Thursday, 30 September 2010

Sneak Peek: The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

I have heard nothing but great things about this book and am really looking forward to the UK release. It's published by Headline 11 November 2010, but for those who can't wait to read it I have a sneak peek for you...

The Body Finder-Sneakpeek[1]

Big thanks to Headline for providing the chapters:)

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Stop Pretending by Sonya Sones

From Goodreads:  It happens just like that, in the blink of an eye. An older sister has a mental breakdown and has to be hospitalized. A younger sister is left behind to cope with a family torn apart by grief and friends who turn their backs on her. But worst of all is the loss of her big sister, her confidante, her best friend, who has gone someplace no one can reach.

In the tradition of The Bell Jar, I Never Promised You a Rose Garden, and Lisa, Bright and Dark comes this haunting first book told in poems, and based on the true story of the author's life.

I'm not at all surprised that this book won the award for Best Books for Young Adults (ALA) in 2000. Based on true events, it comes across as a very honest depiction of a family dealing with the aftermath of a mental breakdown - and I applaud the author for writing about what is obviously a very personal subject.

Written as a collection of poems it is a quick, but very satisfying read. I found myself seeing the distinction between stories that are told through a series of poems or verse, and a collection of poems that tell a story. There were many poems in this book that really stand out on their own - Hospitalized being one of them. According to the Author's Note at the end of the book this is the poem from which Stop Pretending was born and I can see why.

The story is told by Cookie, and through her we get to see her families grief. I felt a strong sense of isolation - her friends are no longer her friends, her parents are obviously struggling to deal with it themselves. And then there is her sister - who has become a stranger - and Cookie's worry that she too may develop a mental illness. One saving grace though is John. I really enjoyed this aspect of the story - very sweet and a great way to show life does go on - even when it feels as if it's falling apart.

I don't want to give too much away - I think it's one of those books you need to discover for yourself. I've got to say though, that I thought the ending was perfect and one that made me smile (albeit through tears!) I would also recommend reading the author's note at the end - to realise this is based on her real life experiences made me really think about how we view mental illness in society. Perhaps this story will help break down the walls and make it less of a taboo - something that we become more understanding towards.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Before The Split Blog Tour

During October I will be taking part in Swati Avasthi's blog tour. For more information on all the different stops on the tour check out Teen Book Scene Tour for details. The blog tour is also designed to help raise money for the Family Violence Prevention Fund. Here is some information to explain:

To honor National Domestic Violence Awareness month, author Swati Avasthi has combined a blog tour for her debut novel, Split, with a charity auction. Over 40 authors, agents and editors have donated manuscript critiques, personalized books, and more to an online auction that anyone –reader, writer, booklover -- can bid on and buy. All proceeds go to the Family Violence Prevention Fund. In addition to the auction, Avasthi is donating $1/comment on her 26-stop, month-long blog tour, coordinated by Kari Olson at Teen Book Scene. If she reaches her goal and cap of $250, she will double the donation. Follow the tour, get stuff you want, and make a difference.

To go to the charity auction click the image on the left.

Extract: Blood Ransom by Sophie McKenzie

Blood Ransom is the sequel to Blood Ties and is published on 1 October 2010. Thanks to Simon & Schuster I have an extract for you all to enjoy...

My mouth was completely underwater now, so I was breathing through my nose, my whole body shaking with cold.
And then my legs stopped moving altogether. I flailed with my arms, panicking, tipping my head back. Mouth above water. One last yell.
And then I sank beneath the water.
The shock of the water on my face roused me for a second. Enough to register that I had to move.
Swim, my brain screamed at my limbs. Swim.
Somewhere, somehow I managed to move, clawing back the water, fighting the urge to sleep. I was running out of breath now.
Give up, said a little voice in my head. It’s the easier choice.
No. My hands banged the side of the tunnel. I reached along the mossy wall, pulling myself through the water. Which way was up? I couldn’t breathe.
And then a huge hole appeared in the wall. I could feel it with my hands. The water was even colder here.
Swim there, my brain shrieked at me.
I had no idea if I should. I’d lost all sense of where I was or who I was or what I was doing here.
All I knew was that I had to keep moving.
My lungs were going to burst. I kicked myself into the hole. Another kick. Darkness forcing itself into my closed eyes.
And another. The darkness was overwhelming.

