Monthly Archives: November 2014

Killer Instinct by Jennifer Lynn Barnes Review 11/13/14

killer instinct

Killer Instinct (The Naturals #2) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
November 4, 2014
Hardcover, 386 pgs

What it’s about:

This sequel to The Naturals, which introduced readers to an elite FBI program for teams with innate crime-solving skills, picks up shortly after the end of the first book. Cassie, who is a profiler, longs for some calm and time to focus on cold cases. FBI higher-ups have the same idea, but when a serial killer hits the scene all eyes are on the teens. The reason? The killer is copying Dean’s incarcerated father. Despite being ordered to stay away, the Naturals are drawn into another dangerous active case. As they delve into the twisted mind of a killer they put not only themselves, but their entire program in jeopardy. In their minds the risks are worth it if they can help their friend.

Why you might like it:

Are you a fan of shows like Criminal Minds or Dexter? You might enjoy the FBI procedural aspects and/or the serial killer elements of this series. Do you like a story with crazy twists and turns? Killer Instinct will keep you guessing until the end (the same goes for The Naturals…I did not see that ending coming!) Do you like smart, sassy, and often tense team dynamics? The members of this elite group are so different from each other and they all work hard to keep their pasts a secret. So, plenty of intrigue in the house alone! Throw in disturbing crime scenes and you have one exciting book!

Want more like this?

You might also enjoy How to Lead a Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller, Also Known as by Robin Benway,  I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga, or The Rules for Disappearing by Ashly Elston.

Happy Reading!



Waiting on Wednesday-Miss Mayhem-11/12/14


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

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

miss mayhem

Miss Mayhem (Rebel Belle #2) by Rachel Hawkins
April 7, 2015

From Goodreads:

“Life is almost back to normal for Harper Price. The Ephors have been silent after their deadly attack at Cotillion months ago, and best friend Bee has returned after a mysterious disappearance. Now Harper can return her focus to the important things in life: school, canoodling with David, her nemesis-turned-ward-slash-boyfie, and even competing in the Miss Pine Grove pageant.

Unfortunately, supernatural chores are never done. The Ephors have decided they’d rather train David than kill him. The catch: Harper has to come along for the ride, but she can’t stay David’s Paladin unless she undergoes an ancient trial that will either kill her . . . or connect her to David for life.”

Rebel Belle was such a fun read! I am looking forward to more of this story.

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Tueday-Character Who Deserve Their Own Book-11/11/14


This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish is all about secondary characters who are so awesome that they deserve their own book.

1. Pretty much anyone from Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Liani Taylor.


2. Roux and Jesse Oliver from Also Known As by Robin Benway.

also known as

3. Phillip and Barron Sharpe from The Curse Workers series by Holly Black.

white cat

4. Steelheart from Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson. I am a little obsessed with this book.


5. Audrey from I am the Messenger by Markus Zusak. I love Ed so much. I would be interesting to see him through her eyes.

i am the messenger

6. Genya and Zoya from The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo. They are so different from each other, but so interesting.

shadow and bone

7. Wolf from Cinder. Mmmmmmmmm.


8. Ezra and Lock from Firebug by Lish McBride. These two are so funny!


9. Darla from Ashfall by Mike Mullin. She is one tough cookie!


10. Donovan from Pointe by Brandy Colbert. His story has to be just as fascinating and heartbreaking as Theo’s.


Happy Reading!



Mondays with Megan 11/10/14

Happy Monday! It’s a shame to spend this gorgeous fall day indoors, but duty calls. I was pretty busy this weekend, but my finished book tally is higher than last week!

mondayreading new monday

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts. Be sure to stop over and see what they are up to!


neil patrick harris silkworm torn away

  • Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography by Neil Patrick Harris. Oh! I really enjoyed this one. Clever, humorous, and insightful.
  • The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith. What a strange and twisted tale! I do enjoy Comoran and Robin and look forward to more of their adventure.
  • Torn Away by Jennifer Brown. After losing everything in a tornado, Jersey is shuffled around until she ends up with the last people she ever expected to help her. All the feels of a John Green novel without the pretension.

Current Audio:

big little lies

I am currently without a Playaway. Oh, calamity!

Currently Reading:

pawn blood of olympus my true love dream a little dream shadow of the blackbirds

I am all over the place with my reading these days! I am going to zip through In the Shadow of Blackbirds today and tomorrow so that is fresh for book club on Wednesday and then I can return to Blood of Olympus. I need to step up the pace here and somehow read 39 books before the end of the year. Eek!

Happy Reading!



Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy Review 11/6/14


Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy
Hardcover, 392 pgs

What it’s about:

Twelve-year old Stephanie Edgley has a pretty normal life. Until her beloved Uncle Gordon, a famous author of mystery novels, dies and leaves her his estate. It is at the reading of the will that Stephanie first meets her uncle’s strange friend, Skulduggery Pleasant. It’s not until Stephanie herself is almost killed at her uncle’s home that she learns about Skulduggery’s true nature. He is a walking, talking skeleton. He is also a sharp dresser, an ace detective, and a powerful sorcerer. Stephanie is thrilled to make his acquaintance and eager to leave her dull and predictable life behind to become his apprentice. As Stephanie learns all about her magical heritage and abilities, she and Skulduggery prepare to face off against an evil sorcerer who is after a magic item he believes Uncle Gordon possessed. The race is on to save the world from the rise of the Faceless Ones.

Why you might like it:

Are you a huge fan of wise-cracking skeletons who are out to save the world from evil sorcerers? Um, who isn’t?! Are you itching to read a book that takes place in Ireland? Here you go! Have you been down-in-the-dumps since you finished Harry Potter ages ago? Is your reading life devoid of magic? Cheer up, my friend! This series is for you! Obviously I am WAY late to the Skulduggery party, but here’s the good news: all nine books of the series are published, so NO waiting for the next book. So, if you are craving an action-packed adventure full of witty banter, dastardly villains, and fantastical magic, this could be just what you need. I am so thrilled to have finally started this series. I just finished the second book and I am officially hooked.

What more like this?

For more wise-cracking paranormal adventures try Lish McBride’s Necromancer series and/or Firebug or the Bartimaeus Trilogy and/or the Lockwood & Co. series by Jonathan Stroud.

Happy Reading!


Waiting on Wednesday-The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate-11/5/14


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

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

curious world of calpurnia tate

The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly
July 7, 2015

From Goodreads:

“Callie Vee, Travis, Granddaddy, and the whole Tate clan are back in this charming follow-up to Newbery Honor–winner The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate.

Callie’s younger brother Travis keeps bringing home strays. And Callie has her hands full keeping the animals—Travis included—away from her mother’s critical eye.

When a storm blows change into town in the form of a visiting veterinarian, Callie discovers a life and a vocation she desperately wants. But with societal expectations as they are, she will need all her wits and courage to realize her dreams.

Whether it’s wrangling a rogue armadillo or stray dog, a guileless younger brother or standoffish cousin, the trials and tribulations of Callie Vee will have readers cheering for this most endearing heroine.”

I really loved The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate and always wondered if there would be more to the story. The wait is (almost) over! There *is* more!

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Tuesday-Books I Want to Reread-11/7/14

toptentuesdayThis week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is about rereading. I am not much of a rereader, but last year I thoroughly enjoyed rereading the entire Gallagher Girls series by Ally Carter. That is as far as I have gotten. For me it’s not that I am in uninterested in revisiting a favorite story, it’s more that I feel a lot of pressure to constantly be reading new things. I have yet to find a balance. Maybe that can be a bookish resolution for 2015! So, if I ever commit to rereading, here is where I will start:

1. I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson. I loved this book so much. I read an advanced copy, but I think I should own it…and of course, reread.

i'll give you the sun

2. Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta. I listened to this one and it took a while to get into, but now that I know how wonderful the book is, I will gladly use my own eyes to reread it.

jellicoe road

3. Curse Workers Trilogy by Holly Black. Last week I had to opportunity to ask Holly Black if there was going to be any more books in this series. Her answer was surprising. She said that the publisher is going to repackage the trilogy and market it as an adult series. She also revealed that she has two more books in mind, but is not yet working on them. I offered to send her friendly reminders…So, in anticipation of someday reading more about Cassel and friends, I might just reread the entire trilogy. The second time around I think I will listen; I hear Jesse Eisenberg is a fantastic reader.


4. The Diviners by Libba Bray. I might have to reread just to refresh my memory before reading the next book. Again, I am tempted to listen to this one for my reread, but I so terrified of hearing the Naughty John song and never, ever begin able to get it out of my head….


5. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. I loved the audio and if I ever reread I will probably get the audio again. Wil Wheaton is an awesome reader.


6. Winger by Andrew Smith. I devoured this book in 2 sittings. A reread would allow my to slow down and savor it.


7. The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan. I am curious to see how this one holds up. I loved it first came out. I was kind of new to zombies. It was a perfect fit. A reread five years later would be interesting.

forest of hands and teeth

8. The Drake Chronicles by Alyxandra Harvey. I haven’t read a really fantastic vampire book in a while. I might need to revisit the Drakes. *swoon*


9. The complete works of A.S. King. Seriously. I will eventually reread everything she writes. Except maybe for Dust of 100 Dogs. That was not my favorite. I still have to read Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future. I can’t wait!

please ignore vera dietz ask everybody sees the ants reality boy glory o'brien

10. Maggie Quinn: Girl vs. Evil series by Rosemary Clement-Moore. This series is seriously neglected at my library. I feel like I should check them out, reread them, and try to push them on a new group of readers.


Bonus: Non-YA rereads

1. Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin. The minute they announce an official publication date for book 6, I WILL start rereading and I will start from the beginning.

2. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. I remember loving this one when I read it years ago. I own a copy and feel compelled to reread it some day.

3. A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving. See above.

4. Trinity by Leon Uris. This is one of the few books I have already reread. It’s a bit of a family tradition and I am long overdue for a reread.

5. The Spellmans series by Lisa Lutz. This series was SO good.

Happy Reading!