Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Top Ten Authors that I would put on my Auto-buy list


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted over at the Broke and the Bookish.

So this weeks theme is
Top Ten Authors that I would/have
 put on my Auto-buy list

I have a lot of favorite authors, but sometimes I don't like every single one of the series that they have going. But hey, I'll at least try it! 
(all links go to the authors Goodreads page)

  1. Brandon Sanderson: All time favorite author! It was so awesome because just recently I was able to go to a signing of his. First time meeting in real life! I actually managed to get out a few coherent sentences. This is one that I will, no questions asked, purchase anything he has written.
  2. Patricia Briggs: I will absolutely purchase any Mercy Thompson or Alpha and Omega book the moment it comes out (so excited for the next Mercy to come out a week from now!). Even though I really like fantasy I haven't really tried Ms. Briggs other works yet though.
  3. Suzanne Collins: Yes, huge fan of the Hunger Games, but actually I much preferred her other series Gregor the Overlander. Ms. Collins is amazing though, so anything she comes out with will be fantastic, I just know. Possibly heart-breaking, but awesome.
  4. Merrie Haskell: I read her "Princess Curse" and thought it was the bee's knees, seriously (such an awesome relatable protagonist and I am praying that there is a sequel). Ms. Haskell is coming out with a book this May called Handbook for Dragon Slayers. Hello! That one is a pre-order!
  5. Brandon Mull: His Fablehaven series is one of my MOST favorite and I can't wait for him to continue the series. I will admit I haven't started his Beyonders series yet because I'm a little scared to. I liked Fablehaven so much, what if it doesn't compare? I'm not such a fan of his Candy Shop Wars either, but that's mainly because it really is a middle grade. I'll read it to my kids when I have them though!
  6. Seanan McGuire: I ADORE her Toby Day series. Seriously, it's on par with Mercy Thompson. I have bought her InCryptid novel but haven't gotten around to reading it yet.
  7. Cassandra Rose Clarke: A fairly new author, I really really loved her Assassin's Curse and am eagerly awaiting it's sequel. I've purchased her other adult book, but haven't read it yet.
  8. Ysabeau S. Wilce: Her 'Flora Segunda' series is AMAZING. Such a great world, such a fun cast of characters. I really hope she comes out with more!!
  9. Sherwood Smith: Her 'Crown Duel' is one of my most favorite books. I haven't read all of her other ones, but I am slowly working through. She has tons!
  10. Franny Billingsley: Chime was a great joy for me to read and I've read The Folk Keeper. Ms. Billingsley has such a lyrical way with words, I gobbled her tales right up!

Who's on your auto-buy list?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Review: Unlocking the Spell by E.D. Baker (Wide-Awake Princess #2)


Overall Impression:

Source: Netgalley

Publication Date: October 2012

Short Synopsis (Goodreads)Now that Annie has helped her sister Gwendolyn (a.k.a. Sleeping Beauty) wake up from the 100-year curse by finding her beloved prince, you would think that things would get back to normal. Think again! That beloved prince, Beldegard, is stuck in the body of a bear and the only way that Annie can be free of the two irritating lovebirds is to help-by finding the evil dwarf who cast the spell. Luckily, Annie has assistance from handsome prince Liam, and she has many tricks up her non-magical sleeve . . .

My Review: I had read the first in the series, The Wide Awake Princess, on the recommendation of another blogger, Small Review, and thought it was OK (my review here). I thought the story had ended, but when I saw this pop up in Netgalley I was pleasantly surprised and wanted to give it a try. I'm glad I did!

I actually ended up liking this story a lot more than the first. It was still Middle Grade, but at the higher end with more of a love story and better interaction between the characters. I thought that this one had a better storyline as well and really enjoyed how the different fairytales were interwoven together.

Annie was just as strong of a character in this one, but her 'head-strongeness' wasn't annoying as it slightly was in the first one. I love the awkwardness between her and Liam and how it all sorts out at the end (not a spoiler, because you know it's going to happen!). We get to know her sister Gwendolyn a lot more and she isn't half bad either. Beldegard hasn't had the easiest of lives and so you get to know him as a deeper character as well.

Overall, this was a great book and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys fairytale mix-ups, whether they are 10 years old or in their 60's. 


Review: The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead (Bloodlines #3)


Overall Impression 1/2

Source: Bought

Publication Date: February 12th , 2012

Short Synopsis (Goodreads)In the aftermath of a forbidden moment that rocked Sydney to her core, she finds herself struggling to draw the line between her Alchemist teachings and what her heart is urging her to do. Then she meets alluring, rebellious Marcus Finch--a former Alchemist who escaped against all odds, and is now on the run. Marcus wants to teach Sydney the secrets he claims the Alchemists are hiding from her. But as he pushes her to rebel against the people who raised her, Sydney finds that breaking free is harder than she thought. There is an old and mysterious magic rooted deeply within her. And as she searches for an evil magic user targeting powerful young witches, she realizes that her only hope is to embrace her magical blood--or else she might be next.

My Review: First off, I have been waiting for this book for a very long time, as I'm sure anyone else reading the Bloodlines series was as well. After what happened in the second book coupled with what I read from the bonus chapters at the end, I was really really looking forward to seeing where this would all go.

And it delivers, don't worry, it does, but..... I don't know. I liked what happens, and I think that Sydney is really growing as character, and it's not that she didn't have to work hard but, it seemed a little too easy at times.

It's hard to be picky without being specific, but I felt like this book gave me a little too much of what I was looking for, especially after the last book. Adrian would probably disagree that things were easy, and I'm happy the way things turned out, but still was just too good to be true. Maybe if I read the first three books all in a row I would appreciate more of where Sydney has come from and what Adrian has had to fight for. As it is, her resistance in this book seemed token and just made things go a little slower. I'm really glad that she (finally) has a certain realization at the end of the book and I'm excited to see how that affects the dynamics of everything for the rest of the series, but it took a whole book of denial almost to get there. But we're there!

Also, this one wasn't as 'edge-of-your-seat' as I was expecting, especially with the focus on witches this time around. The end battle had a twist that I hadn't forseen, but it fell flat for me. The rogue alchemists also weren't as awesome as I was expecting. Potential, but not enough bang.

I do like this series better than Vampire Academy and think that Ms. Mead has really done a great job of fleshing this world out with lots of potential in future books. I'm with this series for the long-haul. While this one wasn't my favorite overall, it still had some 'smile and sigh' parts that made it worth it and I recommend it if you're a fan.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Nightmare Affair Blog Tour : Review and Playlist

Overall Impression

Source: Publisher for Tour

Publication Date: march 5th 2013

Short Synopsis (Goodreads)Sixteen-year-old Dusty Everhart breaks into houses late at night, but not because she’s a criminal. No, she’s a Nightmare.

Literally.

Being the only Nightmare at Arkwell Academy, a boarding school for magickind, and living in the shadow of her mother’s infamy, is hard enough. But when Dusty sneaks into Eli Booker’s house, things get a whole lot more complicated. He’s hot, which means sitting on his chest and invading his dreams couldn’t get much more embarrassing. But it does. Eli is dreaming of a murder.

Then Eli’s dream comes true.

Now Dusty has to follow the clues—both within Eli’s dreams and out of them—to stop the killer before more people turn up dead. And before the killer learns what she’s up to and marks her as the next target.

My Review

Wow, I'm part of a book tour. This is awesome. Thank you to Shane at Itching For Books for putting this all together and letting me participate. And an especial thanks goes to Mindee Arnett who created all of this!!

Ever since I read the synopsis for this book I have been very eager to read it. And guys, it's awesome! Such a creative idea with a girl being a Nightmare! Not sure about the rest of you, but that's a first heard for me and I really, really like the idea. Ms. Arnett does a good job explaining what it is the people like Dusty can do, but I'm looking forward to future books were we see her powers expand.

Dusty was a fun character to follow. At first I thought her snark might kind of get in the way of my view of her, but it wasn't too heavy handed and I bonded with her. The supporting cast was creative and you get to know some of them fairly well. Enough information was given to lend the world credence, but more would have helped flesh it out. 

That being said, however, the pacing I though worked very well. Enough was happening, either emotionally or as a part of the story arc that I turned the pages easily and ended up finishing it in just a few hours!

My favorite line from the book is "Imagination IS Magic". That is something I agree with whole-heartedly!

While Ms. Arnett's creation does have some familiar themes in it to other magic stories, what really made this unique for me was the fact that Dusty is a Nightmare, and that was enough. I'm excited to see where this all goes (especially the relationship!!!! Gah, can you say tension much?). While there is no cliff hanger, there is certainly room in the story for more and I am optimistic since this is labeled as The Arkwell Academy #1. Yes please!


Playlist
These are the songs that I think fit the overall feel of the book. Hope you enjoy!!

1. Main Theme = Monster by Bon Voyage


I actually heard the song first and liked it a lot (thanks Pandora!) and so when I first heard about The Nightmare Affair the two were immediately linked in my mind. Don't you think it's perfect!!! I swear, it's almost like one was written for the other, they work so well!

2. Relationships = Counting Back to 1 by Beautiful Small Machines


I won't go into detail on the relationships...but in my mind this could apply to several different people.

3. Sleuthing theme = Tired by Lily and Madeleine

Dang, couldn't find a complete youtube video for this song so you just have the blurb that Amazon has. However, I thought it described how Dusty has to go through a lot of dead ends before coming to a realization of what is actually going on.

4. The Action and In-between themes = The Sorcerer's Apprentice soundtrack by Trevor Rabin

OK, a whole soundtrack may be cheating, but I thought that this one picks up the in-betweens and action sequences so well that if they were to make a movie of this book (which would be awesome) they should get Trevor Rabin to do it.



Thanks for stopping by!

Check out the other awesome stops on the tour
(and there's a giveaway!!)


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