Sunday, June 30, 2013

Super Six Sunday: My six favorite author encounters!!

Super Six Sunday is a meme hosted by the fabulous Bewitched Bookworms. Join in the fun...see upcoming themes here!!

One of the most exciting things about being a book blogger and all-round book lover is meeting the wonderful people who give us these amazing stories to read.
In the past three years, I've definitely been lucky in being able to meet some of my very favorites.  Here are my top 6!!

Anna Carey
Such a sweet person to chat with. When I met her I had recently interviewed her on the blog and she remembered the cupcake question.  She signed my book "To Becky, My Sweetie!" :D

 Stephanie Perkins
This girl has so much fun energy!  I saw her and Maureen Johnson together in San Francisco and they both looked like there were have a blast together.

Tahereh Mafi
If you ever have a chance to meet this amazing author, TAKE IT.  She is so inspiring and fun to hear speak.

Jackson Pearce
I got meet Jackson Pearce at ALA. She is one of my favorites, so I was just so greatful to finally catch her on one of her rare visits to the west coast!

Ransom Riggs
Another amazing author to hear speak. SO much great writing advice and lots of funny stories. That's Michelle Gagnon and Tahereh Mafi on either side of him, and the three of them together were hilarious.

Kendare Blake
I met Kendare at ALA last year and her's was my most-wanted book at the conference.  I think she was the first author to tell me she knew my blog so you can image just how much that made my day!!

So that's my list!!  It's always fun to meet great our favorite authors and I hope I can meet many more in the coming years! :) 

New Shelf Goodies & The Weekly Nutshell {51}

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 Tynga's Stacking the Shelves) The Weekly Nutshell will be just week here at Stories & Sweeties, in a nutshell. (inspired by Ginger @ GReads and her recaps at the end of the TGIF posts)

The new goodies this week: 
 From Trade:

For review: 
My Chemical Mountain by Corina Vacco 

Many thanks to Macmillan and Random House for these!

The Weekly Nutshell:

Friday, June 28, 2013

Becky's View: Plague in the Mirror by Deborah Noyes

Plague in the Mirror by Deborah Noyes
♦publisher: Candlewick Press
♦release date: June 11th, 2013
♦hardcover, 272 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦source: from publisher for honest review
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.

Review:  When I first started reading this dark historical story, I loved it.  The beautiful descriptions of both modern-day and 14th century Italy enchanted me and the hint of something creepy and bizarre and ghostly about to happen drew me in.  You meet the main character, May, during her first eerie encounter with Cristofana, and she doesn’t know if she’s seen a ghost, had a nightmare, or is just going insane.  I liked May from the get-go, she seemed genuine, a bit of a thinker, a girl going through some emotional family problems.  

The story, though, was not what I was expecting: a story about a girl who gets pulled into the past by her creepy doppleganger, and the adventure and romance that she finds there.  What I got instead was this:  a girl is contacted by her ancestor, Cristofana, who lures her to the past where she meets a handsome stranger; Cristofana then implores May to switch permanently.  The rest of the story is May trying to find out who Cristofana really is and actually considering switching with her, partly to be with the man she met, partly to escape the stresses of her life at home, and partly because Cristofana’s urgency to switch quickly turns into violent threats.

Those looking for an engaging love story should probably look elsewhere.   There is meant to be something brewing with May and her best friend Liam, but it fell short for me as he came off a bit whiny, unsupportive when she tries to reach out to him, and I didn't really get a connection between them beyond anything friendly and slightly superficial.  There is also Marcus, the mysterious man she meets for only moments in her first trip into the past.   I’ll admit it was a romantic moment, full of long looks and a sweet patching-up of her injured knee, but for May to suddenly be contemplating leaving her life in modern times to face the Black Death just to be with this complete stranger just did not seem believable to me. 

Despite a few hiccups, I found Plague in the Mirror to be both lush in historical descriptions and terrifying in a way that fully immerses the reader in the horrors of the black plague.  It was a slow-moving plot in many parts, with maybe just a bit too much historical atmosphere and not enough meat to the story, but interesting enough to keep me reading until the end.

