Monday, February 28, 2011

Awesome Giveaway!

Ok, Kelly Keaton is offering an awesome giveaway as part of her blog tour for "Darkness Becomes Her"!  This giveaway has so much stuff that I was tempted not to post it so that I have a better chance of winning it.
: )

You can catch all the deets over at Once Upon a Twilight, where they have also posted a fab review of the book and an interview with the author.  I think this book just moved WAY up on my TBR list.  Plus, the author's from North Carolina!!  

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Misguided Angel by Melissa de la Cruz

After inheriting the dark Van Alen Legacy, Schuyler fled to Florence with her forbidden love, Jack. Now the two of them must embark on the mission Schuyler was destined to complete: to find and protect the five remaining gates that guard the earth from Lucifer, lord of the Silver Bloods. 

Back in New York, Mimi has been elected Regent of a crumbling coven. Struggling with her heartache over the loss of Kingsley and with her overwhelming desire to destroy Jack, she must focus all of her energy on a perilous new threat. Vampires are being abducted and their captors are planning to burn them alive online…for all the world to see. Help arrives in the form of Deming Chen, a Venator from Shanghai, who must untangle the web of deceptions before the killers strike again. 

As the young vampires struggle for the survival of the coven, they uncover a deadly secret, a truth first discovered by Schuyler’s mother during the Renaissance but kept buried for centuries. And as the Blue Blood enclave weakens yet further, fate leads Schuyler to a terrible choice that will ultimately map the destiny of her heart.


I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to get into this book.  It’s been a while since I read “Van Alen Legacy” and honestly, the details were a little fuzzy.  However, once I just dove into the book, everything started coming back to me and I totally enjoyed the read!

I have found that lately, I’m not really liking these series that seem to go on and on and I was worried that this one was going to get bogged down in pointless detail.  I stopped reading the House of Night series because I just couldn’t take any more of the same old stuff.  The Blue Bloods series, however, is not lots of the same old stuff!  I am still loving this story.

One of the things that I like about this series is the way that the past and the present are brought together.  In this book, the flashbacks to the 15th century were intriguing and I kept wondering just who those people are in present day Blue Bloods society.  I also find myself starting to really like Mimi Force, which is just unbelievable.  Now, I am still a total Jack/Schuyler shipper, but I really admire Mimi.  She’s not the vapid fashionista that she once was and it’s been nice to see her growth as a person…..well, vampire!

The plot in this book was action-packed, complete with a mystery, murdered vampires and a twist that was totally shocking!  Which is to say that it’s my idea of a perfect read!  I am anxiously awaiting the next installment to see what happens next and how this can all work out in the end. 

I wish that there had been more of Jack and Schuyler in this book and Bliss Llewelyn was totally absent.  It seems like the books are almost too short.  In these days of 400+ page books, these seem to read way too fast!  My guess?  The publishers want them short so that they can sell more books with the same amount of story.  But I could be wrong.  Ms. De la Cruz is a very prolific author and perhaps she just thinks in small segments.  But I still would have liked to see all the main players in the story in this installment.

Overall, this was an excellent book with a plot that moved along nicely and characters who keep growing and developing.  All the ingredients for a darn good read!

I give this book an A-.  And then I’m running out to purchase “Bloody Valentine” just to get another fix of these characters. (and read about the bonding of Jack and Schuyler!)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

What's sitting on your TBR shelf?

Maybe other people aren't like me.  I have several dozen unread books sitting on my shelves, just waiting for me to read them.  And then I keep buying more books! (Yes, I have a problem, but no, I don't want to seek help for it.)  Just this week, I went to the book fair at my daughter's middle school and purchased 2 books for myself.  I got "Prom and Prejudice" by Elizabeth Eulberg and "The Cupcake Queen" by Heather Hepler.  I had to put them up on the shelf with all the other books just waiting to be read.

