Waiting on Wednesday 4/23/14

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week I am so excited about this one:

afterworlds

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld, September 23, 2014

From Goodreads:

“Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she’s made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings… Told in alternating chapters is Darcy’s novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the ‘Afterworld’ to survive a terrorist attack. But the Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved – and terrifying – stories need to be reconciled. And when a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most.”

IT’S A NEW NOVEL FROM SCOTT WESTERFELD!!! Ok, will stop screeching at you, but really, it’s a new novel from Scott Westerfeld! Oh, happy day.

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

Top Ten Tuesday-My Favorite Characters Who Are Underdogs 4/22/14

toptentuesday

This week The Broke and the Bookish are talking about our favorite characters who ______ (fill in the blank). I chose to talk about my favorite characters who are underdogs. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, an underdog is:

: a person, team, etc., that is expected to lose a contest or battle

: a less powerful person or thing that struggles against a more powerful person or thing (such as a corporation)

The underdog is at a disadvantage, often coming from a position of inferiority or adversity. Sometimes they are known as the loveable losers. I love a rousing underdog story. Here are some of my favorites:

1. Doug Swieteck from Okay for Now by Gary Schmidt. Doug is good kid who just can’t catch a break. He is bullied at home and unjustly labelled at school. He is full of potential, but is trapped in a horrible situation. I love Doug and his birds forever and ever.

okay

2. Ed Kennedy from I am the Messenger by Markus Zusak. Poor Ed is definitely a loveable loser. He is hopelessly in love with his best friend. His constant companion is a stinky dog called the Doorman. He is stuck in a rut at the tender age of 19, until he foils a bank robbery and begins receiving mysterious messages.

i am the messenger

3. Jacky Faber from Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer. Jacky has it rough! She’s an orphaned street urchin who longs for a better life. She is tough and resourceful, making her one of my all-time favorite underdogs! This girl has a knack for finding and escaping trouble.

bloody jack

4. Ryan Dean West from Winger by Andrew Smith. Ryan Dean West is a fourteen-year old junior at a fancy boarding school. His roommate is the school bully, he’s the smallest kid on the rugby team, and he is also hopelessly in love with his best friend. Ryan Dean is a total misfit who just wants to belong. He had me in stitches and in tears. I love this kid!

winger

5. Deryn Sharp from Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld. Deryn is a brilliant airman in the British Air Service. Deryn has a huge secret. Deryn is a girl!

leviathan

6. The Princes Charming from The Hero’s Guide series by Christopher Healy. Want to know the real Prince Charming? His name is Liam. And Frederic. And Gustav. And Duncan. These are the princes who saved Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Snow White, and Rapunzel, respectively. How they managed these heroics is a mystery because this League of Princes is full of bumbling goofballs!

hero's guide

7.  Will from The Ranger’s Apprentice series by John Flanagan. Will is too small to pursue his dream of being a knight, but he soon discovers his small stature is an asset to a king’s Ranger. People often underestimate Will and his little horse, Tug. It is a mistake they never make twice. I love this unlikely hero.

ruins of gorlan

8. Josie from Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys. Poor Josie is the daughter of a prostitute. She has dreams of college and a better life, far from New Orleans. Unfortunately, she faces adversity at every turn.

out of the easy

9. David from Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson. David is the very definition of underdog. He is a mere mortal going up against super villains who have superhuman powers.

steelheart

10. Amber Appleton from Sorta Like a Rock Star by Matthew Quick. Amber, despite being homeless, is a self-proclaimed optimist, but even her special brand of optimism might not be enough to save her from the tragedy that awaits her. I don’t know why this book isn’t more popular! It is such a feel-good story!

sorta like a rock starHappy Reading!

∼Megan

Mondays with Megan

Happy Monday! I hope everyone enjoyed this beautiful weekend. I had a strangely sports-filled weekend. Friday night baseball, Saturday morning soccer game, and a hockey game in evening. It was nice to be out and about after being sick last week. The one and only sort of silver lining to sick days? I got a lot of reading done!

mondayreading new monday

Thanks to Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts for hosting It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

