Sunday, February 28, 2010

In My Mailbox (3)

In My Mailbox was started by Kristi over at The Story Siren and all you have to do is post about what books you received that week by mail, library, or store.

I'm really excited about the three books I purchased this past week that I'm dropping everything to make sure I read them this week.

Wednesday night I attended the first meeting of a new book club at Books A Million and after the meeting was over, I immediately started looking for Irene Latham's Leaving Gee's Bend. Other than hearing great things about this book, Irene Latham is a resident of Alabama and I love to support local authors, plus I really wanted to read her book before the Alabama Book Festival and what better time to do that than now?

If you've read my blog, you know that I've been waiting impatiently for Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins to be released. Well after seeing her blog entry about Hex Hall being seen in the wild, I knew I had to go back to Books A Million to see if they had it yet and sure enough they had ten copies! I grabbed it as soon as I saw it and tweeted pictures to Rachel in my excitement. I did get the side eye by the two men sitting in the chairs near that section but who cares, right? I haven't had too much time to read this weekend, but I started it immediately and so far it has definitely lived up to all the hexy hype. I can already tell that the second book cannot come out soon enough.

The third and final book I purchased was Jennifer Hubbard's The Secret Year. I've heard rave reviews on this book as well and I was planning on buying this when I bought Leaving Gee's Bend but they didn't have any and were expecting more on Friday (which just happened to be the day I went looking for Hex Hall) and luckily I was the one who got the only copy on the shelf.

Is there anything that you got this past week that you're excited about reading?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Flashback Friday (2)

Flashback Friday was started by Jacki over at Lovely Little Shelf and is a chance to share with others books that you loved as a kid or teenager.

Now I'm not usually one for poetry, I succumbed to a lot of "analyze this" and "what's the author REALLY saying?" type of stuff in high school and college English classes and it just kind of ruined poetry for me. With that said, one of my favorite books from my childhood was A Light in the Attic by Shel Silverstein.

I have a few memories of this book and it has popped up throughout my life. I remember the first time I was introduced to this book, it was by my aunt and we shared the same favorite poem, and that poem is still my favorite. If I'm feeling random, I've been known to recite that poem at odd times as well as one or two others.

One thing I'm not usually is a trend setter, but I do enjoy being me and sometimes that leads to others following suit. When I was in high school I started two things in different classes. In my Web Page Design class I did all my work while sitting on the floor with my keyboard in my lap and by the end of the semester, all but three people sat on the floor on a regular basis.

The other thing happened in my Honors English class my Junior year. Each week we had to do an author report where we had to write about an author and bring in something to symbolize their life or one of their works. After two weeks of hearing numerous reports on the same authors (Fitzgerald and Shakespeare mostly), I decided to do my report on Shel Silverstein. I shared with my class that he started as a cartoonist for Disney and eventually did the same for Playboy (talk about different ends of the spectrum there) and I ended my report with a poem from the book.

My item that represented Mr. Silverstein was of course, a light bulb and I am proud to say that it made it home without breaking. So now, I will end this post with the poem I have always found the most amusing, and yes, it's by memory.

Crowded Tub

There are too many kids in this tub
There are too many elbows to scrub
I just washed a behind
That I'm sure wasn't mine
There are too many kids in this tub

Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Sea of Monsters - Rick Riordan

When it comes to a book series, I really like to pick the next book up as soon as I put the one I just finished down. Sometimes it's super easy and other times it feels like a daunting task, however, the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series has fallen into the former category.

These books are such easy, fast reads but I find them quite entertaining and I had to make sure I picked up the fourth book today so I would have it upon completion of The Titan's Curse.

In book two, The Sea of Monsters, Percy finds himself in yet another boarding school and other than being made fun of for being friends with Tyson, a huge homeless kid who is a little slower than everyone else, the year has been relatively quite.

With Annabeth's arrival, Percy soon learns that Camp Half-Blood is in trouble and that Chiron has been removed as activities director with accusations of poisoning the tree that provides the magical boarders around camp.

On top of all of this, Percy has been having dreams about Grover who is in trouble and needs rescuing. In order to save the camp from being overtaken by monsters and his close friend from death, Percy must go to the Sea of Monsters to retrieve both his friend and the healing Golden Fleece. It's a race against time to save his best friend AND get the Golden Fleece to Camp Half-Blood.

Besides the mythological aspect, I think a big part of what I like about this series is that there is a continuous story, the bigger picture, but there are also various smaller stories that give you satisfaction for having a start and an end. I like how each book has had its own "right now" opponent but that it's not just peppered in as filler.

I also like the fact that each book seems to introduce you to a new god or two and they're like the frontrunner for that book. We met more in The Lightning Thief than we did in The Sea of Monsters but it's nice not to just have them all dumped on you from the get go.

I've already started book 4 so look for that in the next few days as well as Leaving Gee's Bend by Irene Latham.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday - Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that you're eagerly anticipating.

This week's Waiting on Wednesday book is Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. I have seen nothing but good things about this book so far and when I stop by the bookstore Tuesday, this will be one of two books I pick up.

From Goodreads:

What if you had only one day to live? What would you do? Who would you kiss? And how far would you go to save your own life? Samantha Kingston has it all—looks, popularity, the perfect boyfriend. Friday, February 12th should be just another day in her charmed life. Instead, it’s her last. The catch: Samantha still wakes up the next morning. In fact, she re-lives the last day of her life seven times, until she realizes that by making even the slightest changes, she may hold more power than she had ever imagined.

The description reminds me a bit of Groundhog Day and although I disliked the movie this kind of storyline can be entertaining and interesting when done right. My favorite TV show, Supernatural, had an episode titled Mystery Spot in which something of the sort happened and it is in my top five episodes of the show.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Teaser Tuesday - The Sea of Monsters

Thanks to MizB at Should Be Reading for hosting Teaser Tuesday's. If you'd like to participate all you have to do is grab the book you're reading, open to a random page, share 2 teaser sentences (non-spoilers please!), and list the name of the book, page number, and author.

"Eventually," muttered Tantalus, staring at Dionysus's Diet Coke. "Do you have any idea how dry one's throat gets after three thousand years?"

Page 59 of Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sunshine Award

Well look what I've been nominated for, a Sunshine Award.

Aimee at Our Family- From Scratch was kind enough to nominate me for this award. As young as my blog is, it's nice to know that people DO read it and even if it is just Aimee that I can make someone smile.

So in accepting this award I will nominate twelve other people who bring the smiles. Most of these will most likely be repeats of the last award, but that's because I really love them.

I'm nominating Annie's Eats and Bakerella because I love what they do in the kitchen. If I can do half the stuff they do when it comes to baking, I can consider myself accomplished in that area.

The following list is comprised of some of my favorite nestie blogs, all of which contain something book related. I love these blogs and if I had to give up reading any of them I think I would die a little on the inside.

Because Perfection is Boring
Book Hooked
Forever Young
Lovely Little Shelf
My life: Uncensored
See Heather Write
The Simple Things
What the Blog?

Steph Su Reads is basically just an amazing book blog and should speak for itself.

Reading, Writing, Rachel is the blog to debut author Rachel Hawkins. Reading her blog makes me excited for her book because her blog is witty and I love the fact that she has interviews with her characters. It also doesn't hurt that she's an Auburn fan.

So there you have it, these are the blogs I think need to be checked out ASAP.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief - Rick Riordan

So as you can tell, I've kind of been MIA around here the last week. We moved last week and it has been quite hectic since and even though we've been here since Tuesday, we're just now spending the night in the house. It doesn't quite feel like home and I'm kind of depressed. I really hope this feeling goes away soon. Anyway, I wanted to get my review of The Lightning Thief posted before too long and before procrastination sunk in.

In anticipation of the movie based on Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, I decided that no matter what I was going to read the book before seeing the movie. My husband and I went last weekend and although the movie was enjoyable, this is yet another case where the book was a lot better.

The Lightning Thief
follows twelve year old Perseus (Percy) Jackson as he learns that everything he's been learning about in his mythology class is not just a myth. After Percy is accused of stealing Zeus's master bolt, he is taken to Camp Half-Blood to hone his skills and learn about this new life and his father. A prophecy sends him on a quest with his two friends, Grover and Annabeth, to retrieve the bolt and if it is not returned by the summer solstice then war will break out in Olympus.

As many will say, this book reminds them of the Harry Potter series and although that rings true, it wasn't to the point where I couldn't finish a chapter without thinking, "Well that's not what Harry would have done," or something similar. I picked this book up expecting similarities because of the synopsis I had read so it didn't take anything away from the book.

I think part of the reason I liked this book so much is because I enjoy mythology. I took a mythology class my freshman year of high school (I actually came across the paperback I used in the class while moving) and was thoroughly interested in the subject matter. I will say this about the movie, the visual effects were fantastic but some of the storyline was changed and it just left me slightly irked.

Look for a few more updates coming tomorrow morning or afternoon.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Linger Giveaway

Linger Cover LargeIn Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver, Grace and Sam found each other. Now, in Linger, they must fight to be together. For Grace, this means defying her parents and keeping a very dangerous secret about her own well-being. For Sam, this means grappling with his werewolf past . . . and figuring out a way to survive into the future. Add into the mix a new wolf named Cole, whose own past has the potential to destroy the whole pack. And Isabelle, who already lost her brother to the wolves . . . and is nonetheless drawn to Cole.

At turns harrowing and euphoric, Linger is a spellbinding love story that explores both sides of love -- the light and the dark, the warm and the cold -- in a way you will never forget.

Comes out in stores everywhere July 20th. Pre-order here.

Enter to win an advanced review copies of LINGER, Sisters Red, The Dead-Tossed Waves, and The Replacement on Maggie's blog.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

New Winner

Since the first winner has not replied to me in the given time frame, I had to choose a new winner and the lucky person is Heather T. Number was chosen same as before and this time it's someone I know.

Congrats Heather! If you could send me your address in the next 48 hours, I can get your book to you.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Beautiful Blogger Award

After a long hard day of packing, I got online for a few minutes and found out that Angel over at The Simple Things... likes me enough to give me the Beautiful Blogger award..check it out, isn't it pretty?!

Thanks so much Angel! It means a lot to me that you like my little ole blog enough to rank it in your fifteen.

Here are the rules:
1. Thank & link to the person that gave you the award.
Thanks again Angel. If you haven't checked out her blog then I must ask, "what are you waiting for?!" Here. Now.

2. Pass this award onto 15 bloggers you’ve recently discovered & think are fantastic.

Part 2 is going to be a tough one..especially because I have so many blogs I love reading.

Angie Eats Peace
Annie's Eats
Ashley's Bookshelves
Because Perfection is Boring
Book Hooked
Forever Young
Lovely Little Shelf
My life: Uncensored
Reading, Writing, Rachel
See Heather Write
Steph Su Reads
The Story Siren
The Undercover Book Lover
What the Blog?

Friday, February 12, 2010

We have a Winner!

So the winner of my book giveaway has been picked and it is Laura D. Since my husband had no idea what I was doing, I just had him pick a number to determine the winner.

Congrats Laura! Hope to hear from you within the next 48 hours!

Contest Closed

My book giveaway has officially ended. A winner will be announced later this afternoon and will have 48 hours from the timestamp on the email to respond with a mailing address.

Check back later to see if you've won!

Flashback Friday (1)

Flashback Friday was started by Jacki over at Lovely Little Shelf and is a chance to share with others books that you loved as a kid or teenager.

Now when I was a kid, reading was my favorite pastime and I always had a book in my backpack. My biggest book collection from my younger days consisted of the Sweet Valley series. It didn't matter how old the twins were, if I found a book dealing with them, I bought it.

One thing my mom and I did frequently was visit thrift stores and I loved this outing because I could always find at least two Sweet Valley High books at each store. I still have my collection at my mom's house and it takes up a solid box and a half..and let me tell you, they are not small boxes.

I loved so many things about this series and when it was made into a tv show, you can bet your buttons I watched it. Now that there's talk of a movie and more books following Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield, chances are I'll watch or read them just to pay homage to what these books meant to me growing up, because if there are any books that define my childhood and pre-teen years..these are it.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday - Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

So I know last week I featured the third book in The Hunger Games trilogy as my Waiting on Wednesday book. However, thanks to Heather at See Heather Write, I have been informed of the title and cover release for this book and I'm just so freakin' excited, so without further ado, I bring you the cover of the third installment in The Hunger Games trilogy, Mockingjay.

Isn't it beautiful? Like Jessica mentioned, the book covers side-by-side look amazing together with the Mockingjay transforming from a pin to a real bird. August really cannot come quick enough.

Interested in reading what David Levithan had to say about Mockingjay and see the covers side-by-side? Click here.

How to be Popular - Meg Cabot

I have officially read my first Meg Cabot book. I picked up How to be Popular earlier this week because 1) it was a stand-alone book and 2) I wanted something of an easy read.

How to be Popular follows sixteen year old Steph Laundry as she tries to shed a phrase that has haunted her for five years. As she helps her best friend, Jason, clean out his grandmother's attic, she comes across a book on how to be popular and decides to give it a go.

As long as she follows the instructions in the book, she's guaranteed to make it into the A-club.

While I enjoyed this book and appreciated Steph, Jason, and Becca, How to be Popular was kind of predictable, I saw the ending coming from a mile away. Girl strives to be popular, girl gets in with the coveted "in" crowd, girl realizes things were better before.

One thing I really liked about Steph was that she was nice, even when it was hard. Her brief stint never changed how she acted towards others and the very end (literally, last page) had me thinking how nice she really was. If I were in her position and someone treated me like that, there's no way I'd even try to be nice. This was definitely a cute book and I look forward to reading more by Meg Cabot.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

In My Mailbox (2)

In My Mailbox was started by Kristi over at The Story Siren and all you have to do is post about what books you received that week by mail, library, or store.

I'm kind of late on this post but with the move and packing things have been kind of hectic lately so I probably won't be blogging much the next week or two.

Yesterday I received Cut by Patricia McCormick, a book I won from Angel over at The Simple Things. Lucky me, the original contest winner never responded to her so her loss was my gain.

The only other book I got in the last few days was Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. I made an impromptu trip to Books-A-Million because I had been thinking about getting this book ever since I bought it for the person I drew on the book exchange I participated in a few weeks ago.

I'm looking forward to reading both of these books but it's going to be a while before I get around to them.

In the meantime, look for a review of Meg Cabot's How to be Popular by the end of the week.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday - Suzanne Collins

I debated about making the third and final book of The Hunger Games trilogy my Waiting on Wednesday book this week. The title, The Victors, is tentative and I have no shiny cover graphic to go along with this post, however, if there is one book I'm looking forward to in 2010, this is it.

If you've read The Hunger Games and Catching Fire (and aren't of the few who didn't like it) then you'll know why I'm excited for this book to come out. Not only are the first two books captivating but The Hunger Games was the book that got my husband interested in audio books.

My husband hates reading and every time he picks up a book he starts to yawn uncontrollably, which then causes him never to read. When I finished chapter two of The Hunger Games I was telling him about the story so far and he said, "That actually sounds like something I might like," so I made it my mission to download it from and put it on his iPod so he could listen to it during his long work commute. This was in September and since then he has listened to seven audio books and is working on number 8.

Although I don't want the story to end, I can't wait to see where Collins takes Katniss, Peeta, and crew. August cannot come fast enough.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Girl Who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allen

Cori, a girl from my online book club, decided to send the ARC she won from of Sarah Addison Allen's The Girl Who Chased the Moon on tour. Ten people get a week each to read the book before sending it to the next person on the list and I was stop number one. I was pretty stoked to get a chance to participate in this tour because this was my first ARC, as well as the first book by Sarah Addison Allen that I've had the pleasure of reading.

To be honest, I wasn't sure what to expect. I wanted to go into this book blind so I avoided any synopsis and refused to even look at the back of the book. The book follows two girls, Emily Benedict who has come to Mullaby for the first time and Julia Winterson, a woman who has returned to the place she grew up but can't wait to get out of.

After her mom passes away, teenager Emily Benedict moves to Mullaby, North Carolina to live with the grandfather she never knew existed. Being the new girl is never easy, but it seems to be slightly worse for Emily because everyone seems to choose their words very carefully upon meeting her. She gradually finds out more and more about her mom's past, of which she never spoke of to Emily. She soon meets Julia, her next door neighbor who sees a bit of herself in Emily, and a charming and captivating boy named Win Coffey. Soon after arriving in Mullaby, Emily is plunged into a world of strange and wonderous things that seem to surround the Coffey family.

Julia Winterson is woman who returned to town after her dad passed away and is counting down the months until her time in Mullaby is over, so she can once again leave. She's got a troubled past and part of that past is in the form of Sawyer Alexander, who just can't seem to stay away from her.

I really enjoyed reading this book because the picture that Allen painted of the town just seemed so vivid to me and I liked the alternating POV. I became eager to finish reading because I wanted to see where the story went and when I finished, I wanted more.

The downside to this book was that it could have been a little longer, at least another hundred pages or so. The characters were likable but I would have liked to get to know them more and, especially with Julia's story, I would have liked to see that expanded into. I felt kind of let down at the end of her story and I hope there will be a second book to placate me, and other readers who feel the same as me. It was like things were explained a bit too much at the beginning and towards the end it felt like there was a rush to finish the story. There's something special about Win and Emily's story is pretty much oriented around that but when it gets to where he's basically saying "this is me," there's not really an explanation as to how or why.

The Girl Who Chased the Moon is an OK book and although it's a bit predictable at times, it's a light read and I recommend reading it at least once.

Monday, February 1, 2010

In My Mailbox (1)

In My Mailbox was started by Kristi over at The Story Siren and all you have to do is post about what books you received that week by mail, library, or store.

Thanks to a book exchange with some ladies on my online book club, I received four books in the mail earlier this past week. Thanks again Becca, I love them all!

The books I received were:

Percy Jackson and the Lightening Thief
Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters
Percy Jackson and the Titan's Curse
all by Rick Riordan
Sixteeen edited by Megan McCafferty
Nightlight: A Parody by The Harvard Lampoon

I also decided to participate in an ARC tour for Sarah Addison Allen's The Girl Who Chased the Moon. That came Friday and I have a week to read it so look for my review on that in the next two days or so. The weekend didn't allow any time for reading so I only started it last night but I'll most likely finish it sometime tonight.

Did you get anything this past week?


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