Thursday, August 2, 2012

Release Crazed and "The Poison Eaters" Review

Happy Thursday dearlings!

We've got all kinds of stuff going on here at Auggie-Talk lately! I'm so happy that this blog is getting busy and I ask that you guys check back frequently to see what's going on. August is going to be insane with reviews, giveaways, and tours... but it's going to get even busier after that! So just keep a look out little honey bees!

Also, be sure to check in on Saturday for a more structured August overview as well as the next giveaway announcement. 


Oh how fun!

It's THURSDAY! So as usual Auggie-Talk has another RELEASE CRAZED post where I'll showcase 5 lovely titles that I'm anxiously awaiting along with their release dates.

But first... a review!

* REVIEW *
*"The Poison Eaters"*
*Holly Black *
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Title: The Poison Eaters
Author: Holly Black
Genre: Paranormal
Publication:  April 1, 2010
Pages:  212

Synopsis:
Pick your poison: Vampires, devils, werewolves, faeries, or . . . ? Find them all here in Holly Black’s amazing first collection.

In her debut collection, New York Times best-selling author Holly Black returns to the world of Tithe in two darkly exquisite new tales. Then Black takes readers on a tour of a faerie market and introduces a girl poisonous to the touch and another who challenges the devil to a competitive eating match. Some of these stories have been published in anthologies such as 21 Proms, The Faery Reel, and The Restless Dead, and many have been reprinted in many �Best of ” anthologies.

The Poison Eaters is Holly Black’s much-anticipated first collection, and her ability to stare into the void—and to find humanity and humor there—will speak to young adult and adult readers alike.

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Auggie-Talk Quill Rating
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2/5
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I had a lot of hope for this one when I picked it up out of the bargain bin a my LBS. Shame it didn't turn out.

The cover is compelling and haunting. A tad creepy, which I appreciate as well. I despise horror movies, but I like a good horror story so I turn to books for this aspect and I was suspecting that maybe there would be a little bit of that represented in these stories. Not so much.

A few things:

Well, more than a few things really, but I'll stick to the most obvious for me.

It was a hit-miss with each of the short stories but mostly misses. Some of them simply made very little sense to me. "Virgin" especially was a story in the book that I just couldn't fathom. Maybe that's just me but I had no idea how in the world a street girl suddenly wants to devirginify a young man that claims he can see Unicorns. Her main motivation seems to be getting the boy laid, and this will somehow renew his lost sense of reality. Okay, fine, that makes sense in a twisted teenage sort of way... but we never know anything more about the boy, the Unicorn, why he can see it, or why he HAS to be with it.

At the beginning on this particular story I saw SO MANY WAYS that it could go well but nothing was ever explained or expounded upon. In general it just ended up seeming to me another way for the Author to introduce another sexy situation.

Holly Black is gritty, but to me it's not the good kind of "Tackling hard subjects" gritty or even the "I don't give a crap, I'm writing this" gritty. It's more just... dirty to be dirty.

The first story really had me, though. It was short, quick, and to the point but it actually had a plot. A meaning. A purpose.  I could see the first story being turned into a full novel... but none of the others. There just wasn't enough there in any of the other stories to justify wishing for a full book.

In particular I found the story centered around Bacchus both impressive and groanworthy. Again. SO MANY WAYS that story could have been awesome...but then it just wasn't. It was centered around a bunch of prom people groping and kissing and writhing around with each other. Maenads, which were referenced in this story, were wild. They ripped their victims LIMB FROM LIMB. They existed in an exact opposite sphere of life than they were supposed to as women (and sometimes as men), and that could have really been used. But again... just the sexual aspects were utilized. I think she did mention that maybe someone was fighting... but that was it. Just a little drop in the bucket.

I believe that this particular story was just an instance to use Latin knowledge to impress readers (and I was impressed. Not going to lie.) but that was all. Just smoke and mirrors to cover up the general lack of any sort of real plot or meaning.

Her writing style isn't hard to read at all. That's what kept me going, actually, despite the lack of substance to the experience. I don't suspect that she's a bad author and she probably appeals to many many readers. Just not me.

I wasn't able to throw out a 1/5 on this one mostly because the book reads well and I have books like "Iron Witch" to compare it to for perspective. But I can't give it any more than a 2 because I just didn't enjoy it. However... I recognize that it would be enjoyable to other readers so that's why I think I'll recommend it to you all.

It's a quick read. Amusing if nothing else. Not a total waste of time. So go for it.

Powell's Books: $9.99
Amazon: $9.99

Nook: $8.35

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* Release Crazed #4*

Release Crazed is a weekly feature on Auggie-Talk where I list 5 upcoming books that I'm really looking forward to. What are you anxiously anticipating?

