Thursday, July 31, 2014

Delightful Discoveries #73

Delightful Discoveries are books that I have discovered recently... old, new, just released... from blogs, Goodreads, libraries, friends, or bookstores. 

A Wicked ThingA Wicked Thing by Rhiannon Thomas 


A spinning wheel. A prick of a finger. A terrible curse.

One hundred years after falling asleep, Princess Aurora wakes up to the kiss of a handsome prince and a broken kingdom that has been dreaming of her return. All the books say that she should be living happily ever after. But as Aurora understands all too well, the truth is nothing like the fairytale.

Her family is long dead. Her “true love” is a kind stranger. And her whole life has been planned out by political foes while she slept. Everyone expects Aurora to marry her betrothed and restore magic and peace to the kingdom before revolution tears it apart. But after a lifetime spent locked in a tower for her own safety, Aurora longs for the freedom to make her own choices. When she meets a handsome rebel, he tempts her to abandon everything for a different kind of life.

As Aurora struggles to make sense of her new world, she begins to fear that the curse has left its mark on her, a fiery and dangerous thing that might be as wicked as the witch who once ensnared her.

With her wedding day drawing near, Aurora must make the ultimate decision on how to save her kingdom: marry the prince or run.

The Wrong Side of Right
The Wrong Side Of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne

Kate Quinn’s mom died unexpectedly last year, leaving Kate grasping. But when the totally unexpected shows up in her living room, Kate must confront another reality she never thought possible—or thought of at all. Moving in with a politically powerful family she never knew she had, joining a presidential campaign in support of a man she barely knows, and falling for a rebellious boy who may not have the purest motives—this is Kate’s new life. But who is Kate? When what she truly believes flies in the face of the campaign’s talking points, Kate must decide. Does she turn to the family she barely knows, the boy she knows but doesn’t necessarily trust, or face a third, even scarier option?

Set against a backdrop of politics and family conflict, this is a story of personal responsibility, delicious, complicated romance, and trying to discover who you are even as everyone tells you who you should be.

An Ember in the Ashes
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Set in a terrifyingly brutal Rome-like world, An Ember in the Ashes is an epic fantasy debut about an orphan fighting for her family and a soldier fighting for his freedom. It’s a story that’s literally burning to be told.

LAIA is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire’s greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution.

ELIAS is the academy’s finest soldier— and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he’s ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor.

When Laia and Elias’s paths cross at the academy, they find that their destinies are more intertwined than either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself.

Vow your blood and body to the empire.

Keep your heart for yourself.

A Beauty So Beastly (The Beastly Series, #1)

A Beauty so Beastly by RaShelle Workman

The stunning Beatrice Cavanaugh is considered American royalty. She has everything except the ability to love. Cursed on her eighteenth birthday, she becomes more beastly than ever, having a newfound craving for raw meat, and an undeniable yearning for the night. Bitterness is her only companion.

After accusing a maid of stealing, a disgustingly kind and exquisitely handsome guy named Adam shows up asking Beatrice to drop the charges against his mother.

Infuriated by his goodness, Beatrice vows to break him. Destroy him. Make him hurt the way she hurts. So she agrees. On one condition: Adam must take his mother’s place as a servant in the mansion.

Because Beatrice won’t stop until he’s more beastly than she is.

The Secrets We Keep
The Secrets We Keep by Trisha Leaver 

Seventeen-year-old Ella Lawton spent her entire life living in the shadows of her identical twin sister's popularity, but she never dreamed of having Maddy’s life; never wanted it. In fact, she’s spent the last three years trying to separate herself from the group at school Maddy has chosen, preferring the quiet, safe confines of her sketchbook and the company of her best friend, Josh, to the constant battle for attention and popularity that has defined her sister’s life.

When a heated argument and a tragic accident leaves her sister dead, Ella wakes up in the hospital surrounded by friends and loved ones who believe she is Maddy. She is overwhelmed by their joy when they realize she will live - a joy Ella is sure she would not see if they knew the truth, that it is Ella who survived, not her lovable, popular sister. After what she has done, she cannot bring herself to cause even more heartache and in that moment she makes the gut wrenching decision to assume her sister’s life. Navigating her sister’s popularity and boyfriend are hard enough, but Ella soon realizes that Maddy’s life is full of secrets that have kept her popularity intact while slowly destroying her from the inside out. Caught in a web of lies and with no escape in sight, Ella is faced with two options - confess her deception and risk the hatred and betrayal of those around her, or give up all of her own dreams and continue down the destructive path her sister's life has mapped out for her.

