Saturday, March 31, 2012

Graduation Happiness Giveaway!!

YOU GUYS! I totally just had the last day of my interning life yesterday and I'm still not fully comprehending the fact that I'm a doctor now!! Ok, so not officially yet, cause I still need to have the ceremony and say 'I promise' after they recite the oath of Hippocrates and all that, but all that aside: I'm FINALLY done with my internships!! And now I will get to work as a real doctor and actually start getting paid and all that wonderful stuff :)

I'm very excited and it's both scary and wonderful and I feel like running around screaming YAYYYY!!! It did make me a little sad that in order to achieve my goal I had to finish my internship cause I was having a really good time working there! And now comes the REALLY scary part where I'll actually have to apply for a job....

But in honour of my graduation happiness I wanted to do a giveaway, cause you know, you guys have been reading my ramblings about being a medical intern and all that and I wanted to give a little something back.

Oh, and I'm gonna buy myself a bucketload of books to celebrate with (cause I celebrate every achievement by buying books :)), if you have any recommendations as to what I should order/pre-order, let me know!

Without further ado:

-One book of your choice up to 15 euros sent via the Book Depository
-Open internationally, everywhere the Book Depository ships to (check out the list here)
-Required: be a blog follower
-If under 13 you have to have approval from a parent/legal guardian
-Open from March 31st to April 14th 2012
-The winner will be contacted through e-mail as well as announced on the blog
-The winner will have 48 hours to get back to me with the book of their choice, if there's no response after 48 hours I will pick another winner
-That's it, go enter! What are you waiting for?

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Review of The International Kissing Club by Ivy Adams

Title/Author: The International Kissing Club by Ivy Adams
Publisher/Date published: Walker Books for Young Readers, January 17th 2012
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "Piper, Cassidy, Mei, and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives. And they've always agreed on one goal: to get out of tiny Paris, Texas, and see the world. The school's foreign exchange program seems like the perfect escape: Piper will go to the original Paris; Mei will go to China; Cassidy will go to Australia; and Izzy, unable to afford the program, will stay at home. To add spice to their semester away, and to stay connected to their best friends, the girls start The International Kissing Club, a Facebook page where they can anonymously update one another and brag about all the amazing guys they're meeting. After all, these girls are traveling abroad: amazing guys abound at every turn! But sometimes fun, flirty vacation flings turn into more serious romances, and sometimes you don't return from abroad the same person you were. Will the girls' relationships - and their friendships - be able to survive?"

Did you know Ivy Adams is a pseudonym for the writing team Emily McKay, Shellee Roberts and Tracy Deebs? Cause it is. And these 3 lovely ladies have written an absolutely cute novel together!

I totally had a smile on my face the whole time I was reading The International Kissing Club! And seriously, just knowing I was reading a book called The International Kissing Club totally made my day! Cause how awesome would it be to have a club like that?? I would have LOVED that as a teen!
Before starting this one I had been reading a couple of books that weren't really working out for me and this one brought my fun back :)

I LOVED reading about the friendship between these 4 girls! Probably because my group of girl friends from college also consists of 4 girls and it's so recognizable! The dynamics were wonderful to read about and I loved that these girls know each other so well.
Also, there are four different point of views we're reading from, but it was always perfectly clear whose chapter it was because they had really well defined voices! Definitely brownie points to the authors for that cause it's not always the case with these kinds of books!

Of course there is a lot going on that I was expecting to happen, because of course all four girls are going to be having a love interest. And I could see the mistakes the girls made coming from miles away. But none of this made me enjoy The International Kissing Club any less! All four of the lovestories were incredibly sweet and I only wish we didn't have to switch POV all the time cause I enjoyed each of the stories and just wanted to spend more time with the characters and their boys.

Also, I'm BEGGING the authors to write a sequel because I am So not done spending time with these girls and I'm DYING to find out what's going to happen with these mostly holiday romances!
This was such a cute read and it was exactly what I needed at the moment. Definitely recommended when you need something light to just relax with!

My rating: 4,5 stars

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Review of A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

Title/Author: A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
Publisher/Date published: Bloomsbury, first published in 2007
How I got this book: bought it 3 years ago (it almost made the Top Ten Tuesday list of books collecting dust on my shelf)
Why I read this book: it fit nicely into a challenge from the College Students group and I always meant to read it anyway.

Goodreads summary: "Set like its predecessor in war-torn Afghanistan, A Thousand Splendid Suns uses that tumultuous backdrop to render the heroic plight of two women of different generations married to the same savagely abusive male. Born out of wedlock, Mariam was forced to marry 40-year-old Rasheed when she was only 15. Then, 18 years later, her still childless husband angrily takes an even younger wife. Hosseini renders the story of Mariam and her "sister/daughter," Laila, with persuasive detail and consummate humanity. Their abject situation leaves them no emotional space for idle philosophizing; their resistance is from the very core of their being."

I've heard people rave about Hosseini's books, both the Kite Runner and this one. And while I haven't read the Kite Runner, I can honestly say that this one deserves the praise. My copy had 387 pages and the story never once seemed to drag. I immediatley felt connected to Mariam.

