Thursday, March 31, 2011

I am a Fool For Books - so I joined the hop!

I am going to run two contests in this hop.  The first one will be a US only and the second an International only.  There will be separate entry forms.  Please fill in only the contest form that you are eligible for.

Thanks to I am a Reader, Not a Writer and Bookish Snob for hosting this giveaway. My forms have balloons, because April 1st is also my son's birthday.  We have fun on this date!

Contest #1 - US only.
 I really like the books of Anne Osterlund. Her third book will be published later this month, to celebrate and help build the excitement for the release of Exile (Aurelia, #2), I thought I would give away her first two.

Aerin Renning is a scarred fugitive, Dane Madousin a rebellious son of privilege. On the surface, they have nothing in common. But the two most competitive freshmen at Academy 7 share an undiscovered bond. Both harbor a dangerous secret that threatens their own destruction. And while their safety depends on their staying apart, the two are inexplicably drawn to each other. Even as unknown forces conspire to separate them, their competition turns to friendship, and their friendship to romance. Now not only their lives—but their hearts—are at stake. To survive, the two must unite all their knowledge, skills, and gifts to uncover a secret bigger than either could have imagined. A secret as big as the entire universe...
An impressive debut, equal parts commercial appeal and literary prowess.
Princess Aurelia is next in line to rule the kingdom of Tyralt, but she would rather be one of the common folk, free to learn and roam and . . . not marry the next tyrannical prince that comes courting. Naturally, the king wants Aurelia to marry for political power. Aurelia wants to marry for love. And someone in the kingdom wants her dead.

Assigned to investigate and protect Aurelia is Robert, the son of the king’s former royal spy and one of Aurelia’s oldest friends. As Aurelia and Robert slowly uncover clues as to who is threatening her, their friendship turns to romance. With everything possible on the line—her life, her kingdom, her heart—Aurelia is forced to take matters into her own hands, no matter the cost.
To enter - be a follower on GFC, Twitter, Networked blogs or subscribe to this blog via email subscription (Must be confirmed to count.)  You can earn an extra entry for each way that you subscribe/follow.  Only one is needed to enter.

One winner will win both books.

 Contest #2 - International only (must live outside of the United States)
I will have a copy of Aurelia shipped to the winner from the Book Depository.  You must live in an area that they ship to to win this book.

To enter - be a follower on GFC, Twitter, Networked blogs or subscribe to this blog via email subscription (Must be confirmed to count.)  You can earn an extra entry for each way that you subscribe/follow.  Only one is needed to enter.

Check out all of the giveaways!  Follow the links below.

REVIEW of "Sea Change"

Sea ChangeSea Change by Aimee Friedman

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Sixteen-year-old Miranda Merchant is great at science. . .and not so great with boys. After major drama with her boyfriend and (now ex) best friend, she's happy to spend the summer on small, mysterious Selkie Island, helping her mother sort out her late grandmother's estate.
There, Miranda finds new friends and an island with a mysterious, mystical history, presenting her with facts her logical, scientific mind can't make sense of. She also meets Leo, who challenges everything she thought she knew about boys, friendship. . .and reality.
Is Leo hiding something? Or is he something that she never could have imagined?  Description from GoodReads

Miranda is a young woman on the cusp of making major adult decisions. She is intelligent and thinking about a career in science. Her parents are divorced, living on opposite sides of the United States. She has self esteem issues.  Her grandmother has just passed away, leaving her mother the summer home on Selkie Island.

Miranda finds herself in-between two worlds, the snobby rich kids who summer on Selkie Island and the locals. She is a consignment shopper, she isn't like the rich kids. She tries to fit in with the summer crowd, but finds herself drawn to the handsome local. He is different. Does he have a mystery he is trying to conceal?

I must admit that I am a sucker for Selkie themed books. I love the lore. My only concern with the book were the references to teen sex and underage drinking.

I finished this book as "something blue" for Lazy Girl Reads mini challenge.  I purchased the copy that I read.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

REVIEW of Kat, Incorrigible

Kat, Incorrigible (Kat, Incorrigible, #1)Kat, Incorrigible by Stephanie Burgis

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Summary from Goodreads: Twelve-year-old Kat Stephenson may be the despair of her social-climbing Step-Mama, but she was born to be a magical Guardian and protector of Society--if she can ever find true acceptance in the secret Order that expelled her own mother. She’s ready to turn the hidebound Order of the Guardians inside-out, whether the older members like it or not. And in a society where magic is the greatest scandal of all, Kat is determined to use all her powers to help her three older siblings--saintly Elissa, practicing-witch Angeline, and hopelessly foolish Charles--find their own true loves, even if she has to turn highwayman, battle wild magic, and confront real ghosts along the way!

The word that came to mind when I finished this book was "Fabulous!".

Kat is an extremely precocious twelve year old girl, who is more than a witch and has an incredible personality. She is so strong willed and stubborn that she gets into pretty funny situations.  She is one of those characters that you can't  help but like and cheer on.  She has a strong and abiding love and loyalty to her family.

