Friday, March 30, 2012

Review: The Catastrophic History of You and Me

Title: The Catastrophic History of You and Me

Author: Jess Rothenberg

Publisher: Penguin

Year: 2012

Challenge: 2012 Debut Author Challenge

Summary from  Goodreads Dying of a broken heart is just the beginning.... Welcome to forever. 

BRIE'S LIFE ENDS AT SIXTEEN: Her boyfriend tells her he doesn't love her, and the news breaks her heart—literally. 

But now that she's D&G (dead and gone), Brie is about to discover that love is way more complicated than she ever imagined. Back in Half Moon Bay, her family has begun to unravel. Her best friend has been keeping a secret about Jacob, the boy she loved and lost—and the truth behind his shattering betrayal. And then there's Patrick, Brie's mysterious new guide and resident Lost Soul . . . who just might hold the key to her forever after. 

With Patrick's help, Brie will have to pass through the five stages of grief before she's ready to move on. But how do you begin again, when your heart is still in pieces?

Thoughts:  I actually resisted picking this up because I was unsure about the contents and thought it was going to be just another sappy love story.  The story took me a little while to get into but when I did I really liked it.  Also there is a huge twist in it which I am sure that other people picked up on well before I did because I am the kind of person who remains blissfully ignorant of these sorts of things. Seriously I have seen "The Sixth Sense" and "The Usual Suspects" and picked up on nothing. It is perfectly possible that others saw the twist coming.

Brie was an interesting character and although she was flawed I really liked reading about her. There is a part of the book where she is really mean and while I don't really approve I definitely understand because I hate to admit this but I do have a vengeful side. Also there were some very touching moments, the scenes between Brie and her dog were especially touching.  

Overall I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. 

Sunday, March 18, 2012

In My Mailbox (2)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren as a way to showcase the books you got this week. Boy did I ever get books this week.

Books I bought

Pandemonium - Lauren Oliver  - I hemmed and hawed for ages over this and finally decided that if my local bookstore had it then I would buy it. They did. 
The Fault in Our Stars - John Green - This one is signed by John Green so I had to buy it. 
Little Women and Me - Lauren Baratz-Logsted
Where it Began - Ann Redisch-Stampler
Trafficked - Kim Purcell

From the Library

There are no pictures because these were inter-library loan books and have huge ugly stickers on them.

From NetGally

Okay this is the part that needs an explanation. In my non-blogging life I am a librarian. It turns out that NetGally is really supportive of librarians and approves them. I did not know this before I started requesting books so I requested more than I would have otherwise. I also just don't want anyone to think that I got the following books because of this blog.  Yes for a librarian I buy a lot of books. I know. Anyway here they are.

Horse Camp - Nicole Helget and Nate Leboutillier - a review will be coming shortly.

These next three aren't YA but I am super-excited for them. 

Paris in Love - Eloisa James 

Summer Breeze - Nancy Thayer 

That's all for this week. Although that is rather a lot I will admit. 

Also I am a sucker for books with heroines named Gabby/Gabrielle/Gabriella so if anyone knows of any do let me know. 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

REVIEW: Freshman Year and Other Unnatural Disasters

Title: Freshman Year & Other Unnatural Disasters

Author: Meredith Zeitlin

Publisher: G Putnam's Sons

Year: 2012

Challenge 2012 Debut Author Challenge

Kelsey Finkelstein is fourteen and FRUSTRATED. Every time she tries to live up to her awesome potential, her plans are foiled – by her impossible parents, her annoying little sister, and life in general. But with her first day of high school coming up, Kelsey is positive that things are going to change. Enlisting the help of her three best friends — sweet and quiet Em, theatrical Cass, and wild JoJo — Kelsey gets ready to rebrand herself and make the kind of mark she knows is her destiny.  
From Goodreads

Thoughts:  The summary alone made me think that I would like the book and I really did. Kelsey was a fun heroine and someone that I would have loved to be friends with when I was in high school.  I like the poking fun at the glamorous lifestyle that New York teens supposedly have and that Kelsey obviously does not have. I also really liked that while on paper some of the situations that Kelsey found herself in could be described as ridiculous somehow they did work really well. Among those there were also the all too real situations that girls can get into with boys. You really do have to kiss a few frogs.

This next thing is not a complaint but rather an observation. For me as someone who hasn't been a teenager for well let's just say quite some time it seemed like there was a lot of drinking in the book especially considering that they were all 14. I'm going to fully admit here that I was a goody-two shoes at 14 so I didn't do anything exciting. Oh except dye my hair purplish-pink but that was an accident!  However I do suspect that a lot of teens do drink and it wasn't unrealistic it was just a little surprising.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Review: Past Perfect Leslie Sales

Title:  Past Perfect
Author: Leslie Sales
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Year: 2011

Summary:  All Chelsea wants to do this summer is hang out with her best friend, hone her talents as an ice cream connoisseur, and finally get over Ezra, the boy who broke her heart. But when Chelsea shows up for her summer job at Essex Historical Colonial Village (yes, really), it turns out Ezra’s working there too. Which makes moving on and forgetting Ezra a lot more complicated…even when Chelsea starts falling for someone new. Maybe Chelsea should have known better than to think that a historical reenactment village could help her escape her past. But with Ezra all too present, and her new crush seeming all too off limits, all Chelsea knows is that she’s got a lot to figure out about love. Because those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it….
From Goodreads

Thoughts: First off this gets bonus points from me just because of the setting. I love history and the idea of working in a living history village like that would be great. As for the book itself I really liked Chelsea as a character. She was unsure of herself a lot of the time and really isn't confident in her decisions at least not initially. You can see how she grows and changes.

Also the book is really funny which is always a huge plus in my book. I think that this kind of book would appeal to fans of contemporary novels and anyone with an interest in history.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

In My Mailbox (1)

First ever In My Mailbox! Well you have to start somewhere I guess!  I wasn't going to do one because I didn't think that I had gotten any even vaguely YA books this week then I remembered the Kindle books I bought. Thank goodness for sneaky Kindle purchases I guess. In My Mailbox is a weekly Meme hosted by Kristi at the Story Siren to show off the books you got this week.

So this week I bought:

Dead is the New Black - Marlene Perez.  Amazon
It was a Kindle Daily Deal but isn't anymore.
Girl in the Arena - Lise Haines Amazon
Still cheapish for the Kindle
The School with Chocolate Air - Jenifer Rubloff Amazon
I didn't win this on Library Thing but it looked so interesting I bought it.
All-of-a-Kind Family - Sydney Taylor Amazon
Okay so the last one does not count as YA nor is it even a recent book but it is wonderful. I loved it.

That's it for me for right now.

2012 Debut Author Challenge

So I think I might have failed last years's challenge although I am not ready to admit defeat yet since I did read a whole bunch of YA Lit for my YA Lit class. That's right I took a class in YA Lit which was pretty sweet actually. Anyway if at first you fail, try again so I am participating in this years' 2012 DAC hosted by Kristi at the Story Siren. There are a lot of really cool books coming out this year and I really want write reviews. Plus I have some ARCs sitting around from the aforementioned YA Lit class that I feel guilty about not reviewing. So the ones that are definite are

1)The Whole Story of Half a Girl - Veera Hiranandani Amazon / Goodreads
2)Freshmen Year and Other Unnatural Disasters - Meredith Zeitlin Amazon / Goodreads

One of those I bought and the other I got from the library and I hope both arrive next week.


Well I fail miserably at blogging. However I have decided to try again and instead of creating a brand new blog I have revived this one.

I guess I should update on the 2011 Debut Author Challenge.  Of the books listed in the previous post the only one I read was "The Great Wall of Lucy Wu" because I got distracted with a whole bunch of other things. I did end up reading a whole bunch of YA and a lot of YA debuts including "Crossed" and I think "Birthmarked" was also one? Anyway I am going to start afresh this year and hope to do better.