June 30, 2011

Kiss, Marry, Kill: Jane Eyre

I'm trying this out as a regular feature. Here's how it works: you take a book, choose 3 guy characters from the book, and then the other person has to pick one to kiss, one to marry, and one to kill.

This week, it's Jane Eyre. In terms of film adaptations, I'm partial to the 1983 mini-series, personally (I think it's the first version of Jane Eyre I saw, and it's certainly the one that sticks closest to the book) but I've included pictures from the more recent 2006 version as well, which also does a decent job. In any case, feel free to visualize the characters however you choose!

The choices:

1.) Edward Rochester

2.) Richard Mason

3.) St. John Rivers

So, who do you kiss, who do you marry, and who do you kill? I'm willing to bet I can predict what most of the responses will be...but maybe I'll be surprised!

As always, if you'd like to do your own, feel free to mention it in the comments or leave a link to your post there :)

June 29, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday: Pretty Crooked and Tempest

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and features books that we just can't wait to get our hands on!

This week's picks:

Pretty Crooked by Elisa Ludwig

Description from the Harper Collins catalog:

"Willa’s secret plan seems all too simple: take from the rich kids at Valley Prep and give to the poor ones.

Yet Willa’s turn as Robin Hood at her ultra-exclusive high school is anything but. Bilking her “friends”known to everyone as the Glitteratiwithout them suspecting a thing is far from easy. Learning how to pick pockets and break into lockers is as difficult as she’d thought it’d be. Delivering care packages to the scholarship girls, who are ostracized just for being from the “wrong” side of town, is way more fun than she’d expected.

The complication Willa didn’t expect, though, is Aidan Murphy, Valley Prep’s most notorious (and gorgeous) ace-degenerate. His mere existence is distracting Willa from what matters most to her: evening the social playing field between the haves and have-nots. There’s no time for crushes and flirting with boys, especially conceited and obnoxious trust-funders like Aidan.

But when the cops start investigating the string of thefts at Valley Prep and the Glitterati begin to seek revenge, could Aidan wind up being the person that Willa trusts most?

Elisa Ludwig’s Pretty Crooked is the first installment in an adventurous teen caper series filled with mystery, humor, and heart."

Modern-day Robin Hood as a girl? Seriously. Awesome. And that cover is so fun!

Tempest by Julie Cross


Goodreads' description:

"Jackson thought he had all the time in the world with Holly. Until time took him away from her...

Nineteen-year-old Jackson Meyer is a normal guy . . . who just happens to be able to travel through time. It’s all just harmless fun until the day Jackson witnesses his girlfriend, Holly, get fatally shot. In his panic, Jackson jumps back two years, but it’s not long before the people who shot Holly come looking for him. And these “Enemies of Time” will stop at nothing to recruit (or kill) this powerful young time-traveler. Jackson must decide how far he is willing to go to save Holly . . . and the entire world."

Love that he uses his time travel powers to try to save his girlfriend's life...that's always supposed to be a big no-no when it comes to time travel! All that messing with the space-time continuum...I'm really interested to see how it plays out. I'm liking the dramatic cover, too.

What books are you waiting for?

June 28, 2011

Canada Day Blog Hop Giveaway!

Aislynn from Knit, Purl, Stitch...Read and Cook! and Chrystal from Snowdrop Dreams of Books are co-hosting this awesome Canada Day giveaway hop!

Canadian authors are always being overlooked, so I'm giving away your choice of any YA/MG book by a Canadian author, costing $10 CDN or less from The Book Depository. For a list of some Canadian YA and MG authors, check out this link on the blog Just Deb...

Yes, it is open internationally (as long as The Book Depository ships to you — see here for their list of countries)...so that everyone can celebrate Canada's birthday!

  • One entry per person.
  • No tweeting or following necessary, although it's always appreciated. 
  • Comments are nice but do NOT count as entries.  
  • Giveaway ends July 2 at 11:59 pm EST.
  • The winner will be selected randomly and contacted by e-mail.
This contest is now closed.

