Tag Archives: vampires

Mondays With Megan-Groundhog Day, Youth Media Awards Day, Snow Day! 2/2/15

Hi Everyone! Happy snowy Monday. My 2015 got off to a very rocky start and I hardly blogged at all. Well, it’s a new month and a new opportunity to get back into the routine. And what a day to start! There is so much happening today! Here in Northeast Ohio most schools are closed today-lucky ducks, enjoy your snow day! I am here at the library and it is eerily quiet. It’s going to be a long day! As for the rodents’ predictions for spring…our local groundhog, Buckeye Chuck is calling for an early spring! His pal, Punxsutawney Phil, disagrees. Though I hear Staten Island Chuck is also predicting an early spring, so, *fingers crossed*

Most importantly, the American Library Association announced this year’s Youth Media Awards.

I am so excited that I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson won this year’s Prinz Award! This was one of my absolute favorites from last year. The Prinz Honor Award went to the strange and delightful Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith. (I am congratulating myself for having read both of these in 2014).

i'll give you the sun grasshopper jungle

“The Michael L. Printz Award is an award for a book that exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature. It is named for a Topeka, Kansas school librarian who was a long-time active member of the Young Adult Library Services Association.”

The Morris Award went to Gabi, A Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero. I read this one too, but I still can’t talk about my thoughts until after the Cybils have been awarded…stay tuned. The Morris Honor Award went to The Story of Owen by E.K. Johnston. *runs to shelf, snatches up copy*

gabi story of owen

“The William C. Morris YA Debut Award, first awarded in 2009, honors a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens and celebrating impressive new voices in young adult literature.”

And once again, I have read NONE of the Alex Award Winner…sigh.

Alex Awards for the 10 best adult books that appeal to teen audiences:

All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr

Bellweather Rhapsody, by Kate Racculia

Bingo’s Run, by James A. Levine

Confessions, by Kanae Minato, translated by Stephen Snyder

Everything I Never Told You, by Celeste Ng

Lock In, by John Scalzi

The Martian, by Andy Weir

The Terrorist’s Son: A Story of Choice, by Zak Ebrahim with Jeff Giles

Those Who Wish Me Dead, by Michael Koryta

Wolf in White Van, by John Darnielle

I have my work cut out for me! Good thing I am on a roll with my reading (canceling cable has helped!)

mondayreading new monday

Finished: (I took 4 days off last week and spent most of my time reading!)

funny girl fairest battling boy ghosted av 5 av 6 half a king all the rage

  • Funny Girl by Nick Hornby-♥♥♥1/2. It’s been a while since I have read a Nick Hornby novel. Clever and witty.
  • Fairest by Marissa Meyer-♥♥♥♥♥. Give me Winter!!
  • Battling Boy by Paul Pope-♥♥♥♥. YA graphic novel full of gods and monsters.
  • Ghosted, vol. 1 by Joshua Williamson-♥♥♥♥. A graphic novel for the Supernatural fans. A motley crew of characters set out to steal a ghost.
  • American Vampire, vol. 5 by Scott Snyder-♥♥♥♥. Volume 5 moves the story forward, while looking back on Pearl’s past.
  • American Vampire, vol. 6 by Scott Snyder-♥♥♥♥. A collection of “lost stories”.
  • Half a King by Joe Abercrombie-♥♥♥. My first high fantasy since A Dance with Dragons.
  • All the Rage by Courtney Summers-♥♥♥♥♥♥. AMAZING. Grab it up when it comes out!

Current Audio:

one plus one

Currently Reading:

mortal coil black dove

What are you reading?

Happy Reading!


Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst Review

Towards the end of last year I started brainstorming some new ideas for my blog. One of the things I came up with was letting my teen readers pick books for me. It seemed like a fair thing considering fact that I select about 90% of the books my two teen book clubs read. I ran the idea by my high schoolers and they loved it. Their first wicked thought was “what horrible book can we force her to read.” I kindly reminded them that I still picked their books and they quickly changed their tune! I picked one title out of a bowl for my first official Teen’s Choice book. This month I will be reading The Eyes of Minds by James Dashner, but it is currently checked out, so I secretly picked another one of their recommendations to read while I waited. That book was Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst. Here is a quick summary and review for you:

Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst
Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2011
Hardcover, 385 pages

drink slay love

What it’s about:

Pearl is your typical sixteen-year-old vampire. You know the type-a bloodthirsty predator of the night. That is, until she is stabbed through the heart by the horn of a sparkly unicorn. Seriously. A unicorn. Of course, no one in her Family (yes, with a capital F) believes her. It’s surprising that she survives the attack. It’s a complete shock to discover that she can survive exposure to the sun. This discovery comes just in time. The Family is responsible for providing a feast for the Vampire King of New England and Pearl is their meal ticket. They ship her off to high school with one assignment: round up a feast fit for a king!

Why you might want to read it:

I thoroughly enjoyed this snarky little book! I loved watching Pearl learn the ins and outs of high school and I totally appreciated all the John Hughes references. Her observations about social hierarchy are spot-on. While the book is mostly light and humorous, there is some meat to it as Pearl questions the ethics of what happened to her. It’s pretty interesting. This was an unexpected gem. If you need a vampire fix, this book is for you. If you like a sassy heroine, this book is for you. If you like your high school romances to have a unicorn, this book  is for you.

Want more like this? Try Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins, Paranormalcy by Kiersten White and Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride.

Thank you Emily, for the recommendation!

Happy Reading!


Mondays With Megan Read-a-Thons Galore 8/26/13

Is it really Monday already? Here in Rocky River it’s the last Monday before school starts. Ready or not, here they come! I spent the last week of summer participating in a couple of read-a-thons, so let’s just skip to the wrap-ups.

gallagher girls readathon

First up, The Gallagher Girls Read-a-thon, hosted by Books As You Know It. Last week we read book 3 in the series, Don’t Judge a Girl by Her Cover.

don't judge

While the books themselves are all sorts of fun and games, the reality is that the life of a spy is dangerous and that lesson really hits home in this third book. Everyone is on high alert after one a kidnapping attempt and Cammie and her friends are having a hard time coping. They are learning that appearances can be deceiving and trusting the wrong person can be deadly. There are lots of questions and the few answers that the young spies get point to an even darker secret than anyone could have imagined. The tension is building and I am can’t wait to dig into Only the Good Spy Young!

Last week was also Bout of Books 8.0. I really started off strong, but things kind of fizzled out at the end when my weekend became unexpectedly busy! I did not make my goal of getting back on pace with my Goodreads goal (so, so close though. I am now only 1 book off pace.) and I didn’t read either of my graphic novels. They just did not appeal to me at all. I also didn’t visit a single other blog. So lame. Good things there is always another opportunity to do better!

On the bright side, my It’s Monday! What Are You Reading list is huge.

mondayreading IMWAYR

Thanks to Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts for hosting!


 don't judge  infinityglassthis song will save your lifelemoncello explosive eighteen prisoner of heaven

I am on a roll wrapping up series this year. I breezed through Infinityglass, the final book in the Hourglass series by Myra McEntire. All sorts of questions were answered in this satisfying ending, but it was not my favorite of the three. Still, a solid conclusion. I also finished an advanced copy of This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales. This newest offering is a little darker and heavier than her previous books, but it is just as awesome. Loved this one. Escape From Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein is a middle grade book that is being compared to Willy Wonka. If Willy Wonka had a library this would be it! Loved this charming library-themed mystery. I now have one more Stephanie Plum book to read before I am all caught up. Do I detect a hint of personal growth? Finally? Please? And finally, I finished listening to The Prisoner of Heaven, a companion book to The Shadow of the Wind and The Angel’s Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafón.

Current Audio:

wedding night 6=5th

I just started The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey. I am interested to see if it lives up to the hype.

Currently Reading:

coldest shadows charmed

I think I have a nice balance of truly horrifying (Shadows) and light and fun.

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Tuesday: Beach Reads 2013


It’s time for another Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is Beach Reads. It will come as no surprise to regular readers that I intent to cheat a little on this one. Have you recovered from your shock? Ok, then, let’s move on. You see, next week’s list is going to be my Summer TBR list and there are way more than ten books on that list. So, rather than recommending books that I think you take to the beach (because I have read them and loved them), I am going to list the ten books that I would take to the beach if I had to go to the beach. Which I don’t. Thank god. Sand is evil. This list should be called Top Ten Farm Reads, because that’s where I will be vacationing. Chickens, horses, and mountains. No sand.

1. The Last Word by Lisa Lutz. The final *sob* Spellman’s book! Actually, I would definitely recommend the Spellman Files as awesome beach read.

last word

2. Sizzlin’ Sixteen or Smokin’ Seventeen by Janet Evanovich. Oh, look, here I go again recommending a beach read…I have Sixteen at home now and may get to it before I head to the farm and couldn’t wait for vacation. Stephanie, Ranger, and Morelli are the perfect vacation companions. Start with One for the Money.

sixteen smokin seventeen

3. Second Helpings by Megan McCafferty. I think it is time to revisit Jessica Darling! It helps that I own this series and paperbacks travel nicely. I suppose if you enjoy reading about snarky heroines and swoony boys while you at the beach then you might enjoy this series. Start with Sloppy Firsts.

second helpings

4. The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepard. This was a Nook deal of the day a while back. Have Nook. Will Travel. Also, did you know that bizarre, disturbing and creepy books make awesome beach reads? Seriously. The calming lapping of waves cancels out the nightmare-inducing horror. Try it, it works!

madman's daughter

5. How My Summer Went Up in Flames by Jennifer Salvato Doktorski. Every summer vacation needs a road trip book!

summer up in flames

6. BZRK Reloaded by Michael Grant. I am so fortunate to have friends in high places! I am so excited that I don’t have to wait until October to read it and I love the new covers. Also, see above, re: creepy books and beaches. Finally someone gave some awesome cover love to one of Michael Grant’s books. ’bout time.

bzrk reloaded

7.  Harry Potter and…by J.K. Rowling. Beach time is the perfect time for rereading. You know, just in case you find yourself napping or if you accidentally enjoy a few too many fruity beverages, you won’t miss anything awesome in your book because you have already read it! I am ready to get back into the world of Hogwarts. I am not sure if I will start at the beginning or jump into The Chamber of Secrets. Decisions, decisions.

harry box

8. The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson. This is another one that I own on my Nook. I have been meaning to read if for ages. I have been trying not to start a bunch of new series, but I think my summer vacation will require a new fantasy read. Bonus points for being written by a local author.

girl of fire

9. Jessica Rules the Darkside by Beth Fantaskey. I just realized that I haven’t read a vampire book in a while and I am on a mission to finish series! Win-win.

jessica rules the dark side

10. The Outcasts by John Flanagan. I thought I could wait a little longer to start this new series, but who am I kidding? I miss my Rangers so much and I think the only way to make it better is to become friends with some Skandians. Makes sense, right?


This is just the tip of the TBR iceberg! I can’t wait for my vacation to start!

