Monday, April 30, 2012

NOTICE: Sheesh!

Hello readers.

Obviously there haven't been any posts recently. I must apologize deeply for being out of pocket. Lot's of stuff going on here right now that are keeping me from the computer. I'm really hoping that I can get back to it as soon as possible.

Don't expect for me to be out for too much longer! Hopefully I've got a lot to share with you this week!

Everyone enjoy your Monday!

Until Next Post (soon!),

~A.
POST DIVIDER

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Upcoming Book Releases: Rowling, Riordan, Harris

Happy Thursday, dolls!

We're going to do things a little differently today because I discovered a bit of information that I'm tickled about and I'd just like to share it. Then it developed into a sharing of some books that I'm REALLY looking forward to being released this year.

First of all, we have some LOVELY information for all you J.K. Rowling fans out there. You seriously serious fans are already going to know this, but for everyone else let's spread the news, shall we?

Little, Brown has announced that J.K Rowling's newest literary work "The Casual Vacancy" is set to be released September 27, 2012. 

Amazon Blurb 

When Barry Fairweather dies unexpectedly in his early forties, the little town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war. Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils…. Pagford is not what it first seems. And the empty seat left by Barry on the town’s council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations? Blackly comic, thought-provoking and constantly surprising, The Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling’s first novel for adults. 



Huzzah! *Confetti and party balloons. Cake anyone?*

Alright, alright. I have to be 100% honest here and say that I'm not really sure about this newest release. I love Rowling as the author of the HP series and I'm curious about her new book, but that's about the extent of it. I'm not rolling in the floor in excess joy or flapping about spastically  in complete elation over this new work by Rowling. Actually, it sounds like a book that I wouldn't be tremendously interested in.

I must remember, however, that I have no reason to doubt that this next book by Rolwing will be a great one. I enjoyed her writing style in HP, I liked her story telling methods as well as her keen ability to transport the reader right into the middle of tale. So, it seems to me that I must keep faith! Have confidence! I'll be buying the book when it's released later this year. How about you?

Here's some more information:

Publisher's Lunch
The Book Page


Also, if you're a cuddle fan, like me, of the HP series then you weren't aware that Rowling launched a new website.


Anyhoodle. We'll move forward now, yes?

A few other books I'm REALLY looking forward to: 

DEADLOCKED by Charlaine Harris 



This is going to be released on May 1st, so get-a-ready! (Already pre-ordered my copy, woo!) Also, random side-note, Charlaine Harris will be our FEATURED AUTHOR for MAY. Just givin' you a heads up!

For those of you who are Sookie Stackhouse fans... you need no coaxing. For those of you who have never picked up one of these books but know for sure that you love CLEVER writing about vampires, werewolves, and all other manner of paranormal/magical creatures all mashed up into one big adventure (with dashes of romance!) then WHY HAVEN'T YOU STARTED THIS SERIES YET?! GO GO GO!

Also released on May 1st

Rick Riordans latest KANE CHRONICLES book 

The Serpents Shadow




I highly recommend Riordan to any of you peaking through this post, especially if you're a fan of theology, classics, and ancient deities!

Percy Jackson and the Olympians was fabulous! That particular series is semi-finished now and continued on in a separate series called "Heroes of Olympus" which I also recommend. The "KANE CHRONICLE" books are removed from the Greek/Roman god spheres and instead focuses on myth, legend, and religion of Ancient Egypt.

FANTASTIC!

Well love pups, that's all for today. I'm bogged down with reading and exam-study (which I should be putting ahead of reading on my priority list, but come on...) so nada review for today. 

Incorrect Spanish grammar usage on Thursday - *checks off of list*

See you all tomorrow for April's last FEATURED FRIDAY and the official  announcement of next month's author.

Also... DON'T FORGET: 

Until Next Blog, 

Read on! 

~A.
POST DIVIDER

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Trilogy Tuesday and IMM

Okay!

We've got a big post today, peaches! It's going to be "TRILOGY TUESDAY" then we've got a belated IMM.

*flexes fingers to prepare for typing marathon*

Hop on board lovelies! The ride begins with:

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Key Of Valor 
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April's Featured Trilogy was the "Key Trilogy" by Nora Roberts.

The review for the first two books can be found at the following locations: 


Title: Key of Valor

Author: Nora Roberts
Genre: Modern Fantasy Romance
Published: December 30, 2003
Pages: 352
 
Zoe had eaten in this dining room before, with its soaring ceilings and roaring fire. She knew how lovely everything looked under the lights of the chandeliers and the glow of candles.

But this time, she knew without a doubt the way the evening would end. It wouldn't be a matter of a lottery. It wouldn't be the luck of the draw.

Both Malory and Dana had taken their turns. She helped them. She knew she'd contributed ideas, support, even comfort. But when push came to shove, she understood the burden had been on each of them, in their turn. In the end, both Malory and Dana had to reach deep inside themselves every bit a much as they'd had to reach for the tangible key.

Now it was her burden, her risk. Her chance.

She had to be brave enough, smart enough, strong enough, or everything they'd done before her would be for nothing.


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Main Character 

The main character of this last installment of the trilogy is Zoe. She is a character referred to as "Little Warrior" and "Little Mother" (she is the only one of the 3 women with a child, a 10 year old son named Simon). She appeals to me because of her resourceful and powerful personality, wrapped up in a blanket of reservations that eventually gets pulled away to reveal a very strong, very spunky woman who came up swinging even when life threw dirt in her face.

She does not whine incessantly, she does not complain, she doesn't bask in the pity of others and after a long string of really popular books (I know you can think of a few you've read yourself) which features a really flimsy, flaky female character, Zoe was a welcome!

Zoe was endearing and interesting in this book (as she was in the past books as well). In her life she's had to face ridicule (her mother), rejection (Simon's father), and struggle (making ends meat with no education and a little child) and she manages to come out on top (not without fighting).

While Zoe is fantastic it is not just her story this time around.  This is the final book of the trilogy, so while the focus is on Zoe, who has been charged with the responsibility of finding the last key to release the souls of the demigoddesses (who they are themselves), it's all about catching us up with the other two characters and tying things up.

General Thoughts

Key of Valor was my favorite of the 3 in this trilogy. I'm going to put a guess down and say that it's because Zoe is my favorite of the three women and I was just naturally inclined to prefer the last of the books since it featured her.

Also, while the final book in a trilogy is bittersweet (no more books for that storyline!) it's also very exciting because the story wraps itself up, everyone is enlightened, and issues are resolved. This may be another reason I preferred the last book over the others.

Regardless this was the book the made the trilogy a 5 star for me. Nora Roberts was able to bring everything around full circle, tying up all the loose ends, and making sure that there were plenty of moments that would lend the reader to thinking things might not end happily.

Of course... it's Nora Roberts. It's a romance novel. Very rarely do romance novels end badly for the main characters. In the end the girl gets the guy, the bad guys get the boot, and everyone lives happily ever after. Knowing that, I have to give Ms. Roberts credit for trying to make us think that the Happy ending wasn't going to happen.

I found a few people didn't enjoy this last book as much because the story line was just stretched too far, the plot (find the key, fall in love so on and so on) was too boring the 3rd time.

One of the reasons that I rate this trilogy so highly is that, for me, this was NOT the case at all! I was surprised that the story was still interesting and appealing even though it really was just a recycle of the other plots with a new people plugged into the integral roles. 

Recommended To


In my humble bookie opinion, this trilogy is one of the best ever written by Roberts. For her fans and fans of Magical Romance it is a definite TO BE READ!

Read read read!



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I know! I know! I'm late doing this.

It's hectic lately and I'm doing my best to keep things on schedule. I missed the IMM this past Sunday but I figured it's better late than never so... here we go!

I received quite a few book review requests this last week so I'm very excited to share those books with you in the future. May is going to be a busy review month!




 Bought


 ❀ Enchanted Glass


Title: Enchanted Glass
Author:Diana Wynne Jones
Genre: Middlegrade Fantasy
Published: April 6, 2010
Pages: 332

SOMETHING IS ROTTEN IN THE VILLAGE OF MELSTONE

Aiden Cain has had the worst week of his life. Creepy, sinister beings want him dead. What's a boy to do? With danger nipping at his heels, Aidan flees to Melstone, a village teeming with magic of its own. There he is taken in by Andrew Hope, the new master of Melstone House, who has some supernatural troubles too. Someone is stealing power from the area - mingling magics - and chaos is swiftly rising. ARe Aidan's and Andrew's magical dilemmas connected somehow? And will they be able to unite their powers and unlock the secrets of Melstone before the countryside comes apart at the seams? 


I am beyond tickled pink about reading this book! As many of you readers know Diana Wynne Jones is my favorite author and I have adored every single one of her books that I laid my eyes on. This book is one of her last and I look forward to reading it with both joy and a heavy heart.


 ❀ Charlie Bone and the Time Twister 
 
 
Title: Charlie Bone and the Time Twister
Author: Jenny Nimmo
Genre: Middlegrade Fantasy
Published: September 6, 2003
Pages: 402
 
 Time is running out for Charlie Bone . . .

Charlies hopes that the new term at Bloor's Academy will hold no nasty surprises. But then Henry Yewbeam appears, twisted through time from the icy winter of 1916.

With the scheming Yewbeam aunts on the prowl, and the Bloors out to catch him, Henry will need Charlie's help just to stay alive. Bloor's Academy can be a very dangerous place . . .

Book Two in The Children of the Red King series!
 
 
 
It's been a while since I had my hands on a Charlie Bone book, so I'm looking forward to continuing the cute middlegrade series!  Mr. J and I went to our local bookstore and after I thought about buying it then put it back (because it was a bit expensive) he "went to the bathroom" while I looked around and grabbed "Enchanted Glass" instead. When we got back into the car he insisted that he'd left one of his books in the floor of the passengers side . I told him there was no way because we'd recently deep cleaned the car. He pressed that I at least look under the seat for him.

I did.


"Honey... there's no way that your book is under here... " *feels a book shaped thing and pulls out a bag*  "Unless it's in this bag..." *realization dawns* "YOU SNEAKY MAN!" 

Very much looking forward to reading this one!
 
 
Requested Reviews
 

 ❀ Ethos: Morning Star
 
 
Title: Ethos: Morning Star
Author:Desiree Finkbeiner
Genre: YA Fantasy
Published: March 28, 2012
It started with a mushroom, from another world... never before touched by a human hand, until Brianna... but life continued as normal... until a near fatal accident almost a decade later, reveals to Brianna... she's... different...

Unexplained lab results, unusually fast healing, and recent sightings of Jurassic sized dragonflies... What is happening to her?

When a peculiar man delivers her from a violent assault, she becomes enchanted by his heroism and inhuman abilities. Her rescuer, Kalen, is sworn to protect the powerful secret she has yet to realize, from an ancient foe with evil designs...

With the secret exposed, our world is no longer safe. Kalen takes Brianna to Ethos, his home, unprepared for what happens next... An ancient prophecy unfolds and they must make make a choice... Give into their forbidden love, or sacrifice their heart's desire for a chance to save their worlds.
 


Death and Disappearances ❀

Title: Death and Disappearances
Author: Richard Smiraldi
Genre: Mystery
Published: January 26, 2012
Pages: 142

Money, crime, death, unrequited love with a little voodoo in the mix - best characterize this book.
 
When Montgomery Clark wakes up, two weeks after his wife’s disappearance, he finds a bump on the back of his head, a painting (done by his wife) missing, a note in his own handwriting which reads, “You killed my sister, now I’ll kill you,” and a dead sparrow in his dresser drawer. He realizes he must solve the mystery of the disappearance of his wife or face charges for her disappearance.
 
Death and Disappearances is a psychological thriller. Young, rich and promising novelist, Manhattanite, Montgomery Clark, “Mont.” has had one un-successful book, and an interesting marriage to Petula Beaujolais, a Parisian artist he met while attending Columbia University. They’d been married about two years when life as they know it began to unravel. Petula was unhappy because Mont didn’t take her career as an artist seriously. To make matters worse, Mont belongs to that elite class of first American families –to which Petula could not find acceptance. After a heated argument at a club function on Gramercy Park, Petula leaves their apartment at 2am in nothing but her sable coat and a pair of fuzzy pink slippers –never to be seen or heard from again. Did she go back to Paris to visit her twin sister at the asylum (Clarenton)? Where is she? Mont elicits the help of his friends Bea, and Peter. Bea discovers a cancerous lump on her throat and is advised by her psychic root worker to leave the country. While rushing to his parents’ home in Westchester, Peter’s Astin Martin careens off the cliffs of Bear Mountain and crashes into the Hudson River. With nowhere else to turn, Mont files a missing person’s report with Detective, Draza Vicaru, (a first generation American of Slovakian descent and a Coney Island resident). Together, with the help of Bea’s psychic and a little time travel, Mont uncovers the truth about the disappearance of Petula Beaujolais-Clark and the deaths that surround it.
 


❀ Quarter Life Crisis
 

Title: Quarter Life Crisis
Author: Diana-Ashley Krach
Genre: YA Paranormal
Published: March 13, 2012
 

Sam is incapable of having a girlfriend because of her trust issues, and prefers to be alone with the exception of her close circle of friends. Matti is always putting herself before others, especially when it comes to her boyfriends. Jayden is the independent one who doesn't play by any dating rules, yet she is always in a monogamous relationship. These girls don't fit the typical mold of the female stereotype, as babies and marriage were never on their radar. Though, when one of the girls, Jayden, actually gets married, a rift starts to develop between them. In order to mend the rift, they go on a camping trip. What starts as a simple camping trip, quickly turns into a journey of discovery and self-revelation, as each girl comes face-to-face with the woman they have become. They are quickly forced to realize that friends may be forever, but time will always change the friendships.

 ❀ Silver Knight

Title: Silver Knight
Author: Caron Rider
Genre: YA Paranormal
Published: February 24, 2012
Pages: 278

When seventeen-year-old Diana recognizes an elderly priest in a video on YouTube, she realizes that reincarnation is real and that she’s been alive before! Every night in her dreams, she relives her past learning that it’s kill or be killed. Now a bishop at the Vatican whom she saved in another life calls on her once more. She is needed to help defeat evil within the catacombs of Rome. But when she arrives in Rome, she meets Alexander – the man of her dreams! Through the centuries she has loved him…betrayed him...been killed by him. Will she give him another chance or this time will she strike first?








❀ Doll House

Title: Doll House
Author: Anya Allyn
Genre: YA Paranormal
Published: May 2012
For fifteen year old Cassie Claiborne, there's only one good thing about moving from steamy Miami to the wild inland forests of Australia--the even wilder Ethan McAllister. But Ethan already has a girlfriend--Aisha Damaj--the girl with a hundred different moods a minute.

When Aisha goes missing on a hiking trip in the local mountains--presumed dead--the whole town points a finger at Ethan.

Cassie defends Ethan fiercely--and she's just about the only friend he has left. But is Cassie letting her feelings for Ethan cloud her judgment of him?

Or does something dark lurk out there in the forests? Aisha isn't the first girl to vanish there in recent years.

There's only one way to find out--go back to the forests.

A paranormal mystery/light horror.


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REMINDERS

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Auggie-Talk's 2012 Heavenly Challenge

Prizes? YES!
To join the challenge and view the prizes, rules, and book lists click here.



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Giveaways
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NOTICE: Murakami Giveaway will end May 1st 2012!

New Giveaway announced! Lynda Meyers' "Letters From The Ledge" 




 Ends May 1st
I have  another WONDERFUL giveaway!  
 
The Giveaway is for a SIGNED COPY of "Letters From the Ledge" by Lynda Meyers. There are also signed posters and bookmarks that will be given away to the winner and the runners up!
Ends July 4th


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Well, there you have it dears!

A lot of great reads to look forward to! I am now going to grab up one of these books and get to reading.

Happy Tuesday!

Until Next Blog, 



Read on! 


~A.


POST DIVIDER

Monday, April 23, 2012

Guest Post: "The Thief" by Megan Whalen Turner

Hello my peaches!

Auggie-Talk has a very special treat for you today! A lovely guest post from Shelver over at:

BOOKSHELVERS ANONYMOUS

Please drop by and give this lovely blog a look see and read this fantastic guest review by this new blogging friend of mine!


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GUEST REVIEW
"The Thief" by Megan Whalen Turner
Review by Shelver
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Title: The Thief
Author: Megan Whalen Turner
Genre: Y/A Fantasy
Published: December 27th, 2005
Pages: 280


"I can steal anything!"
After Gen's bragging lands him in the king's prison, the chances of escape look slim. Then the king's scholar, the magus, needs the thief's skill for a seemingly impossible task -- to steal a hidden treasure from another land.
To the magus, Gen is just a tool. But Gen is a trickster and a survivor with a plan of his own.

Such a sparse description, isn't it? But then, I didn't care when I first picked up this book at my local library. Sparse though it is, the description hit me hard in several areas of interest - a braggart who might actually fulfill his own boasts, a prison, a hidden treasure, a thief and trickster. The Thief was such a tiny little book that I should have realized that it would have the same tricks as its description. I was drawn in on very little information except a glimmer of promise every now and then, and boy was the ride worth it.

Gen is a filthy, ill-mannered, uneducated piece of gutter scum who picks his teeth at the dinner table just to annoy others. He's rude and cocky and cowardly, and I love him to the tips of his soft-soled shoes. The book is told in first person from his perspective, and while I don't normally enjoy first-person narratives, I loved being inside Gen's snark-encrusted head. One of my favorite moments is when he first meets the other members of the group the magus has put together - the magus's two apprentices, Ambiades and Sophos, and a soldier named Pol - and he immediately dubs the former two Useless the Elder and Useless the Younger.

Let me be clear. The first section of the book is not an adventure-filled treasure hunt. It is a knowledge hunt dripping with insight and sarcasm as Gen tries to ferret out information from the others and to assert himself as more than just a "well-behaved tool." (His words.)

Some have deemed the first half too slow, too full of politics. I disagree. I was too busy having fun joining Gen in giggling up my sleeve to care whether there was a fresh body on every page. As much as I enjoy a Hunger Games-like tension-fest, I liked feeling like I was figuring things out with him, especially when it involves figuring out characters as interesting as the ones in his group.

The second half of the book is when the adventure starts to kick in, because though the gods might be merely myths, do you really think stealing a legendary stone is going to be easy? The pacing was perfect for me; by this point, I cared not only what happened to Gen, but to the others in the group as well. I was solidly invested.

MWT (that's Megan Whalen Turner, for you who aren't super-fans) is a master of slowly cranking up the heat. My tension while reading slowly built in each stage of the story from worrying if Gen would succeed to worrying if they all would succeed to worrying if they all would make it out alive at all.

Do you know what else MWT is a master of? Twists. Big, honking', blow-my-mind twists. I thought I knew. I really thought I knew how things would go and that this would be a story that I valued more for character style than for surprises, despite the few eyebrow-raising moments MWT provided. But then I reached The Big Twist (also known as the moment when I became a super-fan) and went, "Ho. Ly. COW!"

Because MWT doesn't just do twists. She hides twists. She provides hidden subtext like no one else I've ever read. I've read The Thief a good dozen times since first finding it in the library and still can't believe all the clues I missed. I find more every time I read. And they're all hidden inside this beautifully simple book that talks about politics, olive trees, and myths about gods.

I implore you, even if every word I have written fails to catch even an atom of your interest, read this book. Read it to the very end. And then read the sequels, because honest-to-goodness, they're even better.

Points Added For: A snarky thief, myths told within the story, hidden hints, a Mediterranean setting, a great Big Twist.

Points Subtracted For: Ummm… I suppose I should come up with something just for balance, yes? Okay fine. I wish it was longer.

Good For Fans Of: Tricksters and snarky people, Diana Wynne Jones books (DWJ discovered MWT, y'all), Horation Hornblower series by C.S. Forester, Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein, and many more (I have a full list of recommendations from the main Thief  fansite).

Notes For Parents: Some violence, multiple d's and gd's.


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Well, I'm very excited to put the "Thief" on my reading list. I just recently bought a Diana Wynne Jones book (she happens to be my favorite author!) and once I'm finished I'll certainly be checking out Megan Whalen Turner! 

I thank Shelver so much for her guest review and hope to see more of them around here!!

Remember if you're interested in doing a guest review for Auggie-Talk please view "Review Schedule & Contact" page for e-mail instructions.

Alright lovelies, that's all for this Monday.

See you tomorrow for catch up on Trilogy Tuesday!

Until Next Blog, 

Read on! 

~A.
POST DIVIDER

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Stardust Staurday: "Fallen Review", Challenge, NEW GIVEAWAY

Hello my peaches,

My apologies for the lack of posts this past week. My family was shocked with news that my Uncle has stage II brain cancer. Any positive thoughts and prayers from you readers for his strength during this time would be very much welcomed.


Now, we're here with another STARDUST SATURDAY.


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REVIEW




Title: Fallen
Author: Lauren Kate
Genre: Y/A Paranormal/Angels-Demons
Published: December 8, 2009
Pages: 452
There’s something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori.

Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price’s attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in sultry Savannah, Georgia. He’s the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move.

Even though Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce–and goes out of his way to make that very clear–she can’t let it go. Drawn to him like a moth to a flame, she has to find out what Daniel is so desperate to keep secret . . . even if it kills her.



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It is very rare that I give a 1/5 rating for any book but this is a book that genuinely had me squirming in irritation and boredom.

From the get go the story is slow, so slow that I found myself putting it down and switching to a different book numerous times just to keep my sanity. The characters themselves are yawn-worthy but the main character is the worst.

How is a main character infatuated to the point of STALKING interesting or intriguing? The reader is subjected to constant story interruption via random paragraphs full of information about how much the main character is longing for this guy that seems to HATE her... but then not... but then he DOES... but then he doesn't. It's so absurd it's not even believable. In fantasy, believable or not is up for grabs when talking about setting or probability of a power but when it comes to human interaction you have to keep things at least semi-realistic. To make this situation realistic the author would have to admit that her main character has a SERIOUS emotional problem (which she spends the majority of the book explaining is NOT the case.)

There are a LOT of things in this book that don't sit well with me. For example... if there are cameras EVERYWHERE how in the heck is it possible for them to have wild parties (alcohol included) by simply turning them off. Isn't someone WATCHING the cameras? In such an intense reform school wouldn't there be SOME kind of keeping an eye out?

Also, Luce (our heroine) is supposedly extremely intelligent but how she even manages to keep her head afloat is a mystery when all her thought bubbles consist of soppy or sorry thoughts about a blonde headed boy who flips her off on the first day.

The shadows? Don't get me started. No explanation about what the heck they are until you're already so irritated by the lack of proper forward movement of the story that you don't CARE anymore.


I heard some people liken this book to TWILIGHT. And I have to agree. It's written a little better but the story line is generally the dang same (a bumbling girl with problems meets an unnaturally handsome man who seems to hate her, but then actually loves her, and all she can do is think about him and how handsome he is, and how soft his lips look, and 'why doesn't he like me?')



Holy geez. Someone please give this story some substance!

I don't recommend this book, period. There have been quite a few people who really enjoyed it, but I didn't and I wouldn't expect many others to either. I wouldn't even recommend this book to angsty 14 year old girls, mostly because I don't want them to get it into their heads that this kind of behavior is actually sexy and can get you somewhere with a guy (especially when this guy acts like a jerk to you 90% of the time.)

Anyway. There it is. This book hits the line right beside Twilight as one of the most tedious book I've ever picked up.


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New Challenge
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Auggie-Talk's 2012 Heavenly Challenge

Prizes? YES!
To join the challenge and view the prizes, rules, and book lists click here.



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Giveaways
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NOTICE: Murakami Giveaway will end May 1st 2012!

New Giveaway announced! Lynda Meyers' "Letters From The Ledge" 




 Ends May 1st
I have  another WONDERFUL giveaway!  
 
The Giveaway is for a SIGNED COPY of "Letters From the Ledge" by Lynda Meyers. There are also signed posters and bookmarks that will be given away to the winner and the runners up!
Ends July 4th



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❀ Next Week
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This next week Auggie-Talk will be back on schedule! 

As usual there will be an IMM tomorrow, Trilogy Tuesday, Featured Friday, and then another Stardust Saturday.

On Trilogy Tuesday I will also be hosting "RANSOM" book #2 from R.K. Ryals. This was supposed to have happened last week, but due to the family emergency I wasn't able to put it up, so this Tuesday will be the date for that. Thank you for your patience!


Alright everyone! That's all for this week's STARDUST SATURDAY!

See you tomorrow for IMM!

Until Next Blog, 

Read on!

~A.

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Letters from the Ledge GIVEAWAY!


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New Giveaway
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I have  another WONDERFUL giveaway!  
 
The Giveaway is for a SIGNED COPY of "Letters From the Ledge" by Lynda Meyers. There are also signed posters and bookmarks that will be given away to the winner and the runners up!

This was an incredible book that truly moved me and I believe it has the power to stir anyone who reads it. I hope that you'll all decide to take part in this fantastic story and enter to win your very own copy! 
I read and reviewed this recently so if you're interested in getting to know more about the book and the author then read my review. 
The GIVEAWAY will be from April 21 to July 4th.  Enter via rafflecopter blow (if you don't see it please press "read more" at the bottom of this post). 
Title: Letters from the Ledge
Author: Lynda Meyers
Genre: Y/A Fiction
Published: January 11, 2012
Pages: 353
Still reeling from the suicide of his best friend Tess, seventeen-year old Brendan struggles to overcome addiction and identity issues. Walking the ledge outside his Manhattan apartment has become its own sort of drug, as he stands night after night with his arms outstretched, ready to fly away. Sarah can see him from her window, and begins journaling about a boy on a ledge. Paige and Nate, a young couple in another building, can see both teens from their fire escape. None of them know the others are watching, but a strong desire for freedom resides in each of them, and as their lives begin to intertwine, that desire will be tested. Anyone can jump, but not everyone can fly... Sharp, humorous, and deeply layered, this chronicle of a suicidal teen’s survival explores the reality of addiction and other tough issues, but does so easily, through the use of multiple perspectives, intelligent dialogue and authentic characters. Equal parts romance, contemporary drama, and coming of age, this highly engaging and intensely beautiful novel challenges our cultural perceptions in the battle for balance. 
From The Back Cover: "When I was a kid I used to dream about being a pilot. I had a bunch of model airplanes and I would fly them off our balcony, then ride the elevator down and try to find them. Of course they were never there, so I figured once they left the balcony they must have become real airplanes–Pinocchio style. I know better now, but there’s a part of me that still wants to believe in miracles. When you make the leap, can you really become what everyone else says you can’t?" - Brendan High above Manhattan, Brendan walks the ledge. Night after night he stands with his arms outstretched, ready to fly away. 
Sarah can see him from her window. Paige can see them both from her fire escape. None of them know they’re being watched each night by the others. But everyone has a story to tell.
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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

NOTICE

Hello my peaches.

I am posting today to let all of you know that there may be no post until Thursday.

My family received some shocking news last night and I have to prepare to leave for my hometown Thursday morning, which means some of my exam dates have been suddenly pushed up to tomorrow.

I appreciate your understanding for the small break and I'll be happy to begin posting again soon.



Until then please feel free to browse other reviews, the new HEAVENLY CHALLENGE and the KAFKA ON THE SHORE giveaway.

See you Thursday.

~A.
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Sunday, April 15, 2012

In My Mailbox, New Challenge, New Giveaway Announcement

Happy Sunday, dearlings!

I'm happy to present another IMM today along with information about a new challenge and a new Giveaway!



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IN MY MAILBOX #4
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 ❀ Sisters of Isis



Title: Sisters of Isis
Author: Lynne Ewing
Genre:
Published: December 13, 2011
Pages: 538

Meri, Sudi, and Dalila are three girls who live in Washington, D.C., but have little else in common. Or so they think. When an ancient magic is revealed, so are their true identities as Sisters of Isis. The Summoning After receiving an anonymous invitation to dinner at the Sky Terrace, Sudi meets a mysterious guy named Abdel, and two other girls, both strangers. Sudi doesn't know whether to laugh or run when Abdel claims that she and the other girls are the descendants of Egyptian pharaohs, powerful ancestors who have given them magical gifts and powers of transformation. But when evil forces begin to threaten her world, Sudi has no choice but to believe. Divine One It's bad enough that Meri had to leave her laid-back life in California for a snobby prep school in Washington, D.C. Now her mom, Senator Stark, has decided to run for her party's presidential nomination, and Meri is being forced into the spotlight more than ever. But while Meri dodges the paparazzi, the Sisters' newest enemy--Apep, the Egyptian god of darkness and chaos--is on the loose, devouring innocent people and bringing unnatural storms. Meri knows he must be stopped. But have things already spun too far out of her control?
Thoughts - In all honesty, this really does not look interesting to me. But I was doing the thing that I do when I try to give a book the benefit of the doubt. So, we'll see.  

  Hex Hall ❀

Title: Hex Hall
Author: Rachel Hawkings
Genre: YA Paranormal
Published:
March 2, 2010
Pages:
336

Three years ago, Sophie Mercer discovered that she was a witch. It's gotten her into a few scrapes. Her non-gifted mother has been as supportive as possible, consulting Sophie's estranged father--an elusive European warlock--only when necessary. But when Sophie attracts too much human attention for a prom-night spell gone horribly wrong, it's her dad who decides her punishment: exile to Hex Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward Prodigium, a.k.a. witches, faeries, and shapeshifters.
By the end of her first day among fellow freak-teens, Sophie has quite a scorecard: three powerful enemies who look like supermodels, a futile crush on a gorgeous warlock, a creepy tagalong ghost, and a new roommate who happens to be the most hated person and only vampire student on campus. Worse, Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her only friend is the number-one suspect. As a series of blood-curdling mysteries starts to converge, Sophie prepares for the biggest threat of all: an ancient secret society determined to destroy all Prodigium, especially her.
Note: This has already been reviewed. Find the review here. 
 ❀ Demon Glass
Title: Demon Glass
Author: Rachel Hawkings
Genre: YA Paranormal
Published:
March 22, 2011
Pages:
359

Sophie Mercer thought she was a witch.

That was the whole reason she was sent to Hex Hall, a reform school for delinquent Prodigium (aka witches, shapeshifters, and fairies). But that was before she discovered the family secret, and that her hot crush, Archer Cross, is an agent for The Eye, a group bent on wiping Prodigium off the face of the earth.

Turns out, Sophie’s a demon, one of only two in the world—the other being her father. What’s worse, she has powers that threaten the lives of everyone she loves. Which is precisely why Sophie decides she must go to London for the Removal, a dangerous procedure that will destroy her powers.

But once Sophie arrives she makes a shocking discovery. Her new friends? They’re demons too. Meaning someone is raising them in secret with creepy plans to use their powers, and probably not for good. Meanwhile, The Eye is set on hunting Sophie down, and they’re using Archer to do it. But it’s not like she has feelings for him anymore. Does she?

Thoughts: I liked the first one of the series a bit, but not enough to make me feverish about readint the second one. I have it though and I'm sure the desire to complete a series/trilogy will get me reading it eventually. 



 ❀ Switched

Title: Switched
Author: Amanda Hocking
Genre: YA Paranormal
Published: July 12, 2010
Pages: 304

When Wendy Everly was six-years-old, her mother was convinced she was a monster and tried to kill her. It isn't until eleven years later that Wendy finds out her mother might've been telling the truth. With the help of Finn Holmes, Wendy finds herself in a world she never knew existed - and it's one she's not sure if she wants to be a part of.





 

Note: This has already been reviewed. Find the review here.
 
 ❀ Fallen
Title: Fallen

Author: Lauren Kate

Genre: YA Fantasy, Paranormal, Angels-Demons

Published: December 8, 2009
Pages:
452

There’s something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori.

Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price’s attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in sultry Savannah, Georgia. He’s the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move.

Even though Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce–and goes out of his way to make that very clear–she can’t let it go. Drawn to him like a moth to a flame, she has to find out what Daniel is so desperate to keep secret . . . even if it kills her.



Note: I am currently in the middle of reading this. I am not yet impressed and I'm hoping that I will be at some point in the next 280ish page left to go. 


 ❀ The Lightening Thief

Title: The Lightning Thief
Author: Rick Riordan
Genre: Middlegrade Myth-Fantasy
Published: April 1, 2006
Pages: 377 
In this stunning collectors' edition of The Lightning Thief, Percy Jackson's world is brought to life with eight full-color plates by the series jacket artist John Rocco. The edition comes in an elegant slipcase with a ribbon bookmark, rough edges, and cloth cover--a perfect keepsake for fans of this truly epic series.

After getting expelled from yet another school for yet another clash with mythological monsters only he can see, twelve-year-old Percy Jackson is taken to Camp Half-Blood, where he finally learns the truth about his unique abilities: He is a demigod, half human, half immortal. Even more stunning: His father is the Greek god Poseidon, ruler of the sea, making Percy one of the most powerful demigods alive. There's little time to process this news. All too soon, a cryptic prophecy from the Oracle sends Percy on his first quest, a mission to the Underworld to prevent a war among the gods of Olympus.

This first installment of Rick Riordan's best-selling series is a non-stop thrill-ride and a classic of mythic proportions.
Note: I'd read this one quite a while back, but I bought it for Mr. J this week so I thought I'd include it! 

 

 ❀ The Meaning of Night

Title: The Meaning of Night
Author: Michael Cox
Genre: Historical Thriller, Mystery
Published:  September 1, 2006
Pages: 703
Edward Glyver has a confession to make: He's responsible for an unsolved, entirely random murder in Victorian London. But there are untold confessions to come, starting with the fact that Glyver is not his real name, and that his true identity, as heir to one of England's wealthiest and most influential peerages, is slowly being usurped by his childhood archrival, Phoebus Daunt.

Unwilling to accept the middle-class fate chosen for him by his mother, Edward plumbs the truth of his heritage. Deftly navigating the murky confines of London in his quest to find his mark -- an unscrupulous con man who has charmed Edward's father into making him heir to the estate -- Edward succumbs to a vice that has precipitated the downfall of many before him: revenge.


This is also one that was bought for Mr. J, but again I have every intention of eventually reading it... even though it does sound kind of intense. 

 ❀ The Glass of Time
 
Title: The Glass of Time
Author: Michael Cox
Genre: Historical Thriller, Mystery
Published:  October 1, 2008
Pages: 586

In the autumn of 1876, nineteen-year-old orphan Esperanza Gorst arrives at the great country house of Evenwood in Northamptonshire. There she will serve as the new lady's maid to the former Emily Carteret, now Lady Tansor. But Esperanza is no ordinary servant. She has been sent by her guardian, the mysterious Madame de l'Orme, to uncover the secrets that her new mistress has sought to conceal - and to set right a past injustice in which her own life is intertwined.

Unable to escape the reverberations of past misdeeds, Lady Tansor finds herself desperate to keep Esperanza from learning dark, dangerous truths.

As well as a page-turning period mystery, The Glass of Time is a beautifully written and vividly imagined study of seduction, betrayal, and friendship between two powerful women bound together by the past.
  

Another one for Mr. J! This is book #2 in "The Meaning of Night" series.  


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New Challenge
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I've created a challenge, lovelies! 

Auggie-Talk's 2012 Heavenly Challenge

Prizes? YES!


Name: 2012 Heavenly Challenge
Host: Auggie-Talk
Dates: April 1st - December 31
Prizes: Yes

This is a crossover challenge. Books from other challenges count.

Challenge Goal:   Read books containing angelic themes or characters. Books about Angels, containing angelic characters, or with references to battles between heaven and hell all count. The books can be fiction or non-fiction, Middlegrade, YA, or Adult.

There are 5 levels to this challenge. You are more than welcome to move up if you finish one level and wish to continue. Once a level is chosen, however, you will not have the option to move down. 

Level 1: Angel - Read 10 books containing angelic themes or characters.
Level 2: Archangel - Read 15 books containing angelic themes or characters.
Level 3: Ophanim - Read 25 books containing angelic themes or characters.
Level 4: Cherubim - Read 30 books containing angelic themes or characters.
Level 5: Seraphim - Read 35 books containing angelic themes or characters.

To join the challenge and view the prizes, rules, and book lists click here.

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Giveaways

NOTICE: The Sookie Stackhouse Giveaway is OVER!
The Winner will be contacted, if prize not accepted within 3 days another winner will be chosen. 
New Giveaway announced tomorrow, Monday, April 16
"Letters From the Ledge" by Linda Meyers

Just to remind everyone, I have two great giveaways going on right now. If you'll just click the little linkies, they'll send you to the appropriate page. Good Luck!



 Ends May 1st
Alright! Good luck on the giveaways and challenge everyone!

Until Next Blog, 

Read on! 

~A.
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