Friday, July 31, 2009

Winner of Along for the Ride!

The winner of the ARC of Along for the Ride is Briana aka B.A.M. Book Reviews!

I've emailed you, could you please get back to me with your address by Tuesday! Thanks!

Lookalikes 60

Thanks to Kate for suggesting this lookalike!

After by Amy Efaw

Advertisement/Public Service Announcement

These are definitely my favorite kinds of the looklikes. Finding them where you least expect them and this is a fabulous one. After is definitely a stronger composition because of how simple it is. It's kind of funny how they both deal with pregnancy! Note the difference in the hair color!

Which do you prefer?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

Sookie Stackhouse is a cocktail waitress in small-town Louisiana, but she keeps to herself and doesn't date much because of her "disability" to read minds. When she meets Bill, Sookie can't hear a word he's thinking. He's the type of guy she's waited for all of her life, but he has a disability, too--he's a vampire with a bad reputation. When one of Sookie's coworkers is killed, she fears she's next.

Upfront I will say that before I read Dead Until Dark I had seen Season 1 of True Blood so it was an exercise in compare and contrast for me. And this is one of those rare cases where I liked the show a bit more than the original source material, the book. But no matter, I still enjoyed the book and am excited to continue reading the series and watching the series to see what other kinds of adventures Sookie gets into. I've tried to close my ears to spoilers but a few minor things have gotten through and they sound exciting to me!

While Season 1 of True Blood follows the same basic plot it was interesting to see the few differences, who was present for what and even a few characters that were a bit different or not even present in the book. Since the book is told from Sookie's perspective and the show follows all the characters around you hear everything straight from Sookie in the books. I think that made it a bit harder to get to know all of characters as well as you do on the show, but at the same time makes Sookie more lovable because you are with her the whole time. I love the world that the author has created, vampires living out in the open with humans and whatever else exists in her world!

Overall a great start to a series and introduction to a world. I can't wait to read ahead of True Blood and enjoy the books before the show!

Genre: Fantasy/Mystery
3.5/5 Stars
Purchased by myself

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Winner of Tempo Change!

I never heard from the original winner so the new winner is Kaitlyn!

Can you please email me with your mailing address by end of day Friday, I've sent you an email!


"Waiting On" Wednesday! 41

Touch of Dead by Charlaine Harris

Ok so I couldn't find an actual blurb for this but I know what it is! At least I think I know! It is the complete collection of Sookie Stackhouse short stories that were originally published in all sorts of anthologies. So they are all in one place!

Released October 6th 2009

Admittedly I've just finished the first book, Dead Until Dark, so it will be awhile til I'm ready for this. Although... I could probably mix this in with the books as they were meant to be read. I don't know that order though... anyhow I love short stories and Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood is my new obsession so yeah! Really excited!

What can't you wait for to be released?

"Waiting On" Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Hardcover vs. Paperback 39

The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt



Holling Hoodhood is really in for it.
He’s just started seventh grade with Mrs. Baker, a teacher he knows is out to get him. Why else would she make him read Shakespeare . . . outside of class?
The year is 1967, and everyone has bigger things than homework to worry about. There’s Vietnam for one thing, and then there’s the family business. As far as Holling’s father is concerned, nothing is more important than the family business. In fact, all of the Hoodhoods must be on their best behavior at all times. The success of Hoodhood and Associates depends on it. But how can Holling stay out of trouble when he has Mrs. Baker to contend with?

This one is easy for me. I think the hardcover is highly original and I've remembered it and what it was for ever since I saw it. I'd say the paperback is more mainstream so it's probably a good cover for the paperback edition.

Hardcover or Paperback?

Monday, July 27, 2009

BLOG TOUR: Ballads of Suburbia by Stephanie Kuehnert

Welcome to the next Traveling to Teens book blog tour! Created by the lovely Yan and lovely Carol! Today I'm excited to share Ballads of Suburbia by Stephanie Kuehnert!
Kara hasn't been back to Oak Park since the end of junior year, when a heroin overdose nearly killed her and sirens heralded her exit. Four years later, she returns to face the music. Her life changed forever back in high school: her family disintegrated, she ran around with a whole new crowd of friends, she partied a little too hard, and she fell in love with gorgeous bad-boy Adrian, who left her to die that day in Scoville Park....Amid the music, the booze, the drugs, and the drama, her friends filled a notebook with heartbreakingly honest confessions of the moments that defined and shattered their young lives. Now, finally, Kara is ready to write her own.

