Thursday, January 31, 2019

Blog Tour Review: Catastrophe Queen by Emma Hart


One hot mess. One hot boss. One too many hot encounters...


Catastrophe Queen, an all-new hilarious office romantic comedy from New York Times bestselling author Emma Hart is available now!

Book info:

TitleCatastrophe Queen

Author:  Emma Hart

Genre:  Adult romantic comedy

Release Date:  January 29th, 2019

Source:  E-galley received from Social Butterfly PR which did not influence my opinion

My rating:  4.5 stars


It’s not you. It’s me.
No, seriously. It is me. Not only does my name literally mean “unfortunate,” but that’s the story of my life. 

Everything I touch turns to cr*p. An apartment fire—that I swear I was not responsible for—means I’m living back at home with my s*x-mad parents. Yay, me!

Which is why I need my new job as personal assistant to Cameron Reid to get back on my feet. Three months in this job and I can move back out and, hopefully, remember to turn off my flat iron once in a while. 


On paper, my job is easy. Make coffee. Book appointments. Keep everything in order.

Until I walk in on my boss, half-naked, wearing nothing but the kind of tiny white towel that dreams are made of.

Now, nothing is easy—except our mutual attraction. But he’s my boss, and you know what they say about mixing work and pleasure: unless you do p*rn, it’s just not worth it.

Or is it?


My Review:
Now, I have loved everything I have read by this author so far.  This one did not disappoint!  It started off immediately making me laugh out loud as I read. While I am not clumsy like this main character, so much else about her reminded me of myself, and that is usually what helps me get into the story.  While there were lots of laughs throughout the story, there was a bit in the middle when I wasn't quite as invested as I've been in the other books by this author.  Not sure why, just felt a little bit out of it.  But further into the story, getting sucked into the craziness of Mallory's family, not to mention loving Cameron's as well, I was hooked once again, and couldn't tear myself away.  

Once again I was won over by the hilarious banter and witty dialogue, steamy romance, and the sweet perfection of the man we are meant to fall in love with.  I still think it would be a blast to hang out with this author some day, and hope one day I get the chance to meet her and totally fangirl!

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I took my coffee from the counter and scanned the room for an empty table. There wasn’t one, which killed my chances of wasting more time before I went home.  

With a sigh, I checked my phone for the time and headed for the door. I was going to end up at home earlier than I’d planned, and I needed to check with my mom to make sure there wasn’t anything kinky happening somewhere in the house.  

I’d considered bleaching my eyes enough in the last few weeks, thank you.  

I was fairly sure I was safe because my grandfather and great aunt were coming to stay to celebrate Grandpa’s eightieth birthday. It was still a miracle my exhibitionist mother shared DNA with either of them. Unlike her, they were reserved, polite, and didn’t flash their flesh in the hopes of getting out of a speeding ticket.  

Really, it was no wonder I was a walking disaster.  

I pulled up my messages and clicked on my mom’s name. My thumb was poised to type the burning question of whether or not it was safe to come home when I glanced up.  

And saw the car screeching to a stop, mere inches from me.  

I screamed and stepped back. My heel caught on the curb, sending me toppling backward, and both my coffee and phone went flying. My cup slammed against the sidewalk, splattering hot liquid everywhere right as I managed to save my phone from certain death by concrete.  

My heart was beating so fast it should have exploded, and adrenaline raced through my veins. I gripped my phone against me so tightly that the edges pressed painfully into my skin. 

Oh my God.  

I’d just almost died.  

Maybe slightly dramatic, but I probably wasn’t far wrong. I didn’t even know I’d stepped into the road. When had that happened? Had I really been in that deep into my own little world that I hadn’t even checked for traffic?

Dear God.  

How was I still alive?  

The back door to the sleek, black car that somehow hadn’t run me over swung open. From my vantage position on the sidewalk, the first thing I saw was a pair of shiny, black shoes attached to legs wearing perfectly-pressed, light gray dress pants.  

I dragged my gaze up from the feet, over the door of the perfectly clean car, and stared at the most beautiful man known to humankind.  

