Thursday, August 8, 2013

The Dead and Buried by Kim Harrington

The Dead and Buried by Kim Harrington
Publisher: Scholastic Point
Publish Date: January 1, 2013
Pages 295
ISNB# 978-0545333023

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Jade just moved into a new house with her dad, stepmom and brother. New house, new school!  Jade loves the house, it's huge and gorgeous.

Then she notices a lot of kids at the school whispering and staring at her all the time. She learns that the house is supposed to be haunted.  A very popular, although mean, girl from the school died there.  Her name was Kayla. 

When Jade's brother reports seeing a 'glittering girl' in his room, Jade vows to protect him.  He's only five years old and she's worried he'll get hurt.

The plot is good, it builds slowly and hints at several conclusions, but the ending is a surprise.

Jade is determined and nice. There are two boys that are interested in her, but there's no love triangle, the whole thing is pretty low-key and the mystery keeps center stage.

There's a sub-story too: Kayla's diary. Kayla gave people numbers, instead of using their names.  Jade (and you) have to figure it out to find out what happened.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Data Runner (Data Runner #1) by Sam A. Patel

Data Runner (Data Runner #1) by Sam A. Patel
Publisher: Diversion Books
Publish Date: June 25, 2013
Pages: 231

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

 The only way to transport sensitive info is by Data Runners.  Jack Nill works as a Data Runner to pay off his father's debts. But someone gave him info to carry that everyone wants.

The story is very fast-paced and gets pretty technical. The plot is detailed and keeps you reading.

The characters and world building need some work - unless we're going to get all that information in the second book.

In a way, the book reminded me of SNOWCRASH by Neal Stephenson.  Very technical, in language and computer knowledge and not huge on character development.  It's a good story, but perhaps for a very specific crowd.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Scrap (The Grimmic Chronicles #1) by Emory Sharplin

Scrap (The Grimmic Chronicles #1) by Emory Sharplin
Publisher: Green Leaf Book Group
Publish Date: May 17, 2013
Pages 350
ISBN# 978-1938416354

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

King Ibis is cruel and doesn't care about anything. Tucker is a 12 year old girl that lives in an orphanage and works at a bakery. She has a rough life, but it's the only one she knows. When her friends disappear, she's worried. A woman named Vivian shows up and tells her that she must learn to live and act like a rich girl to resolve the kingdom's issues.

Tucker is sassy and never gives up. For being a 12 year old, Tucker certainly understands things and feel things in a much more mature way. I kept thinking she was at least 16. She also went from dirt poor to rich so easily. She only knew poverty, that isn't an easy transition.

Some of the language, slang and ways things are said just didn't fit in a medieval story. Be medieval or don't.  You can't mix it all up.

A great fantasy story has an onion...or an ogre...this story didn't use enough layers and history, but did use a lot of convenient magic to explain things.

Monday, August 5, 2013

New Books out this Week: August 5 - 11, 2013

August 6th

Wise Young Food by Sean Beaudin
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

From Amazon:  Teen rocker Ritchie Sudden is pretty sure his life has just jumped the shark. Except he hates being called a teen, his band doesn't play rock, and "jumping the shark" is yet another dumb cliché. Part of Ritchie wants to drop everything and walk away. Especially the part that's serving ninety days in a juvenile detention center.

Telling the story of the year leading up to his arrest, Ritchie grabs readers by the throat before (politely) inviting them along for the (max-speed) ride. A battle of the bands looms. Dad split about five minutes before Mom's girlfriend moved in. There's the matter of trying to score with the dangerously hot Ravenna Woods while avoiding the dangerously huge Spence Proffer--not to mention just trying to forget what his sister, Beth, said the week before she died.
 Second Impact by David Klass and Perri Klass
Publisher:  Farrar, Strauss and Gireaux

From Goodreads:  About a boy who sustains serious head injuries while playing football, told in alternating voices by a brother-sister writing team.
 Maybe Tonight? (Snap Decision) by Bridie Clark
Publisher:  Roaring Brook Press

From Amazon: 
Maybe Tonight? opens as the reader is getting ready for the most exciting party of the year—Midwinter’s Night Dream, set in the frosty woods just off campus—with her roommates and best friends Annabel Snow, Spider Harris, and Libby Monroe. Choices unfold quickly and the reader must decide which risks to take in pursuit of social status, adventure, success, and love.
 The Uprising (The Forsaken #2) by Lisa M. Stasse
Publisher:  Simon & Schusters Books for Young Readers

From Goodreads:  Alenna escaped. It was expected that she would die on the wheel, the island where would-be criminals are sent as directed by the UNA—the totalitarian supercountry that was once the United States, Mexico, and Canada. But Alenna and her boyfriend, Liam, made it to safety. Except safety, they will soon learn, is relative.

In order to bring down the UNA, they must first gain control of the wheel. If the mission succeeds, the wheel will become a base of revolution. But between betrayals, a new Monk leading a more organized army of Drones, and the discovery of a previously unknown contingent, Alenna, Liam, and their allies might be in over their heads. One thing Alenna knows for sure: There will be a reckoning. And not everyone she loves will make it out alive.
 Infinityglass (Hourglass #3) by Myra McEntire
Publisher:  EgmontUSA

From Goodreads: 
The Hourglass is a secret organization focused on the study of manipulating time, and its members — many of them teenagers -­have uncanny abilities to make time work for them in mysterious ways. Inherent in these powers is a responsibility to take great care, because altering one small moment can have devastating consequences for the past, present, and future. But some time trav­elers are not exactly honorable, and sometimes unsavory deals must be struck to maintain order.

With the Infinityglass (central to understanding and harnessing the time gene) at large, the hunt is on to find it before someone else does.

But the Hourglass has an advantage. Lily, who has the ability to locate anything lost, has determined that the Infinityglass isn't an object. It's a person. And the Hourglass must find him or her first. But where do you start searching for the very key to time when every second could be the last?
 The Golden Day by Ursula Dubosarsky
Publisher:  Candlewick Press

From Goodreads: 
The Vietnam War rages overseas, but back at home, in a year that begins with the hanging of one man and ends with the drowning of another, eleven schoolgirls embrace their own chilling history when their teacher abruptly goes missing on a field trip. Who was the mysterious poet they had met in the Garden? What actually happened in the seaside cave that day? And most important — who can they tell about it? In beautifully shimmering prose, Ursula Dubosarsky reveals how a single shared experience can alter the course of young lives forever. Part gripping thriller, part ethereal tale of innocence lost, The Golden Day is a poignant study of fear and friendship, and of what it takes to come of age with courage.
 TMI by Patty Blount
Publisher:  SourceBooks Fire

From Amazon: 
Best friends don't lie.
Best friends don't ditch you for a guy.
Best friends don't post your deepest darkest secret online.

Bailey's falling head-over-heels for Ryder West, a mysterious gamer she met online. A guy she's never met in person. Her best friend, Meg, doesn't trust smooth-talking Ryder. He's just a picture-less profile.
When Bailey starts blowing Meg off to spend more virtual quality time with her new crush, Meg decides it's time to prove Ryder's a phony.
But one stupid little secret posted online turns into a friendship-destroying feud to answer the question: Who is Ryder West?

 Chasing Shadows by Swati Avasthi
Publisher:  Knopf Books for Young Readers

From Goodreads:  Before: Corey, Holly, and Savitri are one unit—fast, strong, inseparable. Together they turn Chicago concrete and asphalt into a freerunner’s jungle gym, ricocheting off walls, scaling buildings, leaping from rooftops to rooftop.

But acting like a superhero doesn’t make you bulletproof…

After: Holly and Savitri are coming unglued. Holly says she’s chasing Corey’s killer, chasing revenge. Savitri fears Holly’s just running wild—and leaving her behind. Friends should stand by each other in times of crisis. But can you hold on too tight? Too long?

 Broken by Elizabeth Pulford
Publisher:  Walker Books Australia

From Goodreads: 
Critically injured in a motorbike accident, Zara Wilson lies in a coma. She is caught between many worlds: the world of her hospital room and anxious family, and that of her memories and a dream-like fantasy where she searches for her brother Jem. Jem proves elusive but Zara s adventures in her subconscious unlock dark secrets of a troubled childhood. Zara must face up to her past in order to accept her future.

August 8th

Charmed Vengeance (The Aether Chronicles #2) by Suzanne Lazear
Publisher:  Flux

From Goodreads:  In the Faerie realm, Noli Braddock's relationship with her best friend V has grown into something more. But V's mother, Faerie Queen Tiana, has ruled that they are forbidden to see each other. Returning to the mortal realm, Noli joins the crew of her brother's air-pirate ship, the Vixen's Revenge. There she discovers that her brother has hired the scallywag Faerie huntsman, Kevighn Silver. While serving as shipmates, Kevighn and Noli learn that the Earth Court King plans to find a forbidden artifact--one that will bring destruction to everyone Noli loves.

Monday, July 29, 2013

New Books out this Week: July 29 - Aug. 4, 2013

July 30

Earthbound (Earthbound #1) by Aprilynne Pike
Publisher: Razorbill

From Goodreads:  Tavia Michaels is the sole survivor of the plane crash that killed her parents. When she starts to see strange visions of a boy she’s never spoken with in real life, she begins to suspect that there’s much about her past that she isn’t being told.

Tavia immediately searches for answers, desperate to determine why she feels so drawn to a boy she hardly knows. But when Tavia discovers that the aunt and uncle who took her in after her parents' death may have actually been responsible for the plane crash that killed them--and that she may have been the true intended victim--she flees for the safety of Camden, Maine, where the boy she sees in her visions instructs her to go.

Now, Tavia is on the run with no one to trust. No one, that is, except for her best friend and longtime crush, Benson.

Tavia feels torn between the boy who mysteriously comes to her at night and the boy who has been by her side every step of the way. But what Tavia doesn't know is that the world is literally falling apart and that to save it she will have to unite with the boy in her visions. Only problem? To do so would mean rejecting Benson's love. And that's the one thing Tavia Michaels swore she'd never do.

 All Our Pretty Songs (Pretty Songs #1) by Sarah McCarry
Publisher:  St. Martin's Griffin

 From Goodreads:  Set against the lush, magical backdrop of the Pacific Northwest, two inseparable best friends who have grown up like sisters—the charismatic, mercurial, and beautiful Aurora and the devoted, soulful, watchful narrator—find their bond challenged for the first time ever when a mysterious and gifted musician named Jack comes between them. Suddenly, each girl must decide what matters most: friendship, or love. What both girls don’t know is that the stakes are even higher than either of them could have imagined. They’re not the only ones who have noticed Jack’s gift; his music has awakened an ancient evil—and a world both above and below which may not be mythical at all. The real and the mystical; the romantic and the heartbreaking all begin to swirl together, carrying the two on journey that is both enthralling and terrifying.

 Love Disguised by Lisa Klein
Publisher:  Bloomsbury USA Childrens

From Goodreads:  Will Shakespeare is about to meet the girl who will change his life forever. After a mixed-up courtship with the Hathaway sisters ends badly, Will jumps at the chance to go to London, where he can pursue his dream of becoming an actor. There, Will meets the unusually tall (and strong) Meg who has earned the nickname "Long Meg" for her height. She's also fleeing her own past as an orphan turned thief. Disguised as "Mack," Meg was once a member of a band of boy thieves who betrayed her. When Will is robbed by those same villains, Meg disguises herself as "Mack" again--telling Will that Mack is her twin brother--in order to help Will recover his money. As Mack, she finds true friendship with Will. But is there more? And who is Meg really fooling with her disguise? 

  Bubble World by Carol Snow
 Publisher:  Henry Holt & Company

From Goodreads:  Freesia’s life is perfect. She lives on the beautiful tropical island of Agalinas, surrounded by idyllic weather, fancy dress shops, and peacocks who sing her favorite song to wake her up in the morning. She has so many outfits she could wear a different one every day for a year and not run out.

Lately things on the island may have been a bit flippy: sudden blackouts, students disappearing, even Freesia’s reflection looking slightly . . . off. But in Freesia’s experience, it’s better not to think about things like that too much.

Unfortunately for her, these signs are more than random blips in the universe.

  Seven Minutes in Heaven (The Lying Game #6) by Sara Shepard
Publisher:  HarperTeen

From Goodreads:  My sister wants the truth.

But sometimes the truth hurts.

For months, my long-lost twin, Emma, has been living my life and trying to solve my murder. She's unearthed dark secrets about my friends, my family, and my tangled past. But when it comes to finding my killer, she keeps running into dead ends.

Until my body shows up in Sabino Canyon. Suddenly everyone knows there are two girls who look like Sutton Mercer—and that one of them is dead. At first the police assume the body is Emma's. But as questions and accusations start flying, it's harder than ever for Emma to keep playing me. The truth is bound to come out eventually. And when it does, Emma will be suspect number one in my murder investigation. If she can't find my killer before time runs out, she'll end up behind bars . . . or worse.

Way too much Drama by Earl Sewell
Publisher:  Harlequin Kimani

From Goodreads:  Maya is ready to put the fabulous back into her life—and that means getting her manipulative cousin, Viviana, out of it. Bad enough that Viviana is living under the same roof and tried to claim Maya's boyfriend, Misalo, for herself. Now she's going to Maya's high school and she's part of the quiz team competing on a TV show; alongside Maya, Keysha and Misalo.
Maya has no sympathy when Viviana finally starts to feel the pressure of fitting in to her new world. That's until her cousin does something drastic; and dangerous. Maybe Viviana isn't as tough as everyone thought. Maya could be the only person who can help bring her back safely. Question is; does she want to?

 Star Power (Charly's Epic Fiasco's #3) by Kelli London
Publisher:   Kensington Books

From Amazon:  Charly St. James is on top, and she's determined to keep it that way. That's why she and the producers have come up with a plan to take The Extreme Dream Team to the next level--by turning loners into VIPs. After all, how can you enjoy your new digs if your life is jacked up?

But when Charly meets her first makeover, Nia, she knows she'll have to do more than dress her up and boost her self-esteem. Nia is living in the shade of her twin sister, who is luxuriating in a major case of pretty girl syndrome. And the more Charly tries to get Nia to shine, the more her twin sabotages her mission. Good thing Charly loves a challenge, 'cause these twins' troubles are more than skin deep. . .

 Midnight Frost (Mythos Academy #5) by Jennifer Estep
Publisher:  K-Teen

From Goodreads:  Jwhen it seems life at Mythos Academy can’t get any more dangerous, the Reapers of Chaos manage to prove me wrong. It was just a typical night at the Library of Antiquities — until a Reaper tried to poison me. The good news is I’m still alive and kicking. The bad news is the Reaper poisoned someone else instead.

As Nike’s Champion, everyone expects me to lead the charge against the Reapers, even though I’m still hurting over what happened with Spartan warrior Logan Quinn. I’ve got to get my hands on the antidote fast — otherwise, an innocent person will die. But the only known cure is hidden in some creepy ruins — and the Reapers are sure to be waiting for me there …

August 1st

 If I Ever Get Out of Here by Eric Gansworth
Publisher:  Arthur A. Levine Books

From Goodreads:  Lewis "Shoe" Blake is used to the joys and difficulties of life on the Tuscarora Indian reservation in 1975: the joking, the Fireball games, the snow blowing through his roof. What he's not used to is white people being nice to him -- people like George Haddonfield, whose family recently moved to town with the Air Force. As the boys connect through their mutual passion for music, especially the Beatles, Lewis has to lie more and more to hide the reality of his family's poverty from George. He also has to deal with the vicious Evan Reininger, who makes Lewis the special target of his wrath. But when everyone else is on Evan's side, how can he be defeated? And if George finds out the truth about Lewis's home -- will he still be his friend?

Torn by David Massey
Publisher:  Chicken House

From Goodreads:  Witnesses to a mystery on the battlefield, a British medic and an American Navy SEAL confront Afghanistan's fog of war.

In war-torn Afghanistan, a girl walks right into a hail of bullets: Elinor watches it with her own eyes. The young British army medic risks the line of fire to rescue her, only to realize the girl is gone.

To find the missing, mysterious child, Elinor enlists the help of an American Navy SEAL. But in all the confusion, with coalition troops fighting every day to maintain a fragile peace, does Ben have something to hide?

Elinor came to Afghanistan with the hope of changing hearts and minds: What she's about to discover will make her question everything she ever believed about love and war.

  The Boy on the Bridge by Natalie Standiford
Publisher:  Scholastic Press

From Goodreads:  Laura Reid goes to Leningrad for a semester abroad as Cold War paranoia is peaking in 1982. She meets a young Russian artist named Alexei and soon, with Alexei as her guide, Laura immerses herself in the real Russia--a crazy world of wild parties, black-market books and music, and smuggled letters to dissidents. She must keep the relationship secret; associating with Americans is dangerous for Alexei, and if caught, Laura could be sent home and Alexei put under surveillance or worse. At the same time, she's been warned that Soviets often latch onto Americans in hopes of marrying them and thus escaping to the United States. But she knows Alexei loves her. Right?

As June approaches--when Laura must return to the United States--Alexei asks Laura to marry him. She's only nineteen and doesn't think she's ready to settle down. But what if Alexei is the love of her life? How can she leave him behind? If she has a chance to change his life, to rescue him from misery, shouldn't she take it?


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Compliance (Dust Chronicles #2) by Maureen McGowan

Compliance (Dust Chronicles #2) by Maureen McGowan
Publisher: Amazon Childrens Publishing
Publish Date:  June 4, 2013
Pages: 378
ISBN: 978-1477816530

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Glory is a double agent. She's training to be a Compliance Officer in the domed city, while rescuing Deviants secretly.  Glory comes off as stronger, yet more confused, very realistic, in this story. 

Cal is good, but how will he be when he finds out the truth about Glory?  Will he still want her?  Or will he just push her away?

The villian was a little predictable, but otherwise the story was good.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Naturals (Lost Souls #2) by Tiffany Truitt

The Naturals (Lost Souls #2) by Tiffany Truitt
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Publish Date: April 2, 2013
Pages: 352
ISBN: 978-1620611470

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

The second book begins with Tess traveling to the Isolationist camp.

A lot of the book is taken up by flashbacks and how Tess feels.  Depending on how flashbacks are done, I enjoy them.  These were functionally fine, but I was annoyed by the subject matter.

The world building was good on the physical things, but the people and emotional side of things were a bit sketchy.

I didn't like Tess' judgemental attitude toward Sharon - the only other female that can reproduce.  Judge not, Tess!