Saturday, November 28, 2009

In My Mailbox [2]

[I just noticed there's a sleeping baby behind my books! LOL]

Thanks to Kristi @ The Story Siren for hosting IMM every week :]


Fallen [ARC] by Lauren Kate from Nely @ All About {n} [She's great! Sent it SO fast]

From library:

Obernewtyn by Isobelle Carmody  
Liar by Justine Larbalestier
The Afterlife by Gary Soto

For review:

The Real Real by Nicola Kraus + Emma Mclaughlin (Thank you ladies for sending these!) [1 for review, 1 signed for giveaway]

What did you get?!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Show me your TBR list and stack!

So I'm curious as to what is on everyone's TBR list and/or stack!

I love to find new books to add to my list & I'm sure I could find something from everyone's lists.

Also, if you're familiar with your local library's online catalog, link me to the YA section. This is how I find so many great books. Here's my library's.

So if you'd like, link me to your list/stack/or list them in a post.

Here's mine. 
My current count: 179 books already released, and 31 upcoming releases.

Friday Finds [5] Lots of finds this week!

I think this is my favorite meme, I guess because I get so many of the books on my TBR list from other's such a great resource for finding new books.

That being said, much props and thanks to Miz B at Should Be Reading for hosting it every week!

Surprisingly I had a lot of time to look for books this week. I found most of these just scanning through my local library's online catalog. I had so many finds...this isn't even half of them! 

[[ All links go to goodreads summaries ]]

I Know It's Over by C.K. Kelly Martin ++ Kiss & Blog by Alyson Noël

Fat Hoochie Prom Queen-Nico Medina ++ The Gift Moves-Steve Lyon

The One: A Chloe Gamble Novel (book 1)-Ed Decter ++ The Séance-Joan Lowery Nixon

Shadow Falls-Amy Kathleen Ryan ++ So Super Starry-Rose Wilkins

I hope you found something you like this week. Link me to your finds! I love them ♥

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Gobble gobble!

 to all my blogger friends!

What am I most thankful for this year?.....

My little boy :]
(and the rest of my wonderful family, too.)

Hope everyone has a fun filled day!


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Teaser Tuesday [1] The Pencil Test

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by Miz B @ Should Be Reading :]


Right now I'm reading The Pencil Test by James Guilford for review.

I thought I would share this quote because I had the completely wrong impression of what the title meant until I read this. This is from the very beginning of the book (a sort of caption for 'part one'):

 "...[O]fficials used a pencil test to classify some coloured people as black and others as white. Race classification was dependent on whether the pencil slid out of your hair (that made you white) or got stuck (which officially made you black)." --Nosimilo Ndlovu, "The 21st Century Pencil Test" Mail & Guardian, June 28, 2008

This quote makes The Pencil Test sound like a non-fiction book, but keep in mind this is just a quote used @ the beginning of the book to set the stage for the novel. It is a fiction novel.

FYI: You can download the first 5 chapters (it'll leave you wanting more!) of The Pencil Test here. Be sure to check back at my blog for my author interview with James and review!


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Review: Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

        My summary:
In a world hundreds of years more advanced than our own, Tally Youngblood is finally about to be turned pretty--what happens to all sixteen year-olds on their birthday. An operation will turn her from a normal "ugly" into a perfect, beautiful, and stronger being and she will finally get to move over the river into New Pretty Town where it's nothing but carefree fun 24/7.

But a few weeks before her birthday, Tally meets Shay. Her new friend has decided she doesn't want the operation and therefore she runs away before she is made pretty. The "special" pretty authorities step in and send Tally on a mission to find her delinquent friend. Should Tally refuse to cooperate, she will remain an ugly forever.

Torn between betraying a friend or giving up her long-awaited operation, Tally's choice ultimately reveals secrets about the Pretties that will change Tally's way of thinking--and her life--forever.

I had heard such great things about this book but for whatever reason, I was always skeptical to read it. Now I can't believe I passed by it so many times and never picked it up. It immediately sucked me in--a mere 15pg. into the book and I was already hooked--intrigued by the mentioning of things like the "toothbrush pill," talking bridges that kept out intruders, voice-automated elevators and interface rings. This was my first science fiction/dystopia genre book and I loved thinking about what our world could be hundreds of years from now.

I will admit that in the beginning of the book I was clueless as to what was going on. Talk of interface rings and other ridiculously high-tech inventions had me baffled and feeling lost. Luckily everything ended up being explained pretty quickly or was easy enough to decipher even with little info given.

Tally's journey is filled with action and with the outcome of her choices comes plenty of suspense. Both the characters and the settings in Uglies were described quite vividly--I could see pretty much everything in my head while reading, which is important to me in any book. Westerfeld's writing is put together nicely and I can't find anything negative to say about it!

Overall I was very, very unexpectedly pleased with this novel. It ended up being the perfect book for me to start with in it's genre because it leaves me wanting to read more dystopic (is that even a word?)-type books. I will definitely read it's sequel, Pretties, as well as others in the science fiction area.

