Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Ten by Gretchen McNeil

Ten By Gretchen McNeil

Source: I recieved a copy of this book as a gift from a friend!
Publisher: Balzer + Bray ( Harper Collins )
Edition: Ebook 304 pgs

Release date: September 18th 2012
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary/Thriller/Horror
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository*
Rating: 4/5

Description from Goodreads: 

Don't spread the word!
Three-day weekend. Party at White Rock House on Henry Island.
You do NOT want to miss

It was supposed to be the weekend of their lives—an exclusive house party on Henry Island. Best friends Meg and Minnie each have their reasons for being there (which involve T.J., the school’s most eligible bachelor) and look forward to three glorious days of boys, booze and fun-filled luxury.

But what they expect is definitely not what they get, and what starts out as fun turns dark and twisted after the discovery of a DVD with a sinister message: Vengeance is mine.

Suddenly people are dying, and with a storm raging, the teens are cut off from the outside world. No electricity, no phones, no internet, and a ferry that isn’t scheduled to return for two days. As the deaths become more violent and the teens turn on each other, can Meg find the killer before more people die? Or is the killer closer to her than she could ever imagine?

I'm a huge fan of horror movies. I love to jump, cover my eyes and cringe. My boyfriend laughs at me and thinks i'm silly, but to each their own. Ten was a great fit for me. I don't really get into contemporaries where there is no nitty gritty, where it's all about the romance and the friendships and fun times ... But kill a few people off? You've got my attention!

The characters in Ten were a perfect mix, all just a bit different. Since they all  came from different schools it helped add to the mystery because not only do YOU as the reader not know much about them, neither do the other characters. They each have unique personalities they helped them stand out , Meg was a bit of an outsider, the loner, It really helped me connect with her. At the few parties I was actually invited to at school I stayed to myself, off in my own little corner.. probably looking at the bookshelf lol. 

The Mystery/Horror element in Ten was very well done. Even though I was constantly trying to guess Whodunit , I always ended up wrong! I love being wrong in a mystery- it means the author/movie writer is doing their job well ;) Gretchen McNeil also does not shy away from the murders. They are .... inventive. ( If you could see my face right now it would be the look of " I give you props" ) 

Of course like any Horror movie there are moments of " You idiot don't go in there!" " BEHIND YOU" or " Ya sure, the killer is just going to wave and say Over Here!- when you ask "is anyone there?"" But that's one of the marks of a good horror for me. Gotta mock the stupid moves. 

Overall I really enjoyed Ten By Gretchen McNeil! I even have her other Novel Possess already purchased and waiting to be read! I loved her writing style that much and can't wait to see what else she has created! 

So go. Read. Play Sherlock Holmes and try to decode the riddle! 

Rating 4/5  

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Earthbound by Aprilynne Pike

Earthbound (Earthbound #1) 
by Aprilynne Pike

Hardcover, 352 pages

Published July 30th, 2013 by Razorbill

I received Earthbound from Library Thing in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts and opinions are my own! 

Mystery, Action, Romance, and a Unique 

Synopsis from Goodreads but edited by Brittany:

Tavia Michaels is the sole survivor of the plane crash that killed her parents. When she starts to see strange visions of a boy she’s never spoken with in real life, she begins to suspect that there’s much about her past that she isn’t being told. Tavia immediately searches for answers, desperate to determine why she feels so drawn to a boy she hardly knows. But when Tavia discovers that the aunt and uncle who took her in after her parents' death may have actually been responsible for the plane crash that killed them--and that she may have been the true intended victim--she flees for the safety of Camden, Maine, where the boy she sees in her visions instructs her to go.

Aprilynne Pike has crafted a story so unique and mysterious that you wonder where the spiral is going to lead. Twists and turns around every corner made it a can't-stop-even-for-bedtime read. By the end of the story I was completely invested in Tavia's journey and loved her character.  BUT, I did not find the world building in this book as strong as the world she created in Wings.  This could be due to the fact that Tavia doesn't really know who or what she is for most of the story. Now, let's talk romance! 

