Friday, March 6, 2015

I Was Here by Gayle Forman, Book Review


Written by: Gayle Forman
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Release Date: January 27, 2015
Source: Purchased

Purchase: IndieBound | amazon | Barnes and Noble | BAM | Powells

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars -- a mystery that is packed with emotion

When her best friend Meg drinks a bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room, Cody is understandably shocked and devastated. She and Meg shared everything—so how was there no warning? But when Cody travels to Meg’s college town to pack up the belongings left behind, she discovers that there’s a lot that Meg never told her. About her old roommates, the sort of people Cody never would have met in her dead-end small town in Washington. About Ben McAllister, the boy with a guitar and a sneer, who broke Meg’s heart. And about an encrypted computer file that Cody can’t open—until she does, and suddenly everything Cody thought she knew about her best friend’s death gets thrown into question.

I Was Here is Gayle Forman at her finest, a taut, emotional, and ultimately redemptive story about redefining the meaning of family and finding a way to move forward even in the face of unspeakable loss.

On January 27th my kindle had barely registered that it was 9:02 PST when I realized that I Was Here had already downloaded. I might have muttered something about not getting any sleep at all and I dove right into an unexpected surprise. Why unexpected? Because I had no idea that this story was going to be a tricky mystery with a bit of a thriller feeling to it.

I was expecting the emotional turns. This is something that Gayle is simply masterful in writing. But, I wasn't expecting that feeling in the pit of my stomach, that foreboding, that chills-down-my-spine feeling that you get when reading a really well done mystery plot.

Cody and Meg are the tightest of friends, but even BFFs have secrets. When Meg commits suicide, Cody begins to unravel her best friend's footsteps that led to that final decision. Cody is a complex character, full of insecurities and carrying a lot of emotional baggage. So basically, a character that I understood from the very first page. I also understood that devastating feeling of thinking you know someone and discovering that you really didn't know everything about them.

As Cody retraces her friends first term in college, she meets the new people in Meg's life and she discovers a different Meg from the one she knew. Oh you guys, the story will hook you and hook you hard for hours. There were things I expected and things I didn't. Characters I loved and ones that were vile. But in the end, I understood their motivation and yes, the mystery of why Meg committed suicide was crystal clear. In true Gayle fashion, there is that feeling of hope at the end. And in those sad, pivotal moments in our own lives, that feeling of hope is the one we all cling to.

If you enjoy a mystery with depth and characters who are beautifully written, pick up I Was Here. It's just the kind of story to keep you reading through yet another snow storm or even the many hours spent waiting for appointments and school bells. Another Gayle story that goes on my Sharing It with My Kids shelf.

The Dark Artifices: Lady Midnight Snippet

Emma and Julian's Parabatai Ceremony by CassandraJean
Cassie posted a rather worrisome snippet from Lady Midnight.  :

“Let me tell you a truth before you die, Emma,” said the voice. “It is a secret about the Nephilim. They hate love, human love, because they were born of angels. And while God charged his angels to take care of humans, the angels were made first, and they have always hated God’s second creation. That is why Lucifer fell. He was an angel who would not bow to mankind, God’s favored child. Love is the weakness of human beings, and the Angels despise them for it, and the Clave despises it too, and therefore they punish it. Do you know what happens to parabatai who fall in love? Do you know why it’s forbidden?”
So who is The Voice? And oh my goodness, that warning!!!!! This is going to be one good and possibly heart-breaking story. 

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Don Carmody, TMI TV Show Producer Talks About the Series


Global News has an interesting interview with Don Carmody, producer of the TMI TV series. On March 1st, in Toronto at the Canadian Screen Awards, Don spoke about the future of the series.

Carmody was frank when talking about the disappointment of the TMI movie. He said they were hoping for a "Hunger Games" or "Twilight" type of franchise. But, he feels that “The story is so broad and the novels are so dense that we’re actually now talking about doing it as a limited series for television. The first book would be the first year and then assuming that goes well, the second book, the third book, the fourth… there are six books. So that’s what we’re looking at.”

He mentioned that there is a showrunner (someone who is responsible for the creative and financial aspects of the show) and a pilot episode. The last thing he said is that they are hoping to do it "here" (meaning Toronto).

It's exciting to see all this news swirling around the TV show. What are your thoughts, MMs? Can you imagine all six books coming to the small screen?