Kat has inherited her mother's magical abilities. She is a guardian, she can perform magic without spells. She finds herself in possession of her deceased mother's mirror. She can't get rid of the mirror no matter how hard she tries.  The mirror is magic and takes her to a hall, where she meets two guardians who tell her about her magical inheritance and her responsibility to be tutored to be a guardian.

She is resistant. That is putting it mildly. But when circumstances get tough and threaten her family. She realizes the potential that being a guardian entails.  She knows the good that she can do for the witch community if she takes her inheritance.

For me the writing flowed well.  When you become enraptured in a story, it's hard to get too technical.  I cannot stress enough that I loved this story.

This is a great book. It is appropriate for children and adults.

 I received a copy of this book from Simon & Schuster's galley grab. It is scheduled for publication on April 5, 2011.  Yes, I have already pre-ordered a hard copy of this book.  I want to share this one with my kids.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

REVIEW - Northanger Abbey

Northanger AbbeyNorthanger Abbey by Jane Austen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is not my favorite work of Jane Austen. But, it does have it's own merits.

Summary from Goodreads:

A wonderfully entertaining coming-of-age story, Northanger Abbey is often referred to as Jane Austen’s “Gothic parody.” Decrepit castles, locked rooms, mysterious chests, cryptic notes, and tyrannical fathers give the story an uncanny air, but one with a decidedly satirical twist.

The story’s unlikely heroine is Catherine Morland, a remarkably innocent seventeen-year-old woman from a country parsonage. While spending a few weeks in Bath with a family friend, Catherine meets and falls in love with Henry Tilney, who invites her to visit his family estate, Northanger Abbey. Once there, Catherine, a great reader of Gothic thrillers, lets the shadowy atmosphere of the old mansion fill her mind with terrible suspicions. What is the mystery surrounding the death of Henry’s mother? Is the family concealing a terrible secret within the elegant rooms of the Abbey? Can she trust Henry, or is he part of an evil conspiracy? Catherine finds dreadful portents in the most prosaic events, until Henry persuades her to see the peril in confusing life with art.

Executed with high-spirited gusto, Northanger Abbey is the most lighthearted of Jane Austen’s novels, yet at its core this delightful novel is a serious, unsentimental commentary on love and marriage.

Catherine Morland is a woman with little to recommend her. She is passably pretty, not wealthy and not accomplished. She does have a good heart, which is her most recommending feature. But as a woman with little prospects she journeys to Bath with Mr and Mrs Allen and there becomes unwittingly an object of admiration.

She has Mr. Tilney and Mr. Thorpe to deal with. One's attentions she does not desire, and the other's she desires very much. The trick is to not hurt Mr. Thorpes feelings and seek the attention of Mr. Tilney. She makes the acquaintance and friendship of both men's sister's.  She bonds with and develops deep friendships with both within a short period of time.

I was amused with the voice of Jane Austen. She narrates the tale and speaks often to the reader. I was very interested in a passage where she decries the criticism of novels. I have been searching my hard copy of the book and I am having a hard time locating it (I should have marked it). I find it interesting that the intellectuals frowned upon the casual reading of novels. They were considered beneath the notice of the educated, while Austen was in effect a novelist. It is very interesting to me how her novels have withstood the test of time and are celebrated in this time period. I noticed that the manuscript for Northanger Abbey was sold to a London publisher in 1806, but was not published until after Austen's death in 1818.

Once again, Austen has proven to be the Queen of Banter in my eyes. I love her witty writing and wondered how much fun she must have had writing the scenes between her heroes and heroines.

I own a couple of copies of this book and read my kindle edition.  I read this book to complete on of the books on my Book Bucket Challenge it also completes something old for Lazy Girl Reads mini challenge.

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week my teaser comes from a classic piece of literature.  I am reading this book to remove it from my book bucket list and for the mini challenge at Lazy Girl Reads' blog (something old).
Nothanger Abbey by Jane Austin

I have two that I found last night that I really like.  I will post both.  I am reading from my kindle so I do not have page numbers.  I do have the percentage of how far along I am in the book.

"You are a very close questioner."
"Am I? I only ask what I want to be told."
"But do you only ask what I can be expected to tell?"  57%

"And are you prepared to encounter all the horrors that  builidings such as 'what one reads about' may produce?  Have you a stout heart?  Nerves fit for sliding panels and tapestry? 59%

Saturday, March 26, 2011

In my Mailbox #14

In my mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.  It's a way to advertise the books that we receive and  we may not get to quickly.  It's also a fun way to interact and get great ideas of new books to read.

All eBooks this week for me, and each of them are to review.

From The Author's:
The Secret of a Spicy Jalapeno by Charlie Courtland

A Modern Witch by Debra Geary

From Simon and Schuster Galley Grab:
Shift by Jeri Smith-Ready

Seven Sorcerers by Caro King

I am excited to dig into these books.  Unfortunately, it may take me a bit to get to them.  I have too many books in my stack that take priority.

