Sunday, June 30, 2013

Cover Madness Giveaway

Hey everyone & Happy Canada Day to my fellow Canucks out there! I'm super excited to be part of the Cover Madness Giveaway Hop hosted by two fabulous bloggers: Jenni @ Alluring Reads & Giselle @ Xpresso Reads ! We've teamed up for an EPIC giveaway event to show our thanks - and share some loveliness with our followers!

We're kicking off July in style!  You may have noticed the flood of  gorgeous covers releases for upcoming books surfacing lately, making our eyes and hearts bleed rainbows!  Don't believe me?  Check out some of the pretty books Lunar Rainbows has up for grabs (click on the cover for Goodreads):

One lucky winner will get to pick one of these:

See, I wasn't lying *drools* - Cover-lover overload O.O

- Winner can pick a pre-order of any of these -OR- you can choose book 1 in the series if the cover shown is a sequel.

*If a title shown becomes unavailable on Book Depository for whatever reason, the winner will have to chose another book*


 Giveaway Details

Giveaway is for one (1) book choice from the above selection (or another in the series).  Don't forget to visit all the blogs participating in the hop for more giveaways & chances to win!

Grab the Button:
Open internationally as long as The Book Depository ships to your location.
Giveaway ends July 15th 2013
Use the Rafflecopter below to enter

And here are the other blogs participating so you can hop around & enter their giveaways too:

Friday, June 28, 2013

Friday Favorites *6*

Friday Favorites is a quicky feature I've decided to do! It's certainly not the first of it's kind, given the alliteration, but it fits with what I'm going for.   - Every week, I'll feature 5 random favorites of mine, bookish or otherwise!  If you have any suggestions for future 'favorites' I'd love to hear them :)

This week I'm going with a suggested 'favorites' topic from the lovely Sharrice over at Reese's Reviews , who suggested I do a post about my favorite foods.  Now for those of you who may not know, my real-life job is in the naturopathic/natural health field.  Though I'm not a vegetarian (I used to be but it just didn't work for my personal health & metabolic needs), I am careful to avoid preservatives, artificial additives and processed foods.  Add that to a few food allergies and let's just say most of the food I eat is home-made so there will be no actual 'junk' food in this post...but that doesn't mean I don't eat yummy treats!

Penne Pasta w. tomato basil sauce
1. Pasta - this is probably my number one comfort food, so over the years I've tried any and all combinations of pasta.  Lately, I'm on a brown rice pasta noodle kick, which taste the same as regular wheat pasta, just wheat & gluten free!  Topped off with tomato basil sauce and cheese?  YUM.  I could eat this like 4 times a week every week and never ever get bored!

2. Cheesecake - I enjoy the traditional New-York style cheesecake quite a bit - especially when topped when raspberries or strawberries!  My favorite kind of cheesecake is probably key-lime cheesecake like the one they have at the Cheesecake Factory! Though the Butterscotch Cheesecake me & the boyfriend kinda created is pretty intense *drools*  -->  awesome cheesecake I had while @ NYC via Red Lobster.  Which brings me to...

3. Seafood- When you live close to the ocean, eating seafood is almost a way of life!  Lucky for this Pisces that I freaking love the stuff, which was surprising in my childhood because I was notoriously grand-mother was always able to keep me well-fed and pleasantly surprised with a variety of fish & shellfish meals!  <-- this shot here, is of what I had on the first day in New York at Red Lobster: fresh snow-crab legs with butter dipping sauce!

Green Tea Honey Vanila

4. Häagan Dazs Ice Cream -  which is my go-to ice-cream because it's on of the few ice-creams available around here that is made from actual cream, milk and sugar - you know, real food-stuff  >.<   Green Tea & Honey Vanilla flavor is my #1 favorite kind ♥ it's surprisingly refreshing & just plain drool-worthy!  The Praline & Cream one and Dulce de Leche are close runner-ups...though if the Butter Pecan flavor was available around here, I would probably die O.O

Mixed Berries
5. Fresh home-grown veggies & fruits - I know, I know -boring. I just planted my first garden though, and I'm really excited because now that I'm in the country again, we finally have a yard...and a lawn! Working in garden with the bf takes me back to my childhood and the times I spent with my grandmother tending her garden!  And then eating fresh raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, tomatoes, cucumbers, broccoli...OM NOM NOM!  Plus we planted herbs like basil, thyme, oregano and peppermint so I can't wait to throw those in some yummy Italian cuisine!

