Posts Tagged: 2012 YA releases

Book Review- Goddess Interrupted

30 Jan, 2012 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

Goddess Test #2
by Aimee Carter
Paperback, 304 pages
Expected publication: March 27th 2012
by HarlequinTeen
ISBN 0373210450
Book Source: Netgalley
3.5 stars

Kate Winters has won immortality.

But if she wants a life in the Underworld with Henry, she’ll have to fight for it.

Becoming immortal wasn’t supposed to be the easy part. Though Kate is about to be crowned Queen of the Underworld, she’s as isolated as ever. And despite her growing love for Henry, ruler of the Underworld, he’s becoming ever more distant and secretive. Then, in the midst of Kate’s coronation, Henry is abducted by the only being powerful enough to kill him: the King of the Titans.

As the other gods prepare for a war that could end them all, it is up to Kate to save Henry from the depths of Tartarus. But in order to navigate the endless caverns of the Underworld, Kate must enlist the help of the one person who is the greatest threat to her future.
Henry’s first wife, Persephone

Review: *spoiler warning* if you haven’t read The Goddess Test

I really enjoyed the Goddess Test so was super excited to get an advanced peek at book two on Netgalley. Goddess Interrupted has a much slower pace than book one. Even though a new enemy is introduced and the potential was there for non-stop action the scenes felt vague and subdued. The main thrust of the book seemed to be Kate’s internal conflict over whether or not Henry loves her and is invested in their marriage. Henry was pretty much non-existent until the last few chapters which was sad for me because I was so hoping for much more from him and a deeper love to develop between the two newlyweds. I truly felt for Kate in Goddess Interrupted, there is a real internal struggle gong on there as well as the feeling of rejection and unrequited love that may lead to the destruction of their new marriage. It felt like things were headed toward disaster most of the way through. Aimee Carter writes in some heart wrenching emotion that would be felt by a bride who feels her husband is being emotionally unfaithful and detached. The inner dialogue and gamut of feelings were very real.

I was interested by the introduction of Cronus and his resemblance to Henry. I have a feeling there’s a lot more going on there than has been revealed. As for resolution, I would say Kate and Henry made up way too quickly and the key to the book seems to say “sex will solve everything.” Not the best message to portray. The ending- cliffhanger! So if you want to read book two be prepared!

Content: moderate swearing, minor violence, sex, adult themes

From the author biography ~

Aimée Carter was born and raised in Michigan, where she currently resides. She started writing fan fiction at eleven, began her first original story four years later, and hasn’t stopped writing since. Her first novel for young adults, The Goddess Test, will be published by Harlequin Teen in May 2011. The sequel, Goddess Interrupted, will follow in February 2012.

“I’m really not very interesting at all. I attended the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and received a degree in Screen Arts and Cultures (a fancy way of saying I was forced to watch a lot of old movies) with a subconcentration in Screenwriting. I write. I watch a lot of new movies. Read a lot of books. Tweet too much. Love dogs and have two spoiled Papillons.

I’m represented by the magical Rosemary Stimola of Stimola Literary Studio, and on very rare occasions I blog over at WordPress. If you have any questions, feel free to ask!”
Amy says…”Thanks to my wonderful publisher, Harlequin TEEN, I have copies of the ARC of Goddess Interrupted to give away! I’ll be hosting contests the months of December, January, and February, leading up to the release of The Goddess Hunt novella (March 1) and Goddess Interrupted (March 27). Each contest will have one copy of the ARC as a grand prize, and if I can swing it, there may be runner-up prizes as well.

The January contest is simple: just “Like” my page on Facebook and comment on the post there. One entry per person. You must comment on the original post on my official Facebook page in order for it to count. Contest open internationally. You have until January 31st at 11:59pm EST (GMT -5) to enter, at which time the contest will close, and a winner will be chosen at random.

Good luck, and I hope everyone has a fantastic 2012!”

Book Review- The Queen of Kentucky

09 Jan, 2012 by in poppy, queen of kentucky, YA contemporary 1 comment

by Alecia Whitaker
Hardcover, 375 pages
Published January 2nd 2012
by Poppy
Book Source: Publisher
4 stars

Fourteen-year-old Kentucky girl Ricki Jo Winstead, who would prefer to be called Ericka, thank you very much, is eager to shed her farmer’s daughter roots and become part of the popular crowd at her small town high school. She trades her Bible for Seventeen magazine, buys new “sophisticated” clothes and somehow manages to secure a tenuous spot at the cool kids table. She’s on top of the world, even though her best friend and the boy next door Luke says he misses “plain old Ricki Jo.”

Caught between being a country girl and wannabe country club girl, Ricki Jo begins to forget who she truly is: someone who doesn’t care what people think and who wouldn’t let a good-looking guy walk all over her. It takes a serious incident out on Luke’s farm for Ricki Jo to realize that being a true friend is more important than being popular.

The Queen of Kentucky has so many things going for it. First is the cover, which is one of my favorites I’ve seen come in the mail. It’s not that often we see covers in yellow- it jumps out at you. The second thing is the fun trailer and third is the author. I admire authors who take time our of their busy schedules to tweet and thank you for reading their book. The setting is the deep south which wide open spaces, dusty dirt roads,a pond and acres and acres of tobacco. I became immediately immersed in the rural roots of Ricki Jo Winstead and her best friend Luke. It’s the summer before Ricki Jo’s freshman year, her first year in high school. She’s determined to reinvent herself, ditch the two names for a sassier version- Ericka. Fortune falls on her side when the four most popular girls end up in her homeroom and the school stud muffin sits next to her in Spanish. Wolf looks like he just stepped out of an Abercrombie ad and smells like it too. He’s the guy everyone is vying for, the top of Ericka’s wish list. Buy some new clothes, make the cheer leading squad, get asked to homecoming and go through puberty then Ricky Jo might just pull off the new and improved Ericka.

A coming of age tale of a 14 year old girl, this book brought back so many memories of ninth grade year (we were still in junior high). As Ericka moves up the social chain she begins to shed some of her most important friends and values. She also gets repeatedly made fun of and mistreated by her “friends.” It was painful for me to read. She has fabulous parents,a religious upbringing and the perfect boy next door but she’s willing to give it all up for a chance at popularity. Soon a middle grade lifestyle turns much more YA- into sneaking out, lots of talk about sex, streaking, drinking, cheating on school work and belittling her once closest friend. While I can sympathize with the fact that Ericka is young and has a mission, I would have liked to have seen more development of character as the book progresses. Time and time again she is mistreated by her love interest and group of new friends. Instead of standing up for herself or rebuilding those whose names she has defamed …in her upward climb, she takes it all in stride. The ending was just what I wanted to see, but too little too late for me to sympathize fully with the the main character.

Alecia Whitaker is a very talented writer. You can tell she weaves her knowledge and love for the South into her story. Her characters were well fleshed out and vivid. I like that she handles the very hard issue of alcoholism of a parent and domestic violence as it influences the children in the home. I also really liked her references to reading the bible and the importance of sticking to your roots. I could have lived in the county with Ricky Jo before she became Ericka and Luke forever. He is everything you’d want and more. I savored the innocence and closeness of their friendship. Thank so much to Poppy for a chance to read The Queen of Kentucky.

About the Author: Alecia Whitaker grew up with a big imagination on a small farm in Kentucky, which was worlds away from where she currently resides in fast-paced New York City. She knows more about cows, tobacco, frog gigging, and carpentry than the average girl, and she applies the work ethic and common sense she learned from her southern upbringing to the way she now navigates her career and family life in the big city.

Although she graduated from the University of Kentucky with a BFA in Theatre and a BS in Advertising, she’s always been a writer. She won the Soil Conservation Essay contest in the 4th grade, was selected as a Governor’s School for the Arts student in Creative Writing in the 10th grade, and then in college, she was a Top Ten Finalist in the US Southeast Region for a Ten Minute Playwriting competition at James Madison University.

Since then, she has been in loads of commercials, as well as on stage in a few small theatrical productions and poetry slams. She appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show numerous times, The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch, and was a contestant on Deal Or No Deal.

Her personal essays have been published in the anthology Blink: Fiction in the Blink of an Eye and several times in Underwired Magazine. She co-wrote the popular one act play Becoming Woman with a grant from The Kentucky Foundation for Women. The Queen of Kentucky is her first novel and proudest artistic accomplishment.

Now living in New York City with her husband and son, she is amused at how often her big imagination takes her back to a simpler life in Kentucky.

Learn more about Alecia on her website.

Trailer Thursday-YA Book Releases Late 2011/2012

15 Sep, 2011 by in new YA fiction Leave a comment

I was out to dinner last night with author Brodi Ashton, whose debut Everneath is coming in January from Balzer & Bray/ Harper Collins and since her book is going to be made of awesome, I wanted to give you another glance at the cover. Luckily, I stumbled upon this trailer from BookLovingMcFlyFan. There are some gorgeous books coming out this year and next. Fire and Ice will be on the tour schedule for Everneath as well as Tempest by Julie Cross. So stay tuned! Meanwhile enjoy these beautiful book covers.