Friday, 31 July 2009

Don't Forget!



If you've not entered to win Prada & Prejudice you still have a chance! The contest is open until Aug 5th!!

Just leave a comment {HERE} and don't forget to become a follower for an extra entry!

TELL YOUR FRIENDS!

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Fairy Tale


Title: Fairy Tale
Author: Cyn Balog
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Reading level: Young Adult
Rating: 5

Summary:
Morgan Sparks has always known that she and her boyfriend, Cam, are made for each other. But when Cam’s cousin Pip comes to stay with the family, Cam seems depressed. Finally Cam confesses to Morgan what’s going on: Cam is a fairy. The night he was born, fairies came down and switched him with a healthy human boy. Nobody expected Cam to live, and nobody expected his biological brother, heir to the fairy throne, to die. But both things happened, and now the fairies want Cam back to take his rightful place as Fairy King.

Even as Cam physically changes, becoming more miserable each day, he and Morgan pledge to fool the fairies and stay together forever. But by the time Cam has to decide once and for all what to do, Morgan’s no longer sure what’s best for everyone, or whether her and Cam’s love can weather an uncertain future.

Review:
I have the day off, so when I woke up this morning I grabbed Fairy Tale and decided to start what I thought would be an amazing fairytale. I was right...I didn't stop reading. I couldn't even put it down to go pee! It's lunch time and I'm finished, and I can't wait to read it again...It was lovely. What a fairytale! I even had tears streaming down my cheeks in the end. I am a sucker for a fairytale romance, and this did not disappoint. YOU MUST READ FAIRY TALE! I loved it! I am still having a glow about me from this wonderful story. I'll be on cloud 9 all day! This is why I LOVE reading!

Need it now?


Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Blue Moon


Title: Blue Moon
Author: Alyson Noel
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Reading Level: Young Adult
Rating: 3

Summary:
Just as Ever is learning everything she can about her new abilities as an immortal, initiated into the dark, seductive world by her beloved Damen, something terrible is happening to him. As Ever’s powers are increasing, Damen’s are fading—stricken by a mysterious illness that threatens his memory, his identity, his life.

Desperate to save him, Ever travels to the mystical dimension of Summerland, uncovering not only the secrets of Damen’s past—the brutal, tortured history he hoped to keep hidden—but also an ancient text revealing the workings of time. With the approaching blue moon heralding her only window for travel, Ever is forced to decide between turning back the clock and saving her family from the accident that claimed them—or staying in the present and saving Damen, who grows weaker each day...

Review:
Blue Moon wasn't as good as the first book, EVERMORE, but I still enjoyed it and I'm looking forward to the next book in the Immortal Series. I was a bit let down, from the lack of romance..seeing as the first book had so much of it...and this one not so much...but It was a good read. Not my favorite, but it was still good.

Need it now?


Monday, 27 July 2009

Exclusive Interview with Aprilynne Pike


I am so excited! I don't know how I scored an exclusive interview with my new favorite author Aprilynne Pike! I asked her and she said YES!! Her debut novel, WINGS, has been out only a few months and has already hit #1 on the NY Times Best Selling List!! HOW LUCKY ARE WE?!


Sweet Bookshelf: I'm squealing with delight! Thank you so much for agreeing to this interview. Thank you!! OK, let's get started! First things first, I'm a HUGE fan! How did you come up with the idea for WINGS?


Aprilynne Pike: Actually, I came up with the idea for WINGS on purpose, strangely enough. I already had an agent and she had been shopping a book that clearly was not going to sell. So I knew that if I wanted to keep her as an agent, and, more importantly, continue pursuing this dream to be a writer, I needed another book. A better book. I didn’t know what to write about though. So one day I was trolling industry blogs and came across one where an author had said, almost in passing, that Barnes and Noble was expecting fairies to be one of the new trends in YA literature. Now, I have always loved faeries; I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t love faeries. And I have also always loved YA. So I don’t know why I had to get hit over the head with this idea before I put the two of them together. But I remember very clearly sitting at my computer thinking, “Oh my gosh!! A YA faerie book!! I want to write a YA faerie book!” and my next thought was, “And I have to do it RIGHT NOW!” Luckily, my husband had just gotten out of school for the summer, so he watched our kids for six hours a day and I wrote during that time and any other time I could steal throughout the day. I finished WINGS in about six weeks. (I paid for writing it that fast in revisions though.;)

SB: Tell us a bit about you and your family.

AP: I am a mom with an incredible husband and three young children. My husband is a recent graduate of law school and while he is preparing to take the bar, he is also playing stay at home dad so that I can keep working on the Wings series!

SB: What prompted you to become a writer?

AP: I've been writing stories for as long as I can remember! In college, I actually started out as a pre-med major. But after a good heart-to-heart with a professor, I decided that I should switch to Creative Writing. I think that was what really started me thinking I could be "a writer." I began my first serious attempt at a novel in 2002. The first time I truly "completed" a book was in 2005. I finished my first publishable book in 2007. :)

SB: I'm in love with Tamani, what more can you tell us about him?

AP: Um, that he will be back in book two??? :) Tamani is much deeper than meets the eye. We are really going to get to know him better in the second book. Some basic info that doesn't really play a big part in the book: he is five eight, weighs about 160 pounds (he's on the slim side), and is 21 years old. He has been a sentry since he was fifteen. The rest you'll have to wait and find out!

SB: Will Mr. Barnes, the evil troll, be making another appearance?

AP: Mmmmmaybe.:)

SB: What book are you reading now?

AP: I just finished A Match Made in High School by Kristin Walker. It will be out next Spring, but I got an early peek.:)

SB: Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

AP: Honesty? What I always tell writers is to read. Not only read, but read, read, READ! I believe that you learn more about writing by reading than any other single thing. And after that, just write! Just do it! You will never be "ready" to write your novel; you just do it anyway.

SB: What can you tell us about the 2nd novel?

AP: In the second novel readers will actually accompany Laurel right into Avalon as she is summoned to the Academy to learn how to be a Fall faerie. While in Avalon, we will get to see more of Tamani and learn more about him as a person. On the human side, we'll get to see Laurel and David as a couple, and Chelsea will take a more major role.:)

SB: Congrats on the film rights being acquired by Disney! I think Miley Cyrus will be a great Laurel. If you had your way, what stars would play David and Tamani?

AP: Strangely, I actually like Miley's ex-boyfriend, Justin Gaston, as Tamani.:) I saw him in Taylor Swift's video and I was like, hey! It's Tam! For David I have always like David Padeleki as he looks in Season Three of Gilmore Girls with the good-looking hair. (i.e. not the terrible bowl cut of Season One, bleh!)

SB: What's the best part about becoming a published author?

AP: Correcting people when they have asked me what I do for a living, and I say "I'm an author," and they say, "No, I mean, what is your job?" :D Because really, I have the best job in the whole world!!

SB: Is there anything else you'd like to share with The Sweet Bookshelf readers?

AP: Actually, yes! The number one question I always get asked is when the sequel is coming out. And I just recently got that date! it will be out June 10th, 2010.:)

SB: My hubby wants you to know he bought the book for me. Will you sign my book? PLEASE?!?!

AP: Of course!!! How did you want to do it?

Thank you so much for taking the time with me to do this interview Aprilynne! We wish you all he best, and can't wait till your next books!! Thank you!!


Sunday, 26 July 2009

Contest Time!

Ready for another giveaway? Me too!!

I'm giving away my ARC of
Prada & Prejudice!!

Want a chance to win?
All you need to do is comment!
If you'd like another entry just become a follower!


don't forget to leave me your email address!
Contest ends Aug 5th 12midnight EST

Prada & Prejudice


Title: Prada & Prejudice
Author: Mandy Hubbard
Publisher: Penguin Group
Reading Level: Young Adult
Rating: 4

Summary:
To impress the popular girls on a high school trip to London, klutzy Callie buys real Prada heels. But trying them on, she trips…conks her head…and wakes up in the year 1815!

There Callie meets Emily, who takes her in, mistaking her for a long-lost friend. As she spends time with Emily’s family, Callie warms to them—particularly to Emily’s cousin Alex, a hottie and a duke, if a tad arrogant.

But can Callie save Emily from a dire engagement, and win Alex’s heart, before her time in the past is up?

Review:
What a cute book! If you are looking for a beach read, or something to take while you sit by the pool, this is your book. I'm all about Regency England, and any Mr. Darcy type...what girl isn't?!
It's a short, easy read. Only 214 pages. You can read it in a few hours while your on your holiday! Pick it up, you'll enjoy such a light read!

NEED IT NOW?


Saturday, 25 July 2009

The Book Thief


Title: The Book Thief
Author: Markus Zusak
Publisher: Random House
Reading Level: Adult
Rating: 5

Summary:
The Book Thief
is set in Nazi Germany. Beginning in 1939, it focuses on an abandoned German girl, Liesel, who is sent to live with foster parents in a small town near Munich. As Liesel learns to cope with her new environment, all the pains she has endured, and the extreme unhappiness of pre-war and wartime Germany, she yearns to escape via reading. Her foster father Hans helps her learn to read, and Liesel finds books here and there — in a snowy graveyard, in a Nazi book-burning, and inside the local mayor's house. She has a few friends; first her neighbor and classmate Rudy, and later on her foster father's best WWI friend's son, Max, a Jew whom her new family must hide in their basement. While the toll of WWII, Allied bombing, and Nazi brutality increases, Liesel's world starts to crumble, but words and reading sustain her.

Review:
I just finished reading The Book Thief about 10 minutes ago, and words can not describe what I've read. It's a feeling, and I can't even describe those. Amazing....the writing alone is brilliant...but the story is heart wrenching, sad, amazing, loving, and horrid all at the same time. Death is narrating, which shows quite the picture during Nazi Germany. You MUST read this book. It deserves a place by The Diary of Anne Frank. What a story.

Need it now?




Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Featured Author: Gail Carson Levine

Gail Carson Levine is one of my most favorite authors. My sister Becca introduced her books to me, and I fell in LOVE! Who doesn't like a traditional fairytale with a twist? Let me introduce you to her! I know you'll love her too.

Gail Carson Levine was born on September 17, 1947 in New York, New York to her father, David, and mother, Sylvia. Her sister, Rani, is an artist and a professor of fine arts. Levine's mother wrote full-length plays and her father was interested in writing. Her parents believed that creativity was an important tool in life and encouraged their children to respect other's creativity as well as their own.

Levine read many fairy tales as a child and during elementary school, and she was a member of a club called the "Scribble Scrabble Club" and in high school she wrote poems that were published in an anthology. She attended City College of the City University of New York and received her Bachelor's of Arts degree in 1969.

Levine did not pursue a career in writing until she took classes on the subject of writing and illustrating children's books. She found an interest in the writing of the stories more than in illustrating them. The types of children's books that she writes include fairy tales that she reinvents into fascinating new stories with an added twist and recently realistic fiction. One of the first stories that Levine worked on was "Ella Enchanted," which she began in one of her writing classes. She won a Newbery Honor in 1997 for this story.

Her Start as a Writer

I wrote as a kid, but I never wanted to be a writer particularly. I had been drawing and painting for years and loved that. And I meditate, and one time when I was meditating, I started thinking, “Gee, Gail, you love stories—you read all the time. How come you never tell yourself a story?” While I should have been saying my mantra to myself, I started telling myself a story. It turned out to be an art appreciation book for kids with reproductions of famous artworks and pencil drawings that I did. I tried to get it published and was rejected wholesale.

That book led me to a class on writing and illustrating for kids, and when I went into it I thought that I would be more interested in illustrating. But I found that I was much more interested in writing and that I didn't like the illustrating at all. I had always been the hardest on myself when I drew and painted. I am not hard on myself when I write. I like what I write, so it is a much happier process.

