Monday, April 23, 2012

World Book Night 2012!

Who is helping to give out half a million free books all across America on one day?   I am.

What? "World Book Night U.S. is an ambitious campaign to personally give out thousands of free, specially printed books across America. Volunteer book lovers like myself will help promote reading by going into our communities and handing out free copies of a book we love to new or light readers, reaching them especially in undeserved places – and even some fun spots. Volunteers will be picking up the books at a local bookstore or library in order to go out and share them in locations as diverse as VA hospitals, nursing homes, ballparks, mass transit, diners, and more."

Who? "From Kodiak, Alaska, to Key West, Florida, in 6,000 towns and cities across America, 25,000 volunteers will give away half a million free books on one day: April 23, 2012" 

Why April 23? "April 23 is the UNESCO International Day of the Book, chosen in honor of Shakespeare and Cervantes, who both died on April 23 1616. (It is also the anniversary of Shakespeare's birthday.) In the Catalan region of Spain, the day is celebrated by giving a book and a flower to a loved one. We also hope that it’s a lovely spring day perfect for spreading the love of reading in your community"

I was really excited to be chosen as a World Book Night GIVER! I now have 20 lovely copies of Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card to hand out to reluctant, new or light readers.  So fun!  I recruited a couple of helpers and plan to give away the books in a variety of ways; two copies of the book hopped a plane to Philadelphia with my brother to be handed out on the flight. A handful more have come with me to be given out throughout my work day during breaks (doesn't the drive through attendant at In-N-Out want to read Ender's Game? If not, they should!), most of the books will be handed out tonight at a local venue, and two of the books will be given away right now - right here - on the blog!

Are you a reluctant, light or new reader and would like to read Ender's Game?  Believe me it is worth it!!  I read this prize winning sci-fi ages ago and have never stopped loving it.  The book has everything in it - advanced technology, sibling rivalry, action/violence, twisty plots, government conspiracy and more!  Still not sure? Check out all about Ender's Game HERE . Oh, and they are making it into a movie right now! Don't you want to know the story before you see it on the big screen? After all you know - the book is always better!

I wish I could give a copy away to all of you, but I only have two copies to give away to my "online community", so enter below for a chance to claim one of the copies for yourself!  If I don't have any entries by 8 pm tonight these copies will be given away at my local venue instead.


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (57): Keeper of the Lost Cities & A Hero For WondLa

Time for "Waiting On Wednesday" weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine! Waiting on Wednesday spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating!  This week seems to be my mid-grade edition of WoW! What can I say? I love my mid-grades. :)
  Coming Soon...
A Hero for WondLa by Tony DiTerlizzi
To Be Published: May 8th 2012 by Simon & Schuster Childrens Books
Finally, Eva Nine has gotten what she has always wanted: other humans. When she and her friends are rescued by Hailey, another human, Eva couldn't be happier. Now she has everything she has ever dreamed of. Hailey brings Eva and her friends to the human colony New Attica, where humans of all shapes and sizes live in apparent peace and harmony.

But all is not idyllic in New Attica, and soon Eva Nine and her friends realize that something very bad is going on--and if they don't stop it, it could mean the end of everything and everyone on Orbona.
My Ramblings on A Hero for WondLa: I recently listened to the audiobook edition of The Search for WondLa and the ending left me really looking forward to the next book! I am excited to see what happens next, but I think this time I will actually read the book instead of listening to it.  I think the book wasn't as complete with out the illustrations and this time I don't want to miss out. Here's hoping Eva Nine finds her happily ever after!

 Waiting for the long haul...

Keeper of the Lost Cities by Shannon Messenger
To Be Published: October 2nd 2012 by Aladdin

Twelve-year-old Sophie Foster has a secret. She's a Telepath--someone who hears the thoughts of everyone around her. It's a talent she's never known how to explain.

Everything changes the day she meets Fitz, a mysterious boy who appears out of nowhere and also reads minds. She discovers there's a place she does belong, and that staying with her family will place her in grave danger. In the blink of an eye, Sophie is forced to leave behind everything and start a new life in a place that is vastly different from anything she has ever known.

Sophie has new rules to learn and new skills to master, and not everyone is thrilled that she has come “home.” There are secrets buried deep in Sophie's memory—secrets about who she really is and why she was hidden among humans—that other people desperately want. Would even kill for.

In this page-turning debut, Shannon Messenger creates a riveting story where one girl must figure out why she is the key to her brand-new world, before the wrong person finds the answer first.

