HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY!!!









It's Monday! What are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. It's a fun meme where we gather to share what we've read last week and our reading plans for this week.


Last Week I Read:

Forged in Light by Alyssa Rose Ivy (ARC) (4 stars)
Forevermore by Kristen Callihan (5 stars)
The Outliers by Kimberly McCreight (2.5 stars)


Review That Was Posted:

Spectacle by Rachel Vincent (ARC) (5 stars)


Currently Reading:



What I Hope to Read this Week:

First We Were IV by Alexandra Sirowy (ARC)


Other Posts of Interest:







Stacking the Shelves

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!


I thought I would go ahead and use the new logo since we have an extra host added to the mix! It was a nice quiet week in the bookish world for me, so my TBR pile was pretty happy about that! LOL! I've been worrying that my closet shelf is getting too heavy with books, so I decided to remove the "international" editions from it. I have a pretty big stack on my floor. Now I just need to find a box to store them in temporarily until I get more bookcases! LOL!


Here's what I bought this week:

The Gauntlet by Megan Shepherd--now I can finally binge the series!!


For review from the publisher I received:

First We Were IV by Alexandra Sirowy (ARC)


THANK YOU Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers & Netgalley!



Then I received some more preorder swag! This time from Victoria Scott!

SIGNED bookmarks!!
 
 
THANK YOU Victoria!


And then I got a surprise in the mail from my credit card company because I apparently lost track of where I was at point-wise!

a B&N gift card!!! YAY!!


So that was my week! What did you all get?




Discussion Challenge: Favorite Older YA Books!

So I got a post idea from one of my fellow blogger friends, Alyssa at The Eater of Books! Awhile back she posted about her favorite "old" YA Books and I thought, I am all over this topic! LOL!


My Favorite Older YA Books!


A long, long time ago, when I was but a preteen I was craving paranormal books! And in this time of YA, paranormal was scarce. I call these The Dark Ages. It was a very sad time for me as a reader. But the upside was that I did discover a good handful of amazing Paranormal YA books! They're what I call early Paranormal YA for they were among the first of their kind! Again, this is just my reasoning for it! I've talked about a few of these before, but this time will be a nice compilation of them all!


Old Magic by Marianne Curley, probably my first witchy/magical and time traveling kind of read! And it was awesome!! I re-read this one sooo many times because when there's a lack of Paranormal YA books, you simply re-read the ones you do have a few times!








The Forbidden Game trilogy by L.J. Smith, I actually read this series before I did The Vampire Diaries. It's amazing what you could find at Borders 10 years after its initial publication date! This one involved a girl and her friends who are literally sucked into a game where they must overcome their worst fears. The one ruling the game is Julian and he will do anything to make Jenny, our heroine, his! There was a lot of mystery and sometimes frightful times in this series. Though I was a bit shattered by the end! I thought I heard L.J. once considered adding another installment but I don't think it ever went anywhere, tragically!


So after reading The Forbidden Game, I learned L.J. Smith also had a vampire series called The Vampire Diaries! And its first original four novels were amazing!! Basically what you would expect two vampire brothers fighting over the same girl, but there was more to it from what I recall. And it was wayyy different than the show! I'd even go so far as to recommend reading the first three newer books as those were written by the real L.J. Smith, the ones that came after was a ghostwriter or whatever you call it because there was apparently issues with where L.J. was taking her story and the publisher didn't like it so I guess they had rights to her story. I was never really clear on that, but needless to say I never read past what L.J. actually wrote! And just so we're clear, this was pre-Twilight folks! I cringed when I heard people say that Vampire Diaries was trying to be like Twilight!


Demon in My View by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes was the book that started my vampire obsession as you all may know! It didn't hurt at all that the heroine was named Jessica! Lol! Plus you had a dark hero trope with Aubrey and I looooved that vamp! He was my first vampire crush! I read this one dozens of times!!








Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis-Klause had to be my first werewolf book! While there was very little Paranormal YA in my teens, I will say I struck gold with every title I found! This was your typical weregirl falls in love with human boy and the problems that come from that! Add to the fact that we have a jealous ex-werewolf boyfriend, a series of wolfish murders, and a pack Alpha who's also gunning for your heart and body, it made for one intense and incredible read!!





The Mediator series by Jenny Carroll aka Meg Cabot. This was also the first series that I read where I learned an author can write under another name. I was young and un-knowledgeable at the time! Lol. This was also my first "ghost" series! And ohhh how I loved it!! As I look back on it now, Suze has a lot in common with Veronica Mars in the personality department! She can see and talk to ghosts and when she learns her new bedroom is haunted by a hot cowboy ghost, well things get complicated!! There are a total of 7 glorious books in this series with the seventh one featuring Suze as a young adult. It was pure gold!!!




The Wereling trilogy by Stephen Cole isn't one that's as popular as others. It's older. It's a werewolf series obviously featuring a teenage boy who's life is thrown into chaos when a family turns him into a werewolf for the purpose of mating with their teenage daughter (that is if I am recalling everything right! It's been several years since I read it)! It's kind of an action packed series and filled with suspense because it's not long before the two teens are on the run from her family because, you know, they're psycho! Lol! Though the physical copies may be hard to find, they're still available in ebook format, should they spark an interest!

 
And the final series I will discuss, is the Once Upon a Time series! This series you guys was one of the early renderings of retold fairy tales! We're all loving the different kinds of twists we've seen by Marissa Meyer and the rest because there are quite a few now! But this was like literally, the first! Pretty sure! The first I ever saw! There were 19 books according to Goodreads. Since all these books, this series included, were found by browsing shelves, you can bet it was before blogging and Goodreads were ever around! So trying to find out about new releases was basically done by scanning the shelves! I think I read about half of them in my teens. I didn't really know the series was being added to until a few years back! But Snow by Tracy Lynn was my absolute favorite! I re-read a few times as well! You may or may not already know, but Tracy Lynn is actually Liz Braswell. I know a lot of readers struggled with her Twisted Tales from the Disney line, but this book here you guys? Freaking awesome!! Now it was written in 2006, so you know, YA wasn't as intense back then as it is now. So think of that time if you can remember 11 years ago, dear God I am getting old! I re-read this one quite a bit because I just loved it! What was awesome about this series was it still had that old-timey fairy tale kind of feel! You can recognize the fairy tale you're reading, but it's not quite the same ending you might expect! Like in Snow, instead of 7 dwarves, it's 7 half animal, half human people! It's twisted and all sorts of amazing!


And those are the top YA books that come to mind when I think of "older" Paranormal YA books. I still have a lot of L.J.'s Nightworld and Dark Visions books in my TBR pile that I need to read. Bought those back in the Borders closing sales. Can pretty much say that all these books were bought at Borders or Waldenbooks too! Lol! Remember for the fifth and sixth Mediator books when I found them, it was a complete surprise! And I happily skipped to the registers without even reading what it was about, since much of my time was spent at Borders pulling out each individual book (practically) as I looked for a book that caught my interest!

So after that long winded post, if you've stuck through this all to the end, what are some older YA books you've read and loved that were the stepping stones to what you read now?



 


 


Review--The Outliers by Kimberly McCreight

It all starts with a text: Please, Wylie, I need your help.

Wylie hasn’t heard from Cassie in over a week, not since their last fight. But that doesn’t matter. Cassie’s in trouble, so Wylie decides to do what she has done so many times before: save her best friend from herself.

This time it’s different, though. Instead of telling Wylie where she is, Cassie sends cryptic clues. And instead of having Wylie come by herself, Jasper shows up saying Cassie sent him to help. Trusting the guy who sent Cassie off the rails doesn’t feel right, but Wylie has no choice: she has to ignore her gut instinct and go with him.

But figuring out where Cassie is goes from difficult to dangerous, fast. As Wylie and Jasper head farther and farther north into the dense woods of Maine, Wylie struggles to control her growing sense that something is really wrong. What isn’t Cassie telling them? And could finding her be only the beginning


I went into Kimberly McCreight’s The Outliers expecting an on-the-edge-of-your-seat thriller. While it was still a thriller of sorts, it wasn’t quite what I was expecting. There were a lot of flashbacks incorporated into the story and I failed to see the point of some of them and then to top it all off, there was a rather large psychological/science-y edge to it. And science has always been my worst subject!

Wylie is definitely an interesting character. Her mother just died in a car accident a few months ago, she and her best friend have been drifting apart and seeing her spin into self-destruction becomes too much, her father and brother have been sort of distant, and to top it off, she’s always had some anxiety issues, and they’ve only gotten worse for her since her mother’s death. After all the normal chaos she endures, she is startled when her best friend, Cassie, goes missing. Adding to that, Cassie’s boyfriend, Jasper comes to Wylie’s house because he got a text from Cassie telling him to do so. And then Wylie gets a text from Cassie saying she needs her help and that Jasper will help her too.

And so begins the bizarre road trip of sorts as Wylie and Jasper race to find Cassie who has holed herself up in some abandoned campgrounds. Her text messages get direr as she talks about the people holding her and fearing for her life. Though it’s not long before Wylie and Jasper run into their own trouble. It becomes incredible hard for them to know who they can trust in this crazy scenario they’ve found themselves in.

This book was kind of odd, I’ll admit. The beginning was rather slow, that’s where there were a ton of flashbacks happening that didn’t really help to paint our current picture. Some of them did have merit, I’ll admit, but others I couldn’t figure out why we were needing to see said flashback. The story picked up once Wylie and Jasper were on the road to find Cassie and ending up finding more and more trouble. And then at the halfway point, things take another turn, which is when my confusion started as there was more of all the psychological talk. I won’t get into details, I can’t really remember much of them anyway or what their highlights were! I guess this is what happens when you stick to the fantasy and paranormal reads! Modern day science and psychological topics make for incredible hard to understand reading!

The latter half of the story also dragged for me, because it was more about applying what we learned from the situation and what to do next. A few more plot twists come along that did make for more excitement and then that ending! Totally surprised by it, yet at the same time, I was expecting it after everything that happened! LOL!

I am sad to say that I don’t think I will be continuing this series. While the ending does give you a bit of a twisted and edgy cliffhanger, I couldn’t help but remember all my struggles that have come beforehand. You would think I could grasp some of these neurological happenings what with my personal background, but honestly, I didn’t. It was just so overwhelming, much like my own experiences. In a sense, I did get a little bit of what was going on. But just all those details went way over my head, I could only grasp the vaguest of ideas. And what confused me plays a huge part in the grand scheme of things. Sadly, all the shock value of the story wasn’t enough to keep me invested with the series. I just don’t think I’ll mesh well with the remaining books. 


I will however still recommend this one if you like thrillers. Especially ones with a psychological twist, one that’s more focused on the science of said psychology!


Overall Rating 2.5/5 stars—a slightly better than okay read




 

Random Thursday

We once again travel back to That's a Fact Jack: A Collection of Utterly Useless Information [Updated] by Harry Bright and Jakob Anser and learn more useless, but intriguing information! LOL!



(image borrowed from YachtWorld.com)
"The most common name for privately owned boats is Serenity. The second most common is Wet Dream."

That second one! LOL! Really?


"'What in tarnation!' derives from the expression 'What in eternal damnation!'"

That's a new one!


(image borrowed from Ancient Symbols)
"The infinity symbol is called a 'lemniscate'."


Did not know that either!

EDIT: Sorry about that! I had a typo and didn't catch it! Thanks Sjhigbee!