Love Triangles, Love Triangles, Love Triangles!!!!
This love triangle isn't your typical Bella-Edward-Jacob, it isn't just about who looks better without a shirt, it deals with the fate of the world.  I don't want to give away any good details but I was definitely rooting for the librarian, though he is not exactly what he seems to be. I should have known. A cute male librarian seems too good to be true... or is it? 

This book combines all of the elements to make a dang good story.  It is a page turner that doesn't leave many questions unanswered at the end, thank you Aprilynne Pike. That being said, every good answer leaves a trail to new questions. The first book was very good but it sets up to have a strong second book of the series.

Brittany's Rating: 


Monday, July 29, 2013

Introducing The new member of The Passionate Bookworms!

* Drum roll please! *****************

Everybody give a warm welcome to :

Let's let her tell us a bit about herself shall we?

My name is Brittany and I currently work as a high school German teacher! Why German, because it’s the language of love. J I grew up a farmer’s daughter and have three younger sisters who are my best friends. I live in Minnesota with my husband Nick. Besides reading, I upcycle books during my free time:

1. Was there a specific book that started your passion for reading?

This question should be phrased besides Harry Potter what books ignited your passion? I can distinctly remember my extreme reading frenzy beginning during the Harry Potter series. I was one of those kids that read through the night after I bought the books. I am a Potter fan to the death. One of the happiest days of my life was when I saw Harry Potter World in Florida. Another book that really kicked off my reading life was Gingerbread by Rachel Cohn. I have real no idea why, besides the fact that I was able to experience a life that was other than my own.

And this is how I know we are going to get along BRILLIANTLY! Guys... She is drinking Butterbeer in that picture.. at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter... I both love and hate her for this. 

2. What is your favorite Genre?

It’s real hard to pick just one genre because I am a floater. At the current moment, I am reading mostly YA fiction. Anything with mythical, mystical creatures or beings, count me in. I really love to read books that are in a series, I am not fond of just a one and done method. I like seeing characters develop and mature.

3. Least favorite Genre?

My least favorite genre would have to be any nonfiction books. The only exception to that rule is anything to do with Germany history. Why, because I am a German teacher. J

There are very few nonfiction books that I can get into, so were in the same boat there!

4. What was the last book you read that surprised you?

I am absolutely shameless when saying this but Beautiful Disaster. I read that book in one sitting completely oblivious to basic needs like food and going to the bathroom. I don’t usually like books where the man seems domineering or psychotic but this book was entirely different. Usually with a domineering male characters comes a weak female character, but Abby was anything but weak, she held her own!

I think this is one of those contemporaries that I have to give a shot just so I can understand where my ne coblogger is coming from :) Thankfully this one has had awesome reviews!

5. If we were to look at your bookshelf right now, is there anything that would stand out?

Most would think this lady is crazy. I hoard books like it’s my will to live. I have so many books on my TBR pile that it is sometimes unnerving for me. Luckily, I have this strange lighting speed reading ability. Real life answer: It really stinks being a working adult with a need to read like a will to live.

THIS! She gets me guys... she gets me.

6. Do you set up your bookshelf in any specific way?

Absolutely not, most of my life is very organized but I get to live through my books. I like it unorganized, it’s completely freeing.

Let the chaos reign!

7. Thoughts on Movie adaptions?

I will never watch a movie before I have read the book and I hate finding out after if there was a book, I hadn’t read. Also, I almost always disagree with the celebrities they cast for books because I never ever picture celebrities.

I'm bad sometimes about watching movies before reading books. Percy Jackson and the lightning thief The Help, Water For Elephants .... I actually haven't read ANY of those books yet! But loved the movies lol.

8. Are you a Cover Lover? Or does the Cover have really no effect on you?

If I am going without a recommendation, the cover has to be something interesting. My friend, Michelle(not my co-blogger J ), says that my types of books have covers with something mythical on the front.

Ooooh good to know! I also wholeheartedly agree!

9. Are you hoping to get anything out of blogging?

I have been looking to take a step in my reading experience and book blogging seems like the next natural step. I am also really excited to get to work with Michelle!

Im pretty Dang excited as well!

10. Do you feel that you have a noticeable writing style?

Hmm, not really sure so then maybe no. When I write reviews, I don’t write for length, I write for content. Sometimes reviewers write a page for the synopsis and I am more of a short and sweet type of girl.
Yes to short and sweet! Have I mentioned this girl gets me?

I am super excited to have Brittany join the team and I hope your excited to be getting more wonderful reviews! Be sure to visit us often and see the new stuff that will be popping up! Lets's show Brittany what the book community is all about ! 
You can also follow her on Twitter @WordsAfterwards
Brittany's first review will be live tomorrow! 
Be sure to come back and check it out! 

One last look at Farmer Brittany! A John Deer Family after my heart!

Crave ( The Clann #1 ) by Marissa Darnell

Crave (The Clann #1)
by Melissa Darnell

Paperback, 416 pages
Published October 25th 2011 by Harlequin Teen

I was given a copy of this book for review from Harlequin Teen and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

* This review was originally published on the blog in December of 2011, However it had very few page views and no comments. Since I have the next 2 books in the series now for review I wanted to re-share this original review with you in preparation!

" Hon you live in the post-Harry Potter world, where you teens think magic is awesome. I lived in the pre- Harry Potter times. I was witchy when whitchy wasn't cool."

Savannah Colbert has never known why she’s so hated by the kids of the Clann. Nor can she deny her instinct to get close to Clann golden boy Tristan Coleman. Especially when she recovers from a strange illness and the attraction becomes nearly irresistible. It’s as if he’s a magnet, pulling her gaze, her thoughts, even her dreams. Her family has warned her to have nothing to do with him, or any members of the Clann. But when Tristan is suddenly everywhere she goes, Savannah fears she’s destined to fail.

For years, Tristan has been forbidden to even speak to Savannah Colbert. Then Savannah disappears from school for a week and comes back…different, and suddenly he can’t stay away. Boys seem intoxicated just from looking at her. His own family becomes stricter than ever. And Tristan has to fight his own urge to protect her, to be near her no matter the consequences…

A Forbidden love.. Sounds very Cliche right? Been there, read that. But now add in the twist, The Female love interest is a Damphir ( A half Vampire half human, that should not exist. ) Add onto that part Witch! The Male love interest is a Witch, son to the Leader of the Clann. 
I have to say, I was hesitant of the twist. It seemed to complicated to me. But I ended up really enjoying it. It was nice to have the female character be the dangerous one in the relationship. And with Savannah constantly learning new things about herself, I kept wondering what might happen next. 
Tristan was a great character as well. He doesn't want all the power that comes with being part of the Clann or son of the leader. He just wants to play football and lead as normal a life as he can. But when he feels Savannah is in danger he searches for a way to help, while not fully giving in to his families wishes.
The book starts out gripping with curiosities.. then.. it starts to drag a bit. you learn alot about Savannah's school life and new " friends" .. this goes on for awhile.. sigh. It felt very unneeded and was hard for me to get through. This is the only part that really bothered me about the story. But then FINALLY it gets to the nitty gritty. And OH how I loved it. Tristan and Savannah going against everything they have been told, trying to forget who their families are and What they are, and simply wanting to be together. 
The ending is intense, and leaves you wanting more, and then of course I read the 1st chapter in the second book and now I'm regretting it! sooo impatient lol 
Rating: 4/5
Big thank you to Harlequin Teen and Netgalley for letting me read this book!
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Saturday, July 27, 2013

The Sunday Post

To Visit the books goodreads page just click on the title to follow the link. ( Hopefully Blogger will stop bugging soon and let me attach links to the goodreads images again.)

From St. Martin's Press

                    Shutdown ( Glitch #3 )            Shadows of Glass ( Ashes Trilogy #2 )
                                By Heather Anastasiu                       By Kassy Taylor

From Hannacroix Creek Books

By Jeff Yager

Gifted From Friends

                    The Dig ( Zoe and Zues Trilogy #1 )                  The Lost Girl
                                    by Audrey Hart                                by Sangu Mandanna

The top 3 are all books released in July! My Birthday month was a great book month :) The Dig and The Lost girl are a little bit older but still look amazing and I can't wait to read them!

Have you read any or all of these titles? Any favorites out of The bunch?
If you haven't read any, which of these are you looking forward to?! Share in the comments and feel free to leave a link if you are a fellow blogger with a mailbox post!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen

The Moon and More
by Sarah Dessen 

Hardcover, 435 pagesPublished June 4th 2013 by Viking Juvenile 

Luke is the perfect boyfriend: handsome, kind, fun. He and Emaline have been together all through high school in Colby, the beach town where they both grew up. But now, in the summer before college, Emaline wonders if perfect is good enough.
Enter Theo, a super-ambitious outsider, a New Yorker assisting on a documentary film about a reclusive local artist. Theo's sophisticated, exciting, and, best of all, he thinks Emaline is much too smart for Colby.
Emaline's mostly-absentee father, too, thinks Emaline should have a bigger life, and he's convinced that an Ivy League education is the only route to realizing her potential. Emaline is attracted to the bright future that Theo and her father promise. But she also clings to the deep roots of her loving mother, stepfather, and sisters. Can she ignore the pull of the happily familiar world of Colby?
Emaline wants the moon and more, but how can she balance where she comes from with where she's going?
Sarah Dessen's devoted fans will welcome this story of romance, yearning, and, finally, empowerment. It could only happen in the summer.
Sarah Dessen is one of my Favorite YA contemporary authors. That is a very.... very small list. So she should be honored ;) She is on my list of  "I will read ANYTHING this woman writes" authors. That's why I picked up The Moon and More. It didn't intrigue me quite as much as my favorites from her ( Lock and key, The Truth About Forever and Just Listen ) But I was like... Dude... It's SARAH DESSEN. 

I think I hyped it up a bit much for myself. While I still really enjoyed The Moon and More. I didn't love it. It fell a bit flat for me and I was CONSTANTLY annoyed with the " Love interest " Blech.. Blech.... and more BLECH. But ya know... To each their own. He was just annoying and obnoxious. Over the top and just... really unlikeable to me. I understand that for Emaline it was new and exciting, But within the first few interactions with him I was personally like " Please Emaline.. no, just no." I enjoyed the parts of this story that were NOT about Theo.

 I adored Emaline's little brother with his "can do" attitude. I kind of remember being his age and thinking how much I wanted to help out and rushed to be the first one to offer. He was just a super endearing character and he took his family problems in stride, as much as a preteen could. I loved that the main family was a step family, and a HAPPY one. The family dynamic was fun and honest, not always perfect, but still full of love. I really connected with this part of the story, which also made the relationship with Emaline and her " father" tough for me as well. It's hard not to want some kind of relationship with your biological father if he has never really done anything to hurt you. It's not like you as the child have much of a say in his leaving, or how much he is around. I liked how Sarah Dessen tackled this part of the story. Her father isn't portrayed as a bad guy, or the good guy "done wrong" he is just there. Being himself, the good and the bad. 

But while I enjoyed parts of the story, the whole was a bit of a let down compared to her other novels. The problem... didn't feel as deep. I know that not all contemporaries need to have a deep problem to be interesting, but I just felt like The Moon and More was a bit empty, lacking in a richness. So while I liked this story. I did not love it. I would, however, still HIGHLY recommend Sarah Dessen's Novels. My favorites again being : 

 Click on the images to be taken to the books Goodreads page! 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

15 Day Book Blogger Challenge ( Day 8 )

8. Quick! Write 15 bullet points of things that appeal to you on blogs!

Holy cow! 15?! 15!? o.O 

1. Design: I get frustrated with blogs that are just slapped together. Super basic templates are used with no attempt to personalize them. Glaring white backgrounds, blockyness. Blech. I get it for the first chunk of time as you are learning the ropes. Mine probably looked ridiculous as I tried out new things. But other bloggers are so friendly and willing to give "how to" tips! There is also tons of info on the web to help! Personalize it, make it clean, make it something people enjoy looking at. 

That was kinda the negative version huh? well.. erm... flip that all and then you will have what I like! Personality, color, appeal. 

2. non white backgrounds. Sometimes the white can be ok. But personally. I get a headache after awhile. I like blogs that have color :) 

3. Reviews! I love blogs that have alot of reviews! Not Just memes and promos! I hate seeing blogs that are just post after post of promos. It just feels like filler if there is nothing else going on. 

