Friday, March 29, 2013

Feature and Follow Friday (32)

Feature and Follow Friday is hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read! :)

Q: Tell us about the most emotional scene you've ever read in a book - and how did you react?

A: I think that this may be the easiest question I will ever answer - the most emotional scene from a book I've ever read is the epilogue of Clockwork Princess. I finished the book a couple of days back and every time I think of it, I cry. Not just little tear drops, noooo, I cry buckets and buckets of tears. It was the most satisfying ending I have ever read but also the most heartbreaking. It will forever be branded into my mind... Crap, I think I'm crying again.

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Leave us a comment with your FF post and we'll check it out. We follow back! :)

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Thursday, March 28, 2013

ARC Review: Ask The Passengers by A.S. King

Title: Ask the Passengers
Author: A.S. King
Pages: 296 pages
Format acquired: Paperback (ARC)
Publisher: Little, Brown BFYR
Publication date: October 23rd 2012
Source: Gifted
Buy the book: Amazon / Barnes and Noble



Astrid Jones desperately wants to confide in someone, but her mother's pushiness and her father's lack of interest tell her they're the last people she can trust. Instead, Astrid spends hours lying on the backyard picnic table watching airplanes fly overhead. She doesn't know the passengers inside, but they're the only people who won't judge her when she asks them her most personal questions . . . like what it means that she's falling in love with a girl.

As her secret relationship becomes more intense and her friends demand answers, Astrid has nowhere left to turn. She can't share the truth with anyone except the people at thirty thousand feet, and they don't even know she's there. But little does Astrid know just how much even the tiniest connection will affect these strangers' lives--and her own--for the better.

In this truly original portrayal of a girl struggling to break free of society's definitions, Printz Honor author A.S. King asks readers to questioneverything--and offers hope to those who will never stop seeking real love.

(Image and summary taken from Goodreads)

Review:

I really loved Please Ignore Vera Dietz so I already knew that when I got a copy of this book that I would enjoy reading this one too. I admit, I didn't expect this book to have such a heavy "feel" to it, because Please Ignore really was just a light, happy read for me. Here in Ask The Passengers, we see a whole new method that really draws you in the story and keeps you in until you finish the book.

While it did take me a while to get used to the whole heavy feel (I am not fond of heavy stories) I did, eventually get past that. And when I actually embraced the whole feel of it, the book seemed less heavy and more enlightening. It's like I was there with Astrid and everyone else. I felt bad when her mom ignored her, I felt the giddy teenager when she as with Dee and her friends and I felt the lonely girl that she as when she sat out back and sent love to planes that passed by. At first, I was really confused about the whole Kristina-Justin thing. I thought they had one of those huge problems that they cover up to look happy or because everyone else wants them together. When I read it again though, I realized I missed some of the hints that Ms. King put here and there. I really didn't catch up on it until they were going to those bars outside town (sorry, I'm slow)

The story really was well developed and the characters felt sincere and real to me. And it's as if these kinds of stories really DO happen to most people (and I have a feeling it does). I don't personally know people who are shunned by their own mothers but I know it happens. I know of some people who are just so tired of being the perfect child. I know people who are struggling with their sexuality because they're so afraid of ridicule or rejection. Here, Ms. King gives life to those people. She gives them each a character and a story. I enjoyed playing out the scenes in my head and going through the conversations as if they really were happening. I felt the effect it had on the characters, and you know a good book when it's able to draw you in and feel the same things the characters do. When I read this book, my feels just exploded all over the place. One minute I was happy, next I was sad, next I was confused. But that's the beauty of these books. That they make you feel things you didn't know you could. Suddenly, you have a new perspective and vision on things that were blurry or you couldn't understand before.

I felt sad when Astrid explained why she sent love to those airplanes. I just wanted to hug her. From the first page, I felt her sadness and it broke my heart that she had to do that because it meant so much more to her. I really can understand why she does that. I mean, all of us at one point in our lives have felt unloved and neglected. But from where I see it in Astrid's case, it's everyday she feels this way. And instead of caving in and detaching herself, she turns it around and gives what she craves for. Which is actually a much braver thing to do. To just keep on giving. This book pushes more than just acceptance, it pushes for understanding and broadens the light on so many things. Sometimes, when something is blatantly exposed to us, we miss to understand what it is or what it's about. Ms. King didn't just state the obvious, she explained it and gave life to it. She gave us real life situations and scenarios and she made that into something that everyone could understand.

This books really should be read by everyone. No matter what genre you prefer of what kind of stories you want to read, Ask The Passengers should be on your TBR shelf. It's just that awesome. More power to you, A.S. King!

Rating:

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Cover Reveal: Frigid by J. Lynn

Not only am I a fan of Jennifer L. Armentrout but I love her as J. Lynn as well. The fact that she can write both Contemporary and Paranormal is astounding. It's rare to find such diverse authors. I loved Wait for You and I am absolutely honored to be revealing the cover of her new novel, Frigid:
Title: Frigid
Author: Jennifer Armentrout as J. Lynn
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Publication date: eBook: July 30th 2013 / Print: November 5th 2013

For twenty-one-year-old Sydney, being in love with Kyler isn't anything new. They'd been best friends ever since he pushed her down on the playground and she made him eat a mud pie. Somewhere over the years, she fell for him and fell hard. The big problem with that? Kyler puts the 'man' in man-whore. He's never stayed with a girl longer than a few nights, and with it being their last year in college, Syd doesn't want to risk their friendship by declaring her love.

Kyler has always put Syd on a pedestal that was too high for him to reach. To him, she's perfect and she's everything. But the feelings he has for her, he's always hidden away or focused on any other female. After all, Kyler will always be the poor boy from the wrong side of tracks, and Syd will always be the one girl he can never have.

But when they're stranded together at a posh ski resort due to a massive Nor'easter, there's nothing stopping their red-hot feelings for each other from coming to the surface. Can their friendship survive the attraction? Better yet, can they survive at all? Because as the snow falls, someone is stalking them, and this ski trip may be a life-changer in more ways than one.

About the author:

J. Lynn, also known as Jennifer L. Armentrout, is a # 1 New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author. She lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russel Loki.

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen.

She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.

You can find her here: Website / Twitter / Facebook


So, what do you guys think of the cover? The guy on the cover is smokin' but isn't he feeling a bit cold? Haha! I can't wait to read Frigid! :D Thanks for including us in the cover reveal, Jennifer!


Waiting on Wednesday (33)

Waiting on Wednesday/s are hosted by Jill from Breaking the Spine in which you choose a book or books that you're excited and waiting for.
This week's Waiting on Wednesday book is:
Title: Shadow (The Paper Gods #0.5)
Author: Amanda Sun
Publisher: Harlequin TEEN
Publication date: June 1st' 2013
Pre-order the book: Amazon / Barnes and Noble

Meet two teens whose worlds are about to change forever in this paranormal Young Adult novella, a prequel to Ink by debut author Amanda Sun…

Katie Greene’s worst nightmare comes true when her mother dies, and she’s devastated to learn that she will have to leave the only home she’s ever known. Desperate to find where she belongs, she must decide if she has what it takes to start a new life across the ocean.

For Yuu Tomohiro, every day is a nightmare. He struggles to control his strange ability, and keeps everyone at a distance so they won’t get hurt—even his girlfriend, Myu. At night, a shadow haunts his dreams, and a mysterious woman torments him with omens of death and destruction. But these haunting premonitions are only the beginning…
(Image and summary taken from Goodreads)

Why I am excited for this:
I finished INK a few months back and to no one's surprise, I loved it. I know that the wait for Book 2 is going to be painful that's why I'm relieved that there's going to be an eNovella that will help ease The Wait. And the cool thing is that it's written in dual POVs so I finally get to know how Tomohiro's mind ticks! I can't wait to read this and I don't doubt that it'll be amazing.

What are YOU waiting for this week? Leave us a comment and we'll check your WoW post out. :)



Tuesday, March 26, 2013

In Which We Claim Our Blog (in Bloglovin') and Prepare for the Apocalypse (aka the Demise of GFC)

Hi guys!

I'm sure you've all heard the whispered rumors that Google Friend Connect is now bidding us adios because if Google Reader is leaving, why not GFC? And since Geraldine and I have been blogging for quite some time now and we've garnered a pretty cool amount of followers, we're afraid that we'll lose all that we've worked so hard for. Even though it's not a sure thing yet, we think that it would be best that we are prepared for the worst. 

Friends, we asked that may you please follow us in BlogLovin'...

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

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Of course, we'll also follow you back. It's not a problem. :) We appreciate everything that you can help us do and we thank you for everything.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway: Prophecy Girl by Cecily White



Title: Prophecy Girl (Angel Academy #1)
Author: Cecily White
Pages: 352 pages
Format acquired: eBook (PDF)
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Publication date: April 2nd' 2013
Source: Received for blog tour (Thank you, Rockstar Book Tours, Entangled Teen and Cecily White!)
Pre-order the book: Amazon / Barnes and Noble / Book Depository
Add on Goodreads:


Amelie Bennett. . . . Ending the world, one prophecy at a time.

I was born to slay Crossworld demons. 
Big black flappy ones, little green squirmy ones. Unfortunately, the only thing getting slain these days is my social life. With my high school under attack, combat classes intensifying, and Academy instructors dropping right and left, I can barely get my homework done, let alone score a bondmate before prom.


Then he shows up. 


Jackson Smith-Hailey. Unspeakably hot, hopelessly unattainable, and dangerous in all the right ways. Sure, he’s my trainer. And okay, maybe he hates me. Doesn’t mean I’ll ignore the wicked Guardian chemistry between us. It’s crazy! Every time I’m with him, my powers explode. Awesome, right? 

Wrong. 


Now my teachers think I’m the murderous Graymason destined to bring down our whole race of angelbloods. Everyone in New Orleans is hunting me. The people I trusted want me dead. Jack and I have five days to solve the murders, prevent a vampire uprising, and thwart the pesky prophecy foretelling his death by my hand. Shouldn’t be too difficult. 

Getting it done without falling in love. . . that might take a miracle.

(Image and summary from Goodreads)

Review:

I honestly didn't think I'd enjoy Prophecy Girl as much as I did but I didn't just enjoy it, I freaking loved it. My hesitancy towards this book was probably because it gave a bit of a The Mortal Instruments/Vampire Academy vibe to it but as the story progressed, I grew to love it. The story was just filled with so much richness and potential to it that it definitely tapped. I found myself flipping through the pages frantically wanting, no, needing to see what would happen next. Prophecy Girl is written with a fast yet detailed prose that it urges you to just keep going. The way Cecily White wrote her book will definitely make any reader want to read faster and faster because you know that there will be a light at the end of that tunnel and all that you can really do is try to reach it.

Amelie Bennett is one spunky and high-maintenance teenaged-girl. She's not only stubborn but also very string-willed and snarky. I love her "screw-the-rules-because-I-know-what-I-am-doing-is-right" attitude, the way she didn't take bullshit from anybody. Though you may find a lot of heroines like her these days, I still couldn't help but have a girl crush on her. Amelie has been through a lot of struggles but though she may emerge dirty and wounded, her spirit never truly diminishes. There's a sort of spark in her that most heroines don't have because even though Amelie may be quite impulsive, she never truly just thinks of herself. She puts others before her even in the face of death, and that is so commendable.

The whole Guardian idea seemed a little overused to me, how they need to protect the humans from supernatural beings and things like that. And at the beginning, I was still pretty wary of the book and what it held for me but as Prophecy Girl went on, I began to appreciate and admire the story. Three things to remember when reading this book: first, a female Guardian is a Channeler who entraps demons and sends them back to whatever hell they came from, and their male counterparts are Watchers, who not just watches over their Channelers but give them a sort of energy to fuel their power. Secondly, Channelers and Watchers must bond to be able to fully harness their abilities and if your bondmate just so happens to die, you're screwed and you'll be pretty depressed... and you'll turn into an empty shell for life. And lastly, these Guardians come from the blood of angels; such as Gabriel, Raphael, Michael and other heavenly beings. Your calling in life will be determined once you find out what your bloodline is... BUT. There's always a counterpart to good, which is evil. Lucifer also has a bloodline that leads to the Anakim, soul takers. They have the ability to remove a soul from its body just because. These things all play a big role into the book's storyline and I got pretty confused about it at times but once I got the hang of all the terms, I was good.

If I am being honest, I really didn't like Lisa, Ami's (Amelie) best friend. And though she gave the concerned friend vibe a lot, I got annoyed with her most of the time. She always seems to belittle Ami and she's pretty boy crazy and not in a good way. But I do know that she's very loyal to Ami because they've known each other since forever and were practically raised together. I just can't help but not really like her.

Every kickass heroine needs her own kickass boyfriend, and not only is Jack kickass but he's also badass and insanely drool-worthy. It isn't just his looks that make me want to eat him up but also because of his personality. Though Ami and him quarreled and bantered (very entertaining, indeed) through most of the book, I couldn't help but think that he enjoyed it. Because even though it may seem that he's pushing Ami away, you can also sense that he also wants to pull her closer. He's a very conflicted person but I guess he has an excuse since the girl he's running away with is the person who's going to kill him. And may I just add? I adore his friends, especially Luc even though he may seem a bit man-whorish I love him. He's not only hilarious but scorching hot too! And immortal. Yes, Luc, you have my permission to turn me. *swoons*

Prophecy Girl is an exhilarating novel that will literally just leave you breathless and gasping for more. It's high-powered and it will suit any reader that loves action/suspense/mystery and a lot of sexual tension. The plot twists will leave you astonished and speechless because trust me, you will so not see it coming! I absolutely loved it this book and I am hoping that you will too.

Rating:
.5


About the author:


Cecily Cornelius-White, Psy.D. makes a habit of avoiding boredom whenever possible. She has enjoyed careers as a hand model, GAP salesgirl, movie projectionist, psychotherapist, yoga instructor, university professor, artist, dance choreographer, eating disorders specialist, psych diagnostician, book reviewer and copy editor. None of which are as much fun as writing novels.

She currently lives in Springfield, MO with two FABULOUS kids, and a schizophrenic yet well-mannered cat. She can swear in Klingon, take down an alien aggressor using only her mind (or a pair of chopsticks), and kill giant spiders without getting schmutz on her shirt.

When not singing to herself, she spends time creating new worlds and thinking up ways to make this one better…

You can find her here: 


INTERNATIONAL giveaway, win one of three eBooks of Prophecy Girl.



Follow the tour:

3/25/2013            The Soul Sisters             http://the-soul-sisters.blogspot.com/ (You are here!)
3/26/2013            Shortie Says            http://www.shortie-says.com/
3/27/2013            A Dream Within A Dream            http://adreamwithindream.blogspot.com/
3/28/2013            Musings of a YA Reader               http://ayareader.blogspot.ca/
3/29/2013            Seeing Night Reviews            http://seeingnight.blogspot.com/
4/1/2013            Paranormal Reads            http://paranormalreadsreviews.blogspot.com/
4/2/2013            Tales of a Ravenous Reader            http://www.lushbudgetproduction.com/
4/3/2013            Paranormal Opinion            http://paranormalopinion.blogspot.com/
4/4/2013            Emilie's Book World            http://www.emiliebookworld.com/
4/5/2013            Moosubi Reviews!            http://www.moosubi.blogspot.com/



Sunday, March 24, 2013

Review: On the Island by Tracey Garvis-Graves

Title: On the Island
Author: Tracey Garvis-Graves
Pages: 368 pages
Format acquired: Paperback
Publisher: Penguin
Published on: August 16th' 2012
Source: Purchased from Fully Booked
Buy the book: Amazon / Barnes and Noble
Add on Goodreads:



When thirty-year-old English teacher Anna Emerson is offered a job tutoring T.J. Callahan at his family's summer rental in the Maldives, she accepts without hesitation; a working vacation on a tropical island trumps the library any day.

T.J. Callahan has no desire to leave town, not that anyone asked him. He's almost seventeen and if having cancer wasn't bad enough, now he has to spend his first summer in remission with his family - and a stack of overdue assignments - instead of his friends. 

Anna and T.J. are en route to join T.J.'s family in the Maldives when the pilot of their seaplane suffers a fatal heart attack and crash-lands in the Indian Ocean. Adrift in shark-infested waters, their life jackets keep them afloat until they make it to the shore of an uninhabited island. Now Anna and T.J. just want to survive and they must work together to obtain water, food, fire, and shelter.

Their basic needs might be met but as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.'s cancer could return. As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.

(Image and summary taken from Goodreads)

Review:

A lot of people have been telling me how great this book is and when I say people, I mean my mom and when she says great she means, read-this-book-now-or-I'll-disown-you great. And if I've learned something from the years since she's been my mother, it's that to never doubt her judgement. And yeah, I totally was not disappointed.

T.J. and Anna's love story isn't your average boy-meets-girl plot. No sir, it's not. It's more of rich-recovering-from-cancer-boy-meets-tutor-boy-and-tutor-ride-on-an-airplane-pilot-gets-a-heart-attack-and-plane-crashes-boy-and-tutor-gets-stuck-on-an-island-for-years-and-love-blossoms-during-those-years-and-other-things-happen kind of story. I didn't really know what I expected to happen between the two of them but once something did start happening I found myself just nodding along. It was like I wasn't prepared for their relationship but I wasn't shocked that it happened (note: there is around a 13-year difference between their ages. But I'm cool with it.) I was rooting for their relationship because in the end, they had no one else but each other... and the dolphins... and the sharks... and Chicken... and Bones. That's actually a lot of people... But the point is, they're the only human beings there. Ha! Even though I was totally shipping the two of them, I wondered what would happen once they got back to civilization. How would society react towards their love? Negatively or in a positive light? I'll talk about this more later.

I honestly would not know what to do if I were to get stuck in an island for an idefinite amount of time. I'd probably cry and wait my death out or something. You have got to admit that you've been asked the "If you were to get stuck in an island..." question a lot and have come up with pretty cool answers but when you get faced with the real life situation with none of the things you wished for, you'd panic like crazy too. And I totally wouldn't blame you. And I also didn't blame Anna when for a few days all she did was sit on the beach and pray for a plane to fly by because there's really nothing wrong with hope. It's what fuels us in the end, and it's what helps us survive; to strive for something other than what we have now. I was amazed when she finally ditched her pity party and decided to actually go and do something because waiting for yourself to starve to death is never a good thing. You might imagine that they had a pretty good life on the island since it is a fictional novel where anything can happen but no. NO. They didn't have a pleasant life at the beginning. It was struggle and I felt so bad for them. T.J. and Anna were not only starving but also dehydrated and started contracting diseases from the water they drank (not salt water but murky, lake water. *shocked face*) I honestly wondered what would happen next since it seemed like such a lost cause for them but that was when their resourcefulness, survive skills and Anna's suitcase came in.


I was pretty shocked when T.J. was the one who took the lead when it came to the Survivor (<-- pun, pun) things. You know, since he's only 17-years-old and a recovering cancer patient but when he did take charge, I was like: Applause for you, man. It was then when I saw what a confident young man he really was and that he just needed a situation wherein he would be given the opportunity to show that. I felt that that the only time where he was actually taken seriously and adult-like instead of the teenager his parents treated him as. Anna respected and looked up to T.J. and that I was something I commend her for. I think it was also mostly the fact that she also needed someone to lead her and when T.J. stepped up his game, she was relieved that someone decided to be what she needed.

Surviving in that island the way they did for years, it boosted my respect for them. I can't stand not bathing for a day, much less two. Their struggle wasn't just food/health related, it was also hygiene related. So yeah, that was pretty sad. And there was also the thing with the shark... and Bones. I think that we can all just agree on the fact that they went through a lot of things. Things that normal human beings probably wouldn't be able to survive but they did, thanks to desperate times. I think adrenaline played a key part to most of their success.

Although some people may find their relationship about weird since they have a 13-year gap between them but as you read on, you'll realize how much they truly care for each other. I loved them together and I was happy that they stayed together right to the end. T.J. and Anna depended on each other but they also let each other have their space. Especially Anna to T.J., she really wanted him to experience the whole college-kid life since they've been gone for so long and she didn't want him to regret staying with her. In the end, Anna saw how much T.J. truly loved her. And I couldn't help but wish for my own T.J.... Anna, you lucky woman.

On the Island is one of the sweetest most beautiful books I have ever read. I adored every single moment of it and I am just dying to get my hands on its companion novel. I recommend this book to those hopeless romantics out there because this book just exudes romance and lots of suspense, actually. Miss Gravis-Graves has made a novel that is not only unique but so memorable that it will forever be etched into my heart. I fell in love not only with her writing but also with her characters and pretty much everything in this book. I hope that those of you who do decide to read it will love it as much as I did. In the end, age IS just a number.

Rating:

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Stacking the Shelves (21)

Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews! It's where bloggers can share what they got for review, bought, borrowed, won or gifted (both physical and eBooks may be included! :D)

Here's what I got this week:
Bought:

Angelfall (Penryn & the End of Days #1) by Susan Ee (Goodreads)
Catching Jordan (Hundred Oaks #1) by Miranda Kineally (Goodreads)
Dualed (Dualed #1) by Elsie Chapman (Goodreads)
*signed* Insurgent: Collector's Edition (Divergent #2) by Veronica Roth (Goodreads) <-- !!
Splintered (Splintered #1) by A.G. Howard (Goodreads)
Nevermore (Nevermore #1) by Kelly Creagh (Goodreads)
Stealing Parker (Hundred Oaks #2) by Miranda Kineally (Goodreads)
Fifty Shades of Grey: The Filipino Edition (Fifty Shades #1) by E.L. James (Goodreads) <-- LOL!!


Still bought:

Point of Retreat (Slammed #2) by Colleen Hoover (Goodreads) <-- !!
Requiem (Delirium #3) by Lauren Oliver (Goodreads)
Reckless (Thoughtless #3) by S.C. Stephens (Goodreads)
Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices #3) by Cassandra Clare (Goodreads) <-- !!
Walking Disaster (Beautiful #2) by Jamie McGuire (Goodreads) <-- !!

For review:

This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith (Goodreads) <-- !!

Thanks you so much to Samantha from Headline, Maricar from blackplume, National Book Store, Fully Booked and last but never the least, my parents. *HUGS*

What did YOU get in your mailbox this week? Leave us a comment with your StS/IMM and we'll check it out. :)

And check out our GIVEAWAYS too:




Feature and Follow Friday (31)

Feature and Follow Friday is hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read! :)

Q: What is your guilty pleasure as far as reading? Is it a genre, or is it a certain type of book?


A: Guilty pleasure: Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J.R. Ward. Also, anything with biker guys or fighters or, like, really badass heroes then yeah, those are my guilty pleasures. Anything that relates to scary and intimidating badass guys. I don't always read them but when I do... HALLELUJAH.

What your guilty pleasure reading-wise? Leave us a comment with your FF post and we'll check it out! :) We follow back.


Friday, March 22, 2013

Review: Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Title: Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin #1)
Author: Robin LaFevers
Pages: 549 pages
Format acquired: Hardcover
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Published on: April 3rd' 2012
Source: Gifted (Thanks, Kate!)
Buy the book: Amazon / Barnes and Noble
Add on Goodreads:



Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

(Image and summary taken from Goodreads)

Review:

I drooled over the cover of Grave Mercy. Something as simple as a girl standing, looking all empowered and brave makes ME feel empowered and brave, too. It's like I get to be a part of why she's standing there and looking so majestic in the first place. Let's go feminism!! Hahaha!!

I feel guilty for putting off this book for the longest time. I got this book way back during Christmas and until two days ago, I haven't opened the book at all. Hahaha! I didn't think it wasn't a bad book. I just felt like it wasn't "time" for me to read it yet. (Hands up if you know what I'm talking about!!) Until  that fateful day that I was looking for a book to take with me to my parent's office and upon scanning my TBR shelf, my eyes landed on this baby.

DISCLAIMER: I have just finished reading City Of A Thousand Dolls (which I loved) so I may nuance some parts of this book to that one. To be fair, they are quite similar.

At first, I found that using old time-y medieval language was a bit hard to take seriously. I kept laughing and going: "What? *Insert use of analytical skills* Oooh. Hahahaha!!" But I did get used to it, and after that initial grammar shock, I was fine. Actually, I felt like how Ms. LaFevers wrote it was a very good background for the whole story. I mean it being set (correct me if I'm wrong) sometime in the late 1800s or something because the French were trying to invade Britain. Meaning that women weren't given that much attention to. Only when they're to be sold for marriage or taken to be mistresses. I really felt that this book was all about female empowerment, especially during those times. Seeing how Ismae's father beat her up and how she was sold to a husband who also beat her up. Ismae then finds the convent that became her safe haven and it also served as the place where she had her training to become the most badass assasin that had the blessing of a god. I don't know how that could get any better. Oh wait. The book also mentions (lots of times, really) that Ismae "isn't a great beauty" and that she is actually scarred. And that scar is so hideous that that was the reason why her father and supposed husband beat her up. I don't know about you, but a scar so offensive, it makes grown men recoil in horror and beat her makes it quite unpleasant to look at, no? So, not only is Isame a god-blessed warrior, she's also average Annie like all of us. There are no false realities here like extremely beautiful but unwanted girls (ehem Cinderella ehem).

I really enjoyed seeing Ismae grow up and mature. She at first, was a scared little 17-year-old who had a lot of insecurities who then turned into a brave woman who could fight for her life and win. The progression made it all the more realistic. I found that some books had their hero/heroine go from a sad, broken human to being an expert weapon of choice wielder in less than a month and I'm just like: "Mmhm. Yeah." I also had a sneak peek of what may be the coolest nun convent EVER. I never thought I'd use the words "nun convent" and "cool" in the same sentence, but here I am. Ha! What I really loved about Ismae was how focused and determined she was on her task. She never let anything get in her way. She knew why she was there and she was eager to fulfill her task. But like all YA novels, we learn that a little distraction can be good, too. Enter not a prince and a not so charming love interest. I really disliked him in the beggining. He was such an asshole! But then people change especially when they're both working so close together. So badass feminist protagonist and hunky man candy? Check. Possibly the coolest training ground ever? Check. Saving the British empire from the French? Check. This book awesome! You've got action, drama, *slight* romance and a happy ending! If you don't check this book out, you may be missing one of the best ones yet. I hope to get my hands on the next book soon!!

Sad Note: I find it quite sad that most books shun the training of the "female arts". I mean, for me, it can be the most powerful tool we have. Like A City of A Thousand Dolls, the whole House of Pleasure and seen here with a nun who teaches the same (I know!! So cool), both Ismae and Nisha find it unappealing and iffy. I, for one, would like to see a book that focuses more on women learning the art of pleasure. Maybe they're trying to avoid the stigma of objectified women, but I believe that if delivered properly, it wouldn't be seen as an oppression but rather as an empowerment. Especially now in the 21st century that we all have our different stances on such ideas.

I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a great read, but I'm leaning towards giving this one to action or thrill-seekers. Enjoy reading!!

Rating:
.5


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (32)

Waiting on Wednesday/s are hosted by Jill from Breaking the Spine in which you choose a book or books that you're excited and waiting for.
This week's Waiting on Wednesday book is:
Title: Shooting Scars (The Artists Trilogy #2)
Author: Karina Halle
Publisher: Metal Blonde Books
Publication date: May 13th' 2013


A second chance at first love.

There are a few things worth risking everything for - even your life. For Camden McQueen, this is one of them.

Shooting Scars is the second book in The Artists Trilogy and is told from the dual POV of Camden and Ellie.
(Image and summary taken from Goodreads)

Why I am excited for this:
I just finished SIns & Needles a few weeks back and I absolutely loved it. It was a very gritty, emotional and dangerous type of book that exuded sexuality. It was a very unique novel and I'm positive that the sequel will be just the same. Oh, and CAMDEN. Love meeeeee.