28.2.09

Contest Reminders


Just so everyone knows, my Golden Girl contest ends tonight at midnight. So, be sure to enter if you haven't already.

Also, my The King's Rose and The September Sisters giveaways are still going on. So, again, be sure to enter.

25.2.09

Waiting On Wednesday: Week 15

My pick this week is:


Broken Soup by Jenny Valentine

Summary:


Positive.
Negative.
It's how you look at it. . . .

Someone shoves a photo negative into Rowan's hands. She is distracted but, frankly, she has larger problems to worry about. Her brother is dead. Her father has left. Her mother won't get out of bed. She has to take care of her younger sister. And keep it all together . . .

But Rowan is curious about the mysterious boy and the negative. Who is he? Why did he give it to her? The mystery only deepens when the photo is developed and the inconceivable appears.

Everything is about to change for Rowan. . . . Finally, something positive is in her life.Award-winning author Jenny Valentine delivers a powerful and life-affirming story of grief, friendship, and healing that will resonate long after the last page.


My Thoughts/ Why I Want This:
  • I want to know how her brother died.
  • What's in the photograph.
  • Who the mysterious boy and why he gave her said photo.
  • Plus, I love the cover. Since, it's simple while still being pretty.
  • Oh, and it got a great reviews here and here.
Broken Soup will be released March 24, 2009. Anyway, what book are you dying to read this week?

23.2.09

The Anatomy Of Wings by Karen Foxlee

Summary:

When Jennifer looses her sister, she has no clue why this horrible thing has occurred. Her sister, Beth, was beautiful, popular, smart, and according to their grandma, could talk to angels. Plus, now that Beth is gone Jennifer has lost her stunning ability to sing. Every time that she opens her mouth, the words just will not come out. So now with the help of her best friend, Grace, Jenny is on a hunt to figure out what went wrong with her sister. In doing this, she thinks she will regain her ability to sing. Though, along the way, she finds a few secrets that she simply can't understand.
Review:

When beginning The Anatomy Of Wings, I thought I was going to love it since the summary made it seem like it was going to be fast paced and I loved the cover. Unfortunately it was none of those things. The plot moved incredibly slow and sometimes showed little or no relevance to the main plot at hand. Also, the writing was, at times, too descriptive and had little action. For example, there is one time in this book when the author spends around seven pages describing all of Jenny's aunts and uncles who are not part of the story at all! The only part that made this book somewhat decent were the characters. They were well developed and Karen perfectly captured the feeling of their love for and loss of Beth. Though, in all, the cons out weighed the pros. Overall, The Anatomy Of Wings was a big disappointment to me. Even though, I felt that way, I still think Karen has the ability to get better over time and I look forward to possibly reading some of her future books.

Grade: D+

The Anatomy Of Wings
is out now in hardback. You can find out more about here.

*
Reviewed For Flamingnet

22.2.09

In My Mailbox ( 2/17 to 2/21)

I am "stealing" this from The Story Siren. If you want to find out more about it click here. Anyway, these are books I got this week at the bookstore, library, and in the mail, of course. All summaries are either from Barnes and Noble or Amazon.

The Received:

Academy 7 by Anne Osterlund

With a past too terrible to speak of, and a bleak, lonely future ahead of her, Aerin Renning is shocked to find she has earned a place at the most exclusive school in the universe. Aerin excels at Academy 7 in all but debate, where Dane Madousin—son of one of the most powerful men in the Alliance— consistently outtalks her. Fortunately Aerin consistently outwits him at sparring. They are at the top of their class until Dane jeopardizes everything and Aerin is unintentionally dragged down with him. When the pair is given a joint punishment, an unexpected friendship—and romance—begins to form. But Dane and Aerin both harbor dangerous secrets, and the two are linked in ways neither of them could ever have imagined. .

I actually got this on Saturday but since I wasn't home all of last weekend I had no clue about it. Anyway, I love the cover.


Something Happened by Greg Logsted

Five months after his dad's unexpected death, Billy Romero is still struggling with the loss. Billy's mom spends more time talking to her Bluetooth than to him, and his best friend, Ziggy, just doesn't get it. There's no one who understands how alone Billy feels...except his new English teacher, the young and beautiful Miss Gate.

Miss Gate offers support and friendship, even giving Billy extra help with his writing outside of school. Billy isn't really sure how he feels about spending so much time with his teacher. It's a little weird, but it's also kind of exciting that someone like Miss Gate wants to hang out with him. But the closer they get, the more Billy wonders what kind of friendship this really is....

The summary reminds me of Prey which I absolutely couldn't stand. So, hopefully, this will be better.


Winnie's War by Jenny Moss

Life in Winnie’s sleepy town of Coward Creek, Texas, is just fine for her. Although her troubled mother’s distant behavior has always worried Winnie, she’s plenty busy caring for her younger sisters, going to school, playing chess with Mr. Levy, and avoiding her testy grandmother. Plus, her sweetheart Nolan is always there to make her smile when she’s feeling low. But when the Spanish Influenza claims its first victim, lives are suddenly at stake, and Winnie has never felt so helpless. She must find a way to save the people she loves most, even if doing so means putting her own life at risk.

Winnie’s take-charge attitude will empower and inspire readers, as Jenny Moss’s lyrical writing beautifully
captures the big-time worries of a small-town girl.

This book sounds really cute.


Savannah would be happy to spend the summer in her coastal Carolina town working at the library and lying in a hammock reading her beloved romance novels. But then she meets Jackson. Once they lock eyes, she’s convinced he’s the one—her true love, her soul mate, a boy different from all the rest. And at first it looks like Savannah is right. Jackson abides by her mama’s strict rules, and stays by her side during a hospitalization for severe asthma, which Savannah becomes convinced is only improving because Jackson is there. But when he’s called away to help his family—and seems uncertain about returning—Savannah has to learn to breathe on her own, both literally and figuratively.

I'm in the middle of reading this, right now, and it's so good. Defiantly one of the cutest books I've read in a while.


Two brothers are hunted throughout England by a powerful magician's circle after their mother steals a charm, and when the eldest is marked by a demon, the younger uses swords and dark arts in an effort to save him but unwittingly uncovers the darkest of secrets. ( from 2009 Debutantes)

Scott Westerfield AND Holly Black have said wonderful things about it! So, does that mean it's going to be great? I think so!



Love You Hate You Miss You by Elizabeth Scott

You know, I always thought I told you everything, but there are some things I should have said but never did. I should have told you about the time I lost your new sunglasses. I know you really liked them. I should have apologized the time I ruined your brand-new skirt, the one with the beading. I should have apologized for a lot of stuff.

I’m sorry. I’m sorry for everything.

I had no clue this was coming. So, image my surprise when I opened up a package from Harper Collins and THIS was in it. I was jumping up and down squealing. It was so embarrassing. Luckily no one was around when I was doing this. Unfortunately, I won't be able to start this for a while because I'm in the middle of a couple of other books right now.

The Bought:

Crowned by Julia Linker

Presley loves the pageant world. She knows how to work the crowd and looks gorgeous in an evening gown. But really, she needs the pageant world -- for its scholarships and opportunities. The only thing standing in her way? Her archrival, Megan, who was practically born wearing a crown and sash. Megan may be the nastiest girl on the circuit, but she has one thing that Presley doesn't: connections. And she won't hesitate to use them.

What happens when two girls will stop at nothing -- including scandalous Internet pictures, vicious message board rumors, or "accidentally" ruined hair -- to be crowned the winner? Strap on your stilettos and tuck in those shoulder pads...it's going to be a bumpy ride.

Geek Charming by Robin Palmer

Dylan Shoenfield is the princess of L.A.’s posh Castle Heights High. She has the coolest boyfriend, the most popular friends, and a brand-new “it” bag that everyone covets. But when she accidentally tosses her bag into a fountain, this princess comes face-to-face with her own personal frog: selfprofessed film geek Josh Rosen. In return for rescuing Dylan’s bag, Josh convinces Dylan to let him film her for his documentary on high school popularity. Reluctantly, Dylan lets F-list Josh into her A-list world, and is shocked to realize that sometimes nerds can be pretty cool. But when Dylan’s so-called prince charming of a boyfriend dumps her flat, her life—and her social status— comes to a crashing halt. Can Dylan—with Josh’s help—pull the pieces together to create her own happily-ever-after?

Suite Dreams by Rachel Hawthorne

Hello, mate!(Practicing my Australian.* How am I doing?)
I'm so glad the timing worked out for this couch exchange. I'll be crashing on yours by the time you get to mine.** If you run into any problems, just find Alyssa. She'll help you out with whatever you need.***
Your couch-swapping mate,Rick
*That's cute. Go have fun in Australia and leave ME—your girlfriend for an entire semester—to waste away on campus, alone.
**Um, think again. Your couch is already taken.
***Great. Now I've got to find a place for the (unbelievably hot, it turns out) Aussie to crash. But there's only one couch available: the one in my dorm room. . . .



Paradise awaits....
Now that Cheyenne's murderer has been revealed and Reed knows the truth about who's been stalking her, she's ready to leave the heartache and turmoil of last semester behind. And what better way to recover than a five-star Caribbean vacation?
Reed is reunited with former Billings Girls Kiran and Taylor, and she and her friends take over the exclusive island. They spend their days tanning on white-sand beaches and their nights partying on sixty-foot yachts

Does anyone else think that the covers keep getting worse and worse for this series?

Also, I got anothoer copy of Purge and a book for an upcoming contest. I'm not going to say what book. So, you'll have to keep an eye out for the contest.

21.2.09

The Dust of 100 Dogs by A.S. King


Summary:

In the late seventeenth century, famed teenage pirate Emer Morrisey was on the cusp of escaping the pirate life with her one true love and unfathomable riches when she was slain and cursed with "the dust of one hundred dogs," dooming her to one hundred lives as a dog before returning to a human body-with her memories intact. (from Amazon.com)


Review:

Before staring The Dust of 100 Dogs, I really didn't know what to think. Would I like it since it had been getting extremely good reviews all around the blogging world or would it be a disappointment to me because it didn't seem like my type of book? Though, by the first chapter I was completely in love with everything about it and couldn't wait to learn more about Emer's past and current lives.

First off, I'm going to start this review by saying if I were to quickly sum up this book in a couple of words they would be: wonderful, a page turner, spectacular, simply excellent and plenty more words that have the same kind of meanings. It was just an all around wow. The plot was interesting and complex even though you had the gist of what was going to happen from the start. Also, The Dust Of 100 Dogs was extremely well written to the point were I simply couldn't believe that this was King's first novel.

My favorite part of this novel was when it was told from Emer's part of view instead of Saffron's because I'm simply a sucker for historical fiction. Plus, Emer was my all around favorite character from the start because of her interesting back story to how brave she was. Also, the whole Dog Facts part of this novel was a cute and great add to the story.

The only problem I had with this was the ending. It seemed a bit rushed and lagged that all around happy ending that I love about some books. Though, now that I think about it, it kind of perfectly fit the whole bittersweet feeling of this book.

Overall, The Dust Of 100 Dogs was a wonderful debut novel that I think young adults and adults of all kinds will come to love. I can't wait to read King's next work, because I'm pretty sure it will be just as great!

Grade: A-

The Dust Of 100 Dogs is now out in paperback. You can find out more about it here. Also, be sure to check out Steph's ( Reviewer X) amazing contest if you end up buying the book.

20.2.09

Contest for The Setember Sisters by Jillian Cantor

Jillian Cantor has volunteered to donate a signed copy of her newly released book, The September Sisters.

Here's the blurb from Amazon:

Abigail Reed and her younger sister, Becky, are always at each other's throats. Their mother calls them the September Sisters, because their birthdays are only a day apart, and pretends that they're best friends. But really, they delight in making each other miserable. Then Becky disappears in the middle of the night, and a torn gold chain with a sapphire heart charm is the only clue to the mystery of her kidnapping. Abby struggles to cope with her own feelings of guilt and loss as she tries to keep her family together. When her world is at its bleakest, Abby meets a new neighbor, Tommy, who is dealing with his own loss, and the two of them discover that love can bloom, even when it's surrounded by thorns.

This exquisitely written first novel illustrates life as it truly is—filled with fear and danger, hope and love, comfort and uncertainty.

Also, you can check out my review of it here.

If you would like to enter, just leave a comment telling me what book you are currently reading.

For extra entries:

-Put a link to this on your sidebar ( +3)
- If you become a follower/added me on Google Reader( +3)
- If you are a follower/ subscribe to my blog on Google Reader (+6)
- If you send out bulletins (Myspace), send an email to friends ( make sure to include my email address) or anything else. (+1 for each one that you do)
- Comment on my review or/ and Jillian's Inpspired Friday post
(+3 for each)

This contest will end on March 13- 3 weeks from now! Also, this is open to everyone.

Good Luck!!

Inspired Friday with Jillian Cantor

Jillian Cantor is the author of an amazing book called The September Sisters which will be released on February 27. You can check out my review on it here.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I first sat down to write The September Sisters in the fall of 2003. I had another novel that I’d written first, that I’d recently abandoned after a lot of agents told me it was well-written but unsellable. At first, I thought about giving up on writing all together – I couldn’t imagine that I would ever have time to write another novel much less find an agent much less sell a book. But then, I got laid off from my teaching job, just before the semester began due to budget cutbacks, and the only job I could get was teaching one class at a community college two mornings a week – a total of three hours a week out of the house! Suddenly, I had the time to write, and I also felt like I had to do something productive until I found another job.

Before I started writing, though, I thought about what I could do to make this novel attempt more “sellable.” I decided I would write something in the first person and include a mystery in the story. But I wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to write about yet. Then I saw a show about missing children – it seemed there were a lot of missing children cases in the news right around that time, and on the show I noticed that a lot of the missing children had siblings. What happened to those siblings after their brother or sister disappeared, I wondered, as I watched? And the first seed for the book was planted.

At around the same time, I had also, fairly recently started to become close to my own younger sister. When we were kids we hated each other – we used to fight all the time! Our grandmother always used to tell us when we grew up, we would love having a sister, but we never believed we would. Until it actually happened – once we got into our twenties, we actually became friends!

But I still had vivid memories of our childhood fights, which always seemed worse in the summer without school, and in the pool. And then it occurred to me to think about what it might have been like if after one of those fights in the pool, after we told each other that we hated each other, if something terrible happened, if one of us had disappeared.

And thus, The September Sisters was born, a little bit of bad (or maybe in hindsight, good) luck, a little bit of trying to figure out what could make my writing more sellable, a little bit of TV, and a little bit of childhood memories.

Thanks so much, Lauren, for inviting me to be a part of Inspired Fridays
!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

You're welcome, Jillian!!

Want to part of Inspired Friday? Well, just contact me at laurenscrammedbookshelf@gmail.com with Inspired Friday in the subject line!

19.2.09

Evermore by Alyson Noel


Summary:

Ever since the accident that claimed the lives of her parents and younger sister, Riley, Ever has never been the same. Not only is she now an orphan, but she has weird psychic abilities that allow her to read peoples minds, see peoples auras, and tell others life stories by touch. Also, she has routine visits from her dead sister. Suddenly, her perfect and preppy cheerleader life with her popular friends and boyfriend has been replaced with one with hoodies, loud music, and some outcast friends at her new high school. Since, she has a feeling that this is god's way of punishing her for what happened that one dreadful night.

Though, when she meets the charming, beautiful, and wealthy Damen everything is different. She can't tell what he is thinking, tell anything about him from touch, and whenever he's around her it feels like the thoughts and feelings of others magically disappear. Though, with Damen comes dark secrets and a frighting girl named Drina, who seems like she's out to ruin everything Ever has left.

Review:

Before even starting Evermore, I had extremely high exceptions for it. Since, the cover is stunning, I loved Alyson's previous books, and the summary makes it sound mysterious and interesting. Lucky for me, it was a great book that went high above my exceptions and had few flaws.

The whole plot was well carried out and had unique and interesting turns that had me completely stunned at what was happening. I liked how Alyson slowly led up to what had happened that night so long ago. Since, it had me completely interested in the story the whole time and I, have to say, I never saw the whole revelation behind everything coming. Also, Alyson Noel's writing in this adds to how excellent Evermore is and makes it one of her best works yet!

The only problem I had with this was the characterization. Don't get me wrong, Ever's character was great. You could feel the trauma and the pain she went through with her special abilities and the death of her loved ones. Though, the other characters left something to be desired. With Damen, I would have liked for him to explain more about Summerland and what types of powers you have when your Immortal. Though, with reading the excerpt from Blue Moon, the next book in the series, I think it will definitely be part of the main focus. Also, I felt that Ever's friends, Haven and Miles, were flat and underdeveloped characters. I would have loved to seen more of both. Since, they were funny and cute characters that I liked a ton.

Evermore was simply a great book that I loved. I can't wait to read the next book in the series, Blue Moon, which comes out in August 2009. By the way, the cover of Blue Moon is in the back of Evermore and it is simply beautiful, I can't wait to see it in full color!

Grade: B+

Evermore is now out in paperback. You can find out more about it here.

18.2.09

Waiting On Wednesday: Week 14

My pick this week is:

Rampant by Diana Peterfreund

Forget everything you ever knew about unicorns…

The sparkly, innocent creatures of lore are a myth. Real unicorns are venomous, man-eating monsters with huge fangs and razor-sharp horns. And they can only be killed by virgin descendants of Alexander the Great.

Fortunately, unicorns have been extinct for a hundred and fifty years.

Or not.

Astrid Llewelyn has always scoffed at her eccentric mother’s stories about killer unicorns. But when one of the monsters attacks her boyfriend in the woods – thereby ruining any chance of him taking her to prom – Astrid learns that unicorns are real and dangerous, and she has a family legacy to uphold. Her mother packs her off to Rome to train as a unicorn hunter at the ancient cloisters the hunters have used for centuries.

However, at the cloisters, all is not what is seems. Outside, the unicorns wait to attack. And within, Astrid faces other, unexpected threats: from crumbling, bone-covered walls that vibrate with a terrible power to the hidden agendas of her fellow hunters to – perhaps most dangerously of all – her growing attraction to a handsome art student… and a relationship that could jeopardize everything.

RAMPANT, a tale of killer unicorns, will be released in August of 2009 by Harper Collins
.

My Thoughts/ Why I Picked This Book:

Two words: Killer Unicorns. How much more original can you get? Unfortunately, this won't be released until August 25. :(

17.2.09

Contest for an ARC of The King's Rose by Alisa Libby

Since, I somehow ended up with an extra ARC of The Kings Rose by Alisa Libby, I've decided to give it away. ( I keep getting extra ARCs of books for some reason. Did I mention in last week's In My Mailbox that I got another copy of Farey Rebels?) Also, I've decided to have this contest in conjunction of my 100th post and 100th follower. They both happened on the same day. How awesome is that?


Anyway, here's the summary from Amazon:

Life in the court of King Henry VIII is a complex game. When fifteen-year-old Catherine Howard catches the king’s eye, she quickly transforms from pawn to queen. But even luxury beyond imagination loses its luster as young Catherine finds her life—and her heart—threatened by the needs of an aging king and a family hungry for power. Will their agendas deliver Catherine to the same fate as her infamous cousin, Anne Boleyn—sacrificed at the altar of family ambition?

Engaging historical fiction with a throbbing YA heartbeat, this thrilling novel will draw readers into the intrigues and dangers of the Tudor court.

Doesn't that sound awesome? Also, be sure to check out the book trailer, it's so good!

So, would you like to enter? Just comment on this post and poof! you are officially entered.

For extra entries you can:

-Put a link to this on your sidebar ( +3)
- If you become a follower/ add me on Google Reader ( +3)
- If you are a follower/ have me on Google Reader
- If you send out bulletins (Myspace), send an email to friends ( make sure to include my email address) or anything else. (+1 for each one that you do)

This will end on March 3rd- a little less than two weeks from now!! Edit: I forgot to add that this is open to EVERYONE!

DEADLINE: EXTENED TO SATURDAY THE SEVENTH. SO, BE SURE TO ENTER!!

Good Luck!!

The September Sisters by Jillian Cantor


Summary:

Abigail and her sister, Becky, have always been referred to as the "September Sisters." Since their birthdays are only two years and one day apart and they have always put up an allusion that they are best friends. Though, in reality they are far from it. They enjoy making each other miserable by calling each other a baby when one of them shows weakness or simply taking the pink tube in the pool before the other does.

Everything changes, though, when Becky suddenly disappears from the house in the middle of a summer night. Suddenly, Abigail's life is turned upside down. Her mother has fallen into a deep depression and is spending most of time sleeping or just staring into space in the darkness of her room, her dad is putting all his time and effort into finding Becky no matter how much it costs him or his family, and her best friend, along with everyone else at school, thinks that hanging out with her will cause misfortune in their lives too.

Now Abigail doesn't know how to deal with the sadness and guilt over the loss of her sister. Though, with the help of the nice boy who moves in next door, she begins to see that love and happiness still exists even when the people around you can't fathom such a thing.


Review:

Even before reading this novel, I had high hopes. Since, the cover is awesome, the summary is intriguing, and Jillian Cantor has been compared to Sarah Dessen(which means it has to be an extremely good book) Lucky for me, it was wonderful.

The September Sisters is a stunning debut novel that will have all reading long into the night.

Jillian Cantor perfectly captures the raw and scary feelings of first love and losing someone you love dearly. Abby's voice is strong and funny even though she has gone through so much. She is definitely one of those characters that you can relate to even though you haven't had to go through 1/5 of what she has.

One of my favorite parts of this novel was Cantor's writing. It didn't hold back once and it had me wondering throughout the story: Will Becky come back alive and if she doesn't, will the Reeds' realize they have another daughter to raise?

The plot was interesting and had complex turns to it that changed everything. I really liked how it started out in the beginning that they had found Becky, but than transformed to that night so long ago that changed everything. I felt that without that you would not really get to see all the drama Abby and her parents went through.

Overall, The September Sisters was an amazing novel that will appeal to fans of Sarah Dessen, Laurie Halse Anderson, and Meg Cabot. I truly think Jillian has the possibility to be the next big thing in Young Adult fiction! I highly suggest that you go pick this book up from your local library or go buy it at the bookstore when it is released.

Grade: A+

The September Sisters will be released in hardback on February 24, 2009. You can find out more about it here. Also, you can go check out Jillian's blog here and her website here.

* Much thanks to Jillian Cantor for sending me not only a copy, but a singed copy! :)

15.2.09

In My Mailbox (2/9 to 2/14)

I am "stealing" this from The Story Siren. If you want to find out more about it click here. Anyway, these are books I got this week at the bookstore, library, and in the mail, of course. All summaries are either from Barnes and Noble or Amazon.

The Received:

Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow

Dru Anderson has what her grandmother called “the touch.” (Comes in handy when you’re traveling from town to town with your dad, hunting ghosts, suckers, wulfen, and the occasional zombie.)

Then her dad turns up dead—but still walking—and Dru knows she’s next. Even worse, she’s got two guys hungry for her affections, and they’re not about to let the fiercely independent Dru go it alone. Will Dru discover just how special she really is before coming face-to-fang with whatever—or whoever— is hunting her?

I've been dying to read this book since Book Chick featured it on one of his In My Mail Box posts. Anyway, I love the cover and it sounds great! Plus, it's a new series.


Along For The Ride by Sarah Dessen

It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.

A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.

In her signature pitch-perfect style, Sarah Dessen explores the hearts of two lonely people learning to connect.

I love Sarah Dessen's books! ( My favorite is Just Listen. I've read it over 5 times) So, when I found out I was getting this I was so excited!!


Lipstick Apology by Jennifer Jabaley

Sometimes a good-bye is just the beginning…

When Emily Carson’s parents die in a plane crash, she’s left with nothing but her mother’s last words scrawled in lipstick on a tray table: “Emily, please forgive me.”

Now it’s fall and Emily moves to New York City— where she attracts the attention of two very different boys: the cute, popular Owen, and her quirky chemistry partner, Anthony.

With the help of some surprising new friends, Emily must choose between the boy who helps her forget and the one who encourages her to remember, and ultimately heal.

Debut author Jennifer Jabaley has written a wonderful, feel-good romantic comedy with real emotional depth. Full of lovably wacky characters, Lipstick Apology is a heartwarming story about the true meaning of forgiveness.

Another book that I'm extremely excited about! Also, isn't the cover amazing?

Peace, Love, and Baby Ducks by Lauren Myracle

Growing up in a world of wealth and pastel-tinted entitlement, fifteen-year-old Carly has always relied on the constancy—and authenticity—of her sister, Anna. But when fourteen-year-old Anna turns plastic-perfect-pretty over the course of a single summer, everything starts to change. And there are boys involved, complicating things as boys always do. With warmth, insight, and an unparalleled gift for finding humor even in stormy situations, beloved author Lauren Myracle dives into the tumultuous waters of sisterhood and shows that even very different sisters can learn to help each other stay afloat.

I love how instead of writing the title out they show it in words. Very unique!

Purge by Sarah Littman

Janie Ryman hates throwing up. So why does she binge eat and then stick her fingers down her throat several times a day? That’s what the doctors and psychiatrists at Golden Slopes hope to help her discover. But first Janie must survive everyday conflicts between the Barfers and the Starvers, attempts by the head psychiatrist to fish painful memories out of her emotional waters, and shifting friendships and alliances among the kids in the ward.

This looks great!


Riding The Universe by Gabby Triana

Chloe Rodriguez values three things above else--her adoptive family; her best friend, Rock; and her Harley-Davidson 1200 Sportster motorcycle, inherited from her late uncle, Seth. Then there's her amazing new boyfriend...and he changes everything. But just when Chloe thinks she's got all life figured out, a bump in the road comes out of nowhere and sends her skidding.

I finished this on Thursday and it was so good. I was actually sad to see it end.



A Match Made In High School by Kristen Walker

When the principal announces that every senior must participate in a mandatory year-long Marriage Education program, Fiona Sheehan believes that her life can’t get any worse. Then she marries her “husband”: jerky jock Todd, whose cheerleader girlfriend, Amanda, has had it in for Fiona since day one of second grade. Even worse? Amanda is paired with Fiona’s long-term crush, Gabe. At least Fiona is doing better than her best friend, Marcie, who is paired up with the very quiet, very mysterious Johnny Mercer.

Pranks, fights, misunderstandings, and reconciliations ensue in an almost Shakespearean comedy of errors about mistaken first impressions, convoluted coupling, and hidden crushes.

This book looks awesome! I can't wait to read it.


Perfect Fifths by Megan McCafferty

Old flames are reignited in the fifth and final book in the New York Times bestselling Jessica Darling series.

Captivated readers have followed Jessica through every step and misstep: from her life as a tormented, tart-tongued teenager to her years as a college grad stumbling toward adulthood. Now a young professional in her mid-twenties, Jess is off to a Caribbean wedding. As she rushes to her gate at the airport, she literally runs into her former boyfriend, Marcus Flutie. It’s the first time she's seen him since she reluctantly turned down his marriage proposal three years earlier–and emotions run high.

Marcus and Jessica have both changed dramatically, yet their connection feels as familiar as ever. Is their reunion just a fluke or has fate orchestrated this collision of their lives once again?

Told partly from Marcus’s point of view, Perfect Fifths finally lets readers inside the mind of the one person who’s both troubled and titillated Jessica Darling for years. Expect nothing less than the satisfying conclusion fans have been waiting for, one perfect in its imperfection. . . .


Oh my gosh, I was so excited when I saw this was in my mailbox.


The Bought:


The Dust of 100 Dogs by A.S. King

In the late seventeenth century, famed teenage pirate Emer Morrisey was on the cusp of escaping the pirate life with her one true love and unfathomable riches when she was slain and cursed with "the dust of one hundred dogs," dooming her to one hundred lives as a dog before returning to a human body-with her memories intact.
Now she's a contemporary American teenager and all she needs
is a shovel and a ride to Jamaica.


I'm in the middle of reading this now and it's so good!




North Of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley

Terra is tall and blonde, with an unbelievably gorgeous body, but what most people in her stifling Washington town notice is the port-wine birthmark covering half her face. Terra secretly plans to leave her small town by escaping to an East Coast college, but is pushed off-course by her controlling father. When she meets handsome, goth Jacob who immediately understands her battle with feeling different, Terra is forced in yet another direction. With her carefully laid plans disrupted, will Terra be able to find her true path?

I love the cover!

Wow, I had an EXCELLENT week for books!

13.2.09

Inspired Friday with Lauren Baratz-Logsted!!!

Lauren Baratz-Logsted is one of the nicest authors I have talked to yet. So, I was ecstatic when she agreed to do an Inspired Friday post! :)

Anyway, Lauren is the author of many books for Young Adults ( Secrets Of My Suburban Life, Me, In Between, and Angel's Choice), Kids (The Sisters Eight series), and Adults ( Crossing The Line, A Little Change of Face, How Nancy Drew Saved My Life, and many others) Also, she is the author of the upcoming Crazy Beautiful, which is already getting a ton of buzz around blogging world. So, without a further ado here's Lauren talking about what inspired her to write Crazy Beautiful!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Like all writers, including J.K. Rowling, I've had my share of bad luck, although I suspect the bad-luck wand strikes J.K. less frequently than it strikes me. But one thing I am extremely fortunate in is that I never have a shortage of ideas for things to write about. I like to say I see the world in novel-sized chunks and at least a few times a year, I see or hear about something that makes me think, "Ooh, there's a book in that!"

Two winters ago I took my daughter Jackie (one of my coauthors on The Sisters Eight series for young readers, the other being my YA novelist Greg Logsted - quick plug for family project) to see "Beauty & the Beast" on Broadway. A couple of things struck me: 1) that it really is a timeless tale of star-crossed love; and 2) that the reason this is the fairy tale that has translated best into stage and screen adaptations that can be enjoyed by adults as well as younger people is because the principal male is not one-dimensional like all the various Prince Charmings of "Cinderella" or "Snow White" - on the contrary, he's the most developed character in the piece.

