Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Book Review: Senior Year by Melissa Johns

Title: Senior Year
Author: Melissa Johns
Length: 228 pages
Format: Kindle eBook
Description from Goodreads:

 Avery Wilson was already accepted into her first choice Ivy League school. She just needed to maintain her grades and get through her senior year of high school.

Avery started to hear rumors that her best friend, Logan had developed feelings towards her and wanted to start a relationship. Intrigued by the idea of having a boyfriend and wanting to enjoy her last year of high school she decided to give it a chance but an obstacle stood in her way by the name of Noah.

Noah was the older brother of her close friend, Stacey and never gave him a second thought until she allowed herself a break for her school work. She was torn between her friendship for Logan and the passion racing through her veins for Noah.

Will Avery be able to survive her senior year, keep her best friend and follow her

My Thoughts:

Avery is the perfect student and daughter. She makes good enough grades to get her into her top choice law school, she has an academic scholarship, and works a part time job so her parents don’t have to worry about her needing money. The problem is she has been so caught up in her school work that she has a mental melt down and her parents and principal demand that she enjoy her senior year. Find out what happens to socially awkward and anxiety ridden Avery as she suddenly goes from bookish wallflower to blossoming flower her senior year.

This book had the potential to be the perfect romance cliché and teen angst filled story. As a brief overview: sweet, smart, bookish, and innocent Avery has been oblivious all her life that she is a total knock out and her closest male friends are all in love with her. Her hot and popular best guy friend professes his long deep seated feelings for her. A few short pages later her other bff’s hot older brother professes his long deep seated feelings for her as well. As you can imagine…drama, self-doubt, and heartbreak ensue. I am completely fine with all of this. In fact, I absolutely LOVE the above clichés (especially love triangles)! The true downfall of this book was the dialogue between the characters. It was so stilted and stiff that when I read it aloud I laughed. I cannot tell you one teenager that talks the way these characters do or think of someone that is so in tune and rational about their feelings. I don’t know, maybe I hung out with the wrong people. One of the glaring things that stood out was the lack of contractions that would occur in a natural dialogue between your average teenage best friends. At 70% into the book I believe there might have a total of five contractions used. With Avery the other thing I didn’t think made sense was how someone supposedly that intelligent and that smart could be so naïve/flighty. I know that she is sheltered and doesn’t have that much social experience, but you can’t tell me she has never watched TV, read a book, and her other best friend is constantly dating different guys. She had to have been exposed somewhat to the ways of the world. I just didn’t like how every little thing would send her hiding, running away, or crying. 

The book wasn’t horrible, but it wasn’t great. I was very interested in seeing which guy Avery would choose in the end. I honestly really liked the male characters Logan and Noah.  I would have loved the story to have been from their points of view. They seemed like really normal and relatable guys. Even though this wasn’t the best book I probably will pick up the next one just to satisfy my curiosity and see how Avery grows in her first year of college. If you love clichés and a naïve proper damsel in distress then give Senior Year a shot. I give this book 2 ½ STARS.

Monday, June 23, 2014


Title: Angelbound
Author: Christina Bauer
Series: Angelbound #1
Length: 524 pages
Publisher: Ink Monster (November 12, 2013)

Description from Goodreads:

Eighteen year old Myla Lewis is a girl who loves two things: kicking ass and kicking ass. She’s not your every day quasi-demon, half-demon and half-human, girl. For the past five years, Myla has lived for the days she gets to fight in Purgatory’s arena. When souls want a trial by combat for their right to enter heaven or hell, they go up against her, and she hasn’t lost a battle yet.

But as she starts her senior year at Purgatory High, the arena fights aren’t enough to keep her spirits up anymore. When the demons start to act weird, even for demons, and the King of the Demons, Armageddon, shows up at Myla’s school, she knows that things are changing and it’s not looking good for the quasi-demons. Myla starts to question everything, and doesn’t like the answers she finds. What happened seventeen years ago that turned the quasi-demons into slave labor? Why was her mom always so sad? And why won’t anyone tell her who her father is? Things heat up when Myla meets Lincoln, the High Prince of the Thrax, a super sexy half-human and half-angel demon hunter. But what’s a quasi-demon girl to do when she falls for a demon hunter? It’s a good thing that Myla’s not afraid of breaking a few rules. With a love worth fighting for, Myla’s going to shake up

My Thoughts:

Angelbound by Christina Bauer has everything a reader could want. Ms. Bauer delivers a kick-ass rule breaking heroine, super nifty powers, hot guy forbidden romance, evildoers, the fate of the world resting in a teenagers hand, and all of the action you could desire. One of the more impressing aspects of this book is a new and different take on supernatural religious/afterlife beings. It isn’t very often that an author can achieve this. With so many stories these days revolving around angels and demons it can be hard to come up with a “new take” on this story line. Another cool little tidbit is that there isn’t a human involved and I loved it!

Anyways, onto more important things. The main character is Myla a half demon teenager who battles souls in purgatory sending the losers to Hell and victors to Heaven. She is smart, full of sass, and can kick some serious butt. When trying not to get killed by evildoers she is either being an outcast at her Quasi high school or trying to ferret out information on her mother’s mysterious past which includes the identity of her father. Purgatory is ruled by the ghouls and her people are considered sub creatures. The Ghouls are full of self-importance, naiveté, and are blissfully ignoring all of the warning signs of a demonic Purgatory takeover. The Thrax (demon hunters), Angels, and the Demon King Armageddon are all converging on Purgatory. Her mother is hiding her past and the identity of Myla’s father, who she really is, and what happened in the first rebellion. Everything is about to come to a breaking point and Myla is right in the middle. I really enjoyed the action in the book, but my favorite part was the love element. Romance comes in the form of Myla and the Thrax prince. They make an amazing couple. Both are kick-ass, funny, and truly want what is best for their people. Trust me…the Prince…he is definitely swoon worthy. If you are looking for a book with tons of action then you have picked the right book. Regarding the action and controversy Angels, demons, and the fight to send souls to Heaven or Hell is a subject matter that could quickly turn heavy, but Ms. Bauer gives Myla a great sense of humor. She provides quick wit and rebellious comic relief making for one fantastic tale. Although dealing with what is seen as religious elements Angelbound does not touch on the subject of religion and in my opinion nothing was “preachy”. Although Angelbound is a pretty long book it was fast paced and created an atmosphere and world that readers will dive into. The only thing that could have been improved was the background info and depth of the secondary characters. Specifically, I am referring to the other two teenagers and main ghoul in the story. They were interesting characters, but I felt not enough information was given about them and although interesting they fell a little flat at times. Other than that I absolutely loved Angelbound and cannot wait to buy the sequel. I highly recommend it if you are into the angel/demon story lines. I give this book a 4 STAR rating.


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

New Releases: Pressed Pennies by Steven Manchester

Pressed Pennies by Steven Manchester

Brief Synopsis:
Rick and Abby grew up together, became best friends, and ultimately fell in love. Circumstance tore them apart in their early teens, though, and they went on to lives less idyllic than they dreamed about in those early days. Rick has had a very successful career, but his marriage flat-lined. Abby has a magical daughter, Paige, but Paige's father nearly destroyed Abby's spirit.

Now fate has thrown Rick and Abby together again. In their early thirties, they are more world-weary than they were as kids. But their relationship still shimmers, and they're hungry to make up for lost time. However, Paige, now nine, is not nearly as enthusiastic. She's very protective of the life she's made with her mother and not open to the duo becoming a trio. Meanwhile, Rick has very little experience dealing with kids and doesn't know how to handle Paige. This leaves Abby caught between the two people who matter the most to her. What happens when the life you've dreamed of remains just inches from your grasp?

Pressed Pennies is a nuanced, intensely romantic, deeply heartfelt story of love it its many incarnations, relationships in their many guises, and family in its many meanings. It is the most accomplished and moving novel yet from a truly great storyteller of the heart.

Author Bio: Steven Manchester is the author of The Rockin' Chair, as well as the #1 best seller, Twelve Months (2013 San Francisco, DIY & New England Book Festivals award winner). He is also the author of A Christmas Wish (Kindle exclusive), Goodnight, Brian (2013 Southern California Book Festival award winner), and Pressed Pennies (due out May 2014). His work has appeared on NBC's Today Show, CBS's The Early Show, CNN's American Morning and BET's Nightly News. Three of Steven's short stories were selected "101 Best" for Chicken Soup for the Soul series. When not spending time with his beautiful wife, Paula, or his four children, this Massachusetts author is promoting his works or writing. Visit:

Friday, May 2, 2014

Prophecy of the Most Beautiful by Diantha Jones

Title: Prophecy of the Most Beautiful
Author: Diantha Jones
Series: Oracle of Delphi #1
Publisher: Diantha Jones; 1 edition (February 28, 2012)
Length: 255 pages
Format: PDF
*I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Description from Goodreads:

She has a destiny so great that even the gods fear her.

Constant hallucinations and the frequent conversations with the voices in her head, have earned eighteen-year-old Chloe Clever the not-so-coveted title of "Whack Job" in her home town of Adel, Georgia. Fed up with prescription meds and therapists, she wishes for a life where she is destined to be more than the butt of everyone's jokes and mockery.

Be careful what you wish for has never rung more true.

After a vicious attack and learning that her favorite rockstar is an Olympian god, she is thrust into her new life as the Oracle of Delphi, the prophesier of the future. Setting out to fulfill the prophecy she has been given, Chloe learns of how great she is to become, all the while fighting mythical monsters and trying to outwit the ever-cunning Greek gods who harbor secrets of their own. While on a mission to discover the Most Beautiful, she strives to uncover the mysteries of the demigod Prince who has sworn to protect her with his life…and threatens to win her heart in the process.

My Thoughts:

      Chloe Clever is not popular...if anything she is infamous. She is the freak of her school and is constantly getting in trouble. Her latest round has landed her a four week suspension. Why is she constantly getting in trouble? Chloe hears voices and not those of the people talking next to her, but those of people nowhere around. Everything in Chloe's life is about to change. She discovers that she isn't really crazy but is connected to the Greek Gods and they have come to collect her.
       Prophecy of the Most Beautiful by Diantha Jones is a fresh new take on Greek Mythology and has everything a story needs to succeed. There is mystery, magic, romance, and action. Chloe is a diverse character that shows growth and confidence throughout the story that is sure to build in the upcoming installments. She goes from being a social outcast to being someone highly regarded and praised. She experiences a total 180 and handles it rather well. My only complaint is that she might have handled it too easily. I know that if this ever happened to me I would be demanding answers and you wouldn't be able to budge me until you gave them to me. I guess that is just her personality. My favorite part of the story was the romance aspect. I absolutely loved Stafford. He is a great love interest and definitely swoon worthy. In addition I also really liked Ace's character (I have a bit of a soft spot for him). As for the Greek aspect of the story, Diantha did not stick to the strict Greek mythology. She took the foundation and gave it a new twist which is something that I absolutely loved. After all, who wants to read the same stories over and over again? All in all I absolutely loved this book and cannot wait to dive into the second installment. I give this book 4 STAR rating.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Latest Obsession - April 2014

Lately I have felt I need to be in more contact with the bookish community. Over the last couple of years one of the things I have learned is that I love reading about the non-book likes and dislikes from other bloggers and YouTubers. As a way to share additional information and to get back into the habbit of posting more frequently my new goal is to post my latest entertainment likes and dislikes a couple times a month.  

Music- They All Want You by Lissie

There is just something about this song that I absolutely love. You can hear heartbreak and wanting in her voice and in the lyrics. Also check out Everywhere I Go by Lissie. I can listen and do listen to these two songs on repeat.


TV Shows- Salem on WGN


WOW! First episode and I am hooked. Witchcraft, Salem, deceit, beautiful people being bad, and a hot rebel to save the day? What more could you want? Salem has an American Horror Storyesque vibe to and isn't a show for a younger audience. I don't want to give away anything, but I love the story line (or what it seems from the first episode). I have read some negative comments about the show not being historical enough, to frightening or sexual, etc. First off let's tackle the not historical enough aspect. This is not a National Geographic production it is not meant to be historical. It takes a time period where people were persecuted for witchcraft and expands on this idea to what would it be like if there were truly witches during this time period and their motives and the lengths they went to in order to keep themselves hidden. Don't "preach" on the inaccuracy, enjoy the show for what it is...entertainment. There is plenty of gruesome/frightening witchy scenes as well as sexual undertones and scenes. Do I think they are gratifying? No, I actually believe they enhance the story being told. I loved the first episode and will definitely continue watching it. HuluCheck out the season trailer below:


Last But Not Least...My New PUPPIES!

We got THREE NEW PUPPIES last week! They are now 5 weeks old and are the most precious baby chihuahuas ever! They are so stinkin' cute and hilarious to watch romping around.

The 2 on the left are Sam & Dean (boys) and the one on the right is my dad's puppy Dixie (girl). The boys are named after these two awesome guys

I already have a cute dog named Dobby, but he is tempermental and won't let me love him. This is what we look like
You know Supernatural changed your life when...

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Croak by Gina Damico

Title: Croak
Author: Gina Damico
Narrator: Jessica Almasy
Series: Croak #1
Length: 8hrs & 16 mins/320 pages
Publisher: Audible Studios February 28, 2013
Rating: 4 1/2 STARS

Description from Goodreads:

Fed up with her wild behavior, sixteen-year-old Lex's parents ship her off to upstate New York to live with her Uncle Mort for the summer, hoping that a few months of dirty farm work will whip her back into shape.

But Uncle Mort's true occupation is much dirtier than shoveling manure. He's a Grim Reaper. And he's going to teach Lex the family business.

She quickly assimilates into the peculiar world of Croak, a town populated by reapers who deliver souls from this life to the next. But Lex can't stop her desire for justice - or is it vengeance? - whenever she encounters a murder victim, craving to stop the attackers before they can strike again.

Will she ditch Croak and go rogue with her reaper skills?

My Thoughts:

               Lexington Bartleby is a juvenile delinquent. Her delinquent behavior and out lashes find home to all those around her without prejudice. In a last ditch effort her parents and twin sister hogtie her to the dining room chair with jump ropes and inform her she is going to spend the summer in the-middle-of-nowhere Croak with her estranged Uncle Mort at his farm. This is unacceptable, but Lex doesn’t really have a choice. When she first meets Mort she knows something is off and when she really takes a look at small-town Croak, Lex knows something is different about her new home. She soon learns that she has been sent to a town that is home to Reapers…yeah as in the Grim Reapers. Lex becomes a Grim in training, but it soon becomes apparent that Lex is no like everyone else. Her differences make her stick out and eventually make her a target. Something is wrong in the Grimsphere and Lex and her partner Driggs are on the forefront. Will she be able to avert disaster or will she join in the chaos?

               The first chapter of so of Croak didn’t really impress me. However, my opinion quickly turned around. Lex is definitely a unique character by any standard I can think of. She is rough, violent, mean, sarcastic, and I absolutely adored her. She says the kind of mean things I say to my siblings, but would never let anyone outside of my family know. Her fierce independence and tendency to follow her own beliefs makes her pretty awesome in my book. Other than Lex, what made this book so special was that each character truly had a life or spark of their own. Croak is the quintessential mash up of personalities that you will find in the not quite outcast, but fringe high school groups. Everyone couldn’t be more opposite, but the all have that one thing that ties them together. Think of Croak as a morbid updated version of The Breakfast Club crew. The last thing that truly sets Croak apart is the macabre subject matter and the way it is handled. This book deals with teens and adults literally being in the moment that first moment of death. As you know and can imagine many people do not go peacefully and Damico doesn’t shy away from these scenes. In addition, when dealing with these deaths the moral dilemma of bringing justice on your own terms to murders… is it the right thing to do? Along this same note, this subject matter can be pretty heavy. They are tastefully done, yet show how brutal death can be. Gina Damico balances everything out with a slightly morbid sense of humor that is absolutely hilarious.

               The narrator Jessica Almasy did a phenomenal job voicing Croak and all of it’s characters. One of the key things when it comes to audiobooks is if a narrator is reading as a 16 year old he/she not sound like they are in their 50s. Ms. Almasy was spot on and was able to convey the perfect level of amped up sarcasm and contempt for Lex. She is definitely a narrator I look forward to listening to in the future. Overall I absolutely loved Croak by Gina Damico and cannot wait to dig in to the next book Scorch. I give this book a 4 ½ STAR rating.


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday - Bookish Bucket List

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and The Bookish

Top Ten Tuesday

Hello Everyone! Today’s topic is …Top Ten Things On My Bookish Bucket List (could be blogging related, book related etc. -- meeting authors, reading x many books per year, finishing a daunting book, etc.) I am loving this subject! I have a pretty good bucket list.


1.     Finish all of my unfinished series – I am horrible. The majority of my unfinished series I just need to finish the last book. I either put it off because I don’t want the series to end i.e. The Demon Trappers Daughter or it took forever for the book to come out and I would need to reread the entire series to remember what was happening i.e. Infinite Days.

2.     Clean my shelves of all books I will never read/finish – I have absolutely too many books and I just keep buying more. Currently I have 3 floor to ceiling shelves, a dresser filled with books two rows deep, my headboard is a bookshelf, and I have two mid-height shelves that are both stacked two rows deep and one of the resides in my closet. I need to prioritize.

3.     Go to at least one author signing – I am so excited! I might actually get to cross this one off in a couple of days! The university I work at is hosting three National Book Awards authors gene Luen Yang, Lucie Brock-Broido, and Tea Obreht. If you live in Texas and are interested Click Here .

4.     Reach the point where I post at least five times a week – Since getting a full time job I come home and I’m tired.

5.     Finish reading at least half of my TBR (it’s massive) – See number 2

6.     Own all of my favorite book to movie adaptations on DVD – I must own Pride and Prejudice, Austenland, Lost in Austen, The Vampire Academy, and eventually Morganville Vampires.

7.     Accept that just because I have half of a series in paperback and the rest in hardcover it does not mean I have to hunt down and buy the other half to match – For example. I first started reading The Vampire Academy series before they were being published in hardcover. They became popular and if I wanted to read the new one as soon as it came out I had to buy it in hardcover. So I gave my paperbacks away knowing I was going to buy the entire series in hardcover. I had books 1,4,5,& 6 in the Vampire Academy series in hardcover. I could not find 2 & 3 anywhere. So, what do I do? Give the hardcovers away and buy the boxed set. You’re welcome Richelle Mead. Sadly, I also own the audiobooks.

8.     I would love to start a reading program in my community – I have a ton of books I could donate to the cause and as fellow readers you know there is nothing more magical then discovering a book that changes your life. Sadly, not everyone is exposed to this.

9.     Find a part time bookish job - This is just because I want to be more active in the book world.

10.  Write a book – I was feeling particularly creative and have started 2 or 3 ideas, but I’m finding it hard to follow through.


What is on your Bookish Bucket List? Do we have any of the same goals? Leave me a link to your Top Ten in the comments below so I can check it out!