Weekend BookBlogger Hop: 7

The BookBlogger Hop is hosted by Crazy-for-Books every weekend. Basically, if you blog about books, answer a question provided and if you link to their post in your blog, you can add your blog to their list of participants. This week’s question is:

“In honor of Banned Books Week, what is your favorite “banned or frequently challenged book?”

My favorite would have to be either Harry Potter or Bridge to Terebithia. I honestly can’t figure out why these two books, and most of the books on the list, are on the list in the first place. Most of the YA books on the list are fantasy, so if any of those books were banned (and the ban was enforced, which it’s not), there would be an entire genre missing from the world. I think it’s ridiculous.

Loving books,
~Yours Truly

It’s Greek To Me

So I just read Fury by Elizabeth Miles on Simon and Schuster’s PulseIt. This was an interesting read, but here’s the blurb first:

It’s winter break in Ascension, Maine. The snow is falling and everything looks pristine and peaceful. But not all is as it seems…
Between cozy traditions and parties with her friends, Emily loves the holidays. And this year is even better – the guy she’s been into for months is finally noticing her. But Em know if she starts things with him, there’s no turning back – because his girlfriend is Em’s best friend.
On the other side of town, Chase is having problems of his own. The stress of his home life is starting to take its toll, and his social life is unraveling. But that’s nothing compared to what’s really haunting him. Chase has done something cruel … something the perfect guy he pretends to be would never do. And it’s only a matter of time before he’s exposed.
In Ascension, mistakes can be deadly. And three girls – three beautiful, mysterious girls – are here to choose who will pay. Em and Chase have been chosen.

This book was odd from the very beginning. The cover and title was what really drew me in to read the book in the first place, but then when I started, it was almost the complete opposite of what I expected, and for me, at least, this wasn’t a good thing. Em and Chase, the main characters, were completely normal, and made mistakes – okay. But in most books, what happened to Chase just doesn’t happen. (I’d tell you, but that would completely give away the entirety of the book). Let’s just say, it was weird.

The three girls – the Furies – were easily picked out from the characters in the book. Ali, Meg, and Ty were all weird in the first place, and then the relationship between Ty and Chase was just crazy. I had never read anything like it – the wording of the story was weird too, and instead of feeling really intimate with the characters, as though they were my best friends, I felt as though I were a classmate looking in on their feelings during specific times in their lives. It was not the best experience of reading I’d ever had. Right from the beginning, I couldn’t really get into the story. Fury simply existed; it was not a horrible book, but it was not rave-worthy, either, at least for me.

However, for people looking for more of a normal main character (no supernatural powers, etc.) whose life is out of their control and being controlled by twisted freaky Furies, well then this is the book for you! For me though, it just didn’t click.

Sorry for the lateness, again, but I’ve been busy with school and a non-fiction book that I’m reading for fun. Haven’t had much time to read anything else, but I will as soon as I finish this one book! Hopefully, Witchlanders will be up next.
~Yours Truly

Weekend BookBlogger Hop: 7

The BookBlogger Hop is hosted by Crazy-for-Books every weekend. Basically, if you blog about books, answer a question provided and if you link to their post in your blog, you can add your blog to their list of participants. This week’s question is:

“As a blog reader, what information (besides the book review) do you like to see in other bloggers’ reviews of books?  (For example – Author bio, social media links, book synopsis from Amazon/Goodreads or one written by the blogger, page count, ISBN number, link to purchase, etc.)”

I like to see the cover, but not just the one that the blogger read. I like seeing the most common/appealing cover. For example, I posted several covers of Anna and the French Kiss because I wanted to see which the readers liked better. I love comparing covers, but I like seeing the most appealing in a review. I also like the review from the back of the actual book, not from Barnes and Nobles or Goodreads or any other site, unless it’s from the author’s site. I also like seeing the author’s name, whether it’s visible on the cover or typed into the post. Any other relevant information, like page count, publisher info, or series titles is helpful, but not necessary.

If any of you think I should add any of these to my reviews, comment below and tell me!

