Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: The Great Hunt by Wendy Higgins


My TBR list is always growing and I thought it would be fun to share my anticipation for those books with all of you. This is not my own original meme; it belongs to Breaking the Spine. It specifically spotlights upcoming releases. As it implies in the title, I'll be posting this meme on Wednesdays. Please feel free to comment and let me know what books you guys are waiting on as well!

Publication Date: March 8, 2016

Synopsis: Kill the beast. Win the girl.

A strange beast stirs fear in the kingdom of Lochlanach, terrorizing towns with its brutality and hunger. In an act of desperation, a proclamation is sent to all of Eurona—kill the creature and win the ultimate prize: the daughter of King Lochson’s hand in marriage.

Princess Aerity understands her duty to the kingdom though it pains her to imagine marrying a stranger. It would be foolish to set her sights on any particular man in the great hunt, but when a brooding local hunter, Paxton Seabolt, catches her attention, there’s no denying the unspoken lure between them…or his mysterious resentment.

Paxton is not keen on marriage. Nor does he care much for spoiled royals and their arcane laws. He’s determined to keep his focus on the task at hand—ridding the kingdom of the beast and protecting his family—yet Princess Aerity continues to challenge his notions with her unpredictability and charm. But as past secrets collide with present desires, dire choices threaten everything Paxton holds dear.

Inspired by the Grimm Brothers’ tale, “The Singing Bone,” New York Times bestselling author Wendy Higgins delivers a dark fantasy filled with rugged hunters, romantic tension, outlawed magic, and a princess willing to risk all to save her people.

First of all, I have heard AMAZING things about Wendy Higgin's Sweet Evil series though I haven't picked it up yet. I was instantly drawn to this book by its cover because it's so entrancing! It just looks so mysterious and has this "come hither" look. Is it just me? After I read the synopsis and saw that it's inspired by a Grimm Brother's Tale with brooding leading male, I immediately added this to my TBR.

Info about the Author:


Bio: Wendy Higgins is the USA Today and NY Times bestselling author of the SWEET EVIL series from HarperTeen, the high fantasy duology THE GREAT HUNT, and her independently published Irish Fantasy SEE ME.

After earning a Creative Writing degree from George Mason University and a Masters in Curriculum and Instruction from Radford, Wendy taught high school English until achieving her dream job as a full-time writer.

Wendy lives on the Eastern Shore of Virginia with her husband, daughter, son, and little doggie Rue.

Connect with Wendy: Website | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Tumblr | Facebook | Goodreads |

Monday, October 26, 2015

Wicked Reads: Mini Review of Slasher Girls & Monster Boys + Halloween Must-Reads & Twitter Sweepstakes



We've finally reached the week of Halloween! I know all of you are looking for spooky reads to get you in the mood and I've got some suggestions here for you!

4/5 Stars
Details of the Book
Hardcover, 385 pages
Published by Dial Books, 
an imprint of Penguin Group
Publication Date: August 18, 2015

Synopsis: A host of the smartest young adult authors come together in this collection of scary stories and psychological thrillers curated by Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea’s April Genevieve Tucholke.

Each story draws from a classic tale or two—sometimes of the horror genre, sometimes not—to inspire something new and fresh and terrifying. There are no superficial scares here; these are stories that will make you think even as they keep you on the edge of your seat. From bloody horror to supernatural creatures to unsettling, all-too-possible realism, this collection has something for any reader looking for a thrill.

Fans of TV’s The Walking Dead, True Blood, and American Horror Story will tear through tales by these talented authors:

Stefan Bachmann, Leigh Bardugo, Kendare Blake, A. G. Howard, Jay Kristoff, Marie Lu, Jonathan Maberry, Danielle Paige, Carrie Ryan, Megan Shepherd, Nova Ren Suma, McCormick Templeman, April Genevieve Tucholke, and Cat Winters

Mini Review: I don't usually reach for Horror stories, but my co-bloggers and I really enjoyed reading these stories to one another. Though since none of us are very knowledgeable about the Horror genre, we definitely felt like we misunderstood a few of the stories. Nova Ren Suma's The Birds of Azalea Street and McCormick Templeman's A Girl Who Dreamed of Snow in particular. There was definitely some missing piece we needed to fully understand these. Our favorite stories are what I could call Revenge Stories or stories of Divine Intervention lol. It was a lot of fun reading this book and it's perfect to get you in the Halloween spirit. 