That's how I got started. And then everything I wrote was rejected for nine years.

Her Published Books:
Ella Enchanted
The Two Princesses of Bamarre
Ever
Fairest
Fairy Dust and the Quest for the Egg
Fairy Haven and the Quest for the Wand
The Wish
The Fairy's Mistake
The Princess Test
Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep
Cinderellis and the Glass Hill
The Fairy's Return
For Biddle's Sake
Dave at Night
Writing Magic: Creating Stories That Fly

this info was taken from HARPERCOLLINS

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Faery Rebels: Spell Hunter



Title: Faery Rebels (US)/Knife (UK)
Author: RJ Anderson
Publisher: HarperCollins
Reading Level: 9-12 yrs old
Rating:4

Summary:
Deep inside the great Oak lies a dying faery realm, bursting with secrets instead of magic. Long ago the faeries mysteriously lost their magic. Robbed of their powers, they have become selfish and dull-witted. Now their numbers are dwindling and their very survival is at stake.

Only one young faery—Knife—is determined to find out where her people's magic has gone and try to get it back. Unlike her sisters, Knife is fierce and independent. She's not afraid of anything—not the vicious crows, the strict Faery Queen, or the fascinating humans living nearby. But when Knife disobeys the Faery Queen and befriends a human named Paul, her quest becomes more dangerous than she realizes. Can Knife trust Paul to help, or has she brought the faeries even closer to the brink of destruction?

Review:

Another fantastic debut novel! This book was just full of awesomeness. I absolutely loved reading it! The plot was something totally different, which was beyond refreshing! This is the type of faeries that I had always imagined hiding amongst flowers. Knife was so fascinating. Such a complex character. She really made this novel. And I love Paul! I LOVED THIS BOOK!! It sure was a pleasure to read. I've so enjoyed reading about faeries this year!!

NEED IT NOW?



Thursday, 16 July 2009

Can You Keep a Secret?


Title: Can You Keep a Secret?
Author: Sophie Kinsella
Publisher: Random House
Reading Level: Adult
Rating: 4

Summary:
Emma is sitting on a turbulent plane. She's always been a nervous flyer. She really thinks that this could be her last moment. So, naturally enough, she starts telling the man sitting next to her - quite a dishy American, but she's too frightened to notice -all her innermost secrets. How she scans the backs of intellectual books and pretends she's read them. How she does her hair up like Princess Leia in her bedroom. How she's not sure if she has a G-spot, and whether her boyfriend could find it anyway. How she feels like a fraud at work - everyone uses the word 'operational' all the time but she hasn't a due what it means. How the coffee at work is horrible. How she once threw a troublesome client file in the bin. If ever there was a bare soul, it's hers. She survives the flight, of course, and the next morning the famous founding boss of the whole mega corporation she works for is coming for a look at the UK branch. As he walks around, Emma looks up and realises... It's the man from the plane. What will he do with her secrets? He knows them all - but she doesn't know a single one of his. Or... does she?

Review:
By now you all know I love anything by Sophie Kinsella. This book did not disappoint. I was laughing out loud in the bedroom reading, and my husband came in thinking I was laughing at myself. Nope, it was this hilarious book! I never have any trouble getting into Sophie Kinsella's books, I'll read anything she writes...because I trust her as an author. I know her style is something I love. Go get this book, it's super funny, and romantic, and so true about all of us! You'll LOVE it!

Need it now?

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

These Is My Words


Title: These Is My Words
Author: Nancy E. Turner
Publisher: Regan Books
Reading Level: Adult, not suitable for teenagers
Rating: 5

My sister Becca has been going on and on about this book, so I let her write the book review on this one. I can't wait to read it. It sounds AMAZING!!! Thanks for the review Bec!

Summary:
This novel in diary format parallels the early history of the Arizona Territories as Sarah and her family travel from the New Mexico Territory and settle down to carve out a new life on a ranch near Tucson in the 1880s. Sarah's diary, based on the author's family memoirs, is a heartwarming and heartbreaking fictional account of a vibrant and gifted young woman. Sarah starts out as an illiterate, fiery 17 year old. Eventually, her writing becomes as smooth and polished as Sarah herself as she becomes a tenacious, literate, and loving wife and mother. A treasure trove of discovered books becomes the source of her self-education.
Life in the new country brings the constant fear of Indian raids and the threat and reality of floods, fire, and rattlesnakes; bandits; rough men, and pretentious women all have an effect on the protagonist but her strong marriage makes the effort worthwhile. Sarah centers her world around her home and family but maintains an independent spirit that keeps her whole and alive throughout her many trials and heartaches.

Review:
Friends and family have been urging me to read this book for years now. Although I have a history degree and enjoy historical references I turned my nose up at it. I certainly did not have any intentions on reading a book that is written using poor grammar. I was wrong! I am so glad that I picked this book up. I read it quickly and enjoyed it immensely. The book is packed full of everything you would want in a good book, adventure, ROMANCE (and so much of it), joy, and even sorrow. You will find yourself full of respect for our heroine Sarah, and find yourself day dreaming about her fellow. I will be adding this book to my permanent library as I am sure I will read it over and over again. It is a riveting, excellent read.

Need it NOW?


Film Rights!



One of my
NEW favorite books is WINGS by Aprilynne Pike. It's about a 15 yr old girl who finds out she is a faery. Who wouldn't like that?!



This morning I woke up to AMAZING news:

Variety has an article about Disney acquiring film rights
for this debut novel! I can't wait to see it on the big screen. Disney will do an amazing job with this faery tale.

Go check out the article!
Miley Cyrus gets WINGS at Disney

Contest Winners!

I'm so excited to announce the winners of my debut contests!
The day is finally here! Here they are!

THE WINNERS OF THE BOOKS!



AED
Sylvia

The Winner of the Gift Card:

Sara Lyn

Congratulations!
I've emailed you already with the news, please send me your mailing info
asap so I can get your goods out to you!

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Library Loot

Thanks for all the entries so far in the Debut Contests! They are open until Tuesday at 12 midnight! So go tell your friends and family!!!

I bought a few new books this week, and I also made a trip to my library. I'm excited about all the new books I have to read!! Now I have to figure out what to read first...



Title: Knife/Faery Rebels
Author: R J Anderson

Teaser: Once upon a time, a fairy is born. She lives in an old oak tree at the bottom of a garden with the rest of the fairy folk. Never has she known a time when life hasn't been hard, with many dangers and much adversity. But when she becomes the Hunter of the group and learns to do battle in the outside world, her adventures really take off...





Title: Blue Moon
Author: Alyson Noel

Teaser: Just as Ever is learning everything she can about her new abilities as an immortal, initiated into the dark, seductive world by her beloved Damen, something terrible is happening to him. As Ever’s powers are increasing, Damen’s are fading—stricken by a mysterious illness that threatens his memory, his identity, his life.





Title: Fairy Tale
Author: Cyn Balog

Teaser: Morgan Sparks has always known that she and her boyfriend, Cam, are made for each other. But when Cam’s cousin Pip comes to stay with the family, Cam seems depressed. Finally Cam confesses to Morgan what’s going on: Cam is a fairy. The night he was born, fairies came down and switched him with a healthy human boy. Nobody expected Cam to live, and nobody expected his biological brother, heir to the fairy throne, to die. But both things happened, and now the fairies want Cam back to take his rightful place as Fairy King.


Title: The Book Thief
Author: Markus Zusak

Teaser: Death himself narrates the World War II-era story of Liesel Meminger from the time she is taken, at age nine, to live in Molching, Germany, with a foster family in a working-class neighborhood of tough kids, acid-tongued mothers, and loving fathers who earn their living by the work of their hands. The child arrives having just stolen her first book–although she has not yet learned how to read–and her foster father uses it, The Gravediggers Handbook, to lull her to sleep when shes roused by regular nightmares about her younger brothers death. Across the ensuing years of the late 1930s and into the 1940s, Liesel collects more stolen books as well as a peculiar set of friends: the boy Rudy, the Jewish refugee Max, the mayors reclusive wife (who has a whole library from which she allows Liesel to steal), and especially her foster parents.


Title: This Charming Man
Author: Marian Keyes

Teaser: Narrated in turn by each woman, This Charming Man explores how their love for this one man has shaped their lives. But in true Marian Keyes fashion, this is more than a story of four love affairs. It's a testament to the strength women find in themselves through work, friendship, and family, no matter what demons may be haunting their lives. Depression, self-doubt, domestic abuse—each of these women has seen tough times in life, and it's through Keyes's wonderful storytelling ability that these subjects are approached with the appropriate tone and candor. Her deft touch provides a gripping story and, ultimately, a redemptive ending.


WHAT'S IN YOUR BOOK BAG?

Saturday, 11 July 2009

Surprise Saturday!

Wow, I'm so excited for all the entries so far for the Book Giveaway! Thanks for all your support!

Ready for The next giveaway this weekend? So am I!

Saturday's Prize:
ONE $10/£10 Borders Gift Card!
How do you enter? That's easy!
Just comment on this post!
If you'd want another entry just become a follower and let me know in a separate comment!
Don't know how to follow me? Add me to your reading list on your dashboard.

Don't forget to leave me your email address! Good luck!
All Weekend Contests end Tuesday July 14th midnight PST.
All Weekend Winners will be announced Wednesday July 15th.


Don't forget to come back tomorrow for another surprise giveaway!
Tell your friends!

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Debut Giveaway!

Welcome to The Sweet Bookshelf!

This is my Debut Weekend full of
Sweet Prizes and Surprises!!



Friday's Prize:
I'm giving away both the UK cover and the US cover
of R.J. Anderson's debut novel! That's 2 winners!

How do you enter?
That's easy! Just leave a comment!
If you'd like an extra entry, become a follower and tell me in a separate comment!

Don't forget to leave me your email address! Good luck!
All Weekend Contests end Tuesday July 14th midnight PST.
All Weekend Winners will be announced Wednesday July 15th.


Don't forget to come back tomorrow for another surprise giveaway!
Tell your friends!

Knife/Faery Rebles Summary:
Forget everything you think you know about faeries. . . .

Creatures full of magic and whimsy?

Not in the Oakenwyld. Not anymore.

Deep inside the great Oak lies a dying faery realm, bursting with secrets instead of magic. Long ago the faeries mysteriously lost their magic. Robbed of their powers, they have become selfish and dull-witted. Now their numbers are dwindling and their very survival is at stake.

Only one young faery—Knife—is determined to find out where her people's magic has gone and try to get it back. Unlike her sisters, Knife is fierce and independent. She's not afraid of anything—not the vicious crows, the strict Faery Queen, or the fascinating humans living nearby. But when Knife disobeys the Faery Queen and befriends a human named Paul, her quest becomes more dangerous than she realizes. Can Knife trust Paul to help, or has she brought the faeries even closer to the brink of destruction?


Talented newcomer R. J. Anderson creates an extraordinary new fantasy world and weaves a gripping tale of lost magic, high adventure, and surprising friendship in which the fate of an entire realm rests on the shoulders of one brave faery rebel.

Review/Privacy Policy



*I am NOT taking review requests at this time.*
 


************
 
Blogging is not my "job" although I spend many hours per week working on blog related content, in addition to reading. I do not receive any monetary compensation for my reviews. I am located in Scotland. 

I do not accept self published titles for review. I do enjoy them, but I like to choose my own.

Accepting a book for review does not guarantee a review on The Sweet Bookshelf.  I write reviews that will help my readers select quality books. I do not write overly negative reviews.

Please send me an email if you have any questions:

Mary [at] thesweetbookshelf [dot] com

I look forward to working with you!

Privacy Policy:

I take your privacy very personally. I will request your email/mailing address when I hold a contest/giveaway, but I in no way keep your address on file, sell, rent or use it for anything other than what is specified. I delete all information once the contest/giveaway is over.

However, I can not stop others from using the information you leave in the comments section of this blog. Be careful.

Contact Info



At this time I am not accepting review requests.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments:

Email:  Mary [at] thesweetbookshelf [dot] com

Twitter:  @SweetBookshelf
Facebook: The Sweet Bookshelf
GoodReads: The Sweet Bookshelf

Review Requests:

UK Requests: Mary [at] thesweetbookshelf [dot] com

Need to see my Review Policy?

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Welcome

Welcome to The Sweet Bookshelf!


About the Blog:

The Sweet Bookshelf was founded in June 2009.  I am located in Scotland. I started this book blog because friends and family were always asking me for recommendations of books I thought they would enjoy.  I thought it would be a one stop shop for them to see what I'd been reading.  I had no idea there were people who blogged about books! I've always believed the best way to find out about a great book is word of mouth. We are always talking books here!

I generally read about 2 books per week. Right now I am really into Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Fairytale's, Fantasy, some Historical, and anything with a bit of romance.  OK, actually everything I read needs to have a bit of romance.

Here you'll find mainly book reviews, news, and even some author interviews.  I love keeping a log of what I'm reading and how I felt about it.  Check out the Discussions page and join in the fun! See you there!




About Me:
My name is Mary and I am 34 yrs old.  I'm from West Virginia but I have lived in Scotland for 6+ yrs. I'm married and I have one son. I'm a stay at home Mom. 

Fast Facts:
-I'm obsessed with my Kindle! Best. Invention. Ever. 
-I think Dr. Pepper is the nectar of the gods.
-I love period dramas. Even if my husband teases me.
-I have 4 sisters and 10 nieces and nephews.
-I use to work  on cruise lines cruising the Caribbean. 
 
My favorite books:
These is My Words by Nancy Turner
Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson
 

What I do when I'm not reading:  
-I'm always with my son.  We love going to the library, the park, and the pool.
-I'm a phone person.  I love to chat with my family and friends.
-My husband and I love movies!
-I love traveling.  My favorite places so far are: Puerto Rico, Spain, and Paris. 

Fragile Eternity


Title: Fragile Eternity
Author: Melissa Marr
Publisher: Harper Collins
Reading Level: 13+
Other titles in the series: Wicked Lovely, Ink Exchange
Rating: 4

Summary:
Seth never expected he would want to settle down with anyone—but that was before Aislinn. She is everything he'd ever dreamed of, and he wants to be with her forever. Forever takes on new meaning, though, when your girlfriend is an immortal faery queen.

Aislinn never expected to rule the very creatures who'd always terrified her—but that was before Keenan. He stole her mortality to make her a monarch, and now she faces challenges and enticements beyond any she'd ever imagined.


Review:
ADDICTIVE....that's the only word I can think of to explain it. I started it yesterday morning, and couldn't put it down. I was at work slipping in the back room with the book just to read another paragraph here and there. I stayed awake all night to finish it. I HAD TO!

The best thing about Melissa Marr's books? I find myself rearranging characters and loyalties to make everything end up happy. I would tie it all up nice and neatly, but Marr doesn't do that. She isn't afraid to make the world difficult for her characters and her books are so much better and longer-lasting for it.

There MUST be another book in the works...there is MUCH more to tell...I can't wait to find out!

Ink Exchange


Title: Ink Exchange
Author: Melissa Marr
Publisher: Harper Collins
Reading Level: 13+
Other titles in the series: Wicked Lovely, Fragile Eternity
Rating: 3

Summary:

Unbeknownst to mortals, a power struggle is unfolding in a world of shadows and danger. After centuries of stability, the balance among the Faery Courts has altered, and Irial, ruler of the Dark Court, is battling to hold his rebellious and newly vulnerable fey together. If he fails, bloodshed and brutality will follow.

Seventeen-year-old Leslie knows nothing of faeries or their intrigues. When she is attracted to an eerily beautiful tattoo of eyes and wings, all she knows is that she has to have it, convinced it is a tangible symbol of changes she desperately craves for her own life.

The tattoo does bring changes—not the kind Leslie has dreamed of, but sinister, compelling changes that are more than symbolic. Those changes will bind Leslie and Irial together, drawing Leslie deeper and deeper into the faery world, unable to resist its allures, and helpless to withstand its perils. . . .


Review:
I was VERY excited to start this second installment in the Wicked Lovely Series. Nothing happend as I thought it should, which intrigued me.

Ink Exchange is a companion volume to Wicked Lovely, not a sequel. I wasn't sure if I'd like it because I wanted more of the characters I loved from the first book. WELL....I think I love the characters in Ink Exchange BETTER! Melissa Marr has created such a different faerie world than anything else I've read thus far. It's dark, and doesn't end in happily ever after, well not the kind of ending your thinking of....which is interesting to me, I like Happily ever after...but something different is ALWAYS good!

The publisher's age for this book is 13+ but honestly, I wouldn't let me 13 yr old read it. There are teen drugs, sex, alcohol, and rape in this book. That is not a world I ever entered into.

I did enjoy this book very much. It's interesting, dark, has romance of course, and faeries! What's not to like?!

Wicked Lovely


Title: Wicked Lovely
Author:
Melissa Marr
Publisher:
Harper Collins
Reading Level:
13+
Rating: 3

Summary:
Rule #3: Don't stare at invisible faeries.

Aislinn has always seen faeries. Powerful and dangerous, they walk hidden in mortal world. Aislinn fears their cruelty—especially if they learn of her Sight—and wishes she were as blind to their presence as other teens.

Rule #2: Don't speak to invisible faeries.
Now faeries are stalking her. One of them, Keenan, who is equal parts terrifying and alluring, is trying to talk to her, asking questions Aislinn is afraid to answer.

Rule #1: Don't ever attract their attention.
But it's too late. Keenan is the Summer King who has sought his queen for nine centuries. Without her, summer itself will perish. He is determined that Aislinn will become the Summer Queen at any cost—regardless of her plans or desires.

Suddenly none of the rules that have kept Aislinn safe are working anymore, and everything is on the line: her freedom; her best friend, Seth; her life; everything.

Faerie intrigue, mortal love, and the clash of ancient rules and modern expectations swirl together in Melissa Marr's stunning 21st century faery tale.

Review:
It took me quite awhile to get into this book. Every time I started to read it, I wouldn't get very far. I was re-reading the first 30 pages over and over. I had no idea what was going on.

I was about to abandon the book when Friday I decided to give it another go....and boy am I glad I did. It was a very interesting world of dark faeries and romance (I'm always into a romance!). I did enjoy the book very much, but the ending was not how I was hoping. I'm glad there are 2 more books in the series, because I'm still hoping for some special things to happen....

If you are looking for something different in the fantasy world, I'd definitely recommend Wicked Lovey!

Remember Me?


Title: Remember Me?
Author: Sophie Kinsella
Publisher: Bantam Press, 2008
Reading Level: Adult
Rating: 3

Summary:
In this latest offering Lexi wakes up in hospital thinking that it is still 2004 and she is going out with Loser Dave, has wonky teeth, loads of friends and works in a low paid job in a carpet company. In fact it is 2007 and she is married to a gorgeous multi-millionaire, has perfect teeth, lives in a huge penthouse overlooking the Thames and has a high-flying job as a Director (oh, and she is the boss-from-hell), only Lexi can't remember a thing about it. The story follows Lexi as she tries to fit in with her new life and fill in the gaps as to how she ended up where she did (and how she managed to alienate all her friends in the process).

All the usual magic is here - young girl, a love interest (or two), nice clothes and shoes (very important!)

Review:

I am a huge fan of Sophie Kinsella - she is an author where I am never let down. I always look forward to her books coming out as they are guaranteed feel-good books.

Remember Me doesn't disappoint. It's funny, witty, and I love the the hero's Sophie Kinsella conjures up. They are always so YUIMMY! There is a lot of the "f" word, and infidelity in this book...but that being said, I still really enjoyed it. TWO THUMBS UP!

Fairy Haven and the Quest for the Wand


Title: Fairy Haven and the Quest for the Wand
Author: Gail Carson Levine
Publisher: Disney Press
Reading Level: 4-8 yrs old
Rating: 4

Summary:
"Beware a mermaid's wrath!" the mermaid Soop warns the water-talent fairy Rani. Soop has grown tired of waiting for the magic wand that Rani promised her in exchange for her help saving Never Land. And though Rani would love to fulfill her promise and bring Soop a wand, Mother Dove, the wisest creature in Never Land, has forbidden it. Her patience at an end, Soop sends a flood to destroy Fairy Haven. Now the only thing that can save the fairies' home is the arrival of the wand.

Rani, Tinker Bell, and the fairy queen, Clarion, set off on a perilous quest to find a wand, a journey that takes them across an ocean, to the palace of the Great Wanded fairies. Many obstacles stand between the Never fairies and their desire for peace in Fairy Haven, not the least of which are their own secret dreams. For a wand can easily tempt a fairy into making a foolish wish, with terrible consequences.

In this thrilling sequel to Fairy Dust and the Quest for the Egg, Newbery Honor-winning author Gail Carson Levine and illustrator David Christiana have conspired to spin a riveting fairytale about the dangers of dreams come true.

Review:
What a great little book! The illustrations are so beautiful. I love the traditional simple style of children's books, and love any story with Tinkerbell in it!

The Goose Girl

,
Title: The Goose Girl
Author: Shannon Hale
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's Books
Reading Level: 9-12 yrs
Rating: 4

Summary:
Anidori-Kiladra Talianna Isilee, Crown Princess of Kildenree, spends the first years of her life under her aunt's guidance learning to communicate with animals. As she grows up Ani develops the skills of animal speech, but is never comfortable speaking with people, so when her silver-tongued lady-in-waiting leads a mutiny during Ani's journey to be married in a foreign land, Ani is helpless and cannot persuade anyone to assist her. Becoming a goose girl for the king, Ani eventually uses her own special, nearly magical powers to find her way to her true destiny.

From the Grimm’s fairy tale of the princess who became a goose girl before she could become queen, Shannon Hale has woven an incredible, original, and magical tale of a girl who must find her own unusual talents before she can lead the people she has made her own.

Review:
I LOVE this book! My sister, Becca & Katie, have been after for me for the longest time to read this wonderful fairytale. I finally got my library here to buy a copy so I could read it. From beginning to end I was completely enthralled. I even brought the book to work so I could read it on my 15 min tea break! I'm a sucker for a good fairytale, and Ani proves to one of my favorite heroines to date. You must read this coming of age tale! I give it 2 thumbs up!

This is the first book of three. The next in the series are: Enna Burning & River Secrets

Fairest


Title: Fairest
Author: Gail Carson Levine
Reading Level: 8-14 yrs old
Publisher: Harper Collins, 2006
Rating: 2

Summary:
"I was born singing. Most babies cry. Or so I believe. I have no one to tell me the truth of it. I was abandoned when I was a month old, left at the Featherbed Inn in the Ayorthaian village of Amonta. It was January 12th of the year of Thunder Songs." The fairy Lucinda has once again given a dreadful gift. This time it's a mysterious magical mirror.

The gift is disastrous when it falls into the hands of Aza, who never looks in a mirror if she can help it. In the Kingdom of Ayortha, Aza is most definitely not the fairest of them all. Many spurn her. Many scoff at her. She keeps out of sight.

But in a land of singers, Aza has her own gift, one she's come by without fairy intervention: a voice that can do almost anything, a voice that captivates all who hear it. In Ontio Castle, merry Prince Ijori is drawn to it, and vain Queen Ivi wants to use it for her own ends. Queen Ivi would do "anything" to remain the fairest in the land.

In this spellbinding tale filled with humor, adventure, romance, and song, Newbery Honor author Gail Carson Levine invites you to join Aza as she discovers how exquisite she truly is.

Review:
It took me a bit to get into this book. As I got into it I liked it. It has all the elements of a traditional fairy tale. Fairest is the story of Snow White, re-told through Gail Carson Levine's eyes of what really happened. The only thing I didn't like about this book, was how they talked about Aza as being "so ugly". It was mentioned over and over and over. That can't be good for anyone to hear that over and over. It was to centered on "looks." But I did enjoy the book over all, but the looming ugliness of Aza really dampened the story for me. I love Gail Carson Levine, so I wanted to LOVE this book, it just didn't happen.

The Undomestic Goddess

Title: The Undomestic Goddess
Author: Sophie Kinsella
Publisher: Bantam Press, 2005
Reading Level: Adult
Rating: 4

Summary:
The “goddess” in question is Samantha Sweeting, a twenty-nine-year-old lawyer on the fast track to becoming partner at swanky law firm Carter Spink. Although Sam loves her job and wants nothing more than to be a partner, she has no social life to speak of, is stressed out beyond belief, and her high-powered mother and brother can’t even make the time to join her for her latest birthday celebration. All of this seems worth it, though, when she finds out that she has achieved her biggest goal—she has become a partner at Carter Spink. Unfortunately, the joy is short-lived. Sam finds some papers buried on her desk that she apparently forgot to file—and that little mistake has cost one of their clients fifty million pounds.

In a panic, Sam rushes out of the office, takes a train, and ends up in a small suburb of London, lost and terrified. She ends up on the doorstep of Trish and Eddie Geiger, who mistake her for a housekeeper come to apply for a job. Wanting only a place to crash for the night and to get her head in order, Sam unwittingly takes the job. When she finds out that she no longer has a career at Carter Spink, she decides to stick it out at the Geigers for a while. The problem? She doesn’t know how to cook or clean. And though Trish and Eddie are easy to fool, the hot gardener isn’t so gullible.


Review:
I love Sophie Kinsella. She wrote the Shopaholic series. Her books are laugh out loud to me!! This book proves to be another big laugh! I was sitting on the plane laughing at the silly situations that Samantha gets herself into. Want a hot guy to drool over? Nathaniel, the gardener, will do just the trick!

Wings

Title: Wings
Author: Aprilynne Pike
Publisher: Harper Teen, 2009
Reading Level: 11+
Rating: 5

Summary:
Living plants, trolls, a bit of magic, and even King Arthur and Avalon make their way into this fascinating world. And the love triangle created between Laurel and her human and faerie suitors is both heart-wrenching and complicated. You will find yourself hard pressed to make up your mind about this fabulous development and more than likely unable to put this marvelous debut down.

Review:
OH MY GOSH!!!! This book is AMAZING!!! I read it TWICE on my plane trip from Scotland to America! I can't stop thinking about it either. I have been laying awake at night just thinking about the characters and what I think will happen in the next books to come. There will be 4 in the series, one coming out every May. I love Faerie tales and this one has proved to be probably my VERY favorite!!

Evermore


Title: Evermore
Author: Alyson Noel
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin, 2009
Reading Level: Young Adult
Rating: 3

Summary:
Since a horrible accident claimed the lives of her family, sixteen-year-old Ever can see auras, hear people’s thoughts, and know a person’s life story by touch. Going out of her way to shield herself from human contact to suppress her abilities has branded her as a freak at her new high school—but everything changes when she meets Damen Auguste…


Ever sees Damen and feels an instant recognition. He is gorgeous, exotic and wealthy, and he holds many secrets. Damen is able to make things appear and disappear, he always seems to know what she’s thinking—and he’s the only one who can silence the noise and the random energy in her head. She doesn’t know who he really is—or what he is. Damen equal parts light and darkness, and he belongs to an enchanted new world where no one ever dies.

Review:
I am hooked on this book, and can't wait for the sequel. Blue Moon out on July 7, 2009. I was intrigued, deeply involved with the characters, and the story kept me guessing. From the min I started reading it I didn't put it down. Luckily I was trapped in an airport and had all day to read. I wouldn't have been able to stop! It's addicting!

Fablehaven Series

Title: Fablehaven
Fablehaven: Rise of the Eveing Star
Fablehaven: Grip of the Shadow Plague
Fablehaven: Secrets of the Dragon Sanctuary
Author: Brandon Mull
Publisher: Aladdin (2007)
Reading Level: Young Adult
Rating: 4


Summary:
For centuries mystical creatures of all description were gathered into a hidden refuge called Fablehaven to prevent their extinction. The sanctuary survives today as one of the last strongholds of true magic. Enchanting? Absolutely. Exciting? You bet. Safe? Well, actually, quite the opposite.

What an exciting second installment! I really, really, REALLY love this series! It's exciting, it's magical, it teaches great morals, it's suspenseful, it has the classic good against evil themes, and it's wonderful for all ages. We revisit Kendra and her brother Seth as Brandon Mull takes the story a bit deeper in Rise of the Evening Star, the second book in the Fablehaven series. In the first book of the Fablehaven series, Kendra and Seth meet magic face-to-face at the refuge run by their grandparents. Here in the second book, magic comes to meet them in their very normal, non-magical lives at school and home. The plot is twisty and at times very hard to predict, which is something I crave in any story.

Here's what you can expect. Adventure. More adventure. Danger. Action. Even more adventure. Some mystery. Some intrigue. Some surprises. If you love action, adventure, and mystery, then Fablehaven is definitely for you!

Brace yourself for a shocking secret. Two hidden artifacts have been found. Three more remain unrecovered. More preserves face destruction as the Society of the Evening Star relentlessly pursues new talismans.

Review:
I just finished Fablehaven, on request by my good friends. Boy was it good! It was like Harry Potter and The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe all rolled into one. There are currently 4 books in the Fablehaven series, with a 5th on the way. It's a fantasy world that is sure to suck you right in!

Ella Enchanted


Title: Ella Enchanted
Author: Gail Carson Levine
Publisher: Harpercollins, 1998
Reading Level: 9-12 yrs old
Rating: 5


Summary:
At birth, Ella is inadvertently cursed by an imprudent fairy named Lucinda, who bestows on her the "gift" of obedience. Anything anyone tells her to do, Ella must obey. Another girl might have been cowed by this affliction, but not feisty Ella: "Instead of making me docile, Lucinda's curse made a rebel of me. Or perhaps I was that way naturally." When her beloved mother dies, leaving her in the care of a mostly absent and avaricious father, and later, a loathsome stepmother and two treacherous stepsisters, Ella's life and well-being seem in grave peril. But her intelligence and saucy nature keep her in good stead as she sets out on a quest for freedom and self-discovery, trying to track down Lucinda to undo the curse, fending off ogres, befriending elves, and falling in love with a prince along the way. Yes, there is a pumpkin coach, a glass slipper, and a happily ever after, but this is the most remarkable, delightful, and profound version of Cinderella you've ever read.

Review:
This book is my favorite of all time! It is such a classic fairy tale. Gail Carson Levine has basically re-written the Cinderella story! I'm in love with Prince Char!

Review: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Title: The Hunger Games
Author: Suzanne Collins
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Reading Level: Young Adult
Pages: 374


Summary:
COULD YOU SURVIVE ON YOUR OWN, IN THE WILD, WITH EVERYONE FIGHTING AGAINST YOU? Twenty- four are forced to enter. Only the winner survives.

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. Each year, the districts are forced by the Capitol to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the Hunger Games, a brutal and terrifying fight to the death – televised for all of Panem to see.

Survival is second nature for sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who struggles to feed her mother and younger sister by secretly hunting and gathering beyond the fences of District 12. When Katniss steps in to take the place of her sister in the Hunger Games, she knows it may be her death sentence. If she is to survive, she must weigh survival against humanity and life against love.

Review:
Ok, So I just finished the most amazing book! I couldn't put it down! I even brought it to church and was reading it under my bag during church...I'm still waiting for the lightening bolt to strike. I called my sister (who sent me the book) immediately after finishing today, and I was rambling on at super speed to her about how much I enjoyed it. 

I thought the characters were well developed and the setting was well described.  I could really picture everything that was happening.  I am in awe of how creative this story is.  I loved it! I don't want to spoil anything for you, so I won't go into detail, but this is a must read!

The sequels, Catching Fire  and Mockingjay are out now, read my review!

The Twilight Saga

Title: The Twilight Saga
Author: Stephenie Meyer
Publisher: Little Brown Young Readers
Reading Level: Young Adult
Rating: 5

Review:

I am obsessed with the Twilight Saga, I've read it too many times to count. If you are afraid to jump on the bandwagon and read it, JUST DO IT! You'll thank me for it! It's an amazing series by Stephenie Meyer!

Summary:

Bella Swan's move to Forks, a small, perpetually rainy town in Washington, could have been the most boring move she ever made. But once she meets the mysterious and alluring Edward Cullen, Bella's life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn. Up until now, Edward has managed to keep his vampire identity a secret in the small community he lives in, but now nobody is safe, especially Bella, the person Edward holds most dear.

Deeply romantic and extraordinarily suspenseful, Twilight captures the struggle between defying our instincts and satisfying our desires. This is a love story with bite.

"Which is tempting you more, my blood or my body?" Things are heating up between Bella Swan and her vampire boyfriend, Edward Cullen, in this sequel. Then Bella is injured at her birthday party, and the Cullens' reaction to her blood sends Edward's family packing. Bella is inconsolable until she discovers that reckless behavior allows her to hear Edward's warning voice in her head. To keep him close, she decides to live as dangerously as possible, acquiring two motorcycles and developing a close friendship with Jacob, who helps her rebuild them. Romantics will miss Edward's presence, but the suspense created by a pack of werewolves bent on protecting Bella from a vindictive vampire will keep them occupied until the lovers can be reunited. The writing is a bit melodramatic, but readers won't care. Bella's dismay at being ordinary (after all, she's only human) will strike a chord even among girls who have no desire to be immortal, and like the vampires who watch Bella bleed with "fevered eyes," teens will relish this new adventure and hunger for more.
Readers captivated by Twilight and New Moon will eagerly devour Eclipse, the much anticipated third book in Stephenie Meyer's riveting vampire love saga. As Seattle is ravaged by a string of mysterious killings and a malicious vampire continues her quest for revenge, Bella once again finds herself surrounded by danger. In the midst of it all, she is forced to choose between her love for Edward and her friendship with Jacob --- knowing that her decision has the potential to ignite the ageless struggle between vampire and werewolf. With her graduation quickly approaching, Bella has one more decision to make: life or death. But which is which?


In Breaking Dawn, the fourth and final installment in the series, Bella’s story plays out in some unexpected ways. The ongoing conflicts that made this series so compelling--a human girl in love with a vampire, a werewolf in love with a human girl, the generations-long feud between werewolves and vampires--resolve pretty quickly, apparently so that Meyer could focus on Bella’s latest opportunity for self-sacrifice: giving her life for someone she loves even more than Edward. How close she comes to actually making that sacrifice is questionable, which is a big shift from the earlier books. Even though you knew Bella would make it through somehow, the threats to her life, and to her relationship with Edward, had previously always felt real. It’s as if Meyer was afraid of hurting her characters too much, which is unfortunate, because the pain Bella suffered at losing Edward in New Moon, and the pain Jacob suffered at losing Bella again and again, are the fire and the heart that drive the whole series.
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