Friday, December 31, 2010

Out with a Bang Readathon Wrap-up




Well I finished Tyger Tyger by Kersten Hamilton today and loved it! It was also my 100th book of the year -- woohoo! I'm OCD and like even numbers like that =)


I had a blast during the readathon. I only wish I had found more time to read. But I will make up for it next week! I hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did! Don't forget to submit your readathon reviews to my Out with a Bang Review Giveaway through January 7th at noon EST!


Please leave a comment with any suggestions for future readathons! What did you like? What would you change? I think we'll definitely be doing this again and we want your feedback!

First of all, I would like to thank Heather at Book-Savvy, who had this brilliant idea in the first place! It was awesome working with you! You are so sweet and so easy to work with! You have serious swag-recruiting skills! Thank you so much for including me in this fabulous event!


I would like to give a HUGE thank you to all the authors and publishers who made this event possible!

Kristina McBride
Adam Santos
Julie Kagawa
Kristi (The Story Siren)
Harlequin Teen
Borders
TLT Publishing
Kody Keplinger
Kersten Hamilton
Kelly Creagh
Leah Cypess
Kimberly Derting
Jackie Morse Kessler
Chloe Neill
Rebecca Maizel



And to the bloggers:



And finally to all the awesome participants! It wouldn't have been much of a readathon without you!

Happy New Year everyone!


Top Ten of 2010: Heist Society by Ally Carter



Over the next 5 days (the last 5 of 2010) I'll be posting my Top Ten favorite reads of the year. They're not necessarily books released in 2010 -- just books that I've read in the past year. I'll be giving the synopsis and linking to my review (if it's been posted) and telling why I love these books so much. These books are not in a particular order, they are simply my top ten favorite reads of the year.



Heist Society by Ally Carter

REVIEW

When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her to the Louvre...to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria...to steal the crown jewels. When Kat turned fifteen, she planned a con of her own--scamming her way into the best boarding school in the country, determined to leave the family business behind. Unfortunately, leaving "the life" for a normal life proves harder than she'd expected.

Soon, Kat's friend and former co-conspirator, Hale, appears out of nowhere to bring her back into the world she tried so hard to escape. But he has good reason: a powerful mobster's art collection has been stolen, and he wants it returned. Only a master thief could have pulled this job, and Kat’s father isn’t just on the suspect list, he is the list. Caught between Interpol and a far more deadly enemy, Kat’s dad needs her help.

For Kat there is only one solution: track down the paintings and steal them back. So what if it’s a spectacularly impossible job? She’s got two weeks, a teenage crew, and hopefully just enough talent to pull off the biggest heist in her family’s (very crooked) history--and, with any luck, steal her life back along the way.

First Line:
No one knew for certain when the trouble started at the Colgan School.

Why I Loved It: This book is another one that was a ton of fun to read. I laughed out loud constantly. The crazy cons Kat's family had pulled were hilarious when taken out of context in the characters' conversations. Kat was a smart and sassy heroine, but she had the added depth of being torn between family loyalty and a desire to live a legal life. The premise of this caper was fresh and original -- a bunch of teens pulling a heist, aided by the very fact that they ARE teens. Though it's easy to follow the plot, when the end came I was taken totally by surprise. I love the kind of book that you THINK you understand -- and then realize in the end that the author has been misdirecting you all along. This book is just the right blend of light fun and character depth.


Description from Goodreads. Click the hyperlinked title to purchase.

Top Ten of 2010: Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins



Over the next 5 days (the last 5 of 2010) I'll be posting my Top Ten favorite reads of the year. They're not necessarily books released in 2010 -- just books that I've read in the past year. I'll be giving the synopsis and linking to my review (if it's been posted) and telling why I love these books so much. These books are not in a particular order, they are simply my top ten favorite reads of the year.





Three years ago, Sophie Mercer discovered that she was a witch. It's gotten her into a few scrapes. Her non-gifted mother has been as supportive as possible, consulting Sophie's estranged father--an elusive European warlock--only when necessary. But when Sophie attracts too much human attention for a prom-night spell gone horribly wrong, it's her dad who decides her punishment: exile to Hex Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward Prodigium, a.k.a. witches, faeries, and shapeshifters.

By the end of her first day among fellow freak-teens, Sophie has quite a scorecard: three powerful enemies who look like supermodels, a futile crush on a gorgeous warlock, a creepy tagalong ghost, and a new roommate who happens to be the most hated person and only vampire on campus. Worse, Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her only friend is the number-one suspect.

As a series of blood-curdling mysteries starts to converge, Sophie prepares for the biggest threat of all: an ancient secret society determined to destroy all Prodigium, especially her.


First Line:
Felicia Miller was crying in the bathroom.

Why I Liked It: Rachel Hawkins is hilarious. This novel is full of witty one-liners, and dark, menacing mysteries. Sophie is sassy and fierce, but completely realistic. The plot takes several surprising twists, and the novel stands on its own even though it is part of a series. Plus, there's a smokin' hot, mysterious love interest to boot. This is a fun, magical thrill ride, full of imagination and intrigue.


Description from Goodreads. Click the hyperlinked title to purchase.

Top Ten of 2010: Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan



Over the next 5 days (the last 5 of 2010) I'll be posting my Top Ten favorite reads of the year. They're not necessarily books released in 2010 -- just books that I've read in the past year. I'll be giving the synopsis and linking to my review (if it's been posted) and telling why I love these books so much. These books are not in a particular order, they are simply my top ten favorite reads of the year.




Percy Jackson is about to be kicked out of boarding school...again. And that's the least of his troubles. Lately, mythological monsters and the gods of Mount Olympus seem to be walking straight out of the pages of Percy's Greek mythology textbook and into his life. And worse, he's angered a few of them. Zeus's master lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect.

Now Percy and his friends have just ten days to find and return Zeus's stolen property and bring peace to a warring Mount Olympus. But to succeed on his quest, Percy will have to do more than catch the true thief: he must come to terms with the father who abandoned him; solve the riddle of the Oracle, which warns him of betrayal by a friend; and unravel a treachery more powerful than the gods themselves.


First Line:
Look, I didn't want to be a half-blood.


Why I Loved It: I love this whole series. It is so much fun! Trouble follows Percy Jackson wherever he goes. The entire series is one near-disastrous adventure after another. Plus, on top of the hilarious shenanigans, you learn all about Greek mythology in the process. This series is a light read, but it's fun for kids and adults alike. I devoured this series in about a week -- I couldn't wait to see what kind of mischief Percy and his demigod friends got into next. Plus, the chapter titles are hysterical. Good, wholesome, fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants fun.


Description from Goodreads. Click the hyperlinked title to purchase.

Top Ten of 2010: Tyger Tyger by Kersten Hamilton


Over the next 5 days (the last 5 of 2010) I'll be posting my Top Ten favorite reads of the year. They're not necessarily books released in 2010 -- just books that I've read in the past year. I'll be giving the synopsis and linking to my review (if it's been posted) and telling why I love these books so much. These books are not in a particular order, they are simply my top ten favorite reads of the year.



Tyger Tyger by Kersten Hamilton

Review to come

Teagan Wylltson's best friend, Abby, dreams that horrifying creatures--goblins, shape-shifters, and beings of unearthly beauty but terrible cruelty--are hunting Teagan. Abby is always coming up with crazy stuff, though, so Teagan isn't worried. Her life isn't in danger. In fact, it's perfect. She's on track for a college scholarship. She has a great job. She's focused on school, work, and her future. No boys, no heartaches, no problems.

Until Finn Mac Cumhaill arrives. Finn's a bit on the unearthly beautiful side himself. He has a killer accent and a knee-weakening smile. And either he's crazy or he's been haunting Abby's dreams, because he's talking about goblins, too . . . and about being The Mac Cumhaill, born to fight all goblin-kind. Finn knows a thing or two about fighting. Which is a very good thing, because this time, Abby's right. The goblins are coming.


First Line:
Please, Teagan Wylltson's fingers curled in American Sign Language as she spoke.


Why I Loved It: This book is so different and magical. It centers strongly around Irish mythology, which is something new to me in YA literature. The creatures that populate this world are horrid and horrifying, but also diverse and fascinating. All of the characters are quirky and loveable and hilarious. Teagan is unapologetically smart and driven, not interested in boys until she gets her career in motion. Her best friend Abby comes from a Mobster family and is outspoken and protective, if occasionally misspoken. Teagan's little brother Aiden is the most adorable, hilarious, just plain weird little boy on the planet. And then there's Finn. Sexy, tough, gentlemanly but not cheesy, Finn. He just might be my favorite hero of the year. He was complex and and mysterious, not a jerk but not obnoxiously sugary sweet. He was fascinating to watch in his warrior-like grace. The chemistry between Finn and Teagan was undeniable. This was an enchanting, hilarious, but still dark and dangerous read. I'm so glad I got to finish it this year!