Our Favorite Stories:

Fat Girl with a Knife by Jonathan Maberry. We never realized that horror could be this funny.

The Girl Without a Face by Marie Lu. A super creepy read with an oddly satisfying conclusion.

Sleepless by Jay Kristoff. This was awesome! This is the kind of horror I can read over and over again with an extremely satisfying and revengeful ending.

Other Spooky Reads suggestions:

Synopsis: Romeo and Juliet meets Children of the Corn in this one-of-a-kind romantic horror.
“When you fall in love, you will carve out your heart and throw it into the deepest ocean. You will be all in—blood and salt.”

These are the last words Ash Larkin hears before her mother returns to the spiritual commune she escaped long ago. But when Ash follows her to Quivira, Kansas, something sinister and ancient waits among the rustling cornstalks of this village lost to time.

Ash is plagued by memories of her ancestor, Katia, which harken back to the town’s history of unrequited love and murder, alchemy and immortality. Charming traditions soon give way to a string of gruesome deaths, and Ash feels drawn to Dane, a forbidden boy with secrets of his own.

As the community prepares for a ceremony five hundred years in the making, Ash must fight not only to save her mother, but herself—and discover the truth about Quivira before it’s too late. Before she’s all in—blood and salt.

Brittany's Full Review of Blood & Salt


~ ~ ~



Synopsis: It's the accident season, the same time every year. Bones break, skin tears, bruises bloom.

The accident season has been part of seventeen-year-old Cara's life for as long as she can remember. Towards the end of October, foreshadowed by the deaths of many relatives before them, Cara's family becomes inexplicably accident-prone. They banish knives to locked drawers, cover sharp table edges with padding, switch off electrical items - but injuries follow wherever they go, and the accident season becomes an ever-growing obsession and fear.

But why are they so cursed? And how can they break free? 

Brittany's Full Review of The Accident Season

~ ~ ~


Synopsis: The dark will bring your worst nightmares to light, in this gripping and eerie survival story, perfect for fans of James Dashner and Neil Gaiman.

On Marin’s island, sunrise doesn’t come every twenty-four hours—it comes every twenty-eight years. Now the sun is just a sliver of light on the horizon. The weather is turning cold and the shadows are growing long.

Because sunset triggers the tide to roll out hundreds of miles, the islanders are frantically preparing to sail south, where they will wait out the long Night.

Marin and her twin brother, Kana, help their anxious parents ready the house for departure. Locks must be taken off doors. Furniture must be arranged. Tables must be set. The rituals are puzzling—bizarre, even—but none of the adults in town will discuss why it has to be done this way.

Just as the ships are about to sail, a teenage boy goes missing—the twins’ friend Line. Marin and  Kana are the only ones who know the truth about where Line’s gone, and the only way to rescue him is by doing it themselves. But Night is falling. Their island is changing.

And it may already be too late.

Nikki's Review to come soon!


~ ~ ~


TWITTER SWEEPSTAKES!

Penguin Teen is hosting a sweepstakes called #TwitterGhostStory which is a week long event starting today (Oct 26th) that ends on Halloween, Oct 31st, where you write a spooky story in 140 characters or less using the #TwitterGhostStory hashtag. There will even be a lot of Penguin authors participating, so be sure to check out the hashtag and enter your own story for a chance to win a prize pack of the Wicked Reads featured titles!

Friday, October 23, 2015

Sword and Verse by Kathy MacMillan ARC Review + Giveaway

3.5/5 Stars
Details of the Book
paperback ARC, 378 pages
Published by HarperTeen,
an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
Publication Date: January 19, 2016

Synopsis: Raisa was just a child when she was sold to work as a slave in the kingdom of Qilara. Despite her young age, her father was teaching her to read and write, grooming her to take his place as a Learned One. In Qilara, the Arnathim, like Raisa, are the lowest class, and literacy is a capital offense. What’s more, only the king, prince, tutor, and tutor-in-training are allowed to learn the very highest order language, the language of the gods. So when the tutor-in-training is executed for teaching slaves this sacred language, and Raisa is selected to replace her, Raisa knows any slipup on her part could mean death.
Keeping her secret is hard enough, but the romance that’s been growing between her and Prince Mati isn’t helping matters. Then Raisa is approached by the Resistance—an underground army of slave rebels—to help liberate Arnath slaves. She wants to free her people, but that would mean aiding a war against Mati. As Raisa struggles with what to do, she discovers a secret that the Qilarites have been hiding for centuries—one that, if uncovered, could bring the kingdom to its knees.