So then, as my mind tends to do, I started thinking along the lines of, "How do I take this wonderful old classic and make it new? How do I make it different (and hopefully special) so that readers might not even see the similarities (if I didn't tell them about it in blogs like this)?"

And my mind kept percolating and I kept thinking about how B&B is about two themes - how people assume so much about others based on surface features; and also how love transforms the way we are seen and how we feel about ourselves - that are still of relevance to today's teens. Before you knew it, there was the lead female character, Aurora Belle, a girl as beautiful as her fairy-tale name; and before you knew it, there was the lead male character, Lucius Wolfe, the boy with hooks for hands, the boy who everyone thinks is crazy. And then before I knew it, I was writing a thoroughly contemporary he-said/she-said story and having a blast writing from a first-person male point of view...and...and...and...

And that's my Inspired Story and I'm sticking to it.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thanks so much, Lauren!! I can't wait to get my hands on a copy of Crazy Beautiful.

If you are an author and would like to be a part of Inspired Friday, please contact me at laurenscrammedbookshelf@gmail.com.

12.2.09

Triple Shot Bettys In Love by Jody Gehrman



Summary:

Geena is freaking out. She’s been going out with Ben for five months, their relationship is comfortable and perfect, and then Bam! he’s suddenly putting the pressure on to be way more physical. She’s not sure she’s ready.

Enter Mr. Rex Sands, Geena’s delectably hot and brilliant English substitute teacher (he speaks to her soul!), on whom her best friend Amber develops an immediate crush when he stops by the Triple Shot Betty coffee shack. Amber needs Geena’s help talking to him because he is such an intellectual, so Geena finds herself writing love notes, MySpace messages, and texts to Mr. Sands under Amber’s name. And he writes back! Geena is just doing it all for Amber (sort of), so it’s not technically cheating on Ben . . . right? In this romantic and playful update of Cyrano de Bergerac, Jody Gehrman reintroduces readers to Geena, Amber, and the Sonoma gang as they walk the rocky and confusing path toward true love. (from Amazon)

Review:

Triple Shot Bettys In Love
was as funny and heartwarming as Confessions Of a Triple Shot Betty, if not more.

Geena and Amber grew greatly as characters and were hilarious most of the time. The dialogue and situations between them and the other characters was realistic and believable. As I said in my review of Confessions Of a Triple Shot Betty, Geena and Amber felt like they could be some of my best friends if they were real.

The plot was interesting and cute. I thought that Jody made the relationship problems Genna and Ben had realistic, in the way that Genna was constantly questioning things like if Ben just liked Sophie as a friend or more and if Ben was going to dump her because she wasn't willing to go all the way. Basically, they are insecurities that we deal with everyday. Also, the relationship between Amber and Mr. Sands was a great add to the story and constantly made you wonder if Amber was going to realize that they weren't meant to be.

Overall, Triple Shot Bettys In Love defiantly lived up to the first novel. I truly hope that Jody will continue this series someday. I suggest this to fans of the original novel and people who are looking for a good read. Though, I think you should read the first one before this because Jody doesn't do much catch up with what happened previously.

Grade: A-

* Much thanks to Jody Gehrman for sending me a copy.

11.2.09

Waiting On Wednesday: Week 13

My pick this week is:

Flash Burnout by LK Madigan

Fifteen-year-old Blake has a girlfriend and a friend who’s a girl. One of them loves him, the other one needs him.

When he snapped a picture of a street person for his photography homework, Blake never dreamed that the woman in the photo was his friend Marissa’s long-lost meth addicted mom. Blake’s participation in the ensuing drama opens up a world of trouble, both for him and for Marissa. He spends the next few months trying to reconcile the conflicting roles of Boyfriend and Friend. His experiences range from the comic (surviving his dad’s birth control talk) to the tragic (a harrowing after-hours visit to the morgue).

In a tangle of life and death, love and loyalty, Blake will emerge with a more sharply defined snapshot of himself.


My Thoughts:

L.K. is another 2009 Debutante, which means this book will probably be fantastic! It will be released this fall.

10.2.09

My Bookshelves

Since, it seems like just about everyone is showing off their book shelves( Hope, Taren, Kelsey, Ashley), I've decided to show mine, too.

I have two bookshelves that are pretty much crammed with books ( I lost count of how many I have after 100). Actually, I really need a third one, but my mom refuses to buy one saying that that I should donate them to the library and I'm like " No way." So, I have started to use the floor as a substitute bookshelf.

Anyway, here they all are:

Here's my top shelf to my first bookshelf.


The second half of my bookshelf, which also has a ton of awesome books, if I do say so myself.


This is my second bookshelf. More pictures of the books up close are below. Also, you can see my libary books of to the side.











More of my books!!


Books, Books, Books! This self includes one of my favorite new authors, Jillian Cantor and one of my favorite series, Vampire Academy




This is were I put all my ARCs/ books to review. The ones being released in the next couple of months/ are out now go up in the front and then the ones that follow in the next few months go behind them. Also, when I have reviewed a book, I usually put it on one of my other selves.


Last shelf of second bookshelf. Which includes my signed copy of Triple Shot Bettys In Love!!


As you can see, I have a ton of books. Also, I'll let you in to a little secret I have: I haven't actually read most of them, but I'm working on it. Plus, summer's coming soon. So, I'll probably demolish my TBR pile. lol

By the way, I love to see other people's bookshelves ( I know, weird). So, please post them, everyone, because I know for certain most of us here at blogging world love to see them. :)

9.2.09

Breathe My Name by R.A. Nelson


Summary:


"I need to see you. Please come right away We have to finish."

Life should be sweet for Frances Robinson. She has a quirky best friend, lives in a McMansion with a loving, adopted family, and has just met a dreamy new guy from Louisiana, Nix, as charming and exotic as evening on the bayou.

