and celebratory as it always was, and that a surprising number of bloggers have had the wild experience of becoming published writers and are willing to offer advice.  I have decided that, as a blogger, the best I can do is to be myself.  I may not always strike the right balance or write the best posts when I’m deep in manuscript revisions.  But I am happy to keep on celebrating my love for YA lit with fellow writers, readers, bloggers, and all combinations thereof.  Because we all still want the same thing: The perfect reads for the sunny summer afternoon, the chilly winter morning, and the occasional lonely night.

*********************************************************

Thank you so much Stasia!

Stasia Ward Kehoe blogs at Writer on the Side (www.swardkehoe.blogspot.com) and can also be found at her author site, www.stasiawardkehoe.com.  Her debut novel, AUDITION, published by Viking is on sale now!

In My Mailbox - October 16, 2011

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren :)

Vlog in which I'm pretty boring...except for when I say "Sweetspring" instead of "Springsweet" -- but I have FABULOUS books to show you!





Awesome Books Mentioned: 
Links are to Goodreads

For Review:
Silence (Hush, Hush #3) by Becca Fitzpatrick (Audio Book)

Big thank you to Simon and Schuster Audio

Bought:
Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon -- WHY? I have the ARC with the word 'The' across the cover girl's head - I wanted a finished copy after the word was removed from the title :)

Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly -- WHY? This is the paperback version which I like a lot more then the hardcover (which I also own...trade anyone?)

Ruling Passion (Hearts at Stake, Blood Feud, Out For Blood) by Alyxandra Harvey -- WHY? Even though I own these 3 books individually, I love this series and I love Alyxandra's writing so I just couldn't pass this one up!

Ghost Hunt 2: More Chilling Tales of the Unknown by Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson with Cameron Dokey -- WHY? The second book in The Ghost Hunter's non-fiction series - tales based on true life events. I love ghosts and I love the Ghost Hunters! Had to have this book.

Ghost Trackers by Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson with Tim Waggoner -- WHY? A new fiction series by The Ghost Hunters - again - love these guys! hehe

From Maria V Snyder's Book signing:
Outside In (Insider #2)
Poison Study
Storm Glass

Thank you so much Maria!

From Nikki at Wicked Awesome Books - SHE IS AWESOME!!
Daughters of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor - Signed!
And Then Things Fall Apart by Arlaina Tibensky - Nikki's ARC with all her little post it flags still in it :)
Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood -- ARC (Feb 2012) - OMG!
The Springsweet by Saundra Mitchell -- ARC (April 2012) - OMG! OMG! (and so so sorry Saundra for saying "Sweetspring" in my vlog- big oops!)

Thank you so much Nikki!!

That's what I got! So excited to get these all read!
So, what's in your mailbox?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

NetGalley October Facebook Poll

NetGalley wants to know - how many titles have you read so far this month?

I'm really curious as well as I've only been able to get 2 books finished so far. I'm aiming for at least 3 more - think I can do it?

Hop over to NetGalley's Facebook page and weigh in!

There is still time to join in on the fun - if you haven't declared yourself 

Book Review: The Eleventh Plague by Jeff Hirsch

***2011 Debut Author***

Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication Date: September 2011
Pages: 278
Series: no
Acquisition: BEA 2011

Summary:
In an America devastated by war and plague, the only way to survive is to keep moving.
In the aftermath of a war, America’s landscape has been ravaged and two thirds of the population left dead from a vicious strain of influenza. Fifteen-year-old Stephen Quinn and his family were among the few that survived and became salvagers, roaming the country in search of material to trade for food and other items essential for
But when Stephen’s grandfather dies and his father falls into a coma after an accident, Stephen finds his way to Settler’s Landing, a community that seems too good to be true, where there are real houses, barbecues, a school, and even baseball games. Then Stephen meets strong, defiant, mischievous Jenny, who refuses to accept things as they are. And when they play a prank that goes horribly wrong, chaos erupts, and they find themselves in the midst of a battle that will change Settler’s Landing forever. (From Goodreads)

My thoughts:
A great read for me. The post-apocalyptic world Jeff has created both thrilled and terrified. It's harsh and there are so many unknowns it's amazing that anyone can survive. Society hasn't yet reformed itself, and it's questionably if it ever will. There is no known governing forces, the landscape is bare and desolate and the people who inhabit it aren't quite old enough to have forgotten how it use to be. It's a world trying to reform and still so very close to imploding.

This world in which Stephen lives is also very real. The remnants of the way things were are still fresh - I could see our world in Stephen's and this was not comforting at all. But, it was this realism that added a thrill to the story for me.

Alongside this scary, untamed world there is a cast of characters that I really enjoyed. Some really got to me and others didn't make much of an impression but it was a good mix.

Overall, I pretty much enjoyed every aspect of The Eleventh Plague and I'm very excited for whatever Jeff has planned next!