  Find Deborah Noyes online:  Website  •  Twitter  

Purchase Plague in the Mirror:  Amazon  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Becky's View: Pitch Green by The Brothers Washburn

Pitch Green by The Brothers Washburn
♦publisher: Jolly Fish Press
♦release date: March 16th, 2013
♦hardcover, 280 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦series: Dimension in Death, book 1
♦source: from publisher for honest review
Trona is a small, foul-smelling, mostly insignificant town in California. Besides a booming chemical plant, the only thing that characterizes this dismal town is dirt, sagebrush, and an enormous abandoned mansion.

The mansion is, admittedly, the only notable addition to Trona, but it’s something everyone tries to avoid due to its creepy facade. Everyone except for Camm Smith, who is obsessed with the need to get inside.

Seven years earlier, as Camm herded a pack of little trick-or-treaters past the mansion, her young neighbor, Hugh, disappeared, becoming just one of many children who have vanished from Trona over the years without a trace. Now a senior in high school, Camm is still haunted by the old tragedy and is sure the answer to the mysterious disappearances lies hidden somewhere in the decaying mansion. Joining forces with her best friend, Cal, who also happens to be Hugh’s older brother, Camm naively begins a perilous search for the truth.

As things spiral quickly out of control, and others die, Camm and Cal discover it will take all their combined ingenuity to stay alive. An unseen creature, lurking deep within the bowels of the mansion, seems to have supernatural powers and is now hunting them. Making matters worse, they become entangled with hostile federal agents, who care only about keeping old secrets permanently hidden. Left with only their wit and seemingly ineffective firearms, they know they are running out of time. Unless they can make sense out of the few pieces of the puzzle they manage to unearth, the monster will certainly destroy them, and like so many others before them, they will be gone without a trace.

Review: Pitch Green is told in the style of a classic monster-movie horror story.  It’s well told, fast-paced, and suspenseful from start to finish.  An extra eerie tone is struck by adding in the voice of the monster, lurking in the dark and hungrily plotting every kill.

In the small town of Trona, a child goes missing every few years and it inexplicable gets swept under the rug.  Camm has always suspected that it has something to do with the creepy deserted mansion in town.  Her next door neighbor, Cal lost a brother to this mystery when they were young, so when one more child goes missing, Camm decides enough is enough.  An investigation finally gets underway and Camm eagerly jumps on board to help.  When the investigation stalls, Camm and Cal take it upon themselves to prove that something is very wrong inside the Searles mansion…and what they uncover is the stuff of nightmares.

Camm is whip-smart, intuitive, and resourceful.  I liked her immediately and admired her more and more as the story went along. Cal, on the other hand, was hard for me to like, childish and oafish, into playing silly pranks.  In certain moments you could see him hiding a lot of hurt from his family’s loss, but mostly he was just a bit of a boarish, tough guy.  There was a sweet kind of siblingly love between the two from having grown up right next door to each other and the story seems to want make them into something more, but honestly I couldn’t see a girl like Camm falling for a guy like Cal for long---so I was glad the romantic inklings were kept kind of low key.

Pitch Green was certainly not short on the grisly gore, so those with weak stomachs beware! Actually, I've seen reviews of this that thought the gore was pretty tame, but I found some of the descriptions to be pretty gut-churning---but maybe I'm just a wimp when it comes to horror. :)  This is horror in its purest form, spun into a compelling and entertaining creepy mystery.  One to enjoy on a dark stormy night, or better yet, on Halloween, where the story actually begins.
Find The Brothers Washburn online:  Website  •  Twitter  •  Facebook

Purchase Pitch Green:  Amazon  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

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. 
The Mirk and Midnight Hour 
by Jane Nickerson
hitting shelves March 14, 2014 from Random House
Jane Nickerson's second novel, also set in the "Strands" world, is based on the Scottish 'Ballad of Tam Lin,' and is set in Mississippi during the Civil War. Violet Dancey, a 17-year-old whose father has left to fight in the Civil War, is forced to confront Thomas, a hurt Union solider near her home. She must decide how to approach the enemy--and how to deal with her growing attraction to him.
My thoughts: Loved Jane Nickerson's debut Strands of Bronze and Gold, so I'm excited to hear about this book!  I'm sure it will be another beautifully done historical tale!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Amy's View: Invisibility by Andrea Cremer & David Levithan

Invisibility by Andrea Cremer & David Levithan
♦publisher: Philomel/Penguin
♦release date: May 7th, 2013
♦hardcover, 358 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦source: from publisher for honest review
Stephen has been invisible for practically his whole life — because of a curse his grandfather, a powerful cursecaster, bestowed on Stephen’s mother before Stephen was born. So when Elizabeth moves to Stephen’s NYC apartment building from Minnesota, no one is more surprised than he is that she can see him. A budding romance ensues, and when Stephen confides in Elizabeth about his predicament, the two of them decide to dive headfirst into the secret world of cursecasters and spellseekers to figure out a way to break the curse.

