Friday, March 27, 2009

The Forest of Hands and Teeth

by Carrie Ryan

I’m pressed for time with getting ready to go up to New Jersey this weekend, but I wanted to post this review, so I’m going to do something I never do except for Waiting on Wednesdays, and that is use the official summary instead of writing my own. (I’m also using the UK cover because it's so much more intriguing and awesome.) So here it is with my review below:

In Mary's world there are simple truths. The Sisterhood always knows best. The Guardians will protect and serve. The Unconsecrated will never relent. And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village; the fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth. But, slowly, Mary’s truths are failing her. She’s learning things she never wanted to know about the Sisterhood and its secrets, and the Guardians and their power, and about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness. When the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, she must choose between her village and her future—between the one she loves and the one who loves her. And she must face the truth about the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Could there be life outside a world surrounded in so much death?

The Forest of Hands and Teeth drew me in right from the start with its immediate jump into Mary’s life—and also possibly in part because it began with a desire to see the ocean (always a good thing). The characters were introduced quickly but not so fast that they were hard to tell apart, and Mary’s emotions were easy to identify with. The plot moved right along; in a couple parts my palms were sweating and I could hardly read fast enough to see what came next.
But towards the end it fell apart for me—maybe because I read so fast I couldn’t process the story, I don’t know. It seemed to me that there were a lot of plot threads introduced that weren’t taken anywhere, and questions that I wanted answers to but never got. Perhaps the sequel, The Dead-Tossed Waves, will offer explanations.
Aside from that, it was a *very* good debut novel; I think Carrie Ryan has a lot of promise and I will definitely want to read anything she publishes in the future!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Waiting on Wednesday: Rapture of the Deep by L.A. Meyer

"Waiting on" Wednesday was created by Jill of Breaking the Spine, and is a way for bloggers to share the upcoming books that they're longing for. This week I'm waiting on...

Rapture of the Deep: Being the Further Adventures of Jacky Faber, Soldier, Sailor, Mermaid, Spy

by L.A. Meyer
Released September 28th, 2009
Sequel to: Bloody Jack, Curse of the Blue Tattoo, Under the Jolly Roger, In the Belly of the Bloodhound, Mississippi Jack, and My Bonny Light Horseman

On the very day that Jacky Faber is to wed her true love, she is kidnapped by British Naval Intelligence and forced to embark on yet another daring mission—this time to search for sunken Spanish gold. But when Jacky is involved, things don't always go as planned. Jacky has survived battles on the high seas, the stifling propriety of a Boston finishing school, and even confinement in a dank French prison. But no adventure has quite matched her opportunistic street-urchin desires—until now.

Why I'm waiting:
As I have said before, Jacky and her adventures are some of the best in YA and make me go squee. Enough said.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Waiting on Wednesday: A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn

"Waiting on" Wednesday was created by Jill of Breaking the Spine, and is a way for bloggers to share the upcoming books that they're longing for. This week I'm waiting on...

A Kiss in Time
by Alex Flinn
Released May 1st, 2009

Talia fell under a spell.... Jack broke the curse.

I was told to beware the accursed spindle, but it was so enchanting, so hypnotic....

I was looking for a little adventure the day I ditched my tour group. But finding a comatose town, with a hot-looking chick asleep in it, was so not what I had in mind.

I awakened in the same place but in another time—to a stranger's soft kiss.

I couldn't help kissing her. Sometimes you just have to kiss someone. I didn't know this would happen.

Now I am in dire trouble because my father, the king, says I have brought ruin upon our country. I have no choice but to run away with this commoner!

Now I'm stuck with a bratty princess and a trunk full of her jewels.... The good news: My parents will freak!

Think you have dating issues? Try locking lips with a snoozing stunner who turns out to be 316 years old. Can a kiss transcend all—even time?

Why I'm waiting:
Alex Flinn's books have been amazing so far! I can't wait to read her second venture into a new genre.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

or as my pen pal taught me to say it,

Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig!

It's pronounced something like: ban-awk-tee na fail-a por-ick (with a very harsh "awk," almost like you're coughing).

Also, happy birthday to me! Being born today (and having a Gaelic first name) is really my only claim to being Celtic, but take what you can get, right?

Celebrations all around with Scythian's "dueling siblings" act, in which they choose a "random" person to play fiddle:

And with ETH's omigosh-awesome Lancaster Gate:

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Waiting on Wednesday: The Walls Have Eyes by Clare Dunkle

"Waiting on" Wednesday was created by Jill of Breaking the Spine, and is a way for bloggers to share the upcoming books that they're longing for. This week I'm waiting on...

The Walls Have Eyes

by Clare B. Dunkle
Sequel to: The Sky Inside
Released August 25th, 2009

Martin Glass may have seen his baby sister Cassie to safety at the end of The Sky Inside, but his problems are far from over. There’s a totalitarian regime in place, murderous game shows on the air, and a host of government agents on Martin’s tail. And Martin and his Alldog, Chip, get more than they bargained for when they go back to Martin’s old suburb and have to rescue Martin’s parents. But spending time in the wilderness with Mom and Dad isn’t the worst of it. Because Martin learns that Cassie is still in danger—and to keep her and the other Wonder Babies safe, he’s going to have to risk the thing he loves most. Clare Dunkle brings her signature sense of pacing an adventure to a new story of Martin, Chip, and the rest of her varied cast in a story that widens and deepens the fascinating and multifaceted world she presented in The Sky Inside.

Why I'm waiting:
All of Ms. Dunkle's previous books have been fabulous, from her Hollow Kingdom Trilogy to this book's prequel, The Sky Inside.

Friday, March 6, 2009


The Faerie Queen’s Deception
by Maggie Stiefvater

Deidre is used to puking; she does so before every public performance on her harp. But with the appearance of a mysterious man from her dreams, she finds herself calm, and able to add the most breathtaking variations to the melodies as she plays.
When she begins to find four-leafed clovers everywhere, and Luke Dillon and his friends appear at the strangest times, Dee knows something strange is going on. Presently she will discover that she is a Cloverhand; she has an energy that attracts the fey, whether she wants their company or not.

Lament is the first modern-era dark faerie novel I’ve read (and there have been several; Tithe, Ironside, Valiant, Wondrous Strange, Wicked Lovely, Ink Exchange) in which I felt connected with the characters and believed the romances. The story, too, drew me in like none of the others, and for once I was completely sure I understood the plot fully—not that it was overly explained or too simple, only that it was explained well.

Look for the sequel, coming October 1st, 2009: Ballad: The Gathering of Faerie.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Waiting on Wednesday: Dragon's Heart by Jane Yolen

"Waiting on" Wednesday was created by Jill of Breaking the Spine, and is a way for bloggers to share the upcoming books that they're longing for. This week I'm waiting on...

Dragon's Heart
The Pit Dragon Chronicles, Book 4
by Jane Yolen
Sequel to: Dragon's Blood, Heart's Blood, and A Sending of Dragons
Released May 4th 2009

Austar IV isn't the planet it once was, and when Jakkin and Akki finally return to the dragon nursery, their homecoming arouses mixed emotions. Together they've survived the insurmountable, and now they can weather the brutal conditions of Dark After and communicate with the dragons they love. But with this knowledge comes responsibility. What they've learned about survival could transform the planet--or, if entrusted to the wrong hands, bring about its destruction. Akki's insistence that she return to the Rokk to finish her training and begin new experiments drives a chasm between her and Jakkin. Suddenly she finds herself in the midst of a political battle that could claim her life. Only Jakkin can save her. If only he could reach her....

Why I'm waiting:
Because the first three books were very unusual and original and I want the ability to FINALLY read the rest of Jakkin and Akki's story! This book has been a looooong time in coming, and I'm very excited to see it being published for real instead of just rumored.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Recent Libray Loot

I haven't kept up with my Library Loot posts recently--mostly because I've only been getting one book at a time. At one time I had the maximum of 13 holds on my list, but none of them were coming in because all of them are yet to be released! So here is what I have checked out of the library recently, not just for this week:

As always, from left to right:
The Dust of 100 Dogs by A.S. King
This book got a lot of hype, but my library wasn't ordering it. So I used my Borders employee benefit of checking out books and got a chance to read it. Too bad it didn't live up to my hopes.

Two Girls of Gettysburg by Lisa Klein
I love the author's Ophelia, so I was excited to read and review her new book.

Fade by Lisa McMann
Because the idea is so original and I wanted to read this, the sequel to Wake.

Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston
The cover looked interesting.

A Stranger to Command by Sherwood Smith
I thought it would be cool to learn the back story of Vidanric (of Crown Duel), but it wasn't terribly exciting.

Daughter of the Flames by Zoë Marriott
If you saw my Waiting on Wednesday for this one, you'll understand.

Terrier by Tamora Pierce (reread)
It seemed like a good idea to have the plot and characters of Terrier fresh in my mind for the release of Bloodhound in April.

Starclimber by Kenneth Oppel
The first two books, Airborn and Skybreaker were very enjoyable.

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
I'm finally going to see what all the Mortal Instruments hype is about.

Tenacious by Julian Stockwin (Kydd, book 6)
Working my way through the Kydd series, albeit slowly.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

And the winner is...

Chelsea De Torres

Congratulations! I will email you so you know what to do to receive your prizes.

Thanks to everyone who entered!