Whoa. Ballads of Surburbia was a gritty, real and honest book. It doesn't hold back AT ALL. It's one of those books you couldn't really say you enjoyed per say but are really glad you read. Another book I've said that about is Wintergirls but I much prefer Ballads of Surburbia, I sometimes felt like the book was suffocating me, but there is a reward within it when reading this book.

While the story was rather depressing at times and hard to read it was also exciting and tender. I love how the story of Kara's years in Oak Park are framed by her homecoming. You know she's come out of this almost disaster zone ok, but how did she make it, how did she get there? That's the story of Ballads of Suburbia. I love that the author didn't just start with Kara in high school, she picked pieces of her younger years that made her the person she was when she started high school, and because of that Kara comes off as a really sympathetic character. Yes, at times I wanted to smack her upside the head but for the most part you were taking the journey with her wanting her to come out of it ok.

Another interesting thing the author does is share all the main characters ballads (or stories) in the form of a notebook they all share, giving a snapshot of their background and the reason they are the way they are. And because of that all the character come off as sympathetic, some more so than others but still they all do. Weaving these rich stories for all the main characters makes the story a lot deeper than you would expect, it's really packed to the brim with emotion.

Overall a really intense, emotional, and powerful book that is really worth it.

Ballads of Suburbia was released July 21st.
Genre: Young Adult
4.5/5 stars
ARC provided by publisher for blog tour

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Hollywood Is Like High School With Money by Zoey Dean Twenty-four-year old Taylor Henning has just landed her dream job as an assistant at a major movie studio. But when her catty coworkers trick her into almost getting fired, she realizes that the old saying "Hollywood is like school with money" just may be true. The thing is, Taylor wasn't exactly a social butterfly in high school-how is she supposed to do any better the second time around? That's when she meets her boss's popular sixteen-year-old daughter Quinn, and has an epiphany: maybe this teenager can teach her how to use her queen bee tactics to succeed in the Hollywood popularity contest. Quinn comes up with a plan to teach Taylor one lesson a week-everything from "Fake it 'til you make it" to "It's *never* your fault"--and soon Taylor finds herself winning the war against rival assistant Kylie. Until, that is, she's directed to steal Kylie's boyfriend, and something happens that's not in the game plan: Taylor falls for the guy. Now she must do the impossible-- harness her inner mean girl while staying true to herself.

Hollywood Is Like High School With Money was a whole lot of fun for me. Young twenty-something moving to LA to work in the movie business. I mean how could that not be fun! From the beginning I found Taylor relatable, she doesn't show up at her job in designer duds and with the attitude, she actually has to be told how to play the part by a teenage girl so she doesn't accidentally lose her job due to her rival co-worker.

I loved how this book goes behind the scenes of an Creative Executive at a movie studio. From reading over scripts to a meeting with my favorite writer/director Wes Anderson, I ate up all the references to the movie business. I really wanted Taylor to succeed in the business! You could tell she had the passion and her heart was in the right place when she arrived her first day.

I love how the story comes full circle with something from the very beginning of the book (before Taylor starts to become jaded by the movie business) comes back in the end, it's just totally sweet and clever. That really made the book for me. Overall a really fun and funny book!

Hollywood Is Like High School With Money was released July 23rd.
Genre: Chick Lit
4/5 Stars
ARC provided by publisher

Saturday, July 25, 2009

This Week In Books Or When I'm Away the Books Will Play-inside of my mailbox!

Monday: nothing


The Locust and the Bird by Hanan Al-Shaykh
Does My Head Look Big In This? by Randa Abdel-Fattah
Stealing Heaven by Elizabeth Scott
Dark Cindy by M. Apostolina

These are from the library book store. I was really excited to find two straight from my Amazon wishlist!

Best Friends Forever by Jennifer Weiner
Mercury in Retrograde by Paula Froelich

These came for review.


The Magicians by Lev Grossman

This came from a blogging pal, you know who you are thank you! I also got a package of goodies from Michelle Zink. At first I was going to take a picture for this post but since I'll be giving some of it away in a giveaway I thought I wouldn't spoil the surprise!


Rosie and Skate by Beth Ann Bauman

This came for review, I'm really excited because this was a past WOW post!


The Year of Living Biblically by A.J. Jacobs
I Did (But I Wouldn't Now) by Cara Lockwood

These two were from bookmooch. The Cara Lockwood book for Galleysmith's I Dare You Challenge for me!

Demon Chick by Marilyn Kaye
The Sweetheart of Prosper County by Jill S. Alexander

These are from Amazon Vine!

