Tag Archive | Beat The Backlist

REVIEW: Secret Vampire by L. J. Smith

Secret Vampire by L. J. Smith

Series: Night World #1

Read: April 6-8, 2017

Format: Paperback

My Book Rating: 5 Stars

Publisher: Archway Paperbacks / Simon Pulse

Release Date: June 1996

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance

Pages: 242

Reading Challenge(s): Beat The Backlist 2017, 2017 YA

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

The diagnosis for Poppy was death. there was no hope—until James, her best friend and secret love, appeared in the hospital. But this was a James she didn’t know. He offered Poppy eternal life. Only he could open the door to the Night World. They’re soulmates—but can she follow him into death and beyond?

THE NIGHT WORLD isn’t a place. It’s all around us. The creatures of Night World are beautiful and deadly and irresistible to humans. Your best friend could be one—so could your crush.

The laws of Night World are very clear: humans must never learn that Night World exists. And members of Night World must never fall in love with a human. Violate the laws and the consequences are terrifying.

These are the stories about what happens when the rules get broken.


REVIEW

This is actually a re-re-re-re-re-etc-read for me. Its been roughly 20 years since I first discovered L. J. Smith and her Night World series. (Did I just age myself???) Unlike another favorite series from those days, which I re-read in recent years and then questioned my middle grade taste in books, this series is still as amazing as the day I read it.

Smith doesn’t waste time with describing every little nuance that her readers honestly aren’t going to care about, but within 2 pages I had a solid sense of who the heroine, Poppy, was as a person and how she felt about James, the hero of our story.

I was always a huge fan of the whole Soulmate trope and this series executes it perfectly. For me, there needs to be some kind of supernatural reason for Soulmates to exist, and in a world of vampires, witches, and shifters, it’s very easy to buy into that reasoning. Add in forbidden love and what teen girl could resist! Certainly not this one, even now that I’ve said goodbye to my teen years ages ago.

This is a short read, but it is utterly satisfying. There’s the star-crossed lovers, the villain, and vampires and witches galore! I seriously can’t wait to dive into the rest of these books. Who knows, maybe by the time I re-read the last of them, there will finally be a new release date set for the final book in the series. It’s only 17 years past due.

So should you read this one? YES. This was the book for the generation before Twilight. (And the author also created The Vampire Diaries – though the TV series took great liberties with the story. For the better IMO. But that’s a whole other book review!) So, what are you waiting for? Go sink your fangs into this amazing series!



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QUOTES

Looking at him, Poppy felt a pang—as always. It didn’t matter that she had seen  him every day, practically, for the past ten years. She still felt a quick sharp throb in her chest, somewhere between sweetness and pain, when first confronted with him every morning.

 

Until today she’d assumed it was her unconditional right to live. She hadn’t even been grateful for the privilege.

 

You don’t love a girl because of beauty. You love her because she sings a song only you can understand…

 
“There are two cardinal rules in the Night World,” he said steadily. “One is not to tell humans that it exists. The other is not to fall in love with a human. I’ve broken both of them.”

REVIEW: Leaving Yesterday by Zoe Dawson

Leaving Yesterday by Zoe Dawson

Series: Laurel Falls #1

Read: April 6-13, 2017

Format: eBook ARC

My Book Rating: 3.5 Stars

Publisher: Loveswept

Release Date: February 9, 2016

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 268

Reading Challenge(s): TBR 2017, Beat The Backlist 2017

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

If you love Susan Mallery, Kristan Higgins, or Rachel Gibson, don’t miss the start of this captivating small-town romance series! Laurel Falls, Montana, features spectacular mountain scenery—but it takes a rugged cowboy to convince one woman to slow down and enjoy the view.

Rafferty Hamilton doesn’t plan on putting down roots anytime soon. With her divorce final, the hotel heiress has left Manhattan behind to scout new locations for her family’s chain of resorts. Which is why it’s so frustrating to be stranded in Laurel Falls while a good-looking, slow-talking, Stetson-wearing mechanic takes his sweet time with her overheated coupe.

A decorated vet who paid his dues in Afghanistan, Trace Black can fix anything with an engine and get it revving—even Rafferty’s ridiculous sports car. He couldn’t say the same for the knockout driver, who looks like she’s never gripped a gear shaft in her life. Women like Rafferty don’t usually stick around in Laurel Falls, but Trace finds himself showing her everything his hometown has to offer before she cruises on down the road.