Thick, dark, wavy hair covered his head, curling over his ears. Lashes the same dark shade of brown framed impossibly bright-blue eyes that regarded me with a mixture of shock and concern, and my ovaries about exploded when he rubbed a large hand over full pink lips and a stubbled, strong jaw.  

“Miss—I’m so sorry. Are you okay?”  

Scrambling to my feet as he approached me, I tugged down the leg of my pants and grabbed my pursed. “Yes. I mean—it was my fault. I wasn’t paying attention. I’m sorry.”  

He let go of the car door, showing broad shoulders and just how well that gray suit was tailored to him, and picked up my coffee cup. “All the same, I think we can share blame. Are you sure you’re not hurt?”  

Just my dignity, and by this point, I was running low on it anyway. 

I shifted, taking a step back. “I’m fine, really. Thank you.”  

“Can I replace your coffee? Give you a ride anyway to apologize?” His expression was so earnest, his concern so genuine that I almost gave in.  


I had almost walked into the front of his car, then proceeded to embarrass myself in front of everyone on the street.  

“No, no, it’s fine. I’m not far from home.” I clutched my phone and purse straps a little harder. “Again, thank you, but I should be going.”

He nodded as if he understood. “Uh, miss? Did you drop something there?” 

My eyes followed the direction Mr. Dreamboat was pointing. On the side of the road, tucked against the curb, was a pair of white, cotton panties with flamingos on them.  

My white, cotton panties with flamingos on them.  

Swallowing, I met his bright eyes and shook my head. Dear God, please don’t let me blush. “No. I’ve never seen them before.” I backed up a little more. “Thank you for not running me over.”  

Mr. Dreamboat grinned, his eyes brightening with his smile. “I’d never be able to forgive myself if I’d been responsible for running over someone as beautiful as you.” He glanced toward my panties, then winked at me.  

There was no doubting that I was blushing this time around.  

You could fry eggs on my cheeks.  

So I did the only thing any self-respecting, twenty-five-year-old woman who’d just almost been run over, tripped, and dropped her dirty panties could do.

I ran.  

But only like two blocks, because I was in heels, and I had the fitness levels of a hippo.  

Then I grabbed a cab.  

About Emma Hart
Emma Hart is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty novels and has been translated into several different languages.  

She is a mother, wife, lover of wine, Pink Goddess, and valiant rescuer of wild baby hedgehogs.

Emma prides herself on her realistic, snarky smut, with comebacks that would make a PMS-ing teenage girl proud.  

Yes, really. She's that sarcastic.

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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Release Blitz: Moonlight Scandals: a de Vincent Novel by Jennifer L. Armentrout


Moonlight Scandals: a de Vincent novel from New York Times bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout is available now!


It takes a fearless woman to love the most scandalous man alive in New York Times Bestselling Author Jennifer L. Armentrout’s breathtaking novel.

Even a ghost hunter like Rosie Herpin couldn’t have foreseen the fateful meeting between two mourners that has brought her so intimately close to the notorious and seductive Devlin de Vincent. Everyone in New Orleans knows he’s heir to a dark family curse that both frightens and enthralls. To the locals, Devlin is the devil. To Rosie, he’s a man who’s stoking her wildest fantasies. When a brutal attack on her friend is linked to the de Vincents, he becomes a mystery she may be risking her life to solve. 

Devlin knows what he wants from this sexy and adventurous woman. But what does Rosie want from him? It’s a question that becomes more pressing—and more dangerous—when he suspects her of prying into the shadows of his past. 

Now, the legends surrounding the de Vincents may not be myths at all. But if she’s to discover the truth, she must follow them straight into the arms of the man she can’t resist—the handsome devil himself

scandals - an

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Start the Series Today!
Moonlight Sins (de Vincent series, book 1)


About Jennifer L. Armentrout
# 1 New York Times and # 1 International Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Charles Town, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki. In early 2015, Jennifer was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, a group of rare genetic disorders that involve a breakdown and death of cells in the retina, eventually resulting in loss of vision, among other complications.  Due to this diagnosis, educating people on the varying degrees of blindness has become of passion of hers, right alongside writing, which she plans to do as long as she can.  

