Saturday, 29 September 2012

Stacking the Shelves [5]

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Hey all!
Although i've been going easy on my book buying until I catch up with what I have at home, I did end up buying a couple books I've been dying to read and a new release I've been waiting on!

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews , where you show off your new books of the week!

This week I have...
I've been hearing such great things about This Dark Endeavour that I just had to buy it when I came across it! At work everyones been stopping by to pick up the second installment, so I decided it was best if I checked out the hype :p
 
I've been meaning to read The Perks of Being a Wallflower for some time, and then when the chance to go watch the early screening came up (with a couple of fellow Edmonton Book Bloggers, courtesy of Simon and Schuster & Kristilyn of Reading In Winter ), I picked it up right away! I just recently finished it, so look out for a review sometime this evening!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Diviners....I was SO excited when I found out that Libba Bray released a new novel. I'm a HUGE fan of her novels and writting-- I just HAD to buy it the first day it came out! I just started it last night, and I can tell you that Libba Bray never disappoints-- even in her initial opening lines! I'm super excited to get the time to tear through this novel. I'm expecting great things!
 
I found the hardcover version of Delirium on sale at work and decided to buy it. I've been having discussions with a couple other book bloggers about this novel, and they've all seemed to love it. I'm excited to read it to see what the hype is all about!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
That is all I've got! Not too shabby, eh?
What's on your shelf this week? Comment & Let me know! :)
 


Friday, 28 September 2012

Feature Friday: The Night Circus By Erin Morgenstern

Feature Friday is a weekly meme hosted here, at xo'reads, where I will feature a great book & post two of my favorite (and spoiler free) pages/excerpts, to inspire you to pick it up & discover why I have deemed it feature worthy (& amazing)!
 
This Weeks Book: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

So I just recently finished and reviewed this book, and I'll be damned if it wasn't the best book I've ever read! I HAD to share a couple excerpts from this book with you-- so what a better time than for Feature Friday! There are too many great excerpts, but I picked 3 great ones for you to get a taste of this phenomenal novel!

The Night Circus

Chapter **

Prospero the Enchanter uses a pocket knife to slit his daughter's fingertips open, one by one, watching wordlessly as she cries until calm enough to heal them, drips of blood slowly creeping backwards.
The skin melds together, swirls of fingerprint ridges finding one another again, closing solidly once more.
Celia's shoulders fall, releasing the tension that has knotted in them, her relief palpable as she draws herself safely together.
Her father gives her only moments to rest before slicing each of her newly healed fingers again.


Chapter **

"I am sorry to hear that," he says. "It will make the challange a great deal more diifficult for you."

"we have been playing at this for more than a decade, when does it end?"

"It ends when there is a victor."

"And how long does that take?" Marco asks.

"It is difficult to say. The most previous challange lasted thirty-seven years."

"we cannot keep the circus running for thirty-seven years."

"Then you will not have as long a time to wait. you were a fine student, you are a fine competitor."

"How can you know?" Marco asks, his voice rising. "you have not seen fit to speak to me for years. I have done nothing for you. Everything I have done, every change I have made to that circus, every impossible feat and astounding sight, I have done for her."

"Your motives do not impact the game."

"I am done playing your game, " Marco says. "I quit."

"You cannot quit," his instructor replies. "You are bound to this. To her. The challange will continue. One of you will lose. You have no choice in the matter."

Marco picks up a ball from the billiard table and hurls it at the man in the grey suit. He steps out of its path easily and it crashes instead into the sunset of stained glass.
Without a word, Marco turns his back on his instructor.He walks out the door at the back of the room, not even noticing Isobel as he passes her in the hall, where she has been close enough to hear the argument.
He goes directly to the ballroom, making his way to the center of the dance floor. He takes Celia’s arm, spinning her away from Herr Thiessen.
Marco pulls her to him in an emerald embrace, so close that no one distinction remains between where his suite ends and her gown begins. To Celia there is suddenly no one else in the room as he holds her in his arms. But before she can vocalize her surprise, his lips close over hers and she is lost in wordless bliss.
Marco kisses her as though they are the only two people in the world. The air swirls in a tempest around them, blowing open the glass doors to the garden with a tangle of billowing curtains. Every eye in the ballroom turns in their direction. And then he releases her and walks away. By the time Marco leaves the room, almost everyone has forgotten the incident entirely. It is replaced by a momentary confusion that is blamed on the heat or the excessive amounts of champagne. Herr Thiessen cannot recall why Celia has suddenly stopped dancing, or when her gown has shifted to its current deep green.

