Review: Hexed by Michelle Krys

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Hexed
by Michelle Krys
Series: The Witch Hunter, #1
Released on: June 10th, 2014
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Rating: 1 star
Word Rating: Alas, no.
Reviewed by: Mel

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If high school is all about social status, Indigo Blackwood has it made. Sure, her quirky mom owns an occult shop, and a nerd just won’t stop trying to be her friend, but Indie is a popular cheerleader with a football-star boyfriend and a social circle powerful enough to ruin everyone at school. Who wouldn’t want to be her?

Then a guy dies right before her eyes. And the dusty old family Bible her mom is freakishly possessive of is stolen. But it’s when a frustratingly sexy stranger named Bishop enters Indie’s world that she learns her destiny involves a lot more than pom-poms and parties. If she doesn’t get the Bible back, every witch on the planet will die. And that’s seriously bad news for Indie, because according to Bishop, she’s a witch too.

Suddenly forced into a centuries-old war between witches and sorcerers, Indie’s about to uncover the many dark truths about her life—and a future unlike any she ever imagined on top of the cheer pyramid.

Showcase Sunday (45) - It's Been 84 Years...

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Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicki at Books, Biscuits, and Tea, where we showcase what books we've gotten over the course of the week, whether it be bought, received from the library, from the publishers for review, etc. 


Fact: the last time either of us three has done a haul on this blog is January. I always tell myself I'll get around to doing one, but since the majority of my ARCs are usually of the e- variety, I never really get around to it. HOWEVER, this week I get a very large amount of review copies from publishers in the mail (absolutely my biggest week ever so far), and am expecting a few more packages next week, so perhaps this will get me back in the swing of things. But probably not. I'm just aspiring to not be lazy tonight, and because of that you get a rundown of this week's unusually large haul. Let's break it down. (Also keep in mind a few things: I forgot about this as usual; it's now extremely late as I am writing this; and I am exhausted, so this may/probably will be incoherent. And I plan on getting this done soon so I can collapse into pillows.)

Giveaway: Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott

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Today I have for you a giveaway of a signed ARC of Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott, which is like if The Hunger Games had animals that resembled Digimon, pretty much. Victoria Scott and her assistant were generous enough to offer up an extra signed ARC they had from events, and I'm excited to be able to give you all an opportunity to win the ARC today! Below you will find information about the novel, as well as the giveaway details and the Rafflecopter itself. Good luck!



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Time is slipping away.... 

Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can't determine what's wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She's lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she's helpless to change anything.

Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It's an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother's illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there's no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.

The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can't trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?

Victoria Scott's breathtaking novel grabs readers by the throat and doesn't let go.

Release Day Review: The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet

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The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet
by Bernie Su and Kate Rorick
Series: Standalone
Released on: June 24th, 2014
Publisher: Touchstone
Rating: 4.5 stars
Word Rating: YES. A THOUSAND TIMES YES.
Reviewed by: Mel

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A modern adaptation of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice based on the Emmy Award-winning phenomenon, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries.

There is a great deal that goes into making a video blog. Lizzie Bennet should know, having become a YouTube sensation over the course of her year-long video diary project. The Lizzie Bennet Diaries chronicled Lizzie's life as a twenty-four-year-old grad student, struggling under a mountain of student loans and living at home with her two sisters—beautiful Jane and reckless Lydia. What may have started as her grad student thesis grew into so much more, as the videos came to inform and reflect her life and that of her sisters. When rich, handsome Bing Lee comes to town, along with his stuck-up friend William Darcy, things really start to get interesting for the Bennets—and for Lizzie's viewers. Suddenly Lizzie—who always considered herself a fairly normal young woman—was a public figure. But not everything happened on-screen. Luckily for us, Lizzie kept a secret diary.

The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet provides more character introspection as only a book can, with revelatory details about the Bennet household, including Lizzie's special relationship with her father, untold stories from Netherfield, Lizzie's thoughts and fears about life after grad school and becoming an instant web celebrity.

Written by Bernie Su, the series' executive producer, co-creator, head writer, and director, along with Kate Rorick, the novelist, TV writer, and consulting producer on the series, the novel features a journal-entry format and design, complementing the existing web series, while including plenty of fresh twists to delight fans and new readers alike. The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet expands on the phenomenon that captivated a generation and reimagines the Pride and Prejudice story like it's never been done before.

I Kissed Him First + INTL Giveaway

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Most of you will know by now that John Green took to the interwebs last week to declare that what makes The Fault In Our Stars such a truly special film is that Hazel initiates the first kiss. I think most people know just how untrue that statement is, but this isn't really about that.

I know Green was talking about movies, but this "girls kissing boys first" thing relates to books just as well. It's not really something I pay all that much attention to because I'm usually all OMG KISSING YAYAYAY MY SHIIIIIIIIIP but I thought it might be fun to list a few girls initiating sexy times books for the curious and also because it's nice to know those things.

Speaking of nice things, in the name of spreading awareness - and also because it's summer and most of these are summery books - I'm attaching an international giveaway. Two lucky winners will each get to pick one of the books listed below.

Waiting on Wednesday - Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine where we post upcoming releases we're highly anticipating. My pre-publication selection for this week's Waiting on Wednesday is Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins.

Isla and the Happily Ever After
by Stephanie Perkins
Series: Anna and the French Kiss, #1
Released on: August 14th, 2014
Published by: Dutton
Waited on by: Ellis

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From the glittering streets of Manhattan to the moonlit rooftops of Paris, falling in love is easy for hopeless dreamer Isla and introspective artist Josh. But as they begin their senior year in France, Isla and Josh are quickly forced to confront the heartbreaking reality that happily-ever-afters aren’t always forever.

Their romantic journey is skillfully intertwined with those of beloved couples Anna and √Čtienne and Lola and Cricket, whose paths are destined to collide in a sweeping finale certain to please fans old and new.


Review: On the Fence by Kasie West

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On the Fence
by Kasie West
Series: Standalone
Released on: July 1st, 2014
Published by: HarperTeen
Rating: 4.5 stars
Word rating: SHIIIIP!
Reviewed by: Blythe

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She's a tomboy. He's the boy next door…

Charlie Reynolds can outrun, outscore, and outwit every boy she knows. But when it comes to being a girl, Charlie doesn't know the first thing about anything. So when she starts working at a chichi boutique to pay off a speeding ticket, she finds herself in a strange new world. To cope with the stress of her new reality, Charlie takes to spending nights chatting with her neighbor Braden through the fence between their yards. As she grows to depend on their nightly Fence Chats, she realizes she's got a bigger problem than speeding tickets-she's falling for Braden. She knows what it means to go for the win, but if spilling her secret means losing him for good, the stakes just got too high.

Fun, original, and endearing, On the Fence is a romantic comedy about finding yourself and finding love where you least expect.

Discussion Review: Fan Art by Sarah Tregay

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Fan Art
by Sarah Tregay
Series: Standalone 
Released on: June 17th, 2014
Published by: Katherine Tegen
Rating: 0 stars, 1 star, 1.5 stars
Word rating: BAAAAAAA
Reviewed by: Ellis, Blythe and Mel

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When the picture tells the story…

Senior year is almost over, and Jamie Peterson has a big problem. Not college—that’s all set. Not prom—he’ll find a date somehow. No, it’s the worst problem of all: he’s fallen for his best friend.

As much as Jamie tries to keep it under wraps, everyone seems to know where his affections lie, and the giggling girls in art class are determined to help Jamie get together with Mason. But Jamie isn’t sure if that’s what he wants—because as much as Jamie would like to come clean to Mason, what if the truth ruins everything? What if there are no more road trips, taco dinners, or movie nights? Does he dare risk a childhood friendship for romance?

This book is about what happens when a picture reveals what we can’t say, when art is truer than life, and how falling in love is easy, except when it’s not. Fan Art explores the joys and pains of friendship, of pressing boundaries, and how facing our worst fears can sometimes lead us to what we want most.


Waiting on Wednesday: My True Love Gave to Me by Stephanie Perkins

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine where we post upcoming releases we're highly anticipating. My pre-publication selection for this week's Waiting on Wednesday is My True Love Gave to Me by Stephanie Perkins.

My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories
by Mainly LAINI TAYLOR and STEPHANIE PERKINS
Series: Standalone
Released on: October 14th, 2014
Published by: St Martin's Press
Waited on by: Ellis

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If you love holiday stories, holiday movies, made-for-TV-holiday specials, holiday episodes of your favorite sitcoms and, especially, if you love holiday anthologies, you’re going to fall in love with MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME: TWELVE HOLIDAY STORIES by twelve bestselling young adult writers, edited by international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins.


