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Feature & Follow Friday (#32)


The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee’s View and Alison of Alison Can Read.

This week's Question:

Snap it Time! A picture is worth a thousand words. Anything and anything. Just give us a pic.

Well I gave you a picture of my son last week.  He, of course, is the most important and biggest thing going on in my life right now.  So I am adding a couple more pictures of him. We are trying to promote a love of reading at an early age, so here are a couple of my husband reading to him.

A Friday Five (#20) Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell

I haven't done one of these since the baby!  Well actually from before the baby, but man that last trimester kicked my butt.

Friday's I'll feature one of my favorite books or a book I read in the last week and come up 5 words to describe it.  View it as a super mini review.  This week I'm featuring:

I was really looking forward to this book and had made it one of my WoW books.  I am absolutely fascinated by serial killers and I am always watching Discovery ID.  I figured this book would be perfect for me.  Here are the five words I have for my reading experience:

  1. Disjointed
  2. Unrealistic
  3. Flat
  4. Contradictory
  5. Disappointing

Disjointed:  I'm using this word to describe the writing. There was just no flow to the writing, it was filled with basic sentences, and read in almost a jerky manner.  This may have been a purposeful style, but it really bothered me.

Unrealistic:  I completely accept the need for suspension of disbelief often need when reading, but this is just beyond.  I found nothing in this book to be plausible.  Which then begs the question, is this supposed to be a contemporary, or a fantasy?  If this is supposed to be a fantasy book, then maybe it would better?  Probably not.  An example of this is a **SPOILER**, at one point the police find some DNA and try to trick Kat, the main character, to get her DNA as a comparison.  She subs out a MALE classmates DNA, when they try to get hers. NOBODY questions this. Yeah.

Flat:  The whole book fell flat for me, but really it was the characters that fell the most flat.  I'm still not sure what we are supposed to feel for Kat.  Disgust?  Are we rooting for her?  What about her mother?  Her father? The police detective she befriends?  I was left with no feeling for any of them.

Contradictory:  This was probably one of the things that bothered me the most about this book. The whole book is based on moral nihilism, nothing is wrong and nothing is right.  Yet, Kat contradicts this ALL THE TIME.  Some are acknowledged in the book, but others are completely skipped over. 

Disappointing:  My general feeling after I finished it. I wasn't angry about wasting my time reading it, but I was disappointed, because I was really hoping it would be as awesome as it looked.  Instead I found it to be pretty wretched. 

*An ARC was provided to me by HarperCollins. 

"Waiting On" Wednesday (#45) Tabula Rasa by Kristen Lippert-Martin


“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week I'm picking:

Tabula Rasa by
Expected publication: September 23rd 2014 by EgmontUSA

From Goodreads: 

The Bourne Identity meets Divergent in this heart-pounding debut.

Sixteen-year-old Sarah has a rare chance at a new life. Or so the doctors tell her. She’s been undergoing a cutting-edge procedure that will render her a tabula rasa—a blank slate. Memory by memory her troubled past is being taken away.

But when her final surgery is interrupted and a team of elite soldiers invades the isolated hospital under cover of a massive blizzard, her fresh start could be her end.

Navigating familiar halls that have become a dangerous maze with the help of a teen computer hacker who's trying to bring the hospital down for his own reasons, Sarah starts to piece together who she is and why someone would want her erased. And she won’t be silenced again.

A high-stakes thriller featuring a non-stop race for survival and a smart heroine who will risk everything, Tabula Rasa is, in short, unforgettable.

Why I'm Waiting:

Bourne Identity and Divergent?  Sign me up.  This looks like an awesome thrill ride of a book.

Top Ten Tuesday (#52) (03/25/14)


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
Top Ten Things On My Bookish Bucket List

1. Purge my books--I have thousands of books at this point.  I'll never be able to read all of them, and the books I have read, are now just collecting dust because I have so many that need to be read.  Yet I hold onto them, I just love them, but they are taking over my house.

2.  Go to more book signings--I have been to a bunch, and I have met so may of my favorite authors at BEA and ALA, but there are a ton more authors I would love to meet when they come on tour here.  It's just hard.

3. WRITE REVIEWS--One of the reasons I got into blogging is that I was hoping it would make me write more.  I hate writing, I have no confidence in my writing, and as a result I have written way fewer reviews than I had intended when I started blogging.  I think the problem is that I have been in a huge reading slump, and have read a lot of books that left me feeling nothing when I am done.

4. Topping my all time high in reading--2012 saw the most books I think I've ever read in one year.  Granted I haven't tracked my whole life, and it's possible when I was in high school I read more than I did in 2012, but in my adult life 2012 was the gold standard.  I would love to top it one day though, I just don't know when.

5. Serve on a book review committee for ALA--This is a true bucket list item. I am currently not a member of YALSA, because my actual job has nothing to do with YA lit.  I would love to change that, but for now my job as a librarian is far removed from YALSA.  One day I hope to change that and become part of YALSA and serve on a one of the committees such as Morris, Best Fiction for YA,  Amazing Audio, or the Odyssey.  The Printz would be a dream, but you have to be elected to that, and I just don't think I will ever have the credentials to be elected.

6. Attend the book bonanza--So this goes completely against what I want to do in my first bucket-list item, but I would love to attend all the conferences.  My work will pay for me to go to one library conference a year, and I always pick ALA, I covered mid-winter this year, and will probably have to do so in the future.  I would love to be able to hit TXLA, BEA, ALA, ALA-MW, and NCTE all in the same year.  Not related to those conferences but library related, I would love to get to Internet Librarian, SLA, and AALL. 

7. Read all of my DNF books--There is a reason that I have so many current DNF, and I always view them as books I'm still currently reading even if I haven't touched the book in years.  I really want to read all those books that I am part way through, there are about 15 of them.  It's not because they were bad, it's just circumstances that have prevented me from finishing them. 

8. Control my e-book buying habit--For as many books that I have sitting on my shelves, I probably have almost as many e-books.  I am actually trying to convert my book collection to e-books, but it's a very expensive habit.  I have a really hard time resisting that $.99-$3.99 price point that the publishers put books on sale for.  I see that magic number, and I just buy, buy, buy.

9. Get better organized with my reading--I used to be so organized and on top of my reading.  As soon as I finished a book, I was on Goodreads sorting it, and marking it off.  In the last 4 months that has all gone down the drain. I kind of have a good excuse, but it really bothers me that I have fallen so far.

10.  Be a better blogger--It goes back to the reviews, but it's more than that.  I enjoy blogging for the most part, but many I have not been as regular as I need to be.  I need to get back in the groove.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 03/24/14


This weekly recap is hosted by Shelia of Book Journeys and the kidlit version is hosted by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers. Each week we recap what we’ve read and look at what’s coming up this week.

Finished Reading:

Dear Killer by
Ashes on the Waves by

Currently Reading:

The Essence (The Pledge #2) by
Invisible (Smith High #2) by

What I'm Reading Next:

The Geography of You and Me by

Feature & Follow Friday (#31)


The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee’s View and Alison of Alison Can Read.

This week's Question:

Question of the Week: How have your reading habits changed in the past few years? Did you get interested in a new genre? Do you read more? Less? Why do you think your habits changed, if they did. 

This is my first F&FF in SO long!

The answer to this is my reading habits have changed completely in the past few years.  Not only did they change once, they have changed multiple times.

I started primarily reading YA about five years ago. Before that, I was mainly reading magazines, and sometimes re-reading books I had loved from years ago.  I was in a reading slump for years.
The last couple of years I saw a huge increase in the amount of books I was reading.  I was also reading a greater variety of genres.  I got a Nook, and then a Kindle, so e-books became something I read.  I also started reading some self-pub books.

Last fall and until today my reading habits completely changed again.  While pregnant, I found it really hard to stay awake long enough to do much reading. Not only was I not able to stay awake, I found I had no patience for books and really didn't like anything I read.  Once I had my baby in November, and really until the last couple of weeks, I have done very little reading.  What reading I have done has been on my Kindle.  Something portable that I can hold and not worry about dropping on the baby.  I have also been limiting my reading to things I really hope I'll love.  And of course I'm reading a ton of picture books.

Why I'm not reading as much (exception picture books)

"Waiting On" Wednesday (#44) Faces of the Dead by Suzanne Weyn


“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week I'm picking:

Faces of the Dead by

From Goodreads: 

When Marie-Therese, daughter of Marie Antoinette, slips into the streets of Paris at the height of the French Revolution, she finds a world much darker than what she's ever known.

When Marie-Thérèse Charlotte of France learns of the powerful rebellion sweeping her country, the sheltered princess is determined to see the revolution for herself. Switching places with a chambermaid, the princess sneaks out of the safety of the royal palace and into the heart of a city in strife.

Soon the princess is brushing shoulders with revolutionaries and activists. One boy in particular, Henri, befriends her and has her questioning the only life she's known. When the princess returns to the palace one night to find an angry mob storming its walls, she's forced into hiding in Paris. Henri brings her to the workshop of one Mademoiselle Grosholtz, whose wax figures seem to bring the famous back from the dead, and who looks at Marie-Thérèse as if she can see all of her secrets. There, the princess quickly discovers there's much more to the outside world - and to the mysterious woman's wax figures - than meets the eye.

Why I'm Waiting:

This looks like a fun and interesting twist on history.

Top Ten Tuesday (#51) (03/18/14)


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
Top Ten Books On My Spring 2014 TBR List

I had been doing so well reading books that were on my TBR lists that I posted on this site, but then I had a baby and I can barely read two books in a month, let alone ten books in three months.  So here are the books that I really hope to read, as always, these books follow the solstice/equinox, so anything published between March 20th-June 20th.
Expected publication: April 15th 2014 by Little, Brown for Young Readers
Expected publication: May 6th 2014 by HarperTeen

I have such a love/hate relationship with this series, but I have mentioned before, I am still VERY interested in finding out how it ends.
Expected publication: April 8th 2014 by Putnam Juvenile
Expected publication: April 15th 2014 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

I really enjoyed the author's debut, it was one of the top books I read in 2012, so I have really high expectations for this one.
Expected publication: April 15th 2014 by Walker Childrens

I can't wait to read my ARC for this book.  It sounds amazing, and it has everything I want in a book.
Expected publication: April 1st 2014 by HarperTeen
Expected publication: May 6th 2014 by Simon & Schuster

I really enjoyed her two previous books, and I have high expectations for this one as well.  Now I just have to read the ARC.
 Expected publication: April 1st 2014 by Simon Pulse

I have only read a couple of her books, but I have enjoyed them.  I hope this lives up to my expectations.
Expected publication: May 13th 2014 by Delacorte Press

I can't believe it's been 4 years since the final Ruby Oliver book came out, and E. Lockhart published something.  I have been waiting for what seems like forever to read a new book by her.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 03/17/14


This weekly recap is hosted by Shelia of Book Journeys and the kidlit version is hosted by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers. Each week we recap what we’ve read and look at what’s coming up this week.

Finished Reading:
Killer Frost (Mythos Academy #6) by

Currently Reading:
Dear Killer by

What I'm Reading Next:
The Essence (The Pledge #2) by

CATHERINE Cover Buzz Blast + Guest Post and Giveaway

I am super excited to be able to help spread the word about the new cover for the paperback edition of CATHERINE by April Lindner which will be available this August.

Both covers are amazing but convey something very different with the image and colors. And I’m thrilled to be able to welcome April Lindner to the blog with a post discussing them both.

There is also a giveaway for an Amazon eGift Card. Just scroll to the bottom of this post for details and to enter.

While CATHERINE’s paperback release is still a few months away, if you purchase the eBook edition now, it comes with the new cover. And if you’re a fan of the first cover, the hardback copy is still available to purchase.

Both covers rock, but which one is your favorite?


Author: April Lindner
Publisher: Poppy
Release date: January 1, 2013 | August 19, 2014 (paperback)
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, eBook

Catherine is tired of struggling musicians befriending her just so they can get a gig at her Dad's famous Manhattan club, The Underground. Then she meets mysterious Hence, an unbelievably passionate and talented musician on the brink of success. As their relationship grows, both are swept away in a fiery romance. But when their love is tested by a cruel whim of fate, will pride keep them apart?

Chelsea has always believed that her mom died of a sudden illness, until she finds a letter her dad has kept from her for years -- a letter from her mom, Catherine, who didn't die: She disappeared. Driven by unanswered questions, Chelsea sets out to look for her -- starting with the return address on the letter: The Underground.

Told in two voices, twenty years apart, Catherine delivers a fresh retelling of the Emily Brontë classic Wuthering Heights, interweaving a timeless forbidden romance with a captivating modern mystery.


The Guest Post

Promises, Promises: Judging a Book by Its Cover

By April Lindner

We’ve all been told that you can’t judge a book by its cover. And yet some of us book lovers can’t help ourselves; there’s nothing like a gorgeous cover to lure us in. More often than not, an enticing cover is the main thing that moves me to pick up a book I've never heard of, to start paging through it, giving the first few paragraphs a chance to seal the deal—or not.

So for me the most exciting moment in the whole bookmaking occurs when a book’s future cover appears in my inbox. I click on the thumbnail, and wait breathlessly as the image blooms onto my computer screen. Only then can I imagine my manuscript as a book—on a shelf, or, better still, in the hands of a reader. I know the cover will set the book’s tone. And it will make promises—hopefully the right ones.

All of this explains why I’m so thrilled by the new cover of Catherine’s paperback edition, due out in August. Don’t get me wrong: I love the original Catherine cover. Lush and dramatic, it makes certain promises—ones I believe the book keeps. The elegant model in her kickass stance promises a strong female protagonist. (Actually, the book has two alternating strong female narrators—Catherine and her daughter Chelsea.) And the background, with the iconic Flatiron Building rising up through the mist, promises the book’s Lower Manhattan setting will be as important as its characters. The title typeface—bold and purple—promises a confident, free-spirited heroine—exactly how I see Catherine herself.

But the new paperback cover—already available to readers who download the Ebook-- makes a different set of promises. On it, a boy and a girl hold each other in the shadows of a graffiti-covered underpass. They gaze at each other in rapt wonder, their shoulders, neck and heads echoing the shape of a heart. Secret romance, this cover says. It promises love against the odds. The scene is gritty—less glamorous than the cityscape on the original—but this grittiness befits the book’s main setting, a post punk night club on the Bowery. The title’s typeface is still bold, but its peachy color underscores the sweet and optimistic innocence of this couple’s embrace.

Inspired by the classic romance Wuthering Heights, Catherine is a story of star-crossed love interwoven with mystery. Its soundtrack is the post-punk music played by Catherine’s boyfriend, Hence. And the new paperback cover captures that complex mood exactly, I think. In fact, when it popped up on my computer screen for the first time, I almost swooned. There it was, in front of me: almost exactly the picture I saw in my imagination as I wrote the book.

An author can hope for nothing more than that.


About April Lindner

April Lindner is the author of three novels: Catherine, a modernization of Wuthering Heights; Jane, an update of Jane Eyre; and Love, Lucy, due out in January, 2015. She also has published two poetry collections, Skin and This Bed Our Bodies Shaped. She plays acoustic guitar badly, sees more rock concerts than she’d care to admit, travels whenever she can, cooks Italian food, and lavishes attention on her pets—two Labrador retriever mixes and two excitable guinea pigs. A professor of English at Saint Joseph’s University, April lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two sons.


The Giveaway

The Cover Buzz Blast includes a blast-wide giveaway for a $15 Amazon eGift Card to one winner.

  • Must be 13 or older to enter
  • Giveaway is open to anyone who can accept eGift Cards from Amazon's US online store
  • Giveaway ends on March 25th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific

Enter in the Rafflecopter below...

a Rafflecopter giveaway

"Waiting On" Wednesday (#43) Get Even (Don't Get Mad #1) by Gretchen McNeil


“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week I'm picking:

Get Even (Don't Get Mad #1) by

From Goodreads: 

Follows the secretive exploits of four high school juniors - Kitty, Olivia, Margot and Bree - at an exclusive Catholic prep school.

To all outward appearances, the girls barely know each other. At best, they don't move in the same social circles; at worst, they're overtly hostile.

Margot Mejia – academically ranked number two in her class, Margot is a focused overachiever bound for the Ivy League.

Kitty Li – captain of the California state and national champion varsity girls' volleyball team, she's been recruited by a dozen colleges and has dreams of winning an Olympic gold medal.

Olivia Hayes – popular star of the drama program, she's been voted "most eligible bachelorette" two years running in the high school yearbook and has an almost lethal combination of beauty and charm.

Bree Deringer – outcast, misfit and the kind of girl you don't want to meet in a dark alley, the stop sign red-haired punk is a constant thorn in the side of teachers and school administrators alike.

Different goals, different friends, different lives, but the girls share a secret no one would ever guess. They are members of Don't Get Mad, a society specializing in seeking revenge for fellow students who have been silently victimized by their peers. Each girl has her own reason for joining the group, her own set of demons to assuage by evening the score for someone else. And though school administration is desperate to find out who is behind the DGM "events", the girls have managed to keep their secret well hidden.

That is until one of their targets – a douchebag senior who took advantage of a drunk underclassman during a house party, videotaped it on his phone, and posted it on YouTube – turns up dead, and DGM is implicated in the murder.

Now the girls don't know who to trust, and as their tenuous alliance begins to crumble, the secrets they've hidden for so long might be their ultimate undoing.

Why I'm Waiting:

I was part of this cover reveal a few weeks ago.  I took part because this book looks awesome.  I love a good revenge book, and this looks like a fantastic one.