Review: Landry Park by Bethany Hagen

Landry ParkTitle:  Landry Park
Author: Bethany Hagen

Publisher: Dial

Publishing Date: February 2, 2014   
Pages: 374
Genre:  YA Dystopian

Series: Landry Park #1

Source: Audio

In a fragmented future United States ruled by the lavish gentry, seventeen-year-old Madeline Landry dreams of going to the university. Unfortunately, gentry decorum and her domineering father won't allow that. Madeline must marry, like a good Landry woman, and run the family estate. But her world is turned upside down when she discovers the devastating consequences her lifestyle is having on those less fortunate. As Madeline begins to question everything she has ever learned, she finds herself increasingly drawn to handsome, beguiling David Dana. Soon, rumors of war and rebellion start to spread, and Madeline finds herself and David at the center of it all. Ultimately, she must make a choice between duty - her family and the estate she loves dearly - and desire.

This was a book I wanted to read but really didn't know what to expect. Dystopian- check, cool cover- check, intresting synopsis- check. So I picked up the audio and gave it go to see where it would take me. I really really enjoyed this book. There are few times in todays reading world where I find a book that really stands out in the genre as original. This one had that for me. It was a dystopian, it had all the main elements, but the actual story and setting stood out for me. So did the characters.

Madeline lives in a world divided by society and class. Not much changed there. The lower class repressed and the upper class living it up. Again nothing new. However in this story more is at stake when you are part of the lower class, the way you live is completely controlled by the upper class. Madeline is a part of that upper class and though she doesn't like to get into the grit of lower class living, she loves her family and her estate. She has bigger dreams, she wants to go to school, to learn, but her father wants her trained to run the household. The story begins with Madeline finding a way to win her fathers approval for school. The deeper the story goes the messier things get and Madeline finds her pretty good world sucks. 

It's a dystopian. There are certian elements maintained to ensure that the story is a dypstopian, but it doesn't read so much as so. It reads elegant and full of mystery and intrique. The story is told in the future but it feels like the past. There is much of a historical feel. That was one of the things that I loved about this book. I felt I was in an alternate past and really happy that it wasn't a past part of my world, because it sucked. The author did a wonderful job creating the setting and the tone of this book and that's what drew me into this book the most. 

The story was pretty unique for a dystopian. Those are rare these days since the market is flooded with dystopians. There are a handfuls of really good ones and I think this one made my list of loved dystopians. What I found refreshing about this dystopian was that it wasn't all doom and gloom. The ones that had it good were pretty much in the dark and going through their lives all smiles. This makes sense in a dystopian world, we just don't see this much in the stories. We see the gloom and doom end of the story not the happily blind end. What I would have liked to know more of was how the world became what it was. There wasn't really much background and I am not one that likes to read a book that has gone overboard on the details, but bit more than some is a good start.

I liked the main character, she wasn't hard to like. I didn't have any moments of yelling at her, hoping she would wise up, or sadness for her. She was very likable. I do wish she would have been a bit more emotionally unsound. I felt at times she was a bit too strong and to grounded. She was a very sweet and honorable character. She cared about everyone and made sure not to step on toes but also did what she had to when it came to standing up for herself. Likable yes, amazing in some ways but not so much in others. She could use some work but still very likable. 

I wasn't completely vested in the romance either. The story to me was more about Madeline and her journey from spoiled (but still sweet) girl to a girl who wants to make a difference. So the romance was really background for me. I felt there wasn't much meat to the romance and it could have been done a bit better, but like I said it didn't matter, it didn't take away from the story. 

So what won me over with this book. The story, the setting, the tone. This is highly irregular of me. Generally characters win me over, but this time it was definitely the story and what came with it. 

Loved it, can't wait for more!

Bethany Hagen

I'm a born and bred Kansas Citian, meaning I can tolerate jazz for brief amounts of time and I'm offended by dry rub barbecue. I grew up reading Charlotte Bronte, Jane Austen, and all things King Arthur. When I’m not working at the library or running around with the kids and the husband, I’m writing or thinking about writing.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #117

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

I Can't wait for:

Stone Cove Island
Stone Cove Island by Suzanne Meyers

When a catastrophic hurricane devastates Stone Cove Island, a quaint New England resort community, everyone pulls together to rebuild. Seventeen-year-old Eliza Elliot volunteers to clean out the island's iconic lighthouse and stumbles upon a secret in the wreckage: a handwritten letter. On first glance, it hardly makes sense. But the longer Eliza studies it, the more convinced she becomes that it's an anonymous confession to a 30-year-old crime: the unsolved murder of a local teen named Bess Linsky.
Soon Eliza finds herself in the throes of an investigation she never wanted or asked for. As Stone Cove Island fights to recover from disaster, Eliza plunges the locals back into a nightmare they believed was long buried.
Everybody is a suspect. Everywhere she turns, there might be an enemy. And everything she ever believed about her home is false

What are you waiting for?

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Teaser Tuesday #113 and Top Ten Tuesday #103

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Should Be Reading. Bloggers choose two
sentences out of our current read to peak others' curiosity.

Stitching Snow
Stitching Snow by R.C. Lewis 


Princess Snow is missing.
Her home planet is filled with violence and corruption at the hands of King Matthias and his wife as they attempt to punish her captors. The king will stop at nothing to get his beloved daughter back—but that’s assuming she wants to return at all.
Essie has grown used to being cold. Temperatures on the planet Thanda are always sub-zero, and she fills her days with coding and repairs for the seven loyal drones that run the local mines.
When a mysterious young man named Dane crash-lands near her home, Essie agrees to help the pilot repair his ship. But soon she realizes that Dane’s arrival was far from accidental, and she’s pulled into the heart of a war she’s risked everything to avoid. With the galaxy’s future—and her own—in jeopardy, Essie must choose who to trust in a fiery fight for survival.

We walked to the street, and I enjoyed the quiet while Dimwit scurried amongst some empty supply crates. The Drone's four spider-legs made it faster and more agile than I'd ever be, but it lagged behind a distracted puppy, its optic lenses swiveling to take in scenery that never changed. 

Top Ten is an original feature/weekly meme created here at
The Broke and the Bookish that features a great bookish top ten every week.

Top Ten Authors I own or read the most of. (some are just large series) 

1. Kimberly Derting

2. Mari Mancusi
3. Louise Rennison
4. Stephanie Meyer 
5. Cat Patrick
6. Malene Perez
7. Melissa Marr
8. John Green
9. Holly Black
10. Laurie Faria Stolarz

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Stacking the Shelves #80

Stacking The Shelves is a hosted by Tynga's Reviews. Come join the fun and share all the book you received this week. 

For Review:

Tear You Apart
Tear You Apart by Sarah Cross


An edgy fairy tale retelling of "Snow White" set in the world of Kill Me Softly for fans of Once Upon a Time and Grimm.

Faced with a possible loophole to her "Snow White" curse, Viv goes underground, literally, to find the prince who's fated to rescue her. But is life safe in the Underworld worth the price of sacrficing the love that might kill her?

The Cure for DreamingThe Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters 

Olivia Mead is a headstrong, independent girl—a suffragist—in an age that prefers its girls to be docile. It’s 1900 in Oregon, and Olivia’s father, concerned that she’s headed for trouble, convinces a stage mesmerist to try to hypnotize the rebellion out of her. But the hypnotist, an intriguing young man named Henri Reverie, gives her a terrible gift instead: she’s able to see people’s true natures, manifesting as visions of darkness and goodness, while also unable to speak her true thoughts out loud. These supernatural challenges only make Olivia more determined to speak her mind, and so she’s drawn into a dangerous relationship with the hypnotist and his mysterious motives, all while secretly fighting for the rights of women. Winters breathes new life into history once again with an atmospheric, vividly real story, including archival photos and art from the period throughout.


WinterkillCreedLooking for Jack Kerouac


cvAfter the End (After the End #1)Rebel (Reboot, #2)The Murder Complex (The Murder Complex, #1)Torn Away


The Prince of Venice BeachWelcome to the Dark HouseCrane (The Legends Saga, #1)

Imagination Designs