So why is she terrified of ambulances screaming by in the night? And what makes her so uneasy about the coming of spring?

Frances has a secret-the most terrifying secret in the world. A secret that has haunted her for eleven years: her birth mother, Afton Jelks.

Afton is the mother who laughed, sang, and made up stories for Frances and her three sisters when they lived in Fireless, a place of mystery and imagination. A place where Afton led them deeper and deeper into darkness, until one horrific morning in April when Fireless overtook the real world, and Afton committed an unspeakable act.

Now Afton is back, and Frances' secret horror threatens to rip her happy world apart all over again. She sees one chance to regain her life: confront the monster in its lair and find peace-or die trying. She and Nix embark on a desperate clandestine journey that will become the most dangerous quest of her life when she discovers just what it means to finish. (from back of ARC)



Review:

Before reading Breathe My Name, I had seen a couple of stories where the mother or father had killed their children after facing a big form of depression, but I had never really given it much thought to what it must be like to be the child left behind, the one who was saved. So, when I began this I didn't really know what to except from Frances. I wondered if she would have an all around pity party for herself constantly, pretend it didn't happen, or just deal with the consequences.

Within the first chapter it was established that she just dealt with the situation and tried not to think about it much. No pity party for her, I was happy. Anyway, I felt Frances was an extremely strong character given what she had to remember every day for the rest of her life. Also, she was likable along with the rest of the characters.

My favorite part of the story was Nix, though. He was just an all around happy and sensitive guy who didn't care what other people thought. Also, he had a couple of funny lines in the story. The only problem I had with him was that he was too perfect sometimes. He just seemed to always be the all around good guy. Frances and him never got in fights, he was constantly their for her even when he had his own problems and so on. I just felt that maybe R.A. Nelson should have given at least a couple of faults.

The main problem of the story( Frances having to deal with her past and have to deal with her birth father and mother) was complex and interesting. I liked seeing the alternate chapters, ones sit in Fireless and ones set in present day, I felt that without seeing what Fireless was all about the story would be lacking and you wouldn't really understand what had happened.

Overall, R.A. Nelson has created a excellent novel that makes you feel that your right there with Frances ever step of the way. I can't wait to see what he comes up with next!

Grade: B+

Breathe My Name is out now in paperback. You can find out more about it here. Also, be sure to check out his website and myspace.

* Much thanks to JL, yet again, for sending me this wonderful book!

8.2.09

Winner of The Rangers Apprentice: The Seige Of Macindaw


I've decided to close this contest early due to the lack of people entering. So, the winner is:

The Bookworm at Au Courant

Congrats!! I just sent you an email. So, please respond in 72 hours or I'll have to pick a new winner.

To those of you who didn't win, don't worry I have a couple of other contests coming up soon. Also, don't forget to enter my GoldenGirl giveaway, which ends 2/28!

In My Mailbox ( 2/2 to 2/7)

I am "stealing" this from The Story Siren. If you want to find out more about it click here. Anyway, these are books I got this week at the bookstore, library, and in the mail, of course. All summaries are either from Barnes and Noble or Amazon.

The Received:

After The Moment by Garret Freymann- Weyr

A new novel by the Printz Honor author Garret Freymann-Weyr, about a boy who discovers what happens when love fails us—or we fail love.

Maia Morland is pretty, only not pretty-pretty. She's smart. She's brave. She's also a self-proclaimed train wreck.Leigh Hunter is smart, popular, and extremely polite. He's also completely and forever in love with Maia Morland.Their young love starts off like a romance novel—full of hope, strength, and passion. But life is not a romance novel and theirs will never become a true romance. For when Maia needs him the most, Leigh betrays both her trust and her love.Told with compassion and true understanding, After the Moment is about what happens when a young man discovers that sometimes love fails us, and that, quite often, we fail love.

I loved Garret Freymann-Weyr previous novel, Stay With Me.( which you should defintly read if you haven't yet. It's an amazing book!) So, I was so happy when this showed up in my mailbox.


Eyes Like Stars by Lisa Mantchev

All her world's a stage.
Beatrice Shakespeare Smith is not an actress, yet she lives in a theater.
She's not an orphan, but she has no parents.
She knows every part, but she has no lines of her own.
Until now.

Welcome to the Théâtre Illuminata, where the characters of every play ever written can be found behind the curtain. They were born to play their parts, and are bound to the Théâtre by The Book--an ancient and magical tome of scripts. Bertie is not one of them, but they are her family--and she is about to lose them all and the only home she has ever known.

Oh My Gosh!! I am so excited about this. Plus, isn't the cover stunning? Too bad it's not on the ARC.

TMI by Sarah Quigley

Friends call Becca the Overshare Queen, but her tendency for TMI never seemed like a problem to her until she blabs about her sweet band-geek boyfriend’s sloppy kisses—and gets dumped! Realizing it may be better to resist the temptation to overshare face-to-face, Becca decides to blog anonymously about everything instead. On her blog, Too Much Information, Becca unleashes her alter ego, Bella. Bella tells it like it is . . . though perhaps with a bit more drama. After all, no one’s going to read it, right???

This was a very awesome surprise! I can't wait to start it.

The Bought:

Evermore by Alyson Noel

Since a horrible accident claimed the lives of her family, sixteen-year-old Ever can see auras, hear people’s thoughts, and know a person’s life story by touch. Going out of her way to shield herself from human contact to suppress her abilities has branded her as a freak at her new high school—but everything changes when she meets Damen Auguste…

Ever sees Damen and feels an instant recognition. He is gorgeous, exotic and wealthy, and he holds many secrets. Damen is able to make things appear and disappear, he always seems to know what she’s thinking—and he’s the only one who can silence the noise and the random energy in her head. She doesn’t know who he really is—or what he is. Damen equal parts light and darkness, and he belongs to an enchanted new world where no one ever dies.


Evermore was a great book and I can't wait until the sequel. My review is written and should be posted soon!

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

When Brittany Ellis walks into chemistry class on the first day of senior year, she has no clue that her carefully created “perfect” life is about to unravel before her eyes. She’s forced to be lab partners with Alex Fuentes, a gang member from the other side of town, and he is about to threaten everything she's worked so hard for—her flawless reputation, her relationship with her boyfriend, and the secret that her home life is anything but perfect. Alex is a bad boy and he knows it. So when he makes a bet with his friends to lure Brittany into his life, he thinks nothing of it. But soon Alex realizes Brittany is a real person with real problems, and suddenly the bet he made in arrogance turns into something much more. In a passionate story about looking beneath the surface, Simone Elkeles breaks through the stereotypes and barriers that threaten to keep Brittany and Alex apart.

You can check out my review of this here.

I had a pretty good week, don't you think?

7.2.09

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

Summary:


A fresh, urban twist on the classic tale of star-crossed lovers.

When Brittany Ellis walks into chemistry class on the first day of senior year, she has no clue that her carefully created “perfect” life is about to unravel before her eyes. She’s forced to be lab partners with Alex Fuentes, a gang member from the other side of town, and he is about to threaten everything she's worked so hard for—her flawless reputation, her relationship with her boyfriend, and the secret that her home life is anything but perfect. Alex is a bad boy and he knows it. So when he makes a bet with his friends to lure Brittany into his life, he thinks nothing of it. But soon Alex realizes Brittany is a real person with real problems, and suddenly the bet he made in arrogance turns into something much more. In a passionate story about looking beneath the surface, Simone Elkeles breaks through the stereotypes and barriers that threaten to keep Brittany and Alex apart. (from Amazon)


Review:

As said in the summary, Perfect Chemistry is an urban twist on the classic tale of star-crossed lovers. Though, it's so much more than just a love story. It has family problems, the fight to keep up a "perfect" or " tough" appearance even if you don't want to anymore, and it takes you on journey through what it means to be part of one of the scariest gangs there is alive.

The characters in this book were some of the most realistic ones I've seen in a while. Even though I thought I was going to hate Britney, I just couldn't. I felt sorry for her, because of her many struggles that included her having to make up for what her sister couldn't be and having to pretend to be perfect in front of her friends so they wouldn't see her as anything but. With Alex, it was sometimes scary to look through his eyes and see how in order to protect his family he had to be a part of The Bloods, the main gang in the book. Throughout, I was rooting for both to realize they could be so much more than what they were.

Simone Elkeles writing in Perfect Chemistry was just an all around wow. She perfectly captures what it means to be a teenager and the many problems they face every day. Also, the gang and discrimination parts of this were extremely real to the point were, I think, she must have done some research about both.

One of my favorite parts of this novel, was the conversations between the characters that included a mix of Spanish and English. (which I though was awesome because I take Spanish in school) They caused many laugh out loud moments and made this book go by extremely too fast.

Overall, Perfect Chemistry is a funny, cute, and serious book that will make you think about the many situations that were addressed. I can't wait to read more by Elkeles. By the way, have you seen the book trailer for this? It's one of the best I've ever seen. :)

Grade: A+

Perfect Chemistry is now out in paperback! You can find out more about it here. Also, be sure to check out Simone's website and myspace.

6.2.09

Inspired Friday with Lynn Weingarten

This is an idea that I came up with one day when I was home sick from school in January. I have always wondered what inspires authors to write their books. So, I thought, why not do something were the author talks about their latest book and what inspired them to write it? Hence, Inspired Fridays' were born. This is going to be a weekly or every other week feature depending on how many authors agree to do this. Also, if the author offers up a copy of their book for a giveaway, there will be a contest.

So, without a further ado this is Lynn Weingarten talking about her newly released book, Wherever Nina Lies. You can check out her myspace page here.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I was a book editor for five years before I started writing full-time. When I was leaving my editing job, I sent an email to everyone I knew who worked in publishing saying, "Hey! If anyone might want me to write anything, I'm over here!" Some people at Scholastic got in touch with me and told me they were looking to do a YA novel that would have drawings in it that would play a pivotal role in the story. They asked if I'd be interested in trying-out to write it. I said, "Oh boy would I ever be!" A lot of my inspiration for the story came from trying to figure out a plot that would naturally lend itself to this specific format. That said various things in my own life inspired various parts of the story -- I was a barista in high school, I have an older sister, I've been on road trips, I had a couple friends who ran away for a while during high school (but very, very luckily they ended up coming back okay).


The book ended up being about a girl named Ellie whose older sister, Nina, vanished two years before the book begins. Nina was a wild and crazy party girl, but also a really good artist. All the illustrations in the book are meant to be her drawings. Quite early on in the plot, Ellie finds a drawing of Nina's tucked in between the pages of a book at a vintage shop, and this starts her off on a hunt for her sister. Accompanying Ellie on her trip is a hot and mysterious stranger whom Ellie barely knows and various scandalous things happen along the way.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thanks so much, Lynn! Your book sounds great. :)

If you are an author and would like to be a part of Inspired Friday, please contact me at laurenscrammedbookshelf@gmail.com.

5.2.09

Contest for an ARC of Golden Girl by Micol Ostow

Since, Simon & Schuster has given me another copy of Golden Girl by Micol Ostow, I have decided to give it away.

Here's the blurb from Amazon:

Paige, Spencer, and Madison have it all: the looks, the connections, the money, the boys. As the daughters of three of the most prestigious families on Philadelphia's Main Line (read: old money, and lots of it) and the ruling juniors at Bradford Prep, nothing can stand in their way....except, perhaps, their own dark secrets. When an old frenemy from Paige's hidden past shows up at Bradford and plays nice--too nice--Paige is desperate to smother the threat. How far will she go to silence the truth?

To enter, simply leave a coment on this post.

For extra entries:

-Put a link to this on your sidebar ( +3)
- If you become a follower( +3)
- If you are a follower (+6)

- If you send out bulletins (Myspace), send an email to friends ( make sure to include my email address) or anything else. (+1 for each one that you do)


This contest will end February 28th at midnight eastern time- a little more than 3 weeks from now! Also, this contest is open to everyone!


Good luck!! :)

Edit: This contest is now closed and the winner was selected!! So, please do not leave anymore comments. For contests that are currently open now, please, look at the right sidebar where they are listed.

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