(image borrowed from Conserve Energy Future)
"Despite being made famous by Dutch paintings and Spain's Don Quixote, windmills originated in Persia before the tenth century."


Another new tidbit!


(image borrowed from Overstock.com)
"Wedding rings date back thousands of years. The ancient Romans and Egyptians both believed that a vein called the vena amoris ran directly from the ring finger to the heart."


Also interesting!








Review--Forevermore by Kristen Callihan

Miss Layla Starling, the young, beautiful, and extremely wealthy heiress, is the talk of London. Until now, she's managed to evade the marriage noose. Despite the fact that she is unfortunately American, she's received a staggering number of offers. And turned down every one.

St. John Evernight does not want to admit the relief he feels every time he hears that she has rejected one of her suitors. Which is unfair of him. Layla deserves to be happy. But he can not offer her happiness. He will never be normal, never be anything but a freak in her world. So St. John resolves to keep his distance, until he is recruited by the Society for the Suppression of Supernaturals to guard Layla. For she is in grave danger, and he is about to learn the full extent of his powers.




It was a bittersweet moment to begin the finale Darkest London book by Kirsten Callihan. The author who introduced to me what I call Historical Paranormal Romance! Lol! Truly it’s labeled Historical Romance, but come on, werewolves, demons, angels…this is paranormal people! Forevermore is Sin’s story as well as Layla’s. Sin was the brother to the initial three, Miranda, Daisy, and Poppy. He had a rough go in life and lost touch with his family, but it was the paranormal problems that they deal with in London that brought them all together again.

Layla and Sin were once the best of friends in their youth, and only drifted apart when Layla was forced to move with her guardian. Years later they are reunited when Augustus, Layla’s guardian wants Sin’s help in protecting her. Layla is very special you see, and there are evil forces who will try to hurt her and make her theirs. He initially wanted Sin to marry her, but Sin refused that idea and instead decides to play bodyguard while she tries to find herself a husband at her guardian’s request, but you can imagine how that will turn out.

I positively adored Layla and Sin! I swear every time I read one of these Darkest London books, my favorite couple changed to whoever was the current one! LOL! What touched me the most about Layla and Sin was that they had a past friendship as children. And sentimental that I am, that hit home to me in some ways, but sadly I never got to see my childhood friends again after a move happened. Layla makes her lingering feelings for Sin clear, but Sin’s darkened past keeps him from seeking happiness. What he endured under Mab’s hand broke him in many ways, but he still can’t seem to let Layla go even if he isn’t so willing to have her as his.

It felt like a proper sendoff to the series to see most of the couples returning. We had all of Sin’s sisters returning as well as Mary and Jack. Though I did miss seeing the remaining two couples, just to have that feeling of full circle and whatnot, but then it would also feel like trying to be over-pleasing. It works out well in the end with seeing the amount of characters that we do. As we know from all the past novels, they are in their happy endings. Though the current problems may be trying wreak havoc on them and disrupt that happiness.

We also get a few extra points of view in this one other than Sin and Layla. Augustus, Layla’s guardian—and Final Judgment, I figured we’ve seen him previously, but obviously can’t remember that! LOL!, Archer, and Lena who is Layla’s mother. It was quite interesting this time around because we essentially get two couples aiming for a happy ending but there are dark forces constantly at play trying to prevent that from happening.

What I truly enjoyed the most was watching Sin and Layla fall in love. Sin has his issues to work through and a bit of self-acceptance that needs to happen, but with Layla all that becomes possible. And as per usual I was a swoony mess watching these two and their interactions. Some were quite comical too, as Layla is one of those head-strong heroines who isn’t afraid to go after what she wants or says what’s on her mind!

The ending was once again, bittersweet! Knowing that this is the absolute final book of the series put a tear in my heart, but I truly loved how this one ended. Since each book stands alone you expect there to be resolution, but we got a little bit more added to this one. And with any series that ends, I am left with the happy thought that these characters are done with their adventures just because they aren’t being written about. It truly was a most perfect kind of ending! And if Kristen should ever decide to come back to this world I will be more than eager to return!

If you have not yet read this incredibly amazing series, I highly recommend it! It’s Historical Paranormal Romance people! A genre that we definitely need more of! While you can read these in any order, there are always some details that will come about that are better understood if you read in numerical order. But that’s always been my way of reading series anyway! Forevermore was a delight from start to finish and I would absolutely recommend this series if you are a fan of any of the above mentioned genres!


Overall Rating 5/5 stars




 

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly blog post by Jill over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights releases we're eagerly awaiting.


In the latest mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of Give Up the Ghost, it will take a beacon of ghostly intervention to guide contractor Mel Turner to the truth...
 
Dangerous tides ahead...
 
When her friend Alicia hires Turner Construction to renovate a historic lighthouse in the San Francisco Bay, Mel Turner can’t wait to get her hands dirty. Alicia plans to transform the island property into a welcoming inn, and while Mel has never attempted a project so ambitious—or so tall—before, she’s definitely up for the challenge.

But trouble soon arises when Alicia’s abusive ex-husband shows up to threaten both her and Mel, and later turns up dead at the base of the lighthouse stairs. With no other suspects in sight, things start looking choppy for Alicia. Now, if Mel wants to clear her friend’s name, she’ll need the help of the lighthouse’s resident ghosts to shine a light on the real culprit...


I am massively behind in nearly all my paranormal mystery series!! Really need to get caught up in them! So naturally, I'm looking forward to a series of binging! LOL!


PUBLISHER: Berkley
GENRE: Paranormal Mystery
RELEASE DATE: July 4, 2017




 

Teaser & Top Ten Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by Purple Princess of The Purple Booker





Here are the rules:

1. Grab your current read
2. Open to a page
3. Pick out 2 lines that are SPOILER FREE
4. Name the title, author, etc.



"'It isn't James' fault.' Rage filled me. How dare they blame him for the evil of his father? I was sick and tired of people viewing James that way.

'Who said anything about James?'" Kindle loc. 70%*



*This quote comes from the ARC therefore it and its location are not final.








TITLE: Forged in Light
AUTHOR: Alyssa Rose Ivy
PUBLISHER: Self 
GENRE: Paranormal NA
RELEASE DATE: May 16, 2017 




Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.



This week's topic is: Summer Reads Freebie: Top Ten Books I Hope to Read this Summer!



10. A COURT OF WINGS AND RUIN by Sarah J. Maas--yes I still need to read it! Trying to find the perfect long weekend where I can read it, but one has yet to come up!
9. IT TAKES ONE by Kate Kessler--still want to read this one as well! I loooove Kate and her many pseudonyms and I love a good thriller, so it's bound to work out!
8. A GHOUL'S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER by Victoria Laurie--haven't read this finale yet either and I really need to get on that as well because I adore this series yet I don't want to say goodbye yet either!


7. THE OUTLIERS by Kimberly McCrieght--really need to read this one asap as she's coming to St. Louis the first week of June!! Eep!! :D
6. TEN THOUSAND SKIES ABOVE YOU by Claudia Gray--really need to finish this series as well! I was determined to wait out most of my trilogies before finishing them and they're now all finished and I am wayyy behind again! LOL!
5. THE SWEETEST BURN by Jeaniene Frost--it's FINALLY coming out!!! Been waiting ages for this one!!!


4. THE CHESS QUEEN ENIGMA by Colleen Gleason--the series isn't dead!! I need to read this one before the next one comes out!!
3. ROARING SHADOWS by Colleen Gleason--really need to finish this series too!
2. THE DEAD LIST by Jennifer L. Armentrout--I can't believe I haven't read this yet!


1. TORN by Jennifer L. Armentrout--that I have any of her books on my TBR pile shames me!