I hope you had a great week in your eBox or mailbox.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

REVIEW - "The Lady's Slipper"

The Lady's SlipperThe Lady's Slipper by Deborah Swift

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Lady's Slipper is symbolic. Alice is a botanist and artist. She is introduced to a rare orchid growing in a neighbor's yard. She is immediately struck by the flower, it  was her deceased sister's favorite plant. She steals the plant to help it and cultivate it. She destroys a pair of slippers in the process.

To me the slippers represent the changes in life circumstances. The soft silky slippers of a lady, the clogs of the peasants, the homespun clothes of a religious group that puts off the frippery of man and turns to God, and finally the frailty of a rare orchid.

This is set in the early 1600's in England. The Quakers are gaining popularity and disdain as a religious group. The book shows the struggle of a plant, the struggle of a religious sect and the struggles of a woman. The plant struggles for life alone, the lady's slippers (Alice's) would condemn her and teach her many lessons on life and love.

This book is not a religious book. But it does explore how religion can set man against man. The book illustrates what a person will do for power and money.  And finally how we look can inward to find who we are and our place in the scheme of life.  This is a fantastic piece of historic fiction.

There are adult situations that are not overly graphic. I recommend only to adults.  I received this book from a GoodReads first reads contest.


1660. King Charles II has returned from exile, but memories of the English Civil War still rankle. There are old scores to settle, and religious differences threaten to overturn a fragile peace. When Alice Ibbetson discovers a rare orchid, the Lady’s Slipper, growing in a wood belonging to Richard Wheeler, she is captivated by its beauty— though Wheeler, a Quaker, is determined to keep the flower where God intended it to grow. Knowing that the orchid is the last of its kind, she steals the flower, little dreaming that her seemingly simple act will set off a chain of events that will lead to murder and exile, and change her life forever…  Description from GoodReads.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My teaser comes from "The Lady's Slipper" by Deborah Swift.

She caught a glimpse of her hands, stained yellow, small cuts dribbling dark red blood, before she grabbed her paintbox and threw it with all her might across the room.  It rebounded with a crack against the window before falling to the floor, its hinges broken and the porcelain jars in pieces.  Page 146

Monday, March 21, 2011

Winners for the Lucky Leprechaun Hop

I used to determine the winners for the contest on my blog.  

Flash Burnout goes to : Mishel (PS- I love books)
These Things Hidden goes to:  Carol M

I have sent both and email and I am awaiting their addies.  If they do not respond within 72 hours, I will pick a new winner.

If you didn't win and are still interested in the books.  Here are links to where you can get them.

Unfortunately I did have to disqualify a potential winner for not following on GFC.

Blog Tour: Where do You Want to Be When the World Ends? Question & Giveaway with Killian McRae Author of "12.21.12"

When I saw a post by Once Upon A Twilight calling out to bloggers to participate in this tour,  I couldn't enter my info fast enough.  The cover is intriguing, the date is the end of the Mayan calendar.  Sounded like a huge win to me!

I wanted to find out  with whom or where would Killian want to be if the world suddenly came to an end.  I am so thrilled that she answered my question.  I hope you enjoy her answers as much as I do!

Here is her answer:


When Lisa asked me to do this list, I thought the answer was going to be cut and dry. Where do I want to be when the world ends? Well, with my family of course. Having our dog there would be groovy too, but it's negotiable. Then I thought a little more, and I'm going to address the task in the spirit of, if the world was ending and you didn't know it until right as it was happening, fill the the top ten places that you could say, "Well, hell, the world is ending, but at least I'm in __________ while it happens, and that ain't bad."

1. ISTANBUL- This is the no brainer for history buffs. Istanbul was the crossroads of East, West, North and South Europe, Africa, Asia and Africa until the very recent past. In one day, you can experience 5,000 years of history, spanning everything from Hittites to the Byzantines to the Ottomans. Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, the Golden Horn... perfect.

2. Monroe County, Michigan- My ancestral home. I think that one speaks for itself.

3. Prince Edward Island- I was a fanatic reader for L.M. Montgomery, and later a diehard follower of the movies and TV series produced based on her books by the CBC in the late 1980's to late 1990's. Somehow I think seeing some of those places I've seen only with my mind's eye would set a soul at ease.

4. Ireland- It's been a dream of mine to head to the Green Isle since a child.

5. Tuscany- I have a dream of giving up all my creature comforts and going to make olive oil.

6. Moorish Spain (for the architecture)- It's just one of those places you look at and feel like this is where God must have signed his name, using as his ink the hands of men to craft these buildings.

7. My grandmother's house- The refuge of all things good since first I took steps till I scribed this page. (12.21.12 is dedicated to my grandmother.)

8. Lake Tahoe- Despite the fact that I'm a (reluctant) Californian that hates most of California, Tahoe makes me feel like I'm one with nature. Until it snows.  Then I'm one against nature. But it keeps me humble, and gives me an excuse to make cocoa.

9. Whitefish Point, Michigan. - Yeah, this is an odd one. Whitefish Point is an old lighthouse and shipwreck museum in Northern Michigan. Despite the sadness and despair one feels when hearing the harrowing tales of sailors lost and lives destroyed, there's something irreverent about the area that makes it feel almost holy.

10  A Secret Spot in Michigan only I know- I can't disclose where this is exactly, but I will tell you this: It's a little dell by a river side, where the river bends  and changes direction like a woman changing her mind. Here, a tree has fallen over- perhaps years ago- but refuses to rot. The ducks and geese like to make nests along the banks at this spot- the water's but a few steps  away and yet it's covered over in the canopy of the trees to protect from hawks and eagles. Water trickles over iced caps in winter, and in spring and summer, it lazes in the from north and pivots its last turn before flowing several miles away into the lake. The sunlight twinkles over the water like memories dancing before my eyes, and the air smells of the cycles of life: the rot of leaves, the turning of earth, the growth of moss, green and soft, on the bark of the trees.  And when I close my eyes there, it tells me always, "Welcome."

I also get to do an eBook giveaway!  Yay!  One lucky winner will win an e-copy of 12.21.12.  Please fill out the form below.  You only need to leave your email address and name to enter.  If you would like an extra entry, please leave a  comment answering with whom or where would you like to be if the world came to an end.  Please remember that I run a family friendly blog, and keep the answers clean. ; )  Only one comment will accepted as an extra entry.  Please leave the name that you used in the entry form. Due to some adult content, contestants must be 17 and older to enter. I will run this contest until the end of the tour.  The last day to enter will be on March 31, 11:59 pm Mountain Daylight Savings Time. 
If you are interested in reading my thoughts on this book, see the review post right below this one.

Thanks, and best of luck on winning.

Check out all the tour fun at the participating blogs!  Don't forget to stop by Once Upon a Twilight on the 31st for a chat with Killian.

Julie @ A Tale of Many Reviews - Review - March 1st 2011
Yelania @ The Itzel Library - Interview - March 2nd 2011
Damaris @ Good Choice Reading - Top Ten/Giveaway - March 3rd 2011
Mandy @ Twimom101's book blog - Interview - March 4th 2011
Casey @ Dark Readers Blog - Interview - March 5th 2011
Alisha @ My need to Read - Character post - March 6th 2011
Jules @ One Book Shy of a Full Shelf - Interview/Giveaway - March 7th 2011
Lisa K. @ Baffled Books - review - March 8th 2011
Sarah @ The Book Bee - Character Interview - March 9th 2011
Page @ One Book at a time - Guest post/Interview - March 10th 2011
Michelle @ Hooked To Books - Giveaway/Review - March 11th 2011
Kristin @ My Bookish Ways - Review/Interview - March 12th 2011
Celine @ Nyx Book Reviews - Top Ten - March 13th 2011
Sherri @ Urban Girl Reader - review/Q&A/giveaway - March 14th 2011
Cherry @ Cherry Mischievous - Guest post - March 15th 2011
Bianca @ Sweet Nothings xo - review/giveaway - March 16th 2011
Rebecca @ My Life with Boys and Books - review - March 17th 2011
Megan @ A Trail of Books Left Behind - review/character interview - March 18th 2011
Jennifer @ Ponytails Book Reviews - review - March 19th 2011
Tammy @ Into The Mystic - - March 20th 2011
Lisa @ Bookworm Lisa - Top Ten/Giveaway - March 21st 2011
Tara @ Taming the Bookshelf - - March 22nd 2011
Rachel @ Parajunkee's View - - March 23rd 2011
Melissa @ I Swim for Oceans - review/interview - March 24th 2011
Kathy @ I Am A Reader, Not A Writer - giveaway/interview - March 25th 2011
Christin @ Between the Covers - review - March 26th 2011
Stacy @ Girls in the Stacks - review - March 27th 2011
Ash @ Smash Attack Reads - character interview - March 28th 2011
Aleetha @ bacaan-ally blog - review - March 29th 2011
Ashlie @ Bookish Novelties - review/interview - March 30th 2011
Yara @ Once Upon a Twilight - Review/Giveaway - March 31st 2011
Once Upon a Twilight Author Live chat - March 31st 2011 @ 9pm C

Sunday, March 20, 2011

REVIEW - "12.21.12"

I am thrilled to be part of this blog tour.  Getting an eBook copy of 12.21.12 to review was a treat for me and I anxiously dug into it.

Archaeologist Sheppard Smyth has staked his career and the honorable memory of his deceased wife and partner on proving his widely-panned theory: Cleopatra VII, last ruler of Ancient Egypt, was murdered. When a statue of the doomed Queen is discovered in an Olmec excavation site in Mexico, Shep rushes to investigate and, hopefully, find the proof that has evaded him for so long. Soon, he finds himself in the middle of the rivalry between the sexy, enigmatic international thief, Victoria Kent, and infamous rumored Russian mobster, Dmitri Kronastia. Both hold pieces to the puzzle that will finally shed light on Cleopatras death, as they vie for Shep's trust and assistance. As he is drawn further into their world of ancient gods, supernatural powers, and alternative history, little does Shep know that the fate of all humanity may hinge on his ability to discover the truth in between Victoria and Dmitris' fragmented claims and hidden identities. Working to decode the ancient past while attempting to save the future, Shep becomes a common pawn played by forces working to see out a quest older than the pyramids themselves and cloaked by the Mayan prophecy of 12.21.12.  Description from GoodReads.

Shep has a theory that Cleopatra was murdered, that she did not die by natural means.  He is hot in his pursuit of this theory when his wife tragically dies copying some hieroglyphs for him.  He gives up on his passion and settles into teaching at a University.  He is surprised when an old school mate calls and requests that he come to a dig.  They have just unearthed Egyptian artifacts in Latin America.

Shep hustles to the site.  He barely glances at them before  the artifacts disappear under mysterious circumstances. This begins a fast paced adventure taking place in Latin America, London and Egypt.

I enjoyed the Egyptian mythology.  I enjoyed the conspiracy theories.  I enjoyed that this book deals with the harsh effects of secrets,  the devastation that occurs when secrets are kept for far too long.

This book will keep you guessing.  You will wonder what Killian could possibly pull out of her hat next.  Believe me, she has a lot of tricks waiting in that magic hat of her imagination.  You will not be bored if you read this book. There is a little something for everyone in it: adventure, conspiracy, romance, mystery, mafia, and historical fiction.

You may be wondering what would Egyptian mythology have to do with the end of the Mayan calendar?  Ha, ha, I'm not going to tell.  You will just have to read the book and find out for yourself!  Just like I did.

My only caution would be that there is profanity, violence and adult situations.  I am giving this book four stars.  This is an adult book.

In my Mailbox #13

In my mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.  It's a way to advertise the books that we receive and  we may not get to quickly.  It's also a fun way to interact and get great ideas of new books to read.

Here are my goodies for the week!

From Netgalley:
Rage by Jackie Morse Kessler

Dark of the Moon by Tracy Barrett

Two Moon Princess by Carmen Ferreiro-Esteban

Won in contests at LibraryThing:
Any Witch Way by Anastaysia Savage

Relic Master: The Dark City by Catherine Fisher

From Simon & Schuster:
Blood Red Road by Moira Young

Free on Kindle:
Turned at Dark by CC Hunter
prequel to Born at Midnight

There you go.  There is my week.  Only "The Dark City" is a hard copy.  The rest are eBooks.

I hope you had a great week in your mailbox.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

My Trip to the Valley of Goblins

A great alternative title could be "The weird mind of the book obsessed?"

The kids had a day off of school this week, so we took a short vacation.  Our first stop was to "Goblin Valley State Park".  It's located in the State of Utah (my home state).  There are all kinds of weird formations  in a valley. 

My husband asked my kids "what movie does this make you think of?"  Well, for me there was one obvious choice.  They look like mushrooms to me.  Mushrooms make me think of hobits.  Hobits belong with "Lord of the Rings!"  I do like the movie adaptation of the book.  Maybe only someone who is book obsessed will use reasoning like that.  Does anyone else have this problem?

REVIEW - "Unearthly"

Unearthly (Unearthly, #1)Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved the story.

In the beginning, there's a boy standing in the trees . . . .

Clara Gardner has recently learned that she's part angel. Having angel blood run through her veins not only makes her smarter, stronger, and faster than humans (a word, she realizes, that no longer applies to her), but it means she has a purpose, something she was put on this earth to do. Figuring out what that is, though, isn't easy.
Her visions of a raging forest fire and an alluring stranger lead her to a new school in a new town. When she meets Christian, who turns out to be the boy of her dreams (literally), everything seems to fall into place—and out of place at the same time. Because there's another guy, Tucker, who appeals to Clara's less angelic side.
As Clara tries to find her way in a world she no longer understands, she encounters unseen dangers and choices she never thought she'd have to make—between honesty and deceit, love and duty, good and evil. When the fire from her vision finally ignites, will Clara be ready to face her destiny?
Unearthly is a moving tale of love and fate, and the struggle between following the rules and following your heart. Description from GoodReads.

Clara is 1/4 angel. Because of her angel blood she is naturally better at most things than everyone else. She's the kind of girl that it would be easy to hate. But she wants to be a normal girl. Another downside of being angelic is that she has a purpose that she needs to fulfill. Plus she finds out about a war between the light and the dark angels. How many things does a girl need to worry about?

She begins to have visions about a boy she needs to rescue. Her family moves from California to Wyoming so she can fulfill her destiny. It's not as simple as it seems. The boy from her dreams has a girlfriend and there's this other guy who is a total pain but sweet at the same time. Hmmmm.... Bet you can see this one coming from a mile away.  Romantic conflict.

