Friday, July 31, 2015

Review: Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sachar

First, thanks to Delacorte Books for Young Readers and Edelweiss for allowing me to read an egalley of this title.  I was excited for it because I loved Holes and Small Steps by this author. And the idea behind it really grabbed my interest as a science fiction reader and former science teacher.  And while the idea was really great, and there were some good parts to the story, I was left a little disappointed and feeling like the story was too short and too rushed.  I feel it needed more, just more  More depth, more story, something. 

There are two main characters. Tamaya, a 5th grade girl, and Marshall, a 7th grade boy.  Tamaya is a good girl, she likes rules, likes doing what she is supposed to do.  And one of those things is that she has to walk to and from school with Marshall, and not walk through the woods.  Marshall is a pretty normal 7th grade boy, but he is being bullied by a new kid at school named Chad. And on the day the story starts, Chad has told Marshall that he is going to meet him on a certain corner on his normal route home from school and beat him up.  So Marshall decides that he's going to go through the woods and avoid that place.  Tamaya has to go with him, as she doesn't want to walk by herself.  Unfortunately, once they get in the woods, it's almost like they get a little lost. And then, even worse, Chad shows up, and starts beating up Marshall. Tamaya doesn't know what to do, so she sees this mud that looks fuzzy, and throws it in Chad's face, and then she and Marshall take off for home. 

However, the hand that she used to grab the mud is now all tingly, even after she washes it up. And then sores start popping up on her skin. So she tries different creams and bandages, but nothing seems to do much for it.  The next day at school it seems that Chad never made it to school.  With what is happening to her hand, she has a feeling what might have happened.  When Marshall refuses to do what Tamaya knows is the right thing, go look for him, or else tell someone, she goes into the woods herself.  And from there, well all heck breaks loose.

Interspersed within the story are records of a political hearing about the people who made the stuff that is called fuzzy mud. And it is interesting.  But I'd like to maybe have the scientists in the story more. 

A good story, might be a good read for a reluctant reader because of how quick the story is, without a lot of extras.  But it really doesn't have the heart that Holes did, which has always been a good book for reluctant readers itself.  So it was an okay read, but nothing special, and not what I have come to expect from this author.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Cover Reveal: Dangerous Games by D'Ann Burrow

BOOK and AUTHOR INFO:

Dangerous Games by D’Ann Burrow
(Secrets and Lies, #2)
Publication date: September 28th 2015
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Young Adult

Synopsis:
Kennedy Thatcher is leaving Piney Bluff, Texas. In September, she wanted nothing more than to go back home to California, but things have changed.

Two weeks ago

Kennedy broke Rule #1. She used her gift to save a life. Her secret is no longer secret. Her mother once tried to warn her – using her ability was dangerous. No one could know what she could do. Now Kennedy is paying the price.

Two days ago

Tanner Shields helped Kennedy rescue a friend by skipping school and driving to New Orleans. His entire future is at risk when he’s benched during the most important football game of his life. He’s lost the chance for a scholarship and a way out of town.

Two hours ago

Kennedy made a bargain to save Tanner’s future. When she agrees to return home with her father, she’s forced to ask herself the most important question of all – who can she trust?

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25699380-dangerous-games


AUTHOR BIO:
I’m a fan of things that go bump in the night—at least I like to read and write about them. I write both Young Adult and New Adult romances, frequently with a paranormal twist. (No vampires or werewolves allowed…I see enough of them when I watch The Vampire Diaries, and can any other vampire really compare with Damon Salvatore?)

My preschool teachers began to worry a bit when I said that I wanted to be a witch when I grew up and my favorite color was black. Thankfully, my imagination still gets a good workout when I write about the secrets people keep. And don’t we all have a few secrets?

When I grow up, my dream is to work at the Haunted Mansion. Until then, watching Ghost Hunters will have to count as research.
Author Links:
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/DKBurrow
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/dannkburrow
Website:  http://www.dkburrow.com/

Cover designed by Okay Creations.


Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday - The Rule of Mirrors (The Vault of Dreamers #2) by Caragh M. O'Brien

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases that we're eagerly awaiting.  My choice this week is the sequel to a book I got at BEA back in the summer of 2014, The Vault of Dreamers.  It was an interesting story, even if it wasn't quite what I'd expected, and I'd really like to see where the story goes next.  Here is the blurb from Goodreads:

The fast-paced, psychologically thrilling sequel to The Vault of Dreamers follows Rosie after her consciousness has been split in two.

The entire country was watching when Rosie Sinclair was expelled from Forge, the prestigious arts school that doubles as a reality TV show. But few know how Dean Berg was mining students' dreams in laboratories deep below the school. And no one, least of all the Dean himself, knows that when Rosie's dreams were seeded into the mind of another patient, Rosie's consciousness woke up in that body--a girl far from Forge, a girl with a completely different life from Rosie, a girl who is pregnant.

Told from alternating points of view between Rosie as she makes sense of her new identity and the shattered subconscious that still exists in her old body, this sequel to The Vault of Dreamers will keep readers on the edge of their seats and leave them hungry for more.


I'm really excited to see just how this story will go on.  Because it seemed as if Rosie was gone at the end, yet here it seems like she will get a new chance, even if not as herself really, or at least not in her own body.  

So, what book are you eagerly awaiting this week?