Finished:

chasers traitor in the tunnel shades of earth more than this alpha and omega

  •  Chasers by James Phelon was recommended by a teen reader, so I will have a full review up sometime soon. It wasn’t a favorite, but I might read the next book in the series. This first book left me with only questions and no answers.
  • A Traitor in the Tunnel by Y.S. Lee is the third book in The Agency series. This was my Random Read for the month, so look for a full review as well. I really enjoy these Victorian-era mysteries. The heroine is a mixed-race (Irish and Chinese) orphan who is trained to be a spy.
  • Shades of Earth by Beth Revis is the third book in the Across the Universe series. This series follows Amy, a teen from Earth who is frozen and sent to space with her family and a number of other people who will colonize a new planet. Things do not go according to plan and Amy is unfrozen early. The second book reveals a number of startling secrets about the mission and the ship, Godspeed. The third book reveals even more shocking information about the planet they are meant to be colonizing. All in all a fun series and with an exciting conclusion!
  • More Than This by Patrick Ness is really hard to describe without spoiling things. The first part of the story introduces readers to Seth, a teen who makes the decision to commit suicide. What happens next is strange and thought-provoking and a little mind-bending. Did you think you were getting an “issues” book? Ha! This is an excellent pick for the serious reader who enjoys a bit of philosophy and science fiction.
  • Locke & Key, vol. 6: Alpha & Omega by Joe Hill is the final book in a dark and disturbing graphic novel series. This series is an addicting mix of magic and shadows and horror. Loved it and hope for more from Joe Hill!

Current Audio:

accident little brother

  • The Accident by Chris Pavone is a suspense book about a book! Win.
  • Little Brother by Cory Doctorow is about a group of teens caught up in the aftermath of a terrorist attack.

Currently Reading:

elite

  • The Elite by Kiera Cass is the sequel to The Selection. While I enjoyed the first book, I am really kind of disgusted with this one. I am going to be annoyed if I feel compelled to read The One.

On Deck:

bar code tattoo enchantment nantucket red

  • The Bar Code Tattoo by Suzanne Weyn is a Teen’s Choice for the month.
  • Enchantment by Orson Scott Card is the other Teen’s Choice read for the month.
  • Nantucket Red by Leila Howland is an e-galley and the sequel to Nantucket Blue.

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

 

 

 

 

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige Review 4/17/14

dorothy

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige
April 1, 2014
HarperCollins
Hardcover, 452 pgs

What it’s about:

Amy Gumm is just another girl living in a trailer park in Kansas. Her life totally sucks. Her mom is an addict, her dad left them, and she is the favorite target of the mean girls. Everything changes the day of the tornado. That’s right, a tornado in Kansas that rips her home off its foundation and deposits her and her mom’s pet rat in the land of Oz. Yes, that land of Oz. Except things are nothing like in the books and movie. Oz is dying and it is all Dorothy’s fault. The remaining witches of Oz have formed an alliance, the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked and they intend to train Amy for her mission. Her mission is simple: Dorothy must die.

Why you might like it:

Are you a fan of The Wizard of Oz series? If so, you won’t want to miss this twisted tale! Love fractured fairy tales? This one is awesome! Do you like your stories dark and deadly? This Oz story isn’t all rainbows and flowers (but then again, L.Frank Baum’s Oz was kind of dark as well). Do you enjoy it when the lines between good and evil are blurred? Well, get ready to find yourself cheering for some wicked witches. Maybe. It’s complicated. Speaking of complicated, I hope you don’t mind when things don’t always go according to plan. There are plenty of twists and turns and shocking curve balls thrown at out poor heroine. Dorothy Must Die was one of my most highly anticipated novels of 2014. I had high expectations and am pleased to report that this debut was as amazing as I had hoped it would be!

Want more like this?

I recently discovered Eric Shanower’s graphic adaptations of the Oz series. It is amazing! You might also try Mark McGiure’s Oz adaptation, the Wicked series. If you like retellings try Marissa Meyer’s Cinder series, Jackson Pearce’s Sisters Red and Sweetly, or Wendy Delsol’s Stork trilogy.

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

 

Mondays with Megan-Lives Change @ Your Library 4/14/14

 

 Happy National Library Week!
April 13-19

lives-change-library

This year’s theme is Lives Change @ Your Library and if you are a regular library user you know that statement is the truth! I work for a medium-sized independent library and I love all of the awesome services we offer. One of the things that makes my library unique is our Reading Room. Not sure what to read next? This is an excellent place to start! The well-read librarians here at RRPL have created a database of all the great books we read. You’ll find brief summaries and reviews of thousands of books as well as suggested readalikes. You can look for your favorite authors or titles, but if you are feeling more adventurous, you can find books by searching for descriptors or time periods or locations. You should check it out!

