August Book Wrap Up!

Books Pledged to Read in 2015:

150

Am I On Track: 

2 books behind. I was actually caught up at one point but I’ve been writing SO much!

Books Read So Far: 

97

Total Books For August: 

19

Catching Jordan by Miranda Keanneally

The Night We Said Yes by Lauren Gibaldi

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan (Re-Read)

The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan (Re-Read)

With this Heart by RS Grey

The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan (Re-Read)

The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan (Re-Read)

The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan (Re-Read)

Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

My Favorite Mistake by Chelsea M Cameron

My Sweetest Escape by Chelsea M Cameron

When Joss Met Matt by Ellie Cahill

Where I Belong by J Daniels

City of Glass by Cassandra Clare (Re-Read)

Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan

The Lost Herondale by Cassandra Clare and Robin Wasserman

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

All of You by Christina Lee

Before You Break by Christina Lee

****************

That Time I Baked Blue Cupcakes for Percy Jackson’s Birthday!

Happy Birthday to one of my absolute favorite characters pretty much ever, sale Mr. Percy Jackson himself! He is turning 22 today (whoa, adiposity when did I get so old…) and what’s even better is that a brand new book, remedy Greek Heroes, hits bookstores today! Learn all the stories about the Greek heroes of the past from your favorite demigod himself, Percy. To learn more about that book, check out my spotlight on the book!

But yes! It is Percy’s birthday!

I was trying to decide how to celebrate his birthday and it hit me! Percy Jackson loves the color blue. He loves blue Coke, and blue chocolate chip cookies and all the blue candy in the world. It would stand to reason that he loves blue cupcakes as well right.

So I decided that in celebration, I would bake blue cupcakes for Percy’s birthday!

unnamed
that time it looked like I killed a blue Smurf…
Ready to go into the oven. I'm super messy when I bake but they always turn out yummy anyway
Ready to go into the oven. I’m super messy when I bake but they always turn out yummy anyway
I'm so terrible at waiting...
I’m so terrible at waiting…
The supplies are all ready and waiting for the cupcakes to come out of the oven!
The supplies are all ready and waiting for the cupcakes to come out of the oven!
All frosted!
All frosted!
Yummy!
Yummy!

unnamed-5

unnamed-6

unnamed-7

unnamed-8

SO BLUE! Like I said, not the prettiest cupcakes in the world, but they are some good cupcakes!
SO BLUE! Like I said, not the prettiest cupcakes in the world, but they are some good cupcakes!

unnamed-12

I swear, I'm much much happier than my face suggests! Oh! And this new hoodie of mine is so comfy!
I swear, I’m much much happier than my face suggests! Oh! And this new hoodie of mine is so comfy!

It took ALL night but it was so worth it! I’m glad that I made the cupcakes, they were SO yummy and I’m sure Percy would love them too! I’m sure my family loved them ;)

So Happy Birthday Percy Jackson!

Make sure you guys read the Percy series, and the spin off, The Heroes of Olympus. And head to bookstores today to pick up YOUR copy of Greek Heroes.

And eat some blue food just for Percy today ;)

Blog Tour: “Every Last Word” by Tamara Ireland Stone – Spotlight and Giveaway!

Hello everyone! Welcome to today’s stop on Tamara Ireland Stone’s blog tour for her brand new release, treatment Every Last Word. I have been wanting to read this book and was SO excited to be able to get my hands on a copy. I’m also excited to be seeing her in just a week at the RT Book Lover’s Convention! If you are there, ambulance please make sure to say hi!

I’m even MORE excited to be sharing all of this with you. We’re going to learn a bit more about Tamara, about her new book, I’m going to review the book and there’s an epic giveaway. So let’s get started!

About Tamara Ireland Stone

AuthorTamaraIrelandStone

Tamara Ireland Stone is the author of Time After Time and Time Between Us, which Melissa Marr praised as a “beautifully written, unique love story,” and has been published in over twenty countries. A former Silicon Valley marketing executive, Tamara  enjoys skiing, hiking, and spending time with her husband and two children. She lives just outside of San Francisco.

You Can Find Her At:

Her Website / Her Facebook / Her Twitter / Her Tumblr / Her Instagram / Her GoodReads

About Every Last Word

EveryLastWord

Samantha McAllister looks just like the rest of the popular girls in her junior class. But hidden beneath the straightened hair and expertly applied makeup is a secret that her friends would never understand:  Sam has Purely-Obsessional OCD and is consumed by a stream of dark thoughts and worries that she can’t turn off.

Second-guessing every move, thought, and word makes daily life a struggle, and it doesn’t help that her lifelong friends will turn toxic at the first sign of a wrong outfit, wrong lunch, or wrong crush. Yet Sam knows she’d be truly crazy to leave the protection of the most popular girls in school. So when Sam meets Caroline, she has to keep her new friend with a refreshing sense of humor and no style a secret, right up there with Sam’s weekly visits to her psychiatrist.

