Friday, July 31, 2015

Review: A History of Glitter and Blood by Hannah Moskowitz

Review: A History of Glitter and Blood by Hannah Moskowitz
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository
Series: No
Release date: August 18th, 2015
Publisher: Chronicle
Length: 280 pages
Source: ARC from BEA/e-ARC via Edelweiss
Rating: what in the what in the what...BUT I LIKED IT???

Sixteen-year-old Beckan and her friends are the only fairies brave enough to stay in Ferrum when war breaks out. Now there is tension between the immortal fairies, the subterranean gnomes, and the mysterious tightropers who arrived to liberate the fairies.

But when Beckan's clan is forced to venture into the gnome underworld to survive, they find themselves tentatively forming unlikely friendships and making sacrifices they couldn't have imagined. As danger mounts, Beckan finds herself caught between her loyalty to her friends, her desire for peace, and a love she never expected. This stunning, lyrical fantasy is a powerful exploration of what makes a family, what justifies a war, and what it means to truly love.

What the fuck.

Seriously, though...what the fuck?

If I had to sum up this book for someone who wanted to know what its general essence was, the best I'd be able to come up with would be, "This is a non-linear story about sexually fluid fairy best friends who prostitute themselves to survive a brutal war between magical races while their empty fairy city is occupied, while trying not to get eaten by gnomes, but the story is actually a story being written by one of the characters who has no idea what's going on and is entirely unreliable and is probably making up 90% of it."

Seriously. What the fuck.

I think the weirdest part is that I loved this book.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The YA Sorting Hat: Book Boyfriends Part II

Last time on The YA Sorting Hat: Part III

One day, I asked myself the not at all ridiculous question, "Which houses would I sort my favorite literary characters into?" So got Ye Olde Sorty out of the Headmaster's office and put him on the job of sorting some of my favorite non-Harry Potter characters into Hogwarts Houses.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Mini Reviews: Lying Out Loud, Under a Painted Sky, and Lois Lane: Fallout

It's that time. That time I DESPERATELY TRY to get back on track by throwing a bunch at reviews in your face, BITE-SIZED FOR YOUR CONVENIENCE.

Lying Out Loud by Kody Kiplinger
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository
Release date: April 28th, 2015
Publisher: Scholastic
Length: 309 pages
Source: ARC from ALAMW15

FAVE KEPLINGER BOOK. Fave ship. Perfect and feelsy (except for the ending which is way too abrupt I WANTED MORE). It's a sort of Darcy/Lizzy meets Cyrano de Bergerac ship/book, where we have this boy (Ryder, obnoxious snobby hipster) who's in love with this girl (Amy, who is precious and Wesley Rush's little sister) who has a best friend (our heroine, Sonny,  who is HILARIOUS and snarky and great big liar liar pants on fire). One night, while chatting online, Sonny pretends to be Amy and talks to Ryder for hours. And then, of course, she starts to have feelings for Ryder...even though she's lying to both of them. About a lot of things.

I LOVE SONNY. Great big flawed ball of lying hurt, full of sass, with an absolutely wretched home life and a fierce devotion to her best friend. This book is full of friendship feels and SHIPPY GOODNESS. I read it in one day and just couldn't get enough. <333

Friday, July 24, 2015

Summer Reading Slumps, AKA a Case of the Lazies

Summer. It's hot. I'm lazy. I put my book down on the table, but I'm on the bed which is just so far away from the table, and Netflix. Netflix exists. Ooo, all of Merlin is up. Also Friends is due for a total re-watch, right? It's only been a few...months since you watched all ten seasons, right? Good thing I have a bag of chips with me in bed. Because that kitchen, with its tables, is just so far. Sooooooo faaaaaaaar.

Not a recipe for productive reading or blogging.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Top Ten Favorite Diverse Characters

hosted by The Broke and the Bookish
It's been a while since I did a Top Ten Tuesday, so I'm going to return in glorious fashion by breaking all the rules. TOP TWENTY HERE WE GO WOOOOO

Monday, July 20, 2015

Review: The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson

Review: The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository 
Series: #2 in the Remnant Chronicles
Release date: July 7th, 2015
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (Macmillan)
Length: 470 pages
Source: ARC from the publisher

Intrigue abounds in this hotly anticipated sequel to The Kiss of Deception!

Held captive in the barbarian kingdom of Venda, Lia and Rafe have little chance of escape. Desperate to save her life, Lia's erstwhile assassin, Kaden, has told the Vendan Komizar that she has the gift, and the Komizar's interest in Lia is greater than anyone could have foreseen.

Meanwhile, nothing is straightforward: there's Rafe, who lied to Lia, but has sacrificed his freedom to protect her; Kaden, who meant to assassinate her but has now saved her life; and the Vendans, whom Lia always believed to be barbarians. Now that she lives amongst them, however, she realizes that may be far from the truth. Wrestling with her upbringing, her gift, and her sense of self, Lia must make powerful choices that will affect her country... and her own destiny.

The thing about The Heart of Betrayal is that it's so totally different from The Kiss of Deception that is should feel like a mismatch, or jarring, but mostly, it feels awesome. TKoD was crack fantasy with fun ship wars and a snarky heroine and mystery galore, but THoB is the DEEP, GOOD, BLOODY, TWISTY, BRUTAL BAD ASS STUFF. It's so fun. It's full of girl power, and plotting, and lies upon lies which is basically the hallmark of this series. But basically, this book is made of crack and win and badassery and magic and lush writing and LIA. LIA. FOR. QUEEN.

