Monthly Archives: September 2014

Top Ten Tuesday-Books That Were Difficult to Read 9/30/14

toptentuesday

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, was suggested by readers. They are asking about books that were hard to read. There are a number of reasons a book may be hard to read. I made a deal with myself a long time ago to only read books that I like, but sometimes I feel an obligation to read things that make me uncomfortable. Also, it’s good to get out of your comfort zone every now and then.

Hard to read because of the subject:

1. Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein. This was harder than Code Name Verity because of the disturbing and graphic descriptions of life in a concentration camp. I really try to avoid Holocaust books as much as possible. Definitely well-written and deserving of all the praise, but difficult for me to finish nonetheless.

rose under fire

2. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I knew better than to read this one, but I allowed myself to get swept up in the John Green craze and boy, did I regret it. My #1 reading rule is NO CANCER BOOKS. This is what happens when I break the rule. I have to officially and forever break up with John Green. I am done.

fault in our stars

3. Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers. Oh, man. This book about bullying and mean girls is brutal. You should feel uncomfortable reading it. It’s fantastic and terrible.

some girls are

4. Tease by Amanda Maciel. Another disturbing book about bullying, with slut-shaming added to the mix. And suicide.

 

tease

5. Reality Boy by A.S. King. This one really made me stop and think about reality television, and I didn’t like what I came up with. It’s gross. I just felt to bad for Gerald the entire time I was reading. I love A.S. King and I love the way she tackles tough topics!

reality boy

6. Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock by Matthew Quick. I am noticing a pattern here…So Holocaust and cancer books are hard and they tend to be no-nos, but bullying? Just as hard, but I read A LOT of them! I am not sure how I feel about this realization.

forgive me leonard

7. Monster by Ilsa Bick. This one was a surprise to me. I read and liked the first two books in the trilogy, but I actually never finished though because of the graphic violence. It was too much for me!

monsters

Because I just wasn’t buying it…

8. The Eye of Minds by James Dashner. I just wasn’t able to completely suspend by disbelief. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline and More Than This by Patrick Ness are much better choices. I read this one because a teen reader recommended it to me.

eye

9. Small Town Sinner by Melissa C. Walker. I am not sure why this even on my radar, but is was a Random Read selection so I toughed it out.

small town sinners

10. The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black. It pains me that I feel this way, but I thought this was let down. I was expecting something so fresh and new and exciting in the vampire world and I just didn’t get it.

coldestHappy Reading!

∼Megan

 

Mondays with Megan

It was a busy weekend for me that actually included a lot of reading, despite the fact that I worked both Saturday and Sunday. The big boost came on Saturday when I proctored a practice ACT test at the library. That means I had about 4 hours of reading time! I also squeezed in a little book shopping. I am very excited about my purchases:

afterworlds in a handful of dust

 I will be starting Afterworlds sometime very soon! In the meantime, check out all the books I finished in the last week. I am still so far behind in my goal, but progress was made!

mondayreading new monday

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts. Be sure to stop by and check out more lists!

Finished:

letters from skye firebug calvin evil librarian sisters

  • Letters from Skye by Jessica Brockmole-an epistolary novel set against the backdrop of WWI and details the relationship between a young Scottish poet and a young American fan. I lingered over this one, reading a few letters a night. A sweet, easy read.
  • Firebug by Lish McBride-LOVED.
  • Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson-I decided by nephews needed a little Calvin and Hobbes in their lives. I was right, they ate it up and even shared with me.
  • Evil Librarian by Michelle Knudsen-There is a new librarian at Cyn’s high school and he is hot! He is also a demon who has enthralled her best friend, Annie and is sucking the life essence from the students. Cyn has an unusual immunity to his charms so while she juggles school and the set design for the school’s production of Sweeney Todd, she also now has to save her best friend. This devilishly hilarious book has a little something for everyone-horror, humor, romance, as well as musical theater! And while a soul-sucking demon is not necessarily an improvement, I find this librarian to be a refreshing change of pace from the stereotypical shushing old lady librarian!
  • Sisters by Raini Telgemeier-in her companion to Smile, Telgemeier recounts her changing relationship with her younger sister. Anyone with a sibling can relate to the ups and downs having a brother or sister.

