Monday, December 31, 2012

FAREWELL, 2012!! My top 12 reads of the year!

Well, well, well...another year flown by.  It's time to say good-bye to this year and ring in the next!
It was a fantastic year in books, so many great reads that blew me away with great storytelling, some with heart-pounding action, some with swoon-worthy romances, but all with characters that will stay with me a very long time.

So on this last day of the year, I'm going to tell you my absolute
 TOP 12 favorite books of

And in no particular order, here they are:



What a great way to kick the year off.  Cinder was the first book I read in 2012 and it was also one of the very best.
My review of Cinder by Marissa Meyer

The Lost Girl took me completely by surprise.  I'd never even heard of this one when I happened to pick it up at ALA this summer. It blew me away. Completely.  


Ok, so I know alot of people have had a love or hate relationship with these books, but I personally adored this series.  And this last one...WOW. Such a perfect and incredible way to end things.
My review of Rapture by Lauren Kate


I loved the concept of the reincarnated souls and the main character being set apart by being a "new soul", a wonderful fantasy, beautiful music, and a romantic masquerade ball scene that took my breathe away!


Another end of series that was just absolute storytelling perfection. I love how  these stories have so much fun and humor and adventure, but each one brought something so completely fresh and different in every single book.
My review of Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins


This is the only series by Armentrout that I've read, but this one makes me want to read them ALL.  There is just something about her writing that completely draws me in. 


I can't wait to get more of this series. I mean, come on---assassin nuns serving the patron saint of death?? I was salivating for this from the moment I saw this outstanding cover and it was worth every second of the wait.
My review of Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Every bit as good as the first, and even a little gorier.  This was just a two book series, but both of them were amazing.  Can't wait for more from Kendare Blake.


Cat Patrick has this extraordinary way of making a story concept that seems like it might be too sci-fi for us non-sci-fi-readers, and spinning it into such a beautiful human story that takes such a deep look at one girl's view of life and death.
My review of Revived by Cat Patrick





I read a few steampunk books this year, but this one was my favorite by far---an intricate, twisting plot, a sweet slow-budding romance, a mystery that keeps you guessing, and some absolutely wonderful characters.



 


This was another unexpected favorite.  And a good lesson not to judge a book by it's cover. I was not liking this cover, just a bit too cheesy for me. But the story inside...INCREDIBLE.  Loved it.
My review of Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins

  




SO.MUCH.LOVE for this book. Period.  Haven't read it yet?  READ IT. 






So what were your favorites of the year? Are any of these books on your list?
Have a happy new year, everyone!! I'll see you in 2013. Check back in tomorrow for my top 13 most anticipated books of 2013!!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

New Shelf Goodies & The Weekly Nutshell {31}

For New Shelf Goodies, I'll be showing you what lovely books I acquired this week, whether from publishers, or the library, or from whatever half-crazed book-buying binge I happened to go on. :D (Inspired by Alea @ Pop Culture Junkie's This Week in Books & Tynga's Stacking the Shelves) The Weekly Nutshell will be just that...my week here at Stories & Sweeties, in a nutshell. (inspired by Ginger @ GReads and her recaps at the end of the TGIF posts) Note: This is not a meme, but I'll be hopping around to any other book haul-sharing posts I come across!

So these are actually my goodies for the last two weeks:
For Review:
Lovely finished copy - so I'll be giving away my ARC! Reading this now and loving it!

Such awesome things coming out from Harper this year!

Sequel to Mist, which was a fun british MG that I loved!  Can't wait to see what happens next!

Huge thanks to Abrams, Harper Collins, and Hodder Children's for these!!

The Weekly Nutshell: 

Hope everyone had a fantastic holiday!  Ours was a blast with lots of noise and toys everywhere and yummy cookies and fudge! My kids are still on winter break so I'll be in and out of the blog for another week or so! And we've officially started counting the days until ALA midwinter in Seattle, WA!! Anyone else going?? 
 

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Becky's View: The Dead and Buried by Kim Harrington


The Dead and Buried by Kim Harrington
♦publisher: Scholastic Point
♦release date: January 1st, 2013
♦hardcover, 304 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦stand-alone
♦source: from publisher for honest review
A haunted house, a buried mystery, and a very angry ghost make this one unforgettable thriller.

Jade loves the house she's just moved into with her family. She doesn't even mind being the new girl at the high school: It's a fresh start, and there's that one guy with the dreamy blue eyes. . . . But then things begin happening. Strange, otherworldly things. Jade's little brother claims to see a glimmering girl in his room. Jade's jewelry gets moved around, as if by an invisible hand. Kids at school whisper behind her back like they know something she doesn't.

Soon, Jade must face an impossible fact: that her perfect house is haunted. Haunted by a ghost who's seeking not just vengeance, but the truth. The ghost of a girl who ruled Jade's school — until her untimely death last year. It's up to Jade to put the pieces together before her own life is at stake. As Jade investigates the mystery, she discovers that her new friends in town have more than a few deep, dark secrets. But is one of them a murderer?


Review: I love Kim Harrington's writing style.  Her books are always quick-paced page-turners, unfolding these great stories that draw you right in and keep you glued there until the last page.  The Dead and Buried was certainly no exception and has all the elements of a good old classic ghost story.  Rooms getting mysteriously upended, ghostly nightmares and possessions,  there's even a good creepy oujia board scene---and nothing creeps me out more than when there are little kids mixed up in the haunting. 

Jade has just moved into her dream house with her father, stepmother, and 5-year-old brother, whom she adores.  So when creepy things start happening and her brother seems to be the ghost's target, Jade is determined to do anything to make it stop.  Her father is away and she asks her stepmother for help, only to be accused of trying to start trouble.  So she's on her own.  The story also gives us little glimpses into the head of Kayla Sloane, the girl who is haunting the house. In life she was mean, shallow, spoiled, ...just not a very nice person. Maybe a few cracks in her cruel soul, but not many.   And in death she is pure evil.  Kayla wants to know who murdered her and unless Jade solves the mystery, she's threatening Jade's little brother's life.  See what I mean...EVIL.   So Jade is racing to get to the bottom of the mystery, getting in with Kayla's old friends so she can weed out the murderer---but what happens when nearly all of them have a motive?

There are characters to love and characters to hate in this one.  I really enjoyed reading Kayla, she has so much love for her brother, so much pain over losing her mother.  She has some faults and confidence issues, but there is a real kindness to her.  From her mother, she has a love for collecting natural stones and it was an interesting part of her character, the way she used them as sort of talismans although she herself wasn't quite convinced that she believed in their power. The rest of the mixed cast of characters were great, a few of your typical cliché teen personas, but also a few really unexpected surprises.   The romance was sweet, but of course, clouded by secrets and suspicion since the sweet, artsy Donovan had one major motive as well!  

The Dead and Buried is perfect for fans of creepy, ghostly murder mysteries---it's a quick entertaining read that keeps you guessing until the very end!


 Find Kim Harrington online:  Website  •  Twitter  •  Facebook

Purchase The Dead and Buried:  Amazon  •  BN.com  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Happy Holidays!!

I'm taking a few days break from blogging to enjoy the holidays and winter break with my family!  Plus starting Sunday, I'll be busy baking like a mad-woman. :)  So to all my friends and readers, I wish you a safe, fun, yummy (because, you know, the fudge and cookies are my favorite part!), and very Happy Holiday!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It lets us all gush about what soon-to-be released books we are jumping-up-and-down excited for.

Night School
by Shandy Lawson

hitting shelves April 30th, 2013 from Hyperion

description: Ben and Maggie have met, fallen in love, and died together countless times. Over the course of two pivotal days—both the best and worst of their lives—they struggle again and again to resist the pull of fate and the force of time itself. With each failure, they return to the beginning of their end, a wild road trip that brings them to the scene of their own murders and into the hands of the man destined to kill them.

As time circles back on itself, events become more deeply ingrained, more inescapable for the two kids trapped inside the loop. The closer they come to breaking out, the tighter fate’s clutches seem to grip them. They devise a desperate plan to break free and survive the days ahead, but what if Ben and Maggie’s only shot at not dying is surviving apart?


My Thoughts: This definitely sounds like a fun time-warpy book.  I love the cover with the bold title, and flying broken shards of clock!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Becky's View: Because It Is My Blood by Gabrielle Zevin


Because It Is My Blood by Gabrielle Zevin
♦publisher: Farrar, Strauss, & Giroux
♦released: September 30th, 2012
♦hardcover, 350 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦series: Birthright, book 2
  review of All These Things I've Done (book 1)
♦source: from publisher for honest review
“Every time I think I’m out, they pull me back in.”- Michael Corleone, The Godfather 

Since her release from Liberty Children's Facility, Anya Balanchine is determined to follow the straight and narrow. Unfortunately, her criminal record is making it hard for her to do that. No high school wants her with a gun possession charge on her rap sheet. Plus, all the people in her life have moved on: Natty has skipped two grades at Holy Trinity, Scarlet and Gable seem closer than ever, and even Win is in a new relationship.But when old friends return demanding that certain debts be paid, Anya is thrown right back into the criminal world that she had been determined to escape. It’s a journey that will take her across the ocean and straight into the heart of the birthplace of chocolate where her resolve--and her heart--will be tested as never before.

Review: That quote from The Godfather above almost perfectly sums up this book.  Because It Is My Blood is a fantastic follow up to All These Things I've Done and there were some especially great parts that made me wonder if I didn't like this one just a tiny bit more!

Once again, Anya is relaying her story as she is released from Liberty and tries to get her life back on track.  I love her POV, such a great mix of sensibility, frustration, wit, and the mafia-mentality that has shaped her life.  I did think it was a bit awkward when Anya addressed the reader directly---I think because it's a story that's being told 70 years in the future,  it somehow seemed off and disrupted the flow for me.  But that is literally my one and only complaint.  Once again, for a story that is just about a girl trying to get her life back to normal, the pace of this story just flies.  You really can't help but feel for her, in her fight against crooked politicians doing what ever they please with her to further themselves (one of which is her boyfriend's father) to her family of even more crooked gangsters vying for their chance to either take over the Balanchine empire...or take it down. As the story goes along, the people around her drop one by one from the already short list of people she can trust. 

One of my favorite parts about this story was Anya's time spent learning the cacao business in Mexico.  I loved the peek inside this exotic culture and seeing how a cacao farm was run, but I loved even more the introduction of Theo and his family.   Though these characters had a fairly quick spotlight in the story, they really made an impression---on me and definitely on Anya by giving her a glimpse of such a strong loving family. Theo and Anya had such fun chemistry and while they remained friends, I think their connection was so much more irresistible to read about than Anya and Win's, and while I'd hate to see it turn into a full-on love triangle, I do hope we get more of Theo in book 3!

There are some great emotional surprises (one in particular that brought me to tears!), some really interesting twists and discoveries and moral dilemmas as we head into the final chapter of this series.  Actually, I loved the fact that, while I knew a third book was planned, I finished Because It Is My Blood with enough satisfaction and knowledge of where each character was headed that it almost could have ended right there and I would have been completely happy.  Still, I've grown so attached to these characters that I can't wait to see what happens and what new surprises pop up in book 3.

Find Gabrielle Zevin online:  Website  •  Twitter  

Purchase Because It Is My Blood:  Amazon  •  BN.com  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound

Sunday, December 16, 2012

New Shelf Goodies & The Weekly Nutshell {30}

For New Shelf Goodies, I'll be showing you what lovely books I acquired this week, whether from publishers, or the library, or from whatever half-crazed book-buying binge I happened to go on. :D (Inspired by Alea @ Pop Culture Junkie's This Week in Books & Tynga's Stacking the Shelves) The Weekly Nutshell will be just that...my week here at Stories & Sweeties, in a nutshell. (inspired by Ginger @ GReads and her recaps at the end of the TGIF posts) Note: This is not a meme, but I'll be hopping around to any other book haul-sharing posts I come across!


I had a great book week! Which was quite a nice cheer-up since I was sick with a cold all week. *sniffle*
Bought:
So excited to finally have this one! The pub date got pushed back a few times, so it's been a long wait for it!

For Review:
This looks so fun---they look like steampunk Charlie's Angels!
Eeep! Excited for more from Gray--I loved Fateful and this one is about witches! Yay!
Excited that this one showed up unannounced! Gives me the perfect excuse to finally start this series!
I've been assured by my daughter that this is wonderful! I'll be giving away my ARC since this lovely finished copy arrived!
For review (cont.): 
This looks like a cute one :) 
I need to catch up on this series--I read book one a few years ago and loved it!
I've been looking forward to this one! Sounds sad but very good! And I've seen some good reviews!
A brother story--sounds pretty good!
 Not zombies this time...werewolves!

Huge thanks to Penguin, Harper Teen, and Random House for the review books!

The Weekly Nutshell: 

Happy reading, all! :D

Saturday, December 15, 2012

I'm in the Spotlight at The Authoress!

I'm so honored and excited to be in the Saturday Spotlight today over at The Authoress!  
Click on the image below to check it out...and thank you so much to Amelia for having me on!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Review: Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins


Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins
♦publisher: Disney Hyperion
♦released: March 13th, 2012
♦hardcover, 327 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦series: Hex Hall, book 3
             review of Hex Hall
             review of Demonglass
♦source: purchased
Just as Sophie Mercer has come to accept her extraordinary magical powers as a demon, the Prodigium Council strips them away. Now Sophie is defenseless, alone, and at the mercy of her sworn enemies—the Brannicks, a family of warrior women who hunt down the Prodigium. Or at least that’s what Sophie thinks, until she makes a surprising discovery. The Brannicks know an epic war is coming, and they believe Sophie is the only one powerful enough to stop the world from ending. But without her magic, Sophie isn’t as confident.

Sophie’s bound for one hell of a ride—can she get her powers back before it’s too late?

Review: The Hex Hall series has to be one of the most consistently fabulous series I've ever read.  I loved this installment, just like I loved Hex Hall and Demonglass. There was no lull...not a one. Spellbound kept the heart-stopping pace going with great new characters, new challenges, new dangers, while bringing back all of our favorite parts of the past books.

Sophie is still sharp and both her inner and outer dialogue is utterly hilarious, and she has to dig a bit deeper into herself to find her strengths both with and without magic.  Archer is still there to match her at every smart remark and charming glance.  Cal is still wonderful Cal.  Elodie finds a new way to be of use and also comes to a new low.  And the five of them, Sophie, Jenna, Archer, and Cal, never fail to have eachother's back.  In Spellbound, we also get a whole new look at Sophie's family, especially her mom, and she discovers a family history she never knew she had and makes some new bonds along the way.  The evil Casnoff sisters are back in full force, and they all mysteriously land themselves back at Hex Hall.

The ending was explosive and exciting and heart-breaking all at once---I'm very happy with the way this wrapped up (except for one part that I am bawling my eyes out over!). The whole book is a super fast read, I think I blew through this in a few hours---maybe too fast, because once it was all over,  I immediately started to despair that there would be no more. But YAY! Then I found out Hawkins is taking us back into this world with a spin-off featuring one of the new characters, Izzy Brannick! Ah, I can't wait!

An incredibly entertaining and fun series all the way through.  If you haven't started the Hex Hall series yet...you must!!

Find Rachel Hawkins online: Website •  Facebook  •  Twitter

Purchase Spellbound at: Amazon  •  BN.com  •  Bookdepository  •  Indiebound

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It lets us all gush about what soon-to-be released books we are jumping-up-and-down excited for.

There 
by Denise Grover Swank

hitting shelves December 24th, 2012

description:
(WARNING! Major spoiler for book one in description! It's an awesome twist, so I don't want to ruin it for anyone who plans to read this series! You can highlight between the astericks to see the description but you've been warned!)
*Julia Phillips’ world is an alternate universe away.

Trapped in a land where government leaders want her dead, Julia is forced to run for her life with Evan and Reece, the two boys who brought her here. They’re on their own in a hostile landscape ruled by scavengers and thieves.

But Evan is battling a deadly infection, and Julia finds herself racing against time as she tries to find the medicine that will save his life. She and Reece find an unlikely ally—Jo, a girl they free after finding her captured in a bandits’ hideout.

As the four travel across the country, Julia has something else to worry about—her memories are slowly being replaced by the Julia of Evan and Reece’s world. Will they find a way to send Julia home before it’s too late? Or will Julia’s body and mind be trapped THERE?
*


My thoughts:  Book one, HERE, was so good, one of the best self-pubbed books I've read in a long time.  You can check out my review here.  I'm really looking forward to seeing where the story goes after the exciting ending we were left with!
 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Becky's View: Poison by Bridget Zinn (An early buzz review!)


Poison by Bridget Zinn
♦publisher: Disney Hyperion
♦release date: March 12th, 2013
♦hardcover, 288 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦source: ALA 
Sixteen-year-old Kyra, a highly-skilled potions master, is the only one who knows her kingdom is on the verge of destruction—which means she’s the only one who can save it. Faced with no other choice, Kyra decides to do what she does best: poison the kingdom’s future ruler, who also happens to be her former best friend.

But, for the first time ever, her poisoned dart . . . misses.

Now a fugitive instead of a hero, Kyra is caught in a game of hide-and-seek with the king’s army and her potioner ex-boyfriend, Hal. At least she’s not alone. She’s armed with her vital potions, a too-cute pig, and Fred, the charming adventurer she can’t stop thinking about. Kyra is determined to get herself a second chance (at murder), but will she be able to find and defeat the princess before Hal and the army find her?

Kyra is not your typical murderer, and she’s certainly no damsel-in-distress—she’s the lovable and quick-witted hero of this romantic novel that has all the right ingredients to make teen girls swoon.

Review:  I'm spreading some early buzz for this absolutely FUN story! I know this one isn't out until March, but I read my copy early so I could pass it on to another lucky reader.  So here's what I thought:  SO. MUCH. FUN!!

This is an amazingly quick read at only 288 pages, but also because the pacing is incredibly quick.  While this flavor of fantasy might not be for those who insist their stories be lofty and their language flowery and their places-names barely pronounceable---it was definitely full of adventure, hilarious dialogue, danger, wit, and magic.  Think Princess Bride, Ella Enchanted, Labyrinth.  This holds its own among the great comedic fantasy adventures.  Sure, there were one or two parts that seems just a tad cliched or silly, but it all added to the fun storytelling.

Kyra is on the run...she's being tracked down for trying to kill the princess (who also happened to be her best friend).  She was one of the most gifted Potions Masters in the kingdom and no one but her really knows why she did what she did.  I loved how even though the action of the story moved along quickly, the reveal of the "how" and the "why" slowly unfolds as she gets closer to her goal.  I love how she was brave and determined and crafty...and that we see her grow from a badass girl with a mission to someone who is capable of having a soft spot for a certain magical piglet.  I loved Rosie!  Who knew a little piggy could have such character.  The animals play a big part in this story and it added so much charm to this world.  I really enjoyed reading about all of these characters, Kyra, Fred, Ariana, and finding out how much more each one was than what they initally seemed.

If you get a chance to read this one early, definitely take it---and even if you can't read it until March, I promise it's worth the wait!


Although, sadly, the author Bridget Zinn passed away last year, you can still visit her website and find out more about her:

Pre-order Poison: Amazon  •  BN.com  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound

Sunday, December 9, 2012

New Shelf Goodies & The Weekly Nutshell

For New Shelf Goodies, I'll be showing you what lovely books I acquired this week, whether from publishers, or the library, or from whatever half-crazed book-buying binge I happened to go on. :D (Inspired by Alea @ Pop Culture Junkie's This Week in Books & Tynga's Stacking the Shelves) The Weekly Nutshell will be just that...my week here at Stories & Sweeties, in a nutshell. (inspired by Ginger @ GReads and her recaps at the end of the TGIF posts) Note: This is not a meme, but I'll be hopping around to any other book haul-sharing posts I come across!

Well, no new goodies crossed my doorway this week! :(  Nothing came for review, I was a good girl and didn't buy anything, and I even resisted bringing home a few lovely books that crossed my path at work (the library).  As a matter of fact, I've spent the last few days trying to clear off some books from my shelf! I've been getting together some to give away, some to donate to a few different libraries, and some to trade, so keep an eye out soon for a list of books for trading!  Hope everyone has had a wonderful week! Its getting cold outside...so here's a link to my favorite freezing-weather treat for while you're cuddled up with your booksmmmmm. :)  


The Weekly Nutshell: 

{Thursday} Becky's View: Every Day by David Levithan (a new favorite!)
 
It was a slow week, but I dare say the rest of the month will be a bit like this...December and usually right into January tend to be crazy busy in my non-blogging life.  Please bear with me! :)

Friday, December 7, 2012

Thanksgiving-Away - Fallen World Series *REBOOT*

OK, I am so, so sorry about this, but I just realized that the Fallen World Giveaway was posted with the wrong rafflecopter form!! To remedy this, I'm reposting it here and giving it an additional week to run.  Sorry about the confusion!! I don't know how I didn't catch this until now!
Time for the 13th giveaway!  Today I'm offering up the first two books in the Fallen World series by Megan Crewe, The Way We Fall and The Lives We Lost (which isn't out until Feb 2013!)

ARC of The Way We Fall* + ARC of The Lives We Lost by Megan Crewe
*FYI: ARCs of book one did not have final cover art. The one I'm giving away has the art shown above.)
(see event kick-off post for more details!) 
•US mailing addresses only
• Must be 13 or older
• Last day to enter: December 14, 2012 (new date)
Enter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway Note: If you did enter with the form in the original post, your entry went toward the $10 book order giveaway, so please enter here again for The Fallen World series! Sorry!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Becky's View: Every Day by David Levithan

Every Day by David Levithan
♦publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
♦released: August 28th, 2012
♦hardcover, 336 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦source: library
Every day a different body. Every day a different life. Every day in love with the same girl.

There’s never any warning about where it will be or who it will be. A has made peace with that, even established guidelines by which to live: Never get too attached. Avoid being noticed. Do not interfere.

It’s all fine until the morning that A wakes up in the body of Justin and meets Justin’s girlfriend, Rhiannon. From that moment, the rules by which A has been living no longer apply. Because finally A has found someone he wants to be with—day in, day out, day after day.

Review:  It’s  seems a strange thing to admit, as someone who devours so many novels from the YA realm, that I’ve never read any of the numerous titles by David Levithan.  Not until this little beauty: Every Day.  And I can say with utter certainty that Every Day has made me a fan and that I plan to go to the library stacks seeking out more gems from this wonderful author.  I am in awe.  The main idea of Every Day is definitely paranormal: a being, not a boy or a girl, just a soul knows as “A” (though for the sake of my sanity in this review, I'll be referring to him as a "he").  He drops into a different life every single day.  There is never any real explanation about why this happens to him or what he is, but in the end, I was so drawn into his story, and cared so deeply about A and his strange dilemma that the "why" didn't even matter.  The lives he takes over are as mundane as they come: a slacker, a druggy, a nerd, an athelete, someone's little sister, someone's twin,---but that is the magic of David Levithan’s writing, in my opinion.  He makes the subtle differences of each life that A drops into seem so fascinating, so special.  This is the norm for A, it’s all he’s ever known.  He goes to bed at night as one person, and at midnight his soul is sucked out and he becomes another person.  There is nothing he can do about it, he’s even tried to stay up all night to stop it from happening, but learned the hard way that it is much better to sleep through the change.  So he deals.  He takes it in complete stride,  going from body to body, place to place, day to day, just trying not to interfere with each life as much as he can. 

That is until he meets Rhiannon.  She is the girlfriend of the life he’s just dropped into, and he knows  this boy is not treating her very well.  When they meet, she seems almost hollow from the way she’s been treated and he somehow sees the kindness and hope inside her.  So he breaks his own rules. He lets himself give her a wonderful day that she might never have gotten from her real boyfriend…and ends up wanting to stay in a life more than he ever has before.  But he can’t stop it. The next day he is someone else---and the next day and the next, but he never stops trying to get back to Rhiannon.
  
I flew through this book, I couldn’t wait to see what new life he would be in each day and what new obstacle it would pose for both A and Rhiannon.  There were funny moments and very trying moments, and moments that had me in tears. The ending, while inevitable and, if you dwell on it too long, is slightly creepy in a "that's all kinds of wrong" sort of way, was still heartbreaking and the heart and thought behind A's sacrifice was still beautiful.  He is just an incredibly good, strong soul that you can't help rooting for and hoping he finds a way to live how he wants to live and to have love that he can keep. 

If you get the chance to read this one, definitely take it.  Don't pass up this amazing story. 

Find David Levithan online:  Website  •  Twitter  •  Facebook

Purchase Every Day: Amazon  •  BN.com  •   BookDepository  •  Indiebound

This book has an AWESOME trailer...some of the biggest names in YA reading part of the first chapter. Very cool.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It lets us all gush about what soon-to-be released books we are jumping-up-and-down excited for.

Plague in the Mirror 
by Deborah Noyes

hitting shelves July 9th, 2013 from Candlewick Press

description:
In a sensual paranormal romance, a teen girl’s doppelgänger from 1348 Florence lures her into the past in hopes of exacting a deadly trade.

It was meant to be a diversion — a summer in Florence with her best friend, Liam, and his travel-writer mom, doing historical research between breaks for gelato. A chance to forget that back in Vermont, May’s parents, and all semblance of safety, were breaking up. But when May wakes one night sensing someone in her room, only to find her ghostly twin staring back at her, normalcy becomes a distant memory. And when later she follows the menacing Cristofana through a portale to fourteenth-century Florence, May never expects to find safety in the eyes of Marco, a soulful painter who awakens in her a burning desire and makes her feel truly seen. The wily Cristofana wants nothing less of May than to inhabit each other’s lives, but with the Black Death ravaging Old Florence, can May’s longing for Marco’s touch be anything but madness? Lush with atmosphere both passionate and eerie, this evocative tale follows a girl on the brink of womanhood as she dares to transcend the familiar — and discovers her sensual power.


My thoughts: YEAH..this sounds SO good.  Historical, romantic, paranormal, and a creepy doppleganger from the past sneaking up on you in the mirror?? Seriously freaky.  I can't wait!!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Cover Story - tons of new pretties!

SO many great new covers have been revealed lately.  Here's a few:

OMG...a boy who hears voices. Not just any voice...the voice of Jacob Grimm. How awesome is this going to be? Very awesome, I hope.

Charm & Strange by Stephanie Kuehn
Werewolves! Haven't read about them in a while, but this one looks great!



Another cool cover for this series!

Hover by Melissa West
Ahhh! Waiting on my pre-order of book one to come in, but I'm already excited to see book 2!!

This one is a UK book, so I'll be visiting BookDepo for this one! I loved book one! Love the sparkly look of the cover. 

OK, this is the one I am MOST excited about in this post. I LOVED the Hex Hall series. Was so sad to see it end. But LOOK! It's hasn't! Now we get a lovely spin-off focused on Izzy Brannick, who I loved!! Yay! :D

 

This gets my current vote for absolutely CUTEST cover. 

Bold and fun and I love the tiny character.  It looks like a great story, too...so, full package of awesome.

SO...which of these are YOU excited for?? Me? Pretty much all of them. :D


Sunday, December 2, 2012

New Shelf Goodies & The Weekly Nutshell {28}

For New Shelf Goodies, I'll be showing you what lovely books I acquired this week, whether from publishers, or the library, or from whatever half-crazed book-buying binge I happened to go on. :D (Inspired by Alea @ Pop Culture Junkie's This Week in Books & Tynga's Stacking the Shelves) The Weekly Nutshell will be just that...my week here at Stories & Sweeties, in a nutshell. (inspired by Ginger @ GReads and her recaps at the end of the TGIF posts) Note: This is not a meme, but I'll be hopping around to any other book haul-sharing posts I come across!

 Here's what's new on my shelf this week:
 
For Review:
Lovely new finished paperback copy! I do already have this in HC so I'll be giving this one away!

I need to start this series! Love books set in the 20s!

Amy loves this series, so she was glad we got this one! I still need to read book one!

From the Library:
Read this already---guys, I LOVE this book.  Definitely a new one for my favorites shelf!  I'll be posting a review this week, but expect much gushing. ;)    

Many thanks to HarperTeen for the review books!

The Weekly Nutshell: 

 
Well, the Thanksgiving-Away event is all over, several of the giveaways are still open for entry so enter away and good luck! :D  Hope everyone has a great week!