Give Up the Ghost by Megan Crewe

For an upcoming Traveling to Teens tour!

Benny and Shrimp by Katarina Mazetti
Bad Apple by Laura Ruby
Boyology by Sarah O'Leary Burningham

For review!

That's definitely a record for most packages in the mail in one day for me. And I didn't even see them all until today, Saturday!


Eighth Grade Bites by Heather Brewer
The Boy Book by E. Lockhart
Knocked Out by My Nunga-Nungas

I got these from Amazon. The strange thing though, is they shipped from another part of the country yesterday. And this was free shipping, I have no idea how they moved so quickly in one day!

Skeleton Creek by Patrick Carman

Ghost in the Machine by Patrick Carman

These were a surprise for review! I've always been interested in the interactive format of these so I'm excited to check them out!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Lookalikes 59

Shug by Jenny Han

Skinny by Ibi Kaslik

Skinny by Ibi Kaslik Alternate Cover

These are all fun but the first Skinny definitely gets my vote. The contrast between the dark background and bright popsicle really makes the cover pop.

Which is your favorite?

Thanks to Krista and Korianne for suggesting this lookalike!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Giveaway: The Sweet Life of Stella Madison

Now that you've read my review of The Sweet Life of Stella Madison by Lara M. Zeises, I'd love to give you the chance to win your very own hardcover copy of the book!

If you need a reminder here's the blurb:

A warmhearted, delectable novel about what it means to love and be loved.

When Stella Madison's food-loving parents help her land a summer job at the local newspaper, there’s only one catch: she’s expected to write about food. Luckily, Stella has Jeremy, the hot new intern at her mom’s restaurant, who’s more than happy to help. But where does that leave Stella’s boyfriend, Max, who recently dropped the L-word? And could her separated parents be cooking up romances of their own?

Onto the rules!

To win a hardcover copy of The Sweet Life of Stella Madison leave a comment sharing a favorite dining experience, be it the food or the company and why!

For 1 additional entry post/blog about this giveaway and leave a separate comment telling me you have done so.

The giveaway is open to addresses within the U.S.

Please leave a way for me to contact you if you are the winner!

The giveaway will end August 6th at 11:59 pm Central Time.

The Sweet Life of Stella Madison by Lara M. Zeises
A warmhearted, delectable novel about what it means to love and be loved.

When Stella Madison's food-loving parents help her land a summer job at the local newspaper, there’s only one catch: she’s expected to write about food. Luckily, Stella has Jeremy, the hot new intern at her mom’s restaurant, who’s more than happy to help. But where does that leave Stella’s boyfriend, Max, who recently dropped the L-word? And could her separated parents be cooking up romances of their own?

The Sweet Life of Stella Madison is an exciting mix of food, friends, family, boys and summer experiences! I had a great time reading it. But seriously, this book will make you hungry! I found the foundation of food this story had rather unique. From the dinner menus at the beginning of chapters to how to order food when eating for the purpose of a review or even really tasting food for the first time. All those pieces are there.

I really liked reading about Stella's summer internship at the newspaper. I only wish she had started it sooner into the story. I feel like she just really got going there and it was over. I would have liked that to be a bigger part of the story.

I loved the character of Jeremy, Stella's mother's young intern. What a charmer, but he really understood Stella I felt. I felt bad for Stella's loving boyfriend, Max, who was oblivious to Stella's crush on Jeremy. I also loved Stella's parents and their jobs, definitely helped enhance the story, put her in a very interesting environment! Stella's friends were also sweet even if they were in the background most of the time.

I could have used a little more from the ending but overall I found The Sweet Life of Stella Madison to be a sweet and delicious story, pun intended!

The Sweet Life of Stella Madison was released on July 14th!
Genre: Young Adult
4/5 Stars
ARC provided by publisher

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

"Waiting On" Wednesday! 40

Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins

(no cover as of yet)


When Sophie Mercer turned thirteen, she discovered that she was a witch. It's gotten her into a few scrapes. Her non-Gifted mother has been as supportive as possible, consulting Sophie's estranged father--an elusive European warlock--only when necessary. But when Sophie attracts too much human attention for a prom-night spell gone horribly wrong, it's her dad who decides her punishment: exile to Hecate Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward prodigium, a.k.a. witches, fae, and shapeshifters.
By the end of her first day among fellow freak-teens, Sophie has quite a scorecard. Three powerful enemies who look like supermodels; a futile crush on a gorgeous warlock; a creepy, tag-along ghost; and a new roommate, who happens to be the most-hated person and only vampire on campus. Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her friend Jenna is the number one suspect. Meanwhile, Sophie has a more personal shock to grapple with. Not only is her father the head of the prodigium council, he's most powerful warlock in the world, and Sophie is his heir.
As a series of blood-curdling mysteries starts to converge, Sophie prepares for the biggest threat of all: an ancient secret society determined to destroy all prodigium, especially her.