As the days pass, Rafferty finds herself charmed by the pace of life and the openhearted warmth of the residents. She’s even tempted to trust again—and it’s all thanks to Trace. He’s not the kind of guy she’s used to falling for, but he just might be the man she needs.


REVIEW

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

Leaving Yesterday started strong with a hero and heroine I liked. Right off the bat I could tell they were both good people, each with their own set of baggage, each deserving to find real love.

Things I liked: The hero and heroine. They were both strong and independent and meshed well together. I loved the nickname he had for her (Commander Princess). I liked the town, I want to visit and see the mountains and springs and stay at that rundown abandoned old inn! This book also had great, fully developed side characters who have been set up to get their own novels.

What I didn’t like so much: Those side characters I mentioned? While I loved them all, I wasn’t a fan of the POV shifts into their heads. Call me a traditionalist, but I’d rather my romance novels stick with the h/H POVs and leave the side characters to the side. I don’t want in their heads yet, learning all the details of their personal stories. I think this would have benefited with either a revised blurb indicating that there were more stories here than just the main characters romance, or reclassifying this as…. something else. A contemporary drama maybe? I don’t know. It just wasn’t what I expected and that sort of put a damper on my reading experience.

All that said, this was an enjoyable story about enjoyable characters. I would gladly revisit Laurel Falls to see what happens for those secondary characters as well as to see how things are going with Trace and Rafferty. (I really hate her name by the way. But it is the perfect trust-fund baby name.)



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QUOTES

“You don’t know how to fix my car. Do you?”
His eyes flashed. “Never said that. I can fix anything, sure as shootin’.”


“My bullshit meter has a low threshold. We’re bound to strike sparks off each other.”


“I don’t live here, Trace, and I’m not staying. We’ve established that. As soon as you put in my new transmission, I’ll be gone. So what if they do talk? Nothing happened, well, except for that kiss.”
“Except for that kiss? Doesn’t sound like I tried hard enough there. Maybe I should give it another shot.”
“Trace…”

 

“He needs help picking out a shirt.”
Reese looked puzzled. “Are the fashion police after you or something?”

 

“So tell me something bout yourself not many people know.”
“I believe in alien abductions.”

He huffed out a laugh.

 

You’re always so careful, holding back. Always doing some deal for your dad. You’re his closer, his hit woman.

REVIEW: Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter

Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter

Series: White Rabbit Chronicles #1

Read: March 9 – 13, 2017

Format: Kindle

My Book Rating: 4.5 Stars

Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Release Date: September 25, 2012

Genre: YA Paranormal

Pages: 416

Reading Challenge(s): TBR 2017, Beat The Backlist 2017, 2017 YA, Retellings 2017

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

She won’t rest until she’s sent every walking corpse back to its grave. Forever.

If anyone had told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that’s all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.

Her father was right. The monsters are real.

To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn’t careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies.


REVIEW

I can’t remember where I first heard about this book, but from the moment I saw the cover I was in love. It sat on my TBR list for a few months, then I received a sale alert email and it was only 99 cents. You can bet I pounced on that one! The book sat there on my Kindle, alone and neglected, for almost 10 months before I finally decided that this would be a good choice to dig into my backlist with and earn some points for Hufflepuff in the Beat the Backlist 2017 challenge.

Let me tell you, this was $1.07 (after tax) well spent.

I’ll admit, I wasn’t in love with the beginning of this book. It was slow to start and felt very info dumpy. Then Kat showed up and the story picked up pace. The narration sort of glossed over Ali dealing with the aftermath of her family’s death, but it was done in a way that worked, so that we weren’t bogged down with her depression before the meat of the story were revealed.

I loved the characters in this book. Kat is absolutely over the top and amazing. She reminds me a little of Janice from Mean Girls. The other girls in her posse were sort of forgettable, their personalities overshadowed by the more important characters. Cole was an utter ass most of the time, but I still found him absolutely charming. I was intrigued by the strange connection he and Ali share. The clues about their connection that are dropped later in the book really make me want to continue this series.

There is definitely a Twilight vibe to this book, but it’s not a bad thing. Unlike Bella who needs someone to save her most of the time, Ali is a totally kick ass chick she doesn’t really need someone to save her, but will accept the help.

