Posts Categorized: ala

American Library Association Annual Convention 2015 Summary

01 Jul, 2015 by in ala, alaac15 1 comment



Fire and Ice was able to attend ALA this year in San Fransisco. It was a drop and dash (super fast) experience, since I was on family vacation at the time. I picked up a few amazing reads I wanted to share with you!

This year also meant much more than years previous, as I am now a middle school teacher. There are some great giveaways including school packets with book resources, as well as bookmarks and posters I will be adding to my classroom library. ALA is always like a day full of treasure. Here is some I came away with.

The books…


Autumn’s Kiss
The Poe Estate
The Wild Ones
Illuminae (The Illuminae Files)

Westly: A Spider’s Tale
The Dogs
Remnants: Season of Fire (A Remnants Novel)
Andi Unstoppable (An Andi Boggs Novel)
The Taken (Foxcraft #1)
Upside-Down Magic
Fires of Invention (Mysteries of Cove)
A Heart Revealed (Proper Romance)
Lord Fenton’s Folly (Proper Romance)

My favorite booth giveaway from the convention



Titles I’m Sad I Missed

willing to trade for…

The Marvels
Star Wars in 100 Scenes
Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between
Shades of Doon (A Doon Novel)
Until We Meet Again
Spinning Starlight
Circus Mirandus

If you attended ALA, leave me link to your summary post or a link to your photos. I would love to see them!


Review: Stitching Snow by R.C. Lewis

15 Oct, 2014 by in ala, disney hyperion, R.C. Lewis, stitching snow, YA book reviews, ya fantasy 1 comment

I received this book for free from ALA in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Stitching Snow by R.C. Lewis

Stitching Snow

by R.C. Lewis
Published by Disney Hyperion on October 14th 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Pages: 336
Format: ARC
Source: ALA
Buy the BookGoodreads
Princess Snow is missing.

Her home planet is filled with violence and corruption at the hands of King Matthias and his wife as they attempt to punish her captors. The king will stop at nothing to get his beloved daughter back—but that’s assuming she wants to return at all.

Essie has grown used to being cold. Temperatures on the planet Thanda are always sub-zero, and she fills her days with coding and repairs for the seven loyal drones that run the local mines.

When a mysterious young man named Dane crash-lands near her home, Essie agrees to help the pilot repair his ship. But soon she realizes that Dane’s arrival was far from accidental, and she’s pulled into the heart of a war she’s risked everything to avoid. With the galaxy’s future—and her own—in jeopardy, Essie must choose who to trust in a fiery fight for survival

Stitching Snow reminded me a lot of the Wondla Series by Tony DiTerlizzi. Take Snow White and mash it up with Star Wars like drones, add some cage fighting and you have a fresh take on an old fairy tale. Essie is living a quiet life repairing mining drones on planet Thanda when a ship crashes across the sky. The lone survivor is a mysterious and dangerous boy named Dane. Essie’s goal is to get him up and out of her life as soon as possible. The two work on repairing or “stitching” the code to get his mode of transportation back in the air. But as the plot unravels, we learn Dane is way more than meets the eye, much more than a traveling treasure hunter. He is a threat in more ways than one. Essie has major trust issues from her abuse in the past and any male is to be held at more than arms distance.

With slow building romance and plenty of action, Essie’s journey takes readers to several different planets. All the while she has sidekick dwarf drones Dimwit and Cusser by her side. There are dark villains, an evil step-mother and the potential inheritance of a royal throne. Overall, I really enjoyed R.C. Lewis debut. It took a while to understand the world and mindset of each character, but once rolling there is plenty going on! I also really like that this is a standalone. The techy, sci fi side isn’t normally my forte, but the complexity of Dane and Essie’s relationship kept me hooked. Kudos to Lewis for holding my interest and wrapping things up in a hopeful, romantic way.

Content: recommend for 16 and older because of two attempted rape scenes and heavy themes. No swearing. Moderate violence.

About the Author

RC-Headshot-1-SmallerR.C. Lewis teaches math to teenagers—sometimes in sign language, sometimes not—so whether she’s a science geek or a bookworm depends on when you look. That may explain why her characters don’t like to be pigeonholed. Coincidentally, R.C. enjoys reading about quantum physics and the identity issues of photons.

Her debut novel Stitching Snow is a sci-fi retelling of Snow White, releasing October 14th from Hyperion.


Review ~ Destination Unknown by Amy Clipston

13 Aug, 2014 by in ala, amy clipston, book review, Zondervan Leave a comment

I received this book for free from ALA, Zondervan in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review ~ Destination Unknown by Amy Clipston

Destination Unknown

by Amy Clipston
Published by Zondervan on February 4, 2014
Genres: Christian, Contemporary, Fiction, Young Adult
Pages: 272
Format: Paperback
Source: ALA, Zondervan
Buy the BookGoodreads
It’s senior year, and Whitney Richards is tired of the constant pressures to be perfect. When she gets a D in Calculus, her mother immediately hires a tutor, worried Whitney won’t get into the “right” college---her alma mater---with imperfect grades. Her tutor, Taylor, is a quiet, mysterious boy who is unlike anyone Whitney has met before. But Taylor’s rougher upbringing has her mother and friends discouraging any type of relationship. Tired of having to play a part for everyone else, Whitney quits the cheerleading squad that once defined her social identity, and begins spending more time with Taylor. Her mom and friends worry Whitney is making a huge mistake, and even Taylor begins to show concern for some of her choices. But for the first time, Whitney is in the driver’s seat of her life. Will she be able to find her identity---and God’s plan for her life---before she throws everything away?

I picked up a copy of Destination Unknown from the Zondervan booth at ALA in Las Vegas this year. I know I can always count on Zondervan for high quality, clean Christian reads. Destination Unknown is the second in a series about cousins, but having not read the first, I had no problem picking it up and loving it! So, really it’s more of a companion novel. Author Amy Clipston does an excellent job exploring the painful process of “finding oneself” as teen and separating your wishes from the pressure of peers and the expectations of parents. Whitney is in her senior year, coasting by as head cheerleader, and up until this point she’s been the perfect child. 4.0 student, accepted into a prestigious college, with the popular football player boyfriend. A domino effect of events including a “D” in calculus causes a shift. Suddenly she’s painfully aware that her mom’s plans for her life may not be the same as her own and maybe her “friends” and true friends after all.

Whitney starts a downward spiral of small rebellions against her uber strict mother, and spends a lot of time on her knees. I absolutely love when teen titles encourage prayer. Christian behavior vs. church going Christian by name only  is also explored. I will be passing this book on to my daughters and purchasing the author’s other titles. I highly recommend it as a clean, contemporary read that hits on so many things: coming of age, bullying, repentance and loyalty without being heavy handed. Loved it!




about_ the_author

Amy Clipston is the award-winning and best-selling author of the Kauffman Amish Bakery series. Her novels have hit multiple best-seller lists including CBD, CBA, and ECPA. Amy 2765728holds a degree in communication from Virginia Wesleyan College and works full-time for the City of Charlotte, NC. Amy lives in North Carolina with her husband, two sons, and four spoiled rotten cats. Visit her online at Facebook: AmyClipstonBooks Twitter: @AmyClipston