Then hop over to the next blog on the list, Vamps, Weres, and Cassay, to see what they're giving away! The full blog hop linky list can be found at the bottom of this post.

Good luck! I leave you with a couple humorous Canadian videos to enjoy. The first is the infamous (in Canada) Molson beer commercial, which contradicts some well-known stereotypes about Canadians, and the second is a song by the Arrogant Worms. (No offense intended by either — they're just for fun!)

June 27, 2011

Forgotten: Review

Goodreads' description:
"Each night when 16 year-old London Lane goes to sleep, her whole world disappears. In the morning, all that's left is a note telling her about a day she can't remember. The whole scenario doesn't exactly make high school or dating that hot guy whose name she can't seem to recall any easier. But when London starts experiencing disturbing visions she can't make sense of, she realizes it's time to learn a little more about the past she keeps forgetting-before it destroys her future.

Part psychological drama, part romance, and part mystery, this thought-provoking novel will inspire readers to consider the what-if's in their own lives and recognize the power they have to control their destinies."
Forgotten by Cat Patrick


The concept behind Forgotten really intrigued me from the synopsis. However, in its execution I feel like it was just too bizarre to be handled the way it was. I think if London's memory had erased at 4:33 am every morning, and that was the only issue, I could have bought it much more easily. There have been case studies of individuals who have short-term memory loss, after all. But combine that with "remembering" the future and you open a whole other can of worms. First of all, if she can see the future and change the future...um, exactly how does that work? Why doesn't she see herself changing the future? Or see glimpses of a variety of possible futures, that depend on the choices she makes? We don't really know how she sees it, or what her limitations are, and the future "memories" are lacking in description; we are told what will happen rather than getting a peek at them along with London.

Secondly, nitty-gritty of her future-seeing aside...basically, she possesses a supernatural ability in an otherwise magic-less story. I'm pretty sure before I read Forgotten I saw some other reviews criticize it for having no explanation for this ability of London's, and I'm very much inclined to agree with them. The unbelievability quotient is simply over the top. Yes, we are given some revelations about her past that provide an explanation (albeit far-fetched and probably not scientifically viable) for the memory loss. But I don't see how that can be stretched to explain her future-seeing as well.


Honestly, I had a very difficult time connecting with any of the characters in this book, even the narrator London. I think this was partly due to the writing style, which I found rather dry and distancing, and also to the fact that we don't learn a lot about the characters' interests, hobbies or personality quirks. I'm not sure I could name one activity London enjoys doing in her spare time if I had to (I'm not counting hanging out with her friend or boyfriend). Her unusual memory problems define her and largely define her relationships and the storyline. Her whole life is basically just trying to get through each day, and at the beginning I did feel the frustration that anyone with a memory loss like hers must feel. After a while, however, it just became tiring to read about.

London's friend Jamie feels the most "alive" of any of them, yet even she is pretty much the required best friend sidekick. Sure, she and London have a fight partway through, but you know they will patch things up by the end. How can you be so sure? Well, a) that's usually how BFF arguments end up getting resolved, and b) London "remembers" the future in any case.

Luke is introduced as the perfect guy: attractive, charming, considerate — and unfortunately lacking much depth. He doesn't seem to have any flaws; at one point I remember wondering if I could trust him. Thankfully we do find out a bit more about him through a revelation that explains his interest in London and gives their relationship at least some dimension, but I still wasn't crazy about him by the end. (But he does have an obsession with ears that makes him a bit more distinctive...even if it does weird me out.) I did feel kind of sorry for him though, because he has a girlfriend who wakes up every single day and doesn't remember him; frankly I didn't really get why he stuck with her.

The only other really central character is London's mom, and I had a hard time understanding how she could be so blasé about London's memory problems. I mean, yes, it's been years and they haven't found a medical explanation, but her mom really takes it all in stride and doesn't seem to be too concerned about it. If I had a daughter and she forgot each day but "remembered" the future, I'd be more than a little worried. The relationship dynamic between London and her mom is interesting, though; at some points they seem almost more like friends than mother/daughter, and London confides in her more closely than many teens we see in YA do.


There didn't really seem to be one central storyline here, which meant the book lacked direction or much momentum. There's a plot revolving around London's relationship with Luke, another with her friend Jamie, and a third — the most mysterious and significant, I think — related to her unsettling visions of a funeral. Each of these seems to get resolved without too much work on London's part. Okay, she does take steps to get her friendship with Jamie back on track, but since she knew she'd be friends with her in the future...was that really necessary at all? And as for the funeral storyline, there appeared to be some build-up and a few revelations, but then no climactic scene. It was like the action was over before it even began, and London herself isn't really even involved in its resolution — she just finds out about it afterward. Spoilery details, highlight to read: once London's memory of her brother's kidnapping is conveniently triggered and she sees that in the future Luke will die, the police use her clues to discover the house with the stolen children and find out that London's brother's "body" was really a body stolen from the morgue.

And I'm assuming there's a sequel, because there's at least one plot thread completely left dangling. Spoiler: what about Luke dying in the future? Not resolved at all.

Also, given the unique premise, you'd think this would be a gripping read. But I found the opposite to be true — there were so many mundane minuscule details included that I kept losing interest. There were a few scenes that would pull me back into it — usually ones that played on London's memory problems, leading to unexpected situations (spoilery example: I really liked the scene where her memory resets while she's out with Luke and then she wakes up and has no idea where she is or who she's with). And I did like some of the unexpected twists, especially the one involving Luke. But then it would go back to recounting every little encounter that London has, however commonplace. She's constantly forgetting the same things and having similar kinds of conversations, so it gets repetitive. And you can have the most fascinating premise in the world, but if your book is lacking in plot it can only take you so far.

Writing style:

Like I mentioned before, I found the writing kind of dry and clinical, with more telling than showing happening for London's emotional reactions. There wasn't anything blatantly wrong with it, but it didn't sparkle, and some of the dialogue felt inauthentic and stilted. There's also a bit of a disconnect between London's POV and what the reader experiences. London is used to her memory problems and so she's not usually surprised or confused that she forgets the past, or conversely "remembers" something from the future. But to the reader, this is all new and it's frustrating to try to keep track of what London knows, since we can remember everything that's gone on and London can't. I'm not sure there would be any way to really make the reader "forget" along with London, but I just wasn't on the same page as her. Overall, it makes for a confusing reading experience.

Final verdict: 2 shooting stars. A premise with creative potential, but it just didn't happen for me in the execution. I didn't find myself caring about the characters and the whole story ended up feeling pretty pointless.

If you'd like to see a few other bloggers' takes on Forgotten, since I seem to be in the minority, check these more positive reviews out:

The Bookish Type
Poetry to Prose
Amaterasu Reads

Disclaimer: I received this book as an ARC from Big Honcho Media for review.

Cover Reveal: Slide by Jill Hathaway

A while ago Jill contacted some bloggers about helping her to reveal the cover for her 2012 release, Slide. So here it is!

Love the "sliding" effect with the font! And the indigo shade is awesome.

And the blurb:

"Vee Bell is certain of one irrefutable truth—her sister’s friend Sophie didn’t kill herself. She was murdered.

Vee knows this because she was there. Everyone believes Vee is narcoleptic, but she doesn’t actually fall asleep during these episodes: When she passes out, she slides into somebody else’s mind and experiences the world through that person’s eyes. She’s slid into her sister as she cheated on a math test, into a teacher sneaking a drink before class. She learned the worst about a supposed “friend” when she slid into her during a school dance. But nothing could have prepared Vee for what happens one October night when she slides into the mind of someone holding a bloody knife, standing over Sophie’s slashed body.

Vee desperately wishes she could share her secret, but who would believe her? It sounds so crazy that she can’t bring herself to tell her best friend, Rollins, let alone the police. Even if she could confide in Rollins, he has been acting off lately, more distant, especially now that she’s been spending more time with Zane.

Enmeshed in a terrifying web of secrets, lies, and danger and with no one to turn to, Vee must find a way to unmask the killer before he or she strikes again."

Jill's posted about it on her blog if you want to go over and comment! Can't wait to read this one, the premise just sounds fantastic.

June 24, 2011

Forgotten winners!

For the two winners of the giveaway of Forgotten by Cat Patrick, Random.org has selected #8, which was...

Laura from Life After Jane!

And #34, which was...

                               Usagi from Birth of a New Witch!

I've sent them each an e-mail, and Laura has already confirmed. Usagi has 72 hours to get back to me before I select another winner. Congrats to both of you!

Edited: both winners have now been confirmed!

Fave books read in 2011 (so far)

Nomes at Inkcrush has come up with a fabulous idea to feature some of her favourite 2011 reads so far. I'm loving reading everyone else's lists so I'm joining in! If you want to participate see Nomes' post here.

Here are the (awesomely creative) categories and my picks. They are mostly YA but there are a couple adult reads included as well.

1.) Favourite book read so far in 2011

Okay, this one is virtually impossible for me to answer, but I think Anna and the French Kiss and Mistwood would be duking it out. The Host might get a piece of the action too.

2.) Most powerful book

The Host — I really connected emotionally with the main character of this one. I also found Grace to be super intense.

3.) The most brilliantly funny

Hmmm...I don't think I've read any really hilarious books so far...but I did find Ruby Red to be thoroughly entertaining with some laugh-out-loud lines.

4.) Best ache-y, heartbreaking, tearjerker read

Books don't often make me cry, but I think I was tearing up at The Host.

5.) Most beautiful story

I really loved Mistwood, it reminded me of everything wonderful about YA fantasy.

6.) Fave rainy day comfort read

Anna and the French Kiss or Unearthly...both have such cute romances!

7.) Best tense, adrenalin-fuelled, unputdownable award

Divergent would be vying with The Host and Enclave for this one — they all had me totally in their grip.

8.) The beautiful prose award

Song of the Sparrow — the writing was very evocative. Mistwood also gets a mention here.

9.) Most atmospheric and vivid setting

Song of the Sparrow and Jasmyn.

10.) I-so-want-to-go-there award

Ruby Red. Because they get to travel through time and that is awesome. Or maybe Jasmyn by Alex Bell, because part of it is set in Europe and involves castles and such.

11.) Most original and imaginative

Jasmyn by Alex Bell. This book is kind of trippy. Nothing makes sense but you just have to keep turning the pages because it's so wild.

12.) Best under-appreciated, hidden gem book

Probably either Song of the Sparrow or Grace. Some of Elizabeth Scott's other novels get quite a bit of buzz, but Grace seems overlooked.

13.) I-had-no-idea-I-would-love-this-so

Enclave — I was a little wary of it since I'm not big on post-apocalyptic novels, but this one sucked me right in and kept me flipping the pages.

14.) Most haunting story

I'm not sure I've read one yet that really fills this category.

15.) Outside of my comfort zone but gosh how I loved it

The Host by Stephenie Meyer. It was for my "Read Outside Your Comfort Zone" Challenge and I'm not normally one for aliens.

16.) Series that I'm loving

Soul Screamers by Rachel Vincent — I really enjoyed the latest (My Soul to Steal) in this series. It's pretty addictive. I'm also finding the Hex Hall series very entertaining.

17.) Most memorable voice award

To Enclave for Deuce's tough-as-nails attitude and to Anna and the French Kiss for sheer relatability.

18.) Completely awesome premise award

I think Memento Nora and The Host will be fighting over this one. Divergent might sneak in here too.

19.) Would make the best movie

Divergent would make a fantastic, on-the-edge-of-your-seat-the-whole-time movie. And I think Jasmyn would be good as one of those really surreal movies where you don't understand what's going on till the end (and maybe not even then...)

20.) Want to re-read already

Anna and the French Kiss and Mistwood.

If you've done a list and I haven't visited yet then feel free to link me to it in the comments!

Related Posts with Thumbnails