Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Review: Dreaming Anastasia by Joy Preble


Title: Dreaming Anastasia
Author: Joy Preble
Published: September 2009
Paperback: 310 pages
Reading Level: Ya
My Copy: rec'd via trade on swaptree.com
My rating: 4.5 out of 5 wicked stars


Blurb (from Goodreads):

What really happened to Anastasia Romanov?
Anastasia Romanov thought she would never feel more alone than when the gunfire started and her family began to fall around her. Surely the bullets would come for her next. But they didn't. Instead, two gnarled old hands reached for her. When she wakes up she discovers that she is in the ancient hut of the witch Baba Yaga, and that some things are worse than being dead.
In modern-day Chicago, Anne doesn't know much about Russian history. She is more concerned about getting into a good college—until the dreams start. She is somewhere else. She is someone else. And she is sharing a small room with a very old woman. The vivid dreams startle her, but not until a handsome stranger offers to explain them does she realize her life is going to change forever. She is the only one who can save Anastasia. But, Anastasia is having her own dreams…

My Thoughts...
I remembered this story from fairy tales read to me as a child, as much as anyone can remember those I am sure.  The is an updated twist to the missing grand duchess, Anastasia Romanov.  I enjoy it when books weave factual history into updated romantic tales and this book is a perfect example of that.

Our character, Anne, starting having dreams that seem too real to be just dreams, and when she sees her "stalker" with the amazing blue eyes in one of them, she knows there is more going on here that disturbing dreams.  She confronts Ethan thinking he is some creepy guy and then when she realizes their lives are in danger and those whom they trusted before are no longer trustworthy, Anne must start trusting in her dreams and maybe even the scary Baba Yaga.  Anne's best friend, Tess, is a hilarious side-kick in this book. Tess is not afraid to say what is on her mind and I found that refreshing!

I truly enjoyed this book and finished it in one day because I didn't want to put it down.  The mixture of Russian history, fairy tale and modern day life was blended together just about perfectly.  I would have enjoyed a little more romance, but there was a lot going on in the drama department so that made the book flow better.  I read on the author's website, the sequel to this book, Haunted, will be out in 2011.  Can't wait to read more of Ethan and Anne's story considering the ending of the book left that wide open.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Monday, February 22, 2010

Review: Brightly Woven by Alexandra Bracken


 Title: Brightly Woven
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Published: March 2010
 Hardcover: 368 page
Reading Level: YA
My copy: ARC rec'd via trade on Book Mooch
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 wicked stars


Sydelle Mirabil is living proof that, with a single drop of rain, a life can be changed forever. Tucked away in the farthest reaches of the kingdom, her dusty village has suffered under the weight of a strangely persistent drought. That is, of course, until a wizard wanders into town and brings the rain with him.

In return for this gift, Wayland North is offered any reward he desires—and no one is more surprised than Sydelle when, without any explanation, he chooses her. Taken from her home, Sydelle hardly needs encouragement to find reasons to dislike North. He drinks too much and bathes too little, and if that isn’t enough to drive her to madness, North rarely even uses the magic he takes such pride in possessing. Yet, it’s not long before she realizes there’s something strange about the wizard, who is as fiercely protective of her as he is secretive about a curse that turns his limbs a sinister shade of black and leaves him breathless with agony. Unfortunately, there is never a chance for her to seek answers.

Along with the strangely powerful quakes and storms that trace their path across the kingdom, other wizards begin to take an inexplicable interest in her as well, resulting in a series of deadly duels. Against a backdrop of war and uncertainty, Sydelle is faced with the growing awareness that these events aren’t as random as she had believed—that no curse, not even that of Wayland North, is quite as terrible as the one she herself may carry.
My thoughts...
I honestly didn't expect to like this book as much as I did.  I had read a few reviews on it stating that there wasn't much romance in it...what??? no romance?? Well, there was definitely enough drama to make up for it and there was some prelude to a romance, so if you gotta have it - there is some boy-girl interest there.

Sydelle is a strong character that doesn't put up with a lot of crap from anyone, and I liked that about her.  North was a mysterious character at first and I wasn't sure if I trusted or liked him much, but as the story evolved and his inner demons came to light, I started to like him more.  As Sydelle comes to realize the truth about herself and her powers, she grows even more as a character...and toward the end you are biting your nails to know how it ends!

