Monday, September 27, 2010

Review: Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

From Inside Jacket: Weird as it is working for the International Paranormal Containment Agency, Evie's always thought of herself as normal. Sure, her best friend is a mermaid, her ex-boyfriend is a faerie, she's falling for a shape-shifter, ans she's the only person who can see through paranormals' glamours, but still. Normal. Only now paranormals are dying, and Evie's dreams are filled with haunting voices and mysterious prophecies. She soon realizes that there may be a link between her abilities and the sudden rash of deaths. Not only that, but she may very well be at the center of a dark faerie prophecy promising destruction to all paranormal creatures. So much for normal.

My Rating: 5 hearts 

Thoughts on the Novel: I stopped reading Girl Overboard just to begin Kiersten White’s Paranormalcy because I was so excited to get it. I had such high expectations for this novel and am so glad to say it lived up to its hype.   

Evie was such an adorable character and I instantly fell in love with her! Not only were her love for all things pink, her tendency to say “bleep” instead of swear and her desire to simply be normal endearing traits, but she was also smart, witty and could kick paranormal butt. If only she was someone I could actually meet …

White’s other characters were engaging as well and I cannot wait to find out more about them – and what will happen to Evie of course – in Supernaturally, the sequel to Paranormalcy. For now though, Paranormalcy will have to suffice.

Fast-paced and with her own unique twist on the paranormal world, White’s writing completely engrossed me as I tried to find out more about the prophecy surrounding Evie and rooted for the budding romance between Evie and Lend.      

Paranormalcy was released in August 2010 by HarperTeen.    

Comments About the Cover: I love the cover! The background contrasts with the model, the title of the novel and the author’s name, allowing them to stand out more and because it’s dark, it gives off an air of mystery. I can also totally imagine Evie wearing the pink dress which, by the way, is amazing! (Where can I get it?) My only complaint would be to have the model at least smiling a bit to match Evie’s bubbly personality.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Carol's Banned Books Giveaway

In honour of Banned Books Week, the awesome Carol from Carol's Prints is giving away a very cute bracelet made up of charms that are the covers of banned YA books, two copies of Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak and a pre-order of Daisy White's The Mockingbirds. Click here before September 26 to enter her giveaway!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Review: Nothing but the Truth (and a few white lies) by Justina Chen Headley

From Inside Jacket: Not quite a banana (Asian on the outside but white on the inside), and not quite an egg (a white kid who gets off on all things Asian), half-and-half Patty Hot has never felt completely at home in her skin. Life at House Ho is tough enough between her ultra-strict Taiwanese mom (epic-length lectures and all) and her Harvard-bound big brother. But things get worse when a Chinese fortune-teller channels Patty's future via her belly button ... and divines a white guy on her romance horizon. Faster than Patty can add two plus two, her mom freaks out and ships her off to math camp at Stanford. Just as Patty writes off her summer of woe, life starts glimmering with all kinds of probabilities ...

My Rating: 4.5 hearts 
Thoughts on the Novel: A couple of weeks ago when I was browsing through the shelves of my local library, I came upon Justina Chen Headley’s novels Nothing but the Truth (and a few white lies) and Girl Overboard. Since I’d read North of Beautiful about a year ago and had liked it, I decided to check out both books. Though I haven’t read Girl Overboard yet, Nothing but the Truth (and a few white lies) was a great book and I think it’s even better than North of Beautiful.

As someone who is bi-racial, Headley’s Nothing but the Truth (and a few white lies) really resonated with me because I can completely empathize with Patty. While I’ve been lucky to have never had to deal with racism like Patty, I do remember how it feels to not belong and hide your background to fit in better.

Patty was such a funny protagonist and the Truth Theorems and essays written by her that Headley incorporated into the novel were a very creative touch. I loved reading about Patty’s transformation from someone who was ashamed of her Asian heritage to one who embraces it!

Nothing but the Truth (and a few white lies) was published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers in April 2007.    

Comments About the Cover: The pink and green forming a purple blossom tree in the background look great together and I like how the model is smiling as if she has a secret or two. Overall, the cover is pretty and gives off a girly vibe.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Yes, I'm Still Alive!

I just wanted to let everybody know that I've been working a lot this week - anywhere from eight to thirteen hours a shift - so I haven't been able to read as much. I should have a review of Nothing but the Truth (and a few white lies) up in a few days however and will be blog hopping due to BlogFest.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Review: Shadow Hills by Anastasia Hopcus

From Inside Jacket: Since her sister's mysterious death, Persephone "Phe" Archer has been plagued by a series of disturbing dreams. Determined to find out what happened to her sister, Phe enrolls at Devenish Prep in Shadow Hills, Massachusetts - the subject of her sister's final diary entry. After stepping on campus, Phe realizes that there's something very different about this place - an unexplained epidemic that decimated the town in the 1700s, an ancient and creepy cemetery, and gorgeous boy Zach - and somehow she's connected to it all. But the more questions she asks and the deeper she digs, the more entangled Phe becomes in the haunting past of Shadow Hills. Finding what links her to this town ... might destroy her.

My Rating: 4.5 hearts

Thoughts on the Novel: Right from the start, Shadow Hills is attention-grabbing. It begins with a dream sequence that immediately has the reader on edge and manages to keep being suspenseful right up until the end of the novel.

Each of the characters that Hopcus has created is unique and multi-dimensional, and I liked that even the bad guys may not seem so “bad” once the reader understands their motivations. It takes skill to create well-rounded characters and Hopcus does this impeccably.

It was also fascinating to read about the secrets of the inhabitants of Shadow Hills and to discover that they came with a cost – a thing most people don’t think about when wishing they too had a similar secret.
An intense debut novel with a mixture of romance, supernatural, science and mythology, Shadow Hills will have readers asking for a sequel!

Shadow Hills was released by Egmont USA in July 2010.

Comments About the Cover: While not amazing, the cover is eye-catching and its dark colours suit the novel.