Tag Archives: Alyxandra Harvey

Top Ten Tuesday-Underrated Books 9/9/14

toptentuesdayThis week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish is all about the amazing books that have to walk in the shadows of the mega-blockbuster-hits. The underrated and the under appreciated. The books we love and can’t figure out why EVERY SINGLE PERSON HASN’T READ THEM. Come on, folks, let’s give them some love! I can’t wait to see what other people selected. Here are my favorites:

 

1. Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers. Haunting, brutal, disturbing.

some girls

2. Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement-Moore. A clever ghost story/mystery with a sassy heroine, a hunky cowboy, and some troublesome goats. So smart and cute! Please disregard the not so awesome cover!

texas gothic

3. The Drake Chronicles by Alyxandra Harvey. Swoony-vampires, witty banter, and bad*ss heroines. I love this series.

hearts at stake

4. Stork by Wendy Delsol. Ok, I totally have a thing for awesome heroines!

stork

5. Mothership by Martin Leicht. Laugh-out-loud hilarious.

mothership

How about some underrated leading men?

6. How to Lead a Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller. A boarding school for the criminally insane? Yes, please!

life of crime

7. Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride. Wicked, dark humor!

hold me closer 2

8. The Cardturner by Louis Sachar. Not *just* a YA book about bridge!

cardturner

9. I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga. It’s not easy being the son a serial killer!

i hunt killers

10. Reality Boy by A.S. King. Reality television isn’t so funny when you consider the damaging affects it can have on the stars.

reality boy

I hope you see something on this list that sparks your interest!

Happy Reading!

∼Megan

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Will Make You Swoon 2/11/14

toptentuesdayNow this is more like it. I’ll take a swoony book over a tear-jerker any day. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, The Broke and the Bookish want to hear all about our favorite romance novels. Easy-peasy.

1. My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick. This one was very sweet!

my life

2. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. Swoon.

fangirl

3. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith. British guy. Swoon.

statistical probability

4. Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson. I love road trip books!

amy and roger's epic detour

5. Anything by Katie McGarry. Steamy swoon.

pushing the limits dare you to crash

6. Or Simone Elkeles. More steamy swoon.

perfect chemistry rules of attraction chain reaction

How about some paranormal romance?

7. Hearts at Stake by Alyxandra Harvey. The Drake brothers are totally dreamy vampires.

hearts

8. Stork by Wendy Delsol. This one was sweet!

stork

9. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. This romance is destroying me!

daughter of smoke

10. The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare. Dreamy.

Clockwork-Angel_213-1 clockwork prince clockwork princess

Honorable Mentions:

aristotle and dante wanderlove where the stars still shine dash and lily

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Breath of Frost (The Lovegrove Inheritance #1) by Alyxandra Harvey Review

Breath of Frost (The Lovegrove Inheritance #1) by Alyxandra Harvey
January 7, 2014
Bloomsbury/Walker Childrens
Hardcover, 496 pages

breath of frost

What it’s about:

The year is 1814 and cousins Emma, Penelope and Gretchen are being groomed to enter London society. The girls have no idea that they come from a long line of powerful witches. When their powers are inadvertently released a gate to the Underworld in opened, unleashing dark and evil powers on to the city. Young debutante witches are being hunted and drained of the magic and Emma is somehow connected to the murders. The cousins, with the help of the dashing young Cormac, a member of The Order (the governing body in charge of witching families), need to solve the mystery before Emma is accused of murder and stripped of her new-found magic.

Why you might want to read it:

I struggled to get into this one a little. Things are very complicated in the beginning and there are lots of different characters to get to know. The patient reader will certainly be rewarded, because these leading ladies are a lot of fun! The magical world-building is complex and I found the whole spirit animal thing to be really interesting. Emma’s mother’s story is romantic and heartbreaking. The “real” bits about Regency London is such a treat and I constantly had to remind myself that some of the things that annoyed me about certain characters weren’t exactly their fault. They are a product of their time. Never fear, the cousins do a great job of pushing the boundaries of society! Overall I really enjoyed this one. If you like magic and witches, give this one a try. If you enjoy the finery and show of the Regency Era, you might enjoy this as well.

Want more like this? Try Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood or A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray

A copy of this book was provided by NetGalley.com and the publisher for review.

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

 

Mondays with Megan

Happy Monday, everyone. After barely working at all last week this week is going to be a real shock to the system! I’m not scared; this week is going to be awesome. I am taking a new yoga class tonight, tomorrow I have my D & D kids at the library, and Friday I am finally going to see Catching Fire. Lots to look forward to! And I have some great books to work on (and I just finished some awesome books too!) Here’s a quick look at what I have been reading:

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts.

mondayreading new monday

Finished:

stranger thing breath of frost fall of five shadow and bone saga

Boy, did I have an awesome reading week! Hm, lots of aliens here. Interesting.

  • A Stranger Thing by Martin Leicht. This sequel to Mothership (which I LOVED) was just as much fun. This volume had more alien action, a shocking twist, and a cliffhanger ending.
  • A Breath of Frost by Alyxandra Harvey. This one took my forever to get into, but once I did I found that I really liked it. In fact, I am still thinking about the characters. Regency era drama and witches!
  • The Fall of Five by Pittacus Lore. I really cannot figure out why I am so hooked on this series. But, I am. Lots of action and betrayal in this latest volume and now I need the next.
  • Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo. This fantasy series has been on my TBR list for a while. I am so happy that I finally dove in. It is terrible and lovely like The Daughter of Smoke and Bone is terrible and lovely. Make sense? Also, Mal!! Of course, in my mind he looks just like a young Nathan Fillion. Enjoy.

NathanFillionFirefly

  • Saga, vol. 2 by Brian K. Vaughan. This new series from native Clevelander and author of Y: Last Man is so truly bizarre that I cannot even begin to describe it. Intergalactic race wars, rocket ships made from tree, and a pair of star-crossed lovers. I loved it even more than the first volume.

Current Audio:

interestings sabriel

I picked up The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer on Playaway. This was an impulse pick and I am really getting into this story of enduring friendship, art, and success. It’s a nice break from all the alien madness! I just started Sabriel by Garth Nix. I have heard great things about this series and I am ready to give it a try.

Currently Reading:

eye small town sinners shadow hero coal elf

The Eye of Minds by James Dashner is my Teen’s Choice pick for this month. I am about half way through and it is reminding me a little of Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. Small Town Sinners by Melissa Walker is my Random Reads pick of the month. It was a really slow start for me, but about a third of the way in the story took an interesting turn and I am anxious to see where things go. I just got an advanced copy of Gene Luen Yang’s upcoming graphic novel, The Shadow Hero. This is a re-imagining of the first Asian superhero, The Green Turtle. Finally, I am trying to get into The Coal Elf by Maria DeVivo. This was another one that was recommended by a teen reader.

On Deck:

not a drop to drink fables 19 marie

This could change, of course, but I would like to work on my Winter TBR list, so I might pick up Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis. I also have the newest Fables sitting at home. How have I ignored it for so long?? And finally, Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer by Katie Alender needs to be read or brought back. No more hanging out at my house!

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Mondays with Megan-Baby, It’s Cold Outside! 1/6/14

There is no use fighting with Mother Nature. It’s freaking freezing cold out. And getting colder. And then it will be over and we can get back to our regularly scheduled winter. In the mean time, all we can do is wait it out. I am fortunate enough to be able to wait it out at home with my nephews, who are home from school. Kids are so lucky. We did some yoga, made french toast for breakfast, and now are all snuggled up watching some TV. I plan to read for a while at some point. Though I sense Cabin Fever is already setting in. I could be in for a long day…Back to the task at hand. My 2014 reading is off to a great start.

mondayreading new monday

Be sure to check in with Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts for more great lists!

Finished:

bzrk reloaded sweet tooth wild game attachments

I can’t believe it took me so long to get to the second BZRK book, BZRK Reloaded by Michael Grant. The battle for humanity is being fought at the nano level. This series raises fascinating ethical questions. If you have the power to alter the brains of humans to make them “better,” should you? Also, it is so creepy! I loved it and am ready for more. I also finished the Sweet Tooth series by Jeff Lemire. We finally learn what the heck is going on with all the hybrid babies and the answer, while satisfying, was surprising. If you need something to read while waiting for a new Walking Dead, give this one a try! Finally, I finished by first book of 2014, Attachments, by Rainbow Rowell. After reading eleanor & park and Fangirl, I just had to go back to the beginning and pick up her debut novel. I was not disappointed. It was clever and funny and sweet. I read it in two days. I can’t wait for more Rainbow Rowell in 2014!

Current Audio:

shadow and bone fall of five

In my car I have started Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo. I have been listening to The Fall of Five by Pittacus Lore when I walk the dogs. I don’t know what it is about this series. It’s so compelling that I am completely willing to overlook the flaws. I really need know how things end, though I suspect I will have to wait a while for that. Book 5 (out of how many?) comes out this summer. Sigh.