I loved the writing style and the way the story was set up. I thought that she had great ideas dealing with angelic beings.  I loved the way she described, glory, fallen angels, wings, flying and having an earthly purpose.  I will definitely read the next book. I may have to break down and purchase this one.:-)    (Like I really need a reason to buy a great book.)

I received a copy through NetGalley to review. The publisher is Harper Collins.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Stop by for Slippery Willie's Blog Tour

Tribute books is touring "Slippery Willie's Stupid Ugly Shoes".  Today is the stop at Bookworm Lisa!


Willie Wiggles hates his slippery feet. He just slips, slides and spins all over the place. But what he hates even more are the special shoes that have been made for him that will help him to walk just like all the other kids. Willie thinks that they are the "stupidest, ugliest shoes in the whole world."
Discover how sometimes we worry about things about ourselves when actually there is nothing to worry about in the first place.

I love this poem at the beginning of the book.
It does not matter…
How tall or short you are,
How big your nose is,
How fast you can run,
How high you can jump,
If you can see or not,
Hear or not,
Or even be wheelchair bound.
You are all God’s special individual creations
and God “don’t make no junk.”

Willie has a problem.  He slips and slides where ever he goes.  He cannot do many activities that his friends and schoolmates can, because he risks bodily injury.  To help with the problem, he has special shoes made for him.  He is very unhappy about the solution because they are different looking shoes.

Willie learns a special/hard  lesson in this book.  Sometimes we think that things will be worse than they really are. At the end of the story is a guide that has ideas for activities and discussion questions to help children think about having empathy.  I thought this was a very cute book and a great idea to help children work through some tough situations.  I'm giving it 4 out of 5 stars.

Larry Peterson was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. As a freelancer, he has written many newspaper columns for local publications. Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes is his first children’s book. Peterson has lived in Pinellas Park, Florida for the past 28 years.

Links for the book, author and publisher.

Larry Peterson Facebook:!/larrytpbx
Tribute Books website:

Thursday, March 17, 2011

REVIEW - The Missing Series by Margaret Peterson Haddix

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

An irresistible set-up for a new series: An unidentified airplane appears out of nowhere. When the aircraft is boarded, its only occupants are babies; once they are removed, the pilotless plane vanishes. Jonah and Chip, now teenagers, discover that they were among the "airborne orphans," who seem to be somehow linked with missing children from history. Rather than forgetting the past, the two boys decide to venture into it, risking their survival to right the wrongs of time. Crisp time-travel adventure. Description from GoodReads

I am a fan of Margaret Peterson Haddix's books.  She tells a wonderful story and writes well.  This is the first book that I have read of hers that I did not connect well with.  I don't know if I can pin point the reason. Maybe it's that I did not relate well to the characters.  Don't get me wrong, they are great characters.  They fell a little flat for me.

This book is set in the present day United States.  Ohio to be exact.  The story revolves around three characters.  Jonah and Chip are thirteen, and Jonah's twelve year old sister, Katherine.  There is a mystery of sorts to solve.  Jonah and Chip are both adopted and start receiving letters in the mail.  The first says "You are one of the missing". The second says "Beware! They're coming back to get you."

I don't want to get into many details.  I will say that there is a sci-fi element to the book with time travel involved.  As usual Haddix is a great middle grade author. 

This completes one of the books in my Book Bucket List.  I became interested in this book in 2008 when it was published.  At the time I was running a PTA sponsored book fair at my local elementary school.  This was the book that the teacher's wanted for their classrooms.

Now on to the Second book of the series.

Sent (The Missing, #2)Sent by Margaret Peterson Haddix

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

"I think it's probably safe to say, given when you should have landed, that you'"
"Tell me!"
"I think, right now, you're the king of England."
Thirteen-year-olds Jonah and Chip are reeling from the news that they're both missing children from history, kidnapped from their proper time period. Before they can fully absorb this revelation, a time purist named JB zaps Chip and another boy, Alex, back to the fifteenth century, where they supposedly belong. Determined not to lose their friends, Jonah and his sister, Katherine, grab Chip's arms just as he's being sent away. The result? Jonah and Katherine also end up in the fifteenth century, where they decidedly do not belong.
Chip's true identity is Edward V, king of England, and Alex is his younger brother, Richard, Duke of York. But Chip is convinced that his uncle, Richard of Gloucester, plans to kill them and seize the throne for himself.
JB promises that if the kids can "fix time," he will allow them to return to the present day. But how can they possibly return home safely when history claims that Chip and Alex were murdered?
In a riveting tale that climaxes on the battlefield at Bosworth, master storyteller Margaret Peterson Haddix brings readers back in time to an unforgettable moment in history and plunges them into the adventure of a lifetime. Description from GoodReads.

I liked this story better than the first in the series.

In the first book a bunch of adopted children are brought together and find out that they were stolen from their time periods. They were children who died or disappeared in time. The future society took them from the past to be adopted in the future.  It was the new "in" thing to do.  Adopting a child who was born to be the King of England deserved bragging rights for adoptive parents.

In this story two of the children, Chip and Alex, (who are now 13 years old) are sent back to the 15th century to correct the things that were changed when they were taken. Jonah and his sister Katherine mistakenly accompany them and are given permission to help them get out alive.

I may have liked this book better because of the setting. I love historical England. The characters worked better for me and I enjoyed their mistakes as well as the things that they did right. Besides, there's the wicked uncle who steals the throne, awful medieval food, armor, swords, and archaic English.  What's not to like?

This also completes a book from my Book Bucket List.  Yay!  I'm beginning to widdle it down.  There are a ton to go. 

Now I will venture to the third book.

Sabotaged (The Missing, #3)Sabotaged by Margaret Peterson Haddix

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

To repair the damage of time kidnapping, Jonah and Katherine are helping Virginia Dare return to her 17th century birthplace in the American colonies. Unfortunately, Roanoke has been abandoned and, without communication devices, our young time-travelers don't quite know what to do! The third Missing installment is a charm. Description from GoodReads.

I thought that this series would be a trilogy. I was wrong, this is just the third installment. The book's ending is unresolved and leads to another book.  The book is not out yet.  Darn, that means that I have to wait.

I enjoy historical fiction, this book happens in the year 1600 in Roanoke Colony, or should I say what was left of Roanoke. An English settlement that the inhabitants disappeared from. The only clue was the word 'Croatoan' carved into a log. A baby girl was the first settler to be born in the America's. Her name was Virginia Dare. In this story, Andrea  is returned to her correct time period. She was stolen and is really Virginia.

The kids, who are all 12 and 13 years old, must use their own resources to figure out how to fix time.  There is a mysterious time traveller who makes things more difficult for them.  They work together to fix time and thwart the man who calls himself "Second".  I like that the kids are facing difficult choices, but still act their age.  They think like kids.

This series of books is great for a middle grade reader.  Haddix researched the time periods.  To me the books feel authentic.  I believe that they could give children a realistic feel for the time periods depicted in the books.

I wouldn't recommend starting with this book. There is too much back story to understand. Start with the first book "Found,"

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Leprechaun Hop

Yay!!!  A chance to win books!  Welcome to the giveaway on my blog.  I have two books that I will be giving away.  There will be two winners.  One for each book.  Both book descriptions come from GoodReads.

Here is what I am offering:

With the recent passing of LK Madigan. I felt that it would be appropriate to spotlight one of her books by giving it away.
Flash Burnout by L.K. Madigan
Telephoto lens. Zoom. In a shutter release millisecond, Blake’s world turns upside down. The nameless woman with the snake tattoo is not just another assignment. “That’s my mom!” gasps Marissa.
Saturated self-portrait: Blake, nice guy, class clown, always trying to get a laugh, not sure where to focus.
Contrast. Shannon, Blake’s GF. Total. Babe. Marissa, just a friend and fellow photographer. Shannon loves him; Marissa needs him. How is he supposed to frame them both in one shot?
Chiaroscuro. Lightdark. Marissa again, overexposed. Crash and burn.
Talk about negative space.

These Things Hidden by Heather Gudenkauf
When teenager Allison Glenn is sent to prison for a heinous crime, she leaves behind her reputation as Linden Falls' golden girl forever. Her parents deny the existence of their once-perfect child. Her former friends exult her downfall. Her sister, Brynn, faces whispered rumors every day in the hallways of their small Iowa high school. It's Brynn—shy, quiet Brynn—who carries the burden of what really happened that night. All she wants is to forget Allison and the past that haunts her.  
But then Allison is released to a halfway house, and is more determined than ever to speak with her estranged sister.
Now their legacy of secrets is focused on one little boy. And if the truth is revealed, the consequences will be unimaginable for the adoptive mother who loves him, the girl who tried to protect him and the two sisters who hold the key to all that is hidden.
 Take a look at my review.

This contest is International.  To enter you must be a GFC follower.  There are extra entries for following me on twitter and Networked Blogs. (All three can be found in the right side bar) You must be 13 or older to enter. Please enter by filling in  the form below. 

Thank you I am a Reader Not a Writer and Books Complete Me for hosting this hop!  Good luck everyone!

Dont' forget to check back on the 21st.  I will be having a TOP Ten question with Killian McRae, the author of 12.21. 12.  I will also be giving away an eBook copy of her book.
Here are the links for the rest of the hop!  Best of luck! (I learned a trick from another hop, I print the list and then mark them off as I go.  That way I know which blogs I have already visted and don't waste time looking at a page and realizing I have already been there.)

Why do I have a book blog?

I can't remember a time in my life when I did not love to read.  As I would walk home from Jr. High I walked past my local library.  It was my favorite place to stop off  and bring books home in my backpack.  I would stay up late at night devouring the books.  My senior year of high school I took three English credit classes, just because I wanted to.  I even took a Great Literature of Europe class in college, taught by a completely lousy professor, just to get to read classical stories that I didn't already know about. I still wonder why I stayed with that class.  It was not required for my Elementary Ed major.

If anything my love of the written word had grown over the years.  I have nine bookcases (only five of them are full sized) in my home full of books.  I love to have books surround me.  I joke with my husband of 18 years that if there were some kind of disaster and you couldn't get to a library, we would have to have books.  Therefore, they are emergency preparedness items.  He just rolls his eyes at me. For some of my friends and neighbors, I am better than the library.  I have some cool books that the library does not have yet, or doesn't know about.  I frequently fill in the library's request form to purchase books.
Me and my sweetheart at Mesa Verde in Colorado, USA
My oldest child was speech delayed.  He didn't start talking until he was 3 years old. He actually started at one saying basic words, then he was sick often.  He stopped talking and everything became gee or gwee.  While working with the speech therapist, books took on a whole new meaning.  We all know how important it is to read with your children.  I did that.  But I didn't think that I should be pointing out the pictures and naming the objects.  I used to read "Goodnight Moon" to him frequently.  The first time he looked out the window, pointed up to the sky and said "moon" was incredible. Ah, ha, the power of association.  I began to join book clubs and collect picture books to share with him.

The reason that I started this blog was because I am frequently asked for recommendations of books to read.  When you read so many, sometimes it is hard to think of any one to suggest.  Only the current reads come to mind, when I have read many wonderful books.  I wanted to have a central place to put recommendations, and then direct my friends there.  That is why I have pages listing book suggestions in different genres.  I never suspected that this blog would be anything more than that.  It never occurred to me that I would meet other book lovers and publishers and be given the opportunity to review the newest books out there before publication date.  I never worried before that I am not up to date on my English skills.  (I recently purchased a couple of books that were recommended to me by an author friend to work on my grammar.)

Why the name bookworm Lisa?  When I was small my parents took my sister and I to a drive in.  Two movies were showing that night.  The first one was a family friendly movie,  the second one was Jaws.  Now to my parents credit, they made a bed in the back of the family station wagon and told Paula and I to go to sleep.  Did we?  No way!  I had nightmares about sharks for years.  I now can't stand to be in deep water.  I don't like the feel of fish, algae, anything rubbing against me.  It freaks me out.  My kids like to tell me that I am afraid of the water because I am a bookworm.  They say that I am afraid to be used as bait for the fish.  They do have a point.  So in honor of my children, I named my blog.

I don't know why I just made a long rambling post.  But there you have it.  Have a great day!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My teaser comes from "Sent" by Margaret Peterson Haddix.  This is the SECOND book in a trilogy.  I am reading this one for my Book Bucket List Challenge.  I hope to review the trilogy in one post soon.  My teaser comes from page 249.  It is more than two sentences, but I wanted to have  a little more.

"See, this could change time too,' Katherine said as they sat together chewing on the fruit, which was a little hard but still good.  "What if this seed right here was supposed to drop on the ground right over there and grow up to be a huge tree?  And then someone built a road that curved, to go around the tree?  And then, five hundred years from now, someone  important misses the curve and crashes into the tree and dies?  Only, none of that will happen now because I'm dropping the seed...right... here."

Saturday, March 12, 2011

In my Mailbox #12

In my mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.  It's a way to advertise the books that we receive and  we may not get to quickly.  It's also a fun way to interact and get great ideas of new books to read.

Received as part of a blog tour:

"Shades of Atlantis" by Carol Oates

I requested some galleys from NetGalley and some came through this week! Honestly, I did not request all of them this week.  I was happily surprised when some of them were approved.

My Netgalley Selections:
"A Tale of Two Castles" by Gail Carson Levine

"Die for Me" by Amy Plum (This is a pretty new cover.  The cover that I requested looked different.  The publisher decided to to go with the cover for Great Britain.)

"Starcrossed" by Josephine Angelini

"Bumped" by Megan McCafferty

"Queens of All the Earth" by Hannah Stemberg

"Hereafter" by Tara Hudson

"Mercy" by Rebecca Lim

"Demon Glass" by Rachel Hawkins

"Eats, Shoots & Leaves" by Lynne Truss
(I figured that if I planned on posting better reviews, I should reacquaint myself with the intricacies of the English Language!)

"Woe is I" by Patricia T. O'Conner

Recieved to Review:
"The Thirteenth Gift" by Charlene Costanzo

"Called Home: Two Hearts Answer" by Gloria Schumann

"The Swan Maiden" by Heather Tomlinson
Won from Sniffly Kitty and Blkosiner's Loving the Reviews Challenge
"Stargazer" by Claudia Gray
Won from the March Madness Giveaway at Lisa's Love (Books of Course)
I won a $10.00 Amazon Gift Certificate and I chose this book!

There is my week.  I hope you had a great week.  Have any suggestions for me?