Review Copy Cleanup


Review Copy Cleanup hosted by Books, Biscuits and Tea and Nyx Book Reviews is a month long challenge to read your review copies. During the month of August the hosts will also have a number of Twitter parties and mini-readathons. If you would like to join, be sure to visit one of their blogs to sign up.

I don't have a lot of books to review, but I have enough that I felt it was worth joining this challenge to get them taken care of.

Here is the list of the review books that I want to read for this challenge:

1. Personal Effects by E.M. Kokie (Expected publication: September 11th 2012)
2. Through To You by Emily Hainsworth *Update* Read 8-05-12 (Expected publication: October 2nd 2012)
3. The Raven Boys (Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater *Update* Read 8-29-12 (Expected publication: September 18th 2012)
4. Beautiful Disaster (Beautiful #1) by Jamie McGuire
5. The Unquiet by Jeannine Garsee *Update* Read 8-21-12
6. Back to Bataan by Jerome Charyn *Update* Read & Reviewed 8-02-12
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Review: Virtuosity by Jessica Martinez

VirtuosityVirtuosity by Jessica Martinez

Hardcover, 294 pages
Published October 18th 2011 by Simon Pulse

Borrowed From Library

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Now is not the time for Carmen to fall in love. And Jeremy is hands-down the wrong guy for her to fall for. He is infuriating, arrogant, and the only person who can stand in the way of Carmen getting the one thing she wants most: to win the prestigious Guarneri competition. Carmen's whole life is violin, and until she met Jeremy, her whole focus was winning. But what if Jeremy isn't just hot...what if Jeremy is better?
Carmen knows that kissing Jeremy can't end well, but she just can't stay away. Nobody else understands her--and riles her up--like he does. Still, she can't trust him with her biggest secret: She is so desperate to win she takes anti-anxiety drugs to perform, and what started as an easy fix has become a hungry addiction. Carmen is sick of not feeling anything on stage and even more sick of always doing what she’s told, doing what's expected.

Sometimes, being on top just means you have a long way to fall....

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I really enjoyed reading Virtuosity - I loved the writing, the storyline, and the 2 main characters. The prologue sucked me right into the story. Once I started reading I was hooked and I didn't want to put this book down.

The protagonist, Carmen, is very sheltered and extremely naive. Every minute of her life is controlled by her mother. With so much expectation placed on Carmen to always perform at her best, she begins showing signs of cracking. Her mother basically forces her to take anti-anxiety pills, and even though Carmen doesn't want to take the medicine, she becomes dependent upon them. I really sympathized with Carmen because of the pressure she was under, and I admired the way she handled her addiction.

Carmen and Jeremy start off as competitors, but after spending time together, they soon begin to care about each other. Their relationship is well written, and has a forbidden aspect to it, which adds drama to the storyline. With a huge competition looming, I could really feel the pressure that Carmen and Jeremy were under to perform and be the best while attempting to maintain a fledgling relationship.

Jeremy was not an instantly likable character for me. In the beginning I wasn't sure of his motives and I questioned his sincerity. He was very competitive and totally obnoxious. Luckily, the more I got to know Jeremy, the more I liked him. He ended up being more than I expected.

Even though Carmen is naive, she is very smart, and I was happy to see her start to take chances and make decisions about her life. I really enjoyed her progression and maturation as the story went along. Having Jeremy in her life was a huge part of Carmen being able to stand up for herself and what she believes in.

Virtuosity is wonderfully written and completely engaging. The characters were well developed, and the plot will keep your attention. I thought that the romance was very sweet, and the relationship between Carmen and Jeremy felt natural, although they did have a lot of trust issues. This was a very clean read that would be appropriate for younger teens, and I highly recommend it.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
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Book Trailer - Anna Karenina

Inspired by Book Trailer Thursday feature at Once Upon A Twilight.
Share your trailer with us - doesn't matter if it's a new release, a book that is coming soon, or a book that you just read.

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
838 pages (first published 1877)

Trailer: Anna Karenina - 2012
Director comments for a full minute, skip that part to get to the good stuff!

Book Synopsis From Goodreads:

Anna Karenina tells of the doomed love affair between the sensuous and rebellious Anna and the dashing officer, Count Vronsky. Tragedy unfolds as Anna rejects her passionless marriage and must endure the hypocrisies of society. Set against a vast and richly textured canvas of nineteenth-century Russia, the novel's seven major characters create a dynamic imbalance, playing out the contrasts of city and country life and all the variations on love and family happiness.

