blo Teens Read and Write: March 2012

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

WOW: 3 Hot Upcoming YA Releases (3/28/12)

WOW is hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine and showcases upcoming releases we're dying to read!

by Jessica Khoury
Sept 2012 - Razorbill
Pia has grown up in a secret laboratory hidden deep in the Amazon rain forest. She was raised by a team of scientists who have created her to be the start of a new immortal race. But on the night of her seventeenth birthday, Pia discovers a hole in the electric fence that surrounds her sterile home--and sneaks outside the compound for the first time in her life. 
Free in the jungle, Pia meets Eio, a boy from a nearby village. Together, they embark on a race against time to discover the truth about Pia's origin--a truth with deadly consequences that will change their lives forever.

by Pamela Mingle
Aug 2012 - Random House
Miranda has Shakespeare in her blood: she hopes one day to become a Shakespearean actor like her famous parents. At least, she does until her disastrous performance in her school's staging of The Taming of the Shrew. Humiliated, Miranda skips the opening-night party. All she wants to do is hide. 
Fellow cast member, Stephen Langford, has other plans for Miranda. When he steps out of the backstage shadows and asks if she'd like to meet Shakespeare, Miranda thinks he's a total nutcase. But before she can object, Stephen whisks her back to 16th century England—the world Stephen's really from. He wants Miranda use her acting talents and modern-day charms on the young Will Shakespeare. Without her help, Stephen claims, the world will lost its greatest playwright. 
Miranda isn't convinced she's the girl for the job. Why would Shakespeare care about her? And just who is this infuriating time traveler, Stephen Langford? Reluctantly, she agrees to help, knowing that it's her only chance of getting back to the present and her "real" life. What Miranda doesn't bargain for is finding true love . . . with no acting required.

by Gretchen McNeil
Sept 2012 - Balzer & Bray
And their doom comes swiftly. 
It was supposed to be the weekend of their lives—an exclusive house party on Henry Island. Best friends Meg and Minnie each have their reasons for being there (which involve T.J., the school’s most eligible bachelor) and look forward to three glorious days of boys, booze and fun-filled luxury. 
But what they expect is definitely not what they get, and what starts out as fun turns dark and twisted after the discovery of a DVD with a sinister message: Vengeance is mine. 
Suddenly people are dying, and with a storm raging, the teens are cut off the from the outside world. No electricity, no phones, no internet, and a ferry that isn’t scheduled to return for two days. As the deaths become more violent and the teens turn on each other, can Meg find the killer before more people die? Or is the killer closer to her than she could ever imagine?

What are you waiting for? 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Perfect Storm by Lori Foster: Blog Tour and Scavenger Hunt

by Lori Foster
pub: Mar 27
He never saw her coming… 
Spencer Lark already knows too many secrets about Arizona Storm, including the nightmare she survived and her resulting trust issues. But in order to expose a smuggling ring—and continue avenging his own tragic past—the bounty hunter reluctantly agrees to make Arizona a decoy. Yet nothing has equipped him for her hypnotic blend of fragility and bravery, or for the protective instincts she stirs in him. 
Arizona wants to reclaim her life, which means acting as bait to lure the enemy into a trap. Sure it's dangerous, especially with a partner as distractingly appealing as Spencer. But as their plan—and their chemistry—shifts into high gear, Arizona may discover there's an even greater risk in surrendering her heart to a hero… 
As part of the blog tour and scavenger hunt for Lori Foster's A PERFECT STORM, we have an excerpt from this steamy romance! 
The air-conditioning, set on high, left her toes cold, but he’d covered himself with no more than a thin sheet.
Again and again, her gaze tracked over him, from one big foot sticking out over the side of the bed, up and over his flat, solid abs covered by the snowy-white sheet, to his chest—not covered by anything except enticing body hair.
With one arm behind his head, his underarm and the dark tuft of hair there were visible. Seeing that almost made him look vulnerable—except that, despite his relaxed pose, the positioning of his long arm made a thick biceps bulge.
Yes, there's yet another hot guy in the fourth book of the Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor series.  

For more romantic fun, the tour and scavenger hunt continues tomorrow at Book Savvy Babe

Friday, March 23, 2012

Movie Review: The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth

Katniss is a 16-year-old girl living with her mother and younger sister in the poorest district of Panem, the remains of what used be the United States. Long ago the districts waged war on the Capitol and were defeated. As part of the surrender terms, each district agreed to send one boy and one girl to appear in an annual televised event called, "The Hunger Games." The terrain, rules, and level of audience participation may change but one thing is constant: kill or be killed. When Kat's sister is chosen by lottery, Kat steps up to go in her place. 

The Hunger Games is the highly anticipated adaptation of the books of the same name and it did not disappoint.

As a reader of the trilogy, there were some aspects of the movie I was concerned about. Would the violence be toned down too low? How would the acting be? Would Josh Hutcherson finally be in a commercially successful film? All of these concerns we quickly struck down.

Academy Award Nominee/My Future Girlfriend Jennifer Lawrence was perfect as Katniss. I found myself holding my breath and my heart race after looking at the genuine fear in her eyes as she was lifted into the arena. This is a tremendous leap in acting talent for book-to-movie adaptation leading females.

Left: Bella seeing her child for the first time.        Right: Bella furious at Jacob

Josh Hutcherson was a fabulous Peeta. He was charming, caring, and completely in love with Katniss. After a vicious streak of critically panned films "The Hutch" has finally broken through to the hearts of movie goers! The budding romance between he and Katniss shines in the midst of the barbaric atrocities surrounding the "star-crossed" couple.

Liam Hemsworth wasn't really in the movie that much but his Gale was spot on. Someone who stood out as brilliant was Stanley Tucci as Caesar Flickerman. His over the top, enthusiastic talk show host persona had me laughing out loud even in the most grueling situations.

Then there was the fighting. Remember those brutal deaths? I was satisfied with how the movie handled them. The shots were steady enough to tell what was happening but shaky enough not to see too many details. Though I would have preferred more detail, it is a solid compromise, since so many younger viewers will be flocking to this film.

This is a fantastic adaptation of the book. There are some minor plot deviations but the important parts stay true. The acting is superb and I didn't feel that there was a "weak link". Overall exceptional cast, dynamic action, and easily one of (if not the) best book-to-movie adaptation!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Dark Shadows Trailer

Based on a popular soap opera, Dark Shadows takes a more campy and humorous approach to the story and it looks pretty darn hilarious!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Movie Reviews: 50/50 (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) & Mini Review of DRIVE (Ryan Gosling)!

Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, Anna Kendrick
Adam Learner is 27, working for public radio in Seattle. He consults a doctor about his back pains and gets a terrible diagnosis - a rare form of cancer that's fatal half the time. Chemo starts immediately. His best friend Kyle, and his girlfriend, Rachael, vow to see him through it. Rachael helps keep his dramatic mother at bay, he meets some of the regulars at chemo, and he's assigned a grad-student psychologist, Katherine: he's her third patient, and she tries to say the right things, often without effect. Kyle wants to turn Adam's cancer into a chick magnet, Rachael keeps Adam at arm's length, Adam doesn't answer his mom's calls, and the chemo saps his strength. The clock ticks.
50/50 is one of my favorite films of the previous year. After convincing my the rest of my family to rent it on DVD they were all thoroughly impressed at my movie selection prowess, still skeptical from my other Joseph Gordon-Levitt extravaganza choice of (500) Days of Summer

You know what this poster is missing? More pictures of Zooey Deschanel's STUPID FACE!

The story is based off writer Will Reiser's personal experiences with cancer which after watching this movie must have been pretty bad. 

Joseph Gordon-Levitt is fabulous as the cancer stricken nice guy who's taken advantage of by his girlfriend (Bryce Dallas Howard). The usually annoying Seth Rogen is a great fit next to Levitt's slightly neurotic Adam Learner and the source of most of the laughs. Anna Kendrick also gives a great performance as Levitt's bubbly yet awkward psychiatrist-in-training who helps him through all the emotional stages of his ordeal.

While the movie is very funny it also manages to capture some genuinely powerful emotional moments. The subjects of loss, betrayal, and hopelessness are explored but then later countered with love, friendship, and happiness. Right when you're about to think that movie is getting too sad something humorous or sweet will arrive to brighten things up.

50/50 delivers the perfect and powerful mix of drama and comedy. Everyone does an outstanding job of acting and the writing is top notch. It starts off very funny, slowly dips into tragic territory, then levels out with an ending that leaves you bubbling with hope and happiness.

!Bonus Review Alert!

Starring Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan
A mysterious man who has multiple jobs as a garage mechanic, a Hollywood stuntman and a getaway driver seems to be trying to escape his shady past as he falls for his neighbor - whose husband is in prison and who's looking after her child alone. Meanwhile, his garage mechanic boss is trying to set up a race team using gangland money, which implicates our driver as he is to be used as the race team's main driver. Our hero gets more than he bargained for when he meets the man who is married to the woman he loves.

Do not be fooled by trailers or quotes! This movie is slooooooooow. Not to say that it isn't good, just different. I have heard it described as "very European" which for most is probably a turn off.

Drive could have probably been cut to 30 minutes because the majority of the movie is taken up by Ryan Gosling and Carey Mulligan awkwardly staring at each other. I recently found a picture that pretty much sums up the entire film.

There it is folks. 

If you're looking for an artsy reflection on the human condition about how far a man will go to protect the people he loves even at the cost of his own life then Drive is for you! But if you go in expecting an action-packed adrenalin fueled thrill ride then you'll be sorely disappointed. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: 3 Hot Upcoming YA Releases

WoW is hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine and showcases upcoming releases we're dying to read!

Rick Riordan
May 2012
He's b-a-a-ack! Despite their best efforts, Carter and Sade Kane can’t seem to keep Apophis, the chaos snake, down. Now Apophis is threatening to plunge the world into eternal darkness, and the Kanes are faced with the impossible task of having to destroy him once and for all. Unfortunately, the magicians of the House of Life are on the brink of civil war, the gods are divided, and the young initiates of Brooklyn House stand almost alone against the forces of chaos.

To find the answer they need, the Kanes must rely on the murderous ghost of a powerful magician who might be able to lead them to the serpent’s shadow... or might lead them to their deaths in the depths of the underworld
This MG series is great fun! 

Suzanne Selfors
Aug 2012
Emmeline Thistle has always had a mysterious bond with cows, beginning on the night of her birth, when the local bovines saved the infant cast aside to die in the forest. But Emmeline was unaware that this bond has also given her a magical ability to transform milk into chocolate, a very valuable gift in a kingdom where chocolate is more rare and more precious than gold or jewels. Then one day Owen Oak, a dairyman’s son, teaches Emmeline to churn milk into butter – and instead she creates a delicious chocolate confection that immediately makes her a target for every greedy, power-hungry person in the kingdom of Anglund. Only Owen loves Emmeline for who she truly is, not her magical skill. But is his love enough to save her from the danger all around her? 
This is supposed to be an ungly duckling retelling. It just sounds so...different with the cow/milk/chocolate angle that we've got to check it out. 

C.K. Kelly Martin
Sept 2012
THEN: The formation of the UNA, the high threat of eco-terrorism, the mammoth rates of unemployment and subsequent escape into a world of virtual reality are things any student can read about in their 21st century textbooks and part of the normal background noise to Freya Kallas's life. Until that world starts to crumble. 

NOW: It's 1985. Freya Kallas has just moved across the world and into a new life. On the outside, she fits in at her new high school, but Freya feels nothing but removed. Her mother blames it on the grief over her father's death, but how does that explain the headaches and why do her memories feel so foggy? When Freya lays eyes on Garren Lowe, she can't get him out of her head. She's sure that she knows him, despite his insistence that they've never met. As Freya follows her instincts and pushes towards hidden truths, the two of them unveil a strange and dangerous world where their days may be numbered. Unsure who to trust, Freya and Garren go on the run from powerful forces determined to tear them apart and keep them from discovering the truth about their shared pasts (and futures), her visions, and the time and place they really came from.
Still not sure if it's dystopian since it's 1985, but looks interesting. 

What are you waiting for? 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

YA Book Release & Trailer: INFAMOUS by Sherilyn Kenyon

Sherrilyn Kenyon fans rejoice! INFAMOUS, third in the Chronicles of Nick series releases today! Here's the trailer!

You can read the INFAMOUS FIRST CHAPTERS HERE. And check out Sherrilyn Kenyon's website

Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon
Go to school. Get good grades. Stay out of trouble. That’s the mandate for most kids. But Nick Gautier isn’t the average teenager. He’s a boy with a destiny not even he fully understands. And his first mandate is to stay alive while everyone, even his own father, tries to kill him. 
He’s learned to annihilate zombies and raise the dead, divination and clairvoyance, so why is learning to drive such a difficulty? But that isn’t the primary skill he has to master. Survival is. 
And in order to survive, his next lesson makes all the others pale in comparison. He is on the brink of becoming either the greatest hero mankind has ever known. 
Or he’ll be the one who ends the world. With enemies new and old gathering forces, he will have to call on every part of himself to fight or he’ll lose everyone he cares about. 
Even himself. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

YA Book Review: LEGEND by Marie Lu

What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.
From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias' death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.
With the couple-from-the-opposite-sides-of-the-tracks theme, Legend has a Romeo and Juliet vibe, but romance takes a backseat to this action-filled dystopian.

And in this case, Juliet is a kick-butt soldier type.

The U.S. is divided into warring factions of East (Colonies) and West (Republic). June is a military prodigy for the Republic, her mind filled with all the rhetoric that goes with it. When her brother is killed, supposedly by the all-evil Day, she is sent in pursuit. Undercover in the slums, June meets up with Day and the story starts rolling. 

With alternating points of view you get to know each character well. I loved June. Her development is a bit different. Instead of the softie who finds her inner strength, June is a hardnosed believer in the cause who softens over time as she and Day uncover the truth of the malevolent government conspiracy.

And she warms up to Day.

Who wouldn’t? Day is an adorable sweetie, cast in this role of nefarious criminal when he’s really just trying to protect his family and live a peaceful, happy life. But this is dystopian, guys, so life sucks and few get what they want.

A horrific plague runs rampant (and threatens Day’s loved ones), the Republic is a police state where the poor are under the government’s thumb, and everyone’s life hangs by a precarious thread. Mystery and intrigue abound, June’s whole belief system turns upside down, and the story provides plenty of thrills and chills, as well as death and mayhem.

The plot is often predictable – you can figure out who Metias’ real killer is in the first few pages, and overall the “surprises” aren’t really surprising. But who cares when the story is this engaging!

The action, drama, machinations, and political maneuvering, as well as captivating characters you’re happy to invest in (especially June), make Legend excellent entertainment.

I'm excited for the sequel because even though many secrets were revealed, I know there’s a bigger story lurking in the shadows just itching to be told!

Alyssa Avatar with name

Friday, March 9, 2012

Last Chance to Win a Kindle Fire!

Demons at Deadnight Blog Tour Banner with Hex Boys

It's the final day of the DEMONS AT DEADNIGHT Blog Tour and it's been a wild ride!

Today, check out Jenny @ Supernatural Snark for her hysterical interview with Ayden and the Hex Boys. The flirting is off the charts! And you'll get the final word for the secret phrase so you can enter to win a KINDLE FIRE!

You have until March 15th to enter. And if you missed any of the tour, below is the list of fantabulous bloggers and all the links to their amazing posts!

Huge THANKS to every blogger and follower of the tour! 
And GOOD LUCK to all who enter!

Jan 30 - Mar 7

Jan 30Mindful Musings - Review
Jan 31Teens Read and Write - Guest Post
Feb 1The Unread Reader - My Book Boyfriend
Feb 2YA Book Queen - Author Interview
Feb 3Must Love Books- Review

Week 2
Feb 6: Seeing Creative - Guest Post
Feb 7Books and Things - Hex Boy (character) Interview - Matthias
Feb 8:The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia - Review
Feb 9The Book Vixen - Top 10
Feb 10Mindful Musings - Guest Post

Week 3
Feb 13In the Closet with a Bibliophile - Hex Boy Interview - Blake
Feb 14Teens Read and Write - Valentine's Day with the Hex Boys
Feb 15Must Love Books - Author Interview
Feb 16Geeky Blogger - Review
Feb 17In the Closet with a Bibliophile - Of Which I am Well Informed (Jen cooks!)

Week 4
Feb 20Ramblings of a Teenage Bookworm - Review
Feb 21The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia - Cooking Video
Feb 22In The Hammock - Review

Feb 23Geeky Blogger - Guest Post
Feb 24Supernatural Snark - Review

Week 5
Feb 27Musings of a YA Reader - Review
Feb 28Bookish Brunette - Review
Feb 29Tales of Whimsy - Cooking Video
Mar 1Ramblings of a Teenage Bookworm - Tristan Character Interview
Mar 2Tina's Book Reviews - Review

Week 6
Mar 5Teens Read and Write - Guest Post
Mar 6Musings of a YA Reader - Interview

Mar 7Tina's Book Reviews- Interview
Mar 8Electrifying Reviews - Video Author Interview
Mar 9Supernatural Snark - Character Interview

Thursday, March 8, 2012

YA Fiction Book Review: EVERNEATH by Brodi Ashton

by Brodi Ashton
384 pages
Pub: Jan 24, 2012
Got it from: Library
Last spring, Nikki Beckett vanished, sucked into an underworld known as the Everneath. Now she’s returned—to her old life, her family, her boyfriend—before she’s banished back to the underworld . . . this time forever. She has six months before the Everneath comes to claim her, six months for good-byes she can’t find the words for, six months to find redemption, if it exists.Nikki longs to spend these precious months forgetting the Everneath and trying to reconnect with her boyfriend, Jack, the person most devastated by her disappearance—and the one person she loves more than anything. But there’s just one problem: Cole, the smoldering immortal who enticed her to the Everneath in the first place, has followed Nikki home. Cole wants to take over the throne in the underworld and is convinced Nikki is the key to making it happen. And he’ll do whatever it takes to bring her back, this time as his queen.As Nikki’s time on the Surface draws to a close and her relationships begin slipping from her grasp, she is forced to make the hardest decision of her life: find a way to cheat fate and remain on the Surface with Jack or return to the Everneath and become Cole’s queen.
Talk about an emotional read! 

It starts with Nikki trying to say goodbye to the people she loves and making amends for her mistakes. Broke my heart! And then knowing she's decided to let herself be banished back to the Underworld instead of compromising her morals and taking the easy way out -- I instantly loved her!

Her despair and sadness eventually dragged a bit for me -- you all know I love me some fast paced action, so take that with a grain of salt -- BUT then she starts looking for a way to cheat fate. Everything starts snowballing from there and I couldn't put it down. 

The story flashes between present day and the events that led her to follow Cole into Everneath. A thread of dark, cryptic tension rippled throughout the story, and kept me intrigued during the slower parts. And as a mythology nerd, I LOVED the twists on classic lore and the mysteries surrounding it.

Cole's sexy vibe and enigmatic complexity oozes off the pages. I definitely share Nikki's love/hate conflict, and see why she followed him in the first place. Sooooo tempting. 

Jack is equally devastating and so very real. True blue, committed, adoring. *Sigh* There should be one of him wandering the halls of every high school for all the girls to pine for. 

I wouldn't say there's a love triangle exactly, and that gives Everneath a big plus in my book. Nikki loves Jack while she's only ever needed Cole -- for information, survival, etc. And both love interests reflect her feelings. Jack actually cares for Nikki. Cole simply needs Nikki and he'd be stupid if he didn't use that sex appeal to win her over.

The ending left me near tears and frantically awaiting the next installment.

All in all, a really good read. More intensely emotional and gut wrenching than paranormal action/adventure, but worthy entertainment.   

And this remains one of my all-time favorite covers. Why can't I look like that every time I step out of the house? I'll just have to get a fog machine.

Lunar Love Giveaway Hop: Win $10 in Books!

For the Lunar Love Giveaway Hop hosted by I Am a Reader Not a Writer and Bookworm Lisa, you can win your choice of one of Lisa Bergren's River of Time series books, or your choice of any book up to $10. 

A list of participating blogs is below.

Good luck! 

Fill out the Rafflecopter form below
Open to wherever Book Depository Ships
Enter by March 13 midnight
Must be 13 years or older

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Waiting On Wednesday: 3 Hot Upcoming YA Releases!

WoW is hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine and showcases upcoming releases we're dying to read!

Maureen Doyle McQuerry
May 2012
On her 18th birthday, Lena Mattacascar decides to search for her father, who disappeared into the northern wilderness of Scree when Lena was young. Scree is inhabited by Peculiars, people whose unusual characteristics make them unacceptable to modern society. Lena wonders if her father is the source of her own extraordinary characteristics and if she, too, is Peculiar. On the train she meets a young librarian, Jimson Quiggley, who is traveling to a town on the edge of Scree to work in the home and library of the inventor Mr. Beasley. The train is stopped by men being chased by the handsome young marshal Thomas Saltre. When Saltre learns who Lena's father is, he convinces her to spy on Mr. Beasley and the strange folk who disappear into his home, Zephyr House. A daring escape in an aerocopter leads Lena into the wilds of Scree to confront her deepest fears.
A fun steampunk, fantasy, romance adventure! Although her wings look a bit chicken wimpy-ish. She needs to work out and pump those babies up!  

Tiffany Trent
Aug 2012
In an alternate London where magical creatures are preserved in a museum, two teens find themselves caught in a web of intrigue, deception, and danger. 
Vespa Nyx wants nothing more than to spend the rest of her life cataloging Unnatural creatures in her father’s museum, but as she gets older, the requirement to become a lady and find a husband is looming large. Syrus Reed’s Tinker family has always served and revered the Unnaturals from afar, but when his family is captured to be refinery slaves, he finds that his fate may be bound up with Vespa’s—and with the Unnaturals. 
As the danger grows, Vespa and Syrus find themselves in a tightening web of deception and intrigue. At stake may be the fate of New London—and the world.
More steampunk adventure? Awesome! 

Sarah Beth Durst
Sept 2012
In a desert land where serpents made of unbreakable glass fly through the sky and wolves made of only sand hunt within storms, Liyana is destined to be a vessel, to sacrifice herself so that her clan's goddess can inhabit her body... but her goddess never comes.
Something new and interesting from Sarah Beth Durst is always a treat! 

What are you waiting for? 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...