Posts Categorized: netgalley

Galley Glancing ~ October ARCs

07 Oct, 2014 by in eidelweiss, galley glancing, netgalley, wishlist Leave a comment

No matter how many books I have in my TBR pile, I find that I still love Galley Glancing every once in a while. So many shiny new titles available on Netgalley and Eidelweiss!  I haven’t been doing much e reading lately because I’ve found it affects my sleep and also makes it hard for my “brain to shut off.” Many times I use an i phone to read and it heats up too fast in my hand. Nook…toast. It always malfunctioned so I gave up. I also feel like once I request a copy online, if I get ten pages in and hate it, I am then bound to review it. The last three I’ve requested I’ve had a hard time with.

How do you DNF on Netgalley?

What e reader do you prefer?

Are you a paper reader or e reader and why?

I prefer paper copies.

While I know ebooks are the direction many publishers are going to push promotional copies, I miss getting uncorrected bound proofs and ARCs as often as I used to. Paper is still my preferred method of reading. You just can’t beat a book!

 

Here’s a few titles that caught my eye online and will go on my wishlist.

ruby_airshipNetgalley

The Ruby Airship
by Sharon Gosling
Capstone Young Readers
Switch Press
Pub Date Feb 2 2015

In this action-packed sequel to The Diamond Thief, trapeze-artist Remy has left the circus and her life as a jewel thief behind, but doubts that young detective Thaddeus Rec will ever truly trust her. Torn between her new life and her old, her mind is made up when Yannick, a fellow circus-performer from Remy’s past, arrives in London. Remy decides it’s time to go with him to France, and rejoin her best friend Claudette and the circus. But Thaddeus is sure that Yannick is up to no good. He’s determined to track them down and win Remy back, even if he has to embark on a perilous journey by airship to do so.

 

 

My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Storiesmy true love gave to me
by Stephanie Perkins
St. Martin’s Press
St. Martin’s Griffin
Pub Date Oct 14 2014

Looks like I missed this one on Netgalley…but adding to my list! I love Christmas compliations :)

***Limited availability and limited approval through 7/24-7/28 only.
If you love holiday stories, holiday movies, made-for-TV-holiday specials, holiday episodes of your favorite sitcoms and, especially, if you love holiday anthologies, you’re going to fall in love with My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories by twelve bestselling young adult writers (Holly Black, Ally Carter, Matt de La Peña, Gayle Forman, Jenny Han, David Levithan, Kelly Link, Myra McEntire, Rainbow Rowell, Stephanie Perkins, Laini Tayler and Kiersten White), edited by the international bestselling Stephanie Perkins. Whether you celebrate Christmas or Hanukkah, Winter Solstice or Kwanzaa, there’s something here for everyone. So curl up by the fireplace and get cozy. You have twelve reasons this season to stay indoors and fall in love.

 

travel_glassesGORGEOUS cover
Netgalley

Travel Glasses (The Call to Search Everywhen Book 1)
The Call to Search Everywhen, #1
Chess Desalls
Czidor Lore, LLC
Pub Date May 7 2014

When an ethereal being knocks Calla to the ground near her family’s lakeside cottage, Valcas helps her to escape by traveling to another place and time. At first, Calla is as intrigued by the otherworldly Valcas as she is by his method of time travel: an altered pair of sunglasses that enable the wearer to search for anyone or anywhere in the past, present or future. That is until she suspects that his search for her was no mere coincidence.

With her trust broken, Calla sets off on her own, taking the Travel Glasses with her. Torn between searching for her estranged father and reuniting with the rest of her family, she tracks down the inventor of the Travel Glasses in hopes of discovering more about Valcas’ past and motivations. With Valcas hot on her trail, Calla hopes to find what she’s looking for before he catches up.

The Call to Search Everywhen is a serial series of novel-length installments.

 

Rising Fire: A Novel of the Stone Circles (Warriors of Destiny)rising_fire
by Terri Brisbin
March 3, 2015

What if the standing stones and stone circles across the old Celtic world had a secret origin and use?
What if some opened into another world?
What if the goddess of fire was trapped beneath one?

Lovely and innocent Brienne of Yester has always been able to manipulate fire, but when her powers suddenly surge, the simple life she once knew explodes.

Handsome, fearless, and commanding William de Brus has been summoned by the king to investigate a nobleman rumored to have powers linked to the fabled fire goddess. When he chances upon Brienne, his desire for her is immediate. But as his mystical quest unfolds, William realizes that she is at the center of it—for Brienne possesses the very power he has been sent to vanquish….

As their attraction deepens, William attempts to free Brienne from the dark force beginning to control her—even when his duty demands that he treat her as an enemy. With emotions flaring, fire rising, and evil threatening at every turn, can the two lovers survive the coming battle and save all of humanity?

 

What titles have you found galley glancing lately?

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Catch A Falling Star by Kim Culbertson

01 May, 2014 by in catch a falling star, kim culbertson, netgalley, scholastic, young adult fiction 5 comments

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

Catch A Falling Star by Kim Culbertson

Catch a Falling Star

by Kim Culbertson
Published by Scholastic on April 29th 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Pages: 304
Format: eARC
four-stars
Source: Netgalley
Buy the BookGoodreads
A deliciously charming novel about finding true love . . . and yourself.

Nothing ever happens in Little, CA. Which is just the way Carter Moon likes it. But when Hollywood arrives to film a movie starring former child star turned PR mess Adam Jakes, everything changes. Carter's town becomes a giant glittery set and, much to her annoyance, everyone is starry-eyed for Adam. Carter seems to be the only girl not falling all over herself to get a glimpse of him. Which apparently makes her perfect for the secret offer of a lifetime: playing the role of Adam's girlfriend while he's in town, to improve his public image, in exchange for a hefty paycheck. Her family really needs the money and so Carters agrees. But it turns out Adam isn't at all who she thought he was. As they grow closer, their relationship walks a blurry line between what's real and what's fake, and Carter must open her eyes to the scariest of unexplored worlds - her future. Can Carter figure out what she wants out of life AND get the guy? Or are there no Hollywood endings in real life?

I’ve been on a contemporary YA kick lately looking for sweet, summer reads. Catch A Falling Star is just that! Small town girl Carter Moon lives in Little California and works in her parents’ sandwich shop. She’s perfectly happy with the way her life is now. No need to go off to New York or explore the world. She has roots in her town. Carter teaches the elderly dance classes and is not at all fazed when movie star Adam Jakes rolls in to town to shoot his latest movie. Adam is your typical arrogant child star turned young adult. He gets what he want s and he has an attitude. Carter’s best friend Chloe is the adoring fan, with poster plastered all over her walls. So no one is more shocked when Adam seems to take a liking to Carter. How did her friend make the radar and the cut to become Adam’s girlfriend?

Delicately yet realistically exploring addiction and the masks we all wear, Catch a Falling Star is a clean, sweet YA. We get a very clear picture of Carter, but not much fleshing out of Adam or the other side characters. I would have loved to know more about each of them! Carter had a functional relationship with her parents, she is down-to-earth and likable. She has the hard decision all seniors must make in the summer after high school. What to do, where to go to college, to take a gap year or to stay at home? In the vein of Wish You Were Italian and Jennifer E Smith books, Catch a Falling Star ended with a twist, and left me with a smile on my face. A cute read with some great poetic passages peppered through out. Thanks to Scholastic and Netgalley for the sneak peek!

Content: suitable for younger YA readers– boy taking off his shirt a few times, drinking at a party and kissing.

kim_culbertson

heatherAbout the Author

Sourcebooks Fire published Kim’s award winning first YA novel Songs for a Teenage Nomad (2010, originally Hip Pocket Press, 2007) and her second YA novel Instructions for a Broken Heart (2011) which was named a Booklist 2011 Top Ten Romance Title for Youth and won the 2012 Northern California Book Award for YA Fiction. Her third YA novel Catch a Falling Star will be published by Scholastic on April 29, 2014. When she’s not writing for teens, she’s teaching them. She’s a college advisor and teaches creative writing at Forest Charter School. Kim wrote her eBook novella The Liberation of Max McTrue for her students who, over the years, have taught her much more than she has taught them. Kim lives in the Northern California foothills with her husband and daughter.

Learn more on her website*facebook* twitter

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ARC Review: Wish You Were Italian by Kristin Rae

21 Apr, 2014 by in bloomsbury, book review, kristin rae, netgalley, YA book reviews, YA contemporary 3 comments

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

ARC Review: Wish You Were Italian by Kristin Rae

Wish You Were Italian

by Kristin Rae
Series: If Only #2
Published by Bloomsbury USA on May 6, 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Pages: 323
Format: eARC
four-stars
Source: Netgalley
Buy the BookGoodreads
Pippa is in Italy for the summer and, despite her parents’ wishes, she has no intention of just studying the local art! She has a list of things of her own to do: from swimming in the Mediterranean Sea to getting a makeover – and falling for an Italian boy! As Pippa explores the dramatic ruins of Rome and Pompeii, she is swept into her own drama with two guys: an irresistible local she knows is nothing but trouble and a cute American archaeology student . . . Will she find her true love?

The perfect reckless romance to enjoy whether you are home or abroad.

Another really fun summer read. Wish You Were Italian is light, fun and clean. Plus, you get to see Italy though the eyes of Pippa, a 17 year old on her own adventure. Pippa’s mom owns and art gallery and is usually fully immersed in her own work, so Pippa’s not surprised when she gets sent away for  the summer to an art history program through an Italian program. But once Pippa touches down in a strange and exciting country she decides not to conform to her mother’s wishes– she’s off on her own sight seeing trip to take photos of all the places she’s ever wanted to see! It helps that she bumps into Darren, a cute archaeological student with unruly hair and a sweet personality. And then, there’s several dares written in a journal from her best friend back home that lead her to do things she’s never dared to do before. Like cutting her ties, her future plans and seeing the world on her own. I love that Pippa stays grounded by checking in with her grandmother. She has a great relationship with at least one adult. at home and another in Italy.

I lived vicariously through her as she ate gelato, toured the collosseum, lived in a fishing town full of color by the coast and met a local Italian boy who makes sparks fly. The two main men in this story are on complete opposite ends of the spectrum in personality and it makes for a fun, not annoying love triangle. This is one I would buy and pass on to my daughters. There is some tension and kissing, but no parental content that made me uncomfortable. Highly recommend! Awesome way to tour Italy through the pages of a book!

heather Kristin_Rae

Author Bio

From Kristin Rae’s Website

YA writer.
I’m represented by Marietta B. Zacker of the Nancy Gallt Literary Agency, and my debut YA contemporary WISH YOU WERE ITALIAN will be published May 6, 2014 by Bloomsbury.
 
Chocolate addict.
Cake, cupcakes, cookies, hot drinks, Cadbury Mini Eggs. I don’t discriminate.  

Book hoarder.
I go to a lot of author events. I wind up with a lot of books. Hey, that wall could use a bookshelf.
 
 
Crafter.
Oil painting, watercolors, paper crafts.
 
Eater of pizza.
Cheese. Mushroom. Red pepper flakes.

Kdrama and Kpop convert.
If you have to ask, you are missing out on one of life’s most enjoyable time wasters. 
 
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Book Review: Surfacing by Shana Norris

25 Mar, 2014 by in mermaids, netgalley, paranormal, shana norris, swans landing, YA fiction Leave a comment

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

Book Review: Surfacing by Shana Norris

Surfacing

by Shana Norris
Series: Swans Landing #1
Published by Shana Norris on December 19th 2013
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Pages: 328
Format: eARC
three-half-stars
Source: Netgalley
Buy the BookGoodreads
Sixteen-year-old Mara Westray has just lost her mother, and now, being shipped off to live with the father she doesn’t know is not how she imagined grieving. She’s already counting down the days until she turns eighteen and can leave the tiny island of Swans Landing.

But from the moment she steps off the ferry, nothing is as ordinary as it looks. Whispers of a haunting song on the wind make her see impossible things, and she isn’t sure she can trust her judgment about what is real and what isn’t anymore. Maybe she can’t even trust her judgment about quiet Josh Canavan, whose way of speaking in riddles and half-truths only confuses her more, luring her deeper into the secrets hidden beneath the ocean’s surface.

As she tries to unravel the events that led to her mom fleeing the island sixteen years ago, Mara finds that the biggest secret of all is only the beginning.

Surfacing is the first book in the Swans Landing series.

I downloaded Surfacing off of Netgalley drawn by the idea of a remote seaside town, reached only via ferry and intrigued by the legend of mer people or “finfolk.” Main character Mara is thrown into a situation she is less than fond of when her mother passes away and she’s sent to live with her father who she know nothing about.All of her life she’s felt abandoned by him, and now she will have to live with him in Swan’s Landing. Form the moment she arrives in town she can tell she’s not welcome. There’s the strange woman who tells her “she’s not supposed to be here”, and a division amongst the town people– Mara seems to be right int he middle of the heated battle. Only she’s not sure why?

Why is it that no one will tell her why she is being bullied and singled out, or why there is so much tension in this new hometown?

I enjoyed the premise and legend behind Surfacing as well as the cover and the back story included on the author’s website. I also liked that the school staff, townspeople and teens take a stand against bullying. However, the voice of both Mara and her nemesis Sailor started to grate on me after a while as they were so full of attitude, anger and drama. This definitely feels YA, but the angst was a bit heavy handed for my taste. Love triangles are not my favorite either, and Mara leaves my favorite pick in the dark about what is really going on.  I liked it enough to finish and read the sneak peek of book two, but it’s probably not a book I would buy for my shelves. I did like the fleshing out of each character, enough so that I felt I knew them. I enjoyed seeing progress in the relationship between daughter and father. I also really love it when indie authors put their works on Netgalley so we can be exposed to a wide variety of YA titles. Thanks to the author and Netgalley for a chance to read it!

Content: older teen (highlight to reveal) in depth talk of sex, co ed sleepovers, swearing, bullying, violence between adult and child.

heather

Author Bio

shana norris

I was born August 19, on my parents’ first wedding anniversary, in a small town in eastern North Carolina. I’m the oldest of four children. I’m a leo, which means I’m supposed to be bossy, interfering, and intolerant. But I’m also supposed to be broad-minded, warm-hearted, and creative, so maybe it all evens out.

I’ve always loved books. My parents would read my favorite books to me so often that I’d memorize them before I had learned how to read. Some of my favorite memories as a kid are of my mom taking my siblings and me to the public library. I’d always check out a big stack of books and then have them all read within a week. The first time I can remember writing a story that wasn’t for school, but simply because I wanted to write, was when I was eight years old. I wrote and illustrated a book called The Lonely Rectangle. It was a story about a rectangle that had been thrown in the trash and felt unloved until someone found it and took it home to use as a table. No, it was not a box or anything like that, it was just a plain rectangle. I have no clue why I decided to write about a geometric shape. It wasn’t like I was particularly fond of math or anything.

I spent my junior year of high school and part of my senior year living just outside of West Palm Beach, Florida, where my family moved to the summer I turned sixteen. I had a hard time making friends, but the good thing that came out of it was that I started to spend a lot of time online since I had no one to hang out with after school. That was when I discovered online journals written by teen girls and even started my own, which I wrote under a pen name. It was that experience with online journals in 1996-1997, the predecessor of today’s blogs, that helped inspire Something to Blog About.

I knew from a young age that I wanted to be a writer. Well, actually I wanted to be a ballerina, an archaeologist, a teacher, AND a writer, all at the same time. But after a while I figured out that I’d never taken a ballet lesson in my life, I didn’t particularly like to get dirty, and I hated being in a classroom all day, so that really only left writer as my future job. My family advised me to get a back up plan, which meant, “study something else in school that you can earn a living at while waiting for your books to sell.” So I studied graphic design, tested out of as many classes as I possibly could to avoid sitting in so many classrooms, and got my degree.

I’m still a web designer by day and write my books during my lunch hours and at night. I currently live in North Carolina with my husband and our menagerie of pets: two dogs–Chloe and Zoey–and five cats–Elmo, Bandit, Kit, BC, and Butter.

Fin the author on Facebook * twitter * pinterest

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Peek Into My Postbox #12

21 Feb, 2014 by in netgalley, peek into my Postbox, shannon messenger Leave a comment

peek_into_my_postbox

Peek into my Postbox is a meme at Fire and Ice. It’s a chance to share the fun things we get in your box each week. If you already participate in your own similar meme…no worries.  Link your post below to share what books you bought, checked out at the library, bought or received. Also, if you have some exciting other mail or swag to share that would be fun too.

Here’s a Peek into My Postbox

peek_into_postbox

 

The Cowboy of Valentine Valley: A Valentine Valley Novel
Why I Don’t Hide My Freckles Anymore: Perspectives on True Beauty
Let the Storm Break (Sky Fall)
Let the Sky Fall
The Kiss of Deception (The Morrighan Chronicles)
Fire on Ice: Gospel Lessons Learned from a Lifetime of Sports

Netgalley

The Geography of You and Me

What’s in your postbox?

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Book Breview: Endless by Amanda Gray

09 Jan, 2014 by in amanda gray, month9books, netgalley, review, young adult fiction 2 comments

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

Book Breview: Endless by Amanda Gray

Endless

by Amanda Gray
Published by Month9Books on September 10, 2013
Genres: Fantasy, Time Travel, Young Adult
Pages: 384
Format: eBook
three-half-stars
Source: Netgalley
Buy the BookGoodreads
Jenny Kramer knows she isn't normal. After all, not everybody can see the past lives of people around them.

When she befriends Ben Daulton, resident new boy, the pair stumble on an old music box with instructions for “mesmerization” and discover they may have more in common than they thought. Like a past life.

Using the instructions in the music box, Ben and Jenny share a dream that transports them to Romanov Russia and leads them to believe they have been there together before. But they weren't alone. Nikolai, the mysterious young man Jenny has been seeing in her own dreams was there, too. When Nikolai appears next door, Jenny is forced to acknowledge that he has travelled through time and space to find her. Doing so means he has defied the laws of time, and the Order, an ominous organization tasked with keeping people in the correct time, is determined to send him back.

While Ben, Jenny and Nikolai race against the clock - and the Order - Jenny and Nikolai discover a link that joins them in life - and beyond death.

The first thing that drew me to Endless was the cover. Heaven! The beginning chapter was a little rocky for me as the character’s lines and choppy writing style didn’t connect well, but delving into the rest of the story was smooth and easy. This is a book rich with detail. If you were a fan of Dreaming Anastasia by Joy Preble, it’s another YA title to add to your shelves featuring the Romanov family of Russia.

Story in a Nutshell

Jenny is an artist who can feel and see people’s past by touching them so she remains recluse and immerses herself in her art. But suddenly a man she doesn’t know shows up in all of her paintings and begins to appear in her dreams. She has one true friend at the bookstore where they both work, but is suspicious of people. During her”spare time” works alongside her father as he renovates old homes. They meet Ben and his mother on one such job and Ben is just as standoffish.What Jessie and Ben find one day in the attic pulls both teens into a time travel mystery and a dangerous race for time in the present.

What I liked

I always like books with multi- layered elements of history. Abandoned homes that come to life, antiques with meaning in the present day, family history with links to the past

I loved that both the main characters parents were involved even in a  minute way in the story line. These teens have angst, they have independence– but they also have parents who check in and care.

Jenny is navigating what it means to trust and open up to people. She finds true friendship and others that stand by her as she lets down walls.

The flashbacks and  imagery of the Romanov family living in their own home as an exile and sewing their jewels into their clothing was so vivid and makes the bits of history real.

The pace clipped along without stalling which makes Endless interesting and easy to read.

What I Struggled With

I didn’t fall in love with main characters Jenny and Nikolai as they found each other in time. It seemed to be a pre destined romance but not as convincing or emotionally moving to the reader.

Ben, the other main teen character seemed to drop out of the story when Nikolai appears. I wanted to know more about his role in the past visions and what he is seeing and feeling.   Would  love to see a second novel or novella form his point of view in the future.

The mystical elements of ouija boards and mesmirization were weaved in to connect past and present, but along with the men in green robes that looked like monks, they just didn’t mesh with my vision of time travel and Russian history.

Content: mild swearing, moderate violence and one heavy kissing scene.

 

heather

Trailer

About the author

Amanda Gray believes in magic and fantasy and possibilities. She is a team of two bestselling authors who live only miles apart but have never met in person. They talk on the phone and are the best of friends and between them have written more than a dozen novels and novellas and have had their work appear on television.

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Early ARC Review- Rules of Summer by Joanna Philbin

23 May, 2013 by in netgalley, poppy, Rules of Summer, ya Leave a comment

Rules of Summer
by Joanna Philbin
Hardcover, 352 pages
To be published June 4, 2013
by Poppy
ISBN 0316212059
Book Source: Netgalley
3.5 Stars

Book Summary from Netgalley: There are two sides to every summer.


When seventeen-year-old Rory McShane steps off the bus in East Hampton, it’s as if she’s entered another universe–one populated by impossibly beautiful people wearing pressed khakis and driving expensive cars. She’s signed on to be a summer errand girl for the Rules, a wealthy family with an enormous beachfront mansion, and maybe to sneak in some beach time. Upon arrival, she’s warned by other staff members to keep her head down and to avoid socializing with the family, but Rory soon learns that may be easier said than done.

Feeling claustrophobic in her country-club world, the youngest and most impulsive Rule child, seventeen-year-old Isabel, embarks on a breathless summer romance that her family would never approve of. Isabel has decided that this is the summer for taking chances, and she’s bringing Rory along for the ride. The girls forge a true friendship, but when long-hidden secrets start to surface and Rory reveals that she has feelings for someone, too–Connor Rule, Isabel’s older brother–their relationship is put to the test.

Review: I chose Rules of Summer because of the dreamy setting an promise of a light summer read in the Hamptons, on the tip of Long Island. Rory is a Jersey girl from a no nonsense background living wither her mom who seems to have a hard time picking reliable men. Tired of picking up the slack and being around the drama she packs up and takes a summer job with her aunt as the live in help of the Rule family, a blue blood high society wealthy Hamptons family. Right away it becomes obvious Rory is entering a different world of country clubs, in home theatres and a daughter of the house who is used to getting whatever she wants. Isabel Rule is Rory’s same age but the two couldn’t be any more different. Isabel’s growing pains and quest to find herself landed her in California where she picked up a love of surf. Now that she is home she feels the undeniable itch that things aren’t quite the right fit anymore. So when when she runs into an older surfer in the water she gets pulled in deep.

I loved the distinction between classes and how those lines can be blurred by life and friendship. The main distraction for me was one of the love interests and what a jerk he is through the entire book. Isabel is young and doesn’t seem to catch on, but the underage drinking, the age difference and sex were a giant red flag from the beginning. I wanted to yell “run!” 

On the flip side, Connor Rule, “the other boy” is nice, all-American and the perfect fit.  Drama is high and the pacing a little uneven, but the overall message is one of breaking down boundaries in the name of loyalty and love. If you are looking for YA contemp in the perfect place this one is for you, for older audiences due to content.

About the author: Joanna Philbin was born in Los Angeles and grew up in New York City. She is the daughter of television host Regis Philbin. She started her first novel at the age of seven, but only got as far as the second chapter. She went on to receive her B.A. from Brown University and an M.F.A. from the University of Notre Dame. She now lives in Santa Barbara, California.

Learn more on Goodreads/ author’s blog

Netgalley Free Ebook Review- Double Crossed by Ally Carter

09 Apr, 2013 by in netgalley Leave a comment

Double Crossed: A Spies and Thieves Story 
by Ally Carter
ebook, 60 pages
Published January 22nd 2013
by Disney Hyperion
ISBN1423187474
Heist Society #2.5, Gallagher Girls #5.5
Book Source: Netgalley
4 stars
Summary from Goodreads: Macey McHenry—Glamorous society girl or spy-in-training?
W.W. Hale V—Heir to an American dynasty or master thief?
There are two sides to every coin. Whether these two can work together is a tossup.
Born into privilege, Macey and Hale are experts at mingling with the upper class. But even if they’ve never raised an eyebrow at the glitz, neither teenager has ever felt at home with the glamour.
When Macey and Hale meet at a society gala, the party takes a dangerous turn. Suddenly they’re at the center of a hostage situation, and it’s up to them to stop the thugs from becoming hostile. Will Macey’s spy skills and Hale’s con-man ways be enough to outsmart a ruthless gang? Or will they have to seek out the ultimate inside girl to help?
The worlds of Heist Society and the Gallagher Girls collide in Ally Carter’s fast-paced, high-stakes and tantalizing new story. Get a behind the scenes glimpse as Ally delivers an irresistible thriller that is full of her signature style and savvy twists.
Review: Ally Carter is one of those automatic authors for me…I see a book she releases and I buy it. I was first introduced to her Heist Society series while browsing art at the Met Museum in NYC with Tales of A Ravenous Readr. Since reading Uncommon Criminals I’ve been hooked! When I saw this fun novella that blends both of her series characters into one setting I had to check it out.  I’ve never read the Gallagher Girls, but they are at the top of my wish list after sampling Macey’s personality in Double Crossed. I want to get to know Macey McHenry as well as I now know Hale. The aloof, ruffled, handsome Heister I know and love.
Macey and Hale are thrown into a high stake situation at a high society gala when the event is hijacked by men in masks. They have the jaws of life and don;t seem to be in much of a hurry to pull off the job–so what are they really after?  The banter between Macey and Hale makes me want to see much more interaction between these two series. Both are confident in their abilities and both have an air of “I know best.”  We also have some cameos by others from the books and the result is a mash up of awesome proportions.  If you haven;t discovered Ally Carter check this one out for free on Netgalley to wet your whistle and then dive right in!
Content: moderate violence, recommend for ages 16 and up

Author Bio from her website: I  was born and raised in Oklahoma. My mother was a teacher and my father a farmer and rancher. I have one older sister.
In high school, I was very active in a number of student organizations and graduated as co-valedictorian of my senior class. I then attended Oklahoma State University and Cornell University and worked for several years in the agricultural industry before writing full-time.
My first novel, Cheating at Solitaire (Berkley) was published in 2005. The following year I published the sequel to Solitaire, Learning to Play Gin. There are no more plans for future books in that series at this time.
My first novel for young adults, I’d Tell You I Love You but Then I’d Have to Kill You was published by Disney-Hyperion in April 2006. Love You Kill You (as we call it) was followed by Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy (October 2007), Don’t Judge a Girl By Her Cover (June 2009), Only the Good Spy Young (June 2010), Out of Sight, Out of Time (March 2012). Book six will be the final Gallagher Girls novel. Look for it in stores in 2013.
I am also the author of Heist Society (February 2010) and its sequels Uncommon Criminals (June 2011), and Perfect Scoundrels (February 2013).
My books have been published in more than twenty countries and have appeared on best-seller lists from the New York Times, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal, Barnes and Noble, IndieBound, and Bookscan. They have sold over two million copies.
I am one of the luckiest people in the world, and today, I’m able to do the job I wanted to do when I was a kid, and I am back living in Oklahoma.

Book Review- The Iron Knight by Julie Kagawa

01 Aug, 2011 by in netgalley, YA book reviews 4 comments

Paperback, 304 pages
Expected publication: October 25th 2011

by Harlequin Teen
ISBN 0373210361
series: Iron Fey #4
source: Netgalley
4.5 stars

Ash, former prince of the Winter Court, gave up everything. His title, his home, even his vow of loyalty. All for a girl… and all for nothing.

Unless he can earn a soul.

To cold, emotionless faery prince Ash, love was a weakness for mortals and fools. His own love had died a horrible death, killing any gentler feelings the Winter prince might have had. Or so he thought.

Then Meghan Chase—a half human, half fey slip of a girl— smashed through his barricades, binding him to her irrevocably with his oath to be her knight. And when all of Faery nearly fell to the Iron fey, she severed their bond to save his life. Meghan is now the Iron Queen, ruler of a realm where no Winter or Summer fey can survive.

With the (unwelcome) company of his archrival, Summer Court prankster Puck, and the infuriating cait sith Grimalkin, Ash begins a journey he is bound to see through to its end— a quest to find a way to honor his solemn vow to stand by Meghan’s side.

To survive in the Iron realm, Ash must have a soul and a mortal body. But the tests he must face to earn these things are impossible. At least, no one has ever passed to tell the tale.

And then Ash learns something that changes everything. A truth that turns reality upside down, challenges his darkest beliefs and shows him that, sometimes, it takes more than courage to make the ultimate sacrifice.

Once again Julie Kagawa absolutely blows me away with her masterful storytelling. She takes myth and fairytales of old and mixes in characters of her own creation then sets them in a world only she could build. Everything feels so real and vivid. In this final bookend to the Iron Fey series, Ash is out to keep his promise to be with Meghan forever. He must find his way from the Never Never to the River of Dreams to The End of The World and The Testing Grounds then face his demons and ghosts of the past. His quest begins with Puck and Grim and along the way several new characters are added in. Ones the reader will never guess!

It took me a while to get used to hearing the story from Ash’s perspective instead of through Meghan’s voice but I enjoyed seeing a whole new side to Ash. He must face the dark side of who he once was and his biggest fears that come with a soul. The Iron Knight explored the importance of keeping stories alive and atoning for past mistakes as well as the power of loyalty and love. Each character is forced to make some tough decisions.

I’m sad to see the ending of one of my favorite stories but am happy Julie has announced two new series. She never ceases to amaze me. Thanks so much to Net Galley and Harlequin Teen for a wonderful journey through the forest with the fey, red caps, the big bad wolf and even Baba Yaga. I can guarantee Ash, Puck and Meghan will long live on in readers’ imaginations!

Book Breview- Hereafter

29 Mar, 2011 by in netgalley, tara hudson 5 comments

by Tara Hudson Hardcover,
400 pages

Expected publication:
June 7th 2011
by HarperCollins

ISBN 139780062026774
4 stars

Can there truly be love after death? Drifting in the dark waters of a mysterious river, the only thing Amelia knows for sure is that she’s dead. With no recollection of her past life—or her actual death—she’s trapped alone in a nightmarish existence. All of this changes when she tries to rescue a boy, Joshua, from drowning in her river. As a ghost, she can do nothing but will him to live. Yet in an unforgettable moment of connection, she helps him survive. Amelia and Joshua grow ever closer as they begin to uncover the strange circumstances of her death and the secrets of the dark river that held her captive for so long. But even while they struggle to keep their bond hidden from the living world, a frightening spirit named Eli is doing everything in his power to destroy their newfound happiness and drag Amelia back into the ghost world . . . forever. Thrilling and evocative, with moments of pure pleasure, Hereafter is a sensation you won’t want to miss.

Summary: Amelia is dead. She knows that and not much else. Each night dreaming of being churned in water of her tragic end and each day wandering aimlessly through the land of the living. Then one day a boy she’s never seen is in the water with her and she can hear his heartbeat. Somehow against all odds he can see her, can touch her. So begins a whole new chance- hope blossoms anew for Amelia. She has never felt so alive, she’s never desired to follow or know anything more than this boy Joshua. But Joshua comes from a long line of seers– those who can see ghosts. And his grandmother knows their secret. She will do anything it takes to keep Amelia and Joshua apart. Then she’ll go a step further and try to send Amelia away forever.

What I loved: Both main characters. The two of them have off the charts chemistry and I found them genuine. They are likeable. They have real lives in the ordinary day to day happenings of a teen. Joshua is an all-American boy from a stable grounded family. Amelia is a captivating mystery. I’m a sucker for ghost stories and local history, always have been. So this book was perfect for me. And the cover…Gorgeous.

What I wish: The ending felt rushed and convoluted for me. I was wanting a fleshing out of evil bad boy Eli as well as why he felt a pull to Amelia. Readers will wonder why things shake out the way they do and will be left with unanswered questions. I’m hoping the sequel will answer those.

Will I read book 2? Yes Please! It’s been a long time since I’ve found a couple of characters I enjoyed as much as these two. This book will hold a tender spot in my heart as a doomed but destined story of love. Tara Hudson had my attention and held me entranced.

Source: NetGalley and HarperCollins. THANK YOU! HarperCollins is giving away a copy on Goodreads so hurry on over there to enter!

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