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Review: The Young Elites by Marie Lu

I was able to get an ARC of this book through a trade with Emily at Falling for YA.  It was one that I was very excited to read.  Although so far I've only read Legend by Marie Lu, I really liked that one so much, that I just had to get ahold of this one.  Unfortunately I wasn't as blown away this time.  By the end of the book I was definitely drawn in enough that I'll have to read the next book to see what happens though. 

This is a fantasy story set in a world ten year after a horrible disease/plague has either killed or left with major scars.  The types of scars usually include things like hair colors, but can also be things such as losing an eye.  And some of the children who survived not only have strange markings, but also may have powers.  These children are called malfettos, and the king and queen want to rid the world of them.  They may not all have powers, but those that do could be a serious threat to the king and queen.  You see the prince is one, and he wants revenge on his sister who kept him from becoming king due to his new deformity/power.  His name is Enzo, and he is one with the strange powers.  In fact he calls himself and those he has gathered for his revenge, The Young Elites.  Adelina is truly the main character though.  She lost an eye and her hair turned silver.  She has a younger sister who seemed to have survived with no markings or any changes.  And so their father has always treated her younger sister, Violetta, much better.  Until one day Adelina hears a plan of her father's that she wants no part of, and so she tries to run away. But when her father catches her, her powers manifest and she kills him.  But in doing so, she is caught by the king and queen's Inquisitors and taken to be killed.  There she meets Teren, the head Inquisitor.  Teren is a malfetto himself, but his power is more well hidden. And he does the queen's bidding, as he is in love with her, and thinks she is in love with him. 

When the Young Elites save Adelina from her execution, she is taken back to their hideout where they will try to train her and see if she can be of use in their plans.  But she will not know if she is really being accepted, or if she must only do what is in her own, as well as her sister's best interest for themselves. 

The powers were definitely interesting.  The story itself had great detail and description.  I just don't know how I feel about the love story, seems almost forced to me unfortunately.  And really, I just don't know if I like Adelina that much, or even her sister towards the end of the book.  But there is enough left hanging, and characters that I do like, that I need to know what will happen next.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Review: Crystal Kingdom (Kanin Chronicles #3) by Amanda Hocking

First, thanks to St. Martin's Griffin and Edelweiss for allowing me to read an egalley of this final book in the Kanin Chronicles.  As I mentioned in the review for the 2nd book, Ice Kissed, that I finished right before I started this one, I just love this author and her writing.  And I have to say that this ending didn't disappoint me at all.  Again, if you haven't read the first two books yet, there are definitely going to be things you won't want to read about in this review.  So you should go back and start with my review of the first book in the series, Frostfire, in that case.

Of course at the end of the last book Bryn was accused of being guilty of treason, and now she had to flee her home and try to prove her innocence.  Once out of danger and on the run, she is joined by Konstantin, her one time enemy, who now seems to be the only one she may be able to trust in this mess.  The two of them try to work with some of the other troll tribes to get the true mastermind and guilty one, Queen Mina, out of control.  But it will take finding some kind of actual proof of the Queen's treachery, as well as finding which other tribes or members of tribes are not already part of Queen Mina's revengeful scheme.  She will work to avenge the death of her friend Kaspar, and will even call on help from her friend's family back in the Trylle kingdom, so we get to go back and see some of my favorite characters from the Trylle books.  The characters that really got me hooked on Hocking's books.

In the final battle, because there will be one, she will have allies in those that she has helped in the past, but will lose loved ones as they fight to save those they love.  And she will find true love, and work to set her kingdom right as it should be in the best way that she can.  Another great series by Amanda Hocking, one that I could not bear to put down even though I did have to work and sleep at some times. 

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Stacking the Shelves - July 26th, 2015

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews.  It is a way for us to share the new books we have collected.  This week I got several physical books, a few free e-books, and no egalleys.  I also got these cool Pop figures:





Physical books:








I've been wanting to read the new companion series to Flowers in the Attic, and I know that Secret Brother is one of them.  I just didn't realize the other two I'd seen were supposed to be before this one.  So guess I'll be on the lookout for them.  I'm hoping that I didn't already buy Red Hill, but I've wanted to read it for awhile, and it was on the bargain table for like $5, so I had to grab it.  I got Prodigy through the Books for Trade tag.  I've tried really hard to keep the coloring books out of my house so that I don't waste time on them, but I love peacocks so had to buy this one.  Broken Trust is by my friend Michelle Sodaro, and I finally was able to get together with her since she got them so that I could buy one.  And the last one is just a sampler of the actual Black Widow book that they were giving out at my bookstore during the Pop Culture Fangirl event.  

Ebooks:



Both of those were free ebooks.  They sound pretty good.  

So, what books did you add to your shelves this week?

Saturday, July 25, 2015

U.S. Virtual Road Trip- Day 25- Missouri

Hey everyone, haven't had time to blog today.  I had a great writing date with my friend that helped me back in November to actually win NaNoWriMo in the morning, which led to me uploading 4 more chapters of that novel to Wattpad HERE.  And then this afternoon we had my stepmom's birthday party.  But I wanted to make sure to check in and send everyone over to a post I got to be a part of at Reading Away the Days.  You can learn all about my lovely home state of Missouri!





Only one thing I have to do a little correction on, I listed author Heather Brewer as living in Missouri, but recently she has come out to the public as being transgender, and she is now a he, as in Zac Brewer.  So forgive me for the info in the post as I sent my information to Megan before the announcement.