Sword and Verse reads exactly how I want historical fiction novels to read. There is a lot of information, a very detailed setting, but with twists that change the original story. I don't think that Sword and Verse is actually a historical fiction, but I really wish that more books from that genre were more like this one. Sword and Verse would have benefited from being broken up into two books so that MacMillan would have had more time and space to develop the plot and the characters. The pacing of the book goes from to slow to BAM—you've advanced months or even years forward in time. At times, it worked and during other times, it didn't. I really like Raisa and Mati's relationship, and I especially loved how much faith Mati had in Raisa, despite everything she put him through. However, I have to say that I found Raisa to be really frustrating at times; there may have been a few instances when I wanted to shake her a bit haha. All in all, it was an interesting read, but it would have been better if some of it's plot devices were expanded upon. 



Strengths/Likes:

1) I really liked how the religious aspects tied into the plot. They wasn't obnoxiously in your face but well incorporated into the culture of the society. It really added to the foundation of the plot and immersed you into the world that MacMillan created. 

2) I totally ship Raisa and Mati. You can see their love brewing from a mile away. No matter what was happening in the plot, I was rooting for them. Even at the times where Raisa found herself doubting their relationship—I BELIEVED.



3) Sword and Verse reads like a historical fiction novel and I really enjoyed that. The plot and the setting reminded me of Ancient Egypt, especially in regards to how the government was run and the description of the tombs.

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) The pacing of the book to be pretty odd at times. There were sections where I felt that it was moving by slowly and then suddenly the plot would advance rapidly almost out of nowhere. 

2) This book would have been better off as a duology because the plot and the character relationships could have been better developed. Sword and Verse covers the story of Raisa and Mati from when they are little kids until they are young adults and that's a lot of time to cover. MacMillan was successful in how much information and detail she was able to put into the plot, but if given more time and space for a sequel, I think that the story would have benefited from it.  

3) At times, I didn't really understand certain characters' personalities or motives. Even though you get to know Raisa and Mati as Sword and Verse progresses, they sometimes do really out-of-character things that just don't add up. For example, Mati is a very level-headed and loving character, but randomly he had outbursts that didn't make sense or go along with what I thought I knew of the character. 


4) I wish there was more dialogue between the characters. There are long sections of prose which are well-written but I think more dialogue would have developed the character's relationships more. 


Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) "Don't you like it?" Mati asked. "I know it isn't anything special—

"I love it," I whispered quickly. I came so close to telling him about my father then, but I was afraid to—or maybe I didn't want to remind him how different we were. 

Mati drew me closer and kissed my neck. "Tell Laiyonea you found it on the beach," he said, his words buzzing against my skin. "No one will know what it really is but us."

"What is it really?" I asked carefully. My skin seemed to dance up away from my bones, waiting his answer. 

He looked right into my eyes. I very nearly melted away into nothing. "It means you're mine, and I'm yours, Raisa. It means I love you."

2) I froze, then turned on my side so that he couldn't see my face, but I was still within the circle of his arms. "You cared for her," I said to the dim library.

"Yes, of course I—Raisa, don't be ridiculous." He kissed my neck, working his way up to my ear, and when he got there he whispered, "I never have loved, and I never will love, anyone the way I love you." He pushed himself up and faced me, as though to make sure I believed him. I did. No one could doubt his fervent tone. It lit me on fire and made me forget what we were talking about, so that when he flopped back down and went on, it took me a moment to follow.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro


My TBR list is always growing and I thought it would be fun to share my anticipation for those books with all of you. This is not my own original meme; it belongs to Breaking the Spine. It specifically spotlights upcoming releases. As it implies in the title, I'll be posting this meme on Wednesdays. Please feel free to comment and let me know what books you guys are waiting on as well!