From a young age, she hasn't had an easy life. And it doesn't really get better for her. I was SOO rooting for her to find happiness and someone to love who she wouldn't be taken away from. I felt she had such a big heart and so much love to give, but was never given the chance. Mariam is a really strong woman, she's faced every hardship coming her way and she really is someone to look up to.
***SPOILER ALERT, light up to read***
OMG, I cried when she was executed! She was so brave and such a beautiful person. I so wanted her and Laila's escape to work and for Mariam to finally get a break.
**END of spoiler***

I don't know very much about Afghanistan as a country. I know about the war and I know what's shown on television, but that's not what makes a country the way it is. This book has shown me its history and the daily life of someone who lives there and I really appreciate the view from this point.

The romance between Laila and Tariq was beautiful. I also really enjoyed the slowly developing friendship between Laila and Mariam, both brave women that find a way to make a life together, even with an abusive husband.

I loved the quote the book's title refers to:
"One could not count the moons that shimmer on her roofs, or the thousand splendid suns that hide behind her walls."

I absolutely loved this book, for me it lived up to the hype and I immediately passed it on to my mother, who I'm sure will enjoy it as well.

My rating: 5 stars

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Review of My Ruthless Prince by Gaelen Foley

Title/Author: My Ruthless Prince (The Inferno Club #4) by Gaelen Foley
Publisher/Date published: Avon Books, January 1st 2012
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "The Inferno Club: To London Society, they’re notorious for their scandalous pursuits. In private, these warriors would risk their lives for king and country.
His brother warriors fear the Earl of Westwood has turned traitor, but Emily Harper knows this is impossible for the man she has loved since childhood... as impossible as a marriage between them could ever be — she, the gamekeeper’s daughter and he, a bold and adventurous nobleman.
Driven by hatred and revenge, Westwood is playing a deadly game of deception, bent on destroying the enemy’s dark conspiracy from the inside, and he’s furious when Emily plunges herself into danger for his sake. Forced into close quarters, their long-suppressed desire explodes into all-consuming passion.
Emily knows her love can save him... but Westwood is a man who doesn’t want to be saved."

I enjoyed the previous book in this series, My Irresistible Earl, though I did have some moments when I thought WTF??? And I really liked seeing the characters I had met in the that book again in My Ruthless Prince.

While I was reading this book I was considering DNF-ing it a lot of the time, cause for some reason, the story just didn't grab me. I wasn't really excited for Emily and Drake and their romance. And I think what bothered me the most that in all reality both of them would probably have been killed cause they had some serious too-stupid-to-live moments. I get SO annoyed when that happens!

I mean, sure Emily is being brave by going after Drake after he's disappeared, but really, she's a woman going into a whole castle full of dangerous men. Of course this is a brilliant idea... And Drake doesn't seem to grasp the fact that maybe he should put aside this whole save-the-world-on-my-own complex he has and just stop acting stupid.

I know I sound really negative, but I was just annoyed by a lot of what was going on. I mean, I liked that both Emily and Drake are hugely loyal, both to each other and to other people, but sometimes loyalty isn't the be all that ends all, you know?
I also liked that they had history together and this was definitely NOT a case of insta-love, it's been coming for years. I really liked that and I enjoyed reading about those moments in their past.

Also, a slight warning to people just looking for a sweet romance novel, there is also some violence going on and some blood being shed. Just to give you a heads up.

There was enough in this book to like for me to finish it, but just barely.
My rating: 2 stars

Friday, March 23, 2012

TGIF at GReads! (4)

TGIF is an original meme hosted by the lovely Ginger @ GReads!
Each week she posts another fun question for the blogosphere to ponder over :)

This Friday's Question:
Bookish Trends: What are some bookish trends you are noticing in the literature world today? Is there a particular trend you'd like to see more of?

A trend I've been noticing in YA is the appearance of mermaids and sirens. Mermaids and sirens are the new vampires and werewolves ;) I LOVE this trend, I've been fascinated with mermaids ever since I watched The Little Mermaid as a kid (I SO wanted to be Ariel!).

Also, as my buddy Alexa mentioned in her post: strong female characters. Of course I am loving this trend as well! I like my characters wellrounded and while I also appreciate the pure kickbutting thing that some have going on, the characters that I really love are the ones that also have a sensitive side.

What I'd really like to see more of is main characters in their late teens/early twenties, more college-aged characters. It's not really a trend, but I would like to see more of it ;)

What are things that have caught your attention? Or anything you're wishing to appear in books more often?
Happy Friday! :D

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Review of The Invisible Tower by Nils Johnson-Shelton

Title/Author: The Invisible Tower (Otherworld Chronicles #1) by Nils Johnson-Shelton
Publisher/Date published: HarperCollins, January 3rd 2012
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "Part of the spell has already been broken.
The first stones have begun to crumble.
In Artie Kingfisher’s world, wizards named Merlin, fire-breathing dragons, and swords called Excalibur exist only in legends and lore — until the day his video game Otherworld springs to life.
You are special, Arthur,
Says the mysterious message in his game.
In one week’s time you will come to me at the it.
Cryptic clues lead Artie to a strange place called the Invisible Tower, where he discovers that nothing in his life is as it seems. Artie is none other than King Arthur, brought to life in the twenty-first century. Artie has won the battle in the virtual Otherworld — now the key to saving the real Otherworld lies in his hands as well.
Green dragons, hungry wolves, powerful sorcerers — suddenly Artie must battle them all as he wields Excalibur and embarks on a quest worthy of the Knights of the Round Table. With his sister, Kay, by his side, Artie steps into the Otherworld — straight toward his destiny."

This was a pretty sweet book. I was really interested in reading this one because I LOVE everything about the Arthurian legend. I'll admit it, I'm an Arthur junkie. And a modern twist with a video game entering into it sounded really exciting :)

And it was a sweet book and I thought how Johnson-Shelton incorporated the myth into The Invisible Tower was pretty good in my opinion. It had enough of the original thing and also a definite touch from the author.

Things happen with enough speed to keep me interested but it wasn't so fast it felt rushed. I was however a bit shocked at some of the stuff happening, I mean, I thought this was a children's book and it had some pretty gruesome stuff in it that would have scared me as a kid. I mean, I know the original story is not without major shedding of blood, but I hadn't expected it in The Invisible Tower so much.

The characters were nice, I really liked that Kay, Artie's sister, was a major part of the action and not just a sidekick. I really liked the familybonds! There's some real love between the siblings and their father and I loved it! And I really liked the supporting characters, they were so cute! I am sort of questioning one major characters motives, but I can't tell you who because I might spoil something...

While there The Invisible Tower definitely had some really good qualities, I didn't feel very excited while reading it. I'm not exactly sure why that is, but I didn't really feel the urge to keep reading. I do think this is a fun way for kids to learn about the Arthurian legend, though I'm still partial to the original tale (which scared the crap out of me as a kid, good times).

My rating: 3 stars

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Top Ten Books On My Spring TBR List!

As always, Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and that's me you see being featured there this week :)

You guys! It's the first day of spring today!! And what better way to kick off this season which means bye-bye to the nasty cold (a girl can hope right?) than to break out a list with the exciting books coming out between March 20th and June 21st 2012??

I'm doing new releases, but of course it can also be books that are already out, cause a TBR list is just the books you're wanting/hoping to read.

To give you fair warning: you guys know I can never seem to play by the rules right?

1. Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin: the cover for this one is absolutely gorgeous and I've heard people who've been lucky enough to get an ARC gush about it so much I can't wait to read it!

2. Grave Mercy by R.L. LaFevers: it's about NUNS who are ASSASSINS! Enough said really.

3. A Breath of Eyre by Eve Marie Mont: I LOVE Jane Eyre, so this girl falling right into the story is my dream!

4. Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore: I know, I still need to read Fire, but I couldn't resist pre-ordering the shiny new book that will be Bitterblue! I adored Cashore's writing in Graceling and I'm sure I'll love this one as well, I've been hearing nothing but wonderful things about Bitterblue!

5. Until I Die by Amy Plum: the second book in the Revenant series, I absolutely LOVED Die For Me when I read it last year and I can't wait to see what happens next for Kate and Vincent. And the cover is just gorgeous!

6. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo: YAY NEW FANTASY AUTHOR! I'm really excited about this one, it's supposed to be really good, I can't wait to read it! :) The main character sounds like she'll kick some major behind and I love it when my heroines do that!

7. Of Poseidon by Anna Banks: MERMAIDS! I have a thing for mermaids. And this book sounds amazing!

8. Revived by Cat Patrick: cause really, how could I resist a book that has a main character called Daisy? And one that doesn't sound like she's simpering in a corner for a change?!

9. Struck by Jennifer Bosworth: a girl who is struck by lightning all the time and survives and has strange powers and such. Call me fascinated!

10. The sequels I couldn't all fit into this Top Ten (see, told you I cheat): AKA Black Heart by Holly White (this series is THE awesome!), Goddess Interrupted by Aimee Carter (I really enjoyed the Goddess Test, yay Greek Mythology!), Dreamless by Josephine Angelini (I was DEVASTATED at the end of Starcrossed! And again: YAY MYTHOLOGY!)

So that's my list, I actually went a little crazy and pre-ordered almost all of these... :) What are you all planning to read this spring? Any exciting books I should know about? I'm always looking to add books to my TBR list, so let me know what I forgot/should definitely order as well!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Daisy Update (7)

HI! I can't believe it's been almost a full month since my last real Update! I mean, sure, I did my happy post last week, but still...

