Monday, May 30, 2011

In My Mailbox #8

Welcome to In My Mailbox!

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren where bloggers can share the books they bought, borrowed or received throughout the week. For more info on just what it is and how to participate, head to:

This week has been a busy and crazy one for me. Study has kept me busy and will continue to do so for the next couple of weeks while I struggle to finish a couple of assignment and sit a test or two. Yay. Goodie! Not!

However, I managed to buy a book and head on over to the library. This week:

I bought:

Sliver Phoenix by Cindy Pon: This is the first in Cindy's Kingdom of Xia series. Already read and reviewed. Check out my review here:

I received for review:

Winter's Shadow by M. J. Hearle: I was sent this by the fabulous Charlotte at Pan Macmillan Australia. A big thanks to her! I've already read and reviewed it, and you can find my review here:

I borrowed:

Insatiable by Meg Cabot: This is the first book in Meg's new Insatiable series. Find out more:

Once a Witch by Carolyn MacCullough is book number one in her Witch series. Discover it here:

Eon by Alison Goodman: This is the first book of her Eon series. Learn more:

Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Marillier. Find out more here:

How to Ditch Your Fairy by Justine Larbalestier on Audio-book. This will be the first Audio-book I'll have ever read. Hope it's good! Discover more:

I won:

The Unfinished Song: Initiate and Taboo by Tara Maya thanks to Velvet at: and author Tara Maya. A big thanks to the both of you!
Discover more about both these books on Tara's Goodread's page here:

That's it for me this week!
I hope everyone had a good week with books and I ask that you tell me.....what did you get in your mailbox?

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Top 5 Sunday with Larissa's Bookish Life #2

Top 5 Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Larissa at Welcome to Larissa's Bookish Life.
Find out more and how to participate here:

Each week Larissa features a top 5 of something and this weeks topic is:

Favorite 2nd Book in a Series!

Here are my top 5:

1. Anya continues to be one of my all time fave female heroines and I loved this book! It was way better than the first in my opinion. Totally awesome!

2. Chloe, Derek, Simon....the whole gang on the run. Fantastic! This one was even better than the first in my opinion. Love the whole series in fact!

3. Ahhhh, Rhage! What can I say! The guys a total babe. And he and Mary are perfect together!

4. The first book, Graceling, just didn't do it for me. This one did! One of the best female leads I've ever had the pleasure of reading about. Fire is my kind of gal!

5. This book knocked the socks of the first one and then held the bar too high for the 3rd. There's nothing in this book that I don't like. It's Kenyon at her best and Syn and Shahara are just made for each other.

Thanks for checking my Top 5 out and stay tuned for next week!


Friday, May 27, 2011

Book Shelf: Silver Phoenix:Beyond the Kingdom of Xia (Kingdom of Xia #1) by Cindy Pon

No one wanted Ai Ling. And deep down she is relieved—despite the dishonor she has brought upon her family—to be unbetrothed and free, not some stranger's subservient bride banished to the inner quarters.

But now, something is after her. Something terrifying—a force she cannot comprehend. And as pieces of the puzzle start to fit together, Ai Ling begins to understand that her journey to the Palace of Fragrant Dreams isn't only a quest to find her beloved father but a venture with stakes larger than she could have imagined.

Bravery, intelligence, the will to fight and fight hard . . . she will need all of these things. Just as she will need the new and mysterious power growing within her. She will also need help.

It is Chen Yong who finds her partly submerged and barely breathing at the edge of a deep lake. There is something of unspeakable evil trying to drag her under. On a quest of his own, Chen Yong offers that help . . . and perhaps more.

Blurb from Goodreads.....


I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I must admit it’s a bit outside my comfort zone and yet I enjoyed the cultural differences and exoticness of this tale. In fact I liked it more than I expected I would going into it. The story was rich in myth and captivating. There was action and excitement galore and the storyline was interesting and fun at the same time. Cindy Pon has created a fabulous world full of danger and action, with terribly creatures and wonderful characters.
I will say that I have liked a bit more back story on exactly the land of Xia. I feel like the setting of the book wasn’t explained all too well and because of this sometimes I felt lost as to just what this magical world really was and where everything was taking place. Other than that though I loved the world this story was set in.

I found Ai Ling to be a fantastic heroine to follow on her journey. She didn’t annoy me at all or wear on my nerves and throughout the course of the book I really did want the best for her. While she keeps all the personality traits of her heritage and culture, she’s also headstrong and brave, while being sweet and somewhat vulnerable too. It’s so nice seeing a main character that isn’t too out there, and one is very real in her insecurities and fears.
As for our love interest....Chen Yong was a very balanced young man. He had all the trademarks of a great hero--brave, fierce, but he was soft too. Serious and deadly when he needed to be also. It was easy to see he had strong emotions and feelings, although for the most part they were hidden behind his ability to be brave.