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Tuesday: Words/Topics That Instantly Make Me Want a Book


This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the Broke and the Bookish is all about insta-want (not to be confused with the dreaded and annoying insta-love trope). I am talking about those themes/descriptors/genres that pique your interest the moment you hear them. I have been known to have a Pavlovian response to the following:

1. Time Travel. This is a relatively new obsession and I must admit I am not indulging it nearly enough.

hourglass ruby red 112263

2. Road Trip. I have always wanted to be the kind of person who takes road trips. I love the romantic book versions of road trips. In reality, gas station bathrooms are disgusting, you can only eat so many Combos, and cars are pretty uncomfortable. But the road trip novel? Heaven!

amy and roger abundance of katherines going bovine

3. Serial Killers. Nothing like a serial killer to get the heart pumping!

i hunt killers christopher killer name of the star

4. Secret Societies. Who doesn’t want to be a part of a secret society? There is so much variety here-spies, magicians, nano-technology, paranormal agencies, secret demon hunters and more! LOVE this theme.

i'd tell you white-cat bzrk rook stork city of bones blood oath

5. Dark Humor. I love books that have a wicked sense of humor. I also enjoy a serious book with unexpected bits of much-needed comic relief.

hold me closer  dirty job sapphire blue golem

6. Sassy/Snarky/Plucky Heroine. It’s true! I love a mouthy gal! Frankie, Lucy, Sophie, Evie, Elvie, Amy, Jackie, and Ruby, I am looking at you!

frankie hearts hex hall paranormalcy mothership texas gothic bloody jack boyfriend

7. Retellings/Mythology. Fractured fairy tales and modern mythology seem to be all rage and I like it. I need to read more!

cinder fables strands of bronze and gold percy my ex from hellsisters red frost beastly

8. Zombies and Vampires. For me this one is cyclical. I burn out on one and move to the other. I think I am heading back into a vampires kind of mood. I want to read Immortal Rules soon.

forest of hands and teeth original hearts this is not a tesst immortal rules

9. Paranormal that is NOT zombies or vampires. You know, ghosts, chimera, demons, and other such mystical creatures. I never did get into mermaids though.

diviners daughter of smoke raven boys clockwork

10. Romance. I have been fighting this one. I was never a romance reader growing up, but I just have to come to terms with the fact that I enjoy a nice teen romance. I do!

my life just one day pushing the limits nantucket blue

Bonus: Words/Topics that make me run away

1. Cancer. Nope. Can’t do it. No thanks. Ugh. Ugh. Ugh. Too much real life experience with the old C-word to last many life times. No need to read about it. I am also not a huge fan of suicide and eating disorder books.

2. Holocaust. I try. I really do. I acknowledge that there is a ton of really amazing literature out there, and I have appreciated the works that I have read, but oh man, it is so horrifying and disturbing. I can’t handle it. I just can’t.

3. Fairies. So far there has been one exception: Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey series.

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Tuesday: Books From Before the Blog


This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is a really interesting topic. Favorite books from before I had a book blog? Well, my first blog post was July 13, 2009 so I went back through my Goodreads shelves searching for titles that I added in 2008 and early 2009. This stroll down memory reminded me of two things. First, I did not start reading YA until I was in library school which was in May 2006. I read Harry Potter before that, but that’s it. Second, I discovered that my first YA picks were really awful! I apparently had really bad taste. I am sure that venturing out into the blogosphere really helped and I can say with confidence that I have excellent taste in books these days. This does not help me with today’s list however. It was slim pickings, but here are some of the better books I read prior to starting my blogging adventures.

1. Twilight by Stephanie Meyer. The haters out there can hate, but I will always admit to getting swept up in this series. I may even reread them some day.


2. Blue Bloods by Melissa de la Cruz. Twilight was like a vampire gateway drug. I needed more. I picked up this series and religiously followed it for a while. I am currently a couple of books behind, but I will probably finish the series eventually.

blue bloods

3. Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling. Everyone else was doing it too!


4. Uglies by Scott Westerfeld. I read this for a library school class. It was kind of a random pick, like most of my YA choices from that time. I LOVED it and plowed through the entire series and went on to read Westerfeld’s other YA novels. I am a fan. I should try some of his adult books some time. Or he should just hurry up and write a new YA series. Please?


5. Feed by M.T. Anderson. Prior to becoming a Teen Librarian, my only exposure to science fiction was A Wrinkle in Time. I was a life-long contemporary fiction reader. And then I started reading YA science fiction and I was hooked. I think this one stands the test of time (so does House of the Scorpion. My book club recently read it and they were shocked to learn it was written 11 years ago! But that is beside the point. The point is I really liked Feed).


6. A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray. Again, not contemporary. A little historical, a little fantasy, and a whole lot of Libba Bray.


7. Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima. I loved the first book in the series and read the second. Why on earth have I not read the third book? Or started her second series? I really need to work on my local author reading!

warrior heir

8. The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson. More science fiction! I remember loving this one. I recently gave it to my book club and reread it for the first time in a few years. Still great! I didn’t love the sequel, but I have to know how the story ends so I will definitely be picking up Fox Forever. On a side note, I love the new covers.


9. Everlost by Neal Shusterman. This one was so creepy and I loved it! Why did I not continue the series. And why can I not seem to ever get into Unwind? We may never know the answers to these questions…


10. Sea Change by Aimee Friedman. I seem to be alone in my love for this book about mermen. It could be for good reason. I already confessed to my questionable taste during that time…At any rate, I just checked looked up my library’s copy and it hasn’t seen any action in a while. I suspect I will be weeding it soon.

sea change

This may be a record here…a true top ten list with no extras, add-ons, runners-up!

Happy Reading!


Top Ten Tuesday: The Books I Recommend Most


Today’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, was so easy! Really the hardest part was narrowing the list to ten-ish. You know how I don’t like to be limited to ten.

1. The Gallagher Girls & Heist Society series by Ally Carter. Easily the most recommended books ever. Why? First of all, they are just so much fun. Awesome female characters, super-spy action, and just a hint of good clean romance (because the romance is not the point. Girls kicking butt and being awesome is the point). I have no problem handing these books to a fifth grader or a high school reader.

i'd tell you heistsociety

2. Gone series by Michael Grant. The opposite of the above. Gruesome, terrify, brilliant horror. This series is not for everyone, but I give it to anyone looking to be freaked out. The U.S. covers do not help this series at all, but it is a g0-to series for me.


3. The Ranger’s Apprentice by John Flanagan. I love this series. It’s another one that is great for both younger and older readers. Great characters and plenty of action. I like giving this one to reluctant readers because the first volume is pretty slim. Very clever. Get them hooked and then write bigger books!


4. Uglies and Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld. I recommend both of these series all the time! I love that Uglies is a fast-paced and exciting read that lends itself to a lot of thoughtful discussion. The Leviathan trilogy is so unique and the awesome illustrations make it an easy sell.

uglies leviathan

5. The Drake Chronicles by Alyxandra Harvey. So, you are finished with Twilight and need a vampire fix? Please do yourself a favor and read about the Drakes. This stuff is so much better than Bella and Edward!


6. Hourglass by Myra McEntire and Ruby Red by Kiersten Gier. I have been on a time travel kick for a while now, so these two series get recommended a lot!

hourglass ruby red

7. Blood Red Road by Moira Young. It’s what you read after The Hunger Games!

blood red road

8. White Cat by Holly Black. It saddens me that I have to sell this one. It seems to just sit on the shelf unless I put it in someone’s hand. It’s so gritty and awesome. It’s the mob on magic, with a great male POV. I push this one every chance I get.

white cat

9. Cinder by Marissa Meyer. This is a newer addition to my most recommended repertoire, and I LOVE it!


10. Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer. I cannot get enough of Jacky Faber and I really wish everyone would love her.

bloody jack

A few of my most recommended non-YA titles:

ready spellmans 112263 henrietta sweetness blood oath garden spells rook

I could recommend books like it was my job. Oh, wait. It is my job! Lucky me. Well, part of it at least. One of the best parts, actually! But, that’s enough for one list.

Happy Reading!