But things don’t go as planned, especially when Stephen’s grandfather arrives in town, taking his anger out on everyone he sees. In the end, Elizabeth and Stephen must decide how big of a sacrifice they’re willing to make for Stephen to become visible — because the answer could mean the difference between life and death. At least for Elizabeth.

Review:  A contemporary read with a bit of paranormal flair. This book is beautifully blended as it quickly immerses you into its storyline.

Invisibility started off as an easy, fast read, told in the first person of both Stephen and Elizabeth.  Angry, frustrated and alone, Stephen’s world is filled with angst from the very first line, “I was born invisible.”  The authors, David Levithan and Andrea Cremer’s writing style captures your heart from the beginning pulling you into Stephen’s spell, even if that spell means he can’t be seen.

Stephen was born invisible and no one has even seen him, not even his mother. Life was simple and loving as he was greatly cared for by his mother, however when she dies his life is left open and uncertain. With his father living across the country and Stephen living alone, the book opens up to what looks like the most vulnerable time in his life;  and yet when you hit rock bottom isn’t it amazing what doors open? That is just what happens when the new neighbor Elizabeth, moves a few doors down, opening up the story line for a sweet, fast moving and delightfully tender relationship. With Elizabeth and her fun loving brother, Laurie, Stephen quickly realizes that Elizabeth has a gift, one that sees him, with her being the only one that ever has. Leaving questions to be answered, as a new ones arise, opening the door to a new world of both spell and curse casters.

This book was eloquently written, with each character being easily identifiable.  With Stephen, you can almost feel his vulnerability and loneliness, even if he can’t be seen. He is a character written to tap into that part of our soul that longs to be seen by others but also that fear of having others see us for who we really are. Whereas Elizabeth’s character, I felt, only wanted to hide. From the tragic events that brought her and her family to this new city, she is forced to feel invisible by being lost inside a big city. Holding to the comfort of starting over and having people see you for who you want be. However the most important value of her character is discovering the greatest lesson of all, “see with your heart.” Seeing others for who they really are, can be the greatest spell you can cast.

Invisibility takes you on a journey of new young love, and the adventures of discovering curses and gifts, powers and spells, hope and longing. All tied up into the greater need and desire of belonging. A great summer read.
Find Andrea Cremer online: Website   •  Twitter  •  Facebook

Find David Levithan online: Website  •  Twitter  •  Facebook

Purchase Invisibily:  Amazon  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound

Not a trailer, but a super cute video with the authors. :D

Sunday, June 23, 2013

New Shelf Goodies & The Weekly Nutshell {50}

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 Tynga's Stacking the Shelves) The Weekly Nutshell will be just week here at Stories & Sweeties, in a nutshell. (inspired by Ginger @ GReads and her recaps at the end of the TGIF posts)

Here's what's new to my shelves this week! 
 For review:
Set in a post-Victorian gothic boarding school..something magical going on...has me very excited!
Bit scared of this one! Looks really creepy and the synopsis is just bizarre but has me so curious! 

Went to a signing for these lovely ladies just yesterday.  Such fun authors to meet and chat with! Looking forward to both of their books!

The Weekly Nutshell:

 Hope everyone had a great week! 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Becky's View: Born of Illusion by Teri Brown

Born of Illusion by Teri Brown
♦publisher: Balzer & Bray
♦release date: June 11th, 2013
♦hardcover, 384 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦series: Born of Illusion, book 1
♦source: ALA
Anna Van Housen is thirteen the first time she breaks her mother out of jail. By sixteen she’s street smart and savvy, assisting her mother, the renowned medium Marguerite Van Housen, in her stage show and séances, and easily navigating the underground world of magicians, mediums and mentalists in 1920’s New York City. Handcuffs and sleight of hand illusions have never been much of a challenge for Anna. The real trick is keeping her true gifts secret from her opportunistic mother, who will stop at nothing to gain her ambition of becoming the most famous medium who ever lived. But when a strange, serious young man moves into the flat downstairs, introducing her to a secret society that studies people with gifts like hers, he threatens to reveal the secrets Anna has fought so hard to keep, forcing her to face the truth about her past. Could the stories her mother has told her really be true? Could she really be the illegitimate daughter of the greatest magician of all?

Review: Born of Illusion was undoubtedly one of my most anticipated reads of 2013.  The 1920s era setting, the promise of both stage magic and real magic, a volatile mother/daughter relationship, and a mystery involving the great Houdini himself ---the entire concept had me seriously pining for this!  Happily, I report that I was not disappointed.  Born of Illusion is a new favorite of mine.

Stories set in the 20s always seem to have such a grandeur about them.  Whether it’s the bustling streets, the fancy cars, the glittery gowns…the whole era just seems to sparkle on the page.  With Born of Illusion, that sparkle is amped up ten-fold by the addition of illusions and stage magic.  Teri Brown perfectly describes every slight-of-hand so you can almost see it, right down to her protagonist’s wry smile when her tricks are pulled off to perfection. 

Ann Van Housen was a fantastic character.  Torn in so many directions: between wanting a normal life and her love for performing magic; between her wish to share her biggest secret with someone and the dire need to keep it safely hidden; and between her love and protectiveness for her attention-hungry mother and her greatest desire to be out from under her controlling, sometimes even cruel, thumb.  Oh, and between two handsome, and very opposite, men.  Owen is the life of the party, while Cole is quiet and mysterious (and British, extra points for that!). While the romance is a great part of the story, Anna’s relationships with everyone else were just as important to the story and fascinating to read---aside from the complicated dynamic between her and her mother, many new people come into her new life in New York and what she discovers more than anything is how much people can surprise you. 

As much as this book stands strongly on it’s own, with a rich story full of magic, romance, secret societies, and a thrilling ending, I was completely overjoyed to find out that this will be a series. I am beyond excited at the idea of spending more time in the world of Born of Illusion!

Find Teri Brown online:  Website  •  Twitter  •  Facebook

Purchase Born of Illusion:  Amazon  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound

Friday, June 21, 2013

Cover Story (aka A Post Full of Gorgeousness)

Gorgeous, gorgeous things have popped up on the internet this week, dear readers. Way more, actually, than I'm going to show you here today..but these are few that I love!  2014 is beginning to look quite epic.

All that Glows by Ryan Graudin
HarperTeen - February 5th, 2014

Hot Key Press - September 5th, 2013

Of Breakable Things by A. Lyden Rolland
Month9Books - April 2014


Delacorte Press - February 11th, 2014

Perfect Ruin by Lauren Destefano
Simon & Schuster - October 1st, 2013

Putnam Juvenile - April 8th, 2014

Rise of the Arcane Fire by Kristin Bailey
Simon Pulse - February 4th, 2014

Balzer & Bray - January 28th, 2014

The Inventor's Secret by Andrea Cremer
Philomel - April 22nd, 2014

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Blog Tour: Blood Moon by Teri Harman

Hey, everyone!  I recently read Blood Moon by Teri Harman and really enjoyed it! If you are looking for a great story with witches, ghosts, danger and lots of romance, this is just the book you want to pick up! My review will be up a bit later, but today I'm participating in the blog tour for this magical story!

Please welcome Teri Harman to Stories & Sweeties!

Quick! Give us five words that best describe Blood Moon:  enchanting, mysterious, thrilling, emotional, magical

The witchcraft in Blood Moon feels very authentic. How much research went into making it feel so real?

I’ve always loved witches, so I have a lifetime of reading about and watching witch stories. But I also read a few books on Wicca and Natural Magic, relying heavily on the techniques and beliefs of Natural Magic to design the witchcraft.

What is the best writing advice you’ve ever been given?
My dad always says, “There’s no such thing as writing, only rewriting.” There is always room for improvement, for change that takes a story from good to great.

Tell us about your ideal writing space. 
I’d love to sit at a desk, in a comfy chair, in a large room lined with bookshelves, packed full of the best books. The desk would face a large floor-to-ceiling window that overlooks a beach on the Oregon coast. I’d throw open the window, drink in the smell of ocean water and trees and then write the day away.

Who are your favorite authors? What are you reading right now?
I have a lot, but some of my favorite authors are Roald Dahl, Sarah Addison Allen, Kate Morton and Marissa de los Santos. Right now, I’m about 60 pages into “The Enchanted Life of Adam Hope” by Rhonda Riley. It’s strange and fascinating; I can’t wait to see where it goes.

What kind of books did you love to read as a teenager?
I’ve always loved to read the wondrous and haunting. As a teen, I read and adored such books as Madeleine L’Engle’s “A Wrinkle in Time” series, “The Witch of Blackbird Pond,” “The Bean Trees,” and many others.

Which of the characters in Blood Moon was your favorite to write and why?
It’s hard to narrow it down to one, but I’d have to say Simon. He was hard – early on he sounded like a 50 year old man, according to my literary agent – so I had to work at making him an authentic 19 year old guy with complex emotions and a heart wrenching back story. Plus, he’s the heartthrob of the story so it’s hard not to like him. :)

Time for some fun questions!!
Favorite snack while writing?

Lately, although I’ve never been much of a candy person, it’s been Sour Patch Kids. Current, unhealthy addiction.

Favorite movie?
Oh, so many! But since we are talking witches, my favorite witch movie is “Practical Magic.” I watch it at least once a year.

Favorite color?

Favorite band and song right now?
It’s a tie between Imagine Dragons “Every Night,” and Walk the Moon “Shiver, Shiver.”

Favorite teacher from your school years?
My English teacher junior year, Mrs. Baskins, who sadly and unexpectedly died from a stroke near the end of the year. She was so kind and loved books.

And everyone who visits Stories & Sweeties answers this one:  Do you like cupcakes? :)  Frosting or cake better?
Heck yes! I’ll take a chocolate cupcake with chocolate frosting and sprinkles any day!

Thanks so much, Becky! Really fun questions!
Thanks for stopping by Stories & Sweeties, Teri! I can't wait for more from this series!


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

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.
(click cover to add at goodreads!)
Coming January 24, 2014
Book 2 in the Souls series
Paul has always known he was a Protector, fated to serve a Speaker who could hear the voices of spirits lingering after death and help those souls find peace.

Vivienne ignores the voices of the dead.

Paul has always followed the Protector’s rule book, preparing diligently for the day when he’d be matched with his Speaker and fulfill his destiny.

Vivienne never does what she’s told.

So when Paul is matched with Vivienne, they both find the pairing less than satisfactory. But a kidnapping, a malevolent spirit and power stronger than both of them may just prove that they are two halves of the same whole.

In a stunning story about the beauty of fate and the power of secrets, Mary Lindsey returns to the world of Shattered Souls with a breathtaking thrill-ride of a novel.

My thoughts:  YES!!! Shattered Souls was a great book and I'm so happy to see a revisit to the world of Soul Speakers & Protectors!  And with such a gorgeous cover!!  I think this may be my favorite 2014 cover so far.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Becky's View: School Spirits by Rachel Hawkins

School Spirits by Rachel Hawkins
♦publisher: Disney Hyperion
♦release date: May 14th, 2013
♦hardcover, 304 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦source: acquired from trade
Fifteen-year-old Izzy Brannick was trained to fight monsters. For centuries, her family has hunted magical creatures. But when Izzy’s older sister vanishes without a trace while on a job, Izzy's mom decides they need to take a break.

Izzy and her mom move to a new town, but they soon discover it’s not as normal as it appears. A series of hauntings has been plaguing the local high school, and Izzy is determined to prove her worth and investigate. But assuming the guise of an average teenager is easier said than done. For a tough girl who's always been on her own, it’s strange to suddenly make friends and maybe even have a crush.

Can Izzy trust her new friends to help find the secret behind the hauntings before more people get hurt?

Review: With this spin-off of her Hex Hall series, Rachel Hawkins' books hold their place on my shelves as some of my favorite books. In her distinctive style, she gives us one more story that is so entertaining and just plain fun to read.  

From the moment we meet Izzy Brannick in Spellbound (book 3 of the Hex Hall series) I was so taken by this spunky youngest member of the tough Brannick Family, so you can imagine my excitement when I first heard she would be the main character in this new spinoff series.  I was not disappointed.  She has a fresh voice, so different from Sophia's hilarious constant snarkiness, but still bright and sure of herself, tough in a way that shows the no-nonsense way that she was raised as a Brannick, and sweetly naive to the ways of the outside world.  She's still so funny (how could any character written by Hawkins not be?), but with the fear and sorrow that she feels for her missing sister, we get to see her vulnerable side as well.  She's faced with some major challenges---both in proving herself as a creature hunter and in facing down the hallways of her new high school. 

The story weaves around and keeps you guessing as Izzy works to discover the mystery of the ghost haunting the school and who is behind it.  She makes some great friends for the first time in her life and discovers that being normal definitely has it's up and downs, but she learns to love it and knows she will miss it when it's time for her to move on.  More mysteries pop up when she meets a very unique guy named Dex who she comes to suspect of packing some pretty deep secrets...just one more thing to investigate, all while trying to figure out her growing feelings for him.  Romy is another super quirky character---leader of the school's "ghost hunting club" and the one to give Izzy her first experience of having a best friend.  

The ending was exciting and pretty surprising! Some might disagree, but I certainly didn't see it coming.  The twists kept coming and, for me, even as the ending neared, the guilty party could have been anyone! I really enjoyed this one all the way through---another fast-paced and incredibly fun read from Rachel Hawkins. I hope it continues (though sadly I've heard that this will be a stand-alone).

 Visit Rachel Hawkins online:  Website  •  Twitter  •  Facebook

Purchase School Spirits:  Amazon  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Super Six Sunday: 6 books I'm looking forward to reading next!

The lovely ladies over at one of my favorite book blogs, Bewitched Bookworms, have started a new fun listy post for Sundays and invited everyone to join in! Normally, I don't post on Sundays since it's the first day hubby and I have off together each week, but since they are pre-announcing post subjects, it will be an easy one for me to schedule ahead of time (something I am trying to get into the habit of doing anyhow LOL)  SO here goes! Here's my first Super Six Sunday post!

In no particular reading order! :)

I've been hearing fantastic things about this one for a long time!

Another that I've been excited about for ages.  Involves the ghost of Jacob Grimm!

Did you read The Grimm Legacy? Well if not, you should, because it was delightful. :)  This is a companion novel---can't wait!

Based on Poe's Annabell Lee---enough said for me. 

A Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge
A UK title that got rave reviews from Carina's Books, so I know it's going ot be amazing!

Dance of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
LOVED Masque of Red Death, so how could I not be super excited for this one!

New Shelf Goodies & The Weekly Nutshell {49}

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 Tynga's Stacking the Shelves) The Weekly Nutshell will be just week here at Stories & Sweeties, in a nutshell. (inspired by Ginger @ GReads and her recaps at the end of the TGIF posts)

I'm back, guys!  I hope you all didn't forget about me! Here are most of the books that I got in the past few weeks, I know there were a few more, but for the life of me in all the chaos, I can't seem to remember which ones they were.  
For review:
Reboot by Amy Tintera
I wasn't initially drawn to this one, but after taking a look at it and reading a few pages it's caught my attention! Looks good!
Golden Girl by Sarah Zettel
I am likely starting this series next. Read first chapter of Dust girl and I'm hooked.  A fairy story set in the dust bowl...and then in glamorous 20s hollywood?? I'm IN.  
Belle Epoque by Elizabeth Ross
Been looking forward to this one, plus the finished copy is super gorgeous with all the gold foil. 
 For review:
I'd never heard of this until it popped up in my mailbox! It looks pretty gritty.
This one drew me to it's steampunkiness. :)
Book one was just ok for me..but I think now that the story's been set up, it's going to take an interesting turn..especially with the way book one ended.  
THis looks pretty cute. Devil Wears Prada set in Disneyworld. :)
I somehow ended up on several lists for unsolicited NA books, but they don't really strike my interest. I'm going to be passing this one to someone who loves them, hopefully!  

The Weekly Nutshell:
Well, since it's my first day back from hiatus, nothing went down on this blog this week.  But the events I had while I was away all went really well and, guys, thank you so much for all the sweet compliments on my daughter's pictures!  I love them and know she had such fun taking them! 

Gimme some...Bloglovin'
Just a quick note: I know google reader is suppose to go down sometime VERY SOON. Quite sad about that since it was always so easy and convenient to scroll though all the blogs I follow everytime I logged in to write a blog post, but AH well. :(  So, like so many others, I've moved over to Bloglovin'.  Please click below to follow me through there! Thanks, everyone!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

"What's New" June YA Releases & Giveaway

Well, it's a bit late, but luckily nothing came out this month until the 4th anyhow! ;)  I'm not officially back from hiatus yet, but I did want to get this month's post up so you can all see what amazing titles there are in June!

So if you're new to Stories & Sweeties, here's a little run-down of this feature: at the start of each month, I do a little thing called the "What's New List & Giveaway" where you'll find a full list of the new releases in YA for the month, and entry to the giveaway. At the end of each month, one lucky winner will get to choose any new release as their prize!

First things first! The winner of May's giveaway was: Cheryl!  Congratulations! :D
  June 2013 Releases:
Just like previous months, I've put a little lve by those books that I am really anticipating---whether I can't wait to read them or I just can't wait to have my own finished copy!

The Academy: Game On by Monica Seles
Breathe by Abbie Glines
Catch Rider by Jennifer H. Lyne
Confederates Don’t Wear Couture by Stephanie Kate Strohm
Elegy by Tara Hudson
The Elementals by Saundra Mitchell
The Fallen Prince by Shea Berkley
Impossibility of Tomorrow by Avery Williams
The Keep by Veronica Wolf
Letting Ana Go by Anonymous
The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen
Over You by Amy Reed
Phoenix by Elizabeth Richards
PODS by Michelle Pickett
Crushed by Sara Shepard
Rules of Summer by Joanna Philbin
Shadow Train by J. Gabriel Gates and Charlene Keel
Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
Stormbringers by Philippa Gregory
The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau
Tidal by Amanda Hocking
Tides by Betsy Cornwell
When You Were Here by Daisy Whitney
You Look Different in Real Life by Jennifer Castle

Insomnia by J.R. Johansson

Another Little Piece by Kate Karyus Quinn
Belle Epoque by Elizabeth Ross
Born of Illusion by Teri Brown
Boy Nobody by Allen Zadoff
Burning by Elana K. Arnold
Charm and Strange by Stephanie Kuehn
Dance of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
Deviant by Helen Fitzgerald
Far Far Away by Tom McNeal
Ghost Time by Courtney Eldridge
The Girl Who Was Suppose to Die by April Henry
Infamous by Lauren Conrad
Linked by Imogen Howson
A Matter of Day by Amber Kizer
Mortal Fire by Elizabeth Knox
My Chemical Mountain by Corina Vacco
Plague in the Mirror by Deborah Noyes
Rush by Eve Silver
The Sacrifice by Charlie Higson
The Secret Ingredient by Stewart Lewis
Spies and Prejudice by Talia Vance

How (Not) to Find a Boyfriend by Allyson Valentine
Ship Out of Luck by Neal Shusterman
The Wells Bequest by Polly Shulman

Defy the Dark (anthology)
Intuition by C.J. Omololu
Praefatio by Georgia McBride
Proxy by Alex London
Solstice by P.J. Hoover
Star Cursed by Jessica Spotswood
Tarnish by Katherine Longshore
Triangles by Kimberly Ann Miller
A Trick of the Light by Lois Metzger
The Watcher in the Shadows by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Witch Fire by Laura Powell

After Daybreak by J.A. London
Confessions of an Almost-Girlfriend by Louise Rozett
FML by Shaun David Hutchinson
Forevermore by Cindy Miles
Golden Girl by Sarah Zettel
Hidden by Marianne Curley
In the After by Demitria Lunetta
Ink by Amanda Sun 
Invisible by Marni Bates
The Lost Sun by Tessa Gratton
A Moment Comes by Jennifer Bradbury
Neptune’s Tears by Susan Waggoner
Paradox by A. J. Paquette
Samarai Summer by Ake Edwardson and Per Carlsson
Since You Asked by Maurene Goo
Weather Witch by Shannon Delaney
Winterveil by Jenna Burtenshaw

Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey
The Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Robin Palmer
The Feros by Wesley King
Golden Boy by Tara Sullivan

(All links go to Goodreads)
Please feel free to email me if you notice any YA titles missing! :)

Giveaway Details:
One winner will win a YA June release of their choice! *see note below
• Contest ends June 30th, 2013 at 11:59 PM
• Must be 13 or older.
• Open internationally. *International winners will be required to choose a book that is available through  a Rafflecopter giveaway