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Tor, HarperCollins Avon and William Morrow, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her Wicked Series has been optioned by PassionFlix. Jennifer has won numerous awards, including the 2013 Reviewers Choice Award for Wait for You, the 2015 Editor’s Pick for Fall With Me, and the 2014/2015 Moerser-Jugendbuch- Jury award for Obsidian. Her young adult romantic suspense novel DON’T LOOK BACK was a 2014 nominated Best in Young Adult Fiction by YALSA. Her adult romantic suspense novel TILL DEATH was a Amazon Editor’s Pick and iBook Book of the Month. Her young adult contemporary THE PROBLEM WITH FOREVER is a 2017 RITA Award Winner in Young Adult Fiction. She also writes Adult and New Adult contemporary and paranormal romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.  

She is the owner of ApollyCon and The Origin Event, the successful annual events that features over hundred bestselling authors in Young Adult, New Adult, and Adult Fiction, panels, parties, and more. She is also the creator and sole financier of the annual Write Your Way To RT Book Convention, a contest that gives aspiring authors a chance to win a fully paid trip to RT Book Reviews.

  JLA- Credit Franggy Yanez Photography.jpg

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Monday, January 28, 2019

Catastrophe Read-a-thon

I like the idea of this challenge, it ties in with some of my own blogging/reading goals for the year.  As long as I can fit it all in with my review books, I should be able to do it!  It's being sponsored by Olivia at Olivia's Catastrophe.  Here is the info from her blog post:


The catastrophe the read-a-thon is centered around is the TBR Catastrophe! To help solve it we are going to be reading books that have been on our TBRs for too long.


14th – 28th of February. Two weeks of reading!


You can use this hashtag on Twitter, bookstagram or booktube if you’re sharing or participating on those sites! The hashtag is #catreadathon

Reading Prompts

You can read whatever you want, but here are 7 reading challenges to keep you busy.
  1. Read your oldest unread book
  2. Read a 400+ tome
  3. Cover Buy
  4. So old you don’t know where it’s from
  5. An author you know and love
  6. A new to you author
  7. A hyped book
Okay, here are my proposed books to read:

  1. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
  2. Rabbit and Robot by Andrew Smith
  3. Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley
  4. Okay, so there aren't any books I don't know where they came from.  Instead I'll just pick one from a series I need/want to read on in:  Riot  by Jamie Shaw
  5. Moonlight Sins by Jennifer L. Armentrout - didn't know if I'd read this one, but now I really want to after reading about the newest book in the series.
  6. Hot Winter Nights by Codi Gary - it's a short book that I want to check out!
  7. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, I've owned it for a while.  Even accidentally bought a new copy of it when it came out with a pink/red cover instead of the original green one.  So yeah, I need to read it. 
Hopefully I can fit it in with whatever I need to read, I'm a little ahead of my review books at the moment, so I'll try to keep ahead as much as I can, maybe get further ahead if I can!  Maybe I'll even change one of the choices above to a audible book I purchased so I can listen to one.

There are some blog challenges too, I am going to maybe join into these:

16th: 400+ Tomes: Show us the top 5 big books on your TBR.
18th: Cover Buy Discussion: Do covers matter? Show us some bad books with pretty covers and great books with ugly covers. 
20th: Can’t remember where it came from: Tell us where you buy your books and why there?
22nd: Author you know and love: Show us books by your favourite authors you have yet to read!
24th: New to you authors: Show us books on your TBR by authors you’ve never read before!
26th: The Hype Discussion: Are you more or less likely to pick up a book when it is hyped? What hyped books did you like/not like?
28th: Wrap Up: Share your wrap up of the read-a-thon.

There is a Bookstagram challenge.  I'm not great about keeping up with those, but it would be fun to try.  

