Monday, September 29, 2014

*Top Ten Tuesday* Top Ten Books That Were Hard For Me To Read

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week there is a new topic and we all share our thoughts on that topic! I decided it was finally time to jump on board with this wicked fun meme!

Top Ten Books That Were Hard For Me To Read

All of these books were hard to read because they dealt with death and dying and 
truly emotional subjects like rape and bullying.

1. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold

On her way home from school on a snowy December day in 1973, 14-year-old Susie Salmon ("like the fish") is lured into a makeshift underground den in a cornfield and brutally raped and murdered, the latest victim of a serial killer--the man she knew as her neighbor, Mr. Harvey.

2. If I Stay - Gayle Forman 

Choices. Seventeen-year-old Mia is faced with some tough ones: Stay true to her first love—music—even if it means losing her boyfriend and leaving her family and friends behind? Then one February morning Mia goes for a drive with her family, and in an instant, everything changes. Suddenly, all the choices are gone, except one. And it's the only one that matters.

3. Falling Into Place - Amy Zhang

Why? Why did Liz Emerson decide that the world would be better off without her? Why did she give up? Vividly told by an unexpected and surprising narrator, this heartbreaking and nonlinear novel pieces together the short and devastating life of Meridian High’s most popular junior girl. Mass, acceleration, momentum, force—Liz didn’t understand it in physics, and even as her Mercedes hurtles toward the tree, she doesn’t understand it now. How do we impact one another? How do our actions reverberate? What does it mean to be a friend? To love someone? To be a daughter? Or a mother? Is life truly more than cause and effect? 

4. The Truth About Alice - Jennifer Mathieu

Rumor has it that Alice Franklin is a slut. It's written all over the bathroom stall at Healy High for everyone to see. And after star quarterback Brandon Fitzsimmons dies in a car accident, the rumors start to spiral out of control.

In this remarkable debut novel, four Healy High students—the girl who has the infamous party, the car accident survivor, the former best friend, and the boy next door—tell all they know.

But exactly what is the truth about Alice? In the end there's only one person to ask: Alice herself.

5. Torn Away - Jennifer Brown

Jersey Cameron has always loved a good storm. Watching the clouds roll in and the wind pick up. Smelling the electricity in the air. Dancing barefoot in the rain. She lives in the Midwest, after all, where the weather is sure to keep you guessing. Jersey knows what to do when the tornado sirens sound. But she never could have prepared for this.

When her town is devastated by a tornado, Jersey loses everything. As she struggles to overcome her grief, she's sent to live with relatives she hardly knows-family who might as well be strangers. In an unfamiliar place, can Jersey discover that even on the darkest of days, there are some things no tornado can destroy?

In this powerful and poignant novel, acclaimed author Jennifer Brown delivers a story of love, loss, hope, and survival.

6. Prisoner of Night and Fog - Anne Blankman

In 1930s Munich, danger lurks behind dark corners, and secrets are buried deep within the city. But Gretchen Müller, who grew up in the National Socialist Party under the wing of her "uncle" Dolf, has been shielded from that side of society ever since her father traded his life for Dolf's, and Gretchen is his favorite, his pet.

Uncle Dolf is none other than Adolf Hitler. And Gretchen follows his every command.

Until she meets a fearless and handsome young Jewish reporter named Daniel Cohen. Gretchen should despise Daniel, yet she can't stop herself from listening to his story: that her father, the adored Nazi martyr, was actually murdered by an unknown comrade. She also can't help the fierce attraction brewing between them, despite everything she's been taught to believe about Jews.

As Gretchen investigates the very people she's always considered friends, she must decide where her loyalties lie. Will she choose the safety of her former life as a Nazi darling, or will she dare to dig up the truth—even if it could get her and Daniel killed?

From debut author Anne Blankman comes this harrowing and evocative story about an ordinary girl faced with the extraordinary decision to give up everything she's ever believed . . . and to trust her own heart instead.

7. Side Effects May Vary - Julie Murphy

What if you'd been living your life as if you were dying—only to find out that you had your whole future ahead of you?

When sixteen-year-old Alice is diagnosed with leukemia, her prognosis is grim. To maximize the time she does have, she vows to spend her final months righting wrongs—however she sees fit. She convinces her friend Harvey, who she knows has always had feelings for her, to help her with a crazy bucket list that's as much about revenge (humiliating her ex-boyfriend and getting back at her archnemesis) as it is about hope (doing something unexpectedly kind for a stranger). But just when Alice's scores are settled, she goes into remission.

Now Alice is forced to face the consequences of all that she's said and done, as well as her true feelings for Harvey. But has she caused irreparable damage to the people around her—and to the one person who matters most?

Julie Murphy's Side Effects May Vary is a fearless and moving tour de force about love, life, and facing your own mortality.

8. Me Since You - Laura Wiess

Are there any answers when someone you love makes a tragic choice?

Before and After. That's how Rowan Areno sees her life now. Before: she was a normal sixteen-year-old--a little too sheltered by her police officer father and her mother. After: everything she once believed has been destroyed in the wake of a shattering tragedy, and every day is there to be survived.

If she had known, on that Friday in March when she cut school, that a random stranger's shocking crime would have traumatic consequences, she never would have left campus. If the crime video never went viral, maybe she could have saved her mother, grandmother--and herself--from the endless replay of heartache and grief.

Finding a soul mate in Eli, a witness to the crime who is haunted by losses of his own, Rowan begins to see there is no simple, straightforward path to healing wounded hearts. Can she learn to trust, hope, and believe in happiness again?

9. Faking Normal - Courtney C. Stevens

Alexi Littrell hasn't told anyone what happened to her over the summer. Ashamed and embarrassed, she hides in her closet and compulsively scratches the back of her neck, trying to make the outside hurt more than the inside does.

When Bodee Lennox, the quiet and awkward boy next door, comes to live with the Littrells, Alexi discovers an unlikely friend in "the Kool-Aid Kid," who has secrets of his own. As they lean on each other for support, Alexi gives him the strength to deal with his past, and Bodee helps her find the courage to finally face the truth.

10. Maybe One Day - Melissa Kantor

Zoe and her best friend, Olivia, have always had big plans for the future, none of which included Olivia getting sick. Still, Zoe is determined to put on a brave face and be positive for her friend.

Even when she isn't sure what to say.

Even when Olivia misses months of school.

Even when Zoe starts falling for Calvin, Olivia's crush.

The one thing that keeps Zoe moving forward is knowing that Olivia will beat this, and everything will go back to the way it was before. It has to. Because the alternative is too terrifying for her to even imagine.



Saturday, September 27, 2014

*Gizmos Early Reviews* Gray Bishop (Cornerstone Run Trilogy #2) by Kelly Meade

**I received this E-book for free via NetGalley/Intermix in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**

*Synopsis*

Some people need something to fight for…

With the attacks on their homes escalating and human half-breeds seeking sanctuary among them, the loup garou are reaching their breaking point. Two, in particular.

After failing to stop his little brother’s kidnapping years ago, Bishop McQueen angrily broods on his shame, though no one else blames him.

Jillian Reynolds is still dealing with a tragic accident that took everything she ever wanted from life. And her attraction to Bishop is only making things more difficult.

When word reaches them that Jillian's hometown is under attack, the Alpha takes Bishop, Jillian, and a group of enforcers to assist in the battle. And it is in this chaos that both Bishop and Jillian will have to face their pasts—and the true feelings they have for each other—if they are going to survive.


*My Thoughts*

Black Rook introduced readers to Meade's new Paranormal Romance trilogy called Cornerstone Run. The main protagonists were Brynn Atwood, a low-level Magus whose visions were never taken seriously by her people, and Loup Garou Rook McQueen, the youngest son of Cornerstone Alpha Thomas McQueen. Gray Bishop picks up right where Black Rook left off, but changes protagonists to older brother Bishop, and Jillian Reynolds, daughter of the Alpha of Springwell, Delaware.

While Jillian lives with the memories and reminders of the most painful loss a person can experience, Gray made a vow to protect his brothers Rook and Knight from harm no matter what the ultimate cost were. He hasn't forgiven himself for allowing the attacks on his brothers to happen, or for Knight to find himself a prime target of the hybrids. As a female Alpha, Jillian's time for finding another mate is almost as important as defeating the hybrids and saving her people from extinction.

Bishop and Jillian's rock'em sock'em relationship and ultimate romance, is filled with high intensity emotions, major werewolf political games, and sky rocketing losses. If you have read any other novel by Meade, you know that she's doesn't spare readers hearts, or emotions. She twists romantic scenes, with dangerous ones, and the death toll is as high as any disaster movie or dystopian novel.

Mead puts her characters into harms way, and makes them struggle mightily in order to survive with their sanity in check. One would say that you shouldn't get too comfortable with your favorite characters, for Mead will definitely rip out your heart, and laugh maniacally while eating a large bowl of her favorite ice cream.

Except for Knight's headache inducing nonsense and angst, Gray Bishop isn't necessarily a bad follow up to Black Rook. No worries about Brynn or Rook disappearing into the background any time soon. While Rook has stood up and faced all challenges sent his way, Brynn still has a part to play and her visions are definitely an important part of the storyline.

I find myself adoring Shay Butler. I love how she finally found her way out of the darkness, and clings to the fact that she is still important enough to keep on living and finding her own HEA and helping others. She is definitely more interesting than Knight this time out.

White Knight (Cornerstone Run Trilogy #3) the final novel in the trilogy, releases January 20, 2015 by Intermix. Knight and Shay will be the main protagonists in White Knight, and perhaps we will finally cover the truth about who is behind the Hybrid creations, and why.



Author - Kelly Meade
Title - Gray Bishop (Cornerstone Run # 2)
Published by Intermix
Releases: October 21, 2014
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Format: E-Book 313 pages



Friday, September 26, 2014

*Stacking the Shelves* Featuring Gray Bishop by Kelly Meade

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

Stacking the Shelves for the weeks of September 21 thru September 27, 2014

Welcome back!  This has been a relatively light week in regards to books, and that is perfect acceptable to me! Time for me to use the rest of the months in this year, and get caught up on books I really want to read!

Received via NetGalley - Penguin Group (Intermix)

Received via NetGalley - Disney Hyperion

Received via NetGalley - Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Pre-Order 47North via Amazon Digital Services

Thank you for stopping by! Your continued support is greatly appreciated! 


Thursday, September 25, 2014

*Gizmos Early Reviews* Invisible (The Twixt #2) by Dawn Metcalf

**I received this E-book for free from NetGalley/Harlequin Teen in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**

*Synopsis*

Some things lie beneath the surface. 

Invisible. 

With the power to change everything. 

Joy Malone wants it all—power, freedom and the boyfriend who loves her. Yet when an unstoppable assassin is hired to kill her, Joy learns that being the girl with the Sight comes with a price that might be too high to pay. Love will be tested, lives will be threatened, and everyone Joy knows and cares about will be affected by her decision to stand by Ink or to leave the Twixt forever. 

Her choice is balanced on a scalpel's edge and the consequences will be more life-altering than anyone can guess.


*My Thoughts*

"Sometimes we must chose immediately unpleasant things in order to prevent greater unpleasantness." Ink

Indelible introduced readers to Dawn Metcalf's world of the Twixt, and her protagonist Joy Malone. Invisible digs even deeper. Joy is a human who has the Sight which means she can see the Twixt aka the Folk. This is a world where scribes like Indelible Ink, and his sister Invisible Inq, brand humans and Twixt using a person's signaturae, or True Name.

Now 17, Joy has spent the past 5 months getting acclimated to the world of the Twixt, her boyfriend Ink, and the fact that she is more powerful and dangerous than anyone realized. Even though Joy and her family are protected by a Council Edict, she is still the only human to ever break her bonds to the Twixt, while keeping her freedom and her eyes, and that means enemies. Joy's ability to erase a signaturae, scare the Twixt to the point of putting out a hit on her with a rather formidable opponent.

Joy's determination to remain free with Ink, while also protecting her friends, and her family, make for some interesting decisions and choices. I don't mind characters who make mistakes but can learn quickly from them. If characters don't grow in that regard, it definitely makes for some rather unpleasant reading. Joy's mistakes while glaring, aren't intentionally harmful to anyone.

Joy spends a whole lot of face time with Ink, which I'm sure readers will gobble up like Tofurky on Thanksgiving day. Joy's brother Stefan finally appears in the series, and has some interesting abilities. I'm not sure we've dug deep enough into him, or who he actually works for, but I'm sure Metcalf will lead us there eventually. I haven't yet come to completely trust Inq yet, but I do like the Cabana Boys and Filly who shocks Joy with a surprising revelation which changes absolutely everything.

Although I have a "few" questions about the ending, and the fact that Joy made a whole lot of interesting mistakes along the way, when all is said and done, Invisible is definitely a book readers should consider picking up. Metcalf gives readers a glimpse into the Twixt Council, Joy's adversaries, and what she can expect from them in the future. I'm appreciative of the fact that Invisible didn't fall flat on its face like other sequels I shall not name.

Apparently Invisible is the second of four scheduled novels in the Twixt series with Inviolate releasing June of 2015, and Invincible in 2016. I shall be continuing this series.



Title - Invisible (The Twixt # 2)
Author - Dawn Metcalf
Published by Harlequin Teen
Releases: September 30, 2014
Genre: YA, Paranormal Romance
Format: E-Book 380 pages



*Gizmos Reviews* Cover Reveal & Giveaway! REBELLION, book 3 in the Elysium Chronicles

Today, J.A. Souders and Rockstar Book Tours are revealing the cover for REBELLION, book 3 in the Elysium Chronicles releasing in June 9, 2015! Check out the gorgeous cover and enter to win the books!



On to the reveal! 


*Synopsis*

Not Yet Available from Publisher

Title: REBELLION
Author: J.A. Souders
Publisher: TOR Teen
Pub. Date: June 9, 2015
Find it: Goodreads



About J.A. Souders 

J.A. SOUDERS is the author of the Elysium Chronicles and lives in the land of sunshine and palm trees with her husband and two children where she spends her time writing about the monsters under the bed, day dreaming about living in an underwater colony, and failing miserably at playing video games.



Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive physical copies of RENEGADE AND REVELATIONS plus the eNovellas. And ASK AGAIN LATER by Liz Czukas. If you have J.A.s books already, she will do an amazon or book depository gift card of the same value. International.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

*Waiting on Wednesday* Featuring The Spiritglass Charade by Colleen Gleason


"Waiting On Wednesday” is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at “Breaking the Spine”, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating. 

This weeks selection is...The Spiritglass Charade by Colleen Gleason

Loved the first book, so, naturally I can't wait to get my greedy little hands on the next!

What are YOU waiting on?


Synopsis

After the Affair of the Clockwork Scarab, Evaline Stoker and Mina Holmes are eager to help Princess Alix with a new case. Seventeen-year-old Willa Aston is obsessed with spiritual mediums, convinced she is speaking with her mother from beyond the grave. What seems like a case of spiritualist fraud quickly devolves into something far more menacing: someone is trying to make Willa "appear lunatic," using an innocent-looking spiritglass to control her. The list of clues piles up: an unexpected murder, a gang of pickpockets, and the return of vampires to London. But are these events connected? As Uncle Sherlock would say, "there are no coincidences." It will take all of Mina's wit and Evaline's muscle to keep London's sinister underground at bay.

Expected publication: October 7th 2014 by Chronicle Books



Tuesday, September 23, 2014

*Top Ten Tuesday Presents* Top Ten Books On My Fall To-Be-Read list

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week there is a new topic and we all share our thoughts on that topic! I decided it was finally time to jump on board with this wicked fun meme!

Top Ten Books on my Fall TBR List: (September 22 thru December 21, 2014)

1. Gathering Darkness (Falling Kingdoms # 3) - Morgan Rhodes

2. The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters

3. Tainted Blood (Generation V # 3) - M.L. Brennan

4. Mortal Heart (His Fair Assassin # 3) - Robin LeFevers
*Note* While I do have a copy of this book, it's corrupted and can only be read on my computer. I'll probably wait until it releases and borrow it via library.

5. Seventh Grave and No Body (Charley Davidson # 7) - Darynda Jones

6. The Queen of the Zombie Hearts (White Rabbit Chronicles # 3) - Gena Showalter

7. Broken Soul (Jane Yellowrock # 8) - Faith Hunter
*Note* Blog Tour coming to Gizmos Reviews on October 7, 2014*

8. The Young Elites (The Young Elites # 1) - Marie Lu

9. Black Widow (Elemental Assassin # 12) - Jennifer Estep
*Note* Very happy to hear that there WILL be a 13th novel in this series! WOOT!

10. City of Eternal Night (Crescent City # 2) - Kristen Painter






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