I have to say that I really dug the relationship between Ai Ling and Chen Yong! It wasn’t so in-your-face and right in front of your eyes throughout the novel, but rather an undercurrent that flowed through each page. The tension and passion is there between these two characters. I’m pretty sure they both feel it, and it’s so nice to read about a romance that doesn’t have to “be” from the very beginning. They’re friends, with all the hints of something more happening down the track and its great seeing them just enjoy one anothers company and build that foundation. That being said, I want these two to be together!
The journey the two of them went on throughout the story, the things they did, the evil they faced, even the hardships they went through (mainly a certain loss that I must say broke even my heart) all make the connection they have stronger. There’s a reason they’re drawn to each other, a reason why they feel the way they do, and I love that!

This exciting debut from start to finish, with a great group of characters and a plotline that is actually fun to read about. There’s an element of fantasy that saturates this book and ripples through each page and I cannot wait to read the next book.

Rating: **** stars
Recommend: Yes
Did I Buy, Borrow or is it an ARC: Bought
Recommend Buy or Borrow: Buy
Ebook or Actual Book: Actual Book
Cover: It's nice. I like the way it focuses on the necklace
Read sequel/continue with series: Yes

Buy it here:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Book Shelf: Winter's Shadow by M.J. Hearle

Blake Duchamp...

He's all that Winter Adams can think of. Ever since their fateful meeting at Pilgrim's Lament. Ever since he looked at her with those emerald eyes. Ever since he saved her life.

But Blake isn't all that he seems. There is a strangeness about him, something dark and otherworldly. Something dangerous. In his attic is a secret he would kill to defend, but Winter seems to have a special ability to make him forget his duty. And he is her only protection against the gathering darkness.

The only problem is, to protect Winter, Blake must risk exposing her to an even greater danger. Himself

Blurb from Goodreads....


I loved this book. It drew me in and I couldn’t stop reading--I had to know what was going on!
This is a hauntingly beautiful debut. Author M. J. Hearle weaves together a stunning gothic tale that mesmerised me and captivated me from the beginning.
While I’ll be the first to admit the story starts out slow, weaving together and setting the story up, it’s in no way boring or uninteresting. The mystery and little bits and pieces that are thrown in here and there keep you entertained and eager to know what truly is going on. The idea of this story and the theme of the plotline are unique and not like a lot of books out there--the story is eerie and exciting at the same time.

Hearle writes beautifully. His writing flows and paints a dark picture that is beautiful. I admit I was a tad worried going into this book. Sometimes I find that male writers never really capture the essence of the heroine when their lead character is female. And yet Hearle has no problems here what-so-ever. I honestly loved Winter. He’s written her perfectly, making her easy to emphasise with and with a feminine voice. She was a terrific heroine, everything I could have asked for in this tale; realistic and normal, and yet brave and interesting--exactly what you need in these kind of supernatural tales. She reacted how I expect a normal person would when thrust into this kind of world making her someone that you actually enjoy following along on her journey.
As for Blake, well he was intriguing to say the least. One of the things I actually enjoyed so much about this book was the mystery surrounding Blake. Throughout the majority of the tale we never know exactly what Blake is or who he is---we simply know he’s different and that he draws Winter who can’t deny he’s like no one she’s ever known. Blake was a very haunted young man, with many a secret. He was mysterious and it was impossible not to feel the drawl he had that Winter felt.

I only have one issue with this book, and it’s one that tends to impact on my feelings about a lot of books, especially paranormal YA. I’m not the biggest fan of the quick lust/desire-at-fist-sight, I-need-you-from-the-very-beginning type of romance. It’s impossible not to see, and feel, the passion in this book. It saturates the pages and heightens the emotions, however the characters barely know one another. Taking place over the course of a week, is it really possible to feel that deeply about a person so soon? I must say however that Hearle doesn’t rely on this and place such a big importance on this as other writers do. It’s there, it is, but it’s not there to the same extent as I have seen a lot in the past. It’s not sickening (thank god) and it didn’t bother me as much as it normally would, seeing as the brilliance of this novel made up for it.

This book is a tantalizing read with a great range of characters from the main two, Winter and Blake, to the few others that help to give the book flavour and difference. The ending is gripping and exciting and I could not stop reading! I needed to know what was going to happen next and the last few chapters had me needing the second, yet to be named book, stat!
This book will entice you and draw you in and I recommend it to fans of the gothic and paranormal alike!

Rating: **** stars
Recommend: Yes
Did I Buy, Borrow or is it an ARC: ARC from Pan Macmillian Australia (Thank-you)
Release date: June 1st 2011
Recommend Buy or Borrow: Buy
Ebook or Actual Book: Actual Book
Cover: It's so pretty. I love the way her hair stands out--so nice!
Read sequel/continue with series:

Pre-order it here:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Cover Lust Thursday

This weeks Cover lust is:

The Reaping by M. Leighton.....

Every hell has its devil. And Carson is about to become intimately acquainted with hers.

Seventeen-year-old wallflower Carson Porter has always dreamed of being something special, but what she gets isn’t what she signed up for.