Current Audio:

pure ruin and rising

Currently Reading:

famous last words gregor blood of my blood

On Deck:

skulduggery killer instinct pawn

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

Firebug by Lish McBride Review 9/25/14

firebug
Firebug by Lish McBride
September 23, 2014
Henry Holt & Co.
Hardcover, 336 pgs

What it’s about:

Ava is a firebug. She can start fires with her mind, making her deadly assassin and valuable commodity to the head of the local Coterie. Think magical mafia here, led by one psycho vampire named Venus. Ava hates her job (killing is not fun), hates the Coterie (she was forced into an unbreakable blood pact), and most of all she hates Venus (Venus killed her mother), so when Venus puts a contract out on a friend of Ava’s, the firebug surprises everyone by refusing to accept the job. Now she and her friends are in a world of trouble as Venus and her army of lethal lapdogs hunt them down. Can Ava keep her friends and family safe or will Venus win again?

Why you might like it:

You will most definitely love Lock and Ezra, Ava’s totally hot besties. Lock is steady and responsible and Ezra is shamelessly cocky. The three together are a ton of fun. Do you like your paranormal with a side of hilarious? Lish McBride is a genius at serving up the perfect blend of horror and humor. If you are looking for a fast-paced story with suspense, a spectacular array of supernatural creatures (were-foxes, anyone?),and a sassy heroine with heart of gold, then look no further. This is the book for you. I loved everything about this book and look forward to more!

 

Want more like this?

If you missed her Necromancer books, definitely check out Hold Me Closer, Necromancer and Necromancing the Stone by Lish MicBride. They are devilishly delightful. Also try White Cat by Holly Black, The Iron King by Julie Kagawa, Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst, and Paranormalcy by Kiersten White.

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

Waiting on Wednesday-All Fall Down-9/24/14

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

98a84-waitingonwednesday

This week’s pre-publication “can’t-wait-to-read” selection is:

All Fall Down

All Fall Down by Ally Carter
January 27, 2014

From Goodreads:

“Grace Blakely is absolutely certain of three things:

1. She is not crazy.
2. Her mother was murdered.
3. Someday she is going to find the killer and make him pay.

As certain as Grace is about these facts, nobody else believes her–so there’s no one she can completely trust. Not her grandfather, a powerful ambassador. Not her new friends, who all live on Embassy Row. Not Alexei, the Russian boy next door who is keeping an eye on Grace for reasons she neither likes nor understands.

Everybody wants Grace to put on a pretty dress and a pretty smile, blocking out all her unpretty thoughts. But they can’t control Grace–no more than Grace can control what she knows or what she needs to do.”

Her past has come back to hunt her . . . and if she doesn’t stop it, Grace isn’t the only one who will get hurt. Because on Embassy Row, the countries of the world all stand like dominoes, and one wrong move can make them all fall down.

I will read everything and anything that Ally Carter writes. I love her style, I love her characters, and I love her sass. Sign me up for a new series!

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

Top Ten Tuesday-Top Ten Books on My Fall TBR List 9/23/14

toptentuesday

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish is about our Fall Reading list. I did a quick check back on my Summer TBR list and I have to say, I didn’t do too badly. I read 6/10 this time around! I have so many MUST READ books on my fall list.

