Beat The Heat Readathon

 

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  • The Beat the Heat Readathon runs from July 29th through August 18th. What does this readathon entail, you ask? Well, read as much or as little as you want – the main point is to READ! You set your own goal, and for two weeks you read as many books as you can/want to reach your goal!
  • There will be mini-challenges throughout the Readathon for participants, along with a grand prize giveaway at the end!
  • Sign up at Auntie Spinelli Reads or Phantasmic Reads. You may join whenever you like, but to be eligible for our grand prize giveaway, you must sign up by August 5th.
  • To join, all you have to do is make a sign-up post – even if it’s just a “Let’s do this!” thing – and add your post URL to the linky below! You can put your goals and progress (will be required for the final giveaway) in your sign-up post, or you can make it separate. Totally up to you! Feel free to copy and paste this handy little list for your post. We don’t mind. 🙂
  • In order to enter for the grand prize, you must have a post to keep track of your progress so we can see that you participated.

Goals

 

Finish a review book that is dragging for me.

The Thinking Womans Guide To Real Magic by Emily Cory Barker

Finish a series that has been on my TBR list forever.

Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

Four other books of my choosing. Must be from my TBR Shelf of Shame.

Updates

July 31 –

  • Finished the last third of The Son Of Neptune
  • Read from 31% to 43% of The Thinking Woman’s Guide To Real Magic 

August 1 –

  • Read from 43% to 58% of The Thinking Woman’s Guide To Real Magic

August 2 –

  • Read from 58% to 75% of The Thinking Woman’s Guide To Real Magic

August 3

  • Read from 75% to 86% of The Thinking Woman’s Guide To Real Magic

August 4

  • Finished The Thinking Woman’s Guide To Real Magic
  • Read 44 pages of Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

August 5

  • Read 30 pages of Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

August 6

  • Read 48 pages of Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

August 7

  • Read 68 pages of Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

August 8

  • Read 108 pages of Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

August 9

  • Finished Forever by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Started The Bone Season (The Bone Season #1) by Samantha Shannon

August 10

            • 15% into The Bone Season (The Bone Season #1) by Samantha Shannon – This will be a quicker read for me because I do not want to put this book down!

 

August 11

      • 27% into The Bone Season (The Bone Season #1) by Samantha Shannon

August 12

  • 32% into The Bone Season (The Bone Season #1) by Samantha Shannon

August 13

  • 54% into The Bone Season (The Bone Season #1) by Samantha Shannon

August 14

  • 73% into The Bone Season (The Bone Season #1) by Samantha Shannon

August 15

  • Finished The Bone Season (The Bone Season #1) by Samantha Shannon

August 16

  • Started Queen Of Babble by Meg Cabot

August 17

  • On page 148 of Queen Of Babble by Meg Cabot

August 18

  • On page 148 of Queen Of Babble by Meg Cabot

Totals

Read a total of four books and 1,780 pages.

Water Cooler Picks

The books that people are buzzing about.

Water cooler Picks

This Town by Mark Leibovich

Tim Russert is dead.
But the room was alive.
Big Ticket Washington Funerals can make such great networking opportunities. Power mourners keep stampeding down the red carpets of the Kennedy Center, handing out business cards, touching base. And there is no time to waste in a gold rush, even (or especially) at a solemn tribal event like this.

Washington—This Town—might be loathed from every corner of the nation, yet these are fun and busy days at this nexus of big politics, big money, big media, and big vanity. There are no Democrats and Republicans anymore in the nation’s capital, just millionaires. That is the grubby secret of the place in the twenty-first century. You will always have lunch in This Town again. No matter how many elections you lose, apologies you make, or scandals you endure.

In This Town, Mark Leibovich, chief national correspondent for The New York Times Magazine, presents a blistering, stunning—and often hysterically funny—examination of our ruling class’s incestuous “media industrial complex.” Through his eyes, we discover how the funeral for a beloved newsman becomes the social event of the year. How political reporters are fetishized for their ability to get their names into the predawn e-mail sent out by the city’s most powerful and puzzled-over journalist. How a disgraced Hill aide can overcome ignominy and maybe emerge with a more potent “brand” than many elected members of Congress. And how an administration bent on “changing Washington” can be sucked into the ways of This Town with the same ease with which Tea Party insurgents can, once elected, settle into it like a warm bath.

Why are people talking about This Town?

It’s an insiders look at the ultimate insiders. If you are a political junkie who wants to know how the pols actually behave, this is your book.

Who’s talking about This Town?

Book review: Mark Leibovich’s ‘This Town’ over at Daily Kos

Mark Leibovich and the Preening Egos of ‘This Town’ at The Daily Beast

Hypocrisy, Thy Name Is (Duh!) Washington ‘This Town’ by Mark Leibovich at The New York Times

I listen to a decent amount of talk radio and heard the author, Mark Leibovich, interviewed on quite a few talk shows (The Agenda, Stand Up! with Pete Dominick, and Media Matters Radio to name a few.)

Is This Town a book being discussed at your water cooler?

In The Stacks (20)

What I added to my stacks (and stacks and stacks) this week. I am linking up with Stacking The Shelves by Tynga’s Reviews.

Keeping it low key on the book buying front. I went crazy requesting review titles on NetGalley but have not heard anything. Oh well, I really need to tackle my bookshelf of shame.

Purchased

The Ocean At The End Of The Lane by Neil Gaiman

The Ocean At The End Of The Lane by Neil Gaiman

Sussex, England. A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. Although the house he lived in is long gone, he is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl, Lettie Hempstock, and her mother and grandmother. He hasn’t thought of Lettie in decades, and yet as he sits by the pond (a pond that she’d claimed was an ocean) behind the ramshackle old farmhouse, the unremembered past comes flooding back. And it is a past too strange, too frightening, too dangerous to have happened to anyone, let alone a small boy.

Forty years earlier, a man committed suicide in a stolen car at this farm at the end of the road. Like a fuse on a firework, his death lit a touchpaper and resonated in unimaginable ways. The darkness was unleashed, something scary and thoroughly incomprehensible to a little boy. And Lettie—magical, comforting, wise beyond her years—promised to protect him, no matter what.

This one is at the top of my TBR stack. Once I get through a review book (that is very long and very boring), this one will be in my hands. It is short enough to read in a sitting and has gotten such wonderful reviews.

The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau

The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Isn’t that what they say? But how close is too close when they may be one in the same?

The Seven Stages War left much of the planet a charred wasteland. The future belongs to the next generation’s chosen few who must rebuild it. But to enter this elite group, candidates must first pass The Testing—their one chance at a college education and a rewarding career.

Cia Vale is honored to be chosen as a Testing candidate; eager to prove her worthiness as a University student and future leader of the United Commonwealth. But on the eve of her departure, her father’s advice hints at a darker side to her upcoming studies–trust no one.

But surely she can trust Tomas, her handsome childhood friend who offers an alliance? Tomas, who seems to care more about her with the passing of every grueling (and deadly) day of the Testing. To survive, Cia must choose: love without truth or life without trust.

I was approved for this one on NetGalley but never got around to downloading it. It is popping up on some best-of lists and the premise is really interesting.

Kindle

 

The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot

The Princess Diaries (The Princess Diaries #1) by Meg Cabot

She’s just a New York City girl living with her artist mom…

News Flash: Dad is prince of Genovia. (So that’s why a limo meets her at the airport!)

Downer: Dad can’t have any more kids. (So no heir to the throne.)

Shock of the Century: Like it or not, Mia Thermopolis is prime princess material.

Mia must take princess lessons from her dreaded grandmére, the dowager princess of Genovia, who thinks Mia has a thing or two to learn before she steps up to the throne.

Well, her father can lecture her until he’s royal-blue in the face about her princessly duty–no way is she moving to Genovia and leaving Manhattan behind. But what’s a girl to do when her name is Princess Amelia Mignonette Grimaldi Thermopolis Renaldo?

I have read very little Meg Cabot, which is kind of sad. My library always has the other books in this series but never book one. So I had to take matters into my own hands, so I can read this series.

Scott Pilgrim Precious Little Life 1 by Bryan Lee O'Malley

Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life (Scott Pilgrim #1) by Bryan Lee O’Malley

Just when you thought you knew all there was to know about Scott Pilgrim comes Scott Pilgrim Color Hardcover Volume 1: Precious Little Life! The first in a series of brand-new hardcover editions, this remastered, 6″x9″ hardcover presents Scott’s first “evil ex” battle as you’ve never seen it before – in full-color! Plus, previously unpublished extras and bonus materials make this mighty tome one that’s required reading for Scottaholics everywhere!

I am so not a graphic novel reader but really wanted to try one. I loved the Scott Pilgrim movie, so I decided to give it a shot.

What did you add to your shelves this week?

Book Rant: Author Controversy Ender’s Game

If you saw any blockbuster this summer, you probably saw a trailer for Ender’s Game.

Ender's Game Movie Poster

{Image Credit}

The casting looks great (Harrison Ford, Ben Kingsley) and it is based on a book of the the same name that has been popular for decades. So what’s this rant about?

“Laws against homosexual behavior should remain on the books, not to be indiscriminately enforced against anyone who happens to be caught violating them, but to be used when necessary to send a clear message that those who flagrantly violate society’s regulation of sexual behavior cannot be permitted to remain as acceptable, equal citizens within that society.”

“Married people attempting to raise children with the hope that they, in turn, will be reproductively successful, have every reason to oppose the normalization of homosexual unions.”

 

The above are two examples of Orson Scott Card’s writings on homosexuality. (The first is from Sunstone Magazine, February 1990 and the second is from the Mormon Times in 2009.)

Orson Scott Card is a board member of the National Organization For Marriage which is consistently in the news for making horrific anti-gay statements. (A great place to read about some truly egregious statements made by the National Organization For Marriage, please see this write-up by the Southern Poverty Law Center.)

There is an effort to boycott the movie because of Orson Scott Card’s terrible views by Geeks Out (you can view their website where they layout the specific argument for the boycott here.) It remains to be seen how effective the boycott will be but it has forced Orson Scoot Card to address his views on homosexuality.

As someone who has not read Ender’s Game (it is sitting on a shelf, waiting to be read before the movie comes out), this publicity makes me very uncomfortable. I vehemently disagree with Orson Scott Card and consider the views the National Organization For Marriage puts out into the ether akin to hate speech. I do not want to give my money to someone with such abhorrent views. I am on the fence about boycotting the movie, but I certainly will have my distaste for the above quotes in my head if I do decide to watch Ender’s Game and finally read the book.

Does an author’s personal views make it difficult for you to read their books? 

 

In The Stacks (19)

What I added to my stacks (and stacks and stacks) this week. I am linking up with Stacking The Shelves by Tynga’s Reviews.

Purchased

The Son Of Neptune by Rick Riordan

The Son Of Neptune (The Heroes Of Olympus #2) by Rick Riordan)

Seven half-bloods shall answer the call,
To storm or fire the world must fall.
An oath to keep with a final breath,
And foes bear arms to the Doors of Death.

Percy is confused. When he awoke from his long sleep, he didn’t know much more than his name. His brain fuzz is lingering, even after the wolf Lupa told him he is a demigod and trained him to fight with the pen/sword in his pocket. Somehow Percy manages to make it to a camp for half-bloods, despite the fact that he has to keep killing monsters along the way. But the camp doesn’t ring any bells with him. The only thing he can recall from his past is another name: Annabeth

Hazel is supposed to be dead. When she lived before, she didn’t do a very good job of it. Sure, she was an obedient daughter, even when her mother was possessed by greed. But that was the problem — when the Voice took over her mother and commanded Hazel to use her “gift” for an evil purpose, Hazel couldn’t say no. Now because of her mistake, the future of the world is at risk. Hazel wished she could ride away from it all on the stallion that appears in her dreams.

Frank is a klutz. His grandmother says he is descended from heroes and can be anything he wants to be, but he doesn’t see it. He doesn’t even know who his father is. He keeps hoping Apollo will claim him, because the only thing he is good at is archery — although not good enough to win camp war games. His bulky physique makes him feel like an ox, especially infront of Hazel, his closest friend at camp. He trusts her completely — enough to share the secret he holds close to his heart.
Beginning at the “other” camp for half-bloods and extending as far as the land beyond the gods, this breathtaking second installment of the Heroes of Olympus series introduces new demigods, revives fearsome monsters, and features other remarkable creatures, all destined to play a part in the Prophesy of Seven.

 

Star Cursed by Jessica Spotswood

Star Cursed (Born Wicked #2) by Jessica Spotswood

With the Brotherhood persecuting witches like never before, a divided Sisterhood desperately needs Cate to come into her Prophesied powers. And after Cate’s friend Sachi is arrested for using magic, a war-thirsty Sister offers to help her find answers—if Cate is willing to endanger everyone she loves.

Cate doesn’t want to be a weapon, and she doesn’t want to involve her friends and Finn in the Sisterhood’s schemes. But when Maura and Tess join the Sisterhood, Maura makes it clear that she’ll do whatever it takes to lead the witches to victory. Even if it means sacrifices. Even if it means overthrowing Cate. Even if it means all-out war.

In the highly anticipated sequel to Born Wicked, the Cahill Witch Chronicles continue Cate, Maura and Tess’s quest to find love, protect family, and explore their magic against all odds in an alternate history of New England.

 

Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead

Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy #3) by Richelle Mead

It’s springtime at St. Vladimir’s Academy, and Rose Hathaway is this close to graduation. Since making her first Strigoi kills, Rose hasn’t been feeling quite right. She’s having dark thoughts, behaving erratically, and worst of all… might be seeing ghosts.

As Rose questions her sanity, new complications arise. Lissa has begun experimenting with her magic once more, their enemy Victor Dashkov might be set free, and Rose’s forbidden relationship with Dimitri is starting to heat up again. But when a deadly threat no one saw coming changes their entire world, Rose must put her own life on the line – and choose between the two people she loves most.

Kindle

Article 5 by Kristen Simmons

Article 5 (Article 5 #1) by Kristen Simmons

New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C., have been abandoned.

The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.

There are no more police—instead, there are soldiers. There are no more fines for bad behavior—instead, there are arrests, trials, and maybe worse. People who get arrested usually don’t come back.

Seventeen-year-old Ember Miller is old enough to remember that things weren’t always this way. Living with her rebellious single mother, it’s hard for her to forget that people weren’t always arrested for reading the wrong books or staying out after dark. It’s hard to forget that life in the United States used to be different.

Ember has perfected the art of keeping a low profile. She knows how to get the things she needs, like food stamps and hand-me-down clothes, and how to pass the random home inspections by the military. Her life is as close to peaceful as circumstances allow.

That is, until her mother is arrested for noncompliance with Article 5 of the Moral Statutes. And one of the arresting officers is none other than Chase Jennings—the only boy Ember has ever loved.

What did you add to your stacks this week?

All summaries and cover images from goodreads.

Some Quiet Place By Kelsey Sutton A Review

Some Quiet Place by Kelsey Sutton

Title: Some Quiet Place

Author: Kelsey Sutton

Publisher: Flux

Source: Netgalley

Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal

GoodreadsAuthorTwitter

AmazonBarnes&NobleIndieBound

Summary

I can’t weep. I can’t fear. I’ve grown talented at pretending.

Elizabeth Caldwell doesn’t feel emotions . . . she sees them. Longing, Shame, and Courage materialize around her classmates. Fury and Resentment appear in her dysfunctional home. They’ve all given up on Elizabeth because she doesn’t succumb to their touch. All, that is, save one—Fear. He’s intrigued by her, as desperate to understand the accident that changed Elizabeth’s life as she is herself.

Elizabeth and Fear both sense that the key to her past is hidden in the dream paintings she hides in the family barn. But a shadowy menace has begun to stalk her, and try as she might, Elizabeth can barely avoid the brutality of her life long enough to uncover the truth about herself. When it matters most, will she be able to rely on Fear to save her?

Some Quiet Place by Kelsey Sutton is a unique novel and was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Sutton personifies emotions, which the main character Elizabeth can see, but is unable to experience. Instead, Elizabeth feels nothing and goes through the motions of living. It is as if she is acting the role of a teenager, a daughter, and a friend. This is especially heartbreaking in a scene where her only close friend succumbs to cancer and she is left feeling nothing. Being filled with a nothingness does not escape the attention of those around her. Her father reacts with cruelty and violence while her mother dissociates.

Kelsey Sutton does a great job of showing the desolation in Elizabeth’s life. Her horrible home life, where she take whatever abuse is thrown at her, and the horrible way she is treated by the kids at school. The world she creates is dark and sad with small spots of light. I am not a big fan of paranormal fiction but Some Quiet Place has a unique kind of sweetness to it. It may be because the emotions are so much a part of the action but you cannot help but hold your breath hoping that Elizabeth will feel something.

Some Quiet Place by Kelsey Sutton is a well-written unique story that fans of paranormal fiction will enjoy. Some Quiet Place does live up to the beauty of its cover. I highly recommend Some Quiet Place and am looking forward to reading book two, Where Silence Gathers.

I was given a copy of Some Quiet Place on Netgalley but all thoughts are my own.

Cover images and summary from goodreads.

Book Rant: Being Judgey

I was minding my business, reading my Feedly. When all of a sudden this article from GalleyCat popped up, Buzzfeed Post Provokes Reader Rage. It got me thinking…

Do you judge a book by its cover? Buzzfeed does. In the inane original article, 28 ’”Favorite” Books That Are Huge Red Flags, Joseph Bernstein writes about what a persons favorite book says about them. He also acts as if books such as The Giver are only for children which is rage inducing enough. Horrible conclusion jumping aside, I really do not think our favorite books say much about us. Mainly because most people have eclectic tastes. I can use myself as an example I like:

  • Young Adult Fiction
  • Chick Lit
  • Adult Fiction
  • Non-Fiction (Specifically current events, politics, and economics)
  • Fitness
  • Running

Please tell me, what does that say about me?

Maybe that I am a political junkie that likes books about teens and is really into working out?

I love to read popular fiction, never miss a Dan Brown book, but I also enjoy more serious “literature”. So what. Books are books. We should encourage people to read, not shame them because their tastes aren’t as highbrow as we think they should be. Reading should be fun, not something we do to impress other people or to be cool. So let your freak flag fly and read those Middle Grade books if that’s what you like. Ignore anyone who is rude enough to give you the side eye for making a beeline to the Young Adult section of the book store when you are past the age of 30. Who cares, this is supposed to be fun. 

 

Far Far Away by Tom McNeal A Review

Far Far Away by Tom McNeal

Title: Far Far Away

Author: Tom McNeal

Publisher: Knopf Books For Young Readers

Publication Date: June 11, 2013

Source: Netgalley

Genre: Young Adult, Fairy Tale

GoodreadsAuthor

AmazonBarnes & NobleIndieBound

Summary

It says quite a lot about Jeremy Johnson Johnson that the strangest thing about him isn’t even the fact his mother and father both had the same last name. Jeremy once admitted he’s able to hear voices, and the townspeople of Never Better have treated him like an outsider since. After his mother left, his father became a recluse, and it’s been up to Jeremy to support the family. But it hasn’t been up to Jeremy alone. The truth is, Jeremy can hear voices. Or, specifically, one voice: the voice of the ghost of Jacob Grimm, one half of the infamous writing duo, The Brothers Grimm. Jacob watches over Jeremy, protecting him from an unknown dark evil whispered about in the space between this world and the next. But when the provocative local girl Ginger Boultinghouse takes an interest in Jeremy (and his unique abilities), a grim chain of events is put into motion. And as anyone familiar with the Grimm Brothers know, not all fairy tales have happy endings. . .

Far Far Away by Tom McNeal is very unique. It has the feel of a fairy tale. It is difficult to place the time when the book takes place and this timeless aspect is very well done. The book is full of quirky characters, none more that Jeremy Johnson Johnson who is obsessed with fairy tales and whom the ghost of Jacob Grimm is a pseudo-father figure. 

The town of Never Better has that otherworldly feel to it. Filled with odd characters that are mostly likeable, especially the very spunky Ginger Boultinghouse. Ginger and her adventures take Jeremy down a path that is both dark and dangerous. The towns secrets are eventually revealed and we start to see people as they are.

Overall, Far Far Away by Tom McNeal is very enjoyable. The story itself is compelling and the writing is very strong. The problem I had with Far Far Away is how annoying Jacob Grimm is. I did not enjoy this ghost narrating much of the story and could not bring myself to like the character at all. Eventually,  as more is revealed about Jacob, he becomes a bit more likeable but overall I could have used with less of him in the book.

Far Far Away will be a delight for fairy tale fans because it does an excellent job of capturing the feel of a fairy tale. The darkness that lurks beneath the surface. The ending is quite exciting and I truly enjoyed the later third of the book the most. Far Far Away by Tom McNeal is a solid choice for fairy tale fans and those that like a story that is a bit dark but not scary.

 Cover images and summary from goodreads.

In The Stacks (18)

What I added to my stacks (and stacks and stacks) this week. I am linking up with Stacking The Shelves by Tynga’s Reviews.

I am still taking it easy on the book buying. I really have to get through my monstrous TBR shelves before I bring any more books into the house.

Kindle

The Cavendish Home For Boys And Girls by Claire Legrand

The Cavendish Home For Boys And Girls by Claire Legrand

Victoria hates nonsense. There is no need for it when your life is perfect. The only smudge on her pristine life is her best friend Lawrence. He is a disaster—lazy and dreamy, shirt always untucked, obsessed with his silly piano. Victoria often wonders why she ever bothered being his friend. (Lawrence does too.)

But then Lawrence goes missing. And he’s not the only one. Victoria soon discovers that The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls is not what it appears to be. Kids go in but come out…different. Or they don’t come out at all.

If anyone can sort this out, it’s Victoria—even if it means getting a little messy.

Pivot Point by Kasie West

Pivot Point (Pivot Point #1) by Kasie West

Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.

In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.

The Lying Game Sara Shepard

The Lying Game (The Lying Game #1) by Sara Shepard

I had a life anyone would kill for.

Then someone did.

The worst part of being dead is that there’s nothing left to live for. No more kisses. No more secrets. No more gossip. It’s enough to kill a girl all over again. But I’m about to get something no one else does–an encore performance, thanks to Emma, the long-lost twin sister I never even got to meet.

Now Emma’s desperate to know what happened to me. And the only way to figure it out is to be me–to slip into my old life and piece it all together. But can she laugh at inside jokes with my best friends? Convince my boyfriend she’s the girl he fell in love with? Pretend to be a happy, care-free daughter when she hugs my parents goodnight? And can she keep up the charade, even after she realizes my murderer is watching her every move?

The Velvet Room by Zilpha Keatley Snyder

The Velvet Room by Zilpha Keatley

The last three years of Robin Williams’s life have been very difficult. She’s had to move with her large, poor family multiple times as her father seeks jobs as a migrant worker. Now, her father has a new job at the McCurdy Ranch and Robin often wanders off in order to cope with the constant change and difficulty surrounding her.

Near the McCurdy Ranch is the Palmeras House, an old abandoned house that Robin is told repeatedly not to explore. However, with a little help, she finds herself inside the building, in the one place it seems she has always been looking for: the Velvet Room. This plush room is the most beautiful place she has ever seen. Robin is fascinated and enchanted, but she can’t help but wonder: Why is it there?

Gregor The Overlander by Suzanne Collins

Gregor The Overlander (The Underland Chronicles #1) by Suzanne Collins

When eleven-year-old Gregor follows his little sister through a grate in the laundry room of their New York apartment, he hurtles into the dark Underland beneath the city. There, humans live uneasily beside giant spiders, bats, cockroaches, and rats, but the fragile peace is about to fall apart.

Gregor wants no part of a conflict between these creepy creatures. He just wants to find his way home. But when he discovers that a strange prophecy foretells a role for him in the Underland’s uncertain future, he realizes it might be the only way to solve the biggest mystery of his life. Little does he know his quest will change him and the Underland forever.

Library

Whatever Happened To Janie by Caroline B Cooney

Whatever Happened To Janie? by Caroline B. Cooney

As Janie Johnson glanced at the face of the ordinary little girl on the milk carton, she was overcome with shock. She recognized that little girl—it was she. How can it possibly be true? But it is.

With the mystery of her kidnapping now unraveled, Janie’s story continues, and the nightmare is not over. No one can bring back or relive the 12 years gone by. The Spring family wants justice, but who is really to blame? The Johnsons know that they must abide by the court decisions made, but it’s difficult to figure out what’s best for everyone.

Janie Johnson or Jenny Spring? Who is she? Certainly there’s enough love for everyone, but how can the two separate families live happily ever after?

 

Shine by Lauren Myracle

Shine by Lauren Myracle

When her best guy friend falls victim to a vicious hate crime, sixteen-year-old Cat sets out to discover who in her small town did it. Richly atmospheric, this daring mystery mines the secrets of a tightly knit Southern community and examines the strength of will it takes to go against everyone you know in the name of justice.

 

Out Of The Easy by Ruta Sepetys

Out Of The Easy by Ruta Sepetys

It’s 1950, and as the French Quarter of New Orleans simmers with secrets, seventeen-year-old Josie Moraine is silently stirring a pot of her own. Known among locals as the daughter of a brothel prostitute, Josie wants more out of life than the Big Easy has to offer.

She devises a plan get out, but a mysterious death in the Quarter leaves Josie tangled in an investigation that will challenge her allegiance to her mother, her conscience, and Willie Woodley, the brusque madam on Conti Street. Josie is caught between the dream of an elite college and a clandestine underworld. New Orleans lures her in her quest for truth, dangling temptation at every turn, and escalating to the ultimate test.

With characters as captivating as those in her internationally bestselling novel Between Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys skillfully creates a rich story of secrets, lies, and the haunting reminder that decisions can shape our destiny.

Fire by Kristin Cashore

Fire by Kristin Cashore

It is not a peaceful time in the Dells. The young King Nash clings to his throne while rebel lords in the north and south build armies to unseat him. The mountains and forests are filled with spies and thieves and lawless men.

This is where Fire lives. With a wild, irresistible appearance and hair the color of flame, Fire is the last remaining human monster. Equally hated and adored, she had the unique ability to control minds, but she guards her power, unwilling to steal the secrets of innocent people. Especially when she has so many of her own.

Then Prince Brigan comes to bring her to King City, The royal family needs her help to uncover the plot against the king. Far away from home, Fire begins to realize there’s more to her power than she ever dreamed. Her power could save the kingdom.

If only she weren’t afraid of becoming the monster her father was.

All cover images and summaries taken from goodreads.

Friday Favorites

Katie from One Page At A Time is looking for New Adult recommendations. I recently read Easy, which I loved, but am still wary of this new genre. Looking forward to seeing which books people recommend.

Mary from The Book Swarm writes about why you would DNF a book. It is an interesting topic which I struggle with. I really always want to finish every book. Sometimes it might be better just to stop reading instead of forcing yourself to finish a book that just isn’t working for you. (I did recently write about a book that I could not get through, Ink by Anna Sun.)

What is this summers Gone Girl? The folks over at Omivoracious have a list of a few contenders. The Shinning Girls is on the top of my TBR stack but there are a few other choices here that you might want to add to your list.

Leila over at Bookshelves Of Doom posted an infographic from goodreads about why people stop reading a book. It is interesting to see reasons people give for putting a book down.

Are you obsessed with lists? I think the main reason I look forward to New Years is all of the end of the year best of lists. Real Simple magazine has a list of 50 Great Books That Will Change Your Life. I really have to love any list that includes Dr. Seuss.

Have you seen the trailer for The Coldest Girl In Coldtown by Holly Black? I cannot wait to get my hands on this book!

 

So that’s all the random things that caught my eye this week. Do you have anything interesting to share? Leave a link in the comments section.