Review: Dangerous Dream by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

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Dangerous Dream
by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
Series: Dangerous Creatures, #0.5
Released on: December 17th, 2013
Published by: Little, Brown
Rating: 1 star
Word rating: lol nope
Reviewed by: Ellis

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Catch up with Ethan, Lena, and Link as they finally graduate from high school and get ready to leave the small Southern town of Gatlin.

But when Dark Caster Ridley makes an appearance, the sometime bad girl can't resist picking a fight with her sometime boyfriend, Link.

Angry and rebellious as ever, Ridley ends up alone in New York City and becomes entangled in the dangerous underground Caster club scene, where the stakes are high and losers pay the ultimate price.

Where's a Linkubus when you need him?


Review: The Half Life of Molly Pierce by Katrina Leno

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The Half Life of Molly Pierce by Katrina Leno
Series: Standalone
Released on: July 8th, 2014
Published by: HarperTeen
Rating: 4 stars
Word rating: Mind-bendiness
Reviewed by: Blythe 

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You take it for granted. Waking up. Going to school, talking to your friends. Watching a show on television or reading a book or going out to lunch.

You take for granted going to sleep at night, and getting up the next day, and remembering everything that happened to you before you closed your eyes.

You live and you remember.

Me, I live and I forget.

But now—now I am remembering. 

For all of her seventeen years, Molly feels like she’s missed bits and pieces of her life. Now, she’s figuring out why. Now, she’s remembering her own secrets. And in doing so, Molly uncovers the separate life she seems to have led…and the love that she can’t let go.

The Half Life of Molly Pierce is a suspenseful, evocative psychological mystery about uncovering the secrets of our pasts, facing the unknowns of our futures, and accepting our whole selves.

Coming Attractions: Top Ten Clues You're Clueless by Liz Czukas

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Coming Attractions is inspired by The Perpetual Page Turner's Save The Date. Coming Attractions showcases a book that is not released for a while that I've read, and gives you a sneak peek (like a pre-review) as to what I thought about the book, since I can't post the review until closer to the release date.


Top Ten Clues You're Clueless
by Liz Czukas
Series: Standalone
Released on: December 9th, 2014
Published by: HarperTeen
Rating: 3-3.5 stars
Word rating:  Definition of fun
Reviewed by: Mel

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Top Five Things That Are Ruining Chloe’s Day

5) Working the 6:30 a.m. shift at GoodFoods Market

4) Crashing a cart into a customer’s car right in front of her snarky coworker Sammi

3) Trying to rock the “drowned rat” look after being caught in a snowstorm

2) Making zero progress with her crush, Tyson (see #3)

1) Being accused—along with her fellow teenage employees—of stealing upwards of $10,000

Chloe would rather be anywhere than locked in work jail (aka the break room) with five of her coworkers . . .  even if one of them is Tyson. But if they can band together to clear their names, what looks like a total disaster might just make Chloe’s list of Top Ten Best Moments.

Discussion Review: Vivian Divine Is Dead

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Vivian Divine is Dead
by Lauren Sabel
Series: Standalone
Released on: June 3rd, 2014
Published by: Katherine Tegen
Rating: 1.5 stars
Word rating:
Reviewed by: Mel and Blythe

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Filled with surprising twists and poignant moments, Lauren Sabel brings a fresh new voice to contemporary fiction with Vivian Divine Is Dead. Creepy, clever, funny, and romantic.

When a death threat arrives with teen celebrity Vivian Divine's fan mail, Vivian has no choice but to go on the run to Mexico. She soon discovers, though, that her Oscar-nominated performance killing villains on-screen did nothing to prepare her for escaping a madman in real life. Some people say he's a hero, others tremble in his presence, but one thing is clear: he won't stop until Vivian is in his grasp. Why didn't she pay more attention during those judo lessons for her role in Zombie Killer?

Vivian finds an ally in the mysterious and charming Nick. He is everything Hollywood boys are not-genuine, kind, and determined to see Vivian for who she really is. But even he seems like he can't be trusted-what could he be hiding?

Beat up, hungry, and more confused than ever about who she's running from, Vivian is living in a real-life blockbuster horror flick. But there's no option to yell "cut" like there is on set....

Lauren Sabel's Vivian Divine Is Dead is a creepy, witty, fast-paced adventure about family, fame, and having the courage to save yourself.


Review: The Things You Kiss Goodbye

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The Things You Kiss Goodbye
by Leslie Connor
Series: Standalone
Released on: June 24th, 2014
Published by: Katherine Tegen
Rating: 3 stars
Word rating: "Brought to you by Lifetime Network..."
Reviewed by: Blythe

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Bettina Vasilis can hardly believe it when basketball star Brady Cullen asks her out, and she just about faints when her strict father actually approves of him.

But when school starts up again, Brady changes. What happened to the sweet boy she fell in love with? Then she meets a smoldering guy in his twenties, and this “cowboy” is everything Brady is not—gentle, caring, and interested in getting to know the real Bettina.

Bettina knows that breaking up with Brady would mean giving up her freedom—and that it would be inappropriate for anything to happen between her and Cowboy. Still, she can’t help that she longs for the scent of his auto shop whenever she’s anywhere else.

When tragedy strikes, Bettina must tell her family the truth—and kiss goodbye the things she thought she knew about herself and the men in her life.

Leslie Connor has written a lyrical, heartbreaking, and ultimately hopeful story about family, romance, and the immense power of love.


Waiting On Wednesday - I'll Give You The Sun

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine where we post upcoming releases we're highly anticipating. My pre-publication selection for this week's Waiting on Wednesday is I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson.

I'll Give You The Sun
by Jandy Nelson
Series: None
Released on: September 16th, 2014
Published by: Dial Books for Young Readers
Waited on by: Mel

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A brilliant, luminous story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

Jude and her brother, Noah, are incredibly close twins. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude surfs and cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and divisive ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as an unpredictable new mentor. The early years are Noah's story to tell. The later years are Jude's. What the twins don't realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant, fully alive, sometimes very funny novel from the critically acclaimed author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.


TAKE BACK THE SKIES Blog Tour: Character Cosplay

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Hey everyone! Today, the blog tour for Lucy Saxon's fun debut Take Back the Skies (which is released today!) stops by Finding Bliss in Books. Below you'll find some information about the book itself, and also what the post is about (hint: I take a stab at putting together virtual costumes)! (Also, when reading the post keep in mind that I am not the most creative person, but I tried; I should most certainly not be a cosplayer.) Hope you enjoy!


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Catherine Hunter is the daughter of a senior government official on the island of Anglya. She’s one of the privileged – she has luxurious clothes, plenty to eat, and is protected from the Collections which have ravaged families throughout the land. But Catherine longs to escape the confines of her life, before her dad can marry her off to a government brat and trap her forever.

So Catherine becomes Cat, pretends to be a kid escaping the Collections, and stows away on the skyship Stormdancer. As they leave Anglya behind and brave the storms that fill the skies around the islands of Tellus, Cat’s world becomes more turbulent than she could ever have imagined, and dangerous secrets unravel her old life once and for all . . 

Sneak Peek Review: Isla and the Happily Ever After

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Isla and the Happily Ever After
by Stephanie Perkins
Series: Anna, #3
Released on: August 14th, 2014
Published by: Dutton
Rating: TBD when I read the full thing
Word rating: ANTICI...
Reviewed by: Blythe

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From the glittering streets of Manhattan to the moonlit rooftops of Paris, falling in love is easy for hopeless dreamer Isla and introspective artist Josh. But as they begin their senior year in France, Isla and Josh are quickly forced to confront the heartbreaking reality that happily-ever-afters aren’t always forever.

Their romantic journey is skillfully intertwined with those of beloved couples Anna and √Čtienne and Lola and Cricket, whose paths are destined to collide in a sweeping finale certain to please fans old and new.


Review: Brazen by Katherine Longshore

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Brazen
by Katherine Longshore
Series: Standalone companion
Released on: June 12th, 2014
Published by: Viking Juvenile
Rating: 4 stars
Word rating: yesss feminism
Reviewed by: Blythe

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Mary Howard has always lived in the shadow of her powerful family. But when she’s married off to Henry Fitzroy, King Henry VIII’s illegitimate son, she rockets into the Tudor court’s inner circle. Mary and “Fitz” join a tight clique of rebels who test the boundaries of court’s strict rules with their games, dares, and flirtations. The more Mary gets to know Fitz, the harder she falls for him, but is forbidden from seeing him alone. The rules of court were made to be pushed…but pushing them too far means certain death. Is true love worth dying for?