The author has created a beautiful and sometimes heart-wrenching story.  I did check her website and there is not a sequel planned as of yet and this really makes me sad!  There is definitely more that could be told on this story between Sydelle's powers and the blossoming romance between her and North.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Review: Tempest Rising by Nicole Peeler - A Borrow My Book Tour Post

Title: Tempest Rising
Author: Nicole Peeler
Published: October 2009
Paperback: 344 pages
Reading Level: Urban Fantasy Romance
My copy: Borrowed from Peace Love and Pat's Borrow My Book Tour
My rating: 4 out of 5 wicked stars



Blurb from Goodreads:
Living in small town Rockabill, Maine, Jane True always knew she didn't quite fit in with so-called normal society. During her nightly, clandestine swim in the freezing winter ocean, a grisly find leads Jane to startling revelations about her heritage: she is only half-human.

Now, Jane must enter a world filled with supernatural creatures alternatively terrifying, beautiful, and deadly- all of which perfectly describe her new "friend," Ryu, a gorgeous and powerful vampire.

It is a world where nothing can be taken for granted: a dog can heal with a lick; spirits bag your groceries; and whatever you do, never-ever rub the genie's lamp.

 My thoughts:

This book is a classic case of "don't judge a book by it's cover".  I think if I would have seen it sitting on the shelf, I am not sure it would have appealed to me to pick it up and even read the back of it.  It doesn't call to me as a drama-filled romantic adventure with endearing characters, but that's exactly what it is.

Meet Jane True, a pariah of her small touristy town of Rockabill, Maine.  Everyone knows her as the weird girl with the even weirder mother that disappeared years ago...oh...and that also killed her boyfriend, Jason.  Things change dramatically for Jane when a writer that was in town mysteriously dies and Jane is confronted with her true status, a halfling...a human and a selkie.  Enter a hot vampire investigator, Ryu, and you have yourself a great start to series.

Jane and Ryu end up having to travel to the "Compound" where the highest of the supernatural creatures reside to try to determine who is killing the halflings and a few goblins.  The romance is hot, the plot is built up as it should be and the ending is not too surprising, but one that you walk away from satisfied.

The next book in the series, Tracking the Tempest, is due out July 2010.  Don't let the cover on this book fool you like it did me, it is definitely worth reading.  I look forward to reading the next one in July!  And a special thanks to Pat for letting me borrow her book as part of her Borrow My Book Tour! You rock!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Snowed in

Me and the hubs are snowed in today. Texas doesn't get tons of snow and when we do, we have the worst drivers EVAH. So since we are scheduled to get 5 to 7 inches today I am staying home with my fur babies and reading. Oh and since I live in the middle of nowhere my satellite internet and cable are out too.

Meet my dog, Blue...he loves the snow! And he catches snow balls when you chunk them at him which is evil fun :)

- Posted using BlogPress from
my iPhone

Monday, February 8, 2010

Review: The Splendor Falls by Rosemarie Clement-Moore


Title: The Splendor Falls
Author: Rosemarie Clement-Moore
Published: September 2009
Hardcover: 518 pages
Reading Level: YA
My copy: Received via trade on swaptree.com
My rating: 4 out of 5 wicked stars


Can love last beyond the grave?

Sylvie Davis is a ballerina who can’t dance. A broken leg ended her career, but Sylvie’s pain runs deeper. What broke her heart was her father’s death, and what’s breaking her spirit is her mother’s remarriage—a union that’s only driven an even deeper wedge into their already tenuous relationship.

Uprooting her from her Manhattan apartment and shipping her to Alabama is her mother’s solution for Sylvie’s unhappiness. Her father’s cousin is restoring a family home in a town rich with her family’s history. And that’s where things start to get shady. As it turns out, her family has a lot more history than Sylvie ever knew. More unnerving, though, are the two guys that she can’t stop thinking about. Shawn Maddox, the resident golden boy, seems to be perfect in every way. But Rhys—a handsome, mysterious foreign guest of her cousin’s—has a hold on her that she doesn’t quite understand.

Then she starts seeing things. Sylvie’s lost nearly everything—is she starting to lose her mind as well. 
My thoughts:
Wow. This book wrapped me in and I stayed up until 3 am to finish it!!  Sylvie was a pretty likable character even if a little self absorbed at times.  She was unhappy to say the least when she was sent off to Alabama to a cousin she had met once while her mom and new "step-shrink" went on their honeymoon.  As she gets there she meets two guys that she has totally different reactions to...not to mention starts seeing ghosts and hearing sounds!

This book is like an old gothic ghost story with a touch of mystery and romance.  At first you aren't sure who to trust, but the plot isn't so thickly written that you are guessing until the end, I figured it out about half way thru.  That didn't necessarily take away from the book, it just didn't have a shocking ending.  The book was pretty long at 500+ pages so at times I wished it moved along a little faster, but overall I really enjoyed it and loved the spookiness about it.

If you enjoyed Beautiful Creatures and/or Ruined, you should like this book.


Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Thursday, February 4, 2010

14 days of Love 2010 Style


My good friend Amie has an SWEET contest going on over at her blog giving away a different prize each day until the  'day o' love'...aka February 14th.  She is only on day 4 so you have plenty of time to go over and comment on her blog and enter for a chance to win some awesome books!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Review: Captivate by Carrie Jones

Title: Captivate
Author: Carrie Jones
Published: January 2010
Hardback: 273 pages
Reading Level: YA
My copy: Won in a contest
My rating: 4 out of 5 wicked stars

Zara and her friends knew they hadn't solved the pixie problem for good. Far from it. The king's needs grow deeper every day he's stuck in captivity, while his control over his people gets weaker. It's made him vulnerable. And now there's a new king in town.

A turf war is imminent, since the new pixie king, Astley, is moving in quickly. Nick nearly killed him in the woods on day one, but Zara came to his rescue. Astley swears that he and Zara are destined to be together, that he's one of the good guys. Nick isn't buying it, though Zara isn't as sure -- despite herself, she wants to trust the new king. But it's a lot more than her relationship with Nick that is at stake. It's her life -- and his.

My thoughts...

Captivate picks right up where Need left off.  Things are moving right along with Nick and Zara's relationship and they are trying to solve the pixie problem with the help of Issie and Devyn.  Things get shaken up even further when a new pixie king looking to take over comes to town,  enter Astley, the hot pixie.  He patiently explains to Zara that she is destined to be his queen and with her at his side they can take over the area and prevent other pixie kings that are even more evil than her father from taking over.  Who is Zara to trust...the Astley or Nick?  Then something unexpected happens and Zara's outlook changes.  I won't give you any spoilers here...you really need to read the book, haha.

The book has a cliffhanger ending that makes you truly look forward to the next book.  So much is set to happen and things could go any number of ways. Carrie Jones set this up just perfectly.  I enjoyed this book, but slightly less than Need, and I can't put my finger on exactly why.  I think it is the switching of my feelings about her love interests.

I found Nick very controlling and too sappy for my tastes in this book, it kinda turned me off him, which could have been the authors plan since she is introducing a pixie in as a possible love interest/good guy.  Nick called Zara a pet name too much and it got on my nerves, so needless to say when Astley entered the picture I found myself rooting for him.  

If you read Need and loved it, you must pick up Captivate.  It has some surprises in store for you that you don't want to miss!  No word on when book #3 will be coming out, but I will be looking forward to it!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday (3)


Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill over at Breaking the Spine!

Title: and Falling, fly

Author: Skyler White

Summary (from Goodreads):
An edgy, erotic blend of fantasy and romance-from a debut author whose star is on the rise.

In a dark and seedy underground of burned-out rock stars and angels- turned-vampires, a revolutionary neuroscientist and a fallen angel must pit medicine against mythology in an attempt to erase their tortured pasts...but at what cost?

Olivia, vampire and fallen angel of desire, is hopeless...and damned. Since the fall from Eden, she has hungered for love, but fed only on desire. Dominic O'Shaughnessy is a neuroscientist plagued by impossible visions. When his research and her despair collide at L'OtelMathillide- a subterranean hell of beauty, demons, and dreams-rationalist and angel unite in a clash of desire and damnation that threatens to destroy them both.

This book sounds awesome and I won it on a Goodreads giveaway so I will be reviewing it for you as soon as I get it!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Monday, February 1, 2010

Review: The Season by Sarah MacLean


Title: The Season
Author: Sarah MacLean
Published: March 2009
Hardback: 352 pages
Reading Level: YA
My copy: Borrowed from my public library
My rating: 4 out of 5 wicked stars

My thoughts:
I truly enjoyed this book.  I found myself reading and giggling...I know others near me thought I was crazy.  I have been a fan of historical fiction for a long time, and this book does not disappoint.  This book is a novel of friendship and love.  The trio of friends, Alex, Ella and Vivi, are best friends like we all aspire to have.  Gearing up for their debut season in London, the three are not your typical delicate flowers.  They have minds of their own and are not afraid to let others know...and the last thing they want is be married off to some old guy because of their parents money and social standing.  For Alex, love comes from a most unlikely place, her childhood friend, Gavin.  This books is not all parties and love though...Gavin's father was murdered and there is a rush to figure out who was behind it and why. Of course the three girls are told numerous time to stay out of it... but you know they cannot.

If you are a fan of historical fiction and YA, this book will delight you as much as it did me.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Blog designed by TwispiredBlogdesign using Joifa's Bright Night world kit.