Caroline introduces Sam to Poet’s Corner, a hidden room and a tight-knit group of misfits who have been ignored by the school at large. Sam is drawn to them immediately, especially a guitar-playing guy with a talent for verse, and starts to discover a whole new side of herself. Slowly, she begins to feel more “normal” than she ever has as part of the popular crowd . . . until she finds a new reason to question her sanity and all she holds dear.

Find the book at your local bookstore on June 16th or preorder at the following links:

Amazon / Barnes and Noble / iBooks / Book Depository

The Giveaway!

WordsThroughTime

One winner will receive: 

A Copy of Every Last Word

A Copy of Time Between Us and Time After Time

Giveaway only open to those with US addresses. Prizes provided by Disney Hyperion. 

To Enter: 

Image

Find this photo on MY instagram and repost it with the hashtag: #anerdgirlsaysTISgiveaway! You have until Thursday, May 14th to enter so get at it!

********

Book Review: Across the Universe by Beth Revis

Across the UniverseWhere To Buy:
Amazon, page Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, Book Depository

Goodreads Synopsis:
A love out of time. A spaceship built of secrets and murder.

Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.

Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone – one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship – tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn’t do something soon, her parents will be next.

Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed’s hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there’s only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.

My Review:
This book was WAAAAAY better than I expected! To be honest, it gave me the same emotions and fears that the Hunger Games series did — the whole not being in control of your existence and dictatorship and what not. It was brilliant.

Revis does an amazing job with the world building, and I found myself even more afraid of space and planets then I was before (my biggest fear is the movie Gravity). She not only made oblivion very really, she coupled it with twisted versions of history, sociology, and psychology. It was simply fantastic.

The characters were spot on great. Amy, the frozen human who was awakened too soon, was a great female protagonist. She wasn’t a quiet, timid girl. She was a powerhouse of emotion and spunk. And she didn’t back down, especially when she knew things were wrong. I really appreciate when authors take the time to develop a really strong female character.

Her support system in Elder and Harley was really great too. Elder, probably the most developed character (in my opinion), was a joy to witness. His thought processes shifted from beginning to end, which showed huge growth on his part. Can you imagine being told one thing all of your life, only to discover that it’s all been a lie? Amy was that breakthrough for him, initially, but he had to finally accept what he thought to be true all his own. I loved being in his mind.

Harley, my sweet boy, was such a joy to read about. He was the comic relief of the group, the laid back one, but also one who was in a lot of pain. I just wanted to wrap my arms around him and comfort him. He was so sweet.

The plot to ATU was such a great concept — genocide, slavery, murder — all in space. It’s amazing how concepts that we’re currently familiar with in the 21st century, can still be translated into future generations. Human nature is such an interesting concept. People fear what they don’t understand. Fear can lead to irrationality. So, in a way, I get what Eldest way trying to convey. But despite what he was trying to do, I can’t agree with anything he’s done. He was the ultimate antagonist, in my opinion. He’s a scary person. And Revis did a great displaying that.

The secrets revealed and the stories told were so shocking to me, at times, but as the plot unfolded, things really started to click and make sense. To the point where I kept telling myself, “I should have seen that coming”.

I enjoy the pace of Elder & Amy’s friendship/relationship and can only hope it turns into something beautiful.

Great start to this series!

Rating:
5 out of 5 stars!

Evertrue (Everneath #3) by Brodi Ashton Book Review

Evertrue

Where To Buy: Amazon, order  Barnes & Noble, page  Book Depository, order  Books-A-Million

Goodreads Summary: Now that Nikki has rescued Jack, all she wants is to be with him and graduate high school. But Cole tricked Nikki into feeding off him, and she’s begun the process of turning into an Everliving herself… which means she must feed on a Forfeit soon — or die.

Terrified for her survival, Nikki and Jack begin a desperate attempt to reverse the process using any means possible. Even Cole, who they expected to fight them at every turn, has become an unlikely ally — but how long can it last? Nikki needs to feed on Cole to survive, Cole needs Nikki to gain the throne in the Everneath, Jack needs Nikki because she is everything to him — and together, they must travel back to the Underworld to undo Nikki’s fate and make her mortal once more. But Cole isn’t the only one with plans for Nikki: the Queen has not forgotten Nikki’s treachery, and she wants her destroyed for good. Will Nikki be forced to spend eternity in the Underworld, or does she have what it takes to bring down the Everneath once and for all?

**Do NOT read this review if you have not read the first TWO books. There are SPOILERS!**

My Review: The final third of this book is what decided the rating. Had my rating been based on the first two-thirds, I’d have given it a 3.5 or 4 stars. This book ended perfectly, first of all. I still say that the second book was my favorite of the trilogy, because it’s the one that shocked me and grabbed me the most, but the ending to this book was heartfelt, sad, yet appropriate at the same time.

