Thursday, May 31, 2012

Come to My Window, Come Inside

Expected Publication: June 14th, 2012
My Life Next Door
By: Huntley Fitzpatrick
Dial Books for Young Readers
ISBN-13: 9780803736993

A gorgeous debut about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another

“One thing my mother never knew, and would disapprove of most of all, was that I watched the Garretts. All the time.”

The Garretts are everything the Reeds are not. Loud, numerous, messy, affectionate. And every day from her balcony perch, seventeen-year-old Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs her terrace and changes everything. As the two fall fiercely in love, Jase's family makes Samantha one of their own. Then in an instant, the bottom drops out of her world and she is suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?

A dreamy summer read, full of characters who stay with you long after the story is over.


   Samantha Reed has been watching the Garrett family with longing ever since they moved in next door.  There might be a lot of kids and a lot of noise, but compared the Sam's distant, proper family it seems like heaven on earth.  So imagine her surprise when one summer night Jase Garrett comes up onto her terrace and enters her world.  At first they become friends and Sam thinks she can keep it from her Mom, who disapproves of the Garretts and is running to be re-elected as a senator.  Then they begin to fall in love, Sam gets seriously close to the Garrett kids during the times she babysits them and she no longer feels like she needs to hide it from her Mom.  But the last thing she wants to do is disappoint her family.  So at first, she just doesn't tell anyone.  Not exactly lying right?  But when something devastating happens to Jase's Dad, with Sam's Mom and her creepy political boyfriend are to blame, will she be able to do the right thing if it means losing her own family stability?  And will her relationship with Jase and the Garretts be over when the dust settles?  I can understand why this book has been compared to Sarah Dessen - the whole first love, personal identity and family issues mix definitely makes it similar.  But I thought that the way the book ended was pretty weak.  The plot twist involving Jase's Dad getting hurt and Sam's Mom being involved seemed a little too Lifetime movie of the week for my taste.  Huntley should have just stuck to the love story and the side-story of a family in need of healing.  That was what truly interested me about this book.  Jase and Sam made a wonderful couple.  The sub-plot with Sam's best friends, Nan and Tim, was truly wonderful.  I sympathized with Nan and hated her at the same time.  Tim I just wanted to wrap in a hug, feed a hot meal and save him from the downward spiral he was on.  Jase's brothers and sisters were awesome, especially Duff, George and Alice.  Tim cracked me up every time he tried to put the moves on 'Hot Alice.'  Definitely worth the read and it does the small town life admirably well with plenty of heart from each character.  I just don't know where in the HELL that crazy-cakes plot twist came from! :)

VERDICT:  3.5/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is June 14th, 2012.*

Walking On Water

Published: October 4th, 2011
The Son of Neptune (Heroes of Olympus #2)
By: Rick Riordan
Hyperion Book CH
ISBN-13: 9781423140597

Seven half-bloods shall answer the call,
To storm or fire the world must fall.
An oath to keep with a final breath,
And foes bear arms to the Doors of Death.

Percy is confused. When he awoke from his long sleep, he didn't know much more than his name. His brain fuzz is lingering, even after the wolf Lupa told him he is a demigod and trained him to fight with the pen/sword in his pocket. Somehow Percy manages to make it to a camp for half-bloods, despite the fact that he has to keep killing monsters along the way. But the camp doesn't ring any bells with him. The only thing he can recall from his past is another name: Annabeth.

Hazel is supposed to be dead. When she lived before, she didn't do a very good job of it. Sure, she was an obedient daughter, even when her mother was possessed by greed. But that was the problem - when the Voice took over her mother and commanded Hazel to use her "gift" for and evil purpose, Hazel couldn't say no. Now because of her mistake, the future of the world is at risk. Hazel wished she could ride away from it all on the stallion that appears in her dreams.

Frank is a klutz. His grandmother says he is descended from heroes and can be anything he wants to be, but he doesn't see it. He doesn't even know who his father is. He keeps hoping Apollo will claim him, because the only thing he is good at is archery - although not good enough to win camp war games. His bulky physique makes him feel like an ox, especially infront of Hazel, his closest friend at camp. He trusts her completely - enough to share the secret he holds close to his heart.

Beginning at the "other" camp for half-bloods and extending as far as the land beyond the gods, this breathtaking second installment of the Heroes of Olympus series introduces new demigods, revives fearsome monsters, and features other remarkable creatures, all destined to play a part in the Prophesy of Seven.


   Percy Jackson has gone missing from Camp Half-Blood, but that might not be the biggest problem.  He barely remembers his own name, has no clue he's a half-blood anymore and can only recall Annabeth's name - nothing else.  He manages to fight his way to Camp Jupiter, a haven for Roman demigods.  Percy is seen as a bad omen because he is a son of Neptune and is treated with distrust.  But Mars decides that Percy, klutzy demigod Frank and mysterious Hazel have to go on a quest to free Thanatos (Death) from Alaska, the land beyond the reach of the Gods.  Will they make it in time or will all be lost?  Is Hazel who she claims to be or is she hiding something, and what does Nico D'Angelo have to do with it?  I honestly loved this book!  I was supper excited that Percy was back in the game after not being part of The Lost Hero, although I really liked Jason, Piper and Leo a lot.  This book was so mutli-layered that it honestly made me an even bigger fan of Riordan's writing.  I thought Hazel's back story was awesome - I won't say anything more than that for fear of causing spoilers for those who haven't read the book yet.  I really liked Frank, who in the end proved to be great person and exhibited some major change.  The quest was fun, but it made me miss Annabeth and Grover.  I really hope that the next book unites everyone and manages to keep up the pace.  Also, I hope Riordan doesn't drag the series out too much.  I love Percy and his friends, but I don't want this to go the way of other series that don't quit while they're ahead and end in the most mediocre ways ever.  All in all, a wonderful thrill-ride of a book.  Highly recommended for fans of the first book in the new series and if you haven't read ANY of the Percy Jackson books, what the heck are you waiting for????? :)

VERDICT:  4.25/5  Stars

*No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book is now available in stores and online.*

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Dancing With Myself...

Expected Publication: August 21st, 2012
Beautiful Lies
By: Jessica Warman
Walker Children's
ISBN-13: 9780802723383

Rachel and Alice are an extremely rare kind of identical twins—so identical that even their aunt and uncle, whom they’ve lived with since their parents passed away, can’t tell them apart. But the sisters are connected in a way that goes well beyond their surfaces: when one experiences pain, the other exhibits the exact same signs of distress. So when one twin mysteriously disappears, the other immediately knows something is wrong—especially when she starts experiencing serious physical traumas, despite the fact that nobody has touched her. As the search commences to find her sister, the twin left behind must rely on their intense bond to uncover the truth. But is there anyone around her she can trust, when everyone could be a suspect? And ultimately, can she even trust herself? Master storyteller Jessica Warman will keep readers guessing when everything they see—and everything they are told—suddenly becomes unreliable in this page-turning literary thriller.


   Rachel and Alice are identical twins.  That's not so abnormal, right?  Except for the fact that they're so identical that their parents were the only ones able to tell them apart.  They shared a placenta and an amniotic sac, both surviving against all odds.  They have a connection to each other emotionally that most people view as impossible.  But ever since their parents died and they were sent to live with their Aunt and Uncle, they've grown further apart than either girl dreamed could happen.  Alice has become wild and unpredictable, leaving Rachel stuck being the responsible and boring twin that everyone depends on.  No one other than the twins knows about the times they've switched places.  Not until Rachel is kidnapped while pretending to be Alice.  Than Alice must use all of her wits to find out what has happened to her sister, before the kidnapper comes looking for the twin they meant to take the first time - her.  Can Alice save Rachel from the darkness she brought her into?  Was Rachel who she pretended to be or will Alice uncover unimaginable secrets?  The ending will come sooner or later and it will be something you never expected.  This book had me gripped from the beginning, with the psychic twin connection and the kidnapping mystery.  It was astounding to me that Alice could get away with pretending to be Rachel for so long with no one noticing.  I wasn't shocked that Rachel felt trapped by Alice's irresponsibility and was keeping secrets from her.  NO siblings tell each other everything - even identical twins as close as Alice and Rachel are.  I liked the inclusion of the family life while Alice was searching for Rachel.  Each of the family members - Aunt, Uncle, Grandma, handicapped Cousin - added something intrinsic to the plot and furthered the story or character development in some way.  That said, I was pretty disappointed in the way the book ended.  The true facts about Alice's boyfriend Robin were so cliched it was unbelievable at first that the author chose that direction to go in with that thread of story.  I did like the side story with the twins' friend Kimber, who had all sorts of family issues of her own.  The identity of the kidnapper was a similar situation - so obvious and cliched that it really pissed me off.  Also, outcome for the twins made me angry as well.  Seriously, that's how Jessica Warman is going to end such a suspenseful and original mystery/paranormal story?  Overall it was worth reading if you're a mystery fan and fascinated by twins.  Otherwise, it was unfortunately forgettable.


*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is August 21st, 2012.*

Keep It Down Now, Voices Carry

Expected Publication: July 17th, 2012
The Unquiet
Bloomsbury USA
ISBN-13: 9781599907239

Sixteen-year-old Rinn Jacobs has secrets: One, she’s bipolar. Two, she killed her grandmother. 

After a suicide attempt, and now her parents' separation, Rinn and her mom move from California to the rural Ohio town where her mother grew up. Back on her medications and hoping to stay well, Rinn settles into her new home, undaunted by the fact that the previous owner hanged herself in Rinn's bedroom. At school, her classmates believe the school pool is haunted by Annaliese, a girl who drowned there. But when a reckless séance goes awry, and terrible things start happening to her new friends—yet not to her—Rinn is determined to find out why she can’t be "touched" by Annaliese...or if Annaliese even exists. 

With the help of Nate Brenner, the hunky “farmer boy” she’s rapidly falling for, Rinn devises a dangerous plan to uncover the truth. Soon reality and fantasy meld into one, till Rinn finds it nearly impossible to tell the difference. When a malevolent force threatens the lives of everyone she cares about--not to mention her own--she can't help wondering: who should she really be afraid of?

Annaliese? Or herself?


   Corinne 'Rinn' Jacobs has had a difficult life.  She's hoping to leave the past behind after her parents separate and she moves to the town where her Mom grew up, in backwoods Ohio.  After having a bipolar episode that inadvertently resulted in the death of her beloved Grandmother, Rinn is determined to stay on her medication and not give in paranoia due to the creepy rumors floating around town about ghosts in the school...and her new house.  Rinn makes a lot of popular friends and catches the attention of the cute, boy next door Nate Brenner.  Then, at the Homecoming dance, she participates in a seance at the school pool to draw out the ghost of a girl named Annaliese who drowned there.  It turns out not to be quite so harmless when each of the kids who were in the seance are targeted one by one, some malevolent force trying to do away with them.  Rinn is untouchable for some reason and she's determined to find out why and to know with certainty whether Annaliese is real or not.   Enlisting Nate's help, Rinn is on a mission to save herself and her friends, even if it means facing what she fears the most - herself.  Will she be the next to die or can Rinn finally be strong enough to save herself?  This was an intriguing book.  I normally stay away from the creepy, ghost-story YA books because they never turn out as good as they sound.  I liked Rinn's blunt, 'take-me-as-I-am' attitude because it's not necessarily the norm in YA books nowadays.  Most authors seem to favor the shrinking violet heroines for their novels.  I found myself drawn in to the mystery of Annaliese's existence, why she was haunting the school, and whether or not she was a figment of Rinn's imagination after all was said and done.  I liked the side characters, Meg and Tasha especially even though they met tragic endings.  I thought that Annaliese's cause of death was kind of cliched - at least the involvement the other people who were there was to a very large extent.  Nate made a good romantic interest for a book that wasn't focused on the romance.  It was largely about the mystery and his involvement reflected that.  I was reminded of Lois Duncan's style of writing and I was thoroughly creeped out so many times while reading this.  It is highly recommended for YA fans who enjoy horror, mystery and ghost stories.  Just don't read in a dark room with a creepy closet like I did! :)

VERDICT:  4/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is July 17th, 2012.*

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

In the Dead of Night Terrifying Things Happen...

Expected Publication: July 8th, 2012
Dead of Night (The Youngbloods # 2)
By: Lynn Viehl
Flux Books
ISBN-13:  9780738726465

True love . . . and an undying obsession
Catlyn Youngblood has a secret life. Despite being a natural-born vampire hunter like her two older brothers, Cat has fallen for Jesse--an ageless boy from a centuries-old vampire clan.
Cat's job cataloguing rare, mystical texts at a bookstore allows her to meet with Jesse alone every evening. But when girls who look disturbingly similar to Cat start disappearing from town, Cat and Jesse discover frightening clues to their whereabouts within the book collection. Together, they must stop a crazed man from realizing his dark scheme-- one that would claim Cat's life.


   Catlyn Youngblood only recently moved to Lost Lake with her brothers, Trick and Gray, but the last few months have been eventful.  Cat found out that she is descended from Van Helsing and has special powers that allow her to hunt vampires - including some vampire blood in her family tree.  But that's the last thing she wants to do after falling in love with Jesse Raven, a mysterious teenage boy who along with his parents, doesn't age.  He is almost a vampire but not quite.  After Trick tries to make her forget the last few months and Jesse altogether with his mind control abilities, Cat plays along so she'll be free from suspicion and able to see Jesse in secret again.  To help this idea along, Cat gets a holday job cataloguing a rare, occult book collection of the town's recently deceased recluse.  But then girls begin disappearing from town under mysterious circumstances - girls who look almost exactly like Cat.  Is she going to be next?  What does the mysterious kidnapper hope to gain and how sinister can circumstances get before someone is almost lost forever?  This book was a good follow-up to the first of the series.  I enjoy the idea of Van Helsing's descendants and their supernatural powers.  Cat is just an average girl with a good family life and awesome brothers (even if it is sans parents) and this highly appeals to me.  I loved the subplot with the out of control horse, Rika, but even I (totally horse uneducated) could get what her problem was.  It took them way too long to figure that one out.  The whole 'deranged and on a quest for immortality' thing wasn't exactly new, but it was still entertaining.  Cat gets some more revelations about her powers and family history in this book.  My main complaint would be the lackluster romance between Cat and Jesse.  They verge on Edward/Bella, with the main difference being I like Cat and Jesses as individuals - they're just not that great together.  Their relationship is pretty boring and vanilla, because those are the traits they bring out in each other.  The rating for this book probably would have been a star lower, if not for Viehl's jaw-dropping, wall-punching cliffhanger.  It's something that was present at the end of the first book too.  I can't wait to see where it leads.  I would recommend this to readers who were intrigued by the first book.  Don't bypass it, or else you probably won't be sucked in at all to the plot and overall character shenanigans. 

VERDICT:  4/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is July 8th, 2012.*

Just Stay Strong, Cause You'll Make It Through

Expected Publication: May 31st, 2011
Keep Holding On
By: Susane Colasanti
Viking Juvenile
ISBN-13: 9780670012251

A romantic and empowering book about bullying

Noelle's life is all about survival. Even her best friend doesn't know how much she gets bullied, or the ways her mom neglects her. Noelle's kept so much about her life a secret for so long that when her longtime crush Julian Porter starts paying attention to her, she's terrified. Surely it's safer to stay hidden than to risk the pain of a broken heart. But when the antagonism of her classmates takes a dramatic turn, Noelle realizes it's time to stand up for herself--and for the love that keeps her holding on.


   Noelle has a horrible living situation.  Her Mother has basically gone into a mode of full-scale neglect, leaving Noelle to fend for herself when it comes to being clothed and fed.  There is never any food in the house and when Noelle bothered to dream about college (working at a crappy job to save toward it) her Mother wiped out her life savings to pay bills because Noelle 'owed' her.  At school she is bullied mercilessly because of her shabby appearance and pitiful lunches, when all the other kids come from rich families and privileged upbringings.  She eats in the bathroom to avoid Warner, her main tormenter, only to be sidelined by Carly who makes verbal and physical threats to Noelle's safety.  Then Simon Bruckner invites her to join the literary magazine and gives her a safe haven.  Her boyfriend Matt refuses to acknowledge her in public and only wants to use her for physical satisfaction.  Her best friend Sherae is basically the only good thing in her life, keeping her sane and alive.  Then Noelle breaks it off with Matt and is attacked by girls at the bus stop with paintball guns.  At first she refuses to allow nice guy Julian into her world because of her past hurts.  But once she does, Noelle begins to realize that no one deserves the sort of treatment she's been getting.  And maybe it's time to stand up against the bullies and pull the shades from her Mother's eyes.  Then something horrible and devastating happens to someone Noelle knows.  Will Noelle's life actually change at all?  This book ripped me to shreds, probably because it was so personal to me.  I was a victim of bullying from 1st grade, until the 9th grade.  Like Noelle I coped with being the poor kid in a rich school, with everyone teasing me mercilessly because of my unfashionable clothing and reduced price lunches.  I was an individual and that made me a target as well.  Colasanti really grabs you where you live and makes you realize that even if you pretend not to see it, things like this happen every minute of every day.  To someone a comment about there clothes hair or personality could actually be the difference between life and death.  Noelle was an extremely strong heroine.  It takes serious courage to stand up and not let yourself be bullied anymore.  I loved that she had a true friend in Sherae and that she eventually began to realize her self-worth.  My only complaint would be that for as horrifically realistic as the bullying is, the resolution is seriously unrealistic and overly neat.  Things do not change that much, that fast in real life.  And at times it got a little after-school specialy.   Overall it was a very well written, heartbreakingly true book.  I highly recommend it. 

VERDICT:  4/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is May 31st, 2012.*

Monday, May 21, 2012

Turn Around, Bright Eyes

Published: February 2nd, 2012
The Catastrophic History of You and Me
Penguin Young Readers Group
ISBN-13: 9780803737204

Dying of a broken heart is just the beginning.... Welcome to forever.

BRIE'S LIFE ENDS AT SIXTEEN: Her boyfriend tells her he doesn't love her, and the news breaks her heart—literally.

But now that she's D&G (dead and gone), Brie is about to discover that love is way more complicated than she ever imagined. Back in Half Moon Bay, her family has begun to unravel. Her best friend has been keeping a secret about Jacob, the boy she loved and lost—and the truth behind his shattering betrayal. And then there's Patrick, Brie's mysterious new guide and resident Lost Soul . . . who just might hold the key to her forever after.

With Patrick's help, Brie will have to pass through the five stages of grief before she's ready to move on. But how do you begin again, when your heart is still in pieces?


   Brie Egan is in love, has a happy family and three perfect best friends.  She is excitedly counting down the days before she turns sixteen.  Her life is perfect - until her boyfriend Jacob tells her he doesn't love her.  He breaks her heart in half - literally and Brie dies of a broken heart.   Brie is still around though and in her own version of the afterlife - a recreation of her family's favorite pizza place.  There Brie meets Patrick, a boy who is dressed like Tom Cruise in Top Gun.  He becomes her best friend, guide through the afterlife and protector against those who would harm her.   Brie is forced to confront the fact that her life wasn't as perfect as she imagined and face the aftermath of her death on the people she left behind.  Working her way through the five stages of grief, she must learn the rules as she goes along.  Or Brie will pay an extremely  devastating price - one that will cost her the only thing she has left, her soul.  Can Brie forgive Jacob and let go of her family and her old life.  Or will she be stuck in the past for eternity?  I LOVED this book!  The characters were wonderful, especially Patrick, Brie's brother Jack, Brie and her dog Hamloaf.  I didn't know what to expect going into this book, because the premise was unlike anything I'd ever read before.  Brie Egan didn't really get me pulled into her predicament at first.  When she began her journey in the afterlife and truly started to question the supposed perfection of her old life, I got hooked in completely.  I didn't like how  2-dimensional Jacob's personality was, but the surprise twist of why he dumped Brie truly DID shock me.  I really did not see it coming.  Patrick was dreamy.  He was not perfect, but that was what made him so endearing.  I also liked the ideas of reincarnation and the afterlife that the author put forward.  They had a twist that was new to me.  By the end of the book, things had taken a darker turn but it still had a fairly light-hearted finale.  I truly loved this book and really geeked out over the song-titled chapters.  The playlist that Rothenberg has on her website is truly awesome.  I highly recommend this book to anyone who is looking for something out of the norm, sweet, and with a beautiful story to it.

VERDICT:  4.75/5  Stars

*I got a copy of this book with the help of a truly awesome friend! :) (Thanks Stacia!)  No money or favors were exchanged for this review.*

Tempest Unleashed On An Unsuspecting World

Expected Publication: June 5th, 2012
Tempest Unleashed (Tempest # 2)
Walker Children's
ISBN-13: 9780802728302

Tempest Maguire is happy with her decision to embrace her mermaid nature and live among her mother’s clan within the ocean’s depths. Even though training to one day ascend the throne for the aging mermaid queen is rigorous, she finds refuge in the arms of Kona, the selkie who first opened her up to her mermaid side. But when word comes that one of her brothers has been gravely injured on land, Tempest immediately rushes to his side—which also brings her back to her old flame, Mark. And in her absence, a deadly battle begins raging at the hands of Tempest’s old nemesis, the sea witch Tiamat. As the dangerous war erupts, Tempest’s two loves—Kona and Mark, sea and land—will collide for the first time, both to protect her and to force her to choose.


   Tempest has decided that she owes it to her Mother's people to live with them and one day become Queen of the mermaids.  But she is having trouble letting go of the last vestiges of her human life.  Her romance with Kona, the one thing she was certain she could count on is also suffering.  All because Tempest can't let go of Mark, her human ex-boyfriend, completely either.  Then the sea-witch Tiamat strikes out at her human family, forcing Tempest to rush home once more.  All the while Tiamat is attacking Tempest's people under the ocean while she is distracted by the illness of her youngest brother, Moku.  When Tempest and Kona go back underwater, both of their villages have been severely harmed by Tiamat.  Tempest tries to find Kona upon learning some horrific news about his family and learns that he has been taken by Tiamat and a mer traitor who is helping her in the quest for power.  Now Tempest must swim into a trap and use all of her wits, strength and love to find a way to defeat Tiamat and rescue Kona.  Also, Kona isn't the only one who has been kidnapped.  Can Tempest save herself and both of her loved ones?  Or will one of them be left in the murderous grip of the sea witch?  This book was interesting like the first one, but it had some extremely weak points in my honest opinion.  Tempest began to truly annoy me with her chronic inability to make a choice romantically and let it STICK.  Now that she has chosen to be with Kona, she wants Mark back and dreams about being with him again.  Seriously, after the very selfish and completely absentminded way she treated him in the first book when Kona came onto the scene, NOW she freaking wants to be with him?????  And her complete disregard for her family until there's a major crisis is pretty grating.  I liked the mermaid mythology and prophecy of the first one.  However, the 'muhahaha' mentality and characterization of Tiamat got to be a little bit much for me to handle.  I had to laugh at the devolvement of Tempest and Kona's relationship though.  That is what should happen to all of these fake, YA insta-love relationships.  Insta-lust is a more accurate description.  I didn't care for the way that the plot developed which felt at times too slow and then at others way too fast.  I will not be reading the next book if there is one.  ESPECIALLY not after the horrible way this one ends.  If you want a good mermaid book, find another series to read.  If you love Twilight, this is the series for you.

VERDICT:  2.5/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is June 5th, 2012.*

I Haven't Got The Time...

Expected Publication: June 12th, 2012
Timepiece (Hourglass #2)
ISBN-13: 9781606841457

A threat from the past could destroy the future. And the clock is ticking...

Kaleb Ballard's relentless flirting is interrupted when Jack Landers, the man who tried to murder his father, timeslips in and attacks before disappearing just as quickly. But Kaleb has never before been able to see time travelers, unlike many of his friends associated with the mysterious Hourglass organization. Are Kaleb's powers expanding, or is something very wrong?

Then the Hourglass is issued an ultimatum. Either they find Jack and the research he's stolen on the time gene, or time will be altered with devastating results.

Now Kaleb, Emerson, Michael, and the other Hourglass recruits have no choice but to use their unusual powers to find Jack. But where do they even start? And when? And even if they succeed, it may not be enough...

The follow-up to Hourglass, Timepiece blends the paranormal, science fiction, mystery, and suspense genres into a nonstop thrill ride where every second counts.


   Emerson Cole has been thrown into a world of intrigue and excitement, with a secret organization called Hourglass at the center of it all - oh yeah, time travel is involved as well.  Her and her friends are just now recovering from their altercations with Cat Powers and Jack Landers, evils former members of a group of time travel researchers who wish to steal Hourglass' powers and manipulate events in time to their advantage.  But than at a party at Em's brother's restaurant, they are threatened with an ultimatum to find Jack or have time be altered in a horrible way.  Also, saving Michael and Liam in the by changing the timeline has damaged the very fabric of time and the ripples of time are beginning to have more substance than they should.  It's up to Em, Michael, Kaleb and Lily to find Jack and put an end to possible problems before they happen.  This means that Lily will have to use a power that she's sworn not to since she was forced to leave Cuba with her Grandma years before.  But even then it may not be enough to save them from disaster.  And where does the InfinityGlass come into play?  Will Em and her fellow Hourglass team members all make it out alive?  I liked the first book decently enough, so I figured that I would give this one a shot.  I was glad that Em and Michael were not the focus in this one.  Their relationship nauseates and annoys me beyond belief.  Kaleb and Lily were my two favorite characters from the first book, so the possibilities excited me.  It ended up being another disappointing case of unrealistic, insta-love.  The book was from Kaleb's POV and while that could've made a difference, there was practically no distinction from Em's narration in the first book.  At first I didn't even realize that Kaleb was the one narrating!  And the time travel stuff was interesting, but too confusing.  If I wanted a physics class I would take one - there's a reason I'm reading fiction!  Lily was more in-depth in this book, which was the best part for me.  But towards the end of the novel even she devolved into a clone of Emerson.  The only thing that I really enjoyed was the action, Kaleb's discoveries of the complexity of his powers and how to help his Mother recover from Jack's devastating attack on her mind.  Not a book I would recommend unless you're okay with mediocrity or are in love with the first one already.  I will probably be sucked into the next one though, because of the cliffhanger.  It made me it's bitch and I totally admit it! 

VERDICT:  3/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is June 12th, 2012.*

Friday, May 18, 2012

Follow Me Friday # 12

   So, Follow my Blog Friday is a meme hosted by Parajunkee and AlisonCanRead. It's where you answer the weekly question and then link yourself and you go and check out other blogs of your interest.

Q: Summer Break is upon us! What would be the perfect vacation spot for you to catch up on your reading & relax?

A:  I think that the perfect vacation spot for me to catch up on my reading (I literally have about 100 galleys to R&R!) would probably be a National Park.  The one I really would like to go to this summer (I live in Michigan) is not technically a Park, but it's a National Lakeshore, The Sleeping Bear Dunes.  I've never been there and it's so beautiful that it would definitely relax me enough to read my way through about a million books! :)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Dust Consumes Me

Expected Publication:  June 26th, 2012
Dust Girl (The American Fairy Trilogy #1)
Random House Children's Books
ISBN-13: 9780375869389

Callie LeRoux lives in Slow Run, Kansas, helping her mother run their small hotel and trying not to think about the father she’s never met. Lately all of her energy is spent battling the constant storms plaguing the Dust Bowl and their effects on her health. Callie is left alone, when her mother goes missing in a dust storm. Her only hope comes from a mysterious man offering a few clues about her destiny and the path she must take to find her parents in "the golden hills of the west" (California).

Along the way she meets Jack a young hobo boy who is happy to keep her company—there are dangerous, desperate people at every turn. And there’s also an otherworldly threat to Callie. Warring fae factions, attached to the creative communities of American society, are very aware of the role this half-mortal, half-fae teenage girl plays in their fate.


   Callie Leroux has grown up in Kansas, during the height of the Great Depression AND the Dust Bowl.  Her Father disappeared before she was born, but promised to come back for them.  So her Mother refuses to leave for the city and a better life.  Callie has gotten the dust pneumonia, which will eventually kill her if her situation doesn't change.  Also, she's forced to hide the fact that she's the product of a white Mother and a black Father in a time when it's considered nigh unto a sin to be biracial.  Something else is different about Callie that she only learns after a mysteriously supernatural dust storm carries away her Mother - Callie is half-fairy and royalty on top of that.  With the help of Jack Hollander, a young man heading toward California to become a journalist, Callie heads out of town to find her parents.  But not everyone she meets is a friend or trying to help her on her quest.  All the fairies she meets have their own agendas, including the ones that claim to be family.  Can Callie and Jack survive the hunger, racial prejudices and magic that work against them?  Will they make it to California and reach their dreams?  Callie is a great heroine - strong, with a distinctive voice and very sympathetic.  Zettel never overplays the biracial aspect but does a wonderful job of emphasizing all of the prejudices in America at that time working against Callie.  Another thing that I enjoyed was the idea that the Seelie Court (the Shining Ones) were white and the Unseelie Court (the Midnight People) were black.  This put a new spin on the same old fairy mythology that is usually overused in the same ways.  My only real complaint would be the ever-changing reality of who the villain was.  Sometimes that's a good thing, but it turned a little schizophrenic in this case.  This novel was about two young people trying to find themselves and their places in a changing America.  Fantastitcal overtones were there, but not as present as in most fairy books.  This was probably the best book dealing with fairies that I've ever read - and I have read A LOT of them.  I would highly recommend this one to people who aren't even fans of books dealing with fairies, because at its heart it really is a character centric book. 

VERDICT:  4.5/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is June 26th, 2012.*

Monday, May 14, 2012

Evil Is Lurking Beneath the Surface

Expected Publication:  July 12th, 2012
Lies Beneath
By: Anne Greenwood Brown
Delacorte Books for Young Readers
ISBN-13:  9780385742016

Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans, killing them to absorb their energy. But this summer the underwater clan targets Jason Hancock out of pure revenge. They blame Hancock for their mother's death and have been waiting a long time for him to return to his family's homestead on the lake. Hancock has a fear of water, so to lure him in, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. Easy enough—especially as Calder has lots of practice using his irresistible good looks and charm on ususpecting girls. Only this time Calder screws everything up: he falls for Lily—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined. And just as his sisters are losing patience with him.


   Calder White is the only brother to four beautiful and mysterious sisters.  On the surface they are no different from most families - except for the fact they happen to be murderous mermaids on the prowl for human energy to steal.  But this summer they are after a specific person : Jason Hancock, because his Father reneged on a bargain and killed their Mother in the process.  Now the son has finally returned to the family's lake house with his wife and two daughters, giving the perfect opportunity for revenge.  They plan to get to him by using one of his daughters.  But when Calder starts to have feelings for Hancock's oldest daughter Lily, it begins to cause problems for his family's revenge plot.  Also, Lily is smarter than they thought and starts to realize the truth to the stories about monsters in the lake.  Calder's sisters are on the verge of taking over and getting revenge for themselves - the one thing that could ruin his rediscovered humanity.  Can he save Lily and her Father from the jaws his family's hatred or will they all be destroyed?  This seemed like a book that had a different viewpoint than most YA mermaid books - the mermaids were NOT the good guys in this one.  They consistently killed humans and stole their energy.  It was an interesting twist, but it led to some major disconnect from the main characters.  Also, Lily felt a bit 2D in terms of personality.  Calder was practically stalking her for most of the book and she still communicated with him and ended up falling for him.  Seriously, yet another girl with Bella Swan syndrome.  Calder was a decently fleshed out character, but most of the book was spent with him searching for a way to still get revenge and save Lily - not much time left to get to know him very well as an individual.  His sisters were stereotypes at best and I especially despised Maris.  But that seemed to be the point and is therefore acceptable I suppose.  Also the love triangle was annoyingly present in this one.  The two guys were both in love with the unremarkable, average in every way girl.  I am so sick and tired of the usage of this as a plot device in YA novels.  The resolution was totally predictable and while I did manage to read the whole book, I ended up very much unimpressed with it.  I would not recommend this to anyone, unless they are highly obsessed with books involving mermaids.  

VERDICT:  2.35/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is July 12th, 2012.*

Not Written In The Stars...

Expected Publication: May 22nd, 2012
Fated (Soul Seekers # 1)
St. Martin's Press
ISBN-13: 9780312664855

The first book in a magnificent new series about a girl who can navigate between the worlds of the living and the dead by #1 New York Times bestselling author Alyson Noël.

Lately strange things have been happening to Daire Santos. Animals follow her, crows mock her, and glowing people appear out of nowhere. Worried that Daire is having a nervous breakdown, her mother packs her off to stay in the dusty plains of Enchantment, New Mexico with a grandmother she’s never met.

There she crosses paths with Dace, a gorgeous guy with unearthly blue eyes who she’s encountered before...but only in her dreams. And she’ll get to know her grandmother—a woman who recognizes Daire’s bizarre episodes for what they are. A call to her true destiny as a Soul Seeker, one who can navigate between the worlds of the living and the dead. Her grandmother immediately begins teaching her to harness her powers—but it’s an art that must be mastered quickly. Because Dace’s brother is an evil shape-shifter who’s out to steal her powers. Now Daire must embrace her fate as a Soul Seeker and find out if Dace is one guy she’s meant to be with...or if he’s allied with the enemy she’s destined to destroy.


   Daire Santos has lived with her single mother for her entire life, because her Father died before she was born and his mother, her Grandma, disappeared.  But now that Daire has turned sixteen, her Mother's free-wheeling traveling lifestyle has become too much for her - or so it seems.  On the surface it appears that Daire is suffering from a break with reality and her mental health is in jeopardy.  But in reality she is the newest in a long line of soul seekers, able to navigate between the worlds of the living and the dead.  Now she is sent to live with her long-lost Grandma and learn to control her powers before it's too late.  Not everyone wants her to succeed, including the family of evil shape-shifters living in town.  Also, Daire forges a connection with Dace, a boy she's seen only in her dreams.  Can she discover her allies and manage to stand against the evil threatening to destroy her?  Or will Daire be consumed by it?  I will admit that I went into this ambivalently, expecting the worst on a subconscious level.  I have read exactly one and a half books by Alyson Noel, because I couldn't stand the direction of her Immortals series after the first book.  So, I was wary.  I ended up liking Daire and admiring her stubborn nature (much like my own) and wishing that I had a Grandma as cool as hers.  Every other character in the novel fell flat for me.  This book had far too much setup for my tastes and it left me feeling disconnected.  The powers that Daire struggled with felt a little too vague for my mind to comprehend and I was disappointed by how little time was spent on action versus romance and boring trivialities.  The mythology of the Native American tribes was at various times over and under utilized. I probably won't read the next book in the series.  It wasn't a horrible book, certainly not the worst I've ever read, but it was far from the best as well.

VERDICT:  2.75/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading Copy from the publisher, via LibraryThing. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is May 22nd, 2012.*

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Blood On My Hands

Published: April 10th, 2012
The Book of Blood and Shadow
By: Robin Wasserman
Random House Children's Books
ISBN-13: 9780375968761

It was like a nightmare, but there was no waking up. When the night began, Nora had two best friends and an embarrassingly storybook one true love. When it ended, she had nothing but blood on her hands and an echoing scream that stopped only when the tranquilizers pierced her veins and left her in the merciful dark.

But the next morning, it was all still true: Chris was dead. His girlfriend Adriane, Nora’s best friend, was catatonic. And Max, Nora’s sweet, smart, soft-spoken Prince Charming, was gone. He was also—according to the police, according to her parents, according to everyone—a murderer.

Desperate to prove his innocence, Nora follows the trail of blood, no matter where it leads. It ultimately brings her to the ancient streets of Prague, where she is drawn into a dark web of secret societies and shadowy conspirators, all driven by a mad desire to possess something that might not even exist. For buried in a centuries-old manuscript is the secret to ultimate knowledge and communion with the divine; it is said that he who controls the Lumen Dei controls the world. Unbeknownst to her, Nora now holds the crucial key to unlocking its secrets. Her night of blood is just one piece in a puzzle that spans continents and centuries. Solving it may be the only way she can save her own life.


  Nora had a happy life with her best friends and her boyfriend.  So what if her parents were treating her like she was invisible and her brother was dead, leaving her with no real family anymore.  At least she had Chris, Adriane and Max to keep her tethered to real life.  But ever since they've gotten a job as assistants to a Professor trying to unravel and ages-old mystery their lives have changed without them even realizing it.  Then Chris is murdered, Adriane is catatonic and Max is missing.  This leaves Nora to puzzle out what has happened to them all from the clues left behind.  Starting with a 500 year old letter, covered in Chris' blood.  Nora will be lead to Prague on a mission to find a machine called the Lumen Dei, that has the knowledge of God himself.  But there are others searching for the machine and they will stop at nothing to get it - even murder.  With unexpected allies and a shocking betrayl of the worst kind, will Nora and the others be able to find the Lumen Dei in time?  And will they all survive it once they have?  The first half of the novel is full of character building and setting foundations for the mystery of the Lumen Dei, through the centuries old letters of Elizabeth Weston (daughter of a slightly mad alchemist in Elizabethean times).  You really get to know Nora, Chris and Elizabeth.  Max and Adriane are slightly more enigmatic but later in the novel you really begin to understand that they feel this way to Nora as well.  I truly liked Eli, Chris' 'cousin' who feels the need to trail Nora searching for answers about Chris' death.  It ended in a way that wasn't entirely unexpected and seemed slightly abrupt.  That was a little disappointing after such a great, high-level and intelligent mystery.  This novel was definitely one of a kind in the YA market and worth the read for fans of mystery, slight paranormality and adventure.

VERDICT:  3.85/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's publication date was April 10th, 2012.*

It's Kinda Frosty In Here

Published: August 1st, 2011
Touch Of Frost (Mythos Academy #1)
By: Jennifer Estep
Kensington Publishing Corp.
ISBN-13: 9780758266927

My name is Gwen Frost, and I go to Mythos Academy — a school of myths, magic and warrior whiz kids, where even the lowliest geek knows how to chop off somebody's head with a sword and Logan Quinn, the hottest Spartan guy in school, also happens to be the deadliest.

But lately, things have been weird, even for Mythos. First, mean girl Jasmine Ashton was murdered in the Library of Antiquities. Then, someone stole the Bowl of Tears, a magical artifact that can be used to bring about the second Chaos War. You know, death, destruction and lots of other bad, bad things. Freaky stuff like this goes on all the time at Mythos, but I'm determined to find out who killed Jasmine and why —especially since I should have been the one who died. . .


   Gwen Frost is descended from a long line of gypsy women, but she never believed in creatures and people of mythology being real.  When her Mom dies in a horrible accident, she is sent to Mythos Academy by her Grandma because she needs 'training.'  Gym class is really weapons training and her classmates are the descendants of Amazons, Valkyries, Spartans and other races that the world thinks have been long extinguished.  A long time ago there was a war among the Gods and Loki tried to take over the world.  The Bowl of Tears, an ancient artifact that he used has been stolen from the school library.  Then Gwen finds the body of mean girl Jasmine, murdered brutally and decides that she needs to find the killer if no one else will.  Especially since Gwen might be the person who dies next.  Can Gwen figure out who the enemy is in time?  And is her heritage more complicated than she was originally told?  Plus, how is a girl supposed to make any friends in a place where everyone can be lethal?  This book reminded me a lot of the premise of the Percy Jackson series and C.C. Hunter's Shadow Falls series.  Mythological kids sent to camp/boarding school to fight evil, learn about their powers and come to terms with a great destiny.  My only complaint about the follow-through of the mythology plot is that sometimes it feels like an afterthought in lieu of the average high school drama.  Gwen is an interesting heroine who has the requisite tortured past, but has a wonderfully snarky sense of humor to accompany it.    Her Grandma was priceless and truly and awesome old lady.  I loved Gwen's sense of intrepid adventure - it was like what might have happened if Veronica Mars was a psychic gypsy.  Daphne was a great example of character development, starting out as a complete, one-dimensional mean girl and becoming someone who would be a great friend to have.  Logan felt a little to cardboard to be an interesting romantic hero and that disappointed me.  I wasn't expecting the ending fully but it wasn't too shocking either.  This book was a good start to what seems like an interesting addition to YA mythologically inclined fiction.  I recommend it for fans of urban fantasy and mythology of all sorts.

VERDICT:  4/5  Stars

*No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book is now available in stores and online.*

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Touched By An Angel...

Published: September 30th, 2010
Angel Burn
Candlewick Press
ISBN-13: 9780763656522

In a world where angels are beyond redemption, Alex thinks he’s found one that might deserve mercy. 

Alex is a ruthless assassin—of angels. Forget everything you’ve heard about them before. Angels are not benign celestial creatures, but fierce stalkers whose irresistible force allows them to feed off humans, draining them of their vitality until there is barely anything left. As far as Alex is concerned, the only good angel is a dead angel... until he meets Willow. 

She may look like a normal teenager but Willow is no ordinary girl. Half-angel, half-human, Willow may hold the key to defeating the evil angels. But as the hunter and the hunted embark on an epic and dangerous journey and Willow learns the dark and terrifying secrets of her past, Alex finds himself drawn to Willow... with devastating consequences.


   In the world at large, Angels are real and everyone believes that they've been sent to help mankind.  In reality they feed from human energy and make humans diseased and weak, even killing them.  Willow Fields has always been different from other kids.  She is psychic and can read people's futures.  Things take a turn for the worse when Willow reads a popular girl from school's future.  It turns out that Beth is being fed on by an Angel and it's slowly killing her.  But when Willow tries to warn her, she's seen as hostile to the Church of the Angels (an organization used by the Angels to acquire energy sources at the expense of the humans) and is hunted by them.  Also, Willow finds out that the reason for her psychic abilities is that she is half-angel.  Enter Alex, an AK or Angel Killer who is working for the CIA and gets orders to kill Willow.  Then he begins to question his orders and it turns out that the CIA's Project Angel has been compromised - the Angels are the ones giving the orders and they want Willow dead.  Because apparently she's the only one with the power to stop them.  Alex and Willow go on the run, determined to stop the Angels from infiltrating Earth even more in any way they can.  Will they be able to fix things or is it too late?  And will they find love and redemption in one another along the way?  This was a new concept to me - Angels as the bad guys.  I loved the idea because it was different and I'm tired of reading the same old things over and over again.  Willow was a strong heroine, who didn't take crap from anybody.  Her ability to fix cars was cool and I liked that she  never hesitated to do the right thing, even when it might not be what she wanted.  Alex was for want of a better term, a bad-ass.  He is a motorcycle riding, tattooed, angel killing, tortured hero with a painful past.  Plus, he was willing to question everything he'd been taught to figure out the right thing to do.  There was a lot of action and fight scenes that were well-done and kept me on the edge of my seat.  This was a thrilling action/adventure/romance novel and I'm excited to read the next one in the series.  My only complaint it the descent into lovey-dovey near the end of the book.  I highly recommend it.

VERDICT:  4/5  Stars

*No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book is now available in stores and online.* 

Monday, May 7, 2012

More Than Normal...

Expected Publication: June 19th, 2012
Something Like Normal
Bloomsbury USA Children's 
ISBN-13: 9781599908441

When Travis returns home from a stint in Afghanistan, his parents are splitting up, his brother’s stolen his girlfriend and his car, and he’s haunted by nightmares of his best friend’s death. It’s not until Travis runs into Harper, a girl he’s had a rocky relationship with since middle school, that life actually starts looking up. And as he and Harper see more of each other, he begins to pick his way through the minefield of family problems and post-traumatic stress to the possibility of a life that might resemble normal again. Travis’s dry sense of humor, and incredible sense of honor, make him an irresistible and eminently lovable hero.


   Travis comes home from Afghanistan on leave broken and completely messed up.  His new reality at home isn't so awesome either - his Mom and Dad are on the verge of divorce (because his Dad is cheating), his brother has stolen his car AND his girlfriend, plus he can no longer relate to the friends he left behind.  Oh, not to mention the fact that Travis is having hallucinations and nightmares about his best friend Charlie, who died in Afghanistan.  By chance Travis meets up with Harper, a girl whose reputation he ruined in the 9th grade.  At first she wants nothing to do with him, but he manages to find a place in her life in the end.  Harper ends up being exactly what Travis needed, especially now that Charlie's memorial is drawing closer and he'll have to face exactly how his friend died over there.  Travis also has to deal with fact of 3 more years on active duty.  Can he pull it together and begin to heal, or will he be lost in his pain?  This book isn't normally something that I would read.  I can't normally deal with guy narrators or the stories they tell - Travis was a major exception.  This book was so real that Travis, Charlie, and their friends could have been your brother, boyfriend or best friend.  It was scary to contemplate.  The romance was whirlwind but believable and not insta-love by any means at all.  Charlie became a person to me over the course of the novel and by the end his death had my heart breaking in pieces.  The portrayl of PTSD was very un-romaticized and the language Doller used to describe it had me uncomfortable - which is an indication of how good it was.  Also, Travis is a very real person who makes some pretty bad mistakes.  He isn't some perfect romantic, hometown hero.  All of the plot felt so real-world in that sense.  This was a wonderful book, gritty and realistic enough to get deep into my soul.  I will definitely be buying this one in hardcover when it is released and I highly recommend it.

VERDICT:  5/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is June 19th, 2012.*

A Vengeful Mercy

Published: April 3rd, 2012
Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin # 1)
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN-13: 9780547628349

Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae's most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?


   Ismae has always known she was different.  The fact that her Mother had tried to have her expelled from the womb with poison (and failed) left the markings to prove her right.  Her stepfather regarded her as cursed, marrying her off to the first man who would take her.  When he saw the markings Ismae's new husband almost  beat her to death.  But she was saved by a priest, who took her to the convent of St. Mortain where the nuns served Death himself as assassins and whatever else is needed.   Ismae is eager to have her first assignment, which is to infiltrate the high court of Brittany and find the traitor against the Queen.  Then the traitor must die of course.  But is everything truly as it seems?  Is Ismae truly doing Death's will and can she hold onto her heart against love while she carries out her orders?  I am normally loathe to read books that involve political intrigue of any sort.  Even if they're wrapped up in pagan, historical, 15th century kick-ass books like this one.  I liked that Miss LaFevers focused more on the individual characters than the political machinations - at least enough that as a reader I actually cared what would happen to them.  It was a very believable book, including the romance which was a slow build, compared to the usual insta-love of YA books.  Gavriel is the perfect match for Ismae, because he makes her question the blind faith she has for the Nuns of St. Mortain.  Plus, the visit that she receives from Death himself is pretty fantastic.  The idea of Nun assassins probably is the freshest concept that I've read so far this year.  It was a most welcome change from vampires, werewolves and ghosts.  It reminded me a lot of The Blue Sword by Robin McKinley, in a really good way.  This book was definitely worth the read and now I'm dying to have my hands on the next one!  I already know who it will be about (from the little summary in the back of the book) and Sybella was one of the most intriguing minor characters of the book.  I urge you to read this one if you like historical, yet fantastical books with adventure, romance and intrigue.

VERDICT:  4.85/5  Stars

*No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book is now available in stores and online.*