Review: The Winter of the Witch (Winternight Trilogy #3) by Katherine Arden

Book info:
TitleThe Winter of the Witch
Author:  Katherine Arden
SeriesWinternight Trilogy #3
Genre:  Fairy tale retelling, historical fantasy
Release Date:  January 8th, 2019
Publisher:  Del Rey Books
Source:  Finished copy received from publisher which did not influence my opinion
My rating:  4 stars

Following their adventures in The Bear and the Nightingale and The Girl in the Tower, Vasya and Morozko return in this stunning conclusion to the bestselling Winternight Trilogy, battling enemies mortal and magical to save both Russias, the seen and the unseen.

Reviewers called Katherine Arden’s novels The Bear and the Nightingale and The Girl in the Tower “lyrical,” “emotionally stirring,” and “utterly bewitching.” The Winternight Trilogy introduced an unforgettable heroine, Vasilisa Petrovna, a girl determined to forge her own path in a world that would rather lock her away. Her gifts and her courage have drawn the attention of Morozko, the winter-king, but it is too soon to know if this connection will prove a blessing or a curse.

Now Moscow has been struck by disaster. Its people are searching for answers—and for someone to blame. Vasya finds herself alone, beset on all sides. The Grand Prince is in a rage, choosing allies that will lead him on a path to war and ruin. A wicked demon returns, stronger than ever and determined to spread chaos. Caught at the center of the conflict is Vasya, who finds the fate of two worlds resting on her shoulders. Her destiny uncertain, Vasya will uncover surprising truths about herself and her history as she desperately tries to save Russia, Morozko, and the magical world she treasures. But she may not be able to save them all.

My Review:
This is a series that definitely needs attention while you read it.  You can't read this and watch tv or read a couple pages at a time and then do other stuff.  It is a story that requires you to be able to sit and read for at least a good 15 minutes or more at a time.  Not that this is a bad thing. It's just something you need to know.  Overall, I'd say this was a really great ending to a trilogy that has a lot of interesting ideas as well as historical aspects in it.    Now, if you haven't read the first two books, you should probably read those reviews first, and maybe not go on in this review, as I might spoil some things for you.  My reviews are here:  The Bear and the Nightingale and The Girl in the Tower.  
Now the one thing that still annoyed me a bit in this one, even though by this third book I knew who all the names referred to for the most part, was having the same character called by two of three different names, often within the same page or paragraph at time.  And sometimes those different names didn't match up like normal nicknames might, or they didn't refer to their position, like King or Prince, or whatever. Even though the author did address this point in the back notes of this book, and I understand her reasoning, it still made it a little difficult at times for the story to flow as easily for me.  Of course, that may be something that is only a problem for me, but I like to point it out, since it is one of the things that kept me from speeding through it, even if the story was really good.  I was definitely very happy for what finally happened in the bath house with Vasya and the Winter King.  I'd been rooting for that for so long!  The ending was good, and I liked again how the author talked about the actual history behind what had happened in this book and how she took her liberties with fitting the story around those things.

A great fantasy, with some great history and mythology/fairy tale retelling in it.  A series I keep in my high school library, and recommend to anyone who wants more Russian themed stories. 

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Lisa's Looking Forward To #3 - January 27th, 2019

Here are the books that are on my ARC list in my blog planner that will be published this week, on January 29th:

This one just sounds so good!  If you have followed me for a while, you know that I love fairy tale retellings.  And this is an author I keep meaning to read, and not reading.  Someone get me going on it!

Here is the blurb from Goodreads:
In a lush, contemporary fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Brigid Kemmerer gives readers another compulsively readable romance perfect for fans of Marissa Meyer.

Fall in love, break the curse. 

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she's instead somehow sucked into Rhen's cursed world.

Break the curse, save the kingdom. 

A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn't know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what's at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

While the one book by this author that I have read was a DNF for me, I  know her books are popular, and the extra paranormal twist to this one kind of intrigues me.

Here is the blurb from Goodreads:
A killer is on the loose, and only one girl has the power to find him. But in this genre-bending YA thriller, she must first manage to avoid becoming a target herself.

For Adele, the dead aren’t really dead. She can see them and even talk to them. But she’s spent years denying her gift. When she encounters her ex best friend Tori in a shallow grave in the woods and realizes that Tori is actually dead -- that gift turns into a curse. Without an alibi, Adele becomes the prime suspect in Tori’s murder. She must work with Tori’s ghost to find the real killer. But what if the killer finds Adele first?

Master mystery-write April Henry adds a chilling paranormal twist to this incredibly suspenseful young adult novel.

I don't read a lot of adult murder mysteries, they just don't grab me. But when it is YA, I often can find myself able to make it through them.  And so this one sounds like it could be one that I would enjoy.  

Here is the blurb from Goodreads
From the New York Times bestselling author of All the Missing Girls and The Perfect Stranger comes a captivating thriller about two teens who connect when each discovers a mysterious radio frequency, which suggests their family tragedies are mysteriously connected. 

After surviving an infamous family tragedy, sixteen-year-old Kennedy Jones has made it her mission to keep her brother's search through the cosmos alive. But then something disturbs the frequency on his radio telescope--a pattern registering where no signal should transmit.

In a neighboring county, seventeen-year-old Nolan Chandler is determined to find out what really happened to his brother, who disappeared the day after Nolan had an eerie premonition. There hasn't been a single lead for two years, until Nolan picks up an odd signal--a pattern coming from his brother's bedroom.

Drawn together by these strange signals--and their family tragedies--Kennedy and Nolan search for the origin of the mysterious frequency. But the more they uncover, the more they believe that everything's connected--even their pasts--as it appears the signal is meant for them alone, sharing a message that only they can understand. Is something coming for them? Or is the frequency warning them about something that's already here? 

This one sounds very unusual and unique.  I love the idea of both the crossover and the retelling and the updating of the story.

Here is the blurb from Goodreads:
Mean Girls meets The Tudors in Hannah Capin’s The Dead Queens Club, a clever contemporary YA retelling of Henry VIII and his wives (or, in this case, his high school girlfriends). Told from the perspective of Annie Marck (“Cleves”), a 17-year-old aspiring journalist from Cleveland who meets Henry at summer camp, The Dead Queens Club is a fun, snarky read that provides great historical detail in an accessible way for teens while giving the infamous tale of Henry VIII its own unique spin.

What do a future ambassador, an overly ambitious Francophile, a hospital-volunteering Girl Scout, the new girl from Cleveland, the junior cheer captain, and the vice president of the debate club have in common? It sounds like the ridiculously long lead-up to an astoundingly absurd punchline, right? Except it’s not. Well, unless my life is the joke, which is kind of starting to look like a possibility given how beyond soap opera it’s been since I moved to Lancaster. But anyway, here’s your answer: we’ve all had the questionable privilege of going out with Lancaster High School’s de facto king. Otherwise known as my best friend. Otherwise known as the reason I’ve already helped steal a car, a jet ski, and one hundred spray-painted water bottles when it’s not even Christmas break yet. Otherwise known as Henry. Jersey number 8.

Meet Cleves. Girlfriend number four and the narrator of The Dead Queens Club, a young adult retelling of Henry VIII and his six wives. Cleves is the only girlfriend to come out of her relationship with Henry unscathed—but most breakups are messy, right? And sometimes tragic accidents happen…twice… 

Final Thoughts:
I haven't had the chance to read any of these yet.  Have you?  Have I added any to your TBR list?  Hey, while you're here, go back to my post yesterday, and enter the giveaway for one of my ARCs from the past year or so HERE.

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Cleaning Up My TBR: Down the TBR Hole #6 with Giveaway

This meme was started by Lost in a Story.  Here is how it works:

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?
Because I have so many to do, I'm going to try to do this weekly, and do 10 at a time.

1.  Stiff:  The Curious Lives Of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach:
Stiff is an oddly compelling, often hilarious exploration of the strange lives of our bodies postmortem. For two thousand years, cadavers—some willingly, some unwittingly—have been involved in science's boldest strides and weirdest undertakings. In this fascinating account, Mary Roach visits the good deeds of cadavers over the centuries and tells the engrossing story of our bodies when we are no longer with them. 