Publication Date: March 1, 2016

Synopsis: The last thing sixteen-year-old Jamie Watson–writer and great-great-grandson of the John Watson–wants is a rugby scholarship to Sherringford, a Connecticut prep school just an hour away from his estranged father. But that’s not the only complication: Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, the famous detective’s enigmatic, fiercely independent great-great-granddaughter, who’s inherited not just his genius but also his vices, volatile temperament, and expertly hidden vulnerability. Charlotte has been the object of his fascination for as long as he can remember–but from the moment they meet, there’s a tense energy between them, and they seem more destined to be rivals than anything else.

Then a Sherringford student dies under suspicious circumstances ripped straight from the most terrifying of the Holmes stories, and Jamie and Charlotte become the prime suspects. Convinced they’re being framed, they must race against the police to conduct their own investigation. As danger mounts, it becomes clear that nowhere is safe and the only people they can trust are each other.

Equal parts tender, thrilling, and hilarious, A Study in Charlotte is the first in a trilogy brimming with wit and edge-of-the-seat suspense.

First of all, the author has a great name if I do say so myself ;P I know there are a lot of Sherlock retellings/reimaginings out there but I have yet to find one where Holmes is played by a girl (even though I know they're out there). I'm really picky about mystery thrillers especially when they are Sherlock adaptations, which is strange considering I haven't read the original books. For shame, I know. 

Info about the author:


Bio: Brittany Cavallaro is a poet, fiction writer, and old school Sherlockian. She is the author of the poetry collection Girl-King (University of Akron) and is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship. She earned her BA in literature from Middlebury College and her MFA in poetry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Currently, she's a PhD candidate in English literature at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She lives in Wisconsin with her husband, cat, and collection of deerstalker caps.

Connect with the author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Goodreads |

Are you guys looking forward to this one? Are you one of you lucky ducks who've read this already? What do you think of it?

Monday, October 19, 2015

Dreamology by Lucy Keating ARC Review + Pre-Order Giveaway!

Dreamology by Lucy Keating
Paperback ARC, 322 pages
Published by HarperTeen
Publication Date: April 12, 2016
Pre-order it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository |
Rating: 5/5 Stars


Synopsis: For as long as Alice can remember, she has dreamed of Max. Together they have traveled the world and fallen deliriously, hopelessly in love. Max is the boy of her dreams—and only her dreams. Because he doesn’t exist.

But when Alice walks into class on her first day at a new school, there he is. It turns out, though, that Real Max is nothing like Dream Max, and getting to know each other in reality isn’t as perfect as Alice always hoped.

When their dreams start to bleed dangerously into their waking hours, the pair realize that they might have to put an end to a lifetime of dreaming about each other. But when you fall in love in your dreams, can reality ever be enough?

Whimsical, romantic and utterly original, Lucy Keating’s debut novel will win readers’ hearts.


Dreamology is one of the most epic love stories I have ever read. And by epic, I mean:



And this:


AND this:



Seriously guys, I was fangirling the ENTIRE time that I was reading this book. It was amazing, beautiful, hilarious, and relatable. It's a contemporary romance with a sci-fi twist that will make you want to read it over and over again. Once I picked it up, I couldn't put it down. The characters are fantastic, the writing is witty and funny, and the development of the plot is extremely well-executed. I highly recommend that ALL of you add this book to your TBR if you haven't done so already. Dreamology is already on my list of best books of 2016.

Strengths/Likes:

1) I love the romance in this book. Honestly, my heart went through so much while I was reading. With every flip of the page, my heart was just soaring on an emotional roller-coaster and it was FANTASTIC. The best part of the main couple's romance (and this is me trying really hard not to get spoilery here) is how much they struggle to figure things out and make their relationship work. Nothing about their affection for each other comes without a price and Keating lets you experience all of the ups and downs of their relationship—it's all swoon-worthy.


2) The writing—oh man the writing is just so great. From the prose to the dialogue, it's all phenomenal. Keating's writing style is the perfect amount of wit, sass, and whimsy. At the same time, the writing is very relatable and I found myself having similar thought processes as the main character. 

3) I love ALL of the characters. Everyone is so well-rounded and well-developed. Besides the main couple, I adore Oliver and Sophie! These two need their own book . . . not that I'm hinting or anything . . .



4) The parental relationships are really diverse and interesting. Parents aren't often featured in YA books but I really thought they played interesting roles in Dreamology; Alice's relationship with her father was especially moving.  

5) Dreamology gets bonus points for taking place in Boston with snippets in New York. I'm a very proud New Yorker and I looooove Boston. 

