Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Arise (Hereafter #2) by Tara Hudson

Amelia—still caught between life and death—must fight for every moment of her relationship with the human boy Joshua. They can hardly even kiss without Amelia accidentally dematerializing. Looking for answers, they go to visit some of Joshua’s Seer relatives in New Orleans. But even in a city so famously steeped in the supernatural, Amelia ends up with more questions than answers…and becomes increasingly convinced that she and Joshua can never have a future together.Wandering through the French Quarter, Amelia meets other in-between ghosts, and begins to seriously consider joining them. And then she meets Gabrielle. Somehow, against impossible odds, Gaby has found a way to live a sort of half-life...a half-life for which Amelia would pay any price. Torn between two worlds, Amelia must choose carefully, before the evil spirits of the netherworld choose for her.

Before I begin reviewing the book, I just wanna ask, "How gorgeous is this cover?!" I mean seriously, it is perhaps my favorite cover ever, even if it is a creepy gaveyard.

Now, I have been DYING to get my hands on this book, which is the second book in Tara Hudson's Hereafter series, the first book being Hereafter, of course. This is one of my favorite series as of this moment. It's one of the few that doesn't have a female protagonist that drives me insane *cough* Clary from the Immortal Instruments *cough*. That was not-so-subtle example of one lead female who I cannot stand. But Clary is a whole other story; you can read my review expressing my dislike of her in the City of Lost Souls here

But back to Arise. If the cover wasn't amazing enough, the story itself would make up for it. Naturally, I have read a few ghostly love stories but never has one captured my interest for throughout the whole book. Normally I get bored along the way, but Tara Hudson tells Amelia's story in such a way that I had trouble putting this book down. The writing had perfect flow, and obviously, I never came across a dull moment in the book.

As for the plot itself, I was in awe. It's pretty freakin' amazing if I do say so myself. There were so many different twists and turns, all just adding to the suspense and intensity of the dire situation Amelia is faced with. Not only is Amelia on the run from psycho ghosts and other frightening creatures, she is faced with a seemingly impossible decision: should she finally move on and let Joshua live a normal, ghostless life where he is safe from harm, or risk him and everyone else she cares for because of her own selfish wants? I honestly did not want the couple to break up, but of course, the only rational decision would be to do whatever it took to keep Joshua safe.

In this installment, we get introduced to many new faces and also a new setting, for the majority of the book takes place in New Orleans where Joshua's family is meeting for the holidays. This seemed like an excellment setting for the story since New Orleans is so rich with history and ghost stories. In New Orleans, you meet some of Josh's family (aunts, cousins, etc) and also Gabby and her brother. Now, I won't go into too much detail with these characters because if I did, I might be giving away spoilers, and I don't want to ruin the book for anybody. I will say that at first, I didn't like Gaby; I didn't think she could be trusted, but in the end, I really liked her.

I cannot wait for Hudson's next installment which I hope will be just as good as the first two. I would recommend this series to anyone who loves a good ghost story or star-crossed lovers. It's full of twists and turns that will keep you guessing until the very end. This book deservedly received 5 out of 5 stars (well...butterflies actually ;)) from me.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Other Words For Love by Lorraine Zago Rosenthal

When an unexpected inheritance enables Ari to transfer to an elite Manhattan prep school, she makes a wealthy new friend, Leigh. Leigh introduces Ari to the glamorous side of New York—and to her gorgeous cousin, Blake. Ari doesn't think she stands a chance, but amazingly, Blake asks her out. As their romance heats up, they find themselves involved in an intense, consuming relationship. Ari's family worries that she is losing touch with the important things in life, like family, hard work, and planning for the future.

When misfortune befalls Blake's family, he pulls away, and Ari's world drains of color. As she struggles to get over the breakup, Ari must finally ask herself: were their feelings true love . . . or something else?

I loved this book more than I thought I would.

I felt so connected to Ari; the writing style of Ms Rosenthal really lets you get in her head. Ari is just your typical high schooler. Her sister got married and pregnant at 18 so their mother has always been hard on Ari, pushing her to be her best, as a way to right the wrongs of her older sister. For the most part, Ari did just that. However, life isn't always so eay for her. She's been in love with her sister's husband Patrick since she was 10 years old. Her sister also gets very depressed easily, and her kids prefer Ari to their own mother.

The characters spoke out to you. They seemed like real people. Ari's best friend Summer was just a horrible friend. Ari and Summer had been friends forever; Summer was her only friend. And Summer liked to keep it that way. She didn't like when Ari met Leigh and they started hanging out and getting close. Summer was the kind of person who liked having someone they thought was below them to hang around with because she felt it made her look better. I hated her. She really treated Ari badly. Leigh and Ari had a lot in common, and also a rough past. They were good for eachother. But when Ari meets Leigh's cousin Blake, she falls in love instantly. Leigh feels left out after a few months, and when she moves to California, her annd Ari don't part on good terms. I had liked Blake for the most part. But he needed to learn to put his wants ahead of his father.

This book was heart-breaking at times. I was really rooting for Blake and Ari. Ari had gone through so much in a few short months following meeting Leigh. I felt as though I could sort of relate with Ari. She was a migraine sufferer, and so am I. It's hard, I know, and it can be very debilitating. As for her "deformity"(which I don't really want to say, it's sort of embarassing lol), it's not as uncommon as she believes and yes, it is annoying and can make you uncomfortable with yourself, but it's not the worst thing in the world and most people don't even notice, so it's no big deal.

As I said, I really liked this book. Obviously enough to give it 5 stars (err...butterflies actually :)). I would reccommend this book to anyone who is a fan of realistic fiction. I normally don't read too much of it, but I really enjoyed this one. I would say though, that's its probably more for girls, but if you're a guy, go ahead and read it! I won't stop you :)

City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments #5) by Cassandra Clare

The New York Times bestselling Mortal Instruments continues—and so do the thrills and danger for Jace, Clary, and Simon.
Can the lost be reclaimed? What price is too high to pay for love? Who can be trusted when sin and salvation collide? Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series.

Prepare yourselves for a RANT! (Read this at your own risk, can't guarantee I won't spoil the book. My rants are uncontrollable)

This book...I don't even know...too many things bothered me. I suppose a good place to start off is with Clary. SHE'S SO FREAKING USELESS! This girl, throughout the whole book, did absolutely nothing! Okay, maybe that's not true. She did save Jace at the end, so that counts for something. So stabbed him and he's saved, Woo-Hoo! But seriously, that's all she did. She kept making stupid, stupid plans and ignoring everybody who told her that they were indeed stupid. And pleaseeee, everytime she referenced to how Jace wasn't her Jace because he was possessed, I wanted to kill myself. "He was Jace, but he wasn't my Jace", "I had to remind myself, he wasn't really Jace", "My Jace didn't act like this" -___- Oh, and not only does she ignore others when they tell her not to do something, but she doesn't even listen to herself! She didn't want to get close to Jace because he wasn't really her Jace, and you know how she keeps her distance? By making out with him and nearly sleeping with him on numerous occassions, even while repeatedly telling herself that he is not her Jace. And back to her uselessness, the first time she nearly slept with him at this nightclub, she was getting high off faerie glitter while Simon and all the others where trying to figure out a way to save the two of them.

So I will stop complaining about Clary and talk about things I did like. I loved Jordan and Maia! Their parts of the book were so cute and I'm glad they got together. And Simon was always entertaining.

Magnus and Alec, they totally broke my heart at the end. I was so upset. Alec was being such an idiot (almost as big of an idiot as Clary).

Now, before I go on, can I just ask how does one smell boy? There was one part, I don't really remember where, where someone was describing something and they said it "smelled of boy". What does boy smell like? Do boys have a particular smell? Can I go to the store and buy boy in a fragrance? My friend and I were reading this book together and where just like, what??? Also, we cry with our throats now"I could feel the tears in the back of my throat." Yeah...we didn't get that either. Tears don't originate in our throats last time I checked.

Moving on to Sebastian. What a little creep! I always thought he was nuts but then towards the end, he just got plain disturbing. Throughout the book, he kept making inappropriate comments at Clary, his sister! And at the end, it just got weird. He was like in love with her or something. He kept telling her she belonged to him and kept trying to kiss her. I don't care if they weren't raised together, they're still brother and sister and that was just...blehhhh.

Even though this book irritated me, I did enjoy it, for the most part. I will be reading the next book when it is released.

Choker by Elizabeth Woods

Sixteen-year-old Cara Lange has been a loner ever since she moved away from her best and only friend, Zoe, years ago. She eats lunch with the other girls from the track team, but they're not really her friends. Mostly she spends her time watching Ethan Gray from a distance, wishing he would finally notice her, and avoiding the popular girls who call her "Choker" after a humiliating incident in the cafeteria.

Then one day Cara comes home to find Zoe waiting for her. Zoe's on the run from problems at home, and Cara agrees to help her hide. With her best friend back, Cara's life changes overnight. Zoe gives her a new look and new confidence, and next thing she knows, she's getting invited to parties and flirting with Ethan. Best of all, she has her BFF there to confide in.

But just as quickly as Cara's life came together, it starts to unravel. A girl goes missing in her town, and everyone is a suspect—including Ethan. Worse still, Zoe starts behaving strangely, and Cara begins to wonder what exactly her friend does all day when she's at school. You're supposed to trust your best friend no matter what, but what if she turns into a total stranger?

I'm going to start off by first saying that I absolutely love the cover of this book!

But now moving on to the book itself. A lot of what happened in this book was pretty predictable, though I have to admit I wasn't fully expecting the ending. I had a vague idea of what I thought would happen, but wasn't exactly sure. Cara's friend Zoe was a total possessive friend. She gets jealous of Cara going to hang out with other people; basically, she doesn't like Cara having a life that doesn't involve her.

In my honest opinon, Cara was a complete push over. Even when she was suspicious of Zoe, she would just shrug it off because Zoe would get all defensive and deny everything. First of all, if the girl is freaking out and going in denial, than that's a tell-tale sign that she did do something she shouldn't have.

The story behind the title Choker wasn't exactly what I thought it would be. Not that it was bad or anything.

It's really hard to review this book without giving the whole story away, so the review won't be much longer for this one. The ending, it's just weird. Like I said earlier, I sort of saw it coming, but it doesn't take away from the weirdness. I felt so bad for Cara.

Overall, I did enjoy this book, despite its rather predictable story line. The predictability is what kept me from giving it 5 stars, but I would suggest this book to pretty much anybody. Mystery lovers, suspense seekers, whoever :)

The Last Echo (The Body Finder #3) by Kimberly Derting

In the end, all that’s left is an echo.

Violet kept her morbid ability to sense dead bodies a secret from everyone except her family and her childhood-best-friend-turned-boyfriend, Jay Heaton. That is until forensic psychologist Sara Priest discovered Violet’s talent and invited her to use her gift to track down murderers. Now, as she works with an eclectic group of individuals—including mysterious and dangerously attractive Rafe—it’s Violet’s job to help those who have been murdered by bringing their killers to justice.

When Violet discovers the body of a college girl killed by “the girlfriend collector” she is determined to solve the case. But now the serial killer is on the lookout for a new “relationship” and Violet may have caught his eye....

Kimberly Derting is by far one of my favorite authors. I absolutely adore her Body Finder series, and cannot wait for the next book in her Pledge series as well. Therefore, going into this book, I expected nothing but the best. And the best is what I received.

This book was suspenseful...and creepy. I'm not going to lie, the "girlfriend collector" was a major psycho and completely disturbed. I had a feeling that he would eventually go after Violet, but it still didn't take away from the overall feeling I got from the book.

I have to say, my best friend and I agree that Jay is pretty much the best boyfriend ever. He is so understanding and patient with her. And most importantly, he isn't creeped out by her ability. However, Rafe keeps getting in the picture and that's driving me nuts! I want Violet to stay with Jay, and so far so good, but there are these moments when it looks like she may be leaning the other way, and that's when I lose it.

The overall plot was amazing. I never came across a dull moment in this book. I found I actually liked the parts told by the "girlfriend collector" a lot. I don't really know why; I mean, he was totally creeping me out, but it was just...interesting, I suppose I'll call it. :)

If you have never read Derting's Body Finder series, I advise you to do it now. If you're looking for something suspenseful and different, then these books are for you. The writing just flows, and the story will have you sitting on the edge of your seat the whole time you're reading.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Promise (The Lady Quill Chronicles) by D.D. Chant

Dear Reader,
I wish to tell you a tale that began with a promise destined to change the lives of many.
When only a child, Lady Adele of Berron lost her family during a dreadful battle and was betrothed to a stranger.
Lord Rafe of Valrek, only a boy himself when the battle of Calis raged, grew to be a feared warrior and trusted advisor to his King. But sadness filled his past and Adele served only to remind him of all he had lost.
However the promise that bound these two together caused great anger to some.
What, Dear Reader, happened in those days of treachery and darkness? Incline your ear that I may whisper the secrets that you so desire to hear......

Lady Quill

First off, I would like to thank the author for giving me the opportunity to read this book for free. I was so excited going into the book, and was even more ecstatic when I actually began it.

This book was remarkable. D.D. Chant is a very talented writer; the Prologue of the novel drew me in instantly. I liked how it was a letter written by Lady Quill addressed to us, the readers; it was definitely a unique start.

I LOVED the historical aspect. I had been getting into Historical Fiction lately so this was definitely something that quenched my thirst for it. The story itself was captivating, and there were times throughout the book where I didn't want to put it down. The dialogues between the characters seemed natural and far from normal cliches.

I really liked the characters in general. Adele was a very likeable character, however, her friend Eda did get on my nerves just a tad sometimes. Lord Rafe...now, I feel like a lot of the problems the character faced in this book could have all been avoided if Rafe had just been honest about who he really was right from the start, but then, there wouldn't be a story would there? ;)

I felt that the reason behind hiding who he was to Adele at first was sweet in a way. He wanted to get to know his future bride, and to have her like him in turn for who he really was, not just because he was Lord Rafe and their marriage was forced. I liked how their romance blossomed; how he didn't fall instantly in love with her at first sight, but rather, the more he got to know her, the more his feelings began to grow.

Overall, this book was a fantastic start as to what I perceive to be a wonderfully intriguing series. I can't wait for more from D.D. Chant and thank her again for allowing me to review this amazing read.

To learn more about D.D. Chant and her books, visit her GoodReads page by clicking on the link below:

Also, you could visit the following site to buy a copy of the book today!

Here is a trailer for the book:

Book Haul (2)

Hey everyone! So here are some books I've picked up over the last week or so in various locations.

The Things We Carried by Tim O'Brien (college bookstore - have to read over summer for school)

Wayfarer by R. J Anderson (Good Will)

Jessica's Guide to Dating the Darkside by Beth Fantaskey (Good Will)

The Juliet Club by Suzanne Harper (Good Will)

Brida by Paulo Coelho (Good Will - really excited for this one because it is the UK edition! I've never had an international version of a book :D)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Cover Reveal: The Violet Fox by Clare Marshall

Book Name: The Violet Fox
Author: Clare C. Marshall
Publisher: Faery Ink Press (http://www.faeryinkpress.com)
Release date: October 13, 2012
Genre: YA Fantasy
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Violet Fox Goodreads Page: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/14743283-the-violet-fox

Social Media Links:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ClareMarshall13
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/faeryinkpress

There are two kinds of people in the land of Marlenia.

The Marlenians, who live on the surface,

and the Freetors, who are forced to live underground.

The war between them ended two hundred years ago, but the Freetors still fight for the right to live under the sun. Fifteen-year-old Kiera Driscoll embodies the Freetors' hopes as the Violet Fox. In a violet cape and mask, she sneaks around Marlenia City stealing food and freeing her people from slavery.

Then the Elders task her with a secret mission: retrieve a stolen tome that contains the secrets of Freetor magic, something the Marlenians both fear and covet. Kiera must disguise herself as a noblewoman and infiltrate the Marlenian castle.

Before the Freetor-hating Advisor finds out her real identity.

Before her brother is imprisoned because of the secrets he hides.

And before she falls any more in love with the prince she's supposed to hate.

More is happening in the castle than she realizes, and Kiera is faced with a difficult choice. Will she be loyal to her people and their fight for freedom, or will she be loyal to her heart?

Like what you read? The author is hosting a giveaway in which 2 lucky winners will receive an ARC of The Violet Fox. To enter, just click on the following link below:


Starts: July 3, 2012 EST

Ends: July 31, 2012 EST

I would just like to thank Ms Marshall for allowing me to participate in her cover reveal. It was supposed to be up yesterday, but I got home late from my college orientation and didn't have time to do it. But, better late than never! :)

Hope everyone in the U.S.A is having a wonderful (& safe) holiday tonight! Happy Birthday America!

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