Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Giveaway + Review : The Escape

A whodunit with a bad ass female investigator

Avery lived through a traumatic experience when she lost her mom to a drunk driver. Being the chief of police's daughter, also taught her that many of these crimes go unsolved. But when she finds Fletcher, a classmate, covered in blood and his buddy dead, Avery wants to find the killer no matter what. Even if this means becoming a target. 

Jayne lead the reader on a wild goose chase by planting several possible suspects. Fletcher's blank memory after the attack, allowed us to imagine all these scenarios. Although, there were moments when a love possibility could bloom, Avery kept pressing on the case so much it made Fletcher take a step back. I often wonder why she would do this. Put a crime before love. Until I realized how solving one crime would help her accept the loss of her mom.

Even though, the killer's motives made less sense to me, I must admit, that the author placed a lot of effort at puzzling the entire story together and tying up the loose ends.

Hannah Jayne is possibly the only person living in Silicon Valley who has never worked in high tech. When she’s not writing, she’s obsessively watching HGTV or shopping at Target…also obsessively. Find out more about Hannah’s urban fantasy, young adult thrillers, and latest obsessions at Feel free to follow her on her Website, Twitter and Facebook.

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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Cover reveal + Giveaway: Death Wish


Seventeen-year-old Scarlett Blake is haunted by death. Her estranged sister has made the ultimate dramatic exit. Running away from school, joining a surfing fraternity, partying hard: that sounds like Sienna. But suicide? It makes no sense.

Following in her sister’s footsteps, Scarlett comes to the isolated cove of Twycombe, Devon, with grand plans to uncover the truth. Alone. But she hasn’t reckoned on meeting two boys who are determined to help her. Luke: the blue-eyed surfer who’ll see the real Scarlett, who’ll challenge her, who’ll save her. And Jude: the elusive drifter with a knack for turning up whenever Scarlett’s in need.

As Scarlett’s quest for the truth unravels, so too does her grip on reality as she’s always known it. Because there’s something strange going on in this little cove. A dead magpie circles the skies. A dead deer watches from the undergrowth. Hands glow with light. Warmth. Power.

What transpires is a summer of discovery. Of what it means to conquer fear. To fall in love. To choose life. To choose death.

To believe the impossible. 

Megan writes the kinds of books she loves to read: young-adult paranormal romance fiction. It's the time of life that most embodies freedom, discovery and first love. Also, because she's always believed that there are more things in heaven and on earth than are dreamt of in our philosophy. Feel free to follow Megan via her Website, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Read me Like you Do



As a reader, there's a special connection whenever I encounter a character who loves books like I do. It doesn't make him appear snobbish or an introvert to me. Just someone imaginative, who understands that answers are hidden in books. 

This novel tackles a lot of subjects, but among them, Dante's love for poetry and how he encourages his friend Aristotle to read. 

The Night Bookmobile by Audrey Niffenegger

Picture a Winnebago outside your house, holding all the books you've ever read. That's what Alexandra saw one night and couldn't stop thinking about it. She didn't want to leave. She wanted to travel in it forever... unfortunately not all wishes are wise. 

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Fanfiction!! That's an important word to E.L.James and Cather, of course, who spends her time in this novel writing about her favorite character, Simon Snow. 

Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult & Samantha Van Leer

A reader who falls in love with a main character. Hey, it happens! But a character who falls in love back? Now, that is a novel worth reading.   

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling

Couldn't do this list without Hermione. She is always carrying a book and absorbing its knowledge. The definition of a true bookworm. 

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Liesel, who once struggled to read and write, falls in love with books and becomes a writer. 

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

I have never seen a book with so many bookish references. Of course, the main character is a librarian and his love interest distributes books. 

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Jo March loves books so much, her passion soon converts to writing them. 

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

The main character Darcy is a YA novelist about to publish her first series and living the dream life in NYC. 

The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank

Could have also gone for The Perks of Being a Wallflower or The Diary of a Wimpy Kid as all books appear in the form of a journal. But, Anne Frank's an original and that counts for something. 

Who is on your bookworm list?

Monday, July 27, 2015

Review: Revised Orders

"According to new physical doctrine, several dimensions can exist in the same time and space continuum."

Anton comes to learn this in Revised Orders. It appears that the original Anton had no clue about the evil doings of his alter ego in the first book -- the one who wanted Jane at all cost. Will this new information make him willing to help bring down the Order, or will Anton switch sides?

Helenowski took an interesting approach to this sequel. The first book did have all the information on how the dimensions could be crossed, as well as, the first experiences and reactions of the characters. This time the pace was much faster. I would have to loved to see less travelings and dimensions explored more.

On to read the finale.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Caught my arrow #45

Caught my Arrow is a meme similar to Stalking the Shelves featuring books that were purchased, borrowed or received that week.

Candance Bushnell's latest novel didn't get to sit on my nightstand for long. I'm a huge fan of her TV shows, and even though I own several of her books, this was the first I read. Also, I couldn't resist getting caught up in all the Ember rave.

Received from Publisher

Une photo publiée par natalia (@natyuniverse) le

Killing Monica by Candance Bushnell

Borrowed from Library

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

What are you reading this week?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Review: Afterwolrds

Who suffers most in a book -- the author or the characters?

Darcy's YA book series just got picked up by a famous publishing house. To top it off, she's moving to NYC in order of fulfilling her writer's dream. But life is expensive in New York, not to mention lonely. Can Darcy make it in the world of publishing, embrace her first love, and most importantly edit her manuscript in time?

Afterworlds has alternating chapters -- from Darcy to her manuscript -- allowing us to see the progress she makes with her story. As a YA author, I found this book educating. It mentioned book tours, critics, deadlines, writer's block, plotting ... everything you go through in the publishing world. Of course Westerfeld, also managed to create an interesting fantasy story with Lizzie's tale. 

A little long, but at least, you get two books for the price of one.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Cherish Diversity



This week's theme is strong, as we tally up a list of the top ten books that made us appreciate our rights for equality and cherish what other cultures have to offer. 

10- Wonder by R.J. Palacio

"You can't blend in when you were born to stand out."

Auggie was a child like all the others in his classroom, yet his facial deformity made it difficult for him to be accepted. I loved how it targeted a younger audience, yet was able to reach me as well. 

This really short book tells Junior's coming-of-age story, and discusses the differences between growing up in the Rez and studying at a white school.   

8- Tokyo Fiancee by Amelie Nothomb

The DVD just came out!! Not that I'm suggesting you skip straight to film, because the book has a complete different (and harsher) ending. It's also filled with descriptive details about the Japanese culture, relationships and food. 

7- If you could be Mine by Sara Farizan

A forbidden love between two girls set in Tehran-- this book not only deals with diversity of religion but also carries lots of LGBT themes, when one character decides to get a gender reassessment to be with the one they love.  

6- Half Bad by Sally Green

The fantasy genre can also tackle the subject of diversity in a magical way. Half Bad is a good example. We explore the story of Nathan as he is mistreated by the world due to his evil bloodline. 

5- Boring Girls by Sara Taylor

Diversity in the musical world is explored in Boring Girls, as our MC must learn that being a heavy metal female singer is almost impossible. 

4- The Jewel by Amy Ewing

From rich to poor, money has always been a way to diversify people. The Jewel provides a good example of this, even in a Dystopia setting. 

3- Illegal by Bettina Restrepo

Nora and her mom leave Mexico in the trunk of a van in order to find a lost family member in the US. From the dream of a Quinceanera party to simply dreaming of being accepted, this book also made my list. 

A cute middle-grade story about what children face when growing up in Africa. 

1- Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka

A classic book about diversity. Sure, people love you when you are healthy, but will your family hang by your side if you get ill?

What's on your diversity to read list?

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Review: Killing Monica

She brings her to life, then plots to kill her.

Pandy is worldwide famous for creating the books/movies franchise Monica. Plus, her best friend is SondraBeth, the actress that plays Monica on the show. But Pandy is tired of writing only Monica books, dating actors, and above all, constantly comparing her life to Monica's. Maybe it's time to put an end to this, maybe it's time to kill Monica!

Candace Bushnell will always be attached to her characters of Sex and the City, and I wondered if perhaps, this book was her way of reflecting how she feels. Sadly, the camaraderie between SondraBeth and Pandy is the type of friendships we all try to avoid. SondraBeth is constantly monopolizing all the conversations, stealing Pandy's conquests and using her. In fact, everyone is always using Pandy, making her an uneasy character to get attached to. 

Not my favorite Bushnell novel.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Caught my arrow #44

Caught my Arrow is a meme similar to Stalking the Shelves featuring books that were purchased, borrowed or received that week.

Just came back from a wonderful Disney vacation. I did manage to get some reading here and there, but I must say that the lines were surprisingly short -- the longest one 30 min (and that was for Mickey Mouse). Here is what I'm reading this week:

Received from Publisher

Alive by Chandler Baker


Vitro by Jessica Khoury

What are you reading this week?

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Review: Alive

All Stella wanted was a heart.

She needed a transplant urgently. After the surgery, she was warned about the jagged scar that would mark her chest, as well as her inability to perform sports. What she didn't expect was the welcoming she got at school, especially the attention from the new hunk Levi, who wants to be with her all the time. It's like he can't live without his sweetheart. But when Stella starts becoming depended on him, Levi turns sour. Who exactly is this guy, and what game is he playing?

Baker made sure to swoon the reader before giving the story a nice terrifying twist. Aside from Levi, Stella had two great friends (a little love triangle never hurt) who were ready to support her no matter what. I admit, I did rush to read the ending not because it dragged, but to find out if my suspicions were true. 

A refreshing read for the summer. 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Review: The Witch Hunter

And the hunter becomes the hunted

Back in the 16th century Britain, Elizabeth's parents died from the plague. She was taken in by Nicholas, an inquisitor who trained her to become a powerful witch hunter. But now the wheels have turned. And Elizabeth has been accused of witchcraft by the man who made her. The only hope is to follow the orders of a wizard, and join them instead. Still, why would they even want her?

The story is filled with wizards, witches, ghosts, seers, pirates, revenants, and healers -- way too many introductions, taking away precious space that could have been dedicated to the promised love triangle. Even though, the middle part dragged, allowing the reader to get attached to Elizabeth, the sequel appears to have a better set-up. 

Here's hoping it upholds the romance next time.