Sound good?  Here's the synopsis:

From Amazon:  Clones Rachel and Theo now live thousands of miles apart. They keep in touch, but things just aren't the same. When Rachel discovers that evil scientist Elijah is still working in secret for a section of the government and about to murder Daniel, she sets out to rescue the little boy, but her plans backfire with disastrous consequences. Across the Atlantic, Theo becomes suspicious when Rachel misses their weekly internet chat. He discovers a report online saying she's killed herself and travels to Scotland to find her, certain that she has been kidnapped. A clue leads him to Elijah's mysterious clinic, where the sinister Aphrodite Experiment is underway. But what is Elijah really planning? Why does he need to track Rachel down so badly? And will Rachel and Theo be able to pay the ultimate ransom that he demands?

There is also a contest at The Story Siren today which you should check out!

Monday, 27 September 2010

I want to read that...

The Lipstick Laws by Amy Holder

From Goodreads: At Penford High School, Britney Taylor is queen bee. She dates whomever she likes, rules over her inner circle of friends like Genghis Khan, and can ruin anyone's life as easily as snapping her perfectly manicured fingers. Just ask the unfortunate few who have crossed her.

For April Bowers, Britney is also the answer to her prayers. With zero friends and nothing close to a boyfriend, April is so unpopular, kids don't know she exists. That is, until Britney notices her. One lunch spent at Britney's table, and April is basking in the glow of popularity.

But Britney's friendship comes with a price tag.

How much is April willing to pay?

I'm liking the sound of this - very mean-girls-esq! And I really want to know just what April is willing to pay!  It's published April 4th 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/Graphia.

Friday, 24 September 2010

Cover Wars: The Hate List

I really like both of these covers. I find something very haunting about the paperback - and the fact Val is out of focus - very interesting! But there is just something about the hardback that really catches my eye and I love the title as the tear drop. I think the hardback wins for me this time.

Paperback / Hardback

From Amazon: Five months ago, Valerie Leftman's boyfriend opened fire on their school cafeteria, killing five students and one teacher before turning the gun on himself. Valerie, who was shot trying to stop him, is initially implicated in the shootings because of the hate list she helped create. The hate list her boyfriend used to pick his targets. As Valerie integrates back into school, more of an outsider than she ever thought she was before, she is forced to confront her feelings of guilt and loneliness. Exploring the gray area between hero and villain, she navigates the rocky relationships with her family, her former friends, with the memory of the boyfriend she still loves, and with the girl whose life she saved five months ago. As she moves toward graduation and the year anniversary of the shooting, Valerie must come to grips with the tragedy that took place and her role in it all in order to make amends and move on with her life.

Which do you prefer?

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Ivy4Evr - SMS Drama for Teenagers

Source: Ivy4Evr Website

I received an email from Blast Theory telling me about a SMS drama they have created for teenagers called Ivy4Evr. I have included the information below - but you can out the website for more details.

Ivy has left home because Lilsis has done the dirty on her and she's no longer sure who her friends are.

For a week she'll tell you **everything** but can she trust you and what will you tell her?

Ivy4Evr is an SMS drama for teenagers created by the BAFTA-nominated interactive artists’ group Blast Theory, written by Tony White author of novels including Foxy-T (Faber and Faber) and commissioned by Channel 4 Education.

Ivy4Evr uses SMS to go places that other dramas can’t go - onto your phone and into your pocket. Ivy becomes part of your life over seven days, getting ever more intimate with you. Ivy wriggles into your life, sending you messages on the way to school, college or last thing at night. Ivy’s life is parallel to yours: she sends boozy updates late on Saturday night and sarcastic chat on a boring Sunday afternoon. And if you send her messages she will chat with you about sex, music and everything else that really matters to a teenager growing up in Britain today.

For seven days starting on 10th OCTOBER you will receive SMS messages from Ivy, you can send messages back and give her advice on the burning issues in her life.

Ivy4Evr is entirely SMS based. To sign up to participate is free, messages you receive from Ivy are free, SMS messages that you send to Ivy are sent to a standard mobile phone number and will be charged at your normal

To register for the pilot episode please go to Everyone who registers and verifies by midnight on 9th OCTOBER goes into the running to win an iPad.

