Wednesday, August 24, 2011


I'm extremely behind on reviews, not to mention reading, right now, due to the fact that my senior year just started and I'm swamped with schoolwork. I promise to post everything as soon as possible but there's a strong likelihood that my posts will become even more sporadic than they usually are. My apologies, and keep reading! :)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday: Beautiful Days

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly feature started by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It's where we can gossip about yet-to-be-released books that we're looking forward to.

For the bright young things of 1929, the beautiful days seem endless, filled with romance and heartbreak, adventure and intrigue, friendship and rivalry.
After a month in New York, Cordelia Grey and Letty Larkspur are small-town girls no longer. They spend their afternoons with Astrid Donal at the Greys’ lush Long Island estate and their nights in Manhattan’s bustling metropolis. But Letty’s not content to be a mere socialite. She is ready at last to chase her Broadway dreams—no matter the cost.
Cordelia is still reeling from the death of her father at the hands of Thom Hale, the man she thought she loved. Now she is set to honor Darius Grey’s legacy . . . and take her revenge.
Promised to Cordelia’s half brother, Astrid is caught up in a world of dazzling jewels and glittering nights—and the sparkle is blinding. Charlie Grey is a gangster playing a dangerous game; and for Astrid, Cordelia, and Letty, the stakes could be deadly.

I'm a huge fan of Anna Gobersen's The Luxe series and I'm even more enthusiastic for this one. I love everything about the 1920s and I can't wait to see what's in store for this sequel.

**Beautiful Days
releases on September 20, 2011 by HarperTeen, an inprint of HarperCollins publishing.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

ILLUSIONS by Aprilynne Pike

Laurel hasn't seen Tamani since she begged him to let her go last year. Though her heart still aches, Laurel is confident that David was the right choice.

But just as life is returning to normal, Laurel discovers that a hidden enemy lies in wait. Once again, Laurel must turn to Tamani to protect and guide her, for the danger that now threatens Avalon is one that no faerie thought would ever be possible. And for the first time, Laurel cannot be sure that her side will prevail.

Every time I pick up this series I ask myself, "Why am I reading this?" But then I get about fifty pages in and I'm hooked. Illusions started out slow but it certainly picked up the pace as it continued. Aprilynne again did a great job of blending fantasy and normal teenage life into an engaging novel. I think this was probably my favorite book in the series, simply because I was not as confused while reading.  In both Wings and Spells it seemed like a lot of information was missing, stuff that had to be picked up as I went farther into the novel. Illusions was the opposite though; I felt as if I was present for all the action. 

The relationships Laurel has with David and Tamani are both complicated and simplistic. Mainly a game of I Love Him, I Love Him Not, as she's the only one confused about her feelings. Though at times annoying, the dynamics between the characters never detracted from the overall story, something greatly appreciated by yours truly. Don't ask me whether I'm Team David or Team Tamani; I'm Team Undecided. Both are very intriguing and interesting characters but they both annoy the hell out of me sometimes.

Klea and Yuki are brought to the forefront of the story in an interesting way. Though secondary characters, I enjoyed reading about the both of them. Klea was her usual mysterious self and Yuki's innocence and naivete were refreshing to read. Oddly enough, I found myself defending Yuki sometimes even though (SPOILER!!) it was obvious she would wind up being the villain

The ending, though not very surprising, provided more questions to (hopefully!) be answered in the conclusion of the series. I sped through Illusions and if you enjoy faerie stories, I'm sure you'll enjoy this one too.

4/5 stars

Monday, August 8, 2011


Katarina Bishop has worn a lot of labels in her short life life. Friend. Niece. Daughter. Thief. But for the last two months she’s simply been known as the girl who ran the crew that robbed the greatest museum in the world. That’s why Kat isn’t surprised when she’s asked to steal the infamous Cleopatra Emerald so it can be returned to its rightful owners.

There are only three problems. First, the gem hasn’t been seen in public in thirty years. Second, since the fall of the Egyptian empire and the suicide of Cleopatra, no one who holds the emerald keeps it for long, and in Kat’s world, history almost always repeats itself. But it’s the third problem that makes Kat’s crew the most nervous and that is simply… the emerald is cursed.

Kat might be in way over her head, but she’s not going down without a fight. After all she has her best friend—the gorgeous Hale—and the rest of her crew with her as they chase the Cleopatra around the globe, dodging curses, realizing that the same tricks and cons her family has used for centuries are useless this time.

Which means, this time, Katarina Bishop is making up her own rules.

Uncommon Criminals was an incredible sequel to Heist Society. Both books had the same sense of adventure and mischievousness needed to carry the seriousness of the initial plot. You would think a book about stealing precious items would have no moral depth at all, but when talking about the Heist Society series, you would be dead wrong. Without the depth displayed the story would lack necessary components and would fall very flat, at least for me.

The romance factor was slightly upped from the previous book, resulting in a wonderful developing relationship between Kat and Hale. God, I think they are so cute together! But then again, I am a girl, so that is to be expected :P 

Uncommon Criminals brought a lot more back story to the forefront. We learn a lot more about Uncle Eddie and we meet Uncle Charlie for the first time, introducing two semi-new characters who bring a lot to the table. Uncle Eddie and Charlie both bring a level of mysteriousness and tons of new secrets that just have to be revealed. Can't wait to see more of them if this series is continued!

Surprising plot twists occur in almost every chapter, effectively reeling me until the wonderful ending. If you decide to give this book (series) a try, expect a wonderful, gripping ride. Theft, criminals, secrets, romance, I LOVED IT!

5/5 stars

Thursday, August 4, 2011

ANGEL BURN by L.A. Weatherly

Willow knows she’s different from other girls, and not just because she loves tinkering with cars. Willow has a gift. She can look into the future and know people’s dreams and hopes, their sorrows and regrets, just by touching them. She has no idea where this power comes from. But the assassin, Alex, does. Gorgeous, mysterious Alex knows more about Willow than Willow herself. He knows that her powers link to dark and dangerous forces, and that he’s one of the few humans left who can fight them. When Alex finds himself falling in love with his sworn enemy, he discovers that nothing is as it seems, least of all good and evil. In the first book in an action-packed, romantic trilogy, L..A. Weatherly sends readers on a thrill-ride of a road trip - and depicts the human race at the brink of a future as catastrophic as it is deceptively beautiful. 

They’re out for your soul . . . and they don’t have heaven in mind.

 I loved, loved, LOVED Angel Burn. Such a completely original take on all the paranormal books involving angels out there. I just finished it and am completely wowed by how L.A. managed to take an overused baseline and create a storyline so utterly unique that no one has ever thought to try it before. Angels are usually considered good and holy and pure because they're...well, angels, but in Angel Burn the angels are the complete embodiment of evil, feeding off of human life energy in order to survive and not giving a second thought to the harm caused by doing so. Even more ironic is the fact that the humans who are being drained actually enjoy the experience and automatically become obsessed with the angels' "goodness" as a result. Ingenious. LOVED it!!! Okay, I'm rambling, but pick up a copy soon! You won't be disappointed. Hopefully I didn't get too spoilery here. I don't think I did. You had better leave before I ramble again.

P.S. The romance between Willow and Alex was predictable, but yet also incredibly sweet and spicy. *swoon*

5/5 stars

WITCHES OF EAST END by Melissa de la Cruz

The three Beauchamp women--Joanna and her daughters Freya and Ingrid--live in North Hampton, out on the tip of Long Island. Their beautiful, mist-shrouded town seems almost stuck in time, and all three women lead seemingly quiet, uneventful existences. But they are harboring a mighty secret--they are powerful witches banned from using their magic. Joanna can resurrect people from the dead and heal the most serious of injuries. Ingrid, her bookish daughter, has the ability to predict the future and weave knots that can solve anything from infertility to infidelity. And finally, there's Freya, the wild child, who has a charm or a potion that can cure most any heartache.

For centuries, all three women have been forced to suppress their abilities. But then Freya, who is about to get married to the wealthy and mysterious Bran Gardiner, finds that her increasingly complicated romantic life makes it more difficult than ever to hide her secret. Soon Ingrid and Joanna confront similar dilemmas, and the Beauchamp women realize they can no longer conceal their true selves. They unearth their wands from the attic, dust off their broomsticks, and begin casting spells on the townspeople. It all seems like a bit of good-natured, innocent magic, but then mysterious, violent attacks begin to plague the town. When a young girl disappears over the Fourth of July weekend, they realize it's time to uncover who and what dark forces are working against them.

 I have previously attempted to read a novel by Melissa de la Cruz, in fact the first book in her Blue Bloods series, but I never finished it because I didn't care what happened in the end, and that's a dead giveaway that it's not the right book for me. Now you can bet I will be picking up that series again! Though at first a little slow, Witches of East End was an (no pun intended) enchanting novel. The contrast between the characters' personalities was perfect and the intricacy of their differing powers was so interesting to read about. Admittedly, the story did take some time to get started, but once it did, I couldn't put it down. The romance was intriguing and well-written, not to mention confusing, as it sometimes can be. Freya and Ingrid have a very realistic sisterly relationship, one that was entertaining to discover. They're close, but not too close, and they obviously enjoy bickering with one another. Joanna is portrayed as your classic motherly figure but is nevertheless very endearing. My heart was broken at a couple different points, and I loved the plot twists Melissa threw at me. A wonderful fantasy novel, Witches of East End just made me want to pick up the sequel even more. I can't wait to read more of this author! You can bet I will be delving into Blue Bloods in the coming months!

4/5 stars

Waiting on Wednesday: Mist

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly feature started by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It's where we can gossip about yet-to-be-released books that we're looking forward to.

Midnight: a mist-haunted wood with a bad reputation. A sweet sixteen party, and 13 year old Nell is trying to keep her sister, spoilt birthday-girl Gwen, out of trouble. No chance. Trouble finds Gwen and drags her through the mist. Only Nell guesses who’s behind the kidnap - the boy she hoped was her friend, the cute but mysterious Evan River.
All those fairy stories Nell’s grandmother told her about girls being stolen by fairy folk are true. The Elven are beautiful as starlight, fierce as wolves, and cold as ice. And they want their world back. The fight has been raging for centuries. Nell’s grandmother should know, she’s a Watcher, the ones responsible for imprisoning the Elven in isolated iron-bound camps in Siberia. Only Evan, his fanatical older brother Fen, and a handful of Elven children are still free.
Fen, hellbent on revenge, keeps Gwen in their wolf-guarded stronghold deep in the mist. The price for her safe return? The release of all the Elven – but the Watchers will never agree. Only Nell can save Gwen.
Time is twisted through the mist: if Nell stops longer than a night and day, a hundred years will hit her as soon as she returns and she’ll be old and withered before she’s even lived. The clock is ticking.

Advertised as a chilling fairy tale thriller, Mist sounds like a fantastic, entertaining read. Plus, that cover is so mysterious, it automatically draws the eye, calling out for a closer look. I know I'll be picking up a copy!

** Mist releases on September 1, 2011 by Hodder's Children's Books.