Sunday, January 31, 2016

ALA Books: Upcoming Titles I'm Really Excited For Part 1

Hey guys!

Attending ALA Midwinter was such an amazing experience. If you follow me on Instagram, you saw all the books I managed to drag home. Some went to work, some went to a certain young reader, some will be heading to my local librarian and some are all just for me! For now anyway :) I'm still looking over the piles and there is a chance some will make it into a giveaway (or 2, or 3 or 4 ;)

Below are February and March titles I'm most excited for.
Links are to Goodreads so you can add them to your wishlists! (do it!)

February Releases
Where Future Ends by Parker Peevyhouse
Symptoms of Being Human by Jeff Garvin
Reign of Shadows by Sophie Jordan
Bluescreen by Dan Wells
Firstlife by Gena Showalter

March Releases

Seven Black Diamonds by Melissa Marr
You Were Here by Cori McCarthy
A Drop of Night by Stefan Bachmann
Dark Energy by Robison Wells

What do you guys think? Any of these on your radar already?
Happy Reading!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Book Review: My Second Life by Faye Bird

Genre: YA Paranormal Mystery
Publication: January 19, 2016 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Acquisition: read a free eARC via NetGalley

Synopsis:
A pacy pageturner that asks: Can you be held responsible now for something you did in a previous life?

Fifteen-year-old Ana has a good life--she has friends and a boy she likes and a kind mother--but still, she's haunted by her past; she knows that she lived once before as a girl named Emma, and she still misses her old family. When, by chance in her life now, Ana meets a woman she knew in her previous life, a terrifying memory flashes through her mind of a young girl drowning. Was Emma responsible? And should Ana pay the price? Consumed by guilt, Ana sets out to find out as much as possible about the person she was before and what she had done, only to discover that the family she misses so deeply had dark secrets of its own. To come to terms with her life now, Ana must figure out how to let go of the past.
(from Goodreads)
4 / 5 Stars

Very good!

Not my usual read - take away the past life strangeness and it's a teen angst filled contemp and those don't always do it for me.

Add back in that strange past life business and the story takes on a whole different turn.

I love that Ana isn't consumed by her past life - rather, it's just a part of her that she has to deal with. She doesn't tell anyone, she doesn't try to figure it out - it just is.
Sure, her relationships have been affected, but Ana is the only one who knows why. And she just sorta goes with it.

Until! Things happen! Ana's view on her past life changes and all hell breaks loose...in a teen angsty sort of way but still, in a very real life sort of way.

At no time did I question Ana's convictions and at no time did I question why she was doing what she was doing. Emma is a very real part of Ana's life and Emma needs answers.

The paranormal elements is what drew me to My Second Life and the underlying mystery of Emma's life is what kept me reading.
Me = very happy reader.


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

ALA Mid Winter - quick recap

Hey guys!

I'm back from ALA Mid Winter and I'm still totally drained! Not seeing the sun for a full 3 days probably wasn't a good idea ;)

The conference was awesome - I presented (for my co-worker) and didn't faint or throw up (go me!)
I saw my OTSP Secret Sister!
I got to hang out with blogger friends I haven't seen in ages!
Some friends from the area came by for drinks, food, and hilarity!
And...I got a lot of books.

I've been to 4 BEAs and I gotta say, ALA is a much calmer affair. With sessions to go to and work stuffs to get done, I didn't spend all my time on the exhibit floor. The time I did spend there though, was fabulous.

All of the publishers, authors, vendors - they were all so fantastic!

And all those books? Lots for me personally that I can't wait to review, some for my library co-workers who didn't attend, a few for my daughter (who has read through 4 already!) and a bunch more that will go to my local YA librarian.

In total, I walked away with a little under 100 and it could have been much much more.

I'm gonna post again with the details because for real life, a lot of these books NEED to be on your wishlists!

But for now, here are some pics courtesy of my Instagram


A photo posted by Emily De Maria (@wilowraven) on

A photo posted by Emily De Maria (@wilowraven) on

Friday, January 8, 2016

ALAMW Bound!

Hey guys!

Today's Friday the 8th and I'm heading to the American Library Association's Mid Winter Conference (ALAMW) (hashtag ALAMW16)

I'm so excited to connect with new and old blogger friends and library associates. AND all the fabulous vendors whose products make my library life so much easier. AND the fabulous fabulous publishers and authors who are the reasons we do what we do!!

My colleague is presenting tomorrow on our library's migration to a new ILS platform and I couldn't be more proud of her.

I'm going to meet my OTSP Secret Sister!!

I'm reconnecting with blogger friends I haven't seen in ages!

AND I'll be in my second favorite city! (Sorry Boston, NY gets most of my city love ;)

Along with being excited I'm also a little nervous...I'll let my tweet speak for me..


So yeah!

I'll be fine - and I'm sure I'll even have some fun -- and learn things!

If you really do need to find me, email and Twitter work best!

I'll also be Instagraming ALL THE THINGS :)

Happy Reading everyone!




Monday, January 4, 2016

Book Review: Sanctuary Bay by Laura J. Burns and Melinda Metz

Genre: YA Contemporary Sci-fi Mystery
Publication: January 19, 2016 by St. Martin's Griffin
Acquisition: read a free eARC via NetGalley

Synopsis:
In this genre-bending YA thriller, will Sarah Merson's shiny new prep school change her life forever or bring it to a dark and sinister end?

When Sarah Merson receives the opportunity of a lifetime to attend the most elite prep school in the country-Sanctuary Bay Academy-it seems almost too good to be true. But, after years of bouncing from foster home to foster home, escaping to its tranquil setting, nestled deep in Swans Island, couldn't sound more appealing. Swiftly thrown into a world of privilege and secrets, Sarah quickly realizes finding herself noticed by class charmer, Nate, as well as her roommate's dangerously attentive boyfriend, Ethan, are the least of her worries. When her roommate suddenly goes missing, she finds herself in a race against time, not only to find her, but to save herself and discover the dark truth behind Sanctuary Bay's glossy reputation.

In this genre-bending YA thriller, Sanctuary Bay by Laura J. Burns and Melinda Metz, Sarah's new school may seem like an idyllic temple of learning, but as she unearths years of terrifying history and manipulation, she discovers this "school" is something much more sinister.
(from Goodreads)
4 / 5 Stars

I'm a total sucker for a good boarding school mystery. And creepy abandoned asylums? Yep, love those too. Oh! And secluded secret islands? Yeppy yep!

Sanctuary Bay basically has all these things - so, even though the story irked me a bit here and there, overall, I was a very happy reader.

What didn't I like?
The implausibility of certain things...the way the characters developed...Sarah, our MC didn't quite do it for me at times...
It was all very minor though.

What did I like?
Pretty much everything else. Yeah Sarah annoyed me but I loved the way her brain worked and I love how even though I was so so sure of what was going on, because she had doubt, I had doubt. It very much felt like I was living Sarah's life with her. So, maybe not very plausible scenarios but still very realistic ones.

The mystery was kind of predictable but also a bit unique. The romance(s) was great! It wasn't over the top or eye roll worthy and all of the relationships felt very genuine.

Contemporary fans, sci-fi fans, mystery fans - I think a lot of different readers could enjoy this one and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it!

Friday, January 1, 2016

December 2015 Wrap Up: The I didn't do anything so this is a really easy post...Edition

Easiest Wrap Up post eva!!

Why?

Oh, it's just a little matter of the fact that I did almost NO reading in December and NO blogging in December and the fact that I remembered to put shoes on leaving the house each day was cause for celebration.

December was wonderful - and stressful - but mostly wonderful - and BUSY!

(I'm so sorry my lovey little books...I do love you...even though all I did last month was shuffle your piles and cram you onto shelves to get you out of the way)

So? What did I read and review?

2 things...TWO!

But really - the month was wonderful, so I'm actually not complaining :)

THE REVIEW

Winter by Marissa Meyer | REVIEW 5/5 Stars

DECEMBER READS

The Detour by S. A. Bodeen

Hope everyone had a great
December!

Happy New Year!