I absolutely loved this world that Gena Showalter has created. Zombie’s that can only be seen by a special group of people? Because they’re on the spiritual plane? Um, yes please! This whole world is so unique and creative, I want to know more. And to add a secondary baddie for Ali to have to fight on top of the zombies? Perfection!

I feel the need to add that this isn’t a traditional retelling of Alice in Wonderland. I’m actually not an Alice fan, so this was perfect for me. There were certainly parallels to the classic tale though, so I would still consider this a retelling – though a very loose one.

 

So, should you read this book? If you’re looking for a YA book featuring a kick ass heroine, a steamy bad boy love interest, a completely new and unique spin on zombies, AND a satisfying ending that still leaves the door open for more books in the series, then YES. This is the book for you.



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QUOTES

 

The forced incarceration at night drove me to spend as much time as possible outside during daylight hours, whether I burned to lobster-red or not.

 

A scream ripped from my throat, followed right on the heels of another and another. I lost track of everything around me, clutched my ears to stop from hearing the utter horror in my voice, and fell to my knees.

 

My thinking on the matter: Mr. Buttle—whom I would forever call Mr. Butthole—was on a power trip, but whatever.

 

“When she and Cole get married in a beautiful prison ceremony, because we all know that’s where Cole will be, she’ll be able to help your cause.”

 

“Have you ever been in a fight?” With his free hand, he pinched a lock of my hair and rubbed the strands together. “Because you look like something out of a fairy tale.”

“The wicked witch?” I couldn’t help but ask.
“Please. The princess.”

 

She battered her lashes at me and lowered her voice to a smoky rasp. “Cole, you big strong minimal. I know the boogeyman thinks you’ll jump out of his closet, but I think you’re—Hey, are you listening to our private conversation, Marcus?” she ended in a shout. “Yeah, that’s right. Run.”

 

Someone so egotistical shouldn’t have been so charming. But then, I loved Kat, so there you go.

 

Because I hadn’t been on an evening drive since the accident, and couldn’t help but clutch the seat, my stomach a writing vomit bubble ready to burst.

 

He’d be doing the world a favor if he never wore a shirt again, but I wasn’t going to tell him that part.

REVIEW: Some Boys by Patty Blount

Some Boys by Patty Blount

Read: January 27 – February 4, 2017

Format: Paperback

My Book Rating: 5 Stars

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Release Date: August 5, 2014

Genre: Contemporary YA

Pages: 339

Reading Challenge(s): 2017 Beat The Backlist, 2017 YA Reading Challenge, 2017 TBR Challenge

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Some boys go too far. Some boys will break your heart. But one boy can make you whole.

When Grace meets Ian she’s afraid. Afraid he’ll reject her like the rest of the school, like her own family. After she accuses the town golden boy of rape, everyone turns against Grace. They call her a slut and a liar. But…Ian doesn’t. He’s funny and kind with secrets of his own.

But how do you trust the best friend of the boy who raped you? How do you believe in love?

A gut-wrenching, powerful love story told from alternating points of view by the acclaimed author of Send.


REVIEW

Some of the books I win from Goodreads I’m pretty meh about. I’m like, “Oh, cool, I won a book.” But this book? This book I was excited for! I mean, LOOK at that gorgeous cover! The high contract, the beautiful background color, what’s not to love? And then I open it, and on page one I’m in tears. Okay, I didn’t actually cry, but only because I was sitting outside my kids preschool classroom waiting for the class to be released. I held back, but I wanted to cry. I really did.

I’ll be honest with you, I don’t read a whole lot of contemporary YA. I’m a paranormal/fantasy kind of girl, but I’m working on branching out. The book this most closely relates to from my catalog of books read is Girl on the Brink by Christina Hoag. Both books deal with very tough subject matters. In this case, we’re talking not only rape, but bullying and slut shaming.

I love Grace so much. Grace has had to put up with so much shit since her rape. She’s been called a liar, a slut, and worse. She’s had her property damaged. She’s had her own parents blame her for what happened to her. There were so many times I wanted to cry for Grace, but you know what? Grace is badass. She’s not the kind of girl who is going to just let people get away with this stuff, especially not her rapist. She kept fighting even when she was told it was hopeless.

