Thursday, September 11, 2014

Book Review: Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins

Harper Price, peerless Southern belle, was born ready for a Homecoming tiara. But after a strange run-in at the dance imbues her with incredible abilities, Harper's destiny takes a turn for the seriously weird. She becomes a Paladin, one of an ancient line of guardians with agility, super strength and lethal fighting instincts.

Just when life can't get any more disastrously crazy, Harper finds out who she's charged to protect: David Stark, school reporter, subject of a mysterious prophecy and possibly Harper's least favorite person. But things get complicated when Harper starts falling for him—and discovers that David's own fate could very well be to destroy Earth.

With snappy banter, cotillion dresses, non-stop action and a touch of magic, this new young adult series from bestseller Rachel Hawkins is going to make y'all beg for more.


Best Bits: Can we just talk about how cute the cover is for a second? I love pink, and pearls, and orange, ugh it's awesome. Okay, moving forward. I'm always a bit skeptical when books involve the popular-turned-badass leading lady. Hawkins manages to have Harper maintain her sassiness, while gaining an understanding of herself. I think after five year, people know that I love character growth. I also liked the relationships. There's no insta-love, and probably the best part was watching Harper try to decide if she and her boyfriend, Ryan, really should be together (a common struggle in high school when couples tend to grow apart). 

I actually think that I am going to like this series more than Hawkins' previous Hex Hall books. This could be because I love southern settings (I'm one of like 15 people who watch Hart of Dixie). This could also be because there are funny moments littered throughout the book. Hex Hall was a bit more serious, and the sly humor in Rebel Belle made the book that much more enjoyable.

Nit Picks: I was sad to discover that this is going to be a series. My kingdom for a standalone! There is certainly more to be explored in follow-ups, but I would have liked a little more background on Harper's life. We see her adjusting to her new powers, but we don't see her explore grief due to the death of a family member.

Rebel Belle
By Rachel Hawkins
Published by Putnam Juvenile
245 Pages
Purchased 
 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Teaser Tuesday (September 9)

What is teaser tuesday?
It's a meme hosted by Should Be Reading and here are the rules: 

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! 


"Zombirule #2: After a fight, avoid turning away from a fallen zombie to hug your girlfriend with relief. Under no circumstances fail to tage that zombie again, or while you have your PTSD face buried in her shampoo-smelling hair, said zombie will stand up offscreen, give the audience time to scream, and then take a big ol' hunk of rib eye out of your back." 
-The Infects, Page 124, by Sean Beaudoin 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday (September 3)


Waiting on Wednesday was started by Jill at Breaking the Spine. This weekly meme shares the upcoming books that I'm most excited about.


Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Mare Barrow's world is divided by blood—those with red and those with silver. Mare and her family are lowly Reds, destined to serve the Silver elite whose supernatural abilities make them nearly gods. Mare steals what she can to help her family survive, but when her best friend is conscripted into the army she gambles everything to win his freedom. A twist of fate leads her to the royal palace itself, where, in front of the king and all his nobles, she discovers a power of her own—an ability she didn't know she had. Except . . . her blood is Red.

To hide this impossibility, the king forces her into the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks her new position to aid the Scarlet Guard—the leaders of a Red rebellion. Her actions put into motion a deadly and violent dance, pitting prince against prince—and Mare against her own heart.

From debut author Victoria Aveyard comes a lush, vivid fantasy series where loyalty and desire can tear you apart and the only certainty is betrayal.


Published by Orion
Release Date: March 26, 2015

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Review: Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

From the glittering streets of Manhattan to the moonlit rooftops of Paris, falling in love is easy for hopeless dreamer Isla and introspective artist Josh. But as they begin their senior year in France, Isla and Josh are quickly forced to confront the heartbreaking reality that happily-ever-afters aren’t always forever.

Their romantic journey is skillfully intertwined with those of beloved couples Anna and √Čtienne and Lola and Cricket, whose paths are destined to collide in a sweeping finale certain to please fans old and new.

 
Best Bits: Digging into a book by Stephanie Perkins is always a delight. It's like snuggling a warm blanket with some tea. You know it's going to be comfortable and enjoyable. Isla did that for me. Perkins brings us back to France, where we see a couple in a different year at the same school where the series began. Can I go to school there?

 What I enjoy most is how accurate these books are to the teen experience. It captures the angst, the self-consciousness, the fear of uncertainty...and I totally would have gone on a romantic weekend trip with my boyfriend if I could have gotten away with it! I wish that I had read these during those years, because I can imagine myself nodding along and feeling totally validated (did I mention swooning over amazing male characters?). This book also had another great theme, friendship. We see how Isla isn't willing to give up her best friend for her relationship. Sure, they spend less time together and both grow, but it's never a question of leaving him behind. Not to mention, hurrah for a book that depicts male/female friendship without having a love triangle!

Nit Picks: I had extremely high expectations for this one, especially because the couples from Anna and Lola were so swoon-worthy. I think this couple is a lot more realistic in that they had a lot more to deal with. They didn't feel as certain at the end, like the couples in the other book did. I'm not sure if that's because I'm older and more skeptical, or because the drama was more intense between the two. So, in a way this isn't really a nitpick...more of an explanation why this couple wasn't my favorite.

I'm sad to see this series go, but I purchased each book because I know I'll be rereading them during those dreary fall/winter days when I need a pick-me-up!

Isla and the Happily Ever After
By Stephanie Perkins
Published by Dutton
339 Pages
Purchased

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Teaser Tuesday (August 19)

What is teaser tuesday?
It's a meme hosted by Should Be Reading and here are the rules: 

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! 


"An old man with a busted piano is playing "La Vie en Rose"on the street outside my window. He hauls it around this part of the city, from one corner to another, but I've never seen how he moves it." 
-Isla and the Happily Ever After, Page 47, by Stephanie Perkins

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