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Smart Chicks Kick-It Tour: Portland, OR

Friday, September 30, 2011
Yesterday night, September 29, at Powell's was full of people waiting to meet the ladies of Smart Chicks. I showed up 30 mins before the event and it was already. I knew I had a lot of homework to do but I couldn't miss an event like this! The Smart Chicks at the Portland stop were Kelley Armstrong, Melissa Marr, Jennifer Lynn Barnes, Ally Condie, Beth Revis, Margaret Stohl, and Sara Zarr.

Things I picked up from this event:

-Kelley Armstrong is HILARIOUS!
(Seriously, she owned the place the second she walked in.)

-Margaret Stohl should be in track.
(Margaret walked/ran all over the place to hand out Beautiful Chaos wrist-bands)

These ladies were full of fun and games. They even played who'd you marry, shag, and push off a cliff with characters from each other's books. Throughout the whole night there would be random moments of games.

The books I bought and got signed:
Once Was Lost by Sara Zarr
Matched by Ally Condie
Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr
The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong
Raised By Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Across the Universe by Beth Revis
Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

The audience for this event was full of familiar faces. I spotted Lucy and Steph from RainTown Press, Sara from Novel Novice, Eliza (who's blog will be up soon.), Colleen Houck, Suzanne Young, and Lisa Shroeder. I know for a fact that there were more bloggers and authors that I don't know of.

I had this whole issue with carrying my books so I couldn't take any pictures. But I did manage to take some from the side. Here are some pictures from the signing:

The back of Sara Zarr and to her left Ally Condie.
From left to right; Me, Suzanne Young, and Lisa Shroeder.
Photo courtesy of Suzanne.

From left to right: Me and my middle school librarian
who started my reading obsession.

The back of Margaret Stohl and to her right
Beth Revis.

The tour is still going so be sure to check out their website, Smart Chicks Kick-It!, to see if they'll be stopping by somewhere near you.

My Big Sib!

Thursday, September 29, 2011
Big Sib/Little Sib is a program where novice bloggers are paired with veteran bloggers to learn the ropes of book blogging. If you're interested in signing up visit one of the blogs bellow.

Founders of Big Sib/Little Sib:
- Ivy @ Ivy Reads
- Hafsah @ Icey Books
- Kelsey @ The Book Scout

I signed up a few weeks ago and recently got my big sib.

My Big Sib is:
Bailey @ IB Book Blogging

IB Book Blogging

Young Bloggers Unite

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I recently signed up to be part of Young Bloggers Unite!

Young Bloggers Unite is this great idea Melina from Reading Vacation started. The blog will feature bloggers 18 and under. Then on thursdays Melina will have a blogger do a guest post on her blog.

Right now the blog for Young Bloggers Unite is being put together by Melina from Reading Vacation, HD from Reading Writing Breathing Book Reviews, and Hafsah from Icey Books. The opening of the blog will be October 1st!

For more information be sure to check out Melina's blog post.

And be sure to follow Young Bloggers Unite through Twitter and on the blog.

Review: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Blog | Twitter | Website | Powell's

Series: Mara Dyer #1
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release Date: September 27, 2011
Format: Hardcover - Signed
Source: Author Giveaway

Mara Dyer doesn't think life can get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
It can.
She believes there must be more to the accident she can't remember that killed her friends and left her mysteriously unharmed.
There is.
She doesn't believe that after everything she's been through, she can fall in love.
She's wrong.

My first thoughts after The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer:
and then after being speechless I became very paranoid. Like scared to look in the mirror after you take a shower paranoid.

This was crazy twisted and beautiful. No one told me how creepy this was going to be. When I wasn't sitting around looking under my bed I was sitting trying to understand what just happened. One page I think I know what's going on and then the next it's like I haven't even read the pages at all. I didn't feel like I was READING the story of Mara, I felt like I was LIVING the life with Mara. This isn't the typical everyday normal life, but Michelle Hodkin wrote it in a way that I believed that this was normal.

As normal as the writing made it, Mara's life is anything but normal. Mara is a bit on edge when she finds that she doesn't remember what happened the night when her friends were killed. She doesn't remember why she was the only one who survived. Mara lives in fear of everything she sees and hears. Day after day with the fear of herself and what she might do.

You'd think that after being traumatized by an event like that the last thing Mara would do is fall in love. When Mara does something, it's never something ordinary, not even when she falls in love. Mara ends up falling for the school's most gorgeous guy, Noah Shaw. He got to me the second he spoke with his English/British accent. *swoons* Noah started off as a real jerk and a total player, and I'm using that loosely. He's arrogant, slick, and dark. Of course underneath there's a whole different guy who I don't even know.

I loved everything about this book. From the original plot to the characters developments, especially the characters themselves. I just ate this book up the second I got it.

I understand that there is a lot of hype going on for Mara Dyer and some may be wary of reading it. In my opinion, this book was as amazing. I do see where the opinions are kind of weighted to either you absolutely love the book like crazy or absolutely find nothing about you like. But give it a shot because The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer has to be one of my favorite books I've read this year.

I'd go get this book the second it hits shelves on September 27.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5
If you've missed any of the Mara Monday posts click here for the full schedule.

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer Book Trailer:
This has to be THE BEST trailer I've ever seen. I've watched this trailer at least 10 times.


Banned Books Week

Sunday, September 25, 2011
It is Banned Books Week and it will be running from September 24 - October 1.

Since it is Banned Books Week it is giving me ANOTHER reason for me to go pick The Perks of Being A Wallflower by Stephan Chboskey.

Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it, Charlie is navigating through the strange worlds of love, drugs, "The Rocky Horror Picture Show", and dealing with the loss of a good friend and his favorite aunt.

It is also another reason for me to wear my "I Read Banned Books" button on my school bag.

*Apologies for the blurry image!*

For more information of Banned Books Week be sure to visit ALA and there's even a website this year, Banned Books Week.


Meredith from Mint Tea and a Good Book made this really awesome video.


Be sure to go enter in the Banned Books Week Hop.


Review: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Monday, September 19, 2011
Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
Blog | Website | Facebook | Twitter

Series: Companion to Anna and the French Kiss
Publisher: Dutton
Release Date: September 29, 2011
Format: ARC
Source: Sarah @ Sarah's Random Musings
Buy It: Powell's

Budding designer Lola Nolan doesn’t believe in fashion . . . she believes in costume. The more expressive the outfit -- more sparkly, more fun, more wild -- the better. But even though Lola’s style is outrageous, she’s a devoted daughter and friend with some big plans for the future. And everything is pretty perfect (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the dreaded Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, return to the neighborhood.

When Cricket -- a gifted inventor -- steps out from his twin sister’s shadow and back into Lola’s life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door.

I love everything from the writing to the characters to the whole plot. There's this strong voice to it that I craved so much. I was trying to savor it by reading it slow, but everything was just so smooth that I found myself finishing it in one sitting.

The plot was just cute! Lola thinks she's having the perfect life with her amazing designs and hot (and older) boyfriend. When old friends move back in the neighborhood her life takes a drastic turn. Where in "Anna" we get the view of someone pining for someone already taken. In "Lola" we get the taken person pining for someone else.

Lola is just fabulous! She's so confident in herself and her style. Everyday she's in a different mind blowing outfit that only she could pull off. What I most most about Lola is that she's not perfect. Lola is real. She has flaws and insecurities like anybody else, but that's just what makes her even bolder. And she has some killer costumes.

Cricket Bell. When would I even think that I'd swoon over a guy name Cricket.

Well for starters, Cricket has some great tall hair. Second, he has some pretty neat outfits. And third, he's a nice guy. Which is a total win.

When Lola starts to get use to having him around again they'd talk to each other through their windows since they're literally next door neighbors. Cricket respected Lola and never tried to push the boundaries of their friendship. The whole talking to each other at night things is just so cute!

The cameos of St. Clair and Anna are clever. They fit right in and are just so fun as usual. It was really nice to see their relationship after we saw the start, which doesn't happen too often.

Lola and the Boy Next Door is a witty read that will leave you laughing, tearing up, and just plain old swooning. I just overal love everything about this book and Stephanie's writing.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5

In My Mailbox (22) - Vlog

Sunday, September 18, 2011

In My Mailbox is a meme hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren and inspired by Alea from Pop Culture Junkie. It gives bloggers a chance to share all the books we bought, borrowed, and received this week.

Titles that are linked go to goodreads and covers that are shown on my iTouch are eBooks.

This week is 2 weeks worth of books! School in september is pretty rough right now so I apologize for neglecting my blog so much.

Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout (Read)
(Thank you Vi from Confessions Of A Vi3t Babe)

NetGalley: (Thank you Harlequin and Disney-Hyperion)
Crave by Melissa Darnell (Read)
Dancergirl by Carol M. Tanzman
Keys To the Repository by Melissa de la Cruz

Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen

Last Sacrafice by Richelle Mead
Keys To the Repository by Melissa de la Cruz
Bloody Valentine by Melissa de la Cruz

Blue Bloods by Melissa de la Cruz
Masquerade by Melissa de la Cruz
Revelations by Melissa de la Cruz
The Van Allen Legacy by Melissa de la Cruz
The Misguided Angel by Melissa de la Cruz
Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty
Possess by Gretchen McNeil
Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare (Re-Read)

Feel free to leave a link with your comment so I can go check out what's in your mailbox!

Top 100 YA Book List

Saturday, September 17, 2011
I've been seeing this list around a lot lately. From Reading Teen, Novel Thoughts, Elizzie Books, and The Bookish Brunette. I thought this would be a fun way to see how many I've read out of this list.

Pink = Books I own but haven't read
Green = Books I've read
Gray = Books I haven't read

1. Alex Flinn - Beastly2. Alice Sebold – The Lovely Bones
3. Ally Carter – Callagher Girls (1, 2, 3, 4)
4. Ally Condie - Matched5.Alyson Noel - The Immortals (1, 2 , 3, 4, 5, 6)
6. Anastasia Hopcus – Shadow Hills
7. Angie Sage – Septimus Heap (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
8. Ann Brashares – The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (1, 2, 3, 4)
9. Anna Godbersen – Luxe (1, 2, 3, 4)
10. Anthony Horowitz – Alex Rider (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)
11. Aprilynne Pike - Wings (12, 3)12. Becca Fitzpatrick - Hush, Hush (1,2)13. Brandon Mull – Fablehaven (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
14. Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret15. Cassandra Clare - The Mortal Instruments (1, 2, 3, 4)16. Carrie Jones – Need (1, 2, 3)
17. Carrie Ryan – The Forest of Hands and Teeth (1, 2, 3)
18. Christopher Paolini – Inheritance (1, 2, 3, 4)
19. Cinda Williams Chima - The Heir Chronicles (1, 2, 3)20. Colleen Houck – Tigers Saga (1, 2)
21. Cornelia Funke – Inkheart (1, 2, 3)
22. Ellen Hopkins – Impulse
23. Eoin Colfer – Artemis Fowl (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
24. Faraaz Kazi – Truly, Madly, Deeply
25. Frank Beddor – The Looking Glass Wars (1, 2, 3)
26. Gabrielle Zevin – Elsewhere
27. Gail Carson Levine – Fairest
28. Holly Black – Tithe (1, 2, 3)
29. J.K. Rowling – Harry Potter (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7) <--- Yeah I know, I'm working on it.
30. James Dashner – The Maze Runner (1, 2)
31. James Patterson - Maximum Ride (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)32. Jay Asher – Thirteen Reasons Why
33. Jeanne DuPrau – Books of Ember (1, 2, 3, 4)
34. Jeff Kinney - Diary of a Wimpy Kid (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
35. John Boyne – The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
36. John Green – An Abundance of Katherines
37. John Green – Looking for Alaska
38. John Green – Paper Towns
39. Jonathan Stroud – Bartimaeus (1, 2, 3, 4)
40. Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl - Caster Chronicles (1, 2)41. Kelley Armstrong – Darkest Powers (1, 2, 3)
42. Kristin Cashore - The Seven Kingdoms (1, 2)43. Lauren Kate - Fallen (1, 2, 3)
44. Lemony Snicket – Series of Unfortunate Events (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
45. Libba Bray – Gemma Doyle (1, 2, 3)
46. Lisa McMann – Dream Catcher (1, 2, 3)
47. Louise Rennison – Confessions of Georgia Nicolson (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
48. M.T. Anderson – Feed
49. Maggie Stiefvater - The Wolves of Mercy Falls (1, 2, 3)50. Margaret Peterson - Shadow Children (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
51. Maria V. Snyder – Study (1, 2, 3)
52. Markus Zusak – The Book Thief
53. Markus Zusak – I am the Messenger
54. Mark Haddon – The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
55. Mary Ting – Crossroads
56. Maureen Johnson - The Little Blue Envelope (1, 2)
57. Meg Cabot – All-American Girl (1, 2)
58. Meg Cabot – The Mediator (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
59. Meg Cabot – The Princess Diaries (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
60. Meg Rosoff – How I live now
61. Megan McCafferty – Jessica Darling (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
62. Megan Whalen Turner – The Queen’s Thief (1, 2, 3, 4)
63. Melina Marchetta – On the Jellicoe Road
64. Melissa de la Cruz – Blue Bloods (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)65. Melissa Marr - Wicked Lovely (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)66. Michael Grant – Gone (1, 2, 3, 4)
67. Nancy Farmer – The House of the Scorpion
68. Neal Shusterman – Unwind
69. Neil Gaimen - Coraline70. Neil Gaiman – Stardust
71. Neil Gaiman – The Graveyard Book
72. P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast - House of Night (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8)73. Philip Pullman – His Dark Materials (1, 2, 3)
74. Rachel Caine – The Morganville Vampires (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
75. Rachel Cohn & David Levithan – Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist
76. Richelle Mead – Vampire Academy (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
77. Rick Riordan - Percy Jackson and the Olympians (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)78. Rom LcO’Feer – Somewhere carnal over 40 winks
79. S.L. Naeole – Grace (1, 2, 3, 4)
80. Sabrina Bryan & Julia DeVillers – Princess of Gossip
81. Sarah Dessen – Along for the Ride
82. Sarah Dessen – Lock and Key
83. Sarah Dessen – The Truth about Forever
84. Sara Shepard – Pretty Little Liars (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)
85. Scott Westerfeld – Leviathan (1, 2)
86. Scott Westerfeld – Uglies (1, 2, 3)
87. Shannon Hale – Books of a Thousand Days
88. Shannon Hale - Princess Academy89. Shannon Hale – The Books of Bayern (1, 2, 3, 4)
90. Sherman Alexie & Ellen Forney – The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
91. Simone Elkeles - Perfect Chemistry (1, 2, 3)
92. Stephanie Meyer – The Host
93. Stephanie Meyer - The Twilight Saga (1, 2, 3, 4)
94. Sue Monk Kidd – The Secret Life of Bees
95. Susan Beth Pfeffer – Last Survivors (1, 2, 3)
96. Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games (1, 2, 3)97. Suzanne Collins – Underland Chronicles (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
98. Terry Pratchett – Tiffany Aching (1, 2, 3, 4)
99. Tonya Hurley – Ghost Girl (1, 2, 3)
100. Wendelin Van Draanen - Flipped

I'll definitely be looking into more books from this list. Especially Harry Potter and John Green.

Review: Firelight by Sophie Jordan

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Firelight by Sophie Jordan
Facebook | Website | Twitter

Series: Firelight #1
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: September 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library
Purchase: Powell's

A hidden truth.
Mortal enemies.
Doomed love.
Marked as special at an early age, Jacinda knows her every move is watched. But she longs for freedom to make her own choices. When she breaks the most sacred tenet among her kind, she nearly pays with her life. Until a beautiful stranger saves her. A stranger who was sent to hunt those like her. For Jacinda is a draki—a descendant of dragons whose greatest defense is her secret ability to shift into human form.
Forced to flee into the mortal world with her family, Jacinda struggles to adapt to her new surroundings. The only bright light is Will. Gorgeous, elusive Will who stirs her inner draki to life. Although she is irresistibly drawn to him, Jacinda knows Will's dark secret: He and his family are hunters. She should avoid him at all costs. But her inner draki is slowly slipping away—if it dies she will be left as a human forever. She'll do anything to prevent that. Even if it means getting closer to her most dangerous enemy.
Mythical powers and breathtaking romance ignite in this story of a girl who defies all expectations and whose love crosses an ancient divide.

A book about DRAGONS! How did I miss this?

When Jacinda finds herself in trouble in the Pride, she's dragged out into the mortal world with her mom and twin sister. Firelight is mostly about Jacinda adapting to the mortal world and finding herself going to the same school as Will. The same hunter who saved her life. Jacinda is also on the run from the Pride but was unsuccessful at keeping the Pride's heir away, Cassian.

What makes Jacinda so special is that she's a fire-breathing draki, which happens to be a very rare trait. Unlike other girls, Jacinda knows exactly who she is and what she can do. She doesn't doubt for one second that she is a draki which is awesome! At first it was a bit rough getting to like Jacinda, but she's so determined in everything she does that makes her this fierce heroine.

There is this sort of love triangle that was really interesting. Where Will is the guy keeping her from the Pride, Cassian is the guy trying to get her back to the Pride.

Will is this strong hunter that happens to be the best at what he does. He came off a bit too... possessive. I couldn't find that same person at the beginning of the book, but at the same time I liked that a lot because I had the chance to see all of Will.

I can totally see where Cassian can be labeled as "the bad guy"since he wants to take Jacinda back to the Pride. He's the heir to the Pride who wants to be with Jacinda so they could reproduce the most amazing drakis. Yeah, I know that sounds wrong, but like Will these two characters aren't what they are on the surface.

The story was very fast paced and easy to read. It was simple, fun, exciting, and just plain old awesome fantasy! I really love Sophie Jordan's writing!

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5

BBAW: Interview with One Librarian's Book Reviews

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

I am here today with Melissa from One Librarian's Book Reviews

"I'm just a librarian who loves to read books and then write about them. Currently, I work as an academic librarian, but my heart belongs to YA and MG literature."

1) What was the most recent book you've read in one sitting?

I'd have to say the one that comes the closest (I can't even remember reading an entire book in one sitting, except a picture book or something) is Blood Red Road by Moira Young. It is ridiculously readable and so fast-paced that you can't stop yourself for devouring it as fast as possible.

2) I think that's really awesome that you're a librarian. What would be your favorite experience working as one?

The only kind of "real" librarian jobs I've worked so far are in colleges. One of the things I love the most about being a librarian is seeing the look on a student's face when they find what they're looking for. I mostly help students with research papers, but I've also occasionally recommended some YA books to students before and that always gives me a thrill. I've got my fingers crossed that someday I'll get to put all of this YA and MG reading to good use at work.

3) How do you feel about books to movies? If that's something you're into, what book to movie would you like to see?

Books to movies generally don't satisfy me! I'm usually too much of an advocate for the book that I hate to see it on the big screen. But, when they are done right, I think they are fabulous (Lord of the Rings is a great example). I'd like to see Blood Red Road made into a movie, though I'm so squeamish about violent movies I might not be able to watch it!

Guest Post: Nathan Everett (Steven George & the Dragon)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Steven George & the Dragon by Nathan Everett
Website | Blog

Publisher: NWE Signatures, LLC
Release Date: March 1, 2011

When Steven is sent by his village to slay the fearsom beast that threatens them, he suddenly realizes that he doesn't know what a dragon looks like, where it lives, or how to slay it. But Steven's village has fostered the talent of telling tales. Steven trades once-upon-a-times with the people he meets along the way and each remarkable story leads him a step closer to understanding the true meaning of his quest. All roads lead to the dragon.

The Art of Storytelling

Some of my fondest memories of my mother are of her sitting on the steps in church calling all the children around her to tell them a story. They weren’t just Bible stories either. She told stories adapted from Birdlife in Wington, Thornton Burgess’ Mother Westwind, and even the odd fairy tale if she thought it had a strong message. My nephews and nieces would often be the first to gather round her, whether they were 15 months old or 15 years. She occasionally had children who were over 50 sitting at her feet because her stories, though told to children, were often told for parents.

I guess I grew into storytelling naturally.

At the end of the 60s, I was a rebellious college student, determined to see this country for what it really was. So I mounted my bicycle (a Schwinn 5-speed Collegiate) and rode off cross-country. I found work along the way mowing grass, baling hay, or washing cars. My favorite of all was telling stories, whether while standing on street corners, visiting summer camps, or doing an impromptu performance in a cafe. And all my favorite stories began “Once upon a time…”

Now, I knew how to tell children’s stories from watching my mother. But I had also found an entire body of literature that was not, shall we say, rated G. I told and retold Edgar Alan Poe’s “The Telltale Heart,” “The Cask of Amontillado,” and “The Mask of the Red Death.” I discovered that there was a world of difference between Grimm’s Fairy Tales and Disney’s Sleeping Beauty. I had a trusted copy of The Annotated Mother Goose, and discovered the dispute over what “Ring Around the Rosy” meant. And finally, I began to write my own once-upon-a-time stories, often with a preamble to give a twist to the trusted words.

“Time is like an onion we peel. As we go deeper to the heart, layer-by-layer, our tears grow more intense. And once in a layer of time…”

Whether you are telling children’s stories, classics, fairy tales, or shaggy dog stories, the secret is to make the story completely your own. That often means that it doesn’t the way it was written. But it does come out your story.

Eventually, I decided to write a book in which a village dragonslayer is sent out to battle the fearsome beast only to realize he doesn’t know what a dragon looks like, where it lives, or how to slay it. As he journeys on his quest, Steven George exchanges once-upon-a-times with the people he meets. Each story leads him a step closer to understanding the nature of his quest.

Steven George & The Dragon is not a children’s tale. The stories include the rape of his ancestress, the bloody slaying of an ogre and rejection by the hero’s temporary wife, the drowning of a tyrant, the cheating of a miser, and the love of a dragon. It is a book for young adults, not for children.

I like Steven George. He is mildly CDO. (That’s the same as OCD, but the letters are in alphabetical order like they should be.) He counts his footsteps believing that he if he knows how many steps away home is, he will never be lost. He mistakes a tinker’s cart, a company of knights, and the shadow of a thief for the dragon. He has a mixture of the deep wisdom of a very small village and the utter naiveté of a country bumpkin in the big world. But he is faithful to his village and discovers that all roads lead to the dragon—even if the dragon is not what he expected.

That is what I want my storytelling to be. No matter what path it takes, it must always lead to the dragon. And if the dragon is not what the reader or listener expects, so much the better. The story is my own.

My mother was so clever in her story-telling that, when I was doing genealogical research, she let me videotape her telling about her life in Chicago when she and Dad were married. The story had to do with always being puzzled about how Dad could “make things from scratch” and ended up with her suggesting they raise chickens. I swallowed the entire story, hook, line, and sinker. It was the Christmas after she passed away in 1999 that a friend sent me a clipping from a book. It was the same story, almost word for word, but with a different cast of characters.

She had made the story her own.

Never Forget 9/11

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ten years ago, I was 4 years old living on the West Coast. I barely remembered anything, including the events of 9/11. All I've known was from learning about it from school. Even though I don't have a story to share I didn't want 9/11 to go unnoticed on my blog.

Review: Drink, Slay Love by Sarah Beth Durst

Saturday, September 10, 2011
Drink Slay Love by Sarah Beth Durst
Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook

Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Release Date: September 13, 2011
Format: eARC
Source: Simon & Schuster - Galley Grab
Purchase: Powell's

Pearl is a sixteen-year-old vampire... fond of blood, allergic to sunlight, and mostly evil... until the night a sparkly unicorn stabs her through the heart with his horn. Oops.

Her family thinks she was attacked by a vampire hunter (because, obviously, unicorns don't exist), and they're shocked she survived. They're even more shocked when Pearl discovers she can now withstand the sun. But they quickly find a way to make use of her new talent. The Vampire King of New England has chosen Pearl's family to host his feast. If Pearl enrolls in high school, she can make lots of human friends and lure them to the King's feast -- as the entrees.

The only problem? Pearl's starting to feel the twinges of a conscience. How can she serve up her new friends—especially the cute guy who makes her fangs ache—to be slaughtered? Then again, she's definitely dead if she lets down her family. What's a sunlight-loving vamp to do?

I've never thought of vampires and unicorns as a pair before. A vampire + being staked by a unicorn = turning slightly good, is just full of fun!

Pearl was just like any vampire. She's fierce, sexy, and knows it. Everything Pearl thought she knew was drastically changed after her "unicorn accident". Pearl belongs to one of the most feared and respected vampire families. Which means her new ability to walk in sunlight is either viewed as a disgrace or a prized possession.

Things start to get very interesting when you take someone as independent as Pearl to rely on others.

Since she's the only vampire to walk out in daylight, she's put to the test of going to high school to lure all the students to become the entrees at a very important feast. It may have been approved by some members of her family but it's not approved by others.

Pearl first encounters Evan who quickly becomes her friend at the new high school. What I loved was that Evan isn't the best friend turned boyfriend, he was always a contender from the start. Evan plays such a big part in the story with his kind heart and secrets. Oh, Evan is also a poet. Is that awesome or what?

There were so many memorable second characters! Bethany is a friend of Evan's and she's the sweet best friend that you just have to love. But Bethany is one of those more than meets the eye kind of person. I'd want her as my best friend!

A very clever plot with a surprising twist that left me laughing all night. Seriously, I was laughing so much that the guy sitting next to me on the plane kept on shooting me looks.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5

In My Mailbox (21) - Vlog

Saturday, September 3, 2011

In My Mailbox is a meme hosted by Kristi from The Story Siren and inspired by Alea from Pop Culture Junkie. It gives bloggers a chance to share all the books we bought, borrowed, and received this week.

Titles that are linked go to goodreads and covers that are shown on my iTouch are eBooks.

Unfortunately school is starting on Tuesday which is my lame excuse for not blogging lately. It will be my freshman year in high school which is pretty nerve-wracking but pretty awesome at the the same time. After I try to settle into my new school things will start to get better, hopefully.

Ten Things We Did (and Probably Shouldn't Have) by Sarah Mylanowski (read)
Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles (read)
It's Not Summer Without You by Jenny Han

Hourglass by Myra McEntire (read)

This week's question:
What NOT to do when you're a high school freshman?
Leave answer with your comment please :)
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