 ( I know that mine kinda looks like that now.. Not promo posts but some filler. I'm working on getting back to active guys I swear! I am working on reviews as much as I can! Doing this 15 day challenge is making me enjoy getting posts up again and I hope to have more soon!) 

4. NO ADS ! I hate when a blogs sidebar and middle are filled with annoying ads from amazon and such. They are obnoxious and make my internet slow :/

5. No music. I love silent blogs. - I listen to my own music or watch shows on my computer while browsing blogs. When I open a new blog and their music interrupts my show? I immediately exit. 

6. Release dates for books that bloggers review as ARCs. I usually have a notebook with me and take notes on books I want to look into further, if they are ARCs I want to know how long I will have to wait! 

7. Fun memes ! While I love alot of reviews, I also enjoy W.O.W posts and Mailbox posts! They help my TBR pile grow by letting me read about books that maybe haven't popped up on my radar yet!

Ya.... 15 points is not going to happen :/ My brain isn't working! These are the top things I notice when I am visiting Blogs! I can sometimes handle one or two things I don't like on blogs.. More than that? 

What things do you enjoy when visiting a blog? What things make you back away quickly?!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Cover Lover (3)

The Meme Name says it all

The spine-tingling horror of Stephen King meets an eerie mystery worthy of Sara Shepard's Pretty Little Liars series in Kate Karyus Quinn's haunting debut.

On a cool autumn night, Annaliese Rose Gordon stumbled out of the woods and into a high school party. She was screaming. Drenched in blood. Then she vanished.

A year later, Annaliese is found wandering down a road hundreds of miles away. She doesn't know who she is. She doesn't know how she got there. She only knows one thing: She is not the real Annaliese Rose Gordon.

Now Annaliese is haunted by strange visions and broken memories. Memories of a reckless, desperate wish . . . a bloody razor . . . and the faces of other girls who disappeared. Piece by piece, Annaliese's fractured memories come together to reveal a violent, endless cycle that she will never escape—unless she can unlock the twisted secrets of her past.

There is so much that I love about this cover. The Typography is such a wonderful clash with the Cover Models style. Instead of just being pure dark horror style, it's gritty and interesting. I enjoy how the scene fades away right in the spot where I wonder.. is there something there? Can the girl see something just beyond the " fog" that we cannot? 

Three things have me wanting to read this one: 

1. Gorgeous cover

2. Intriguing premise

3.  My Girls Jessica @ Just a Book Lover
and Katie @ Katie's Book Blog 

All enjoyed it! I mean really? How could I not at least try it!?

Monday, July 15, 2013

15 day Book Blogger Challenge ( Day 6 & 7 )

6. Describe how you shop for books?

You mean people actually have a method? What is this madness! Rarely do I go in with a specific book in mind unless I am going to an event. I pretty much just walk through the bookstore doors ( when I can actually make it to a store ) pause, breathe in the smell of new books, and head straight for the YA section! I proceed to pull out books whose titles intrigue me, or covers snag my attention, and make decisions from there. 

When I worked at Borders I would find new books on my lunch breaks- or while I was shelving- and just sit down in a corner and start to read, if I felt like I didn't want to put it back on the shelf after my break, it came home with me. :) 

7. Talk about your blogger quirks.

I dunno if I really have " quirks " .. Just watch. All of you are sitting there reading this and just ticking off the weird things that I do. 

If I had to pick something I would say my quirk is that I review things fairly conversationally. I don't use proper grammar, or even actual sentences sometimes. ( I don't even want to think about what editors would think if they read this. ) I say what's in my head. Sometimes that just comes out like word vomit, sometimes it might actually sound eloquent. I'm not writing for a teacher, i'm sharing my thoughts for myself, and for you; my friends. 

So ya, that's my quirk. Word vomit. 
I'm probably making you think of puke now.. I really don't care! haha

Do you think I have blogging quirks? I would love to know what you think they are! Do you have your own? Be sure to share in the comments and leave a link if you have your own post! 

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Revel By Maurissa Guibord

Revel by Maurissa Guibord

Hardcover, 352 pages

Published February 12th 2013
by Delacorte Books for Young Readers

There’s an island off the coast of Maine that’s not on any modern map.

Shrouded in mist and protected by a deadly reef, Trespass Island is home to a community of people who guard the island and its secrets from outsiders. Seventeen-year-old Delia grew up in Kansas, but has come here in search of her family and answers to her questions: Why didn’t her mother ever talk about Trespass Island? Why did she fear the open water? But Delia’s not welcome and soon finds herself enmeshed in a frightening and supernatural world where ancient Greek symbols adorn the buildings and secret ceremonies take place on the beach at night.

Sean Gunn, a handsome young lobsterman, befriends Delia and seems willing to risk his life to protect her. But it’s Jax, the coldly elusive young man she meets at the water’s edge, who finally makes Delia understand the real dangers of life on the island. Delia is going to have to fight to survive. Because there are monsters here. And no one ever leaves Trespass alive.

I like to experiment. Since I am a cover lover, I sometimes pick out books to read based solely on their covers, and just hope the contents do it justice. That's exactly what I did with Revel. Though honestly, the description ( now that I have read it ) is wonderfully elusive as well! Unlike many descriptions that give away 1/2 the story before you read the first chapter!

 My reactions within the first few chapters were all over the place! Like A fish out of water flip floppin on the deck! * Snickers* 

* No one will take her to Trespass Island? ... huh.. weird.
* Weird old man rolling literal Knuckle bones to make decisions ? Even Weirder!
* WTF is in the water! o.O
* ... Gonna smack the Grandma...
* AWE nvm, Gonna Hug her!
* Oh Cute guy!... Ugh Jerk... Awe Sweet!     

Seriously.. my emotions were everywhere. 

Thankfully this didn't last through the whole book. Slowly I started to work out what was going on and it was like an " ah ha" moment. ( Nope, not gonna tell ya (; ) 

Trespass island is filled with mysteries that will keep you guessing. An almost cult like atmosphere that will have you questioning your feelings about the characters, and some gruesome and terrifying scenes that may leave some with nightmares. 

In the midst of all this we have Delia, a character that won my heart in the first chapter when readers learn she was removed from her last foster home because she spoke up and called the cops because the foster mom was smoking in the car with a baby. This girl knows what she believes in and fights for it tooth and nail. She recognizes that things are not just black and white, but varying shades of grey. Ex: the Glaukos are creatures who did at one point attack, but when she sees one in obvious distress she cannot ignore it's cries of pain. 

This story had some major twists that left me stunned. A few I was able to guess a little earlier on than others, but still shocked me non the less. The Revel, The Glaukos, Sean, even Delia herself has secrets to share. 

The only thing that left me wanting was the back stories on some of the other characters. Zuzu and Jax in particular. We learn very little about  their lives before Delia arrived. I would have loved to know more about their lives growing up on the island. As far as I know this is a standalone ( though personally, I can see a possibility for more ) which makes me even more sad that we don't learn more about these side characters. 

Overall though I was thrilled with this story! I highly recommend it for fans of mythology/ folklore, dark stories and strong Female MC's! 

Rating: 5/5                                                                                                                                                                            

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Sunday Post

This Sunday Post is going to be .. ALOT smaller than it aught to be. I have been gifted a ton of books o.O mostly e-books,  but awesome non-the-less. So I'm going to share the ones that I am the most excited about, 
or that I have been told I HAVE TO READ. This will include books I received last month, and so far this month.

Sorry that nothing is linked up this time guys! I took an accidental nap that completely screwed up my productivity!

( Currently reading Revel by Maurissa Guibord and LOVING it ! )

(Hopeless by Colleen Hoover was recommended to me by Jessica at Just a Book Lover . Supposedly it's awesome and will make me love contemporaries... we shall see haha. )

Recieved - Already Read- To Be Reviewed

From Spencer Hill Press

From St. Martin's Press to be used in future giveaway!

I have also been participating in the 15 Day Book Blogger Challenge hosted by Good Books and Good Wine ! Be sure to check out my challenge posts! Feel Free to leave links to your own Challenge posts, Mailbox posts, or.. just awesome reviews!