Monday, December 31, 2012

Book Spotlight: Falling From Eternity (+Giveaway)

For William, life was as wicked and malicious as the beast he was trying destroy. Decades spent living a life of extravagance, domination and ravenous hunger haunted him. But when you live forever, the past never stays buried. And that which wishes to control you, will never let you go. William thought he found his escape, his one and only love, but the thing he fears the most could be the only thing that saves them. Or, it could doom them all.

2 E-books of the book (thanks to the author!)
Winners of the Falling from Eternity giveaway are... Mirlou & KimVa!! Congrats!!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Movie Review: Abduction

A thriller about a teen who finds himself in mortal danger after realizing that his entire childhood has been built on lies. Realizing that the people who raised him aren't his real parents after stumbling across a childhood photo of himself on a website devoted to missing children, the frightened teen flees for his life as FBI agents race to protect him and uncover the truth about his mysterious past.

Released: 2011
Runtime: 106 mins
Rating: 5/5 stars (tsk tsk Nina :p )

My last review for the year is one that I’d had to do long time before, especially, after watching the movie, when my memory was still fresh. Oh, well, I’ll do my best either way.

The reason I choose to see the movie is obvious: The lead actors. The story is simple, actually it is, because you have a teenager who finds out that his whole life was a lie and he has to, literally, fight for the truth. And, of course, a girl gets in the way.

From just the trailer, I knew that I would like the movie, or just enjoy to see Taylor Lautner in a movie other that the Twilight Saga. Now, I'm not one of those people that never heard of Taylor Lautner before the saga, because he was kinda famous already.

Back to the movie:
The story was interesting enough and it is a light action movie. There are the nice fighting scenes and the super-wow jumps that can be done by professionals.

Now, the directing part, I liked it. It was exactly what I was expecting to see. It was fast and adventurous. The acting was ok too. There weren’t any big emotions involved with which you can understand if the actor is a great or not. But, as I said, you saw what you were expecting to see: Acrobatic martial arts, speed, and a teenager getting away from bad guys with a girl hanging from he’s arm.

Bottom line, forget my boring tone above. I liked it. It was an adventurous movie, the type I like, with a young guy kicking asses. The end was interesting, especially because you know the actor who’s face we don’t see, and it makes you wonder if the movie is going to have a sequel or not.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Movie Review: Twilight Breaking Dawn Part II

After the birth of Renesmee, the Cullens gather other vampire clans in order to protect the child from a false allegation that puts the family in front of the Volturi.

Twilight Braking Dawn II
Released: 2012
Runtime: 115 mins
Rating: ?/5 stars
From all the bloggers writing on this blog, I'm the only one who has no problem with the Twilight. So, as I did the previous times, I went to see this one on cinema with a friend who's more fan than I am. Needless to say, that we had problems with this one too. No, it wasn't the rain in the beginning of July, or the fact that we confused the hour and we had to cross the city to find another theater. This time,  my friend -in charge of the tickets- got there late and we were able found seats on the very first row. Yep, not the best, I know.

I remember saying in the previous review of part one, that I had so many things I wanted to say, for the phenomenon called Twilight, but the time has passed, and I have to admit, that I have forgotten what else I wanted to say.

Anyway, about the movie. After the beginning of the movie, it took me a while to get used of the huge screen so close to my face, but I did it.
The movie starts where the other finishes, basically, couple days later, and Bella is a vampire. We see many similarities with the book in the beginning, like the first hunt, and the bras-de-faire between Bella and Emmet. There were some funny moments and small scenes that weren't in the book, like when Jacob reveals his two-natured form to Charlie and the Christmas dinner. And there were big scenes that weren't in the book and gave a whole new meaning to the movie.
In the book you see some characters, but in the movie you see them in a whole different level. I liked that they shown them the way they did, it was really good to get to know characters that were meaningless in the book, to be played by known actors.
From the trailer you see that there is a fight scene, whereas, in the book there is none. And, wow, the fighting scene was amazing. It made the movie better. I was wondering why they need a second part, and this scene gave me the answer.

As for the acting it was the same. With the exception that Kristen Steward looked more beautiful and not as awkward and unbalanced as she did in the previous movies. Plus, there is a sex scene, way better and slightly more detailed than the previous one.

Bottom line, I liked it. I liked the end and the fight scene, and I think it was a very nice way to conclude the series. Some people don't like the fanaticism that existed throughout the series, but -guess what- it's over. Now, it's time to pick up a new series of movies to fanaticism ourselves.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Giveaway: Return to Arèthane (INT)

16-year old Emily has accepted her fate with each weakening beat of her heart, but after her best friend's brother and sister arrive in town and turn out to be more than what they appear, Emily's life is turned upside-down. When their friendship includes confronting wizards who harbor dark secrets and dancing with an elf prince, Emily discovers there are some things still worth living for.

Winner Announced: Nenna


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Book Spotlight: Remnants of Life

Legend of Darkness
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 181 (ebook)
Part of Series: Remnants of Life #1

Dangerous Saviors… What would you do if your life rested in the hands of something that really wanted to eat you? Come journey through the realms of the next world where everything you know about Good and Evil are put to the test.

Samantha Garrett lives and dies a good life in the human world. She awakens a new creature, Samoda, a vampire-like warrior in the army of Nuem. She is forced to realize that she has become a part of a world that humans believe to be only “Legends of Darkness.” Samoda finds her new life is entwined with the age old story of greed, love, betrayal, and vengeance.

Join our heroine as she battles not just for her own existence, but for the entire human race’s future.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Book Review: Finding Mia (+Giveaway)

Intelligent and fiercely independent, sixteen-year-old Mia Marchette has never had a childhood. After her father’s disappearance when she was six, she has alone borne the burden of her mother’s bipolar disorder.

When her mother is institutionalized after a failed suicide attempt, Mia is abruptly forced to live with the estranged father she has not known for ten years. She is shocked to discover that he has created a new, picture-perfect life for himself, and is now living with a stepmother and a half-sister Mia never knew she had. Together, Mia and her new family must face the bitterness, mistakes, and long-hidden secrets that threaten to destroy their precarious happiness.

Finding Mia follows Mia's journey as she searches to find the unanswered questions from her past, leading to her own self-discovery.

Ultimately, this is a story of confronting pain and finding freedom, of letting go and learning to search for love in unexpected places.

Finding Mia
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: ?? (ebook)
Part of Series: -
Purchased: Review for tour
Rating: 5/5 stars
Buy: Amazon (US) || Amazon (UK)

I cannot remember exactly why I picked this book. I guess it looked cool and I had available dates on my journal and I thought that it would be a great book to finish this year's tours.

Starting the book, you feel a melancholic atmosphere. The way the author writes and expresses Mia's feelings and private thoughts in her journal. It doesn't take you long to enter the book, to become part of it and understand everything that is going on.

The author writes on the third person and what made this book different is that she doesn't focus only on Mia and Mia's problems, but also on the other characters too. The memories and the mistakes of the past. Except maybe Denise's, but there is a reason for that.

The author explores the hard side of life. Diseases, addictions, lost, everything that no matter how difficult they are, when they are over, they make us stronger and transform us in a way that we become different on the inside.

Bottom line, I liked it. It was one of those books that after you finish them, you have a voice in your head pointing at you which characteristic and decision  of yours, you have to change or look in an alternative perspective. I liked how it ended, though slightly sad. It was a ray of light in a cloudy day.

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Thursday, December 6, 2012

Book Review: Betwixt (+Giveaway)

 Beautiful, wild-child Nicole Tepper is hit by a car and left for dead. But when she wakes the next morning, Nicole finds herself in bed without a scratch. Perhaps she was more intoxicated than usual, as her mother is giving her the silent treatment and her friends are ignoring her as well.

Things take a turn for the weird when Nicole soon discovers she is actually hovering between life and death. Her body is lying in the forest while her spirit is searching for anyone who can hear her. Unfortunately the only person who can is Dale Finnigan, the guy she publicly humiliated with a sharp-tongued insult that has left him branded.

Desperate, Nicole has no choice but to haunt Dale and convince the freaked-out senior to help her. Will he find her body before it's too late? Or will the guy who tried to kill her with his car, beat him there and finish her off before anyone finds out?

Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 203 (ebook)
Part of Series: -
Purchased: Review for tour
Rating: 5/5 stars
Buy:  Amazon (US) || Amazon (UK)

The book had a pretty decent summary and looked cute but I have to admit i did not expect to fall in love with it.

Even though the story it's not something super original or new, the writing makes it one of the best stories with "ghosts" i've ever read. The strongest aspect of the book is the feelings that portrays. Guilt, love, friendship, disappointment, dreams. The writing and the way all those feelings are described gave life to the story in a level i did not expect. I loved how the supernatural side of it, wasn't that important. It was just there to help the story and not the story itself. There were times i completely forgot that there was something out of the ordinary there.

I was in pain with Nicole and while she is a girl entirely different than me, i had one of the strongest connections with her that i ever had with a character. I was literally in her position and i believed every single thing was happening or she was feeling. Her scenes with both her parents and Dale were all freaking amazing. There were times she was just the observer but thanks to the author, you could completely not only understand but be one with the rest of her environment too. The progress of her relationship with Dale was so natural. It wasn't love at first sight. Or even friendship at first time. It took lot of events to go where it was headed, and as a result everything felt more real.

And in the end it was actually one of those books, that teach you something.Not just there to have fun with. Second chances, respect for i'm not telling you more. I feel it will work differently for each one who reads it so go ahead...

Thumbs up for another awesome book!!! It's a yes from me! Beautiful :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Book Review: Always and Forever

Mia's first reaction is outright disbelief. Obviously, a mistake has been made. Sixteen-year-old girls don't die. But, when the diagnosis is confirmed, she dives headlong into anger. If she has to die, why should it be of cancer? In fact, anything would be preferable to cancer. Better for her to say when, where, and especially how.

Determined to meet death on her own terms, Mia devises scheme after scheme to get the job done. A “fall” down the basement stairs, driving her car off a bridge, and even a dance with a train all end in her survival.

And through it all, Mia keeps her family and friends at arms' length with her destructive and hurtful behavior. With each failed suicide attempt and burned relationship, she slowly realizes that it’s not the dying that she’s afraid of, but the life she’ll be leaving behind. Now, that life is in a shambles. As time begins to slip through her fingers and death is upon her, Mia fights to rebuild the bridges she has destroyed, but can she do it before the clock runs out?

Always and Forever
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 263 (ebook)
Part of Series: -
Purchased: Review for tour
Rating: 5/5 stars
Buy: Book Depository || Amazon (US) || Amazon (UK)

This book is mocking you from the start ''I'm going to make you cry. Embrace yourself, I'm going to make you cry''. The synopsis screamed that to me, but as a curious creature, I accepted to read anyhow.

The writing is amazing. It tells you the story of a 16-year-old who has a disease that cannot be cured. So we follow her through the five stages of grief, from how she first denies it, to how finally she accepts it. And through that time, the only thought wondering around her head is how she wants to be in control of her life and not her disease.

I know I spoiled the end, but it's a well known fact from the first page. I found the story extremely true. It's something that happens around us, not in our family specifically, but generally, and it's sad and really makes your good mood go bad in an instant. I really don't know what else to say, except that I did cried at the end. I'm not very proud of it, but a book that makes you have such strong feelings is worth it.

Bottom line, I liked it. I cannot say that I can read books like this all the time, but for this once it was great. I have to say that at the end, I felt relieved and I realized that life goes on and that we have to live it to the fullest.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Book Review: Derailed

When you're lost, sometimes the only place you can go is home.

Broken over the death of her fiancé, Molly leaves law school to return to her childhood home in North Carolina. Expecting to lay low until she can figure out what else to do with her life, she finds herself in the arms of her high school sweetheart, the boy who represents everything from the past she tried to leave behind.

Looking for an escape, she instead finds a way back to the girl she almost forgot existed and a future she never dreamed possible.

Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 260 (ebook)
Part of Series: Clayton Falls #1
Purchased: Review for tour
Rating: 5/5 stars
Buy:  Amazon (US) || Amazon (UK)

The reason I choose this book was because of the author. I never thought that a name would do that to me, but reading and reviewing a past work of Alyssa Rose Ivy, made me want to read more of her.

This story is simple. Not supernatural creatures here. It tells the story of Molly who one day quits being a law student and moves back into her hometown for a fresh start. The death of her fiance hunts her dreams and she believes that a change of scenery will help her. What she doesn't count on is the things she had left in her hometown before she left. Friends, ex-boyfriend and lots of memories.

The writing was easy. It wasn't difficult to understand and by using many dialogues, the author managed to make it vivid and closer to reality. There were not many descriptions of the places, but all the places are easy to find and construct an image of the city on your own.

If there was something I didn't liked that was how possessive Ben was sometimes. I get that they are in love, but Ben seemed to leave no choice to Molly to think otherwise. Also, there were some things Molly was talking about that sounded very weird, like that she was thinking she was a failure because of not having a job at her twenty-two years or the fact that she wasn't married yet. I mean, to me and my lifestyle, they do sound weird.

Botton line, I liked it. I had a nice time reading it. I was able to forget my problems and focus on someone else's life for a while. I liked how romantic it was and it made me jealous for not having that kind of love. I cannot wait to read the next book of the series, which will be very different from this one.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Newbies - November 2012

For the month of November
Nina didn't have any books this month, me on the other hand i got a bunch of new ones :)

(Gift) Skulduggery Pleasant 3-4-5-6 by Derek Landy: I started the series years ago in Greek but i never got the chance to continue with it. Thanks to my friend George, he decided to buy me all the books i was missing for my name's celebration :D Now, i just need the time!

(Gift) Tiger's Curse by Colleen Houck: This book have been in my basket forever. Finiding it a bookstores too but always never buying because i needed another book more. So thanks again to George, it's finally in my hands. He was probably tired seeing me have the books in my hand but never buying it XD

(Bought) Songs of the Earth by Elspeth Cooper: I had no idea what's that book was about really. A greek store had some offers and i wanted a few new good fantasy books so here we are...

(Bought) A Wizard Earthsea by Ursula Le Guin: Same as with the Songs of the Earth. I've seen the movie of this one though, and it was fun.

(For Review) Remnants of Life by Georgia Jones: Oh this one is for a tour!!! Thanks a lot to First Rule Publicity for sending it printed :D

(Gift) Deathnote: George or his girlfriend (i'm entirely confused here) had that volume of the manga twice. So they just gave it to me XD

(Bought) Broken Aro by Jen Wylie: I've read this one for a tour some weeks ago and it was simply so awesome i had to buy it!

(Bought) The Magician's Guild by Trudi Canavan: Well i think i mentioned this at my previous mailbox. I found a store with books at 5 euros and obviously i visited it again. As a result we have the first book from Trudi Caravan.

(Bought) The Tower of Shadows by Drew Bowling: That's the same with the Trudi Canavan book.

(Bought) The Avalon Chronicles by Emma Vieceli: I've reviewed this from NetGalley months ago and i really really loved it. Now, i have it in my hands and can't wait for the next one too.

(Bought) Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff: From the time the cover was released i just couldn't wait to buy it. Hardback version of course because it's way too awesome for a simple paperback.

(Trade) The Long Look by Richard Parks: I don't really know those books but a friend of mine, didn't want them anymore so we traded.

(Trade) Blood of Ambrose by James Enge: Same as above :D

What your mailbox had inside? Feel free to leave your links at the comments :D

Friday, November 30, 2012

Book Review: Stalk Me

Gossip girl meets Hollywood in this new series by That Boy author, Jillian Dodd.

Keatyn has everything she ever dreamed of. Her life is following the script she wrote for the perfect high school experience. She’s popular, goes to the best parties, dates the hottest guy, and sits at the most coveted lunch table.

She’s just not sure she wants it anymore.

Because really, things aren’t all that perfect.
Her best friend is threatening to tell everyone her perfect relationship is a scam.
Her perfect boyfriend gets drunk at every party they go to.
It’s exhausting always trying to look and act perfect.
And deep down, she isn’t sure if she has any true friends.

To add to the drama, her movie star mom’s long-time fan has turned stalker.
An older man is flirting with her and telling her they should make a movie together.
And she’s crushing on an adorable surfer. Dating a guy like him would mean committing social suicide.

So she writes a new script. One where all the pieces of her life will come together in perfect harmony.
But little does she know, there’s someone who will do anything to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Stalk Me
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: ?? (ebook)
Part of Series: The Keatyn Chronicles #1
Purchased: Review for tour
Rating: 5/5 stars
Buy: Book Depository || Amazon (US) || Amazon (UK)

I don't know exactly what made me accept the book. I remember telling that the cover was not so great and that the opening line of the description was so cheap. I don't like when they describe books or movies with analogies. I believe that every piece of art is unique. But the point is that I accepted it and that it didn't disappointed me.

The book is simple. The language is easy and your time flies happily. Even though Keatyn is a rich girl, she is a cool person, easy going and not spoiled. As for the other characters, I liked how her mother was modern, how cute her sisters looked and how Keatyn was able to move through different worlds. There were also her other rich friends, who I totally disliked, so spoiled and selfish, except some.

I know I already used the term, but the story was indeed easy. I was able to find out who the bad guy was and what was going on with whom, from the start. I didn't mind the sex scenes or the fact that Keatyn was talking for the clothes she was wearing in every occasion.

During the end, the book became complicated and it started moving too fast. What I liked there, was the work everyone did in order to keep Keatyn safe.

If there was something I didn't like, that was the amount of boys liking Keatyn. I get she's pretty and cool, but this makes the rest of us have less hope.

Bottom line, I loved it. It was amazing how the story was able to drag me out of my life and into Keatyn's life. She's a strong character that I think we can all take lessons from her. I cannot wait to read the next one of the series.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Book Excerpt: Wicked Fate

Remember when we did the cover reveal and the author interview couple weeks back??

What if you lived in fear of yourself?
 For Mage McPherson being afraid of herself is just the norm. Thanks to that fear, being a loner in a small town never bothered the mysterious Mage. Once she received her secret abilities, she figured being alone was the safest way to be. That all changes during her sophomore year at Summerville High when Adam, her equally mysterious secret crush, starts to notice her.
 Afraid that she might harm Adam, Mage must learn to either control or deny herself. With Adam by her side she's more powerful than she’s ever been, but is she powerful enough to defeat her worst nightmare? She learns a hard lesson about love and magic when her destiny comes to collect.
Well, here is a book excerpt too....
1. The next day at school, everyone’s talking about the unique weather and how the weather man can’t explain the strange phenomenon. Weather professionals from all over the United States have come to Summerville to be a part of what’s now called “The North Pole of the South.”
They can’t figure out how it’s happening. How in Summerville there’s snow, ice, and fifteen-degree weather. Yet in Charleston, twenty minutes down the road, there’s breeze, sunshine, and seventy-degree weather.
I’m staring into my locker trying to figure out how to make it stop. I hate that I can’t change the weather, that I can’t make this cold lonesome feeling go away. I throw books in and pull books out, and then I feel someone behind me. I know who it is without even looking. His warmth spreads through me and for a minute I feel like nothing’s changed. The feeling quickly disappears when he turns and walks away. I turn around in time to see Adam walk around the corner without looking back.
Gym flies by in a daze; Bernie asks me several times if I’m okay.
“I’m okay. I think I’m getting sick or something,” I shrug.
The quick peek I get of him in the hallway is the only time I see Adam today. He didn’t come to lunch and he doesn’t show up to history either. Even though technically I see him in school most days, I still miss him so much. Somehow, the empty desk next to me makes it worse.
I agree to let Bernie give me a ride home from school. We walk through the parking lot towards her car, stopping every now and again for her to talk to someone. She’s become quite the Social Sally in the last couple of weeks. I think it has something to do with the relationship between her and Kale.
When we get to Bernie’s car, which is parked closest to the trees, I wait as she digs through her book bag searching for her car keys. I can feel Adam’s gaze penetrating my skin. I look over to where his truck is usually parked and he’s there. He’s leaning against the driver’s side, his arms crossed over his chest as he stares back at me. He looks pissed off and mad at the world. Good! Join the crowd, punk!
That’s when I hear it, a loud popping and cracking noise. I turn my head quickly to the noise and I notice that a huge pine tree that’s draped over Bernie’s car is frozen solid. Long sharp icicles hang from it, waiting to drop at any second. One of the large branches looks like it’s about to break off and that branch is covered in the largest and sharpest of the icicles—it’s right above Bernie’s head.
 An icicle breaks off and darts straight towards Bernie’s car crashing into it before I can stop it. I jump back and Bernie screams as she falls onto her back. Before she has a chance to move another sharp icicle heads straight towards her followed by the entire tree branch—it’s the size of a small tree.
I react quickly without a thought for the people surrounding me. I lift my hand to the falling objects; I feel a small sting when the now invisible fire leaves my fingertips. I don’t even feel the fire anymore, not since I started using my magic every day.
The falling objects stop abruptly and sit, floating in mid air for a second or so. I quickly fling my arm towards the woods; the huge tree branch along with four sharp icicles fly into the woods.
 I drop my hand quickly praying that no one saw what I’d done. I’m on the outer edge of a packed parking lot full of people who already think I’m odd. The last thing I need right now is for those exact same people to see me do what I just did.

