Monthly Archives: October 2015

Book Title:
Color Me Mindful - Underwater
Book Author:
Anastasia Catris
Book Series:
Color Me Mindful
Publishing Date:
July 30th, 2015
Publisher:
Gallery Books

Synopsis

These intricate and beautifully detailed line drawings of underwater scenes are ready for you to bring to life. Relieve stress, practice your mindfulness, and discover your creative side as you unplug and slow down by filling these exquisite pages with color.

No matter our age, useful mindfulness techniques can help re-center us amidst a world of noisy stimuli constantly vying for our attention. Coloring can act like a tranquil meditation—relax and unwind with this calming coloring book for adults featuring beautifully detailed line drawings and designs of soothing ocean motifs.

Make your mark—inside or outside the lines—with these fifty beautiful black and white illustrations of fish, turtles, coral, and other amazing ocean life just waiting for your gentle touch to bring the magic of the sea to life.

Don’t miss the other adult coloring books in the Color Me Mindful series: Color Me Mindful: Birds and Color Me Mindful: Tropical. Join the coloring craze!

My Review

Color Me Mindful: Underwater was the first “grown up” coloring book that I bought.  I always loved to color when I was little (and I found myself coloring in my daughters’ coloring books all the time), so when I saw … Continue reading

4 stars
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Happy Halloween! I hope you all have fun plans today!  I’ll be dressing up (the three of us are going to be bumblebees!  No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t get my husband to go as a beekeeper…and the … Continue reading

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Book Title:
Of Sea and Stone
Book Author:
Kate Avery Ellison
Book Series:
Secrets of Itlantis, #1
Publishing Date:
February 2nd, 2014
Date Read:
October 2nd, 2015

Synopsis

All her life, clever Aemi has been a slave in the Village of the Rocks, a place where the sea and sky meet. She’s heard the stories about the fabled People of the Sea, a people who possess unimaginable technology who live below the waves in the dark, secret places of the ocean. But she never dreamed those stories were true.

When a ship emerges from the ocean and men burn her village, Aemi is captured, and enslaved below the waves in Itlantis, a world filled with ancient cities of glass and metal, floating gardens, and wondrous devices that seem to work magic. To make matters worse, her village nemesis, the stuck-up mayor’s son Nol, was captured with her, and they are made servants in the same household beneath the sea.

Desperate to be free, Aemi plots her escape, even going so far as to work with Nol. But the sea holds more secrets than she realizes, and escape might not be as simple as leaving...

My Review

I feel the need to start off by saying I don’t typically enjoy books in a series.  Sometimes I have a difficult time keeping up with a standalone novel to the end, let alone want to keep reading about the … Continue reading

4.5 stars
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Book Title:
The Anatomical Shape of a Heart
Book Author:
Jenn Bennett
Publishing Date:
November 3rd, 2015
Publisher:
Feiwel & Friends
Date Read:
October 26th, 2015

Synopsis

Artist Beatrix Adams knows exactly how she's spending the summer before her senior year. Determined to follow in Leonardo da Vinci’s footsteps, she's ready to tackle the one thing that will give her an advantage in a museum-sponsored scholarship contest: drawing actual cadavers. But when she tries to sneak her way into the hospital’s Willed Body program and misses the last metro train home, she meets a boy who turns her summer plans upside down.

Jack is charming, wildly attractive . . . and possibly one of San Francisco’s most notorious graffiti artists. On midnight buses and city rooftops, Beatrix begins to see who Jack really is—and tries to uncover what he’s hiding that leaves him so wounded. But will these secrets come back to haunt him? Or will the skeletons in Beatrix’s own family’s closet tear them apart?

My Review

This was one of the books I was most looking forward to for the fall of 2015, so I was absolutely thrilled when I got the chance to read it.  I can say that I was not disappointed, and I … Continue reading

4 stars
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Book Title:
NEED
Book Author:
Joelle Charbonneau
Publishing Date:
November 3rd, 2015
Publisher:
HMH Books for Young Readers
Date Read:
October 14th, 2015

Synopsis

"No one gets something for nothing. We all should know better."

Teenagers at Wisconsin's Nottawa High School are drawn deeper into a social networking site that promises to grant their every need . . . regardless of the consequences. Soon the site turns sinister, with simple pranks escalating to malicious crimes. The body count rises. In this chilling YA thriller, the author of the best-selling Testing trilogy examines not only the dark side of social media, but the dark side of human nature.

