This week’s question –
Friday, November 30, 2012
This week’s question –
Thursday, November 29, 2012
In Deuce’s world, people earn the right to a name only if they survive their first fifteen years. By that point, each unnamed ‘brat’ has trained into one of three groups–Breeders, Builders, or Hunters, identifiable by the number of scars they bear on their arms. Deuce has wanted to be a Huntress for as long as she can remember.
As a Huntress, her purpose is clear—to brave the dangerous tunnels outside the enclave and bring back meat to feed the group while evading ferocious monsters known as Freaks. She’s worked toward this goal her whole life, and nothing’s going to stop her, not even a beautiful, brooding Hunter named Fade. When the mysterious boy becomes her partner, Deuce’s troubles are just beginning.
Down below, deviation from the rules is punished swiftly and harshly, and Fade doesn’t like following orders. At first Deuce thinks he’s crazy, but as death stalks their sanctuary, and it becomes clear the elders don’t always know best, Deuce wonders if Fade might be telling the truth. Her partner confuses her; she’s never known a boy like him before, as prone to touching her gently as using his knives with feral grace.
As Deuce’s perception shifts, so does the balance in the constant battle for survival. The mindless Freaks, once considered a threat only due to their sheer numbers, show signs of cunning and strategy… but the elders refuse to heed any warnings. Despite imminent disaster, the enclave puts their faith in strictures and sacrifice instead. No matter how she tries, Deuce cannot stem the dark tide that carries her far from the only world she’s ever known.
I also LOVED this book. I too did not know what the fuss was or even review the plot before I dived in. In a time when survival is key, it is interesting that humans would do anything to keep some semblance of order and balance. What I found interesting was how the Enclave below ground was run compared to above ground societies.
' There were different kinds of strength. I knew that now. It didn't always come from a knife or a willingness to fight. Sometimes it came from endurance, where the well ran deep and quiet. Sometimes it came from compassion and forgiveness.' (page 244)
There really are no weak characters in the story. Deuce has incredible willpower and skills as a hunter. Fade is a true hunter with a soft core that he keeps well hidden from everyone. Stalker, well he's just fierce, but you can see that he just does what has to be done to survive. Tegan, weak on the outside but with an incredible inner strength. They are brought together through a bizarre set of circumstances and their journey is a continual fight to live.
Deuce was bred to be a hunter and it was ingrained in her down to the core. As the story progressed though, you see glimpses of her emotions come through and her lack of understanding. She experiences feelings such as envy and jealousy but does not have words for them. Stalker was just as interesting as he begins to share tidbits of his prior life before heading underground. I would love to learn more about him and his experience. Imagine being barely a teen and needing to survive on your own! I had mixed feelings about Tegan. She did keep a lot in but she had reasons for doing such. (We do learn more about her in Book #2)
The bad guys, well they are a sort of mutant scavenger/cannibal type, that are slightly reminiscent of zombies, but they are not dead. Strange, deadly and very, very frightening. There are lots of dark tunnels and ruins and strange noises, and lots of nasty fights full of blood and gore. Lots of fun, right? I read Enclave pretty much in one sitting and really enjoyed it. It's one of those books where I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. Is there a love interest? Well, perhaps the beginnings of one. I must admit I am really pleased to see that there will be more books to follow this one. Apparently Enclave is 'Razorland #1' and I personally can't wait to see what happens next to this intrepid band of adventurers.
I pictured the bad guys to be similar to zombies. Ms. Aguirre's description painted ghastly images in my mind. Smelly, putrid beings intent on gnawing on whatever appendage you may have left for them. Deuce mentioned that in the Enclave, if someone died, they left the bodies outside of the Enclave for the Freaks to devour. This was slightly disturbing to me. Aguirre paints such a dismal environment but thrown in are sparks of humanity and hope. As I read about the different groups living in this dystopian-type environment, I started to grade them using different levels of humanity. Actions taken and rules established determined where I would position each group.
After reading Enclave, I sat back and thought about Deuce and why I felt so involved in her life as a reader. She is rough and tough but has an innocence about her. Her job as a Huntress has trained her to be hardened as a person yet meeting Stalker brings out a softness in her and identifies how she is quite naive in some ways.
