Thursday, September 29, 2011

Review: The Mephisto Covenant

The Mephisto Covenant by Trinity Faegan

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars


Class of 2K11 member Trinity Faegan, really did a great job on The Mephisto Covenant! I have heard a lot of negativity about this book but I for one loved it. Sasha’s father was killed and she can’t get over the fact that his killer has not been found. She is willing to do anything to find his killer even go to a meeting with a secret group at school. The group simply wants her to pledge her soul to someone named Eryx who gives his followers anything they want. In reality Eryx steals people’s souls when they pledge and is trying to take over hell. I was a little lost in the beginning because you are thrown right into a scene and you are wondering “who is that?” and “what did he call her?” but as the story progresses it’s all explained.

When Sasha goes to the group they turn on her and try and kill her but she's saved by Jax (insert swoon). Jax is part demon and hopes to find an Anabo. Anabos are the only girls capable of loving a demon but finding one is completely rare. Sasha happens to be an Anabo but doesn’t want any part of demons, secret groups or Eryx. Trinity really pushes the envelope by including religion in The Mephisto Covenant which at first I was skeptical about, but the book is fiction and it unfolded nicely.

The connection between Sasha and Jax is unbelievably hot! I will say I wasn’t crazy about Jax’s duster but something that could accidently get lost. Being that Jax is part demon he doesn’t have experience with dating so he has no idea what to do to get Sasha to fall in love with him. The twist is that as a demon he isn’t capable of love and she finds herself wondering if he really cares about her or if it's just the fact that he wants her to love him. If I were Sasha, I would have had my way with him now and asked questions later….Kidding-sort of!

There is a very detailed sex scene but it wasn’t vulgar. Again it's something new that I have not seen in YA but let’s face it teens have sex. Teens see sex on TV and you don’t watch 16 and Pregnant by not knowing about sex. I have seen people categorize this as instant love which I don’t think is accurate but I will say that part of being a teen is thinking you are in love with crushes, boyfriends, and Robert Pattinson until you learn what love really means. I also want to say that I love how Egmont USA puts out a great variety of stories. For me The Mephisto Covenant was great and I look forward to reading more books from Trinity Faegan!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Blue Willow Bookshop's Banned Book Week Video

I'm really excited to share two videos that we took at Blue Willow Bookshop to promote Banned Book Week. Valerie's husband Greg built our jail and Alice's grandmother made the costume. I can't tell you how much I love being part of the Blue Willow Bookshop Family!



The second video is of my blogger friend Sarah from http://sarahsbookslife.blogspot.com/ and I begged convinced to come help me film!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Tantalize: A Graphic Novel Winner


Congratulations to: hernameisavril on winning the Tantalize graphic novel!

The winner has been notified and has 48 hours to reply or a new winner will be chosen. If you did not win make sure you enter the Banned Book Giveaway.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Banned Books Week Giveaway Hop

Photobucket

My awesome friend Jen from I Read Banned Books is co-hosting the Banned Books Week Hop so to support her I'm participating in my first hop!

When I learned that book banning was still going on in the 21st century, I really thought it was a joke. With television pushing the boundaries of what we call "entertainment" and most kids, tweens, and teens having access to technology at their fingertips, if they really wanted to see or read things that involved profanity, drugs, alcohol, and sex there are far more accessible ways than a book. Allowing one group to decide what should be allowed in our public and school libraries is wrong and one way to give these banned and potentially banned books a voice is for us to give them one.

As you know I'm a big fan of supporting our Texas authors and earlier this year I met Gail Giles at the Texas Library Association conference. She also spoke at the Houston Teen Book Festival, she talked about how her book, SHATTERING GLASS, was challenged and it's something that has stayed with me.
SHATTERING GLASS was originally challenged in Lake Oswego, Oreg. Junior High School (2007) because the novel is "peppered with profanities, ranging from derogatory slang terms to sexual encounters and violence." - ALA's 2007-2008 Yearly Lists of Challenged and/or Banned Books

GIVEAWAY
Right Behind You (SIGNED)
Shattering Glass
What Happened to Cass McBride (SIGNED)
Banned Book Button
Bookmarks and Swag


To enter:
 US only
Must be a GFC follower
Leave a comment with contact info (email/twitter)
Winner will be announced 10/2 and has 48 hours to reply back

For a list of all the other blogs participating visit: I Read Banned Books

Friday, September 23, 2011

Interview with Gae Polisner and Geoff Herbach

Happy Friday Everyone!

