Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Review: The Au Pairs, Skinny Dipping

The Au Pairs: Skinny Dipping

Melissa de la Cruz

The trio is back, and better than ever! Or… is it? This summer, only Jacqui and Mara are working as au pairs for the Perry family in the Hamptons. Eliza and her family are renting a place in the Hamptons themselves, and since their family financial status is steadier, Eliza decides she will work on improving her social status. She takes a job at Seventh Circle, where only the coolest of the cool can get in.

The trio turns into a sad duo until Jacqui and Mara meet the very French, very cute Philippe. Jacqui is instantly attracted to him, but she has sworn off boys with hopes of studying for her SATs and improving her chances of getting into New York University.

Mara, however, is trying to get back her ex boyfriend Ryan Perry until she sees him with another girl. Trying to make him jealous, she goes out with Garrett Reynolds and becomes the It Girl of the Hamptons. What she doesn’t know, though, is Eliza and Ryan now have a history, too.

Cute, funny, and interesting, The Au Pairs: Skinny Dipping is sure to catch the eye of teens everywhere! Not used to more girly novels, I had read Melissa de la Cruz’s series Blue Bloods, but this book definitely caught my attention with the quirky characters and the forever-coming drama.

Contest: Comfort food and a tote bag!

The Written Word is giving away an ARC of Comfort Food and some tote bags! Hurry, this contest ends tonight.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Contests: The Story Siren and Frostbite

That's right! The Story Siren (the cool gal that she is) is giving away a signed copy of Frostbite!! *crowd gasps... whispers of "a signed copy? I don't believe it!" going around the room... crowd cheers*

Go enter!

And I promise, I will put up a new review tomorrow!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Review: Perfect You

Perfect You

Elizabeth Scott

Kate’s life is far from perfect. After losing seventy pounds, her best friend in the whole wide world “dumps” her to join the popular crowd. Not only did her dad quit his job, but he is now selling horrible infomercial vitamins at a tiny booth in the mall (and expects her to help out!) Her older brother got a college degree and is living at the house again. And then, there is Will.

Kate has secretly liked Will since (well… since forever). But, once he humiliates her in their first year of high school, she vows to never again show how she feels. So, when Will starts trying to talk to her again, she just snubs him. However, she has a harder time controlling her emotions when he kisses her behind the mall. She really likes him, but will she just become another statistic?

There is just one word I could use to sum it all up: wow. Elizabeth Scott amazes me again with her interesting characters and her wonderful plot. Kate’s story is something all teens can relate to: trying to find happiness when all we feel is unhappy. Kate certainly found her happiness, though it took the help of a few characters to shove her in the right direction. It amused me that Kate could not see that Will actually liked her, and I thought that it gave a cute twist to Scott’s novel.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Contest: Reviewer X/The Year of My Miraculous Reappearance

Like the title of this entry says, Reviewer X is giving away a copy of Catherine Ryan Hyde's novel The Year of My Miraculous Reappearance. This contest is open until sometime Saturday.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Review: Going Nowhere Faster

Going Nowhere Faster

Sean Beaudoin

Stan Smith’s (yes, like the tennis shoe) greatest ambition is to write a script. However, he believes that all of his ideas are full of clichés. His psychologist says he suffers from creative stifling, though it may be because his whole life sounds like a movie. His mom is possibly the healthiest person in the town, running a natural and organic food store. His father is an inventor, and besides building their house (on a slant, mind you) his inventions include cars that run on vegetable oil, talking showers, and automatic sheet changers.

Stan himself is a list man. With every event that comes up, he writes a list. ‘Five reasons not to leave,’ ‘five things that Keith is bigger than,’ and well… you get the idea. He has a not so secret crush on a girl named Eleanor Rigby (yes, like the Beatles song), and did I mention that someone is out to get him?

Sean Beaudoin’s Going Nowhere Faster was an interesting surprise, to say the least. Since I pride myself on being able to figure out what is going to happen in a novel before it does, I was impressed that the author was able to keep me wondering until the end. I really enjoyed being able to read Stan’s cliché-filled, not so original screenplay ideas that just do happened to include what was happening in his life.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Look! New Layout!!

Well, in case you haven't noticed, I completely changed the layout of this blog. Yes, I realize that it doesn't take much to change one premade layout to another premade layout, but still. I like the new layout.

Review: Looking for Alaska

Looking for Alaska

John Greene

Miles Halter was always a fan of last words. While some people pride themselves on knowing the capitals of the states, Miles prides himself on knowing famous people’s last words. So when Miles reads a biography of Francois Rabelais, he learns his last words were “I go to seek a Great Perhaps.” Convinced now that he himself is after a Great Perhaps, Miles begins his journey at Culver Creek boarding school.

His roommate Chip (called Colonel) introduces Miles (whom he nicknames “Pudgie” – complete irony, seeing as Miles is insanely skinny) to his friend Takumi, and more importantly, to Alaska. After meeting Alaska, Miles is sure that he is in love with her. She completely confuses him, being flirty and sweet one day, then moody the next. But, Miles continues to hang out with these people who become his friends, and he agrees to help out with the pranks that they are planning. After all, they are teenagers and invincible – what could go wrong?

John Greene entertains readers with these unique characters. My favorite character is Alaska; there is no doubt about it. Just the fact that her character was given the power to pick her own name shows how unique she really is. The whole novel was definitely unique in its story line, and I really enjoyed reading it.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

And Another Book Read Scavenger Hunt!!

Okay, I promise that this is my last post for today. I just had to post about And Another Book Read's scavenger hunt! Just check out her blog so you can see what you need to do.

Braless in Wonderland Contest

In honor of Braless in Wonderland's release (which is today!!!), Debbie Fischer is giving away a copy of the book on her livejournal. Pass the love around and tell everyone what today is!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Review: Bloom

Elizabeth Scott

Lauren has everything a girl could ask for – good friends, decent grades, and a boyfriend that most girls want. She knows how lucky she is. She does not expect a big miracle to happen and make things perfect. And she definitely did not expect Evan Kirkland to appear after all these years.

Her mom left their family when Lauren was six years old. After that, Lauren’s dad had new girlfriends all the time, including Mary, Evan’s mother. So, when Evan reappears at her school, it brings back not only old emotions and memories, but new emotions, too. She cannot deny that she is attracted to him, but she sure tries. After all, she has a good life – she has some friends (who either do not open up to her or accept her only because of her boyfriend), good grades (including that C in Geometry and not to mention failing World History), and the perfect boyfriend who loves her (because she respects his faith and his limits) – doesn’t she?

Elizabeth Scott presents this story of teen love in Bloom as perfectly as if she went through the story along with her characters (and she brought me along, too!) I absolutely love, love, LOVED the characters and their own little unique traits. Her writing brings this story to the reader that is as unforgettable as our own. I have high expectations for her novel Perfect You.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Review: Chosen (A House of Night Novel)

P.C. Cast and Kristen Cast

Zoey Redbird has gone through very much in the last few months. First she was Marked with a sign from the goddess Nyx. She was graced with powers unheard of in a third year fledgling. Not only does she have an affinity for all of the five elements, but her mark is unusual, too – it is filled in completely, which only happens to adult vampyres. She also Imprinted with her human on again, off again boyfriend, giving her a strange and strong lust for his blood.

Then, Zoey was Betrayed. The goddess had warned her – not all things that seem evil are evil, and not all good things are good. Those whom she trusted the most plotted against her, while her enemy became her alibi.

And now, she is Chosen. Faced with a huge load of responsibility, Zoey wants to turn to her friends for support. But how can they understand what she is going through? She’s Imprinted with her human (sometimes ex) boyfriend, she is in a relationship with the extremely hot Erik Night, and she definitely has feelings for her teacher (and he definitely has feelings back!). Not only that, but she struggles to help her undead best friend Stevie Rae from turning into a monster, while there are monsters slaughtering adult vampyres. So what is a girl expected to do?

P.C. and Kristen Cast have exceeded expectations again! Their newest installment in the House of Night series is even better than the first two novels. I would have liked to see a little more character development in the plot, but for the most part the characters were as good as ever.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Review: The Road to Vengeance (The Strongbow Saga)

The Strongbow Saga, Book 3: The Road to Vengeance
Judson Roberts

Truly a gift from the gods above, Halfdan Hroriksson does not question his good fortune or luck when it comes to his life. Just a year or so ago, Halfdan had a bleak outlook on his life as a slave in his father’s house. But now, he is on the road to vengeance. Halfdan has sworn an oath to the gods that protect and empower that he will avenge his brother Harald’s death, caused by the hands of their half-brother, Toke.

We find Halfdan in the foreign country the Franks have inhabited, along with much of the Danish forces. Finally rid of their captives, the Danish army seeks to fight and take control from the Frankish army. They ride out and the two armies clash for one of the most pivotal instances at the time, and Halfdan truly earns his bestowed title of Strongbow. Halfdan does not forget his sworn oath to avenge his brother, however. He is truly a man of honor.

Judson Roberts has done an amazing job continuing this series. His knowledge of Viking history shows greatly in his writing, bringing to us the story of a rising hero. This book does justice to the rest of the series, and leaves the readers wanting the next installment in the Strongbow Saga.

Review: The Running Man

The Running Man

Michael Gerard Bauer

There is always something worse. That is what Joseph Davidson’s neighbor Tom Leyton tells him. Joseph, however, can not see anything worse than the reoccurring nightmare he has about the Running Man, a creature in town that always seems to be running.

Joseph only meets his reclusive neighbor at the request of Tom’s sister, Caroline. Rumors spread like wildfire about Tom across the town. Some people say that he fought in the Vietnam War, and that is why he is never seen. Others still say that he used to be a teacher, and he had inappropriate contact with a young boy. Caroline only fuels Joseph’s fear more by reassuring him that she will always be there when he comes over to draw Tom’s portrait for school. Even through his fears, Joseph becomes closer to Tom Leyton and a shaky friendship is formed over a box full of silkworms.

Bauer’s writing in The Running Man gives a breath of fresh air in a genre clouded with the same topics. I especially like the author’s use of poetry in this short novel. Bauer included pieces from both Douglas Stewart and John Milton. The author leaves the readers at the end of the book with this important message: miracles do happen.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

April Contests: Author2Author and Word for Teens

Word for Teens is giving away a copy of Snapshot. Check out the blog here.

It's day four in the Author2Author Take a Break giveaway. Today's book is French Kiss.

Also, The Page Flipper is giving away five copies of Audrey, Wait! Leave a comment on her blog to be entered.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Day 3: Take a Break Giveaway

Today, Author2Author is giving away a copy of ZIGZAG by Ellen Wittlinger. Congrats to the winner of yesterday's contest :]

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Take A Break Giveaway Day 2 (Author2Author)

Hey everyone (again)! Author2Author today is giving away a copy of Do Over. Check out the post to enter.

I'm so excited :] I won yesterday's contest :]

Monday, April 7, 2008

Another April Contest :]

Author2Author is giving away one book every day this week! Today's book is The Au Pairs: Skinny Dipping by Melissa de la Cruz.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Three More April Contests

In Bed With Books is giving away both The God of Animals and Wake. Check out the blog for more details here.

Check out how you could get a copy of Twisted Sister at this blog. (Oh, and let's try to get the comments past fifty - there's an ARC to sweeten up the deal that way!)

Kinsmen of the Shelf is giving away a signed copy of Magic Study. It's her first giveaway, so let's all be supportive!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

April Awesomeness!!

Okay, kids. Here are two contests for this month.

Liv's Book Reviews is giving away a copy of Jinx by Meg Cabot. It's her very first contest, so go give her some support!

The Page Flipper has updated and posted about Prize Pack of the Month for April.

And, by the way, WE WON! WE WON!