I can't say that I have any desire to actually read Anna Karenina, but I did enjoy the 1935 film version featuring Greta Garbo. Now, this new version stars Keira Knightley and looks highly stylized and honestly, quite weird. I thought Keira was an odd casting choice, and I'm still not convinced she can pull it off. I'm not the biggest fan of hers, and my main reason is because she always acts exactly the same no matter the role. Am I the only one who feels this way? Oh, and not to nit pick, but I hate that she always has her mouth open. I just want to tell her to close it. And Aaron Johnson as Count Vronsky? What's with the weird blond hair? Well, casting choices aside, I'm still willing to give this movie a chance.

Has anyone actually read Anna Karenina? Or have you seen any of the film versions? Are you going to see this version when it comes out?
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Waiting On Wednesday (36) Going Vintage

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

My choice for this week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt

Expected publication: March 26th 2013 by Bloomsbury

Synopsis from Goodreads:

The story of a girl figuring out the truths and illusions of life and love, both in the nostalgic past and in the very real now. Laugh-out-loud humor combines with a hint of romance in this delightful contemporary novel.

The cure for a broken heart? Go vintage and live like it’s 1962! Mallory’s boyfriend, Jeremy, isn’t just cheating on her. He’s cheating with an online girlfriend. So Mallory decides to swear off boys and modern technology. Inspired by a list of goals her grandmother made in 1962, Mallory decides to “go vintage” and return to a simpler time. She sets out to complete grandma’s list: run for pep club secretary, host a dinner party, sew a homecoming dress, find a steady, do something dangerous.
The list proves to be trickier than it looks. Obviously finding a steady is out . . . no matter how intriguing she finds Oliver (er, Jeremy's cousin). But with the help of her sister, Mallory will finish the list and find peace. Somehow.

Why I Want To Read It:

I love a good contemporary, and Going Vintage sounds like it will be a very interesting read. Funny AND romantic? Just what I like. 1962 indeed. What are you waiting on this week?
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Tune In Tuesday (11)

Tune In Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by GReads. It's a great way to share songs that you love, new or old, and spread some music around the blogosphere!

Tune In Tuesday: My Teen Years Special Edition

I still listen to tons of music from the 80's, and 2 of my all-time favorites are 'Kayleigh' by Marillion and 'Crazy' by Icehouse. Both songs invoke such emotion in me and really take me back to when my best friend and I couldn't get enough of these songs. We would listen to them over and over again and watch the videos that we recorded on VHS.

The reason I love these 2 songs so much is because I love the lyrics and imagining stories that fit the lyrics. The videos are great, but I feel they are just one interpretation of the lyrics. Both songs have so many other possibilities.

The Year: 1985
Marillion - Kayleigh

Kayleigh came out at a time when we were obsessed with Steve and Kayla from Days of Our Lives (Best Couple EVER!) and I swore I was going to name my potential way way in the future daughter Kayla or Kayleigh. Ah, good times.

The Year: 1987
Icehouse - Crazy

(I'm loving Iva's mullet. And his pants - gotta love the pants.)
Of course, I have the 8 minute long extended version of this song because I love it so much. This video is based on Clint Eastwood's movie 'Play Misty For Me', but with the caller requesting the song 'Crazy' instead of 'Misty'. I love the little smile on Iva's face when he discovers she's a crazy bitch. Personally, I think she's just a little obsessed with him... in a good way. Not the crazy-gonna-kill-you way.


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Review: Narc by Crissa-Jean Chappell

NarcNarc by Crissa-Jean Chappell

Publication Date: August 8, 2012
Page Count: 288
Published by: Flux
Source: eArc received from publisher in exchange for an honest review

Synopsis From Goodreads:

"You're going to hate me forever when you learn my secret."

Seventeen-year-old stoner Aaron Foster was offered a choice: go to jail or turn undercover narc to find the dealer who's funneling drugs into Miami's Palm Hammock High School. But Aaron has never been good at getting close to people. He's human wallpaper, a stoner wastecase who's obsessed with video games and street magic.

With a cop from Narcotics breathing down his neck, Aaron gets himself invited to parties where the deals go down. To get close to the school's biggest players, Aaron lies to everyone--most of all, the cute but troubled Morgan Baskin. With the Everglades party on Halloween night--and a planned drug bust there--just days away, Aaron realizes that he's falling hard for Morgan . . . and trying to protect her could cost him everything.