Now, on to my favorite Monday list.

mondayreading new monday

 It’s time to check in with Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts for another edition of It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

Finished:

universe versus dorothy

  • The Universe Versus Alex Woods by Gavin Extence is one of this month’s Teen’s Choice books. This book deserves a full review from me. I absolutely loved it. Alex starts his story with the end-with an urn of ashes and a bunch of marijuana. A quietly moving story of bullying, friendship, and end of life decisions unfolds.
  • Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige has been one of my most highly anticipated books of the year. As I write this I technically haven’t finished the book, but I intend to devour the remaining 100 pages the second I am free from work, so I am counting it. Amy Gumm’s trailer home gets sucked up by a tornado and she is deposited in Oz, much like the previous visitor from Kansas, Dorothy Gale. It turns out that Dorothy returned to Oz and became totally evil and Amy has to save Oz. This book is everything I had hoped and dreamed for in a twisted Oz retelling! It also deserves a full review.

Current Audio:

shades of earth more than this

I will finish both of these this week. I am anticipating a satisfying conclusion to the Across the Earth trilogy by Beth Revis. I am also really glad I stuck with More Than This by Patrick Ness. I hesitate to reveal too much, but it is so weird and totally worth it.

Currently Reading:

chasers elite

On Deck:

peace, love and baby ducks traitor in the tunnel

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

Far From You by Tess Sharpe Review 4/10/14

far from you

Far From You by Tess Sharpe
April 8, 2014
Disney-Hyperion
Hardcover, 352 pages

What it’s about:

Seventeen-year old Sophie watches her best friend get shot and killed. The cops rule the murder a drug deal gone wrong. Everyone blames Sophie, assuming that she relapsed in her recovery from her addiction to painkiller. Everyone is wrong. Sophie is clean and after being forced into rehab, she is ready to find out the truth behind Mina’s death. She can’t solve this mystery alone, but she is reluctance to reach out to her few friends because that will mean revealing the big secret has been protecting. In the end, the desire for justice for Mina prevails and Sophie risks everything to find the person who robbed her of the girl who more than just a best friend.

Why you might like it:

If you like a gripping murder mystery, you might give this one a try. Are you interested in stories about drug addiction and recovery? Far From You is a powerful recovery story you might like. Are you looking for books with bisexual/lesbian characters? Under the thrill of the mystery and drama of recovery, you will find a touching story of first love. Do you love a good redemption story? Far From You has that! Are you a fan of a non-linear story? The story of Sophie and Mina slowly unfolds as Sophie jumps between the past and present. If you like an intense, emotional read, you might enjoy this impressive and poignant debut. I really liked this one and will be watching for more from Tess Sharpe!

Want more like this?

For more LGBT themed books try Ask the Passengers by A.S. King, Shine by Lauren Myracle, and Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz. For another murder mystery try All Unquiet Things by Anna Jarzab. For more on drug abuse try Ellen Hopkin’s Crank series.

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

Waiting on Wednesday-Famous Last Words 4/9/14

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week I am so excited about this one:

famous last words

Famous Last Words by Katie Alender, September 30, 2014.

From Goodreads:

“Hollywood history, mystery, murder, mayhem, and delicious romance collide in this unputdownable thriller from master storyteller Katie Alender.

Willa is freaking out. It seems like she’s seeing things. Like a dead body in her swimming pool. Frantic messages on her walls. A reflection that is not her own. It’s almost as if someone — or something — is trying to send her a message.

Meanwhile, a killer is stalking Los Angeles — a killer who reenacts famous movie murder scenes. Could Willa’s strange visions have to do with these unsolved murders? Or is she going crazy? And who can she confide in? There’s Marnie, her new friend who may not be totally trustworthy. And there’s Reed, who’s ridiculously handsome and seems to get Willa. There’s also Wyatt, who’s super smart but unhealthily obsessed with the Hollywood Killer.

All Willa knows is, she has to confront the possible-ghost in her house, or she just might lose her mind . . . or her life.

Acclaimed author Katie Alender puts an unforgettable twist on this spine-chilling tale of murder, mystery, mayhem — and the movies.”

I really enjoyed Katie Alender’s Bad Girls Don’t Die series. Due out at the end of September, this will be a perfect addition to the library’s collection just in time for Halloween!

Happy Reading!

∼Megan