Monday, January 28, 2013

This just in!

Just scored got this in the mail today from Macmillan Children's Publishing. JACKPOT!

From left to right: Crewel, Unremembered, SCARLET!!!!, Eve & Adam

Here are the summaries of my little treasures:

Crewel (Available now):

Enter a tangled world of secrets and intrigue where a girl controls other’s destinies, but not her own.

Sixteen-year-old Adelice Lewys has always been special. When her parents discover her gift—the ability to weave the very fabric of reality—they train her to hide it. For good reason, they don’t want her to become one of the elite, beautiful, and deadly women who determine what people eat, where they live, how many children they have, and even when they die.

But Adelice is forced to into this powerful group, and she must learn to navigate the dangerous politics at play. Caught in a web of lies and forbidden romance, she must unravel the sinister truth behind her own unspeakable power. Her world is hanging by a thread, and Adelice, alone, can decide to save it—or destroy it.

Unremembered (March 5, 2013):

When Freedom Airlines flight 121 went down over the Pacific Ocean, no one ever expected to find survivors. Which is why the sixteen-year-old girl discovered floating among the wreckage—alive—is making headlines across the globe.

Even more strange is that her body is miraculously unharmed and she has no memories of boarding the plane. She has no memories of her life before the crash. She has no memories period. No one knows how she survived. No one knows why she wasn’t on the passenger manifest. And no one can explain why her DNA and fingerprints can’t be found in a single database in the world.

Crippled by a world she doesn’t know, plagued by abilities she doesn’t understand, and haunted by a looming threat she can’t remember, Seraphina struggles to piece together her forgotten past and discover who she really is. But with every clue only comes more questions. And she’s running out of time to answer them.

Her only hope is a strangely alluring boy who claims to know her from before the crash. Who claims they were in love. But can she really trust him? And will he be able to protect her from the people who have been making her forget?

From popular young adult author Jessica Brody comes a compelling and suspenseful new sci-fi series, set in a world where science knows no boundaries, memories are manipulated, and true love can never be forgotten.

Scarlet (February 5, 2013, I think I'm swooning):

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She's trying to break out of prison--even though if she succeeds, she'll be the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit's grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn't know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother's whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.  

Eve & Adam (Available now):

In the beginning, there was an apple –

And then there was a car crash, a horrible injury, and a hospital. But before Evening Spiker's head clears a strange boy named Solo is rushing her to her mother’s research facility. There, under the best care available, Eve is left alone to heal.

Just when Eve thinks she will die – not from her injuries, but from boredom—her mother gives her a special project: Create the perfect boy.

Using an amazingly detailed simulation, Eve starts building a boy from the ground up. Eve is creating Adam. And he will be just perfect . . . won’t he?


Friday, January 25, 2013

Freebee Friday!

This winter has been the coldest I can remember. I'm talking -2 to 1 degree temperatures. This is NOT the norm for us. Anyway, a friend showed me this video and it made me laugh. I could only hope for temperatures like the ones they're having!

Happy Friday, my friends!


Friday, January 11, 2013

Freebee Friday!

Feelin' a little down? Maybe you just want a good chuckle? Check out this website:

Happy Friday, everyone!


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Fault in Our Stars
By: John Green
Genre: YA Contemporary
Rating: PG-13, one closed door, somewhat vague sex scene
Spoilers: No
Coffee Beans: 4/5
Cover: Simplistic but good
Instalove Factor: Not really
My Personal Recommendation:  Read it
Opening Line: “Late in the winter of my seventeenth year, my mother decided I was depressed, presumably because I rarely left the house, spent quite a lot of time in bed, read the same book over and over, ate infrequently, and devoted quite a bit of my abundant free time to thinking about death.”
Favorite Line: “As he read, I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once.” (Pg 82, ebook)

Publisher’s Summary
Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.

Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning-author John Green’s most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.

