Monday, August 29, 2011

I just wanted to stop by and tell you all about an article that has been written about me for the local newspaper. You can find the news article here. You don’t have to read it if you don’t want to, but I just thought I should give those who haven’t seen it- a link.

Anyways, I have to get back to doing schoolwork. There will be more reviews coming soon (I’m still trying to work myself off that hiatus).



Sunday, August 28, 2011

Bloodborn by Karen Kincy

imageBrock Koeman always hated werewolves and Others like them. While trying to trap a werewolf pack, he and his brother Chris were attacked and bitten—becoming what they have always feared and despised. While Chris fights for his life in the hospital, Brock faces another kind of battle: stifling his terrible urge to transform.

When werewolves kidnap him and the girl he loves, Brock discovers what it means to be Other—wondrous new sensations and experiences, overshadowed by constant danger—and the life that awaits him if he can ever accept his fate.

Bloodborn is a companion novel to Karen Kincy’s first novel Other. Other was amazingly unique and incredibly addicting- so I had high hopes for Bloodborn. Thankfully, my high hopes were met. This novel isn’t a typical werewolf story. Brock doesn’t come into being a werewolf like it’s natural to him. He struggles with accepting both what he is and other people like him.

Personally, I prefer Other because I felt like I could connect with the story more, but I’m definitely not going to discourage you from picking up Bloodborn. For those of you who’ve read Other, I highly recommend picking Bloodborn up. It goes more into depth about Brock and his life, where as in Other we just caught a brief glimpse of him.

Karen Kincy is an amazing paranormal YA writer. Since the release of her last book, her writing has been transformed into something even better than it was before. Though her novels are paranormal (which I usually don’t like), Kincy is able to put an interesting spin on her stories that make them more than just the typical YA paranormal read. I highly recommend both Other and Bloodborn, even if you aren’t really into paranormal books.

FTC- Received for book tour.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Alexis by Alexis Singer

imageIn six words, an instant message changed Alexis forever.

After a rocky junior year of high school, Alexis Singer was lonely, stressed out, and vulnerable--the ideal target for an older man with bad intentions. When a message popped up on her computer screen one night from a message board acquaintance, she could never have known that by responding she was making a choice that would change her forever.

By posing as a friend and confidant, the man gave Alexis the attention she desperately craved and weaseled his way into her life in an unimaginable way. Within weeks, Alexis was sucked into an emotionally dependent relationship, engaging in cybersex and sending him explicit photos of herself. Somewhere along the way, she lost who she was and put her dreams for the future, relationships with friends and family, and psychological well-being on the line.

'Not much about that first online conversation we had sticks out in my head except for his surprising interest in me. I probably would have forgotten about it if it weren't for that. I would have dismissed him as just another creep.'

Because Truth Is More Fascinating Than Fiction

I’ve always said that it’s hard to review someone’s life, and that still rings completely true. Alexis tells the story of Alexis Singer when she was a junior in high school. This is the second book I’ve read as a part of the Louder than Words series and it didn’t disappoint. The stories in the series are all emotionally heavy books that everybody should read. Not only do they tell you about these amazing people’s lives, but they also make you aware of various things people around you could be going through. A good example of this is in Alexis. The people around her don’t know that she’s in this a part of this relationship.

I think it’s important to remember that Alexis is a real person, when you read this book. That’s the really mind-blowing part. Normally when I read fiction that includes any form of abuse (or anything else considered “edgy”), I can console myself with the fact that the characters I’m reading about are fictional. With this, I couldn’t do that. I think as readers of YA novels or just novels in general, we need to remember that even though the books we normally read are fictional- there are still people who go through the things we’re reading about.

Alexis is a great book. Not only will you learn about the brave author Alexis Singer, but I think it will help teach people how to be more cautious when online. I have immense admiration towards Alexis for sharing her story with the world. I recommend this to anyone, really. It is an impeccable memoir that I can’t stop thinking about.

FTC- Received it from Erica of The Book Cellar.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles

imageLuis Fuentes has always been sheltered from the gang violence that nearly destroyed his brothers’ lives. But that didn’t stop him from taking risks—whether he’s scaling a mountain in the Rockies or dreaming of a future as an astronaut, Luis can’t stop looking for the next thrill.
Nikki Cruz lives her life by three rules—boys lie to get their way, don’t trust a boy who says “I love you,” and never date a boy from the south side of Fairfield. Her parents may be from Mexico, but as a doctor’s daughter, she has more in common with her north-side neighbors than the Latino Blood at her school. Then she meets Luis at Alex’s wedding, and suddenly, she’s tempted to break all her rules.
Getting Nikki to take a chance on a southsider is Luis’s biggest challenge, until he finds himself targeted by Chuy Soto, the new head of the Latino Blood. When Chuy reveals a disturbing secret about Luis’s family, the youngest Fuentes finds himself questioning everything he’s ever believed to be true. Will his feelings for Nikki be enough to stop Luis from entering a dark and violent world and permanently living on the edge?

I’ve been waiting to read Chain Reaction ever since I turned the last page of book 2 in the Personal Chemistry series, Rules of Attraction. And let me just say that Chain Reaction delivered. I’ve been reading books by Simone Elkeles before I knew much about YA books and even back then, I loved her writing.

Each book in the Perfect Chemistry series follows the life of one of the three Fuentes brothers. In Perfect Chemistry, we followed Alex. He’s the oldest brother. In Rules of Attraction, we followed Carlos. The middle brother. In the last book of the Perfect Chemistry series, we follow Luis. The youngest brother. Even though I know that there can’t possibly be any more books, I can’t help but want there to be more. Simone Elkeles did an amazing job ending the series and I admire her for doing so, but over the past three books I’ve grown to love these characters and I’m just not ready to let them go yet. (But I guess that’s why I have the option to reread the books?)

Chain Reaction was incredibly addicting and well written. Both Luis and Nikki were both interesting and fully-fleshed out characters. Though the plot of Chain Reaction had some similarities to the previous books in the series, it was still interesting enough to continue reading without the similarities bothering me.

All in all, I really recommend Chain Reaction (and the previous 2 books in the series). You will be in for a nonstop thrill ride that is complete with fighting, dogs, and steamy kissing scenes!

FTC- Publisher.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Cheryl Rainfield’s Top 10 LGBTQ Movies

imageToday I have Cheryl Rainfield here to share with you her top 10 LGBTQ movies. Cheryl is the author of Scars. Here is a summary of her novel (taken from Goodreads)-

Kendra, fifteen, hasn't felt safe since she began to recall devastating memories of childhood sexual abuse, especially because she still can't remember the most important detail-- her abuser's identity. Frightened, Kendra believes someone is always watching and following her, leaving menacing messages only she understands. If she lets her guard down even for a minute, it could cost Kendra her life. To relieve the pressure, Kendra cuts; aside from her brilliantly expressive artwork, it's her only way of coping. Since her own mother is too self-absorbed to hear her cries for help, Kendra finds support in others instead: from her therapist and her art teacher, from Sandy, the close family friend who encourages her artwork, and from Meghan, the classmate who's becoming a friend and maybe more. But the truth about Kendra's abuse is just waiting to explode, with startling unforeseen consequences. Scars is the unforgettable story of one girl's frightening path to the truth.


Top 10 Favorite LGBTQ Movies

1) Desert Hearts

2) The Incredibly True Adventures of Two Girls In Love

3) In and Out

4) Better Than Chocolate

5) Imagine Me and You

6) It’s In the Water

7) Late Bloomers

8) To Wong Foo, Thanks For Everything, Julie Newmar

9) TransAmerica

10) A Touch of Pink

Got a favorite queer movie? I would love to hear about it.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Hey everyone,

We need to talk. I swear, it’s not you, it’s me.

So as some of you may have noticed, I haven’t posted anything in a week. It’s not because I’m on vacation (though, I was on vacation for most of last week). Lately I’ve been finding it hard to write reviews and read books. It’s not because I don’t like writing reviews (or reading books). I’ve been feeling kind of burnt out lately, in terms of this blog. So, I think that Zoe’s Book Reviews is going to go on hiatus for awhile. I don’t know how long, though. I promise that this isn’t the end of the blog because I love it so so much and I don’t think I’m ready to stop anytime soon.

For all I know, I could be back to posting tomorrow. I’m thinking that the hiatus may last for a week or two. I just need to rediscover my love of reading and reviewing. I’ll still be on twitter and I’ll still be answering my emails, if you want to talk or tell me anything. There will still be occasional posts, because I’ve scheduled some things and I have previous commitments for book tour posts- so those will still be popping up here and there. I could be forcing myself to write reviews and blog posts, but then the writing will be increasingly worse, and I don’t want that to happen.

To author/publishers who have sent me their book and are reading this- don’t worry! The book will get reviewed eventually. I would rather send you a quality review than send you one that I just forced out.

Thank you all so much for understanding!



PS- My time is also currently being consumed by (1) planning various bookish stuff (2) trying to finish writing my novel. I’m nearly half way done with it!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Blood Ties by Mari Mancusi

image**possible spoilers for the series are located in the summary and review**

Officially back in the arms of her vampire boyfriend Magnus, Sunny finds she still can't forget the gentle mortal Jayden who once saved her life. When darkness threatens to steal his humanity, Sunny must make a choice: stay true to her love, or defy him in a desperate attempt to save Jayden's soul.
Meanwhile, the Blood Coven is gearing up for a showdown with a splinter group of Slayer Inc. It's Vampires vs. Slayers in a showdown that could cost Sunny not only her heart...but also her life.

Blood Ties is the sixth book in the series, but I read it without having read the first five books. Even though I haven’t read the first five novels in this series, I was still able to understand what was going on in the story.

One of the best parts of this story was the character development. Mancusi did an amazing job writing her characters realistically. Sunny is so stubborn, but she is so herself that I couldn’t help but like her. All of the characters were written really well and I don’t have a complaint.

At times, Blood Ties was slow and I just wanted to get it over with but I stuck in there and at the end, the novel was ultimately really good. However, I don’t recommend doing what I did. I think that if you want to read Blood Ties, you should read the first books in the series first.

FTC- Received for book tour.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Crush Control by Jennifer Jabaley

imageWillow has spent most of her life as her mother's sidekick in a popular Las Vegas hypnotism show. So when she and her mom move back to their sleepy southern hometown to start over, she thinks she's in for a life of quiet normalcy. Except that her new life turns out to be anything but, when she kinda sorta hypnotizes Quinton, the hottest guy on the football team, to fall madly, deeply, head over heels in love with her. But what started out as an innocent way to make her best friend, Max, jealous soon gets way out of hand, and Willow begins to wonder if the mind - and more importantly, the heart - is something you can really control.

I love Jennifer’s first novel Lipstick Apology so I was beyond excited to read Crush Control. Though I didn’t like Crush Control as much as I liked Lipstick Apology, it was sill awesome.

I loved reading about Willow’s hypnotism escapades. Willow was a strong character, but she did sometimes annoy me. She seemed really life like, which is good- but because of her personality I got annoyed. Willow’s best friend Max, was so adorable. From the very start of the novel I could see why Willow was attracted to him. All of the characters in Crush Control were written very well. Even the characters who weren’t incredibly important had their own individual personalities and voice.

Crush Control is the perfect quick summer read! I wasn’t able to put it down. I highly recommend Crush Control, the writing is realistic and the story is memorable.

FTC- Bought.