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6/27/2012

Waiting on Wednesday #1

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases we're eagerly anticipating.

I just finished reading Legend by Marie Lu, and I abso-friggin'-lutely loved it (the review will be up on the blog soon). Then I saw the cover of the second installment in this series, Prodigy, and I read the blurb, and I started craving for it. Just look at it, and you will understand me! *fangirl squee*

title: Prodigy (Legend #2) - Marie Lu
to be released:  January 29th 2013


The Elector Primo of the Republic has died, with his son assuming power over what’s left of the USA’s West Coast as it teeters on full-blown chaos. June and Day join up with Patriot rebels so they can rescue Day’s brother and head east for the Colonies. In order to help, though, the rebels want June and Day to kill the new Elector, who may pose an even greater threat than his father.


Love, 
Mar

Cover reveal Sever, Deep Betrayal and more

Hey everyone ^^
I decided to start doing cover reveals on my blog, so here are a few new covers I just had to share with you. Enjoy, love, fangirl, all of it :)


First of all, the most exiting one, Sever by Lauren Destefano. I absolutely love Destefano's books, and their covers are so beautiful.


title: Sever (The Chemical Garden #3) - Lauren Destefano
to be released: February 12th, 2013


What if you knew exactly when you would die? In the not-too-distant future, genetic engineering has turned every newborn into a ticking time bomb — males only live to age 25 and females only live to age 20.
In this bleak landscape, young girls are kidnapped and forced into polygamous marriages to keep the population from dying out. When 16-year-old Rhine Ellery is taken by "the Gatherers" to become a bride, she enters a world of wealth and privilege. Rhine has only one purpose after she has been married to her new husband, Linden: to escape and find her twin brother.
But Rhine has more to contend with than losing her freedom. Linden's eccentric father is bent on finding an antidote to the genetic virus that is getting closer to taking his son, even if it means collecting corpses in order to test his experiments. With the help of Gabriel, a servant to whom she is dangerously attracted, Rhine is desperate to learn the truth and protect those closest to her. But, as her sister wife Cecily keeps insisting, her role may be much bigger than that.
In the first two books of the Chemical Garden trilogy, Wither and Fever, Rhine struggles to escape the mansion and then to navigate the brutal world outside. Now in Sever, the third and final book, Rhine uncovers some shattering truths about the past that her parents never had the chance to tell her and the alarming implications regarding her own genes. She may be the one who can save the human race.


Secondly, there is the cover for Deep Betrayal, part 2 of the Lies Beneath series. I just reviewed the first part. Mermaid books are so amazing :)


title: Deep Betrayal (Lies Beneath #2) - Anne Greenwood Brown
to be released: 2013

It's been thirty days, two hours, and seventeen minutes since Calder left Lily standing on the shores of Lake Superior. Not that she's counting. And when Calder does return, it's not quite the reunion Lily hoped for. Especially after she lets her father in on a huge secret: he, like Calder, is a merman. Obsessed with his new identity, Lily's dad monopolizes Calder's time as the two of them spend every day in the water, leaving Lily behind.
Then dead bodies start washing ashore. Calder blames his mermaid sisters, but Lily fears her father has embraced the merman's natural need to kill. As the body count grows, everyone is pointing fingers. Lily doesn't know what to believe—only that whoever's responsible is sure to strike again. . . .




Then there is the cover for Ally Carter's Heist Society #3. I haven't started the series yet, but I will probably read the first (and second) book during the summer holidays.


title: Perfect Scoundrels (Heist Society #3) - Ally Carter
to be released: February 5th, 2013


Kat is a girl who is used to getting—or stealing—everything she wants. But telling the truth to the boy she likes? Now that's a cat of a different color.
When Kat's on-again off-again boyfriend, Hale, suddenly inherits his family's billion dollar company, Kat gets a tip-off that the will is a fake. Trapped between a rock and a hard place, how can she tell Hale that he might be living a lie?


What do you think about these covers. Do they give you a covergasm? :P I absolutely need Sever (Like, right now, just let me finish my time machine) and Deep Betrayal looks pretty amazing too. (although I liked the cover of lies beneath better, this one isn't bad)


Love,
Mar

Tour stop - Guest post by Ednah Walters

Today's Tour stop is for Betrayed, by Ednah Walters. She has written a great guest post on the difference between writing YA and Adult romance. Make sure to check out Betrayed! I absolutely loved it and will post my review soon.


Meet Ednah Walters, author of Betrayed, a YA paranormal romance novel.



Lil has come to terms with her life as a Guardian/demon hunter and the wielder of the Nephilim most powerful weapon. But trouble looms in the Guardian enclave. Bran is pulling away from her and her best human friend is in trouble, and it's all Lil's fault


The Difference between Writing YA and Adult romance:


Writing both YA and adult romance can be challenging but at the same time rewarding.


Is it easy? No, but the yo-yo-ing back and forth does wonders to my creativity.
The best part of writing YA is experiencing first love through the eyes of a teenager. Teens are not burdened by what the guy does for a living and the future, past relationships and the baggage that comes with them. They focus on each other and their love, which is intense and all consuming, and that is enough for them.


Try to write something similar for adult romance and the story comes across as unrealistic.


1. When writing adult, I keep the sensuality level high. The kissing scenes are more descriptive, feelings from every part of the body are described. When writing YA, I pretend that my characters are dead waist down. Heck, make that dead neck down. I absolutely do not mention blood rushing to the, uh, lower extremities or the chest.


2. When I write adult romance, I can draw from my own experience, the heartache of dealing with a difficult man, the compromises, the jaded way adults look at different situations. Writing YA, I try to get inside teenagers’ head by watching teen TV series, listening to my kids and their friends talk about high school, cliques, understanding their angst, the “I’ll absolutely die if he talks to me…or, I’ll die if he dumps me…” things that drive grownups nuts but make perfect sense to teens.


3. I keep the dialogue simple for my YA… Having a 19 and 15 year old around the house helps. I read aloud dialogues and they go, “Mom, no one talks like that.”
“I did when I was a teenager,” I retort but I always listen to them.


 5. Last, I find a way to make my YA soul mates. Why? Because they are still teenagers. They will go to college or rejoin their pack, their den, return to their parallel world or planet before they can come back to be with the hero or heroine. The bottom line is they must have their HEA but it is not going to happen when she is 16 and he’s 17 or 19. Soul mates in adult romance sounds contrived unless it is paranormal.


Happy Reading.


*disclaimer: this guest post was written by Ednah Walters, author of Betrayed. I was not paid to post this guest post.*




giveaway of some amazing stuff:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

The list of other blogs participating in this tour:

6/24/2012

Before I die by Jenny Downham

title: Before I die
written by: Jenny Downham
series: -
genre: Young Adult, tragedy, romance
page count: 327
publication date: January 1st, 2007


Tessa has just months to live. Fighting back against hospital visits, endless tests, drugs with excruciating side-effects, Tessa compiles a list. It’s her To Do Before I Die list. And number one is Sex. Released from the constraints of ‘normal’ life, Tessa tastes new experiences to make her feel alive while her failing body struggles to keep up. Tessa’s feelings, her relationships with her father and brother, her estranged mother, her best friend, and her new boyfriend, all are painfully crystallised in the precious weeks before Tessa’s time finally runs out.

I had been wanting to read Before I die for a long time, and then I just stumbled upon it in the library, and I just had to read it. So I did. And I loved it, and cried a lot. Just like most people who have read this book probably have. 

Before I die is not your stereotype sad story. The list made it a unique book. What would you want to do before you died? Tessa tries to do everything on the list. The list becomes her life, as far as she still has a life. But there are some things on the list that will be hard to accomplish. Love and be loved. It seems so hard. With the last power she has inside of her, Tessa completes the list. Some things are hilarious to read about, like the only-say-yes day she had, while others seemed impossible, like bring back together her parents. 

As I turned the pages of this book, I became fully aware of what was happening. Every page meant one page closer to Tessa's death. Even a miracle couldn't make her stay alive anymore. No-one should die at that age, or earlier. 

Tessa is one of the greatest characters ever. She has cancer but can still be happy, and she can still find the power to hang on to her life, even if that power is the list. Tessa was super realistic, and at one point in her process of accepting her own death she decided to stop giving a f*ck about her own life. And that's what made her so special. Then there was the YA-stereotype mean best friend. She didn't really interest me. And there was the Boyfriend, who was a-dor-able, he was so caring and protective, just like Tessa's dad. And the most amazing character from this book was Tessa's brother. He seemed to have accepted his sister's death, and was joking about it all the time, but when she was about to die he revealed his real feelings. That made me cry so much!

Jenny Downham has a great writing style, and the pace of this story was great, too. I just wished the book wasn't so short...

A recommender for every teen who likes sad tragic stories, or just wants to see how amazing his/her own life is. 

I rate this book 5/5 stars.

Love, Mar

6/23/2012

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

title: Vampire Academy
written by: Richelle Mead
series: Vampire Academy #1
genres: Young Adult, Paranormal Romance
page count: 332
publication date: August 16th, 2007
publisher: Razorbill


St. Vladimir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school—it’s a hidden place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Princess. They’ve been on the run, but now they’re being dragged back to St. Vladimir’s—the very place where they’re most in danger...


Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy’s ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi—the world’s fiercest and most dangerous vampires—make Lissa one of them forever.


Oh my, I had heard so much about Vampire Academy. Everyone had read it and loved it. Still I was worrying, what if I didn't like it? What if I found it to be too much like Twilight or House of Night. And it was another vampire book. Still, when I entered the book store and found some very cheap copies of the first 3 installments in this series, I couldn't resist buying them. So here I am, reading Vampire Academy, and falling in love with this series. Yes, I fell for it. I fell hard.


The one thing I loved most about this book was Rose. Rose Hathaway is the most kick-butt character I have ever encountered while reading. Even more kick-butt than Katniss. And Katniss won the Hunger Games! Rose is the best protector ever. Hard from the outside, and caring from the inside. And I still am not sure which side of her I like best. Probably the kick-butt side of her :)


Secondly, all other characters were so amazing! Lissa, the Moroi princess and Rose's best friend, can be arrogant, but most of the times she is nice and herself. Her royality hasn't turned her into a royal bitch! Then there were all the other royal people, and they were royal bitches. All of them! And of course there was Dimitri *fangirl alert* Oh my gosh. Dimitri seems like the perfect boyfriend. Hot, good fighter, nice to girls, all of it. I just kept on forgetting that he was 7 years older than Rose, and that they shouldn't be together because they should.


The plot of Vampire Academy was interesting and full of suspence. First I had a hard time figuring out what exactely Moroi, Strigoi and Dhampirs were, but with my awesome reading skills (ahem) and Greek skills (yes, I have been taught some Ancient Greek) I quickly got it. No single use of vampire in this book -except the title- is a pro. I have read too much Vampire books, and they don't interest me anymore. More zombies please?


I can't really discuss the writing style with you because I read this book in Dutch (I should have read it in English, I know)


Altogether Vampire Academy is a great Young Adult novel all teen girls will like (even I liked it!), and I will definitely read the next books in this series.


I rate this book 4/5


Love, Mar

6/22/2012

Giveaway + review Waterspell by Deborah J. Lightfoot

Tour stop time :) Today I'm here with you to revier the book Waterspell, by Deborah J. Lightfoot. And make sure to continue reading, as there also is a giveaway!


title: Waterspell
written by: Deborah J. Lightfoot
series: Waterspell #1
genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy
page count: 375
publication date: January 1st, 2012
publisher: Seven rivers publishing


LINKS TO BUY
Amazon
Barnes and Noble


Drawn into the schemes of an angry wizard, Carin glimpses the place she once called home. It lies upon a shore that seems unreachable. To learn where she belongs and how to get there, the teenage traveler must decipher the words of an alien book, follow the clues in a bewitched poem, conjure a dragon from a pool of magic -- and tread carefully around a seductive but volatile, emotionally scarred sorcerer who can't seem to decide whether to love her or kill her.

I always like doing tour stops, and Waterspell sounded very intriguing, so I signed up for this tour immediately. I was not disappointed by it, but it was not what I expected it to be at all! I will give this book a thumbs up, because high fantasy books are epic. always!

The main character, Carin, was captured by an angry wizard, and that was the best thing about this books' plot. Angry evil wizards are amazing! Also, I loved the enormous influence Alice in Wonderlands had on this novel. Lots of references to the book, that played a major role in this book, and some of them about one of my favorite Alice in Wonderland character, which I shouldn't talk about because that would be a spoil.

The book was not 100% easy to read for me, mainly because of the range of vocab used in it. I had to look up some words because I thought they were imporatant, and had never seen them before. (e.g. volatile in the blurb.) Not that it is super special when I haven't heard of a word, since I'm not English/American, but it kind of bothers me... Still, I think it fit wit this book because it was set in another time.

The plot of this book was special, but it didn't grab me. It just didn't have the wow-factor for me. Might be my issue with high fantasy. I always need a long time to get into those novels. Also, I couldn't really relate to the main character. Luckily, while reading I got a little more interested in the whole story and characters.


My main problem with this book was the lack of Romance. I ain't a romance junkee, but a little romance or something like it always is a pro for me. Unless it's incredibly cheesy...


Altogether I would recommend this books to teens who have no problems with getting into high fantasy and don't mind it if a book contains no romance.


I rate this book 3/5


Now enter the giveaway :)


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Author bio: 
Castles in the cornfield provided the setting for Deborah J. Lightfoot’s earliest flights of fancy.On her father’s farm in West Texas, she grew up reading extraordinary tales of adventure and reenacting them behind tall ramparts of sun-drenched corn. She left the farm to earn a bachelor of science degree in journalism and write award-winning books of history and biography, including The LH7 Ranch (University of North Texas Press) and Trail Fever (William Morrow, New York). High on her Bucket List was the desire to try her hand at the genre she most admired. The result is WATERSPELL, a complex, intricately detailed fantasy that begins with Book 1: The Warlock and Book 2: The Wysard, and concludes (for the present) with Book 3: The Wisewoman. But a legal pad filled with notes and tucked away in a desk drawer suggests a possible Book 4 before the saga may fairly be said to be finished. 

Deborah is a professional member of The Authors Guild. She and her husband live in the country south of Fort Worth, Texas. Find her online at www.waterspell.net.

WEBSITE
FACEBOOK


*Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a member of Reading Addiction Blog Tours and a copy of this book was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by Reading Addiction Blog Tours, no payment was received by me in exchange for this review. There was no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, publisher, publicist, or readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning Use of Endorcements and Testimonials in Advertising*

6/20/2012

Breaking Dawn part 2 full movie trailer

So, as you might know I'm not a real Twilight fan. But this trailer showed up and I just watched it.
Well, my opinion on Twilight hasn't changed, although the movies are getting better and better (BD #1 is the exception, it was horrible) And now the BD#2 trailer is released. The acting got a little bit better.


The most exiting part of the Twilight series (the gathering of all vampires + fight) will be in this movie ^^


I absolutely hate it that Bella is a vampire now, because she isn't worth to be one. She should have died somewhere in the first book. *don't hate me, please* , and they completely screwed up the role of Renesmee in the movie. -well, that's my opinion again.-


Will I watch it? - Probably sometime in my life, but not on the premiere night
Will I hate it? - A big chance I will.


So, do you like Twilight, and will you go to the cinema for this movie? Share your opinion on this trailer in the comments :)


Here's a link to the full trailer:



Love, Mar

6/19/2012

Manga Tuesdays; Boku No Hatsukoi Wo Kimi Ni Sasagu


funny fact, the background picture is the
same as the photo for the movie

Manga: Boku No Hatsukoi Wo Kimi Ni Sasagu
Written by: Aoki, Kotomi
Genres: Romance, Shoujo, Sliceof life
Volumes:  12
Anime: nope, a movie though, haven't checked it out yet
own/ library/ borrowed/ read online
read online via the sites: www.manga.animea.net and www.mangareader.com
completed/ ongoing
publisher: shogakukan










Summary:Takuma and Mayu's story began when they were only 8 years old. During his childhood, Takuma was constantly hospitalised due to his heart condition. He soon became friends with Mayu, the daughter of the doctor in charge of his case. Day by day they grew closer and closer. However, the summer when Takuma was 8, he made a promise to Mayu that he couldn't keep... Their story unfolds as they grow older and their bond gets stronger...source: http://www.mangareader.net/468/boku-no-hatsukoi-wo-kimi-ni-sasagu.html 
Review:

And here is the
movie picture
This is one of the first manga I read actually (first nana, then kimi ni todoke, then bokura ga ita, then a sad love story and then this one, if I remember correctly). Anyway, it was ongoing while I read it and I think this what actually the first story that finished while I was reading it. That is already a while ago, though.
Back to the point.
It is about Takuma and Mayu and they make a promise to marry each other when they are eight. But Takumi has a heart disease and might not even be able to live till he is 18, so, yeah, that's a problem.
Takumi starts to avoid Mayu, but they still get together and decide to deal together with his disease.
It was nice to read, don't think I would still read it though, a too predictable storyline, but still, especially if you are a fan of shoujo, and you haven't read too much manga yet, it is a good manga. The art is not very special, very shoujo-ish.
I like the ending, it's not very likely that it would happen that way, but I think it was finished nicely, not to rushed, which is often the case.

Rating:
3.5

Some things about manga for non-manga readers :P :

Manga is a Japanese cartoon or comic. There are lots of them in all kind of different genres (really from porn to manga for little girls). Of most mangas there is a new chapter released every month, so that's why some are ongoing (it also can be that the translation group is a bit slow. DON'T EVER GET ANGRY BECAUSE OF THAT THOUGH! Manga's are translated by volunteers, and not very much people speak both English and Japanese well enough to translate them. If your bothered by it, join such a group! They are always looking for new members! Also editors and cleaners are needed!).
If you are too lazy to read, of most mangas there is an anime to watch ;)
If you consider reading manga pay attention! Manga is written from right to left!

some terms:
Shoujo= Manga for mostly teenage girls (it can be very childish, it can be really mature)
Shounen= Manga for mostly teenage boys (example: Naruto )
Josei= Manga for older women (the manga site says: late teenage and adult audiences, this is usually because the characters in the manga are not in high school anymore, this doesn't mean it's not fun to read if you are younger)
Seinen= Manga for older men (also for late teenage and adult audiences, also usually fun to read if you're younger)
School life= is sometimes quite interesting because the japanese school life seems very different than what I am used to
Shoujoai= girls love
Shounenai= boys love
Yuri = let's just say: the more advanced version of girls love
Yaoi= the more advanced version of boys love

6/16/2012

Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown

title: Lies Beneath
written by: Anne Greenwood Brown
series: Lies Beneath #1
genres: Young Adult, Paranormal Romance, merfolks
pages: 303
publisher: Delacorte books for Young Readers
publication date: June 12th, 2012


Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans, killing them to absorb their energy. But this summer the underwater clan targets Jason Hancock out of pure revenge. They blame Hancock for their mother's death and have been waiting a long time for him to return to his family's homestead on the lake. Hancock has a fear of water, so to lure him in, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. Easy enough—especially as Calder has lots of practice using his irresistable good looks and charm on ususpecting girls. Only this time Calder screws everything up: he falls for Lily—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined. And just as his sisters are losing patience with him.

First of all, what a beautiful cover!! Secondly, Lies Beneath was my first book about mermaids ever, so I had no idea what to expect. I have never given much attention to mermaids, the only mermaid thing I have ever seen on TV in Disney's the Little Mermaid and the movie Aquamerine. I was expecting all mermaids to be like Ariel, all nice and friendly and girly, but only after reading the first chapters I was sure I was 100% wrong about them. They were badass killer mermaids!

Right after opening this book I was sucked into the story, told from Calder's -a merman- point of view. Calder was a great character, although he reminded me of Edward from the Twilight Saga at some parts of the book. The only thing he does is lying, not because he wants to, but for his sisters, who are definitely more kick-ass than he is. I absolutly love the whole woman on top thing :) Maris is the kind of annoying, but also the most dangerous of the mermaids. She wants to avenge her mother's death, and is prepared to do everything for that. Then there is the sweet one of the 3 sisters, Tallulah, and to me she seemed a porcelain doll, breakable but extremely beautiful.

The plot of this stories was very original. Killer mermaids, teenage romance, family drama, the whole package! Some passages made me smile, others made me sad. But at the end some of them just made no sense, and even annoyed me. I can't say much about it without spoiling, so I won't... But I was not very happy about it. 

Anne Greenwood Brown's writing style is not very special, but pleasant to read. It was not extremely hard, so I didn't have to pick up a dictionary every minute, and it had little pieces of poetry in it. I really love poetry, although I am really bad at understanding it... Furthermore, it was written from a single POV, which I really liked. Most of the books I read are written from multiple points of view, which sometimes confuses me. 

I give 3.5 stars to Lies Beneath, a very original YA romance with something for everyone, which I would recommend especially to people who have already read some other mermaid books and are looking for another gread mermaid book.

Love, Mar

*A review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for a honest review. This was done via Netgalley, an organization that connects readers with publishers and distrubutes eGalleys. I did not recieve any money or other payment for this review.*


6/13/2012

Looking for Alaska by John Green

title: Looking for Alaska
written by: John Green 
series: -
genres: Young Adult, Romance, Contemp
page count: 211
publication date: January 1st, 2005

Miles Halter is fascinated by famous last words and tired of his safe life at home. He leaves for boarding school to seek what the dying poet Francois Rabelais called the "Great Perhaps." Much awaits Miles at Culver Creek, including Alaska Young. Clever, funny, screwed-up, and dead sexy, Alaska will pull Miles into her labyrinth and catapult him into the Great Perhaps.


Oh. My. Freaking. Gosh! John Green did it again! His first book, for me the last, is a masterpiece! Looking for Alaska belongs on my shelves, between my most-loved books. I never want to return it to the library. Ever. So, first of all, John Green - write more books. Please. For me? Otherwise ... ...  *scary glare* Looking for Alaska was not my favorite John Green book, that will, and will always remain to be, the Fault in our Stars. I absolutely LOVE that book. Make sure to read it!

Looking for Alaska is a typical John Green book. It is a) realistic, b) full of words I have to look up in my dictionary, c) is enormously sad, and d) I can talk about it for hours, and I will...  Especially d) -well, only d)- really annoys my friends and family. I will go rambling about this book for hours and they just have to listen. I think most of them have developed a mental mute mode with which they can switch the sound of my voice on and off... Actually it would be great if a thing like that existed :)

The characters were so wonderful. Miles, the main male character, was so a-dore-able. I totally want to hug him at the moment. His obsession with last words is one that is amazing and so original. Maybe I should pay more attention to them, too. :) And Alaska is so 101% messed up I just had to love her. I mean, you can choose your own name, and you choose Alaska, that told me a lot about her character already! Then there was Chip, the genius annex rebel and Miles' roommate. The three of them formed an amazing group of friends. I wish I knew them, and could be their fourth(/fifth) messed up friend!

John Green is the master of character development. This book had one major turning point, not very hard to locate because of the before-after writing style, which was pretty unique, just like the whole book was a one-of-a-kind book. Miles changed só much, but Green still made the whole transition look realistic. He totally deserves a medal for that! A big fat gold with diamonds medal!

The plot, however, was the best thing about this book. Never have I ever read a book with a plot as well thought-through and perfect as Looking for Alaska's. Everything worked out, every word sucked me deeper into the story and the lives of Miles, Alaska and Chip, and I loved everything about it! Most of the times I'm like - bwhlegg another college/high school story. But this one was indescribably good, incredibly close to perfection. The Before--After writing style was perfect for this book. It made the story easier to read, and made me interested. What was going to happen?!?! When I had found out I wished I could turn back the time. Oh my, I cried. I cried buckets full of tears. Like the girl in Absolutely - nine days. I quote: "this is the story of a girl, that cried a river and drowned the whole world" That song has been stuck in my head for days. Then there was the Great Perhaps and it made me think so much, about the labyrinth of suffering and all of it. 

Anyways, what usually bothers me about John Green's books, his use of extremely difficult words, was no problem with this book. Miles was a kind of genius, and so were -most of- the other characters, so I could imagine them really speaking like that. 

I've heard that people in America have to read this book in class. Lucky bastards! I wish I were reading such amazing books in class, but the only book I have had to read in class was Romeo and Juliet... 

I will never be able to give this book a rating worth it. It should get the highest number possible +1 out of 5!


DFTBA!!!

Love, Mar
ps; did you read this book? Do we share the same feelings about it? Let me know :)

6/12/2012

Manga Tuesdays; Heaven's Door


First of all I should say that I'm really sorry for not posting last week and for the short and late post of this week. I'm really busy and really lazy and I just forgot to do it last week, since I was too busy and didn't feel like doing it in the weekends and then I wanted to do it on wednesday, what I forgot, and well... okay I should stop with the excuses, I'm sorry for my laziness and stuff.

Manga: Heaven's door
Written by: Hongou Rango
Genres:  Comedy, drama, romance, shoujo
Volumes:  1
Anime: no, but it's actually based on a movie
own/ library/ borrowed/ read online
read online via the site(s): www.manga.animea.net and
completed/ ongoing
publisher: Shogaku Kan









Summary:Harumi has been in the hospital practically her whole life. She has a life-threatening disease, and is kept inside at all times. Her life is incredibly mundane until she meets Masato, a new patient. He isn't the best influence, being a heavy smoker and drinker, but since they've both got nothing better to do, they become friends. This humorous story follows their meeting and the night they spend together, talking about what it means to die early.source: http://manga.animea.net/heaven-s-door-hongou-ranko-.html

Review:

Heaven's door movie
Actually it was a pretty eye-opening story. I mean, both of these (young) people were about to die and you could feel that well. I also liked both of the characters. The art isn't really good, not too bad either, still really shoujo like. I also like the fact that it's definitely a tragedy, but it's really funny as well. Harumi doesn't know anything about the outside world while Masato is the kind of guy who has tried everything (at least, it seems that way).
Actually the whole story is about the last thing they want to do before they die, at least, before Harumi dies.
1. Kiss a cool guy
2. Go to the sea (she only wants that after she has talked about it with Masato)
The journey is hilarious, it's really the kind of journey you only can't afford to make if you are sure you die after it.
The ending is sad, but it's kind of predictable.

Rating:
4 stars

Some things about manga for non-manga readers :P :

Manga is a Japanese cartoon or comic. There are lots of them in all kind of different genres (really from porn to manga for little girls). Of most mangas there is a new chapter released every month, so that's why some are ongoing (it also can be that the translation group is a bit slow. DON'T EVER GET ANGRY BECAUSE OF THAT THOUGH! Manga's are translated by volunteers, and not very much people speak both English and Japanese well enough to translate them. If your bothered by it, join such a group! They are always looking for new members! Also editors and cleaners are needed!).
If you are too lazy to read, of most mangas there is an anime to watch ;)
If you consider reading manga pay attention! Manga is written from right to left!

some terms:
Shoujo= Manga for mostly teenage girls (it can be very childish, it can be really mature)
Shounen= Manga for mostly teenage boys (example: Naruto )
Josei= Manga for older women (the manga site says: late teenage and adult audiences, this is usually because the characters in the manga are not in high school anymore, this doesn't mean it's not fun to read if you are younger)
Seinen= Manga for older men (also for late teenage and adult audiences, also usually fun to read if you're younger)
School life= is sometimes quite interesting because the japanese school life seems very different than what I am used to
Shoujoai= girls love
Shounenai= boys love
Yuri = let's just say: the more advanced version of girls love
Yaoi= the more advanced version of boys love

white cat by Holly Black

book: White Cat
written by: Holly Black
series: Curse Workers #1
genre: young adult, fantasy, Mystery
pages: 310
publication date: January 1st, 2010
publisher: McElderry

Cassel comes from a family of curse workers—people who have the power to change your emotions, your memories, your luck, all by the slightest touch of their hands. Since curse work is illegal, they’re all criminals. But not Cassel. He hasn’t got the magic touch, so he’s an outsider—the straight kid in a crooked family—as long as you ignore one small detail: He killed his best friend, Lila. Now he is sleepwalking, propelled into the night by terrifying dreams about a white cat. He also notices that his brothers are keeping secrets from him. As Cassel begins to suspect he’s part of one huge con game, he must unravel his past and his memories. To find out the truth, Cassel will have to outcon the conmen.

So, I have finished my first Holly Black book. After watching the movie 'The Spiderwick Chronicles' I wanted to read that book(s) but I just couldn't find them anywhere. Some libraries suck, especially the small Dutch ones... Anyways, I did have high expectations of this book -yeah, I know, dangerous- and was not amazed by it. Still, I liked it :)

Holly Black is a master of writing fantasy, since her fantasy becomes realistic. I hardly ever come across a great fantasy book that is also realistic, so a 1+ for that. Also, the writing style of this book was marvellous, I could read it very easily, and I just felt very comfy reading it. -call me crazy, but some writing styles can seriously make me feel uncomfortably-

Blacks characters were great, but hard to relate to. Cassel, the male main character, was special from the inside, but didn't impress me, neither did most of the other characters. Only the cat, I absolutely loved it. Cats are walking around this planet to kill people that are allergic to adorableness... 

anyways, I wasn't impressed at all with the plot. I had expected way more of it. Not that it was bad, but after seeing the movie of the Spiderwick Chronicles -and after hearing that the book was better- I was sure White Cat was going to be freaking amazing. And it was just average amazing, so I was disappointed. Probably my own fault... Whatevs. 

I rushed through this book, and finished it in about 3 hours (that's over 100 pages per hour... is that even legal?) and that's one of this indicators that I didn't find this book extremely interesting. Usually, when I truly like a book, it takes a long time to read it, because I feel like I have to read every word that's written, but with this book I didn't have that feeling.

White Cat is a great fantasy for teens, but don't expect too much from it! I guess it just wasn't my cup of tea...

I give this book 3 stars




6/11/2012

Guest post + Review - Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00 by C.R. Hiatt

Photobucket And here I am again, risen from death (or from my lazy ass), with a tour stop of the wonderful YA mystery novel, Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00 by C.R. Hiatt. I will review it and there is an amazing guest post. Make sure not to miss it!

book: Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00
written by: C.R. Hiatt

series: McSwain & Beck #1
genres: Young Adult, Mystery, Action
pagecount: 351
publication date: April 31st, 2012


Sydney Marie McSwain and her pal, Cody Beck, team up to take on a secret club called The Devil's Door where members are branded with the tattoo of a devil and call themselves The Privileged Ones.
 Sydney Marie McSwain loves her mom, Anna - a private investigator in the coastal city where they live - but they had a major issue between them. Anna refused to give Sydney the identity of her father. On the day of her high school graduation, they were battling it out, once again. An hour later, Sydney, Cody and Jaden were at the local café, and watched as Anna was gunned down, and it was broadcasted on live TV.
 Faced with immediate responsibility, Sydney and Cody agreed to take over the agency, only they changed the name to McSwain & Beck. At the same time, Sydney convinced Sutter Beach Detective, Ace Carter, to help her track down her father.
 Out of the blue, a model walked in and hired them to follow her step-brother. While Cody was busy editing a trailer to solicit new clients, Sydney settled into her lemon-yellow pickup to do surveillance, and wound up staking out a secret club called The Devil’s Door whose suspicious members wore the tattoo of a devil.
 That same night, Sydney received a call from one of her mom’s former clients, only the client was gunned down at the location where they agreed to meet. The mysterious discovery of a DVD revealed the possibility that teenagers were being abducted, only nobody reported them missing.
 On the hunt for the victims, McSwain & Beck were chased by men in ski masks, nearly gunned down by members of a cartel called the outlaws, Sydney’s precious pickup was broken into; then the step-brother they were hired to follow, was found dead and Sydney was the number one suspect.
 If things weren’t bad enough already, they had to figure out how to crash a red-carpet Mardi Gras bash being held on a private cruise ship, before it sailed off into the sunset, where they just might meet the devil, himself.
 Now, the clock was ticking…
 And time was running out…
 How was she ever going to find her father, now?


“Their lives were in the hands of two 18 year-olds…”
Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00 was a wonderful book full of surprises and packed with action. I don't read a lot of action novels, but I enjoy reading them once in a while. This book really was worth the time it took me to read it.


I was amazed by the characters. They were great, and not some lame stereotypes. The girl, Sydney, was not very girlyl, but more of a tomboy. She definitely kicks ass! Then there was her a) hot, and b) great fighter bst friend Cody. He loves filming and photographing, which is why his parents kicked him our. He lives in the house of Jaden, the third, and last, one in the friend group. Together they form a marvellous trio of teenagers that might be able to arrest some major criminals...


The plot of this book sounded very promising, and it was just like I expected it to be. There was only one empty spot; no(t much) romance. Not that I am a 100% romance lover or something, but I just like to have some in every novel. But I get it, action and romance isn't always the best combination... Still, I was okay with it because of the whole story. Some teens who kick ass and save the world from criminals always are great to read about -this explains my obsession with Anthony Horowitz' Alex Rider series- and I adored all characters.


It was very well-written and easy to read. However, sometimes it was just so easy to read for me. As a Dutch girl that's still learning English, I am used to having a hard time reading novels because of the use of difficult words. This book was so easy to read... Maybe I'm just getting better at English. That would be great :)


A book I'd recommend to all teens that love books packed with action, mystery and humor. You will not be disappointed.


I give this book 3 stars!



Now who's up for a guest post? :P





What are my writing quirks and must haves to write?
 a guest post by C.R. Hiatt
Before I sit down and start writing, a lot of things need to be in place. Some may call them quirks. I call them: tools to a future bestselling novel. J 

For starters, where I write is critical. I am somewhat of an odd ball when it comes to that. I don’t have an office (by choice) - at least not the kind of office that everyone would consider normal. I love the outdoors, and don’t like being confined to a room with a desk and a computer, or four walls closing in on me. Instead, I bought myself a portable laptop desk that I can move around to wherever I plant myself for a particular day. The portable desk has compartments for all my accessories, phones, Kindle and USB cords. The legs can be folded underneath, and it can easily sit on my lap, or I can put the legs down and sit opposite a comfortable chair.

If the weather outside is poor, I park myself in front of a large window of the seasonal home. Now that summer is creeping up on us and the temperatures are starting to get warm, I will move the portable desk out on a screened-in deck, or I might even park myself down by the water.

Another quirk is; I need noise. A lot of writers need it to be completely quiet when they’re writing. If I’m stuck inside because of rotten weather, I either have the TV on tuned into an action flick, or I have the music cranked up. When the weather cooperates and I can sit on the deck, I put a sign out letting the neighbors and toursis know I’m “working”; then they know to steer clear. I may like the noise when I’m writing, but I prefer to not be interrupted when I’m in the middle of plotting a scene.

Now comes the must haves…I must have tons of dark chocolate in the refrigerator, and a case of Dasani water. Once I start the writing process, the only thing that I will definitely break for is; exercise. Exercise is a major part of the process to keep the juices flowing. Chances are; I won’t have time for full meals during my process, so I will have stocked up on salad fixings, and of course, my chocolate. To keep the hunger at bay, I will nibble on small pieces of the chocolate. It also helps with my concentration - at least that’s my excuse for getting to eat chocolate. J

When I’m finally seated and settled, first I check emails and social media outlets. I CANNOT start writing unless that is done. Otherwise, my mind will constantly drift off while I’m writing, worrying that I might have missed something. With that out of the way, I begin my writing process using my regimented “quirky” process, and I do not deviate from:

1. Write out a one or two sentence logline describing the story.
2. Write out a list of my characters and mini bios and backgrounds.
3. Using my logline as a guide, I write a one-page outline which can be used as a synopsis later.
4. Using my outline as a guide, I then write a draft screenplay using the three-act structure, and make sure to include the action scenes and dialogue.
5. Now that I have three-act screenplay (beginning, middle and end), I start adapting the story into a novel.
 Author Bio 

CR HIATT is a writer of screenplays and an author of YA action-mystery novels. The daughter of a military veteran, CR grew up in a small town where she became an All-American athlete. CR knew early on that she wasn't cut out for the nine to five type of job - her tendency to day 
dream about adventures often got in the way. But, being the daughter of a Navy Veteran she also knew one had to do what was necessary to be ecure, so she disciplined herself to push those dreams aside and settled on working in the entertainment legal field. When those dreams invaded her world once again, CR finally gave in and set out to write her own adventures. What the heck, right. If you can't live 'em, you might as well write about them. The McSwain & Beck series are works of fiction, only based on real life events. Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00 is the first in the series, and available now. Fireworks on the 4th will be released in late June, just before the 4th of July holiday season. 

website:
Blog:
Twitter @mcswainandbeck
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So, are you going to read Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00?

Love, Mar


*Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a member of Reading Addiction Blog Tours and a copy of this book was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by Reading Addiction Blog Tours, no payment was received by me in exchange for this review. There was no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, publisher, publicist, or readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning Use of Endorcements and Testimonials in Advertising*