The Mortal Instruments UK Editions Get New Covers


One of the hard things about being away on vacation is all the exciting book news that happens while I'm away. Our friends at Page Turners tweeted a link to the UK covers, and upon logging in to quickly post about the TMI TV Series script post, I found a lovely email from my fabulous contact at Walker UK, which is Cassie's UK publishing house. They sent me info on the new, beautifully recovered Mortal Instruments Series, coming later this year. Check out the artwork!

These are stunning covers. The artist, Mila Furstova, is also the artist who created the album artwork for Coldplay's Ghost Stories. Here's a closer look at each individual cover. Head over to HERE to get more information via the official cover reveal. Fans can look for these to be released later this year! 

TMI TV Series Casting Call Ad Up on Craigslist in L.A.!


It appears the Cat Is Out Of the Bag! Our friends over at Fangirlish linked to a Craigslist posting for the #TMITVISeries casting call. While it seems a little odd that an add on Craigslist would be the first to break news, it's not surprising since it is from LA. Check out the link here. I've posted it what the casting call portion of the add said:

Sample:
SHADOWHUNTERS, Ep. #1001 "The MortalCup"

Pilot - Straight to Series
ABC Family
UNION
Draft: 2/23/15

Executive Producers: Ed Decter, Michael
Reisz, Marjorie David
Director: TBD
Writer: Ed Decter
Casting Directors: Alyson Silverberg &
Jonathan Clay Harris
Casting Associates: Susan Esrock & Justin
Kiang
Start Date: May 2015
Location: Vancouver

The download the script, go to Sides Express and use script key code S1212.

[CLARY FRAY] 18-21 years old, beautiful, fiery red-headed, creative, and intelligent. Clary
Fray is a promising art student whose bright future is derailed when her mother is
kidnapped and she learns her life has been a lie. Clary discovers a hidden Shadow World full
of Vampires, Werewolves, and other unthinkable danger that she quickly learns to
navigate. As she is forced into action, she embraces her newfound powers and realizes that
she will play the central role in this new world. . .SERIES REGULAR, PLEASE SUBMIT ALL
ETHNICITIES

[JACE WAYLAND] Early 20s, narcissistic, and lethally gorgeous, Jace is a determined and
expert Shadowhunter. A skilled soldier in a war against demons. After his father is killed,
Jace makes it his life mission to seek revenge on the man who is responsible. After years of
being the object of every girl's desire, he finds himself in an unfamiliar position -- falling in
love with Clary. . . SERIES REGULAR, PLEASE SUBMIT ALL ETHNICITIES

[SIMON LEWIS] Early 20s, intelligent, very handsome in a non-calculated kind of way,
Simon Lewis is Clary Fray's long-time best friend. He's the first to find humor in any
situation. An accounting student by day, Simon spends his free time performing in a band.
His loyalty and feelings for Clary are tested as he fights alongside her on an epic journey.
Because of this, he is ultimately turned into a vampire and struggles to maintain his
humanity while simultaneously accepting his fate. . . SERIES REGULAR, PLEASE SUBMIT ALL
ETHNICITIES

STORY LINE: Clary Fray is perfectly normal; she's a budding art student who loves spending
time with her friends and family. On her 18th birthday, however, Clary discovers she is part
of an age-old battle between demons and an elite race of warriors known as
Shadowhunters. When her mother is kidnapped and her home is destroyed, so is her sense
of reality. Clary must now understand her new role in an ancient battle, and come to terms

What do you think Shadowhunters? Personally, I hope fans meeting that deception head out and auction! Hopefully we'll hear some more official news soon.

Tracked by Jenny Martin, 3rd Lap GIVEAWAY!

Get your engine's started! Debut author Jenny Martin's TRACKED will be hitting book shelves soon, and to celebrate, she's hosting giveaways! As an official Tracked Crew Member, I'm so thrilled to be hosting today's 3rd Lap Giveaway! Trust me, you don't want to miss today's giveaway. Not only is Jenny giving away some of her awesome Tracked swag, she also has a SIGNED 1st edition copy of Cassandra Clare's City of Ashes. 

Before you enter to win, check out today's new book blurb, and excerpt/teaser from her book. First, here's a little bit about TRACKED. 