Released March 2nd 2010

I haven't read a lot of paranormal books but it seems to me when kids in those books set off for a mysterious school they aren't really sure what kind of creatures they are going to encounter until they reveal themselves. I like how in Hex Hall right off the bat we know who all the students really are. That's rather refreshing! I like the idea of high school for like supernatural creatures. It just sounds awesome! And the start of a series? Count me in!

What can't you wait for to be released?

"Waiting On" Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Hardcover vs. Paperback 38

Shug by Jenny Han



In this gem of a first novel, Han artfully captures the wonder and complexity of that on-the-brink-of-womanhood age. Twelve-year-old Shug is a clever, brave, and true (on the inside) girl who experiencing the angst of junior high.

The paperback is so much more alive and engaging than the hardcover. Isn't that a fun summer cover! I'm writing this in April and will probably be beginning of Fall by the time this posts, but right now I'd love to be sitting outside with a popsicle! So fun!

Which is your favorite?

Monday, July 20, 2009

Same Difference by Siobhan Vivian
Emily is ready for a change. She's been in the same town with the same friends for a long time...and none of them really understand her art. But when she goes to Philadelphia for a summer art institute, she suddenly finds like-minded people. One in particular, Fiona, intrigues and challenges her. But there are some things Emily is going to have to find out for herself -- like what the balance is between life and art, and which is more important when push comes to shove.

Same Difference is one of those books I've been waiting to find. I've for years tried to find a book about the life of a young artist and what it's like to discover your creative potential. I think I've found that in Same Difference.

Same Difference really made me reflect on my life as an artist so far. It exhibits a lot of the struggles people can face. Living up to the potential you so desperately want to have or discovering that you even have the potential or the passion. It's all illustrated through the characters in Same Difference.

The main character Emily, is one of those girls that discovers almost by accident one day that they like art and might not be too bad at it. She is perfectly balanced out by fellow classmate Fiona who has always lived the life of an artist, she knows she's an artist and wants desperately to prove to everyone what a genius she is, there is no other way. I loved seeing the artistic journey through both Emily and Fiona.

I thought it was really honest and real to see Emily struggle over her friendship with best friend from home Meg. Emily changes so drastically while in summer school trying to find herself, she struggles to find any common ground with Meg who is at home spending her summer with her boyfriend. Will they still be able to be friends at the end of the summer?

Another really interesting character is Yates, the student teacher and Emily's crush. He's not only fun to read about because of Emily's longings for him but for his insight into the life of a artist a year or two into school. He has some really interesting ideas about making a name, literally for yourself as an artist.

Most of the action inside of the classroom takes place in the drawing class or during field trips. We see Emily a few times in her Mixed Media class(?) away from the other students like Fiona and her posse. I would have really enjoyed seeing Emily more in that environment to contrast it with when she was with those other students.

I think Same Difference is a wonderfully unique story of finding yourself as an artist and as a person. I would highly recommend it to anyone that is interested in the arts or self discovery in general.

Same Difference was released on March 1st.
Genre: Young Adult
4.5/5 Stars
Review copy provided by publisher

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Breathing by Cheryl Renee Herbsman Savannah would be happy to spend the summer in her coastal Carolina town working at the library and lying in a hammock reading her beloved romance novels. But then she meets Jackson. Once they lock eyes, she’s convinced he’s the one—her true love, her soul mate, a boy different from all the rest. And at first it looks like Savannah is right. Jackson abides by her mama’s strict rules, and stays by her side during a hospitalization for severe asthma, which Savannah becomes convinced is only improving because Jackson is there. But when he’s called away to help his family—and seems uncertain about returning—Savannah has to learn to breathe on her own, both literally and figuratively.

Breathing is a perfect book to read in the summer. What a wonderful story. Watching Savannah come into her own over one summer, meeting the love of her life Jackson, and learning things about herself she never knew were possible.

Savannah goes through a roller coaster of emotions, up and down and up and down, because of her family, her severe asthma, and because of Jackson. I really worried for her at some points, her asthma could really put her in danger from time to time. Her trips to the hospital made it hard for her mom to keep a job because she refused to tell her bosses why she couldn't come to work, she didn't want them to pity her.

I really liked Savannah's voice and her attitude towards life. She's sort of carefree but at the same time really determined. I love the dialect that the author brings into this story. I could hear the story in my head with Savannah's accent, I think that really helped ground the story in a culture and a location. I thought the ending was spot on, I was a little worried for awhile it wouldn't end that way but it's definitely the way the ending should have been!

Overall a wonderful summer story!

Breathing was released April 16th.
Genre: Young Adult
4/5 Stars
ARC provided by publisher

Saturday, July 18, 2009

One of My Many Quirks or Why TV on DVD makes me giddy!

So ever since tv shows have been released on dvd, every summer I get insanely excited when all the tv shows start popping up in dvd form for pre-order on Amazon. There is something about seeing the image and design that they pick for the dvd, to represent a whole tv show and a whole season that gets me really excited. I also love to see how they change from season to season, what remains the same, what changes. The same could be said for the advertising campaigns for Fall Primetime and tv show season premieres in general! I really can't explain this weird obsession so it probably makes no sense...

This is totally my inner design nerd coming out once again. And what's weird is, yeah it's exciting for tv shows I love (shown below) but also for tv shows I don't even really care for, or ones I've never heard of. I just loooove seeing what they decide to do with the covers. So just a few days ago I was poking around on Amazon and found a whole bunch of these new tv on dvd covers for seasons releasing in the Fall. Oh boy did I go NUTS! Squealing and clapping, yes I'm that easily pleased. So I thought I would share what I am currently in love with and will eventually buy when these all go into my chosen price range of under $25! And these are only the ones I plan to buy so far and a few of them I haven't even seen but I just know they are going to be good!!

Gossip Girl Season 2 (August 18th)
I missed most of the season, was busy watching TBBT and HIMYM, but I really liked the first season so this I will buy!

Flight of the Concords Season 2 (August 4th)
The first season was hilarious, so there is no reason this one shouldn't be either!

The Big Bang Theory Season 2 (September 15th)
If you aren't watching The Big Bang Theory I'm not sure if we can be friends! :P

Pushing Daisies Season 2 (July 21st)
I'm so so angry this got cancelled, SO ANGRY!

Ugly Betty Season 3 (September 22nd)
This reminds me, I still need to see the last few episodes of this season!

The IT Crowd Season 3 (September 15th)
The first two seasons had me in tears from laughing so much!

Mad Men Season 2
This is already out but I'm listing it anyways!

90210 Season 1 (August 11th)
I want to make a bet right now, next year they won't be in a pool, but what will they be doing?

I could go on and on but you get the idea! I'm nuts!

This Week In Books Or This Is What It Looks Like When I Show Restraint!

Monday: nothing


Crushed by Frances Lynn
It's Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini
The Actual Real Reality of Jennifer James by Gillian Shields
Totally Fabulous by Michelle Radford
Jennifer's Body by Audrey Nixon

Decided Tuesday would be a good day to go to the library!

Everything Sucks by Hannah Friedman
Undiscovered Gyrl by Allison Burnett

These are for upcoming blog tours in August! I've already finished Everything Sucks!

Wednesday: nothing




Do-Over by Niki Burnham
Do-Over by Rachel Vail
Leap Day by Wendy Mass
Sunday at Tiffany's by James Patterson

Wow, those 4 books are all I got at the tent sale. Can you believe it! This is what I got last year! This might be the only James Patterson book I've been interested in.

Initiation by Susan Fine
Dear Diary by Lesley Arfin
Lucky Girls by Nell Freudenberger

And this is all I got inside the store. Usually I at least get like 5 clearance books! I'm so proud of myself! I've had Dear Diary on my wishlist for at least 2 years, so was excited to fit it half price! Stopped by another used bookstore but didn't get anything!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Lookalikes 58

Sharing Sam by Katherine Applegate

Sing Me to Sleep by Angela Morrison

Hmm I guess they are both sort of nice. The background for Sharing Sam is a little too plain I guess and the snow maybe a little too much on Sing Me to Sleep. I'm not really digging either of the type treatments on the books. So I guess TIE!

Which is your favorite?

UPDATE: Here's another one from Deborah!

For Pete's Sake by Linda Windsor

Thursday, July 16, 2009

GIVEAWAY: Along for the Ride

Now that you've read my review of Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen, I'd love to give you a chance to win your very own ARC copy of the book!

If you need a reminder here is some information about the book:

It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.

A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.

In her signature pitch-perfect style, Sarah Dessen explores the hearts of two lonely people learning to connect.

Onto the rules!

To win a ARC copy of Along for the Ride leave a comment sharing an adventure you've had in the middle of the night and if you haven't stayed up almost all night an adventure you would like to have in the middle of the night!

For 1 additional entry post/blog about this giveaway and leave a separate comment telling me you have done so.

The giveaway is open to addresses within the U.S.

Please leave a way for me to contact you if you are the winner!

The giveaway will end July 30th at 11:59 pm Central Time.

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen

It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.

A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.

In her signature pitch-perfect style, Sarah Dessen explores the hearts of two lonely people learning to connect.

Along for the Ride is my second Dessen novel, the first being Lock and Key. I definitely think Along for the Ride was more enjoyable for me, I connected with the main character Auden a great deal more than Ruby in Lock and Key. Instead of just being a nice book it made me feel something.

This book has a wonderful message, it's never too late to live your life the way you want to and you are never too old for anything. I admittedly probably cannot ride a bike. I learned when I was young and had a nasty encounter with one in my early teens I believe, never touched one again. I really applaud Auden's determination to make up for the things that she missed earlier in her life when she was acting more like an adult than a child.

Another really interesting thing the book has going for it is what can two kids getting to know each other do in the middle of the night? Where can they go what can they see? I loved reading about Auden and Eli's routine they fell into. And Eli, what a sweet boy. I definitely can say I'm on Team Eli. I think most boys would never take the time to help Auden on her journey but Eli does. I loved how they both came to lean on each other and help each other through some tough times.

I really liked the secondary characters as well, from Auden's mom (I kind of hated her dad) and her stepmother Heidi and her little baby half sister Isby to the boys at the bike shop and the girls that worked at Heidi's boutique. They all helped her on her journey and really rounded out the story.

Since I've read only one other book this probably isn't saying much but this is by far my favorite Dessen book so! I'm excited to dig into her back list and find some other stories that really speak to me as well!

Along for the Ride was released June 16th!
Genre: Young Adult
4.5/5 Stars
ARC provided by publisher

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Painter From Shanghai Winner!

The winner of The Painter From Shanghai is nfmgirl!

Congratulations! I have emailed you! Please respond with your mailing address by next Wednesday!

"Waiting On" Wednesday! 39

Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan

From the Publisher:

Two superstar authors join forces on a collaborative novel of awesome proportions.

One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, two teens-both named Will Grayson-are about to cross paths. As their worlds collide and intertwine, the Will Graysons find their lives going in new and unexpected directions, building toward romantic turns-of-heart and the epic production of history's most fabulous high school musical.

Hilarious, poignant, and deeply insightful, John Green and David Levithan's collaborative novel is brimming with a double helping of the heart and humor that have won both them legions of faithful fans.

Released April 6th 2010

Well let's see here... two master of YA check, an interesting sounding plot check. Loving the cover as well. This should be GOOD! Maybe in the meantime I can read a few of their other books!

What can't you wait for to be released?

"Waiting On" Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Hardcover vs. Paperback 37

Let it Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle

Paperback 1

Paperback 2 I just checked Amazon and it looks like this might have been an earlier discarded cover. Look below for the real one...

Sparkling white snowdrifts, beautiful presents wrapped in ribbons, and multicolored lights glittering in the night through the falling snow. A Christmas Eve snowstorm transforms one small town into a romantic haven, the kind you see only in movies. Well, kinda. After all, a cold and wet hike from a stranded train through the middle of nowhere would not normally end with a delicious kiss from a charming stranger. And no one would think that a trip to the Waffle House through four feet of snow would lead to love with an old friend. Or that the way back to true love begins with a painfully early morning shift at Starbucks. Thanks to three of todays bestselling teen authorsJohn Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myraclethe magic of the holidays shines on these hilarious and charming interconnected tales of love, romance, and breathtaking kisses.

The second Paperback is horrible just horrible. It looks like Target wrapping paper and this is the only time that I have ever referred to something Target related as horrible. It's just so BLAND! The original paperback is too cute and should not have been messed with. Case closed.

Which is your favorite?

UPDATE: 7/15/09:

Real Paperback 2

I didn't think it was possible but I like this even less than the discarded one I think. They should have just kept with the original paperback cover. I'm sure there is a reason they did it but I'm not feeling it. :/

Monday, July 13, 2009

Lovestruck Summer by Melissa Walker

From Melissa Walker's website:
This is the story of Quinn, an indie rock girl who came out to Austin, Texas for a music internship.

She also plans to spend long, lazy days in the sun at outdoor concerts--and to meet a hot musician or two. Instead, she's stuck rooming with her sorority brainwashed cousin, who now willingly goes by the name 'Party Penny.' Their personalities clash, big time.

But Sebastian, a gorgeous DJ, definitely makes up for it. Sebastian has it all: looks, charm, and great taste in music. So why can't Quinn keep her mind off Penny's friend cute, All-American Russ and his Texas twang?

One thing's certain: Quinn's in for a summer she'll never forget!

Lovestruck Summer has got to be one of my favorite summer romances of all time. I seriously squeeeeeeed throughout the whole book. Oh My God. I felt like Melissa Walker wrote this book for me. I totally and completely got Quinn. I'm sort of a music snob myself and could totally see myself in her. I don't do country music, I just don't. I'm sure I like a few songs that I don't realize are country but that is all. Also, I've never thought of a cowboy/fratboy as hot, never, until now. I really appreciated this book's message of not dismissing something or someone just because you think you should or because you believe the stereotype about something.

I loved the back and forth between Quinn and her cowboy/fratboy neighbor Russ. Holy heck was that boy as sweet can be! But no, Quinn is set on finding herself an indie/emo boy and sets her sights on Sebastian a local dj who might not be as good inside as he looks outside.

Then we have Quinn's cousin Penny and her sorority sister/next door neighbor Chrissy who at first glance Quinn writes off. And then there's co-intern Jade who comes off kind of cold at first. By the end of the summer Quinn will get to know these girls so well and come to learn a lot about herself and her beliefs in the process.

Ok, I could just go on and on about how much I love this book, but just really see for yourself. You will squeal and laugh and go aww about 1,000 times!

Lovestruck Summer was released on May 5th.

Genre: Young Adult
5/5 Stars
Review copy provided by publisher

Sunday, July 12, 2009


Here are some things I've come across in the last 3 weeks that I wanted to share...

Beautiful Creatures Trailer

Doesn't it make you want to read the book RIGHT NOW. Although I'm sure you felt that way before you even saw this trailer!

Shiver Trailer

Isn't this beautiful! I mean this stuff takes work! I'm super impressed that author Maggie Stiefvater made this herself. Gorgeous!

Forget Beach Reads. Darken Your Summer Days.

Cute little summer reading trailer from Penguin Young Readers. I'm totally not a beach girl so this made me laugh!

Burn This Book

I know a lot of people in the reading/blogging community are very interested in censorship and the thought behind it. Here's a book that was recently brought to my attention that might interest you on the subject!

Harper Studio:

Published in conjunction with the PEN American Center, Burn This Book is a powerful collection of essays that explore the meaning of censorship, and the power of literature to inform the way we see the world, and ourselves. Contributors include literary heavyweights like Toni Morrison, Salman Rushdie, Orhan Pamuk, David Grossman and Nadine Gordimer, and others.

In “Witness: The Inward Testimony” Nadine Gordimer discusses the role of the writer as observer, and as someone who sees “what is really taking place.” She looks to Proust, Oe, Flaubert, and Graham Greene to see how their philosophy squares with her own, ultimately concluding “Literature has been and remains a means of people rediscovering themselves.” In “Freedom to Write” Orhan Pamuk elegantly describes escorting Arthur Miller and Harold Pinter around Turkey and how that experience changed his life.

As Americans we often take our freedom of speech for granted. When we talk about censorship we talk about China, the former Soviet Union. But the recent presidential election has shined a spotlight on profound acts of censorship in our own backyard. Both provocative and timely, Burn This Book includes a sterling list of award-winning writers; it is sure to ignite spirited dialogue.

Antics In the Big Apple

Maureen Johnson is just hilarious. Enough said! And yes I still need to read this, what's wrong with me!


There is a really cool contest going on in Sarahland right now and it's interactive! You are supposed to upload a photo of a friend, family member anyone that you want to introduce to the world of Dessen holding up one of Sarah's books and why you want to introduce them to the world of Sarah Dessen and you can be entered to win two paperback sets of her books, one for you and one for a friend! Enter by August 1st!

Speaking of Sarah Dessen two of my lovely twitter pals helped me out when I was getting all confused about Sarah Dessen's boys. I've only read two of her books so this is mighty helpful! From Karen Healey we have this sweet flowchart! And from my blogger pal Mya this sweet Condensed Guide to the hottest of Dessen guys chart! You guys rule!

And finally Along For the Ride debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. Another book I loved, Dork Diaries also found a spot on the list as well! Congratulations!

Traveling to Teens website

There is now a Traveling to Teens website (the blog is still around but it's for participants only) for anyone that is interested in learning more about it! Go check it out! Authors and bloggers interested in participating can fill out forms to learn more and get in touch with the masterminds behind the project!

My Soul To Lose E-book

For those of you like me that are excited about Rachel Vincent's new teen series, starting with the book My Soul to Take it's exciting to find out a free e-book prequel has been released by Harlqeuin. Check it out here! I downloaded it yesterday!

Petronella Saves Nearly Everyone: The Entomological Tales of Augustus T. Percival by Dene Low

You would think Petronella’s sixteenth birthday would be cause for celebration. After all, fashionable friends are arriving at her country estate near London, teas are being served, and her coming out party promises to be a resplendent affair. Everything is falling nicely into place, until, suddenly—it isn’t. For Petronella discovers that her guardian, Uncle Augustus T. Percival, has developed a most unVictorian compulsion: He must eat bugs. Worse still, because he is her guardian, Uncle Augustus is to attend her soiree and his current state will most definitely be an embarrassment. During the festivities, when Petronella would much rather be sharing pleasantries with handsome Lord James Sinclair (swoon), important guests are disappearing, kidnapping notes are appearing, many of the clues are insects, and Uncle Augustus is surreptitiously devouring evidence. It’s more than one sixteen-year-old girl should have to deal with. But, truth be told, there is far more yet to come . . .

This has got to be one of the strangest, cutest, most wonderful starts to a series I've ever read and I think I'm in love with it. The language, the characters, their behaviors to me everything was spot on.

Right off the bat we are introduced to Victorian manners and ways of doing things and then all of a sudden we find Uncle Augustus T. Percival having a bite to eat, a bite to eat of BUGS! His compulsion is just so hilarious, the way the author writes it, seeing him hopping around in the background grabbing bugs out of the air and such, it just never got old! That was probably my favorite part of the book.

Next we have this wonderful mystery of two very important people vanishing from Petronella's party and she and her friends and relatives take it upon themselves to help out the police to find them. Oh and did I mention that Petronella's Aunt and son and Great Aunt and two daughters show up to try and help sort out this mess but are basically in the way the whole time. They make for some great comedy.

And most surprisingly and most welcome too is a bit of romance in the story. Petronella's best friend happens to have an adorably handsome brother who Petronella swoons for, if only he would notice her as anything other than a sister. Let's just say I can't wait to see where the story picks up in the next installment of this series!

I would highly recommend this book for something a bit out of the ordinary. I was highly impressed.

Petronella Saves Nearly Everyone: The Entomological Tales of Augustus T. Percival was released on June 1st.
Genre: Middle Grade/Young Adult
5/5 Stars
ARC provided by publisher

Saturday, July 11, 2009

This Week In Books Or Striking Library Book Store Gold Again + A Tapir Surprise!


The Pact by Jennifer Sturman

After reading Jennifer's And Then Everything Unraveled I hunted down her first adult book on Bookmooch!

Tuesday: nothing


Rampant by Diana Peterfreund
Once Dead, Twice Shy by Kim Harrison
A Good Indian Wife by Anne Cherian
Shopaholic and Baby by Sophie Kinsella
6X: The Uncensored Confessions by Nina Malkin
Perfect Cover by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Killer Spirit by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Backstage Pass by Mary Wilcox
On Location Mary Wilcox
Take it Off by J. Minter
Mates, Dates, and Sleepover Secrets by Cathy Hopkins
Mates, Dates, and Designer Divas by Cathy Hopkins

So went to the library (as if you couldn't tell) and silently screamed a few times I think when I was there. SCORE!


Piece, Love, and Happiness by Emily Franklin

I'm pretty sure this is out of print so I was really lucky to find this on Bookmooch!

How to Steal A Car by Pete Hautman

For review!


This isn't a book but check out the SWEETEST TAPIR BAG IN THE WORLD MADE BY KATIE ALENDER! OMG! I'm totally trying out the eye pillow ASAP! Thanks so much Katie you made my day!

Saturday: nothing

Friday, July 10, 2009

Lookalikes 57

Toy Monster by Jerry Oppenheimer

My Big Nose and Other Natural Disasters by Sydney Salter

While I do like how bright the eyes are in Toy Monster, My Big Nose wins, it's easier on the eyes. I love the pastels!

Which is your favorite?

Thanks to Liviania and pepsivanilla (and was there someone else, I haven't been updating via my email lately sorry, will add in later) who also noticed this lookalike!
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