Anyone who enjoyed Maze Runner, Hunger Games, Incarceron, Rot and Ruin etc will love this one I'm sure, so run out and get yourself a copy and sit back and get lost in the story.
Like Curlypow, I found it hard to put Enclave down. It was so good that I bought Outpost (Book #2) right away. Keep your eyes peeled for my review!
Dystopian fans, this is totally for you. I think Deuce would probably be BFFs with Tris (from Divergent)... or Saba from Blood Red Road....
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
At the luminous conclusion of The Pledge, Charlaina defeated the tyrant Sabara and took her place as Queen of Ludania. But Charlie knows that Sabara has not disappeared: The evil queen’s Essence is fused to Charlie’s psyche, ready to arise at the first sign of weakness.
Charlie is not weak, but she’s being pushed to the brink. In addition to suppressing the ever-present influence of Sabara, she’s busy being queen—and battling a growing resistance determined to return Ludania to its discriminatory caste system. Charlie wants to be the same girl Max loves, who Brook trusts, but she’s Your Majesty now, and she feels torn in two.
As Charlie journeys to an annual summit to meet with leaders of nearby Queendoms—an event where her ability to understand all languages will be the utmost asset—she is faced with the ultimate betrayal. And the only person she can turn to for help is the evil soul residing within.
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Many people want to master new skills, stimulate their creativity, and explore additional fields of interest. With DK's Get Started series, readers can create their own learning opportunities—on a schedule and budget that works for them.
My daughter has recently been expressing an interest in growing her own produce and then preserving what she reaps. Unfortunately, she was a little frustrated with the preserving books that she found, because they all assumed that she wanted to preserve bushels. As a beginner in this field, she wanted beginner instructions.
Well, that's what I found in this amazing new book from DK Adult. It is absolutely chock full of amazing photographs and simple step by step instructions. There is a page picturing all of the utensils that are required for each different technique and the instructions go back to basics - like showing you how to peel and cut peaches for bottled or candied fruits. The quantities required are small, the instructions are clear and precise and the photographs are remarkably helpful
Just some of the choices you are offered in this book are jams and jellies; chutneys and pickles, cordials or alcoholic drinks, bottled or candied fruits; frozen vegetables or herbs, and even cured and potted meats, if that's where your fancy lies.
As is usually the case with any DK products, there is not just one book, but an entire series. There are books for sewing, knitting, baking, growing vegetables, wine appreciation, yoga, pilates and of course preserving. This looks as if it is going to be an absolutely fantastic series, and one of the best things about this series - they come out before Christmas, and are available for pre-order. They are also very reasonably priced.
Right now, I'm off to order my copy of this one for Ellie for her Christmas stocking. In fact, I may have to get one for myself as well - some of these recipes look absolutely yummy. Thank you Dorling Kindersly for continually producing books that completely fit the bill. Check this Getting Starting series out - I'm sure you'll love it.
Monday, November 26, 2012
Sunday, November 25, 2012
One night Kylie Galen finds herself at the wrong party, with the wrong people, and it changes her life forever. Her mother ships her off to Shadow Falls—a camp for troubled teens, and within hours of arriving, it becomes painfully clear that her fellow campers aren’t just “troubled.” Here at Shadow Falls, vampires, werewolves, shapshifters, witches and fairies train side by side—learning to harness their powers, control their magic and live in the normal world.
Kylie’s never felt normal, but surely she doesn’t belong here with a bunch of paranormal freaks either. Or does she? They insist Kylie is one of them, and that she was brought here for a reason. As if life wasn’t complicated enough, enter Derek and Lucas. Derek’s a half-fae who’s determined to be her boyfriend, and Lucas is a smokin’ hot werewolf with whom Kylie shares a secret past. Both Derek and Lucas couldn’t be more different, but they both have a powerful hold on her heart.
Even though Kylie feels deeply uncertain about everything, one thing is becoming painfully clear—Shadow Falls is exactly where she belongs…
From the moment Kylie Galen arrived at Shadow Falls Camp, she’s had one burning question: What am I? Surrounded by vampires, werewolves, shape-shifters, fairies and witches, Kylie longs to figure out her own supernatural identity…and what her burgeoning powers mean. And now she’ll need them more than ever, because she’s being haunted by a new spirit who insists that someone Kylie knows—and loves—will die before the end of the summer. If only she only knew who she was supposed to save. And how…
But giving Kylie the most trouble is her aching heart. Gorgeous werewolf Lucas left camp with another girl, but he’s still visiting Kylie in her dreams. And Derek, a sexy half Fae who’s always been there for her when she needed him, is pushing to get more serious—and growing impatient, especially when Lucas returns. Kylie knows she needs to decide between the boys, and it’s tearing her up inside.
Yet romance will have to wait, because something from the dark side of the supernatural world is hiding in Shadow Falls. It’s about to threaten everything she holds dear…and bring her closer to her destiny.
Kylie Galen wants the truth so badly she can taste it. The truth about who her real family is, the truth about which boy she’s meant to be with—and the truth about what her emerging powers mean. But she’s about to discover that some secrets can change your life forever…and not always for the better
Just when she and Lucas are finally getting close, she learns that his pack has forbidden them from being together. Was it a mistake to pick him over Derek? And it’s not just romance troubling Kylie. An amnesia-stricken ghost is haunting her, delivering the frightful warning, someone lives and someone dies. As Kylie races to unravel the mystery and protect those she loves, she finally unlocks the truth about her supernatural identity, which is far different—and more astonishing—than she ever imagined.
Published March 2011; October 2011 and April 2011
Publisher: St Martin's Griffin
Three days, three books and 1.161 pages. I could not stop reading. I had so much fun reading these three books, I just couldn't stop. You know when you get that buggy eyed feeling and you know you've read too much, but you only have another 98 pages to go and it's only 1.00 am ........ Yep, that was me.
This was a series for me that worked in every way. The setting was wonderful - a camp for supernaturals out in the wilderness, but not entirely secluded, with other camps nearby and a small town. Set in Texas so that the heat was almost oppressive, but that just made the cold from the ghosts even more noticeable.
The characters were superb. Kylie, Derek, Lucas, Della, Miranda, Perry, Ellie, even bitchy Frederica all played their parts well. Kylie is a ? - well we don't find out what she is until the very end of the third book and I'm not tellin'! Derek is part fae, Lucas is all werewolf, Della is a vampire, Miranda is a witch, Perry is a shapeshifter, Ellie is another vamp and Frederica another werewolf. Can you just imagine the tensions with all these different supernatural creatures trying to play nice with each other. Then there are Holiday and Burnett - they are the adults in the group and their relationship almost deserves a book of its own. As each book progresses we come to see more and more of what makes each character tick. The series is about friendship and acceptance, of being comfortable with yourself and with each other and learning to trust.
One of the things we know about Kylie is that she is a ghost whisperer (amongst other things we won't talk about) and each volume has a ghost mystery running through it that Kylie has to solve. This is not something that the others can really help her with and she has to struggle with each mystery while trying to solve her own identity crisis. Of course there are some nasty bad guys who are chasing after Kylie and there is a shadowy government agency that has some major skeletons in its closet, both of which add to the ghostly, creepy factor.
And then there is the love triangle. I'm not always a fan of the triangle, but this one worked for me. I was totally unable to decide whose team I was on until about halfway through the third book before that it was Derek, no Lucas, no Derek, no Lucas etc, etc. - I'm not usually so indecisive, but I just couldn't make up my mind. Which team did I eventually land on - well it was team Derek, but I still don't know if I've made the right choice or not, because guess what, there is at least one more book in the series. Yep, it's called Whispers at Moonrise and it came out early this October and I'm first on the waiting list for it at work.
If you enjoy supernatural creatures, camp settings and ghostly mysteries, this series comes highly recommended.
Saturday, November 24, 2012
Gene is different from everyone else around him. He can’t run with lightning speed, sunlight doesn’t hurt him and he doesn’t have an unquenchable lust for blood. Gene is a human, and he knows the rules. Keep the truth a secret. It’s the only way to stay alive in a world of night—a world where humans are considered a delicacy and hunted for their blood.
When he’s chosen for a once in a lifetime opportunity to hunt the last remaining humans, Gene’s carefully constructed life begins to crumble around him. He’s thrust into the path of a girl who makes him feel things he never thought possible—and into a ruthless pack of hunters whose suspicions about his true nature are growing. Now that Gene has finally found something worth fighting for, his need to survive is stronger than ever—but is it worth the cost of his humanity?
(feeling a little bold today so I've added some subheadings...)
Third Time's a Charm!
So Curlypow was the first to review The Hunt. You can read what she thought here. Next, Special K did a review. You can read her thoughts here. I had heard so many great things about this title that I thought I should bump it up my TBR list. After I downloaded the first few chapters on my reader, I was hooked! The Hunt is a fast-moving thrillride if you like a Dystopian world that has been overtaken by vampires.
Moo says you
There are several things I want to discuss in this review. As much as I enjoyed this book, humans were constantly referred to as Hepers. Which sounds awfully close to the word - Heffer (a cow). My mind continued to automatically correct the world Heper to Heffer throughout the book. Similar to a mental spellcheck. It was rather distressing. The theme of domesticating humans as food continued throughout the story as Fukada progressed by talking about the Dome and incorporating it into the Hunt. Andrew, did you mean to play this little mind game/association on us readers? If so, brilliant! if not, here's that ISU idea people!
What's in a name?
Something that was incredibly odd (also brought up by Curlypow) was that the characters did not have actual "names". Gene referred to them by giving nicknames to qualities that stood out such as Crimson Lips, Phys Ed and Ashley June (the vamp he is crushing on). This method was brilliant and I actually did not notice the lack of name reference until about 1/3 of the way through the book.
When the Prey becomes the Predator
So Gene (we don't actually learn his first name until part way through the story) is a human trying to live hidden in a world of vamps. The thing is, he lives among them and has a very strategic routine to blend in. His rigorous training to avoid detection was stunning. I found myself feeling sorry for him and his lack of actual human interaction. Imagine trying to be something you are not for your entire lifetime! The idea of the hunted hiding among a sea of predators....just when you thought your life couldn't get any more dismal.
Like living under a microscope
Some of the Hepers lived under a dome and were supplied with basic necessities and a few luxuries as well. It was an interesting concept because the vamps would monitor and learn from them.
Mr. Fukada gave me as a reader, a lot of food for thought. There were so many interesting aspects to this story that had me question a lot about the way we live as a community. That being said, there were also many holes in this story but I was able to overlook them due to the great storyline. I would whole-heartedly recommend The Hunt. I would even recommend it as an ISU title due to the themes you could pull from the vampire community and relate to culture today.
Macmillan Audio has graciously given us a link to a clip from the book - http://media.us.macmillan.com/
Friday, November 23, 2012
Q: What blog are you thankful for?
One of the blogs I am thankful for is Annette's Book Spot. Annette is a librarian like Christinabean and myself and she has a healthy dislike of bad spelling. It's because of her that I check my spelling so much in my posts, although I'm ashamed to admit that I still miss some. She is also much closer to my own age than a lot of the bloggers I follow, so I'm grateful that I'm not the only 'older adult' (ha ha) that blogs about YA books. If I'm honest though, I'm grateful for all the blogs I follow, thank you all, for the entertainment, reviews and suggestions. I (we) love them all. The Paperback Princesses are Canadian, so we are not celebrating Thanksgiving with our southern cousins - we celebrated a month ago - but we send our very best wishes for your special holiday.
Thursday, November 22, 2012
Within the walls of Baalboden, beneath the shadow of the city's brutal leader, Rachel Adams has a secret. While other girls sew dresses and obey their male Protectors, Rachel knows how to survive in the wilderness and deftly wield a sword. When her father, Jared, fails to return from a courier mission and is declared dead, the Commander assigns Rachel a new Protector, her father's apprentice, Logan--the same boy Rachel declared her love for two years ago, and the same one who handed her heart right back to her. Left with nothing but a fierce belief in her father's survival, Rachel decides to escape and find him herself. But treason against the Commander carries a heavy price, and what awaits her in the Wasteland could destroy her.
At nineteen, Logan McEntire is many things. Orphan. Outcast. Inventor. As apprentice to the city's top courier, Logan is focused on learning his trade so he can escape the tyranny of Baalboden. But his plan never included being responsible for his mentor's impulsive daughter. Logan is determined to protect her, but when his escape plan goes wrong and Rachel pays the price, he realizes he has more at stake than disappointing Jared.
As Rachel and Logan battle their way through the Wasteland, stalked by a monster that can't be killed and an army of assassins out for blood, they discover romance, heartbreak, and a truth that will incite a war decades in the making.
I LOVED Defiance. It was such a wonderful blend of post apocalyptic/dystopian/medieval fantasy, with a touch of outlawed technology thrown in for good measure. It reads a little like a fantasy, but it is more in tone than in substance. There is no magic, other than that of 'old' technology. Sound strange, well it wasn't, it worked on every level.
Rachel and Logan were marvellous protagonists. Both were resourceful and smart, but oh, the trials they had to bear. There is a lovely romance between the two of them that is more the realization of an existing love than something new, which worked for me. As for bad guys, well The Commander was rather a nasty villain - one of those guys who has let power really go to his head. Towards the end of the story we begin to realize that he is even more of a bastard than we think, and this bodes well, or ill perhaps, for future books.
The story is written from dual POV's, that of Rachel and Logan, which was easy to follow, with my only complaint being that some of the chapters were a bit short. (That's really just a personal dislike, it didn't affect the story in any way.) There's lots of exciting things going on - like nasty fire breathing dragon-like wormy creatures - but not everything works out the way we hope it will. Of course, this leaves the way open for books 2 and 3 - yep Defiance is the first in a trilogy, with #2 coming out next fall. Great romance, great characters, great action, interesting story - I loved it.
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
When Freedom Airlines flight 121 went down over the Pacific Ocean, no one ever expected to find survivors. Which is why the sixteen-year-old girl discovered floating among the wreckage—alive—is making headlines across the globe.
Even more strange is that her body is miraculously unharmed and she has no memories of boarding the plane. She has no memories of her life before the crash. She has no memories period. No one knows how she survived. No one knows why she wasn’t on the passenger manifest. And no one can explain why her DNA and fingerprints can’t be found in a single database in the world.
Crippled by a world she doesn’t know, plagued by abilities she doesn’t understand, and haunted by a looming threat she can’t remember, Seraphina struggles to piece together her forgotten past and discover who she really is. But with every clue only comes more questions. And she’s running out of time to answer them.
Her only hope is a strangely alluring boy who claims to know her from before the crash. Who claims they were in love. But can she really trust him? And will he be able to protect her from the people who have been making her forget?
From popular young adult author, Jessica Brody comes a mesmerizing and suspenseful new series, set in a world where science knows no boundaries, memories are manipulated, and true love can never be forgotten.
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Monday, November 19, 2012
Curlypow here. I just realised when I was downloading these pictures from Goodreads, that Blood Magic has been out for a while in hard cover. While I was never interested in the original, this new cover for the paperback intrigues me, so I'll give it a go. Here's the original cover, below. Which do you prefer?
Sunday, November 18, 2012
This story follows Katelyn from her hometown just outside Atlanta to her new school in Charleston. There she meets James and is deeply intrigued by him from their first meeting; feeling as if he has touched her very soul. The more she considers him, the more intense her interest becomes. He is a wealthy patron of the arts, especially at her school. He is tall and handsome with a strong persona; a young widower, living alone in a huge, but beautifully restored old plantation house called 'Whitehall'. Their friendship soon becomes serious, becoming a full on relationship as Katelyn falls madly in love with him. James soon makes his love for her just as obvious. Their lives begin to blend, twisting and turning, as they continue to grow closer.
After several strange incidents, Katelyn begins to develop a series of unsettling questions about her new love. However, she knows that after facing the catastrophe of her parent’s deaths, she can face anything life throws at her. She begins looking at the questions, searching her own soul. Finally deciding that she must know the answers, she confronts him. She soon discovers James' true nature; confirming her fears that he was indeed not the man she thought, but the man she feared him to be. The confirmation of her suspicions are shocking to her, turning her world view on its side. She is forced to acknowledge things about herself and her world that she never thought possible. With her new found knowledge, Katelyn realizes she must make a choice to live with or without James. She quickly decides to adapt her life and adjust her beliefs in order to continue to be with James.
Their love for each other develops and continues to grow as he assists her to close the gaping wounds left by the tragedy of her parent’s murders. Katelyn continues to uncover other secrets, discovering another existence, as she begins her new life with James. The story reaches a highly emotional and completely unexpected ending that fully illustrates Katelyn's personality of love and care for those around her.
The Master of Whitehall, a paranormal romance novel is complete at 104,000 words. The story unfolds over the course of nearly a year, and features flashbacks that more fully develop each of the characters, offering insights into their personal histories. The story is narrated in first person perspective by Katelyn as she offers a window into the world of possibilities of love between mortal and immortal.
The Master of Whitehall will be very appealing to readers of Rachel Caine's 'Morganville Vampires', Charlaine Harris’ ‘True Blood’ series, and Anne Rice's 'Vampire Chronicles'.
I asked Rick if he could tell us why he chose to write for the 'new adult' crowd and this is what he said:
Rick has also very kindly offered some swag for our readers. We have a signed print copy, 2 ecopies and some bookmarks to give away. WOW. So if you're interested, leave us a comment with your email and we'll see what we can do.
Saturday, November 17, 2012
But fifteen years of studying never prepared her for this.
Now she must abandon everything she’s ever known—the guardians who raised her, the boy she’s forbidden to love—to move to India and convince the world that Amarra is still alive.
What Eva finds is a grief-stricken family; parents unsure how to handle this echo they thought they wanted; and Ray, who knew every detail, every contour of Amarra. And when Eva is unexpectedly dealt a fatal blow that will change her existence forever, she is forced to choose: Stay and live out her years as a copy or leave and risk it all for the freedom to be an original. To be Eva.
From debut novelist Sangu Mandanna comes the dazzling story of a girl who was always told what she had to be—until she found the strength to decide for herself.
Eva and Amarra are both strong, wonderful female characters, with enough hesitance to make them believable. Much to my happiness, they didn’t gush out all their secrets within days of meeting a heartthrob of a boy. They were complex, and kept some secrets and blurted out others all I a very believable and likeable way.
Many thanks to Special K for this wonderful review. I'm off to get a copy to read for myself.
Friday, November 16, 2012
Big Bang Theory did a surprise flash mob in front of their live studio audience.
And here's an even better version!
Books are turned into movies all the time! Turn it around. What movie would make a great book?
Thursday, November 15, 2012
Mason Starling is a champion fencer on the Gosforth Academy team, but she's never had to fight for her life. Not until the night a ferocious, otherworldly storm rips through Manhattan, trapping Mason and her teammates inside the school. Mason is besieged by nightmarish creatures more terrifying than the thunder and lightning as the raging tempest also brings a dangerous stranger into her life: a young man who remembers nothing but his name--the Fennrys Wolf. His arrival tears Mason's world apart, even as she feels an undeniable connection to him. Together, they seek to unravel the secrets of Fenn's identity as strange and supernatural forces gather around them. When they discover Mason's family--with its dark allegiance to ancient Norse gods--is at the heart of the mystery, Fennrys and Mason are suddenly faced with a terrifying future.
Set against the gritty, shadowed back-drop of New York City, this first novel in award-winning author Lesley Livingston's epic Starling Saga is an intoxicating blend of sweeping romance and pulse-pounding action.
Have you ever read a book, loved it and then gone back to write a review but were blank for an explanation? That is what I'm experiencing today. I'm blank for an explanation because I loved enjoyed this story so much! I love Lesley Livingston. Not only is she a brilliant Canadian writer but she seems to write across varied topics. I first had an opportunity to preview Starling via NetGalley. Unfortunately I only had access to the first few chapters (that was mean!). Right off the bat Livingston begins with a pulse-pounding action scene which leaves you feeling, quite frankly, out of breath. Mason Starling leads a very mysterious life and as the story develops, things are not quite as they seem. Supernatural beings are beginning to pop up at the most unusual times and Mason must figure out why with the help of Fennrys Wolf, a man who literally fell out of the sky!
Lesley links her English background with an interest in folklore and mythology in this fantastic first series novel. One of the things I love best about Ms. Livingston's work is her writing style. She writes beautifully and I was able to envision myself in Mason's world. The theme of Starling also has a different twist than the titles I have been reading this year. She expertly combines the supernatural with folkfore, romance and adventure, appealing to all of my book senses. Well done Lesley! I look forward to reading Book #2!
By the way, for those of you who have read Once Every Never, the second book in the series was announced at the beginning of October - Every Never After with a release date of March 2013.
If you happen to be in the Ontario area, you might want to check out Chapters Brampton (November 17th) and Chapters Barrie (November 24th) for appearances by Lesley Livingston, Leah Bobhet, Megan Crewe, Maureen McGowan and Cheryl Rainfield! See the link for details.
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
In this gripping conclusion to the #1 New York Times-bestselling Matched Trilogy, Cassia will reconcile the difficulties of challenging a life too confining, seeking a freedom she never dreamed possible, and honoring a love she cannot live without.
In a city where humans and Darklings are now separated by a high wall and tensions between the two races still simmer after a terrible war, sixteen-year-olds Ash Fisher, a half-blood Darkling, and Natalie Buchanan, a human and the daughter of the Emissary, meet and do the unthinkable—they fall in love. Bonded by a mysterious connection that causes Ash’s long-dormant heart to beat, Ash and Natalie first deny and then struggle to fight their forbidden feelings for each other, knowing if they’re caught, they’ll be executed—but their feelings are too strong.
When Ash and Natalie then find themselves at the center of a deadly conspiracy that threatens to pull the humans and Darklings back into war, they must make hard choices that could result in both their deaths.
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Still far from their homeland after escaping slavery in the icebound land of Skandia, Will and Evanlyn's plans to return to Araluen are spoiled when Evanlyn is taken captive by a Temujai warrior. Though still weakened by the warmweed's toxic effects, Will employs his Ranger training to locate his friend, but an enemy scouting party has him fatally outnumbered. Will is certain death is close at hand, until Halt and Horace make a daring, last-minute rescue. The reunion is cut short, however, when Halt makes a horrifying discovery: Skandia's borders have been breached by the entire Temujai army. And Araluen is next in their sights. If two kingdoms are to be saved, an unlikely union must be made. Will it hold long enough to vanquish a ruthless new enemy? Or will past tensions spell doom for all?The battles and drama are nonstop in Book Four of this hugely popular epic.
The Battle for Skandia is the fourth volume in John Flanagans brilliant Ranger's Apprentice series. This is a series that I recommend constantly at work for boys and I have yet to have anyone come back to me and say they didn't like it.
Each volume has some type of adventure and/or battle where the main characters are neck deep in trouble and this volume is no exception. After having been separated, Will and Evanlyn meet up again with Horace and Halt, but very shortly find themselves involved with the Skandians again. This time trying to stop the invading Temujai from taking over the country.
Halt is as enigmatic as always and Horace is wonderful, there is no subterfuge to Horace, what you see, is what you get, and his moral code is set in stone. Will continues to grow, in character if not in stature and Evanlyn continues to make herself useful wherever she can. One of the things I love about this series is the strong adult characters. Halt is a positive and welcoming role model for the kids to follow and while there are nasty bad guys, the positve influence well outweighs the negative.
Flanagan continues to define his characters, but this volume is more about the action. There is a lot of interesting preparation for the big battle and then wow, we are right in the middle of it. I found the whole strategy for the battle rather fascinating and I loved the way the Skandians come to realise that their brute force methods, while successful, are not always the best way to win.
If you haven't already started this series, give it a try. It is well worth it.
1. The Ruins of Gorlan
2. The Burning Bridge
3. The Icebound Land
4. The Battle for Skandia
5. The Sorceror of the North
6. The Seige of Macindaw
7. Erak's Ransom
8. The Kings of Clonmel
9. Halt's Peril
10. The Emperor of Nihon-Ja
11. The Lost Stories.
Monday, November 12, 2012
Kobo had a great contest going on last week and I won some online discount coupon codes so I cashed them in for a couple titles to put on my reader. Unfortunately, not all of my favorite publishers were participating but here's what I snagged -