ABOUT THE BOOK


Published by: Dial
To Be Released on: 5/5/15
Pre-Order from: Amazon | B&N | IndieBound
Add it to Goodreads

The Fast and the Furious gets a sci-fi twist in this action-packed debut. On corporately controlled Castra, rally racing is a high stakes game that seventeen-year-old Phoebe Van Zant knows all too well. Phee’s legendary racer father disappeared mysteriously, but that hasn't stopped her from speeding headlong into trouble. When she and her best friend, Bear, attract the attention of Charles Benroyal, they are blackmailed into racing for Benroyal Corp, a company that represents everything Phee detests. Worse, Phee risks losing Bear as she falls for Cash, her daring new teammate. But when she discovers that Benroyal is controlling more than a corporation, Phee realizes she has a much bigger role in Castra’s future than she could ever have imagined. It's up to Phee to take Benroyal down. But even with the help of her team, can a street-rat destroy an empire?


This book had me at The Fast & the Furious meets sci-fi. I love it when books have something I've not read about before in YA books. Bring on the race, romance, and excitement of this new debut!

Before I share the blurb author Antony John gave for Tracked, I want to talk about the cover for just a moment. I am in love with this cover. I don't know how many times I've seen it, but I somehow never picked up on the fact there are headlights that are reflecting on the emblem in the center of the cover. How cool is that!?! I love it! Okay, now you can read Antony's glowing blurb for Jenny's debut. 

Here's the blurb, from Elemental author Antony John:
"Dazzlingly imaginative and whip-smart, TRACKED is pure adrenaline rush. Buckle up!"

And the teaser excerpt, from Chapter Eleven: 
My mind slips into a zone—I wonder if my father felt this same rush, driving the circuit. Even as I roar down this empty track, I can almost visualize the blur of a hundred thousand rally fans, screaming from the stands. I hear the snarl of engines on all sides. I feel the sweatbox heat of the three hundredth lap.
One last turn. Straight shot. I go for one more lap. Then two. Three. Faster. This time, I’ll make this rig scream. My hand slams against the throttle deck and I find the triggers.
Ready.
Push.
GO.

Whoa. The bursts are like nothing I’ve ever felt. The car runs pretty tight, but only a death grip on the wheel keeps me from spinning out of control. I’m banking dangerously close to the wall and it’s time to start praying.
Please. Please. Hold on. Yes.
My tires squeal but valiantly grip the track. I’ve managed to keep it together and make the next straightaway. My heart pounds and this glorious feeling builds and expands, radiating from the fist-sized knot in my core, until I’m as weightless as laughter. I smile, because this is what I was made for. This moment. Right or wrong, this is my inheritance.

The Giveaway




*Click each image to enlarge*

Enter to win a signed Tracked tote, chrome key chain, bookmarks AND t-shirt! Plus, since Jenny knows we're HUGE Cassandra Clare fans, she is also including a SIGNED 1st edition of Cassie Clare's City of Ashes!! Please fill out the form below to enter to win. US residents only.

Every Breath By Ellie Marney Book Review



By: Ellie Marney
Published by: Tundra Books
Released on: 2014
Series: Every Series
Rating: 5 Stars - I Loved It!
Source: own copy
Purchase from: Amazon

What if Sherlock Holmes was the boy next door?

Rachel Watts is an unwilling new arrival to Melbourne from the country. James Mycroft is her neighbour, an intriguingly troubled seventeen-year-old genius with a passion for forensics. Despite her misgivings, Rachel finds herself unable to resist when Mycroft wants her help investigating a murder.
And when Watts and Mycroft follow a trail to the cold-blooded killer, they find themselves in the lion’s den – literally. A night at the zoo will never have quite the same meaning again…
I first heard about this series via a friend who is from the same country town in Vic Australia as the author Ellie Marney. I am normally not a huge fan of mysteries. But I thought I'd give it a go being local Aussie Author.  I was not disappointed at all.  In fact I think Every Breath might have converted me to mystery novels! 
In Every Breath, Rachel is a country girl who has moved to the city with her family and she isn't happy about it.  She is going through the motions at school, and working hard to just get by and keep her family happy, and she misses her country farm life.  Mycroft lives next door to Rachel but he isn't your typical boy next door.  Then that is where the story gets interesting.  On discovering a homeless friend of Mycroft's murdered, the pair begin to look for answers. 
I loved the characters in this book.  Yes story is loosely based on Sherlock but you don't have to be a Sherlock fan to enjoy this as well.  Rachel is smart and doesn't take and crap from anyone.  Mycroft is troubled but still endearing.  Sometimes two characters just click and in Ellie's writing, Rachel and Mycroft just do.  It's not a typical love story, more friendship building, but we know this is often the basis of a good love story.  

