Monday, August 31, 2009

Review by Alex- The Demon's Lexicon

The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan

Nick and his brother, Alan, have spent their lives on the run from magic. Their father was murdered, and their mother was driven mad by magicians and the demons who give them power. The magicians are hunting the Ryves family for a charm that Nick's mother stole -- a charm that keeps her alive -- and they want it badly enough to kill again.

Danger draws even closer when a brother and sister come to the Ryves family for help. The boy wears a demon's mark, a sign of death that almost nothing can erase...and when Alan also gets marked by a demon, Nick is desperate to save him. The only way to do that is to kill one of the magicians they have been hiding from for so long.

Ensnared in a deadly game of cat and mouse, Nick starts to suspect that his brother is telling him lie after lie about their past. As the magicians' Circle closes in on their family, Nick uncovers the secret that could destroy them all.

This is the Demon's Lexicon. Turn the page.

Very First Impression: Seems okay... But didn't have enough time to read it (library book)

Second First Impression: Got from library again after reading reviews for it and reading how interesting (aka hot) Nick is. XD Thinking it would be really good.

And I was surprised- The Demon's Lexicon is even better than I thought it would be!

The book just launches into action and at first it's a little tough to follow and figure out what's going on. Demons are attacking Nick and Alan- WHAAAT? But things are nicely explained- very nicely. Secondary characters Mae and Jamie, are introduced early on. The two are siblings and Jamie has been marked, cursed, by demons.

It would be easy to say that the rest of the book involves Nick, Alan, and Mae and Jamie trying to get rid of the marks and survive. But there's more to it- Nick and Alan also have quite the history. Alan is keeping some very important secrets from Nick.

Alright. Well there is quite a bit going on, but it's all told very well and it's so addicting. Nick is awesome. Seriously. He starts off as the epitome of the sexy, bad boy type but then diverges and becomes entirely his own character. He's something entirely different and I just couldn't get enough of him.

All the other characters are distinct and unique. I would have liked to know a little bit more about Mae and Jamie, but that's a minor problem. The writing's smooth and flowing, very easy to read. There's humor laced through the novel and I loved every minute of that. Nick is sarcastic and cold- which makes the perfect type of wittiness.

The twist at the ending is such a shocker. The whole path of the novel is full of sharp turns and bends, but the one at the end- just wow. Didn't see any of it coming. And wouldn't want to at all. I find it better to just enjoy the ride than to always try to second guess what's happening. (Which is why I suck at predicting anything.)

Final Impressions: So much better than I expected, so much fun to read. It's a dark and thrilling tale with lots of plot twists. A must read for fans of bad boys, fantasy, or just looking for a great book to escape in.

Favourite Character: So easy! Definitely Nick. Without giving too much away, he's dark, mysterious, sarcastically funny, and all around awesome. He's also very lovable. :D

Almost 6 shelves! 5.5/6.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

In My Mailbox (14) + Update

In My Mailbox:


:'( It's kind of depressing. Not even from the library. I suppose I should see the silver lining and think of all the books I need to read in my pile already, which is true. But still...

Oh wait! Did get an e-book to review! :D

The Siren by Kiera Cass
"You must never do anything that might expose our secret. This means that, in general, you cannot form close bonds with humans. You can speak to us, and you can always commune with the Ocean, but you are deadly to humans. You are, essentially, a weapon. A very beautiful weapon. I won't lie to you, it can be a lonely existence, but once you are done, you get to live. All you have to give, for now, is obedience and time..."

The same speech has been given hundreds of times to hundreds of beautiful girls who enter the sisterhood of sirens. Kahlen has lived by these rules for years now, patiently waiting for the life she can call her own. But when Akinli, a human, enters her world, she can't bring herself to live by the rules anymore. Suddenly the life she's been waiting for doesn't seem nearly as important as the one she's living now.

I actually don't have much experience reading e-books, so that should be interesting. I'll have to not wear contacts because I've tried wearing contacts and staring at a computer screen for a long time and the two do not mix.


Also, you may have noticed that we've been doing some tweaking to the review system, here at A Flight of Minds. We're keeping our shelves because we love our shelves dearly and even just added half shelves. We have added First Impressions, Final Impressions, and Favourite Character though. And we're hoping to add Favourite Quote also in the near future.

If you have any suggestions in adding to our review system, we'd love to know! Or if you guys think the First/Final Impressions things is terrible, we'd also love to hear from you. (Although if you can do it kindly, that'd also be appreciated. We have delicate egos.)

- Alex

Review by Alex- Ballads of Suburbia

Ballads of Suburbia by Stephanie Kuehnert

Kara hasn't been back to Oak Park since the end of junior year, when a heroin overdose nearly killed her and sirens heralded her exit. Four years later, she returns to face the music. Her life changed forever back in high school: her family disintegrated, she ran around with a whole new crowd of friends, she partied a little too hard, and she fell in love with gorgeous bad-boy Adrian, who left her to die that day in Scoville Park....

Amid the music, the booze, the drugs, and the drama, her friends filled a notebook with heartbreakingly honest confessions of the moments that defined and shattered their young lives. Now, finally, Kara is ready to write her own.

First Impression: Probably really really great. It's raved about by pretty much everyone else, I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone, by the same author, is wonderful. It's going to be amazing.

And I was right.

Ballads of Suburbia is a tale of a group of lonely teenagers, finding solace with each another, with alcohol, with drugs. All of them have messed up families, all of them have their own story to tell.

The novel starts with an epilogue, with Kara, back after 4 years. Then it launches into Kara's story as a teen, starting with her childhood and going onto her late teens. Interspersed within Kara's story are ballads of others, of her friends. Each story is unique and haunting and beautiful.
Stephanie Kuehnert surpassed my expectations of I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone. That one was good, but this one, I love. It's so relateable. I like to live vicariously through novels, and Ballads of Suburbia is absolutely perfect in that way. There's never a dull moment in the book- there's heart break and drug abuse, problems and friendships.

The thing I love most about Ballads, or one of the things at least, is all the different relationships. It really shows just how much other people can effect us. Parents, siblings, friends, romantic partners (for lack of a better term; sorry, can't think). I lovelovelove that. How Kara's shaped by her parent's marriage's disintegration. How she is willing to change and love her brother, Liam. How a friendship with Maya can make her stronger. How being with Adrian can pull her into drugs and lust. This isn't to say that Kara is completely shaped by others, but I think everyone is greatly affected by others.

It's just- it's raw, you know? But not so much so that's it's unreadable. The writing is beautiful and the whole novel is unflinching and honest.

Final Impressions:
Such. An. Amazing. Story. Slash stories. Seriously. If you haven't read it, just go buy it now. It's definitely a keeper.

