Current Giveaways

Current Giveaways
More coming soon!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

[Audio Review] Life By Committee by Corey Ann Haydu

Buy from the Book Depository

Title: Life By Committee
Author: Corey Ann Haydu [ FacebookTwitter | Website ]
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books, an imprint of HarperCollins
Genre: Young Adult Fiction - Contemporary Realistic Fiction
Release Date: May 13, 2014
Source: Library copy via Overdrive, opinions are honest and my own. – review policy here.

Some secrets are too good to keep.

Tabitha might be the only girl in the history of the world who actually gets less popular when she gets hot. But her so-called friends say she’s changed, and they’ve dropped her flat.

Now Tab has no one to tell about the best and worst thing that has ever happened to her: Joe, who spills his most intimate secrets to her in their nightly online chats. Joe, whose touch is so electric, it makes Tab wonder if she could survive an actual kiss. Joe, who has Tabitha brimming with the restless energy of falling in love. Joe, who is someone else’s boyfriend.

Just when Tab is afraid she’ll burst from keeping the secret of Joe inside, she finds Life by Committee. The rules of LBC are simple: tell a secret, receive an assignment. Complete the assignment to keep your secret safe.

Tab likes it that the assignments push her to her limits, empowering her to live boldly and go further than she’d ever go on her own.

But in the name of truth and bravery, how far is too far to go? via Goodreads

Life by Committee introduces some very relevant concepts today involving the power of rumors, bullying, and virtual relationship building. This intertwined with the traditional YA concepts of growing up and discovering oneself produces an emotionally charged story that can be summed up as "you don't know me." 

The voice actress gives Tabitha an authentic sound to wade through the pains of "slut shaming" exhibited through the eyes of adults and peers alike, including her own parents. This is the strength in Haydu's writing. Tabitha's pain and confusion surrounding something she has no control over is central to the story and the writing's cultural relevance. Her bodily changes take on a persona of their own, for better or worse, reminiscent of your own teenage awkwardness. 

The foundation of the various arcs surround the idea that nothing is really what it seems. Tabitha is juggling several compelling issues that could have made for great writing points on their own. Instead the reader is left behind with unfinished issues raining down in the last pages. 

Why I won't read it again, but recommend it for...

I liked it but there were definitely things that were more tolerable than others. Tabitha has several relationships that she's working on throughout the novel. While her school stuff sort of gets sorted out in the end, a la Mean Girls style, her relationship with her parents is left without a solid conclusion. While I think peer resolution is important I think we can all admit it's our parents who shape us for better or worse and I was left wanting more in this case. It's kind of a big deal for me... 

The online forum, Life by Committee, presents a unique scenario diving into online based relationships founded in mutual trust, anonymity, and exploring the concept of blending virtual reality as physical reality. I really wanted this concept to be flushed out a bit more versus being used as a catalyst for driving the plot. 

Call me mushy, call me a girl but I wanted more legit swoons. I needed those specific swoons!!!!! I like him. :)

I won't be reading this again, while it was deep and tackled important topics I just didn't connect with the MC and the ending left me feeling incomplete. I recommend this read for teens who are exploring web-based friendships for the first time, or enjoy reads about social and relationship issues.  

3 Stars

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

[Waiting...] Black Ice by Becca Fitzpatrick

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine,
that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This Week's Pick: 

Pre-Order at The Book Depository

Title: Black Ice
Author: Becca Fitzpatrick
[Facebook | Twitter | Website]
Release Date: October 7, 2014
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Genre: Young Adult- Mystery, Thriller

Summary via Goodreads:

Sometimes danger is hard to see... until it’s too late.

Britt Pfeiffer has trained to backpack the Teton Range, but she isn't prepared when her ex-boyfriend, who still haunts her every thought, wants to join her. Before Britt can explore her feelings for Calvin, an unexpected blizzard forces her to seek shelter in a remote cabin, accepting the hospitality of its two very handsome occupants—but these men are fugitives, and they take her hostage.

In exchange for her life, Britt agrees to guide the men off the mountain. As they set off, Britt knows she must stay alive long enough for Calvin to find her. The task is made even more complicated when Britt finds chilling evidence of a series of murders that have taken place there... and in uncovering this, she may become the killer’s next target.

But nothing is as it seems in the mountains, and everyone is keeping secrets, including Mason, one of her kidnappers. His kindness is confusing Britt. Is he an enemy? Or an ally?

Why I'm Waiting...

A mystery thriller with what is bound to be poor decision making? I'm in!

I just have to know what is going to unfold. Homegirl is planning to hike alone but then the ex comes along at the last minute. She's kidnapped and now hoping the ex, who she doesn't want there, finds her? Oh what a tangle web we weave.

I love mysteries and trying to figure out the whole "who dunnit" scenario! I'm in and hoping there's just a bit of swoons and lots of plaid. I'm also really excited about the whole YA mystery/thriller trend that's coming through!

You can read a sneak peek here

What do you think? Would you plan to go hiking alone? Fall in love with your captor? 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

[Top Ten Tuesday] Authors I Own the Most Books From

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish

Top 10 Authors I Own the Most Books From

This is an interesting topic for me since 1) I've only been reading extensively for the past two years. 2) I purchase a LOT of used books from various places so although I may own a lot of books from a particular writer it doesn't mean I've read any of them... Ironically, my favorite author is not on this list! I must remedy this ASAP!

in no particular order
  1. Nicholas Sparks
  2. Sarah Dessen
  3. Melissa De La Cruz
  4. Maya Banks
  5. Rainbow Rowell
  6. Nick Hornby
  7. Jennifer Weiner
  8. Dean Koontz
  9. Ernest Hemingway
  10. Cassandra Clare

Nicholas Spark and Sarah Dessen are both popular in North Carolina so there are always a lot of their books floating around. I've been reading Sparks since I was in middle school so call it a guilty pleasure if you will. I hope to read some of my Dessen books soon because I've heard so many good things!

At a library sale a while back I was able to scoop of all of the Blue Bloods series by De La Cruz for a bargain. The bonus was they were all brand new, finished copies. 

Yes, I read Maya Banks and I heart her so throw the shade in the comments, I can handle it. I've never been a big erotica reader but I do like Ms. Banks in my life. 

I own all of the published books by Rainbow Rowell and I wish there were more. Maybe I'll find her old columns... haha. 

I was introduced to Nick Hornby via movies based on his books. *insert collective groan here* I loved the movies so I knew I'd love the books. I have a number of his novels now thanks to various used books sales. 

I'm not big on traditional romance novels, but Weiner writes entertaining adult romance with the comedic timing of real life. I now scoop up any of her novels I see on the shelves.

At the last large library book sale I started hunting for all of the Odd Thomas novels and I think I found all but one of them. This easily made Koontz one of the authors I own the most books from. Maybe one day I'll actually get to read them. *dun, dun*

A while back I read The Paris Wife a fictional novel about Hemingway's first marriage. I became enamored by his life and started reading all of his books. I own multiple editions of some of his titles, and have read them all. I don't even think highly of his writing but his himself was a very interesting man with an even more interesting family. However, every time I hear his name I think of this...

Last but not least I own a lot of Cassandra Clare mostly because of the number of novels she churns out! Between the Mortal Instrument and Infernal Devices series that totals to nine books not to include what more I plan to add to my shelves from this world. 

Talk to me:

What author do you own the most of? Is it reflective of your reading tastes? Is your favorite author your most owned author? 

Monday, July 28, 2014

[Review] The Young World by Chris Weitz

Buy from the Book Depository

Title: The Young World
Series: The Young World #1
Author: Chris Weitz [ Twitter ]
Publisher: Little, Brown Books
Genre: Young Adult Fiction - Science Fiction, Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopian
Release Date: July 29, 2014
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher, opinions are honest and my own. – review policy here.

After a mysterious Sickness wipes out the rest of the population, the young survivors assemble into tightly run tribes. Jefferson, the reluctant leader of the Washington Square tribe, and Donna, the girl he's secretly in love with, have carved out a precarious existence among the chaos. But when another tribe member discovers a clue that may hold the cure to the Sickness, five teens set out on a life-altering road trip to save humankind.

The tribe exchanges gunfire with enemy gangs, escapes cults and militias, braves the wilds of the subway and Central Park...and discovers truths they could never have imagined. - via Goodreads

In a NYC run by teenagers left after a mysterious Sickness, Weitz uses his movie know-how to create a plot driven, fast-paced novel through the voices of childhood friends. Jefferson and Donna offer two perspectives of life after the Sickness and members of the Washington Square tribe. 

Skipping a beat, The Young World kicks off a series with a journey across Manhattan in search of answers to the Sickness and a cure. With an uneven foundation the action and societal constructs keep things interesting and form a realistically frightening post-apocalyptic NYC. Teens are king, living in fear of the Sickness, each other and the wild, while introducing various survival techniques, some which are more disturbing than others. 

Setting up both a familiar world and story line, it's the tribes and secondary characters that make the journey well worth the ride. Diversity and action scenes playing to Weitz's Hollywood strengths, character and story development is haunting the reader as the cliffhanger for book two sits in the last sentence. 

What I'm looking for in the series moving forward...

More science... there's some explaining to be done. The explanation for the Sickness is hormonal imbalances and since teenagers are going through puberty so they're immune. Okay, let's say I buy this puberty thing... it would create major age gaps between the sexes. Some women begin puberty as young as 10 years old and some don't start until 17/18 years of age. Men typically hit puberty later in life and can begin as late as their early 20s. Additionally, women typically have a hormone imbalance every 28 days so yeah... I'm looking for a lot more science as we venture into book two. Fortunately, it looks we're set up for a lot more world building and information with the cliffhanger ending that is presented in the last sentence.

Better writing for Donna. I want to like her for a multitude of reasons but the maturity levels in her actions versus her speech are not compatible. Her voice comes across forced and unauthentic.

Why I'll be reading book two...

I love the tribes! Unlike other post-apoc/dystopian reads the groups are not pre-determined or fated. These tribes have formed for survival purposes and are very realistic portrayals of what could happen if society broke down. 

I like the world that has become of New York City because it's not too much of a stretch. There are plenty of pop culture references so this isn't too long after today. While the science maybe a little muddled the aftermath is not. The desire to create communities for safety in numbers, the struggle for weapons, food, gas, electricity... it's all real. Even some things that occur are a more sobering reminder of what humanity is capable and privileges a developed world has afforded us.

I like the crew... there are some feels moments just because they're kids! I really like Jefferson, Peter, Brainbox and SeeThrough. They each have histories and reasons for being. While being diverse they also dispel some stereotypes and bring light to the fact that in super diverse areas like NYC there's a "peak" and it becomes homogenous.  
3.5 Stars

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Comic Sunday #11: Sisters by Raina Telgmeier

Comic Sundays are an American newspaper tradition where new comic strips are published weekly. At Becoming Books this tradition will continue focusing on comic strips, comics and graphic novels appealing to young adult and adult audiences.

Story by and Illustrations by Raina Telgemeier
Color by Braden Lamb
MG Nonfiction – Graphic Novel, 211 pages // August 26, 2014
Graphix an imprint of Scholastic Books // Buy on Amazon
Advanced copy provided by the publisher. – Opinions are my own, review policy here.

Carefully balancing the present and the past Raina unveils her family's drama after her wish for a baby sister comes true. The present day takes mom, Raina, younger sister Amara and baby brother Will on a road trip from San Francisco to Colorado for a family reunion. The carefully placed flashbacks give the reader more background on the family's dynamics. Luckily for the reader, no matter where we're at on the timeline the humor shines through in the writing and majorly expressive illustrations. The writing is  very much "To tell that story, I have to tell this story" commonly used by comedians and translates brilliantly in graphic form with each scene interweaving into a new one.

Juggling the family living space, the desire for pets, family issues and more Raina tackles relevant topics and makes the accessible to middle grade readers. The moral of the story is something all ages could take away from the novel while the big question sets up a possible focus for a third novel.

Why I'll be reading Smile and heart Raina:

I saw Raina on a graphic novel panel at BEA/BookCon back in May and was blown away. I haven't read Smile but I immediately saw her impact on young readers as we were waiting to start. Several young girls approached her for photos and signatures. She did them one better and pulled out ARCs from her bag.

I haven't read Smile but I plan to pronto! I will also be gifting these novels to any middle grade readers I know. Sisters is heartfelt and I giggled long after closing the book. The nostalgia of being a big sister was enough to be like "yup!" that's my relationship with my sister. I hope you read it and enjoy it as much as I did.

4 Stars 

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Stacking the Shelves #19: July 19 – 26

This week I've been super jelly over ALL THINGS COMIC CON! Going to Comic Con has been on my bucket list for a while, probably since I got a "big girl job". So one year I'm going to have to sacrifice BEA for Comic Con or maybe budget and do both. We'll see!

This week on the blog I review The Keeper and there are currently 3 giveaways so enter them!

This is what I added to the shelves this week...

click cover photos for Goodreads

In the Mail

For review from Merit Press, thanks! There's also a Goodreads giveaway going on until August 22 so click on the photo to enter. It's a short historical read. I'm intrigued since I like war books even if historical can be a struggle for me.

I finally placed a Book Outlet order and was so excited I got this stack for $30 including shipping!!

Digital Review Copies


What did you add to your shelf this week?

Friday, July 25, 2014

[Special Release + Giveaway!] Four Houses by Victoria Scott

Everyone knows Victoria Scott, the author of the Dante Walker trilogy and the new Fire & Flood Series. I've really enjoyed her reads in the past and am patiently awaiting the second book in the F&F series.

In the meantime, you can check out Scott's new self-pubbed short story, Four Houses, for only 99 cents! It sounds positively spooky and I look forward to reading it soon.

A frightened girl. 

An empty field. 

Four houses. 

Which house would you choose?

FOUR HOUSES is a dark short story told in an unusual format that leaves readers wondering how they'd react if found in the same situation as seventeen-year-old Maddy.

Buy it for 99 cents!

This giveaway is sponsored by the author and is open internationally.

YA Entertainment #3: Comic Con, Trailers and Bits of Bookish News!

YA Entertainment is a weekly feature looking at book, movie and tv news! This week we're looking at Comic-Con in San Diego... the only place I wish I was right now. Maybe next year!

Batch of Comic Con Links

BFFs, Banshees And (Lacrosse) Balls: 9 Things We Learned At The ‘Teen Wolf’ Comic-Con Panel

featuring Sophie Turner (Game of Thrones) and Jonathan Rhys Myers
Based on the 2003 YA novel by Cathy McPhail a high school girl is haunted by a secret past. Looks positively wicked!

If I Stay released a second extended trailer earlier this week. I'm already tearing up and it's not even the actual movie yet! 

Bits of Bookish News

Tahereh Mafi, Shatter Me series, sells two new novels to Dutton. The first is a middle grade fantasy.

Jandy Nelson, The Sky is Everywhere, has sold her third novel Fall Boys and Dizzy in Paradise to Dial Books for Young Readers.

Julie Cross, Temptest, has sold two novels, Lay It On The Line and Yours To Lose, to Simon Pulse. The series will focus on small town high school hockey billed as similar to 'Friday Night Lights'.

reported by Publisher's Weekly

Talk to Me:

Has anyone read 'Another Me'? Tell me about it.
All the authors are signing book deals! What are you looking forward to the most?

Thursday, July 24, 2014

[Guest Post] Author Adi Alsaid's Travel Tips and Reads!!

I'd like to welcome Adi Alsaid to the blog today! I'm really looking forward to this read so come back on Monday to check out my review. Don't forget to scroll down and enter the giveaway! - Meghann

Things to Pack

5. Books
4. Notebook/Pen

3. My “I wish I could fly” penguin t-shirt for airplane days.

2. If it’s a road trip, snacks.

1.  Not much else. I prefer to keep it light.

Top 5 Travel-Themed Reads/Books to Read on the Road

  1. With Friends like These by Danny Wallace- A very funny man—the author of Yes Man—decides to revisit long lost friends across the globe. A touching and entertaining read about the things worth traveling for.
  2. Timbuktu by Paul Auster- A canine protagonist will teach you more about loneliness and how to be okay with it than any other book I’ve read. A great companion to the inevitable lonesome lulls while traveling. Plus it’s nice and light, so easy to carry with you.
  3. 101 Summertime Knock-Knock Jokes- Just kidding.
  4. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams- To vicariously go where no man has before, and to find the answer to the universe.
  5. Best American Travel Series­- I usually go for the Best Shorts collections, but I picked up one of the travel collections once and it immediately made me want to hit the road. The pieces range from touching to insightful to just plain entertaining. With contributors like Anthony Bourdain and Gary Shteyngart, there’s something in it to please everyone, and plenty of ideas for not just where to go next, but how.
  6. Tales from Nowhere edited by Don George- Another collection of short pieces, all sent from different nowheres. From the back copy: “Nowhere is a setting, a situation and a state of mind. It's not on any map, but you know it when you're there.” A great non-fiction companion to Let’s Get Lost.

Let's Get Lost
Release Date: 07/29/14
Harlequin Teen

Summary from Goodreads:
Five strangers.
Countless adventures. One epic way to get lost.

Four teens across the country have only one thing in common: a girl named LEILA.
She crashes into their lives in her absurdly red car at the moment they need
someone the most.

There's HUDSON, a small-town mechanic who is willing to throw away his dreams
for true love. And BREE, a runaway who seizes every Tuesday—and a few stolen
goods along the way. ELLIOT believes in happy endings…until his own life goes
off-script. And SONIA worries that when she lost her boyfriend, she also lost
the ability to love.

Hudson, Bree, Elliot and Sonia find a friend in Leila. And when Leila leaves
them, their lives are forever changed. But it is during Leila's own 4,268-mile
journey that she discovers the most important truth— sometimes, what you need
most is right where you started. And maybe the only way to find what you're
looking for is to get lost along the way.

About the Author

Adi Alsaid was born and raised in Mexico City, then studied at the
University of Nevada, Las Vegas. While in class, he mostly read fiction and continuously failed to fill out crossword puzzles, so it's no surprise that after graduating, he did not go into business world but rather packed up his apartment into his car and escaped to the California coastline to become a writer. He's now back in his hometown, where he writes, coaches high school and elementary basketball, and has perfected the art of making every dish he eats
or cooks as spicy as possible. In addition to Mexico, he's lived in Tel Aviv, Las Vegas, and Monterey, California. A tingly feeling in his feet tells him more places will eventually be added to the list. Let's Get Lost is his YA debut.  

Let's Get Lost Website!

Author Links:
 photo iconwebsite-32x32_zps1f477f69.png  photo icongoodreads32_zps60f83491.png  photo icontwitter-32x32_zpsae13e2b2.png  photo iconfacebook-32x32_zps64a79d4a.png

Early Praise:
“Reminiscent of John Green’s Paper Towns and road trip novels that feature a teen paving the way to
adulthood, Alsaid’s debut is a gem among contemporary YA novels.” – School Library Journal

“Five love stories, beautifully woven together by a special girl in search of adventure, hope, and full
appreciation of life’s simple pleasures. A do-not-miss.  ” – Justine Magazine

“Moving and poignant.”  - Glitter Magazine

“An entertaining and romantic road-trip debut.” – Kirkus

"Leila's quest to find the Northern Lights takes readers on a captivating cross-country journey, where four strangers' adventures collide into one riveting tale of finding yourself." ―

“This will likely be a popular summer hit, especially for older teen about to embark on their own journeys of self-discovery.” –Booklist

*This giveaway is sponsored by HarlequinTeen*

1 signed hardcover copy of Let’s Get Lost
1 Let’s Get Lost luggage tag
1 Harlequin TEEN notebook
1 Let’s Get Lost satchel
1 Harlequin TEEN tote bag

Book Blitz Organized by: