Monday, June 30, 2008

Review:Angelmonster by Veronica Bennett

Review of AngelMonster by Veronica Bennett

Publisher's Summary:
In 1814, poet Percy Shelley enters the life of young Mary Godwin like an angel of deliverance. Seduced by his radical and romantic ideas, she flees with him to Europe, where they mingle with other free-spirited artists and poets. Frowned on by family and society, Mary becomes haunted by hideous visions — and as tragedy strikes, she realizes her dreams have become nightmares, and her angel . . . a monster. Has the time come for Mary Shelley to set her monster free?

While I recently hailed The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong the best book of the year, AngelMonster would be the most enjoyable. AngelMonster is a gripping tale of Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein.

Now, I wanted to review this book for mainly 2 reasons, 1) because I loved fiction biographies like this, and 2) I was actually very well acquainted with Percy Shelley, Mary's husband. For those who are not familiar with his work, it is some of the most gratifying pieces to come out of the 19th Century. I was also very familiar with his life, so I knew how this would end.

I cannot tell you which is more painful, knowing how it ends or not knowing. However, I can tell you it was like watching TITANIC or A Walk to Remember, reading and knowing. The book has an epic feel to it. You know from the ominous style, that horrible things are to come.

The book deals with a lot of things, but mainly Mary's internal fight on whether or not Shelley is her angel or her monster. I won't tell you what she decides on in the end, but it gives a wonderful sense of completion.

The only big difference between this book and Mary's real life, is when she wrote Frankenstein. Frankenstein was finished in 1818, in this book she finishes it in 1822.

The most beautiful part of it all is, despite the fact that Percy Shelley lied to her and more than likely cheated on Mary-in the end, they both truly did still love one another.

Books like this are the reason I review books. These are the kind of books I get thrills and chills out of-they are the best kind.

In Conclusion: An epic, wonderful novel all literature buffs, like myself, should read. Reccomended to everyone who doesn't mind a few tissues.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Review:The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong

Review of the Summoning by Kelley Armstrong

Publisher's Summary:
My name is Chloe Saunders and my life will never be the same again.
All I wanted was to make friends, meet boys, and keep on being ordinary. I don't even know what that means anymore. It all started on the day that I saw my first ghost—and the ghost saw me.
Now there are ghosts everywhere and they won't leave me alone. To top it all off, I somehow got myself locked up in Lyle House, a "special home" for troubled teens. Yet the home isn't what it seems. Don't tell anyone, but I think there might be more to my housemates than meets the eye. The question is, whose side are they on? It's up to me to figure out the dangerous secrets behind Lyle House . . . before its skeletons come back to haunt me.

Best. Book. This. Year.

From the first page, The Summoning sucks you in, only to let you go at the end wishing that the next book was published already.

Ms. Armstrong's writing is very detailed. She keeps the story moving and maintains an easy to follow plot.

Chloe is our main character. She's entertaining and interesting. and well..... You know when you like a book better because you feel like you are the main character. Well, that would be this. Chloe is me in almost every aspect, with a different name. And she can see ghosts........I can't do that. Yet. :) I'll let you all know when I can.

Okay, so it's a good book, but why are you like it's the best book this year?

Excellent Question. Us reviewers just get that feeling, when somethings just that good. Yes, I'm about to make that comparision. Think Twilight before it was Twilight. For those of you who read Twilight and got that "OMG, this is going to be so big!" feeling, that would be this feeling. Checking in at 400 Pages-The Summoning has everything needed to be the book of the summer.

So in Conclusion:Don't be surprised when this is HUGE. I reccomend it to every single one of my readers. Even if you hate scary- you will love this book

The Summoning is released July 1st

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Interview:Joni Sensel(author of The Humming of Numbers)

Here's my interview I recently conducted with Joni Sensel, the author of The Humming of Numbers)

When did you decide you wanted to be a writer?I started writing in second grade, but it didn’t occur to me that I could just decide to be a writer — I thought somebody else had to confer that upon me, and that never happened. So although I wrote stories and poems all through school, I didn’t really start to think of myself as a writer until I was in college.

Why did you decide you would like to write a young adult book?I’ve really only stumbled into it because I’m a little jaded about adults; I don’t think they change much. But young people are still creating themselves and changing a lot, so I think they make very interesting characters. Since that’s who I want to write about, my stories tend to appeal to young readers of similar ages.

Where did the inspiration for The Humming of Numbers come from?First, I’ve always been interested in illumination, so while I was in Dublin in 2004, I saw the Book of Kells exhibit and the old library, called The Long Room, at Trinity College. I was really taken by a sense -- the presence, almost -- of the people who created those incredible books. In addition, I’d been noodling the idea of a character who could hear numerical auras, like a sort of synesthesia, and one night the two ideas came together in the character of Aidan.

Why did you decide to write Historical Fiction (it's one of my favorite genres)?It wasn’t really a conscious decision — Aidan was a monk and an illuminator, so I had to put him in a time and a place where he belonged. I love the British Isles and I liked the idea of the potential conflict with a raid, so that pretty well narrowed down my time and place.

Is there some theory behind humming #s- I've heard about everyone having a number but I've never heard about someone hearing these numbers-where did this idea come from?It really comes from my own personal sense, probably imagined, that there are distinct connections between things, colors, and numbers — on sort of a quantum or metaphysical level. Blue and five seem like different expressions or manifestations of the same energy to me, for instance. My own perceptions are what I used to build Aidan’s, but those don’t jive with traditional numerology.

Which character are you more like-Aidan or Lana?Oh, probably Aidan. But I really like Lana’s feistiness; I’d like to be more like her, ha ha.

Will you "miss" writing about any of the characters(like Aidan, Lana, Liam, etc)?Oh sure, I think most writers enjoy at least some of their characters enough to want to continue spending time with them, just like we all as readers find characters we just don’t want to say goodbye to. I might try to write a sequel to Humming one of these days — we never did find out the truth about Lana’s wood fragments, after all. :-)

Do you have any upcoming projects you’re working on?Lots! My next novel, The Farwalker’s Quest, comes out in February, so I expect to proof the galleys soon. That’s a post-apocalyptic fantasy about a girl whose future depends on her ability to solve a riddle from the past. And I have two new manuscripts, including a ghost story, that I’ve recently finished revising and now hope to sell.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Winners of Quondam!

I have pulled the winners of the Quondam giveaway using's number generator. These numbers correlated to these winners, I will be emailing the winners shortly asking for contact information. You have 10 days to respond, once I have everyone's information, I will email it to Ms. Gibson.

Note: If you where wondering how I got these winners from the numbers, it's in order of how I received them. If you sent posted it on your blog and got an extra entry you got 2 consecutive numbers (ex 4,5)

These are the winners:
Kayla(Midnight Twilight's Book Blog)

Congratulations to the winners and thank you all for entering! Winners will be getting an email shortly.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Review: Sisters of the Sword by Maya Snow

Review of Sisters of the Sword by Maya Snow

Publisher's Summary:
Kimi dreams of being a great samurai warrior, but she and her sister, Hana, are young ladies of feudal Japan, daughters of the Jito of the province. Her future seems clear: Girls do not become samurai.

Then, betrayal shatters the sisters' world. Their power-hungry uncle murders their father, and their mother and little brother mysteriously disappear. Determined to seek revenge and restore their honor, they disguise themselves as boys to train at a school for samurai. Kimi and Hana are thrown headlong into a life of warrior codes, sharp swords, and shadowy figures—as they work with fierce determination to avenge the brutal wrongs done to their family.

In a flash, life has swept them into a terrible adventure, more heart-pounding than Kimi and Hana ever could have imagined . . . and once it has been set in motion, nothing will ever be the same.

Sisters of the Sword is very fast moving, quick read. A lot of detail in things like costume, fighting style and other such culture. I enjoyed it. I know how cliche sounding this is, but is very much a Japanese version of Mulan.

It isn't something I would of picked up in a bookstore. BUT....if you are interested in things like Aikido, Japanese culture or samurai-I would recommend it. For those who aren't interested, it is still a nice read-forgettable, maybe-but still enjoyable. It does have a nice setup for a possible sequel.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Review:Alive and Well in Prague, New York by Daphne Grab

Review of Alive and Well in Prague, New York by Daphne Grab

Publisher's Summary:
Matisse Osgood is a New York City girl through and through. She buys her clothes at Andy's Cheapies, watches indie films at the Angelika, and wouldn't be caught dead on a hayride. But when her father gets sick and Matisse's parents decide to leave Man-hattan for a small town in upstate New York, her perfect world crumbles. As Matisse trudges through life in Prague, she dreams of waking up in her apartment on West 78th Street with a father who's well enough to walk with her in Central Park and a mother who doesn't pretend that everything is okay. When rumors surround Matisse at school and her father's symptoms worsen, Matisse realizes that the friends she's making in Prague are the kind you can count on. They help Matisse find the strength to reach out to her father, who may not be as far from her as she thought. And one particular farm boy shows Matisse that country living is a lot more magical than she ever imagined.

Alive and Well is a captivating story about a girl who sacrifices pretty much everything for her ailing father's wellfare and in return, get's so much more.

Matisse is a very sympathizable character. You, obviously, would feel bad for someone who's father has Parkinson's, I can't imagine going through that. She handles it in different ways than most of us would but she does her best spite her situation. Matisse is also a very real character, one whom you will feel by the end of the book that you know like your BFF. This is due to........

Ms. Grab's writing-The most shocking part of the book is how wonderful Ms. Grab's writing is. For this being her first book you would think she'd been doing it for years. Very detailed, but not overly fluffy to the point where you want to throw up. Her characters-as stated- are very real- like Matisse. Her story keeps moving and has an even pace -which, I imagine, is hard to write(I'm sure you all are familiar with authors who are wonderful writers, but sometimes the story drags on and others you're like wait what just happened).

In Conclusion: I loved the book! Ms. Grab is a very wonderful new addition to YA literature and I hope we see more of her in the future!

Note: Check out my interview with Daphne Grab, coming soon!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Review:Pug Hill by Alison Pace

Review of Pug Hill by Alison Pace

For Holly Golightly, there was always Tiffany's. For me, there's always Pug Hill. For as long as I've lived in New York, whenever I've just wanted to think, or relax, or be happy, or even sad, my destination of choice has been, without fail, Pug Hill.
For Hope McNeill, pugs are love, unconditional friendship, happiness, and freedom-all qualities currently in short supply in her own life. She's also short on time and apartment space, and for those reasons she doesn't have a pug of her own. But she does have Pug Hill in Central Park, where pugs (and their owners) from all over New York City convene.
She also has a serious crush on one of her co-workers at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a flailing relationship with her squash-playing, cold-weather-loving boyfriend, and an unspeakable fear of public speaking. When Hope's father calls with a daunting assignment-to make a speech at her parent's fortieth wedding anniversary party-Hope is completely taken off guard. As a last resort, she signs up for a public speaking class, but can't help wondering, will it be enough?

This is one of those books that when asked if I liked it, I respond with " I guess I liked it...."

Yes, parts where witty and funny

Yes, there are pugs on the cover-more incentive to buy it

No, nothing really happens in the book.

I felt like the main character Hope, did not really go through any drastic changed throughout the book, and it kinda bored me. There where parts that where funny and parts that where interesting but all in all, all she learned to do was Public speaking and it just felt like almost repetitive. She gets dumped a few times. I didn't get a feeling of completion with it.

In conclusion: if you are looking for an uneventful, filled with pugs and witty jokes kinda book-this is for you.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Review:When Harry Hit Hollywood by Mara Goodman-Davies

Review of When Harry it Hollywood by Mara Goodman-Davies

Jessica used to paint idly in her East Hampton garden. Now she ducks paparazzi hiding in the bushes. She used to live quietly, happy to be in the shadows. Now she's on the front page of every tabloid magazine.

No one said life on the A List would be easy.

When Harry Hit Hollywood is the hilarious story of celebrity marriage, where paparazzi watch you wash your hair, and every argument makes Page Six.

When sweet, quiet Jessica married Harry-Hollywood's most notorious billionaire bachelor-she knew she'd have to work hard to mend his hard-partying ways. But she didn't expect to become the "it" couple, crowned America's new royalty and adored by celebrities.

A hilarious send-up of the Hollywood scene, When Harry Hit Hollywood is a true-love story of when heartland values meet the cash and panache of the rich and ridiculous.

Every once in awhile I will review books that aren't YA or have been out for awhile. This book falls into both of those categories. I picked this book up because I have an obsession with Hollywood. I work at my local library and this happened to be in discard because we had 2 copies.

The story itself was very good. It's about a New York artist who marries a rich heir to a clothing company's fortune- who also is a big partier. They go through ups and downs as a couple. The writing was a little choppy as I felt it could of been expanded more.

NOTE: As mentioned before, this is not teen or young adult fiction. Do not read if you are easily offended by language or sexual descriptions.

In conclusion: a fun read. Nothing out of the ordinary but if you are interested in Hollywood or being A-List and a little dirt along the way-I highly recommend it.