Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Should Be in Your Beach Bag

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This meme was created because they are particularly fond of lists. I am too so that is why I am participating this week.

Top Books that Should Be in Your Beach Bag
1. Perfect Fifths (or any book from The Jessica Darling Series) by Megan McCafferty - because what fun is summer without a fling with Marcus Flutie?
2. The Summer of Skinny Dipping by Amanda Howells - It made me happy, it made me cry. It made me want to spend all day at the beach and all night too.
3. Crush: Twenty Six Real-Life Tales of First Love ed. by Andrea Richesin - I don't have this one yet, but it will probably make it into my beach bag too!
4. Endless Summer by Jennifer Echols - it may just make you want to try wakeboarding. I did!
5. Invincible Summer by Hannah Moskowitz - it will knock your socks off and leave you with so much to think about.

 Top Books in my Beach Bag
6. The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han - dying to read this but I'm waiting for my first day of vacation. Why can't it be June 19th already?
7. We'll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han - I know I won't want to wait to dig into the second of the series.
8. It's Not Summer Without You by Jenny Han - thank goodness, the last one has already come out. No waiting for me!
9. Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Mattson - I bought this near the end of last summer but saved it for this summer. I have been avoiding all reviews because I didn't want to have any spoilers. I'm excited to read it and then go back to read everyone's posts to find out what they thought about it too.
10. Perfect Fifths by Megan McCafferty - because it's not summer without a fling with Marcus Flutie

Sunday, May 29, 2011

In My Mailbox (33)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme run by Kristi at The Story Siren which explores the books that have been delivered to our mailbox or doorstep or directly into our hot little hands.

Watch Me by Lauren Barnholdt
The Mortal Instruments Box Set:
City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare
City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

The Lucky Kind by Alyssa B. Sheinmel

Destroy All Cars by Blake Nelson
Sweet Valley High: Double Love (book 1)  by Francine Pascal
Paperback Swap
Aces Up by Lauren Barnholdt
Thank You!

Let me just say this first. I have my reasons. Yes, that is Sweet Valley High.There will be no laughing. None. Again I have my reasons. If you must know, check out the Sweet Valley High on Forever Young Adult  Ok, you can laugh, but only if it is with me.

I jumped at the chance to get my hands on a box set of The Mortal Instruments box set from the Green Valley Book Fair.A few weeks back during the Spring Blog Carnival, I hosted the Karaoke Booth and several people wrote in about the hotness of Jace - and he's been mentioned on many a blog. I didn't want to miss out on his swoon-worthiness and now I don't have to.

Emily from Red House Books gave me Aces Up as a Random Act of Kindness. This was such a great surprise because I didn't know which book from my wish list she was going to send. When I send my RAK books out, I like to keep them a surprise too. I think Random Acts of Kindness is just wonderful  and is hosted by Isalys and Vanessa at Book Soulmates 

All in all, an awesome week of books. I can't wait to see the books everyone got this week. I'm sure there will be some impressive IMMs for all of those who attended BEA.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Love My Indie with Author Karin Lefranc

Love My Indie is a feature where fellow bloggers, readers, and authors tell me about their favorite independent bookstores. I love the feeling I get when I go into an independent bookstore - like it is filled with hidden treasures just waiting for me to find them. Maybe one day I will have the chance to visit these amazing bookstores.

Showing some Indie Love today is:

  Karin Lefranc, author of A Quest for Good Manners

Millrace Bookshop in Farmington, Connecticut is a much-loved treasure nestled on the the banks of the Farmington River. The store was formerly the Grist Mill, built in 1680! Part of it was converted to the Millrace Bookshop in 1968 and just a few years later current owner Jan Owens took over.
Tantalizing titles from biographies and mysteries to lush coffee table books and children's books line the shelves of this historic building. Readers can dip into a juicy memoir while sitting in the big bay window overlooking the flowing river. 
Millrace Book has expanded to offer classes and workshops in writing. In addition Jan supports local authors in many ways like featuring us in a special section, organizing book readings and fun special events.