Here is the next installment of my interview with Gae and Geoff. I will post a few more videos over the weekend and then next week we will have a giveaway.



You can find Gae online here:
http://gaepolisner.com/html/ya.html
http://twitter.com/#!/gaepol

Geoff can be found here:
http://geoffherbach.com/
http://twitter.com/#!/geoffherbach

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Interview with Gae Polisner and Geoff Herbach Part 2

If you watched part one of my video interview with Gae and Geoff you know to expect silly giggles but what I hope is that you see how awesome they are. As promised here is part 2 and 3





You can find Gae online here:
http://gaepolisner.com/html/ya.html
http://twitter.com/#!/gaepol

Geoff can be found here:
http://geoffherbach.com/
http://twitter.com/#!/geoffherbach

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Interview with Gae Polisner and Geoff Herbach



As you know I always support the Class of 2k11 and one day on facebook I saw Gae mention that she was hoping to build a buzz for her book. I said well if you dress like a bee I will giveaway a copy of your book. She said that sounded like a great idea so I went further and said if she could get Geoff to dress like a flower I would give away his book! That somehow turned into me wearing a flower and Gae wearing bee antennas and both agreeing to do a video interview with me. I'm really lucky to have them on my blog! This will be a series because there was so much great information that I want to share with you and at the end I will be giving away copies of their books. I hope you enjoy the videos and check out The Pull of Gravity and Stupid Fast.

DREAMLAND winners


Sydney said... A cozy pair of Ugg Boots!!!

Meredith said.... The best accessory would be a really big walk-in closet to hold all of her wonderful accessories!

Winners have been notified via email and have 48 hours to reply.  If they do not reply a new winner will be picked.  A huge THANKS to Alyson Noel, Macmillan Audio and Zeitghost Media!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Lost In Time: The Blue Bloods Book Trailer

I swear the videos for The Blue Blood series only get better and better! I wanted to share this with you and remind you that Lost in Time is available 9/27 but if you can wait you will want to order it from Blue Willow Bookshop in Houston because Melissa will be there 10/14 and you can buy an autographed copy.




Order of the Blue Blood Series 1-6
  1. Blue Bloods
  2. Masquerade
  3. Revelations
  4. Van Alen Legacy
  5. Misguided Angel
  6. Lost in Time


  • Bloody Valentine 5.5 (Short Stories about the series)
  • Keys to the Repository (Companion - Bios, family history, dictionary)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Tantalized Graphic Novel Giveaway

I love promoting our Texas authors and this week Cynthia Leitich Smith will be at Blue Willow Bookshop so to celebrate I'm giving away a signed Advance Readers Copy of:

Tantalize: A Graphic Novel!


Tantalize graphic novel (Sample of inside)
Illustrated by hot new talent Ming Doyle, Cynthia Leitich Smith’s TANTALIZE is reimagined as a graphic novel— seen through Kieren’s werewolf eyes.

As a hybrid werewolf, Kieren is destined to join an urban Wolf pack and learn to master his shift. Soon, he’ll leave everything behind: home, school, his family, and Quincie, his human best friend . . . who’s beginning to be a whole lot more than a friend. For years, Kieren has managed to keep his desires— and his wolf— at bay. But when the chef at Quincie’ s family restaurant is brutally murdered, Kieren resolves to be there for her, even if it means being framed. Even if it means watching Quincie’s beloved restaurant morph into a vampire lair. But when the new chef begins wooing her, how long can Kieren control his claws? How long can he protect Quincie— and himself? In an elegant graphic edition featuring cinematic sequential art by debut artist Ming Doyle and lush, romantic cover art by Sam Weber , bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith re-envisions her delicious dark fantasy through wolfish eyes.

GIVEAWAY

To Enter:
Leave a fun comment 
One entry per person leave contact info (email/twitter)
US/CAN only
Winner will be announced 9/23/11
Winner has  48 hours to reply

Thursday, September 15, 2011

ALA 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults Nominations




ALA just announced the 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults and some of my favorite people are on it! Below are the authors I have read and my reviews. Congratulations to all the authors nominated!

Aguirre, Ann. Enclave.
Archer, Jennifer. Through Her Eyes.
Dessen, Sarah. What Happened to Goodbye.
DeStafano, Lauren. Wither.
Herbach, Geoff.  Stupid Fast.
Johnson, Maureen. The Name of the Star.
Jordan, Sophie.  Firelight.
Marr, Melissa. Darkest Mercy.
Oliver, Lauren. Delirium.
Perkins, Stephanie.  Anna and the French Kiss
Roth, Veronica. Divergent
Smibert, Angie. Memento Nora.
Stiefvater, Maggie. The Scorpio Races.

Visit ALA's site to see a complete list.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Book Trailer: Dreamland (A Riley Bloom Book) by Alyson Noël & Giveaway



I'm really excited to bring you the book trailer for Dreamland by Alyson Noël. Riley is full of spunk and sass so when I first read about her in Evermore she quickly became one of my favorite characters. Then Alyson announced that Riley would get her own series and I was thrilled. The Riley Bloom books are the first middle grade books I read and I loved them just like I do YA. If you haven't picked up this series I would recommend them for readers of any age.

Giveaway Update:

Zeitghost Media has provided a giveaway copy of DREAMLAND!

Macmillan Audio has offered an audio copy of DREAMLAND!


There will be two winners!

To Enter:
Riley loves fashion so recommend a fall accessory for her
US/Canada only
One entry per person
Leave a comment telling me how to contact you email or twitter
You have 48 hours to reply with a mailing address
I will draw a winner September 19th

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Partials by Dan Wells

I don't know about you but I like to browse the catalogs and Goodreads for upcoming books and today I came across PARTIALS by Dan Wells. To be honest I don't even remember what I was looking for but how amazing is this cover and description?  Will this end up on your to reads list?

Partials by Dan Wells
Harper Collins Balzer + Bray
On Sale: 2/28/2012

About the book:
The human race is all but extinct after a war with Partials—engineered organic beings identical to humans—has decimated the population. Reduced to tens of thousands by RM, a weaponized virus to which only a fraction of humanity is immune, the survivors in North America have huddled together on Long Island while the Partials have mysteriously retreated. The threat of the Partials is still imminent, but worse, no baby has been born immune to RM in more than a decade. Our time is running out.

Kira, a sixteen-year-old medic in training, is on the front lines of this battle, seeing RM ravage the community while mandatory pregnancy laws threaten to launch what’s left of humanity into civil war, and she’s not content to stand by and watch. But as she makes a desperate decision to save the last of her race, she will discover that the survival of humans and Partials alike rests in her attempts to uncover the connections between them—connections that humanity has forgotten, or perhaps never even knew were there.

Dan Wells, acclaimed author of I Am Not a Serial Killer, takes readers on a pulse-pounding journey into a world where the very concept of what it means to be human is in question—one where our humanity is both our greatest liability and our only hope for survival.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ladybird, Ladybird Book Trailer and Giveaway



Ladybird, Ladybird by Abra Ebner

Crimson Oaks is offering a great giveaway! All you have to do is click here to enter and say I sent you.

About the book:
Samantha was born on a full moon to a mother already dead. Revived by doctors and given to her unloving father, Samantha was raised a cursed child, her only friend the ghost of her mother who speaks to her through keys that open a secret box Sam hides under her bed.

From the inside out, Sam burns with life, a fire so vivid it keeps her peers at a distance, all except one. Leith, a quiet farm boy with a broken heart and demons of his own, enjoys the seclusion his classmates grant him, but the seclusion is all too familiar to Sam, drawing her interest.

For the first time in their lives, fate pushes them together, but when their worlds collide…fires burn.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Review: Sleight

Goodreads summery:
Her mom is dead.
Ghosts follow her around.
Her best friend is an elephant.
And she’s about to meet the biggest game changer of all: a boy. With a secret.

