Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Happy Tuesday :)

Hello lovelies!

I've been absent from the interwebs for a few days now as my father was up visiting and I was having way too much fun watching him spoil his granddaughter.

Figured you wouldn't want some half-hearted posts thrown up for the hell of it right?
And if you did you should probably not follow me as that just isn't my way ;)

In any case!

I'm here :) I've had a good couple of days and I've missed you all.

While you wait for more of my titillating words of intense wit and intellect, don't forget to enter Cole's contest! 2 days left!


Rafflecopter widget thing can be found HERE

That's all for now - hope you all are having a fabulous week so far!



Thursday, July 26, 2012

Cover Reveal: Senshi by Cole Gibson + A Giveaway

A big thank you to Cole for letting me be a part of her newest cover reveal :)

Senshi comes out next March and after reading book 1, Katana, I'm itching to get my hands on it.

So - here it is!



What do you guys think?

To celebrate, Cole is giving away one item, winner's choice, from her Etsy Shop, Sewing Samurai.

Click the banner below to check it out.



Contest is open to US residents and ends on August 2nd at 11:59pm EST

Winner can pick anything from Cole's shop. If what you want isn't in stock, she'll make one just for you. How awesome is that?

Fill out the Rafflecopter below to enter and let me know if you have any questions!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Fill Up Those Shelves: My June and July Recommendations

Says one book addict to another:
Isn't it time you hit the stores and showed your bookshelves a little love?

Here are some June and July releases that come highly recommended - by me!



Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne
Why I love it:
The real life situations freaked me out in just the right ways. We have an apocalyptic world on day 1 and there are so many possibilities! Lots of unknowns with lots of puzzle pieces to find and realistic characters that stick with you long after you finish reading.
Emmy is a debut author and Monument 14 is the first in a series. The ending was killer and book 2 is going to be an automatic buy for me.
(my full review)

A Midsummer's Nightmare by Kody Keplinger
Why I love it:
It's a contemporary story that doesn't shy away from the truth. So very hard to love the MC but her strength and her sass are hard to ignore.
Real issues are dealt with - sex, substance abuse, neglect, abandonment.
I read this one cover to cover in one sitting.
Very full of emotion - very much a book you won't soon forget.

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Why I love it:
A fantasy world with so many elements. Magic and power warring with each other and our MC gets caught right in the middle. A world I would never want to find myself in, yet it's also a world I found myself fascinated with. Bad guys that got under my skin, good guys that I was routing for the entire time - this book is full of so much win!
Leigh is a debut author and Shadow and Bone is the first in a series.
Young adult fantasy at it's best.The hype around this one is totally worth it!
(my full review)

Temptation by R.L. Stine
Why I love it:
A must have for any R.L. Stine fans in my opinion. A collection of 3 stories - Goodnight Kiss, Goodnight Kiss 2 and The Vampire Club.
R.L. Stine is one of my favorite authors and I don't care how many times they repackage his books - I have to have them all!
I read Goodnight Kiss 1 and 2 as a tween and I loved them! Vampires that don't sparkle!
I already got my copy and it looks beautiful on my shelve next to all my Stine 'classics' :)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Short Story Review: Insider Information by Elana Johnson

E-novella / Short Story
Possession #0.5
November 2011 from the author

Synopsis:
Read an exclusive short story told by Zenn Bower, a character from the full-length novel POSSESSION by Elana Johnson. (from Goodreads)

My Thoughts:
The information about Zenn in this short story seems, at least to me, to be pretty important to the story. I can't help but wonder if my reading experience of Possession will be changed at all after knowing this information. Or maybe these aren't secrets? I just don't know but I am excited to find out.

A perfect 'teaser' to the bigger story. I've had Possession sitting on my shelf for a while now and after reading this short story, I'm really looking forward to reading the entire series.

Zenn is a pretty interesting character. He seems to be pulled in many different directions but one thing is always clear - his love for Vi. I can't wait to see how their lives play out.

Extras? No, just the story, but the entire thing is free to read on Goodreads

Will I continue the series? Yes!

Worth the price? Free so yeah I would have to say yes.


Monday, July 23, 2012

Book Review: Ferocity Summer by Alissa Grosso

"...more grit and less glitz…"
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication Date: May 2012
Publisher: Flux
Pages: 279
Series: no
Acquisition: NetGalley

Summary:
Scilla Davis is haunted by a horrible accident that she was involved in last summer--a drunken, reckless joyride that ended in tragedy. With a big trial looming, life seems empty, unreal, and utterly hopeless. It's especially painful watching her best friend, Willow, slowly destroy herself with pills and booze. Yet Scilla can't seem to wrest Willow--or herself--from a path of self-destruction.

But there might be a possible escape from this nightmare. As a dangerous new drug called Ferocity sweeps the nation, an FBI agent asks Scilla to turn narc and help locate the Ferocity kingpin. In exchange, she could avoid conviction for her role in the accident. All she has to do is deceive and betray people she's known all her life . . .(from Goodreads)

My thoughts:
Raw, gritty and a little disturbing, Ferocity Summer tells the story of one girl's trip down the rabbit hole. Her life is out of control, her mother is a horror and her best friend is on a path that could only lead to pure destruction. To say that I was a swept away by Scilla's story would be an understatement.

From the very start I knew Ferocity Summer was going to be an intense read. Scilla's voice is honest and honestly? Her life is messed up. She does nothing to take control of her life and it quickly spirals out of control. She makes bad decisions, she keeps company with people she shouldn't and she really doesn't care about herself at all. Is she a teenage role model? Hells no. But is she a real character? A person who could very well be your friend or neighbor? Yes.

It was the unpredictability of everything that really drew me in. Scilla's life might be a bit unbelievable but it wasn't hard to imagine the things that happened to her and her family happening in real life. The totality of her experiences are a bit out there but the individual pieces were terrifyingly realistic.

Final verdict:
Ferocity Summer could be seen as a cautionary tale. A warning of sorts about the things that can happen when you make bad decisions. It could also be seen as a story of friendship. I read it in the same way I might approach a dangerous animal - a healthy dose of caution mixed with a curiosity that had to be satisfied. Not knowing how Scilla's story would end was scary and fascinating.

A great read for me. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this one to fans of YA lit who want more grit and less glitz in their contemporary reads.

Overall Rating:
5 / 5 Stars

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Book Roundup - 4 weeks worth!

For real time updates on my book obsession collecting, check out my Tumblr :)

These lovelies *somehow* found their way into my home over the last 4 weeks  


For Review:
Croc Capers: Bindi Wildlife Adventures by Bindi Irwin and Chris Kunz
August 2012 from Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Read this one already and it is supper cute! It's the 7th in a series and I'm planning on picking up the first 6. My daughter will love these!

Katya's World by Jonathan L. Howard
October 2012 from Strange Chemistry
Sci-fi thriller from a new to me author and pub - looking forward to reading this one.

Won:
ARC of Insignia by S.J. Kincaid
Won this one from EpicReads.com - if you haven't checked it out, you should! Been hearing nothing but good things about it so my hopes are high :)

Gifts:
My wonderful friend Nikki let me paw through some boxes of books she needed to clear from her shelves. How could I not take some home?! Thanks Nikki :)
*So Many Boys (The Naughty List #2) by Suzanne Young
*The Way We Fall by Megan Crewe
*Where The Truth Lies by Jessica Warman
*Robopocalypse by Daniel H. Wilson
*The Bridge To Never Land (Peter and the Starcatchers #5) by Ridley Pearson and Dave Barry
*The Marked Son by Shea Berkley

Bought:
WAY TOO MANY BOOKS!
*Sleuth or Dare books 2 and 3 by Kim Harrington -- Supper cute middle grade mystery series that I've read and loved!

*Faery Tales and Nightmares by Melissa Marr -- I *might* already own this as an e-book but I really wanted to see this gorgeous cover on my shelf with all my other Marr books

*Kat, Incorrigible by Stephanie Burgis -- This one came highly recommended from another lover of middle grade reads

*Chime by Franny Billingsley -- If you liked The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab, you might just love this one as well. Love the new paperback cover too.

*I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga -- I might have to take a pic of the hardcover of this one for you guys later- the graphics under the dust jacket are awesome.

*Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo -- Read and LOVED this one! (check out my review)

*Blood Moon (Drake Chronicles #5) by Alyxandra Harvey -- GASP! More Drake boys! Probably my most favorite vampire series right here :)

I'm addicted to James Patterson's YA series in Manga!
*Witch and Wizard: The Manga Vol 1 and 2 by James Patterson
*Daniel X: The Manga Vol 3 by James Patterson

*Exposed by Kimberly Marcus -- A moving contemp told in verse. Read it already and it was fabulous.

*The Day Before by Lisa Schroeder -- Another verse book. Had to get this one after reading and loving Lisa's Chasing Brooklyn


*This Dark Endeavor  by Kenneth Oppel -- A Frankenstein prequel? Yes please!

*The Unquiet by Jeannine Garsee -- Love that cover! Totally an impulse buy but I don't think I'll be disappointed.

Ok - that's it! (for now ;)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

On My Reader (19) - July 21, 2012


On My Reader posts are were I highlight recent ebooks I've added to my digital collection :)

I've been trying not to go click crazy with Kindle / iBook buys since I'm totally disorganized and I have no idea how many books and short stories I've bought recently that I haven't read yet!
That's why I love doing these posts - it helps me get just a little bit more organized :)

Links are to Goodreads

For Review from NetGalley


August 2012 from Bloomsbury
A contemp with a few twists. Sounds really intriguing.

October 2012 from Month9books
"20 authors explore the dark and hidden meanings behind some of the most beloved Mother Goose nursery rhymes through short story retellings" - Ooooo! I can't wait!

Bought


January 2012 from Bloomsbury
There are 4 of  these short story novella's that prequel Sarah's Throne of Glass debut. I'll probably wind up buying / reading / reviewing all of them soon :)

So, what's on your readers?



Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Book Review: Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne

***2012 Debut Author***
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication Date: June 2012
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Pages: 294
Series: 1st in a series
Acquisition: received an ARC for review

Summary:
Your mother hollers that you’re going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don’t stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don’t thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not—you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner.

Only, if it’s the last time you’ll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you’d stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus.

But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran.

Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong.

In Emmy Laybourne’s action-packed debut novel, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart. (from Goodreads)

My thoughts:
Wow. I was pretty much terrified throughout this entire book. It might take place in the future but the reality of what is happening felt all too real to me. Imagine getting on your school bus, expecting another tedious day  and a few hours latter you're fighting for your life against terrors from your worst nightmares. Such is the case for 14 kids from Monument Colorado.

The world these kids live in isn't much different from ours. Technology has advanced and the ways people communicate have changed a bit but since not a lot about society is revealed, it's very easy to imagine that what is happening could happen in our world - at any time - to any group of kids.

Along with an awesome storyline, what really got me hooked was the dynamic characters. 14 kids ranging in age from 5-17ish all with their own strengths and fears. And when you lock them up together with little to no hope of escape? These strengths and fears become the difference between life and death.

Final verdict:
What really got to be about Monument 14 were the details. Their refuge is a mega store (I was picturing a Super Walmart or Target) and they have nearly everything they need to survive at their disposal. And they use everything, in ways that make sense. They do things that I would do in their situation. This added layer of realism that really made all the difference for me.

Also, it wasn't hard to care about these kids. It wasn't hard to want then to win, to survive. Added terror right there! If I'm invested in what happens to a character, I'm even more terrified by the events in their story.

The ending had a few last minute shockers to thrown at me but I'm happy for it. There is a lot more story to be told here. I'm already wishing for book 2! An awesome debut!

Overall Rating:
5 / 5 Stars

Author's website / Goodreads / IndieBound

Monday, July 16, 2012

Book Review: Skylark by Meagan Spooner

***2012 Debut Author***


Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication Date: August 2012
Publisher: Carolrhoda Lab
Pages: 344
Series: 1st in a series
Acquisition: NetGalley

Summary:
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? (from Goodreads)

My thoughts:
It's a little hard for me to pin down Skylark. It's a dystopian story of sorts but it almost feels like it's a dystopian world that isn't our own. Magic is everywhere and we never really find out why. Was it inherit in this world before disaster struck? Is magic a by product of the destruction? Trying to figure out these answers was only part of what made Skylark such a great read for me.

Lark has only known one life. She knows what will happen to her and she knows her place in her world. This all changes when she has her magic harvested. Everything she thought she knew about her society is thrown out the window and she has some tough choices to make.

I loved Lark as a character. I loved the fact that she knows her strengths and she knows her weaknesses. She never makes excuses for herself and even when she's terrified, she take full account of the situation and realizes that, yes, she might die but there might not be anything she can do about it. She doesn't whine or complain. She makes choices and she sticks to them.

Final verdict:
The world of Skylark isn't one I would personally want to find myself in but it is world I wish I could learn more about. There is so much unknown and so much to discover that I couldn't help but be sucked in.

A fantastic debut! My only regret is that I read it so early (thanks NetGalley :) It's going to be a long wait for book 2 - but I'm sure it will be worth it!

Overall Rating:
5 / 5 Stars

Books in the Series:
#1 Skylark
#2 Shadowlark (2013)
#3 Untitled (2014)

Author's website / Goodreads / IndieBound

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Blogoversary Contest Round Up

I absolutely love giving things away! Can't you tell ;)

All 10 contests end on Friday July 20 at Midnight EST
Each has it's own post and Rafflecopter entry and each only takes a log-in and click to enter.
You can earn extra entries for following, commenting etc. but they are not mandatory.
1 contest is for INTERNATIONAL folks only!

Check each post for specific rules and let me know if you have any questions!




I can't wait to pick winners next week!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Blogoversary Round Up

A big thank you for everyone for putting up with my gushing all week :)

I've had a great time thinking back on the last 3 years and I'm supper excited for whatever it is that comes next.

In case you missed it, this week I talked about:

Tomorrow I'll post a round up of all 10 contests which all end on the 20th

Thank you again for everything guys!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Blogoversary Giveaway #10 - Swag Pack


bookmarks, postcards, stickers, buttons AND!
An Exclusive Extended Preview of 
Days of Blood and Starlight, sequel to Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone :)

*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!


CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

Blogoversary Giveaway #9 - ARC of Eve and Adam by Michael Grant and Katherine Applegate

I picked up a copy at BEA and then received another one in the mail. Very excited to be able to give my extra copy away!

Eve and Adam by Michael Grant and Katherine Applegate
October 2012 from Feiwel and Friends
(from Goodreads)
Sixteen-year-old Evening Spiker lives an affluent life in San Francisco with her mother, EmmaRose, a successful geneticist and owner of Spiker Biotech. Sure, Evening misses her father who died mysteriously, but she’s never really questioned it. Much like how she’s never stopped to think how off it is that she’s never been sick. That is, until she’s struck by a car and is exposed to extensive injuries. Injuries that seem to be healing faster than physically possible.
While recuperating in Spiker Biotech’s lush facilities, she meets Solo Plissken, a very attractive, if off-putting boy her age who spent his life at Spiker Biotech. Like Evening, he’s never questioned anything... until now. Solo drops hints to Evening that something isn’t right, and Emma-Rose may be behind it. Evening puts this out of her mind and begins her summer internship project: To simulate the creation of the perfect boy. With the help of Solo, Evening uncovers secrets so big they could change the world completely.

*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!


CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

The Future

Blogoversary Celebration Day 5

Ok, have that crystal ball ready?
What?
You don't have one?

Oh wait...neither do I…

So! What does the future hold?

I have no freaken idea.

And.

I think I want to keep it that way.

Who knows where I'll be in a year or a month or even next week?! Will I still be blogging? I hope to. I'm planning on it but who really knows?

I should have added this to my favorite things about blogging -- The future is whatever we make of it. I love my blog and I love my books and I love my friends and I can do whatever I want with it all and that is FABULOUS!

I want to be surprised by what comes next. Like reading a book, you never know what's going to be on that next page.

I want Red House Books to grow and change but I don't ever want to get to the point where it's done. Where it's perfect and nothing more needs to be added or taken away.

And, if blogging ever did become a chore? I would probably just walk away. Fade into the sunset so to speak. I'll never give up books or reading but I might give up blogging.

What I can promise is this - while I'm here, I'll strive to give you, my dear readers, the best of me. I'll put as much as I can into every review, every post, every word you read. I'll never worry about what is too much or too little - you'll never get filler posts or wanton meme abuse from me :)

If and when I have something to say, I'll say it and if not….I think everyone would be just fine without me for a little while.

So, the future holds everything. My future looks good and I couldn't be happier to have you all along for the ride!

Happy Reading Everyone!!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Blogoversary Giveaway #8 - Swag Pack


bookmarks, postcards, stickers, buttons - a little bit of everything!

*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!

CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

Blogoversary Giveaway #7 - ARC of Endangered by Eliot Schrefer


I have it on good authority that this book is fabulous! I'm afraid that it's another that I might not have time to read so I'm hoping to pass it on to another good home.



Endangered by Eliot Schrefer
November 2012 from Scholastic

(from Goodreads)
The compelling tale of a girl who must save a group of bonobos--and herself--from a violent coup.
The Congo is a dangerous place, even for people who are trying to do good.
When one girl has to follow her mother to her sancuary for bonobos, she's not thrilled to be there. It's her mother's passion, and she'd rather have nothing to do with it. But when revolution breaks out and their sanctuary is attacked, she must rescue the bonobos and hide in the jungle. Together, they will fight to keep safe, to eat, and to survive.
Eliot Schrefer asks readers what safety means, how one sacrifices to help others, and what it means to be human in this new compelling adventure.


*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!





CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

Why I Blog

Blogoversary Celebration Day 4

It started 3 years ago but why I am I still here?

I'm here because I can be. Because I want to be. Because blogging has never been a chore and even if there are things I hate about it there are far more things that I love.

I'm here because of the people I've met and the people I hope to meet.

I'm here because I read way more now then I did 3 years ago.

I'm here because even if I'll always have access to other blogs and bloggers, I couldn't be a bystander.

I'm here because it's a part of my life and I think I'm a better person for it.

I blog because it's not just a hobby or a way to spend my extra time (wait, what? I have extra of that?).

I blog because I find fulfillment in it. It takes nothing from me and adds so much. It demands nothing but what I'm willing to give. It will never push me away and it will never suck me in too deep.

I blog because where else would all the crazy book love that lives in my head go?

My crazy has found a home :)

~Coming up tomorrow: The Future

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Blogoversary Giveaway #6 - $40 to The Book Depository INTERNATIONAL ONLY


This giveaway is a little special as it's only open to folks outside of the US.

If you live in a country (excluding the US) that The Book Depository ships to, you can enter.

1 winner can choose up to $40 worth of books!

*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to NON US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following, tweeting, and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!



CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

Blogoversary Giveaway #5 - ARC of Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr


I was able to get a copy of this one while at BEA - I've already read it and plan on buying the hardcover as soon as it releases. I hope my ARC finds it's way into the hands of someone who is as excited to read it as I was!

Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr
September 2012 from HarperTeen

(from Goodreads)
In a city of daimons, rigid class lines separate the powerful from the power-hungry. And at the heart of The City is the Carnival of Souls, where both murder and pleasure are offered up for sale. Once in a generation, the carnival hosts a deadly competition that allows every daimon a chance to join the ruling elite. Without the competition, Aya and Kaleb would both face bleak futures--if for different reasons. For each of them, fighting to the death is the only way to try to live.
All Mallory knows of The City is that her father--and every other witch there--fled it for a life in exile in the human world. Instead of a typical teenage life full of friends and maybe even a little romance, Mallory scans quiet streets for threats, hides herself away, and trains to be lethal. She knows it's only a matter of time until a daimon finds her and her father, so she readies herself for the inevitable. While Mallory possesses little knowledge of The City, every inhabitant of The City knows of her. There are plans for Mallory, and soon she, too, will be drawn into the decadence and danger that is the Carnival of Souls.
From Melissa Marr, bestselling author of the Wicked Lovely series and "Graveminder," comes a brand-new tale of lush secrets, dark love, and the struggle to forge one's own destiny.


*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following, tweeting, and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!




CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

My Favorite Things About Blogging

Blogoversary Celebration Day 3

A list of my personal views on the awesomeness that revolves around book blogging :)

Other bloggers -- people who 'get you' - people who love what you love and aren't afraid of shouting it from the rafters - people who you can always turn to when your favorite character breaks your heart - people who you could have nothing in common with other then books and books will always be enough

The accessibility -- to The Rock Stars, aka authors. You invite them to visit your home (blog) and they come! They sit and they chat and they give you warm fuzzies. Or they say 'thank you' for a review. Or you meet them in real life and they remember you because they remember your blog!

The community -- not just with other bloggers but with readers from all over the world. And with the authors and the publishers who bring those books to life. And the publicists who work so hard because they care. And the people who maybe didn't even know what a book review blog was until you told them and now they can't get enough.

The freedom -- my blog is my home, my world, my creative space, my soapbox, my best friend, my cranky relative. It's mine and I can do whatever I want. People may love me, people may hate me but my blog will always be there. It's mine and it always will be.

The BOOKS -- I'm not talking about ARCs or galleys or the fact that yes, I read a lot of books before they hit the shelves. I'm talking about the BOOKS. You see them and you know them because you blogged about them or someone else did or someone you know read it and told you it was fabulous, or horrible. You see books and you're no longer alone in your thoughts. The thoughts of others are there with you, for good or bad. The Books are why I'm here. Lock me in my house for a year and I'm surrounded by friends.

~Coming up tomorrow: Why I Blog

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Blogoversary Giveaway #4 - Swag Pack


bookmarks, postcards, stickers, buttons - a little bit of everything!


*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!




CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

Blogoversary Giveaway #3 - ARC of Who I Kissed by Janet Gurtler


I received a copy of this one at BEA but I don't think I'll have time to read it.
Will someone give it a good home? :)

Who I Kissed by Janet Gurtler
October 2012 from Sourcebooks

(from Goodreads)
Samantha didn't mean to hurt anyone. She just wanted to make Zee a little jealous after he completely ditched her for another girl at the party. So she ate a salty party snack and she kissed Alex. And then he died--right in her arms. Was she really the only person in the entire school who didn't know about his peanut allergy? Overnight Sammy turns into the school pariah and a media sensation explodes. Consumed with guilt, abandoned by her friends, and in jeopardy of losing her swimming scholarship, she'll have to find a way to forgive herself before anyone else will.


*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following, tweeting, and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!



CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

My Least Favorite Things About Blogging

Blogoversary Celebration Day 2

A list of my personal views on the anti-awesomeness that revolves around book blogging :)

The self doubt -- is my blog good enough? Am I good enough? Do people like me? IS ANYONE EVEN READING THIS!?

The self hate -- I didn't blog today and I 'should' have. I forgot to email someone back and I suck. I didn't feel like posting today, that must mean I'm not really devoted to blogging.

The drama -- did you hear it? Did you see that? I can't believe that happened! Someone on the Internet is wrong and I can't look away!

The freedom -- it belongs to everyone. Wrong deeds go 'unpunished'. Wrong people continue to be wrong. What YOU think doesn't always matter.

The books -- sometimes they suck. Sometimes you agree to read something or write something or look at something and you wish you hadn't.

The time suck -- blogging can't exist without the Internet and we all know the Internet can steal your soul away in 5 easy mindless clickty click click hours.

So - what do you hate about blogging? :)

~Coming up tomorrow: My Favorite Things About Blogging

Monday, July 9, 2012

Blogoversary Giveaway #2 - Swag Pack


bookmarks, postcards, stickers, buttons - a little bit of everything!

*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!


CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

Blogoversary Giveaway #1 - ARC of Crewel by Gennifer Albin

I picked up a copy of Crewel at BEA and then I received another one in the mail. The extra one needs a new home!



Crewel by Gennifer Albin
October 2012 from Farra, Straus and Giroux

(from Goodreads)
Incapable. Awkward. Artless.
That’s what the other girls whisper behind her back. But sixteen year-old Adelice Lewys has a secret: she wants to fail.
Gifted with the ability to weave time with matter, she’s exactly what the Guild is looking for, and in the world of Arras, being chosen as a Spinster is everything a girl could want. It means privilege, eternal beauty, and being something other than a secretary. It also means the power to embroider the very fabric of life. But if controlling what people eat, where they live and how many children they have is the price of having it all, Adelice isn’t interested.
Not that her feelings matter, because she slipped and wove a moment at testing, and they’re coming for her—tonight.
Now she has one hour to eat her mom’s overcooked pot roast. One hour to listen to her sister’s academy gossip and laugh at her Dad’s stupid jokes. One hour to pretend everything’s okay. And one hour to escape.
Because once you become a Spinster, there’s no turning back.


*Contest starts now and ends July 20th at midnight EST
*Open to US residents 18 years or older
*Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (those viewing this post in a feed reader or via email will need to click through to the post to see the widget)
*There are no mandatory requirements for entering but extra entries can be gained by following and / or commenting (see widget for details)
*Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my email or another winner will be chosen
*Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!



CONTEST HAS ENDED - THANK YOU TO ALL!

Thank You

Blogoversary Celebration Day 1

When I first started blogging I knew almost nothing of the book blogging world. I had met someone via LibraryThing, a young reader who announced in a forum group that she had started a book blog. My first reaction was, what the hell is that? I knew what online blogging was but I always saw it as more of an online diary then anything else.

After visiting her blog and being one of her first followers I quickly found out that there was a whole new world out there. A world where not only did people love books as much as I did but they talked about it - all day - every day! I was in heaven.

Within a few days I had decided that yes, I did want to create a book blog - I picked a name (Red House Books), I picked a platform (Blogger) and I threw up my very first post!  I was in! This was great!

I could not have imagined the world that I was soon to become a part of and I could not imagine my life now, without the friends I have made a long the way.

I couldn't possibly thank every person that has helped me in some way over these last 3 years!
These are just a few people I couldn't imagine blogging without - in pretty much the order they entered my life :)

Paige
It's Paige's fault I'm a blogger today. If I hadn't asked her 3 years ago, what the hell a book blog was, Red House Books would never have been born. She doesn't blog anymore and I have no way of finding her again but I will always remember her!
Thank you Paige!

Kristen and Kate of The Book Monsters
Bookworming in the 21st Century and The Neverending Shelf were some of the first blogs I ever followed.
Kristen started blogging about the same time I did and her blog was always absolutely beautiful! While I was still discovering the wonders of what a template actually was, she was designing a masterpiece. She put so much work into blogging and she was always an inspiration to me.
Kate was ALWAYS there to help me out. Her skills are awesome and I can't tell you how many of her how-to posts I have saved and bookmarked. The help she has given me over the years has been priceless.
Both these lovely ladies now blog over at The Book Monsters and I love what their combined creative minds have produced!
Thank you Kristen and Kate!

Eleni of La Femme Readers
Eleni was the very first blogger I met in real life. BEA 2010 was a nervous and stressful event for me. Eleni called me the night before I headed to the Jacob Javists Center and we made plans to meet the next day. It was such a weight off my shoulders, knowing I had someone to hang out with! She quickly became a great friend and I can't think about these last 3 years without thinking of her.
Thank you Eleni!

Lexie of Poisoned Rationality
Lexie is one of the nicest people I have never met! I'll never forget my very first BEA walking the floor with her. Spring time in NY just wouldn't be the same without her :)
I'm constantly amazed at the power of her brain to recall facts and names and books and everything else in between.  Her geekiness rivals my own and I love her for it!
Thank you Lexie!

Cindy of Books Complete Me, Cindy Thomas  Aspiring YA Author and Tangled Up In Words
I met Cindy at the very first author event I ever went to. I didn't know a soul and as I'm pretty much the most awkward person you will ever met, I didn't have high hopes I making friends that day.
Cindy was the nicest person I could have ever hoped to have sit next to me! She was sweet and kind and I look forward to the times we can each get away for a little while and meet up.
She's a mom and a wife and a blogger and a writer and I don't know how she does it all! I can't wait to see her books sitting on my shelves one day :)
Thank you Cindy!

Nikki of Wicked Awesome Books
Nikki is another blogger I met at my first author event. I can remember thinking: What do you mean you live in NH? No one else lives in NH?! How very quickly did this astonishment turn to joy. Nikki and I have gone on many adventures together and she even lived through a week in NYC with me :)
She's a fantastic person and a great friend and absolutely love her blog.
Even if we both stopped blogging, I knew we would still be friends. Her love of reading and books is equal to my own and she's always there when I need her.
Thank you Nikki!

Danielle of Frenzy of Noise and Tangled Up In Words
Danielle is an amazing person and an amazing writer and her books will be sitting on my shelves one day :) She's fun and energetic and she's been another adventure companion! And after spending a week with me during BEA she's still my friend! I love the way her mind works and I love chatting with her.
She's far away now :( BUT she's still here in spirit!
Thank you Danielle!

~Coming up tomorrow: My Least Favorite Things About Blogging

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Happy Blogoversary to Me!

Source
3 years!

3 years ago today I posted for the first time. I might have said I was quickly getting the hang of blogging but after all this time I still feel like I learn something new each day.

I love this little blog of mine and I can't believe it's been 3 years already!

I have many people to thank, lots of thoughts and musings to share and some awesome prizes to give away :)

This year, I'm celebrating all week so be sure to check back - I'm so excited!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

On My Reader (18) - July 7, 2012

On My Reader posts are were I highlight recent ebooks I've added to my digital collection :)

Scholastic and NetGalley were good to me this week!
Links are to Goodreads


The Believing Game by Eireann Corrigan
December 2012

Geeks, Girls, and Secret Identities by Mike Jung
October 2012


Below (Floors #2) by Patrick Carman
September 2012

Magisterium by Jeff Hirsch
October 2012

So, what's on your reader? :)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

DEBUT FEATURE: Joanne Levy on Books and Memories


A big welcome to
Joanne Levy
whose debut novel
Small Medium at Large
released July 3rd
from Bloomsbury

After she’s hit by lightning at a wedding, twelve-year-old Lilah Bloom develops a new talent: she can hear dead people. Among them, there’s her overopinionated Bubby Dora; a prissy fashion designer; and an approval-seeking clown who livens up a séance. With Bubby Dora leading the way, these and other sweetly imperfect ghosts haunt Lilah through seventh grade, and help her face her one big fear: talking to—and possibly going to the seventh-grade dance with—her crush, Andrew Finkel. (from Goodreads)

Today she's visiting Red House Books sharing some books and memories.

What book makes you think of...your childhood?
Any of the Chronicles of Narnia books. Wow, I loved those books and read them over and over as a kid. I particularly loved Aslan and often wished I could have a lion that I could walk with, burying my hand in the fur of his mane. Dorky, I know, but those books just really spoke to me and especially the animal-lover in me.

What book makes you think of...your happiest memory?
My happiest recent memory would be getting the call from my agent to say that SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE was going to be published, so I hope it’s not cheating to say MY book! :-D

What book makes you think of...your scariest memory?
I don’t have a lot of real life scary memories (Thankfully), but Misery by Stephen King was, by far, the scariest book I’ve ever read. When I finished it, it was about 3a.m. (it was quite a page-turner and I couldn’t put it down) and I had to sleep with the light on, something I’ve never done before or since reading it. Yikes, that was one terrifying book!


What book makes you think of...your road to publication?
The Little Engine that Could. Most definitely – I’ve had a long road to publication, complete with LOTS of steep hills, but I kept on trying and finally made it. I think I can...I think I can...And now I know I can!

What book makes you think of...your writing style? 
When I started working on writing middle grade, I read some of Phyllis Reynolds Naylor’s Alice books and loved the very witty and smart voice of Alice. I think we have similar writing styles and I can only hope that I pull off the voice of a middle-grader half as well as Ms. Reynolds Naylor does in her books.

What book makes you think of...high school?
Flowers in the Attic and the rest of the books in the V.C. Andrews series about the Dollanganger kids  – my friends and I were BIG fans back in high school (normally this would date me, but I understand the books were re-released a little while ago). But what teen wouldn’t love these dark, gothic and deliciously naughty books about children locked away in an attic together, waiting for a mean old patriarch to die? We read them over and over and my copies were very dog-eared and falling apart by the time I finished high school.

Thank you so much Joanne!

Linky Love :)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Can't Wait To Get My Hands On...

For those celebrating - Happy 4th of July!
Here are some books from my wishlist releasing this month.
Links are to Goodreads.

The Unquiet by Jeannine Garsee
July 12 from Bloomsbury

Sixteen-year-old Rinn Jacobs has secrets: One, she’s bipolar. Two, she killed her grandmother. 

After a suicide attempt, and now her parents' separation, Rinn and her mom move from California to the rural Ohio town where her mother grew up. Back on her medications and hoping to stay well, Rinn settles into her new home, undaunted by the fact that the previous owner hanged herself in Rinn's bedroom. At school, her classmates believe the school pool is haunted by Annaliese, a girl who drowned there. But when a reckless séance goes awry, and terrible things start happening to her new friends—yet not to her—Rinn is determined to find out why she can’t be "touched" by Annaliese...or if Annaliese even exists. 

With the help of Nate Brenner, the hunky “farmer boy” she’s rapidly falling for, Rinn devises a dangerous plan to uncover the truth. Soon reality and fantasy meld into one, till Rinn finds it nearly impossible to tell the difference. When a malevolent force threatens the lives of everyone she cares about--not to mention her own--she can't help wondering: who should she really be afraid of?

Annaliese? Or herself? (from Goodreads)

Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard
July 24 from Harper Teen

The year is 1876, and there’s something strange and deadly loose in Philadelphia…
Eleanor Fitt has a lot to worry about. Her brother has gone missing, her family has fallen on hard times, and her mother is determined to marry her off to any rich young man who walks by. But this is nothing compared to what she’s just read in the newspaper—

The Dead are rising in Philadelphia.

And then, in a frightening attack, a zombie delivers a letter to Eleanor…from her brother.

Whoever is controlling the Dead army has taken her brother as well. If Eleanor is going to find him, she’ll have to venture into the lab of the notorious Spirit-Hunters, who protect the city from supernatural forces. But as Eleanor spends more time with the Spirit-Hunters, including their maddeningly stubborn yet handsome inventor, Daniel, the situation becomes dire. And now, not only is her reputation on the line, but her very life may hang in the balance.(from Goodreads)

The Forsaken by Lisa M. Stasse
July 10 from Simon and Schuster

A thought-provoking and exciting start to a riveting new dystopian trilogy.

As an obedient orphan of the U.N.A. (the super-country that was once Mexico, the U.S., and Canada), Alenna learned at an early age to blend in and be quiet—having your parents taken by the police will do that to a girl. But Alenna can’t help but stand out when she fails a test that all sixteen-year-olds have to take: The test says she has a high capacity for brutal violence, and so she is sent to The Wheel, an island where all would-be criminals end up.

The life expectancy of prisoners on The Wheel is just two years, but with dirty, violent, and chaotic conditions, the time seems a lot longer as Alenna is forced to deal with civil wars for land ownership and machines that snatch kids out of their makeshift homes. Desperate, she and the other prisoners concoct a potentially fatal plan to flee the island. Survival may seem impossible, but Alenna is determined to achieve it anyway. (from Goodreads)

Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson
July 3 from Harper Collins

Before Peter Pan belonged to Wendy, he belonged to the girl with the crow feather in her hair. . . .

Fifteen-year-old Tiger Lily doesn't believe in love stories or happy endings. Then she meets the alluring teenage Peter Pan in the forbidden woods of Neverland and immediately falls under his spell.

Peter is unlike anyone she's ever known. Impetuous and brave, he both scares and enthralls her. As the leader of the Lost Boys, the most fearsome of Neverland's inhabitants, Peter is an unthinkable match for Tiger Lily. Soon, she is risking everything—her family, her future—to be with him. When she is faced with marriage to a terrible man in her own tribe, she must choose between the life she's always known and running away to an uncertain future with Peter.

With enemies threatening to tear them apart, the lovers seem doomed. But it's the arrival of Wendy Darling, an English girl who's everything Tiger Lily is not, that leads Tiger Lily to discover that the most dangerous enemies can live inside even the most loyal and loving heart.

From the New York Times bestselling author of Peaches comes a magical and bewitching story of the romance between a fearless heroine and the boy who wouldn't grow up. (from Goodreads)

Insignia by S.J. Kincard
July 10th from Katherine Tegen Books

More than anything, Tom Raines wants to be important, though his shadowy life is anything but that. For years, Tom’s drifted from casino to casino with his unlucky gambler of a dad, gaming for their survival. Keeping a roof over their heads depends on a careful combination of skill, luck, con artistry, and staying invisible.

Then one day, Tom stops being invisible. Someone’s been watching his virtual-reality prowess, and he’s offered the incredible—a place at the Pentagonal Spire, an elite military academy. There, Tom’s instincts for combat will be put to the test, and if he passes, he’ll become a member of the Intrasolar Forces, helping to lead his country to victory in World War Three. Finally, he’ll be someone important: a superhuman war machine with the tech skills that every virtual-reality warrior dreams of. Life at the Spire holds everything that Tom’s always wanted—friends, the possibility of a girlfriend, and a life where his every action matters—but what will it cost him?

Gripping and provocative, S. J. Kincaid’s futuristic thrill ride of a debut crackles with memorable characters, tremendous wit, and a vision of the future that asks startling, timely questions about the melding of humanity and technology. (from Goodreads)

Continuing Series

Spark (Sky Chasers #2) by Amy Kathleen Ryan
Once (Eve #2) by Anna Carey



In case you missed them the first time around, these books are releasing in paperback this month