Friday, March 30, 2012

Pride and Popularity by Jenni James

Pride and Popularity by Jenni James
Published by Inkberry Press
On shelves now!!!
Reviewed by: AmyG (big sis)

Pride & Popularity




Chloe Elizabeth Hart despises the conceited antics of the popular crowd, or more importantly, one very annoying self-possessed guy, Taylor Anderson, who seems determined to make her the president of his fan club! As if! Every girl in the whole city of Farmington, New Mexico, is in love with him, but he seems to be only interested in Chloe. 
This modern high school adaptation of “Pride and Prejudice” is a battle of wits as Chloe desperately tries to remain the only girl who can avoid the inevitable—falling for Taylor.



Pride and Popularity is the first book in the Jane Austen Diaries series. I'm sure many of you have seen my review of Northanger Alibi a couple of months back.  They are both books in this series, but I've read them out of order!  That's okay though, they are all stand alones, and in their own way, modernize one of Jane Austen's works!  


Like Northanger Alibi, Pride and Popularity is a fun, sweet read!  Where Northanger Alibi was more suttle in its references to Northanger Abbey and tended to more represent the same themes, Pride and Popularity, is a more evident moderinization of Pride and Prejudice.  I had a lot of fun trying to figure out the parallel characters and situations.  I cracked up several times over the names that Jenni James chose!  She chooses names that allude not only to the books but the classic P&P movies as well!  See if you can find all the connections!


Pride and Prejudice has some of my favorite characters of all time!  Mr. Darcy (the Colin Firth one) is one of the great loves of my life!!!  The characters in this, do not disappoint either.  Where, historical Mr. Darcy, probably would not blend well, in a modern day high school, Taylor does almost to a fault.  Instead of hiding his feeling behind a brooding, prideful personality, Taylor is the life of the party.  He always has a girlfriend, and girls are falling at his feet left and right, except for Chloe of course.   However, no one ever sees his true feelings.  He masques them behind his popularity.  Everybody knows who Taylor is, but nobody truly knows him intimately until Chloe slowly starts to break down his walls.  He's an endearing character that pulls at your heartstrings.  Just like the orginal Darcy, you'll think less of him at first, but by the end, you'll be cheering in his corner!


Georgiana makes an appearance as well, but she's of preschool age, so no eloping with the dreaded parallel of Mr. Wickham.  She's a cute addition to the novel that I absolutely loved!  Chloe's mom, like Mrs. Bennett is pretty dreadful as well, but I missed some of her comic relief.  Chloe's mom didn't suffer from an excess of nerves as did the orignial Mr. Bennet.  She does have that uncanny ability to force relationships on her daughter though!  All in all, one of the best things about the books is comparing the characters to the original.


Ms. James adds her own spin on things that leaves a touch of her in the novel.  Any of you ever heard of MORP?  I hadn't either!  But, its the opposite of PROM, where the girls ask the guys in lieu of Sadie Hawkins.  It's a very cute idea and oh the drama it causes!!! You will love it!


If you are a fan of modernizations, then you will not be disappointed!  Being a mom, I am always concerned about what books are out there for girls, and I would say whole heartedly that I would let my daughter read this.  It's labeled as a YA book, but I think middle grade girls might love this book even more.  Pride and Popularity is a lighthearted contemporary that will leave you happy and carefree.  Just eh right dash of high school with a heaping spoonful of Austen to make it the perfect, sweet treat!


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Cover Reveal: THE ONE by Heather Self

We are so excited to be revealing the cover of our friend, Heather Self's debut novel, The One, coming this summer!  We love Heather and are beyond thrilled for her cover reveal and book release this summer!  So here it is:

Stranded on Earth four thousand years they’ve waited for the arrival of the One: some to save her, others to kill her. With her birth, the ancient prophecy could at last be fulfilled and the doorway between the worlds would open. Those who know the prophecy believe this event occurred almost eighteen years ago, and now, they'll stop at nothing to find her.
Seventeen-year-old Eveline has lived her entire life on the move and she hates it. She knows her parents believe she’s the One, and they've done whatever it takes to stay one step ahead of those who want her dead. But Eveline isn't fully convinced that her parents' beliefs match her own. What she does believe is that Leadville, Colorado may be the chance she's been waiting for. The chance to be somewhere safe. The chance for her to make friends and have fun. The chance to finally date a guy. The chance to be a normal girl, at least as normal as possible for someone not human.

If this gorgeous cover wasn't enough, you can also get a sneek peek of chapter 1 and some additional very steamy teasers!!! How great is that?!? Trust me, you want to check them out!

Additional Teasers:

Also please go follow Heather and learn more about her!  We love her, and we know all of you will too!!!
Find Heather:

Jennifer L. ArmenTOURNEY Match 4 & Match 8

**click on the pic above to visit other Pure Blog Tour stops**


And the Winners are

Caleb and Dawson


Matches will open at 12:01AM on March 29th and close at 8PM CST on the 31st. We are not having advocates in this tournament, so all of you feel free to rally the troups and support your characters in the comments. Remember above all that this tournament is to celebrate ALL of Jennifer's characters. If there is any slandering, character bashing, cursing, or anything else we deem inappropriate, we reserve the right to delete your comment. Let's have fun, cheer on our favorite characters, and show Jennifer how much we love her!

Match #4: Caleb (Seed #4) vs Deacon (Seed #5)


Caleb and Deacon are from the Covenant Series.  Caleb is Alex's best friend, and he is the one who welcomes her with open arms after her return to the Covenant.  He is always there to pull Alex away before she makes a huge mistake by punching Lea straight in the face.  Whenever Alex has a problem, she confides in Caleb--she even admits her desire for a relationship with Aiden to him.  Caleb is fiercely loyal, and even when Alex does the risky and unthinkable, he shows up to lend his support or fighting skills--whichever is needed at the time.  Deacon is Aiden's swoon-worthy little brother.  He puts up a shield to keep himself from getting hurt, most of the time hiding behind alcohol--a defense mechanism because of his parents' deaths.  He is handsome and good with the ladies, but he also seems very sympathetic, lending his arm and ear to Alex on more than one occasion.  We haven't seen much from Deacon so far, but we would definitely not be opposed to learning more in the future!

March # 8: Dawson (Seed #4) vs Bethany (Seed #5)

I know, I know, I know! This match is cruel and unusual punishment!  It shouldn't be allowed to happen, but alas, the tournament must go on!  Dawson's and Bethany's story is told in the prequel to Obsidian, Shadows.  Dawson is the other triplet to Dee and Daemon.  Dawson like his brother and sister is a Luxen or alien.  Where as Daemon is the broken, bad boy, Dawson is the sweet, attentive boy.  He meets Bethany, a human girl, at school and a whirlwind romance ensues.  Bethany is new to school and has come to West Virginia with her family to help with her sick uncle.  She is a very talented artist.  After, she discovers what Dawson is, she doesn't freak out and run away. She loves him for who not what he is.  Dawson's and Bethany's love is that of legends, stronger even than death.

Voting is Closed

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A Million Suns by Beth Revis

A Million Suns by Beth Revis
Publication Date: January 10th, 2012
Reviewed by: Honorary Sis Beth
Sister says: Murderous, Mysterious, and Majestic
Summary from goodreads.com
Godspeed was once fueled by lies. Now it is ruled by chaos. It’s been three months. In that time, Amy has learned to hide who she is. Elder is trying to be the leader he’s always wanted to be. But as the ship gets more and more out of control, only one thing is certain: They have to get off the ship.
***Warning: if you haven't read Across the Universe there will be spoilers ****
Beth Revis has done it again! In my opinion, it is a rarity when the second book is as good or better than the first; however, Ms. Revis not only succeeded, but completely blew me away! I'm not even sure where to start because this book is just amazing!
A Million Suns picks up 3 months after Elder has taken rule of the spaceship "Godspeed". With the entire ship off of phydus and history books and literature readily available, the passengers are starting to think for themselves; one of the results: political unrest. Leadership is questioned, especially when the food supply is running dangerously low. Elder's character is developed more and he learns who his friends and enemies are and who to trust. He tries to lead the ship with conviction and resolution while determined to get the ship to Centauri-Earth.
Amy, on the other hand, is lonelier and more hated than ever. Seriously, this girl is strong and amazingly tenancious. She does not let adversity get her down, but instead is more committed to fulfilling the mission and protecting her parents. Through a series of events, she and Elder uncover more lies and secrets Eldest was keeping from them. As she and Elder get closer to the truth, people start dying. The more people that die, the more the passengers get unsettled and on the brink of another revolution. It is a vicious circle that will keep you guessing until the very end.
Elder and Amy's friendship continues to deepen as they search ship for more clues to the truth. Usually, I am not a fan of split naratives, but in this book, it is perfect. I appreciate being able to see events from both Elder and Amy's point of view. Especially when it comes to their relationship. It is interesting to see Amy's viewpoint since she came originally from Sol-Earth and questions everything and contrast that to Elder's where the spaceship is all he has ever know.
This book is a definite must read! Beth Revis is able to intertwine, murder, mystery, romance, and political drama in 390 pages AND leave you wanting more! A Million Suns has so many twists and turns, it is impossible to put down. I highly recommend this book, but you must have read the first in the series, Across the Universe. If you haven't read or heard of it, click here to read my review.
Buy it.....Read it.....LOVE IT!!!! (I most definitely did!!!)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Teaser Tuesday: Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by MizB over at Should Be Reading!
To participate all you have to do is:

•Grab your current read
•Open to a random page
•Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
•BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure what you share doesn't give too much away! You don't want to ruin the book for others!)  

<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3<3

This week's Teaser Tuesday is Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins.  It's published by Harper Teen and will be released May 1st.  And, let me just tell you this book did all sorts of things to me!!! Oh ladies, wait until you meet Kaidan!  It's an emotional rollercoaster ride of pure awesomeness!!!  Pre-order this beauty right now!!! (there is a reason for all these exclamation points!!!)