Then there’s Ian. Ian liked grace before she dated his BFF Zac. But friends don’t date friends exes. Despite acting like an idiot for most of the book, Ian is a good guy. He has good parents who raised him right. It takes a really long time for him to step up and do the right thing and from other reviews I’ve read, a lot of people hate him for that. You know what I think? I think that makes him real. It takes a lot of courage to stand up against your friends and team, especially as a teenager. If Ian were to drop his best friend just because the girl he liked cried rape, I wouldn’t buy it. So yeah, while it’s frustrating at times to read some of the things Ian did/said, it made sense. And in the end, we see him grow and change into a better person.

As for Zac, it was so easy to hate him from Grace’s POV, and at times question her story and almost sympathize with him from what he tells Ian in his POV. (Did I mention this is dual POV alternating between Grace and Ian? I love dual POV!) I mean, I never liked Zac. He was always a sleaze ball, but the author was able to really help me understand why Ian felt the way he did for Zac based on his interactions and conversations with Zac.

There were a couple of times in this book where it bordered on After School Special territory, but even with those way too cheesy moments, this book is a 5 star read. Every girl should read this. Every boy should read this. Hell, every parent and teacher and human being should read this!

This will not be my last Patty Blount book. She is an author to watch out for.


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QUOTES

 

I want to turn to look at him, look him dead in the eye, and twist my face into something that shows contempt instead of the terror that too often wins whenever I hear his name so he sees—so he knows—he didn’t beat me.


She always wants me to run with her, but I strongly believe if God had intended man—or woman—to jog, he’d have scaled way back on breast size and sent some of that padding to the soles of our feet. Just sayin’.

 

“Everybody says it’s my fault because I got drunk, and you know what? That doesn’t count! Everyone was drinking that night. There’s only one thing that counts, but nobody wants to hear it.”


Maybe the whole female sex is worse than the males, the way they turn on each other, transforming from bat-shit crazy into straight-up vicious over some guy.

 

I just want to shatter so I never have to feel anything again.

 

REVIEW: Pan by K. R. Thompson

Pan by K. R. Thompson

Series: The Untold Stories of Neverland #1

Read: February 2017

Format: Kindle

My Book Rating: 3 Stars

Publisher: Magic Quill Press

Release Date: August 10, 2015

Genre: Fantasy, Retelling

Pages: 103

Reading Challenge(s): 2017 YA, Retellings 2017, Beat The Backlist 2017, TBR 2017

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Neverland has always been their sanctuary—until now.

Magic is dying in Neverland—and so are the pixies. Only one is brave enough to search the human world for someone to believe. Tink finds a desolate boy flying in the night, peering in windows, searching for the life he once knew. But can she convince him to abandon his quest and save Neverland?

Discover the untold story of the boy destined to become Peter Pan.


REVIEW

A while back I had an idea for a story I wanted to tell and as this story tossed and turned in my brain I realized it might make a good Peter Pan retelling. But then I remembered I’ve never read Peter Pan, and I’ve only read one story based on it. So I went on a downloading binge, snagging every free fairy tale and Peter Pan related book I could find on Amazon. I promptly forgot about them, and there they sat on my Kindle, until I was motivated to read them by the retelling and backlist challenges I recently signed up for. (Two birds with one stone!)

This particular book, while well written, didn’t really capture my full attention. I actually mostly had my Kindle read it to my 5 year old daughter and me over the course of a few days while we ate lunch. The whole of the book was broken into smaller stories. The first is the tale of how Peter Pan came to meet Tinkerbell and find his way to Neverland. Another is Peter finding the Lost Boys and bringing them to Neverland as well. There’s interesting bits about the fairy’s and why Tink brought Peter. The Nyad’s were interesting as well and I think I’d like to read more about them. As a whole though, I didn’t connect to the characters. I never really cared what happened to them. I’m blaming that on the length of each of these small stories and would assume that the full length novels would have better character development. As of right now I would not pay to read the first full length book, but should it become free I would give it a chance and if I liked it, perhaps go on to purchase the others in the series.

As for my initial quest which led to me downloading this book? I’ve got some fresh inspiration tossing around in my head now, so mission somewhat accomplished.


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QUOTES

 

The pixies in Neverland were dying, and without someone to believe in them, Neverland would soon cease to exist.