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I wanted to read Narc because the premise definitely interested me, and I really enjoy reading books from the male's POV. I wondered how being a narc would play out in a high school setting. And I was curious how a boy could go from being 'human wallpaper' to fitting in with the 'in' crowd.

I did actually enjoy the story like I thought I would. At times the writing was good. However, I found most of the book to be rushed and a bit clunky and disjointed. Almost as if Chappell couldn't finish writing one sentence before getting to the next - or complete one scene and make it connect to the next scene. Even within certain scenes the storyline jumped around quite a bit, and I couldn't figure out how anyone got from point A to point B. I was lost a few times and had to re-read to try and figure out what was going on. This was a really fast read, but the story did not unfold or flow smoothly.

After he is busted with drugs, the protagonist, Aaron, is forced by the police to find out who is supplying the high school with drugs. He agrees only to avoid jail time. He gets to know Morgan and her friend Skully while attempting to fit in with the drug users at school, who are not his usual crowd. Morgan and Skully are able to introduce Aaron to their inner circle, and he used these connections to gather info on the drug suppliers at school. I really couldn't understand Aaron's attraction to Morgan, especially after he spent time with her and had first hand knowledge of how messed up she was. He turned a blind eye to her faults and it made him seem very naive.

Not all of the characters in Narc are authentic, and I had a hard time connecting and relating to any of them. I thought the characters were one-dimensional and most of the relationships seemed very flat. I wasn't sure if the author was using the disconnect to show that the only true bond the characters had was the drugs.

At times I thought the dialogue was realistic, and other times it felt stilted and forced. I think Chappell was trying too hard to make the teens sound like teens, and it came off as fake. I will admit that I have no personal experience in knowing how drug deals go down, so I'm not an expert, but some of those scenes were very unrealistic to me.

Overall the book was really lacking the emotional depth that it should have had, considering most of the subject matter and situations the protagonist and others found themselves in. I felt the conclusion to Narc was satisfactory and fitting. I think that if given more time and attention, this could have been an incredible book. It just did not live up to it's potential.

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
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Sunday Updates (6)

Inspired by features from The Sunday Post from Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer and Sunday Summary from Book Twirps.

Received For Review:

Personal Effects by E.M. Kokie (via NetGalley)
This one getting approved came as a total shocker because I requested it months ago. I can't wait to read it!

Borrowed From The Library:

Of Poseidon (Of Poseidon #1) by Anna Banks

I have had a lame ass reading week. Well, really it's been 2 weeks. I attempted (and failed) to read From What I Remember... by Stacy Kramer, Valerie Thomas. It's just soooo boring to me. I had absolutely zero interest in the characters or in finding out what happens. I forced myself to read up to page 260, so I gave it a great effort, but I just couldn't do it. 10 days I spent attempting to read that book. 10 days and only 260 pages.

I DID finish reading Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross today and I enjoyed it - faults and all.

Now I just need to catch up on reviews and I'll be a happy woman.
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TGIF (6)

TGIF is a weekly feature hosted by Ginger over at GReads.

Top 3 Best Books I've Read (So Far) This Year:

Something Like Normal by Trish Doller
Such a Rush by Jennifer Echols
Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

Something Like Normal is simply amazing. I love everything that Jennifer Echols writes. And be sure to pick up a copy of Pushing The Limits when it is released on July 31. You won't be disappointed.
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Book Trailer - Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr

Inspired by Book Trailer Thursday feature at Once Upon A Twilight.
Share your trailer with us - doesn't matter if it's a new release, a book that is coming soon, or a book that you just read.

Hardcover, 320 pages
Expected publication: September 4th 2012 by HarperCollins

Synopsis From Goodreads:
In a city of daimons, rigid class lines separate the powerful from the power-hungry. And at the heart of The City is the Carnival of Souls, where both murder and pleasure are offered up for sale. Once in a generation, the carnival hosts a deadly competition that allows every daimon a chance to join the ruling elite. Without the competition, Aya and Kaleb would both face bleak futures--if for different reasons. For each of them, fighting to the death is the only way to try to live.

All Mallory knows of The City is that her father--and every other witch there--fled it for a life in exile in the human world. Instead of a typical teenage life full of friends and maybe even a little romance, Mallory scans quiet streets for threats, hides herself away, and trains to be lethal. She knows it's only a matter of time until a daimon finds her and her father, so she readies herself for the inevitable. While Mallory possesses little knowledge of The City, every inhabitant of The City knows of her. There are plans for Mallory, and soon she, too, will be drawn into the decadence and danger that is the Carnival of Souls.

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
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Winner! 700 Follower Giveaway

Thank you so much to everyone who stopped by my blog to enter and leave comments. I had a total of 586 entries, and the winner of Such A Rush by Jennifer Echols is #389 Christina K. (tweeting every day really payed off for you!) Winner has been notified and has 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.

Don't forget you can still enter my July New Release Giveaway Hop.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Waiting On Wednesday (35) Rivals and Retribution (13 to Life #5) by Shannon Delany

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

My choice for this week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

Rivals and Retribution (13 to Life #5) by Shannon Delany

Paperback, 320 pages
Expected publication: August 7th 2012 by St. Martin's Griffin

Synopsis From Goodreads:

In Rivals and Retribution, the fifth book in the 13 to Life series by Shannon Delany, Pietr and Jessie will find themselves caught in a pack war with a new breed of werewolves.

Jessie Gillmansen is in trouble again and she's in for the fight of her life--and Pietr's! With Marlaena’s dangerous wolf pack putting more pressure on the Rusakova family, change is inevitable and when it comes, it brings a heavy price that forces Alexi into action to save his youngest brother's heart, head, and life. In the stunning conclusion of this celebrated paranormal series two werewolf families fight for control of the small town of Junction, control of each other and--most elusive of all--control of themselves.

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Why I Want To Read It:

I really love this series and I can't wait to read the final book. It had better be epic or you will be getting an earful from me. Just sayin'. (I just noticed the description no longer says this is the final book in the series. IS this the final book in the series???)

What are you waiting on this week?
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Tune In Tuesday (10)

Tune In Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by GReads. It's a great way to share songs that you love, new or old, and spread some music around the blogosphere!

Tune In Tuesday: My Teen Years Special Edition

The year: 1985
Me: 16 years old

Let me tell you a little story. My best friend and I obsessed over music together during our teen years. We started going to concerts together and we always had so much fun. In 1984, this guy named Julian Lennon came out with an album that we liked. You all know who Julian Lennon is, right? Then during the summer of 1985, we bought tickets to see Julian in concert at The Muny in Forest Park. (Forest Park hosted the 1904 World's Fair, and The Muny was built in 1917 and is still in use today.) We had decided to go see Julian because we liked him, obviously, but also because it was the closest we would ever get to John Lennon or The Beatles. Not long after we purchased our tickets, we found out that the night after Julian's concert, a group that I adored, The Outfield, would be in concert. We couldn't go to both concerts, so we consoled ourselves with the knowledge that The Outfield was opening for another huge act, so they would probably only have 5 songs or so, whereas Julian was the headliner and we would get to enjoy him longer.

The night of the concert arrives and we show up early because of the nice weather. We hang around for a while and then go find our seats... not bad, on the aisle about halfway back. We're sitting and chilling when down the center aisle come 2 men leading a blind man between them. I looked at my friend and she looked at me. Holy shit! It was 3 members of The Outfield! And they sat right in front of us! We freaked the shit out - silently - as we squeezed each others hands and did a very quiet squee of delight! I don't need to mention that we were raised right - our first thought was to NOT bother the band as they were obviously there to enjoy a concert. They were not there to entertain US and our schoolgirl crush, so we left them alone out of respect. It didn't take long for others in the crowd to approach the trio and demand autographs. It was pretty bad and I felt sorry for the guys - they lasted about 5 minutes before they got up and left. We were so bummed!. This would have been a really great story if they had been able to stay and we could say that we were that close to the guys for a whole concert. But this is all we were left with - thoughts of what could have been a great thing. So sad.

Julian Lennon - Valotte

Julian Lennon - Too Late For Goodbyes

I love The Outfield so much. Especially their first album, Play Deep. I listen to it all the time and it never gets old.

The Outfield - Your Love
(The 3 members of the band that we saw were the 2 blonde guitar players and the blind man on keyboards.)

The Outfield - Say It Isn't So

The Outfield - Everytime You Cry

The Outfield - All The Love

The Outfield - Since You've Been Gone

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Sunday Updates (5)

Inspired by features from The Sunday Post from Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer and Sunday Summary from Book Twirps.

Received For Review:
The Raven Boys (Raven Cycle #1) by by Maggie Stiefvater (via NetGalley)

Reviews Posted:
Such A Rush by Jennifer Echols
This Is Not A Test by Courtney Summers

Books Read This Week:
I was somehow able to start reading 3 books and finish not a single one. But I did manage to squeeze in a 3 day mini vacation with the family and not miss a blog post every day. I don't usually read more than 1 book at a time, but I was feeling restless and not happy with what I was reading.

700 Follower Giveaway Ends July 17th
July New Release Giveaway Hop Ends July 31st
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July New Release Giveaway Hop

Welcome to my stop on the July New Release Giveaway Hop, which is hosted by Book Twirps & Refracted Light Reviews.

PRIZE: One winner will get their choice of ANY YA July New Release book from The Book Depository up to $15.00 U.S.

There are so many great YA books being released in July! Here are just a few of my picks. You do NOT have to choose one of these books. Let me know in the comments what YA books you are looking forward to reading in July.

Such A Rush by Jennifer Echols You can read my review HERE
Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry Review coming soon.
The Unquiet by Jeannine Garsee Review coming soon.
The Thing About the Truth by Lauren Barnholdt

Contest Rules:
  • The hop runs July 15th through July 31st.
  • Giveaway is International as long as The Book Depository ships to your country.
  • Must be 13 years of age or older to participate.
  • Fill out the Rafflecopter entry below.
  • Winner will have 48 hours to respond to email or a new winner will be chosen.
  • Be sure to check out the linky below and visit all of the participating blogs.
  • I shouldn't have to remind anyone, but please do not attempt to cheat with multiple entries.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Review: This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers

This is Not a TestThis is Not a Test by Courtney Summers

Paperback, 323 pages
Published June 19th 2012 by St. Martin's Griffin
Source: Library

Synopsis From Goodreads:

It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self.

To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up. As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually want to live.

But as the days crawl by, the motivations for survival change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life—and death—inside.

When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?

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To be honest, This Is Not A Test was not a book I was anticipating reading, but when I realized that my library had a copy on order, I went ahead and requested it. I'm glad I did, because I really enjoyed reading it. The plot was very good and the writing and pacing were perfect. It got quite intense at times, but there were also plenty of quiet, reflective moments to balance out the story.

When we are introduced to the protagonist, Sloane, we learn that she is physically abused by her father, her mother is dead, and her older sister ran away to escape their father. Sloane is understandably miserable and looking for her own escape. I found it very easy to sympathize with Sloane even though I couldn't personally relate to her situation. Things quickly change for Sloane when zombies break in through the picture window of her house. Sloane sees her escape from her father and her escape from life - she rushes outside hoping to be done in by the zombies. Flash forward 7 days, and Sloane has joined 5 other teens as they seek refuge in their high school. Everyone except Sloane is in full on survival mode.

Each of the 6 teens are unique and have their own distinct personality. The negative and positive aspects of each character are made apparent during their interactions and confrontations. It is because of the differences in the characters that a lot conflict occurs within the group. There is also tons of conflict within each character. I felt that all of the characters were well developed and they all had growth throughout the book.

This is not a story about zombies. And it's not just about the characters themselves, but more about the desperation the characters feel, and how they learn to deal with what appears to be a hopeless situation. They play off each other's strengths and weaknesses as they fight for survival. As the story moves forward, you can really feel their determination and drive just to survive. You'll find yourself caring about each one of them.

Personally, I would have preferred either an explanation for the zombies, or at the very least, a little more background info on the zombies. And with the teenagers in such seclusion, I often found myself wondering what was going on in the outside world and how far and wide the zombies had spread. I will admit that the lack of communication with the outside world added tons of suspense to the story, but I just wanted to know more. And I would really love to know what happens next.

Overall, I thought this was a really well written story and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Highly recommended for non-zombie lovers (like me) who enjoy character driven storylines.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
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Book Trailer - Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry

Inspired by Book Trailer Thursday feature at Once Upon A Twilight.
Share your trailer with us - doesn't matter if it's a new release, a book that is coming soon, or a book that you just read.

Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry

Hardcover, 384 pages
Expected publication: July 31st 2012 by Harlequin Teen

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Synopsis From Goodreads:
"I won't tell anyone, Echo. I promise." Noah tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did. Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins? His dark brown eyes shifted to my covered arms. "You didn't do that-did you? It was done to you?" No one ever asked that question. They stared. They whispered. They laughed. But they never asked.

So wrong for each other...and yet so right.

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with "freaky" scars on her arms. Even Echo can't remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal. But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo's world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she'll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.

I had the opportunity to read this Pushing The Limits already and it is so good. I really need to get my review up. But until then, here is the book trailer for your enjoyment.

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Waiting On Wednesday (34) Onyx (Lux #2) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

My choice for this week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

Paperback, 416 pages
Expected publication: August 14th 2012 by Entangled Teen

Synopsis From Goodreads:

Being connected to Daemon Black sucks…

Daemon’s determined to prove what he feels for me is more than a product of our bizarre connection. I’ve sworn him off even though he’s running more hot than cold these days. But against all common sense, I’m falling for him. Hard.

Our relationship issues aren’t out biggest problem…

The Department of Defense is here. If they ever find out what Daemon can do and that we’re linked, I’m a goner. So is he. And when a new boy shows up a school with a secret of his own, things get complicated fast. I need to choose between my own instincts and Daemon’s.

But then everything changes…

I’ve seen someone who shouldn’t be alive. Daemon’s never going to stop searching until gets the truth. What happened to his brother? Who betrayed him? And what does the DOD want from them—from me?

No one is who they seem. And not everyone will survive the lies.

Why I Want To Read It:

I was feeling a little left out, like I was the only person who hadn't read Obsidian yet. I've had it on my ereader for quite a while but never got around to reading it until recently. While I did enjoy it, I wasn't all that impressed with Daemon. With all of the gushing going on about him, I expected him to be A-MA-ZING. He was alright, but I thought he was pretty much of an ass. Well, a smokin' hot ass - with potential. But that won't stop me from reading the rest of the series and hoping that his disposition improves.

What are you waiting on this week?

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Tune In Tuesday (9)

Tune In Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by GReads. It's a great way to share songs that you love, new or old, and spread some music around the blogosphere!

Tune In Tuesday: My Teen Years Special Edition

Last week I gave you waaay too much info on the amazing Duran Duran. This week I bring you the years 1986 and 1987 and only ONE member of Duran Duran. The guitar player, Andy Taylor.

Check out this cheese-tastic video for a flop of a movie from 1986 called "American Anthem." The movie was terrible, but it was an opportunity for Andy Taylor, as a solo artist, to reach a new audience. The movie featured real life gymnast Mitch Gaylord and some chick named Janet Jones (whose claim to fame is that she is from St. Louis and she attended the same high school as my husband... No, wait a second. We don't claim her. But she is married to some hockey player.)

Take It Easy

Andy also got much needed exposure by writing a song for the soundtrack of Miami Vice II.

When The Rain Comes Down

Then in 1987 Andy released his first solo album titled Thunder. This was the soundtrack to my senior year of high school. I loved this record SO much. I also realized that Andy was a great artist (I love his voice!) and his guitar playing was under-utilized in Duran Duran. I still really love this CD and I listen to it all the time. I'm a dork that way.

I Might Lie

Don’t Let Me Die Young (Check out Andy's son at the end of the video. Too cute!)

Bringin' Me Down

Life Goes On


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700 Follower Giveaway

I have reached 700 followers and it is time to celebrate with a giveaway!! I am so grateful for all of my amazing followers. Thank you so much for stopping by and reading what I have to say.

I am giving away a copy of Such A Rush by Jennifer Echols.
Be sure to check out my review of Such A Rush HERE.

Contest Rules:
1. You must be a follower to enter.
2. Open to wherever the Book Depository ships for free.
3. No cheating please - everyone should have an equal chance of winning. I do check entries and duplicates will be deleted.
4. Contest ends July 17th at midnight. I will notify the winner by email and they will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.
5. Must be 13 years of age or older to enter.

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Review: Such A Rush by Jennifer Echols

Such a RushSuch a Rush by Jennifer Echols

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Hardcover, 320 pages
Expected publication: July 10th 2012 by MTV Books

Synopsis From Goodreads:
A sexy and poignant romantic tale of a young daredevil pilot caught between two brothers.

High school senior Leah Jones loves nothing more than flying. While she’s in the air, it’s easy to forget life with her absentee mother at the low-rent end of a South Carolina beach town. When her flight instructor, Mr. Hall, hires her to fly for his banner advertising business, she sees it as her ticket out of the trailer park. And when he dies suddenly, she’s afraid her flying career is gone forever.