So what are some of your favorite foods?
Let me know guys, I'm always into new food ideas :)

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday *37*

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly 'hump-day' feature hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine where book bloggers get together & spotlight an upcoming release we're especially looking forward to!

Here's my pick for this week:


Release Date: September 24th, 2013

Author: Brandon Sanderson

Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics.

But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his wills.

Nobody fights the Epics... nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them.

And David wants in. He wants Steelheart—the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David's father. For years, like the Reckoners, David's been studying, and planning—and he has something they need. Not an object, but an experience.

He's seen Steelheart bleed. And he wants revenge.

Yes, I'll admit it: I've been talking about this one non-stop already. And yes, I did get a copy at BEA so I'm technically not really waiting on it anymore...BUT, in my defense: I hadn't featured it as a WoW post yet and it was the one scheduled to go up this week.  Plus, I'm holding off to read it closer to the release date - if only because I have so many other books to get to! So really, I am still waiting on Steelheart.  And you know me, I'll jump at any excuse to fangirl over Brandon Sanderson!!  For Steelheart, Sanderson revisits the idea of magic powers coming from or using metal (*ahem* Mistborn) but in typical Sanderson fashion, he offers a fresh & innovative spin on things! Steelheart is a sci-fi, dystopian read about Epics - who are pretty much like super-humans or Superheroes (!!!) who wish to rule ordinary humans.  And then there are Reckoners, regular people with no power who study the they can fight back.  Hmm, calling them 'Epics' seems fitting because this book sounds like just that - EPIC.

Enough fan-girling from me - are YOU excited for Steelheart?
Link me you to your WoW posts guys!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Review: Born of Illusion

Born of Illusion by Teri Brown
Published: June 11, 2013 by Balzer & Bray

Anna Van Housen is thirteen the first time she breaks her mother out of jail. By sixteen she’s street smart and savvy, assisting her mother, the renowned medium Marguerite Van Housen, in her stage show and séances, and easily navigating the underground world of magicians, mediums and mentalists in 1920’s New York City. Handcuffs and sleight of hand illusions have never been much of a challenge for Anna. The real trick is keeping her true gifts secret from her opportunistic mother, who will stop at nothing to gain her ambition of becoming the most famous medium who ever lived. But when a strange, serious young man moves into the flat downstairs, introducing her to a secret society that studies people with gifts like hers, he threatens to reveal the secrets Anna has fought so hard to keep, forcing her to face the truth about her past. Could the stories her mother has told her really be true? Could she really be the illegitimate daughter of the greatest magician of all?
*An ARC was provided by Balzer & Bray in exchange for an honest review* 

Born of Illusion is a book I fell in love with the moment I found out about it.  Beyond it's attractive cover, it promised to be a tale of mediums, magicians and yes, illusion.  Set in New York in the 1920's, the jazzy backdrop and mysterious tone...even mentions of Harry Houdini made this historical tale with paranormal elements made this impossible to resist.  I'll admit that I hesitated for a split second before cracking open the cover, because honestly it almost sounds almost too good to be true!  Could it live up to all I was building it up to be in my head?  The answer? Oh yes, yes it could!  It so could, that I can hardly stand it!

Our main character, Anna, is a gifted illusionist and assistant to her famous 'medium' mother.  Anna's entire life has be spent in the underground world of séances, mentalists and deception.  Which is a good thing because Anna has secrets of her own.  The supposed illegitimate daughter of Harry Houdini himself, according to her mother, Anna already draws enough stares and unwanted attention as it is.  If the truth ever got out...if people really knew that Anna can see the future & that she can sense other people's feelings? Well Anna can't even bear thinking about it.   Soon though, she may not have much choice.  As her powers become stronger and stronger, she begins to have chilling visions of her mother in grave danger and Anna is faced with a choice: should she open herself up to her powers and risk exposure - if it means she might be able to keep her mother safe?  As if Anna doesn't have enough to be getting on with as it is, a dark and equally mysterious boy just happens to move downstairs and Anna has to wonder if and how he could be connected to all of this, before it's too late.

Born of Illusion started off a bit slow admittedly, but I didn't really mind because I was able to fully soak up the time period and setting.  New York City in the roaring 20's must have been something to behold and Teri Brown did a spectacular job bringing it to life before my very eyes. From the fashion to the descriptions of the city life...the way a character would turn a phrase or use an expression, everything was brilliantly woven into the story & used to full-effect.  I was truly fascinated by the life of magic and illusion that Anna was a part of in her day to day life and the time-period chose was fit to a tee because in the early 1900's, the whole world seemed to be brimming with possibilities.  Advances in science and technology would have seemed like magic to many and the author did a fantastic job of utilizing these tools to build a rich atmosphere dripping with intrigue, mystery and just the right touch of fantasy!

The cast of characters in Born of Illusion is kept reasonably small, which I found quite refreshing.  I feel like a lot of the books I read lately feel almost overstuffed with superfluous characters. In this case specifically, I felt keeping the number of characters on a smaller scale gave the book an added mystique and definitely fit with the tone of the plot.  Each character was introduced for a purpose, even if it wasn't always clear right away what that purpose was.   As a main character, I warmed to Anna quickly and my affection for her only grew as the story unfolded.  I love a girl who can think on her feet in a pinch and Anna was all that and more.  Her love of performing and making the audience wonder never failed top put a smile on my face and her quiet resolve was something I really admired about her - I could easily be friends with someone like Anna!  

Another aspect that really worked for me was Anna's complicated relationship with her mother.  Generally speaking, I'm consistently surprised when an MC in YA fiction has a living parent to begin with.  Orphans seem to be a prerequisite nowadays, or maybe it's always been the case...I don't know.  It just instantly feels fresh to me when the protagonist has even one parent. Beyond that though,  Anna and her mother are simultaneously very different and quite similar in a way that causes them immense conflict with warmer, more normal moments thrown in.  I relished uncovering bits of their shared past and how their adventures & misadventures have made them into the women they are today, both separately and as a team.  

There is romance in Born of Illusion but it is of the slow-burn and very believable variety.  There is even the beginning of  a love triangle but fear not: it's short lived!  Soon enough it becomes fairly obvious that there's only one real choice to be had here.  I'm usually not a fan of the dreaded triangle but if there's a purpose to it, or if it's handled properly it can be enjoyable - and in this case it was! The two boys in question: Cole and Owen clearly have different intentions, both where the plot is concerned and also as far as their relationship with Anna.  In any case, I had fun watching it all unfold!

Born of Illusion was quite simply filled to the brim with mystery & allure .  The possibilities felt endless, and Teri Brown certainly took full advantage of her playing field, in my opinion.  This tale was deliciously plotted & executed and though it wasn't entirely perfect, it was the perfect balance of early 20th century ambiance with a touch mysticism thrown in for good measure. I wanted to fully immerse myself in this world and never come back up for air. 

Reminiscent of The Prestige by Christopher Nolan (featuring Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman) & The Illusionist by Neil Burger (featuring Edward Norton, Paul Giamatti & Jessica Biel) but with a fresh YA twist!  Born of Illusion is simply too much fun to pass up!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday *36*

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly 'hump-day' feature hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine where us book bloggers get together & spotlight an upcoming release we're especially looking forward to!

Here's my pick for this week:

The Chaos of Stars 

Release Date: September 10th, 2013

Author: Kiersten White

Isadora’s family is seriously screwed up.

Of course, as the human daughter of Egyptian gods, that pretty much comes with the territory. She’s also stuck with parents who barely notice her, and a house full of relatives who can’t be bothered to remember her name. After all, they are going to be around forever—and she’s a mere mortal.