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) Literally, nothing. I'll be reading this book over and over again. 

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) "You know when Egyptian royalty died, they often had loved ones buried with them," I say. 

"I think it was just servants actually, so they could be waited on in the afterlife," Max corrects me. Always such a know-it-all. 

"Well if I died, I'd have you buried with me." I turn over on my side to face him.

"Oh, babe, thanks," he exclaims. "That is by far the creepiest thing you have ever said to me."

2) "Okay, people!" We hear a familiar voice shout. Sophie and I peer around the corner and are mortified to find Oliver standing in the middle of the room, holding a beer. "You don't know me. My name is Oliver, and I don't go here. I won't tell you where I go because that would betray my age and I think there is a sixty percent chance of me kissing at least one girl at this party tonight . But you know how that's not going to happen?" He walks over to the stereo and plugs in his iPod, which he has pulled out of pocket. "If this party keeps going the way it's going. So that's all about to change right . . . now." He hits a button and cranks up the volume.

Within seconds, the rhythmic synth of Prince's "Kiss" comes gyrating over the speakers, and it comes on loud. The whole room seems transfixed as Oliver begins to wiggle his shoulders to the music, complete with spins, pelvic thrusts, and lip-synching."

3) "I can't lose you, Alice," he says again. And then before I can help myself I have leaped across the bed to kiss him and fall into his arms, my legs circling his waist. And he accepts me, his arms coming up around to support my back while his hands grip the base of my head, under my hair. 

"I can't lose you," he says for a third time, in a whisper. And I take his face in my hands and push his hair behind his ears as I stroke his jaw with my fingers.

"You will never lose me," I say. "I'm right here." and I kiss him again.

4) "I can't help but feel that it's rather rude of Jerry to keep barking incessantly in the front hall when some of us have better things to do, like lie in our beds hating everything."

~ ~ ~

You guys have no idea how hard it is to come up with quotes, but to leave out my big, spoilery favorites! I hope you guys enjoyed this review and add Dreamology to your TBRs. Trust me, you need this book. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Reign of Shadows (Reign of Shadows #1) by Sophie Jordan ARC Review *light spoilers* + Giveaway

5/5 Stars
Details of the Book
paperback ARC, 292 pages
Published by HarperTeen,
an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Synopsis: Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.
But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

Reign of Shadows is a unique twist on the Rapunzel fairytale and it's definitely one of the best fairytale re-imagining/retellings I have ever read! Although my ARC copy is only 292 pages, there is a shocking amount of growth and information packed into it. Reign of Shadows really caught me by surprise in its plot and character development, as well as with its brutality. I was not at all expecting it to be so gruesome, but it really raised the stakes in the plot. Jordan's writing is emotive, and it really paints a clear and complete picture of the setting and the characters. Plus, there are nods to Tangled in it, which I LOVE.

Luna and Fowler are really adorable together! I love their banter and how they both equally depend on one another. I really fell for these two—they are such a beautiful couple. 


I predict that Reign of Shadows will be one of the best books of 2016. I highly recommend this book to everyone, and especially to those who has been looking for an AMAZING fairytale re-imagining/retelling with a breathtaking romance—and these are really hard to find!

I have no idea how I'm going to survive waiting for the next book—the ending is insane and makes you question how are you going to survive until the next book.



Strengths/Likes:

1) I really love the world-building in Reign of Shadows. You are given the right amount of details to be completely immersed in the world and to understand the setting. The details are not overwhelming and they make everything easy to imagine.

2) Luna and Fowler are really cute together. Their relationship somehow moves fast and slow at the same time because they struggle with their feelings for one another due to the obstacles they face in the world that they live in. Also . . . let's just say that things get pretty steamy and I like it XD



3) There were a lot of gruesome details that I wasn't prepared for going into this novel, but I felt that they were well-written and made me feel immersed in the setting of the plot. I'm not usually a fan of graphic details, but I think it was completely necessary to take the world in Reign of Shadows seriously.

4) The development of the main characters and their relationships with minor characters were impressive, especially considering the fact that this book is under 300 pages! Jordan manages to cram in a lot of information without sacrificing her writing or the flow of the plot.  

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) I really think that this book would have benefited from being at least 100 pages longer. Some of the details are a bit rushed because the book is so short. For example, as stated above, I really loved the romance aspects in this book but the relationship moved forward a little faster than I would have preferred. I just wanted more of this book to read.



*SPOILER ALERT: From this point on, read at your own risk!

2) Luna is blind, but at times, the writing made it seem like she was able to see things. Words such as "glance" and "see" were used often enough that I forgot several times that she was blind until I was reminded of it later on. It was sometimes confusing how Luna couldn't do simple things because of her blindness, but was somehow able to do more complicated things despite it. 

Favorite Quote/Moments:

1) "Afraid to be left alone with me? I have my clothes on this time."

"Should your naked form frighten me? I can't see you, remember? So I needn't be repulsed." 

He laughed at that, and I stopped, quite undone by the low, smoky sound. It rippled over my skin like the stroke of fine ribbon. His laughter stopped abruptly, almost as though it startled him as much as me. When he spoke again, his voice held no hint of that laughter. "Rest easy, I've not sent many females running away screaming before."

2) "She scanned the firelit faces, searching for one, her lips moving, mouthing what I knew was my name in a soundless plea. It was there, wordlessly humming between us. She clung to the feeble hope that I would come. That I would stop all this from happening.

That I would keep my promise. 

I shook the bars with impotent fury.

The king finished and silence fell again. The gray deepened to purply black and the fog melted, giving way for night again. I scanned the distant tree line. Dark shadows swelled from the thicket, black, growing claws stretching across the barren land toward her. 

My chest hurt. Each breath an agony. She held herself so still. Her gaze trained on the faces watching her. Family. People she'd known all her life. No one to help her. 

I'm here. I'm with you. I willed the words to her as though she could hear them."

3) "Whatever it took, whatever words I had to say, I would make her understand that she didn't have to do this. That we could be together in Allu. We would. 

"Let her go," Mirelya murmured as though she could read my thoughts. Maybe the old woman could. 

I shook my head. "Never."

"She's trying to do the right thing. Let her go."

Swinging my pack over my shoulder, I passed her and headed for the door, calling back, "She can try all she likes to do the right thing. But so will I."

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

NYC Comic Con Recap!




Hey, guys! So you might have noticed that I have been MIA recently and that is because I spent the weekend over at Comic Con! There were so many things to do and see, and it was all so exciting! I had a lot of fun and I'm really happy now that I can share all of my experiences with you. 






This was my first year at Comic Con and it was a lot of fun, but so overwhelming! At first, I couldn't figure out where to look because I just wanted to see EVERYTHING at once! Unfortunately, I don't have eyes all around my head, so that didn't work out too well, but I think that I did get to see everything Comic Con had to offer in the end. However, I completely avoided the panel area because I know that those lines are insane and being a New Yorker, I knew that I would have other opportunities for similar panels down the road. 



I will say that after seeing all of the great costumes, it made me want to step up my game for next year. This year, I simply went as a Gryffindor student, but next year I'll pick a YA book character most people probably won't get recognize for next year, but oooooh well haha. I bet you guys can figure out what books I'll be pulling characters from haha.







Epic Reads Plinko!


I'm so glad that books are beginning to permeate events like Comic Con. I spent most of my time in the book section, and I have no regrets. Shocking coming from a bibliophile, right?

The HarperCollins Booth had a great game hosted by Epic Reads. Once a day, you could play Plinko and win 2016 ARCs. For those of you who are not familiar with Plinko, let me explain. It's a board that's covered in pegs and at the very bottom are slots for the books you can win (refer to picture on the above). You drop a disc, and it bangs off the pegs until it reaches the bottom of the board and you find out what you win. On my second day, I was lucky to win the Jackpot—meaning I got to win all of the available ARCs. To be completely honest, I was a 100% sure that "Jackpot" was a book title . . .  so imagine my surprise when I was handed a tote full of 2016 ARCs! I did play Plinko on each of the three days, and I did get some doubles, so be on the lookout for my upcoming giveaways!



Books for Trade!


I had no idea coming in to Comic Con that book trading was a thing, but I found out pretty quickly that it happens all the time and I ended up trading for these babies! I already had a few of these prior to the trades, but I knew that I could find them better homes and I traded away books I already had or wasn't interested in, so it all worked out in the end! Aren't they pretty? I wish the Seven Black Diamonds ARC had the official cover, because it is GORGEOUS!





