Thursday, June 28, 2012

Only Mine by Susan Mallery

Susan Mallery's Fool's Gold romances continue in this second trilogy of books about the mainly female populated town of Fool's Gold.

Since the town made headlines with its lack of men and its mostly women run town, the men have been pouring in. That isn't the only issue in the little town. A television reality show has made its presence known leaving Dakota Hendrix to navigate the complexities of what happens backstage and making sure that nothing unseemly happens.

Cue Finn Anderssen, whose twin brothers have entered in the show. Making sure nothing unseemly happens is now much harder as Dakota now has to keep an eye on a meddling older brother and the trouble making twins. The thing is, the more time Dakota spends with Finn, the more she falls for him. Both of them know what it is to be heartbroken, but will they both realize that their love will last and that not all love ends in heartbreak?

Another great installment from Susan Mallery. Only Mine not only follows Dakota and Finn, but also Stephen and Aurelia - the only couple in the reality show that have an actual chance of making it. With meddling towns folk and crazy show producers, Dakota and Finn have their hands full. Full of laughter and tears, Only Mine is a heartfelt romance readers will enjoy every time.

Perchance to Dream by Lisa Mantchev

Beatrice "Bertie" Shakespeare Smith was left crushed at the end of Eyes Like Stars. Nate was lost to the Sea Goddess and Ariel had almost destroyed the theatre she loves so much. Now she has set out from the Théâtre Illuminata in order to save Nate and to find out about The Mysterious Stranger - the one who made the protective medallion Bertie wears around her neck.

With her ever present fairy friends and Ariel the wind spirt, Bertie must travel across strange lands and into the strange world of the Sea Goddess. Her feelings battle between her childhood love of Ariel, the forbidden and her growing love for Nate, the man who fills her dreams. With her magic arsenal of words on her side, Bertie is headed into deep water - her only hope being that her magic is strong enough to save them all from the Sea Goddess' power.

Mantchev continues the story of Bertie and her friends in the same fashion of the first novel, Eyes Like Stars. Told like a play in many respects, Bertie grows as a character before the eyes of readers. While in some respects she is still a child, Bertie grows up to be a young woman and she protects her own. The mysteries of her past unfold and readers will be reaching for the third installment before they are hardly finished with this second book in the series.

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Katniss Everdeen has yet again survived the torments of the Capitol. She doesn't understand why she has survived and the plot that was uncovered in the last book was more than she ever expected. No in the hands of the elusive District 13, Katniss has trouble adjusting to her new life. Not knowing what to expect, Katniss is thrown into a plot that will lead to the destruction of the Capitol and their games for good.

While both The Hunger Games and Catching Fire were both fast paced novels, Mockingjay slows things down. Readers will still flip through the pages, but the action is quite a bit less than before. Katniss' inner turmoil seems to take the center stage more than before. It becomes more clear that she will do what she has to in order for the world to become a better place. Even if that means breaking the trust of those around her.

This conclusion to The Hunger Games trilogy is an exciting end to the story that fans have fall in love with. Who will Katniss choose; Peeta or Gale? Will the Capitol and President Snow fall? Is District 13 the best answer? In a story of loss and betrayal, Katniss will have to choose what side she is on, or if she really is the Mockingjay and will lead her own path.

Heir Apparent by Vivian Vande Velde

"Win the game, or begin again, and again, and again..."

Giannie Bellisario thought she was just going into Rasmussem Gaming Center to redeem her birthday coupon from her dad. She thought she was just going to play a fun total immersion video game. What she got was way more than she ever bargained for.

Stuck in the game, Giannie must win before her time runs out...the only problem is trying to figure out the right combination in order to actually win the game. If she doesn't figure it out, the consequences would be bad - not just for Rasmusem Enterprises, but also for Giannie. If she doesn't win then she will die for real this time.

The fast paced story Heir Apparent presents is both realistic and entertaining. Giannie is a humorous narrator and it is very clear that she won't put up with any B.S. Even as time runs out, Giannie keeps her humor and her wits. The only way out is to win and she will do what ever it takes to do so. Even if that means making a few mistakes and dying only to be brought back to the beginning of the game once again. Readers will have fun reading this book again and again as Giannie's sarcastic comments never fade into the ordinary.

The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan

In this sequel to The Lost Hero, readers finally find out what happened to the missing Percy Jackson. Not only is his memory gone, but he has been dropped in the middle of a possibly hostile Roman camp. He meets two new friends: Hazel and Frank, both of whom have secretes they would rather no one found out...ever.

As the war against the Earth goddess, Gaea, becomes more present and pronounced it is clear that these three unlikely heroes must work together to prove themselves and to fight for what is right. With the Prophecy of Seven looming overhead, will Hazel, Frank, and Percy prove that they are three of the heroes mentioned? Is this "other" camp a safe haven that Percy has always dreamed of? Or is it too good to be true?

The continuation of Percy's story will give readers the plot and depth they were hoping for. It leaves more questions than answers and readers will flip through the pages to find out what will happen next. If readers thought Capture the Flag was dangerous, wait until the see the Roman equivalent. Readers young and old will laugh out loud as Riordan works his humorous magic.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Charlie seems to be the average teen: awkward, on the fringes; the perfect wallflower. In this series of letters broken into four parts, readers learn to love Charlie and his unique sense of being. He shares his world and his struggles. Charlie is a sensitive soul and he touches the souls of readers with his words.

As a Charlie starts high school, readers watch as he makes friends with Sam and Patrick. Even as they accept him into his fold, he still sits on the edge; watching and not participating. There is more to Charlie than readers originally assume as he digs deeper into his past and into his present. His wallflower status allows him to give readers details that many other narrators wouldn't have noticed. He is a wise voice for his age - an old soul in a young body.

Charlie writes letters to a unknown person because it is a way for someone to know him without either party becoming hurt. This is a fantastic read for young adults as it covers a wide range of experience on may face in high school and beyond. While in the beginning he doesn't seem to be a completely truthful narrator, by the end of the book he is a trusted narrator. He reaches inside of himself and becomes more than just a wallflower.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Exciting News!!

I am going to be on here more!! Yay!! I'm sure you are wondering what that is all about. I'm getting there, but I have other things to talk about first.

First news, I have moved from my old apartment (otherwise known as the place that gives me nightmares) to the new apartment! It only took us five days to move, then clean, then clean, and unpack. I still don't have everything unpacked, but it looks like an actual apartment now.

Second news, my roommates are back in the states and I can't wait to hang out with them and for all of us to be at our apartment at the same time. In a couple of weeks or so, I might head in that direction and we might see Brave together.

And finally, the news that I'm most excited about (and totally freaked out over...) is I received an email tonight saying that I have been selected for the C.C. Hunter Street Team. When I originally entered I didn't think I would be picked, I hoped, sure, but I didn't think it would actually happen. Then it did and now I am totally freaking out!! I'm so excited and I can't wait!

This means I will be reviewing more and trying to get other people interested in the things that I read. I can't wait to see how it all goes.