Monday, January 31, 2011

New Contest! Super book giveaway!

Please head on over to The Secret Adventures of WriterGirl. She is doing a huge giveaway! All you have to do is become a follower and tell them that I sent you when you sign up! Wait til you see all the books she is giving away. It's a reader's dream!

Don't forget to tell them Mflick1 sent you!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Lost Saint - Bree Despain

Book number 8! I can't wait to hit the double digits!

Grace Divine made the ultimate sacrifice to cure Daniel Kalbi. She gave her soul to the wolf to save him and lost her beloved mother. When Grace receives a haunting phone call from Jude, she knows what she must do. She must become a Hound of Heaven. Desparate to find Jude, Grace befriends Talbot - a newcomer to town who promises her that he can help her be a hero. But as the two grow closer, the wolf grows in Grace, and her relationship with Daniel begins to crumble. Unaware of the dark path she is walking, Grace becomes prideful in her new abilities - not realizing that an old enemy has returned and deadly trap is about to be sprung. stolen from Barnes and Noble

I thought this book was good... maybe a bit slow in the beginning. I was worried that Daniel and Grace were going to follow that road of "we aren't communicating so its going to destroy our relationship but don't worry we will work it out by the end of the book but only for a devastating twist to happen." Well, it did. Except I loved the TWIST AT THE END! VERY GOOD!

Grace really struggled with the wolf in this book. It took me a few times see it in the book but the italics is the wolf trying to lure Grace to the dark side and once I caught on, I saw how manipulative the wolf was being. Mini-spoiler I did think for a moment that Daniel and Grace were going to have a love scene because of the wolf, but it doesn't happen...

I generally feel bad for the Divine family. The mother goes from outrageously, overbearing mother to the catatonic mother and changes each day. A father searching for a son, leaving his other family members behind along with his parish. A baby brother who is scared of his big brother. I do wish Despain would develop James some more. They were perfect. Family dinners. Concerns. Love. Joy. Community service. A real sense of family. And it is ripped away. AND POOR JUDE. I love Jude. He was a lost soul by the end of the first book and he has become more lost since then. He's confused and I just want to make it better for him. Which makes me feel for Grace as she tries to save her brother.

I now have to wait until the next one comes out.

Big Hopes.... Total Rejection

I really have been taking my writing seriously and have begun the process of query letters and agents. In fact this weekend, I sent out my first email submission. I was so excited and (even though I read the likely hood of finding an agent with the first letter is like 1 to 1,000,000,000) was so hopeful and thought this was it!

Well, due the Internet and how quickly people can receive emails now, I got my first rejection. Yep, same day! It hurt! I know that the agent was doing her job and that they have to be picky and not to take it personally. And I knew this was going to happen. I was going to get rejected, but man did it hurt!

So I was feeling blue and decided to curl up with my NOOK. Well, my mastiff, Mia, decided she wanted to curl up too! Leave it to a 95 pound dog to make me feel better. Later, my collie Fergie, curled up too! Leave it to two fur balls to make this part of the writing process better. Now, (still curled up with Mia and Fergie) I am making a plan of attack, being positive, and remembering that S. King, S. Meyer, and Dr. Seuss all were rejected multiple times and they turned out A-OK!

I wonder if they had dogs.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

LCB Contest!

Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf is having a give-a-way for the Iron Fey series. It's a great opportunity. I am excited for it because I have been seeing a lot of it and I want to read it!! Also, help Lauren out by posting the contest for her!

Good luck... I have included the synopsis for each of the books to give you a taste!

The Iron King

Summary/Cover Image from Publisher's Website:

Meghan Chase has a secret destiny—one she could never have imagined…

Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan's life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school…or at home.

When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she's known is about to change.

But she could never have guessed the truth—that she is the daughter of a mythical
faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she'll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil no faery creature dare face…and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.

The Iron Daughter

Summary/Cover Image from Publisher's Website:

Half Summer
faery princess, half human, Meghan has never fit in anywhere. Deserted by the Winter prince she thought loved her, she is prisoner to the Winter faery queen. As war looms between Summer and Winter, Meghan knows that the real danger comes from the Iron fey—ironbound faeries that only she and her absent prince have seen. But no one believes her.

Worse, Meghan's own fey powers have been cut off. She's stuck in
Faery with only her wits for help. Trusting anyone would be foolish. Trusting a seeming traitor could be deadly. But even as she grows a backbone of iron, Meghan can't help but hear the whispers of longing in her all-too-human heart.

The Iron Queen

Summary/Cover Image from Author's Website:
In less than twenty-four hours I'll be seventeen.

Although, technically, I won't actually be turning seventeen. I've been in the
Nevernever too long. When you're in Faery, you don't age. So while a year has passed in the real world, agewise I'm probably only a few days older than when I went in.

In real life, I've changed so much I don't even recognize myself.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Mizb @Should Be Reading
-Grab your current book
-Open to a random page
-Share (2) teaser sentences from somewhere on that page
-no spoilers!
-Share title and author

So I hate to admit this but I am not in the middle of anything... so I am going to give you the first two line of my new book...The Lost Saint by Bree Despain...

"Do what he wants, and you might survive,: a harsh voice said in the boy's ear before he felt a sharp blow to the kidneys. He fell forward onto the concrette, his arm splayed out in front of him." - Page 1!

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Lying Game by Sara Shepard

Book 7 of the 100 Book challenge.

The following synopsis is taken from

I had a life anyone would kill for.

Then someone did.

The worst part of being dead is that there’s nothing left to live for. No more kisses. No more secrets. No more gossip. It’s enough to kill a girl all over again. But I’m about to get something no one else does—an encore performance, thanks to Emma, the long-lost twin sister I never even got to meet.

Now Emma’s desperate to know what happened to me. And the only way to figure it out is to be me—to slip into my old life and piece it all together. But can she laugh at inside jokes with my best friends? Convince

my boyfriend she’s the girl he fell in love with? Pretend to be a happy, carefree daughter when she hugs my parents good night? And can she keep up the charade, even after she realizes my murderer is watching her every move?

From Sara Shepard, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of thePretty Little Liars books, comes a riveting new series about secrets, lies, and killer consequences.

Let the lying game begin.

I had heard a lot about Sara Shepard, currently I have several of my students reading the Pretty Little Liars series. They love them! So instead of losing an arm trying to get the first in that series, I grabbed this one.

I thought it was very creative using "YouTube" to discover that Sutton was in trouble. I thought it was something that my students would latch on to. I love it when authors use the modern fads to tie things in. Like texting, teens don't call anymore, they text. Authors should include texting... right? Am I wrong about this?

Back on topic. I like the contrast between Sutton and Emma and I think having Sutton regret the way she was and by her showing remorse for the nasty pranks pulled in "The Lying Game" is very redeeming. I do wonder if Emma will get caught up in the lifestyle, not the nasty pranks, but the whole rich and fabulous lifestyle that Sutton was accustomed to...

One thing I did not like was the flipping of the narration. It went from the third person to Sutton's thoughts. I wish instead of it saying... "Emma was talking to Mrs. Mercer." I think it should have read, "Emma was talking to my mom." I was under the impression from the beginning that this was being told by Sutton. Maybe that's just the writer in me.

I am assuming there will be a sequel to this, though I felt Shepard could have wrapped it up. If there is a different killer, great. If there is not a different killer than the "one" (trying not to spoil here) well I am concerned she will have a dragged out second novel...

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Wither Contest on The Lovely Getaway!

I have heard a lot about the novel Wither by Lauren DeStefano. I "stole" the following synopsis from The Lovely Getaway.

What if you knew exactly when you would die?

Thanks to modern science, every human being has become a ticking genetic time bomb—males only live to age twenty-five, and females only live to age twenty. In this bleak landscape, young girls are kidnapped and forced into polygamous marriages to keep the population from dying out.

When sixteen-year-old Rhine Ellery is taken by the Gatherers to become a bride, she enters a world of wealth and privilege. Despite her husband Linden's genuine love for her, and a tenuous trust among her sister wives, Rhine has one purpose: to escape—to find her twin brother and go home.

But Rhine has more to contend with than losing her freedom. Linden's eccentric father is bent on finding an antidote to the genetic virus that is getting closer to taking his son, even if it means collecting corpses in order to test his experiments. With the help of Gabriel, a servant Rhine is growing dangerously attracted to, Rhine attempts to break free, in the limited time she has left.

The following link is a link to the contest.

I am super excited for this book!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Teaser Tuesday

Yep, jumping on board with this as I ease myself into the blogging world.
The rules:
Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Mizb @Should Be Reading
  • Grab your current book
  • Open to a random page
  • Share (2) teaser sentences from somewhere on that page
  • No spoilers!
  • Share title and author

My teaser comes from The Lying Game by Sara Shepard

"The gun dug into her skin. Dark, blurry shapes fluttered through the blindfold someone had quickly tied around her eyes, and the sound of traffic roared in her ears." Page -48

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Book one of the Wordsworth Classic Reading Challenge was Mary Shelley's Frankenstein! I recently finished it with my senior English class.

Synopsis from Wordsworth Classics website - Begun when the author was only eighteen and conceived from a nightmare, Frankenstein is the deeply disturbing story of a monstrous creation which has terrified and chilled readers since its first publication in 1818.

The novel has thus seared its way into the popular imagination while establishing itself as one of the pioneering works of modern science fiction.

I am an English teacher. I love the classics, but this being the first time I have read this novel, it's not my favorite. Like some of the classics, it gets bogged down with pretty words and the meaning can get lost. My seniors had a hard time paying attention to this book, but we did it! And like I knew they would be, they were surprised to discover that the monster's name is not Frankenstein.

I also was surprised by how much I hated Victor Frankenstein. For as much as the monster made him suffer, I could not believe how selfish he was. The monster killed his family. I get it, a bad thing, but Victor should have warned them, been upfront with the monster, something to try to preserve the lives of his nearest and dearest, but no! He was too caught up in what he had done. I think of all the main characters I have read about, I hate him the most. But good literature evokes emotions!

The monster is a monster but he was created that way and I don't mean physically. His hatred and misery are caused by others. And without a proper mentor to guide him morally or the love of a companion or father to show him compassion, what did Victor and reader expect?

I feel for the monster.

PS. Book 6 done.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Qurey Letters

If writing a novel wasn't hard enough, you ad the Q. Letter. I'm at that point where I should start writing it. I have talked to several friends about this done research on the net, and picked up a few books and you would think with all that information, it wouldn't be so hard... OMG, it is far more difficult than writing my manuscript!

The first part of a Q letter is a concise one-liner that sums up your novel, (yeah, 99,849 words broken-down into twenty words. I have 6 possibles that I have sent to Nadine, but I know she's going to point out something that I should include, which means starting at square one at the one-liners.

With all my research and my knowledge of English, I know how important the Q. Letter is. I know how perfect it needs to be, how it needs the WOW element, and that it is the first impression and agent, publisher, and editor will get of your and your writing style.

It's super hard.
In fact, I would categorize it as unbelievably hard.

I did find this website, AgentQuery, to be helpful. I liked the voice of the website and how they gave examples and links to other sources.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick

I was a big fan of Hush, Hush and couldn't wait for this to come out, along with a bunch of my female students.

Review from Amazon -

Nora should have know her life was far from perfect. Despite starting a relationship with her guardian angel, Patch (who, title aside, can be described anything but angelic), and surviving an attempt on her life, things are not looking up. Patch is starting to pull away and Nora can't figure out if it's for her best interest or if his interest has shifted to her arch-enemy Marcie Millar. Not to mention that Nora is haunted by images of her father and she becomes obsessed with finding out what really happened to him that night he left for Portlan

d and never came home.

The farther Nora delves into the mystery of her father's death, the more she comes to question if her Nephilim blood line has something to do with it as well as why she seems to be in danger more than the average girl. Since Patch isn't answering her questions and seems to be standing in her way, she has to start finding the answers on her own. Relying too heavily on the fact that she has a guardian angel puts Nora at risk again and again. But can she really count on Patch or is he hiding secrets darker than she can even imagine?

I did generally like this book. And had I read this book last year I would have been crazy about it. However, I recently have become bored with the typical paranormal romance where the girl can only think of her love interest, and that is exactly what Nora is about.

I also didn't like the the section with her father's ghost - I won't give a ton of detail but I felt that this element could have utilized much better. It was a great idea but I felt like it was tossed out at me a few times and then it was over.

I did (and still do) love Patch. I love the fact that he isn't the typical boy in the story that loves the girl uncondtionally and wants to change for the better and does everything in his power to do so. I mean, he does love Nora and always has her interest at heart but he can be shady, a jerk, pompous. In reality no person in a relationship is perfect and each person has flaws. Patch is the character and the reason that I will continue to look for the next in this series.

Another great part about Fitzpatrick is her ability for great twists. In this novel, she def. did not disappoint! and another one happens in the last three pages... be prepared to say "WHAT?!"

Overall, I would say it was 4 out of 5

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Surrender My Love - Johanna Lindsey

Yes, I do love the occasional romance novel... a nice, easy read. Book four for my challenge.

Here is the synopsis from B&N

A Lady's Scorn

Wrongly branded a spy, the dark and handsome Viking lord Selig Haardrad suffered greatly in the dungeons of Lady Erika of Gronwood. And as he hung in chains, his magnificent body wracked with pain and fever, one thought sustained him: revenge!

A Viking's Vengence

Now Destiny's great wheel has turned--and Selig's exquisite, hone-

haired tormentor has been delivered into the Norseman's hands. Now it is Selig who is the master, bound and determined to break the proud spirit of his captive "ice queen" and to conquer her with passion's sword -- never dreaming that his own heart will be vanquished by sensuous desire. . .and victorious love.

I read this book when I was younger and to be honest, I remember it to be a but "rounder" in characters.... Granted we know how books like this go... they hate each other, they resist each other, they sleep together, can't figure out why they do, then they both at different times come to realize that they are in love with one another, and then they live happily ever after... It's a pick me up... but I have read a bunch of Lindsey's books before and some of them have really great characters and great plots. This one, like I said I thought was better than I did this time, but still a nice easy read during a busy week... It relieved my stress so what could I ask for?

2 out of 5

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Dark Divine by Bree Despain

Book 3 down! I'm on fire!

Synopsis -
Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared--the night she found her brother Jude collapsed on the porch, covered in his own blood--but she has no idea what a truly monstrous secret that night held.

The memories her family has tried to bury resurface when Daniel returns, three years later, and enrolls in Grace and Jude's high school. Despite promising Jude she'll stay away, Grace cannot deny her attraction to Daniel's shocking artistic abilities, his way of getting her to look at the world from new angles, and the strange, hungry glint in his eyes.

The closer Grace gets to Daniel, the more she jeopardizes her life, as her actions stir resentment in Jude and drive him to embrace the ancient evil Daniel unleashed that horrific night. Grace must discover the truth behind the boy's dark secret...and the cure that can save the ones she loves. But she may have to lay down the ultimate sacrifice to do it--her soul.

The Dark Divine is in the lead for my favorite book of the year :). I think that Grace is a great character. She is a pastor's kid fully intact with her morals, especially forgiveness, which I think is uncommon among heroes in any kind of story. She is by no means a push-over, but is very compassionate.

As for Daniel, if it isn't clear yet, I love a good bad boy, and Daniel has sins! It took at
least half the book for Daniel's secret to come out. I had an idea about what his secret was,but not confirmation from Despain. It def. kept me reading into the night, because I needed to know and I was not disappointed when the secret's background was described.

Another character, that is key in the story, is Jude, Grace's beautiful, even more warm-hearted than she brother. He's really angry and Daniel and they used to be like brothers, which only led to my curiosity as to what Daniel's secret was. But Jude, well I think you need to read the book, there is something off.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Sister Red by Jackson Pearce

Book 2 of the 100 book challenge....

I had seen this book several times over the last few weeks on some of the blogs that I follow. Everyone gave it awesome reviews. Several even said it was one of their favorite books of 2010... I downloaded the story on my NOOK as soon as I got a gift card for Christmas.
Here is the synopsis of this book courtesy of B&N.

Scarlett March lives to hunt the Fenris—the werewolves that took her eye when she was defending her sister Rosie from a brutal attack. Armed with a razor-sharp hatchet and blood-red cloak, Scarlett is an expert at luring and slaying the wolves. She's determined to protect other young girls from a grisly death, and her raging heart will not rest until

every single wolf is dead.

Rosie March once felt her bond with her sister was unbreakable. Owing Scarlett her life, Rosie hunts ferociously alongside her. But even as more girls' bodies pile up in the city and the Fenris seem to be gaining power, Rosie dreams of a life beyond the wolves. She finds herself drawn to Silas, a young woodsman who is deadly with an ax and Scarlett's only friend—but does loving him mean betraying her sister and all that they've worked for?

I thought Pearce did an awesome job re-inventing the classic Little Red Riding Hood. Starting with page one I was riveted! I was intrigued by the "stranger" who is a wolf who attacks the two sisters and their grandmother, Oma. It was brutal and my heart broke for little Scarlett when she protected her little sister.

The story did slow down after the first twenty pages, but I imagine it would be extremely hard to keep the book that intense throughout. The sisters and their adorable friend Silas are hunters and realize that a potential werewolf (Fenris) is going to be joining the already huge mass of werewolves. They move to Atlanta desperately seeking this new "Potential." But while they are there Rosie discovers and interest in all things normal and Silas... saw it coming a mile away but ... who doesn't like a little love mixed with their werewolves?

I felt that Rosie and Silas were very predictable, normal teenage fiction characters. However, Scarlett was not. Normal heroines are startlingly beautiful and adored by everyone, not Scarlett. She has to be an 18 year old who is horribly disfigured, ultimately driving her to be a hunter and taking her little sister down the path, but still wishes that she were beautiful or not disfigured. I felt for this character, especially when she would notice anyone who didn't have a disfigurement (yep, everyone around her).

I will say that the first twist was predictable, (won't ruin it) but the second one I did not see coming, though I love a tragic ending and Pearce had a great opportunity for one but didn't do it... but it's like romance... you always appreciate the happy ending...

From the English teacher's standpoint, I would say its a great mentor text to show how to modernize a fairy tale. I also think that I have several students who would really enjoy this.

Solid 4 out 5