Oct 31, 2012


Through the Ever Night ARC!!!!!

You've probably already read my rant on how amazing Under the Never Sky and Veronica Rossi are. If not, you can read about it here. And definitely start working on getting that book into your hands. Trust me, you won't be disappointed.

But now I have been even more affirmed of how incredibly wonderful this author is. Look at what just arrived in my mailbox today!

Not only did we get a beautiful signed ARC of Through the Ever Night, she sent a signed bookmark with it too! How nice is that?

Oct 28, 2012


Sweet Evil Read-Along: Halloween

Wednesdays: the hump day. If you make it past that, then the rest of the week is a breeze. And let's not forget that it is the day that spell check hates the most. (Honestly, that "d" does not belong there). But this year, it's something more. In this fated year of 2012, the most magical time of the year falls on this most pivotal and underrated day, Wednesday.

(A little known fact about Halloween is that it actually is National Magic Day. It was first created a year after Harry Houdini died.... on Halloween. Coincidence? Or not?)

I've always loved Halloween even though I'm definitely past the point where trick-or-treating is still considered cool. I never really understood that. Halloween is supposed to be a day when you can give yourself the courage to be anyone you've ever wanted to be, without feeling like you're being judged for it. Why would anyone want to give that up to meet other people's standards?

And c'mon people, free candy! What kind of deranged masochist denies themselves that? If the "cool" people don't eat candy, then I want absolutely nothing to do with them. They're obviously mentally unstable!

And finally, to end this post with one of my favorite quotes from the entire book:

"'I've got a joke for you,' Kaidan told him. Jay nodded his head, ready. 'What's the difference between a drummer and a savings bond?'
'I don't know. What?' Jay beamed bright yellow.
'A savings bond eventually matures and makes money.' "

Oct 27, 2012


Cover Lovin' #2: Abstract

I never really understood abstract art. You put a block here, a circle there, sign your name, and suddenly it's worth millions when it looks like a preschooler made it. But there are times when I have to admit that abstract can really turn into something amazing. When your book pops with such an incredibly creative cover that I just can't get out of my head, you know you're doing something right.

Crewel by Gennifer Albin


Black City by Elizabeth Richards


To be completely honest, I'm not exactly sure what either of these are (well, except for the rose). They lead nothing to the actual book as far as I can tell, but they caught my eye and they kept it. Somebody obviously put a lot of thought into creating them, and I think that it really paid off. I had never heard of either of these books anywhere else, and I probably wouldn't have looked further into them if the covers weren't so intriguing.

What do you guys think? Has there ever been a book that you picked up just because it had really original and creative cover art?

Oct 21, 2012


Sweet Evil Read-Along: Truth or Dare


So I hope I'm not the only one who's more than a little confused as to how exactly one plays Truth or Dare via blog. I never really was an expert on this game myself. But because daring myself to do something seems slightly unsportsmanlike, I think I'll go with the truths.

  1. I've only ever given up on one book, and that was Harry Potter: Please don't hate me, but it's true. Trust me, I tried, but nothing ever really clicked. I got half-way through with the first novel, but then I just gave up. For some reason, I couldn't get into the story. They still seem awesome, so of course I wish I could enjoy them, but I guess there was something about her writing style that I just couldn't get past. I may be willing to give them a second chance in the future, but until then, there are too many other books that I want to read for me to give time to one that failed me the first time.
  2. I still adore the Percy Jackson, The Kane Chronicles, and The Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan: I have to admit, when I saw my seven year old cousin with these books a few weeks ago, I was on the verge of admitting the loss of my sanity. That is, right after I congratulated him on having better taste in books than both of his older siblings combined. History of the Boston Red Sox? Really? But I still think these are great books, regardless of the age of their intended audience. There's mythology, action, adventure, and enough comedy to bring a grown man to his knees. What's not to like about that?
  3. I am extremely stubborn when asked to read books that have become popular: Anyone who's ever met me knows how extremely stubborn I can be. And it gets just that much worse whenever books are involved. I am always extremely reluctant to read books that have gotten a lot of hype lately among more than just the die-hard novel ninjas (yes, I did just say that). Does it mean that I don't trust my fellow humans' judgement? Absolutely. I've come to notice that when a whole lot of people become obsessed with a book, it's usually because it follows some sort of cookie cutter standard. And then more people join the readership only to tell their friends that they have as well. I don't think reading should be about popularity; I think that true book lovers read because of what the novels mean to them, not what everyone else says they should.
  4. I have never become very attached to the main character of any book: For some odd reason, I never really identify with the main characters in books. There always seems to be some supporting character that's just that much more interesting than they are. Like in Sweet Evil, my favorite characters were Patty and Belial/Jonathan LaGray, Anna's dad. I thought the best part of the book was when Patty went up and slapped him, and I was begging the entire time after I met Belial that it wouldn't turn out that he was lying about his past. It was never Kaidan that could've broken my heart by betraying Anna, but her father.
  5. My books are my children, and if you hurt them, you die: I am extremely protective of my books. If you have been allowed anywhere near them, then you are among the chosen few, but by harming them in any way, you've given yourself a death sentence. When I let them leave my sight, I worry the entire time until they have been returned safely to me. I'm sure I've annoyed quite a few people by how viciously I watch them read my books, and the extensive list of rules that must be adhered to. For example, if the book is paperback, I freak out when people open the pages all of the way. If I'm there while you're reading it, you must hold the back of the book so that the binding isn't damaged. And don't you ever, EVER dog-ear the pages. That is a no questions asked, one way ticket to the end of the rest of your life.