ANYWAY, enough of my 'I'm getting old, my, how the time does fly' and let's get on with what I desperately want to show you guys:

It's the dress I bought last week to wear to my graduation!!! :D I am very much in love with it and feel really pretty wearing it :) Originally it hung in the living room so I could stare at it all day, but well, that sorta wasn't very convenient, so I have relocated it to a safer place: hanging on the outside of my closet. Now I just visit it several times a day and sigh :)
I got a jacket to go with it, cause I don't know what kind of weather it'll be then and the room we always have the graduation ceremony in is really cold most of the time.
Now all I need are shoes to go with the dress... YAY ANOTHER SHOPPING TRIP!! :D

Also: I cannot believe how much money I spent while shopping for this dress!! Seriously, I went to a store I don't normally go to cause the price tags scare the crap out of me, but here I was buying one dress for graduation and then buying another simply because it was pretty and it begged me to let it come home with me... I have no self control... But it's a little black dress, so I'll be able to wear if often :)

Also: Only 2 more weeks and then I'm done interning!! I cannot believe it myself and it feels really weird, but only 10 more days of actual interning and then I can graduate! It's unreal. I'm sure it will keep being unreal until I actually get my hands on that diploma and maybe even then.

I had a lot of fun last week spending time with my friends, both from college and the ones I've known since high school. We shopped, ate lots of delicious food and just caught up what's happening in our lives. I loved it!

And then this week I finally caught the cold my boyfriend has been spreading around for the last week or two and felt miserable even though I know I wasn't really all that sick. I just couldn't stay awake past 9 PM and felt like a little old lady ;) But I think I've sort of conquered it now :)

We went over to some friends last night and played this really fun game called Cliché, basically you have categories like 'What do men think they're better at than women' and 'Movies guys watch because women make them' and other stuff like that and you had to write down 5 things in the category and then compare your answers. You got points based on if you had answers in common with the others, so you had to try and pick the cliches everyone puts down.

Next weekend will have me working my old job one last time at the local supermarket I worked at while I was in high school. They've won some sort of prize and all the employees are going on a trip to Disneyland and the owner asked ex-employees to fill in. Should be fun :) And we get a dinner afterwards, which is very nice!

Bookish news: my orders and pre-orders have been slowly making their way to my mailbox and the shelves I got not even that long ago are starting to fill up... But I still have 2/3 of it left to fill up! Which is good since I expect some serious celebratory book buying going on two weeks from now ;)

And then this is the moment when I realise it's been a whole month since my last 5 star read...
You guys, something is seriously not going as planned with my reading! I need something to blow me away SOON! Any recommendations? Pretty please?

I hope you're all having a relaxing Sunday and a great week! Oh, and don't forget to join in on Top Ten Tuesday over at The Broke and the Bookish this Tuesday! I'll be featured and it's all about the books you're wanting to read this spring! Speaking of, I'm off to write my post for it ;)

Friday, March 16, 2012

Review of Dreaming of Mr. Darcy by Victoria Connelly

Title/Author: Dreaming of Mr. Darcy (Austen Addicts #2) by Victoria Connelly
Publisher/Date published: Sourcebooks Landmark, January 1st 2012
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "Fledging illustrator and Darcy fanatic Kay Ashton settles in the seaside town of Lyme to finish her book, The Illustrated Darcy, when a film company arrives to make a new adaptation of Jane Austen's Persuasion. Kay is soon falling for the handsome bad boy actor playing Captain Wentworth, but it's the quiet screenwriter Adam Craig who has more in common with her beloved Mr. Darcy. Though still healing from a broken heart, Adam finds himself unexpectedly in love with Kay. But it will take more than good intentions to convince her that her real happy ending is with him."

Dreaming of Mr. Darcy was extremely cute, it's almost a bit too cute. But I like a good candybar read every now and then! ;)

Kay, the main character, was nice, though she's a bit too clueless for my taste. I mean, Kay is trying to play matchmaker and get Adam and another female character to fall in love, when Adam is obviously interested in her! And she's pining after some actor, thinking they'll have children and get married when he's made it quite clear he's not exactly willing to settle down and for him it's all just a fling. She goes off into the most elaborate fantasies about their future when they haven't even been on a date yet. It was a bit too high school crush like for me. And sometimes I thought even high school girls had more sense.
But Kay is a really nice person and genuinely wants to help people.

And then there's Adam, the man who doesn't know how to communicate. He KNOWS Kay is trying to set him up with another woman and he doesn't say anything to her like 'I'm not interested' or something of the sort. Instead he just broods. I am extremely PRO communication, so this didn't really work for me. But Adam is a really nice guy and I love that he's such a good grandson!

You know how we all complain about the insta-love going on in YA? Well, this is one adult novel that has got it going on as well... There are basically two lovestories developing at the same time and both felt too much like insta-love to me to really get into them.

I think I sound negative, while I did actually enjoy Dreaming of Mr. Darcy. It is a cute book and it made me laugh a couple of times. This book was a nice break from all the drama going on at the hospital. I did think this story had a lot of potential, the execution just didn't always work for me.

My rating: 2,5 stars

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Review of This Is Not Forgiveness by Celia Rees

Title/Author: This Is Not Forgiveness by Celia Rees
Publisher/Date published: Bloomsbury, February 2nd 2012
How I got this book: Vickie at Coma Calm sent it to me, thank you!!

Goodreads summary: "Everyone says that Caro is bad ...but Jamie can't help himself. He thinks of her night and day and can't believe that she wants to be his girlfriend. Gorgeous, impulsive and unconventional, she is totally different to all the other girls he knows. His sister, Martha, hates her. Jamie doesn't know why, but there's no way he's going to take any notice of her warnings to stay away from Caro. But as Jamie falls deeper and deeper under her spell, he realises there is more to Caro - much more. There are the times when she disappears and doesn't get in touch, the small scars on her wrists, her talk about revolutions and taking action, not to mention the rumours he hears about the other men in her life.
And then always in the background there is Rob, Jamie's older brother, back from Afghanistan and traumatised after having his leg smashed to bits there. Jamie wants to help him, but Rob seems to be living in a world of his own and is increasingly difficult to reach.
With Caro, the summer should have been perfect... but that isn't how things work out in real life, and Jamie is going to find out the hard way."

This book is REALLY dark. And after finishing it I had the urge to start another, happier book immediately, cause that dark feeling is really intense.

The first chapter of This Is Not Forgiveness is haunting, it's actually something that takes place after all the events in the book and you get an enormous sense of foreboding after reading it.
Sadly, the rest of the novel didn't quite live up to what drew me in about that first chapter. I was expecting to get sucked into the lives of these characters, but it never really happened for me.

Not really all that much actually happens in This Is Not Forgiveness. Or at least not for a huge part of the book, and then at the end everything happens at once and I was going 'wait, WHAT?' and then I was reading the last chapter. I never felt like I got to know that characters and their motivations well enough, it all stayed pretty much on the surface and I felt some things could have been explained a bit further.

The main character Jamie is probably a good guy deep down, but because we don't really delve into his personality and I didn't really get to know him, I wasn't rooting for him. And Caro and Rob definitely didn't endear themselves to me with their actions, so I was left not really caring about any of the characters in This Is Not Forgiveness.

What happened in this book wasn't what I had expected when I started reading it and I like being surprised by books. It's definitely a darker read than my usual thing, but I was pretty ok with that. I did feel that the ending was rushed though.

My rating: 2,5 stars

Monday, March 12, 2012

Review of Trouble at the Wedding by Laura Lee Guhrke

Title/Author: Trouble at the Wedding (Abandoned at the Altar #3) by Laura Lee Guhrke
Publisher/Date published: Avon Books, January 1st 2012
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "Annabel is about to marry the perfect man...
The last thing Miss Annabel Wheaton desires is true love. She learned the hard way that love makes a woman foolish and leads only to heartache. That's why she agreed to marry an earl who needs her money. He's got a pedigree and a country estate, and he won't ever break her heart. There's only one problem...
Christian isn't about to let her marry that pompous prig...
Christian Du Quesne, Duke of Scarborough, thinks the stubborn heiress is about to make the biggest mistake of her life, and he's determined to stop her. Tempting beautiful women is Christian's forte, after all. When her family offers him a nice sum of money to stop the wedding, he's happy to accept.
Falling in love with Annabel was never supposed to be part of the bargain..."

You guys know how much I love my historical romances. Because really, I do love them. And this one was a perfect example of why I enjoy reading them so much!!

I really liked both of the main characters, I mean, Christian and Annabel were both strong characters who knew what they wanted. Even though that might not always be the most sensible thing or what was best for them. Annabel had me laughing at her Southern charm with an underlying bit of steel! She had her lawyers good and cowed, it was great!

Christian was a great hero, he's one of those men who says 'I'm never going to get married' until he meets the right woman. And really, the man knows when it's time to just accept the fact that he's changed and he does want the whole shebang with one special lady. Also, I loved that Laura Lee Guhrke had him *talking* Annabel out of her marriage, I mean, Christian has the seductive powers down, but mostly he's just talking to Annabel. YAY COMMUNICATION!

And I was so loving the ignorant male moment Christian had when he's doing the right thing, but going the wrong way about doing said right thing! :) I mean, I LOVE those moments when the heroine is despairing because of it, thinking he doesn't love her. Makes for the BEST tension and tear-inducing moments! (I swear I'm nice, I'm not enjoying people's misery, but these moments when they find out the truth are AMAZING!)

I was kind of rolling my eyes at the Annabel's idea that she shouldn't seek to marry for love, but I totally forgive her because she was such an awesome character in all other matters.
What I mean to say is, I've never read a book by Laura Lee Guhrke before, but I'm definitely going to be reading more by her, because Trouble At the Wedding was SO GOOD! It had me smiling and laughing and just enjoying myself tremendously!

My rating: 4,5 stars

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Review of On A Dark Wing by Jordan Dane

Title/Author: On A Dark Wing by Jordan Dane
Publisher/Date published: Harlequin Teen, December 27th 2011
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "The choices I had made led to the moment when fate took over. I would learn a lesson I wasn't prepared for. And Death would be my willing teacher.
Five years ago, Abbey Chandler cheated Death. She survived a horrific car accident, but her "lucky" break came at the expense of her mother's life and changed everything. After she crossed paths with Death — by taking the hand of an ethereal boy made of clouds and sky — she would never be normal again.
Now she's the target of Death's ravens and an innocent boy's life is on the line. When Nate Holden — Abbey's secret crush — starts to climb Alaska's Denali, the Angel of Death stalks him because of her.
And Abbey finds out the hard way that Death never forgets."

This book sounded SO interesting when I first read the summary and I couldn't stop myself from hitting the request button. But the story went in a whole other direction than the one I'd thought it would go... And sadly this didn't work so well for me.

I never really connected to Abbey. She carried a lot of guilt about her mother's death around with her and she doesn't talk to her dad or anyone else about this. But she doesn't really talk to her dad at all and is barely civil to him. And I felt really sorry for her dad, cause it seemed like he was trying, maybe a little too hard, but at least he was trying.

Abbey has this 'secret' crush on Nate who goes to the same school she does. The crush is extremely superficial, they don't talk to each other and Abbey doesn't know all that much about him, but she is pretty much obsessed with him, even going so far as to ask her only (male) friend to follow his excursion on the maintain through the radio because she can't herself. This was majorly off-putting to me. And sure I know what it was like to be a teenager and be in love with someone you didn't exactly know, but it never felt real to me.

Also, I had an issue with the way Death was portrayed in On A Dark Wing. I can't tell you exactly why, cause I'd be spoiling things, but I felt like he behaved like a petulant child instead of a being that's been around for centuries.

I didn't DNF this, but I almost did. I did like Abbey's best friend, he seemed like a really good guy to me and I would love to have him as a friend. But other than being a distraction for my stomach ache, On A Dark Wing didn't work for me.

My rating: 1,5 stars

Friday, March 9, 2012

It's weekend! And I haz a happy!

You guys, the weekend started!! :D I don't really have anything clever to say, but I'm feeling happy and relaxed and who doesn't like a picture of a cute puppy RIGHT?

Also, good things happening in my life right now:
*I'm going shopping with my friends tomorrow and my mom told me to get a pretty dress for graduation and send her the bill! I LOVE shopping and I particularly love shopping for pretty dresses!
*I'm spending a lot of time with my friends this weekend
*I'm also visiting my parents tomorrow :)
*3 more weeks of interning and then I'm DONE! YAY!
*Everyone I care about is happy and healthy
*The boy I love and I have been together for 6,5 years now and are still happy together
*I'm making banoffee pie tomorrow :) I love baking :) And banoffee pie is AMAZING!
*I have a neverending list of books to read and this also gives me a happy :)

Hope you all have an amazing weekend! Got any plans? Things that make you happy right now? Let me know! :)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Review of The Demon Lover by Juliet Dark

Title/Author: The Demon Lover (Fairwick Chronicles #1) by Juliet Dark
Publisher/Date published: Ballantine Books, December 27th 2012
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "Since accepting a teaching position at remote Fairwick College in upstate New York, Callie McFay has experienced the same disturbingly erotic dream every night: A mist enters her bedroom, then takes the shape of a virile, seductive stranger who proceeds to ravish her in the most toe-curling, wholly satisfying ways possible. Perhaps these dreams are the result of writing her bestselling book, The Sex Lives of Demon Lovers. After all, Callie’s lifelong passion is the intersection of lurid fairy tales and Gothic literature — which is why she finds herself at Fairwick’s renowned folklore department, living in a once-stately Victorian house that, at first sight, seemed to call her name.
But Callie soon realizes that her dreams are alarmingly real. She has a demon lover — an incubus — and he will seduce her, pleasure her, and eventually suck the very life from her. Then Callie makes another startling discovery: He’s not the only mythical creature in Fairwick. As the tenured witches of the college and the resident fairies in the surrounding woods prepare to cast out the incubus, Callie must accomplish something infinitely more difficult — banishing this demon lover from her heart."

This sounded absolutely fasciniating, I mean, falling in love with an incubus? Hello complicated relationship! Or at least that was what I had been expecting. And don't get me wrong, this book was pretty enjoyable, but I had just expected something more from it I think.

Callie is an interesting main character, she's a smart girl as in book-smart. She's not always as smart when it comes to men and she's in general not a real good judge of character. I did think she dealt really well with the whole 'this town and all your co-workers are magical creatures and oh yeah, they do actually all exist' thing. I liked Callie, she was a nice girl and although she doesn't always make the right choices, she was a nice heroine.

I also liked some of the other characters in The Demon Lover, mainly one of the students and the head of the college. I did feel that most of the others were a bit two-dimensional and just lacked that extra something that makes them really come to life for me.

The thing that annoyed me at one point was that all the characters in The Demon Lover didn't make the connection between what was happening and who was the most likely suspect. I could smell it from MILES AWAY! Seriously, and these people call themselves mystical creatures that have been around for AGES! You would think they'd learn how to read people over the years...
I also thought that the relationship between Callie and another character progressed very quickly and the whole thing just felt off to me.

I just noticed The Demon Lover is the first in a series, the second book isn't on Goodreads yet, but while reading it, it felt like there should be a sequel, cause it felt unfinished. And now I know why :)

This was an enjoyable read, not amazing, but good enough for me to finish reading it.
My rating: 3 stars

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Review of Geek Girl by Cindy C. Bennett

Title/Author: Geek Girl by Cindy C. Bennett
Publisher/Date published: Sweetwaker Books, December 8th 2011
How I got this book: recieved it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: ""Think I can turn that boy bad?" 17-year-old Jen turns her life upside down when, out of boredom, she makes a bet that she can turn school geek Trevor into someone like her. Instead, the goth girl finds herself sucked into his world of sci-fi movies, charity work, and even-ugh!-bowling. To truly belong with him - and with her new foster family - she must first come to terms with her violent past."

This is one of those times when I probably misread summary, cause going in all I expected was a cute story. And it was SO MUCH MORE!!

Seriously, I LOVED this book! Geek Girl is not only a cute lovestory, but also deals with some serious stuff. I mean, I really needed to warm up to Jen in the beginning of the novel, but as the story progressed and I got to know her better and learned the reason for her being somewhat bitter and distrustful it all made sense.

And I really liked Jen! I really felt for her and at times I just wanted to give her a big hug, even though she probably wouldn't have appreciated it. She was so real and it all just felt so natural! I got totally sucked into the story and I *was* Jen while reading the book, kudos to the author for accomplishing that feeling! Jen goes through a LOT of character growth and experiencing this along with her was wonderful!

And TREVOR!! OMG! Can I just gush over Trevor a bit?? He sounds exactly like the boy I would have fallen in love with in high school! Or actually, he sounds like the boy I did fall in love with: my boyfriend. Really, smart guys rule! And I was secretly psyched that I got all the 'geek' references and have actually pretty much seen all the movies mentioned! Trevor is just a really good guy and a wonderful brother and loyal friend. He's my kind of guy!

And of course there's some heartbreak, because what would a good lovestory be without some roadblocks? EXACTLY! But I felt like Bennett handled it extremely well and I could actually see this happening the way it did. And it brought tears to my eyes! It was wonderful!

So I'd say definitely read this, it's not the fluffy romance I expected at first, but deals with some tough subject, BUT the lovestory is amazing and it felt real! I was completely absorbed by the story and couldn't put it down for anything except necessary evils. I'm hoping to read more from this author soon!

My rating: 5+ stars

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Review of Every Other Day by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Title/Author: Every Other Day by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Publisher/Date published: Egmont USA, December 27th 2011
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "Every other day, Kali D'Angelo is a normal sixteen-year-old girl. She goes to public high school. She attends pep rallies. She's human.
And then every day in between... She's something else entirely.
Though she still looks like herself, every twenty-four hours predatory instincts take over and Kali becomes a feared demon-hunter with the undeniable urge to hunt, trap, and kill zombies, hellhounds, and other supernatural creatures. Kali has no idea why she is the way she is, but she gives in to instinct anyway. Even though the government considers it environmental terrorism.
When Kali notices a mark on the lower back of a popular girl at school, she knows instantly that the girl is marked for death by one of these creatures. Kali has twenty-four hours to save her and, unfortunately, she'll have to do it as a human. With the help of a few new friends, Kali takes a risk that her human body might not survive... and learns the secrets of her mysterious condition in the process."

From the reviews I've admittedly skimmed before starting this book, it seems to be either a hit or miss. And I'm really glad to say I fall into the first category! :)

Every Other Day is an actionpacked, fast read that had me wanting to keep reading to find out EVERYTHING! There's a whole lot of mystery surrounding Kali's mother and also about what exactly it is that Kali is. Cause it's not really normal for a girl to turn into a predatory, self-healing zombie-killer every other day.

I really felt for Kali. She's never had friends before and isn't on the best of terms with her father, the only parent she has left. And seriously, I guess the whole supernatural-killing thing can be traumatic even if you do have a happy life outside of it. Kali deals with it all pretty well in my opinion and I love that she's a strong girl. And I also loved that although she's hesitant at first, she learns to let other people in.
I also really liked both girls that become Kali's friends and I love that they are both well-rounded characters!

Also, I was pretty impressed the author didn't go for the obvious love-interest, because looking back that probably kind of would have ruined the story. And I liked that the romance that did appear didn't take over the whole storyline.

I was shocked and horrified along with Kali when she finds out more about herself and her mother and I don't want to give anything away, but what Kali turns out to be? BRILLIANT! I'm actually really hoping there will be a sequel someday, because I'm dying to find out more and to see what happens next for Kali and her friends!

My rating: 4,5 stars

Friday, March 2, 2012

Book Blogger Tag!

I got tagged by Sarah @ Sarah Says Read and decided I was going to play along :)

What to do

1. Post rules.
2. Post 11 fun facts about yourself.
3. Answer questions from the person who tagged you.
4. Make up 11 questions for people you tag.
5. Tag 11 people. (I'm a lazy person and I'm not going to tag people, but if you feel yourself gently poked by this post, then please play along and link me your post!!)
6. Let them know they’ve been tagged. (This is kind of irrelevant)

So, 11 fun facts about me... I'm really not all that interesting, but I'll try :)

1. I've been in love with the Disney version of Robin Hood and Peter Pan for as long as I can remember. And seriously, I had a real crush on them as a kid! I still can't help but wish I could fly...

2. I've ordered about 42 books in the past 2 months. Yes, I've been going a little crazy. Of those, there are 32 left that haven't gotten to me yet: 26 pre-orders and 6 'normal' orders. I can't wait to have them all on my shelves!

3. I live in an apartment and our spare room is actually the room that all my stuff lives in. It has my closet with clothes, shoes, 3 bookshelves and anything else that doesn't have a proper place anywhere else in the house. Needless to say my boyfriend doesn't venture in there often.

4. I absolutely LOVE cooking and I can talk about food all day. But I never make the effort to cook something when I'm eating alone. It just seems like too much trouble to go to and I just end up eating something I can put in the microwave or oven.

5. I used to want to be an author and have started and discontinued several stories and even posted some fanfiction on way back when. But in the last couple of years I've discovered I enjoy reading other people's books more than writing them myself.

6. I always try to go on 'buying bans', which include shoes, purses, books, movies, dresses, earrings... But they never last.

7. Every time I visit the pet store with my mom to get dog food I'm tempted to take a bunny home. The only reason I haven't is because of the carpeting in my home and my fear of the bunny peeing on it and not being able to see where exactly it peed. But I'm getting one as soon as we move somewhere that has a different kind of floor! :) I love bunnies.

8. Ever since I started my internships, I lost the ability to sleep in on the weekends/holidays. I always wake up between 7.30 and 8.30 AM, no matter what time I went to sleep. Which sometimes leaves me with 3-4 hours of sleep if I've been out that night.

9. In my teens I despised the color pink and skirts. I was SO anti-girly it's not even funny. The only time I deemed it ok to wear a skirt was when I put in on over my bikini (yes, there really isn't any logic to this). And now I own lots of pink clothes and skirts/dresses are my favourite things to wear.

10. I hate exercising. I know I should, but I can't bring myself to actually do it. I very much dislike getting all hot and sweaty and having to leave my house to actually do it. Which is why I need to get a dog in the future, cause I like going on walks with my parents' dogs and it doesn't seem like pointless exercise then.

11. I can raise my left eyebrow without moving the right one. (this is #11, I'm all out of interesting things) Only, my bangs sort of cover my left eyebrow, so noone can see this astonishing accomplishment... FAIL!

Sarah's Questions:
1. Do you like where you live?
Yes and no, I love living in Nijmegen, a city that's big enough for most of the things I want to be close by and not so big I feel like I could get lost in it. However, as for the apartment I live in, it's getting a bit small for all my stuff and the neighborhood isn't very desirable.

2. What would you do if you were omnipotent?
I'd make it so there were more hours in the day, because seriously, I don't have enough time to do everything I want to now. Also, in less selfish things I'd do, I'd find a cure for cancer, HIV and make it so there was enough food for everyone. Oh, and I'd bring Mr. Darcy to life :)

3. What’s your favorite holiday?
Christmas. I LOVE Christmas.

4. What music did you like to listen to 10 years ago?
I was a bit of an emo kid when I was 14 and I listened to Avril Lavigne and all kinds of more obscure punkrock bands.
But the music that's stayed with me the most are the albums by Michelle Branch, Lifehouse and The Calling I listened to back then. I still know all the songs on them by heart!

5. What are your favorite websites?
Without a doubt Goodreads, Twitter and all the blogs I follow :) Oh, and I visit the Book Depository frequently as well ;)

6. What’s your favorite plant or flower?
I don't really have a favourite plant I think, but I really love forget-me-nots and potroses :) And the plant that you can get around Christmas, with the red leaves? I don't really know what it's called in English, but here it translates as a Christmas star :)

7. Do you have any pets?
I WISH! My parents own 2 dogs and I would love to have one of my own, sadly my boyfriend is less enthusiastic about this idea...

8. What are some of your favorite tv shows right now?
The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Gossip Girl, America's Next Top Model and Grey's Anatomy. And I really loved Ugly Betty, I was heartbroken when it ended!

9. If you could jump into any book, which would it be?
Either Harry Potter or Pride and Prejudice. Or both! I could take Mr. Darcy with me or just bring my wand back to P&P :)

10. What’s your favorite joke?
I'm not much of a teller of jokes, but I do sometimes like to try exactly how far I can go with outrageous untruths before they catch me. One of my success stories is that I once convinced someone I met on the train that as a medical student I needed to bring the dead body to use for the pathology class myself. I still cannot believe the guy actually believed that! We even discussed the trouble I would have transporting it to the university...
Oh, and I once convinced a girl in my class that mink were 6-8 feet tall and had huge claws and tusks :)

11. If you could buy anything right now, regardless of the price, what would it be?
A house, with a garden. Really, I love my apartment, I do, but if I had the choice I'd rather live in a house that actually has a garden cause in the summer we can't really sit outside and I LOVE reading outside! Or a car, public transportation is not my favourite way to travel.

As I also got tagged by Julia @ The Competitive Bibliomaniac, I'm saving my 11 questions for that post (cause answering another set of questions will make this already ginormous post even longer).
Thanks for tagging me Sarah! I had a lot of fun coming up with the answers to your questions :)