 My Ramblings on Keeper of the Lost Cities: I first heard of Shannon via her blog and started following her there. When I found out she was publishing her debut novel I was thrilled for her...  and then I heard what the novel was going to be about and I was thrilled for myself! haha.  I can't wait to read this story, it seems like something right up my alley! Hidden talents, mystery, and being thrust into a new world sounds like a recipe for success! Also, the cover? LOVE IT.  This one is at the top of my wish-list for the fall!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

eBook Deals! Mysterious Benedict Society, The Gathering & Waterfall

I ran across a few good eBook deals today that I wanted to share with you! Snatch them up fast because I don't know how long the prices will last...

The Mysterious Benedict Society [Kindle Edition]
by Trenton Lee Stewart

The Gathering (Darkness Rising #1) [Kindle Edition]
by Kelley Armstrong for $2.99!

Also $2.99 on NOOK


Waterfall (River of Time Series #1) [Kindle Edition]
by Lisa T. Bergren for $1.99!


Friday, April 13, 2012

The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden #1) by Julie Kagawa

The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

Genre: Young Adult - Paranormal
Publication Date: April 24th 2012
Publisher:  Harlequin Teen

Age Range: Young-Adult

:  512

Book Source
: ARC from publisher for review

Synopsis (via Goodreads)

In a future world, Vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity. 

 Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten.

Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them. The vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself is attacked—and given the ultimate choice. Die… or become one of the monsters.

Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad.

Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend—a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike.

But it isn't easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what—and who—is worth dying for.

Scoot’s Review:
I enjoyed the Iron Fey series, but Julie Kagawa has managed to raise the bar with her newest novel. This story was sooo good and it was long! Yay for a book with a little meat on its bones! So many YA books seem to cut the story short, or get chopped up into three books when it could easily be one good, long book.  I felt Julie took her time to do justice for the storyline and truly develop the story.  And yet, despite its length I was instantly ready for the next 500 pages! I wanted to keep reading and reading.  The story was very action packed; a never-let-your-guard-down kind of book because you never knew what might be lurking (literally!) around the corner. Once the story got rolling the pace was intense; full of twisting plot-lines and action until the last page. A lot happens in this book, but I don’t want to say anything to spoil your enjoyment of learning and adventuring with Allie. This was a story of choosing what kind of person you will be – despite your circumstances or life-assumptions. The characters were unique and well developed; there were a lot of characters and they ranged from one extreme to the next.  They were multi-dimensional and made mistakes, but then they learned from them.  Allie was a strong female lead, with a backbone of steel. I loved it! The romance element in the novel was perfect for me – no insta-lust here.  It was a slow-build romance with plenty of obstacles and tension to make it feel genuine.  The book also had hints of occasional humor that I wasn’t expecting and really appreciated. The story didn’t leave a cliffhanger ending; the arc of this initial book was settled, but the larger story still has plenty more pages to fill.  I feel this is Julie’s best book yet and I can’t wait to see what she writes next. 

Notable Quotable*: 
"My vampire creator told me this:
'Sometime in your life,
Allison Sekemoto,
you will kill a human being.
The question is not if 
it will happen, but when.
Do you understand?'

I didn't then, not really.
    -  Julie Kagawa, The Immortal Rules


Random Note: Be sure to enter my giveaway HERE for a chance to win a hardcover copy of The Immortal Rules from Harlequin Teen!

 *This quote is taken from the back cover of the ARC.  Please see the final printed edition of the novel to verify accuracy.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (56): Ashen Winter & The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom

Time for "Waiting On Wednesday" weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine! Waiting on Wednesday spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating!  
  Coming Soon...
The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy (Author), Tod Harris (Illustrator)
To Be Published: May 1st 2012 by Walden Pond Press
Enter a world where everything, even our classic fairy tales, is not at all what it seems.

Prince Liam. Prince Frederic. Prince Duncan. Prince Gustav. You've never head of them, have you? These are the princes who saved Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Snow White, and Rapunzel, respectively, and yet, thanks to those lousy bards who wrote the tales, you likely know them only as "Prince Charming." But all of this is about to change...

Rejected by their princesses and cast out of their castles, Liam, Frederic, Duncan, and Guztav stumble upon an evil plot that could endanger each of their kingdoms. Now it's up to them to triumph over their various shortcomings, take on trolls, bandits, dragons, witches, and other associated terrors to become the heroes no one ever thought they could be.

