Friday, July 31, 2009

Friday Finds - July 31st

Friday Finds is hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading.

I have only 5 this week! Craziness.. I know.. Imagine me only adding 5 books this week to my to-read list.

I'm still too lazy to do more than links. So as usual, click the pretty cover or the underlined title for more information about each book.

Amazon Ink by Lori Devoti
Army of the Fantastic by John Helfers
Sphinx's Princess by Esther Friesner

Andromeda Klein by Frank Portman
Forget-Her Nots by Amy Brecount White

Now I'm off to look at your finds so I have a billion like usual for next week. :)


Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Waiting on Wednesday - Sea Glass

This meme is hosted by Breaking the Spine. Here is a book I've been lusting after for a while! Enjoy.

Sea Glass
by Maria V. Snyder
Sequel to Storm Glass
Release date: September 1, 2009

Like the colorful pieces of sea glass washed up on shore, Opal has weathered rough waters and twisting currents. But instead of finding a tranquil eddy, Opal is caught in a riptide. Her unique glass messengers which allow instant communication over vast distances have become a vital part of Sitian society. Once used solely by the Councilors and magicians, other powerful factions are now vying for control. Control of the messengers equals control of Sitia. Unfortunately that also means control of Opal.

If that isn’t enough of a problem, Opal’s determination to prove blood magic is still being used is met with strong resistance. The Council doubts her, her mentor doubts her, and even her family is concerned. When her world is turned upside down, she begins to doubt herself. In the end, Opal must decide who to believe, who to trust, and who has control—otherwise she will shatter into a million pieces and be swept out by the tide.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Are you new to book blogging?

If you're new or just beginning to tinker around in blogging about books, I want to spotlight you!

Starting this Saturday, I'm going to start a Saturday Spotlight about bloggers that are new or unknown in the blogosphere.

So, please send me an email ( if you're interested on being spotlighted on my blog and let me know if you want a traditional interview or would rather type up a guest post introducing yourself and your blog.

I'm really excited about this idea, so please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or even if you want to share a blog YOU just discovered that might be interested in being spotlighted.

Thanks guys!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Want to win Bite Me?

Melissa Francis, the author of Bite Me, is giving away a copy of her book and some other goodies on her website.

Check it out!

Catching Fire Review

Catching Fire
by Suzanne Collins

Since I don't want to spoil anything... here is my brief review of Catching Fire.

Stunning. Full of twists and turns. AMAZING. Unbelievable. And god**** cliffhanger.

Suzanne Collins - send me your third book - NOW!

5/5 Roses

Enter my contest below if you want to read the best book EVER.

I edited it to include the link to this post... so for 2 points more, leave me a comment on this short review.

Here's a link to The Hunger Games. If you haven't read it, you must! Teenage romance, battle royale, and sci-fi... what more could a girl want?

Catching Fire Giveaway Contest!

Hey guys! I know I'm a little bit behind contest wise. I had meant to post another contest when I hit 100 followers, which whipped right by last week.

So, I've finally read and reviewed Catching Fire and I'm giving my ARC copy away. I want to spread the Hunger Games Trilogy love!

I also am trying to figure out how to get rid of some of these books real quick before I move in November. I'm hoping to read and review a ton of the ARCs and other books I got from ALA. There is a poll up on the sidebar of my blog. Please VOTE! It's only up for a few days, so please please please VOTE! (There will be extra points for this.. )

Now, onto to what you will win:

  • An ARC copy of Catching Fire, read only once! :),
  • A festive mockinjay button,
  • and a set of pretty red earrings from Chatty Cathie:

The Rules:

1. Open to EVERYONE.
2. Please include your email address with your comment(s).
3. Contest ends Friday, August 7th at midnight CST
4. How to get points:

Answer me this question: What is your favorite character of a book you read THIS year and why?
  • +3 for answering the question above
  • +5 for voting on my contest poll! (See sidebar - Ends at 5 pm CST, July 31)
  • +2 for commenting on my review HERE
  • +2 for becoming a follower
  • +5 if you were already a follower
  • +2 for following me on Twitter (@bookgoil)
  • +2 for each time you advertise this contest - sidebar, twitter (please @bookgoil), blog, etc (Please leave a link!)
  • +5 for just looking at Chatty Cathie's website and telling me one piece you think/want to buy or just find shiny and want to stare at all day...
  • +20 if you purchase something from Chatty Cathie's etsy website. You do not have to do this, but take a look at her website and see if there's anything cute you like. You can send me a copy of the receipt at


Sunday, July 26, 2009

In My Mailbox - July 26th

In My Mailbox is hosted by the wonderful Kristi at The Story Siren.

This week I got a ton of books! Which is good, but I have so many books to read! Gah!!!!

The first book I received was from Word For Teens. I won her contest for Suite Scarlett by Maureen Johnson. Check out her awesome blog for more contests, reviews and whatnot! :)

Then, I got this box... with... Ballads of Suburbia taffy! I really want to read Ballads of Suburbia by Stephanie Kuehnert. Taffy Tree made this wonderful bag of goodness and I even got a little bag of Independence Day taffy.

You can get your own Ballads of Suburbia taffy here!

And now... didn't think this box would come this week, but here it is:

I won this box of goodies from Class of 2K9: Debut Middle Grade and Young Adult Authors.

And here are the 12 books inside the box:
My Big Nose and Other Natural Disasters by Sydney Salter (ARC)
Breathing by Cheryl Renee Herbsman (signed)
Bull Rider by Suzanne Morgan Williams
Give Up the Ghost by Megan Crewe (ARC, signed)
Also Known as Harper by Ann Haywood Leal (ARC)
Initiation by Susan Fine (signed)
Jane in Bloom by Deborah Lytton (signed)
Operation Redwood by S. Terrell French
Shrinking Violet by Danielle Joseph
The Year the Swallows Came Early by Kathryn Fitzmaurice (signed)
Watersmeet by Ellen Jensen Abbott (ARC)
When the Whistle Blows by Fran Cannon Slayton (ARC)

Add those to my already huge 100+ pile of books to read.. yeah, I have my reading for the rest of the year!

And that is why I have not been to the library except to get movies. I'm forcing my fiance to watch Twilight with me this weekend, so he'll see New Moon with me when it comes out. The friend I went to see Twilight with moved to Washington, so she won't be available to see New Moon with me. Kudos to my awesome fiance for letting me force him into watching these!

Let me know what you guys got this week!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Fairies vs. Demons

If you have not heard yet...

Lisa Mantchev - author of Eyes Like Stars


Michelle Zink - author of Prophecy of Sisters

Are holding a contest!

Oh, but this isn't just ANY contest. No, it's one that will be the talk of the town for days, weeks, or even months.

You can win one of two grab bags. All you have to do is take a video or pictures depicting fairies or demons battling...

So click the button below for more information.

Eyes Like Stars: Fairies and Demons Contest


For only one side can prevail!

Quick sidenote: Not creative or too scared to try? You can still win a prize for blabbering on about the contest. Just click on the pretty image above and you can learn all!

Interview with Jack W. Regan

Welcome readers to my first EVER interview of an author. Jack has kindly decided to be interviewed by myself on his newest book T'Aragam, which I reviewed here earlier today. I am one of the stops of his Virtual Book Tour taking place through July and August. See Jack's website for more book tour dates!

A little bit about Jack before we begin:

Jack W. Regan has writing in his blood. His mother being a writer and English teacher, it wasn't long before Jack was trying his own hand at creative writing.

At sixteen he won 2nd place in a national essay contest and was editor of his high school newsletter. At college he served on staff at the campus newspaper and, the next year, was promoted to editor-in-chief.

Once out of college he continued his love affair with words and in 2004 began a popular online book review service. In 2007 he withdrew from reviewing to focus all his attention on writing.

The next year he published Duke Dookums, Frontier Hero, a zany western for young boys, and contracted out for some non-fiction works. Regan is also an annual judge in Baker Trittin Press’s Tweener Time International Chapter Book Competition.

T’Aragam is Regan’s first juvenile fantasy novel.

Thanks again to Jack for volunteering as the first author interview on my blog. Now, onto the interview!

You were a book reviewer before you started focusing on your writing, how do you feel that has affected your writing?

I think it helps me write more from the perspective of a reader, possibly to be more critical of my own work than if I had never been in a position to critique someone else’s material. And because I know how a reviewer’s mind works, it’s helped me be more accepting of criticism from other sources, since I know from experience it can be just as hard to give a tough opinion than to receive one. All in all, the experience of reviewing books helped shape my own writer’s journey. It was well worth the effort and hard work.

As T'Aragam is your first juvenile fantasy novel, what drew you to the realm of writing fantasy?

I chose fantasy because of the sheer make-believe. All fiction is pretend to a certain extend, even if based on true events, but with fantasy you have the freedom to introduce elements (events, characters) that would obviously not be accepted in other genres. I found it quite liberating.

I chose juvenile fantasy because, as a part time employee at a public library, I noticed a gap in the reading level. There’s plenty of material for older teens and a lot for young kids. But the middle (tweeners), those who aren’t quite ready or interested in YA subject matter and yet bored with the younger stuff, had fewer options. T’Aragam, and the continuing series, is an effort to fill that gap and get those kids hooked on reading in general. It’s a healthy addiction and a gift they’ll use their entire lives.

What inspired the story behind T'Aragam?

The basic idea for the world of T’Aragam really just occurred to me one day, a flash of inspiration. But most of the rest was created through blood, sweat, and tears. And finger cramps after a long day of typing. After the initial brainstorm, it would probably be more accurate to say
that I went and found the inspiration, rather than it finding me. I did this by postponing the rest of my life and just sitting at the computer day after day, knowing I couldn’t leave until I reached my word goal. And more often than not, by the time I reached the word goal, I was into the story and just kept going. Of course, there were times along the way when inspiration returned (discipline breeds inspiration), but it was there because I looked for it.

Are any of the characters in your book inspired by people you know or even yourself?

Most of the characters contain elements of people I know, although they’re not individually recognizable. Most of us have little quirks. I took those characteristics and exaggerated them, then attributed them to my characters. There’s no one in the book that is a copy of any one person. As far as anyone being inspired by myself...I guess I tried to make Max how I would have liked to have been at his age. The stuff I imagined myself doing when I was thirteen. :0)

What did you learn while writing T'Aragam?

Mainly that writing a book for kids isn’t as easy as a lot of people think. You still have to have all the story elements in place. One of the things I made a conscious effort to avoid was writing “down” to the reading level. I hate it when authors do that. Kids are more than capable of keeping up and, besides, it’s by stretching their abilities that they really learn and build their literary “muscles”—vocabulary, etc. Let’s challenge them!

What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

Make sure you’re writing for the right reasons. Write because you can’t not write. (And don’t use double negatives.) Understand from the outset that writing well is likely to be the hardest work you’ll ever do. Write every day. Learn to accept criticism, but also to sift through it for the good stuff (and then discard the rest.) Remember that plot is a verb—keep it moving. And last but not least, always include a large woodshed in your stories--it’s a good place to stack the bodies once your characters start getting in the way of the plot.

Is there anything else you want your readers to know about you or your novel?

First of all, I love my readers. I love hearing from them and getting feedback on the book. I write because I need to, but having someone else take the time to read what I scribbled is gratifying and humbling even beyond that.

Also, T’Aragam is the first in a series, the Max Ransome Chronicles, the second of which is scheduled to be released December 1, 2009. And, of course, everyone is welcome to stop by the website, where all news and contact information is posted:

And, finally, I want to thank everyone for visiting this stop of the tour. Most of all, a big thank you to my gracious hostess, Kristen, who has been absolutely wonderful through this process. I encourage everyone to bookmark her blog and become regular followers!


The Max Ransome Chronicles, 1
by Jack W. Regan

From Jack W. Regan's website:

Young Max Ransome watched his father die, killed by marauding phantors as they swept through T'Aragam at the bidding of the evil wizard Zadok. Barely escaping with his own life, Max is thrust into a whirlwind journey as he races against time to save T'Aragam, the world he loves, from a dark dominion. Can Max overcome the horror of his father's death and save T'Aragam from the grasping talons of its enemies?

Woven with a charming mix of zany humor and genuine danger, T'Aragam immerses the reader in a world of original characters and tightly-woven plot. Young Max leads the cast and is ably supported by, among others, a faithful medgekin friend named Gramkin, two monster brothers named Doom and Gloom, and an equuraptor named Dresden.

Coupled with quirky supporting characters, such as mercenary Captain Baggywrinkle, Lord Stench, and a perpetually hungry sea serpent named Bob, this cast of characters steps from the pages and pulls the reader into the story.

I've been really interested to read this book since I first saw it on Goodreads. I was not disappointed when I received a copy and started to dig into the book. The world Jack creates is a definite fantasy, full of evil villains, monsters both humorous and deadly, and a hero that is still unsure of himself at the age of thirteen.

Max Ransome is not your typical hero - he doesn't have inhuman strength, terrible cunning, or the training to really be one. But, with some good luck, a want to keep living, and the need to defend the land from evil, Max steps up to the plate and manages to keep himself alive and the wizard Zadok from taking over.

I loved the diversity in characters and the invention of some newer types of creatures. My favorite was the medgekin Gramkin - who would often use the names of cheese as curses or exclamations. The phantors were both spooky and basically evil, which gave a foreboding tone to some of the scenes with them involved.

Overall, the plot kept you reading, the characters made you laugh, and the setting gave your mind something to imagine.

This book will inspire middle grade readers to pick up more fantasy books and may eventually lead them to heftier readings - such as The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

5/5 Roses


Contest Winner + An Award

My Twenty Boy Summer contest for a hardcover copy of the book and an imitation necklace just closed about 10 minutes ago and, with the help of a random friend picking a number on twitter, we have a winner! First of all, thank you to everyone who entered for sharing what awesome things you are doing or did this summer! It was fun to read through all of those!

#103 Mariah from A Reader's Adventure!

I'm sending you an email in a minute here.

And now for an award!

A few days ago, I got an award from Harmony Book Reviews! Yay! Thanks so much! I'm always a little surprised to get awards and it takes me a while to get over it.. so that's why I take a few days to get these posted up. Here's a blurb about the award:

Let's Be Friends Award

"Blogs that receive the Let’s Be Friends Award are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers."

And here are my nominations:

WilowRaven from Red House Books

Kim from The Book Butterfly

Taschima from Bloody Bookaholic

Scrap Girl from Serendipity

Sab H. from Crystal Reviews

Andrea from The Little Bookworm

Alex and Lauren from A Flight of Minds

Emma from Booking Through 365

Thanks for being awesome you guys!

A big huge thanks to Emma, who inspired me to start blogging and has become my blogging buddy, who always seems to be on when I need to share some blogging thing or another. :)


Friday, July 24, 2009

Friday Finds - July 24th

Friday Finds is hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading.

I really need to stop reading blogs.. because my list of books to read is getting WAY long. But I can't resist.. and well, these books look so PRETTY! The one I'm most looking forward to is Peter & Max - because I love the Fables graphic novels so much.

As usual, to learn more about each book, either click on the bookcover or title.

Wolf Cry by Julia Golding
Saving Rafael by Leslie Wilson
Peter & Max: A Fables Novel by Bill Willingham

Add Image
The Eternal Smile by Derek Kirk Kim & Gene Luen Yang
I Heart You, You Haunt Me by Lisa Schroeder
Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder

Far From You by Lisa Schroeder
Voices of Dragons by Carrie Vaughn
A Golden Web by Barbara Quick

Fallen by Lauren Kate
The Vinyl Princess by Yvonne Prinz
The Girl with the Mermaid Hair by Delia Ephron

Darklight by Lesley Livingston
The Siren by Kiera Cass

Thanks for tuning in!


Thursday, July 23, 2009

Need a new bookshelf?

Well, you may be in luck.

Just Your Typical Book Blog is giving away a bookshelf under $80 from CSN.

Check out the contest on their blog!

Lipstick Apology Booktrailer

Jennifer Jabaley is having a contest over on her livejournal for what you think is the better book trailer. Here was my choice:


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Waiting on Wednesdays - This World We Live In

This meme is hosted by Breaking the Spine. Here is the book I've been lusting after for a while! Enjoy.

If you haven't read Life as We Knew It and The Dead and the Gone - you need to! This is the third book that takes place after those two.

This World We Live In
by Susan Beth Pfeffer
Release Date: April 1, 2010

A blurb from Susan's Blog:

It's been over a month since Miranda Evans has written in her diary, a month of relative calm for her and her family. It's springtime, and with warmer weather comes rain, and the melting of the winter's snow. The shad are running in a nearby river, and Miranda's brothers Matt and Jon leave home for a few days to see if they can catch some to supplement their food supply.

When they return, Matt brings with him a girl named Syl, who he introduces as his bride. But that's not the only shock Miranda and her family have to deal with. A few weeks later, Miranda's father, stepmother, and baby brother show up at her door. Accompanying them are three strangers, a man named Charlie Rutherford, and two teenagers, Alex and Julie Morales. These five people have crossed America together, becoming, in their own way, a family.

Miranda's complicated feelings about Alex, curiosity, resentment, longing, and passion turn into love. Alex's feelings are equally complex. His plans to escort Julie to a convent where she can be taken care of, so that he will be free to enter a monastery, are destined for failure. He wants desperately to live up to his moral code, but his desire for Miranda is too strong. He proposes to Miranda that they take Julie and go to a safe town.

But before Miranda and Alex can go off together, a devastating tornado hits the town of Howell, and in its aftermath, Miranda makes a decision that will change forever her life and Alex's, and the world that they live in will never be the same.

Anne of Green Gables

Anne of Green Gables
by L.M. Montgomery

When Marilla Cuthbert's brother, Matthew, returns home to Green Gables with a chatty redheaded orphan girl, Marilla exclaims, "But we asked for a boy. We have no use for a girl." It's not long, though, before the Cuthberts can't imagine how they could ever do without young Anne of Green Gables--but not for the original reasons they sought an orphan. Somewhere between the time Anne "confesses" to losing Marilla's amethyst pin (which she never took) in hopes of being allowed to go to a picnic, and when Anne accidentally dyes her hated carrot-red hair green, Marilla says to Matthew, "One thing's for certain, no house that Anne's in will ever be dull." And no book that she's in will be, either.

I listened to this classic for the first time this summer. The audiobook was fantastic. I loved Kate Burton's performance and I think she really hit Anne right on. This book made me laugh a ton and cry a bit. It's definitely worth reading if you haven't before.

I'm keeping this review short, because there really is not much to say besides the fact that there is a reason that people are still reading this classic - it's amazing. I think I may have to continue on with the series.

5/5 Roses

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Give a new blogger some love

Hey guys!

I'm here to chat you up about a new blogger I've discovered. I literally was her first follower and she'd appreciate it if you guys checked her blog out.

She'd appreciate it so much, she's promising a giveaway when she gets 20 followers!

Check out BookLover - she reads teen books and reviews them.

That's my little spiel for now.

Now go click on the link and leave her some fellow blogger love.

Teaser Tuesdays - July 21st

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
Here are my teasers:

"we were the only ones one the block, but pounding music and smoky plumes of pine incense trialed out of a high window. a beautiful man was standing in a doorway with a beautiful woman, whispering things to her that made her giggle. we both stood there with longing, watching them --"
p. 139 Gothic Lolita by Dakota Lane

"It was dark inside the flat because the curtains across the glass balcony doors had been closed. (By Grandad? By the police?) We didn't open them."

p. 193 Tamar: A Novel of Espionage, Passion, and Betrayal by Mal Peet

Monday, July 20, 2009

I forgot an Award!

I feel so bad! Almost two weeks ago now, Cornucopia of Reviews nominated me for the Your Blog Rocks award.

So thank you Lizzy!

Here are my nominations:

You 2.0 Blog run by Kay Cassidy
Wondrous Reads
Reviewer X
Reverie Book Reviews
Lucid Conspiracy
Must and Lust for Books
Library Lounge Lizard
In Bed With Books


by Kristin Cashore

Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight—she’s a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king’s thug.

She never expects to fall in love with beautiful Prince Po.

She never expects to learn the truth behind her Grace—or the terrible secret that lies hidden far away . . . a secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms with words alone.

With elegant, evocative prose and a cast of unforgettable characters, debut author Kristin Cashore creates a mesmerizing world, a death-defying adventure, and a heart-racing romance that will consume you, hold you captive, and leave you wanting more.

I must say, there was a ton of hype about this book from a ton of my friends on Goodreads. Which only made me want to read it more. I did love this book - a lot.

The character Katsa is so hard, but has her soft points. Although she is forced into harming and sometimes killing for her uncle, she decides to help others - to form the Council that will help those who are in need.

I fell in love with Po and his semi-arrogant behavior. The way he loved Katsa so openly and did not dare suggest to possess the woman who can kill without effort.

Princess Bitterblue also had the unique characteristic of being so regal at the age of 10. The way she dealt with the tragedy in her life was inspiring and the way that Katsa took care of her really softened me to Katsa's usually rough character.

And the plot, oh the plot. Kristin throws you right in with Katsa on a rescue mission and then backtracking to understand her background and why she acts the way she does. The action doesn't seem to slow, but for travel time on the different adventures.

This book has everything you could want in a fantasy - a unique world, amazing characters, and a plot to keep you on your toes and wanting more.

If you love fantasy, and you haven't read this book yet - you MUST!

5/5 Roses


Award Time!

Thanks to The Little Bookworm and Bambi Reads for this award!

The Hearthfelt Award:

Do you reach for a cup of cocoa or tea when your relaxing, seeking comfort, sharing a plate of cookies with family and freinds? You know the feeling you get when you drink a yummy cup of cocoa, tea, or a hot toddy? That is what the Hearthfelt Award is all about, feeling warm inside.


Put the logo on your blog/post.
Nominate up to to 9 blogs which make you feel comfy or warm inside. Be sure to link your nominees within your post.
Let them know that they have been nominated by commenting on their blog.
Remember to link to the person from whom you received your award.

Here are the blogs that I'm nominating:
Thanks to you guys for being awesome!

Thanks to mis(h)takes for this award!

The Literary Blogger Award

Thanks to Diane from The Book Resort for creating this new & very charming looking award.The Literary Blogger Award acknowledges bloggers who energize & inspire reading by going the extra mile. These amazing bloggers make reading fun & enhance the delight of reading!

The Rules:

1) Put the logo on your blog/post.
2) Nominate up to 9 blogs.
3) Be sure to link to your nomine
es within your post.
4) Let them know that they have been nominated by commenting on their blog.
5) Remember to link to the person from whom you received your award.

And here are the blogs I'd like to nominate:

And now, for the last award!

Thanks to Bambi Reads for nominating me for this award!

The Humane Award

The Humane Award is to honor certain bloggers that are kindhearted individuals. They regularly take part in my blog and always leave the sweetest comments. If it wasn't for them, my site would just be an ordinary book review blog. Their blogs are also amazing and are tastefully done on a daily basis. This award is to thank them for their growing friendships through the blog world.

Here are my nominations:
The Book Explorer
Strange and Random Happenstance
Booking Through 365
Another Book Blog Whore

Thanks to all of you who nominated me! And to all of you that I'm nominating - for being awesome. :)

It's Monday, What are you Reading? (June 20)

J.Kaye hosts this wonderful meme.

Click on titles for my reviews or more info on the book.

Read this past week:
Graceling by Kristin Cashmore (review is coming!)

Currently reading:
Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
Tamar: A Novel of Espionage, Passion, and Betrayal by Mal Peet
Ash by Malinda Lo
Gothic Lolita by Dakota Lane

T'Aragam by Jack Regan
Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
The Ride of Our Lives by Mike Leonard
Anahita's Woven Riddle by Megan Nuttall Sayres

I've been pathetic lately about reading, I know. Hopefully this week I'll get at least 4 or 5 books read. If not 10.

And a quick update:
  • I now have 100+ followers, which means I'm plotting to give away a book I'm reading this week - any guesses to which one? All will be revealed later...
  • On Saturday, I plan to post my first author interview with Jack Regan, author of T'Aragam. I am part of his virtual book tour! Yay!
  • I hope to get my last review and an awards post up today. Maybe not right now.. but today, sometime.
Thanks for tuning in! And let me know what you are reading!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Red Glass

Red Glass
by Laura Resau

From Laura's website:

One night Sophie, her mother, and her stepfather are called to a hospital, where Pablo, a five-year-old Mexican boy, is recovering from dehydration. Pablo was carrying the business card of Sophie's step-father - but he doesn't recognize the boy. Crossing the border into Arizona with seven other Mexicans and a coyote, or guide, Pablo and his parents faced such harsh conditions that the boy is the only survivor. Pablo comes to live with Sophie, her parents, and Sophie's aunt Dika, a refugee from the war in Bosnia. Sophie loves Pablo - her Principito, or Little Prince - but after a year, Sophie's parents are able to contact Pablo's extended family in Mexico, and Sophie, Dika, and Dika's new boyfriend and his son must travel with Pablo to his hometown so that he can make a heart-wrenching decision.

Sophie has always been afraid of everything - car wrecks, cancer, becoming an orphan herself. But traveling with Dika, Pablo, Mr. Lorenzo, and Angel - people who have suffered losses beyond Sophie's imagining - changes her perception of danger. Sophie feels a strong connection to Ángel, but she fears losing him almost as much as she enjoys their time together. When a tragic event forces Sophie to take a dangerous journey, she recognizes that life is beautiful even in the midst of death - and that love is worth the risk of losing.

I think I'm falling in love with everything Laura Resau writes. After having read What the Moon Saw, I just had to pick up another book by her. For the most part, I don't pick up realistic fiction, but I do enjoy multicultural literature, which is what Laura writes.

The different attitudes of the various characters with their differing backgrounds really pulls you into the story and into loving the characters. Sophie grows up in a materialistic world, but can let go and try on some adventure for the love of her adopted brother Pablo and a love interest named Angel.

This book makes you realize how safe we feel in America, how easy it is to get from place to place and how cold it can be. The view of Mexico that Resau shows us is a realistic one - where most of the people are willing to help, to share their home for a night. But there are dangers with the gangs in Mexico and the transportation isn't always safe.

I really was drawn into this book, with it's heart-wrenching moments where you're not sure if everyone will live happily ever after. The characters that just warm you inside out.

There's not much more to be said except to say that you MUST read this book and her other books.

5/5 Roses