Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Friday, August 27, 2010
Katniss Everdeen, girl on fire, has survived, even though her home has been destroyed. Gale has escaped. Katniss's family is safe. Peeta has been captured by the Capitol. District 13 really does exist. There are rebels. There are new leaders. A revolution is unfolding. 

I thought it was a good read, but definitely didn't live up to the expectations I had from the first and second books (the first especially). The plot was good and the writing was awesome as it always is, but I felt there wasn't such a traumatic triangle between Gale, Peeta, and Katniss as there was in the first two. I wanted to see more of that and not just all of the bomb sequences, missiles, and things like that. I did feel like sometimes the author wanted to hurry on to the next part so some missions ans training were glossed over. One page she's nervous about it and the next she's finished with it and we didn't hear what happened.

I still enjoyed it though I was disappointed in the ending. As I said, it was pretty apparent who she was going to pick from the beginning. I wish I could've been more surprised with that aspect and the ending was really gruesome and made my stomach churn. I know it was necessary, but it just made me wince.


Teaser Tuesday (8/24/10)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Should be Reading.

* Grab your current read.
* Let the book fall open to a random page.
* Share with us 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!
I stare down at my shoes, watching as a fine layer of ash settles on the worn leather. This is where the bed I shared with my sister, Prim, stood. - page 3

(I haven't started reading it yet so I didn't want to spoil it for myself and others, since today is the first day of release so I just put the first two lines of the novel. :D)

Before I Fall - Lauren Oliver

What if you had only one day to live? What would you do? Who would you kiss? And how far would you go to save your own life?

Samantha Kingston has it all—looks, popularity, the perfect boyfriend. Friday, February 12th should be just another day in her charmed life. Instead, it’s her last. The catch: Samantha still wakes up the next morning. In fact, she re-lives the last day of her life seven times, until she realizes that by making even the slightest changes, she may hold more power than she had ever imagined.

What a beautiful novel Lauren Oliver has crafted! I've always been a sucker for the feel good about yourself and self evaluation type of books, and this one is no different. I felt like I was going through the story right next to Sam, figuring it out alongside her.

The writing was beautiful and almost whimsical. I have to admit that Sam did irritate me at first, because she was so naive and didn't realize what she was doing. As the book progressed, I started to like her more and more until she turned into a really good character. I adored Kent and Izzy, they were so real and loveable. My favorite line in the book is said by Izzy who's Sam's eight year old sister who has a lisp.

"So why don't you do something about it?" I say. "You could learn to talk differently, you know."

"But this is my voice." She says it quietly but with insistence. "How would you be able to tell when I was talking?"

A beautiful novel with an unexpected twist at the end and worth the read, one hundred percent. Please go read it, it'll change your thoughts about the people you hang out with and the way you live your life.


Graceling - Kristin Cashore

Sunday, August 22, 2010
Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight — she’s a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme, and in her case horrifying, skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king’s thug. When she first meets Prince Po, Graced with combat skills, Katsa has no hint of how her life is about to change.

She never expects to become Po’s friend. She never expects to learn a new truth about her own Grace — or about a terrible secret that lies hidden far away... a secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms with words alone.

At first, I found this book pretty hard to get into because there was a lot of information to take in and the bloodlines to get straight. However, once that was finished, I found this book to be highly enjoyable! There was a bunch of action and suspense, and of course the perfect amount of romance to make you say 'awww', but not get a toothache. ;]

I did find Katsa's character to be a bit obnoxious, more in the Mary Sue type of way but I think that's because her Grace makes it so (her true Grace, for those who have read it). Po was my favorite character, Bitterblue coming in at a close second. They were so sweet and had very strong personalities that I really liked.

The writing was wonderful, I really enjoyed it and the way she writes make a page go by in seconds. She knows how to write a page turner, for sure. I can't wait for the third book, tentatively named Bitterblue, to be released on April 1st, 2011. Obviously the main character is that of the title, so I'm super stoked about it.


Waiting on Wednesday (8/18/10)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.
Chain Reaction (Perfect Chemistry #3) 
by Simone Elkeles
The third novel in the Perfect Chemistry series will be about Luis Fuentes, the youngest Fuentes brother. He’s such a good guy who doesn’t live with the angst that his big brothers have always lived with. Luis is smart, funny, and has big dreams. When he falls for the wrong girl, Luis enters a dark world he’s never known to try and save her from herself. Just when he thinks he’s got life all figured out, Luis learns some disturbing news about his family that destroys his positive outlook on life. Will that Fuentes bad boy streak come out with a vengeance and lure Luis to live on the edge like his new girlfriend and his own father?

Since I just finished Rules of Attraction, I've had the Fuentes brothers on my mind! I've always been intrigued by Luis, as he's the most easygoing character and the plot sounds really good. I can't wait! Chain Reaction is due to come out sometime in 2011.

Teaser Tuesday (8-17-10)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Should be Reading.

* Grab your current read.
* Let the book fall open to a random page.
* Share with us 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!
"To have beautiful eyes. Does it lighten the burden of your Grace, to know you have beautiful eyes?"
She laughed. "No Lord Prince. I'd happily do without both." - page 22

Rules of Attraction - Simone Elkeles

Monday, August 16, 2010
When Carlos Fuentes returns to America after living in Mexico for a year, he doesn’t want any part of the life his older brother, Alex, has laid out for him at a high school in Colorado . Carlos likes living his life on the edge and wants to carve his own path—just like Alex did. Then he meets Kiara Westford. She doesn’t talk much and is completely intimidated by Carlos’ wild ways. As they get to know one another, Carlos assumes Kiara thinks she’s too good for him, and refuses to admit that she might be getting to him. But he soon realizes that being himself is exactly what Kiara needs right now.

As always, I'm not disappointed with this Simone Elkeles novel!

She has a way of really getting in there and making you fall in love with the characters and plot/world she creates. It's Simone's world and I'm just living in it! She has a gift for writing and the way she integrates these two very different sides of society is brilliant.

I think I liked Perfect Chemistry better, because the odds were really against them, but this book was still excellent and such a treat to read. I devoured it in about a day, but I do that with all of her books. Carlos didn't wow me as much as Alex did but I found him just as wonderfully egotistical and cocky as his brother! Kiara was a good character for me, she was very quirky and her stuttering made me just want to give her a great big hug. The writing and development of the plot and characters was great as well. I loved the significance of the book cover too. Sighh! <3

I can't wait to find out what happens to Luis when he meets the wrong girl in Chain Reaction (3rd book in the series) coming out in 2011.


If I Stay - Gayle Forman

Saturday, August 14, 2010
What? Laura actually has a book review for you? It's a regular four-months-away-from-Christmas miracle!

In a single moment, everything changes. Seventeen-year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck...

A sophisticated, layered, and heartachingly beautiful story about the power of family and friends, the choices we all make—and the ultimate choice Mia commands.

This book was intense, powerful, and beautiful. I enjoyed it so much and after my lack of reading for the past couple weeks, I'm so happy to be back in the swing of things. The way this author puts words is so elequent and real...I found myself feeling everything Mia felt. My heart broke for her family and for her friends, I could understand how torn she is in this decision, I would be too. I love novels that make me step back and think what I would do in that situation. I adored every single one of the characters. Seriously. Loved. Them. All.

One thing I am pissed about is people are comparing this to Twilight. What?! This book isn't even in the same league as Twilight. It's so, so, so much better. Not to mention the plot isn't even remotely like Twilight. It just made me giggle on the inside a bit.

Overall this book is beautiful, it made me cry, and it will make you think about your life and what you have done to affect others in your life. It shows how important family and friends are, and how the power of love can conquer pretty much anything. Absolutely gorgeous.


Immortal: Love Stories with Bite - Edited by PC Cast

Monday, August 2, 2010
Sorry I've been a bit MIA for the last couple days guys! I got pink eye and it was like daggers to look at any light so I had to sit in complete darkness for about three days. Without being said, that means no computer time and no reading! I have a book review for you though! Yay!

Anthology of stories about teenagers aka vampires striving to maintain a sense of self and find lasting love.

I thought this one was good, some of the stories were better than others. The main problem I had with this book is the stories were around 28-30 pages. I know what you're thinking. Well, duh Laura - it's a compilation of short stories. Yes, I know that, but I felt some of the characters and plotlines felt rushed. I also thought that some of the endings were a little abrupt. I decided to rate the stories instead of the book as a whole since I had such strong feelings towards each.

Haunted Love by Cynthia Leitich Smith - 4/5. This was one of the better ones in my opinion. It's a love triangle (sort of) with a vampire, a ghost, and a human girl. She didn't really touch on the love story, as they didn't mention feelings, but the idea was still good. I wish she'd write a full novel on this so she could really get into the story.

Amber Smoke by Kristin Cast - 2/5. I'm not really a fan of Kristin Cast's writing. I thought the girl accepted everything a bit too willingly and it wasn't realistic. The ending was abrupt like the author suddenly lost steam and just wanted to end it.

Dead Man Stalking by Rachel Caine - 3/5. I liked the humor in this story and it made me more excited to read The Morganville Vampires. The main character was funny and likeable, but once again I thought the ending was pretty bad.

Table Manners by Tanith Lee - 3/5. I think I would like Tanith as an author, it just didn't work for me in this story. The characters were kind of flat and the plot was a little lame. I do want to get her book about the girl pirate though, because I think there's a good author there!

Changed by Nancy Holder - 1/5. Couldn't finish.

Blue Moon by Richelle Mead - 3/5. I liked this story a lot more than the first book in the Vampire Academy series. Lucy and Nathan were cute together and she was a good heroine for the story.

Free by Claudia Gray -4/5. My other favorite from the book. It was kind of based in the Evernight series, about Patrice and her life before she became a vampire. Amos was very intriguing and I liked them together. It was very dark and I enjoyed it. I wish Claudia would make a novella about each Evernight student. *ahem* Balthazaar *ahem*