The Eleventh Plague is a great read for anyone but I really think younger boys will really be engaged by this story. The bleakness of the society combined with characters that are easy to relate to, in my opinion, makes this a perfect read for reluctant and avid readers alike.

Overall Rating:
5 / 5 Stars

Linkage Love:
Scholastic
Author's Website
Goodreads

Monday, October 10, 2011

Week 2 NetGalley October Tips: Requesting and Getting Approved

Welcome to Week 2 of NetGalley October :)

Last Week Lindsey Rudnickas, NetGalley Digital Concierge shared some tips on getting started with NetGalley.

Today Lindsey is back with some very useful information to help you request those titles you want and get approved to read them by the publishers. 


Requesting and Getting Approved

Make sure to check the Before You Request page: http://www.netgalley.com/catalog/before_request/

Check out the Public Catalog of available galleys to find titles you want to request. You can browse by Publisher or by Genre, and of course search by Title, Author, etc. You can also find out what publishers are looking for when they approve requests. Then just click "Request!" to send your request to the publisher.

Remember that some publishers take longer than others to go through their pending requests, so try to be patient! You’ll get an email notification as soon as your request is either approved or declined.

You could also get an email that says “You've been auto-approved.” What does this mean? Individual publishers can auto-approve individual NetGalley members for all their titles in the catalog. This means that when you press the Request button for that publisher’s titles, you’ll receive the galley immediately on your home page. If you are auto-approved by a publisher, you’ll receive an email saying: “You have been auto-approved for any of Publisher’s titles in the NetGalley catalog. Next time you click the REQUEST button for one of their titles, you’ll be automatically approved. Congrats!”

While you’re waiting to hear if your request is approved, this is a good time to do these three things:
1. Add support@netgalley.com to your email address book, so you'll be sure to receive emails from NetGalley.
2. Be sure to download Adobe Digital Editions, the program you'll need to view galleys. The download is quick and free here:
3. Check out our NetGalley Features and sign up to receive our Newsletters by Genre here: http://www.netgalley.com/features/

*****************************************************************************

Have questions about Week 2's tips?
Comment below and I'll be sure to share them with Lindsey when we Twitter Chat on the 28th.

Haven't declared yourself yet?

Missed it the first time around?

Coming up next week: Downloading and Devices

*See that awesome button up there? Sarah from Workaday Reads made it. Isn't it fabulous? 
I love it! Thank you so much Sarah!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

In My Mailbox - October 9, 2011


In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren :)

Vlog in which I stayed up way too late to make a fool out of myself...just for you! hehehe




Awesomeness mentioned

Traded
Trapped by Michael Northrop -- WHY? I've always wondered what I would be like to be trapped in my school. Snowstorms are kinda creepy too.

The Gatheringby Kelly Armstrong-- WHY? I love Kelly's Darkest Powers series and I've heard really good things about this new one.

Betrayed (The Guardian Legacy #2) by Ednah Walters -- WHY? I really enjoyed book 1, Awakened.

Torn by Erica O'Rourke -- WHY? A recent addition to my wishlist - sounds dark and mysterious with some intense romance.

The Pace by Shelena Shorts -- WHY? Been on my wishlist a while and when this one first came out there was a lot of hype and praise going on. Plus, I really like Lands Atlantic Publishing.

To Die For by Christopher Pike -- WHY? Because even though it's a bind up of 2 novels I already own (Slumber Party and Weekend) it's Christopher Pike and I love him!

Secondhand Charm by Julie Berry -- WHY? Already read this one and really enjoyed it but I didn't have my own copy -a great fantasy story.

Big thank yous go out to Julia, Lilibeth and Vivien!

Bought
Impulse by Ellen Hopkins -- WHY? I've really been enjoying verse novels and Ellen is a fantastic writer. I have book 2 as a audio and I'm curious to see which I like better - reading or listening.

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin -- WHY? Because it's awesome! Read an ARC and seriously couldn't put it down. One of my favorite reads of 2011. The finished copy is so soft! Buy yourself a copy now!

The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff - WHY? Already read and loved it. This cover is one of my favorites.

The Son of Neptune (Heroes of Olympus #2) by Rick Riordan -- WHY? I love Rick Riordan and I love the world he's created in his Percy Jackson series. Haven't read book 1 yet but now I have matching hardcover copies :)

Big thanks go out to my local indie bookstore :)

For Review
The Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg (ARC: January 2012) -- HOW? A total surprise and I couldn't be happier. Jess is a 2012 Debut Author and I can't wait to get started on this one!

Big thanks go out to Penguin / Dial Books!

Other Awesomeness mentioned:

There is still time to sign up and join the fun! I've finished 2 NetGalley books so far :)

Still have a lot of goods ones and I'm still adding to the list. 

So, what's in your mailbox?