The Friday Five ~ Spring TBR

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Spring has sprung! And while April showers make way for May flowers, I’ll be curled up with a few good books ;) . So, in honor of yesterday being the first official day of Spring, here’s a little peek at my Spring TBR. Coincidentally, this was also this week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt.

Five Books I Want To Read This Spring

City of Heavenly Fire (Mortal Instruments #6) by Cassandra Clare ~ Is it May yet? No? Whyyyyyyyyy? I am equal parts excited and terrified to read this book. For real. It is the last book of the Mortal Instruments series (which is, like, my favorite series of all time) and I have been waiting a very long time for it to come out. Did I mention that it’s THE LAST BOOK OF THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS SERIES? Ohmygawd, it’s over! Finished! Through! And I am scared to death of what Ms. Clare has up her sleeves.

Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay ~ This book has been on my TBR for years. Years. Well, thanks to this amazing book haul that we’ll talk about later, I finally have it in my possession and I’m quite determined to read it.

Second Star by Alyssa B. Sheinmel ~ I snagged this beauty from NetGalley and I’m pretty excited about it. I may have mentioned before that I have this affinity for fairy tale retellings, and this just happens to be an updated spin on Peter Pan. So, yeah.

Unhinged (Splintered #2) by A.G. Howard ~ Again with the new spin on an old story, this sequel to Splintered has been sitting on my shelf since the day it came out. I absolutely loved Splintered. Loved. It. I’ve heard some pretty amazing things about this book, too, so I think it’s about time that broke down and read it. I may have to reread Splintered first, though ;) .

The Universe Versus Alex Woods by Gavin Extence ~ This was to be my pick for Books & BFFs for March/April. But hey, just because the book club kind of dissolved doesn’t mean that I can’t still read it, now does it? I mean, it’s already sitting on my Kindle and it sounds super interesting, so there’s really nothing to keep me from diving right in. Well, except for other books maybe. . .

What books are on your Spring TBR?

Release Day Blitz: Fade In by M. Mabie

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The Book

Release Date: March 17, 2014

Tatum Elliot is a successful writer on a hit television show, lives in an Upper East Side apartment and loves her life. She wouldn’t change a thing. Unfortunately, she doesn’t have a choice. She’s losing her sight.

 Tripping over her tongue and her heels, Tatum all too quickly realizes that the things which appeared so important before are slowly slipping away leaving room for what really matters. With the support of her best friends, family and colleagues, she begins to see that there’s much more to life… and herself.

When Ben Harris enters her life as her new personal assistant, she can’t tell if it’s his good looks and charm that are working on her libido, or his kind and helpful nature working on her heart? Whatever it is, neither one of them can resist it.

As her vision fades out, a world of love and happiness just might…Fade In.

Fade In is a contemporary-romance novel about laughing through your tears and telling life to, quite frankly, “Suck it.” This novel contains sexual situations that the author may or may not have tried at home… for your safety, of course. Research is research.

Find it on Goodreads

Teaser 1

Buy on Amazon
Buy on Barnes & Noble

Excerpt:

“I hope you saved the receipt for the breakfast and all that stuff yesterday, too. You don’t need to be buying my meals,” I say with a mouth that’s half full.

He quickly pulls the Jeep into a parking lot and smoothly parks in an available space. He turns the engine off and turns to face me.

“Okay. We need to get a few things straight for today, Tatum.” Emerald eyes look at me with utmost determination. “Today, I’m not working. Neither are you. Today we are Ben and Tatum, out and about, having a good time. Think of it like a date.”

“A date?” Is this a date? Hold up. When did I agree to a date? Then again, what could it hurt? It’s one day-date.

“A date. I’m paying. I’m driving. I’m in control. Do you agree or disagree to this arrangement?”

“No one has ever asked me to go on a date while I’m already on the date.” I can’t help but smile and be a little excited that he wants to be on a date with me—and he didn’t mind telling me so either.

“Will this date interfere with our working relationship?” That’s the responsible question I needed to ask. 

He shakes his head no.

“Is this like a friends-buddies kind of date?” My eyebrows rise and I lean forward, trying to gauge where he’s at in this whole thing.

“Not for me, but I can’t answer that for you. You don’t even have to think about that right now. Just relax and let me show you a good time. Deal?”  He says this with such confidence that I’m speechless.

The Author

m mabie

M. Mabie lives in Illinois with her husband. She loves reading and writing romance, and an active member of the Indie Author Romance Chicks. She cares about politics, but will not discuss them in public. She uses the same fork at every meal, watches Wayne’s World while cleaning, and lets her dog sleep on her head. M. Mabie has never been accused of being tight lipped or shy. In fact, if you listen very closely you can probably hear her flapping her gums.

You’re encouraged to contact M. Mabie about her future works, as well as this one.

  Website  Facebook  Twitter  Goodreads

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The Friday Five ~ Books I Read Before I Blogged

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I’ve always been an avid reader. Always. I may not have been quite as voracious in my consumption of books as I am now, but the passion has always been there. It’s actually kind of funny because, back in the day, I read nothing but Grisham and Koontz and King, and now that I’m older I’ve traded them in for Clare and Schwab and Green. But I digress. The point is that there were books before the blog, obviously, and I wouldn’t mind revisiting a few of them for reviewing purposes. And pure reading pleasure, too, of course. ;)

Five Books That I Read Before I Blogged That I Would Like to Reread and Review

One Day by David Nicholls ~ I love this book. So. Hard. I love how you get to see Emma and Dex’s friendship evolve over twenty years through the window of just one day each year. I love Emma. I love Dex. I love Emma and Dex. I love when Emma says, “Dexter, I love you so much. So, so much, and I probably always will. I just don’t like you anymore.” Gah! Knife, meet heart. And I love how I was so invested in this book that I bawled my eyes out at the end. There. How’s that for a mini review?

The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen ~ I don’t know if you know this, but I’m a HUGE Sarah Dessen fan. Seriously, I have ALL of her books. And where I would actually like to go through and reread them all, I would probably start with this one because it’s my favorite. Because of, you know, Wes ;)

Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler ~ I can’t remember when I read this for the first time, but I remember that I liked it and that it made me cry. In the first chapter. I also remember lending it to a friend (you know, back when I still did that sort of thing) and her liking it. . .and crying in the first chapter. I came across it when I was unpacking a box of books recently, and I think that it’s time to give it another go.

Unwind by Neal Shusterman ~ I found the concept of this book fascinating. It’s one of those books that really makes you think. Well, at least that’s what I thought. One of the student aides that comes into my patient’s class at school was reading it a few weeks ago, and I’m pretty sure I scared her when I started to get all fangirly about it.

Wicked by Gregory Maguire ~The Wizard of Oz has always been one of my favorite movies.  I, like, seriously love it. I also love story/fairytale retellings. Usually. It’s not really a stretch of the imagination then, to come to the conclusion that I loved Wicked.  LOVED it. I really enjoyed how Gregory Maguire built Oz from the ground up, brick by yellow brick.  And I thought that he did an excellent job of really making the story fresh and new. I also loved how Elphaba isn’t what you would think she’d be, based on the original tale. She’s just a bit misunderstood, is all.

What books did you read before you blogged?

The Archived by Victoria Schwab

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archivedSynopsis

Imagine a place where the dead rest on shelves like books.

Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures that only Librarians can read. The dead are called Histories, and the vast realm in which they rest is the Archive.

Da first brought Mackenzie Bishop here four years ago, when she was twelve years old, frightened but determined to prove herself. Now Da is dead, and Mac has grown into what he once was, a ruthless Keeper, tasked with stopping often—violent Histories from waking up and getting out. Because of her job, she lies to the people she loves, and she knows fear for what it is: a useful tool for staying alive.

Being a Keeper isn’t just dangerous—it’s a constant reminder of those Mac has lost. Da’s death was hard enough, but now her little brother is gone too. Mac starts to wonder about the boundary between living and dying, sleeping and waking. In the Archive, the dead must never be disturbed. And yet, someone is deliberately altering Histories, erasing essential chapters. Unless Mac can piece together what remains, the Archive itself might crumble and fall.

In this haunting, richly imagined novel, Victoria Schwab reveals the thin lines between past and present, love and pain, trust and deceit, unbearable loss and hard-won redemption.

Find it on Goodreads

5 out of 5 Stars

Get ready for some incoherent fangirl babbling, because that’s what’s coming your way.

This book. THIS. BOOK. This book is why I love reading. This book is why I read so many other books: because I am always searching for books like THIS BOOK. Oh. Em. Gee. I just can’t. . .

Ok. So, The Archived is basically my perfect book. Its concept is both amazing and heartbreaking. The writing is flawless. The world building is mind-blowing. The characters are just. . . wow. There was action. There was paranormal stuff. There was even a love triangle. Kind of. Not really. Which is good, because I don’t really like those anyway.

I don’t even know where to start. I want to tell you everything about this book and at the same time I want to tell you nothing at all, because you just need to read it and experience it for yourself. This is hard. I’m going to make a list.

Things I loved about The Archived

1. The writing was so good. So. Good. Ms. Schwab’s writing is fabulous. Her descriptions were rich and allowed me to have a crystal clear picture of everything. Everything. And I was so engaged in the plot that I actually didn’t see some of the plot twists coming. Seriously. I was so engrossed in the here and now, that I didn’t even stop to consider ten pages from now. It was brilliant.

2. The world building was amazing. The Archive. The Narrows. The Outer. The Coronado. Each place is practically a character in its own right. The different levels of the Archive: the Keepers, the Crew, and the Librarians, were well thought out and explained in such a way that it was almost like they were real. Like the Archive was something that actually existed. I almost believed it.

3. Mackenzie. Mac. M. I loved this girl. She’s tough, yet vulnerable. She’s totally relatable. She’s totally kick-ass. And she does the hard thing even when there’s an easy way out. (Is that a spoiler? I don’t think that’s a spoiler. . .)

4. Wesley “Guyliner” Ayers. He’s charming and loyal and. . . Just. Yes.

5. The rest of the cast: Mac’s parents, her best friend Lyndsey, Roland, Da, Mr. Nix.

6. The banter. Oh, the banter! :)

7. The feels. This book actually made my chest ache. Like, physically ache. There was a 2 ton elephant sitting on my chest as I read parts of this book. For real. And there was definitely crying. But there was also laughing, cursing, and swooning. My emotions ran the full gamut with this one.

8. Too many other things to mention.

I honestly can’t think of a single thing that I didn’t like about this book. Well, ok. Maybe Owen. The stuff with Owen just made me sad. . .until it made me mad. But that’s just good writing.

I could go on and on about this book all day long and still not do it any justice. Did I mention how good it was? It. Was. So. Good. SO. GOOD. I mean, it was so good that my brain is too busy being excited about how good it was, to come up with any other adjective to describe it other than “good”. And there’s soooooo much more I could get into, would love to get into, but I won’t. Because you need to read this book and I don’t want to spoil it for you. So what are you waiting for? Go. Read. Then come back here and fangirl with me ;) .

Don’t Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski

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DETAISynopsis

Contemporary teen fiction with romance, secrets, scandals, and ESP from the author of Ten Things We Did (And Probably Shouldn’t Have).

We weren’t always like this. We used to be average New York City high school sophomores. Until our homeroom went for flu shots. We were prepared for some side effects. Maybe a headache. Maybe a sore arm. We definitely didn’t expect to get telepathic powers. But suddenly we could hear what everyone was thinking. Our friends. Our parents. Our crushes. Now we all know that Tess is in love with her best friend, Teddy. That Mackenzie cheated on Cooper. That, um, Nurse Carmichael used to be a stripper.

Since we’ve kept our freakish skill a secret, we can sit next to the class brainiac and ace our tests. We can dump our boyfriends right before they dump us. We know what our friends really think of our jeans, our breath, our new bangs. We always know what’s coming. Some of us will thrive. Some of us will crack. None of us will ever be the same. So stop obsessing about your ex. We’re always listening.

Find it on Goodreads

4 out of 5 Stars

*I received an ARC of this eBook via NetGalley in exchanged for an honest review*

Have you ever looked at someone and wished that you could hear what they were thinking? Well, you should be careful what you wish for, because as the kids in Homeroom 10B quickly found out, you may not really want to know.

This book was funny. Like, laugh out loud in public and begin to collect weird looks, funny. Ms. Mlynowski perfectly paints a picture of what it would be like if a group of teens could suddenly hear the thoughts of everyone around them. And not just specific thoughts, but every random thought that floats through your head. Are you hungry? Did you forget your homework? Are you bored? Did you cheat on your boyfriend? Do you have to pee? They can hear all that and more, whether they want to or not. I couldn’t stop giggling. Like when one girl “overhears” her parents ,um, being intimate, I just about died laughing. It was priceless.

Told as a collective “We”, the story follows an entire gaggle of high school students that go in for a flu shot and come out with a little more than they bargained for. I really enjoyed the fact that there was such a wide cast of characters involved, because it allowed you to see how a variety of different personalities reacted to becoming spontaneously telepathic. Like the Type-A student who automatically figures out how to use this new “gift” to their advantage. Or the shy girl who builds confidence when she doesn’t have to worry about what others are thinking about her, because she already knows. Or the happy-go-lucky kid that has his bubble burst when he realizes that everything is not as great as it seems. Or the twins that think they’ve suddenly developed the “twin powers” that they’ve always secretly known they were capable of.

And you know what? For having as large a cast as the book did, I never got confused or felt overwhelmed. The characters were all well rounded and had their own little quirks that made them seem real, like Olivia being a hypochondriac (her thoughts were some of my favorites) and Cooper singing almost everything he says. I mean, the trains of thought could get a little chaotic if more than one person was thinking at once, but I thought that it felt authentic (well, as authentic as telepathy can be, anyway). And you could usually pick out who “said” what based on what was “said”, thanks to the stellar character building.

And I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised at the  amount of character development that happened throughout the book. In every character. It was impressive, really. Having to flesh out that many characters could have left some of them overlooked, leaving them flat and empty. That totally wasn’t the case though. It seemed to me that all of the characters completed some kind of arc, so kudos for that.

The only thing that kind of bothered me was the end of the book. It had one of those non-endings where things kind of conveniently came together, but a lot of stuff was left wide open like there could possibly be a sequel in the works. I’m not saying that there is, in fact I can’t find anything that even remotely hints at another book, but that’s just how it felt to me. I like my endings to be tidy and wrapped up in a little bow, not brimming with possibility. Unless of course there are more books to come, then the possibilities can overflow all they want. It’s just a preference thing.

Anyways, ending aside, I deeply enjoyed this book. It’s a quick, fun read that makes you think twice about the way you think. If anyone could hear the thoughts running through your head right now, would you have to censor yourself? Or do you think what you say and say what you think? Either way, if you’re looking for something light and cute to read, don’t even think about passing this one up :) .