Isadora’s sick of living a life where she’s only worthy of a passing glance, and when she has the chance to move to San Diego with her brother, she jumps on it. But Isadora’s quickly finding that a “normal” life comes with plenty of its own epic complications—and that there’s no such thing as a clean break when it comes to family. Much as she wants to leave her past behind, she can’t shake the ominous dreams that foretell destruction for her entire family. When it turns out there may be truth in her nightmares, Isadora has to decide whether she can abandon her divine heritage after all.
I have not read anything by Kiersten White...yet. I know a lot of people liked her Paranormalcy Series, but I also know a lot of people were underwhelmed by Mind Games but as conflicting as all that might sound, it all came down to one thing for me: this book is about Ancient Egypt!!  Egyptian gods & myths *flails*  Cards on the table, I'm kinda obsessed with Ancient Egypt so any excuse to spend time in a world like that is a win for me. I want to find out how Isadora's status as a mortal comes into play with her immortal Egyptian relatives and what effect(s) - if any, her heritage has on her in way of abilities or even powers!  And that cover? Gorgeous.

Thoughts?  Are you a Mythology-lover or an Egypt-fanatic like me?
Don't forget to link me up to your WoW's below!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Review: Second Grave on the Left

Second Grave on the Left by Darynda Jones
(Charley Davidson Series #2)
Published in August 2011 by St. Martin's Press

"If you hang around with dead people, life can deliver a whole world of trouble."

Take it from Charley Davidson, part-time P.I. and full-time Grim Reaper.The deceased find her very sparkly. Demons find her irresistible. And one entity in particular wants to seduce her in every way possible...

When Charley and Cookie, her best friend slash receptionist, have to track down a missing woman, the case is not quite as open and shut as they anticipate. Meanwhile, Reyes Alexander Farrow (otherwise known as the Son of Satan. Yes. Literally.) has left his corporeal body because he's being tortured by demons who want to lure Charley closer. But Reyes can't let that happen. Because if the demons get to Charley, they'll have a portal to heaven. And if they have a portal to heaven...well, let's just say it wouldn't be pretty.

Can Charley handle hot nights with Reyes and even hotter days tracking down a missing woman? Can she keep those she loves out of harm's way? And is there enough coffee and chocolate in the world to fuel her as she does?
''National Sarcasm Society: Like We Need Your Help''

*This Review is Spoiler-Free*

Second Grave on the Left is the second offering in the Charley Davidson Series and it does not disappoint.  While I'd found First Grave to be very much of an introductory book, this sequel did not fall prey to the dreaded second book slump but instead picked up right where book one left off and continued building momentum while also increasing in awesomeness.

The stakes felt like they were quite a bit higher this time around, for everyone involved in Charley's world...and Charley herself is no exception.  The missing woman case she and her best friend/assistant Cookie are working on is anything but what it appears to be.  The case is beyond enigmatic and  soon it's morphing into something a lot bigger than Charley first thought.  On top of that,  there are other people searching for the same missing woman...very dangerous men who will stop at nothing to find her first, even if it means stopping Charley, cold.  And if that wasn't enough, the incredibly seductive bad boy Reyes Alexander Farrow (a.k.a. the son of Satan)  is in serious danger and refuses to let Charley help... but that doesn't stop him from visiting Charley by *ahem* other means. ;) 

As a character, Charley just really grew on me this time around.  Done were the introductions to her baddass-ness, she wasn't explaining anymore - she just did.  She seemed even tougher to me which made me admire her even more. The best part about her though is her sense of humor, her snarky-ness and her sarcasm which returned full swing in Second Grave.  I was happy to find that the secondary characters also exhibited some form of change and growth on their end too. It always sucks when every background character stays sort of stagnant while the MC gets all the attention.  I was especially pleased that we got to know the glorious Reyes a bit better too - although he doesn't lose an ounce of mystery...or allure.  Wow, that man just keeps getting better and better the more I read about him. Excuse me while I swoon some more!

The plot itself was really satisfying because it began to build right from page one and grew from there.  You're sort of thrown into a case right then and there and as the story progresses, more layers or other sub-plots are added smoothly.  Similarly to book one, the world-building is pretty minimal because other than being the grim-reaper, Charley leads a pretty normal life (as weird is that sounds).  She's a Private Investigator, she works closely with the police force helping them solve crimes.  It's like a police mystery with paranormal elements thrown in for good measure.  We get a few more hints about the way other 'other-worldly' beings exist and their world, but nothing major...yet. I feel like there will be more and more as the series moves forward.

As an Adult Mystery/Paranormal, the Charley Davidson Series could be thought of as a guilty pleasure - except for the fact that I feel absolutely no guilt whatsoever for reading AND enjoying them!  This was the perfect read for me at the best possible moment because despite the horrible crimes, the mystery and the suspense, it manages to keep the tone light and especially funny.  The ending is seriously killer though so I'm already dying to get started on book 3!  A story as addictive as a good cup of coffee and filled to the brim with enough thrills & sexiness to keep me glued until the very last page.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Stacking the Shelves *26*

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly feature hosted by Tynga's Reviews showcasing new books we've gotten a hold of (bought/given/gifted/trade/for review).

This week is a veery leetle week for me - especially when you compare it to last week's XD but I'm seriously SO excited about all of these that I wanted to share!  A big (HUGE) thank you to SourceBooks Fire, Random House, Harper Collins UK & Netgalley for the sweetness that is:

& The Bell Between Worlds (Mirror Chronicles #1) by Ian Johnstone.

I was lucky enough to score a coveted copy of Vicious Deep at BEA, so when I got home and saw that the sequel The Savage Blue was available on Netgalley I freaked.  I hit request like a lightning bolt.  I mean, mermaids!!! And those covers are sooooo alluring to me, I just can't even >.< Kenobi, I feel speaks for itself pretty much? I'm a big Star Wars fan and Obi Wan is easily my favorite Jedi so any kind of story focusing on him was impossible to pass up.  The Bell Between Worlds in the first book in The Mirror Chronicles - a story centering on a magical world that exists alongside our own.  According to the blurb it's a 'glorious epic fantasy' along the lines of Narnia & His Dark Materials! Yeah, you know I love my epic fantasies!  The premise sounds pretty cool though and the concept of 'glimmers' is intriguing to say the least.
That's it for me this week dolls!
Don't forget to link me up to your hauls below :)

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday *35*

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly 'hump-day' feature hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine where us book bloggers get together & spotlight an upcoming release we're especially looking forward to!

Here's my pick for this week:

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea 

Release Date: August 15th, 2013

Author: April Genevieve Tucholke

You stop fearing the devil when you’re holding his hand…

Nothing much exciting rolls through Violet White’s sleepy, seaside town…until River West comes along. River rents the guesthouse behind Violet’s crumbling estate, and as eerie, grim things start to happen, Violet begins to wonder about the boy living in her backyard. Is River just a crooked-smiling liar with pretty eyes and a mysterious past? Or could he be something more? Violet’s grandmother always warned her about the Devil, but she never said he could be a dark-haired boy who takes naps in the sun, who likes coffee, who kisses you in a cemetery...who makes you want to kiss back. Violet’s already so knee-deep in love, she can’t see straight. And that’s just how River likes it.

Blending faded decadence and the thrilling dread of gothic horror, April Genevieve Tucholke weaves a dreamy, twisting contemporary romance, as gorgeously told as it is terrifying—a debut to watch.

Wow, I just love the sound of this!  Both the synopsis and that stunning cover give off such a gothic vibe!  It sounds like it will be scary, romantic and mysterious, with added super-natural elements and how in the world is anyone expected to pass all that up?!  Well, I'll tell you: I can not pass this up.  It would be impossible.  I love the sound of Violet's 'sleepy seaside town' too, you just know this boy River is just bound to shake that little town to it's core!  And if the place looks anything like that staggering cliff on the cover? Well, things just keep getting better and better :)  I can't wait to dive in, head-first and see where I end up.