It is also a fantastic mystery novel.  With lots of forensic and detective work to keep the mystery fans happy but not too much to overwhelm a novice like me.  Set in Melbourne with many of the landmarks familiar to me, I adored this so much.  It is a fast paced page turner right from the start, that will keep you guessing right until the end.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

EW Reveals the Book Trailer for Sabaa Tahir's AN EMBER IN THE ASHES #AnEmberInTheAshes


An Ember In The Ashes doesn't hit bookstore shelves until April 28th, 2015, but EW revealed the book trailer for it today! You can watch the trailer HERE. After you watch the trailer, but sure to check out their interview with debut author, Sabaa Tahir. You can read an excerpt from the book I previously shared here

ABOUT THE BOOK

By: Sabaa Tahir
Published by: Razorbill
To Be Released on: 4/28/15
Pre-Order from: Amazon | B&N
Add it to Goodreads

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

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

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

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


I really like this trailer! I can not wait to share my review for the book here on Mundie Moms. 

FROZEN TIDES by Morgan Rhodes; Waiting on Wednesday #239



By: Morgan Rhodes
Published by: Razorbill
To Be Released on: December 15th, 2015
Series: The Falling Kingdoms #4
Add it to Goodreads


Rebels, royals, and monsters wage war over the Mytican throne in the shocking fourth book of the Falling Kingdoms series, from New York Times bestselling author Morgan Rhodes.
CLEO: Reeling after a bloody showdown in Limeros ending with Amara’s abduction of the water crystal, and a vacancy in the Mytican throne, Princess Cleo must cast aside her feelings and look toward her kingdom with the eyes of a Queen.
MAGNUS: With the kingdom in chaos, Princess Lucia still missing and quite possibly in danger, and a shocking realization about Cleo, the steely prince is once again torn between love and duty, leaving him wondering whether he’s strong enough to rule his people.
LUCIA: The young sorcercess has had her vengeance after the cruel death of her first and only love. Heartbroken and unable to trust anyone, she allies with the awoken Fire god, who also seeks revenge.
JONAS: After escaping death by the skin of his teeth, the defeated rebel—along with a mysterious stranger–leader reunites with Princess Cleo, only to find himself a mere pawn in a dangerous hunt for the elusive Kindred.
KING GAIUS: Abandoned by Melenia and betrayed by his own children, Gaius flees Mytica and sails to Kraeshia, where he attempts to ally with the famously brutal emperor across the Silver Sea.
Oh my cover love!! Our friends over at NovelNovice revealed the stunning cover to this book yesterday. Even though this book is months from being released, I am dying to get my hands on it. I know that sounds dramatic, but this is one of my all time favorite series, and I need to know what happens next! Also, this cover! The cover designer has done an amazing job with each of the covers in Morgan Rhodes's Falling Kingdom series, but this one is stunning. Check out the other three books and their covers:

*Click image to enlarge.

I am now officially counting down the days of this book's release. If you haven't yet done so, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND that you pick up the first three books in this series and read them. What book are you waiting?

New Stephanie Perkins Anthology to Feature Cassandra Clare & 11 Other YA Authors!

Yesterday Stephanie Perkins announced a new book deal! Not only does this upcoming anthology feature some of our favorite YA authors, CASSANDRA CLARE is also apart of it! Continue reading below to find out more information about the book. 