Description from Goodreads. Click the hyperlinked title to purchase.

Out with a Bang Readathon: Twitter Party!



As the grand finale of the Out with a Bang Readathon, we will be having a twitter party from 10 pm - midnight EST tonight! We'll be discussing what we read and wish we'd read, the challenges and our reading goals for 2011!

Join the conversation with the hashtag #OutWithABang!

Of course there will be giveaways!



13 to Life by Shannon Delaney
SIGNED Nevermore by Kelly Creagh bookmarks
Nevermore temporary tattoos
$10 Borders gift card

The giveaways are open only to readathon participants (you must have signed up and read some books). Everyone is welcome to join the discussion though!

We're on the home stretch -- good luck everyone! Let's end 2010 with a bang!

Out with a Bang Readathon Update: Day 3



I can't believe it's already the last day! This has flown by. I haven't gotten nearly as much reading done as I wanted -- I was afraid of that with all my family in this week. I was doing so much better at the beginning of the week though, doing about a book a day. Maybe I'll be able to make up for yesterday today? I only got about 1/3 of the way through Tyger, Tyger by Kersten Hamilton, but I'm really enjoying it! What are you reading?

We have four more fabulous mini-challenges and giveaways for you today! The links are all updated!






Don't forget to enter the two big giveaways as well: my Readathon Review Giveaway and Book-Savvy's Most Pages Read Giveaway!

Happy readathoning and wish me better reading luck today!

My Out with a Bang Mini-Challenge Responses: Day 2



I thought it would be fun to participate in the challenges. I'm not entering for prizes, I'm just doing it for the fun of it.


Post a verse of a song that reminds you of a YA book.

Well, I used to be REALLY into Twilight. I still like it, but I've moved on. Anyway -- there was a time when all kinds of songs made me think of the series, so I'm going to use it for this question ;-)

Thinking of You by Katy Perry -- Bella in New Moon

You said move on, where do I go?
I guess second best is all I will know

Cause when I'm with him I am thinking of you< Thinking of you, what you would do 

If you were the one who was spending the night
Oh I wish that I was looking into your eyes

You're like an Indian summer in the middle of winter
Like a hard candy with a surprise center
How do I get better once I've had the best
You said there's tons of fish in the water
So the waters I will test



Come up with three photos (you may use image sites or your own) that pertain to the chapter or page you are currently reading in your book. And state why they are significant to this chapter or page!

I'm reading Tyger, Tyger by Kersten Hamilton

Tiny Tiddly, Teagan's favorite baby hedgehog at the zoo where she works. Something has just happened involving him.


There is a particular passage from Hamlet that keeps being quoted, which seems to be significant to the development of the novel.


Teagan's adorable but crazy brother Aiden, who has been dressed up like Max from Where the Wild Things Are, has seen something scary and mysterious.

Are you intrigued? Isn't that hedgehog ADORABLE? I want one now.


Tell me about a book you have read that will forever stick in your mind. It can be a book you read as a child or as an adult (please keep it family friendly as kids that read my blog may want to pick it up). It’s a book that you can “feel”, “see” and actually “smell” the tension and that was very hard to put down. Tell me the Title, the author and what made this your favorite book.

I think the book that is seared in my memory is probably Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K Rowling. I'm going to try not to be spoilery here (are there still people out there who haven't read these?! I find this hard to believe.) The most memorable scene is after Harry has seen Snape's memories toward the end of the novel and walks through the forest with The Stone to do what he must do. The fact that he is that brave at the age of 17 is amazing (I was 17 when I first read this book and I couldn't imagine doing what he did). I bawl my eyes out every time I read that scene. It's just so powerful.



Leave a comment on my blog telling me the character you felt the most connection with in 2010 and why you had such a strong bond with him or her.

Alright, I know I've been talking about The DUFF by Kody Keplinger a lot over the past few days, but I'm starting to realize that it really made an impact on me this year. I really, REALLY connected with Bianca. Her snarky, cynical mental voice sounded SO much like me. And I'm just as likely to throw a Coke in some obnoxious playboy's face. While I can't ever see myself making the same decisions she did, she still reminded me a lot of myself and it was easy to put myself in her shoes. She's strong and smart and occasionally stupid, and has plenty of family drama. Story of my life.


You still have time to enter these great mini-challenges to win awesome prizes! Click the links to head over!


Thursday, December 30, 2010

Top Ten of 2010: The DUFF by Kody Keplinger


Over the next 5 days (the last 5 of 2010) I'll be posting my Top Ten favorite reads of the year. They're not necessarily books released in 2010 -- just books that I've read in the past year. I'll be giving the synopsis and linking to my review (if it's been posted) and telling why I love these books so much. These books are not in a particular order, they are simply my top ten favorite reads of the year.





Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is cynical and loyal, and she doesn’t think she’s the prettiest of her friends by a long shot. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. In fact, Bianca hates him. And when he nicknames her “the Duff,” she throws her Coke in his face.

But things aren’t so great at home right now, and Bianca is desperate for a distraction. She ends up kissing Wesley. Worse, she likes it. Eager for escape, Bianca throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with him.

Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out Wesley isn’t such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she’s falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone.

First Line:
This was getting old.

Why I Loved It: This book surprised me. With a title that stands for "Designated Ugly Fat Friend" and an apparent subject matter of meaningless sex, I was pretty wary of this book at first. I'm so, so glad I gave it a chance though. It was nothing like what I expected. There were deep, powerful messages behind the teenage shenanigans, and Kody Keplinger handled the tricky waters of teen sex in a classy and sensitive way. Bianca is an utterly realistic heroine, blending strength and stupid decisions. Her snarky and cynical mental voice sounded eerily like my teenage self at times, and I really connected with her from the start. Even when she was making obviously bad choices, I still couldn't help but be on her side. When adults try to write a teenage narrator, they're often so far removed from that time of their life that they've forgotten what it's really like. But since Kody wrote this novel when she was 17, every word rings true. It's amazing the kind of talent this still-youthful writer had at such a young age. I really enjoyed stepping outside of the paranormal realm and into the familiar territory of the real world. I felt like I really knew Bianca, and went through all her teenage trials with her. And even though I really, really wanted to hate Wesley (and did at first), Keplinger did a beautiful job of demonstrating his transformation without being heavy-handed about it. While he initially seemed like nothing more than a womanzing playboy, Keplinger beautifully shaded his character until it was impossible not to feel some compassion for the troubled teen. Overall, a stellar debut full of raw honesty and the oft-forgotten beauty of the teenage years.


Description from Goodreads. Click the hyperlinked title to purchase.

Review: Once in a Full Moon by Ellen Schreiber

Celeste Parker has never believed in the myth of the Legend's Run werewolf -- not even when a mysterious witch doctor's psychic prediction comes alarmingly true. After being rescued from a blinding snowstorm and a bloodthirsty pack of wolves by her school's new loner, Celeste can't help but be fascinated by her secret hero. But Celeste soon realizes that she should have heeded the witch doctor's warning: "Beware of a kiss under the full moon. It will change your life forever..."

Once in a Full Moon by Ellen Schreiber starts strong, with the mystery and intrigue surrounding the ethereal witch doctor and her bizarre prediction. Yet, the characters that populate this world are far too cookie cutter and stereotypical to truly come to life for the reader, or to be compelling. All of Celeste's friends -- from her best girl friends Abby and Ivy, to her boyfriend Nash -- are pretty and popular, but also shallow and cruel. Celeste sets herself apart by her compassion and her willingness to look past exteriors, and yet she is still utterly caught up in what her terrible friends think of her, and constantly shows a sad lack of self-esteem. While I really wanted to root for Celeste, I ultimately couldn't because she refused to recognize that she was putting too much stock by her superficial, "popular" friends, all while trying to appear as though she was morally superior to them all. This novel does have several truly mystical moments that are mesmerizing, and the drama is occasionally heart-pounding. Yet, the suspense ultimately came to naught, as the mythology was never brought together in a coherent way -- but continued to develop in surprising ways without any real explanation.

First and foremost, however, this is a love story -- but the romance that developed over the course of the novel felt thin and even a little cheesy. Even though Celeste's new love interest, Brandon, is by far the most interesting character, he is so mysterious that it's difficult for the reader to get a true sense of his personality. Their love develops far too quickly to be believable as anything more than teenage infatuation. Despite all this, though, there was still something that drew me forward throughout the story. Once in a Full Moon had the potential to be so much more, and I kept hoping that it would develop that promise into reality. I was ultimately disappointed, but I believe that this story of paranormal love can be revived if more of Brandon's true nature and the mysteries of Legend's Run are revealed in future installments.

Rating: 


Disclosure: I received a review copy of this novel via NetGalley. This did not affect my review in any way.

Click here to purchase Once in a Full Moon by Ellen Schreiber

Out with a Bang Readathon Update: Day 2



Well, with all the distractions around my house I only made it through one book yesterday: Rising Shadow by Jacquelyn Wheeler. I really enjoyed it though! It was really different than anything else I've read in a while, which was nice. I hope your reading is going well! I think I'm moving on to Tyger, Tyger by Kersten Hamilton now!

Today we have four more great mini-challenges and giveaways for you! Once again, we're in different time zones, so check back throughout the day. I'll update the links as the challenges go live.


Also, don't forget to enter my Readathon Review Giveaway and Book-Savvy's Most Pages Read Giveaway!

Happy readathoning!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

My Out with a Bang Mini-Challenge Responses: Day 1


I thought it would be fun to participate in the mini-challenges! I don't feel right entering the giveaways, so this is just for my own entertainment -- and to compare answers with all of you!



Which two authors would you pair up to co-write a book, and what would it be about?

Wow -- that's a hard question. I would love to pair up Julie Kagawa and Charlotte Bronte. Jane Eyre has so much darkness and even a hint at mysticism in it (the "gypsy fortuneteller," for example) that came to mind when I read about the darker fey in The Iron Fey trilogy. I think that they could come up with something utterly haunting. Rochester calls Jane his fairy, and I believe the word "vampire" is used at one point (if I'm not imagining things -- it's been a while since I read Jane Eyre), so I would like to see them write about all the darkest paranormal beings that the human imagination has created throughout time. Vampires, dark fey, demons...whatever their imaginations could come up with!



Take a scene from your favorite book and CREATE IT! Reenact it with your friends, build it, draw it, cook it, make it into a poem with refrigerator magnets...whatever you'd like to do, be creative and have fun! Anything and everything is encouraged.

It's going to take me a bit to get this one together. I'll need my grandmother's cat...



Choose a character from the book you're currently reading and answer the following questions:
  • What historical figure do you think they could have been in a past life? 
  • Why did you choose this figure?
  • What similarities do the two share?
  • Be sure to tell us the book and the character you chose.

I'm going to pick Rebecca from Rising Shadow by Jacquelyn Wheeler. I believe she could have been Florence Nightingale in a past life. Rebecca is an Empath who is a great healer and very compassionate, and as an added bonus -- she wants to be a doctor!



Perhaps you’d resisted reading a particular book or from a particular genre for a long time. Perhaps it was the hype that a particular novel or genre was receiving that put you off. Maybe you thought it would be one type of book, but when you actually took the time to read it, it wowed you in one way or another because it was entirely different than you expected. Some of you might have resisted this book or genre, but at a trusted friend’s insistence or because you were sent it for review, you gave it a go and wound up loving it. However it came about, I want to hear comments from readers about which book, series, or genre took you by surprise (in a good way) over the last year without any spoilers of course.

Well, I think the book that surprised me the most this year was The DUFF by Kody Keplinger. The premise really threw me off -- it sounded like just another tale of teenage debauchery. But I was SO WRONG. I won the book in a giveaway, so I figured I might as well give it a go. I am so glad I did! Kody Keplinger handled some tough topics with an incredible grace. The characters and writing were so real and gut-wrenchingly honest. Kody clearly knew what it was like to be a teenager -- so I was not at all surprised to learn that she was only 17 when she wrote the novel. I really recommend this book. It was stunning.

It's not too late to enter today's great mini-challenges! Click on the links to head over to each site!


Top Ten of 2010: Nightshade by Andrea Cremer


Over the next 5 days (the last 5 of 2010) I'll be posting my Top Ten favorite reads of the year. They're not necessarily books released in 2010 -- just books that I've read in the past year. I'll be giving the synopsis and linking to my review (if it's been posted) and telling why I love these books so much. These books are not in a particular order, they are simply my top ten favorite reads of the year.



Nightshade by Andrea Cremer


Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything— including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?


First Line:
"I'd always welcomed war, but in battle my passion rose unbidden."

Why I Loved It: This is such an intelligent novel. I've never read a dystopian novel with fantasy elements before. Andrea Cremer weaves a story that combines fantasy and philosophy, romance and dytopia. The novel treats themes of loyalty, servitude, free will and domination. It is a fascinating look at profound, contemporary issues within the microcosm of the mystical world of Vail, Colorado. The history of the Keepers and Guardians is shrouded in mystery, but it is all bound up tightly with Hobbesian theory. The novel kept me guessing and holding my breath; the mystery and suspense were almost overwhelming (in a very good way). It evoked such strong emotions -- frustration with the system, sadness and admiration for Calla, love for Shay, horror as the truth began to unfold. This debut novel is truly spellbinding and I can't wait to see what brilliance the future installments hold.