 

The crocodile was the only one who hadn’t tired of his games, the only one who returned the attention given to him, and was the only one who seemed worthy of the adventure Peter sought.

 

She would listen because they were a part of him, such an important part, he would sit for long periods of time and replay the memories in an effort to never forget them.

 

“Then the snow came, just as Mother said it would. I kept thinking I had to be close. If I could go just a bit farther, then I would find them and I could duck inside and be safe. But the snow fell faster, and it got cold… so, so cold…”

 

“It wasn’t life I was offered. It was an existence of death. I couldn’t go home and I couldn’t be a boy anymore.”

REVIEW: Snow White’s Revenge by Casey Lane

Snow White’s Revenge by Casey Lane

Series: Fairy Tales Forever #0.5

Read: January 31 – February 1, 2017

Format: ebook

My Book Rating: 4 Stars

Publisher: Casey Lane

Release Date: July 12, 2016

Genre: YA Fantasy / Fairy Tale

Reading Challenge(s): TBR Challenge 2017, Beat The Backlist 2017, 2017 YA Reading Challenge, Retellings Reading Challenge 2017

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

She’s a prisoner. He wants an adventure. Together, they’ll change a kingdom forever.

Read the prequel novella to a new series of standalone fairy tale novels from Casey Lane!


REVIEW

I received a copy of this novella when I subscribed to author Casey Lane’s newsletter. (And you can too!)

This quick read tells the story of Princess Snow White. Her parents, the king and queen, have been murdered and the new Queen Lacey has taken over the throne. She sends her huntsman out to find Snow, who was not in the castle at the time of her takeover. After two years on the run, being hunted, Snow is caught and thrown in the dungeon.

The story begins something like 8 years later when Prince Strife visits the castle. His parents hope to create an alliance between the kingdoms.

What started as a pretty generic take on the tale of Snow White soon turns around. Snow White is no damsel in distress, waiting for her prince to save her. In fact, more often than not Snow does the rescuing! She’s a pretty badass princess. I mean, she survived in the forest alone for two years, she’d have to be pretty badass, right?

Prince Strife on the other hand is a pampered privileged young man. He gets tangled up with Snow and she ends up having to save his butt.

The only gripe I had was the love between these two. They spend most of the story bickering, but when Snow kisses him suddenly it’s true love. I mean, it’s a fairy tale, but I would have liked a little more lead up to that.

All in all, this is a decent tale of Snow White. I look forward to reading more from Casey Lane in the future. I only hope her full length novels have a little more meat to bridge the gap between meeting and falling in love.


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QUOTES

Snow let an entertaining image dance across her mind: her slicing Ratface’s throat with the thorn of a rose.

“When he homed in on Queen Lacey’s perfection, he realized nothing was glowing quite like her. It was like her edges were frayed. Like the reality she projected wasn’t exactly what it seemed.”

“I succeeded at playing hero! I literally rescued a princess. And now the ungrateful damsel is trying to run away from me. It doesn’t make any sense.”
Snow met his eyes. “Try calling me a damsel again. We’ll see how long I stick around.”

She closed her eyes. “You saw the Queen. How could anyone say that I hold a candle to her beauty?”
“Strife was silent for a few seconds. He locked eyes with her. “Is this one of those times when I’m supposed to play the girlfriend who says, ‘Are you kidding me? You’re the most beautiful girl that ever lived!’?”

“You’re saying I need a man to help me? That’s some chauvinist forest crap right there.”

 

Review: Vampire Academy 10th Anniversary Edition by Richelle Mead

Vampire Academy 10th Anniversary Edition by Richelle Mead

Series: Vampire Academy #0.2

Read: January 11 – 16, 2017

Format: Paperback

My Book Rating: 5 Stars

Publisher: Penguin Razorbill

Release Date: November 29, 2016

Genre: YA Paranormal

Pages: 483 (332 pages of VA + 151 pages bonus stories!)

Reading Challenge(s): 2017 YA Reading Challenge, Beat The Backlist 2017

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Richelle Mead celebrates 10 years of Vampire Academy with an exclusive, never-before-seen collection of stories that sheds new light on the world and its players:

The Turn and the Flame takes a deeper look into the dark stain on the Ozera dynasty…

From the Journal of Vasilisa Dragomir unearths the princess’s private thoughts from a transformative period of her life…

The Meeting gives us a glimpse of Rose Hathaway through Dimitri’s eyes…

Hello My Name Is Rose Hathaway tracks the shenanigans that ensue when Rose and Dimitri become unlikely teammates in a high-stakes scavenger hunt…
St. Vladimir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school—it’s a hidden place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Princess. They’ve been on the run, but now they’re being dragged back to St. Vladimir’s—the very place where they’re most in danger. . . .

Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy’s ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi—the world’s fiercest and most dangerous vampires—make Lissa one of them forever.


REVIEW

Those who know me can attest to the fact that Richelle Mead is my favorite author. Her characters are amazing and I never want to let them go.

Fortunately for me, with 2017 bringing the 10th anniversary of the original Vampire Academy novels release, Penguin Razorbill put out a 10th anniversary edition.

Who cares that I already have the original paperback (personally autographed last spring!) AND the ebook edition. The cover of this edition is absolutely epically beautiful. I couldn’t pass it up. And as if that weren’t enough for me to throw my money at them, they went and threw in a bunch of bonus stories for us diehard fans to more fully immerse ourselves in the VA universe.

And immerse myself I did.

I didn’t re-read the original story because I’ve read it so many times already, but I did read all of the short stories and they ended far too soon!

 

THE TURN AND THE FLAME

This story features Christian’s aunt Tatiana, just before and shortly after her brother and his wife—Christian’s parents— willingly choose to become Strigoi, the dark and evil undead vampires.

Tatiana is a controversial character in the VA universe due to her relationship with Dimitri and…arm…some poor life choices she makes later in the series. I’ve always found her fascinating so I loved getting this peek into how she went from a young girl questioning her place in society to a strong woman fighting for the rights of the Dahmpires and Moroi.


QUOTES:

Tatiana leaned closer. “You’re only here to look pretty, dear. Not to give your opinions. See that you remember that.”

 There were a million possible responses to that, but there was only one that Tasha was allowed to make: “Th-thank you, your Majesty.”


FROM THE JOURNAL OF VASILISA DRAGOMIR

Throughout the VA series we don’t get to see much from Lissa’s POV, so this was a really interesting look not only at the life she and Rose had while on the run (see quote below), but also of her descent into the madness Spirit causes. Loved this.


QUOTES:

March 25
It turns out you can’t put aluminum foil in the microwave. We have to go shopping again to buy a new one for the house.

 

THE MEETING

This story is SUPER short, but it gives us a small glimpse into Dimitri’s head when he first meets Rose. A must read for Romitri shippers!

QUOTES:

But there was a look in her eyes now that said this was no joke, that she would die a thousand times over before she let anyone harm the princess at her back. She reminded me of a cornered wildcat, sleek and beautiful—but fully capable of clawing your face off if provoked.

 

HELLO, MY NAME IS ROSE HATHAWAY

Hands down my favorite bonus story. Rose takes on the task of winning a covert scavenger hunt on campus. Full of Rose’s loyalty to Lissa, chemistry with Dimitri (Swoon! I don’t even ship them all that hard!), and hilarious antics. With Rose, if it can go wrong, it probably will.

QUOTES:

Mason regarded me with awe and affection—and also concern. “Rose, I love it when you’re crazy, but this might even be beyond you.”

 I stood up, turned around, and found myself looking right at Dimitri.

And not just any Dimitri. Dimitri dressed as a cowboy.



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REVIEW: Mortality by Kellie Sheridan

Mortality by Kellie Sheridan

Series: The Hitchhiker Strain #1

Read: January 28-30, 2017

Format: Kindle (NetGalley)

My Book Rating: 4 Stars

Publisher: Patchwork Press

Release Date: March 19, 2013

Genre: YA Post-Apocalyptic (Zombie)

Pages: 254

Reading Challenge(s): 2017 YA Reading Challenge, Beat the Backlist 2017

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

After surviving a deadly plague outbreak, sixteen-year-old Savannah thought she had lived through the very worst of human history. There was no way to know that the miracle vaccine would put everyone at risk for a fate worse than un-death.

Now, two very different kinds of infected walk the Earth, intent on nothing but feeding and destroying what little remains of civilization. When the inoculated are bitten, infection means watching on in silent horror as self-control disappears and the idea of feasting on loved ones becomes increasingly hard to ignore.

Starving and forced to live inside of the abandoned high school, all Savannah wants is the chance to fight back. When a strange boy arrives with a plan to set everything right, she gets her chance. Meeting Cole changes everything. Mere survival will never be enough.


REVIEW

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

This poor innocent book was received from NetGalley a little over a year ago. Due to it’s past release date it kept getting set aside in order to read and review books that were not yet released. I’m sorry to the author AND to myself, because this book was great!

This is a dual POV story set in a post-apocalyptic world. The zombie apocalypse is here, and to make matters worse, a “vaccine” was distributed, but all it did was turn those who were vaccinated and then infected into living zombies.

The story switches back and forth between Savannah and Zarah, two girl trying to survive pretty much on their own. Savannah is the character we spend the most time with. She’s 17 and sick of being cooped up in the high school, she wants to prove she’s grown up up enough to be out there fighting with the adults. She can definitely handle herself. Zarah on the other hand is more of a pacifist. After teaming up with Liam, a classmate, when it becomes clear they’re on their own they set off on their own trying to stay safe. She leans on Liam a lot to take care of her.

It was interesting to see how each of these very different girls handle the situation they’ve been forced into. I was also surprised to find that this wasn’t a typical zombie novel, we got to see some insights that I did not expect! When the girls paths cross it’s really hard to know who to root for.

This is actually only like, the fourth dystopian zombie-type novel I’ve ever read and only the second with true classic zombies. It had similarities to The Walking Dead, but it absolutely stands apart from the show.

My only minor qualm was in the sort of insta-love between the two sets of characters. I’m giving it a pass because for Savannah it wasn’t really instant, it just came sort of out of nowhere. For Zarah the build up just wasn’t shown because she didn’t have as much of the story as Savannah did. I don’t think most teen readers will have a problem, and honestly, I didn’t really either.

The ending had a slight cliffhanger, but if there wasn’t a sequel the reader wouldn’t be left completely hanging. There’s some closure, and the mission Savannah set out on does reach a somewhat satisfying end point.

I’ll probably read the second book in this series at some point down the line.

 

SHOULD YOU READ IT? If you’re into zombies and teen fiction yes. It’s a fast paced enjoyable read.



Get the Mortality here:

Amazon | Nook | iBooks | Kobo

~ Add to Goodreads ~

 


QUOTES

We were prepared for this, but my heartbeat still quickened. This was everything I had been waiting for, but suddenly I was less enthusiastic. My hand shook and I fumbled loading my weapon.

 

He wasn’t dead, and that was a very, very good thing. Then it hit me—this situation was still far from a good one. Letting out a strangled gasp, I clasped my hand over my mouth. He was probably still alive, but I might never see him again.

 

I would never be given the chance to bury my parents or my brother. I’ll never even know if there is anything left of them to bury. But I’m trying not to think about that.

 

Cole had come up with this entire plan in less than ten minutes.
And people say I’m impulsive.
No. I was just the idiot who agreed to this insanity.

 

“Come out with your hands over your head.” Apparently I wasn’t the only one reliving every action movie ever made.

Beat The Backlist: Print Book Edition

 

I’m supporting Hufflepuff in the #BeatTheBacklist reading challenge.

 

The challenge goal: Read/review as many backlist books as you possibly can. Bonus points for social media posts!

My goal: Get through as many of my Goodreads wins and impulse library/Goodwill buys as I possibly can.

Below you’ll find my current list, though I doubt I’ll come close to reading them all! This is JUST my print books. I’ve got to take some time to compile a list of ebooks, which I can get through much quicker thanks to the wonders of Text-to-Speech (nothing like a robotic voice reading to you while you fold laundry, am I right???)

Without further ado, my list of book titles and reason for bumping them up on my TBR list.

 

* Note: All books are linked to Amazon with an affiliate link.


Some Boy by Patty Blount

– Goodreads win. AMAZING cover. Important topic (rape culture). Already 50% in after 2 days and in love.

Switch by Douglas Davey

– Goodreads win. It’s YA. It fits the LGBTQ reading challenge I took on. Also looks like it might be a relatively short read.

The Other Boy by M. G. Hennessey

– Goodreads win. Very short middle grade. It might bore me, but it might not. It’s about bullying. I might give it to my 4th grader to read when I’m done. Also an ARC…. I probably should have read sooner. I’m the worst.

The Black Sheep by Yvonne Collins & Sandy Rideout

– Pretty sure this was a Goodreads win. One of the very few YA’s I’ve won. Plus it looks super cute with reality TV and teen romance mixed in.

Sophie Quire and the Last Storyguard by Jonathan Auxier

– Goodreads win. MG I believe. Might be a good one to read with/to my kids. Been on my TBR list since I won it. Another ARC I feel guilty for not reading sooner!


More Than Friends by Monica Murphy

– Goodreads win. YA contemporary romance. Fun cover. Second in a series, hopefully I can enjoy despite having not read book 1!

Silence by Michelle Sagara

– Goodwill find. I paid money for it, I damn well better read it! Pretty cover.

The Wizard, The Witch & Two Girls From Jersey by Lisa Papademetriou

– Friends of the Library buy. I paid money for it, I damn well better read it! If the book is as good as the title I’m sure I’ll enjoy it.


Legacy: A Private Novel by Kate Brian

– Friends of the Library buy. I have a feeling I won’t like this one about rich boarding school girls, but I paid $1.50 for it so I have to at least try.

Palace of Mirrors by Margaret Peterson Haddix

– Friends of the Library buy. I’m iffy on this one. But it was cheap. And there are girls in tiaras. I like princesses.

The Best “Worst” president: What the Right Gets Wrong About Barack Obama by Mark Hannah

– Goodreads win. Fabulous cover. I need to read more about politics. And I love the Obama family. Big book with small print though…


How To Get Publicity For Your Book by Natalie Obando

– Goodreads win. May help with promo ideas for my own publications. SUPER SHORT – only 145 pages. I meant to read this over the summer, but it got lost in the shuffle.

The ABC’s of Adulthood: An Alphabet of Life Lessons by Deborah Copaken & Randy Polumbo

– Goodreads win. Short. Maybe I’ll learn an important lesson about adulting. I suck at adulating.

The Courtship Basket by Amy Clipston

– Goodreads win. I’ve been trying to win an Amish romance since forever. Now I can find out if I even like Amish romances!


Something Borrowed by Emily Griffin

– On loan from a friend. From at least 3 years ago! EEP! Better read and return. Hesitant because it’s chick lit and my luck with that genre has been meh.

A Night With Audrey Hepburn by Lucy Holliday

– Goodreads win. One of my FIRST wins. Keeps getting pushed back on the list because I haven’t had much luck with chick lit. Beautiful cover though!

Something Blue by Emily Griffin

– See book 1 for all reasons. If I hate Something Borrowed I will not be reading Something Blue.

 

Cat With a Clue by Laurie Cass

– Goodreads win. Cozy mystery. Cats. Sounds good to me! Was going to read summer 2016 but it got shuffled aside. 🙁


Her Darkest Nightmare by Brenda Novak

– Goodreads win. Another ARC I feel guilty for not reading sooner. The author recently liked/commented on my Instagram post I made when the book arrived. Now I feel extra obligated to read/review!


The Cardboard Spaceship by Matt Snee & Gregg Chirlin

– Goodreads win. It’s….about a cardboard spaceship. I’m intrigued! Also it’s pretty short.

A Boy in Barcelona by R. W. Mitchell

– Goodreads win. Meets 2 other reading challenges (LGBTQ & Tour of Europe). Main character is quitting social media? I must see how this plays out, I couldn’t do it!

Amp’d by Ken Pisani

– Goodreads win. A book about a man who loses his arm. And it’s a comedy. Yes please.

The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman

– Goodreads win. I’ve heard good things about this one. I like libraries. And magic. It was an ARC and I feel guilty for not reading/reviewing yet! (BONUS: Counts for my European Reading Challenge!)

Drop Dead Beautiful by Jackie Collins

– Given to me by a friend to keep. I read most of the Lucky Santangelo series before this one. The first one, Chances, I thought I’d hate. But my friend insisted and boy am I glad I did! SO ADDICTING! I need to double check that I am up to date before starting this one, but I’m pretty sure I have at least one more to read first. Despite being HUGE books, these are totally addicting page turners. It’s good to have a little Jackie Collins in your life.