Password Please!






For all of the books in this picture, you needed to know or have something in order to get them.



Wink Poppy Midnight: You needed a ticket to receive a copy. 

Glass Sword: You had to tell a staff member what you loved about Red Queen to get the ARC. 

Flamecaster: You had to spot the Gray Wolf in the HarperCollins Booth.

The Fifth Wave: The password was "The Lone Star" to get a survival pack and this book.



Epic Reads Panel! 


                                                                                                                      
I only attended one panel throughout all of Comic Con and that was the Epic Reads Panel, where we got to hang out with Heidi Heilig (The Girl From Everywhere), Jodi Meadows (The Orphan Queen), Dan Wells (Partials), Danielle Paige (Dorothy Must Die), and Sona Charaipotra & Dhonielle Clayton (Tiny Pretty Things). I have to say that this was the best panel that I've ever been to! Instead of the authors sitting at a table at the front of the room, they sat with us! There were four round tables, and like speed dating, the authors would rotate to sit at each table to talk to us and sign books that they were giving away.

The biggest surprise at this panel to the attendants and Jodi (XD) was that we were given a bound manuscript of My Lady Jane. I've never gotten anything like this before in my entire life, so I'm really excited. Plus, it's a book by three amazing authors! Who wouldn't want that?




Although I always love meeting authors, I was especially thrilled to finally be able to meet up with Heidi Heilig! Everyone I know (including moi) is dying to read her 2016 debut novel The Girl From Everywhere. I now own an ARC copy of it, and it's signed and personalized! Could life get any better? I don't think so. Heidi and I have been talking for a while through Twitter and I'm so happy that I finally got to hang out with my doughnut buddy/long-lost cousin!





FRIENDS!






I got to hang out with some amazing people while at NYCC! Some I knew from Twitter and others I randomly met while there. It was so much fun talking and spending time with all of you!







Nori @ ReadWriteLove28 (Founder of Team Alpaca)



Sajda @ Across the Words

Danielle (Her Goodreads)

~  ~ ~


My Final Haul!




I did not include all of my doubles in this shot, because otherwise all of the books wouldn't fit! There is one book that did escape this photo and that is an arc of Gena/Finn by Kat Helgeson & Hannah Moskowitz. Thanks to this haul, I've had to remake my reading schedule to accommodate all of these books, which I was more than happy to do! Although I will say that my schedule is now filled up through January 2016 XD


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: The Girl Who Fell by Shannon M. Parker


My TBR list is always growing and I thought it would be fun to share my anticipation for those books with all of you. This is not my own original meme; it belongs to Breaking the Spine. It specifically spotlights upcoming releases. As it implies in the title, I'll be posting this meme on Wednesdays. Please feel free to comment and let me know what books you guys are waiting on as well!


Publication Date: March 1, 2016

Synopsis: 

His obsession.

Her fall.

In this dark kissing book, high school senior Zephyr Doyle is swept off her feet—and into an intense relationship—by the new boy in school.

Zephyr is focused. Focused on leading her team to the field hockey state championship and leaving her small town for her dream school, Boston College.

But love has a way of changing things.

Enter the new boy in school: the hockey team’s starting goaltender, Alec. He’s cute, charming, and most important, Alec doesn’t judge Zephyr. He understands her fears and insecurities—he even shares them. Soon, their relationship becomes something bigger than Zephyr, something she can’t control, something she doesn’t want to control.

Zephyr swears it must be love. Because love is powerful, and overwhelming, and…terrifying?

But love shouldn’t make you abandon your dreams, or push your friends away. And love shouldn’t make you feel guilty—or worse, ashamed.

So when Zephyr finally begins to see Alec for who he really is, she knows it’s time to take back control of her life.

If she waits any longer, it may be too late.

There is something really important that you guys need to know. I am a huge hockey fan. When hockey seasons starts (which is in a matter of days!! YAAASSSS) I become somewhat of a hermit and watch hockey almost nonstop. So when I saw that this book is about hockey and heartache, I didn't need to know anymore. Hockey is one of the most under-appreciated sports and to finally see it in a book, I'm so excited!


Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Bookish Habits That I Need To Quit


I've seen this meme on a lot of blogs and decided to join in. This meme was created by The Broke and Bookish. Every Tuesday there is a new topic that involves a list of ten books. 