My thoughts:
I really do want to read a book by this author at some point.  And this is one that I am definitely interested in.  I think I should keep at least one book by this author on my TBR to make sure I don't forget her.

Verdict:  Keep

2.  Under a Green Sky: Global Warming, the Mass Extinctions of the Past, and What They Can Tell Us About Our Future by Peter D. Ward:

By looking backward at the course of great extinctions, a paleontologist sees what the future holds.
More than 200 million years ago, a cataclysmic event known as the Permian extinction destroyed more than 90 percent of all species and nearly 97 percent of all living things. Its origins have long been a puzzle for paleontologists. During the 1990s and the early part of this century, a great battle was fought between those who thought that death had come from above and those who thought something more complicated was at work.

Paleontologist Peter. D. Ward, fresh from helping prove that an asteroid had killed the dinosaurs, turned to the Permian problem, and he has come to a stunning conclusion. In his investigations of the fates of several groups of mollusks during that extinction and others, he discovered that the near-total devastation at the end of the Permian period was caused by rising levels of carbon dioxide leading to climate change. But it's not the heat (nor the humidity) that's directly responsible for the extinctions, and the story of the discovery of what is responsible makes for a fascinating, globe-spanning adventure.

In Under a Green Sky, Ward explains how the Permian extinction as well as four others happened, and describes the freakish oceans—belching poisonous gas—and sky—slightly green and always hazy—that would have attended them. Those ancient upheavals demonstrate that the threat of climate change cannot be ignored, lest the world's life today—ourselves included—face the same dire fate that has overwhelmed our planet several times before.  

My thoughts:  So, in a way, you could call me a bit of a "climate change denier".  Although honestly, what I think about it is based on the education I received to become a science teacher in college.  And this book is right up my alley.  I think that a lot of the change our climate goes through is natural, but I do feel that as humans we could be speeding things up. The fact that this book looks back at other extinctions in our past is one that interests me due to my background in earth science and paleontology.

Verdict:  Keep

3.  Beauty Sleep:  A Retelling of Sleeping Beauty by Cameron Dokey:

The Princess Aurore has had an unusual childhood. Cursed at birth, Aurore is fated to prick her finger at the age of sixteen and sleep for one hundred years -- until a prince awakens her with a kiss. So, to protect her, Aurore's loving parents forbid any task requiring a needle. 

Unable to sew or embroider like most little princesses, Aurore instead explores the castle grounds and beyond, where her warmth and generosity soon endear her to the townspeople. their devotion to the spirited princess grows as she does. 

On her sixteenth birthday, Aurore learns that the impending curse will harm not only her, but the entire kingdom as well. Unwilling to cause suffering, she will embark on a quest to end the evil magic. The princess's bravery will be rewarded as she finds adventure, enchantment, a handsome prince, and ultimately her destiny.

My thoughts:  If you know me, you know I love a good fairy tell retelling.  And while this one definitely sounds good, I don't know if it is one I will ever get to.  But again, I'm afraid to take it off my list, because the author, while prolific in this type of story, isn't as popular these days.

Verdict:  Keep  

4.  Behind the Bedroom Wall by Laura E. Williams and A. Nancy Goldstein (illustrator):
It's 1942. Thirteen-year-old Korinna Rehme is an active member of her local Jungmadel, a Nazi youth group, along with many of her friends. She believes that Hitler is helping Germany by instituting a program to deal with what he calls the "Jewish problem," a program that she witnesses as her Jewish neighbors are attacked and taken from their homes. Korinna's parents, however, are members of a secret underground group providing a means of escape to the Jews of their city. Korinna is shocked to discover that they are hiding a refugee family behind the wall of her bedroom. But as she comes to know the family, her sympathies begin to turn. When someone tips off the Gestapo, loyalties are put to the test and Korinna must decide what she really believes and whom she really trusts. Filled with adventure, Behind the Bedroom Wall helps readers understand the forces that drove so many to turn on their neighbors and the courage that allowed some to resist.  

My thoughts:  I am someone who seeks out books about the holocaust.  I think that I feel like if I can read about what happened, and feel their stories however it is possible, then I have done something to make the memories of the horrible injustices live on, and not let it ever happen again.   This is a less well known story, as far as I know, so I think I will probably still want to read it some day.

Verdict:  Keep

5.  Truancy by Isama Fukui:
In an alternate world, in a nameless totalitarian city, the autocratic Mayor rules the school system with an iron fist, with the help of his Educators. Fighting against the Mayor and his repressive Educators is a group of former students called the Truancy, whose goal is to take down the system by any means possible - at any cost.

Fifteen-year-old Tack is just trying to survive. His days are filled with sadistic teachers, unrelenting schoolwork, and indifferent parents. Things start to look up when he meets Umasi, a mysterious boy who becomes Tack's mentor.

Then someone close to Tack gets killed in the cross fire between the Educators and the Truants, and he swears to avenge her. To achieve his purpose, he abandons his old life and joins the Truancy, looking for an opportunity to confront Zyid, its enigmatic leader. But Tack soon finds himself torn between his desire for revenge and his growing sympathy for the Truants.  

My thoughts:  I think this is one that I became interested in around the time I was reading The Hunger Games. While it sounds like maybe something I'd like, I don't know that I will probably get to it.  I've had chances to read it, but haven't taken any of them.  

Verdict: Toss 

6.  Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr:
Rule #3: Don't stare at invisible faeries.
Aislinn has always seen faeries. Powerful and dangerous, they walk hidden in the mortal world. Aislinn fears their cruelty - especially if they learn of her Sight - and wishes she were as blind to their presence as other teens.

Rule #2: Don't speak to invisible faeries.
Now faeries are stalking her. One of them, Keenan, who is equal parts terrifying and alluring, is trying to talk to her, asking questions Aislinn is afraid to answer.

Rule #1: Don't ever attract their attention.
But it's too late. Keenan is the Summer King, who has sought his queen for nine centuries. Without her, summer itself will perish. He is determined that Aislinn will become the Summer Queen at any cost — regardless of her plans or desires.

Suddenly none of the rules that have kept Aislinn safe are working anymore, and everything is on the line: her freedom; her best friend, Seth; her life; everything.

Faery intrigue, mortal love, and the clash of ancient rules and modern expectations swirl together in Melissa Marr's stunning twenty-first-century faery tale.  

My thoughts:  So, Melissa Marr is an author that I either love, or else can't get into.  This is one that while it sounds good, I don't know if I'll ever get to it.  However, I feel that Marr is a well-enough known author that this is one I won't have to worry about forgetting even if I don't keep her on the list.  

Verdict:  Toss 

7.  Cut by Patricia McCormick:
Callie cuts herself. Never too deep, never enough to die. But enough to feel the pain. Enough to feel the scream inside.

Now she's at Sea Pines, a "residential treatment facility" filled with girls struggling with problems of their own. Callie doesn't want to have anything to do with them. She doesn't want to have anything to do with anyone. She won't even speak.

But Callie can only stay silent for so long...

My thoughts:  I know that this is a well-known classic, and I think it has won awards.  And it is one I'd probably want to read.  But, I know that I've read other books about this topic, and so not sure if this is one I have to read or not.  It is short enough that it would be a quick read, but as I said, probably not one I have to save the name of so I don't forget it.

Verdict:  Toss 

 8.  Going Home by Harriet Evans:
They say love feels like going home . . . 
but what if your home is no longer there?

Leaving her tiny flat in London -- and a whole host of headaches behind -- Lizzy Walter is making the familiar journey back home to spend Christmas with her chaotic but big-hearted family. In an ever-changing world, her parents' country home, Keeper House, is the one constant. But behind the mistletoe and mince pies, family secrets and rivalries lurk. And when David, the Love of Her Life -- or so she thought -- makes an unexpected reappearance, this one ranks as a Christmas she would definitely rather forget.

As winter slowly turns to spring, all the things that Lizzy has taken for granted begin to shift. Keeper House is in jeopardy and might have to be sold for reasons Lizzy doesn't understand. Her family seems fractured like never before. And, with a new man in her life, she may finally have to kiss her dream of a reunion with David good-bye. By the time the Walters gather at Keeper House for a summer wedding, the stakes have never been higher -- for Lizzy, for her family, and for love.

My thoughts:  I honestly have no idea why I saved this one.  If I've read other books by the author, her name doesn't stand out to me. And the synopsis isn't enough to make me sure I want to read it again.

Verdict: Toss 

9.  Evolution's Darling by Scott Westerfeld:
Does a clone have a soul? Darling, an astronavigational control unit and personal companion, achieves sentience and wants to know. Now, 200 years and an artificial body later, he is off in search of a dead artist, a living artwork, and the forces behind a mystery that spans the universe. Accompanied by a female assassin, he'll confront the Maker and get the answer.  

My thoughts:
So, I love Scott Westerfeld.  And this is an older book, but still sounds like one I would want to read.  You don't see it around much, so even though Westerfeld is a well-known author, I'm afraid to take it off my list and not remember some day that I want to read it.

Verdict:  Keep 

10.  Harriet Tubman, Secret Agent:  How Daring Slaves and Free Blacks Spied for the Union During the Civil War by Thomas B. Allen and Carla Bauer (Illustrator):
It's 1863. Harriet Tubman is facing one of the biggest—and most dangerous— challenges of her life. She has survived her master's lash, escaped from slavery, and risked her life countless times to lead runaway slaves to freedom along the Underground Railroad. Now she has a new role—that of Union spy! The outcome of a secret night raid deep into Confederate territory depends on the accuracy of the intelligence she and other black spies have gathered. Success will mean freedom for hundreds of slaves. Failure will mean death by hanging. 

You are about to enter the undercover world of African-American spies—enslaved and free—risking everything in the name of freedom. How were the Underground Railroad and slave songs used to pass secret messages? What were "contrabands" and "Black Dispatches?" What did Harriet have in common with the Secret Six and a maidservant in the home of Confederate President Jefferson Davis? You'll discover these answers and more as the action unfolds. 

Thomas B. Allen, author of the award-winning George Washington, Spymaster, has sifted through military and intelligence archives, diaries, and little-known memoirs from ex-slaves to bring to light new facts about the role Harriet and other black spies played in helping the Union win the war. 

This detailed account combined with powerful archival images supplemented with woodcuts by Carla Bauer, maps, a time line, footnotes, and extensive quote sources make this incredibly detailed account an excellent resource for report writing as well as an exciting true-life adventure.

National Geographic supports K-12 educators with ELA Common Core Resources.
Visit for more information.  

My thoughts:  So, back in middle school, in the 80s, we still had a class called handwriting.   What we did was to choose a book to copy from and practice our handwriting, cursive, and then turn in what we'd copied.  That's when I first really learned about Harriet Tubman and became very interested in her whole story and others of that time.  This is one that may be hard to find, but I feel like I'd still like to read it some day.

Verdict:  Keep 

Well, didn't do quite as well this week with tossing books, well, kept more than I tossed. But that's okay.  I'm going to rectify the physical stacks with the giveaway below!  Tell me, have you read any of the books above?  Would you agree with my decision to keep or toss them?

I'm going to continue doing this giveaway that I started last week.  Once again I can only do a US giveaway, unless you are INT and want to chip in on the shipping costs because you really want a book from my shelves.  Just as with last week, you get to pick any book from the pictures below, as long as they don't get traded away, or picked by last week's winner, and I will pick a surprise book from the piles to add to your choice.  Here are your choices:

The picture above is all of the 2018 ARCs I have for this giveaway

These are the 2017 ARCs I have to giveaway

These are the ARCs I have from 2013-2016.

There you have it!  Just enter in the rafflecopter below to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway