Posts Categorized: young adult fiction

Ebook Review- Prince Charming Must Die

29 Jun, 2012 by in young adult fiction Leave a comment

Prince Charming Must Die
by Isabella Fontaine and Ken Brosky
Kindle edition, 91 pages
Published April 2010
by Brew City Press
A Sin: B007V4JAO0
Book Source: Author
Summary from GoodreadsOn the eve of her 18th birthday, high school junior Alice Goodenough feels on top of the world. Classes are almost finished. She’s about to start her summer job at the local library, where she’ll be surrounded by all of her favorite books. And she has a wonderful boyfriend.

Then the rabbit shows up. The giant talking rabbit. He has a message:

200 years ago, the Brothers Grimm unleashed their stories upon the world.
Literally.

With the help of a magic pen and paper, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm brought all of their characters to life. The world was a more magical place … for a time. Cinderella found her prince. Briar Rose’s spell was broken. The dancing princesses spent their nights hidden away in a secret underground city. The old miller’s boy found true love.

Then, slowly, the Grimms’ characters began to change for the worse. They became Corrupted. Evil. They didn’t belong in our world, but it was too late for the Brothers Grimm to destroy them.

Only a hero can save the day. Every generation for the past 200 years, a hero has been chosen to fight the Corrupted and rid the world of the Grimms’ fairy tales. To her horror, Alice has been chosen as the next hero. As her 18th birthday nears, she begins to realize life is never going back to normal. School will never be the same. 

As for her boyfriend, Edward … well, he might be hiding a terrible secret.

Cathy’s review: Alice is almost 18, she has an amazing boyfriend, Edward, she loves to fence and she has a perfect volunteer job working in the library. Plus school’s almost over…what could go wrong? Plenty. On her first day at her library job she is asked to shelve an old book downstairs in the basement. In the basement she finds old books, a really old pen and a note… addressed to her, who could have known she would be down there? The note tells her to draw a door and not to forget the handle. This door opens to a room, where Alice finds a snake and another note telling her to kill it. The snake slithers away, and as it does it grows bigger. Alice uses the only weapon she has, the old pen, to stab the snake and that’s when the rabbit appears. Telling her a wild story about the Brothers Grimm’s stories, the characters become real and then they become corrupted. After they are corrupted, they need a hero, Alice, to kill them, so they can’t hurt anyone else. Alice quickly learns how to find the characters, but she’s not so sure she wants to kill them. Meanwhile, her “perfect” boyfriend has a secret of his own.

This book was just okay for me. I didn’t connect with the characters really. The story line is quite short, that might be part of why I didn’t connect with the characters, and the story seems quite rushed. There’s not really enough time to get to “know” them. I like to know my characters so that I can care what happens to them. 

Content: Sexual references, teenage drinking

Mary’s Review: Alice is head over heals in love with Edward the new boy at school. He’s the most handsome boy any girl has ever seen and out of every girl in school to choose from he has chosen her. Has told her she is his soul mate. She also gets her dream job working in the library for the summer. How could she get so lucky?

But just when she thinks everything is perfect, she meets a giant talking rabbit who claims to be Briar Rabbit. That’s right. Straight from Grimm’s Fairy Tales. He tells her she is a “hero” and has been chosen to kill the Corrupted. Who are the Corrupted? What is a “hero”? Is Alice going crazy? This is where the adventure begins.

This is a great read and book 1 of the Grimm’s Chronicles series.

I recommend this for young adults ages 16 and up. It contains mild profanity and mild intimacy content not suitable for younger children.

About the authors: Isabella Fontaine lives a quiet life on a farm in rural Wisconsin. She enjoys reading Grimm’s Fairy Tales and writing on a typewriter, which annoys her cats. This is her first book collection.

Ken Brosky received his MFA from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He’s written a number of books and regularly publishes short stories. He also helps out at Brew City Press whenever possible. This is his first young adult collection.
Find out more about authors: Goodreads/ Website
 

Book Review- Becoming Bayley

30 May, 2012 by in Susan Auten, young adult fiction 1 comment

Becoming Bayley
by Susan Auten
ebook
Published May 9, 2012
by Deseret Book Company
A SIN B008224CBQ
Book Source: Publisher
5 Stars
Book Summary From Goodreads: Bayley Albrecht’s dream is to play soccer on BYU’s South Field. When she is invited to soccer camp the summer before her senior year in high school, she just knows she’s one step closer to her dream. Things get even better when she meets Matt Macauley, the star of the men’s soccer team. When they decide to write each other while Matt is on his mission, Bayley figures her life can’t get any better. But it certainly can get worse…

After she receives a minor concussion from playing soccer, Bayley discovers she had a disease called alopecia which causes her to lose her hair. As Bayley struggles to deal with the reality of her baldness she finds herself having to make some tough decisions. Can she still play soccer? Does she even want to? More importantly, should she tell Matt? And will he still want her when she does? Becoming Bayley is the story of one girl’s journey through self-discovery, of the definition of true love, and of the realization that as a daughter of God, she is of infinite worth.

Cathy’s Review: Bayley is a 17 year-old-girl. She loves to play soccer and she’s kind of a tomboy, much to the dismay of her younger sister Fin. Fin is always trying to get Bayley to wear things like mascara and lip gloss and to do something different with her hair, but Bayley wants nothing to do with it, until she goes to soccer camp at BYU and sees the awesome BYU soccer player, Matt Macauley. When her roommates at the camp realize that she really likes Matt, they convince her that she’s going to need to look her very best to get him to look her way. They trim help her with her hair and makeup, and just when Bayley thinks that it was all for naught and he’s not going to see her anyway, he catches her on South Field. She’s not supposed to be there, but the gate was open and she thought that no one would ever know. Matt challenges her to a game of PIG and then insists on walking her home, but he doesn’t ask for her address so he can write her while he’s on his mission. Fate steps in and allows her to see his car on her way back to Wyoming, and she decides to be brave and leave her address there. Just when she thinks it must have blown away, she receives a letter from him, and is surprised to learn that he felt the same connection to her that she felt to him. Soon, however, Bayley’s life will change forever with the onset of alopecia, a disease that causes her to lose her hair. Bayley can’t see how anyone, especially Matt, will ever love her in spite of her baldness. 

I LOVED this book! Bayley was such an amazingly strong girl. I loved her at the beginning and I loved her character even more as the book progressed. I was amazed at the way that her “friends” from her high school treated her after she lost her hair. I can’t even imagine being treated the way she was. I loved Matt, his character was amazing, he was the perfect boyfriend for this book. I can’t believe how real the characters seemed to me in this one. I finished this one yesterday, but I kind of still feel like I’m in Bayley’s world, thinking about soccer and alopecia. I loved the way that Bayley relates the women with the issue of blood from the New Testament to herself and her own situation, it made me think of this familiar story in a different way than I ever have before, I love it when that happens.

Content: clean

Author Bio: I’ve always loved telling stories. My favorite is the one where I sent the wrong letter to the right missionary. We were married the next summer. I attended LDS Business College where I earned an Associate’s in Computer Technology and Brigham Young University where I should have majored in English. I live in a small town nestled in the heart of the Appalachians. When I’m not busy writing, I can be found baking cookies, going to the movies, helping with the homework or catching fireflies with my handsome husband and four adorable children.

Find out more about author Susan Auten: Goodreads/ Website/

Shayla Witherwood: A Half Faerie Tale Blog Tour

10 Apr, 2012 by in Tamra Torero, young adult fiction 2 comments

Fire and Ice is today’s stop on the official blog tour for
Shayla Witherwood: A Half Faerie Tale
by Tamra Torero
Hardcover, 312 pages
Expected publication date: May 8, 2012
by Cedar Fort
ISBN: 1599559633
Book Source: Netgalley
4.5 Stars
Summary: A brief moment of disappointment washed over me as I approached Jace’s lifeless body. Here I was, about to kiss a boy on the lips for the very first time, and he was completely comatose—possibly paralyzed—and would never even know or remember the experience. This was not how I’d envisioned my first kiss—me invisible, him unconscious. 

Shayla Witherwood is not exactly normal. First of all, she’s spent her entire life being homeschooled, traveling in an RV around the country with her grandparents. And second, there’s the kind of inescapable fact that her mom was a genuine faerie. 



But now that she’s starting a real life in a regular high school, Shayla desperately needs to stay out of trouble in both worlds because even her faerie powers might not be enough to protect her from what’s coming. 


In her latest novel, Tamra Torero spins a magical tale filled with laugh-out-loud sarcasm, surprising twists, and spell-binding romance. Perfect for fairytale fans of all ages, this is one story you won’t want to miss!

Cathy’s Review: Shayla Witherwood is just a normal high school girl…okay not really! She’s a half-faerie, she’s been home-schooled for her whole school career by grandparents that she traveled the country with in an RV named Brutus. But now her grandfather has died, so her grandmother decides that it’s time to settle down in a small town and it’s time for Shayla to go to school in the public high school. This doesn’t sound like a wonderful plan to Shayla, and her first day finds her wanting to use her faerie powers to turn herself invisible so that none of the other kids see her, but Grandma has firmly told her that using her powers around others is against the rules. But will Shayla be able to keep her new friends from realizing that she’s a half-faerie? I was excited to read this book, because I really loved her Molly Mormon? series a few years ago. This was a fun story to read, and the characters were fun. Shayla gets herself into some pretty crazy situations when she uses her faerie powers to do things like turning invisible or changing her ears. I liked the ending and how Shayla figured out a bunch of stuff about herself and also her parents and extended family that she had never known. 
Content: Really nothing offensive, clean




About the Author: Tamra Torero fills her life with all things sweet from her nine children and two grandsons, to her husband, Paco. By day she creates sweet things to eat as a bakery manager, and by night she creates sweet stories (which all-too often require “brain food,” a.k.a. Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate). She enjoys reading in the bathtub, watching movies in bed, and dancing in the kitchen. She is the author of seven novels for children and teens.
Find out more on her website/ Goodreads


Book Review-The Dig by Audrey Hart

19 Dec, 2011 by in young adult fiction Leave a comment

The Dig
Zoe and Zeus Trilogy #1
by Audrey Hart
ebook, 208 pages
published November 11, 2011
by Backlit Fiction
Source: Publisher

Rating: 4 stars

Zoe Calder has always been an outsider. Stashed away in boarding schools since her parents died, Zoe buries herself in the study of ancient worlds. Her greatest thrill is spending her summers with her archeologist aunt and uncle on digs around the world. And one day, while investigating a newly unearthed temple in Crete, Zoe discovers a luminous artifact that transports her to ancient Greece.

As Zoe quickly learns, the Olympian Gods are real, living people—humans with mysterious powers… Powers that Zoe quickly realizes she has come to possess, as well. However, when the people of ancient Greece mistake Zoe for an Olympian, the Gods must restore the balance of the ancient world… No matter what.

Zoe is forced to play a confusing and dangerous game as Hera rallies the gods against her—all except for Zeus, the beautiful, winged young god who risks everything to save her.

Out of time and out of her element, teenager Zoe Calder finds herself in ancient Greece, battling against the power of the Olympians and the vengeance of a scorned goddess—all for the strange and mysterious boy she has come to love.

This was a fun read. I have really enjoying the Gods and Godesses trend we have seen lately (probably due to the popularity of the Riordan series). Mythology has intrigued me since my high-school days when I was first introduced to Odysseus and the interesting characters he encountered along his journey. And who didn’t love Hercules?

One of the aspects of this story that I truly loved was the voice. Our teenager really feels like a teenager. She is a bit awkward; doesn’t quite fit in with the in crowd. I really identified with Zoe. While it has been years since I was a teenager (I hate to even think about how many it really has been) hearing Zoe’s worries and concerns felt so familiar. She felt very real to me.

Another aspect of this book that I enjoyed was the youthfulness of the Gods and Goddesses of Olympus. The concept that the Gods and Godesses were eternally teenagers really makes sense. Their capricious natures and self indulgent whims really make so much more sense if they are teenagers with such amazing powers.

If you like a sweet romance mixed in with an Olympian style adventure, check out The Dig, available as an ebook from Back Lit Publishing.


Content: Fairly clean. If you are uncomfortable with the use of the Lord’s name in vain, this book uses it quite a bit.

Learn more about The Dig on Goodreads/ Facebook/Entertainment Weekly


Book Review- Putting Makeup on Dead People by Jennifer Violi

01 Oct, 2011 by in putting make up on dead people, young adult fiction 2 comments

Putting Makeup on Dead People
by Jennifer Violi
Hardcover, 336 Pages
Published May 24th 2011
by Hyperion Books
ISBN 1423134818
Book Source: publisher
3.5 stars

In the spring of her senior year, Donna Parisi finds new life in an unexpected place: a coffin.

Since her father’s death four years ago, Donna has gone through the motions of living: her friendships are empty, she’s clueless about what to do after high school graduation, and her grief keeps her isolated, cut off even from the one parent she has left. That is until she’s standing in front of the dead body of a classmate at Brighton Brothers’ Funeral Home. At that moment, Donna realizes what might just give her life purpose is comforting others in death. That maybe who she really wants to be is a mortician.

This discovery sets in motion a life Donna never imagined was possible. She befriends a charismatic new student, Liz, notices a boy, Charlie, and realizes that maybe he’s been noticing her, too, and finds herself trying things she hadn’t dreamed of trying before. By taking risks, Donna comes into her own, diving into her mortuary studies with a passion and skill she didn’t know she had in her. And she finally understands that moving forward doesn’t mean forgetting someone you love.

Jen Violi’s heartfelt and funny debut novel is a story of transformation—how one girl learns to grieve and say goodbye, turn loss into a gift, and let herself be exceptional…at loving, applying lipstick to corpses, and finding life in the wake of death.

This was an interesting read. It was somber in tone, as the main character was still mourning the death of her father, four years prior to the start of the book. She also could not understand how the rest of her family had been able to move on with the lives.

Donna is young and socially awkward. She isn’t sure how to create friendships or what relationships should feel like. You almost want to sit her down and have a little talk with her; tell her how life works, but as you continue to read, you find that she learns it all by herself.

One thing that bugged me about the book was the gradual increase in harsh language and sexual content. It wasn’t terrible, but the book starts out pretty clean and then adds in more as it progresses. As a mom to a tween daughter who is slowly outgrowing her young readers books and approaching the reading level that would transition into young adult, I would not want her reading this book, for a long time.

I did really connect with the characters, brought to happy tears as the book came to a close (I won’t say more; I don’t want to spoil it for you), but I am not sure it is one I would read again (which for me is my line between a 3 star book and a 4 star book, being the big fan that I am of re-reading favorites).

Content: Swearing, fairly descriptive sexual encounters between young adults. This is definitely for much older teens

I received a review copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. No further compensation was received. Summary and cover image from Goodreads.

Fall 2011 Wish List

12 Sep, 2011 by in wish list, young adult fiction 29 comments

Okay folks I admit I am not a pro vlogger but every once in a while I get a wild hair in bookstores. So, I wanted to post some of my wish list titles for this fall in Children’s Young Readers and Young Adult. Comment on YouTube or leave one of your wish list titles below and you’ll be entered to win a surprise ARC from our shelves at Fire and Ice. Good Luck. Giveaway ends October 12, 2011!

The Seven Rays

20 Dec, 2009 by in seven rays, young adult fiction 2 comments

You are more than you think you are.

THAT IS THE ANONYMOUS MESSAGE that Beth Michaels receives right before she starts seeing things. Not just a slept-through my-alarm-clock, late-for-homeroom, haven’t had-my-caffeine-fix kind of seeing things. It all starts with some dots, annoying pink dots that pop up on and over her mom and her best friend’s face. But then things get out of control and Beth is seeing people’s pasts, their fears, their secrets, their desires. The images are coming at Beth in hi-def streaming video and she can’t stop it. Everyone thinks she’s crazy and she’s pretty sure she agrees with them. But crazy doesn’t explain the gold envelopes that have started arriving, containing seeing keys and mysterious tarot cards. To Beth, it all seems too weird to be true. You are more than you think you are? But here’s the thing: What if she is?

The creator of Bring it On, Jessica Bendiner, brings her teen savvy writing to this paranormal romance, The Seven Rays.

I was drawn to this book by its cover and book trailer and I was excited to read it. About ten pages in I got skeptical. The jacket said it is written for 14 years or older. Already within the first chapter we were talking about things that are not at all okay for 14 year olds. I kept reading because the plot was interesting, but it just got worse. By page 200 I had to put the book down and stop reading. It made me, a 34 year old married woman with children feel dirty. In my opinion the book has soft porn designed to stimulate young minds to desire music that pushes sex. The main characters went for 0 to 60 in a couple of minutes. Why?

It is sad to me that some Young Adult fiction can be wrapped up in great appealing characters and push trashy values. The author here threw in a semi-feel good ultimate message. Her premise that jealousy and lies be combated by love was lost for me amongst all of the sexual, alternative undertones. I gave it 2 out of 5 stars.

Top 25 Books Heather Can’t Wait To Read

18 Dec, 2009 by in waiting on, young adult fiction 1 comment

25 Linger (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #2) Stiefvater, Maggie*

24 Ash Lo, Malinda

23 Going Bovine Bray, Libba

22 The Way He Lived Smith, Emily Wing

21 Sweethearts Zarr, Sara

20 Peeps (Peeps, #1) Westerfeld, Scott

19 To Kill a Mockingbird Lee, Harper

18 Fallen (Fallen, #1) Kate, Lauren

17 Wintergirls Anderson, Laurie Halse*

16 The Demon’s Lexicon (Demons, #1) Brennan, Sarah Rees


15 The Dark Divine Despain, Bree*

14 Misguided Angel (Blue Bloods, #5) Cruz, Melissa de la

13 Bitterblue Cashore, Kristin

11 The Maze Runner (Maze Runner, #1)

10 Confessions of a Shopaholic (Shopaholic, #1)

9 If I Stay Forman, Gayle

8 Spells (Wings, #2) Pike, Aprilynne

7 City of Fallen Angels (Mortal Instruments, #4) Clare, Cassandra

6 As You Wish Pearce, Jackson*

5 The Actor and the Housewife: A Novel Hale, Shannon

4 Need (Need, #1) Jones, Carrie*

3 The Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1) Clare, Cassandra

2 Forest Born (The Books of Bayern, #4) Hale, Shannon

1 Before I Fall Oliver, Lauren*

Hush Hush Giveaway on Mundie Moms

09 Oct, 2009 by in Heather Gardner Photography, mortal instruments, mundie moms, young adult fiction 1 comment


If you are a Twilight lover you are sure to enjoy the Mortal Instruments Series by Cassandra Clare.  This week the Mundie Moms site is giving away a free copy of Hush Hush, another awesome Young Adult Fiction book.  Their blog site featured Heather Gardner Photography/ Fire and Ice by asking us to use one of Heather’s angel photographs.  Thanks so much to Katie B!  We met her at Twi Con in Dallas and she is an incredible person. Check out her page and become a follower!