And on that happy note.... in the spirit of Truth or Dare, I suppose there is one more thing I should share with you all: I read the sparkly vampire books on a dare. One of my not so readerly friends was gushing over how amazing the books were, but (going back to #3) I just wasn't having it. I thought it was all a lie and the cult had finally reached over to snare one of my own. But then she made me a deal. If I read the Twilight Saga, she would read the Inheritance Cycle - Eragon, Eldest, and Brisingr (Inheritance wasn't out yet).

I agreed to the dare, but not much to my surprise, she never got around to reading my books. I have to admit, I read all four of those enormous books in three days. I thought that the storyline was interesting, I adored almost all of the characters, and I absolutely fell in love with Stephanie Meyer's writing style. My only complaint was that everything seemed very depressing. There was never really a happy moment that wasn't marred by some sort of tragedy, and everyone always had something to complain about. Aside from that, I didn't think they were too terribly awful. So I suppose I owe at least one series to the magic of dares.

Was any of this true for somebody else?

Oct 19, 2012


Review of The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown

Famed Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon answers an unexpected summons to appear at the U.S. Capitol Building. His planned lecture is interrupted when a disturbing object—artfully encoded with five symbols—is discovered in the building. Langdon recognizes in the find an ancient invitation into a lost world of esoteric, potentially dangerous wisdom. When his mentor Peter Solomon—a longstanding Mason and beloved philanthropist—is kidnapped, Langdon realizes that the only way to save Solomon is to accept the mystical invitation and plunge headlong into a clandestine world of Masonic secrets, hidden history, and one inconceivable truth . . .

Have you ever heard of the White House or Washington being overrun by vampires or some type of supernatural creature? Or about how the Roman, Grecian architecture had such a profound impact on the founding fathers of this nation almost three centuries ago?

Sounds almost…impossible huh? Well, the first is impossible because vampires don’t exist. In my mind anyways, but the rest? Well, its true and has been proven by the amazing author Dan Brown who wrote The DaVinci Code, Angels and Demons and the book I am reviewing now, The Lost Symbol. The reason that I enjoy reading his work so much is because personally, I am a fan of history such as the kind that he portrays in his books. I love anything to do with ancient history and would jump at the chance to learn more about it. Hence the reason I am going to tell you all about this amazing book.

As I already mentioned, this book has to do with the history of America’s capital: Washington D.C and the supposed secret that has been hidden under the cornerstone of the Washington Monument. It has been said in the Ancient Mysteries (which are elaborated more in the book) that the Mysteries are what will save this world from some apocalyptic meltdown. The Mysteries are what the nation was founded on and what the world will eventually end on.

In the book, the protagonist, Robert Langdon, is summoned to the capital to give a lecture on the history of the nation and what the nation was founded on, which was mostly European culture. Don’t believe me? Research it. Well, long story short, the Ancient Mysteries are brought up and the wild goose chase ensues. Well more like the wild-murderer-who-wants-to-destroy-the-world-chase ensues. Robert and his friend Katherine are desperately truing to stop the monster who wants the secret of the mysteries for his own personal gain as well as to “save the world.” Let it be known that he obviously has a twisted mind and seems to view the saving of the world to be something that would inevitably ruin it. 

For When Words Aren't Enough

Forgive me, I know it's for the movie, but that's all I could find!

Amazon              Barnes & Noble                Goodreads              The Book Depository


Oct 18, 2012


Attractive Characters #7: Dimitri Belikov

I have always said that foreign guys are attractive and more mature than what we here in America know. For one, foreign guys are seemingly more attractive because they almost always know another language. What person would not be attracted to that? Plus, they might have grown up with different customs and so they are capable of teaching us so much. This very reason is why I have grown to love young, handsome, and Russian Dimitri Belikov AKA Dimka (no, I will never understand Russian nicknames). He’s a character in Richelle Meade’s Vampire Academy series.

Dimitri is a main character who is a Guardian. That means that he knows some serious kick-butt moves that involve decapitation, and staking. Sounds harsh? Well, when dealing with Strigoi, undead, evil vampires who take innocent lives, that’s what is necessary to survive. Ok, allow me to elaborate because I am probably confusing the cheese out of you.
In the Vampire Academy series, there are two different kinds of vampires: the Moroi and the Strigoi. As I have already made clear, the Strigoi are the ones who are evil and are the very stereotype of nasty, evil, blood-drinkers that many people seem to associate vampires with. Moroi are the good vampires who only drink blood in small amounts when feeding. They have elemental magic, such as control over water, air, fire, earth and even spirit. The Strigoi don’t making them even more….dead.
Due to the unnatural Strigoi, the Guardians are the ones who protect the Moroi from being attacked and murdered by the Strigoi. This is the job of Guardian Belikov. He is one of the best at the school he teaches at: St. Vladimir’s Academy. Dimitri is Russian and from Siberia where he grew up. Hence the reason I started off by explaining why foreign people are considered more attractive. And this Guardian is.  Make no mistake about that.
Dimitri is described as having a tall, toned, physique with brown eyes and hair. He can best all and any other Guardian trainer. He is considered an intimidating person when he is first introduced but he turns out to be a calm, patient, loving guy with a sense of humor. His partner in crime, ok one of his students, Rose Hathaway, gave him the nickname Comrade because of his Russian background. More of his nicknames include, Cradle Robber, Anti-Social God, and Sergeant Boring Borscht. Obviously his nicknames are seemingly accurate, at least the majority are. Granted, he takes his job seriously and so he hardly ever jokes during a lesson but in general? He is one of the most open and fun loving people you could ever meet. That is in books. Real life…? Maybe not. But hey! One can always dream.

To learn more about this amazing godlike man, read the Vampire Academy Series  by Richelle Meade. 


Oct 12, 2012


Coming Soon.... #4: Through the Ever Night

Guess what just happened! Wait for it.... wait for it.... MARKED BY BOOKS JUST WON AN ARC OF THROUGH THE EVER NIGHT!!!!!

If you've never heard of this series or Veronica Rossi, then you need to stop whatever you're doing right now and find a way to get your hands on one of the books. At this very moment. They are really good. Look at this beautiful-ness! Look at it!

Book #1

Since she'd been on the outside, she'd survived an Aether storm, she'd had a knife held to her throat, and she'd seen men murdered. This was worse.
Exiled from her home, the enclosed city of Reverie, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland - known as The Death Shop - are slim. If the cannibals don't get her, the violent, electrified energy storms will. She's been taught that the very air she breathes can kill her. Then Aria meets an Outsider named Perry. He's wild - a savage - and her only hope of staying alive.
A hunter for his tribe in a merciless landscape, Perry views Aria as sheltered and fragile - everything he would expect from a Dweller. But he needs Aria's help too; she alone holds the key to his redemption. Opposites in nearly every way, Aria and Perry must accept each other to survive. Their unlikely alliance forges a bond that will determine the fate of all who live under the never sky.

Book #2

It's been months since Aria last saw Perry. Months since Perry was named Blood Lord of the Tides, and Aria was charged with an impossible mission. Now, finally, they are about to be reunited. But their reunion is far from perfect. The Tides don't take kindly to Aria, a former Dweller. And with the worsening Aether storms threatening the tribe's precarious existence, Aria begins to fear that leaving Perry behind might be the only way to save them both.
Threatened by false friends, hidden enemies, and powerful temptations, Aria and Perry wonder, Can their love survive through the ever night?


After a childhood spent wandering the borderlands, Roar finally feels like he has a home with the Tides. His best friend Perry is like a brother to him, and Perry's sister, Liv, is the love of his life. But Perry and Liv's unpredictable older brother, Vale, is the Blood Lord of the Tides, and he has never looked kindly on Roar and Liv's union. Normally, Roar couldn't care less about Vale's opinion. But with food running low and conditions worsening every day, Vale's leadership is more vital—and more brutal—than ever. Desperate to protect his tribe, Vale makes a decision that will shatter the life Roar knew and change the fate of the Tides forever.

This series is so amazing. Though I've only read the first book, I loved it. I was so depressed once I finished it because I couldn't wait until the next book came out in over a year. Through the Ever Night will definitely be pushed to the top of my list once it arrives.

Have any of you guys ever read one of Veronica Rossi's books?


Oct 11, 2012


Sweet Evil Read-Along: Citrus Recipe

I love oranges. They're the perfect combination of sweet and tart, and come in their own convenient carrying cases. I personally find them to be much more appealing than pears. Yes, yes, big laughs for everyone who read the book; it's true on both counts.

I also really like drink recipes. I'm a huge fan of any kind of cooking that doesn't really require much skill, effort, or time. Usually if recipes don't have any chocolate in them, it's just not worth it, but for this one I make an exception.

Sherbert Punch

6 cups ginger-ale or some sort of lemon-lime soda
1 cup orange juice
1 cup pineapple juice
12 scoops orange (or another flavor) sherbert (you can put as much or as little of the sherbert in as you want, depending on how sweet or tart you want it to be)

Chill each of the drinks before you put them in the punch bowl. Pour in the first 3 ingredient together and mix them. Add in the sherbert. Chill it if you need to, but DON'T ADD ICE because then it will just get watered down. And that's it!

Easy as pie! Or punch. Whatever floats your boat. Or your sherbert. Okay, I'm going to stop with the bad jokes now.

But there's one more thing I want to show you guys. There's this one cooking blog called Chocolate Covered Katie, and she is so amazing. All of her recipes are delicious, and they're actually healthy! This is actually just a fun thing, though, and it's so cute. And orange themed!

She's really good. Aren't they beautiful?

Oct 7, 2012


Sweet Evil Read-Along: Road Trips

So I just started Sweet Evil today. And finished it.... today. Do you think I have a problem? Wait a minute, don't answer that.

This book is REALLY good. I fell in love right off the bat with just about all of the characters (hi Patti!), and almost beheaded somebody when I got to the end. Why must sequels take so long?!

I will be posting a review of this at some point in time, but I'd better get back to road trips before I create too big of a book rant for me to pull myself out of.

I personally love road trips. They're the one time when my family is either sleeping (hopefully not the driver, but I wouldn't really be surprised) or in a junk food induced coma and are actually quiet enough for me to read. And I mean the kind of reading that lets you tear through books one after another without care for things like bathroom breaks or breathing. I'm drooling just thinking about it.

But everyone has had their fair share of road trips gone horribly wrong, and I am no exception. So every Christmas, my family drives ten hours to Cleveland, Ohio (which just so happens to be the Rock 'n' Roll Capital of the World, thank you very much). For those of you who are unaware, Cleveland is located in the Snow Belt, that area right around the Great Lakes up north. Which means we get a hundred or so inches of snow every year. And it's not nice and fluffy winter wonderland snow all of the time. Oh no, it's more like a sacrifice-your-first-born-to-the-snow-plows-and-rock-salt-or-fear-the-wrath-of-Jack-Frost kind of snow.

Well, at around nine o'clock, we ran into one of those blizzards. The entire interstate was backed up for miles. You couldn't see a single thing, and all of the roads were covered in black ice. It was pretty obvious that we weren't going anywhere. We were stuck in that exact spot for nine hours! And not only does most of my family snore, but I had the pleasure of being the pillow for my dog while sleeping on the floor of the car.

But it's not like I was going to be getting much sleep anyway. Unless we wanted to be trapped there for the rest of our lives, we had to start the car up every half hour so the engine wouldn't freeze over, and then roll the tires back and forth so that they wouldn't be encased in ice by the time we were able to leave. And people say Ohio is boring.

But what is this I see? Slithering through the uninhabited corners of the blogosphere.... It's a bird! It's a plane! No, it's a GABBY!

Welcome to our very first Double Trouble post, where you have the misfortune of dealing with both of us at the same time. I wish you all the very best of luck. Hopefully we won't scare you so much that you never come back.

Have you ever seen the movie "College Road Trip" with Raven Simone? It about a girl who goes on a road trip (obviously) with her father to the college of her dreams: Georgetown. They have obstacles that try and hinder them from reaching their objective. In the long run, the daughter and father get closer and share a bond which nothing can break. Quite original, huh? Sadly, real life road trips aren't as interesting as Hollywood makes them out to be, but that doesn't make them boring either.

Me? I have had my share of road trips. Every summer, my family and I used to Go somewhere that involved driving.  One year we went to New York, another year we went to Orlando, Florida and yet another year we went to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  The 8 to 14 hour drives were never the most comfortable things ever, but they were always worth it. 

For one,  the trips gave us time together as a family that we otherwise probably wouldn't have had. We were in a four-by-four car stuck with one another, so it was inevitable that we'd talk.  We laughed and joked and had our family time. Granted, we shared dinner every night as a family, but there is just something "binding" about being stuck in a car with three other people for hours on end. 

So my point is that road trips are and can be beneficial. Sure they might be claustrophobic... agonizingly cramped.... and even tiring (it might seem a bit odd to be tired after sitting for 8 hours or more, but trust me, IT IS!!) but all in all, it's worth it. You get to bond with people and you gain a sense of accomplishment in the end.