Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Trailer Reveal: Opal by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Today I have the great pleasure of taking part in the trailer reveal for Jennifer L. Armentrout's upcoming Opal, the third book in her Lux series. Just keep scrolling to see the trailer and let me say that if you weren't already excited about the book, the trailer will just make you want Opal even more.

Opal (The third book in the Lux Series)
Available in both print and digital version on December 18, 2012
Barnes and Noble

Official Opal Trailer

The Author

Check out Jennifer L. Armentrout on the following sites:
Official Website
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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Update - Where I've Been

Hi Everyone!

You may have noticed that these past few months, in particular the last couple of weeks, I've been kind of neglecting the blog and I haven't really been on Twitter as much. I am here to tell you that I have not completely disappeared off the face of the planet, but I have been incredibly busy. I'm currently in my last year of university and I work on top of that so those things are kind of, unfortunately, taking priority over blogging and reading right now. I've gotten to the point that any time I have a few minutes of free time I can't even bring myself to read since I've gotten so tired of doing readings for school.

But never fear, I will be back with a bang in December once all my assignments are handed in and my jobs stop for the exam period/holiday break. I have some exciting things planned for December including two really awesome blog tours and information about something that will be happening on the blog over the course of the next year. Exciting stuff, right?

In the mean time, please bear with me as I get through the next hellish couple of weeks and disappear into my essay writing cave. If you need to get in touch with me your best bet is through e-mail and I will do my best to respond. There may still be some posts going up on the blog, but for the most part it will be sporadic and something I can put together when I have a few minutes to myself.

If all goes well, I'll be back in no time!

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Ontario Blogger Meet Up - Recap

On November 3rd was the 2nd Annual Ontario Blogger Meet Up in Toronto and I was lucky enough to be able to attend. Myself and the other Ottawa bloggers (Ciara, Katie, Meaghan and Kathy) decided to make a whole weekend out of it, and as such we hit the road on Friday night, arriving in Toronto late into the evening. During the car ride there was much talk about books and much singing along to music--especially to Taylor Swift (sorry once again Ciara!)--which made the 5 hour drive go by faster.

The next morning we all woke up excited about the meet up and proceeded to spend the majority of the morning slowly getting ready and getting all of our things together. A few hours later (we're girls, we take a while to get ready) we headed out to catch the subway to the event with all of our books in tow. 
Once we arrived at the Watermark Irish Pub, we were welcomed by the wonderful organizers of the event, and right away we were able to start mingling with other bloggers, publishers and authors. And that was the start to what turned out to be a fantastic afternoon. It was fantastic to be able to finally meet all these people I've been talking to online for months, if not years, and just to be able to spend an entire afternoon talking about books in general. 

Here are a few pictures to give you an idea of our afternoon.

L-R: Meaghan, Lindsey, Me, Kathy, Katie, Ciara
I was also very excited to be able to once again see Lesley Livingston (I've been seeing her a lot lately, check back later this week for more on that) and to meet Elizabeth Miles, the author of Fury and Envy. It was great of the organizers to bring to many authors to the event, and it was great being able to chat with all of them. 

L-R: Kathy, Me, Meaghan, Katie, Lesley Livingston, Ciara, Elizabeth Miles
After talking to them online for so long it was also great to finally be able to meet Liz from Midnight Bloom Reads and Michele from Just A Lil' Lost, two of the wonderful organizers for the afternoon.

L-R: Liz, Ciara, Katie, Kathy, Me, Michele, Meaghan
And of course this wouldn't be a book event if I didn't come home with piles of books. Here's a sneak peek at what was it my goodie bag. I am especially excited about the advance copy of Sever by Lauren DeStefano in there because that is one book I am just dying to read.

Thank you once again to the wonderful organizers for putting this event together. It was a fantastic afternoon and I can't wait to hopefully be able to attend another event like this one in the future.

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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (67)

For those who don't know, Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine where book bloggers showcase books they are particularly looking for to. For the next few weeks, I'm going to be doing this a little differently. Like I did last year, each week I will be talking about books that are coming out early next year from different publishers. Up this week are January 2013 releases coming from St. Martin's Griffin.

Vortex by Julie Cross
January 8, 2013
Julie Cross's Vortex is the thrilling second installment of the Tempest series, in which the world hangs in the balance as a lovelorn Jackson must choose who to save.

Jackson Meyer has thrown himself into his role as an agent for Tempest, the shadowy division of the CIA that handles all time-travel-related threats. Despite his heartbreak at losing the love of his life, Jackson has proved himself to be an excellent agent. However, after an accidental run in with Holly--the girl he altered history to save--Jackson is once again reminded of what he's lost. And when Eyewall, an opposing division of the CIA, emerges, Jackson and his fellow agents not only find themselves under attack, but Jackson beings to discover that the world around him has changed and someone knows about his erased relationship with Holly, putting both their lives at risk all over again.
Though I had my issues with the first book, Tempest, it ended on a really interesting note that left me wondering what would happen next. It was the kind of book where it took me a while to get into it and I started liking it right before it ended, so I'm really interested to see where Julie Cross is going to take the story in Vortex.

Uses for Boys by Erica Lorraine Scheidt
January 15, 2013
Anna remembers a time before boys, when she was little and everything made sense. When she and her mom were a family, just the two of them against the world. But now her mom is gone most of the time, chasing the next marriage, bringing home the next stepfather. Anna is left on her own--until she discovers that she can make boys her family. From Desmond to Joey, Todd to Sam, Anna learns that if you give boys what they want, you can get what you need. But the price is high--the other kids make fun of her; the girls call her a slut. Anna's new friend, Toy, seems to have found a way around the loneliness, but Toy has her own secrets that even Anna can't know.

Then comes Sam. When Anna actually meets a boy who is more than just useful, whose family eats dinner together, laughs, and tells stories, the truth about love becomes clear. And she finally learns how it feels to have something to lose--and something to offer. Real, shocking, uplifting, and stunningly lyrical, Uses for Boys is a story of breaking down and growing up.
Right when I read the summary, I knew that I just had to read Uses for Boys. It honestly sounds like it has the potential to be a great story, and one that will no doubt have my heart breaking on more than one occasion. I honestly can't wait to be able to read this one.

Stolen Nights by Rebecca Maizel
January 29, 2013 
Lenah Beaudonte should be dead. But having sacrificed herself to save another, she finds herself awakening with strange powers that are neither vampire nor human--and a new enemy on her trail. In her vampire life, Lenah had thought that being human was all she ever wanted; but the human heart suffers pain, heartbreak and loss. 

With her new powers growing and the dark force of the Nex after her soul, Lenah faces a choice: between the mortal love of gorgeous Justin, whose passion fed her human soul, and taking a different path to become the mistress of her own destiny, wherever that may lead…
I cannot even begin to explain how long I have been waiting for Stolen Nights. I absolutely loved Infinite Days when I read it over 2 years ago and I have been (im)patiently waiting for the second book. Though I feel a reread of Infinite Days may be in order so I know what's going on when I pick up Stolen Nights

So these are the January titles from St. Martin's Griffin I'm eagerly awaiting. From all these posts the last few weeks I feel like January is going to be an awesome month for books. Be sure to come back next week to see what books I'm waiting on from HBG & Disney-Hyperion!

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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Blog Tour: Venom by Fiona Paul

Title: Venom (The Secrets of the Eternal Rose #1)
Author: Fiona Paul
Publisher: Philomel
Release Date: October 30, 2012
Source: ARC from Publisher
Buy the Book: Amazon / Book Depository
Cassandra Caravello is one of Renaissance Venice's lucky elite: with elegant gowns, sparkling jewels, her own lady's maid, and a wealthy fiancé, she has everything a girl could desire. Yet ever since her parents' death, Cassandra has felt trapped, alone in a city of water, where the dark and labyrinthine canals whisper of escape.

When Cass stumbles upon a murdered woman--practically in her own backyard--she's drawn into a dangerous world of courtesans, killers, and secret societies. Soon, she finds herself falling for Falco, a mysterious artist with a mischievous grin…and a spectacular skill for trouble. Can Cassandra find the murderer, before he finds her? And will she stay true to her fiancé, or succumb to her uncontrollable feelings for Falco?

Beauty, love, romance, and mystery wave together in a stunning novel that's as seductive and surprising as the city of Venice itself.
The Italian Renaissance is without a doubt my favorite period of history. So when I first heard about Fiona Paul's Venom, I just knew that I had to read the book. Not only does it take place during the Renaissance, but it is also set in Venice which is an amazing city. And then I started reading and I found myself being carried away to another time and place.

Cassandra Caravello has always had everything she needed, being part of the elite of Renaissance Venice. But lately, Cass has wanted to escape the future that has all been planned out for her, especially her marriage to reliable Luca da Peraga. While out wandering the cemetery next to her aunt's villa, Cass meets Falco, a mysterious artist who makes Cass believe she might be able to escape her future. But then dead bodies start appearing all over town, and Cass decides to investigate with Falco's help. Though Cass may not be completely safe, and even the people she thinks she can trust might not be who she thinks they are. And the more time she spends with Falco, the more Cass wants to believe she can have a future different from the one that has been all laid out for her.

I absolutely love the Renaissance. It is not a period I would have liked to live in at all, but it is by far one of my favorite periods of history to study. And I love Italy, especially Venice. I've been lucky enough to visit the city and it was amazing. So when I heard about a YA novel set in Renaissance Venice, I knew I had to get my hands on it. And when I started reading, I immediately felt myself transported to another world. I found myself getting carried away reading, picturing the city alongside Cass. And to make things better, the story had that element of mystery that I absolutely love. Fiona Paul kept me guessing about who the guilty party was the throughout the entire story. But that wasn't all. The writing itself was was magical, and all the little details are what allowed me to be transported to another time and place. I can only assume an incredible amount of research went into the writing of Venom and that was made the story so believable while I was reading it. And that still wasn't all. The romance in Venom was sensual in a way that fit perfectly with the Italian Renaissance. Lust was everywhere, but love wasn't instantaneous. Instead, I got to see Cass's relationship with Falco and Luca as more of a courtship, again, fitting in perfectly with the time period. But what made the romance as great as it was are the characters themselves.

Cass was so different from what I expected. Knowing this was a book set in the Renaissance, I expected a typical Renaissance young lady. But that was not at all who Cass was. Sure, on the outside that's how she portrayed herself, but then below the surface there was this rebellious and adventurous girl who was just dying to come out. And that's the side of Cass I loved so much. I have to admit I also loved the side of Cass that came out whenever Falco was around. Around him, she was someone who wasn't afraid of saying what was on her mind, or doing whatever she wanted to do. And I think Falco's personality had something to do with that. Falco was definitely rebellious, but as an artist he was also a bit of a dreamer. And though he had his flaws, I could see what Cass saw in him. But there was also Luca, Cass's fiancé, and he was just as mysterious and intriguing as Falco. And he had this fiercely protective streak, willing to do anything to keep Cass out of danger. And Cass was torn between Falco and Luca, and I can see why.

Fiona Paul's Venom was a magical read. The writing took me to another time and place and as I was reading I could picture Venice in all of its Renaissance glory. This was a story that mixed mystery and romance in just the right doses, making it difficult to leave the story. My only wish is that I already had Belladonna, the sequel, to read. 

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