Taken from Cassandra Clare's tumblr post about Stephanie Perkins's announcement, here's what she shared with fans, which was reposted from Stephanie's original announcement:
New! Book! News!
I’m absolutely thrilled to announce the sale of my second YA anthology. Summer Days & Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories will be released in Summer 2016 from the same WONDERFUL publishers who brought you My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories—Sara Goodman at St. Martin’s Press and Rachel Petty at Macmillan UK. Once again, I’ll be editing as well as contributing a story.
This collection will feature twelve new tales of romantic love, all set during the summer months, from twelve new (okay, okay—minus me, eleven!) outstanding authors:
I am so, so grateful to each of these authors for their trust and enthusiasm. I mean. That’s an incredible list, right??
I’m also thankful for Kate Schafer Testerman, my kindhearted and always kick-ass agent. And I’m so happy and honored to be working with Sara Goodman and Rachel Petty again, because … because … they’re just so freaking great, you guys.
Here’s the official announcement from Publisher’s Weekly:
Sara Goodman at St. Martin’s has bought Stephanie Perkins’s second young adult anthology, Summer Days & Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories, a collection of 12 romantic tales of young summer love, which includes contributions from Leigh Bardugo, Francesca Lia Block, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Nina LaCour, Veronica Roth, Jennifer E. Smith, among others. Publication is slated for summer 2016; Kate Schafer Testerman at KT Literary brokered the deal for North American rights.
I hope you’re as excited as I am! Except I realize that’s not actually possible. (Because I’m REALLY REALLY SUPER EXCITED.) But I do hope this news makes you smile.
Because this book? It’s gonna be special. :-)
xo,
Steph
P.S. If you’re on Goodreads, please add Summer Days & Summer Nights to-read HERE.
I can't wait to read this one! 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

March 2015 YA Releases

Hello Readers! Check out all the fabulous YA titles hitting bookstore shelves this month. There definitely won't be any shortages of good reads when you're sitting by the pool during spring break. 


    The Week of March 3rd

    1. The Winner's Crime by Marie Rutkoski, 3/3/15, Macmillan
    2. Sorceress by Claudia Gray, 3/3/15, Harper Teen
    3. Death Marked by Leah Cypress, 3/3/15, Harper 
    4. The Storyspinner by Becky Wallace, 3/3/15, Simon & Schuster
    5. Mosquitoland by David Arnold, 3/3/15, Penguin
    6. How To Win At High School by Owen Matthews, 3/3/15, Harper Teen
    7. The Memory Key by Liana Liu, 3/3/15, Harper Teen
    8. Bone Gap by Laura Ruby, 3/3/15, Balzer & Bray
    9. Deviate by Tracy Clark, 3/3/15, Entangled Teen
    10. The Selection Stories: The Queen & The Favorite by Kiera Cass, 3/3/15, Harper Teen 
    11. Dead To Me by Mary McCoy, 3/3/15, Disney Hyperion 
    12. Silence by Deborah Lytton, 3/3/15, Shadow Mountain 
    13. The Wizard Returns by Danielle Paige, 3/3/15, Harper Teen
    14. Harmonic by Erica O'Rourke, 3/3/15, Simon & Schuster

    The Week of March 10th

    1. The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows, 3/10/15, Harper Teen
    2. Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver, 3/10/25, Harper Teen
    3. Burning Kingdoms by Lauren DeStefano, 3/10/15, Simon & Schuster
    4. Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman, 3/10/15, Random House
    5. Rivals in the City by Y.S. Lee, 3/10/15, Candlewick
    6. Breaking Sky by Cori McCarthy, 3/10/15, SourceBooks Fire
    7. Little Peach by Peggy Kern, 3/10/15, Balzer & Bray
    8. The Dickens Mirror by Ilsa J. Bick, 3/10/15, Egmont USA
    9. The Infinite by Lori M. Lee, 3/10/15, Skyscape

    The Week of March 17th


    The Week of March 24th

    1. Half Wild by Sally Green, 3/24/15, Penguin 
    2. The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma, 3/24/15, Algonquin Young Readers
    3. In The Time of Dragon Moon by Janet Lee Carey, 3/24/15, Kathy Dawson Books
    4. We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach, 3/24/15, Simon & Schuster
    5. Liars, Inc. by Paula Stokes, 3/24/15, Harper Teen
    6. Guardians by Susan Kim & Laurence Klavan, 3/24/15, Harper Teen
    7. Written in the Stars by Aisah Saeed, 3/24/15, Nancy Paulsen Books

    The Week of March 31st

    1. The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord, 3/31/15, Bloomsbury
    2. Black Dove White Raven by Elizabeth Wein, 3/31/15, Disney Hyperion 
    3. The Cemetery Boys by Heather Brewer, 3/30/15, Harper Teen
    4. Solitaire by Alice Osman, 3/30/15, Harper Teen
    5. The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige, 3/30/15, Harper Teen 
    6. King by Ellen Oh, 3/30/15, Harper Teen
    7. The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige, 3/31/15, Harper Teen
    8. Ether World by Claudia Gabel & Cheryl Klam, 3/31/15, Katherine Tegen Books
    9. What's In The Woods by Kieran Scott, 3/31/15, Point
    10. Gods of Chaos by Jen McConnel, 3/31/15, Month9Books

    HAPPY READING!

    Don't see a new YA book that's being released this month? Please leave me a comment with the title of the book, the author, and the publishing house, and I'll add it. *This list is complied from arcs/books I've received from publishers to review, Goodreads and EpicReads lists.


    All Time Favorite Books (from the last 3 years): Top Ten Tuesday #22

    This weekly meme is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

    This meme from The Broke and Bookish has some really thought provoking topics. Last week we listed Our Top Ten Heroines. This week, we're looking at Our All Time Favorite Books (from the last 3 years). 

    With Katie on vacation *waves to Katie over the continents and ocean*, I searched our Top Reads for 2012, 2013 and 2014. So without further ado, we have our All Time Favorite Books (from the last 3 years) by year of release:

    All of Cassie's 2012, 2013 and 2014 releases. Seriously, these years gave us Clockwork Princess,  City of Lost Souls, The Shadowhunter's Codex, City of Heavenly Fire, The Magisterium: The Iron Trial and The Bane Chronicles


    Katie (quotes taken from Katie's reviews/Top 10 Yearly posts which are linked):

    1) Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo  (2012) "I LOVE, love, love this book. The romance was awesome, the characters were great and holy crow what Leigh did with her 'bad guy' was awesome! This is one masterfully told story.:

    2) Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi (2012) "This is one of my all time favorite dystopians. The romance, the characters, the world building and the writing all came together beautifully in this story. I don't know what else to say other than I LOVED it!"

    3) Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare (2013) Like I mentioned above, it's obvious that every single year, we could easily include a Cassie story. But, this story held something special in it for Katie -- Will. And Tessa. And Tessa and Will together. I'm very confident I can speak for her on this matter. :)

    4) Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi  (2013) "Curse you Tahereh for making me fall for Warner. He's that classic broken bad boy that I can't help but fall for. Unravel Me is AWESOME! READ THIS BOOK! I LOVED IT!"

    5) Katie had a tie in 2014: Gathering Darkness by Morgan Rhodes and Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas. "I don't even know what to say about these two books, other than they are EPIC!!!"


    Sophie:

    1) Out of Sight, Out of Time by Ally Carter (2012). This is how series should be written. My heart beat faster every time I thought of how Ally has sustained the tension through all five books.

    2) The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black (2013). Holly reminded me why I love vampire stories and why there is always room on my shelf for one more vamp tale. Psssst, Gabriel has overtaken Lestat as my Very Favorite Vamp Ever.

    3) Just One Day by Gayle Forman (2013). If you enjoy a story about a character who evolves and discovers the person she wants to be -- pick up Just One Day. But heed this warning: this book will linger with you and you'll flip back to re-read about tulip greenhouses, cobblestone streets and kindness in the most unexpected of people. And Willem. You'll want your passport stamped with Paris, if only to spend those 24-hours with him.

    4) Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins (2014). If you loved Anna's fish-out-of-water story and Lola's be-true-to-your-true-self story, just wait until you read Isla's story. It's a listen-to-your-heart story, and I think, from time to time, we all need a reminder to do just that.

    5) Sublime by Christina Lauren (2014). Bittersweet. Impossible love. Who doesn't love to read that?

    Phew. This was a hard list to compose because there are so many good stories which were released in the last three years. What were some of your favorites? Do they overlap with ours?

    March 3rd, 2015 YA Releases

    Happy Book Birthday to the following YA books that are being released TODAY!


    1. The Winner's Crime by Marie Rutkoski, 3/3/15, Macmillan
    2. Sorceress by Claudia Gray, 3/3/15, Harper Teen
    3. Death Marked by Leah Cypress, 3/3/15, Harper 
    4. The Storyspinner by Becky Wallace, 3/3/15, Simon & Schuster
    5. Mosquitoland by David Arnold, 3/3/15, Penguin
    6. How To Win At High School by Owen Matthews, 3/3/15, Harper Teen
    7. The Memory Key by Liana Liu, 3/3/15, Harper Teen
    8. Bone Gap by Laura Ruby, 3/3/15, Balzer & Bray
    9. Deviate by Tracy Clark, 3/3/15, Entangled Teen
    10. The Selection Stories: The Queen & The Favorite by Kiera Cass, 3/3/15, Harper Teen 
    11. Dead To Me by Mary McCoy, 3/3/15, Disney Hyperion 
    12. Silence by Deborah Lytton, 3/3/15, Shadow Mountain 
    13. The Wizard Returns by Danielle Paige, 3/3/15, Harper Teen
    14. Harmonic by Erica O'Rourke, 3/3/15, Simon & Schuster
    If you don't see a YA title that is being released today, just leave me a comment with the title and the author, and I'll update my list. 

    Monday, March 2, 2015

    THE STORYSPINNER by Becky Wallace; Blog Tour: Book Review & Enter To Win!




    Hello & welcome to the next stop in THE STORYSPINNER blog tour, hosted by RockStar blog tours. I'm so thrilled to feature debut author, Becky Wallace's book on Mundie Moms today. After you check out more about the book, don't miss my review, and be sure you enter to win!

    ABOUT THE BOOK



    By: Becky Wallace
    Published by: Margaret McElderberry Books (Simon & Schuster)
    To Be Released on: March 3rd, 2015
    Series: The Keepers' Chronicles #1
    Rating: 5 Stars - I Loved It!
    Source: arc from publisher, in exchange for my honest review
    Purchase from: AmazonBarnes & Noble
    Add it to Goodreads
    Drama and danger abound in this fantasy realm where dukes play a game for the throne, magical warriors race to find the missing heir, and romance blossoms where it is least expected.

    In a world where dukes plot their way to the throne, a Performer’s life can get tricky. And in Johanna Von Arlo’s case, it can be fatal. Expelled from her troupe after her father’s death, Johanna is forced to work for the handsome Lord Rafael DeSilva. Too bad they don’t get along. But while Johanna’s father’s death was deemed an accident, the Keepers aren’t so sure.

    The Keepers, a race of people with magical abilities, are on a quest to find the princess—the same princess who is supposed to be dead and whose throne the dukes are fighting over. But they aren’t the only ones looking for her. And in the wake of their search, murdered girls keep turning up—girls who look exactly like the princess, and exactly like Johanna.

    With dukes, Keepers, and a killer all after the princess, Johanna finds herself caught up in political machinations for the throne, threats on her life, and an unexpected romance that could change everything.

    A enchanting debut! Becky Wallace has proven she is just as talented of a storyteller, as her main character Johanna. THE STORYSPINNER is an addicting fantasy where magic, and danger lurk around every twist and turn. Secrets are guarded, but come at a deadly price. Romance is destined to happen, and not everything is quite as it seems. This is one fantasy I thoroughly enjoyed, and I really wish the rest of this series was already out. I want more!

    The story itself is told from multiple points of views. At first I was a little annoyed there were so many points of views. But, as the story gets set up, I realized that the different points of views really give the reader the two different sides from the story. It didn't take me long to get into the grove of reading from the various points of views. I honestly don't think the story could have been told any different. The multiple points of view give readers the rich details, and in-depth history of both sides of the story, as well as really allow readers to get to know the various characters. I loved how the two different sides of the story come together at the end. One side tells the story of the Keepers, the guardian's of the magic, and a few other things that I won't mention, since I'd like to keep my review spoiler free. The other side is of the human point of view, which features our main character Johanna, and her love interest Rafi, as well as Rafi's brother.

    I really enjoyed getting to know Johanna. I love how independent, feisty, and at times, stubborn she is. She isn't afraid to stand up for herself. Johanna has a talent for storytelling, and much like her father, has the gift for captivating her audience. She'll soon learn there is more to the stories and history she is telling, then she ever thought possible. It's hard to accept a story that's been told over and over again, especially when it's one filled with truth and shocking secrets. Johanna will do whatever it takes to protect her family, especially her younger brothers. I also liked the relationship she has with her brothers, both the older on, and the two younger ones. I feel like her relationships with her brothers helped shape her into the bold character she is. One of the things I loved about her, is she is as bold as she is loyal. She isn't afraid to say no or stand her ground, even if it's to nobility. She definitely knows how to handle herself, and boy does she know how to play her part in getting under Rafi's skin. haha It is fabulous! 

    Rafi, also known as Lord Rafael DeSilva has met his match with Johanna. Though the two meet under, should I say an unusual circumstances, their lives are forever entangled by the turn of events that led them to one another. While I didn't hit it right off with Rafi, I ended up loving him, and all that he stands for. He's a complex character that needed some get to knowing. I'm glad Becky didn't allow me to like him immediately, because he is a layered character that has a lot going on, and a lot at stake. The more I got to know the bits and pieces of Rafi and his story, the more I liked him. The more I got to him, the more I ended up loving hims character. Like Johanna, I liked how he was able to get under her skin as well. These two know how to push each other's buttons, and it's fabulous.

     I love that Becky gave me the story from both Johanna and Rafi's points of views. I love a romance that involves snark, and two characters who can irk each other, while at the same time drive each other mad with the way they feel about each other. Even if it takes them both awhile to admit it. Their romance is one that wasn't immediate, and I LOVED that! Johanna and Rafi's relationship is one that naturally developed and grew into something more. I really liked seeing how the other characters in this story interacted with these two. Some of my favorites are Dom, Rafi's brother, and Johanna's younger brothers. I loved the sibling relationships through out the story. 

    Through the Keepers' storyline we learn more of the history Johanna's world, and the danger some of the characters are in. In the midst of both storylines, is a traitor. It's up to the Keepers to find out who that traitor is before one of their own betrayers them all, and destroys the one thing the Keepers are tasked at protecting. I liked getting to know each of the characters within the Keepers' group. I liked the history their side of the story brought to the over all story arc. There's so much going on, and both sides keep the over all story evolving. I admit, if I didn't get to know some of the Keepers' and didn't have their storyline, I don't think I would have liked them every much. I'm still not a fan of some of the ways they go about doing things, but at least I understand the why. 

    One of the things I LOVE about fantasy, is a rich story to along with the unforgettable characters. THE STORYSPINNER does just that. To compliment it's rich story telling, is a rich, captivating world I easily envisioned. The world building is beautiful, and enticing. Becky Wallace created a world full of magic, lore, and gave it a rich history with plenty of danger, and secrets. I liked that the entire story is developed in an orderly fashion, and the way the two storylines come together. It was beautifully done. The story itself is beautifully told, and easily hooked me. 

    With a book this size, I never once found myself bored with the story. In fact, I wanted more of the story when it came to an end. Each of the characters, whether it be a main character or a supporting one, are all fabulously in-depth characters I really enjoyed reading about, and getting to know. THE STORYSPINNER is one of those books I had no problems jumping right into. The story is so well crafted. I really like that while Becky answered some of my questions through out the story, she didn't give me all the answers I wanted. I want more, and I can not wait to read more for this series! I look forward to reading more of Becky's books. 



    About The Author 

    In second grade, Becky Wallace had to sit in the corner because she refused to write anything except princess stories and fairy tales (and because she talked too much). 
    Her time in isolation gave her plenty of opportunities to dream up the fantasy worlds she’s been dabbling with ever since. She was lucky enough to find her own real-life Prince Charming. They have four munchkins and live in happy little town near Houston, Texas.
    Find Becky via: Website | Blog |Twitter | Facebook |Pinterest | Goodreads


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    The Mortal Instruments T.V. Series Plans for a Limited Series #TMITVSeries



    Happy Mundane Monday Shadowhutners! I found some exciting news earlier this morning (late last night for many of you, as I'm currently over seas), that I wanted to share with you about the #TMITVSeries. Check out this tweet below, which I took a picture of after I RT'ed. 


    There has been no official word on plans for the TMI series yet. Meaning I've not heard anything from the studio. However, I like that there are plans for the series and that it's being discussed, and that it's being mentioned on Twitter. I know many of us fans are extremely anxious to know more about the TMI T.V. Series. 

    To clarify what Limited Series means. I know some fans were concerned about the "limited" series. My understanding is that this means there is a predetermined end date when they have a limited series for TV. For all we know that might be a couple years from now, or it might be a few months. They have a lot of storyline to go with, and I'm curious to see how long the series will run for. I'm hoping it's for awhile. I have no worries about the amount of story they can cover in a few seasons. 

    Shooting wise, I like that they're hoping to shoot in Toronto, which is the same city the TMI Movie was shot in. Hopefully that means we'll see a lot of the same or similar places we saw in the movie, in the T.V. series. 

    Once I hear more news about the TMI T.V. series, I'll post it here. In the mean time, what are your thoughts about the possibility of having a limited TMI series for TV?