Description from Goodreads. Click the hyperlinked title to purchase.

Out with a Bang Readathon Review Giveaway





The purpose of this readathon is to draw attention to all these great books -- so of course we want to encourage everyone to review the books they're reading over the next three days! Here's how it works:

  1. You MUST be signed up for the readathon to be eligible. Sign up here.
  2. Read a book and write a review (a REAL review -- a book summary and/or a one sentence review doesn't count).
  3. Post it on your website. If you don't have a website, post on Goodreads or somewhere similar.
  4. Type the title and author of the book in the name field of the Mr. Linky at the bottom of this post and link to your review.
  5. Comment on THIS POST with the number of your review in the list and your EMAIL ADDRESS so I can contact you if you win!
  6. You can post as many reviews for readathon books as you want -- each one will count as a separate entry. You don't have to be a follower, but it's always appreciated =)
  7. Winner will be chosen via Random.org and will have 48 hours to respond to my email with their mailing address.
  8. To give you time to write your reviews, this giveaway will be open until January 7, 2011 at NOON EST.

One lucky winner will win:

The Iron Fey Trilogy by Julie Kagawa (all 3 books!)
Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
1 Demon Trapper's Daughter iron-on patch
1 Demon Trapper's Daughter adhesive decal
1 Hunger poster (not pictured)
1 Evermore postcard 
1 signed Mistwood bookmark 
1 unsigned Mistwood bookmark 
1 signed Body Finder bookmark 
1 Desires of the Dead sticker 
1 Team Luc tattoo 
2 signed Tension of Opposites bookmarks 
1 Iron Fey flyer

Special thanks to: Harlequin, Eileen at St. Martin's, Jackie Morse Kessler, Leah Cypess, Kimberly Derting, Lisa Desrochers, Kristina McBride, and Julie Kagawa!

Good luck and happy readathoning!


Out with a Bang Readathon Kick-off!



Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines! I hope everyone has their TBR pile and coffee cups ready! The Out with a Bang Readathon hosted by myself and Heather at Book-Savvy has commenced!

To join the readathon conversation on Twitter, use the hashtag #OutWithABang!

There will be many giveaways over the next 3 days, and I will be posting mine later today. In the meantime, check out these awesome blogs who are hosting their own mini-challenges and giveaways today! Each day we'll be posting updates listing who is hosting that day's mini-challenges.

All the challenges have been posted! Links have been updated:






Ready? Set? Read!


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Top Ten of 2010: The Iron Fey Series by Julie Kagawa


Over the next 5 days (the last 5 of 2010) I'll be posting my Top Ten favorite reads of the year. They're not necessarily books released in 2010 -- just books that I've read in the past year. I'll be giving the synopsis and linking to my review (if it's been posted) and telling why I love these books so much. These books are not in a particular order, they are simply my top ten favorite reads of the year.



IRON KING REVIEW

IRON DAUGHTER REVIEW

AUTHOR INTERVIEW



Meghan Chase has a secret destiny—one she could never have imagined…

Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan's life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school…or at home.

When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she's known is about to change.

But she could never have guessed the truth—that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she'll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil no faery creature dare face…and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.

First Line (The Iron King): 
Ten years ago, on my sixth birthday, my father disappeared.

Why I Loved It: I'm counting all 3 as 1 because I adore this whole series. The first thing that drew me to it was its relationship to my favorite Shakespeare play, "A Midsummer Night's Dream." Julie Kagawa takes the minor fey from the play -- Oberon, Titania, and especially Puck -- and turns them into complex and mesmerizing characters. This series has it all: action, adventure, romance, magic and mystery. I really couldn't ask for more. The heroine is a believable teenage girl, with just the right level of angst without being annoying. The two heroes vying for her attention are total opposites, and each is utterly swoon-worthy in his own right. There are so many fey creatures and territories in the Nevernever that there's always something new lurking around the next bend. And then there's Grimalkin: a sarcastic, sage and impatient talking feline. Not just any writer could make a talking cat a serious character in a series, but Grim really steals the show in every novel. He's hilarious and mysterious, infuriating and cuddly (but don't tell him I said that). This series kept me on my toes, and really invested in the characters -- I cared how things ended for them all, dark or light (and really, the fey blur that line until it's almost nonexistent).


Description from Goodreads. Click the hyperlinked title to purchase.

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