Karin Lefranc is the author of the children's book A Quest for Good Manners

Thanks Karin for stopping by. I loved learning about your favorite independent bookstore!

If you're interested in participating in this feature, please send me an email at actinupwb@gmail.com - I'd love to hear from you and discover your favorite indie bookstore!  

TGIF: Author Love

TGIF is hosted by Ginger over at GReads! Head on over and link up!


This Friday's Question:
Author Love:
In 2011 which new/old authors have your discovered and loved?
In looking over my books read so far this year, I realized, with the exception of David Levithan, the authors are all new to me. I may have heard of them before and may even own a few of their books, but it is the first time I've read any if there books. For some reason, I am amazed by this. I have enjoyed all of them but the one that I am most impressed by and eager to read more of is Hannah Moskowitz. I loved her novel Invincible Summer. If you interested, you can read my review here. I was amazed by the complexity of her characters and the depth that she took them to. I was mesmerized by the story and thought about it for days after reading it. I know I'll read it again before the summer is over.
 Even though she is new to me, I'm excited to know that Invincible Summer is her second novel and I have her first novel Break to hunt down and read. Plus she has more books in the future! Gone, Gone, Gone is already on my wish list! I think she's an author to know about AND she's fun to follow on twitter @hannahmosk

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Splash Into Summer Giveaway Hop

I am so ready for summer! And what better way to kick it off than with a giveaway! The Splash Into Summer Giveaway Hop is hosted by I Am a Reader Not a Writer and Pixie at Page Turners.

One of my favorite books last summer was actually two! Endless Summer is a bind-up of The Boys Next Door and Endless Summer by Jennifer Echols.  And I am giving away 2 copies. Yay!

To enter, fill out the form below and tell me one of your favorite summer reads. While I love comments, they will not be used as entries into this giveaway.

Must be 13 or older to enter
Open to US/Canada 
Contest is open 5/25 to 5/31
One entry per person
Two winners will be selected using random.org

Now that you've entered to win this fun summer read, hop over to these blogs and enter to win some more!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Love My Indie with Author Amalie Howard

Love My Indie is a feature where fellow bloggers, readers, and authors tell me about their favorite independent bookstores. I love the feeling I get when I go into an independent bookstore - like it is filled with hidden treasures just waiting for me to find them. Maybe one day I will have the chance to visit these amazing bookstores.

If you're interested in participating in this feature, please send me an email at actinupwb@gmail.com - I'd love to hear from you and discover your favorite indie bookstore! 
Showing some Indie Love today is:

Amalie Howard, author of Bloodspell

I live in Larchmont NY, a picturesque and beautiful town in Southern Westchester nestled alongside the Long Island Sound, and bordered by Mamaroneck in the north and New Rochelle in the south. We are incredibly lucky in Larchmont to have two equally fabulous independent bookstores—Anderson’s Book Shop and The Voracious Reader.

Anderson's Book Shop

Located on a tree-lined block on the main street in the center of Larchmont, Anderson’s has been a Larchmont staple for years, almost sixty-five of them to be exact. In fact, Anderson’s will be celebrating its sixty-fifth birthday on May 7, so Happy Birthday in advance! Aside from the full range of fiction, nonfiction, and both adult as well as children’s titles, Anderson’s also carries miscellaneous gifts (which I’ve always found great in a pinch for the endless stream of kid birthday parties). 

Inside Anderson's Book Shop
The store is spacious, airy, and browsing-friendly. I’ve been known to lose an hour at a time perusing books in there! Anderson’s also hosts book signings and promotional events for many authors, both at their store and at other local venues. Annabelle and Jenny Siegel, who both run Anderson’s, are wonderful people and are always up for a chat or ready to recommend a good book. They are extremely supportive of local authors and even have a special wall at the front of the store where these authors are prominently displayed. Annabelle graciously offered to not only host a book signing for Bloodspell, which we will likely do in late summer/early fall, but also is very happy to include my book on the local author wall! It’s wonderful to feel so supported by a local bookstore. But this comes as no surprise – my two older boys have painted Halloween pictures on Anderson’s store windows (part of a local Halloween window-painting tradition) two years in a row! Anderson’s Book Shop loves their town, and it loves them back.

Just around the corner and also in the main village area, you will find The Voracious Reader with its charming red-brick exterior.

The inscription on the front store window reads “for young people with an appetite for books.” It’s a whimsical kind of place that just beckons for you to come in off the street and perhaps have a delicious mug of butter-beer while checking out all the fantastic books. 
Inside The Voracious Reader
When I walk into The Voracious Reader, it’s like walking into a fantasy world full of beautiful books. Geared toward children and teens, The Voracious Reader is run by Francine Lucidon who is just as charming as her store. Francine has always hit the spot for me with her young-adult book recommendations, and has been a particularly enthusiastic supporter of my own writing journey. Francine will be hosting the launch of my debut novel, Bloodspell, at The Voracious Reader in early June! This lady knows books like nobody’s business. And she also knows how to host fabulous author and book events that have people signing up weeks in advance on the Voracious Reader website. I’ve met both Jane Yolen and Justine Larbalestier at different events there! For any aspiring writer, this kind of exposure is invaluable. My two-year-old also attends story-time there every Monday at 11 (stories read by none other than the multi-talented Francine herself), so it’s definitely a family-oriented venue. Francine has been so successful here in a few short years that she is currently expanding into the space next door, which means more books, more great events, and much more to offer all the voracious readers who live nearby! Knowledgeable, compassionate, and kind, it’s no surprise at all that the residents of Larchmont have embraced her and her wonderful bookstore, The Voracious Reader, with wide-open arms.

Hurrah for indie bookstores!

Amalie Howard is the author of the young adult urban fantasy novel, Bloodspell which will be available June 1, 2011 from Langdon Street Press. You can visit her website at amaliehoward.com

Sunday, May 15, 2011

In My Mailbox (32)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme run by The Story Siren which explores the books that have been delivered to our mailbox or doorstep or directly into our hot little hands.

What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen
The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han (e-book)

By the Time You Read This, I'll Be Dead by Julie Anne Peters
Liar by Justine Larbalestier

The Summer I Turned Pretty was the first book I bought this week. I planned to buy it some time before my vacation this summer, but after seeing Kelsey's IMM last week at Reading or Breathing, I bought it immediately. And Ginger at GReads! recommendations swayed me too. Of course I had to get Sarah Dessen's newest novel too. I love her books!

I can't wait to see what everyone else got this week. Happy Reading!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Spring Carnival Karaoke Booth Winner!!


This is a reposting of the Spring Blog Carnival Karaoke Booth winner.

I had a lot of fun reading all of your challenge entries. They were great! I selected my top ten favorite entries and randomly selected a winner. In no particular order, my favorites are:

 C.E. Hart said... 
Jack Torrance, from Stephen King's The Shining, enters the karaoke booth.

He opens a bottle of spirits and gargles, readying himself for a night of fun. After all, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

The music begins and Jack belts out ‘Crazy’ by Gnarls Barkley.

I remember when, I remember
I remember when I lost my mind
There was something so pleasant about that place
Even your emotions have an echo in so much space
Does that make me crazy?

 Enbrethiliel said...
I'd like Mr. Rochester to sing A Girl Like You to Jane Eyre! He could do it during the house party, so that Blanche Ingram thinks it's actually about her. =P (We'd have to find him a Victorian equivalent for "protest singers" and "protest songs," though.)

When this song first came out, I thought it was really creepy and stalkerish, and didn't like it. Well, Mr. Rochester has his creepy, stalkerish side, too. It fits him! (It's also a great song to have ringing in our ears right before the novel's fortune telling scene!)

FreakChiq said... 
I can totally see/hear Wesley Rush from Kody Keplinger's The DUFF singing Fever For the Flava by Hot Action Cop. :)

He's a (funny, lovable and charming) man-slut and he doesn't take himself too seriously. This song is just perfect for him. :D

Tammy said...
I think Hermione from Harry Potter would be thinking about Ron and she'd sing "I'd Lie" by Taylor Swift.

"And I could tell you, his favorite color's green. He loves to argue, born on the seventeenth. His sister's beautiful, he has his father's eyes. And if you ask me if I love him, I'd lie."

The Story Queen said... 
If Puck from the Iron Fey series participated in a Karaoke Booth, he would sing something to make everyone (especially Meaghan!) laugh. I can picture him singing a Justin Bieber song, like "Baby." Come on - picture it! He jumps on stage and starts singing "baby, baby, baby oh, like baby, baby, baby, ooh, like" - You get the idea. Meg would be mortified ;)

Hannah said... 
Combining my dual love of music and books? I think I could kiss ya. ;-)

I've always pictured Violet (from Kimberly Derting's "Body Finder" series) singing Delta Goodrem's "LOst Without You" to Jay, especially during "Desires of the Dead" when they're broken up and Violet is a mess. The lyrics are just so epic and perfect.

"I thought I had all the answers,
Never giving in
But baby since you've gone,
I admit that I was wrong
All I know is I'm lost without you
I'm not gonna lie
How am I gonna be strong without you?
I need you by my side"

I think this song is the embodiment of Violet's emotions.

Jex said... 
Trella (Inside Out by Maria V Snyder) steps up to the mic as Firework by Katy Perry begins to play. I see a montage of various times throughout the book where Trella sees the scrubs around her reach out to help her on her mission to find Gateway. Its the perfect song to describe how Trella goes from being just another scrub amongst the crowd to being a leader in the rebellion, a spark to light the fire Inside. 

Riv Re said... 
This is such an awesome challenge! Let me think... *rubs head from thinking*
Aha! I have the perfect one:
I can totally see Po singing "Crashed Into You" by Chris Daughtry to Katsa in Graceling.
When they met, Katsa overpowered Po, knocking him unconscious. The song goes "and then I crashed into you...could've been the death of me, but then you breathed your breath in me." Katsa is stronger than Po, and could kill him if she wanted, but they're perfect together.

I can't help it, I have another one: Breathing by Cheryl Renee Herbsman is about Savannah, a girl with asthma and the boy, Jackson, who makes her feel better, but then has to leave, making her asthma get even worse than before. I can imagine Savannah singing Taylor Swift's "Breathe" to Jackson as she begs him to come back. "I can't breathe without you, but I have to."

Liz Tea said... 
Seriously? Jace Wayland from the Mortal Instruments singing "I'm too Sexy" would be the most epic thing ever. That boy is all about some self-confidence, with a smidge of arrogance. ;D

And Rachel agrees

Rachel said... 
I'm choosing Jace from the Mortal Instruments series and the song I'm choosing is 'I'm Too Sexy For My Shirt'. I think the reasoning behind this one's obvious, but I can totally imagine Jace singing this one.

And the Winner Is . . .


Thank you to all who participated. I hope that there is another blog carnival next year!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday - Stupid Fast

Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

Stupid Fast 
Geoff Herbach
Published by: Sourcebooks Fire
on June 1, 2011

Fifteen-year-old Felton Reinstein has always been on the smallish side, but in his sophomore year he starts growing...and growing.

During gym one day he smokes the football jocks in a 600-yard race. Felton has never been interested in sports, but there's no doubt-he is "stupid fast." As he juggles his newfound athletic prowess, his mom's sudden depression, an annoying little brother, and his first love, he discovers a shocking secret about his past which explains why he's turning out the way he is. (from Goodreads)

It's pretty funny that I don't care that much for football, but I like movies, tv shows and books about football (or football players).

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

And the Winner Is . . .

The Winner Is . . . 

Ashley from Bookcase Siren

As the Spring Blog Carnival Hop winner, she has selected Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist.

There were a total of 144 entries and using random.org, number 139 was selected. Check back for the announcement for the Spring Blog Carnival Karaoke Booth Challenge winner. Coming soon!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Random Acts of Kindness - May Sign-Up

Book Soulmates are awesome and they are once again hosting Random Acts of Kindness. This is a great opportunity to share books with fellow bloggers and readers. I'll be sending out a few books this month and one of them may just go to you! So keep your lists updated because I'm checking them out!

My wishlist can be found HERE  and again below.

If you want to participate, here is what you do (from Books Soulmates):
• Sign up each month that you'd like to participate.
• Show off your participation by grabbing our RAK button :)
• Create a wish list (on Amazon, Goodreads, or your blog etc) and post it in the Google Doc located in each R.A.K post for the month.
• If you choose to do a R.A.K for someone, check out their wish list and contact that blogger for their address.
• At the end of the month, SHOW US YOUR R.A.K!
Make a post saying 'Thank You' to whoever granted one of your wishes and share it with us :)

Let's keep our International bloggers in mind and in our hearts.
Remember, there's always the Book Depository and they offer FREE shipping!

Easy peasy!

Sign up for May [HERE]
See who else is participating [HERE

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact:
Vanessa at Twerd413 [at] gmail [dot] com
Isalys at booksoulmates [at] gmail [dot] com 
                                                                                                    or via Twitter.
My wish list is always changing and always growing. This is my most updated list as of May 8, 2011.

6 by Karen Tayleur
13 to Life by Shannon Delaney
Accomplice by Eireann Corrigan
And Then Things Fall Apart by Arlaina Tibensky (July 26, 2011)
Beauty Queens by Libby Bray
Beige by Cecil Castellucci
Boy Proof by Cecil Castellucci
Breathless by Jessica Warman
Brother/Sister by Sean Olin
Carry Me Down by M.J. Hyland
Crashing by Chris Wooding
Dead End by Jason Myers (June 2011)
Displacement by Thalis Chaltas (June 2011)
Family by Micol Ostow
Funny How Things Change by Melissa Wyatt
Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley
Hold Still by Nina LaCour
I Am J by Cris Beam
Life as We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer
Love Drugged by James Klise
Model Home by Eric Puchner
Ordinary Beauty by Laura Wiess (June 14, 2011)
Perfect by Ellen Hopkins
Playing Hurt by Holly Schindler
Playing with Matches by Brian Katcher
Plus by Veronica Chambers
Random by Lesley Choyce
Rats Saw God by Rob Thomas
Rich and Mad by William Nicholson
Rules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles
Saltwater Moons by Julie Gottus
Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready
Shift by Jennifer Bradbury
Small Town Sinners by Melissa Walker
So Much Closer by Susane Colasanti
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams - I actually got this one at the library but had to return it before I got around to reading it
The Day Before by Lisa Schroeder

The Day I Killed James by Catherine Ryan Hyde
The Eleventh Plague by Jeff Hirsch (September 1, 2011)
The Hole We're In by Gabrielle Zevin
The Lost Summer by Kathryn Williams
The Nobodies Album by Carolyn Parkhurst
The Piper's Son by Melina Marchetta
The Uncoupling by Meg Wolitzer (April 5, 2011)
Thief by Brian James
Trapped by Michael Northrop
What Comes After by Steve Watkins
When Jeff Comes Home by Catherine Atkins
You Against Me by Jenny Downham

In My Mailbox (31)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme run by The Story Siren which explores the books that have been delivered to our mailbox or doorstep or directly into our hot little hands.

Something Like Fate by Susane Colasanti
Bumped by Megan McCafferty (e-book)
Songs for a Teenage Nomad by Kim Culbertson (e-book)
Dream Smashers by Angela Carlie (e-book)

I'm looking forward to my life slowing down a bit so I can actually read books that have been piling up around the house. I'm currently reading Bumped and am liking it so far! Megan McCafferty's dystopian tale is crazy.  I have Songs for a Teenage Nomad in paperback, but it was FREE for Nook (and kindle) so I couldn't pass it up!

Can't wait to see what everyone else got this week. Happy reading!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Love My Indie with Author Julie Chibbaro

Love My Indie is a feature where fellow bloggers, readers, and authors tell me about their favorite independent bookstores. I love the feeling I get when I go into an independent bookstore - like it is filled with hidden treasures just waiting for me to find them. Maybe one day I will have the chance to visit these amazing bookstores.

If you're interested in participating in this feature, please send me an email at actinupwb@gmail.com - I'd love to hear from you and discover your favorite indie bookstore! 
Showing some Indie Love today is:

Julie Chibbaro, author of Deadly and Redemption

The reasons I love Oblong Books & Music are simple:  Their enthusiasm for books and authors, and their involvement with their community.  Every month, owner Suzanna Hermans and her dad Dick set up events for the public, whether it’s for children’s books or young adult or adult, the events are always fun.  These guys know how to throw a party.  And they know how to be part of one, too.  I had a book launch for my latest release, Deadly, at the end of February, and they drove an hour south to the library with four boxes of books to sell.  These are dedicated indie booksellers!

They must be doing something right.  Last month, they renovated and added 1,000 sq. ft., a new annex to their store that they called Oblong Jr.  They set up an area for reading, making it easier for parents to bring in their children.  A monthly newsletter, if you sign up for it, tells you all about the upcoming events.

Oblong opened in 1975, and is still going strong.  Visit their website at oblongbooks.com.  

Julie Chibbaro is the author of Deadly and Redemption. You can check out her website at

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Spring Blog Carnival - Karaoke Booth

Welcome to the Spring Blog Carnival 
Karaoke Booth

I love books and music. I love books about bands, musicians, singers - and their muses. I love them so much I'm giving away books about bands and some music!


The winner will receive a copy of Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway and a $10 i-Tunes Gift Card.

Imagine a character from a book you've read enters the Karaoke Booth. Tell me the song they would sing and why they chose that song. Enter by leaving a comment. Make sure to include the character's name, the title of the book they appear in and the song they would sing and why.


Must be 13 or older to enter
Open to US and Internationally
(if an international winner is selected, a second book will be offered in place of the i-Tunes gift card)
One entry per person
Provide an email or twitter name with your comment so I can notify you  
The winner will be chosen randomly from my top 10 favorite responses
Challenge ends 5/8/11

To get you started, here's my challenge example:
When Jacob is trying to decide if he can be friends with Bella again at the beginning of Eclipse, I could imagine him scream-singing "Whataya Want from Me" at Bella. He can't decide if he wants to make up with her and is confused by their relationship because he thinks she may want more but she can't admit it to him or to herself. The playful side of Jacob, and the part of him that wants to make up with Bella, just might even sport some Adam Lambert guy-liner.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Spring Blog Carnival

Welcome to the Spring Blog Carnival 

Hosted by:
Candace from Candace’s Book Blog, Angela from Reading Angel,
Lori from Pure Imagination and Mary from The Book Swarm

Each day of the carnival, you can visit booths/blogs for all kinds of challenges. On Tuesday, May 3rd, I will be hosting the Karaoke Booth!! I'm so excited for my challenge for you, but you'll have to check back on Tuesday to find out what it is. You can see the complete schedule and blogs hosting challenges below.

May 1st-

May 2nd-

May 3rd-

May 4th-

May 5th-

May 6th-

May 7th-

Now for my giveaway. Since I am hosting the Karaoke Booth, I will be giving away a music/singing themed book. You can choose from Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan or I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone by Stephanie Kuehnert.

To enter, fill out the form below
and if you're up for it, complete my challenge! Starts May 3rd!


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