When circus-dwelling Gemma Flannery learns she will be attending public school for the first time in her seventeen years, little does she know that fitting in with her 12th-grade classmates will be the least of her concerns. A pro at hiding her knack for seeing the dead (“shades”), Gemma is grieving the recent suicide of her mentally ill mother, a process eased by the introduction of her first real love interest, the charming and painfully handsome Henry Dmitri, who is harboring his own collection of dangerous secrets. Together, they will be presented with a frightening challenge: to assume their roles as heirs to a 3000-year-old magical text, the AVRAKEDAVRA, a book the über-rich, sleight-of-being master Lucian Dmitri would do anything to get his hands on. As each terrifying layer in her new reality melts away, Gemma unearths truths that her quiet, nomadic life with the Cinzio Traveling Players is not at all what she’d always cherished. Gemma and Henry must rely on each other to stop Lucian’s diabolical plotting that will bring the world to its tired, scab-riddled knees, and are sent on the flight of their young lives, to save themselves, their families, and the world from the darkest kind of destruction.

Let the chase begin.

My thoughts: 2 of 5 Stars

Sleight had a great beginning but fizzled out half way through the story and never got better. I liked Gemma and her family and the fact that the story is set in the circus. I thought the love story was good at first, but again, it didn't keep me interested. After Gemma's mother killed herself her family decides that, instead of traveling, they are going to stay in one city. Gemma has never attended public school and on the first day she meets Henry Dimitri, the son of the man funding their show. Gemma and Henry hit it off and a relationship starts to develop. Gemma can see ghosts and soon she will discover that Henry has a supernatural power of his own. Gemma and Henry learn that they are the only ones who can stop the man who wants to become ruler of the free world. I felt there was a lot of waiting to find out what Gemma and Henry were going to do and then at the very end it felt like a cat and mouse game. Through out the book I kept wondering where the story was going. Sleight is a series and while I'm not a fan of this book I will consider giving the second book a chance.

Blog Winners


We have winners!!! 

They have all been notified via email and have 48 hours to reply. Thank you again to everyone who entered and to everyone who reads this blog. Look for a new giveaway soon!

US: starryeyedjen

Canada: .Ambur.

Internatinal: Cass (Words on Paper)

Friday, September 9, 2011

Review: One Flight Up

One Flight Up by Susan Fales-Hills

Rating: 2 of 5 Stars

Where to begin....One Flight Up is a story of four friends who are all unhappy with something in their relationships. India, a powerful lawyer, will only date guys she is sure she would never marry because she had her heart broken by the one she really loved. Abby is married to an artist whom she has helped become well-known, but he treats her and her friends like something he stepped on. Abby refuses to see that he is an ASS! Esme, a hot blooded Latina, is so bored in her marriage that she sleeps with any man who crosses her path. Monique went to school with the girls, but wasn't part of the group until recently, because she used to bully India for being half white and half African America. She is now a successful doctor but gets no attention or affection from her husband.

While India's boyfriend Julien plans for the future, India plans for the day that she gets tired of him and buys an apartment, that she keeps a secret. At this point I want to yell YOU HAVE A GOOD MAN SET HIM FREE OR BE HONEST!

Instead of each woman dealing and talking about why they are so unhappy with their men they turn to other men. They carry out affairs with no remorse. If anything they feel empowered, young and beautiful when they have their affairs or sleep around. If you ask me, having an affair makes you a coward and dirty. Since three of the girls are married they start out keeping their sexual escapades to broom closets and hotels. They eventually make use of India's secret apartment. Can we say gross? Who is cleaning the sheets? While I love my friends I really don't want to think they got it on all over my furniture. There is not enough LYSOL in the world.

As all affairs go spouses find out, but don't expect a typical reaction. I never really felt I could connect with any of these women. I also think that when we as women cheat, you have a guilty conscience, because being with a man is usually more emotional than physical and I didn't feel this was the case. For me this story was too far from reality and I didn't enjoy it.

I believe that there is a book for everyone and just because I didn't like it doesn't mean someone out there won't enjoy it. So if you are in the US or Canada and would like to read this then email me and I'll mail it to you.

Friday, September 2, 2011

It's my Blog Birthday!

Dear Readers,

Today my blog turns TWO and I wanted to celebrate with you. Some of you might know that my birthday was yesterday and I haven’t been a big fan of birthdays because something always goes crazy. Two years ago I was having an especially bad birthday and the next day I decided I would do something my friends @PhotogAlice and Karm had been suggesting for a long time. Start a book blog! If you look back my blog started with two followers (PhotogAlice and Karm) then it slowly built with my Twilight friends to what you see today.

I ask myself how did your blog grow or change this year? What have you accomplished?
Have you made a difference?

So I want to quickly talk about some of the things that have happened in a year.

I worked with the Class of 2k11! They are such lovely people and have such dedication to the YA Genre and passion for what they do. Debut authors have to work 1000 times harder to get in the door and if I can do anything for them at any time they have my support!

You Rock: Carole Estby Dagg, Amy Fellner Dominy, Trinity Faegen, Alissa Grosso, Kiki Hamilton, Carrie Harris, Geoff Herbach, Tess Hilmo, Amy Holder, Tara Hudson, Julia Karr, Christina Mandelski, Sheila O’Connor, Gae Polisner, Bettina Restrepo, and Angie Smibert

My Blog was featured on Blogs of Note! Blogs of Note is an award provided by Blogger.com they feature a new blog every day and out of the billions they picked me. This still shocks me every single day!

I attended so many wonderful events! From the Texas Book Festival, Texas Library Convention, ALA, Dark Days Tour in Austin, to so many great events around Houston at Blue Willow Bookshop and Murder by the Book! I saw everyone from Sophie Jordan, Melissa Marr, Heather Brewer, Stephanie Perkins, David Levithan, Linda McMann, Justin Cronin, Jennifer Lynn Barnes, Ally Condie, Melissa de la Cruz, Ellen Hopkins, Veronia Roth, Lauren Oliver and so many more! I also met Tara Hudson, Kiki Hamilton, Christina Mandelski, and Bettina Restrepo from the Class of 2k11! I get to meet Amy Fellner Dominy this weekend!

I got a job! The lovely staff at Blue Willow Bookshop gave me a home! While I have a day job GirlBoss asked me to become part of the Blue Willow Family! Don’t tell her this but I would have done it for free! See they have the best staff! Val (GirlBoss) works really hard to give us a great place for book lovers! Cathy is the angel who loves YA and gets all the cool author visits! Martha, Nancy, Jordan, and the rest of the staff keep the place running! If you are ever in Houston trust me this is the place to go! I spend so much time there and will always support them.

Friends I have met so many wonderful people both online and in real life this year! My Blogger Sister Michelle, for one, is someone I had known online but had yet to meet in person and I can tell you she has a big personality but a bigger heart! If you are ever in Fort Worth look her up! I have also met so many wonderful people from Literary Lonestars like the creators Jen from I Read Banned Books and Stephanie Pellegrin a writer who I know I will feature her book when she finally lets the world see it.  Lili from WordVom and Stacy from Girls in the Stacks both Dallas girls I had a blast with this year! Christen from Portrait of a Book who always attends events around Houston with me and I can always talk into going book shopping!

To my dear friends PhotogAlice and Suzi thank you for listening every time I have a new book to gush about! PhotogAlice you always have my back when it comes to editing my post and pointing out that something made sense in my head and not so much on paper.  You are the best friends a girl can have!

I have found that some people are meant to stay in your life while others you have to let walk away. I have learned that we make mistakes and while we can’t always go back and change things we can learn from them and maybe use it as inspiration to fix other things in our lives.

I try and remind myself that life is about living and when I make mistakes I must acknowledge them and grow from them. Try to not make the same mistakes twice and reflect on who you are and where your life is going. To all my blogger friends, readers, and supporters I thank you! You have given me so much and have changed my life in ways I never would have imagined. I only hope that I continue to entertain you and bring you back because you share the same crazy love of books! Did someone mention books? What is a Blog Birthday without Presents right? So let’s get to it!

Thank you all,
Cari

3 Prize Packages:




International: Any YA Book under 15.00 USD

How to Enter:

You must leave a comment.

You must be a google connect friend follower.  Meaning see that follower button the left hand side click that.

You must be at least 13 years of age and have a parent's permission.

You must leave a way to contact you (email or twitter)

What prize pack (US/Canada/International) you qualify for

Winner will be drawn on 9/8/11

Winners will have 48 hours to reply or a new winner will be picked.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact me!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

September To Read List

So here is my schedule of what I plan to read this month. Feel free to join me and then we can discuss. Also I am always up for taking recommendations. If you check my blog often you will find I add and remove books just depending on my moods. What are you reading or looking forward to reading this month?

Currently Reading:






To Read:


Finished Reading:




Happy reading!