Sweet Evil

           "I've never been too terribly attached to anyplace. I guess it would have to be ... here."...
"The Texas panhandle?" I asked.
"No." He seemed to choose each word with deliberate care. "I mean here in this car. With you." (ARC, p. 150)





Monday, March 26, 2012

Jennifer L. ArmenTOURNEY Match 3 & Match 7

And the winners are:


Seth & Dee


**click on the pic above to visit other Pure Blog Tour stops**



Matches will open at 12:01AM on March 26th and close at 8PM CST on the 28th. We are not having advocates in this tournament, so all of you feel free to rally the troups and support your characters in the comments. Remember above all that this tournament is to celebrate ALL of Jennifer's characters. If there is any slandering, character bashing, cursing, or anything else we deem inappropriate, we reserve the right to delete your comment. Let's have fun, cheer on our favorite characters, and show Jennifer how much we love her!

Match #3:  Seth(Seed #3) vs Marcus(Seed #6)
A Little Bio:

Seth and Marcus are both from the Covenant Series.  Seth is the uber-strong Apollyon who is able to control the four elements:  earth, wind, water, and fire.  But, he doesn't stop there--he is the only one who can control a fifth element--akasha, which can only be described as a lightning bolt coming from his oh-so-masculine hands.  He is arrogant to a fault, and as a result, he thinks he's, we'll say Zeus's gift, to all women.  Because Alex will end up being the 2nd Apollyon, Seth has a very strong connection to her--both physical and emotional.  He's tempermental, saucy, and has the kind of charm that radiates sexiness.  If Seth were in our world--he'd be the oh-so-sexy guy who told your parents that "My girl doesn't have a curfew," and then with a tough "vroom," you'd jump on the back of his motorcyle and take off (fearing exactly what your parents were going to say when you returned).  Marcus is Alex's uncle who now holds the job of Dean of Students at the Covenant school.  At first, he threatens to place Alex into servitude, but is talked out of that decision by Aiden, Leon, and Laadan.  While he comes off as the "bad guy" in many of his encounters with Alex, deep down you can see that he cares.

Match #7:  Dee(Seed #3) vs Ashley(Seed #6)
A Little Bio:

Dee and Ashley are both from the Lux Series.  Dee is a Lux and Daemon and Dawson's sister.  These three seem to have quite a bit in common, as they all form bonds with humans.  Dee immediately befriends Katy, and soon becomes her best friend, despite Daemon's futile attempts to pull them apart.  Dee is in an on-again, off-again relationship with Adam, one of the Lux who seems to be more tolerable towards humans.  She is by far the friendliest of all the Lux, and she whole-heartedly defends Katy to all the other Lux.  She's beautiful and has a fantastic sense of fashion.  Ashley, on the other hand, is one of the more hateful Lux.  She is the sister of Andrew and Adam, and she despises humans, especially Katy.  At one point, she dated Daemon, and even though that is long over, she still flirts and seems very possessive over him.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Jennifer L. ArmenTOURNEY: Match #2 & Match #6

And the winners are... 


Our leading ladies: 


Alex and Katy!




**click on the pic above to visit other Pure Blog Tour stops**


Matches will open at 12:01AM on March 23rd and close at 8PM CST on the 25th. We are not having advocates in this tournament, so all of you feel free to rally the troups and support your characters in the comments. Remember above all that this tournament is to celebrate ALL of Jennifer's characters. If there is any slandering, character bashing, cursing, or anything else we deem inappropriate, we reserve the right to delete your comment. Let's have fun, cheer on our favorite characters, and show Jennifer how much we love her!

Match #2:  Alex(Seed #2) vs Lea(Seed #7)

A little bio:
Alex and Lea are both from JLA's Covenant series.  Alexandria, Alex for short, the protagonist of the series, was born a Half-Blood but finds out that she is actually 1 of 2 Apollyons.  In modern day history there has never been 2 Apollyons, so she is extremely rare.  And as legend says, 2 apollyons does not bode well for the Covenant.  Alex has bravely faced every challenge that has been tossed her way, some so harrowing that even the greatest of mythological heroes would have turned back.  She is caught in a love triangle of epic proportions between Seth and Aiden in which many of JLA's readers would gladly take her place!  Alex is facing down her arch-nemesis, Lea, who happens to know exactly how to push Alex's buttons.  Lea, like Alex, is a half-blood.  Lea's parents are killed tragically in HB, and the events surrounding those murders are linked to Alex, making their relationship even more volatile.  Lea is also known for her beauty and definitely is not lacking in any fighting skills. Even though Alex and Lea seem to be at odds most of the time, they do have some common ground that we are just starting to see as we dig deeper into the series.

*VOTING IS NOW CLOSED*


Match #6:  Katy(Seed #2) vs Andrew(Seed #7)

Katy and Andrew are both characters in JLA's Lux series.  Katy, the protagonist, is a book blogger (woo-hoo) and moves next door to Daemon and Dee at the beginning of Obsidian.  Her and Daimon quickly strike up a very tense love/hate relationship with a little more of the hate used to hide the love.  It is flooked down upon for the Lux (aliens) to have realtionships with humans, but that doesn't stop Katy.  Even though Katy has no powers of her own, she in no means lacks for bravery.  She does her fair share of kicking butt and saving lives!  She is snarky and doesn't let anyone run over her. Dee quickly becomes her best friend giving her an even stronger tie to the Lux.  Andrew on the other hand, the stereotypical Lux.  He was born as a triplet with Andrew, Ashley and Adam making up the three.  Like all Lux, he is very good looking.  He is also proud, powerful, and very prejudice against humans.  He makes his feelings very evident that he does not agree with the relationshiops that Dawson, Daimon and Dee have with humans.  We don't know much about Andrew yet, but I'm sure there is more to come from him in Onyx.

*VOTING IS NOW CLOSED*

Spellcaster by Cara Lynn Shultz

Spellcaster by Cara Lynn Shultz
Reviewed by:  Middle Sis Jenn
ARC received from Harlequin Teen via Net Galley
Release Date:  3-27-2012

The Sisters Say:  A breathtaking blow by blow of bewitchment and beguiling romance!


Finding your eternal soulmate - easy.
Stopping a true-love-hungry evil - not so much…

After breaking a centuries-old romantic curse, Emma Connor is (almost) glad to get back to normal problems. Although...it's not easy dealing with the jealous cliques and gossip that rule her exclusive Upper East Side prep, even for a sixteen-year-old newbie witch. Having the most-wanted boy in school as her eternal soul mate sure helps ease the pain-especially since wealthy, rocker-hot Brendan Salinger is very good at staying irresistibly close....

But something dark and hungry is using Emma and Brendan's deepest fears to reveal damaging secrets and destroy their trust in each other. And Emma's crash course in ├╝ber-spells may not be enough to keep them safe…or to stop an inhuman force bent on making their unsuspected power its own.


If you liked Spellbound, you are going to LOVE Spellcaster!  I couldn’t put it down!  Cara Lynn Shultz definitely upped her game with more magic, more mystery, and more mahem!  (Not to mention more make-out scenes)!!!

I really loved to see the characters develop even more in this installment—especially Angelique!  She is so much fun to read about—so much attitude that she had me laughing out loud at times.  But then we also get to see a more sensitive side of her that we didn’t see in Spellbound.  We also meet her cousin, Randi, a fellow witch who has some enjoyable moments as well. 

Emma definitely undergoes some changes through this novel, too.  That confidence that we begin to see at the end of Spellbound really takes off, which I love (because who doesn’t love a kick butt heroine), but I also like that her struggles were realistic (if you take out the fantasy part…hehe).  I mean, it’s not like she snaps her fingers and all of a sudden she’s one of the Charmed ones.  She has to work on her spells, and it’s really captivating to see her ups and downs as she struggles with this new aspect of her life.

And then…the best part—Brendan.  We see so much more of him in Spellcaster.  He’s just as overprotective in this installment, and it makes me love him so much more!  Just like Emma, it’s great (and heart breaking) to see him struggle with the idea that all the danger Emma finds herself in is his fault.  He’s the guy that every girl wants—compassionate, completely devoted, and overprotective to a fault—not to mention that he’s stunningly handsome.  I absolutely adore him and can’t wait for more!  The scenes between Emma and Brendan are a little more hot and heavy (but I still wish Cara Lynn Shultz would dive in with the details), but still PG, with one scene that hints at some PG-13 related content, but it’s still not extremely specific.

I actually really enjoyed the villain in this book, too—truly evil with a vendetta that, if you’re like me, might cause your heart to speed up (and for you to look behind your shoulder when walking anywhere alone).   I won’t tell you any more, but I will say—I didn’t see this villain coming!  Oh…and Kristin?  She’s still there with a vengeance…but trust me…you’ll want to read this to see what Emma has in store for her!

What bugs me?  I wish Cara Lynn Shultz would add an umbrella conflict to the series—a storyline that reaches from book to book, instead of just focusing on a different conflict for each book.

Overall, Spellcaster is a must read for those of you who enjoy paranormal romance novels.  The action was fun and exciting with no dull moments!  It comes out Tuesday…so go get it!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Spellbound by Cara Lynn Shultz

Spellbound by Cara Lynn Shultz
Reviewed by:  Middle Sis Jenn
Published by:  Harlequin Teen
Release Date:  6-21-2011
The Sisters Say:  Spunky, Spicy, Spectacular
 
What's a girl to do when meeting The One means dying a horrible death?
 
Life hasn't been easy on sixteen-year-old Emma Connor, so a new start in New York may be just the change she needs. But the posh Upper East Side prep school she has to attend? Not so much. Friendly faces are few and far between, except for one that she's irresistibly drawn to—Brendan Salinger, the guy with the rock-star good looks and the richest kid in school, who might just be her very own white knight.

But even when Brendan inexplicably turns cold, Emma can't stop staring. Ever since she laid eyes on him, strange things have been happening. Streetlamps go out wherever she walks, and Emma's been having the oddest dreams: visions of herself in past lives—visions that warn her to stay away from Brendan. Or else.


Spellbound is enchanting—from the first chapter I was hooked!  You’ve got the Charmed type of witchcraft, the Cinderella type fairy tale, and the Vampire Diaries type sexy guy! Add all ingredients, put in a blender, and what do you get?  A book that will truly keep you “spellbound” until the next installment!
I really enjoyed the different characters that Cara Lynn Shultz melds together.  You have Emma who, at first is the type of girl who shuns away from confrontation, but then as she is constantly picked on at the posh private school she attends, she begins to break out of her shell.  I’m not sure “break” is really the word, even, more like lashes out of her shell and charges anyone who gets in her way.  It’s great to see Emma’s confidence in herself build, and it’s even greater to see her start to stand up to Kristin (the resident, rhymes with smee-ootch) of the school. 
Then you have Angelique—the resident emo witch of the school who I absolutely adore!  She’s so spunky and from the moment I met her, I couldn’t wait to see how her character developed.  Besides Brendan (who’s my favorite because let’s face it…he’s an overprotective hottie with parent issues…yum), Angelique is definitely my favorite character.  I can’t wait to see what awaits her next!
Okay…drum roll please…..Brendan! 
Give me a moment to form my thoughts….because right now, all I’m getting is:
BRENDAN!!!!  OH LA LA!!!!!  BRENDAN!!!!!  EEEEEKKKK!!!!!    BRENDAN!!!!!
Where to begin?  He’s got dark hair and mesmerizing green eyes that literally take your breath away.  He’s tough as nails—winning every fight he gets in to, seriously, Cara Lynn Shultz should put him in a fight club—the only thing that could make this guy even hotter!  His parents are practically “The Queen” type of rich, and the parent issues are obvious from the get-go.  But who doesn’t love a guy that’s a rebel?  What else?  He’s crazy protective—which I love even more!  The scenes where Brendan sticks up for Emma are the absolute best in the book!
You know, it’s not very often that I find a book that quite literally speeds up my heartbeat.  I found myself growing increasingly nervous as things became even more dangerous in the book.  Even now, thinking back on it, I feel my heart beating a little faster—and I know how it ends!
Now, there are a few flaws.  Namely, I wish we would get more details about Emma and Brendan’s relationship (it’s pretty G rated)—there’s only so many kisses I can read about before I scream, “Come on!  More!”  But, maybe Cara Lynn Shultz is saving that for the future.  I also wish there would be a few more plot twists (there were some aspects of predictability).
As far as content goes, the only thing you might be wary about is the underage drinking (which there is quite a bit), and some violence against women.  But truthfully, I wouldn’t mind my teenage daughter reading this one.
If you haven't read this one, you definitely need to check it out.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday: Velveteen by Daniel Marks

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. It spotlights books that have not yet been released, but ones that you should pre-order today! This week's book that we are anxiously awaiting is Velveteen by Daniel Marks. It is published by Random House Children's Books and is set to be released on October 9, 2012.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Velveteen Monroe is dead. At 16, she was kidnapped and murdered by a madman named Bonesaw. But that's not the problem.

The problem is she landed in purgatory. And while it's not a fiery inferno, it's certainly no heaven. It's gray, ashen, and crumbling more and more by the day, and everyone has a job to do. Which doesn't leave Velveteen much time to do anything about what's really on her mind.

Bonesaw.

Velveteen aches to deliver the bloody punishment her killer deserves. And she's figured out just how to do it. She'll haunt him for the rest of his days.
It'll be brutal . . . and awesome.

But crossing the divide between the living and the dead has devastating consequences. Velveteen's obsessive haunting cracks the foundations of purgatory and jeopardizes her very soul. A risk she's willing to take—except fate has just given her reason to stick around: an unreasonably hot and completely off-limits coworker.

Velveteen can't help herself when it comes to breaking rules . . . or getting revenge. And she just might be angry enough to take everyone down with her.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

This cover was just recently revealed, and ever since it was, I find myself going back to look at it!  I mean, before even reading the synopsis, I knew I would want to read this!  I love the premise of this book!  I love the idea that her haunting causes cracks in purgatory--it's so original!  But even more, I think Velveteen sounds like a kick butt heroine, and I love how it sounds like Daniel Marks is going break down the idea that a heroine must be all good.  And lastly, it has a forbidden hottie--one of my favorite aspects in a book!!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Pure Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway


**click on the pic above to visit other Pure Blog Tour stops**

Every once in awhile as a reader an author comes along that just speaks to your soul.  Everything they write captures your heart and never lets it go.  For us, Jennifer is that author!  All of her characters, worlds and words have taken apart of us with them!  For her, no ordinary review would do.  We had to do a top 10 list!  If you haven't read any or all of JLA's books yet, then we implore you from the bottom of our souls to read them!!!  You will not regret!


Being destined to become some kind of supernatural electrical outlet isn't exactly awesome--especially when Alexandria's "other half" is everywhere she goes. Seth's in her training room, outside her classes, and keeps showing up in her bedroom--so not cool. Their connection does have some benefits, like staving off her nightmares of the tragic showdown with her mother, but it has no effect on what Alex feels for the forbidden, pure-blooded Aiden. Or what he will do--and sacrifice--for her. 
When daimons infiltrate the Covenants and attack students, the gods send furies--lesser gods determined to eradicate any threat to the Covenants and to the gods, and that includes the Apollyon... and Alex. And if that and hordes of aether-sucking monsters didn't blow bad enough, a mysterious threat seems willing to do anything to neutralize Seth, even if that means forcing Alex into servitude... or killing her. 
When the gods are involved, some decisions can never, ever be undone.


These are the top 10 out of a million things we LOVED about Pure!


