Tuesday, December 20, 2011

2012 Reading Challenges!

I decided to do some reading challenges for 2012, because I didn't do any this year. They sound really fun, so I can't wait to get started! I'll start off with a few challenges that I'm entering, and if I enter more I will add them on later.

First, I'm entering the 2012 YA Contemporary Challenge that Reading Angel and Katie's Book Blog are hosting. I wanted to enter this challenge because I love contemporary books, but I don't read enough of them! I'm determined on this one...I'm going to try to read 15 or more contemporary books, or Level 3. The books I chose are:

1. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
2. Don't Breathe A Word by Holly Cupala 
3. In Too Deep by Amanda Grace
4. The Fine Art of Truth or Dare by Melissa Jensen
5. Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard
6. Where It Began by Anna Redisch Stampler
7. Breaking Beautiful by Jennifer Shaw Wolf
8. The Story of Us by Deb Caletti
9. The Summer My Life Began by Shannon Greenland
10. The Summer of No Regrets by Katherine Grace Bond
11. My Life in Black and White by Natasha Friend
12. A Midsummer's Nightmare by Kody Keplinger
13. The Thing About the Truth by Lauren Barnholdt 
14. Perfect Escape by Jennifer Brown
15. Small Damges by Beth Kephart


Next, I'm entering the 2012 TBR Pile Reading Challenge because there are definitely a lot of books I would like to read that are in my TBR Pile, so this challenge could help me finish them. I'm starting with 1-10 and move up as I go along if I want to. I'm not going to make a list yet, I will probably just do a wrap-up post.

I'm starting with these challenges and then see what other challenges I want to enter. What challenges are you entering?

Friday, December 16, 2011

Review- Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick 


Release Date: September 14, 2010
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Pages: 391
Source: Bought
Series: Hush, Hush #1

Rating from A+ to F: A

-Summary-

When Nora Grey and Patch are forced together as lab partners, Nora would rather fall to her death than put up with his elusive answers to this questions, his teasing, and his infuriatingly handsome face and hypnotizing eyes. It seems Patch was put on earth just to drive her crazy. 


But before long, Nora's defenses start to break down as her curiosity about Patch heats up. Why does he always seem to be wherever she is and know exactly what she's thinking? How does he know what to say to both attract her and repulse her? And what is up with those V-shaped scares on his chiseled back? 


As their connection grows stronger, Nora's own life becomes increasingly fragile. Nora needs to decide: Is Patch the one who wants to do her harm or the one who will keep her safe? Has she fallen for one of the fallen? 

-Review-

I LOVED THIS BOOK! When I first got it, I wasn't sure if I'd like it or not, thinking it might be like all the other paranormal series out there right now, but it wasn't. I had a lot of trouble putting this book down, it sucked me into the plot right away. I had heard a lot of great things about this book from other bloggers and I'm definitely glad I read it!

Plot- The plot in this book was amazing; there weren't any slow moments and I enjoyed every part of the book. I couldn't put it down, it was so addicting. It has the perfect amount of action, romance, and suspense and you will get hooked on it as soon as you start reading it, like I did!

Characters- The characters were pretty good in this novel, I wasn't blown away by them. But, I wasn't terribly disappointed in them either, they were just okay. I felt that Nora's character was a little too safe and cautious at times, but I get where her choices were coming from. I get she was being practical and trying to do what was best for her and her safety, so that wasn't too much of a problem for me. But, Nora's best friend, Vee, was annoying to me. If I was Nora, I would have gotten rid of this girl as my best friend right away. I didn't think she acted like that much of a friend to Nora, and was very self-centered. I loved Patch, even if he was dangerous. He was a great character, but I didn't learn much about him during the plot, so I'm hoping his character is elaborated more in the sequel. I think my least favorite character was Elliot--I didn't like him from the start of the book. I thought he was cocky, and by the middle I absolutely didn't like him. Overall, I thought the characters were pretty good.


Writing- I thought Becca Fitzpatrick's writing was amazing in Hush, Hush. Her descriptions were great and I loved the world she created here. She developed the characters excellently, but I'm hoping she develops Patch's character more in Crescendo. There isn't much for me to say here, except that I loved Becca's writing and that's it.


Cover- The cover is beautiful, it draws me right into the book. I like the colors and how on my copy it's sort of sparkly. This is probably one of my favorite covers on a novel.

I can't wait to get Crescendo, the sequel to Hush, Hush! I loved this book, so I'm hoping that the next one is as good as this one!

First Sentence: Chauncey was with a farmer's daughter on the grassy banks of the Loire River when the storm rolled in, and having let his gelding wander in the meadow, was left to his own two feet to carry him back to the chateau. 


-Rating Analysis-

1. Plot: 20 out of 20 points.
2. Characters: 13 out of 15 points.
3. Writing: 20 out of 20 points.
4. Creativity: 15 out of 15 points.
5. Originality: 9 out of 10 points.
6. Ending: 13 out of 15 points.
7. Cover: 4 out of 5 points.
Equals: 94. 94-96 is an A. 


-Parental Book Review-

Violence- minor parts
Mild/Excessive Cursing
Mild/Excessive Sexual Content
Drug/Alcohol Use


-About the Author-

Becca Fitzpatrick grew up reading Nancy Drew and Trixie Belden with a flashlight under the covers. She graduated college with a degree in health, which she promptly abandoned for storytelling. When not writing, she's most likely prowling sale racks for reject shoes, running, or watching crime dramas on TV. She is the author of the bestselling HUSH, HUSH Saga. HUSH, HUSH and CRESCENDO are in stores everywhere now! SILENCE will be released worldwide on October 4, 2011.

Visit her website: http://www.beccafitzpatrick.com/
Check out this book at Goodreads




**Sorry again, I haven't been posting much, but I'm hoping to be posting more now!

Friday, August 5, 2011

WINNERS!

Today my 100 Follower Giveaway ends! Thank you to everyone who entered it, and also followed me, I am very appreciative! The winners were chosen on random.org, and I am picking two winners. So, here they are:

The first winner is Felicia C over at A Novel Paradise! She picked Luminous by Dawn Metcalf as her book choice.

The second winner is Katharyn Vela and she chose Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma.

I emailed both winners, and they have 48 hours to reply and if they don't I will pick a new winner! Thank you to everyone who participated in the giveaway, I am very thankful! I'll be having my 200 Follower Giveaway soon, so look for that!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Friday Blog Hops 8/5

It's Friday, so it's time for the weekly blog hops! Again, I'm really sorry for the lack of blog posts, I'm very busy lately, but I'll try to get more up soon!

Follow Friday is hosted by Rachel at Parajunkee's View and Alison at Alison Can Read! This week's question:


Talk about the book that most changed or influenced your life (was it a book that turned you from an average to avid reader, did it help you deal with a particularly difficult situation, does it bring you comfort every time you read it?).



The Harry Potter series definitely influenced me to become an avid reader, it was the first series that I fell in love with. I probably could also say that the Twilight series influenced me even more, but when I read Harry Potter, is where it all started. After I finished reading the series, I read more often which helped me to become an avid reader today. So, I would say the Harry Potter series for me.



The Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Jen over at Crazy-for-Books.

What is the one ARC you would love to get your hands on right now?


Hm, I really want to get The Beginning of After by Jennifer Castle. It looks really good, and I have been wanting to read it for some time now. If anyone's read it yet, tell me your thoughts about it in the comments!






Tgif is hosted by Ginger over at GReads! Here's this week's question:

Taking it Personal: Which books have effected you on a personal level and lingered in your mind long after you closed the pages?


I would have to say books like Hold Still by Nina LaCour and Fall for Anything by Courtney Summers, were on my mind long after I finished reading them. Books with these topics always stay in my mind and get a few tears out of me. I just get really emotional when I read books like that, but I'm pretty sure many people do, so I'm not alone!

Thanks to everyone for stopping by, commenting, or following! I really appreciate it! 

Friday, July 29, 2011

Friday Blog Hops 7/29

Sorry for not posting a lot this week, again I have been super busy but I promise you I will be uploading more posts soon! It's Friday, so it's time for the weekly blog hops!

Follow Friday is hosted by Rachel at Parajunkee's View and Alison at Alison Can Read. This week's question was:


Let's step away from books for a second and get personal. What T-Shirt slogan best describes you?


Okay, I know my answer isn't supposed to be about reading, but when I found this t-shirt I thought it described how I'm feeling right now. Ugh, I don't have enough time these days to read as many books as I want to!


The Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Jen over at Crazy-for-Books.

Highlight one book you have received this week (for review, from the library, purchased at the store, etc.) that you can’t wait to dig into!




I'm really excited to start reading Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs. I recently bought it, and heard great things about it, so if anyone has read it tell me what you thought about it! I can't wait to start reading this book, it looks really interesting!




Tgif is hosted by Ginger at Greads! Here was this week's question:


Character Envy: If you could be one character from a book, 
who would you choose & why?


Wow, this definitely is a tough question. I'd probably have to choose either Hermione Granger from Harry Potter because I've always wanted to go to school at Hogwarts, or Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games because I really want to be the girl who was on fire! There are a ton more characters that I would probably want to be, but those were my top two picks.

Thank you all for stopping by, commenting, or following my blog! I really appreciate it. If you haven't already, check out my 100 Followers Giveaway, you should! More information is on the sidebar. 

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Author Interview- Alejandra Aponte

Today, I have on my blog: Alejandra Aponte, a publisher and upcoming author! She is giving us some great tips on publishing and writing in the interview, so here it is!

Tell me a little about yourself. 


My name is Alejandra Aponte, I'm 18 years old, and I'm a writer and publisher. In my spare time I enjoy reading, shopping for books, spending time with my family and friends, and teaching myself new languages. 


What got you started in writing books? 


I've been writing for as long as I can remember; I have stacks of journals from when I was a kid filled with detailed observations of everything going on around me. Also, my family is definitely a "Humanities" family: a lot of us are involved in the arts, so I've always been encouraged to develop my talent.


Did you have any favorite authors as a child that influenced you to begin writing? Do you have any favorite authors now? 


Authors that influenced me as a child include Kay Thompson, author of Eloise; E.L Konisburg, author of From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler; and Carolyn Keene, author of the Nancy Drew books. Current favorites include Sarah Dessen, John Green, Truman Capote, and Dashiell Hammett. My favorite books include Breakfast at Tiffany'sThe Thin Man, and Will Grayson Will Grayson


When did you know you wanted to become an author/publisher?


I've always loved writing, but I didn't think I could pursue it as a career until I was about fourteen years old. The publisher bit is really recent; I decided on that about four months ago. I've always wanted to be able to help other writers but I never knew how, and now I have the perfect opportunity to help others get their work out there.


What do you recommend to young writers on starting their career in writing? 


My recommendations for young writers:


a. READ A TON. Read anything you can get your hands on. A $2.99 paperback romance novel; historical fiction; science fiction; tedious nonfiction; memoirs; novels for adults; novels for kids; foreign books; genres you love; genres you hate; mysteries; poetry; the classics; books on writing...you get the idea. Always be open to reading new genres and styles, because you never know where you might find your niche. Which leads me to my next point:
b. EXPERIMENT OFTEN. Try writing all kinds of stuff. Poems, plays, short stories, haikus, novels...let yourself try it out on paper, even if it feels silly. It's important to experiment because you never know what might be your niche. I never saw myself reading a mystery novel, but I tried it out on paper and ended up loving it. 
c. IT'S A BUSINESS. The publishing industry has some pretty gnarly secrets (case in point: authors at most big publishing houses only get, on average, 10% of their book's profits), and some aspects that are radically unfair (like the part where big houses won't help you with publicity after your first three months there). You have to always keep in mind that writing is an art, but publishing is a business, and if you decide to query a big house like HarperCollins or Simon and Schuster, it's a lot like applying to an Ivy League school: they don't need you, you need them. Sometimes, having a great idea and a brilliant query letter and an intriguing backstory isn't enough. Which leads me to:
d. YOU ARE YOUR OWN BEST ADVOCATE. Big publishers are usually only looking for one thing: dollars. Will your book sell? Will your book bring in profits? That's why the best way to get a publisher's attention is to prove that your book has marketability and selling potential--and who can do that better than you? You know your book better than anyone else. Sell it like you mean it, take charge of your publicity (get on Twitter, start a Facebook page, talk to book bloggers, etc.), and always speak up. Believe in your book, and believe you have a story worth telling. If you don't believe in your work, why should anyone else?
e. FIND A BALANCE. You have to remember that at the end of the day, you're a writer because you have stories to tell, and words to put on paper, and you're doing this for yourself. Not because you want to make buckets of money or be famous the world over. Yes, there's a business side to it, but writing is an art form, and it's all about telling stories and engaging your creativity. The minute it gets to be tedious or annoying or "all about the Benjamins," if you will, is the minute you have to stop and think about why you're in it in the first place.


What inspired you to begin writing your upcoming novel, Murder and Other Madness? 


The inspiration for Murder and Other Madness came from my relationships with my closest friends. I got the idea about a year ago: I wanted to write a book about four interesting, complicated female characters, but as I played around with the idea, I got bored. I wanted something exciting to happen, so I thought, "Oooh, what if they solved a murder?" And that was that.


Do you have any advice for aspiring writers on becoming inspired to write their own novel?


I could go on for days but the most important thing is: let the world in. Let everything you experience inspire you. Once, I wrote a short story based on my experiences in the car with my older sister while she was learning to drive; that piece ended up winning a national contest. Let everything you see and hear and remember inspire you: funny things people say, stories you hear about your family, movies you see, places you go, people you meet...it's all relevant, and could end up inspiring your best work. 
Also, read Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott, and Writing Down the Bones, by Natalie Goldberg, both beautifully written and full of great advice. 


Is it better to self-publish or use a publishing company? 


The self publishing vs. using a publishing company debate isn't, in my opinion, a discussion that boils down to which one is better than the other. When it comes to choosing a career path, what matters is that you choose what's best for YOU and your situation and your goals. The great thing about self-publishing is that you have complete control over your vision of your book at all times, and no one telling you "no." On the other hand, you have no way of getting into major bookstores (if you're a print book), and you have no expert advice from a professional; you're on your own, and therefore very likely to make mistakes. Also, the stigma surrounding self-publishing makes most people shy away from it. The great thing about a publishing house is that you have professionals taking care of you: your agent (because if you go with a big house you will most likely have an agent representing you), editors and copyeditors and graphic designers and the whole enchilada guiding you if they think your book has selling potential. On the other hand, all those people will tell you what your book should be and possibly compromise the integrity of your vision...plus you might only get 10% of all profits...so it's really up to you. You have to decide what's best for you. Maybe your best bet is to submit your work to a smaller house (like mine, First Fig Press), where you have more control over your work, but also receive one on one attention and guidance throughout the entire process of getting your novel from manuscript to published book. It all depends on how much control you want over your work, and how much guidance you think you need.


Can you give some help to hopeful writers on constructing a good query letter to send to publishers? 


A. Keep it under a page. 
B. Start with a sentence about your book that hooks the reader instantly. 
C. Go to the publishing house/agent's (if your querying a literary agency) website and check out their submission guidelines; then follow them perfectly. 
D. Show that your book is marketable by highlighting what's special about your work, whether it's the clever premise, the complex characters, the plot...
E. Google sample queries and see what's out there. Find out what works and what doesn't. (Heather Brewer's query letter is online. And it's awesome. Check it out! Also, Kristin Nelson literary agency has a blog where they dissect query lettes; be sure to check that out, too).







F. Leave the reader wanting more. Always. 


What is the best way to deal with rejection from publishers? 


The best way to deal with rejection is to remember not to take it personally. DO NOT send an angry e-mail telling whoever rejected you that they're missing out, and that they can stick it where the sun don't shine. Just because an agent or a publisher didn't accept your manuscript doesn't mean you are a terrible writer with no future; it just means that you're not a good fit for them (much like a rejection from a college does not mean you're a terrible person with no future). Agents and publishers get HUNDREDS of submissions a day; they're ruthless because they have to be. So don't take it personally; always remember that it's a business, and there's someone out there who will love your manuscript and consider it a perfect fit for their agency/publishing house. Also: give yourself 24 hours to be sad, angry, and whiny, and to eat anything sugary you can get your hands on. Then the next day, get back to work!


Where do you see yourself in the future as a writer and publisher? 


In the future, I see myself writing more novels; definitely mysteries. I already have two more books in the works right now. As a publisher, I see myself publishing many aspiring authors (so if you've got a manuscript, query me!). There are so many talented writers out there who just need a little attention and a big break; I'm excited to give them that chance.


Thank you for participating in an interview with me Alejandra! It was great to have you on my blog! 



Friday, July 22, 2011

Friday Blog Hops 7/22!

Sorry everyone for not posting a lot this week, I've been on vacation, but I am back now!

Follow Friday is now hosted by Parajunkee at Parajunkee's View and Alison at Alison Can Read. This week's question was:


Name 3 authors that you would love to sit down and spend an hour or a meal with just talking about either their books or get advice on writing from?



I'd love to meet J.K. Rowling, Cassandra Clare, and Suzanne Collins. They all have wrote amazing series that are very popular, and I would be honored to meet with them and talk about books and writing with them. They all have inspired me in reading and writing, and I think it would be great to meet them. I know these are probably boring and unoriginal answers, but I still think it would be great to talk with them.



The Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Jen at Crazy-for-Books.

What’s the ONE GENRE that you wish you could get into, but just can’t?


I don't think there is a particular genre that I can't get into. I think for me it usually depends on the book to see if I can get into it or not. I'm usually good with all genres, I am able to read all of them and get into them well.




Tgif is hosted by Ginger over at GReads! Here was this week's question:


Bookshelf Tour: Where do you keep your books at home? 
Are they organized?


I keep my bookshelf in my room, so I can easily access it! My bookshelf isn't that organized. I keep all the series together of course, but I like to have it crazy with different books spread together. I don't really know how to explain how I organize it, but I probably should start organizing it into genres or something like that. I'm not good with organization!

Thank you to everyone who stops by, comments, or follows my blog! Be sure to enter my 100 Follower Giveaway, more information is on the sidebar. Have a great weekend! 



Monday, July 18, 2011

Review-Dear John by Nicholas Sparks

Dear John by Nicholas Sparks


Release Date: December 1, 2009
Publisher: Mass Market Paperback
Pages: 335, Paperback
Source: Library
Series: Standalone book


Rating from A+ to F: B+


"Dear John," the letter read. And with those two words, a heart was broken and two lives changed forever. 
When Savannah Lynn Curtis comes into his life, John Tyree knows he is ready to turn over a new leaf. An angry rebel, he had enlisted in the army after high school, not knowing what else to do. Then, during a furlough, he meets Savannah, the girl of his dreams. The attraction is mutual and quickly grows into the kind of love that leaves Savannah vowing for John while he finishes his tour of duty. But neither can foresee that 9/11 is about to change the world. Like so many proud men and women, John must choose between love and country. Now, when he finally returns to North Carolina, John will discover how love can transform us in ways we never could imagine.
Dear John is such a touching, heartbreaking story that I really enjoyed. I've only read The Last Song from Nicholas Sparks, and I loved that one, so I wanted to check this one out. Just a warning, if you check this one out, grab a box of tissues. You might not cry a lot, but I certainly teared up at parts of this story! Especially at the end, that just made me sad.

Plot- The plot was good, it wasn't the best I've ever seen, but I still liked it. I found it a little slow at times and hard to get through, yet when I did get through them, there were parts I really liked. This book definitely isn't fast-paced and intense, but I liked taking my time with reading it. The plot definitely earned a few tears from me, so that is why I said to have a box of tissues near you, but I wasn't given the warning! To the people that don't like books that make you cry, this book isn't one that has you crying constantly, but only some times. I definitely disagreed with the ending of the novel. Nonetheless, I thought it was very touching. (That's all I'm saying, you have to read this book to find out what happens!) So, I guess I didn't exactly love the plot, but I didn't hate it. 


Characters- I had mixed emotions with the characters. I was annoyed by a few and I loved a couple of them. Nicholas Sparks always does a great job with the development of the characters, so I really liked that. 
Favorite Character- It would have to be a tie between John and his dad. The dad was so cute, I felt really bad for him! 
Least Favorite Character- I didn't like Savannah, she annoyed me. I questioned a lot of her choices around the end of the book, and that's probably when I started to get annoyed by her.

Writing- I really like Nicholas' writing, he always does a great job with his books. I want to read more books by him, he has a ton, and I especially want to read The Notebook. His books are really popular, and I understand why. Both young adults and adults are interested by his writing because he is such a good author. 


Cover- Well, the book I read had the movie tie-in cover, so I'll talk about that one. I like the cover, it's cute. I want to see the movie to see how well they did with it, but I've always loved Channing Tatum. He's so adorable! 


This was a great read, I think many people will enjoy it. I had mixed feelings about it, but that doesn't mean that other readers will also. I recommend people to go check it out! 


First Sentence: What does it mean to truly love another? 








1. Plot- 16 out of 20 points.
2. Characters- 12 out of 15 points.
3. Writing- 19 out of 20 points.
4. Creativity- 15 out of 15 points.
5. Originality- 10 out of 10 points.
6. Ending- 12 out of 15 points.
7. Cover- 4 out of 5 points.
Equals: 88. 87-100 is an A+



Violence
Mild/Excessive Cursing
Mild/Excessive Sexual Content
Drug/Alcohol Use
With well over 50 million copies of his books in print, Nicholas Sparks is one of the world's most beloved storytellers. His novels include eight #1 New York Times bestsellers, and all his books, including Three Weeks with My Brother, the memoir he wrote with his brother, Micah, have been New York Times and international bestsellers, and were translated into forty languages. Six of Nicholas Sparks's novels--Dear John, The Last Song, Nights in Rodanthe, Message in a Bottle, A Walk to Remember, and The Notebook--were also adapted into major motion pictures. The author lives in North Carolina with his wife and family.

Visit his website: http://nicholassparks.com/
Check out this book at Goodreads
Buy this book at: Amazon | Borders | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Blogger Interview (2)

Today I have Anna from The Bursting Bookshelf on my blog for an interview! I had a great time interviewing Anna, so here it is!

What is your favorite book? Explain why.


The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I love it because it is a great book with a deeper meaning to it.


I love that series also! 

Who is your favorite book couple? 


Jace and Clary from The Mortal Instruments. They are so good together!


How many books are currently in your to-be-read pile?


Well, I am actually afraid to count. Between the eBooks I need to get done and the physical books, it is a scary amount.


What is your biggest pet peeve, in blogging or in general? 


Definitely when you get those spam links on Twitter. No, for  the thousandth time, I do not want an iPad!


Very true, I hate when I get those! 


What book are you currently reading? 


I'm reading several, but I am focusing on Ultraviolet by RJ Anderson. It is just awesome!


I really like the cover, I should go check it out! 


What is your favorite part about blogging?


I love being able to get my opinions on books out there and being able to talk to so many other book lovers.


Do you have a favorite bookstore? Which one is it? 


I adore my local bookstore. I use it as much as possible!


What are a few books that you like that aren't very popular? 


I quite liked Curse of the Shamra by Barry Hoffman. It's not too well known, but it should be. Give it a try some time!


This book also looks good! 


What genre do you prefer reading? 


I don't have a preferred genre, but I do prefer to stick in YA books over.


Who inspired you the most to start reading?


I've always read a lot, but a friend of mine let me borrow a lot of her YA books including The Vampire Diaries by LJ Smith. From then on, I was hooked on YA books, and it's all thanks to that one friend!


Thanks Anna for participating in an interview with me! Everyone should go check out her blog, and her follow her on Twitter



Saturday, July 16, 2011

My 100 Follower Giveaway! -CLOSED

Well, I know I haven't reached 100 followers YET, but I wanted to put up the post for it, so I can get help to spread the word about my blog and this giveaway! If I reach 100 followers, I will put up a deadline for the giveaway, and the date I will pick the winner. So, I'm giving everyone a lot of time to enter!

I've reached 100 followers! Thank you to everyone who followed me and spread the word about it! This giveaway will end August 5th! 


The winner of the giveaway will receive their choice of one book from these five books:
Hourglass by Myra McEntire
Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma
Possession by Elana Johnson
Ten Things We Did (and probably shouldn't have) by Sarah Mylnowski
Luminous by Dawn Metcalf

If you all help me to reach 100 followers, I might even give away TWO books! So, that would mean TWO winners instead of just one!

This giveway is International, so everyone can enter and participate in the giveaway! You are required to be a follower, if you enter and you are not a follower, your entry is deleted. Sorry :( I'm giving everyone a ton of extra entries, so you get more chances to win! You must be 13 or older to enter this giveaway.

Fill out THIS FORM to enter! 


Thank you everyone for following and helping me to reach 100 followers if you spread the word! I really appreciate it! Thank you so much, and good luck in winning the giveaway! 

In My Mailbox {3}

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. She has a great blog, so you should go check it out! This week I borrowed a few from the library, and I received one in the mail! I'm really happy with all the books I received this week, so here's what I got in my mailbox!

Living Dead Girl by Elizabeth Scott. I've already read this one, and it is definitely a heartbreaking book that I cried endlessly with.










A Blue So Dark by Holly Schindler. I've already read this one also, check out my review here!










Dear John by Nicholas Sparks. Review will be up soon for this one!











All-American Girl by Meg Cabot. I'm currently reading this one, and it is such cute and fun read!










Firelight by Sophie Jordan. I'm so excited to read this one, it looks so good!











Crush (An Anthology from 26 different authors) I recently won this in a giveaway, and I'm excited to read it! It looks like a cute read!











So, that's all I got this week! What did you get in your mailbox? I love getting comments so tell me what you got in them!

You might have noticed that I got a new commenting system, but I really like it! I hope everyone has a great weekend!









Friday, July 15, 2011

Friday Blog Hops 7/15!







Follow Friday is hosted over at Parajunkee's View, and this weeks question was:







What do I do when I am not reading?


When I'm not reading, of course I blog and review books! I also play a few sports, swimming and softball, and I spend time with family and friends. And, from fall to spring, I still have to go to school, but I always find time to read books! During the summer, I love to hang out outside by my pool reading or I love to go bike-riding! But, I constantly have to be told to take a break from reading, because I definitely do spend a LITTLE too much time with it! 




The Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Jen over at Crazy-for-Books! Here is this week's question: 

How/Where do you get your books? Do you buy them or go to the library? Is there a certain website you use like paperbackswap?
I usually either buy my books or borrow books from the library. I like to only buy books that I know will be good, if I've seen countless reviews that say this book is amazing, I will go out and buy it. Then, I get books from the library that I really want to read, but they have a few mixed reviews or aren't that popular, so I save some money and get them from the library. But, it always seems like I get books from the library that after I finish reading, I love, so then I want to go out and buy them! I don't use many websites to get books, but I'm planning on starting that soon. 

Tgif is hosted by Ginger at GReads! This week's question was: 







Book Blogger Appreciation: Which book blogs have inspired you 
or made a difference in your blogging experience?

Wow, there are so many blogs that I love! I wouldn't be able to name them, but a lot of them have inspired me in some way. Well, I've always looked up to Kristi from The Story Siren. She has a great blog, and some day I wish to become as well known in the blogging community as her. I also like the blog, Reading Teen, they always put up great reviews and posts. And, of course I love the blogs that host these hops, they put up great reviews and I always look at their blogs each day. There are a ton more that I love, but I can't put all of them up here. I love all my followers' blogs, each and every one of them are great. 

Thanks to everyone for stopping by my blog, following, or commenting on the post. I really appreciate it! 


This Week at Such A Teenage Bookworm



Thursday, July 14, 2011

Review-A Blue So Dark by Holly Schindler

A Blue So Dark by Holly Schindler


Release Date: May 1, 2010
Publisher: Flux
Pages: 277, Paperback
Source: Library
Series: Standalone book


Rating from A+ to F: A

Fifteen-year-old Aura Ambrose is hiding a secret. Her mother, a talented artist and art teacher, is slowly being consumed by schizophrenia, and Aura has been her sole caretaker ever since her dad left them. Convinced that "creative" equals crazy, Aura shuns her own artistic talent. But as her mother sinks deeper into the darkness of mental illness, the hunger for a creative outlet draws Aura toward the depths of her imagination. Just as desperation threatens to swallow her whole, Aura discovers that art, love, and family are profoundly linked--and together may offer an escape from her fears. 
I really enjoyed A Blue So Dark. The cover intrigued me, but after I started reading it, I was blown away by the writing. This book tells the story of a girl, Aura, who has to deal with her mother who has schizophrenia. Aura is terrified that she will get this illness because she has an artistic talent, like her mother, and thinks that means she will automatically get it. At times, I just felt bad for Aura and what she has to deal with, and it might even make you tear up. It is beautiful story, and I loved reading it.

Plot- I liked the plot, it was a little slow at times, but I still loved the book. It is just unforgettable, and you keep thinking about the plot a long time after you finished reading it. There are many heartbreaking scenes that never leave your mind, and really open your eyes to what Aura deals with. I could see the relationships that Aura had with people that she held onto, especially the mother-daughter bond that she didn't want to break. The plot was very good, and I was enthralled with it from the start. 


Characters- I really liked the characters, but you didn't see many of them during the book, except for Aura and her mother, Melanie. I wanted to see more of people like Nell or Janny, and definitely Jeremy. Nonetheless, the characters were developed pretty nicely. 
Favorite Character- I don't think I can pick a favorite. As I said, I didn't see many of them, but I think I would choose Nell. Around the end of the book, I think she really helped Aura with her mother.
Least Favorite Character- Definitely Aura's dad. I hated him from the beginning of the book. 


Writing- Wonderful writing from Holly Schindler, I loved it. I can't wait to read more from her, because I really enjoyed her writing in this book. I have never read a book about schizophrenia before, but I loved the way Holly wrote this novel. I think the only way this book would of worked is if Holly wrote it, and I'm glad she did. Here's a quote that just made me sad. Aura's family was at the beach when she was ten and wanted to buy something but she couldn't decide. This is what her mom says: 
Cover- I really like the cover, and I love the title of this novel. I think it has such a deep message, and it fits well with the book. The cover is really pretty, and as I said, that's mainly the reason I picked this novel up, from the cover. 


I definitely recommend this book to readers who like a good tear-jerking, heart-wrenching story. But, I think anyone would enjoy this, even if your favorite genre is paranormal. It is an unforgettable book, and I loved it. 


First Sentence: When I was ten, I took my best friend Janny on our family vacation. 







1. Plot- 17 out of 20 points.
2. Characters- 13 out of 15 points.
3. Writing- 20 out of 20 points.
4. Creativity- 15 out of 15 points.
5. Originality- 10 out of 10 points.
6. Ending- 15 out of 15 points.
7. Cover- 5 out of 5 points.
Equals: 95! 94-96 is an A








Violence
Mild/Excessive Cursing
Mild/Excessive Sexual Content
Drug/Alcohol Use


Holly Schindler dove headfirst into her writing pursuits after obtaining an MA in English from Missouri State University. Teaching private piano and guitar lessons to pay the bills quickly made her realize she wanted to write for the teens who filled her home with music. Having penned a pile of drafts that literally stretches to the ceiling, she is ecstatic to be releasing her first novel with Flux. She is a member of SCBWI, lives with a ridiculously spoiled Pekingese, and is firmly convinced that Springfield-Style Cashew Chicken is the ultimate writing fuel.

Visit her website: http://hollyschindler.com/
Check out the book at: Goodreads
Buy the book at: Amazon | Borders | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound