Archive for the ‘new release’ Category


Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

Book Links: Goodreads   Amazon   Barnes & Noble   The Book Depository

Author Links: Website   Blog   Goodreads   Facebook

Can you believe that we are back again with another amazing novel by Maria V. Snyder?! The first of the series left me breathless and craving for more action, magic, and, of course, KERRICK! Touch of Power (the first contest and info here) dove straight into the life of Avry, Healer and outlaw. We learned the history of the land, of Prince Tohon and his horrible plans to take over every Realm with the use of atrocious methods such as reanimating the dead. You cried for their losses, feared the worst, and fell in love as Avry did.

Now they are back with an even greater adventure that seemed to have started faster than any Snyder has written before. Here is the synopsis:

As the last Healer in the Fifteen Realms, Avry of Kazan is in a unique position: in the minds of her friends and foes alike, she no longer exists. Despite her need to prevent the megalomanical King Tohon from winning control of the Realms, Avry is also determined to find her sister and repair their estrangement. And she must do it alone, as Kerrick, her partner and sole confident, returns to Alga to summon his country into battle.
Maria1Though she should be in hiding, Avry will do whatever she can to support Tohon’s opponents. Including infiltrating a holy army, evading magic sniffers, teaching forest skills to soldiers and figuring out how to stop Tohon’s most horrible creations yet; an army of the walking dead—human and animal alike and nearly impossible to defeat.

War is coming and Avry is alone. Unless she figures out how to do the impossible… again.

Are you already ordering the book? You should! Snyder does it again with her incredible talent at keeping pace, bringing a completely different world to life, and delivering characters that will stick with you well beyond finishing the book. You will have a difficult time putting this one down and, like me, will be begging for the next one.

The previous characters bleed into this second installment, bringing new friends and foes along with them. In ToM, you get to know Avry, Kerrick, the  Monkeys, and Tohon. In SoM, Snyder pulls out the lives of the other royalty, Avry’s sister, and the military leaders she meets along the way while still diving deeper into our favorites.

This time around Avry and Kerrick have separated to help on opposite ends of their world. As per usual, the author has kept a quick pace, jumping between their individual, but connected, adventures. I love that about Snyder’s writing. Just as Avry is trying to save Prince Ryne from assassination, Kerrick is finding out his brother made a deal with Tohon to use their army! AH! The suspense and intrigue never end!

Any fan of Snyder’s work, fantasy, love in action, or reading, will coddle this book until it is finished. Maria V. Snyder has yet to disappoint.

If that isn’t enough to get you reading this series, maybe this will persuade you…

Screen Shot 2012-12-13 at 9.10.20 AM

Oh yes, did I mention that there is a contest? Of course! Maria and her team at Harlequin are giving away one copy of Scent of Magic to one of my followers! Yahoo! The contest will run as long as the rest of this blog tour to give you all enough time to enter. That means you have until the 21st to enter. Here are the rules:

US/Canada Only

Up to 5 entries!

There is also a Harlequin TEEN Prize Pack!!! Click on the image and enter for a chance to win:

Screen Shot 2012-12-13 at 6.34.54 PM


12/10/2012 Parajunkee  review and Q&A

12/11/2012 Paranormal Urban Fantasy Reviews  review

12/12/2012 Read Now Sleep Later  Interview with Maria

12/13/2012 The Book Heroine  review

12/14/2012 We Fancy Books Playlist

12/17/2012 Two Chicks on Books Guest Post From Belen

12/18/2012 The Starry-eyed Revue   Guest Post

12/19/2012 A Great Read  Review

12/20/2012 YA Reads Guest Post

12/21/2012 The Book Hookup  Review


Author: James Dashner
Publisher: Random House
Released: October 11, 2011
Pages: 384
Genre: YA, Science Fiction, Dystopia
Source: Library (Pat is Awesome!)

Thomas knows that Wicked can’t be trusted, but they say the time for lies is over, that they’ve collected all they can from the Trials and now must rely on the Gladers, with full memories restored, to help them with their ultimate mission. It’s up to the Gladers to complete the blueprint for the cure to the Flare with a final voluntary test.
What Wicked doesn’t know is that something’s happened that no Trial or Variable could have foreseen. Thomas has remembered far more than they think. And he knows that he can’t believe a word of what Wicked says.
The time for lies is over. But the truth is more dangerous than Thomas could ever imagine. Will anyone survive the Death Cure?

We have followed closely on the running heels of the Gladers as they fought demonic beasts, survived in the harshest of terrains, and watch parts of their group die. We have survived with them, hearts beating at every turn of page and hoped against hope that they would make it beyond the grips of Wicked.

Here we are again with Thomas and his band of misfits as they try to unveil the truth of their existence. As always, James Dashner has delivered an incredible novel to complete the series. I have yet to be disappointed in his ability to shine every character’s personality and to keep us enthralled with them from page one to the final word.

Though the conflict remains the same, the storyline is not repetitive. It’s a new adventure for the groups with all new obstacles. Every question of mine was answered at some point, yet nothing was predictable. I think that is a talent that many authors do not have.

Each book has the ability to hold its own, but no one should deprive themselves of reading only one. Pick these books up from wherever you can find them and do not let go until the end of The Death Cure. They will keep your mind reeling for months!

P.S. James is the first author whom I have seen that thanked book bloggers in his acknowledgements. That is just too cool! 😀

I have the honor of interviewing Pat Schmatz! She is the author of multiple Young Adult novels including BLUEFISH, Mousetraps, and Circle the Truth.
BLUEFISH will be coming out September 13th of this year and as this date draws near, I wanted to introduce you to this incredibly talented author.
1. To start, please give us a summary of Bluefish and its incredible characters.
Bluefish follows Travis Roberts as he starts eighth grade in a new school.  He lives with his grandpa, and until recently, with their dog Rosco.  He’s just been torn away from the place he’s lived his whole life – a house in the woods, with a swamp out back – and they’re now living in town.  He’s miserable and resentful, and he’s starting school, the worst place in the world with its closed-in walls and demands that he do things he cannot possibly do.
Meanwhile, Velveeta has recently lost her best friend Calvin, the elderly neighbor in the next trailer.  With him she lost the tiny hold she had on structure and direction and security.  
The first day of school, an act of kindness on Travis’s part captures Velveeta’s attention.  Her attention – no small thing – creates some new air and breathing space for Travis.  In that fresh light, he finds a small doorway through Velveeta’s crispy hard cover, and he eases it open.  Velveeta in turn knocks on Travis’s closed-up-tight shell, and so a revolving door to the world of possibilities swings into motion.

2. Illiteracy is an interesting theme to choose for a middle-school novel. What made you choose this?
I can’t say I consciously chose the theme of illiteracy, nor did I choose to make it a middle school novel.  I started off writing a picture book about a kid who loved the swamp, and that kid was Travis.  After spending some time with him, his real story began to take place not in third grade, as I originally thought, but in eighth grade.    
Both of my parents were reading teachers, and I have several friends who struggled to learn to read.  I suppose this was working beneath the surface from the start, but I didn’t set out to write a book about illiteracy.  Travis led me there.

3. Just because I love the name and the book, what made you choose the title of a Dr. Seuss book for the reading groups?
Again, I don’t recall actually choosing the title.  Travis was in the Bluefish reading group at school.  That concept, and way of thinking of himself, carried with it layers of literacy and wordplay (nobody does it better than Dr. Seuss), and grief and the fishiness of the swamp, so the book called itself that and I went along.

4. What audience (age, group, etc.) did you intend on writing this for and why?
I don’t consciously write for an audience.  I tell the story I need to tell myself.  I needed a story about a swamp and scarves, about kindness and connection, and a dog, and about the riches that come through the written word, and how that print on the page can drastically alter our understanding and experience.  To write a book for my own pleasure and have it connect with an audience – well, that’s a thrill I can barely comprehend, much less express.

5. Will there be other Travis and Velveeta adventures in the future? Possibly.  I wrote one entire draft of Bluefish in Velveeta’s voice, and I have a sense of what’s coming for her after eighth grade.  I’d like to take that journey with her, and I hope to after I finish the book I’m working on now.

6. Do you recall the first book you read?
I don’t remember learning to read, or the first book I read.  I only remember clinging to them like life preservers.  When I was six, or maybe seven, I’d been reading under the covers late at night with a flashlight.  My parents took every book out of my room for a week.  Worst punishment EVER.

7. What was your favorite book growing up and what is your favorite book now?
I had several favorites in early childhood, and Jim Kjelgaard was my favorite author until I stumbled on The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton.  That locked in at the top of the list, and has been my favorite ever since.  I love many books, but no other has reached into my heart and soul in the same way.

8. Outside of writing, how do you spend your time?
I work at my day job.  I read a lot.  I spend time outdoors – walking, cross-country skiing, swimming.  I love to travel and do so whenever I can.  

9. What is number one on your bucket list?
I don’t have a bucket list.  I try to stay open to possibility and if I see a good idea, I jump on it.  I’ve already has the good fortune to do most of the things I felt I must do, and anything else that rolls my way is bonus.

10. Any final thoughts to share with your readers?

Bluefish is about the power of kindness and the power of story.  I didn’t know that when I started – it’s what the book has taught me in the process.  When kindness and story intersect and weave together, I believe they can change a person’s world.  That person’s world changes another world.  And so it goes.