Yeah, a girl’s supposed to change as she gets older, but this is ridiculous! Shiny skin, greener eyes and a run-in with the flesh-eating dead are just a few of the changes Carson has to adjust to, not to mention the arrival of very hot and very dangerous Derek Hrolf. If all that wasn’t enough to turn her once hum-drum life into something unrecognizable, a twin sister that haunts her from the shadows and a wheeling, dealing collector of souls will definitely do the trick. The question is: what will her life become? And what will she become?

This cover is so simple and yet oh so eerie at the same time. I can't stop looking at this girls eyes! Love the sound of this and looking forward to reading it!

Win an ARC of Betrayed by Ednah Walters and other goodies + Betrayed Trailer

Author Ednah Walters is participating in this months Splash Into Summer Giveaway Hop.

The author of the YA series The Guardian Legacy is offering up 4 prizes to 4 lucky winners including a SIGNED ARC of her not-yet-released book Betrayed, the 2nd book in the The Guardian Legacy as one prize and a signed paper back copy of Awakened the 1st book in another, with two other packs!

To enter head on over to Ednahs website:
Contest runs from the 25th of May until the 31st and is international!

While you're here check out the trailer for Betrayed!


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Free Ebook!

You can download Warrior Of The Cross by T.R. Graves now from for FREE!

Allison La Crosse, beginning a challenging family medicine residency, leaves the protection of her family. With the transfer, her worst nightmares come true. Her closely guarded mystical talents – those which seldom appeared before the move – unleash themselves from her confinement and reveal their presence with very little provocation.

Allison’s most terrifying power is her compulsion to cure the dying with her touch. Given her career, this gift would be valuable if she were not drawn like a magnet to the ailing person's every symptom. Some of which are fatal.

At the hospital and surrounded by life-and-death emergencies, Allison’s inability to manage her impulse turns deadly. When it does, her mentor, Brody, rescues her from her own demise. His resuscitation ignites an exciting and tempestuous bond between them.

Simply go to: and enter the code HT64C when purchasing to get the book for free.

Happy reading!


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Book Shelf: A Mermaid's Kiss (Daughters of Arianne #1) by Joey W. Hill

The angelic Jonah has been battling the Dark Ones for centuries. But his noble spirit has begun to tire with the weight of war—allowing a Dark One to strike a blow that severs his wings and knocks him into the sea.

Anna is a Daughter of Arianne—a direct descendant of the mermaid of legend. Anna’s longing for love compels her to risk her very life to protect and hide the fallen Jonah. And the longer Jonah delays his return to the heavens, the more Anna’s secret passions are tempted.

But as she falls more in love with him, Anna wonders if she’s destined to lose her heart and her dreams to save Jonah’s soul…

Blurb from Goodreads....

Review: (Warning, contains spoilers)

In the beginning I found it hard to get into this book. And even throughout it some parts seemed to drag on while others were interesting and wildly enjoyable. For the most part I enjoyed this book. I won’t say it was brilliant, but it was an okay read, if not long and tiresome at times.

For the most part I liked the two main characters, although at times I had my fair share of issues with them. Anna seemed naive and annoying at times and yet as the story went on, it was clear that she really was as noble and honourable as she came across. I mean really, if a woman is willing to die for someone the way she did for Jonah, then that’s really saying something.
I actually wasn’t fussed with Jonah either way. There were a lot of times where I really didn’t like him and the way he carried on. He had such a bad attitude to things, and although I see the purpose of this within the storyline, that doesn’t mean that it didn’t wear on my nerves, because it did.

The romance between Anna and Jonah was alright, although it seemed a bit forced at times and sometimes I felt like their physical relationship was more dominate than anything else in the book, which I don’t really like. I’m a big fan of an emotional connection between two characters first and then a gradual building of things but instead these two seemed to jump into bed together too quickly for my taste.
That being said, the sex scenes between these two are hot and steamy, if not a little out there. Some people have commented on the oddness of the one sex scene between Anna in her mermaid form (complete with tail and fins) and Jonah in his regular human form (complete with male...ahem....appendages), but I actually wasn’t bothered by this. The author has written it well and it was actually a nice scene between the too—intimate and trusting.

And yet for all the issues I had with it, I didn’t mind this book. When I got past the issues I had with it, it wasn’t too bad. It had its moments, especially the friendship between the angels which I’d have loved to have seen more of and even the idea that the great deity is actually a HER and not a HE---which I totally love. Girl power and all!
I find that the thing, or person, I seemed to love most about this book was Mina. Even though we didn’t get to see all too much of her, I feel like she could be a really complex, interesting character and I’m so intrigued by the possibility of her relationship with David that I’m actually going to read the second book, just to see what becomes of them.

Rating: *** stars
Recommend: Hmmm...yeah...I guess, but I wouldn't go out of my way to read it.
Did I Buy, Borrow or is it an ARC: Bought
Recommend Buy or Borrow: Borrow
Ebook or Actual Book: Actual Book
Cover: I love the cover! The pinks and purples go together so nice
Read sequel/continue with series: Yes. I just wanna read Mina's story

Buy it here:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Monday, May 23, 2011

In My Mailbox #7

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristin over at The Story Siren where bloggers can share the books they bought, borrowed or received throughout the week. For more info on just what it is and how to participate, head to:

This week was a slow one for me. I've been sick and because of this I didn't buy any books. I know! Gasp! How could I? Well, I haven't left the house and had no opportunities to buy books. So sad.
However, I did get a couple of things....

I won:

I was luck enough to win a copy of Wolfbreed by S. A. Swann, book #1 in the Wolfbreed series from Velvet over at: so I'm very excited. I look forward to reading it. More info about the book here:

I received:

I received some beautiful postcards and a bookmark (at the bottem of picture) from Cindy Pon, author of the Kingdom of Ixa books, Silver Phoenix and Fury of the Phoenix. Cindy was kind enough to send them to me and they're just stunning.

To learn more about Cindy, her books and to perhaps get some goodies for yourself check out her website:
A big thanks to Cindy for the wonderful postcards--I'm so grateful and I can't wait to read her books!

So that's all fr me this week.
Tell me. What did you get in your mailbox?

Celebrate 500 Followers and 6 Month Blogoversary with Moon Light Gleam's Bookshelf

Lucy @ Moonlight Gleam's Bookshelf, has reached not only 500 followers, but her 6 Month Blogoversary and to celebrate she is having a giveaway!

3 winners will receive a book up to the value of $10 from The Book Depository! It's open internationally and for every extra 100 followers Lucy gains, she will add another winner.

Head on over to: to enter and wish her a Happy Blogoversary!


Sunday, May 22, 2011

Top 5 Sunday with Larissa's Bookish Life #1

I recently discovered Larissa's blog and since then I've become a bit of a fan. Larissa hosts a weekly feature called, you guessed it....Top 5 Sunday where she features her top 5 fave's of something. E.g book, character, anything like that.

Check it out and participate for yourself at:

This week I've decided to participate for the first time. This week's topic is....

Favourite Book Quotes!

Here are my top 5:

1. There is no pretending," Jace said with absolute clarity. "I love you, and I will love you until I die, and if there is life after that, I'll love you then."
(~Jace, City of Fallen Angels. The Mortal Instruments #3)

2. "No. If I let myself love you, I won't throw myself in front of her. I'll throw myself in front of you."
(~Dimitri, Vampire Academy. Vampire Academy #1)

3. "I was dead until you found me, though I breathed. I was sightless, though I could see. And then you came...and I was awakened."
(~Zsadist, Lover Awakened. Black Dagger Brotherhood #3)

4. "Forgive me," Ash murmured, and I heard the faintest of tremors beneath his voice. "But I can't...I won't...give her up. Not now, when I've just found her."
(~Ash, The Iron Daughter. The Iron Fey #2)

5. "I set off, off to kill the man I loved."
(~Rose, Shadow Kiss. Vampire Acadmey #3)

Well, those are my top 5. Seriously it was hard as all hell to narrow them down, but these are the quotes that make me swoon and sign and the last, gives me the shivers.


Free Ebook!

Finley Jayne knows she's not 'normal'. Normal girls don't lose time, or have something inside them that makes them capable of remarkably violent things. Her behavior has already cost her one job, so when she's offered the lofty position of companion to Phoebe, a debutante recently engaged to Lord Vincent, she accepts, despite having no experience. Lord Vincent is a man of science with his automatons and inventions, but Finley is suspicious of his motives where Phoebe is concerned. She will do anything to protect her new friend, but what she discovers is even more monstrous than anything she could have imagined…

You can download this ebook, The Strange Case of Finley Jayne (prequel to Kady Cross's The Girl in the Steel Corset, the first book in her new Steampunk Chronicles) now from Harlequin Ebooks for FREE.

he Girl in he Steel Corset:

In 1897 England, sixteen-year-old Finley Jayne has no one…except the "thing" inside her.

When a young lord tries to take advantage of Finley, she fights back. And wins. But no normal Victorian girl has a darker side that makes her capable of knocking out a full-grown man with one punch….

Only Griffin King sees the magical darkness inside her that says she's special, says she's one of them. The orphaned duke takes her in from the gaslit streets against the wishes of his band of misfits: Emily, who has her own special abilities and an unrequited love for Sam, who is part robot; and Jasper, an American cowboy with a shadowy secret.

Griffin's investigating a criminal called The Machinist, the mastermind behind several recent crimes by automatons. Finley thinks she can help—and finally be a part of something, finally fit in.

But The Machinist wants to tear Griff's little company of strays apart, and it isn't long before trust is tested on all sides. At least Finley knows whose side she's on—even if it seems no one believes her.

Get it here:

And be quick! I have no idea how long this lasts....


Saturday, May 21, 2011

I'm on Booklover Discovers!

Each week Chloe over at YA Booklover Blog has a weekly feature called Booklover Discovers where she features a blog and blogger and guess what? This weeks featured blogger is yours truly!

I was thrilled for the chance to feature and couldn't be happier that Chloe picked me for this week.

Head on over to check it out and see what I had to say!


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Cover Lust Thursday

This weeks Cover Lust is:

Muse by Rebecca Lim......

An angel searching for answers, for her destiny…
In the third MERCY paranormal romance, Mercy wakes in a new unknown host, her love for Ryan and Luc burning stronger than ever. But who will she make the ultimate sacrifice for?

There's something very wrong with me. When I wake up, I could be anyone…

Mercy is thrust into the excessive world of fashion when she awakes in the body of a troubled Russian supermodel, Irina: bitchy, hot-tempered and known to be dabbling in things she shouldn’t, Irina is on the verge of a very public breakdown.

Against the glamorous background of opulent Milan, Mercy continues her increasingly desperate search for Ryan to lead her back to her immortal lover, Luc. But this time Mercy is aware that her memories and powers are growing ever stronger – and she begins to doubt Luc as The Eight reveal more of her mysterious past. Are Luc’s desires as selfless as her own or does he want her for a more terrifying purpose?

This is the 3rd book in the Mercy series. I actually haven't read any of the books yet, but I love this cover. Ever since I first saw it, it's been back and forth from my mind. I love the pink coulours and the different shades. It's so pretty.


Book Shelf: Give Up the Ghost by Megan Crewe

Cass McKenna much prefers ghosts over “breathers.” Ghosts are uncomplicated and dependable, and they know the dirt on everybody…and Cass loves dirt. She’s on a mission to expose the dirty secrets of the poseurs in her school.

But when the vice president of the student council discovers her secret, Cass’s whole scheme hangs in the balance. Tim wants her to help him contact his recently deceased mother, and Cass reluctantly agrees.

As Cass becomes increasingly entwined in Tim’s life, she’s surprised to realize he’s not so bad—and he needs help more desperately than anyone else suspects. Maybe it’s time to give the living another chance.

Blurb from Goodreads.....

Review: (Warning, contains spoilers)

I’ve been waiting to read this book since before it was released and after waiting so long to read this book, I wanted to love it, but I didn’t. In fact, I find it hard to say I even liked it. Was it alright? Yes. Was it worth reading? Yeah, maybe. Was it brilliant? No, not at all. Actually most of the time I found myself too annoyed with the two main characters to enjoy the storyline at all or plot.

Cass was so frustrating. She saw nothing in people, wanted nothing to do with them and spent all her time trying to make their lives miserably by spilling their secrets. These were horrible people, your typical popular crowed, but really how low must one person be to allow them to have that kind of focus in her life. Sure, she said she didn’t care about them, and blah, blah, blah....but actions speak louder than worlds. I know as the heroine we were supposed to feel sorry for he having lost her sister, and her messed up family and her seeing ghosts and being an outcasts and people picking on her and all, but I just didn’t. It’s too much when the only thing you see about a character is an angry girl with personality issues.

As for Tim, gah! Could the guy get any more annoying? He was your typical popular, golden guy and yet he had no personality what-so-ever. The only thing that seemed to define him as a person was his sadness over his mother’s death. I’m not being cruel here, I understand why a person would grieve and feel the way he did, but he was a jerk, plain and simple. I admit he had a moment or two where he was okay, but I never saw what Cass saw in him. All he did was sulk and throw temper tantrums when he didn’t get his way. He treated Cass horrible when she wouldn’t do what he asked and I just don’t understand why she’d want to be his friend after all that. Honestly, I never even saw a moment where he really redeemed himself in my eyes.

I’m so disappointed in this book. The idea was good. I’m a sucker for a good ghost story, through and through, but this was just a disappointment for me on so many levels. It wasn’t even a real “ghost story”. The supernatural aspect took a back seat to everything else and while sometimes that works in books for me it just fell flat here. I wonder if maybe I expected too much going into this book, because let’s face it....I thought it was going to be excellent, but in the end I still feel like this story was just lacking.

Rating: ** stars
Recommend: No
Did I Buy, Borrow or is it an ARC: Bought
Recommend Buy or Borrow: Borrow
Ebook or Actual Book: Actual Book
Cover: I do actually like the cover. That's the only thing I really liked about the book.
Read sequel/continue with series: This is a stand alone book.

Buy it here:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Book Shelf: Starcrossed (Starcrossed #1) by Josephine Angelini

How do you defy destiny?

Helen Hamilton has spent her entire sixteen years trying to hide how different she is—no easy task on an island as small and sheltered as Nantucket. And it's getting harder. Nightmares of a desperate desert journey have Helen waking parched, only to find her sheets damaged by dirt and dust. At school she's haunted by hallucinations of three women weeping tears of blood . . . and when Helen first crosses paths with Lucas Delos, she has no way of knowing they're destined to play the leading roles in a tragedy the Fates insist on repeating throughout history.

As Helen unlocks the secrets of her ancestry, she realizes that some myths are more than just legend. But even demigod powers might not be enough to defy the forces that are both drawing her and Lucas together—and trying to tear them apart.

Blurb from Goodreads....

Review: (Warning, contains spoilers)

Gah! I just finished this book and I don’t know if I want to scream or cry! I was so frustrated by the ending and revelations of this book. I don’t remember being this upset since the famous Clary-and-Jace-are-siblings revelation of The Mortal Instruments series. And just knowing the truth and what it all means just makes me madder. I was devastated by what we learned and was told---there’s no other way to describe it and I wanted to cry out in frustration.
This book was incredible! Really, truly. It’s very rare to find a book that manages to draw such a range of emotions from me. Josephine Angelini has created something amazing right here. I went through excitement, happiness, frustration, happiness again, shock, surprise, sadness and finally devastation.....devastation at how this book ended.
I thought it was brilliant how she took the idea of demigods and Greek Myth and gave it a twist and direction that I’ve never seen before! There is nothing out there like this!
The storyline was marvellous. I was drawn in from the very first page by the characters and the idea and I just didn’t want to stop reading. The idea of the modern day tragedy is alluring and appealing. You know it’s going to lead to heartbreak, and yet you keep reading regardless--I love that!

This book had a great cast of characters, Helen and Lucas obviously, but Hector, Jason, Arianne, Cassandra, Claire were all big draws for me. I love nothing more than when there’s a great family dynamic within a book and this one sure had that!
I admit I had my issues with Helen at the very beginning of this book. Although I thought she was a cool gal there was just something about he that didn’t sit right with me. BUT as the story went on, I came to really love her. There’s no denying she had her issues though. She had no idea who she was and she wanted to kill Lucas, which is a big no, no in my eyes, because....let’s face it, he’s Lucas (insert dreamy sigh here). I thought it was really nice to see how she approached everything and I never felt like she accepted things too easily, like I sometimes do in books. I think there’s a lot in her though that could be subject to some growth in the next couple of books and I honestly look forward to seeing it.
As for Mr. Lucas Delos....what can I say about him besides, “squeee”. Loved the guy! First I have to say that he reminded me of a certain vampire we all know *cough* Edward Cullen *cough* but not in a way that occasionally annoys me like in other books. I think he was similar in the way that they had the same personality traits and all, but Lucas had his own individual personality too. Lucas knew who is was and what he couldn’t do. Sure he fought it and sure....he lost the fight with himself, but he still saw the consequences and was willing to fight for Helen---gotta love a man like that! He was wicked, with a sense of humour too and a serious side that just captivated me.

I thought the romance between Helen and Lucas was beautiful. For once it wasn’t one of those love-at-first-sight tales you always see. It was more hate-at-first-sight or kill-him-at-first-sight! Their relationship grew with time and wasn’t in your face from the very beginning. It changed gradually and altered as they got to know each other and as they were drawn together. There was a chemistry and a spark between them and I can’t wait to see how their relationship continues over the course of the series. Especially after the revelation that we shall never speak of..... *sob*
I must say I adore Hector! For all his faults he’s one of my faves in this series and he’s got a special place in my heart. I love his mischievousness and his sometimes meanness (so what? He rocks anyway) and I hate what happened to him—he does not deserve what he’s going through.
Claire and Jason cracked me up too. Seriously, like you can’t tell straight away what all their bickering means and where it’s heading--so cute! Can’t wait to see more of them, they’re gonna be firecrackers those two, I can totally see it.

DAPHNE!!!! Grrrr! Sooo not liking that woman. After what she’s done and continues to do, I’d like nothing more than to beat her senseless (I know! Where does this violence come from inside me, I have no idea?”) and I’m wondering just what she’s gonna do next. She wants to play nice and all that, but I don’t trust her at all. And if Helen doesn’t well, then I don’t see how anyone can.
Lots of surprises towards the end of this book. This chapter of the story seems like it’s been summed up, what with Creon killed and everything out in the open (kinda).

I am, and will continue to root for Helen and Lucas all the way through. It’s just not fair that they found each other and can’t be together. Seems like everywhere you turn nowadays in the book world are a pair of star crossed lovers, but there hasn’t been a couple like this for a while.
Josephine Angelini debut novel is beautiful, capturing and incredible. It’s a story you start and don’t want to stop.
I have no issues what-so-ever with this books, except that technically it’s not even out yet and I’m DYING for the sequel already. I cannot wait until Dreamless and I recommend this book with my heart and soul!

Rating: ***** stars
Recommend: Yes!
Did I Buy, Borrow or is it an ARC: ARC from Netgalley
Recommend Buy or Borrow: Buy
Ebook or Actual Book: Ebook
Cover: It's so pretty. It's flowy and stunning
Read sequel/continue with series: YES!

Pre-order it here:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Book Shelf: The Throne of Fire (Kane Chronicles #2) by Rick Riordan

Ever since the gods of Ancient Egypt were unleashed in the modern world, Carter Kane and his sister Sadie have been in trouble. As descendants of the House of Life, the Kanes have some powers at their command, but the devious gods haven't given them much time to master their skills at Brooklyn House, which has become a training ground for young magicians.

And now their most threatening enemy yet - the chaos snake Apophis - is rising. If they don't prevent him from breaking free in a few days' time, the world will come to an end. In other words, it's a typical week for the Kane family.

To have any chance of battling the Forces of Chaos, the Kanes must revive the sun god Ra. But that would be a feat more powerful than any magician has ever accomplished.

First they have to search the world for the three sections of the Book of Ra, then they have to learn how to chant its spells. Oh, and did we mention that no one knows where Ra is exactly?

Narrated in two different wisecracking voices, featuring a large cast of new and unforgettable characters, and with adventures spanning the globe, this second installment in the Kane Chronicles is nothing short of a thrill ride.

Blurb from Goodreads.....

Review: (Warning, contains spoilers)

This book was wonderful. I’m always entranced by Rick Riordan’s work. I adored Percy Jackson, and I always will, but I think it’s possible that if this series continues to way it is, I may end up liking it more. Both books in this series have been brilliant and Riordan knows exactly what he’s doing. One of the things I love about Riordan’s writing is how he adds in little sentences that let you know something crazy is going to happen like, “It started when we set Brooklyn on fire" or “Should I describe Waterloo Station as it was before or after we destroyed it?"--things like that are just brilliant and you know you’re going to get a fabulous tale from the very beginning.
This book was a fast paced, never ending ride of awesome the entire way through (yeah, yeah, tacky but sue me). It was action packed and fun, with the perfect blend of friendship, humour and romance to draw you in and captivate you the entire way through.

It was great to see all the wonderful characters from the first book back, along with some new inclusions. Bes, Walt, Jaz were all excellent additions to a cast of characters that I love already. Carter and Sadie continue to be fabulous main characters and I love following them on their journeys. I feel like they’re both really growing as characters, especially Sadie, who is really beginning to shine and I find it adorable to watch her face her boy troubles just like every other teenager while trying to save the world. Then again, most teenagers don’t have the choice between a boy who’s dying and a god. Still Sadie is hanging in there and managing to lean things as she goes.
I admit that I don't have the same love for Carter as I do for Sadie. He's not quite as interesting and at times can be bland, but he's beginning to take shape too and I like character growth. I feel sorry for him with how the Zia situation turned out and I’m hoping to see things resolved as the series progresses.
Although I missed seeing Bast in this book, but I thought Bes was a terrific replacement. He was gross and grumpy and kind and funny and just a great guy. It was nice to have the dwarf god in the story and I’d love to see more of him, depending on whether or not Carter and Sadie can return him to his former glory that is.

The battle scenes within this book were many, and the fight scenes between Carter, Sadie and Apophis/ Vlad were interesting. I almost feel sorry for our two heroes. They went through so much and it almost seems like they didn’t gain anything. Desjardins is dead, Apophis is in the abyss (although it’s pretty obvious he’ll claw his way out sometime soon) and Amos is the new Chief Lector. Ra is still, well, senile and Zia apparently has some big destiny that we all know nothing about....things sure are exciting!
I’m looking forward to the next book in this series, although I have no idea when it will be released. Can’t wait regardless.

Rating: **** stars
Recommend: Yes!
Did I Buy, Borrow or is it an ARC: Bought
Recommend Buy or Borrow: Buy
Ebook or Actual Book: Actual Book
Cover: I actually don't mind the blue cover we got Down Under--it's nice.
Read sequel/continue with series: Yes.....

Buy it here:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Monday, May 16, 2011

Interview and Giveaway with Heather Hildenbrand

Heather Hildenbrand is a mother of two who lives in coastal VA with her husband young family. She’s a part time property manager who writes YA paranormal romance.
I was thrilled to interview Heather, who was so lovely, and read her YA tale Dirty Blood.


Hi Heather, first I’ve love to say a big thanks for taking the time to answer my questions and for allowing me to interview you. It’s a pleasure to have you on the blog.

You recently gave me the chance to read and review your novel Dirty Blood (thank-you once again) and I really loved it, what do you think readers going into it can expect?
I think they can expect a fast paced werewolf story with a twist and a main character you want to root for.

You’ve got a number of books published on smashwords, how do you feel knowing your stories are out there, being read and loved by readers?
It's so awesome! It's sort of a permanent adrenaline rush because I don't know when or where it's happening and then I start to get nervous and then I get an email from someone who says they loved it and want to know when the next one is coming out, and then it's all warm fuzzies.

You began writing for fun in high school, what advice would you give to anyone who wanted to do the same?
Don't stop!!! I wrote a lot in high school and then took a ten year break from it. Just think how many books I would have out right now, had I not strayed away from it! And like anything else, being a good writer takes lots and lots of practice, so the best advice is: Don't stop.

You yourself are an avid reader, what is your fave genre to read?
The same genre I write, of course: paranormal romance and urban fantasy. Although, I've really only been hooked on it for the past couple of years. (I was one of those converted by Twilight.) Before that, I read romance and murder mystery and epic fantasy and plenty of other genres, too.

What is your favourite book/s?
Books are sort of like moods to me, so I don't know if I can pinpoint just one favorite. The Lord of the Rings was epic for me, and inspired me to write in high school. The Chronicles of Narnia series by C.S. Lewis was probably the first love for fantasy I ever felt, so maybe that would be a good choice for 'favourite'. Also, Shel Silverstein's Where the Sidewalk Ends is something I can still quote here and there, and inspires me to be silly and goofy and imaginative in my writing. I also love The Forever King by Warren Murphy because he weaves the lines together brilliantly and makes you love his characters like they're family. Oh, and another that is so special I can't even begin to explain is This is Graceanne's Book by P.L. Whitney.

Who do you think is the most inspirational person you know/have read of/heard about?
Well, there's Jesus. For sure. I mean, you don't get more inspirational than that. But if you want a smaller scale answer, like maybe another writer, I am inspired by Stephanie Meyer. She was a stay at home mom with no real writing experience to speak of, and she put her mind to it, and got passionate about a story she had, and whether you're a fan of Twilight or not, there is no denying that woman's success. Nora Roberts is another one. She started writing to pass the time as a stay at home mommy, no writing experience at all. It's amazing to me; so when I have to turn off the computer to do laundry or clean a bathroom, I think, well, some of the most successful writers are stay at home mommies just like me. And they clean toilets, too.

Describe yourself in five words?
(Dang I hate these exercises, don't you?) Lover of words, kids, hubby. =)

If you could meet anyone, dead or alive, fictional or real, who would it be and why?
And we're back to Jesus. Seriously, I don't really know. I could never pick just one answer to this question. Too many choices. How about... Joe Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst. Together. The rivalry and tension would be awesome AND they would have some killer marketing strategies for me.

What is your favourite place to write? Do you even have a fave or will anywhere do?
In the dead silence of my living room, because the kids are at school, on the corner of my couch, next to the fireplace, with laptop in hand.

Is there any news on upcoming books your working on that you wanted to share?
The second book in my DreamKiller series (an adult urban fantasy short story) is overdue to be out. Yeah, seriously. I kept saying how it would be out by the beginning of May but due to technical difficulties (my hubby not having time to finish the cover) it’s not out yet. It will be out by the end of the month though and it’s really fun. Each segment is only .99 and is a quick read for in between getting sucked into a full length novel or if you're on a lunch break at work. Its X-men meets Underworld meets Heroes and it rocks.

6 quick questions:
1. Cake or ice-cream? Ice Cream Cake
2. Favourite song? Seize the Day (Newsies soundtrack)
3. Favourite animal? Elephants!
4. Summer or winter? Summer
5. Lucky number? 9

You can find out more about Heather or her books on her blog:
or on her Goodreads profile:
Read my review for Dirty Blood here:

Dirty Blood:

I killed a girl last night. I did it with my bare hands and an old piece of pipe I found lying next to the dumpster. But that’s not the part that got me. The part that scared me, the part I can’t seem to wrap my head around and still has me reeling, was that when she charged me, her body shifted – and then she was a wolf. All snapping teeth and extended claws. But by the time I stood over her lifeless body, she was a girl again. That’s about the time I went into shock… And that was the moment he showed up.

Now, all I can do is accept the truths that are staring me in the face. One, Werewolves do exist. And Two, I was born to kill them.

Heather has so graciously offered one ebook copy of Dirty Blood to one winner. The winner will be able to pick their choice of format from smashwords and the contest is open worldwide.
To enter, you simply have to be a follower and leave a comment on the interview. You get one extra entry if you follower Heather's blog too here:

Contest will run from the 16th of May until the 31st, and I'll pick a winner after then.

A big thanks again to Heather, and I wish her all the best with future endeavors and stories to come!

In My Mailbox #6

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristin over at The Story Siren where bloggers can share the books they bought, borrowed or recieved throughout the week. For more info on just what it is and how to participate, head to:

This week, I bought:

Give up the Ghost by Megan Crewe. I've been wanting to try this for a while and I finally got it. Check it out here:

Throne of Fire by Rick Riordan, this is the 2nd book in the Kane Chronicles, which I love. Discover more:

Possessions by Nancy Holder, this is the 1st book in the Possessions series. My Borders is closing down and they currently have 50% off. Not a lot of books left, but I found this one hidden away. Learn more about it:

That's all for me this week. Kinda a slow one, but we'll see how next week is.
What did you get in your mailbox?