Are you excited for this one too?
& what was your WoW pick this week?  Link meee!!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

ARC Review: Some Quiet Place

Some Quiet Place by Kelsey Sutton
Publication Date: July 8th 2013 by Flux Books

Elizabeth Caldwell doesn’t feel emotions . . . she sees them. Longing, Shame, and Courage materialize around her classmates. Fury and Resentment appear in her dysfunctional home. They’ve all given up on Elizabeth because she doesn’t succumb to their touch. All, that is, save one—Fear. He’s intrigued by her, as desperate to understand the accident that changed Elizabeth’s life as she is herself.

Elizabeth and Fear both sense that the key to her past is hidden in the dream paintings she hides in the family barn. But a shadowy menace has begun to stalk her, and try as she might, Elizabeth can barely avoid the brutality of her life long enough to uncover the truth about herself. When it matters most, will she be able to rely on Fear to save her?
Some Quiet Place is a book I went into with pretty high expectations.  For someone like me, the synopsis was almost too good to be true: a girl who can see emotions in physical form?!  Beings from another realm that exist among us, without us knowing.  She literally sees emotions as living beings when people around her feel them!  But while she sees more than others... they can feel these emotions - Elizabeth feels nothing. Ever.  That combination of ideas is just too cool! I want to gobble up stuff like that!  I longed to explore this other realm further and get to know all the different possibilities of emotions in 'human' form!  I was also really curious as to what had happened to Elizabeth to make her so different - not only because of what she can see that others can't, but why all those emotional elements she sees simply can not touch her, in any way.  

I have mixed feelings about Some Quiet Place, mostly because despite dealing with personified emotions and 'the other realm', it didn't really come off as a fantasy-filled read.   Not to say that that's a bad thing!  Honestly once I got used to reading the book I was actually reading, instead of what I though I was getting, the dark, gritty reality of this story was a nice change of pace from the usual.   Often, Some Quiet Place almost felt like a contemporary read - it had an abusive home and an MC who is emotionally shut-off, distant: an outsider.  And when I say abusive home, I mean it.  There are multiple instances and most are severe, so fair warning. Oh and did I mention,  she also has a friend who is  dying of cancer. o.O   This is not a light and breezy fantasy romp and not something I'm especially used to reading.  I've read adult fantasy books where the MC is abused but none ever came off this raw...or tragic.  All these heavy themes a bit jarring initially but honestly they were also a  refreshing change of pace, especially with the amount of YA or adult fantasy I read.  So props to Kelsey Sutton for taking the road less traveled here!

The MC, Elizabeth was compelling, though sometimes hard to truly connect with - much of that due to her complete lack of emotion.  It makes her so impossibly 'other',  next to any and all humans...and last time I checked, I'm human too. (Right??)  What I'm trying to say, is that I got the impression that Elizabeth was written with that purpose in mind;  to seem mostly separate from humanity.  How could she not be when she simply is incapable of feeling anything.   I empathized with her though, especially when she began taking interest in why she's so different and what happened to make her this way.  At times she frustrated me though because from the outside, it seemed like she was blindly clinging on to her stubbornness sometimes - instead of determinedly searching for answers.  Honestly though when the truth comes out, it's a little easier to understand why she clung to her notions and I could see the logic behind her resistance.  The more she began to dig & search, she was able to piece things together bit by bit and the effect it had on her was clear...even if she couldn't see it yet.  And that made me root for her even more.  I cared.  I wanted to put the puzzle pieces together.  I did manage to guess the finale outcome before the MC did but even then, I wanted to know when she'd figure it all out - and how she'd take it. 

I realize that this review is kind of cryptic, but there's not much I can discuss plot-wise without spoilers.  So let's move on to things I can talk about!  The supporting cast of characters is solid & memorable throughout, from the humans in Elizabeth's everyday life - as horrible as some of them are, there are simply wonderful ones to balance things out.  The emotions and elements though are truly something, each physical being seeming to truly embody the emotion or element in question, in every single combination imaginable, from the truly dreamy bad boy to a really (really!) horrifying presence.  I would have liked more information on their world and their origins though and would have gladly traded off some of the slower moving scenes for some sort of 'other realm' history lesson.