Okay. Coherency. We can do this.

shut up Tyra

We left off at the end of TKoD with Lia and Rafe finally learning who the other was just as Kaden, Assassin of Venda, has brought them as prisoners to the harsh and unforgiving country of Venda to be put upon the mercy of the extra harsh and extra unforgiving Komizar. It will take all their smarts and manipulative powers (of which they both have MANY) to get out of it alive.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Blog Tour + Giveaway: The Fixer by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

I'm SO pleased to be part of the blog tour for The Fixer by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, a twisty, witty (twitty?) Washington, D.C. tale of intrigue, politics, scandal, mystery, and the most intriguingly political scandalous mystery of all--family. It's the perfect blend of Veronica Mars and Scandal, and I adored reading it heaps and bunches. I'm honored to have the author herself, Jennifer Lynn Barnes, on the blog today to talk of a time when SHE would have loved to have had a fixer in high school.

And now, Jennifer!

The FIXER Challenge

“You’re telling me that my sister is a professional problem solver?” I asked tightly. “She just goes around, solving other people’s problems? How is that even an occupation?” 

“Supply and demand?” Vivvie suggested. “Around here, we call them fixers.”

When my protagonist, Tess Kendrick, moves to Washington DC, she has no idea that her older sister is the person to go to in Washington if you have a fire that needs to be put out or a secret that needs to be buried. The famed Ivy Kendrick can fix any problem for a price. And, due to an unfortunate incident on her first day of school, Tess inadvertently develops a reputation for being a chip off of the old block. Soon, students at her elite private school are coming to her for help.

In honor of THE FIXER’s release, I’m challenging readers try their hands at being a fixer. And I thought it would be doubly fun (and also: personally embarrassing) if the problems you guys had the opportunity to suggest fixes for really happened to me in high school.

So, without further ado, I present to you…


Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Three on a Theme: Nerd Boys

Hi, welcome to my new once-in-a-blue-moon feature, Three on a Theme, wherein I'll highlight three books that have something in common and that I can wholeheartedly recommend. Today's post is about one of my favorite things: NERD BOYS.

YA doesn't have enough adorably nerdy boys, i you ask me. Sure, i love bad boys, and flirts, and warrior princes just as much as the next YA reader, but deep down, I think my soul mate is a nerd boy. And here are three of my faves.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Review: Rebel Mechanics by Shanna Swendson

Review: Rebel Mechanics by Shanna Swendson
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository 
Series: #1 in the Rebel Mechanics series
Release date: July 14th, 2015
Publisher: Farrar, Strouss, and Giroux (Macmillan)
Length: 320 pages
Source: ARC from the publisher
Rating: Squeeeeee

A sixteen-year-old governess becomes a spy in this alternative U.S. history where the British control with magic and the colonists rebel by inventing.

It’s 1888, and sixteen-year-old Verity Newton lands a job in New York as a governess to a wealthy leading family—but she quickly learns that the family has big secrets. Magisters have always ruled the colonies, but now an underground society of mechanics and engineers are developing non-magical sources of power via steam engines that they hope will help them gain freedom from British rule. The family Verity works for is magister—but it seems like the children's young guardian uncle is sympathetic to the rebel cause. As Verity falls for a charming rebel inventor and agrees to become a spy, she also becomes more and more enmeshed in the magister family’s life. She soon realizes she’s uniquely positioned to advance the cause—but to do so, she’ll have to reveal her own dangerous secret.

I adored reading that! My god, was that some delightful fun. Adorable boy, fun rebel shenanigans, a feisty yet practical heroine, plays on a bunch of tropes, and alternate history to boot.. If you love stories about governesses, nobility, magic, New York City, steampunk gadgets, or--must be said again--completely adorable boys, read Rebel Mechanics, because reading it was pure pleasure. It's short and zippy and not too deep, but sometimes that's perfect. I'm so full of SQUEE. (And I toooootally ship the ship, yessiree.)

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Literary PSA: So You Want to Read Tamora Pierce

Long ago I decided to start a NEW THING: Literary Public Service Announcements. Essentially, I'm going to pimp a book that I read before I started blogging, but that I want to foist upon the world due to its high levels of sheer awesomeness for the good of the public and all that jazz. Instead of me just telling people over and over that they should read something "JUST BECAUSE!!!1!", I've decided to actually explain in a more eloquent fashion just why my favorite books are my favorites.

Last time on Literary Public Service Announcements: The Mediator series by Meg Cabot

I was inspired to toss this post together because Angie started reading The Song of the Lioness quartet after many years of me bellowing about Tamora Pierce and TO MY UTTER GLEE she got completely into it and yelled at me about her feelings and asked which Tamora Pierce series she should read next.

I have very definitely opinions about the order in which Tamora Pierce series should be read.
I do want to preface this with the disclaimer that I am not the great authority in all things, no matter how much I wish that were true. This is not like Buzzfeed; there will be no tossing around of the word "definitive", because this is a categorically not definitive post. It's just a Gillian's opinion post, which you can take with either a grain or a mountain of salt.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Looking Forward: July

Sometimes it's really hard for me to keep track of what comes out what month, especially while juggling early reviews and publisher catalogues and all the other confusing bookish things bloggers deal with. It's just a LOT OF BOOKS ALL THE TIME. How do you ever keep them straight?! So on the last day of the month, I post a guide to what books I'm most looking forward to in the following month and that you should keep an eye on. So, since it's now JULY OH MY GOD, here are the July releases most tempting me.