Review: Lucky in Love

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Summary:

Maddie’s not impulsive. She’s all about hard work and planning ahead. But one night, on a whim, she buys a lottery ticket. And then, to her astonishment —

She wins!

In a flash, Maddie’s life is unrecognizable. No more stressing about college scholarships. Suddenly, she’s talking about renting a yacht. And being in the spotlight at school is fun… until rumors start flying, and random people ask her for loans. Now, Maddie isn’t sure who she can trust.

Except for Seth Nguyen, her funny, charming coworker at the local zoo. Seth doesn’t seem aware of Maddie’s big news. And, for some reason, she doesn’t want to tell him. But what will happen if he learns her secret?

With tons of humor and heart, Kasie West delivers a million-dollar tale of winning, losing, and falling in love.

Thoughts:

Look, guys. Kasie West is an instant-buy for me…easily. Her books are always adorable and this isn’t any different.

I was worried going into this that it was going to be exactly like Jennifer E Smith’s Windfall, but they were different enough for me. Still both about teens winning the lottery, but different.

I will say that I didn’t like Maddie, but I think I didn’t like her because she was frustrating. Then again, I guess she was acting like anyone else who won the lottery would act, so I don’t judge this very harshly.

But…Seth. Seth is precious and just the type of male lead I like to see in a Kasie West book!

Overall, if you’re looking for a quick, fun contemporary book, then look no further!

Huge thanks to Scholastic for the review copy that was sent to me!

 

Waiting on Wednesday: Lucky in Love

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Summary:

Maddie doesn’t believe in luck. She’s all about hard work and planning ahead. But one night, on a whim, she buys a lottery ticket. And then, to her astonishment —

She wins!

In a flash, Maddie’s life is unrecognizable. No more stressing about college scholarships. Suddenly, she’s talking about renting a yacht. And being in the spotlight at school is fun… until rumors start flying, and random people ask her for loans. Now, Maddie isn’t sure who she can trust.

Except for Seth Nguyen, her funny, charming coworker at the local zoo. Seth doesn’t seem aware of Maddie’s big news. And, for some reason, she doesn’t want to tell him. But what will happen if he learns her secret?

With tons of humor and heart, Kasie West delivers a million-dollar tale of winning, losing, and falling in love.

Why I’m excited:

Kasie West quickly became on insta-buy last year with her most recent releases, PS I Like You and By Your Side. I devoured both books though, to be honest, I still haven’t gone back and read her older books- I plan to soon though!

This book sounds adorable and right in line with her other books, so I can’t wait. It doesn’t release until July 25, but I’m definitely ready for it as soon as I can get my hands on a copy!

Making Reading More Fun!

Ask any of my close friends and family and they’ll tell you that I have the shortest attention span of anyone they know.

In fact, it often makes me struggle to finish books in a timely manner because I JUST CAN’T FOCUS.

Well…Friday I had an idea that made reading much easier to focus on.

I wrote notes to the next reader.

No, not IN the book, I put them on sticky notes…I hate writing on the actual pages- negative.

Last year at RT convention, my friend who went with me was SO EXCITED about Kasie West. I’d never read any of her books, but she assured me that I would like her books.

As luck would have it- I ended up with a copy of one of her books from the day and got to meet her and get it signed at the same party.

…That conference was a year ago yesterday and I still haven’t gotten around to reading that book.

So I kept seeing that Kasie has a new book coming out, PS I Like You. I requested it from Scholastic awhile back and got an ARC.

I promised that friend she could read it since she’s who told me about Kasie and decided to start it last Friday. I decided to write the notes originally just because it was my first Kasie West book and I knew she’d think it was funny.

 I finished and got the book to her Saturday and earlier I got a notification on Instagram that she has finished and added notes.

It looks like this  now with many more notes not hanging out of the sides where they are visible.

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This was such a FUN way to pay attention to what I was reading and still also be able to share my thoughts with the next reader as they read it.

Plus, I just find it hilarious that she added her own notes too!

A review is coming for this book SOON, but if you’re a Kasie West fan, or even just love a cute contemporary romance, order it ASAP!

-M

Now what can I decorate with sticky notes next…

Review: The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall by Katie Alender

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Book info:

Release date: 8.25.15

In this asylum, your mind plays tricks on you all the time …

Delia’s new house isn’t just a house. Long ago, it was the Piven Institute for the Care and Correction of Troubled Females — an insane asylum nicknamed “Hysteria Hall.” However, many of the inmates were not insane, just defiant and strong willed. Kind of like Delia herself.

But the house still wants to keep “troubled” girls locked away. So, in the most horrifying way, Delia becomes trapped. And that’s when she learns that the house is also haunted.

Ghost girls wander the hallways in their old-fashioned nightgowns. A handsome ghost boy named Theo roams the grounds. Delia learns that all the spirits are unsettled and full of dark secrets. The house, too, harbors shocking truths within its walls — truths that only Delia can uncover, and that may set her free.

And she’ll need to act quickly — before the house’s power overtakes everything she loves.

Katie Alender brings heart-pounding suspense, gorgeous writing, and a feminist twist to this tale of memories and madness.

My Thoughts:

Two things:

  1.      I adore Katie Alender’s books. They’re so fun and have just the right amount of creepy/scary going on. LOVE.
  2.     I’m ordering this for school and it will be my new go-to when students ask for a “scary book.” (But really…why are high school students asking for a “scary book”?)

I got this ARC back in July and took forever to finish it. Things are crazy with the beginning of a new school year. That doesn’t mean I didn’t love the book though. This may actually be my new favorite book from Alender!

I initially felt bad for Delia. Yeah, she made a mistake, but she wasn’t really a BAD girl. Then again, we learn that most all of the other inhabitants of the house were misunderstood as far as their behavior goes. However, as far as the storyline goes…despite my lack of TIME, I found that I was constantly wanting to know what the heck was going on with Delia. What was the story behind the house? Was there any way to fix the situation?

Fans of Alender, and thriller fans in general, are going to love this one. I, for once, can’t wait to get a copy in my library and get my students hooked on the story. They’re going to enjoy it so much!

4/5 stars!

-Melanie

Random Update!

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Currently Reading:

In this asylum, your mind plays tricks on you all the time …

Delia’s new house isn’t just a house. Long ago, it was the Piven Institute for the Care and Correction of Troubled Females — an insane asylum nicknamed “Hysteria Hall.” However, many of the inmates were not insane, just defiant and strong willed. Kind of like Delia herself.

But the house still wants to keep “troubled” girls locked away. So, in the most horrifying way, Delia becomes trapped. And that’s when she learns that the house is also haunted.

Ghost girls wander the hallways in their old-fashioned nightgowns. A handsome ghost boy named Theo roams the grounds. Delia learns that all the spirits are unsettled and full of dark secrets. The house, too, harbors shocking truths within its walls — truths that only Delia can uncover, and that may set her free.

And she’ll need to act quickly — before the house’s power overtakes everything she loves.

Katie Alender brings heart-pounding suspense, gorgeous writing, and a feminist twist to this tale of memories and madness.

Updates:

I got Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall from Scholastic and am LOVING it so far. I’ve read a few of Katie Alender’s books before and always enjoy them. However…this one is my favorite of hers so far! Full review to come when I finish.

That said, I haven’t done much lately because I’ve been working on my first paper for Grad school. My class last fall didn’t require a paper and I didn’t take anything in the spring, so this is my first time to write a graduate level paper and it is kicking my butt.

Side note: Never read a Katie Alender book while also writing a paper on a Poe story…talk about creepy dreams!

ALSO!! I have a new library this year! I went one day last week for a brief while before a new employee orientation and I love my space, but I have a LOT of work to do. The school hadn’t had a librarian since around November, so tons of things were in the wrong spot on the shelves. I’m not OCD by any means except for when it comes to my shelving.

Which brings me to another point…I’m thinking of taking on the task of organizing my fiction by genre. I’ve searched pinterest and found several articles on it, but it still seems like a HUGE undertaking. If anyone has any tips on what to do then feel free to share because it seems like a huge idea.

I also have some crafting in mind for book ends and what not. I’m not crafty, so that should be interesting, for sure.

Well, back to Poe for now. I’ll be glad to finish this paper and get it turned in Thursday!

-M

Review: Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer

Summary from Amazon:

Heads will roll!

Paris, France: a city of fashion, chocolate croissants, and cute boys. Colette Iselin is thrilled be there for the first time, on her spring break class trip. 

But a series of gruesome murders are taking place around the city, putting everyone on edge. And as she tours the sights, Colette keeps seeing a strange vision: a pale woman in a ball gown and powdered wig, who looks like Marie Antoinette. 

Colette knows her status-obsessed friends won’t believe her, so she seeks out the help of a charming French boy. Together, they discover that the murder victims are all descendants of people who ultimately brought about Marie Antoinette’s beheading. The queen’s ghost has been awakened, and now she’s wreaking her bloodthirsty revenge. 

And Colette may just be one of those descendants . . . which means she might not make it out of this trip alive.

Acclaimed author Katie Alender brings heart-stopping suspense to this story of betrayal, glamour, mystery, history–and one killer queen.

 

My Review:

Get this book. Point blank.

This is a new middle grade book that releases on September 24. I got it from NetGalley because it is a featured pick for Scholastic’s Book Fair this fall. As librarian, I like to stay up-to-date on current books so that I can give my students great recommendations. Several of my girls are always asking about mysteries or scary books. I don’t necessarily want to point them towards Goosebumps because…they’re girls. That said, this seemed like the perfect choice. The book starts right into the excitement and gives us a glimpse of Antoinette. It then jumps to our main character, Collete. She goes on a school trip to Paris and is excited to hopefully learn about her French ancestry. LIttle does she know- she will learn more than she ever anticipated! 

MASK is full of excitement and has a great pacing that middle school girls will love. I can’t wait for my school’s book fair so I can share this one with my kids. I’m already planning to purchase a copy for the library! Also- look how awesome the cover is!

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Book Review: Gorgeous by Paul Rudnick

I’m going to be extremely lazy and not post a picture and synopsis…mostly because I did that on my last post.

My Review: 5/5

I absolutely adored Gorgeous! I got it on Netgalley awhile back and let it sit on my Kindle for awhile. I wish that I’d read it sooner. I didn’t know where Gorgeous was heading in the beginning. Becky Randle’s overweight mother died and Becky called a phone number that she found in a ring box. It turned out to be a famous designer that promised to turn her into the most beautiful woman in the world. However, there was a catch that she had to get married in a year to remain that way.

First of all, I’m a sucker for fairy tale type stories. Gorgeous was like Cinderella meets The Prince and Me (one of my all time favorite movies. I enjoyed Becky as she was a realistic character. She was never quite sure of herself–even as Rebecca, she still doubted if she was ever good enough. Rocher was an amazing best friend character. In fact, she reminded me of a redneck version of Lily in Princess Diaries, so I guess we could throw that in the mix for comparisons.

My favorite part of the book though? The visuals. I could vividly imagine the castle or the clothes that Tom designed for Rebecca. The author did a great job of describing things to the reader so that we’d know what was going on.

While this is YA in nature, I wouldn’t recommend Gorgeous to younger teens due to some strong language. Sadly, profanity is the norm in YA lit these days, but I still wouldn’t suggest that a younger teen read such language. It is best for an older teen or mid-20’s age like myself.

Be prepared for a fun, modern fairy tale if you pick up Gorgeous. It is hilarious and heartbreaking all in the same book! Get it here:  http://www.amazon.com/Gorgeous-ebook/dp/B00B7MW4AE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1374462232&sr=8-1&keywords=gorgeous+paul+rudnick

-M