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Title: Incarnation
Author: Emma Cornwall

Genre: YA Steampunk
Release Date: September 18 2012

Pages: 352

Synopsis:

Lucy Weston tracks down the novelist Bram Stroker in her search to reveal the dark force who made her a vampire—and regain her humanity in the process.


In the steampunk world of Victorian London, Lucy Weston, a character in Dracula, seeks out Bram Stoker to discover why he deliberately lied about her in his popular novel. With Stoker’s reluctant help, she tracks the creature who transformed her from the sensual underworld where humans vie to become vampires to a hidden cell beneath a temple to madness and finally into the glittering Crystal Palace where death reigns supreme.

Haunted by fragmentary memories of her lost life and love, Lucy battles her thirst for blood as she struggles to stop a catastrophic war that will doom vampires and humans alike. Ultimately, she makes a choice that illuminates for her—and for us—the true nature of what it means to be human.



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Title: Forget Me Not
Author: Carolee Dean

Genre: YA Paranormal
Release Date: Ocotber 2, 2012

Pages: 384

Synopsis: From the author of "Take Me There," a fast-paced novel in verse about a girl caught between life and death--and the boy who will do anything to save her.Ally is devastated when a scandalous photo of her is texted around school. With her reputation in shambles and her life essentially over, she hides out in a back hallway, trying to figure out where everything went wrong.

Elijah has spent time in that hallway too. He landed there after taking a whole bottle of sleeping pills. Now he can see ghosts, and he knows what Ally has yet to suspect--that she's already half dead, and one choice away from never coming back. Elijah has loved Ally for years and would do anything to save her from the in-between place. But if she's going to live, Ally must face her inner demons and find the will to save herself.

Told in interwoven verse narratives, this crushingly honest and poetic exploration of pain and redemption will appeal to fans of Ellen Hopkins.



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Title: Promised (Birthmarked Trilogy #3)
Author: Caragh M. O'Brien

Genre: YA Fantasy
Release Date: October 2, 2012



Synopsis: After defying the ruthless Enclave, surviving the wasteland, and upending the rigid matriarchy of Sylum, Gaia Stone now faces her biggest challenge ever. She must lead the people of Sylum back to the Enclave and persuade the Protectorat to grant them refuge from the wasteland. In Gaia’s absence, the Enclave has grown more cruel, more desperate to experiment on mothers from outside the wall, and now the stakes of cooperating or rebelling have never been higher. Is Gaia ready, as a leader, to sacrifice what—or whom—she loves most?










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Title: The Spindlers
Author: Lauren Oliver

Genre: Middlegrade Fantasy
Release Date: October 2, 2012

Pages: 256

Synopsis:

Looking across the breakfast table one morning, twelve-year-old Liza feels dread wash over her. Although her younger brother, Patrick, appears the same, Liza knows that he is actually quite different. She is certain that the spindlers-evil, spiderlike beings-came during the night and stole his soul. And Liza is also certain that she is the only one who can rescue him.

Armed with little more than her wits and a huge talking rat for a guide, Liza descends into the dark and ominous underground to save Patrick's soul. Her quest is far from easy, and the road to the spindlers' nests is riddled with danger. She must brave tree snakes, the Court of Stones, and shape-shifting serpents before facing her greatest challenge in the spindlers' lair, where more than just Patrick's soul is at stake.




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Title: Freakling
Author: Lana Krumwiede

Genre: Middlegrade Dystopian
Release Date: October 9, 2012

Pages: 320

Synopsis: A thrilling, fast-paced dystopian novel about the dangers of unchecked power and the dilemmas facing a boy torn between two ways of life.

In twelve-year-old Taemon’s city, everyone has a power called psi—the ability to move and manipulate objects with their minds. When Taemon loses his psi in a traumatic accident, he must hide his lack of power by any means possible. But a humiliating incident at a sports tournament exposes his disability, and Taemon is exiled to the powerless colony.

The "dud farm" is not what Taemon expected, though: people are kind and open, and they actually seem to enjoy using their hands to work and play and even comfort their children. Taemon adjusts to his new life quickly, making friends and finding unconditional acceptance.

But gradually he discovers that for all its openness, there are mysteries at the colony, too—dangerous secrets that would give unchecked power to psi wielders if discovered.

When Taemon unwittingly leaks one of these secrets, will he have the courage to repair the damage—even if it means returning to the city and facing the very people who exiled him?



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Well guys and dolls. That's all for this Thursday's post.

I'll see you tomorrow for something truly fantastic! I've got more information for you on a much anticipated book due to release in September:  "PLEDGED".

Until Next Blog,

Read On!

~A.

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