My Review

I have a tendency to pick up a “thriller” and be disappointed less than halfway in.  I guess I just don’t find the majority of them very thrilling or exciting, and yet, I keep reading them.  I’m always searching for … Continue reading

4 stars
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Book Tour

The Anatomical Shape of a Heart Author: Jenn Bennett Publication Date: November 3rd, 2015 Publisher: Feiwel & Friends Summary from Goodreads: Artist Beatrix Adams knows exactly how she’s spending the summer before her senior year. Determined to follow in Leonardo … Continue reading

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating. Blackhearts Author: Nicole Castroman Publication Date: February 9th, 2016 Publisher: Simon Pulse Summary from Goodreads: Blackbeard the pirate … Continue reading

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Book Title:
Armada
Book Author:
Ernest Cline
Publishing Date:
July 14th, 2015
Publisher:
Crown

Synopsis

Zack Lightman has spent his life dreaming. Dreaming that the real world could be a little more like the countless science-fiction books, movies, and videogames he’s spent his life consuming. Dreaming that one day, some fantastic, world-altering event will shatter the monotony of his humdrum existence and whisk him off on some grand space-faring adventure.

But hey, there’s nothing wrong with a little escapism, right? After all, Zack tells himself, he knows the difference between fantasy and reality. He knows that here in the real world, aimless teenage gamers with anger issues don’t get chosen to save the universe.

And then he sees the flying saucer.

Even stranger, the alien ship he’s staring at is straight out of the videogame he plays every night, a hugely popular online flight simulator called Armada—in which gamers just happen to be protecting the earth from alien invaders.

No, Zack hasn’t lost his mind. As impossible as it seems, what he’s seeing is all too real. And his skills—as well as those of millions of gamers across the world—are going to be needed to save the earth from what’s about to befall it.

It’s Zack’s chance, at last, to play the hero. But even through the terror and exhilaration, he can’t help thinking back to all those science-fiction stories he grew up with, and wondering: Doesn’t something about this scenario seem a little…familiar?

At once gleefully embracing and brilliantly subverting science-fiction conventions as only Ernest Cline could, Armada is a rollicking, surprising thriller, a classic coming of age adventure, and an alien invasion tale like nothing you’ve ever read before—one whose every page is infused with the pop-culture savvy that has helped make Ready Player One a phenomenon.

My Review

Zack Lightman is a bit of a nerd.  Okay, maybe a big nerd.  He adores science fiction books, television shows, and video games, and most of his life revolves around them.  And like most who find themselves really enjoying these … Continue reading

4 stars
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Book Title:
Hotel Ruby
Book Author:
Suzanne Young
Publishing Date:
November 3rd, 2015
Publisher:
Simon Pulse
Date Read:
October 17th, 2015

Synopsis

Stay Tonight. Stay Forever.

When Audrey Casella arrives for an unplanned stay at the grand Hotel Ruby, she’s grateful for the detour. Just months after their mother’s death, Audrey and her brother, Daniel, are on their way to live with their grandmother, dumped on the doorstep of a DNA-matched stranger because their father is drowning in his grief.

Audrey and her family only plan to stay the night, but life in the Ruby can be intoxicating, extending their stay as it provides endless distractions—including handsome guest Elias Lange, who sends Audrey’s pulse racing. However, the hotel proves to be as strange as it is beautiful. Nightly fancy affairs in the ballroom are invitation only, and Audrey seems to be the one guest who doesn't have an invite. Instead, she joins the hotel staff on the rooftop, catching whispers about the hotel’s dark past.

The more Audrey learns about the new people she's met, the more her curiosity grows. She’s torn in different directions—the pull of her past with its overwhelming loss, the promise of a future that holds little joy, and an in-between life in a place that is so much more than it seems…

Welcome to the Ruby.

My Review

I’m going to start off with this: Hotel Ruby is by far the best book I have read this year.  And I’ve read a ton of books this year.  It’s so very rare when I find a book that I … Continue reading

5 stars
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Book Title:
Darkest Dawn
Book Author:
Katlyn Duncan
Book Series:
Willows Lake, #1
Publishing Date:
September 17th, 2015
Publisher:
HarperCollins
Date Read:
October 16th, 2015

Synopsis

One desperate journey for the truth

Returning to Willows Lake eleven years after her mother’s tragic death, Sloane Baker knows she will finally get the answers she needs! She always suspected that there was something more sinister at the heart of the accident that claimed her mother’s life, but a cryptic note could be the key to her past…

Two lives changed forever

The small town has always seemed safe to Brianna Taylor – until a mysterious new girl arrives who looks exactly like Bri! Now everything Bri knew has been thrown into question and Sloane’s arrival has changed the world of Willows Lake forever.

Strange things are happening in Willows Lake. But when they turn deadly, Bri and Sloane must find a way to save each other or risk losing everything they hold dear…

My Review

Darkest Dawn by Katlyn Duncan is an interesting book with a plot that’s definitely gripping.  It was a great page-turner that I didn’t want to put down until I had finished it! The story starts off with Sloane receiving a … Continue reading

3.5 stars
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