Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (12)

Waiting on WednesdayWaiting on Wednesday is an amazing weekly topic that is brought to you by Jill @ Breaking the Spine.

imageThe Thing About the Truth by Lauren Barnholdt

July 10, 2012

Sixteen-year-old Kelsey Romano has always been one of the most popular girls at Concordia Prep. But after a disastrous breakup and her subsequent meltdown (um, destruction of school property, anyone?) she's kicked out of Con Prep and shipped off to Concordia High School, for good.
Seventeen-year-old Isaac Brandano has been kicked out of more prep schools than he can name. But now that his father's State Senate campaign is pushing a public school agenda, Isaac finds himself enrolled at Concordia High.
Kelsey and Isaac are destined to hate each other. And at first, they do. But when they are forced together on the creation of a new school club, sparks begin to fly. Then the club's critical event turns into chaos. Now Kelsey and Isaac must retrace their steps and figure out how and why everything got so got screwed up, who was to blame, and how they can move forward.

Lauren Barnholdt is an awesome author. I’ve loved all of her books that I’ve read, and I can’t wait to read this one. It sounds amazing!

You can add The Thing About the Truth on Goodreads here.

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Poison Eaters:And Other Stories by Holly Black

imagePoisonous girls whose kisses will kill. A fateful eating contest with the devil. Faeries who return to Ironside, searching for love. A junior prom turned bacchanalia. In twelve short stories, eerie and brimming with suspense and unexpected humor, Holly Black twists the fantastical creatures you thought you knew in ways you’ll never expect.

I love anthologies like mad. They make me unbelievable happy because you have so many storylines in one place. So I was automatically excited to read The Poison Eaters.

Holly Black is an amazing author. Her stories are all so well written and full of life (not always literally). Every single character in this book of short stories is incredibly well developed and relatable. Though many of her stories cover ‘dark’ topics, there is always something incredibly… light about her writing.

I think my favorite story out of this book is the first one, The Coldest Girl in Coldtown. It’s dark, slightly disturbing, and completely enthralling. These stories stem from faeries, demons, and other paranormal creates that I normally don’t enjoy reading about. Holly’s stories on the other hand, hit spot on. I didn’t mind reading about the paranormal creatures she wrote about.

The Poison Eaters And Other Stories is an impeccable book. I highly recommend it.

FTC- Bought.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Vast Fields of Ordinary by Nick Burd

imageIt's Dade's last summer at home. He has a crappy job at Food World, a "boyfriend" who won't publicly acknowledge his existence (maybe because Pablo also has a girlfriend), and parents on the verge of a divorce. College is Dade's shining beacon of possibility, a horizon to keep him from floating away.
Then he meets the mysterious Alex Kincaid. Falling in real love finally lets Dade come out of the closet - and, ironically, ignites a ruthless passion in Pablo. But just when true happiness has set in, tragedy shatters the dreamy curtain of summer, and Dade will use every ounce of strength he's gained to break from his past and start fresh with the future.

After months of people telling me to read The Vast Fields of Ordinary, I finally did. And I did not regret it! The Vast Fields of Ordinary is beautifully written. The story is believable, and so are the characters. This novel will touch your heart. It had me laughing, crying, and dying for more.

Nick Burd is an extremely talented writer. Dade was such a heartfelt character. I felt so bad for him. At some parts, I just wanted to jump into the novel and give him a big hug.Pablo was so cringe-worthy. I wanted to jump into the book and hit him in the face every time he did something stupid. Which was a lot. Alex Kincaid was fun! I also really like his last name.

Nick Burd is an amazing writer. The Vast Fields of Ordinary is an amazing novel. It's meaningful, well written, and amazingly addictive.


Thursday, November 24, 2011

A Thanksgiving Guest Post with Mary Lindsey

Today is Thanksgiving for the United States, and I’m lucky enough to have Mary Lindsey here for a guest post. Mary is here to tell you all what she’s thankful for.



I Am So Thankful

image2011 has been a crazy year--wonderful and crazy. I could go on and on about things for which I'm grateful, but I'll narrow it down to people who have kept me sane through this amazing time leading up to the release of my debut novel. I'll refrain from getting gushy and keep this super short. 

First, I'm thankful for my agent, Ammi-Joan Paquette. who has believed in me from day one even more than I believe in myself sometimes. She's always there for me with a "hooray" or a "hang in there." 

Next, there is Jill Santopolo, executive editor of Philomel books at Penguin, who loved my book enough to take it on and make it ready for the world. 

Of course there are my precious children, Emily, Hannah, and Robert who have endured lots of strangeness leading up to this book release. 

Last, and certainly not least, is my dear, sweet, patient husband, Laine, who has never stopped believing I could do it--not even for a second. 

I'm also grateful for Zoe, who was kind enough to host this stop on the Shattered Souls Teen Book Scene blog tour. 

I wish everyone a glorious Thanksgiving Day. 


Thank you so much for stopping by Zoe’s Book Reviews, Mary.

You can find Mary Lindsey online, here

You can find more information about Shattered Souls, on goodreads, here.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (11)

Waiting on WednesdayWaiting on Wednesday is an amazing weekly topic that is brought to you by Jill @ Breaking the Spine.

Level Two by Lenore Appelhans


Simon and Schuster

In Level Two, the liminal place between our world (Level One) and heaven, Felicia spends her days reliving her memories from the security of her pod—until she gets broken out by Julian, a boy she met on Earth.

Though there isn’t a cover or final release date for this novel, I can’t wait to get my hands on it! Lenore is an amazing person, and a blogger! She blogs at Presenting Lenore.

Level Two sounds awesome, and I honestly can’t wait to get my hands on it.

You can add Level Two on Goodreads here.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

An Interview with Beth Revis

I was looking through the old archives of my email inbox and realized that in January (like, January 2011) I interviewed Beth Revis, author of the amazing book Across the Universe. I never posted the interview. I don’t know why I didn’t post it. Needless to say, here is said interview with Beth Revis!


image1. When did you know that you wanted to write a Sci-Fi book?

When I was in the middle of it! I didn't intend to write a sci fi--the book just ended up being that way!

2. If you had to make a choice to be frozen or not, what would you choose?

I....really don't think I would. I like my life here! But I can see if things took a turn for the worse, maybe...

3. The cover is gorgeous, did you have any input on to how the design would be?

They did ask for my input, but I'm not a graphic designer at ALL and so I was happy to see what the creative geniuses at Penguin could do!

4.Describe Across the Universe in 5 words.

A murder space!


Here is a summary of Beth’s novel Across the Universe. The sequel to Across the Universe, A Million Suns, is coming out on January 10, 2012.

image      Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules. Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone - one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship - tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn't do something soon, her parents will be next. Now, Amy must race to unlock Godspeed's hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there's only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Magnolia League by Katie Crouch

imageAfter the death of her free-spirited mother, sixteen-year-old Alex Lee must leave her home in northern California to live with her wealthy grandmother in Savannah, Georgia. By birth, Alex is a rightful, if unwilling, member of the Magnolia League, Savannah's long-standing debutante society. She quickly discovers that the Magnolias have made a pact with a legendary hoodoo family, the Buzzards. The Magnolias enjoy youth, beauty and power. But at what price?
As in her popular adult novels, Crouch's poignant and humorous voice shines in this seductively atmospheric story about girls growing up in a magical Southern city.

I was reluctant to start reading The Magnolia League, because I thought it wasn’t going to live up to all the hype I had heard about it. Luckily, Katie Crouch’s writing came through. The Magnolia League was a fast paced novel. It captured southern essence perfectly. The little southern hierarchy thing that was going on was both creeping and alluring, and I loved reading about it.

My biggest problem with The Magnolia League was that Alex’s background was stereotypical. Alex leaves California after her mom dies to go and live with her grandmother in Savanna, Georgia. When she was still living with her mom in California, they were considered hippies. It’s that part of her background that I don’t agree with. We’re told that she grew up on a communal-type land where her and her mom grew plants. I know that there are communal-type places in California, but it seems like having the character grow up in one of those places follows a stereotype.

Other than that, I really enjoyed The Magnolia League. I liked how mysterious it was. Katie Crouch is als a really good writer. There was amazing character development, and I think she described the atmosphere of the south perfectly.

FTC- Received from publisher.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Spotlight on Harper Teen

harperspotlightThis is a series of posts (over the course of weeks, months, etc.) in which I spotlight books coming out that I can’t wait for. These posts will go by publisher. If you click on the book title, you will get linked to the books page on Goodreads. This series of posts are inspired by Absconditas weekly meme “Spotlight On”.

imageThe Selection by Kiera Cass

April 24, 2012

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in the palace and compete for the heart of the gorgeous Prince Maxon.
But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.
Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself- and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.


imageEndlessly by Kiersten White

July 24, 2012

The third book in the Paranormalcy trilogy.
The final chapter of Evie's adventures. Old friends, new ones, all wrapped up in impossible decisions. And some ball gowns. Because what's a life of normal and paranormal drama without a ball gown or two?





imageSmashed by Lisa Luedeke

August 1, 2012

Maine high school senior Katie Martin is set to win a field hockey scholarship until her life is derailed by drinking, a car accident, and an angry classmate.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Foiled (Hello, Gorgeous #2) by Taylor Morris

imageMickey's thrilled to have some female friends for a change. But things get a little too close for comfort when her mom goes and hires Lizbeth to work at the salon. Mickey's worried that Lizbeth is stealing her thunder. After all, Lizbeth is everything Mickey isn't-outgoing, bubbly, and quick-on-her-feet. But when Mickey tries too hard to outshine her, things backfire in a hair-raising way!

I officially love this series! Taylor Morris has done a fantastic job writing Mickey’s story. I loved reading about Mickey and her friends. I loved how the story was fun, but still interesting and sent really good messages.

Even though Mickey kept getting herself into sticky situations, she still manages to keep her head on her shoulders. Sure, they sometimes cause her to question what’s right and what’s wrong- but ultimately she makes well thought-out decisions.

I love how Taylor Morris writes. I really enjoyed the first book in the Hello, Gorgeous series- and I think I liked this one even more. I’m really interested in reading Taylor’s other novels. If how much I liked Foiled is any telling, I should love her other novels*.

You should totally check out the Hello, Gorgeous series. It’s geared towards a younger audience, but don’t let that stop you. Foiled is an awesome book!

FTC- Received from author.


*I’m reading one of her other books, BFF Breakup right now.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines

imageA Lesson Before Dying, is set in a small Cajun community in the late 1940s.  Jefferson, a young black man, is an unwitting party to a liquor store shoot out in which three men are killed; the only survivor, he is convicted of murder and sentenced to death.  Grant Wiggins, who left his hometown for the university, has returned to the plantation school to teach.  As he struggles with his decision whether to stay or escape to another state, his aunt and Jefferson's godmother persuade him to visit Jefferson in his cell and impart his learning and his pride to Jefferson before his death.  In the end, the two men forge a bond as they both come to understand the simple heroism of resisting—and defying—the expected.

I had to read this book for class, so generally I had apprehensions about if I would like it or not. I’m happy to say that I really enjoyed A Lesson Before Dying. It is impeccably well written. Though this is a simple story, it packs a big punch. Though I only read a few pages of it a day, I found myself always thinking about it.

Gant is an amazing character and watching him grow throughout the story was really interesting. I loved how he transformed from someone who see’s his life as dim to someone who’s excited about his future.

A Lesson Before Dying was an incredibly amazing novel. Both the story and the characters are extremely well written. I recommend A Lesson Before Dying, even if you aren’t into adult books.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Every You, Every Me by David Levithan

imageIn this high school-set psychological tale, a tormented teen named Evan starts to discover a series of unnerving photographs—some of which feature him. Someone is stalking him . . . messing with him . . . threatening him. Worse, ever since his best friend Ariel has been gone, he's been unable to sleep, spending night after night torturing himself for his role in her absence. And as crazy as it sounds, Evan's starting to believe it's Ariel that's behind all of this, punishing him. But the more Evan starts to unravel the mystery, the more his paranoia and insomnia amplify, and the more he starts to unravel himself.

I love how every book that David Levithan publishes is so original. I imagine that his mind is like a mecca for amazing ideas. It is probably known by most of you that I am a huge David Levithan fan. That being said, I honestly really liked Every You, Every Me. It’s not every day that a book like this is published- one that has pictures, as well as a thrilling story.

Evan is a wild character, and not in the crazy-does-stupid-things way. He’s realistic in a brutally honest way. It was refreshing. I read Every You, Every Me in a few hours. It was creepy, well written, and inventive. I wish it would have been written a little smoother, but in a way, I think having it be kind of choppy is good. It isn’t a fluffy, everything-is-alright type of book. And, I think we need books that don’t sugar coat things.

I view reading Every You, Every Me as an experience. You read this fantastic story, and you have the pictures to go along with it. David Levithan’s writing is amazing, but I have to give props to the photographer, Jonathan Farmer. I’m not familiar with Jonathan Farmer’s work, but after seeing the pictures presented in this novel, I want to be. The pictures are dark, mysterious, and completely alluring. Without them, there would simply be no novel.

Every You, Every Me is a fantastic novel that will leave you wanting more. Evan is an interesting main character that you won’t forget! The pictures presented in this piece of literature are as breathtaking as the writing. I can’t recommend Every You, Every Me enough.

FTC- Bought.


*Also, the title of this book is taken from an amazing Placebo song. You should listen to it.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Yep, it’s that time of year again my lovely readers. National Novel Writing Month. NaNoWriMo. The one set month a year in which I put myself through loads of stress to produce a novel that in all honesty, will never see the light of day.

Day 1 of NaNo is almost over, and I’m already a hideous ball of stress. I still need to do homework, finish a book, and meet my word count quota for the day- and it’s nearly 11pm. I’m not sure what I’m writing, I’m not confident at all because I’m not sure what I’m writing- but hey, welcome to NaNo.

So, I should really get back to writing. Are any of you doing NaNoWriMo? Have any of you never heard of NaNoWriMo before? If you are doing NaNoWriMo, what’s your username? (You should add me as a buddy, by the way. My username is zoealea.)


Happy writing!