Mar 8, 2016

March Releases in my TBR

Lady Midnight (The Dark Artifices, Book 1)
by Cassandra Clare

The Great Hunt (Eurona Duology, Book 1)
by Wendy Higgins

I love the Mortal Instruments but I've been stuck with book 3, and years later, there's a load full of prequel and sequel to the original, I need to keep up.  And this new series from Wendy Higgins?  I love her Sweet series so, let's see.

The Study of Seduction (Sinful Suitors, #2)
by Sabrina Jeffries

The Princess Wore Plaid (The Oxenburg Princes, #2.5)
by Karen Hawkins

I really like these historical authors (among the many historical romance authors that I love), and the Hawkins' book in particular has a very interesting premise.

Pocket Prayers for Moms
Pocket Prayers for Friends
Pocket Prayers for Teachers
by Max Lucado

I've read a Max Lucado before and it was inspiring. And these books are good to give as gifts.

Jan 27, 2016

2016 Reads

JANUARY

  1. Sorceress (Spellcaster #3) by Claudia Gray | 352pp | 01.21.16 | A+
  2. Wings (Wings #1) by Aprilynne Pike | 290pp | 01.25.16 | A++
  3. Rush (Breathless #1) by Maya Banks | 396pp | 01.26.16 | A++
  4. Fever (Breathless #2) by Maya Banks | 416pp | 01.27.16 | A++
  5. Caught Up In Us (Caught Up In Love, #1) by Lauren Blakely | 240pp | 01.28.16 | A+

FEBRUARY

  1. The Coven (Sweep, #2) by Cate Tiernan | 185pp | 02.01.16 | A+
  2. Blood Witch (Sweep, #3) by Cate Tiernan | 202pp | 02.01.16 | A+
  3. Trophy Husband (Caught Up In Love, #3) by Lauren Blakely | 222pp | 02.06.16 | A-
  4. Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1) by Sarah J. Maas | 404pp | 02.14.16 | A++
  5. Dark Magick (Sweep, #4) by Cate Tiernan | 186pp | 02.16.16 | A+
  6. Awakening (Sweep, #5) by Cate Tiernan | 188pp | 02.17.16 | A+
  7. Spellbound (Sweep, #6) by Cate Tiernan | 192pp | 02.18.16 | A+
  8. Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass, #2) by Sarah J. Maas | 418pp | 02.24.16 | A++
  9. Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass, #3) by Sarah J. Maas | 562pp | 02.28.16 | A++

MARCH

  1. Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4) by Sarah J. Maas | 648pp | 03.02.16 | A++
  2. Stormdancer (The Lotus War, #1) by Jay Kristoff | 451pp | 03.06.15 | A+
  3. Desperately Seeking A Duke (Heiress Brides, #1) by Celester Bradley | 332pp | 03.09.16 | A+
  4. We Were Liars by E. Lockhard | 242pp | 03.17.16 | A+
  5. A Discovery of Witches (All Souls Trilogy, #1) by Deborah Harkness | 579pp | 03.18.16 | A+

APRIL


MAY


  1. Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea (Between, #1) by April Tucholke | 360pp | 05.05.16 | A-
  2. City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1) by Cassandra Clare | 485pp | 05.10.16 | A-
  3. Prodigy (Legend, #2) by Marie Lu | 371pp | 05.12.16 | A++

JUNE


JULY





Oct 12, 2015

Middle Grade Bestsellers


Serafina and the Black Cloak
by Robert Beatty 

Living secretly in the basement of a grand estate where her pa works as a maintenance man, young Serafina narrowly escapes a black-cloaked man who has been abducting local children and who Serafina, aided by a youth from the estate, endeavors to expose. 

The Isle of the Lost : A Descendents Novel 
by Melissa De la Cruz 

The teen offspring of Maleficent, the Evil Queen, Jafar and Cruella de Vil search for a cursed magical relic that will help them escape from the dreary isle where their wicked parents have been exiled. By the author of the Blue Bloods series.



The Thing About Jellyfish 
by Ali Benjamin 

A teen determinedly investigates the drowning death of her best friend to prove that the tragedy occurred because of a rare jellyfish sting. A first solo novel by the co-author of The Keeper. 

Crenshaw 
 by Katherine Applegate 

Fearing his family will have to move into their minivan when they suffer another financial setback, Jackson finds support and comfort through his friendship with a giant imaginary cat. By the Newbery Medal-winning author of The One and Only Ivan. 


Sep 10, 2015

September Releases on my TBR

A fourth installment to my favorite series, Sweet; and following Nalini Singh's Guild Hunter.

I admit, Niffenegger relationship with the ghostly is kind of creepy. Nevertheless, she's on my list since I read Her Fearful Symmetry (not a favorite, but she delivered).  And look at that, Miss Peregrine, the most peculiar of plots, IS a trilogy.

Haven't read these two but I do have the first book in these series.

My aim to collect all the books in the Death series; and my recent fascination with Leigh Bardugo.


Sep 8, 2015

Ten Finished Series I Have YET to Finish

For future Top Ten Tuesday topics and info on how to participate, click here
  1. The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare - I've started this when there were still three books. I've finished the 3rd book last 2012, and I haven't since picked up the 4th installment. I've seen the movie, and ticked the prequel to the series (Infernal Devices) to be read, but I HAVEN'T PICKED UP the 4th book in the series. Why? I'm planning to reread books 1-3, like RIGHT NOW.
  2. Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard - The second book left me no longing to grab the conclusion in the series. It's good but I was disappointed with the heroine's lost hand.
  3. The Maze Runner by James Dashner - I've seen the movie, and justified some questions when I read the book.  I guess I loved the movie (and Thomas in the movie - blame it on Teen Wolf), and I wasn't in a hurry to finish the series since the movie itself satisfied my craving.
  4. House of Night by P.C./Kristin Cast - I think I need a pat on the back for this series. I went on and on even when I've read a lot of negative reviews. For a while I was like, finish the series already! I promised myself to stop at book 10, and I did.  Two books later, the series was concluded. Gaaah!
  5. The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken - I recently read the Darkest Minds, and it has a compelling plot, and one of my interesting reads in YA. I'm not sure if it's a trilogy but this is one among many series that I wanted to do a 'readathon'.
  6. Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen - This lady in tights ala Robin Hood. Two books more to go!
  7. Darkest Powers by Kelley Armstrong - there's a lot of novellas in the series, and I haven't read them one bit. I try to stay away from the novellas and concentrate on the books, and I'm only one book left.
  8. Divergent by Veronica Roth - the truth is, I'm seldom into Dystopia and Science Fiction, but for me to understand the whole of the story, I need to delve into the books. So, book first, then movie. At a time.
  9. The Keatyn Chronicles by Jillian Dodd - This is a chick lit that I really like. I just don't have access to it since it was not available in my local library. I bought the e-book online, and I'm itching for the succeeding installments.  Gotta have control. Gotta have control.
  10. Historical romance series by Various Historical Romance Authors - my list won't be complete if I don't include historical romances in my top ten. I can't list them since they go by the dozens but they're definitely included in my YET TO FINISH list.

Aug 16, 2015

Cover Characteristic - OWL

Each week we will post a characteristic and choose 5 of our favorite covers with that characteristic. If you want to join in and share your 5 favorite covers with the weeks particular characteristic, then just make a post, grab the meme picture (or make your own) and leave your URL in Linky (so we can visit). You don’t even need to participate, just stopping by and saying hi would be great! Don’t forget to stop by the other participants! - Sugar and Snark


Jun 7, 2015

The Bride (Lairds' Fiancées #1) by Julie Garwood


352 pages • Done June 7, 2015
Published by Pocket Books • January 1st 1989
Historical Romance • Highlander • Laird

Scotland • England. By the king's edict, Alec Kincaid, mightiest of the Scottish lairds, must take an English bride. And Jamie, the youngest daughter of Baron Jamison, is his choice. From his first glimpse of the proud and beautiful English lady, Alec felt a burning hunger stir within him. This was a woman worthy of his fearless warrior's spirit. And he aches to touch her, tame her, possess her...forever.

But with the wedding vows, Jamie pledges her own secret oath: She will never surrender her love to this Highland barbarian. He was everything her heart warned her against -- an arrogant, brooding scoundrel whose rough good looks and seductive embrace fire her blood. But when strange accidents begin to threaten Jamie's life and an old rumor that Alec killed his first wife spreads anew, something far more dangerous than desire threatens to conquer her senses. (via GoodReads)



Jun 5, 2015

Shadow and Bone (The Grisha #1) by Leigh Bardugo

368 pages • Done June 2, 2015
Published by Henry Holt and Co • June 5th 2012
Young Adult • Fantasy • Adventure

Ravka. Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart.

Shadow and Bone is the first installment in Leigh Bardugo's Grisha Trilogy. (via GoodReads)

I've expected this book to be good, but I didn't anticipate that I won't be able to put this down!  It was good, with two lengthy scenes - the first was when Alina first displayed her power, and the second was when she and Mal was trekking to get away from the Darkling and tracking down the Morozova's herd. At first, I was leaning towards the Darkling as her mate (and comparing it to Death of the Arcana Chronicles).  But, considering the Darkling's intention somewhere along the book, I went back to Mal, with whatever little romance going on between them.  

After reading this book, I've read reviews that critically bashed the language, the names, the whatnots.  But people, THIS IS A FANTASY.  Anybody can do and write anything they can in their book!  Some have issues on its technicalities, I've had issues with Alina's prowess (because, really, that's all she can do?), and the non-existent romance that was squeezed at the end,  but I commend this for IMAGINATION, which this book did deliver.  

Would I follow through? Definitely.  I want to see Alina bloom, the Darkling humbled, and Mal, some sense of a love story, and not an attachment.


Jun 2, 2015

The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros

110 pages • Done June 2, 2015
Published by Vintage  • April 3rd 1991 (1st 1984)
Young Adult • Realistic Fiction

Chicago, IllinoisAcclaimed by critics, beloved by readers of all ages, taught everywhere from inner-city grade schools to universities across the country, and translated all over the world, The House on Mango Street is the remarkable story of Esperanza Cordero. 

Told in a series of vignettes – sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes deeply joyous – it is the story of a young Latina girl growing up in Chicago, inventing for herself who and what she will become. Few other books in our time have touched so many readers. (via GoodReads)

This book, in its snippets, was an interesting collection of struggles and challenges that people on Mango Street have experienced.