Sunday, November 30, 2014
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Oh, man, is it the season of blogger tags, or something? It's like a tagapalooza all up in here. I mean, I've been tagged, like... twice. That's... a lot? I don't know. YAY FOR TAGS! I was tagged by Shae at Shae Has Left the Room for the Sisterhood of the Traveling... no, the Sisterhood of the Ya Ya... Sisterhood of the World Book Bloggers Tag? Book Blogging Award? Book... think... Look, I DON'T SPEAK TAG. It's a cool thing, whatever it's called. Someone (in this case, Shae) posts a bunch of fun questions about reading, and you answer them, then tag more people and ask them questions. It's like passing notes across the classroom, or those chain emails or AIM memes-before-memes-were-a-thing. Remember those? ...No? God, I'm ancient.
1. Thank the blogger that nominated you and link back to their website.
2. Post the award’s logo on your blog.
3. Answer the ten questions you have been asked.
4. Nominate ten other bloggers and ask them ten other questions.
Monday, November 24, 2014
Review: Jane Austen Cover to Cover: 200 Years of Classic Book Covers by Margaret C. Sullivan
Release date: November 11th, 2014
Publisher: Quirk Books
Source: Finished copy from the publisher
Length: 224 pages
Rating: Gorgeous, Jane Austen-y, hilarious, and comprehensive. Perfect holiday gift for Janeites!
Jane Austen’s six novels are true classics, still immensely popular some 200 years after their first publication. But although the celebrated stories never change, the covers are always different. Jane Austen Cover to Cover compiles two centuries of design, from elegant Victorian hardcovers and the famed 1894 “Peacock” edition to 1950s pulp, movie tie-in editions, graphic novels, foreign-language translations, and many, many others. Filled with beautiful artwork and insightful commentary, this fascinating and visually intriguing collection is a must for Janeites, design geeks, and book lovers of every stripe.
You guys, this book is my catnip. It combines several of my favorite things: Jane Austen, cover design, history, and humor. It's got a gorgeous cover and full-color pages and hilarious commentary.
Thursday, November 20, 2014
Review: Suspicion by Alexandra Monir
Release date: December 9th, 2014
Publisher: Delacorte (Random House)
Length: 368 pages
Rating: No. I'm sorry, book, but... no
Mysterious. Magnificent. Creepy. Welcome to Rockford Manor.
"There's something hidden in the Maze." Seventeen-year-old Imogen has never forgotten the last words her father said to her seven years ago, before the blazing fire that consumed him, her mother, and the gardens of her family's English country manor.
Haunted by her parents' deaths, Imogen moves to New York City with her new guardians. But when a letter arrives with the news of her cousin's untimely death, revealing that Imogen is now the only heir left to run the estate, she returns to England and warily accepts her role as duchess.
All is not as it seems at Rockford, and Imogen quickly learns that dark secrets lurk behind the mansion's aristocratic exterior, hinting that the spate of deaths in her family were no accident. And at the center of the mystery is Imogen herself--and Sebastian, the childhood friend she has secretly loved for years. Just what has Imogen walked into?
Combining a fresh twist on the classic REBECCA with a spine-tingling mystery and powerful romance, SUSPICION is an action-packed thrill ride.
This book has all the set-up ingredients to be a gothic, creepy, vaguely Rebecca-esque mystery with a paranormal twist. And yet Suspicion is just plain lame.
Tuesday, November 18, 2014
Sunday, November 16, 2014
Guys. I have officially gone to the scary place.
So a couple of days ago, I was trying to find something to watch on Netflix while I baked a pie, because that's the kind of action-packed lifestyle I lead. Netflix told me that the TV show The 100, based on the book by Kass Morgan which I read and was exceptionally "meh" on, was very popular. And because I am very open to persuasion, I decided to stream a few episodes while I pied.
Fast forward to 4 am the next morning, when I'm still watching.
|Why yes Bellamy thank you for asking you wonderful thing you|
Friday, November 14, 2014
Review: The Clockwork Scarab by Colleen Gleason
Release date: September 17th, 2013
Series: Yes, #1 in the Stoker & Holmes series
Length: 356 pages
Rating: Steampunkian, girl-powery, mysterious fun.
Evaline Stoker and Mina Holmes never meant to get into the family business. But when you’re the sister of Bram and the niece of Sherlock, vampire hunting and mystery solving are in your blood. And when two society girls go missing, there’s no one more qualified to investigate.
Now fierce Evaline and logical Mina must resolve their rivalry, navigate the advances of not just one but three mysterious gentlemen, and solve murder with only one clue: a strange Egyptian scarab. The stakes are high. If Stoker and Holmes don’t unravel why the belles of London society are in such danger, they’ll become the next victims.
I've been meaning to read The Clockwork Scarab for ages. When its sequel, The Spiritglass Charade, showed up in the mail, it was the kick in the pants to finally get me do it, and boy, am I glad I did. This book is fun. It's steampunk, feminist, funny, breezy fun, and while it definitely could dig deeper in some parts, the quick pace and twisty mystery make for a super entertaining read.
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
image from Dana Square
I was tagged by the lovely Shae from Shae Has Left The Room and Gaby and Lisa from Bookish Broads to partake in the TBR tag. This tag is originally hosted/created by Dana Square and A Perfection Called Books. Read on to learn how I organize my reads (I don't), what sort of logic I use to choose my next book (I don't), and if there's a chance I will ever catch up with my TBR (I won't).
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Monday, November 10, 2014
Review: Exquisite Captive by Heather Demetrios
Release date: October 7th, 2014
Publisher: Balzer + Bray (Harper)
Series: Yes, #1 in the Dark Caravan cycle
Source: eARC via Edelweiss/ print ARC from BEA14
Length: 480 pages
Rating: A positive meh-to-middling.
Forced to obey her master.
Compelled to help her enemy.
Determined to free herself.
Nalia is a jinni of tremendous ancient power, the only survivor of a coup that killed nearly everyone she loved. Stuffed into a bottle and sold by a slave trader, she’s now in hiding on the dark caravan, the lucrative jinni slave trade between Arjinna and Earth, where jinn are forced to grant wishes and obey their human masters’ every command. She’d give almost anything to be free of the golden shackles that bind her to Malek, her handsome, cruel master, and his lavish Hollywood lifestyle.
Enter Raif, the enigmatic leader of Arjinna’s revolution and Nalia’s sworn enemy. He promises to free Nalia from her master so that she can return to her ravaged homeland and free her imprisoned brother—all for an unbearably high price. Nalia’s not sure she can trust him, but Raif’s her only hope of escape. With her enemies on the hunt, Earth has become more perilous than ever for Nalia. There’s just one catch: for Raif’s unbinding magic to work, Nalia must gain possession of her bottle…and convince the dangerously persuasive Malek that she truly loves him. Battling a dark past and harboring a terrible secret, Nalia soon realizes her freedom may come at a price too terrible to pay: but how far is she willing to go for it?
Inspired by Arabian Nights, EXQUISITE CAPTIVE brings to life a deliciously seductive world where a wish can be a curse and shadows are sometimes safer than the light.
This is not a bad book. It is well-written, thoroughly researched, and full of mythology. It has a kick-ass premise and is thoughtfully created. There is a gorgeous map, diversity, and genies. But Exquisite Captive may be Exquisitely Crafted, but it is not Exquisitely Captivating.
Saturday, November 8, 2014
YAY THIS WEEK IS OVER. THANK THE BOOKISH GODS. (It's really been one of those weeks, hasn't it? AT LEAST THERE'S BOOKS!)
Friday, November 7, 2014
Review: Famous in Love by Rebecca Serle
Release date: October 21st, 2014
Publisher: Poppy (Little, Brown)
Series: Yes, #1 in the Famous in Love trilogy
Length: ARC from BEA14
Rating: I don't really understand the point of this book.
The romantic story of a girl who gets plucked from obscurity to star in the next major feature film franchise based on a book and the ensuing love triangles she gets entangled in on—-and off screen.