I guess my ambivalence with Some Quiet Place mostly stems from me expecting a paranormal-heavy story and getting more of a contemporary vibe with fantasy or paranormal elements thrown in.  I think this could be an excellent book for contemporary readers who tend to mostly dabble in fantasy-lite stories.  And I know I've said this before but I'm BIG on MC-reader connections and as someone on the high-emotion side, Elizabeth kept me at a distance when I would have wanted us to be more like BFF's... it's almost like her inability to feel rubbed off on me.  Only I did care, just not as much as I would have wanted to.  The ending was satisfying, but since I'd already pieced together the big twist, I can't say how the surprise element would have affected my overall impression.  I'm guessing if you haven't guessed the twists before they happen, you might just really be blown away!   Despite my lack of surprise, I appreciated the way everything fit together so well - no lingering loose ends and everything stayed true to whatever we'd learned previously.  I know I'm kind of all over the place here, but the bottom line for me really is: I finished Some Quiet Place 3 days ago now, and I still really want to discuss it with someone - anyone!  And to me, that defines a book that was worth my time.

 My rating: 3 out of 5 stars

**Thanks to Flux Books for the ARC of Some Quiet Place that was provided in exchange for an honest review!**

Saturday, June 8, 2013

StS *25* - BEA Edition!!!

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly feature hosted by Tynga's Reviews showcasing new books we've gotten a hold of (bought/given/gifted/trade/for review).

This is the big one dolls, because in this edition I'll be featuring all my BEA'13 goodies!!  I already did up a BEA Event Recap Post, (click if you missed it and feel like checking it out), so this post is all about the books!  Because it would take forever to link up to every single book I got, I decided to just share pictures of my individual-day hauls, feature some of the highlights for me & a few autographs because I know some of you wanted to see those too :)  So let's get to it:

~ Day 1 Haul ~
Highlights include: Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson, Born of Illusion by Teri Brown, treats by Julie Kagawa (The Immortal Rules, The Eternity Cure, The Iron Daughter & The Iron Queen), an Heir Chronicles books by Cinda Williams Chima, The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater,  Storm Watcher by Maria V. Snyder, The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black & These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner.  Day 1 was pretty epic overall!

 ~ Day 2 Haul ~
Highlights include: The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson, Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas, The School for Good & Evil by Soman Chainani, Curtsies & Conspiracies by Gail Carriger, Vicious by Victoria Schwab, The Lord of Opium by Nancy Farmer and Gameboard of the Gods by Richelle Mead.  Day 2 had a lot of signings, so more time spent in line and less time running around to catch book-drops.

~ Day 3 Haul ~
Highlights Include: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas, The Beautiful & the Cursed by Page Morgan, The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas, Some Quiet Place by Kelsey Sutton, False Sight by Dan Krokos, Unraveling  by Elizabeth Norris & Vicious Deep by Zoraida Córdova.  I expected Day 3 to be more quiet than the previous 2, but I got really lucky with signings & being at the right place at the right time so I got some unexpected but coveted goodies!

The Entire Stack - ♥ !!
I did try to restrain myself and only get books I'd already had on my Wishlist or TBR shelf and for the most part I think I did pretty darn good!  Sometimes the temptation was too much to resist though >.<  so many pretties...all around...all shiny and alluring! *blacks out* o_O  A million thanks to all the amazing authors, publishers & BEA staff in general for making this such a truly life-changing experience!  I'm already planning a repeat for next year!

As for the autographs - I know some of you were curious, so here are a few shots of the more memorable ones (ps- it was really hard to limit myself here, authors are totally like rockstars to me:

From left to right: Maria V. Snyder, Kelsey Sutton (Some Quiet Place), V.E. Schwab & Dan Krokos

From left to right: Brandon Sanderson, Julie Kagawa, Teri Brown (Born of Illusion) & Sanderson (again!)

I'd been on a book buying ban for months prior to BEA so I'm extremely happy to have some new goodies to swoon over.  I'll probably reinstate my ban for a few weeks now (till the wallet recovers from NYC) but I have some galleys already set for next week!  Don't forget to link me up to your haul below so I can return the visit & see what everyone else got! ♥