My Review
The Fault in Our Stars isn’t a cheerful sunny YA book with a happy ending. It’s about two teens who have cancer (albeit in remission) and find each other. It’s not so much a book about broken people finding romance or about self discovery or redemption. It’s about love and loss and how life can be really sucky sometimes; but at the same time, be really great. A lot of times, there is no meaning behind something bad that happens, no greater purpose, or silver lining. Sometimes, it just has to happen. And we grieve, and we mourn, and we live on.

I loved this book for so many reasons. The writing of Mr. John Green was just amazing, the dark humor was commendable. I thought the relationship these kids shared through their cancer brought a strong sinew of attachment between them that was stronger than a “normal” relationship created in normal YA books. The characters (Hazel Grace, Agustus, Isaac, and Peter Van Houten) are unique and well written. Hazel Grace and Agustus are so honest with each other and it’s a breath of fresh air. Neither on is trying to impress the other, they realize there’s more to their side effect of cancer than that.

And yes, there were several times I laughed or smiled; but there were also several times where my throat tightened and my eyes teared up. Things happen in life that we don’t think should happen, and sometimes those things sneak up on us and hit us in our blind side so hard that we see stars, and the fault in those stars.
In the end, the pros outweighed the cons of this book (it seemed to drag a little towards the end). I highly recommend this book to readers who enjoyed books with the emotional impact  of The Sky is Everywhere, the reality of books like Zero, and the good writing found in Wanderlove.

Check it out.


Monday, January 7, 2013

There's nothing like a good song

One of the many memories I have growing up, is that our life was never without music. In the house, in the car, our mom always had it playing (she was also an aerobics instructor). I’ve had a background of music from Air to Enya to CCR to Simon & Garfunkel to the Beach Boys and all other kinds of oldies. Then, as I developed my own tastes, I spread my wings even further to cover such great bands as New Kids on the Block and Backstreet Boys (Spare me the judgment, I was in elementary school for the former, but concede that I was old enough to know better for the latter.). From The Offspring in 6th grade (THANK YOU Jeremy) to BeastieBoys, POD, Dr. Dre, Juvenile & Chingy, and Jars of Clay in high school. Then there was all the amazing rock that came out of the 90's--my favorite of which was Nirvana

I went through my serious rock/kill the puppies music to rap & hip hop stage in high school as well. From George Winston and Yo Yo Ma to Mumford & Sons and The Civil Wars in my college & post college years. But I’ve never ventured into country (except for a select few of Carrie Underwood and one or two from Taylor Swift’s new album, Red). Wait…there was that one Alan Jackson CD in Jr. High….

Blessed by such an eclectic background of songs, I can find pleasure in almost any type of music. Sure I have strong preferences as well as aversions to certain kinds of music over others, but mostly, I like ‘em all. We all have certain songs or artists we listen to when we’re in certain moods (I really like Korn when I’m pissed or in a particularly vengeful mood, not gonna lie). Sometimes, when we’re particularly palatable, the music shapes our emotions and days. I really believe music (like many things) can be that powerful.

When I’m working on a books, I tend to find that a certain band or soundtrack really speaks to me while I’m writing. As a result, whenever I listen to said music now, I’m instantly consumed by the book I was writing at the time. Case and point: Ludovico Einaudi for White City, AFI for Edge of Heaven, and A Perfect Circle/Imagine Dragons/KDrew for my Outcast Series (Caste).

The point is this: a good song is a lot like a good book. The lyrics, the music, the atmosphere of the song can all come together to tell an amazing story. A lot of times, (whether it’s just a score or a particularly impactful(ing?) lyrical arrangement) I can get inspired by a single song. Whether it’s a story that’s born in my head, a spark for a story that sprung from a line in one of the stanzas, the background music I need to set the tone for a scene I’m writing, or whatever, I couldn’t live very productively without music in my life.

I feel that strongly about it.

Also, you can find pretty good titles in song lyrics.

Here's a list of a few more recently inspirational songs/artists on YouTube. Take a listen, you may find something new you like. 


Friday, January 4, 2013

Freebee Friday!

Grumpy Cat is one of my favorite things out on the net right now. Enjoy one of my favorites. :)

Cat Had Fun Once