But Mr. Hall’s teenage sons, golden boy Alec and adrenaline junkie Grayson, are determined to keep the banner planes flying. Though Leah has crushed on Grayson for years, she’s leery of getting involved in what now seems like a doomed business — until Grayson betrays her by digging up her most damning secret. Holding it over her head, he forces her to fly for secret reasons of his own, reasons involving Alec. Now Leah finds herself drawn into a battle between brothers — and the consequences could be deadly.

My Thoughts:
I LOVE THIS BOOK! I really love this book. Jennifer Echols has done it again with Such A Rush. It is so well written and is overflowing with drama and romance and features amazing characters that you can't help but love. Sorry if this is too gushy, but I am a huge fan of this book.

The protagonist, Leah, is smart and spunky and full of snark and humor despite her crappy home life. She has basically been on her own most of her life because her mother is a flake and is usually gone with her current boyfriend, leaving Leah to take care of herself. They move around a lot. They run from one town escaping old boyfriends and landlords, and follow the new boyfriend to a new town. And they always end up in the run down trailer parks that are inevitably next to the airport. Being so near the airport and airplanes really inspires Leah's dreams of escaping her miserable life and leaving everything behind by becoming a pilot. She gets an office job at the airport to help pay the rent so she has a place to live (so she can stay in one place long enough to matter). Then she gets up the nerve to approach Mr. Hall for flying lessons. He sees something in her that makes him want to give her a chance. I really loved Mr. Hall and the father/daughter type relationship he had with Leah. Of course, this close relationship doesn't please Mr. Hall's 3 sons. They live with their mother and only come to visit on holidays and summer break. They aren't close with their dad, but they don't want anyone else getting close to him either, especially not a girl that they assume is taking advantage. The boys are very antagonistic towards Leah when they come to visit. Despite this, Leah develops a crush on Grayson.

When Mr. Hall dies and his twin sons, Alec and Grayson, take over his banner flying business, Leah feels her dreams of escaping and her attempt at independence slipping away from her. She was supposed to continue flying for Mr. Hall while she went to community college and then on to a college with a flight school so she could get her airline pilot's license. She assumes the twins won't want her around anymore, but then Grayson surprises her by blackmailing her into working for them over spring break. Leah and Grayson spend a lot of time in each others company and get to know each other a lot better. Leah works her butt off to earn the brother's respect, which is very important to her.

Grayson really frustrated me. As a reader, I want to like the potential love interest, but Grayson made it so darn hard at first. One minute he's sweet and charming, and the next he's acting like an ass. He ran so hot and cold that I was confused about my feelings for him, much like Leah was. But once I got to know him better, I really did love him since he's a bit deeper than what he lets on. And the motivation behind him acting the way he does was really heartbreaking. He hides his emotions behind those damn aviator sunglasses, so it's difficult to get a read on him. It's one of my favorite things about Grayson. Well, that and his fist clenching. Those moments really got to me.

The chemistry between Leah and Grayson is just amazing. Their relationship was not all fluffy and light, and some of their confrontations are downright hot. And the sexual tension is off the charts. Leah and Grayson are both such complex and wonderful characters, and they have so much development in this story. It was truly fascinating watching them evolve.

I positively adored this book. It has tons of drama and angst, along with sexy, sweet (and yummy!) boys that will knock your socks off! I really loved all the airplane and flying scenes. I know Ms. Echols did a ton of research for this story and it really shows. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves a good contemporary with a really hot, yet sweet, romance. Such A Rush is definitely for older teens due to mature situations.

ARC provided by author - Thank you so much!!

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Sunday Updates

Inspired by features from The Sunday Post from Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer and Sunday Summary from Book Twirps.

Books I Received From The Library:
It is NOT a good thing all 5 of these books came in at the same time. I was way down on the list when I requested these, so I was not expecting them all on the same day. Too many books, not enough time! And the look my husband gives me when he comes home from the library with my books.... like he knows I'm never going to read them before they are due back. I think I need more hours in my day. 24 just aren't enough.

From What I Remember... by Stacy Kramer, Valerie Thomas
My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund
Flirting in Italian (Flirting in Italian #1)by Lauren Henderson
Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross

For Review:
Through To You by Emily Hainsworth (from Edelweiss)

Reviews Posted:
Review: Stay with Me by Paul Griffin
Review: One Moment by Kristina McBride
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