Favourite character: Definitely Liam, Kara's younger brother. He's adorable and sweet and all around lovable. Other's may like Kara's love interest, Adrian, but to me there's only Liam. Seriously, I want a Liam of my own.

Oh, and if you want to WIN your own copy of Ballads of Suburbia, I do know The Book Pixie is giving away a copy here.

Hey you! You, Canadian?

Because if you areeee...


Because Kim is super awesomely cool, she's holding a contest that's only open to Canadians. The prize:

3 bookmarks and a book of your choice from this list:

-Prada and Prejudice
-The Eternal Kiss

Amazing right? I'm actually super excited because sometimes it feels Canada is a little overlooked.

I know there has to be Canadian bloggers and viewers, because on the little map at the bottom of this site, it does say there are people from Canada. So if you're seeing this and are Canadian, why not go ENTER THAT CONTEST now? No excuses- just go! :D

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Show Me 5 Saturday (3)

1 Book you read and/or reviewed this week (you name 1 book)
2 Words that describe the book (2 descriptive words)
3 Settings where it took place or characters you met (name 3 places or characters in the novel)
4 Things you liked and/or disliked about it (4 likes or dislikes)
5 Stars or less for your rating?

Yep, another Show Me Saturday! As usual, it's hosted at That's A Novel Idea.

1 book: Lipstick Apology by Jennifer Jabaley

2 words: light mystery
3 settings/characters: Emily: main character, typical average girl who's parents have died in a plane accident; Owen: golden popular boy who likes Emily but is mostly a player; Anthony: cute Chemistry partner to Emily and friend/maybe more...?
4 things liked/ disliked: like that Emily has a tragic past and must solve the mystery of her mother's apology; don't like the typicalness of the love triangle; like the interesting characters; don't like the model on the cover who kind of scares me- I think it's the eyes and eyebrows.
5 stars or less: maybe a little less. 3.5/4.

- Alex

Zooooombie Week!

Yes, yes indeed. We have decided to join the zombie appreciation week! Oh, you want to know what it's about?

Pretty much, at A Flight of Minds, we will have reviews of zombie books such as Kiss of Life by Daniel Waters and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith. We'll also toss in some zombie fun ramblings and well... we'll see. There's such a variety of zombie books out at the moment- from the crazy and silly high school zombie fun to the zombies that really will tear your brains out and eat.

Oh, and we're not the only ones doing zombie week. If you want to find out more about Zombie Week and who else is participating, you can go to September Zombies. There you will find lots of zombie related posts and links.

And yeah. So it sounds fun, doesn't it? You want to join too, don't you? Course. So just go follow that link!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Review by Lauren - This Book Isn't Fat, It's Fabulous

Queen-sized queen bee Riley Swain is not to be messed with.

Filthy rich and whip-smart, Riley thinks nothing of kissing her best friend's crush or taking incrimating photos of her future stepmom. But Riley has a secret. This school break, Riley will be crunching, dieting, and complaining her way to a thin new shape at New Horizons, a special program in Upper Nowheresville, New York.

Thanks Dad.

Of course, New Horizons is a nightmare: like military school without carbs. But then Riley meets adorable Eric, a boy who can go toe-to-toe with her snark, but also seems to see beyond her tough exterior. Could it be that her time away from the glitz and glamour of home will change not Riley's figure... but her heart?

Don't count on it.


So first off, we're throwing in a couple more routinely, factual bits to our reviews. Add a little structure :) Alright, not really but we're trying to shake things up here so bear with it.

First Impression: Not crazy excited - I got a pile of books from the libary and it's the last one I picked up. Just sounds like overweight Gossip Girl.

So, not super pumped, but I am picky and there are a lot of books I just can't bring myself to read. So bonus points for make me... open it.

This Book Isn't Fat, It's Fabulous is about a girl named Riley, who lives a life pretty similar to the people in Gossip Girl. Upper East Side and whatnot. Plus, Riley is a pretty confident girl. So yes, it did start very much like Gossip Girl, but Riley is a much more entertaining character.

That was the first thing I liked. The style of writing, from Riley's POV, was very entertaining and funny. The book was comical. She was pretty synical & sarcastic, but all around very enjoyable. The book was also very believable in the sense that the way things worked, the character logic and whatnot, was plausible. Sometimes, I just can't understand reasoning behind other characters or things move too fast, but everything worked out perfectly for me.

So yes, Riley goes off to 'fat camp', where she definitely does not feel like she belongs. I liked that as well. Riley was so confident in herself (she constantly refers back to having the Fabulous factor) and I really commend her for that. I found the book to be very positive - especially towards teenage girls where there is so much pressure to be a certain way. I know I struggle with my body constantly but after reading this book, it made not want to care as much. This Book Isn't Fat, It's Fabulous was definitely a huge confidence & morale booster for me.

Final Impressions: This Book Isn't Fat, It's Fabulous is, in fact, fabulous to say the least. A great feel-good book with a cute love story behind it that encourages girls to love themselves for who they are - just not quite that cheesy lol.

Any Favorite Characters: Well, Riley of course. And Eric. They were really cute together -although he seemed a bit weird but I'm just going to try not to think about that. His assertiveness was cute.

5.5/6 shelves! Yay!

♥ Lauren

Review by Alex- Fragile Eternity

Fragile Eternity by Melissa Marr
Seth never expected he would want to settle down with anyone-but that was before Aislinn. She is everything he'd ever dreamed of, and he wants to be with her forever. Forever takes on new meaning, though, when your girlfriend is an immortal faery queen.

Aislinn never expected to rule the very creatures who'd always terrified her-but that was before Keenan. He stole her mortality to make her a monarch, and now she faces challenges and enticements beyond any she'd ever imagined.

In Melissa Marr's third mesmerizing tale of Faerie, Seth and Aislinn struggle to stay true to themselves and each other in a milieu of shadowy rules and shifting allegiances, where old friends become new enemies and one wrong move could plunge the Earth into chaos.

Thoughts on Fragile Eternity: Very dark, dangerous, complicated. These are not the fairies that prance around, weaving flower petal crowns.

All of the relationships are so mixed up. Nothing is perfect, nothing works. Someone’s always hurt, because of the problems being a faerie/not being a faeries causes. For instance: Seth is mortal and weak. Aislinn is strong and a Summer Queen faerie. Donia is the Winter Queen. Keenan is the Summer King. Seth loves Aislinn. Aislinn loves Seth. Keenan loves Donia. Donia loves Keenan. Keenan and Aislinn feel drawn together- inevitable. It’s this one huge love square that made me want to pull my hair out. Must everything be so darn complicated? Yes, it makes for a good plotline, I suppose, but goshdarnit! I never want to be a faerie.

I liked Fragile Eternity but not as much as the first two. Actually, sometimes it got a little dull and repetitive. Here, I’ll break it down for you:

First quarter and second quarter- relationship problems.
Third quarter- relationship problems and Seth sets out to find a way to become a faerie to stay forever with Aislinn.
Fourth quarter- relationship problems and repercussions of Seth’s actions. Plus some weird mother-son moments.

Basically. Or at least that’s how I found it.

The writing’s good, the characters are fine if a bit meh. Seth becomes increasingly desperate and I came up with a new saying: “Desperation can only lead to disaster- especially if it involves wicked faeries.”

It didn’t help that I remembered nothing of the first two books. Wicked Lovely, the vague ideas and events, Ink Exchange, nothing at all. I had to piece together what little bits the book told to remember what happened. I suggest you reread the first two if you don’t remember them, or else you may end up like me, ruining a good story wondering and being confused.

If Wicked Lovely was Aislinn’s story, and Ink Exchange was Lesley’s, then I suppose this one should be Seth’s? It jumps around a lot though so it isn’t really just Seth’s. Also Aislinn's. It’d be nice if it was Seth's though. I'm wondering who the fourth book will focus on...

The ending was perfect for me. Like that last chapter, the epilogue- yes. It’s just the feeling of openness it leaves. How this one story is done, but another one will surely follow. It leaves no doubt for a sequel while also wrapping up this one nicely.

So in conclusion, this is a good faerie story. If you're in the mood for something like this, read it. But I warn you sometimes it gets a little frustrating to read, what with all the weird relationships.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Friday Facts (3) - BOOKS! OUR FAVORITES

Welcome to the third edition of Friday Facts!

This week's topic is... BOOKS!


Alright, well, our favorites. The best of the best - and we've read a lot of books. Statistically. Everyone here doesn't count...

First off though, last week we asked for some questions, because we were not feeling that creative. So thank you to everyone who asked and FEEL FREE TO ASK MORE. We like it. You ask questions now, we'll answer in next week's post, and you can get extra entries in our upcoming contest! We swear, the contest will come. Hopefully...

Let's start with those questions.

1. (From Kate) Since you have started your blog, have you or Lauren ever thought about having splitting up and each having your own blog?

Lauren: I would fail. Alex runs this show. BUT, I have been helping out a lot more lately. She doesn't pester me 24/7 anymore :) But no, we work well.

Alex: It came to mind to ditch Lauren... but no, I'd never actually do it. It's more like when I'm awkwardly talking in third person that I get annoyed with having Lauren also on the blog. :P But she is helpful now, so no. I like having her a lot. (insert sweet sappy music and AWWWs now.)

2. (From ReaderGirl) How many books do you guys read a week?

Lauren: Well, if you are super duper interested, you can check out our right-hand sidebar where we list all the book's we've read this year. Technically, in order to read 100 a year, you have to read a book every 3-4 days. So 2-3 a week. Alex has read over 100, so go her. This summer, I managed to catch up and have read about 40, so about 1 book every 2 days. It depends on how bored I am. I read My Soul to Take today because I had nothing to do.

Alex: Urrrr. I guess it depends. I read a lot more during the school year than this summer, oddly enough. Per week, during the school year, it could be 4-5 books. Now it's more like 2-3. I know, weird right? But if you divided the number of books I've read (116) by the weeks so far of 2009 (approx. 38 or so I think) it equals around 3. So the answer is 3 books per week. On average. Yes, that is math. Getting prepared for school! :D Oh joy... (If you're thinking I'm a nerd, you are currrect. At work today I calculated which size of fudge would be cheapest.)

3. (From Marisa) Do you prefer reading about faeries, zombies, werewolves, witches or vampires?

Lauren: Alright. Well I'd have to say my least favorites are witches and zombies. I was a huge Twilight fan before the craze happened - Alex and I were hooked right after Twilight first came out - and I loooooooved my Jacob. But at this point, I'm going to say faeries. There are a lot of faerie stories but they just aren't as tiresome as the vampires have become.

Alex: Honestly, I would go with faeries, but recently I get annoyed with them. I still like them though. I guess I like them all. While I like reading about zombies, they're not my favourites because I find them creepy. Not all that time, but I imagine zombies as really scary. Witches are fun. I like all the different takes on vampires. Werewolves are okay- I did like Jacob before, I'll admit. Now I think more of the HP werewolf and get a little scared. So at my top are probably faeries and vampires.

4, 5 & 6. (From Celi.a) Have you ever been under the influence of anesthesia? If you had to own a natural-colored cow, what color would yours be? When you read the word 'test,' what immediately comes to mind?

Lauren: No. Black & white spots. Tube.

Alex: Ur, I don't think so? My cow would be all black. Is that possible? Test = school = death. D: Not looking forward to school. I hate tests. I suck at them.

SO A BIG THANK YOU TO ALL ... FOUR OF YOU! BROWNIE POINTS! and I think Alex mentioned contest points too... Don't worry. We won't forget. Or at least Alex won't.

Now on to the factualness!!



1. The Book Thief - Marcus Zusak
3. The Host - Stephanie Meyer
4. The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins
5. A Great and Terrible Beauty - Libba Bray


1. Harry Potter series
2. The Mortal Instruments trilogy - Cassandra Clare
3. Dairy Queen - Catherine Gilbert Murdock
4. Elsewhere - Gabrielle Zevin
5. The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins



1. Libba Bray
2. Tamora Pierce
3. J.K. Rowling
4. Marcus Zusak
5. E. Lockhart


1. Tamora Pierce
2. John Green
3. Sarah Dessen
4. Laurie Halse Anderson
5. Scott Westerfeld



1. Gemma Doyle. Hands Down. (A Great and Terrible Beauty - Libba Bray)
2. Ruby Oliver (The Boyfriend List - E. Lockhart)
3. Frankie Landau-Banks (The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks - E. Lockhart)
4. Liesel (The Book Thief - Marcus Zusak)
5. *has been traded for an extra boy because I don't care*


1. D.J. Swenk in Dairy Queen
2. Parker in Cracked Up To Be
3. Audrey in Audrey, Wait!
4. Terra in North of Beautiful
5. Willow in Willow



1. Kartik (A Great and Terrible Beauty - Libba Bray)
2. Kreacher (Harry Potter - J.K. Rowling)
3. Wes (The Truth About Forever - Sarah Dessen)
4. Dexter (This Lullabye - Sarah Dessen)
5. Jesse (The Mediator - Meg Cabot)
6. (shhh don't tell Alex) Ariel (Eyes Like Stars - Lisa Mantchev)


1. Jace in The Mortal Instruments trilogy (Lauren agrees)
2. Wes in The Truth About Forever
3. T.C. in My Most Excellent Year
4. Nick in The Demon’s Lexicon
5. Kartik in The Gemma Doyle Trilogy



1. Fire - Kristin Cashore (here)
2. Wicked Lovely - Melissa Marr (here)
3. Dramarama - E. Lockhart (here)
4. The Book Thief - Marcus Zusak (here) *this is not the cover I have, but I love it)
5. City of Ashes - Cassandra Clare (here)


1. Hush Hush - Becca Fitzpatrick (here)
2. Wondrous Strange - Leslie Livingston (here)
3. Eyes Like Stars - Lisa Mantchev (here)
4. The Luxe - Anna Godbersen (here)
5. 13 Reasons Why - Jay Asher (here)
6. And if we go into UK covers, Fire and Graceling by Kristin Cashore because those covers are absolutely stunning!



1. Wanderer/Ian (The Host - Stephenie Meyer)
2. Jesse/ Suze (The Mediator- Meg Cabot)
3. Dexter/Remy (This Lullabye - Sarah Dessen)
4. Katniss/Peeta (The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins)
5. Kate/Will (Perfect You - Elizabeth Scott)


1. Katsa/Po in Graceling
2. Gemma/ Kartik inThe Gemma Doyle trilogy
3. Katniss/ Peeta in The Hunger Games
4. Terra/ Jacob in North of Beautiful
5. Kate/ Will in Perfect You

Alex: You'll notice a lot of our lists don't really match up. But we really do have similar interests. Just different preferences. :D And plus, isn't there a saying that goes "friends are made by similarites but it's our differences that keep us together"? Obviously put more eloquently than that.

Hope you enjoyed this weeks edition of Friday Facts!

Next week? Music!

Review by Lauren - My Soul to Take

My Soul To Take by Rachel Vincent

She doesn't see dead people, but…

She senses when someone near her is about to die. And when that happens, a force beyond her control compels her to scream bloody murder. Literally.
Kaylee just wants to enjoy having caught the attention of the hottest guy in school. But a normal date is hard to come by when Nash seems to know more about her need to scream than she does. And when classmates start dropping dead for no apparent reason, only Kaylee knows who'll be next…

I don't think I should have liked My Soul to Take. If you had explained the premise of it to me, I don't think I would have picked it up. Thankfully, the description (as posted above), is not incredibly revealing.

But I'm glad I did :)

There was a bit of a lack of subtetly in the novel. I know it's alright to have the "ooo I know something's up" but there seemed to be a lot of it and I managed to figure stuff out that I didn't want to.

So the first thing we find out is that there is this (popular) boy, Nash, who Kaylee meets in a club (that she snuck into), who is with her when she starts to... freak out. He somehow calms her down before she can start shrieking and whatnot. Which already was like "Alright, Mr. Popular is special." Well then Kaylee finds out that she is a bean sidhe - I won't tell you how. I'll try not to spoil it - AKA a banshee. Yeah. It's irish for she-faerie, which, when I read it, almost made me pee my pants with excitement because I'm extra cool and am trying to teach myself Irish in my spare time. Out of the 10 words I happen to know, bean is one of them. How sad. Sidhe, I knew from the 50 other YA faerie novels out there.

SO I was all like "OMG WOMAN FAERIE!! I'M SO SMART!". Even as I pronounced it properly (ban shee), I failed to make the connection between the irish she-faerie and an actual banshee until they blantantly explained it in the book. Which made me feel a little stupid. Kaylee was like "What I'm a banshee?" and I'm thinking "Oh Kaylee, you are stupid. You're not a banshee. You're a she-faerie :):)" and then the other person is like "yeah. That's not ACTUALLY how it should be spelled. It's taken from the Irish." and then I just felt stupid. Because she completely exhibits signs of being a banshee... I mean, come on, she screams when people are about to die.

Wow. Ramble. Sorry if you're confused - Alex said it makes sense so go blame her.

But I really enjoyed the book, despite the fact that it tried to toss supernatural craziness into normal, everyday life. I usually cannot stand that at all - just create me an alternate universe please - but I survived. There was some nice romantic bits, throughout the novel, which was nice. Like I mentioned at the beginning though, there was a big shocker that I figured out much earlier on in the novel - it was hinted but I don't know if anyone else would notice - just by choice of word. I'm pretty sure it was intentional, but personally, I prefer shocker moments to ones that you know are coming. And I can smell a love triangle.

If you happen to have read My Soul to Take, and are interested in the prequel, My Soul to Lose, a free e-book can be found here. Personally, I am not interested in reading it (just because I know the plot and it doesn't interest me), but it's short. I am very excited about the upcoming sequel though :)


Thursday Thunks (7)

(which we always seem to post on Wednesday)
Where we make you think a little bit before you blog!
This week we will answer some crazy questions brought to you by
Kimber, the number of kids I have and the color of dead roses.

1. Have you ever played Bullshit?
Alex: I have, but never as that name. Having played as a kid from a young age, it was always just called Cheat. XD

Lauren: Yup

2. A dog licks you on your face. Are you disgusted or thinking it was sweet?
Alex: Eeew. Not much of an animal person and I don't like slobber all over my face, thankyouverymuch.

Lauren: She hates my dog. I can tell.
Well it depends where - I let my dog lick me as long as it doesn't come anywhere near my mouth or eyes. Otherwise, it's cool...

3. Tell us about a fun/special memory you have of a grandparent.
Alex: Playing mah-jong with my grandma, I guess. Or doing tai-chi with my granpa. Or eating dinner with my other grandparents. I can't really pick one.

Lauren: Lol tai-chi. I play mah-jong with my grandma - except you probably follow the hard core asian rules :)

4. Have you ever pet a rat?
Alex: Maybe...? I had some friends with pet rats- I may or may not have pet the rat.

Lauren: I have had two.


5. If I walked into your kitchen, where are the cups?
Alex: They are in the cupboard to the right of the fridge, just over the dishwasher. Very easy.

Lauren: In the corner above the toaster.

6. Since you already let me in your home, I found the cup and had water, now where's the bathroom from the kitchen?
Alex: Well, there are four bathrooms in the house. I'm assuming you want to go to the closest one. You go to the leftmost of the kitchen, then at the end of the kitchen, turn left. There's a hallway and second door to your right is the washroom.

Lauren: This is weird... cross the dining room and turn left. The light switch takes a minute to find because it's on the wrong side.

7. Have you ever pet a turtle or tortoise?
Alex: Same as number 4, maybe. This one's less likely though. But if my younger brother gets his way of a pet turtle, then I probably will eventually pet a turtle or tortoise.

Lauren: No.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Review by Alex- Being Nikki

Being Nikki by Meg Cabot
Things aren't pretty for Emerson Watts.

Em was sure there couldn't be anything worse than being a brainiac the body of a teenaged supermodel.

But it turned out she was wrong. Because that supermodel could turn out to have a mother who's gone mysteriously missing, a brother who's shown up on her doorstep demanding answers, a former best friend who's intent on destroying Stark Enterprises to avenge the death of his lost love, and a British heartthrob who's written a song about her that's topping the charts.

How can Em balance all that with school, runway shows, and weekend jaunts to St. John's - especially when she's got ex-boyfriends crawling out of the woodwork who want more than just a photo op; a sister who is headed to the high school cheerleading championships; a company she represents that seems to be turning to the dark side...

Not to mention trying to convince the love of her life that models aren't really airheads after all... especially one model in particular. But then, nobody said it was going to be easy being Nikki.

Being Nikki, the sequel to Airhead, is a lot of fun. While it might sound a little sci-fi- it isn’t. This is the story of a girl who’s suddenly in the body of a model, dealing with lots and lots of problems. She’s stuck in another girl’s body, for one. That’s weird. Her family knows that Em’s in Nikki’s body, but the public can’t. Stark Enterprises would not be happy- and has enough power to show Em’s family just how unhappy.

Em has guy troubles. She loves her best friend who doesn’t realise she’s Em in Nikki’s body. He’s hell bent on revenge, wanting to take down Stark Enterprises. He’s gone a little… crazy. And somehow hot. And Em is still dealing with Nikki’s boyfriend. Plus she’s got paparazzi stalking her, dealing with school and modelling.

And then the plot thickens. Nikki’s brother comes and says her mother is missing. Nikki’s mother, that is. Em embarks on a quest to help Steven find his mother. It’s a difficult path however, fraught with perils.

Yeah, are you getting the feeling I have no idea what I’m talking about? Because you’re right. I shouldn’t have waited 11 days to write a review. :/ Stupid memory o’ mine.

Anyway, I do really like Airhead and Being Nikki. Meg Cabot’s able to tackle a subject that could be a little dark but instead makes it light and fun. The writing’s wonderful, although sometimes it bugs me. I think it’s something to do with the fact that the narration explains itself and backtracks a lot, if that makes sense. It goes “It was wonderful. I mean, in that hopelessly awful way, the only way that can be wonderful.” That was just a line I made up, but you get my idea. I’d quote an actual line from the book, but I don’t have the book anymore.

I find Being Nikki to be a little unrealistic, but putting my scepticism aside it's just a lot of fun. That's really all I can say. There are some twists and turns, some surprises and revelations. Ther characters are all interesting and unique. Being Nikki is a great sequel to Airhead. There's drama, intrigue, mystery, romance, body switching, and a lot more. It's maybe not life changing, but it's definitely worth the read.

And I get to use the new half shelves! Yay! 4.5/6. :)

Magic Under Glass contest heads up

Coming 12/22/09 from Bloomsbury...

Nimira is a music-hall girl used to dancing for pennies. So when wealthy sorcerer Hollin Parry hires her to sing accompaniment to a mysterious piano-playing automaton, Nimira believes it will be the start of a better life. In Parry's world, long-buried secrets are about to stir. Unsettling rumors begin to swirl about ghosts, a madwoman roaming the halls, and Parry’s involvement in a group of corrupt sorcerers for whom the rules of the living and dead are meant to be broken for greater power. When Nimira discovers the spirit of a dashing fairy gentleman is trapped within the automaton, she is determined to break the curse. But even as the two fall into a love that seems hopeless, breaking the curse becomes a perilous race against time. Because it's not just the future of these star-crossed lovers that's at stake, but the fate of the entire magical world.

Want to win an ARC with original sketches from the author inside? See for details!

Who wouldn't love to win Magic Under Glass? Plus there's fun sketches! And you're also entered to win a book of your choice from this list:

The Queen's Soprano-Carol Dines
Changeling-Delia Sherman
The Cabinet of Wonders-Marie Rutkoski (ARC)
Head Case-Sarah Aronson (ex-lib)
Larklight-Philip Reeve
Kiki Strike: Inside the Shadow City-Kirsten Miller
My Most Excellent Year-Steve Kluger
Vampire Academy #1-Richelle Mead

OR you could get a 5 page critique from the author herself! Now, how awesome is this contest?

Waiting on Wednesday (14) + HELP US!

Hey readers! Can you help us? We need YOUR help. Help for what you ask? Well, two things. We've started to do some new memes- Factual Fridays and ______ Tuesdays.

For Factual Fridays, we want you, dear readers, to ask us questions! They can be ANYTHING. Anything at all. Well no, not really. Ask questions we can answer, please. But they can be silly, or deep, or typical questions like "what is your favourite colour?" To make it worth your while, we'll give you extra points in our upcoming contest! So please, go here and ask us questions!

_______ Tuesdays, is a new meme hosted by Lauren (I know! Shocker right! Lauren doing a meme!) We need YOUR opinion on what to call the meme! We really are at a loss. If you comment and vote there, we'll also give you extra entries in our upcoming contest!

Wow, we'd better make this contest good. :P

And so, onto Waiting on Wednesday!

Split by Swati Avasthi
Publisher: Knopf BFYR
Publishing Date: March 9, 2010
Goodreads Amazon

Sixteen-Year-Old Jace Witherspoon arrives at the doorstep of his estranged brother Christian with a re-landscaped face (courtesy of his father’s fist), $3.84, and a secret.

He tries to move on, going for new friends, a new school, and a new job, but all his changes can’t make him forget what he left behind—his mother, who is still trapped with his dad, and his ex-girlfriend, who is keeping his secret.

At least so far.

Worst of all, Jace realizes that if he really wants to move forward, he may first have to do what scares him most: He may have to go back. First-time novelist Swati Avasthi has created a riveting and remarkably nuanced portrait of what happens after. After you’ve said enough, after you’ve run, after you’ve made the split—how do you begin to live again? Readers won’t be able to put this intense page-turner down.

Now doesn't that sound good? I've read books with abusive parents and in the end, the kid fights back, but never a book where it's after the kid does so! Veeery interesting. Plus, his name is Jace! I've falled in love with that name ever since I read The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare a few years back. :D

Waiting on Wednedsay is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine! What are all of your picks this week?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

INTRODUCING: _____ Tuesdays

That's right everybody! New meme :) Run by me this time though. Alex can't do everything around here...

To add to the long list of super cool things Alex & I do in our spare time, I spend some of my time on YouTube *cough*.

So now we will be featuring, every Tuesday, a video related to literature in some way. Be it and interview with an author, a book trailer, or even something completely random that I find amusing. First up, this morning I came across this highly entertaining video of Libba Bray, promoting her new novel, Going Bovine.

But we've hit a snag. Alex and I are torn between 2 names: Tech Tuesdays or Telecomm Tuesdays. SO IT'S UP TO YOU GUYS!
So comment, comment, comment. please?

Oh, and we still only have 1 question for Factual Fridays, which makes a great meme, I know. Super entertaining. IT CAN BE ANYTHING! We would LOVE to hear your crazy questions!!

♥ Lauren

We present to you....


Exciting, isn't it? You may have noticed us complaining about our lack of half shelves. It's hard to decide between say, 4 shelves and 5 shelves for a bit. But this invention, this, solves our problems! And hopefully makes our ratings more accurate too.

And for your viewing pleasure,

Now, this may not seem all that exciting to you, but it is. Oh yes, it is. It's quite tremendous actually. It took a lot of work. Kind of. Go Photoshop!

Oh, and ignore the fact that some of the books on the shelves are leaning weirdly. It's hard, okay?

And well, yeah. That's our announcement. It doesn't seem half as exciting now though...

Review by Lauren - The ABC's of Kissing Boys

pThe ABC's of Kissing Boys by Tina Ferraro

Parker Stanhope has played soccer practically since she could walk. And now that she’s a high school junior, everything she’s worked for is finally coming together. She’s paid her dues on the field, and as an upperclassman, she’s a shoo-in for the varsity team. But that’s not what happens.

This year, Coach Hartley moved up every JV player but two—and one of those two was Parker. Now, she’s stuck with the freshmen, her friends are cutting her loose, and her love of the game is seriously beginning to fail. But Parker is determined to get her life back. She has to get on the varsity team, and she has the perfect plan. All she needs now is the right kind of coach.

Haha well the premise of this story seemed really similar to that of The Comeback (review); popular girl loses everything and tries to get it back. Truthfully, her plan seemed really weird to me - ok let me try to make it not sound super complicated... Her brother's hot friend, who is 4 years older than her is coming to like a carnival and demanding that he kiss her... Umm but he can't because the kissing booth isn't for the JV team so he's supposed to offer 300 $ so that she gets put back on varsity and he can kiss her.


Makes sense? :/

Yeaaahhh I think this entire review is going to be confusing... Sorry guys :(

So I thought that could have been a little better thought out lol. So poor Parker is going to have to make out with this guy but she's never been kissed. So her freshman neighbour decides to give her kissing lessons, which just makes the plot even weirder. ALTHOUGH: He is a freshman but he's only a year younger than her because he got held back or something... a little less of the whole cradle robbing thing...

Even with all this wonky plot, I really enjoyed The ABC's of Kissing Boys. It was so cute :) :) I loved Tristan and the whole "I have to become popular again" wasn't quite there as much as in The Comeback. A little less desperation lol and a little less... uh... evilness? Ha. Quick, light, happy, cute read. I really enjoyed it.


Yay for half shelves!!

♥ Lauren

Monday, August 24, 2009

Review by Lauren - The Treasure Map of Boys

The Treasure Map of Boys by E. Lockhart

Ruby is back at Tate Prep, and it’s her thirty-seventh week in the state of Noboyfriend. Her panic attacks are bad, her love life is even worse, and what’s more:

Noel is writing her notes, Jackson is giving her frogs, Gideon is helping her cook, and Finn is making her brownies.

Rumors are flying, and Ruby’s already-sucky reputation is heading downhill. Not only that, she’s also: running a bake sale, learning the secrets of heavymetal therapy, encountering some seriously smelly feet, defending the rights of pygmy goats, and bodyguarding Noel from unwanted advances.

In this companion novel to The Boyfriend List and The Boy Book, Ruby struggles to secure some sort of mental health, to understand what constitutes a real friendship, and to find true love—if such a thing exists.

I love Ruby Oliver. (and Noel)

That's about all I've got. Last summer, I decided to read all of E. Lockhart's books (which meant rereading the Boyfriend List), and fell in love. With all of her stuff. So, when I arrived at the library to pick up my weekly bucketload of books, I nearly wet myself when I discovered this on the holds shelf. Alex doesn't completely agree with my insane love for Ruby, but that's cool. Her life is simply so messed up and you have to feel so bad for her - Ruby's, not Alex's lol. I can definitely see things from everyone who hates her's perspective - she did some pretty stupid things - but it all seems so justifiable and completely unfair. Just one thing after another.

Once again, Ruby screws her life over, has at least 10 panic attacks, and manages to lose more friends. Thankfully, this one ends on a pretty optimistic note, which is driving me insane with longing for a sequel. I really enjoyed The Treasure Map of Boys, and if you haven't managed to read The Boyfriend List or The Boy Book, go get them. They're light, entertaining, funny - overall, very enjoyable! :)

5 (and a half - but we don't have half shelves really, so I'm inventing one) /6

Just imagine half of that empty shelf is full...

♥ Lauren

Sunday, August 23, 2009

So you say there's contests, eh?

Bringing in the Canadian roots! :-) Umm if you didn't get that, I meant the "eh" in the title. :P

Hadn't updated the contest links in the sidebar in a while, but look! Now they're all updated. :D And I decided to do a post also with some of the contests around the blogosphere.


First up, B.A.M. Book Review's contest for I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak. I've been dying to read this one because I read The Book Thief and it was amazing.


Bloody Bookaholic's mega palooza contest:

- Signed copy of Dreaming Anastasia + Goodies
- Hardback Another Faust
- Hardback Prophecy of the Sisters
- ARC Eyes Like Stars + Backstage Pass Bracelet and some Theater-Theme Swag.
- ARC The Dark Divine
- ARC Hush Hush
- ARC Give Up The Ghost
- ARC Ash
- ARC Behind Every Illusion
- ARC Shiver
- ARC The Demon's Lexicon
- ARC Betraying Season
- ARC Any Given Doomsday
- Dead Until Dark
- Gossip Girl 1st Book
- The Black Tatto + poster
- Vampire Academy
- Frost Bite, a Vampire Academy Novel.
- Shadow Kiss, a Vampire Academy Novel.
- Blood Promise, a Vampire Academy Novel.

That's 20 books going to 3 winners. Ends September 27.


Addicted To Books is giving away 4 books to one person. These books are: Tangled, by Carolyn Mackler; Fire by Kristin Cashore; After by Amy Efaw; and The Splendor Falls by Rosemary Clement-Moore. Contest here.


Stop, Drop, and Read! has finished with the Blogversary posts, but the giveaways are still open until the end of August! I'd like to point out the contest for The Elite series.


Melissa's Bookshelf is celebrating 300 followers! The prize, you ask? Gift cards! Who doesn't love gift cards? Oh, and this contest is international. :)


At Miss Danaidae, there's a chance to win Violet Wings by Victoria Hanley. For some reason, I keep thinking of the title as Violent Wings, and then must correct myself.


There's a giveaway for 5 books at Running for Fiction. The books include: Ophelia by Lisa Klein, 2. Hit And Run by Lurlene McDaniel, Selected Poems of Anne Sexton by Anne Sexton, You Are Here by Jennifer E. Smith, and Cathy's Book by Sean Stewart and Jordan Weisman.


Kate at The Neverending Shelf is hosting a really cool contest! 3 winners, tons of books to choose from. :) There's a lot of books, so I'll just tell you all to go there now and enter yourself.


Want to read and own The Hunger Games? At Jenna Likes To Read, there's a chance to win your own copy!


Bree Despain is giving away copies of her book, The Dark Divine, which I'm sure you're all dying to read, along with a pedicure kit. There's 3 prizes to win:

1. A pedicure kit complete with my new THE DARK DIVINE nail polish! + An autographed ARC of THE DARK DIVINE + $15 gift card to Barnes & Noble.
2. Signed copy of MY BIG NOSE AND OTHER NATURAL DISASTERS by Sydney Salter + Signed copy of LIFE IN THE PIT by Kristen Landon
3. A $30 gift card to Barnes & Noble

I'm wanting some Dark Divine nail polish! Aren't you?


La Femme Readers is giving away two books to celebrate the gaining of 200 followers! The books are Jumping Off Swings by Jo Knowles and Secret Society by Tom Dolby. Contest right over here!


Completely unrelated to books but... have you seen this contest? You can win an adorable dress!


At Lee Verday's blog, there's the chance to win a signed copy of Wings by Aprilynne Pike! This time though, it's not a commenting contest but the usual type.


Living Your Five, a wonderful site to promote changing our world for the better, is celebrating it's launch week by having a huge contest! The fivers of the site are Kay Cassidy, Tera Lynn Childs, Becca Fitzpatrick, and Alyson Noel. Oh, wanting to know what you could win?

A $100 gift card to Barnes & Noble
A $100 dollar donation to the non-profit organization of your choice, in your name
A signed copy of each of the authors' latest books/ARCs


And.. yep! Contests and giveaways are fun. Free books are wonderful. So really, what do you have to lose? (The answer is a lot of time. But it's worth it.) So go onward fellow bloggers! Take the leap of faith and go enter some contests. You won't regret it.

- Alex

Review by Alex- The Dust of 100 Dogs

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.

First off, this book is definitely different. It's unique. It's also strange, compelling, interesting, at times confusing, weird, and a ton of other adjectives. I don't think there's one word to describe this book.

The book is told in 3 different perspectives: Emer, the famed young pirate who's tough as nails but didn't start off that way; Saffron, the modern day girl who's a reincarnation of Emer and 100 dogs; and Fred Livingston, a man insane.

The whole deal and narration with Fred Livingston confused me at first. It's a little, "who is this guy and what the heck is he doing here?". But eventually you figure out he must be there for some reason, and just go along with it.

Emer's story is one of a poor, orphaned child who's abused. She finds love and solace in a boy, Seanie. But when she turns 14, her uncle sends her off to be married to some rich, fat man and so Emer runs away. She finds herself on a boat, and through time, becomes a captain of a boat, and through more time, becomes a pirate. Emer's timeline is confusing, especially because it's rotated with Saffron's narration, but usually there are little clues to the times.

Saffron has been birthed into a poor family. They're what you would call white trash. Saffron has retained memories of Emer and of the 100 dogs she's lived as, so of course she knows things. Her family recognizes her intelligence and therefore place her as their salvation- the one to have the brilliant future and make them lots and lots of money. Saffron doesn't like this. Eventually, she leaves on her own to Jamaica to try to find Emer's buried treasure.

There, Saffron meets Fred Livingston, who also narrates. He talks to himself, doesn't go out much, is filthy rich, and owns a huge mansion of which he spies on girls. He becomes a little obsessed with Saffron. He's... creepy and strange. And you find out more of him at the very end.

There are also fun dog facts interspersed throughout the novel.

I've never been much of a pirate person, so a lot of this stuff is new to me. But Emer's adventures are fun and I loved every minute reading them. Saffron, being reminiscent of Emer, feels the urge to mutilate people she dislikes in her mind, which is both hilarious and horrifying. I didn't really see the point of having the dogs thrown into the whole mix of reincarnation, besides there being facts and so Saffron could be more modern day.

And apparently, there's lots of metaphors. Anyone want to explain them to me? I couldn't really understand any of them. I read the interview at the back and it said there were a lot of big meaning metaphors. I must have missed them. :/ I think I need English class to help me.

Overall, The Dust of 100 Dogs is a really fun read. It's unusual and interesting with a big twist at the end that actually kind of scared me. Great writing, unique characters, wonderful setting. It goes from old day Ireland, to old day France, to modern Jamaica, to tons of other places I can't recall. The Dust of 100 Dogs is like a pirate adventure, a coming of age story, a travel book, and a doggie help book all rolled into one.

In My Mailbox (13)

Pretty good week for me. Yay for libraries!

The Bought:

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
In his first book for young adults, bestselling author Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot. Heartbreaking, funny, and beautifully written, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which is based on the author's own experiences, coupled with poignant drawings by acclaimed artist Ellen Forney, that reflect the character's art, chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one Native American boy as he attempts to break away from the life he was destined to live.

Umm. So, I've never actually read this book, but have been wanting to for AGES. I requested it from my library a while back, still haven't gotten it (now thinking maybe I actually never did request it...?), so when I ended up going to an Indigo I never go to because it's far away, I convinced my mom to buy it for me. :-)

The Borrowed:

The Treasure Map of Boys by E. Lockhart
Ruby is back at Tate Prep, and it's her thirty-seventh week in the state of Noboyfriend. Her panic attacks are bad, her love life is even worse, and what's more: Noel is writing her notes, Jackson is giving her frogs, Gideon is helping her cook, and Finn is making her brownies. Rumors are flying, and Ruby's already-sucky reputation is heading downhill. Not only that, she's also: running a bake sale, learning the secrets of heavymetal therapy, encountering some seriously smelly feet, defending the rights of pygmy goats, and bodyguarding Noel from unwanted advances. In this companion novel to The Boyfriend List and The Boy Book, Ruby struggles to secure some sort of mental health, to understand what constitutes a real friendship, and to find true love--if such a thing exists.

Yayy! I haven't read about Ruby Oliver in a longlong time. It's been... 4 years? Maybe 3? :/ Lauren just finished this one though and loved it. I'll get around to reading it eventually. Hopefully.

Just One Wish by Jannette Rallison
Seventeen-year-old Annika Truman knows about the power of positive thinking. With a little brother who has cancer, it’s all she ever hears about. And in order to help Jeremy, she will go to the ends of the earth (or at least as far as Hollywood) to help him believe he can survive his upcoming surgery.

But Annika’s plan to convince Jeremy that a magic genie will grant him any wish throws her a curveball when he unexpectedly wishes that his television idol would visit him. Annika suddenly fi nds herself in the desperate predicament of getting access to a hunky star actor and convincing him to come home with her. Piece of cake, right?

Janette Rallison’s proven talent for laugh-out-loud humor, teen romance, and deep-hearted storytelling shines in a novel that will have readers laughing and crying at the same time.

I actually keep getting this one and "As You Wish" confused. The titles are so similar and I find that the covers resemble one another also. :/ The plot seems a lot different though. I just get confused.

The ABC's of Kissing Boys by Tina Ferraro
Parker Stanhope has played soccer practically since she could walk. And now that she’s a high school junior, everything she’s worked for is finally coming together. She’s paid her dues on the field, and as an upperclassman, she’s a shoo-in for the varsity team. But that’s not what happens.

This year, Coach Hartley moved up every JV player but two—and one of those two was Parker. Now, she’s stuck with the freshmen, her friends are cutting her loose, and her love of the game is seriously beginning to fail. But Parker is determined to get her life back. She has to get on the varsity team, and she has the perfect plan. All she needs now is the right kind of coach. A kissing coach.

I'm not too sure how soccer and kissing is related, but sure, it sounds like a fun book.

You Are So Undead To Me by Stacey Jay
Fifteen-year-old Megan Berry is a Zombie Settler by birth, which means she’s part-time shrink to a bunch of dead people with a whole lot of issues.

All Megan wants is to be normal—and go to homecoming, of course. Unfortunately, it’s a little difficult when your dates keep getting interrupted by a bunch of slobbering Undead.

Things are about to get even more complicated for Megan. Someone in school is using black magic to turn average, angsty Undead into flesh-eating Zombies, and it’s looking like homecoming will turn out to be a very different kind of party—the bloody kind.

Megan must stop the Zombie apocalypse descending on Carol, Arkansas. Her life—and more importantly, homecoming—depends on it.

Sounds like a cute zombie book- unique, for sure.

Deadly Little Secret by Laurie Faria Stolarz
Until three months ago, everything about sixteen-year-old Camelia's life had been fairly ordinary: decent grades; an okay relationship with her parents; and a pretty cool part-time job at an art studio downtown. But when Ben, the mysterious new guy, starts junior year at her high school, Camelia's life becomes far from ordinary.

Rumored to be somehow responsible for his ex-girlfriend's accidental death, Ben is immediately ostracized by everyone on campus. Except for Camelia. She's reluctant to believe he's trouble, even when her friends try to convince her otherwise. Instead she's inexplicably drawn to Ben...and to his touch. But soon, Camelia is receiving eerie phone calls and strange packages with threatening notes. Ben insists she is in danger, and that he can help – but can he be trusted? She knows he's hiding something...but he's not the only one with a secret.

A Little Friendly Advice by Siobhan Vivian
Ruby's turning sixteen . . . but the day doesn't turn out to be as sweet as it's supposed to be. Her long lost father shows up, and Ruby doesn't want to have anything to do with him. Instead, she wants to hang out with her friends - loyal Beth, dangerous Katherine, and gossipy Maria. They have plenty of advice for her - about boys, about her dad, about how she should look and what she should be feeling. But really, Ruby doesn't know what to think or feel. Especially when a new boy comes into the picture . . . and Ruby discovers some of her friends aren't as truthful as they say.

I recently figured out that "Siobhan" is actually not pronounced See-Obe-Han but Shivan. O_O

Shadowed Summer by Saundra Mitchell
Nothing ever happened in Ondine, Louisiana, not even the summer Elijah Landry disappeared.

His mother knew he ascended to heaven, the police believed he ran away, and his girlfriend thought he was murdered.

Decades later, certain she saw his ghost in the town cemetery, fourteen-year-old Iris Rhame is determined to find out the truth behind "The Incident With the Landry Boy."

Enlisting the help of her best friend Collette, and forced to endure the company of Collette's latest crush, Ben, Iris spends a summer digging into the past and stirring old ghosts, in search of a boy she never knew.

What she doesn't realize is that in a town as small as Ondine, every secret is a family secret.

I'm quite interested in reading this one! Although I don't really like the cover. It's both spooky and old looking, which turns me off. Maybe it's the colours too?

Surface Tension by Brent Runyon
Lucas at 13 is excited about everything—swimming, fishing, skipping rocks, and searching for lucky stones—there’s so much to do in two weeks at the lake.

Lucas at 14 is a little more jaded. And more interested in looking at the hot girl next door than in looking for rocks.

Lucas at 15 is a little more angry. The friend he brings along makes him see his summer haven with new—and less appreciative—eyes.

Lucas at 16 is in love—until he gets a break-up post card from his girlfriend, and then he wants to die.

Brent Runyon has crafted a remarkable portrait of a boy at four distinct points in his life and literally shows us his coming-of-age. It’s a story about what is ever-changing and what is timeless, and how we are shaped by both the people and places we love.

I really like this idea and think it's very interesting, the life of a boy over 4 summers. :)

The Vast Fields of Ordinary by Nick Burd
It’s Dade’s last summer at home. He has a crappy job at Food World, a “boyfriend” who won’t publicly acknowledge his existence (maybe because Pablo also has a girlfriend), and parents on the verge of a divorce. College is Dade’s shining beacon of possibility, a horizon to keep him from floating away.

Then he meets the mysterious Alex Kincaid. Falling in real love finally lets Dade come out of the closet—and, ironically, ignites a ruthless passion in Pablo. But just when true happiness has set in, tragedy shatters the dreamy curtain of summer, and Dade will use every ounce of strength he’s gained to break from his past and start fresh with the future.

I think this one sounds really interesting, don't you think?

And that's it for me this week! What about all you?

As usual, this meme is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren who was influenced by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie. :)

- Alex
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