Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Waiting On Wednesday 2/11/15 (The Winner's Crime by Marie Rutkoski)

Age Range: 12 - 18 years Grade Level: 7 and up Series: The Winner's Trilogy (Book 2) Hardcover: 416 pages Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) (March 3, 2015) The Following Description Via Goodreads. Book two of the dazzling Winner's Trilogy is a fight to the death as Kestrel risks betrayal of country for love. The engagement of Lady Kestrel to Valoria’s crown prince means one celebration after another. But to Kestrel it means living in a cage of her own making. As the wedding approaches, she aches to tell Arin the truth about her engagement…if she could only trust him. Yet can she even trust herself? For—unknown to Arin—Kestrel is becoming a skilled practitioner of deceit: an anonymous spy passing information to Herran, and close to uncovering a shocking secret. As Arin enlists dangerous allies in the struggle to keep his country’s freedom, he can’t fight the suspicion that Kestrel knows more than she shows. In the end, it might not be a dagger in the dark that cuts him open, but the truth. And when that happens, Kestrel and Arin learn just how much their crimes will cost them.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Book Haul - In My Mailbox 2/6/2015

Hardcover: 320 pages Publisher: Scholastic Press (February 25, 2014) A pulse-pounding thrill ride, where a teen girl and her animal companion must participate in a breathtaking race to save her brother's life--and her own. Time is slipping away. . . . Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can't determine what's wrong, her parents decide to move to the middle of nowhere for the fresh air. She's lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying--and she's helpless to change anything. Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It's an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother's illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there's no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race. The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can't trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?
Age Range: 12 - 18 years Grade Level: 7 - 12 Series: Grisha Trilogy (Book 1) Hardcover: 368 pages Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR); First Edition edition (June 5, 2012) Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee. Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling. Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart. Shadow and Bone is the first installment in Leigh Bardugo's Grisha Trilogy.
Age Range: 12 - 18 years Grade Level: 7 and up Paperback: 352 pages Publisher: Square Fish (September 29, 2015) It begins as an assignment for English class: write a letter to a dead person - any dead person. Laurel chooses Kurt Cobain - he died young, and so did Laurel's sister May - so maybe he'll understand a bit of what Laurel is going through. Soon Laurel is writing letters to lots of dead people - Janis Joplin, Heath Ledger, River Phoenix, Amelia Earhart... it's like she can't stop. And she'd certainly never dream of handing them in to her teacher. She writes about what it's like going to a new high school, meeting new friends, falling in love for the first time - and how her family has shattered since May died. But much as Laurel might find writing the letters cathartic, she can't keep real life out forever. The ghosts of her past won't be contained between the lines of a page, and she will have to come to terms with growing up, the agony of losing a beloved sister, and the realisation that only you can shape your destiny. A lyrical, haunting and stunning debut from the protégé of Stephen Chbosky (THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER).
Hardcover: 336 pages Publisher: Random House (March 17, 2015) Anna was a good wife, mostly. Anna Benz, an American in her late thirties, lives with her Swiss husband, Bruno—a banker—and their three young children in a postcard-perfect suburb of Zürich. Though she leads a comfortable, well-appointed life, Anna is falling apart inside. Adrift and increasingly unable to connect with the emotionally unavailable Bruno or even with her own thoughts and feelings, Anna tries to rouse herself with new experiences: German language classes, Jungian analysis, and a series of sexual affairs she enters with an ease that surprises even her. But Anna can’t easily extract herself from these affairs. When she wants to end them, she finds it’s difficult. Tensions escalate, and her lies start to spin out of control. Having crossed a moral threshold, Anna will discover where a woman goes when there is no going back. Intimate, intense, and written with the precision of a Swiss Army knife, Jill Alexander Essbaum’s debut novel is an unforgettable story of marriage, fidelity, sex, morality, and most especially self. Navigating the lines between lust and love, guilt and shame, excuses and reasons, Anna Benz is an electrifying heroine whose passions and choices readers will debate with recognition and fury. Her story reveals, with honesty and great beauty, how we create ourselves and how we lose ourselves and the sometimes disastrous choices we make to find ourselves.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Review: The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

Product Details Age Range: 12 and up Grade Level: 7 and up Hardcover: 336 pages Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (January 13, 2015) Children can have a cruel, absolute sense of justice. Children can kill a monster and feel quite proud of themselves. A girl can look at her brother and believe they're destined to be a knight and a bard who battle evil. She can believe she's found the thing she's been made for. Hazel lives with her brother, Ben, in the strange town of Fairfold where humans and fae exist side by side. The faeries' seemingly harmless magic attracts tourists, but Hazel knows how dangerous they can be, and she knows how to stop them. Or she did, once. At the center of it all, there is a glass coffin in the woods. It rests right on the ground and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointy as knives. Hazel and Ben were both in love with him as children. The boy has slept there for generations, never waking. Until one day, he does... As the world turns upside down and a hero is needed to save them all, Hazel tries to remember her years spent pretending to be a knight. But swept up in new love, shifting loyalties, and the fresh sting of betrayal, will it be enough? REVIEW~ 5-STARS***** This book was awesome of course! Holly Black's books are fun to read and I enjoy her characters. I read The Coldest Girl in Coldtown after receiving a copy for Christmas, which was the first book I had read by Holly Black, and immediately became a fan of her writing style. I could not wait to get my hands on another, and I used a gift card to pre-order a copy of The Darkest Part of the Forest from Amazon and was completely satisfied with my decision. This book is a fantastic escape into an original, dark, creepy, magical place where I wanted to savour every sentence until the end. I thought there could have been a touch more action but the entirety of this book is blended well. When I should have been studying for exams I would sneak a page or two in and always read more than intended. The Darkest Part of the Forest is a treat for readers, and the characters likeable, so I plan to revisit Hazel's story at least once more. (And I do not like to re-read books) I want more, and would find it hard to believe that anyone would not enjoy this book. I am certainly a fan of Holly Black's books thus far- I'm enchanted by Holly's story-telling, and this book is special, written with quality, it's fun, and definitely recommendable. Now, I'm off to White Cat, book one in her Curse Workers trilogy. Happy Reading... Reesa***