“Is something wrong?” he asks, when he realizes that she is trembling. 


Chapter **


She had only wanted to keep the circus in balance. to preve nt the two conflicting sides from causing damage to each other or their surroundings.
To keep the scales from breaking.
Over and over in her mind, she sees them together in the ballroom.
She remembers snatches of the overheard argument. Marco saying he had done everything for her , a statement she had not understood at the time and forgotten soon after.
But now it is clear.
All the emotion in the cards when she would try to read about him, it was all for Celia.
The circus itself, all for her. For every beautiful tent he creates, she builds one in return.
And Isobel herself has been helping to keep it balanced.
Helping him. Helping them both.
She looks down at the hat in her hands.
White lace caressubg black wool, ribbons intertwind. Inseperable.
Isobel tears at the ribbons with her fingers, pulling at the bows in a sudden fury.
The handkerchief floats down like a ghost, the initials C.N.B legible amongst the embroidered vines.
The tarot card falls to the grund, landing faceup. The image of an angel is emblazoned on it, the word Temperance is lettered beneath.
Isobel stops, holding her breath. Expecting some repercussion, some result from the action. But everything is quiet. Candles flicker around her.
She thinks herself a fool for believing she could have any impact on such things. That anything she ever did mattered at all.
She reaches down to retrieve the fallen card, but her hand freezes just above it when she hears something. For a split second it sounds like the squealing brakes of a trian.
It takes a moment for Isobel to realize that the noise coming from outside the tent is actually the sound of Poppet Murray screaming.

***
 
Want to read more of this heart-stopping novel? Check out The Night Circus By Erin Morgenstern 
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Thursday, 27 September 2012

review: The Night Circus


The Night CircusName: The Night Circus

Author: Erin Morgenstern

Publication: September 13th 2011 by Doubleday

Source: Purchased

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart



                        
 


“People see what they wish to see. And in most cases, what they are told that they see.” 

I'm at loss for words. Nothing I could possibly say could do this phenomenal novel any justice. It's just so beautifully written and exquisite, any review would be an understatement.

The Night Circus follows two magicians, Celia & Marco, as they duel in a deadly battle that they have been trained for since childhood, each by their respect instructors whom have nothing in mind but winning at all costs. The battle takes place behind the scenes of a beautiful circus, Le Cirque des Rêves (The circus of Dreams), where each must use their own forms of magic to outdue the other, while holding the circus in check- until only one is left standing. Despite the battle between the two and the high stakes, love takes both the magicians by surprise and may be the essence of their distruction, along with the preforms and patrons who's lives lay entangled within this deadly battle.

Never have I read a book with such beautiful description and ambience. I kid you not, Morgenstern could very well be describing paint drying and you'd still be flipping pages like a maniac. The atmosphere, the characters, the writting-- all of it: Pure Perfection.


“Everything I have done, every change I have made to that circus, every impossible feat and astounding sight, I have done for her.”

The novel jumps back and forth between past and future, as the novel progresses towards the one future time-frame where the climax takes place. Usually such a writting style ticks me off; but the way Morgenstern writes makes it easy to follow, no matter what the time-frame and what character is being followed.
The novel follows various vital characters that all connect back to Celia and Marco, and their competition. A couple chapters were also told from a patrons perspective, as to what they see when they enter this glorious circus. Morgenstern is an EXCELLENT writter, and I just cannot wait to read more of her work. She makes all this perspective/character jumping, and time-frame shifting so easy to follow and somehow makes it all flow together so beautifully-- it's hard not to be entranced.

I'm usually not fan of extensive description, but TRUST ME, it's just as important as Celia and Marco.
I adored all the other characters that played roles throughout Celia and Marco's competition: Isobel, whom I pitied, Poppet and Widget whom you get to watch grow up and play their own vital roles in the circus, Bailey, who's story starts in the future and ends along side Poppet, Widget, Celia & Marco and all the other Circus preformers that made the atmosphere and story as beautiful and complex as it was.

I can't stress enough how phenomenal this story truly is. I was extremely pleased with the ending and literly fell in love with all the characters and the atmosphere. My top 4 novels have officially become top 5. Hopefully I'll be able to keep from comparing every novel I read from now on to this one... I'm not sure any novel can satisfy me as The Night Circus has.

“But dreams have ways of turning into nightmares.”
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Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Recent Releases: Alice In Zombieland

A novel that I've been eagerly anticipating and has just recently been put on the market is Gena Showalter's Alice In Zombieland. After reading the synopsis and checking out the gorgeous cover, I knew that I had to get my hands on this novel when it comes out. Guess what I'll be getting this week?!

Alice in Zombieland (White Rabbit Chronicles, #1)She won’t rest until she’s sent every walking corpse back to its grave. Forever.

Had anyone told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that’s all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.

Her father was right. The monsters are real….

To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn’t careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies….


I wish I could go back and do a thousand things differently.
I'd tell my sister no.
I'd never beg my mother to talk to my dad.
I'd zip my lips and swallow those hateful words.
Or, barring all of that, I'd hug my sister, my mom and my dad one last time.
I'd tell them I love them.
I wish... Yeah, I wish



So excited to get started on this! I do have a couple of novels in line before it though... hopefully I can get to it come Halloween. The PERFECT occasion!
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Waiting on Wednesday [3]: Beautiful Redemption

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at breaking the spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
This weeks waiting on is.....
Beautiful Redemption By Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

    Expected PublicationOctober 23 2012
Series: Caster Chronicles #4-- finale


Being my favorite series ever... this is my waiting on of the whole year!!
Not only did Beautiful Chaos make me blubber like a baby at 3 am, but I've been dying to know what happens ever since I flipped the last page.
There is no doubt in my mind that I'll be the first person in the bookstore.... mwahahaha ;)

If you haven't started this series... DO SO NOW!
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Saturday, 22 September 2012

Special Feature: Opal Cover reveal!

 
 
No one is like Daemon Black.

When he set out to prove his feelings for me, he wasn’t fooling around. Doubting him isn’t something I’ll do again, and now that we’ve made it through the rough patches, well... There’s a lot of spontaneous combustion going on.

But even he can’t protect his family from the danger of trying to free those they love.

After everything, I’m no longer the same Katy. I’m different... And I’m not sure what that will mean in the end. When each step we take in discovering the truth puts us in the path of the secret organization responsible for torturing and testing hybrids, the more I realize there is no end to what I’m capable of. The death of someone close still lingers, help comes from the most unlikely source, and friends will become the deadliest of enemies, but we won’t turn back. Even if the outcome will shatter our worlds forever.

Together we’re stronger... and they know it




*EEEEK!* Please do not deny your excitement, I can sense it through the screen. After you finish drooooooling over Daemon and move on to the synopsis, I think we can all come to the same conclusion of epicness in Jennifer L. Armentrout's third novel in the Lux series, Opal.
I have already sent in my pre-order. Baby, Here I come ;)

What do you guys think of the Opal Cover & Synopsis?


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Stacking the Shelves [4]

Hey guys!
I think I've lost my book touch this week. I've been so busy getting through the books that I already own, that I only recieved 3 new books! *gasp*
I know.
But... without further or ado:

Books I bought:

Cinder (Lunar Chronicles, #1)I bought this for my younger sister to enjoy, which I doubt she'll read since i'm the only one that inherited the 'love of reading' gene... more books for me :D

The Strain (The Strain Trilogy, #1)This was on sale for $2... I mean, really? I just had to get it!
Blog Tour Books:
 
Roots of Insight (Dusk Gate Chronicles, #2)Thank you, Breeana!
                                                                    
That's all I have for this week. Maybe next week will be more interesting, as I plan on purchasing "The Diviners" by Libba Bray (one of my favorite authors!) and a couple others i've had my eye on :)
 
What's on your shelf this week?
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Friday, 21 September 2012

Review: This Is Not A Test

This is Not a TestName: This Is Not A Test

Author: Courtney Summers

Recieved: Purchased

Publication: St. Martin's Griffin

It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self. To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up. As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually want to live. But as the days crawl by, the motivations for survival change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life—and death—inside. When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?
 
 
                                   

 
Boy am I impressed. This is my first zombie book, and Summers has not failed to deliver! After having read such great reviews, naturally my expectations were high. After reading the first sentance... I was hooked.
I aboloutly ADORE the narrative voice. Sloane's character is so interesting and the writting style is so different... I just couldn't help but love it!
The novel follows Sloane Price and five other students as they take refuge in Cortege High during the zombie apocolyse. But for Sloane, her world had already ended six months earlier, when her sister Lily left her alone with their abusive father and fled. Now with death around every cornor, their motivation for living gets bleaker, as what's outside-- and inside-- tears them apart.
 
Although I loved the atmosphere and the narrative voice, I did feel like this was a single dimensional story. Other than the occasional flashbacks into sloan's life, most of it was told & not shown. No background information was given about any of the other characters. This didn't affect the story too much, as the emotional tension and plot made up for it.
Summers knows what she's writting about. Sloane's hate for life, the love/hate she feels towards her sister- yet surviving anyways. It's all spread out and planned to perfection. Have I mentioned the zombies yet? PERFECT.
Sloane's hate for her father and the betrayal of her sister makes the story all that much more enjoyable. It changes her attitude when she contemplates killing herself, then thinks about how she'll be betraying another person as her sister betrayed her. The way her story is pasted together creates a page-turner that's hard to put down.
Most of the other characters got on my nerves- and again, I felt that they were way too one demensional. In the moment, the characters we're conflicted *cough*TRACE*cough*, which made the story all the more amusing to read- but nothing that made each character, other than Sloane, memorable.
Now, this is a short novel AND it's a stand-alone, so it's understandable that each characters life story etc. wasn't told. It's a great read that's hard to put down.
 
More zombies... Here I Come!
 
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Thursday, 20 September 2012

Feature Friday: Pushing the Limits

Feature Friday is a weekly meme hosted here, at xo'reads, where I will feature a great book & post two of my favorite (and spoiler free) pages/excerpts, to inspire you to pick it up & discover why I have deemed it feature worthy (& amazing)!

This Weeks Book: Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry

Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits, #1)

Chapter **

 [Echo]

"I wont tell anyone, Echo. I promise."
Noah Tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did.
Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins?
His dark brown eyes shifted to my arms. "You didn't do that- did you? It was done to you?"
No one ever asked that question.
They stared.
They whispered.
They laughed.
But they never asked.
 
Chapter **

[Noah]

Fifteen minutes. Fuck it. She wasn't coming and I was going to continue standing here in the freezing cold like a moron. I had a party to go to. A party where there would be plenty of girls willing to give themselves to me and plenty of shit to smoke and enough alcohol to help me forget.
I pushed off the brick wall of the gym, shoving my hands in my jean pocket for my keys. The door flew open, almost smacking me in the face. I opened my mouth to yell at the asshole busting out the door, but stopped the moment I came face-to-face with my own personal siren, my nymph-- Echo. This time, She wouldn't walk away.
Wrapping my arms around her, I walked her backwards into the brick. "Tell me you chose me, Echo."
She licked her lips. Those green eyes smoldered, calling me to her. " I chose you."
For the first time in three years, the coil forever tightened in my gut relaxed. "You'll never regret it. I promise."
She shouldn't be with me. We'd both been through hell, but Echo deserved better. Still, I wasn't all bad. I used to be good, like her. She needed to know that.

***



Want to read more of this heart-stopping novel? Check out Pushing The Limits By Katie McGarry!

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Review: Bitten


Bitten (Women of the Otherworld, #1)Name: Bitten

Author: Kelley Armstrong

Series: Women of the Otherworld

Recieved: Purchased


Elena Michaels seems like the typically strong and sexy modern woman, She lives with her architect boyfriend, writes for a popular newspaper, and works out at the gym. She's also a werewolf.

Elena has done all she can to assimilate to the human world, but the man whose bite changed her existence forever, and his legacy, continue to haunt her. Thrown into a desperate war for survival that tests her allegiance to a secret clan of werewolves, Elena must recon with who, and what, she is in this passionate, page-turning novel.




                                             
 
Disappointment at it's finest.
After having unsuccesfully gotten through 50 agonizing pages of The Summoning , from Kelley Armstrong's young adult series, I decided to give her Adult series a go since I've been hearing such great things- Plus she was in town for a signing, so it seemed like a win, win situation.
Opened up the book and started reading... Okay I was impressed. It didn't start off completely boggus like The Summoning and I didn't get the urge to kill the main character right off the bat. In fact, the intro was actually... good.
50 pages in... It's slow now, but that's okay. Most books start off slow.
100 pages in... It's getting better. Plot's boring, but Clayton is interesting.
200 pages in.... Why Kelley. why.

In my previous experiences, the content usually ascends in bookish awesomeness- not vice versa. It wasn't until I was about 200 pages in did the story get too interesting to put down.
Don't get me wrong; this is a good book. I was merely disappointed with what I read, as my expectations were sky high going into it. Maybe I need to stop raising the pole so damn high, but it's hard to help when I've read so many great reviews. I'll definitly need to stop reading reviews before I have come to a conclusion about a novel myself. *Sigh* I'll never learn.

Bitten follows Elena, the Only female werewolf in the world, as she returns from Toronto to help her former pack fight a suprise uprising by 'mutts' that don't seem to know their place. Elena only wanted a normal life; until she was bitten. She moved away to try and forget, and found a man that made her feel human again. She denied her old life until duty calls, and she has to face the man that betrayed her in the worst possible way and the pack that expects her loyalty when danger threatens their sanctuary. Elena's desperate need to feel human comes head to head with her inner wolfish desires, as she fights a battle of old, shattered love, instinct, betrayal & realization.

I liked Elena. She's a fierce, fiesty chick that can hold her own against guys twice her size. She's slightly troubled by the past that haunts her and is constantly trying to forget the fact that the man she loved betrayed her and turned her into the monster she now is. Her constant denial of her feelings for Clay ticked me off 99.9999% of the time. I understood her uncertainty with her feelings and her place of belonging,  I mean, who would blame her? Her fiance turned her into a werewolf before they got married.
I liked her attitude and her temper, they suited the situation she has been placed in. The only thing I can really complain about is her constant Love-Hate for Clay, which gets annoying to a certain degree after she fucks him about 5 times and then claims that she doesn't love him & Philip is the guy she wants to be with.
I loved Clay. He was so protective over Elena, that it overrode his asshole-ness most of the time. I respected his cocky attitude, because really, Elena left him no choice. He's a total badass and his  commitment to the Pack, Jeremy & Elena is just so darn cute!
I'm definitly excited to see more of him in the novels to come. 

The plot was an iffy situation for me. Some parts were extremely well developed and executed, while others were boring and poorly written. I do feel that this novel had the potential to be amazing, if it wasn't for the fact that Armstrong played it safe most of the time. I wanted to see Elena go after Clay no matter what Jeremy said. Not sit there and negotiate. I wanted to see Clay act on his own, not follow Jeremy like a lost pup, when his personality was clearly more than that. The story only really let loose near the end, and even the final fight scene was played as safe as a 'fight' could get. I wasn't unhappy with the ending per se, but I do believe that it had the potential to leave a bigger impact.
I've crossed my fingers for the next book in the series... Maybe Armstrong will suprise me.

Happy reading!
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Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Special Feature: Beautiful Creatures Teaser Trailer & Stills


 I have an AWESOME Special Feature for you guys today! The much anticipated BeautifulCreatures MOVIE has just released a teaser trailer for us to swoon over & enjoy *eek!*
And some amazing stills as well. I had goosebumps the WHOLE TIME while watching the trailer, despite the fact that the cast looks NOTHING like the characters.
My Issues:
Where are Lena's black curly hair & green eyes?
Why doesn't Ethan have hair that falls into his eyes?
WHY is Lena dressed in FLORAL & beige? She wears all black.
Why is Ridley's hair red, and not Blonde with a pink streak?
I'm pretty sure Lena writes the number of days until her claiming on the Palm of her hand....in a sharpie.
 
Despite all that.... The trailer still gave me goosebumps.
 
  video
 
 
                  Ethan & Ridley                                                Macon, Lena & Ethan
 
                     Ethan & Lena                                                  Ridley
 
 
 
 Yes, I see huge issues...But it's still exciting! Since BC is my favorite book ever, I'll have to have faith in the cast.....
 
How do you guys feel about the Cast?
Your Thoughts on the Trailer & Stills?
 
Comment & Let me know :D
 
You can still enter to win a SIGNED copy of Beautiful Creatures & A signed promotional movie bookmark!
 
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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