Meet Paige Townsen, Rainer Devon, and Jordan Wilder…
When Paige Townsen, a young unknown, gets cast in the movie adaptation of a blockbuster book series, her life changes practically overnight. Within a month, Paige has traded the quiet streets of her hometown for a crowded movie set on the shores of Maui, and is spending quality time with her co-star Rainer Devon, one of People’s Sexiest Men Alive. But when troubled star Jordan Wilder lands the role of the other point in the movie’s famous love triangle, Paige’s crazy new life gets even crazier.
In this coming-of-age romance inspired by the kind of celeb hookups that get clever nicknames and a million page views, Paige must figure out who she is – and who she wants – while the whole world watches.
I am a sucker for books about Hollywood. 99 out of 100 times, they get it factually wrong, but I don't even care. I love Stars: They're Just Like Us! books and those cheesy Disney Channel movies where Jerstin Weeber/Rick Ronas/Whatever McTeenybopper falls in love with and unassuming nobody who cares naught for fame and is "so real" and "doesn't know she's beautiful". That shit is my catnip, okay? But the problem with Famous in Love is it's all those things... but it's not fun. It's not original, it's extremely serious, and it's extremely boring.
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
Recently, I've been binge-reading the amazing Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima. These books have everything I like: layered characters, shippity ships, complex world building, magicks, betrayal, and royalty. It also has two main characters who have had very busy and very complicated and very heartbreaking love lives. Their life situations have gone through multiple stages, and as they aged, they found themselves responding to different people at different times. They acted like most people do outside of books, and I realized, as I was reading, how much I love it when characters in YA books don't end up with the first person they liked/kissed/sexed.
Tuesday, November 4, 2014
|Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish|
Monday, November 3, 2014
Review: Unmade by Sarah Rees Brennan
Release date: September 23, 2014
Publisher: Random House
Series: Yes, #3 in The Lynburn Legacy
Length: 384 pages
A modern, magical twist on the Gothic romance and girl detective genres, the Lynburn Legacy books will appeal to fans of both Beautiful Creatures and the Mortal Instruments series.
Powerful love comes with a price. Who will be the sacrifice?
Kami has lost the boy she loves, is tied to a boy she does not, and faces an enemy more powerful than ever before. With Jared missing for months and presumed dead, Kami must rely on her new magical link with Ash for the strength to face the evil spreading through her town.
Rob Lynburn is now the master of Sorry-in-the-Vale, and he demands a death. Kami will use every tool at her disposal to stop him. Together with Rusty, Angela, and Holly, she uncovers a secret that might be the key to saving the town. But with knowledge comes responsibility—and a painful choice. A choice that will risk not only Kami’s life, but also the lives of those she loves most.
As coauthor with Cassandra Clare of the bestselling Bane Chronicles, Sarah Rees Brennan has mastered the art of the page-turner. This final book in the Lynburn Legacy is a wild, entertaining ride from beginning to shocking end.
Sometimes when I read and LOVE a series ender, I like to do a Reasons to Read instead of a full review so as to remain as unspoilery as possible and lure new readers into a series. My goal, of course, is to force you all to know and love and suffer the pain of The Lynburn Legacy by Sarah Rees Brennan, because it is all of the things. What are the things? Humor and heartbreak, pain and hope, kissing and killing, light and dark. It's gothic mystery laced with twenty-first century pluck and banter. It's supernatural romance with absolutely gorgeous friendships and parent-kid relationships that wring every ounce of feelswater from those eyeballs. You'll laugh so hard you'll cry, and then you'll cry so hard you'll laugh, and then you'll throw the book because you love it but it hurts you and why.
Saturday, November 1, 2014
Happy November 1/All Saints' Day/NaNoWriMo kickoff! If you're a NaNoer like me (aka one of the thousands of poor souls participating in the masochistic blood sport that is National Novel Writing Month), you are probably working on digesting the twelve pounds of Reese's peanut butter cups in your stomach, pouring out a biiiig cup of coffee, and setting up shop at the computer to crank out those first (dreadful) 1,667 words. If not, you're lucky! You'll probably sleep this November! Except then you'll remember that it's already November, which means that October is over, which means that it's almost December, which means it is almost 2015, which means we are living in the god damn FUTURE and soon cars will fly and aliens will come and it's all one step closer to DEATH, my friends.
Ahem. So. Books happened, and these were them: