Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sunday Cover Scramble [84]


Let's have some fun! I am going to post covers on here every Sunday that are scrambled up graphically, making it hard to tell what cover it is. I would like your guesses on what cover you think I've posted. I won't answer you until I'm posting the next one to let you know if you are right, allowing others to guess as well. Some will be hard, and others may be easy. Let me know in the comments if you'd like some more hints and I'll offer some more if no one guesses it correctly.


I'm changing up the format a little bit! I am going to be pulling covers off the Most Popular Page on Goodreads.




Saturday, September 13, 2014

JC's Bulletin of the Week [3]


Welcome to my weekly Bulletin. This is a place where you will find what's going on at JC's Book Haven lately, what I've found around the blogger world, Book News, and any books that are releasing in the next week.


Whoo! I've had a great reading week. I have 7 reviews that I haven't posted yet of some amazing books. That's the furthest ahead I've ever gotten! Also I JUST GOT A WITCH WITH NO NAME so I'm thrilled :D hehehe

YAY Happy Birthday to me! My birthday is Sunday. I know I may be one of few here, but I absolutely adore birthdays. It is so special to me that I have made it through another year and I'm left feeling incredibly blessed. I don't know everyone's birthdays, but if you like celebrating, let me know when your's is and I'll give you a b-day shout-out. Did you know that more babies are born in September than any other month?

The last two weeks on the blog:
I re-read Karen Marie Moning's Dark Fever and reviewed
I posted Zane and my 'classic' choices for When Life's Kicking Your Butt, How About a Theme Song
Blog Tour Excerpt and Trailer for Shadow of the Last Men by J.M. Salyards
Melody reviewed Toxic (Pretty Little Liars #15) by Sara Shepard
Matt reviewed Desperate Reflections (Adventures of Alexis Davneport #3) by Shay West
My Sidekick Showcase for this month is Best Friend
Did you post your guess on this week's Sunday Cover Scramble?
R.A. Desilets stopped by for an interview and a giveaway for her release of Girl Nevermore
Heena reviewed This is Sarah by Ally Malinenko
Blog Tour Trailer and Giveaway for The Watchers Book 1: Knight of Light by Deirdra Eden
Harry Potter Moment of the Week - Least Favorite Book
Matt reviewed Out of Time by Donna Marie Oldfield



Robyn's Birthday was yesterday. Stop by and give her some birthday love. 

Erika over at Your Urban Fantasy is having a giveaway for a signed copy of A Witch With No Name by Kim Harrison!

Lexxie gives an Up Close and Unconventional discussion about organization of her kindle and those many, many books on her to-read shelf. How do you organize your reads? She tells you what she does and asks for suggestions you may have as well.


Marissa Meyer is breaking down her writing process on her blog. These are some VERY detailed posts. She already has the first one up on Brainstorming and Research. Check out the introduction post here.

This is a pretty amazing post about Deep POV by Jeni Chappelle who is an editor and writing coach.

And this hilarious video: 


Friday, September 12, 2014

Review: Out of Time by Donna Marie Oldfield


Published: July 14th 2014
Genre: YA, superhero
Format: ebook
Source: provided for honest review
Goodreads Summary

A superhero novel.

Scarlett Shortt is just an average 18-year-old girl, but then her life takes an extraordinary turn following a road accident. She wakes up to find that the world has twisted beyond recognition – everything is very dark and different now and a bunch of teenagers she’s never met before claim to be her best friends. The group can do amazing things, such as fly, read minds and control electricity, and Scarlett is shocked to learn that she has special powers too.

The reluctant superhero soon finds herself caught up in their mission to make the world a better place and overthrow the evil prime minister, Adam Goulden. Will she learn how to use her powers in time to face their dangerous adversaries and will she ever discover exactly where she is and how she got there?

Out Of Time is the first book in a continuing series for young adults.

"What do I do now?" she thought. "I've been hit by a lorry, woken up in a nightmare universe, lost my best friend, found out my family are supposedly dead, I'm homeless and I've been attacked by a bunch of super-powered maniacs. Things really couldn't get crazier, or much worse."


The Good

Alright just what I needed...an easy to get into super hero book.  Fun powers, good heroes, and of course, my favorite, the despicable villain. But not only do you have your good guy super hero group but you also get your grey area, the end's justify the means super hero group trying to bring down the villain as well.


The Bad

The bad thing for me would be the old saying 'Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me'. You'll see what me and General Ackbar (Think return of the jedi) mean by this when you read it.


The Romance

The romance is interesting in this book as it has a love triangle, plus amnesia and even a 4th party. So let's just say everything is not smooth sailing.


Conclusion

Overall I had a great time reading the book and look forward to the second book in the series. If you’re looking for a fun Superhero Young Adult novel, this is the book you're looking for. And just in case I'm not a jedi, give it a try any way you won't regret it.





Excerpts


Neelam didn't look convinced. "Or maybe the concussion you had made you invent that perfect world you remember and it doesn't exist at all," she suggested.

"I'll try..."
"There's only do, no try," Dylan said in a croaky voice.
"So now you think you're Yoda?" she laughed. "You do know you got that quote completely wrong?"

It was nice to be held like this by a boy. It was all so new to Scarlett, but she certainly liked it. She gazed around at the stars and wondered if she was dreaming, then she pushed the thought right out of her mind, scared that if she was asleep, she would wake herself up.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week [32]


This is a meme hosted by Uncorked Thoughts.The aim of this meme is to share with fellow bloggers a character, spell, chapter, object or quote from the books/ films/ J. K. Rowling herself or anything Potter related! She is picking a topic within HP for us to focus on each week and then if anyone wants to take part feel free! All she asks is to link back to her blog :). There is now a full list of the topics to come here.

     Least Favorite Book



Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets


Out of all the books, the second one was my least favorite. Obviously, with this being my favorite series ever, it's not 1/16 as bad as my other least favorite reads. 

There are a lot of things that I do enjoy about it. The flying car, the Weasleys rescuing Harry, Dobby, Moaning Myrtle, Fawkes, and the joke that is Gilroy are pretty great. What I absolutely can't stand is the NUMEROUS times spiders are brought up. I literally felt spiders crawling all over me each time I read about them scuttling along the floor. Aragog and the cave scene nearly drove me out of my mind (I skip it in re-reads). It was also the one that was most similar to the first one for me as far as the story goes. 


Which one is your least favorite?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Blog Tour Trailer and Giveaway - The Watchers Book 1: Knight of Light by Deirdra Eden

Welcome to my stop on the tour for The Watchers Book 1: Knight of Light. Don't forget to enter for the giveaway below!



In England, 1270 A.D., Auriella (pronounced yurr-ee-ella) flees her village after being accused of witchcraft. Pursued by nightmarish creatures, she struggles to accept the truth about her humanity. Filled with fairies, dwarves, pixies, dragons, and monsters, Knight of Light is an enthralling tale that will capture the imaginations of readers young and old.

In England, 1270 A.D., Auriella (pronounced yurr-ee-ella) flees her village after being accused of witchcraft. Pursued by nightmarish creatures, she struggles to accept the truth about her humanity. Filled with fairies, dwarves, pixies, dragons, and monsters, Knight of Light is an enthralling tale that will capture the imaginations of readers young and old.
The Watchers Series has been described as Braveheart meets Supernatural. The mythology for the series is based on many theological texts from dozens of sects with correlating themes. Ancient writings include The Dead Sea Scrolls, The Traditional Apocrypha, The Pearl of Great Price, and The Kabbalah.

“The Watchers” are supernatural beings in human form whose duty it is to protect and guard mankind from the armies of darkness. Unfortunately, as the Book of Enoch mentions, some of these Watchers go bad. Although the mythology is based on these texts, Deirdra Eden’s The Watchers Series is written in a traditional fairytale style with a young girl’s discovery of incredible, but dangerous powers within herself, a cast of humorous side-kicks, a quest for greater self-discovery and purpose, and villains of epic proportions.


About the Author


"My goal in writing is to saturate my books with intrigue, mystery, romance, and plot twists that will keep my readers in suspense. I want to see fingerprints on the front and back covers where readers have gripped the novel with white knuckles! Aside from writing, I enjoy jousting in arenas, planning invasions, horseback riding through open meadows, swimming in the ocean, hiking up mountains, camping in cool shady woods, climbing trees barefoot, and going on adventures."
-Deirdra Eden

Find Deirdra Eden and The Watchers Series online on AmazonDeirdra's websiteFacebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Wattpad, and Pinterest.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Review: This is Sarah by Ally Malinenko


Published: July 3rd 2014, BookFish Books
Genre: Contemporary, YA, Romance
Format: ebook (e-pub)
Source: provided for honest review
Goodreads Summary

When Colin Leventhal leaned out his bedroom window on the night of May 12th and said goodbye to his girlfriend, he never expected it would be forever. But when Sarah Evans goes missing that night, Colin's world unravels as he transforms from the boyfriend next door to the main police suspect. Then one year later, at her memorial service, Colin makes a phone call that changes everything. Is it possible that Sarah is still alive? And if so how can he bring her back?


As Colin struggles with this possibility, across the street, Sarah’s little sister, Claire learns how to navigate the strange new landscape of life without her sister. While her parents fall apart, Claire remains determined to keep going even if it kills her.


THIS IS SARAH serves as a meditation on loss, love and what it means to say goodbye.

The Good

The best thing about This Is Sarah is that it's about dealing with reality. Not the past, not the future but the present! At some point in life each one of us experience one or more devastating incidents that change our lives forever (if not, then I guess you're lucky!). This Is Sarah will make you relive it. Yea, I know, that scared me as well, but at the end it comes down to dealing with the problems and moving on, no matter how much we don't want to do just that!

The book is so well-written that it took me two days just to get over the hurt and the pain that I experienced while reading it. I'd quote this book as a "Strong dose of emotions", that too mostly negative ones, so if you can't take strong emotional ups and downs, then unfortunately this book is not for you.

This Is Sarah is about the sudden disappearance of Sarah and how it affects the lives of people around her, her family, boyfriend and friends. Her parent's marriage falls apart, her sister breaks completely and her boyfriend is on the verge of completely going insane.

The best part about the book is that the emotions are perfectly real and so are the actions and reactions of characters, which connects you with them instantly. This book cannot be described in words, you have to read it if you want to experience what it's like to lose someone, without knowing what happened to them. The ending is bitter yet appropriate.


The Bad

The only thing bad that I can think of is the strong and negative emotional content.

The Romance

Colin's love for Sarah is the purest love I've read about in a very long time. Being away from Sarah is destroying him bit by bit and slowly-slowly he is falling apart is just on the verge of being declared insane.

Sarah's parents love her so much that the pain of being away from her took over them and destroyed their otherwise happy marriage. Sarah's younger sister, Claire also loves her immensely and her disappearance affected her very badly.

Everyone loved Sarah tremendously which, in the second half of the book, starts to play tricks with Clair's mind. She starts feeling that all the love and care is only for Sarah and that it wouldn't have been there if it were for Claire's disappearance.

Also, though Colin was Sarah's boyfriend, Claire loved him with all her heart and at one point tries to take Sarah's place in Colin's life after Sarah's disappearance.


Conclusion

This Is Sarah is a brilliant book by Ally Malinenko. It's a very unique book which is a bit high on emotions, but at the end that's what separates it from other YA books.

I'd not recommend it to readers who can't handle strong emotions and negative reading environment.
It will serve you well to think twice before reading it. I'd say if you can then give it a try, it will be a very unique reading experience.




Did you enjoy this review? Check out Heena's other reviews at The Reading Bud

Excerpts


She wasn't Sarah. She was a disappearance. A vanishing. A terrible story to tell when people came to town. She was pain and bad luck and something unrecoverable. Something that changed all of us.

Sometimes it felt like, if possible, to get rid of this pain, they would undo all of Sarah. As if it would be easier to never have had her than to have had her and lost her.

Or maybe sometimes I think that way. And thinking that makes me feel like I betray her. Abandon her.

Again.

I think that a lot. I spend so much time thinking about all the times I wasn't there for her. How I couldn't save her... 

Monday, September 8, 2014

Release Day Interview and Giveaway: Girl Nevermore by R.A. Desilets


Today is the release day of Girl Nevermore! I have author R.A. Desliets here with an interview as well as a giveaway.
Goodreads Summary

Genre: Contemporary YA

Last week, Cooper Mesa was a quiet, studious bookworm.

This week, she feels unworthy of love or forgiveness.

When Cooper's twin sister, Kayla, tries to end her own life, Cooper blames herself. If only she had paid more attention...

Desperate to understand her sister's decision, Cooper starts down a dark path, discovering her own inner turmoil. Losing herself is easy, but finding a reason to live is becoming impossible.



Author Interview


Tell us a little background of how Girl Nevermore came about:

Girl Nevermore is a story I’ve attempted to write in numerous ways. Until now, I hadn’t been successful. The core emotions in the story stem from my own past, and while it is fiction, it was really hard for me to write with finesse.

I had several friends who suffered from depression, and a few who attempted suicide. When I was younger, I had no idea how to cope with any of those feelings. I developed anxiety and didn’t seek help.

Cooper’s story was the first to capture the essence of losing yourself. Her story came about because I needed to tell it to gain closure.

What do you hope readers take away?

For those who have experienced a traumatic event, depression, or anxiety, I want readers to come away with hope. I want readers to understand that they are never alone, even if they feel like they are.

For those who haven’t experienced depression or anxiety, I’d love for readers to gain a better understanding of how it feels to suffer from anxiety, self-doubt, and self-loathing.

I’d love for Girl Nevermore to open up a larger dialogue about mental health. No one should be ashamed to talk about how they feel, and oftentimes, I think a lot of us are. It should be easier to talk about than it is.

How hard was it to go from writing a humorous story to one so dark and gritty?

It’s been intense. With Hipstopia and The Collapse, I wasn’t as nervous. While I’m proud of my satirical books, I was also more emotionally distant. Girl Nevermore feels like I’m putting a piece of my past and myself out there, and that’s the most terrifying part.

As for writing it, it wasn’t difficult to switch gears. I think Murphy provided a good transition into the dark and gritty in The Collapse. But I’ve also been toying with characters similar to Cooper for years. I was finally able to capture the right tone from trial and error.

A few of your favorite books?

Goodness, this is always hard. I can’t ever just pick a few! I think everyone who has read Hipstopia (and the acknowledgments) knows how much I appreciate Courtney Summers, so of course This is Not a Test tops my list every time. Birthmarked by Caragh O’Brien is up there, along with More Than This by Patrick Ness and Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi. There are so many more, but I’m trying to keep this short!

A fun fact about yourself:

Since I’ve mentioned high school, I’ll share the “I’m a super nerd” fact. I never missed a single day of high school. Not even on senior skip day, not even when I was sick (which, in retrospect, was a terrible decision as I probably made some of my classmates sick--sorry, guys).

When I made it to the end of freshman year with no absences, I decided why not? Once I came up with the idea, as a goal-oriented person, I had to follow through.

What are you working on now?

I’m in the middle of editing an Adult Ebola Apocalypse novella, The Unanswerable, which will be part of a series of conquels (called The UnSeries).  Matthew and his family are stuck in New York City when an airborne Ebola virus breaks out. They have to risk everything on the feral streets for a slim chance at survival. The tentative release date is October 27.

I also have two YA novels in the works. One is No Sugar Coating, YA magical realism, which is expected to be out February 2015. The second is In a Blue Moon (Blue Moon #1), YA fairytale retelling/apocalypse, which is slated for sometime in the “near future/as soon as possible.”

I keep my Publishing Schedule updated on my blog (radwrites.blogspot.com). So you can always see what’s coming out next!

About R.A. Desilets:

Rachel Desilets (R. A. Desilets) is the author of YA Satirical Dystopian duet, Hipstopia and The Collapse. She also wrote a children’s adventure/adult humor novelette, My Summer Vacation by Terrance Wade. She’s just released Girl Nevermore, a YA Contemporary novel.

She enjoys tea, coffee, and warm blankets. Rachel is the self-proclaimed owner of “way too many cats” and currently lives with her husband in Southern California.

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