I definitely recommend Uglies, even if it isn't your type of read. I was skeptical at first and I loved it. You won't be disappointed!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Giveaway winners!

The first place winner of Gossip Girl and Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, + extra girly goodies and surpries, is.......

Well first lets take a look at how the contest ended.

# of entrants: 50
Total # of entries: 179
Person with most entries: tie between Alexa & Veronica and with 14 entries each
# of new followers during contest: 88!

Okay I don't know what else to list. So the 1st place winner is...


I will be e-mailing you directly, and you have 48 hours from then to reply with your
mailing address. If you don't reply in time, I will have to choose another winner, so make sure you're looking out for my e-mail!

But wait...
It seems that I reached 100+ followers while this contest was running!

And as promised, I am adding two more books to a second winner!

But I have a problem...
I haven't chosen the books yet :\

But I have chosen a winner!
I will let you know what you've won early next week.

And the 2nd place winner is......

The same applies to you:

I will be e-mailing you directly, and you have 48 hours from then to reply with your
mailing address. If you don't reply in time, I will have to choose another winner, so make sure you're looking out for my e-mail!

Thank you so much to everyone who entered! Check out my left sidebar ['currently reading'] for upcoming giveaways!


Saturday, November 21, 2009

In My Mailbox [1]

^^ I wish that was my actual mailbox! ^^

Thanks to Kristi for hosting IMM week after week :D 

This is my first IMM ever! The last 2 weeks I received...

For review:

The Pencil Test by James Guilford [Thank you to James for sending me this copy of his book to review. FYI, you can download  the first 5 chapters of his book here.]


Ruined by Paula Morris [Thanks to Shooting Stars Mag]
Feelin' The Vibe by Candice Dow [Thank you to Tena @ Crazy Book Slut for hosting this giveaway and to Hachette for sending it]

Bought @ used bookstore:

Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen
Girl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen

Bought @ Barnes & Noble:

Bought @ yard sales: 

Nights In Rondanthe by Nicholas Sparks
The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
Yoga For Dummies mini-book (this one was free! woot) 
Dreams: Unlock the secrets of your subconscious by Frank Garfield & Rhondda Stewart-Garfield

Friday, November 20, 2009

Review: Confessions of a Serial Kisser by Wendelin Van Draanen

            My Summary:

After reading a romance novel found under her mom's bed, Evangeline Logan sets out on a mission to "live her fantasy" and find the perfect kiss. What she ends up finding is ear-lickers and fish lips, among other not-so-perfect kissing encounters. But when her reckless kissing starts to take it's toll on both her reputation and her relationships, what Evangeline learns brings much more value than a kiss ever could.

I picked this up at my library on a whim, simply for the pink cover (yes I can be quite the cover judge at times), plus I thought it looked like a cute read although it's not my usual type of novel. I liked the short, to-the-point chapters and ended up enjoying the whole book.

Overall, Evangeline was an upbeat and likable character. However, a few minor things about the writing bothered me. As I've found with a couple other chick-lit books I've read, there was an overuse of exclamation points in this book. They made Evangeline seem just a little too perky and animated. While I'm sure that's the personality Draanen wanted Evangeline to come off as having, it still just rubbed me as a little too over-the-top. I also was slightly annoyed by the word "dweeb," used four or five times throughout the book, but that's not too important. It's just not a word I'm used to seeing in my usual reading.

There were many entertaining parts in this book and I was kept pretty amused throughout. Surprisingly the ending was not too predictable (usually a common factor for romance books, in my opinion at least) and I was kept guessing the whole time about whether or not she would find her "crimson kiss," and which one of the many boys she would end up with.

Confessions of a Serial Kisser was pretty fast-paced, and maybe too much so at times. For example, when Evangeline gives herself a makeover, her transformation is just too rushed to be believable, and the same can be said for some of her kissing encounters. I mean, who walks up to some random guy in Starbucks and grabs and kisses them? But I guess that sort of thing is common in a lot of chick-lit romances.

Overall I would say that this would be the perfect read for those who really enjoy light, girly, romantic chick-lit books. It's filled with amusing characters and a good moral ending. I definitely recommend it, like I said, to any chick-lit fans looking for a cute and entertaining read.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

2010 YA Reading Challenge ♥

Read the rules for this challenge and sign up at the original post :D

I'm planning to participate in this challenge hosted by J. Kaye!

It runs Jan. 1st 2010 - December 2010.

I've chosen the 3rd level, which is reading 50 YA books in 2010.
Personally I think I could do the 4th level, 75, but I'll start with 50 just to be safe.

Wish me luck! ;D

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Books To Prisons fundraiser = huge success!

I'm happy to announce that the silent auction fundraiser our Books To Prisons group (refer to this post) organized was a huge success!

We raised over $500 Thursday night! The proceeds will cover postage to mail many packages we've been too broke to ship the past couple of months (pic below), as well as packages in the future.

If you'd like to know more about our group, refer to this post.

Just had to share with someone, I'm so happy we had such a good turnout :]