January 29, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday 1.29.14

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. It features upcoming books that we're eagerly waiting for!

Bonjour! Today I have a book by an author I've read a couple times. Her books aren't the greatest novels I've ever read, but they're nice contemporary books when you're in the mood.

16 Things I Thought Were True by Janet Gurtler
March 4, 2014
Heart attacks happen to other people #thingsIthoughtweretrue 
When Morgan's mom gets sick, it's hard not to panic. Without her mother, she would have no one—until she finds out the dad who walked out on her as a baby isn't as far away as she thought... 
Adam is a stuck-up, uptight jerk #thingsIthoughtweretrue 
Now that they have a summer job together, Morgan's getting to know the real Adam, and he's actually pretty sweet...in a nerdy-hot kind of way. He even offers to go with her to find her dad. Road trip, anyone? 
5000 Twitter followers are all the friends I need #thingsIthoughtweretrue 
With Adam in the back seat, a hyper chatterbox named Amy behind the wheel, and plenty of Cheetos to fuel their trip, Morgan feels ready for anything. She's not expecting a flat tire, a missed ferry, a fake girlfriend...and that these two people she barely knew before the summer started will become the people she can't imagine living without. 

The hashtag thing is interesting, to say the least, but it doesn't look bad by any means. What do you guys think? Have you read anything by this author before?

January 28, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday 1.28.14

Top Ten Tuesday is a book meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Hey everyone! I've missed you. I'm still in that incessant reading/blogging slump, but I've decided that February is going to be a new month for me. Until then (for only a few more days, of course) the posts will probably be a bit pitiful. Again, sorry!

Okay, so this week's TTT is worlds you wouldn't want to live in. Again, I'm going to be a bit different with this and do five worlds I wouldn't want to live in and five I would. Here goes...

Worlds I Wouldn't Want To Live In

Lauren Oliver's Delirium - Um, no thank you. Love is not a curse. End of story.

Marie Lu's Legend - This world is just terrifying. So much rebellion, so much fighting and struggle for survival. Eek! Not something I'd be able to hand at all.

Rick Yancey's The 5th Wave - I don't want to live in a world where aliens are trying to take over. My personality isn't cut out for that sort of thing. I would be dead in two seconds flat. Not kidding.

Suzanne Collins' The Hunger Games - I don't think this one needs much explanation. I probably wouldn't even make it to the arena. I'd die beforehand in some crazy, ridiculous way.

Tahereh Mafi's Shatter Me - As cool as the whole powers thing is, I really don't want to live in this world. Too much fighting, and way too much drama. I'm much happier reading about it.

Worlds I Would Want To Live In

J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter (a.k.a. Hogwarts) - If you asked me what fictional world I'd like to visit, this would be my first answer. I've dreamed of going to Hogwarts since I started reading the books. You can imagine my distress when I didn't get my Hogwarts letter. I'm still waiting.

Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson (a.k.a. Camp Half Blood) - I want to live in Camp Half Blood, no questions asked. It would be fun to visit the Roman camp, but to be honest, they scare me. I think the Greek mythology suits me better, anyway.

Veronica Roth's Divergent - I know, I know. Wars. Death. Factions. Stereotypes. But some part of me thinks it would be really cool to live in this world. To belong to a faction. 

Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments/Infernal Devices - I want to be a Shadowhunter! Count me in. :)

Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl's Beautiful Creatures - I really want to be a Caster. I also love Gatlin and the world the authors have created. Beautiful Creatures was one of the first books where I fell in love with the world just as much, if not more, as the characters.

What worlds would you want to/not want to live in? Share your thoughts in comments below! :)

January 23, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday 1.21.14 (On Thursday)

Top Ten Tuesday is a book meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Hello! I know I said I probably wasn't going to be back, but I lied. Well, at the time it wasn't lying, but I guess you could consider it a lie now.

Anyway, today's - Tuesday's - topic was things on our reading wishlist, or things we wish authors would write about. I don't know what it is, but something about this topic just throws me off. I don't love it. So I decided to change it up a bit, and instead make two lists. One with things I wish authors would stop writing about and one list with the things I wish they did write more about.

Things I Think Authors Should Stop Writing About

Vampires and werewolves. The only exception to this rule (for me) is The Mortal Instruments/The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare. 

Love triangles. They were pretty great the first time around, but now they're just getting old.

Cliche boy-meets-girl love story. I've read so many books like this, and when I find one I really love along these lines - usually contemporary - it's unique in ways that the others aren't.

Insta-love. It doesn't happen, it's not realistic, and it makes me cringe. Need I say more?

Things I Think Authors Should Write About More Often

More relationships between friends and family. Sure, romance is great and all. But do we ever really get to see the relationships between family and friends? Those relationships exist, too, though it might not seem so judging by a lot of the books I've read.

YA books from the point of view of guys. This sounds sort of weird, but most YA protagonists are 17-year-old girls. It never seems to change. I've read both Beautiful Creatures and Let the Sky Fall (review can be found here if you're curious) which were both great books told - or partially told - from the POV of a guy.

Crazy plot twists. Okay, so this might not exactly be a topic to write about. But it is something you can include in your writing, and it's also something I feel like I don't see enough of. I ADORE plot twists. 

So that obviously wasn't a list of ten, but for some reason I'm having trouble thinking of anything else. But I did notice that about half of these half to do with romance, either lack-thereof or complaints about it being overdone.

What do you guys think? Do you agree or disagree? Share your thoughts below! And as always, I'll see you soon. :)

January 22, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday 1.22.14

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. It features upcoming books that we're eagerly waiting for!

Hey guys! I'm so sorry I've been absent this month. Not totally absent, but most of the posts don't have much effort put into them and I haven't been interacting with any of you! That's the reason for the comments without replies, no twitter interaction, no reading, etc. I'm afraid it's going to be this way for the rest of the month, most likely, or at least until next week. The new year has been really hectic for me. I can't wait to actually have time to read and blog and do all those fun things again. :)

Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins
April 8, 2014
Harper Price, peerless Southern belle, was born ready for a Homecoming tiara. But after a strange run-in at the dance imbues her with incredible abilities, Harper's destiny takes a turn for the seriously weird. She becomes a Paladin, one of an ancient line of guardians with agility, super strength and lethal fighting instincts. 
Just when life can't get any more disastrously crazy, Harper finds out who she's charged to protect: David Stark, school reporter, subject of a mysterious prophecy and possibly Harper's least favorite person. But things get complicated when Harper starts falling for him--and discovers that David's own fate could very well be to destroy Earth. 
With snappy banter, cotillion dresses, non-stop action and a touch of magic, this new young adult series from bestseller Rachel Hawkins is going to make y'all beg for more.

This is the first novel in a series, I believe, and I thought it looked really interesting! The Southern theme usually isn't my type of thing but I thought I'd give it a shot anyway.

That's all for today! If I have time tomorrow I was planning on possibly doing Top Ten Tuesday (which I missed yesterday, as you can see) but I'm not so sure that'll happen. 

So until next time...

January 19, 2014

Sunday Spiel: Happy vs. Sad Endings

Hey guys! Today I'm going to talk about something that I have mixed feelings about - sad endings versus happy ones.

Before I get into this, I'd just like to say these are my opinions. I am in no way saying that you should have these opinions or that mine are correct. This is simply a post open to discussion, and you're free to share your opinions as well. :) I love hearing them!

I'm going to jump right into this. The issue of happy endings versus sad endings is a constant struggle for me. If you asked me outright which one I prefer, I would immediately tell you sad endings. But it really depends on my mood and the type of book I'm reading. Sad endings, I feel, are more realistic. 

That actually sounds terrible, as if I think life is or should be sad. But I think it is - at least, sad endings are more realistic than fairy tale ones. Fairy tales are fairy tales for a reason.

That being said, most people read books because they're fairy tales. They want happy endings, they want to read something that won't happen in real life. I think that's the reason why most people enjoy both reading and writing the unrealistic happy endings. Why write or read something that already happens in real life? We read and write as an escape.

Still, I'm not always in the mood to read a fluffy book. Sometimes I want to read something that will understand me, something I can relate to. Other times I just want to get lost in a quick, cutesy read.

Overall, I really like sad or bittersweet endings - even though that doesn't make much sense - over happy ones. But I do enjoy fluff every once in a while.

What about you? Do you prefer one over the other, or do you like both? Is there one you can't stand?

January 18, 2014

Stacking the Shelves #20

Stacking the Shelves is a feature hosted by Tynga's Reviews. It's about sharing the books you got this week--virtual or physical--from the bookstore, the library, borrowed from friends, etc.

Hey everyone! How have you guys been? I have a three-day weekend, which is nice. Hopefully I'll be able to really get into this new Laurie Halse Anderson book I bought this week.


Roomies by Sara Zarr and Tara Altebrando - I've already read and reviewed this book (review below) and thought it was really cute. It was also a quick read. Worth buying, for sure. :)

The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson - I've been looking forward to the release of this for a while, since Laurie Halse Anderson is one of my favorite authors, and I've just started reading it. I'm only about 20 pages in but I'm really excited to get into it!

That's all for today! How was everyone's week? Did you guys buy any new books?

January 16, 2014

Roomies by Sara Zarr and Tara Altebrando

Title: Roomies
Authors: Sara Zarr and Tara Altebrando
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publish Date: December 24, 2013
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

It's time to meet your new roomie. 
When East Coast native Elizabeth receives her freshman-year roommate assignment, she shoots off an e-mail to coordinate the basics: television, microwave, mini-fridge. That first note to San Franciscan Lauren sparks a series of e-mails that alters the landscape of each girl's summer -- and raises questions about how two girls who are so different will ever share a dorm room. 
As the countdown to college begins, life at home becomes increasingly complex. With family relationships and childhood friendships strained by change, it suddenly seems that the only people Elizabeth and Lauren can rely on are the complicated new boys in their lives . . . and each other. Even though they've never met. 
National Book Award finalist Sara Zarr and acclaimed author Tara Altebrando join forces for a novel about growing up, leaving home, and getting that one fateful e-mail that assigns your college roommate.
This book was adorable. I’m not quite sure if that’s what the authors were going for, but that’s what I got out of it.

Then again, maybe “adorable” isn’t the right word. Maybe something more like…light. Endearing. It was such a quick read, and I enjoyed every part of the book. The issues I had with it weren’t specific events or reactions the characters had to elements of the story. They were more general.

First of all, the book was vague. This is never a term I’ve had to use to describe a book before, but there it is. Even though it was in first person—from both POVs, I might add—I felt as if I were watching the entire book play out from an overhead, God-like POV. Not necessarily in a good way, either. I don’t think I got the full potential out of it as I would have if it were written in a better way. I do understand the whole email thing between the two girls, but that also seemed like only half the plot, and the other half was their final summers before college.

I did enjoy the characters and plot overall, though. There was a good balance between the two. The characters weren’t amazing but the plot wasn’t either, so they evened themselves out really nicely.

And it was such a fast read! I felt like I had just watched a movie or something. It was nice, especially because I’m still getting over a reading slump. This was the perfect book for that kind of situation.

The end threw me off a bit. It didn’t feel like the end of the story—it felt more like the end of a chapter. And considering the fact that this book is a stand-alone, I think it would have benefited from an extra 25-50 pages or so. There wasn’t enough resolution in the end.

But overall, I really enjoyed Roomies and I’d love to see these two authors collaborate again!

January 15, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday 1.15.14

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. It features upcoming books that we're eagerly waiting for!

Hello! Random note: January has been going by really slowly for me...what about you? 

The Treatment by Suzanne Young
April 29, 2014
Can Sloane and James survive the lies and secrets surrounding them, or will The Program claim them in the end? Find out in this sequel to The Program, which Publishers Weekly called “chilling and suspenseful.” 
How do you stop an epidemic? 
Sloane and James are on the run after barely surviving the suicide epidemic and The Program. But they’re not out of danger. Huge pieces of their memories are still missing, and although Sloane and James have found their way back to each other, The Program isn’t ready to let them go. 
Escaping with a group of troubled rebels, Sloane and James will have to figure out who they can trust, and how to take down The Program. But for as far as they’ve come, there’s still a lot Sloane and James can’t remember. The key to unlocking their past lies with the Treatment—a pill that can bring back forgotten memories, but at a high cost. And there’s only one dose. 
Ultimately when the stakes are at their highest, can Sloane and James survive the many lies and secrets surrounding them, or will The Program claim them in the end?

I read The Program sometime last year. In the summer, possibly? I did enjoy it so I've been looking forward to it for quite a while now.

What about you? Are you waiting on any good books? Share your thoughts below! (Also, my apologies. I haven't been commenting back for a little while, but I plan to get all the comments in sometime this weekend.)

January 14, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday 1.14.14

Top Ten Tuesday is a book meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Hey everyone! I'm back again. You may have noticed I didn't post a review yesterday, which is because I haven't read a book recently. Oops! But I'm about 100 pages into Roomies by Sara Zarr and Tara Altebrando and really loving it, though.

Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
This book has a cute premise, the cover is gorgeous, and the author seems so cool. You can check out her website here.

The Half Life of Molly Pierce by Katrina Leno
I haven't heard much about this one, but it looks really interesting. The cover is gorgeous, too. :)

Far From You by Tess Sharpe
I don't know what it is, but the mystery/contemporary novels really intrigue me.

A Mad, Wicked Folly by Sharon Biggs Waller
I found this on Edelweiss a while back and I don't think I ever requested it. But it looks really good, and I don't mind the YA historical fiction every once in a while.

Alienated by Melissa Landers
I've heard both bad and good things about this book, but I still want to give it a try.

Prisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman
This looks SO good. Especially after having just read The Book Thief.

Pointe by Brandy Colbert
Ballet dancing? Not my thing. But it sounds interesting enough that I'm still willing to give it a try!

Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy
This was my WoW last week. I can't wait for this book! I love the title, premise, everything.

Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira
Ever since I heard about this book I've wanted to read it. I wish I had an ARC! It sounds like my kind of YA contemporary.

Nearly Gone by Elle Cosimano
This was also one of my WoWs recently! It's one of those contemporary YA novels with a hint of paranormal and mystery.

That's all for today! What debuts are you guys excited for? I'm sure there are plenty I didn't mention...leave comments so I can find some new books! :)

January 12, 2014

Sunday Spiel: Reading Slumps

Hey guys! Sorry I've been absent for the past two days or so. I've been having a bit of a reading/blogging slump, hence the discussion post today.

Before I get into this, I'd just like to say these are my opinions. I am in no way saying that you should have these opinions or that mine are correct. This is simply a post open to discussion, and you're free to share your opinions as well. :) I love hearing them!

The way I see it, there are a few reasons why you could get into a reading slump. The first and most common one is the result of having read an extremely good book. When I finish said book, I’m in this kind of daze. It was just so good, and I immediately want to read it over again. I may do that, or I might end up sitting around with nothing to do. Eventually, I go to pick up another book from my TBR pile. But I don’t want to read it, because it probably won’t be as good as that awesome book I just finished. So I don’t read at all, for a long time.

This kind of reading slump happens to me the most often. I read a good book and nothing else seems to live up to my expectations.

The next reading slump is the outcome of having read tons of books really fast. This doesn’t happen to me too often, but it’s occurred before. I read so many books that I get burned out really quickly, and don’t want to read anything else for a long time. Maybe I’ll go watch a movie instead. For some reason, that always sounds much more enticing than starting yet another novel.

Finally, reading slumps can occur because I’m too interested in something else to bother picking up a book. This is what’s happening to me right now, actually. I’ve been focused on writing for the past week or so, and not too interested in reading a book. 

I did buy two books today that I’m excited about reading, but I’m not sure if I’ll get into them anytime soon. Hopefully I will, though, so I can get into reading again!

What about you guys? How do you get out of reading slumps? Share your thoughts and ideas below!

January 9, 2014

These Broken Stars (Starbound #1) by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Title: These Broken Stars (Starbound #1)
Authors: Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Publish Date: December 10, 2013
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Romance
Rating: 4/5 Stars

It's a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone.  
Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help.  
Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder—would they be better off staying here forever? 
Everything changes when they uncover the truth behind the chilling whispers that haunt their every step. Lilac and Tarver may find a way off this planet. But they won’t be the same people who landed on it.
A timeless love story, THESE BROKEN STARS sets into motion a sweeping science fiction series of companion novels. The Starbound Trilogy: Three worlds. Three love stories. One enemy.

*This review will contain minor spoilers.*

I'd heard so many good things about this book, so I was expecting a lot. On top of that, science fiction is not my thing. Not at all. And the premise seemed pretty general, even too insta-lovey for my liking. So it was going to take a lot for me to love this book.

I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. If I were to ever really get into science fiction, this would be the type of science fiction I would want to read. There were the combined elements of romance, a new planet, I survival story...and there were only a few things that seemed truly cliché.

In the beginning, I was completely drawn into the story. The descriptions were gorgeous and it really brought me into this entirely new world. When Tarver saw Lilac for the first time, it was a bit of the love-at-first-sight deal. But not unlike a lot of good books I've read recently, it wasn’t too bad. The only part that I didn’t like about this was the fact that Tarver didn’t know who Lilac was. According to the story she was completely famous and in the news all the time, so how could he not know who she was?

I loved how it was like Titanic in the sky (this is to be expected, though—Titanic is my favorite movie of all time). The ship crashed, but Lilac trusted Tarver even after she pushed him away and they got on an escape pod. Another element of this I really loved was the fact that even though Lilac wasn’t physically all that strong (which was to be expected, considering the fact that she was so rich she hadn’t had to lift a finger her entire life) she was still really good with the technical stuff because her father was an engineer. Because of this, she saved Tarver’s life almost as many times as he saved hers.

I will admit that I cried about three quarters of the way in, when the event occurred that I will not name for the sake of keeping this as spoiler-free as possible. It was terrible and perfect at the same time, and it kept the book from having too much of a happy ending (which, in my opinion, is a good thing).

One other issue I had was that it started to get slow about halfway through. I grew bored, as I usually do eventually with survival stories, but it did pick back up. It was only a minor lull. :)

The ending was extremely satisfying, almost to the point where I can’t picture what a sequel could possibly be about, much less a trilogy. The only thing I missed in this book that could be explored more was the extent of the world they live in. But we'll see!

Overall, I loved These Broken Stars and recommend it to all lovers of science fiction. If science fiction isn’t your thing, I would still give it a shot.

January 8, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday 1.8.14

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine. It features upcoming books that we're eagerly waiting for!

Happy Wednesday! I hope you're all having a great new year. I just got home from my first day back at school. (Insert heavy sighing here.)

Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy
March 18, 2014
What if you’d been living your life as if you were dying—only to find out that you had your whole future ahead of you?  
When sixteen-year-old Alice is diagnosed with leukemia, her prognosis is grim. To maximize the time she does have, she vows to spend her final months righting wrongs—however she sees fit. She convinces her friend Harvey, whom she knows has always had feelings for her, to help her with a crazy bucket list that’s as much about revenge (humiliating her ex-boyfriend and getting back at her arch nemesis) as it is about hope (doing something unexpectedly kind for a stranger and reliving some childhood memories). But just when Alice’s scores are settled, she goes into remission. 
Now Alice is forced to face the consequences of all that she’s said and done, as well as her true feelings for Harvey. But has she done irreparable damage to the people around her, and to the one person who matters most?  
Julie Murphy’s SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY is a fearless and moving tour de force about love, life, and facing your own mortality.

This reminds me a bit of The Fault in Our Stars but with a happier twist. It sounds like just my type of book and I can't wait to read it!

January 7, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday 1.7.14

Top Ten Tuesday is a book meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Hey everyone! I realized I haven't done Top Ten Tuesday in a while. Last Tuesday I did the end of the year book survey, so it's been a couple of weeks. Today's topic is bookish resolutions. I'm just going to jump right into this.

Comment more. I get so many great comments from all of you but sometimes I don't keep up, even though I know I should. This year I hope to reply to all of your comments and leave one over at your blog if you have one.

Keep up with eARCs. I have a bunch of these from Edelweiss that I still need to read, and I should probably be keeping them up with them more.

Read more books I already own. I have a compulsive book-buying habit where I buy books even though I already own plenty I haven't read. Oops. 

Allow myself to DNF books. Even if I absolutely hate a book I'm reading, I still finish it. I have no idea why I do this. I think I feel guilty for not finishing something I've started. But with less time to read, I should probably use that time to read books that will actually be worth it.

Do better at planning posts. Or, um, plan posts at all. So far I've only planned posts when I know I'm going to have a really busy day. But other than that, I've written one every day instead of writing a couple ahead of time. I think it would benefit me to plan.

Make blogging friends. Even on the internet, I'm an introvert. But I know there are so many awesome bloggers out there and I'd love to meet them. Still, I'm totally shy. 

Read out of my comfort zone. Classics, sci-fi, anything I don't normally love. I recently finished These Broken Stars and really liked it, which was surprising, because sci-fi normally isn't my thing.

I think my list is going to stop at seven. Is that a bad thing? I'm going to pretend it's not. Resolutions aren't really my thing. I'd rather have long-time goals. :)

Anyway, do you guys have any resolutions? Like I said, I'm not much of a resolution person, but I'd love to hear yours!

January 6, 2014

Let the Sky Fall (Sky Fall #1) by Shannon Messenger

Title: Let the Sky Fall (Sky Fall #1)
Author: Shannon Messenger
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publish Date: December 3, 2013
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
Rating: 4/5 Stars

Vane Weston should have died in the category-five tornado that killed his parents. Instead, he woke up in a pile of rubble with no memories of his past - except one: a beautiful, dark-haired girl standing in the winds. She swept through his dreams ever since, and he clings to the hope that she's real.  
Audra is real, but she isn't human. She's a sylph, an air elemental who can walk on the wind, translate its alluring songs, even twist it into a weapon. She's also a guardian - Vane's guardian - and has sworn an oath to protect him at all costs.  
When a hasty mistake reveals their location to the enemy who murdered both their families, Audra has just days to help Vane unlock his memories. And as the storm winds gather, Audra and Vane start to realize that the greatest danger might not be the warriors coming to destroy them, but the forbidden romance growing between them

I have not read a paranormal romance book like this in a while, and it is extremely refreshing. There are so many things I loved about it, and only a few that bothered me. Let's start from the beginning.

This book is far from slow. The beginning is gripping and intriguing, and I immediately wanted to read more. The plot was even-paced, even fast, all the way through, which kept me interested the entire time. 

One thing I really loved about this book was how the parents were actually involved. I don't know what it is about young adult paranormal novels (or even young adult in general) but the parents are always mysteriously absent. This makes no sense whatsoever. But in Let the Sky Fall they actually play a part in the plot, and this was really nice to see, as the whole absent parent thing is one of my book pet peeves. I'm hoping their part in the plot continues in the sequel.

The characters were strong, and they each had their own voice. Especially Vane. Vane was hilarious. I generally find that most books with dual POVs would be better just as one, but this was one of the best dual POVs I've read. You could tell who was talking no matter the circumstances. Another thing about the characters was that they were each their own type of frustrating (in a good way - the kind of frustrating where you just want them to make a decision already)!

The only complaint I have is that it felt slightly insta-lovey. I say slightly because I'm aware Vane has technically known Audra his entire life, if only in dreams (which ended up being the issue for me). For most of his life he didn't even know she was real, and how can you really be that in love with someone who possibly doesn't exist? On the flip side, I did like how because of unusual circumstances having to do with being a guardian, Audra wasn't supposed to fall in love with him - only guard him. This kept it from being as insta-lovey as it had the potential to be.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading Let the Sky Fall and I'm anticipating the sequel, Let the Storm Break, which releases March 4.

January 5, 2014

Sunday Spiel: Imperfect First Drafts (Yes, I'm Talking About Writing)

Hi everyone! Today I'm going to talk about writing. This is sort of unusual for me, as I don't normally talk about the fact that I love to write. (Mainly because I'm really insecure about it.) But I thought it was about time.

Before I get into this , I'd just like to say these are my opinions. I am in no way saying that you should have these opinions or that mine are correct. This is simply a post open to discussion, and you're free to share your opinions as well. :) I love hearing them!

I’ve begun working on plenty of ideas by now, but I always seem to give up once I hit the halfway point. It’s taken me a while to realize why, but I’ve narrowed it down to one main reason: fear of failure. 

I am terrified of messing up. When you begin to flesh out a new idea, it plays like a movie in your head. You can see scenes the way you want them to be, and you promise yourself that you’ll be able to put them down on paper the right way so others can see them as well. But when you sit down to write that first draft, you’re afraid. What if it doesn't turn out the way you want it to? What if it turns into a mess of words that don’t make sense and scenes that go in the wrong direction?