Currently Reading:

stranger thing breath of frost

This week I plan to finish A Stranger Thing, the sequel to Mothership by Martin Leicht. I will also finish (I swear!) A Breath of Frost by Alyxandra Harvey

On Deck:

eye coal elf small town sinners

How are you staying warm?

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Blood Prophecy (Drake Chronicles #6) by Alyxandra Harvey Review

Happy New Year! I totally slacked off at the end of 2012, but I am refreshed and ready to jump back into blogging. And what better way to start off the new year than with a book review?

blood prophecy

Blood Prophecy (The Drake Chronicles #6) by Alyxandra Harvey
Bloomsbury Children’s Books
January 8, 2013
496 pgs.

Blood Prophecy, the final book in the Drake Chronicles series, picks up where Blood Moon left off. Solange has been crowned Queen of the Vampires, fulfilling an ancient vampire prophecy. It should be time to get back to vampire business as usual. Instead, Solange appears to be losing her mind. Her family has been banished from court, the Hel-Bar continue to plague the area around the Blood Moon court, and unsuspecting humans are falling victim to the “Dracula Killer.” What the other vampire clans do not know is that Solange is slowly being possessed by the spirit of one very angry vampire. The vampires are divided. Some want Solange to rule, some want her dead, and her own erratic behavior is not helping her case any. Can her best friend Lucy and her brothers help her before it’s too late? Is Solange strong enough to save herself from possession or is the evil Viola finally going to have the revenge she desperately seeks? You’ll find out in the thrilling conclusion to this amazing series.

Blood Prophecy is a solid, satisfying conclusion to one of my favorite vampire series. I will admit, things got a little dicey in book five and Solange was nearly unbearable. But, hey! Now we know why. I think vampire possession is a pretty valid excuse for being crazy. It took me a little while to warm up to this story line, but in the end I think it really works. Lucy continues to be the real star of the show, outshining even the hottest of the Drake brothers (and really, how can you pick just one?) She is fierce and sassy and has this magical ability to remain loyal to the Drakes while staying true to herself. There is plenty of mystery and intrigue as well as action-packed vampire hunting (and not just for the bad kind this time around). Swoony romance, witty banter, and heart-pumping action make this another win. Loose ends are tied up, questions are answered, and some beloved characters are in for a few surprises. I am sad to see the Drakes go, but I am pleased with where the author left them. Now, how about a Lucy/Helios-Ra spin-off?

This book was provided by the publisher and NetGalley.com for review.

You may also enjoy The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson, Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins, or Paranormalcy by Kiersten White.

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Mondays With Megan-Vacation Starts Tomorrow. My Brain Left Today.

Seriously. No. Focus. At this time tomorrow I will be at the airport waiting to board a plane that will take me to Montana and I am so flipping excited. My suitcase isn’t packed, but my Nook is all loaded and ready to go! But I will get to that in a minute. For the past few days I have been wracking my brain, trying to figure out how it has taken me ten years to watch Firefly. Well, I finally drank the Kool-Aid and all I can say is mmmmmmmm….grape. I mean, shiny. I mean, Nathan Fillion. *Sigh* This is my brain right now. Montana and Mal. That’s it. No room for anything else.

You’re welcome. Now, if I you can tear myself yourself away, let’s do It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? Brought to you by Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts.

Finished:

My Vacation Plan:

I am sitting out on the skiing this trip (one skiing related torn ACL is totally enough for me) and plan to hang at the lodge and read. We’ll see how much I get through, but I really want to finish A Dance With Dragons. I have to get on my with my life!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

˜Megan

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Books Read Over the Lifespan of My Blog

Dear The Broke and The Bookish,

Seriously? For real? Sigh.

Love,

Megan

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is a challenge! I feel bad for all you veteran bloggers out there. At least I only have 2.5 years worth of books to slog through!

So let’s rewind the clock to 2010, when I first started keeping track of my books on the blog. This was a good year. I discovered Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins, Paranormalcy by Kiersten White, and I fell in love with two spin-off series, The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan and The Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare. I love these authors and their books and they will always have a place on my favorites shelf, but they still can’t top these hits of 2010:

1. Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer. Jacky Faber is my hero. I want everyone to read these books. A girl disguised as a boy, pirates, bawdy sea shanties, and more! What’s not to love?

2. White Cat by Holly Black. It’s Harry Potter meets The Sopranos. Magic and mafia. A perfectly flawed male POV. I was sorry to say goodbye to Cassel this year. A must read, in my opinion.

3. The Drake Chronicles by Alyxandra Harvey. This series got me out of my post-Twilight vampire slump. I thought I was over vampires. Wrong. I love me some Drakes.

I could go on and include The Cardturner by Louis Sachar and Going Bovine by Libba Bray, but I need so save room for my 2011 and 2012 favorites. Moving on to 2011…

And I thought 2010 was a good year! 2011 brought gems Hourglass by Myra McEntire and Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier (I do love a good time travel book!). the Marbury Lens by Andrew Smith stuck with me for days after I had finished and Where She Went by Gayle Forman actually made me cry. But, the next spots on my Top Ten list are reserved for these four books:

4. Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John. This was the feel-good hit of the year. Again, everyone should read this book.

5. The Ranger’s Apprentice series by John Flanagan. And this is when I truly learned to not judge a book by its cover. I picked up the first book in the series because I needed to find more “boy” books to recommend to my readers. I had no idea that I was going to discover a new all-time favorite series!

6. Blood Red Road by Moira Young. I received this as an ARC from the publisher. It gathered some dust on my desk. I attempted a few pages but was turned off by the dialect. More dust. Then the guilt set in. I had gotten a free advanced reader copy and I was neglecting it! So, I buckled down, and holy crap, it was amazing! I think the little blurb on the cover of the paperback edition declaring it “better than The Hunger Games” is a little mean-spirited and cocky, but totally true.

7. The Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. I would like to thank a number of coworkers for peer pressuring me into starting this series. I am half way through book 3 and I love it so much that I can hardly think of anything else!

Before Stork by Wendy Delsol and Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins start to feel snubbed for not making the top ten, I need to move on to 2012. I have read some awesome YA books this year, but top honors goes to a non-YA!

8. The Rook by Daniel O’Malley. This has to be one of the most bizarre and intriguing books I have ever read. So unique. And strange. And funny. An awesome debut!

9. Cinder by Marissa Meyer. Another stunning 2012 debut! Cinderella is a cyborg. Love.

10. The ten spot is shared by two amazing graphic novel series. I didn’t start reading graphic novels until about a year ago. Now I am hooked. My favorites have been Fables by Bill Willingham and Locke & Key by Joe Hill.

         

Wow, that was hard. Please don’t tell Ashes by Ilsa Bick and Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King, Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly, or I am the Messenger by Marcus Zusak that they didn’t make the list. They were awesome and I don’t want to hurt their feelings!

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Top Ten Tuesday-Characters I Would Trade Places With For the Day

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, brought to you by The Broke and The Bookish, is all about swapping places. This is a tricky one because I would never want to be some of my favorite characters. Not even for a day. I’m looking at you Sabba and Katniss! Talk about trouble. Here are my picks:

1. Amy Curry from Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson. While Amy has some baggage she’s dragging around, I would totally appreciate every part of a road trip!

2. Jacky Faber from Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer. Ok, so being an orphan and part of a street gang kind of stinks. And life is hard for everyone in the early 1800’s. And there are pirates. BUT…her adventures are so amazing! I think I would enjoy a day of singing and dancing on the high seas. Without the pirates.

3. Katla LeBlank from Stork by Wendy Delsol. She certainly finds herself in some tricky situations, but her power is so cool! And she has fashion sense.

4. Gwen Shepard from Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier. Time travel. Need I say more?

5. Frankie Landau-Banks from The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart. I love a good prank!

6. Lucy Hamilton from The Drake Chronicles series. This girl is human, gets to stay human, and have vampire best friends and still be bada**, cool and hilarious all on her own. She rules. And she can eat chocolate.

7. Laura Ingalls Wilder from Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder. She was a real person, does that still count? I say yes! I would love to trade places with her for a day. But only for a day because I do enjoy indoor plumbing and sleeping past sunrise.

8. Cammie Morgan from The Gallagher Girls by Ally Carter.  I wish I could go to a top-secret spy school. But I think in the end it would be totally exhausting, so one day would be enough for me!

9. Jessie Sloane from Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern. Like Julie, I fully embrace my nerdiness (but secretly wish to be cool). This girl has a good thing going and I would be down with a day of D&D and pizza. A little known fact about yours truly: I totally rock at D&D.

10. Elizabeth Rew from The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman. Elizabeth has The. Best. Library. Job. Ever.

I also would mind trading places with Anna from Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins, Mary Lang from The Agency series by Y.S. Lee, and Amy Goodnight from Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement-Moore. Who do you want to trade places with?

Happy Reading!

˜Megan