There is a point to this post!  I've been trying to figure out how to determine what gets read next.  Granted, I should be reading my lab manual for my class in Classification and Cataloging and memorizing the different areas of the Dewey Decimal system, but why on earth would I want to do that when "Misguided Angel" by Melissa de la Cruz was tempting me?  (Dr. Becnel, if you're still reading this, what I'm really doing is trying to get a head start on the YA lit class I'll be taking with you this summer.  ::grins::) 

So this is what I've decided.  I will not start any new series because then I get sucked in and I have to read even more books.  Instead, I'm going to go ahead and read the "next" book in all the series that I have started.  This is what I have to read:
1.  Misguided Angel by Melissa de la Cruz from the Blue Bloods series (I'm reading it now!)
2.  Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
3.  Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
4.  Ballad by Maggie Stiefvater

I think this will catch me up with the series books that I"m reading.  Of course, by April, I will also need to read "City of Fallen Angels" by Cassandra Clare. ::squeals::

The next book on my TBR list will have to be "Water for Elephants" by Sara Gruen because I want to read it before the movie comes out, and I won't be able to wait long to go see historical period Rob. :::sighs::  So that book may have to interrupt the series catching up.

That's how I've decided what I"m going to read next.  How do you decide?  I'd love to get some other suggestions in the comments!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

12.21.12 blog tour!

I'm so excited!  I will be participating in the blog tour for 12.21.12 by Killian McRae!  It is sponsored by the great girls over at Once Upon a Twilight.  This book will hit Into the Mystic on March 20th.  I will be posting my review and I will then host a giveaway of a copy of the book to one lucky reader!

Stay tuned for more information!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Haunted by Jessica Verday

An impossible truth. An impossible love. 

After a summer spent reclaiming her sanity and trying to forget the boy she fell in love with—the boy who must not exist, cannot exist, because she knows that he is dead—Abbey returns to Sleepy Hollow, ready to leave the ghosts of her past behind. She throws herself into her schoolwork, her perfume-making, and her friendship with Ben, her cute and funny lab partner, who just might be her ticket to getting over Caspian once and for all.

But Abbey can never get over Caspian, and Caspian has no choice but to return to her side, for Caspian is a Shade, and Abbey is his destiny. They are tied not only to each other, but also to the town of Sleepy Hollow, and to the famous legend that binds their fates—a legend whose dark truths they are only beginning to guess.... (picture and summary from


Aaagggghhhhhh!!!!!!   What is it with these authors and their horrible, right in the middle of the action, cliffhanger endings??  I have read so many of those in the last month.  It is seriously starting to mess with my mind!  And yet, it is the best sort of torture, right?

Well, as soon as I finished The Hollow, I downloaded The Haunted onto my Nook because I’m impatient like that.  This book was better than the first book.  Everyone, including Abbey, knew what was going on.  And then, of course, more mysterious situations start popping up.  This book had a lot more action, and the sexual tension between Caspian and Abbey was pretty steamy!  In fact, I don’t think I’ve seen that sort of tension in a book since Edward and Bella.

Unfortunately, Abbey didn’t get much smarter in this book, but she wasn’t quite the dimwit that she was in The Hollow.  Still, I’m wondering why her mom is pushing college so much since Abbey seems like more of a local community college sort of girl to me. One thing I love about Abbey though is her perfume making hobby!  The way it is described and used as an integral part of the book adds a unique touch to the storyline.  And makes me want to take up the hobby of perfume making.  I wonder if I can make perfumes and read books at the same time?  Hmmmmmmm.............

I am having a hard time reviewing this book without giving spoilers and lots of them!  I guess that I have to say that: 1) I’m glad that the mystery of Kristen’s death was somewhat solved 2) I’m glad that the mysterious “D.” was identified and 3) this was a very, very satisfactory continuation of the story.  Oh!  And the cover!  I sincerely hope that they are paying the artist of these covers really well.

I’m still worried about how this series will end.  I mean, I don’t want some sort of “everybody lives happily ever after and we get to have a beautiful baby even if it is a half-vampire mutant” sort of ending.  But it would be nice to have things work out just a little bit.  I’m having a hard time envisioning how Ms. Verday is going to solve all of this without making me want to throw myself off a bridge at the end.  But, I have faith that she will do well by the reader and I am anxiously counting the days until the release of “The Hidden”!  (Which will be 2 days after my birthday, so happy birthday to me!!)

This book was a bit of an improvement over the last book.  It’s a solid A for me!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

yeah, I'm a loser......

ok, I changed the blog back to the old URL and title.  I really liked my old title, I just didn't like the URL.  I think I might just buy my URL so that I can be

But the good news is that I'm still reading great books and I hope to have a review of The Haunted, the sequel to The Hollow, up later this week!  : )

And in March, I will be participating in a great blog hop for Killian McRae's book 12.21.12!!!  And I'll be giving away a copy of it!  That should get some forgiveness for my flakiness, right?

I hope some of you will start leaving me some comments......I feel like I'm blogging in a giant black hole.....

Saturday, February 5, 2011

The Hollow by Jessica Verday

When Abbey's best friend, Kristen, vanishes at the bridge near Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, everyone else is all too quick to accept that Kristen is dead and rumors fly that her death was no accident. Abbey goes through the motions of mourning her best friend, but privately, she refuses to believe that Kristen is really gone. Then she meets Caspian, the gorgeous and mysterious boy who shows up out of nowhere at Kristen's funeral, and keeps reappearing in Abbey's life. Caspian clearly has secrets of his own, but he's the only person who makes Abbey feel normal again...but also special.
  Just when Abbey starts to feel that she might survive all this, she learns a secret that makes her question everything she thought she knew about her best friend. How could Kristen have kept silent about so much? And could this secret have led to her death? As Abbey struggles to understand Kristen's betrayal, she uncovers a frightening truth that nearly unravels her—one that will challenge her emerging love for Caspian, as well as her own sanity.
(synopsis and cover photo taken from


I loved this book, but I’m having a really hard time reviewing it without spoilers.  So, in the interest of being spoiler-free, I might not give enough information.  Just go get this book and read it anyway!

I bought this book at the Decatur Book Festival, where I was lucky enough to listen to Ms. Verday speak and then get my book autographed!  And yes, the book has been sitting in my TBR pile since September.  Why?  Not sure.  But I’m very glad that I just pulled it out last week and decided to dive right in.

First of all, the covers, both hardback and paperback, are absolutely GORGEOUS!  I love those dark and foreboding midnight blue covers and this one is no exception.  Not that the cover has anything to do with the epicness contained within, but it’s always nice to have pretty packaging.

I really liked the novelty of this book.  It’s very different from what I’ve been reading (vampires, werewolves and witches, oh my!) and so it was quite refreshing.  Also, I like the tie-in with The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.  All Americans know (or should know!) this story, so it was nice to see it worked into a modern re-telling.  However, I have to say that at the end of the first book, I don’t see how on earth this story can have a happy ending.  I can’t wait to see what the author does with this plotline.

I liked most of the characters.  Ben is a great character and I hope to see more of him in the sequel.  I definitely do NOT like Abbey’s mom though.  She seems really selfish and inattentive.  And then there’s Abbey.  I’m not sure how I feel about her.  I like her.  She’s a very sweet girl, but there were times in the book when she seemed almost dim-witted.  I just wanted to grab her and shake her and make her see what was right in front of her face!  She was sort of like those dumb girls in bad horror movies that move closer to the suspicious sound and end up being chopped to pieces by the maniac.  Seriously.  This girl had some real self-preservation issues.

The plot was interesting and unique, but there were some times in the middle of the book where it seemed to drag a little bit and I got frustrated.  Of course, I think that some of that was because Abbey kept making some dumb decisions and it was hard to watch her keep on doing it.  But the storyline still managed to keep my attention and I found that I cared so much for the main characters that I just couldn’t put the book down, even when the plot wasn’t that exciting.

Overall, this was a very good book with a unique plotline and interesting characters.  It should appeal to any readers who like history, ghost stories and a little angst!  If I were grading this book, I would give it an A-.


Ok, so I haven't been happy with the name of my blog for a while.  I just was too lazy to do anything about it, but today, I got some inspiration!  I found the great quote that's on the heading and knew that it described exactly how I feel about books.

Why the change?  First of all, the url was sort of awkward.  Second, I realized that I won't be reviewing ONLY paranormal books.  That is still the type of book that I prefer, so don't worry about that! : )  But it's not the only thing I read.

Finally, as many of you know, I am currently working on my MLS (Master's in Library Science) and I sort of want this blog to continue into that job.  I'd like to have something that I can direct students to when they are looking for books and I think book blogs can be a great resource.  And since it's looking like my chances of being in a library next school year are good (::squeals like a middle school girl at a Justin Bieber concert::), I figured this was a good time to make the change.

I loved my storybook girl, so I couldn't let her go and I just make a new title and subtitle for the blog.  The new url is:

Probably most of you won't even notice it, but I thought I'd give you a heads up!

And I just finished reading "The Hollow" by Jessica Verday-- great book!  I'll post a review this weekend if I can pull myself away from the sequel! : )