2. When I’m doing homework, reading journals, or relaxing in the gardens, I wonder to myself if Adam misses me as much as I miss him.
My answer arrives a few days later. It’s Saturday and, of course, I’m in the library with Thaddeus. I hear a loud knock at the door. There’s a little man at the door with a bouquet of pink camellias and red carnations. It’s a strange looking bouquet.
I sign a delivery confirmation and then I take the flowers. The delivery man also hands me a gift. It’s wrapped in purple and silver wrapping paper. I can tell by looking at it that it’s a book of some sort. I can also tell by the wrapping paper that it’s from Adam. He’s the only person who cared enough at one point to know my favorite color. Anything he’s sent from that point on was either purple or wrapped in purple.
I thank the delivery man and sit on the closest couch in the front living room. I lift the flowers and breathe them in. I feel my heart constrict with the thought that Adam might actually be thinking about me.
I sit the flowers down on the couch beside me and begin to rip at the wrapping paper on the gift. It’s a book, a strange looking old book. The book’s called The Language of Flowers. I flip through a few pages and realize right away the subject content of the book. It’s a listing of different flowers and what they mean. Adam’s trying to communicate with me the only way he knows how without having to worry about breaking his deal with Eris.
I quickly flip through the book to the page with camellias and carnations on it. When I read what’s on the page I clasp the book to my chest and breathe deeply. It feels so good to know what Adam’s really thinking. I look at the page of the book once more.
Camellia (Pink) = Longing for you…
Carnation (Red) = My heart aches for you…
His heart aches for me! He misses me too! My thoughts are going crazy. Should I go to him or should I just take this for what it is and leave it be?
 I wanted nothing more than to run to his house and throw my arms around him. I miss him so much and to know that he misses me too is enough to make me float. I pick up my flowers and hold them to my nose to smell them once more.

Here's the last post from the beginning of the month:
So what do you think of the book??

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Tell Me Something Tuesday #1

Tell Me Something Tuesday is a weekly meme by author Cambria Hebert. I know there are a lot of that kind of memes out there, but i really like this one since i found the questions each week really interesting. This is my first time participating, because i always had a tour post scheduled for the previous Tuesdays which had to be on top of the day. So hopefully, i will manage to keep with this maybe not each week but at least 2 times each month.

Tell Me Something:
What have been your favorite reads of 2012?

My Answer:
I'm currently at 130 books out of 150 goal of the year. I know i haven't been reviewed that many, so don't be surprised if you don't see reviews for some of the books below. No special order. No manga or graphics novels included either. (It is a little unfair for the rest books of 2012 though! We still have a month!).

There we are then :D Any of those books in your list too?
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