I’m here to tell you something. It isn't going to turn out the way you want it to. And that’s okay. In fact, it’s ideal. 

If you sat down to write said idea and it turned out perfectly on the first draft, it would be great, sure. But would you really learn anything from writing? Writing isn't just about writing. It’s about revision and finding out what works. It’s about learning from your mistakes. You couldn't do any of that if there were no mistakes in the first place.

The first draft will be and should be terrible. It should be a jumble of words. It shouldn't look the way it looked in your head. But it will eventually. That’s what revision is for. Once you've finished the first draft, you can polish it up like a new penny. But for now, it’s not going to be perfect. 

First drafts are often called rough drafts for a reason. Fear of failure is something that every writer feels. It’s not unusual. But here’s another thought: it’s not necessary. If thinking of it like this makes it easier, every writer’s first draft fails. Everyone fails. And then they look at their failure, read through it, and polish it up for as long as they need to until it is no longer a failure. Until it is a novel.

If that’s not a good way of looking at it, then think of it like this: It’s okay to not do things perfectly on the first try. That’s why we receive second chances, whether it’s from ourselves or from other people. We’re only human. 

So sit down and write that beautifully flawed first draft, and then create your masterpiece. Don’t worry about how good or bad it is for now. Just let the words flow.

January 4, 2014

Stacking the Shelves #19

Stacking the Shelves is a feature hosted by Tynga's Reviews. It's about sharing the books you got this week--virtual or physical--from the bookstore, the library, borrowed from friends, etc.

Hello! I'm back again. (Well, it's not like I would leave...I mean...never mind.) How is everyone? Are you snowed in? I'm not snowed in, but there is a bit on the ground and more winter weather forecasted as well. I hope you got a snow day so you could stay in and read. :) 

I go back to school next week and I've been dreading it. Basically I bought (and was gifted) more books so I could be in their fictional worlds instead of my real one. Here they are:


I started reading this the moment I bought it, and then finished it last night. Gosh, it was so good. I sobbed at the end. I'll probably end up rereading it at some point. I'm going to see the movie today, and I can't wait. (Also, just a side note: I'm not going to be reviewing this, only because I don't think I would do the book justice. And because there's nothing to say, other than that the entire thing was perfect.)


I always see this in bookstores but I've never actually bought it. Now, thanks to a friend, I own it. :) Not sure when I'll be reading this but hopefully it'll be sometime soon.

That's all for today! I can't wait to come back tomorrow with my discussion post. I'll give you a hint: it involves writing. I don't think I've ever really talked about writing on here, but tomorrow is the exception. 

January 3, 2014

Sneak Peek: Sing Sweet Nightingale by Erica Cameron

Hey everyone! Today I'm just going to make a small announcement. You can read the first chapter of Sing Sweet Nightingale by Erica Cameron, which comes out on March 4, 2014, only for today! It will be up until 10 PM EST tonight.

Here's some information on the book:

Title: Sing Sweet Nightingale (The Dream War Saga #1)
Author: Erica Cameron
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Publish Date: March 4, 2014
Genre: Paranormal, Fantasy, Young Adult

Mariella Teagen hasn't spoken a word in four years.  
She pledged her voice to Orane, the man she loves—someone she only sees in her dreams. Each night, she escapes to Paradise, the world Orane created for her, and she sings for him. Mariella never believed she could stay in Paradise longer than a night, but two weeks before her eighteenth birthday, Orane hints that she may be able to stay forever.  
Hudson Vincent made a pledge to never fight again. 
Calease, the creature who created his dream world, swore that giving up violence would protect Hudson. But when his vow caused the death of his little brother, Hudson turned his grief on Calease and destroyed the dream world. The battle left him with new abilities and disturbing visions of a silent girl in grave danger—Mariella.
Now, Hudson is fighting to save Mariella's life while she fights to give it away. And he must find a way to show her Orane’s true intentions before she is lost to Paradise forever. 

Click here to download the chapter.

Preorder links:

I hope you guys take a look at this chapter! I really, really loved it and can't wait for the book to come out. I'd suggest at least looking it up. :)