This title is the first in a series about the adventures of Liam, Frederic, Duncan, and Gustav. The second title is due out in 2013
My Ramblings on Hero's Guide: I just discovered this intriguing looking novel the other day.  I think it sounds like a book I would love to read.  The Prince's sides of the fairy tales aren't often told and I look forward to seeing the new twists on the tales! Also, the art for this book... LOVE it! I have seen a couple of the illustrations and they are fabulous.  Can't wait to get my hands on this one!

 Waiting for the long haul...

Ashen Winter (Ashfall #2) by Mike Mullin
To Be Published: October 14th 2012 by Tanglewood Press

It’s been over six months since the eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano. Alex and Darla have been staying with Alex’s relatives, trying to cope with the new reality of the primitive world so vividly portrayed in Ashfall, the first book in this series. It’s also been six months of waiting for Alex’s parents to return from Iowa. Alex and Darla decide they can wait no longer and must retrace their journey into Iowa to find and bring back Alex’s parents to the tenuous safety of Illinois. But the landscape they cross is even more perilous than before, with life-and-death battles for food and power between the remaining communities. When the unthinkable happens, Alex must find new reserves of strength and determination to survive.

 My Ramblings on Ashen Winter:  Oh man, the cover on this novel is awesome.  I liked Ashfall's cover, but Ashen Winter has just blown that one out of the water.  It totally sets the tone for jumping back into Alex's apocalyptic world.  I am curios to know how everything is turning out for Alex and Darla (I assume not well - because really it was not a "happily-ever-after" type of world in the last book, lol.)  Lucky for me I was just approved for the digital ARC so I should be able to find out early, but for everyone else October is so far away!

Check out my review for the previous novel in the series:


Monday, April 9, 2012

GRETA & THE GOBLIN KING Cover Reveal & Blurb!

I am excited to participate in Chloe Jacobs' Greta and the Goblin King's cover reveal today!  I think the story sounds intriguing and the cover looks great!

Cover & Blurb:

While trying to save her brother four years ago, Greta was thrown into the witch’s fire herself, falling through a portal to a dangerous world where humans are the enemy, and every ogre, goblin, and ghoul has a dark side that comes out with the full moon.

To survive, seventeen-year-old Greta has hidden her humanity and taken the job of bounty hunter—and she’s good at what she does. So good, she’s caught the attention of Mylena’s young Goblin King, the darkly enticing Isaac, who invades her dreams and undermines her determination to escape.

But Greta’s not the only one looking to get out of Mylena. The full moon is mere days away, and an ancient evil knows she’s the key to opening the portal. If Greta fails, she and the lost boys of Mylena will die. If she succeeds, no world will be safe from what follows her back…

Add Greta and the Goblin King to your Goodreads account HERE

Pre-Order Greta and the Goblin King at Barnes and Noble HERE.

About the Author:

Chloe Jacobs is a native of nowhere and everywhere, having jumped around to practically every Province of Canada before finally settling in Ontario where she has now been living for a respectable number of years. Her husband and son are the two best people in the entire world, but they also make her wish she'd at least gotten a female cat. No such luck. And although the day job keeps her busy, she carves out as much time as possible to write. Bringing new characters to life and finding out what makes them tick and how badly she can make them suffer is one of her greatest pleasures, almost better than chocolate and fuzzy pink bunny slippers.

Meet Chloe here:

Friday, April 6, 2012

Mini Reviews: On the Edge & Darklight

Why are tiny things always so darn cute?!

  Mini Reviews are short reviews of books I have read for my own enjoyment and wanted to share with you. I will describe in a couple of sentences (often fragmented) my thoughts on the book.  I may or may not ever post full reviews of any of these books.  The mini-reviews might not be as cute as the mini car, but they are mini! Enjoy!

On the Edge by Ilona Andrews 

: Adult - Urban Fantasy
September 29th 2009 by Ace
"Rose Drayton lives on the Edge, between the world of the Broken (where people drive cars, shop at Wal-Mart, and magic is a fairy tale) and the Weird (where blueblood aristocrats rule, changelings roam, and the strength of your magic can change your destiny). Only Edgers like Rose can easily travel from one world to the next, but they never truly belong in either.

Rose thought if she practiced her magic, she could build a better life for herself. But things didn’t turn out how she planned, and now she works a minimum wage, off the books job in the Broken just to survive. Then Declan Camarine, a blueblood noble straight out of the deepest part of the Weird, comes into her life, determined to have her (and her power).

But when a terrible danger invades the Edge from the Weird, a flood of creatures hungry for magic, Declan and Rose must work together to destroy them—or they’ll devour the Edge and everyone in it.

My thoughts:
Loved it!  There is something about books about siblings raising their siblings that just suck me in.  Orphaned siblings banding together = perfect. The story is filled with adventure, magic, romance, angst ... what more could you want? This is a great start to a wonderful series with strong characters and world building. This is a great urban fantasy; basically if it says Ilona Andrews anywhere on the cover - I am there. I thoroughly enjoyed it!


Darklight by Lesley Livingston

Genre: Young Adult - Urban Fantasy
December 22nd 2009 by HarperTeen
"Much has changed since autumn, when Kelley Winslow learned she was a Faerie princess, fell in love with changeling guard Sonny Flannery, and saved the mortal realm from the ravages of the Wild Hunt.

Now Kelley is stuck in New York City, rehearsing Romeo and Juliet and missing Sonny more with every stage kiss, while Sonny has been forced back to the Otherworld and into a deadly game of cat and mouse with the remaining Hunters and Queen Mabh herself.

When a terrifying encounter sends Kelley tumbling into the Otherworld, her reunion with Sonny is joyful but destined to be cut short. An ancient, hidden magick is stirring, and a dangerous new enemy is willing to risk everything to claim that power.
Caught in a web of Faerie deception and shifting allegiances, Kelley and Sonny must tread carefully, for each next step could topple a kingdom . . . or tear them apart.

With breathtakingly high stakes, the talented Lesley Livingston delivers soaring romance and vividly magical characters in Darklight, the second novel in the trilogy that began with Wondrous Strange.

My Thoughts:
Second novels in a trilogy often make me angry because they take the happy world created in the first novel, mess everything up and then make you wait ages for the third book for closure.   To some extent this pattern does occur in Darklight, but the first book was already bittersweet - so it wasn’t quite so rough on me.  Sonny and Kelley are forced apart and the long-distance/doubt is a strain on their relationship.  The novel still had plenty of fast paced magic and adventure. I love Livingston’s writing style and characterization.  It had a shocking and heartbreaking conclusion... looking forward to reading the last novel!


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (55): A Confusion of Princes & The Crimson Crown

Time for "Waiting On Wednesday" weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine! Waiting on Wednesday spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating!  
  Coming Soon...
A Confusion of Princes by Garth Nix
To Be Published: April 8th 2012 by HarperTeen
You’d think being a privileged Prince in a vast intergalactic Empire would be about as good as it gets. But it isn’t as great as it sounds. For one thing, Princes are always in danger. Their greatest threat? Other Princes. Khemri discovers that the moment he is proclaimed a Prince.

He also discovers mysteries within the hidden workings of the Empire. Dispatched on a secret mission, Khemri comes across the ruins of a space battle. In the midst of it all he meets a young woman named Raine, who will challenge his view of the Empire, of Princes, and of himself.
My Ramblings on A Confusion of Princes: I haven't read a great sci-fi in a while and this one sounds intriguing.  I have seen some good reviews on it at Goodreads, so I am really looking forward to reading it.  The cover kind of has a space-cowboy feel with that bandanna/cloth thing in front of the model's face.  Just a few more days and we'll see if this one lives up to expectations!

 Waiting for the long haul...

The Crimson Crown (Seven Realms #4) by Cinda Williams Chima
To Be Published: October 23rd 2012 by Hyperion Book CH

A thousand years ago, two young lovers were betrayed— Alger Waterlow to his death, and Hanalea, Queen of the Fells, to a life without love.

Now, once again, the queendom of the Fells seems likely to shatter apart. For young queen Raisa ana’Marianna, maintaining peace even within her own castle walls is nearly impossible. Tension between wizards and Clan has reached a fevered pitch. With surrounding kingdoms seeking to prey on the Fells’ inner turmoil, Raisa’s best hope is to unite her people against a common enemy. But that enemy might be the person with whom she’s falling in love.

Navigating the cutthroat world of blueblood politics has never been more dangerous, and former streetlord Han Alister seems to inspire hostility among Clan and wizards alike. His only ally is the queen, and despite the perils involved, Han finds it impossible to ignore his feelings for Raisa. Before long, Han finds himself in possession of a secret believed to be lost to history, a discovery powerful enough to unite the people of the Fells. But will the secret die with him before he can use it?

A simple, devastating truth concealed by a thousand-year-old lie at last comes to light in this stunning conclusion to the Seven Realms series.

 My Ramblings on The Crimson Crown:  I can't WAIT for this one! I am really excited about this book, but at the same time dreading it's release.  I don't really want the story to end, but believe me - that won't hold me back from devouring this novel.  I am in the car a lot so I have been listening to audiobooks of the first three novels as a refresher before this one comes out. Raisa & Han FTW! (Also - the cover! I am really curious about exactly who's kingdom is burning down in the background...)

Check out my reviews for the previous novels in the series:
The Demon King
The Exiled Queen
The Gray Wolf Throne


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

April NetGalley Read-A-Thon

Lucky for us Red House Books is constantly challenging us to read our NetGalley books!  I am joining this month's Read-A-Thon in hopes of getting caught up.  I just figured out that I can have my galleys sent to my Kindle app on my iPhone so this should make reading them even easier. Wahoo!

Here is what I am hoping to READ and/or REVIEW from NetGalley for the challenge...

The Girl in the Clockwork Collar by Kady Cross
Goal: Finish reading and write review
Status: I've already started reading this one!

The City's Son by Tom Pollock
Goal: Read & write review
Status: I haven't started on this one yet, just admired the cover.
Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
Goal: Write review
Status: I've already read this one and now I just need to right a review for it!
Something Like Normal by Trish Dollar
Goal: Write review
Status: I've already read this one and now I just need to right a review for it!

Spellcaster by Cara Lynn Shultz
Goal: Read & write review

Status: I haven't started on this one yet.  I might need to refresh myself on the previous novel before I get started on it.



Monday, April 2, 2012

Q&A with Julie Kagawa & The Immortal Rules Giveaway!!

The Immortal Rules is the first in a new series by Julie Kagawa!
In a future world, Vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity.

Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten.

Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them. The vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself is attacked—and given the ultimate choice. Die… or become one of the monsters.

Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad.

Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend—a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike.

But it isn't easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what—and who—is worth dying for.
A Q&A with
New York Times Best Selling Author Julie Kagawa

After writing the Iron Fey series for so many years, how difficult was it to immerse yourself in a futuristic world filled with vampires, rabids and an enslaved human race?

It was...very different. I think the hardest thing for me was the fact that this story does take place in the real world -- a futuristic, vampire-infested world, but the real world nonetheless. Things had to make sense, for example: how far can a large group walk in a single day if there were no roads, they were going through thick woods, and there were children in the group? I had to have logical reasons for everything; I couldn't just make something work "because of faery magic," lol.

Just like Meghan Chase in the Iron Fey series, the main character in The Immortal Rules, Allison Sekemoto, is a “take charge and kick butt” kind of girl. Is this intentional? What woman – real or fictional, alive or deceased – do you look up to or admire?

Yes, Allison comes from a very different world than Meghan Chase. Meghan's upbringing was pretty normal; Allison grew up among vampires and monsters, where every day was a fight to live, so she couldn't afford to be weak. While Meghan had to learn to "take charge and kick butt," Allison's first impulse is stab first, talk later.

As for female role models, the first that comes to mind--when it comes to kicking vampire butt, anyway -- is Buffy Summers. Thank you, Joss Whedon, for making me love feisty, snarky, heroines who can dust all sorts of nasties but who also look good in a cheerleading outfit. ;)

You mention in your acknowledgments in The Immortal Rules that at the beginning of your writing career you promised yourself you wouldn’t write a vampire book. What changed your mind?

Well, there were already so many really good books about our favorite bloodsuckers, so many stories and ideas, I thought I didn't have anything new to add to the masses. I was actually toying with a post-apocalyptic YA novel when my agent mentioned I might want to try writing a vampire series. I wasn't intrigued with the idea at first, but then I thought about combining vampires with the post-
apocalyptic novel and then rest sort of fell into place.

Allison claims she hates vampires and believes they are monsters yet when faced with a choice of die or become one, she becomes a vampire. Would you have made that same decision?

Me personally? No. I'm like Zeke in the belief that there is something better waiting for me beyond this life, and I just have to do my best until it’s time for me to go. Besides, I love pizza and Mountain Dew too much to give it up.

Who do you think the most complex character is in The Immortal Rules?

Probably Kanin, Allie's sire. He's a vampire who has made his peace about being a monster, yet chooses to live by his own set of moral rules. He warns Allison about getting too close to humans, yet he does not kill unless he absolutely has to. He is tormented about something in his past that he refuses to share with anyone. He is certainly the most mysterious of all the characters, if not the most complex.

How many books will be in the Blood of Eden series? When will the next book be coming out?

At the moment, there are three books planned, with the second coming out sometime next spring, after the release of the new Iron Fey series this fall.

Before you starting writing full time you were a professional dog trainer. Do the professions share any similarities?

Lol, well you have to think on your feet a lot. And some of the small dogs could be compared to tiny snapping goblins, but writing requires less dodging skills, though perhaps the same amount of creativity and problem solving.

When starting a new series, like Blood of Eden, do you have the entire series mapped out in detail or do you let the story develop book by book?

I have a high point that I write toward in each story; I know this and this has to happen, but getting from point A to point B usually develops as I go along.

And for the speed round:
What book have you read and re-read, and read yet again?

Any of the Harry Potter books.

Favorite song to play when writing a fight scene?

My "favorites" change daily. Right now its "Awake and Alive" by Skillet.

Worst job?

Working a kiosk in the mall during Christmas. It sold glass figurines, and the maneuvering space around the hundreds of very breakable merchandise was quite small. I was like a bull in a china shop.

Best vacation spot?

Walt Disney World

Sweets or salty?


One thing most people don’t know about you – and would never guess!

I used to play the flute when I was a kid. I was really good at it too, but my instructor stopped teaching to have a family, and I never went back to it.

Thank you Julie!

 Why wait? Pre-order a copy of The Immortal Rules!

Enter to win a copy of The Immortal Rules!

In My Mailbox (28)

"In My Mailbox" is a weekly Meme hosted by The Story Siren.

This week I snagged a bunch of great books to read!

For Review

The Girl in the Clockwork Collar by Kady Cross
The City's Son by Tom Pollock
Fated by Alyson Noel 

From the Library
The Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare
The King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner

Infamous by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Ballad by Maggie Stiefvater
Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder
Memento Nora by Angela Smibert
Overprotected by Jennifer Laurens
Indelible by Lani Woodland

Sunday, April 1, 2012

City of Orphans by Avi

City of Orphans by Avi

Genre: Historical Fiction
Publication Date: September 6th 2011
Publisher:  Atheneum/Richard Jackson Books
Age Range: Mid-Grade
Pages: 368
Book Source: Audiobook from Library
Synopsis (via Goodreads): The streets of 1893 New York are full of life: crowded, filthy, dangerous. If you are a newsboy like thirteen-year- old Maks Geless, you need to watch out for Bruno, leader of the Plug Ugly Gang whose shadowy, sinister boss is plotting to take control of all the newsies on the lower East Side. With Bruno's boys in fierce pursuit, Maks discovers Willa, a strange girl who lives alone in an alley. It is she, stick in hand, who fights off the Plug Uglies--but further dangers await. Maks must find a way to free his sister Emma from The Tombs, the city jail where she has been imprisoned for stealing a watch at the glamorous new Waldorf Hotel. Maks, believing her innocent, has only four days to prove it. Fortunately, there is Bartleby Donck, the eccentric lawyer (among other employments) to guide Maks and Willa in the art of detection. Against a backdrop alive with the sights and sounds of tenement New York, Maks, as boy detective, must confront a teeming world of wealth and crime, while struggling against powerful forces threatening new immigrants and the fabric of family love.

Scoot’s Review:
City of Orphans’ story starts off well; building up the story setting and getting you quickly wrapped up in the main character’s life. You learn the ins and outs of the world for
Maks, a young newsie making only eight cents a day selling papers on the streets of New York.  The story had a few plot twists and some action to keep the reader entertained.  The overall pace of the story felt slow at times, but I was curious enough in regards to the plot to hang on during the slow parts; which was rewarded with a dramatic and fast paced ending. The crime solving elements were fun, if a little predictable at times.  The book had great world building – I feel like we really understood what it was like for immigrants living in New York City in the late 1800’s.  A strength in this novel was the character building.  Maks was a great lead character; loyal and brave, and we were quickly introduced more individuals with unique traits and personalities.  I enjoyed getting a glimpse into each of their worlds.  I was content with the ending of this book; the story wrapped up with an epilogue of sorts to let you know what happens to all of the characters you have come to know so well. Something I thought was interesting about this story is that you aren’t really ever sure who the narrator is, if it is Maks or one of his brothers in the family.  Overall I enjoyed City of Orphans!  A great book showing the strength of family and friends with honorable characters that you will come to love.  Be sure to check it out sometime!

Notable Quotable: 

“People are freer in America. But there are more tears.”
                             -Avi, City of Orphans




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