10.  The Trainings
 In Pure, Alex must split her time training between Aiden and Seth.  We love these scenes because you can really see Aiden’s protectiveness coming out, and we get a little more insight into how Seth feels about Alex.  And what we love the most, the sessions are always tinged with heat—the good heat, not the sweaty, smelly kind of heat.  The guy’s training techniques are completely different, but these scenes will definitely make you question whether you should be Team Aiden or Team Seth.

9.  Deacon
Aiden’s too cute little brother that follows in Aiden’s heartthrob footsteps.  We don’t know much about Deacon so far, but what we do know, we like!  He’s broken, just like Aiden, and keeps himself in a slightly drunken oblivion so he doesn’t have to deal with the loss of his parents.  Besides his heartbroken demeanor, we love that he stands up for Alex, refusing to treat her like a half-blood.
8.  The Furies
They used to be beautiful women, now they are killers, huntresses of evil, or anything that threatens the Gods.  With snakes as hair and blood dripping from their eyes (creepy imagery, huh), these terrifying women take Pure by storm.  These are the first true Gods we see in the Covenant series, and let us tell you, she picked the perfect Gods to foreshadow the wrath and destruction that we are sure is to come in Deity.  They say “hell hath no ‘fury’ (perfect word) like a woman scorned,” but apparently, they didn’t know about Hades minions.
7.  Greek Mythology
Let us just say, “Yay!  Greek Mythology!”  We love when authors take mythology and modernize it into something fresh.  You have the Half-Bloods who are children of Pure bloods and mortals who are either forced into protecting the Pures or serving them.  Then you have the Pure bloods who sit up on their high horse like nothing could touch them, looking down on the halfs like they are lesser beings.  But we have a feeling that their high horse will end up reminiscent of the Trojan horse, and I can’t wait to see how Jennifer L. Armentrout brings it all down!


6.  Hey Jealousy, Hey Jealousy
Just like the song says, “Hey jealousy, well she took my heart.”  Between Aiden and Seth, you can cut the jealous tension with a Covenant dagger (and with those two, they just might)!  The scenes where Aiden and Seth get jealous are some of our absolute favorite.  Jennifer L. Armentrout describes them perfectly--how their faces turn red and you can sense the anger wellling up in their chests.  Were not going to say too much more, but let us insist…you MUST read this book because seeing Aiden and Seth lose their cool with make you giggle like a school girl and smile ear to ear.


5.  Crazy Apollyon Connection
They thought it was just a legend, but it turns out it wasn't!  Seth and Alex are both Apollyons which doesn't bode well for either of them or for anyone else.  It's the first time in modern history that this has happened.  There's always only been 1 Apollyon.  With 2 at one time now though, Seth and Alex are connected in a way that is powerful, emotional, physical, and so much more.  They sense each other's thoughts, feelings, and powers.  This makes for some very entertaining reading!  Picture Seth, who as we mentioned earlier, does have a jealous streak.  Now, imagine Seth reaction to the physical and emotional feelings Alex might have as she's kissing Aiden!  If you are picturing something similar to an atomic bomb going off, you would be absolutely correct!  For this craziness alone, Pure gets a million stars from us!


4.  Forbidden Love  
Hook, Line and Sinker!!!  Here at the Sisterhood, we love the angst, especially if it is directly due to Forbidden Love!  The constant longing that can never cease without serious consequences is a heavy theme throughout this series, and to watch the torture that this longining causes is honestly so much fun.  Mwahahaha!  I will say that Alex and Aiden's forbidden romance makes Romeo's and Juliet's look like preschool.  I would go to battle against the Montague's and Capulets any day before I would face the supernatural powers of the Pures!  So many obstacles lie in the path of "happily ever after" for Aiden and Alex!  The threat of physical punishment hangs heavily over their relationship causing the heat level to rise to boiling!  It's getting hot in here...


3.  Seth
Umm, can you say "broken bad boy" on steroids!  Seth is like He-Man meets Iron Man plus the Hulk all rolled into one!  With all that testosterone, girls are pretty much dropping at this feet.  Holy daimons, I need a fan just thinking about him!  Seth is the guy every girl wants to date, but the idea scares them to death.  No one comes out of an entanglement with Seth in one piece!  We're hoping with all hope, that his brokeness is the kind that can be fixed.  Even if not though, we would still take the chance!  


2.  Alex
Team Half-Blood is here to stay!  I know that Alex didn't win the Heroine Tourney, but it wasn't because she didn't deserve it!  She deserves that and more with all that she has accomplished and overcome.  Alex represents everything that being a true heroine entails!  She amazed us all in Half-Blood, and she will blow you away again in Pure.  I cannot wait to see where Jennifer takes her throughout the rest of this series!


1.  Aiden
The you-make-me-sigh-every-time-I-think-about-you (which is all the time) forbidden hottie of the series.  A completely off-limits pure blood, Aiden is one of Alex’s love interests, the one that makes her heart flutter and face turn bright red with the slightest look.  So, what do we like most about him?   He’s conflicted, contradictory.  He’s fire and ice—hot one minute, full of compassion and desire, and then, bam…he’s frigid.  He’s heaven and hell (or should I say Elysium and Tartarus)—one minute he can’t keep his eyes off Alex (or his lips) causing her heart to float with the Gods, and the next he’s pushing her away insisting he doesn’t care, causing her to plummet into an abyss.  But, oh gods, are the highs worth every penny!  He’s unpredictable, he’s chiseled, he’s broken—the trifecta of perfection!  Move over Zeus, there’s a new God in town.


***Be sure to go to the post below this one and vote in the Jennifer L. ArmenTOURNEY to determine who is the fan's favorite JLA character!***

Jennifer L. ArmenTOURNEY: Match #1 & Match #5

And the winners are:

Aiden and Daemon (of course)!


Matches will open at 12:01AM on March 20th and close at 8PM CST on the 22nd. We are not having advocates in this tournament, so all of you feel free to rally the troups and support your characters in the comments. Remember above all that this tournament is to celebrate ALL of Jennifer's characters. If there is any slandering, character bashing, cursing, or anything else we deem inappropriate, we reserve the right to delete your comment. Let's have fun, cheer on our favorite characters, and show Jennifer how much we love her!

Match #1:  Aiden (Seed #1) vs Leon (Seed #8)

A little bio:
Both of these characters hail from The Covenant Series.  Aiden and Leon are both Pure's and are fellow sentinels.  Aiden has been forced to grow up quickly as his parents were killed by daimons.  Because of this, he is now responsible for his younger brother Deacon.  He has also taken on the responsibility of training Alex to become a sentinel.  Aiden and Alex are the main love interest in the story, but share a forbidden romance as it is illegal for Pures and Half-Bloods to be together.  On the other side of the poll, stands Leon.  He is Aiden's right hand man, so this makes this match-up a little awkward.  Leon is the strong silent type that is dependable to his core.  He even helps break-up a little scuffle between Aiden and Seth!


Match #5:  Daemon(Seed #1) vs Adam(Seed #8)

A little bio:
Daemon and Adam both represent JLA's Lux Series.  Both are gorgeous aliens that have all kinds of awesome powers.  All of the aliens from this series are born into triplets.  Daemon, Dawson and Dee are one set of triplets as Adam, Andrew and Ashley are another.  Daemon out of all the aliens on earth is currently the most powerful.  He comes across as harsh and mean, but it's only to protect his family.  He is Katy's love interest in Obsidian even though he never wanted to be involved with a human.  Adam was born to a very intolerant set of triplets.  Adam on the other hand, does not share those same feelings.  There is a love interest between Adam and Dee even though we haven't gotten to see much of that yet!

Voting is Closed

Monday, March 19, 2012

Edenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson Blog Tour + A Giveaway





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Edenbrooke
Marianne Daventry will do anything to escape the boredom of Bath and the amorous attentions of an unwanted suitor. So when an invitation arrives from her twin sister, Cecily, to join her at a sprawling country estate, she jumps at the chance. Thinking she’ll be able to relax and enjoy her beloved English countryside while her sister snags the handsome heir of Edenbrooke, Marianne finds that even the best laid plans can go awry. 
From a terrifying run-in with a highwayman to a seemingly harmless flirtation, Marianne finds herself embroiled in an unexpected adventure filled with enough romance and intrigue to keep her mind racing. Will she be able to rein in her traitorous heart, or will a mysterious stranger sweep her off her feet? Fate had something other than a relaxing summer in mind when it sent Marianne to Edenbrooke.

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Edenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson is a new category called A Proper Romance.  A Proper Romance is Shadow Mountain Publishing's brand of clean, smart, engaging, romantic stories that will never embarrass the reader.

If I was in the same room as Julianne Donaldson right now, I would "squeeze her juicy" (to quote Myra McEntire).  Edenbrooke is one of those novels that throws me into joyous raptures!  I love Jane Austen to the bottom of my soul, and as I was reading Edenbrooke, it seemed as if Julianne was channeling the ghost of Jane Austen.  The great character depiction, witty dialog, and beautiful romance that characterizes Austen's works, are found alive and well Julianne Donaldson's Edenbrooke.  I can't just write a normal review for this story because it deserves so much more, so I have decided to just plead with you to read this and make a list as to why you should do so immediatly!  It is a truth universally acknowleged that everyone in possession of a love of reading, must be in want of a good book!  And, Edenbrooke is that book!

Reasons why you should read Edenbrooke:

For Edenbrooke!  Move over Pemberly because Edenbrooke is easing it's way into my heart right next to you!  The gorgeous setting of the book makes by heart flutter.  If as a little girl you ever dreamed of going back in time, wearing a beautiful dress, and living on a gorgeous English estate then score one for the home team!  The gardens, the house, the stream (into which our heroine falls), the paintings, and the landscape add beauty and grace into a story that was complete in itself.  However, setting Marianne's and Phillip's story at Edenbrooke makes it perfection!


For the quirky characters!  Oh wow, did this book have some characters!!!  From the opening pages we meet, Mr. Whittles, yes Whittles!  His name could not be any more fitting!  He is a gross older man that believes himself to be violently in love with Marianne.  He is also profusely disgusting with an over abundance of saliva that collects at the corners of his mouth!  Mr. Whittles wet mouth will for all eternity haunt my dreams.  I'm not really sure why I am telling you all about his except that the depiction of Mr. Whittles is absolutely brilliant.  I couldn't help but cringe on the inside for Marianne at the same time that I was laughing on the outside.  It's the ultimate unwanted suitor scenario that will leave you dying for more.  I must also tell you that Mr. Whittles isn't the only crazy character!  Wait until you meet Marianne's grandmother and the Clumpetts!  This book is busting at the seems with amazing characters!

For the WORDS!  I love words.  I love quick, witty dialog that keeps the characters on their toes.  Dialog that can melt your heart one second or slice it like a razor blade the next.  When two characters have a battle of wills, minds and words not much can beat that in my book.  The plot in this book is definitely lacking nothing between highway robbery, mysterious suitors and kidnapping, it has its fair share of adventure.  However, even without the page-turning plot, this book could survive alone on it's spunky dialogue.


For the Love Letter Scene!  Ok, I must find my fan before I write the next part!  Holy guacamole Batman!!!  There is a theme of longing throughout the entire book.  Unfulfilled desire is very powerful and will have you suffering right along with the characters.  The angst created by wanting but not being able to have is the worst kind of torture, but honestly my favorite thing to read EVER!  To add to the characters torture and the readers, there is this amazing love letter scene!  Phillip teaches Marianne how to write and love letter!  It's all meant to be innocent, but there's so much longing and reading between the lines that I pretty much had to be scooped up off the floor at the end of this chapter!  It's seriously one of the best chapters I've ever read in a book EVER, EVER, EVER!  BTW-It's chapter 16 incase you wanted to know!:)


For Marianne! Of course you should read this for Marianne.  She's a true heroine that is smart, sweet, funny, and witty to her core.  She's a geniunely likable female character in a world that is teeming with Mary Sues.  Life has dealt her a rotten hand, but she preseveres and becomes a better person through it all.  I want to be like her, and I want my 2 little girls to grow up and be like her.  I don't think I can give her a better compliment than that!


For Phillip!  Oh Phillip, I usually have a serious thing for the broken bad boys, but I think it's possible that you might have single handedly changed my mind!  I think my new type might be highly respectable and serious on the outside but wildly inappropriate yet passionate on the inside.  Imagine the air of Mr. Darcy with the snarkiness of Jace and the sense of responsibility of Four. His name is Phillip, and I think I'm in love! Does anyone know a spell that can make him into a real person?  Phillip is the number 1 reason you should read this book because you will go all googly eyed and want to marry him youself!  I'll leave you with a little taste of what Phillip is like:

"Thank you for the pillow," I said politely, handing it [his coat] to him as he stood.
"You're welcome to borrow my pillow anytime," he said with such a rakish glint in his eyes that I thought I should slap him for it. 


Now you know all the reasons why I think you should read this book ASAP!  Edenbrooke honestly has it all: perfectly, flawed characters, intense plot, witty dialog and swoon-worthy Phillip!  Also, don't forget the love letter chapter!  It's definitely a must read that you do not want to miss!  Now, you have a chance to read it for free by entering our giveaway!

Julianne Donaldson grew up as the daughter of a U.S. Air Force fighter pilot. She learned how to ski in the Italian Alps, visited East Berlin before the wall came down, and spent three years living next to a 500-year-old castle. After earning a degree in English, she turned her attention to writing about distant times and places. She lives in Utah with her husband and four children. Edenbrooke is her first novel.  


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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Pure Blog Tour: Jennifer L. ArmenTOURNEY Nominations & Info


MAY I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION PLEASE!!! We have some crazy, amazing news for all of you!  We are having a mini tournament to determine who is your favorite Jennifer L. Armentrout character!  This is all in celebration of the release of Pure, the 2nd book in the Covenant Series. The tournament will consist of 16 characters, 8 from the Covenant Series and 8 from the Lux Series.  The character's will face off in another YA-Sisterhood tournament to determine who has the right to hold the title of fan favorite!  The characters from their respective series will first battle each other to determine the favorite character from each series.  Then the 2 favorites will face off against each other in the grande finale!  To help us kick off this tournament, we need all of you to tell us, who you want to be in this tournament.  Please nominate 8 characters from each series.  The number of nominations each character receives will determine the seeds.  The nominations will only be open until 10pm Sunday night, so spread the word to insure your favorite character is in this tourney!

NOMINATIONS ARE CLOSED! Here's are the characters you nominated in their respective spots:




Matches will open at 12:01AM and close at 8PM CST on their respective dates.  We are not having advocates in this tournament, so all of you feel free to rally the troups and support your characters in the comments.  Remember above all that this tournament is to celebrate ALL of Jennifer's characters.  If there is any slandering, character bashing, cursing, or anything else we deem inappropriate, we reserve the right to delete your comment.  Let's have fun, cheer on our favorite characters, and show Jennifer how much we love her!!! 

*If you have any questions, leave them in the comments, and we will answer them there.*   

Here is the schedule of the tournament:

Round 1:

March 20th-22nd

March 23rd-25th
Match 2: Alex(2) vs Lea (7)  Winner:  Alex

March 26th-28th

March 29th-31st

Round 2:

April 1st-3rd

April 4th-6th

Round 3:

April 7th-9th

GRANDE FINALE

April 10th-13th