You can also search for Ivy4Evr on Facebook and Twitter.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

I want to read that...

Ripple by Mandy Hubbard

From Goodreads: Lexi is cursed with a dark secret. The water calls to her, draws her in, forces her to sing her deadly song to unsuspecting victims. If she succumbs, she kills. If she doesn’t, the pain is unbearable. To keep herself and those she cares about safe, she shuts herself off, refusing to make friends or fall in love—again. Because the last time she fell in love with a boy, he ended up dead.

Then Lexi meets Cole. Against her better judgment, she finds herself opening up again, falling in love when she knows she shouldn’t. But when she’s offered the chance to finally live a normal life, she learns that the price she must pay to be free of her curse is giving him up.

In Ripple, Mandy Hubbard spins a sea-ravaged tale of melancholy beauty, and the choices one girl makes between land and waves, love and freedom, her future—and her heart.

I am so looking forward to this one - I have no idea how I'm going to wait until next year *sobs* It's published July 21st 2011 by Razorbill/Penguin

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Mini Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella

For review: Bantam Press. Published 2 September 2010
From the book cover: The world's favourite economically challenged heroine is back... with a small friend in tow...

Becky Brandon (née Bloomwood) thought motherhood would be a breeze and that having a daughter was a dream come true - a shopping friend for life! But two-year-old Minnie has a quite different approach to shopping...

Cue havoc in the toy department at Harrods and the handbag department at Harvey Nicks, a near disaster when Minnie starts bidding on eBay, and a surprise birthday party that is turning into a nightmare.

Becky is at her wits' end!

So who will get a gold star and who will end up on the naughty stair?

I always find Sophie Kinsella a joy to read and this instalment in the shopaholic series is no exception.

It's been a few years since we last saw Becky and Luke, now with the addition of their daughter Minnie, not much has changed. Luke is still a workaholic and Becky is still a major shopaholic! Add in a financial crisis, a rather willful child and a surprise birthday party Becky is determined to hold for Luke and we have the recipe for the usually mishaps and laughs.

Becky is one of those characters I adore and am completely frustrated by in equal measure. I have no idea how she manages to get herself into complete chaos every time but it is definitely a skill! Minnie is awesome and I loved how willful and stubborn she is! She's definitely her mother's daughter when it comes to shopping! I also love Luke - although he felt very absent this time. I hope in the next book - I'm assuming there will be another - he will be around a lot more.

I didn't feel as if there were as many laugh-out-loud moments present in Mini Shopaholic as there have been in the previous shopaholic books - this one felt a bit more serious as it concentrated on Becky's desperate need to plan the ultimate surprise party for Luke (for reason's that become clear at the end) and the reappearance of Elinor - a character I have actually become to adore. I do really like the more emotional aspects of these books - it's just they are usually more balanced with humorous ones.

I do hope there are more books to come - I love this series and don't think I'll get tired of it anytime soon. Based on the ending of this one I am very much looking forward to more Becky, Luke and Minnie! I hope this time Luke does something majorly romantic for Becky - I think she deserves it:)

Monday, 20 September 2010

Cover to Covet (5)

I LOVE book covers. Love, love love them. So I decided to make it a regular post - each post featuring a cover I love.

Moonglass by Jessi Kirby


I LOVE this cover! It's so pretty - makes me wish I was there! The story sounds great too:)

From Goodreads: A contemporary YA novel about a girl who, years after her mother's death, gets a fresh start in a new seaside town. She seems to be outrunning the past, but discovers that the sea glass she wears around her neck is not just a token of her mother's memory but a connection to the very stretch of water she now calls home.

It's published May 3rd 2011 by Simon & Schuster (US)

Saturday, 18 September 2010

In My Mailbox (57)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren

I had a really awesome week for books this week! I got some fab books for review and I bought some great books. It didn't seem as if I'd bought that many until I put them all together, though!

For Review:

Spy Glass by Maria V. Snyder
Jiggy's Magic Balls: A Medieval Mess by Michael Lawrence
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen, The by Alan Garder
A Gathering Light by Jennifer Donnelly
Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly (Squeee)
You Against Me by Jenny Downham (Squeeeeee!)


Firelight by Sophie Jordan
Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Dark Heart Forever by Lee Monroe
The Night of the Solstice by L.J.Smith
TimeRiders: Day of the Predator by Alezx Scarrow
Make Lemonade by Virginia Euwer Wolff
Shark Girl by Kelly Bingham
Stop Pretending by Sonya Sones
What My Mother Doesn't Know by Sonya Sones
What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know by Sonya Sones
Cathy Cassidy - Friendship and Dreams Collection (includes Scarlett, Dizzy and Indigo Blue)

I forgot to include it in my last IMM but the other week I received a surprise package from Jenny @ Wondrous Reads containing some Firelight stuff. Thanks Jenny:)

Hope you all had a great week:)

Thursday, 16 September 2010

One Of Those Hideous Books Where The Mother Dies by Sonya Sones

From Amazon:
My name is Ruby.
This book is about me.
It tells the deeply hideous story
of what happens when my mother dies
and I'm dragged three thousand miles away
from my gorgeous boyfriend, Ray,
to live in L.A. with my father,
who I've never even met
because he's such a scumbag that he
divorced my mom before I was born.
The only way I've ever even seen him
is in the movies,
since he's this megafamous actor
who's been way too busy
trying to win Oscars
to even visit me once in fifteen years.
Everyone loves my father.
Everyone but me.

I really enjoyed this. From the title I was expecting a sad story - which in some ways it was - but it was also injected with some great humour. We first meet Ruby after her mother has died and she is on the plane to California to live with her father in LA. She doesn't want to go and still resents her dad for not being involved in her life until now. She also doesn't want to leave her boyfriend Ray or her best friend Lizzie.

Sonya Sones really hits the mark with Ruby's voice - snarky and very much a teenager. You really get a sense of who she is and a glimpse of who she could be in the future. I could also really feel the longing in her words for her mother and the life she'd left behind.

There are many different aspects to this story. Ruby has to deal with her grief over her mother's death, moving away from her boyfriend and best friend, trying to find new friends, and building a relationship with her father. It's here that I felt the story excelled. I completely understood Ruby's reasons for disliking her father but I warmed to him straight away. I also adored Max - and loved the relationship that developed between him and Ruby.
Some of the big revelations towards the end were not much of a surprise - I guessed them early on - but it was still enjoyable watching it all unfold. I was really looking forward to Ruby working one of them out and loved her reaction when she did.

This is another verse novel I thoroughly enjoyed and can't wait to read more - I am finding them very addictive! And on the basis of this one I am really looking forward to reading many more by Sonya Sones.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Cover Wars: Immortal Beloved

This is an easy choice for me - as much as I really like the colours and circular design on the US one I just really LOVE the UK one! It does look a bit similar to Shiver/Linger though - or is that just me?


Immortal Beloved by Cate Tiernan
From Goodreads: New name, new town, new life. Nastasya has done it too often to count. And there’s no end in sight. Nothing ever really ends... when you’re immortal. But this time is different: Nastasya knows that this new town must hold her salvation—or her death.

Nastasya was born into darkness, and has embraced it her whole life. Four hundred years ago, a tragedy robbed her of her birthright, and she’s been living a lie ever since. Now, four centuries of exploring the depths and limits of dark power has left Nastasya feeling sickened unto death. If she continues down this road, she will end up as a very dark, twisted, evil thing—with unthinkable power. Or she can begin the long, painful road toward light, and reclaim the destiny that others tried to destroy.

They’re rare. You may have never met one, never sat next to one on a plane, never eaten in the same restaurant at the same time. But the Immortals are there. Have always been there. Will always be there. Moving among humans, playing out their own cursed fate. Sometimes subtly, sometimes with huge, sweeping implications for mankind. But no one will ever know. Except you.

What do you think?

Monday, 13 September 2010

I want to read that...

Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly
From Goodreads:
BROOKLYN: Andi Alpers is on the edge. She’s angry at her father for leaving, angry at her mother for not being able to cope, and heartbroken by the loss of her younger brother, Truman. Rage and grief are destroying her. And she’s about to be expelled from Brooklyn Heights’ most prestigious private school when her father intervenes. Now Andi must accompany him to Paris for winter break.

PARIS: Alexandrine Paradis lived over two centuries ago. She dreamed of making her mark on the Paris stage, but a fateful encounter with a doomed prince of France cast her in a tragic role she didn’t want—and couldn’t escape.

Two girls, two centuries apart. One never knowing the other. But when Andi finds Alexandrine’s diary, she recognizes something in her words and is moved to the point of obsession. There’s comfort and distraction for Andi in the journal’s antique pages—until, on a midnight journey through the catacombs of Paris, Alexandrine’s words transcend paper and time, and the past becomes suddenly, terrifyingly present.

This sounds awesome! And how much do I love that cover! You can read the first chapter by clicking here and find out more about the inspiration behind the novel here

You can check out the author's website here

Revolution is published 13 October 2010 by Bloomsbury.

Jennifer Donnelly has also written A Gathering Light. More details can be found here including the first chapter.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

In My Mailbox (56)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren

For Review:

Mistress of the Storm by Melanie Welsh - Thanks Melanie:)
Boys Don't Cry by Malorie Blackman. Manuscript copy - Thanks to Random House for this one:)
Burning Secrets by Clare Chambers. Thanks to Harpercollins:)
The Dead of Winter by Chris Priestley.
Tales of Terror from the Tunnel's Mouth by Chris Priestley. Thanks to Bloomsbury for both of these:)


Dead is Just a Rumor by Marlene Perez
Losing Faith by Denise Jaden
Dances with a Vampire by Ellen Schreiber
Insatiable by Meg Cabot

Hope you all had a great week. I shall leave you with this trailer for Insatiable - cracks me up every time:)

Friday, 10 September 2010

My So-called Haunting by Tamsyn Murray

For Review: Piccadilly Press. Published 1 September 2010
From Goodreads:
How many times do I have to ask you to knock?' I yelled at Mary as she drifted through the door of my room and looked me up and down. 'Thou resemblest a strumpet,' she said, staring pointedly at my thigh-skimming skirt. Sometimes I had trouble understanding Mary’s weird babbling, but in this case I was getting her loud and clear. Suddenly, my mood was blacker than a vampire’s soul.

Skye, a fourteen-year-old psychic, is stressed out. Not only is the ghost of a sixteenth-century witch giving her fashion tips, but she’s struggling to settle into life with her aunt, and is developing a crush on the most unattainable boy in the school, Nico.

When her aunt asks for her help with a troubled teen ghost called Dontay, she's glad of the distraction. But then Nico starts paying her attention, and she's soon facing a battle to keep her love life and her psychic life separate.

As things get ever more complicated, it looks as though Dontay’s past might cost Skye her future.

I loved Tamsyn Murray's first book My So-called Afterlife. I thought it was a really enjoyable read - with great characters and fun dialogue - so I was very excited to read My So-called Haunting.

It's more of a spin off than a sequel - taking the characters Jeremy and Celestine from the first book and introducing Celestine's niece Skye, who has moved from Scotland to live with her Aunt while her mother spends time abroad. Having had the psychic ability to see ghosts for as long as she can remember Skye now needs to find a way to balance this ability with carving out a life for herself in her new home - which includes trying to capture the interest of a rather gorgeous boy called Nico and help Dontay find out the reason he is still here so he can move on.

I loved Skye straight away. She is caring, thoughtful and witty and I really enjoyed getting the story from her point of view. I love that she is psychic and can see ghosts - it is a premise I can never tire of. I also really liked her best friend Megan - she's really quirky and a good friend to Skye. And I loved Nico and thought the relationship between him and Skye was very sweet. I found the direction it took very interesting and was a bit disappointed it wasn't resolved in this book but it gives me something to look forward to in the next installment - My So-called Phantom Lovelife.

Dontay's storyline was really good and one of my favourite aspects of the story. I enjoyed watching Skye gain his trust and I love the way Murray manages to merge a serious storyline into the book and still have it feel lighthearted.

The book is a pleasure to read and in places out right hilarious. There is one scene involving a triple jump mishap that had be laughing hysterically and then giggling to myself for the rest of the day! Mary is also a great source of humour and a fabulous character. I loved how she spoke and hope to see much more of her in My So-called Phantom Lovelife.

Overall this is great fun and I'm really looking forward to more!

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Guest Post: Tamsyn Murray

I'm delighted to present a guest post from Tamsyn Murray, the author of My So-called Afterlife and My So-Called Haunting.

My So-Called Haunting is the follow up book to My So-Called Afterlife and it introduces Skye Thackery. She's fourteen years old and has been psychic all her life. In fact, she's been seeing ghosts as long as she can remember and it takes more than things that go bump in the night to faze her. But which famous ghosts are at the top of her afterlife meet-and-greet list?

1) Casper The Friendly Ghost

What's not to love about Casper? Bored of scaring people, all this ghost wants is to make friends with the living and that's something Skye can identify with. She thinks they'd have a great time hanging out together - after all, he is the friendliest ghost of all!

2) Nearly Headless Nick

OK, so he goes on a bit about joining the Headless Hunt but he knows all the secrets of Hogwarts, including that passageway into Honeydukes at Hogsmeade. Skye reckons he'd be the perfect guide to show her around and since everyone else can see him too, she wouldn't feel so weird about talking to him. Maybe he could even introduce her to Cedric Diggory?

3) Lucy Shaw
Lucy was the first ghost that her 'Uncle' Jeremy ever saw and Skye thinks he talks about her all the time, to the point where Skye is kind of glad Lucy has already passed across. Even so, she's curious about Saint Lucy and wouldn't mind meeting her, if only to see what all the fuss is about. Now there's an idea for a future book...

4) The Mackenzie Poltergeist
The MacKenzie Poltergeist is a troubled soul who haunts a vault inside Greyfriars Kirk in Edinburgh. Legend has it that the ghost is the spirit of a seventeenth century lawyer who tortured and killed others for their religious beliefs and was buried in the churchyard. Edinburgh is Skye's hometown and she's always wondered if she could help the poltergeist find peace. She's never quite been brave enough to venture inside, though.

5) Anne Boleyn
Henry VIII's second wife was the one he plunged his country into turmoil for. He was so consumed with desire that he invented a new religion in order to marry her. Unfortunately, she didn't give him the son he wanted so he accused her of witchcraft (amongst other things) and had her executed at the Tower of London. Needless to say, Skye would love to know if she was actually a witch. And maybe Anne could help her with her History coursework...

You can meet Skye for yourself on my website, where the first chapter of My So-Called Haunting is available to read. And you can buy it from Amazon here. Happy reading!


Thanks Tamsyn! I love the idea of Skye meeting Lucy!

You can read my review of My So-called Afterlife here and check back tomorrow for my review of My So-called Haunting:)

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Far From You by Lisa Schroeder

From Goodreads:
Lost and alone...down the rabbit hole

Years have passed since Alice lost her mother to cancer, but time hasn't quite healed the wound. Alice copes the best she can, by writing her music, losing herself in the love of her boyfriend, and distancing herself from her father and his new wife.

But when a deadly snowstorm traps Alice with her stepmother and newborn half-sister, she'll face issues she's been avoiding for too long. As Alice looks to the heavens for guidance, she discovers something wonderful.

Perhaps she's not so alone after all...

Verse novels are still a new experience for me but they are fast becoming something of an addiction. After reading this one I want to get my hands on as many as I can and preferably all of those written by the rather talented Lisa Schroeder.

Far From You is the story of Alice's journey after the death of her mother. Time has passed and her father has remarried and now has a baby daughter. Alice is finding it hard to accept all the change and is not connecting to her new family. But when she finds herself trapped in a snow storm she begins to re-evaluate what it is she holds dear.

I loved Far From You. I am still in awe of how much story and characterisation is fitted within the pages. Although it felt such a quick read - it also feels as if I have just finished a much longer book. So much detail and emotion is included in the choice of words that it feels very powerful.

I loved Alice and could completely understand her reluctance to accept the changes within her family structure. It must be extremely hard to reconcile letting someone new into your life while still honouring those who have gone without feeling as if you are forgetting them. I also really enjoyed the story lines involving her friend Claire and her boyfriend Blaze. I really adored Blaze and thought he was a great match for Alice.

The story had a great pace and I really felt the tension when the snow storm hit. I really wasn't sure if this would end happily or not - I'll let you find out for yourselves - and I loved the slight supernatural element. I was left with the impression it could have been real or it could have been Alice's imagination/subconscious. You are left to make that decision and I really enjoyed that element to the story.

I can't wait to read more books by Lisa Schroeder and more verse novels in general. If you haven't tried one yet I would definitely recommend you do. You might be pleasantly surprised and it could open up a whole new reading experience. It certainly has for me.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

I want to read that...

Fall For Anything by Courtney Summers

From Goodreads: When Eddie Reeves’s father commits suicide her life is consumed by the nagging question of why? Why when he was a legendary photographer and a brilliant teacher? Why when he had a daughter who loved him more than anyone else in the world? When she meets Culler Evans, a former student of her father’s and a photographer himself, an instant and dangerous attraction begins. He seems to know more about her father than she does and could possibly hold the key to the mystery surrounding his death. But Eddie’s vulnerability has weakened her and Culler Evans is getting too close. Her need for the truth keeps her hanging on… but some questions should be left unanswered.

I loved Cracked Up To Be and Some Girls Are so I cannot wait for this one. It sounds so amazing and I have come to expect great things from Courtney Summers - her stories have the such wonderful and believable characters. I'm really looking forward to it!

It's published December 2010 by St. Martin's Griffin (US)

Scarlett Dedd Winner

The winner of Scarlett Dedd is


A big thanks to everyone who took part:)

Sunday, 5 September 2010

In My Mailbox (55)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren

For Review:

The Enemy by Charlie Higson
My So Called Haunting by Tamsyn Murray
Spilt by Swati Avasthi (ARC - for a blog tour)


The DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) by Kody Keplinger
To Die For by Christopher Pike
Dear Zoe by Philip Beard

Return to Paradise by Simone Elkeles
Shug by Jenny Han


Matched by Ally Condie (Thanks Becky!)

Saturday, 4 September 2010

The Contemps Website and Challenge

I'm really excited about The Contempts website and challenge so I thought I'd do a post about it in case some of you hadn't already heard about it.

The Contempts are a group of YA authors who have contemporary novels being released over the next 12 months. They have set up a website called The Contempts which you can visit here. Check out their introduction video below.

There is also a challenge you can sign up for - with the chance to win the books if you accept the challenge before 15 November 2010. You can get the details by clicking on the image below.
Take The Contemps Challenge!
I'm really looking forward to this challenge as all the books look ace! I've included the complete list below:
  • Losing Faith by Denise Jaden (Simon Pulse, September 7, 2010)
  • The DUFF: Designated Ugly Fat Friend by Kody Keplinger (Little, Brown/Poppy, September 7, 2010)
  • Girl, Stolen by April Henry (Henry Holt, September 28, 2010)
  • Freefall by Mindi Scott (Simon Pulse, October 5, 2010)
  • The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney (Little, Brown, November 2, 2010)
  • Fixing Delilah by Sarah Ockler (Little, Brown, December 15, 2010)
  • Fall For Anything by Courtney Summers (St. Martin's Press, December 21, 2010)
  • Trapped by Michael Northrop (Scholastic, January, 2011)
  • Rival by Sara Bennett Wealer (HarperTeen, February 15, 2011)
  • Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Leavitt (Bloomsbury, March 1, 2011)
  • Like Mandarin by Kirsten Hubbard (Random House/Delacorte, March 8, 2011)
  • Family by Micol Ostow (Egmont USA, April 26, 2011)
  • Back When You Were Easier to Love by Emily Wing Smith (Dutton, April 28, 2011)
  • Pearl by Jo Knowles (Henry Holt, Spring, 2011)
  • Saving June by Hannah Harrington (Harlequin Teen, May, 2011)
  • The Day Before by Lisa Schroeder (Simon Pulse, June, 2011)
  • Between Here and Forever by Elizabeth Scott (Simon Pulse, June, 2011)
  • Small-Town Sinners by Melissa Walker (Bloomsbury, July 19, 2011)
  • The third book in the Carter series by Brent Crawford (Summer, 2011)
  • Sharks & Boys by Kristen Tracy (Disney-Hyperion, Summer, 2011)
  • Want to Go Private? by Sarah Darer Littman (Scholastic Press, August, 2011)
You can also find The Contempts on Goodreads here and twitter here.
My Contempts Challenge Books I have read so far:
1: The Day Before by Lisa Schroeder
2: Freefall by Mindi Scott
3: Fall For Anything by Courtney Summers
4: Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Leavitt
5: Sharks & Boys by Kristen Tracy