We pick up with the decision of Nikki deciding she needs to destroy the Everneath because Cole tricked her into beginning her transformation into an Everliving. Throughout this entire book, I was suspicious of Cole yet I enjoyed him at the same time. I kept wondering what he had up his sleeve now that Nikki and Jack knew what he did. But then Brodi Ashton decides to throw me a curve ball and give Cole something quite big to deal with throughout the entire book. When I found out about Cole’s situation, I was PISSED! I couldn’t believe that Ashton would even allow me to be confused over how I was feeling about Cole. I mean, I will continue to say that he was the best developed character of the entire series, but that didn’t mean I had to like him. Or feel sorry for him. But Ashton has me questioning.

Having Jack back in the picture was great, but at times I felt like he was a little too much. Especially when Nikki had to feed off of Cole, which we all knew was necessary in order for her to stay alive. Jack needed to chill. Just a little.

Then Nikki, having been through hell & high water with the Everneath and with Cole, still made a few rash decisions that had me scratching my head. But by the end of the book, I honestly just settle in the fact that this was who she was. She’s a compassionate person, and sometimes even when you’ve been scorned, you can’t help having that compassion, even if you could potential get burned again.

Can I just say that I love Will? That’s all. No particular reason, other than I just love how dedicated he is and how he is always willing to help.

For me, the middle of the novel dragged a bit. Especially when Nikki & Jack are trying to deal with Cole. Once again, there’s the struggle with the decision to trust Cole or to not trust Cole. And I was struggling with it too.

Throughout the entire series, regardless what Cole has done to Nikki, you can tell that he cares about her. But he’s also acting out of his own selfish desires. You see it in Everneath, you see it in Everbound, and you see it in Evertrue. It’s just obvious. He loves her, which means he wants her happy, but he’s also selfish.

The queen — she was boring to me. In the previous book and this one. The Shades were scarier than she was. I kept thinking “Can you just die? Please? I’m over you.” I think the queen could have been written a little better. I always expect more out of female characters, so I just wasn’t feeling this queen.

My favorite scene in the entire book? Not the romance, not the fighting, not anything Cole-related. Nope. It was the frickin’ BEETLE scene! Can you say EWWWWWW???! I cringed as I read that scene. The fact that Nikki had to walk across a bed of beetles, each the size of half of her foot?? What the hell, man?! I would have just laid down to die. I couldn’t do it. That scene gave me hives just thinking about it!

Overall, this was a great story. There are things within the entire series that I wish were written better, but I am not going to nitpick over this trilogy. I’m just glad that Ashton ended the story in a way that was satisfactory. At least for me, and I’m sure for others as well.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5!

Paper Towns Book Review

Paper Towns by John Green

6442769

   

You Can Find the Book At:

GoodReads

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Author Website

GoodReads Summary:

Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs back into his life—dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge—he follows. After their all-nighter ends and a new day breaks, ask Q arrives at school to discover that Margo, always an enigma, has now become a mystery. But Q soon learns that there are clues—and they’re for him. Urged down a disconnected path, the closer he gets, the less Q sees of the girl he thought he knew.

My Review:

When I first started reading John Green a few years ago, this was one of the first ones I had picked up. The first one I had read was An Abundance of Katherines, which still remains my favorite of his. Back then, Paper Towns didn’t impress me as much as his other works so I decided to give it another try.

I still found it kind of lacking. For me, in this particular book, it was really hard to get John Green out of my head. It didn’t feel like it was Quentin’s voice. It always felt like John’s voice and it was kind of frustrating. I watch a lot of Nerdfighters and Vlog Brothers and just John Green videos on YouTube, and I felt like it was John the whole time so it was hard to get into Quentin as a character. I know that authors put themselves into characters-I definitely do that-but it was highly distracting in this book.

I also just didn’t think it was that great of a story. I was kind of like Q’s friends, and sort of frustrated at his obsession with Margo. She seemed sort of…I don’t know. I just didn’t like her. She was so mysterious and she left these clues and everyone was fascinated by the idea of her but not actually her, you know? It was kind of “been there, done that.” I feel mean right now haha because I don’t tend to give less than positive reviews but I just wasn’t that impressed with this book. I felt like Margo was a one-dimensional character and I really wanted her to surprise me. The direction in which her story ended up just didn’t surprise me and I like a good book to surprise me. His other books have done that before, and this one just felt predictable from the beginning.

That being said, there is a lot of good about this book because John Green is a really great writer and he has a way of capturing teen voice in a way that not many authors can do (Andrew Smith!!!!!) and he definitely does that in Paper Towns as well. It always seems to me that John Green never really left his teen years behind, but in a good way. He remembers what its like and it comes across in the page. He gets the emotions and the hormones and the humor and all of it. Its great. And there were parts of the book that I really liked, like the after-prom party and the road trip and that sort of thing. There were parts that had me laughing like crazy. There were almost, like, short stories within the bigger story that I enjoyed more than the story as a whole. Not one of John Green’s strongest, not in my opinion.

Rating:

3.75 out of 5 Stars