~Yours Truly

Another Historical Fiction

I’m really sorry for the delay in posting this – it was meant to go up almost a week ago. But it’s up now, so finish reading! Here’s my review of The Kite Runner.

Taking us from Afghanistan in the final days of the monarchy through the horrific invasion of the Taliban, The Kite Runner is the heart-breaking story of the unlikely and inseparable friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father’s servant, both of whom are caught in the tragic sweep of history. It is also about the power of reading, the price of betrayal, the possibility of redemption, and the influence of fathers over sons, of a country over men – and the sacrifices, loyalty, and lies that bind them.
Set against a volatile and intensely emotional backdrop that has never been explored in fiction before,
The Kite Runner debuted to national acclaim. A multiple award winner and a #1 New York Times bestseller, it is the first Afghan novel to be written in English.

I loved this book. There was so much information, so much historical fact, but then so much emotion that went along with it. Even though it wasn’t based on a real person, it was based off of historical events, and I’m sure that this story happened at some point in the history of the world, even if it wasn’t recorded as true. The emotional baggage this story holds for Afghans and even people hearing about what happened for the first time was amazing. The author managed to send a message through not only his own language, but another one as well. The horrors of the war came alive, even before the Taliban came into the picture. The political and social climate in Afghanistan had been decaying for a while, as shown through the hostile feelings towards the Hazaras; the discrimination was distgusting, even among those who employed them.

My favorite character was most definitely Hasaan. He was brave, loyal, and forgiving, despite everything. His best friend was cowardly, but Hasaan found the strength to be a friend in times where friends could be spying on you as an enemy. The life that Hasaan lived in innocence and goodness was inspiring; I wish that I could have known him, and shown him respect that he deserved but never received in his life. I won’t say anything more, because I really want to but think that it would spoil a lot! Just know that this story was amazing, and I would highly recommend it for anyone looking to read an emotional story of love, friendship, war and its consequences, as well as the effects one man’s actions can have on the people around him. The blurb states it very accurately: “the power of reading, the price of betrayal, the possibility of redemption, and the influence of fathers over sons, of a country over men – and the sacrifices, loyalty, and lies that bind them.”

~Yours Truly

Presidential Vamps?

Okay, I just read a very interesting combination; picture this: Abraham Lincoln – Vampire Hunter. So you’re thinking really boring, right? WRONG!! I’m going to give the summary before I go on and on with praise. **WARNING: Cover may be gruesome to some readers. There is violence in this book. Recommended for mature readers only (13+ is a reasonable age).

Indiana, 1818. In a one-room cabin, nine-year-old Abraham Lincoln kneels at his mother’s bedside. “‘My baby boy…'” she whispers before dying. Only later will the grieving Abe learn that his mother’s fatal affliction was actually the work of a vampire. Gifted with his legendary height, strength, and skill with an ax, young Lincoln sets out on a path of vengeance that will lead him all the way to the White House.
While Abraham Lincoln is widely lauded for saving the Union and freeing millions of slaves, his valiant fight against the forces of the undead has remained in the shadows for almost 200 years – until Seth Grahame-Smith stumbled upon
The Secret Journal of Abraham Lincoln. Now, using the journal as a guide, Seth reconstructs the true life story of America’s greatest president. For the first time ever, he reveals the hidden history behind the Civil War – and uncovers the role vampires played in the birth, growth, and near-death of the nation.

Ever wonder why Americans are so obsessed with Twilight? Maybe there’s a method to the madness! According to S. Grahame-Smith and Honest Abe (who apparently wasn’t so honest) vampires have existed for a long, long time. I loved the way this book was written, from the historically accurate researched facts to the gruesome, yet entertaining, tale of vampires. Even though I was enjoying the writing and the story, I was also learning. There was a lot of historical facts twisted very neatly so that I actually started to believe that this was the REAL story of the mid-1800’s.

My favorite character, despite his shortcomings, would have to be Henry. He has learned to deal with existing in America in a way that Abe could learn to accept and even befriend Henry for it. Even though Henry has gotten a little too used to his routine, and thought less about life and emotions behind human reasoning, which ended up back-firing on Abe, he still felt, still thought about his pain and Abe’s pain every single day. He always gave a choice to Abe, provided him with opportunities and resources and never forced anything onto the future president.

I wish that Lincoln hadn’t been assassinated – true, life would be different today, but then so would the story be too! There would have been more of Lincoln’s life, of his association and friendship with vampires, and of his presidential successes – for I have no doubt that he would have been more successful than Andrew Johnson, the VP). Anyway, that’s my review for today – up next will be The Kite Runner, as soon as I finish it.

Undeadly,
~Yours Truly

Weekend BookBlogger Hop: 6

The BookBlogger Hop is hosted by Crazy-for-Books every weekend. Basically, if you blog about books, answer a question provided and if you link to their post in your blog, you can add your blog to their list of participants. This week’s question is:

“As a book blogger, how do you introduce yourself in your profile?”

This is an interesting question. On my blog, you can go to my About page and see the information that I give out. I don’t give out everything about me, but I do give out more information than necessary because I want my readers to know me as a person, not just as a person on the Internet. However, on my Netgalley page, I want publishers to know what books I’d be interested in and that I am interested. My profiles vary depending on the networking site, but unless it’s my blog profile, I always have a link to my blog there. The more readers, the better! What about you?

Mythos Academy!

I finished Touch of Frost last night!!! Jennifer Estep did me a huge favor by sending this to me, and I’m going to return the favor by getting the next book, Kiss of Frost, myself.

My name is Gwen Frost, and I go to Mythos Academy – a school of myths, magic and warrior whiz kids, where even the lowliest geek knows how to chop off somebody’s head with a sword and Logan Quinn, the hottest Spartan guy in school, also happens to be the deadliest.

But lately, things have been weird, even for Mythos. First, mean girl Jasmine Ashton was murdered in the Library of Antiquities. Then, someone stole the Bowl of Tears, a magical artifact that can be used to bring about the second Chaos War. You know, death, destruction and lots of other bad, bad things. Freaky stuff like this goes on all the time at Mythos, but I’m determined to find out who killed Jasmine and why – especially since I should have been the one who died…

Okay. I LOVE this book. It was just amazing. Every aspect of this book hooked me. It absolutely KILLED me when I had to put it down in school because of class. I loved how even though she was surrounded by mythology – real, LIVE mythology – Gwen still didn’t believe in any of it. It was fun to watch her accept certain things, like a girl was called a Valkyrie or Amazon, but not accept the facts about them, like Valkyries are extremely strong. As in, win-the-Olympics-with-no-training strong. The love interests and characterization of Gwen as well as secondary characters like Logan, Daphne, Carson, and Metis, were so much fun to read. I loved the humor in the relationship between Daphne and Gwen. I won’t put any spoilers in here, but what happened was almost inevitable. A lot of the book was cliche-ish, but it was still intriguing because the main character wouldn’t admit that she believed any of it. As a reader, I was just waiting to see when she was going to figure it out, and that was probably the most entertaining part of the story. The main character pretty much dictates how a reader feels when an author writes a good book, and even though I knew some of what was going to happen, I couldn’t stop and think and put my predictions into words because I was so into the book and focused on what Gwen was thinking. That was the best part for me.

The cover was captivating. The cover model even looks like she’s wearing a sweatshirt, she’s got the purplish eyes, and the messenger bag slung over her shoulder. The setting and backstories were also pretty cool. I loved (it’s not the best choice of words, but you know what I mean if you’ve read the book) the whole hairbrush thing. It totally related to the rest of the story, and I thought it was such a useful gift to have, Gwen’s psychometry. She could really do some damage as a detective; her mom was really proud of her. I also liked how Gwen’s mom was such a big part of the story, despite the complication that I won’t state because it’d be a total spoiler, even though it’s in the first couple chapters. But still. When everything comes together in a story like this one, I love it. It makes for an awesome series, and I can’t wait to see what Jennifer Estep has in store for Gwen in the next installment.

Moving on to the next book!
~Yours Truly