This week's topic: Ten Bookish Habits That I Need To Quit


1) Feeling bad for rejecting review requests.




I know that it's normal to reject review requests and authors generally understand when you decline, but I always feel so bad. First off, I'm always concerned that I passed over an amazing book. Second, I know how difficult it is to get word out about your book, especially if you're an indie author.

2) Feeling bad for writing a negative review.



The most important thing as a reviewer is to be completely honest, but when it comes to writing reviews that are 3 stars and below, I just can't help but feel bad. Authors have a really tough job and the last thing I ever want to do is hurt their feelings, but if I were to sugarcoat the truth, I wouldn't be helping anyone. And yet every time I post a negative review, I worry about the author seeing it and making them upset. 

3) Forcing myself to finish a book I'm not enjoying.




As a kid, I never left a book unfinished, even if I hated it. I would trudge though the book and whine the entire time until the pain was finally over and the book was finished. Since I became a book blogger, I've realized that life is too short to spend my time on books that I'm not enjoying, but I still find myself saying, "well what if it's about to get good and I'm going to miss out?" Fairly recently, I've made a new policy that if I've read 25% of the book and I'm still not liking it, then I need to put it down... though most of the time, I still end up forcing myself to go further and I end up finishing it.

4) Comparing everything to Leigh Bardugo's books.




Some of you may have an inkling about how I feel about Leigh Bardugo's books. For the very few of you who don't know, Leigh Bardugo is the QUEEN and if you haven't read her book--DO IT NOW. Start with Shadow & Bone and read all the way through the trilogy, and then read Six of Crows... But anyway, Bardugo's books are my absolute favorite and I compare a lot of the books I read to her books. Considering my love for her writing, those are impossible expectations to put other books up against.

5) Buying every book from book panels/events that I attend. 




I'm very lucky to be living in New York City, where a lot of authors hold events and panels. Most panels include at least 2 authors, if not more. I usually plan on attending an event because of a specific author, but by the time the panel is over, I've walked out of the bookstore with all of the books from the attending authors. I'm proud to be a book-hoarder, but even I know that I allow myself to get carried away.

6) Kicking myself for missing book events.




As I already mentioned, there are a lot of book events held in New York City, and obviously I can't make it to all of them--even though I would like to! I even make obscure plans to try to fit the event in my schedule, even if I know it's stupid and/or impossible. It usually goes like this: "Well, if I come into work an hour early, I can leave at 4PM instead of 5PM, I'll have to skip all meals and find a way to explain to my uncle why I'm not there for my cousin's birthday, then take two trains and a bus, and only be a few minutes late . . . then I'll be home around midnight." Apparently, there are other things that are important in life like work, family, and you know . . . eating and sleeping once in a while haha. I really need to force myself to understand that if I don't keep up with the other important things, I won't be able to go to any book events in the future. 

7) Being shy around authors.




You'd think that since I have been lucky enough to meet so many authors that I would be a pro at talking to them . . . NOPE. I can spend hours, days, weeks, even months daydreaming about when I'll finally get to meet an author and what I'll say, but when the time comes, I'm a mess. I get so flustered that I have to work myself to even speak normally to them when it's my turn to talk. It's something I really need to work on.

8) Not allowing myself to re-read books that I really love.


You guys know that my reading schedule is usually pretty insane and it prevents me from re-reading some of my favorite books. I find a lot of comfort and happiness in my favorites and I need to allow myself more freedom to go back to read them whenever I just want to jump back into those familiar worlds or hang out with my beloved characters. 

9) Buying book-related merchandise without considering where I'm going to keep it.




Just like my book-hoarding problem, I buy a lot book merchandise. Totes, mugs, bookmarks, t-shirts, you name it, I have it . . . AND my house has become quite cluttered with all of it and somehow I have not stopped myself ever from buying book merch. At this rate, you guys might see me on Hoarders: Buried Alive someday.

10) Choosing books over sleep.


In general, I'm a bit of an insomniac but there have been plenty of times when even though I was sleepy, I choose to read instead before I knew it, the sun was out! I mean, you'd think that since I have a sleeping problem, that on the rare occasions that I'm actually sleepy at a normal time, I would take advantage of that but nooooo, I just keep reading and it makes it really hard to function in my every day life.