1. The Iron Trial by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black. (Sept. 9). This is will be read before the author’s visit Cleveland in October!

iron trial

 

2. Messenger of Fear by Michael Grant. (Sept. 23) A new series! YAY!

messenger of fear

 

3. Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan. (Oct. 7) Is it really time to say goodbye to Percy and Crew?

blood of olympus

4. Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future by A.S. King. (Oct. 23). I am so excited for my signed copy to arrive in the mail. Have I mentioned lately how much I love A.S. King’s books? No? Are you sure, because I fangirl ALL. THE. TIME.

glory o'brien

5. My True Love Gave to Me by Stephanie Perkins, et al. (Oct. 14). I am excited to surprise by High School book club with this one. This group of girls has been with me for 3 years and they always ask to read girly romances but I shy away just in case some guys want to join. Guess what? They don’t. So, Merry Christmas, ladies! Girly love stories for you!

true love

6. The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters. (Oct. 14). I can’t wait for this one!

cure for dreaming

7. The Retribution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin. (Nov. 4). The suspense is killing me. Seriously.

retribution of mara dyer

8. Mortal Heart by Robin LaFever. (Nov. 4). I am not ready to say goodbye to His Fair Assassins. Good thing I own these books!

mortal heart

9. Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater. (Oct. 21). I love me some Raven Boys and so excited for this new audiobook. These are a must-listen for me.

blue lily, lily blue

10. Young Elites by Marie Lu. (Oct. 7) A new series by Marie Lu is a good thing indeed.

young elites

I will also most certainly be reading or listening to these non-YA titles:

rosie effect big little lies yes please neil patrick harris

The Rosie Effect, Big Little Lies, Yes Please, and NPH Choose Your Own Autobiograpy.

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

 

Mondays with Megan-Readathon Sign Up Time! 9/22/14

Happy Monday everyone! In case you missed my post over the weekend, I have been selected to be a Round 2 Cybils Awards judge! Mark your calendars because nominations for these awards open October 1. October is also when the bi-annual Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon takes place. Save the date: October 18th! Oh happy day! It’s time to start making a readathon TBR list. I am so far behind on my reading goal and I am counting on this readathon to get me back on track. My reading these days has been so sporadic that I hardly have anything to report. 😦 But, it’s Monday, so here goes!

mondayreading new monday

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts. Be sure to stop over for more great lists.

Finished:

say what you will secret place

  • Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern. I am not sure what I had expected of this one, but I was certainly a bit surprised by some of the twists and turns of the story. I really liked Amy and Matthew and I appreciated the fascinating look at what it is like to live with a disability.
  • The Secret Place by Tana French. Stephen Moran is back in this fifth book of the Dublin Murder Squad series. When new evidence comes to light in a cold case, Moran jumps at the opportunity to work the case. The case involves the murder of a teenaged boy on the grounds of a private girl’s school and Holly Mackey, daughter of Detective Mackey, appears to be involved in some manner. I adore am slightly obsessed with The Dublin Murder Squad. This latest installment is magical and have savored every word.

Current Audio:

ruin and rising

  • Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo. I set aside Seven for a Secret by Lyndsay Faye for the time being in order to finish this series.

Currently Reading:

letters from skye firebug

Still. *sigh*

On Deck:

evil librarian pure famous last words

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

 

2014 Cybils Awards-I am a Round 2 Judge!

Cybils-Logo-2014-Rnd2I am so excited to report that I will be one of the Round 2 Judges for the 2014 Young Adult Fiction Cybils Awards! What are the Cybils, you ask? Check out this mission statement:

Cybils Awards Mission

The Cybils Awards aims to recognize the children’s and young adult authors and illustrators whose books combine the highest literary merit and popular appeal. If some la-di-dah awards can be compared to brussels sprouts, and other, more populist ones to gummy bears, we’re thinking more like organic chicken nuggets. We’re yummy and nutritious.

Round 2 judges read and discuss the 5-7 finalist that the Round 1 judges select from the hundreds of nominated titles. Sounds like fun, right? Want to join in on the fun? You can, by nominating your favorite books. Nominations begin October 1. Be sure to check out the Cybils website for all the details about nominating books. In the meantime,  I should get busy meeting my fellow Round 2 judges! We are going to have lots to talk about when we start our reading in January!

Happy Reading!

∼Megan