Monday, May 25, 2015

Monday Meme Spotlight: Under the Sea

Mermaids are a powerful source of book ideas. From Aquaman to Aquamarine, YA literature has been making use of this nearly limitless pool (no pun intended) for a long, long time. Here are just a few of the YA books that feature mermaids or ocean lore. 

1. The Syrena Legacy- Anna Banks: A trilogy of mermaids and humans colliding, this series is a great example of the excellence that can come from using mermaids in books. Told in dual points of view, this is a series that moves quickly, gets to the point, and interweaves ancient mythology with modern life. There are some really wild twists- crazy, really, and maybe sometimes a little weird, but it's a great series that I would definitely recommend. To get the series, click on this link.

2. Aquamarine- Alice Hoffman: Possibly one of the most familiar mermaid tales, this books was also adapted into a movie several years ago. It's the story of a young mermaid washed up on shore, who's trying to find real love on land. A great story and one of my personal favorite mermaid tales, it's also got another book in the series- Indigo, this one about two boys who discover their true heritage. They're both excellent stories and worth reading- and they aren't long, either. 

3. Waterfell- Amalie Howard: Although this one is only on my to-read list, I think it sounds like a real winner. A mermaid hiding on land until she can claim her stolen kingdom back from her father's murderer? YES, please. Of course, throwing in a mortal love interest can only make things more complicated and more exciting. If you think it sounds cool, click right here and you can hold a library copy.

Whether you like the ocean or not, everyone can enjoy a good book about mythical mermaids and wild undersea battles. But this all begs the question:

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Waiting On Wednesday: The Stars Never Rise by Rachel Vincent

“Waiting On Wednesday” is a weekly event hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine, and it gives you a chance to spotlight a book that you are eagerly waiting to be released.

This week, I picked:

The Stars Never Rise
By Rachel Vincent
Publication Date: June, 2015

Summary from Goodreads:

Sixteen-year-old Nina Kane should be worrying about her immortal soul, but she's too busy trying to actually survive. Her town's population has been decimated by soul-consuming demons, and souls are in short supply. Watching over her younger sister, Mellie, and scraping together food and money are all that matters. The two of them are a family. They gave up on their deadbeat mom a long time ago.

When Nina discovers that Mellie is keeping a secret that threatens their very existence, she'll do anything to protect her. Because in New Temperance, sins are prosecuted as crimes by the brutal Church and its army of black-robed exorcists. And Mellie's sin has put her in serious trouble.

To keep them both alive, Nina will need to trust Finn, a fugitive with deep green eyes who has already saved her life once and who might just be an exorcist. But what kind of exorcist wears a hoodie?

Wanted by the Church and hunted by dark forces, Nina knows she can't survive on her own. She needs Finn and his group of rogue friends just as much as they need her.

Why I Picked it:

Rachel Vincent’s previous YA Soul Screamers Series, made me a HUGE fan of her writing, so I am extremely excited to see where she will take readers in her new series…. Not to mention the fact that I’m curious to see if this hoodie wearing exorcist, named Finn will be able to live up to the awesomness of the Hudson Brothers.

If you want to read The Stars Never Rise, click here to put your name on the hold list. OR, if you would like to read her previous series {and find out who the mysterious Hudson Brothers are} click here.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Monday Meme Spotlight: Book Worlds

      Have you ever been so immersed in a book that you forgot it wasn't real? Have you ever found yourself surprised because you reached the last page and you don't know how it happened? Have you ever been awake until the early morning hours because you had to know what happened? I have. It's a great feeling, isn't it? To know that there are writers out there who can so fully tug at your heart and really make you want to live in the world they created. Here are a few books that made that happen for me.

1. The Wrath and the Dawn- Renee Ahdieh: This book came out very recently. The moment I saw the cover, I felt that it was something special, and I was right- that book sucked me in and didn't let me go until I had turned the last page. And then I yelled at it, because it wasn't supposed to end so soon. I loved everything about it- the characters were all so engaging, the settings were elegantly described, and the writing was so beautiful that I couldn't breathe during some of the more intense scenes. I like a lot of books, I do. But this one surpassed them all. As soon as I put it down, I wanted to turn it back over and read it again, just like that (but it was past midnight, so I only read a few of my favorite parts again before I fell asleep). If you would like to be entranced by an elegant retelling of One Thousand and One Nights, click this link.

2. The Winner's Curse- Marie Rutkoski: This is a novel that I affectionately call a time-melter. The reason for that is because the first time I picked it up to read a few chapters, I read for what I thought was ten minutes and turned out to be almost forty-five. The world was reminiscent of a Roman empire, and the interwoven stories made for an intriguing, exceptional read. Rutkoski's writing sweeps over you in original, beautiful descriptions of the opulence and decadence that surrounds Kestrel (the main character) at every turn, as well as the discontent of the Herrani slaves and their plans for revolt. You can get it here.

3. Some Quiet Place- Kelsey Sutton: Admittedly, this book takes place in the present, with one small exception- the main character does not feel emotions, but sees them, as well as elements like Fog, Mist, Nightmare, etc., as physical manifestations. People. And she can interact with them, too- like Fear. Fear is one of her best friends, in a strange twisted way. He's fascinated with why she can't feel his influence, and he makes it his mission to find out why. The novel, although short, grabs you and shakes you and makes you want to see emotions as well, and then leaves you with a new perspective after the last page. If you think it sounds interesting, you can put a hold on a library copy by clicking right here.

     These are just three of the books that I've found to totally drown you in their engaging detail, creative worlds, and unique perspectives. What books do that for you?

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Waiting On Wednesday: Nowhere But Here by Katie McGarry

“Waiting On Wednesday” is a weekly event hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine, and it gives you a chance to spotlight a book that you are eagerly waiting to be released.

This week, I picked:

Nowhere But Here
By Katie McGarry
Publication Date: May 26, 2015

From Goodreads:

An unforgettable new series from acclaimed author Katie McGarry about taking risks, opening your heart and ending up in a place you never imagined possible.

Seventeen-year-old Emily likes her life the way it is: doting parents, good friends, good school in a safe neighborhood. Sure, she's curious about her biological father—the one who chose life in a motorcycle club, the Reign of Terror, over being a parent—but that doesn't mean she wants to be a part of his world. But when a reluctant visit turns to an extended summer vacation among relatives she never knew she had, one thing becomes clear: nothing is what it seems. Not the club, not her secret-keeping father and not Oz, a guy with suck-me-in blue eyes who can help her understand them both.

Oz wants one thing: to join the Reign of Terror. They're the good guys. They protect people. They're…family. And while Emily—the gorgeous and sheltered daughter of the club's most respected member—is in town, he's gonna prove it to her. So when her father asks him to keep her safe from a rival club with a score to settle, Oz knows it's his shot at his dream. What he doesn't count on is that Emily just might turn that dream upside down.

No one wants them to be together. But sometimes the right person is the one you least expect, and the road you fear the most is the one that leads you home.

Why I picked it:

I’m not going to lie, what originally drew me to this book was the cover. But once I read the summary, I was hooked. A biker gang by the name of Reign of Terror? And they’re the good guys. I have a feeling this book is going to be fantastic. If you’d like to read this book, click here to put your name on the hold list.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Monday Meme Spotlight: Comics!

     If you're like me, the above describes you perfectly. I like superhero movies and games and apparel, but I'm pretty useless when it comes to the actual comics. I've never been able to get into them. Of course, the term has expanded- it's 'graphic novels' for the library, and these can be historical, memoirs in cartoons, really, any story primarily composed of pictures. There are new ones every day! Whether you're comically challenged like me or you're a graphic novel genius, here are a few that caught my eye from YALSA's graphic novels for teens list.

1. No Normal- G. Willow Wilson: Kamala is the new Ms. Marvel. She has to discover who she truly is when she suddenly finds herself in possession of great power- and we all know that with great power comes great responsibility! I think this one looks really cool, and I'm waiting to get it for myself. If you think it sounds interesting, you can check it out on the library website by clicking here.

2. In Real Life- Cory Doctorow & Jen Wang: This is a story of how online gaming can blur the lines of reality and fantasy. An online player finds out a poor player is collecting game objects and selling them to other gamers for real currency- a highly illegal action. It details how shady the line between right and wrong can become when people's lives are at stake. I think this is a really cool concept, and I love the cover, even though I haven't had a chance to read it myself. If you htink it sounds good, click here to hold a copy.

3. The Gigantic Beard That Was Evil- Stephen Collins: Admittedly, KHCPL classifies this as an adult graphic novel, but it's a really fun read. I thoroughly enjoyed this story about a man's life being upended when he suddenly begins to grow a beard that cannot, and will not, be defeated. Sounds strange, right? But it's funny and smart and the pictures are engaging, as a good graphic novel should be. You can find it if you click here!

     Whether you're comic-savvy or pictorially challenged, graphic novels can be a fun way to branch out your reading comfort zone and expand your horizons. It's all good, but don't be a poser- nothing is more annoying that someone like this:

P.S. Keep your eye out for June 1- That's the Summer Reading Club kickoff party here at the South Branch on Center road, and our theme this year is....drumroll please...SUPERHEROES! It's the perfect time to get into some good comics to win cool prizes and have a fun summer!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Waiting On Wednesday: Love Fortunes And Other Disasters by Kimberly Karalius

 “Waiting On Wednesday” is a weekly event hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine, and it gives you a chance to spotlight a book that you are eagerly waiting to be released.

This week, I picked:

Love Fortunes and Other Disasters
By Kimberly Karalius
Publication Date: May 12, 2015

Summary from Goodreads:

In the tradition of Alice Hoffman’s Practical Magic, one girl chooses to change her fortune and her fate by falling in love.

Love is real in the town of Grimbaud, and Fallon Dupree has dreamed of attending high school there for years. After all, generations of Duprees have successfully followed the (100% accurate!) love fortunes from Zita’s famous Love Charms Shop to happily marry their high school sweethearts. It’s a tradition. So she is both stunned and devastated when her fortune states that she will NEVER find love.

Fortunately, Fallon isn’t the only student with a terrible love fortune, and a rebellion is brewing. Fallon is determined to take control of her own fate—even if it means working with a notorious heartbreaker like Sebastian.

Will Fallon and Sebastian be able to overthrow Zita’s tyranny and fall in love?

Why I Picked it:

This book looks absolutely hilarious. A rebellion against a love fortune? Who wouldn’t want to read about that?

If you want to read Love Fortunes and Other Disasters, click here to put your name on the hold list.