UPDATE: Hmmm...I really failed at this challenge!  But since I have all the books I will get round to reading them at some point!

UPDATE 2012:  I have now also read...

6:  The DUFF: Designated Ugly Fat Friend by Kody Keplinger
7: Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Friday, 3 September 2010

Immortal Remains by Rook Hastings

For review: Harpercollins. Published 2 September 2010
From Goodreads: Four freak accidents. Four mysterious deaths. Four signs of trouble. Welcome back to Weirdsville! "You see, the girls that died -- it wasn't by accident. They were cursed, every one of them. Cursed to meet a horrible death! And I'm going to be next." Four girls from posh school Riverbank have been killed in seemingly random but freakish ways and it's not long before Bethan and co. are lured into investigating the grisly case. Is it really just coincidence or is there something more sinister going on? Meanwhile Hashim's playing truant, Kelly's on the warpath and Jay's trying to avoid someone even more close to home! Himself. Scary, paranormal and supernaturally chilling experiences are everyday in a town like Weirdsville!

I really enjoyed Nearly Departed so I was looking forward to this one. I am pleased to say I think it's even better!

Taking place shortly after the events of the first book we have some new ghostly goings-on to deal with. This time it's a possible curse and the group decide to investigate. With Hashim avoiding them in order to live a 'normal' life and Jay worried about what his 'encounter' really means we have quite a bit going on!

I've got to say I think this may have been even creepier than the last one. I usually have a pretty good threshold when it comes to horror but even I found myself a little creeped out in parts. The supernatural mystery was really good - and even though I had my suspicions I was only partly correct!

The character interactions were really good this time as well - I think it really is here that Hastings excels. I loved all the romantic and friendship material just as much, and possibly even more than the supernatural mystery. I also really enjoyed that we got some more insight into Kelly's home life. I'm hoping this will continue and extend to the other characters as well.

I can't wait for more - this is fast becoming a favourite series of mine. And with an ending like that it sets up the next book as a must read!

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Cherry Crush (Chocolate Box Girls) by Cathy Cassidy

For review: Puffin. Published 2 September 2010
From Amazon: Cherry Costello’s life is about to change forever. She and Dad are moving to Somerset where a new mum and a bunch of brand-new sisters await. And on Cherry’s first day there she meets Shay Fletcher; with suntanned skin and sea-green eyes he’s the kind of boy who should carry a government health warning. But Shay already has a girlfriend, Cherry’s new stepsister, Honey. Cherry knows her friendship with Shay is dangerous – it could destroy everything. But that doesn’t mean she’s going to stay away from him...

Having previously read Lucky Star by Cathy Cassidy and really enjoyed it I jumped at the chance to review this one. I am so glad I did because I really, really loved it

Taking a fairly simple premise Cathy Cassidy injects it with magic. Full of wit and charm it's a book that I know would have been one of my absolute favourites had I read it as a teen. Even now, many moons away from being a teenager, I read it in one sitting - just completely captured by all the wonderful characters.

I adored Cherry. She was kind and considerate - especially towards her dad. She was being asked to make big changes in her life but I don't remember her complaining. Yes, she did have a tendency to tell some white lies and be rather economical with the truth but she didn't do any of it to be mean - it was done more as a way to fit in and be liked. I loved all the other characters too - even Honey - who I thought was an interesting character and am really looking forward to her story. All the characters were completely fleshed out - even the parents who can sometimes be overlooked.

My favourite aspect of the story though was Cherry and Shay's friendship. It was extremely sweet and one that felt based on a true connection. I'm really looking forward to seeing what happens between them in future installments. I'm so glad this is going to be a series of five books. I can't wait to get my hands on the next one!


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