Review 132. Ginger Garrett – In the shadow of the Lions.

In the Shadow of Lions: A Novel of Anne Boleyn (Chronicles of the Scribe #1)Title: In the shadow of the Lions: a novel of Anne Boleyn.
Author: Ginger Garrett.
Pages: 336.
Published: September 1st 2008.
Publisher: David C. Cook
Sort: Part one of ‘Chronicles of the Scribe’
"I am the first writer, The Scribe. My books lie open before the Throne, and someday will be the only witness of your people and their time in this world. The stories are forgotten here, and the Day draws close. I will tell you one of my stories. You will record it." So begins the narration of one such angel in this sweeping historical tale set during the reign of England's Henry VIII. It is the story of two women, their guardian angels, and a mysterious, subversive book. A book that outrages some, inspires others, and launches the Protestant Reformation. The devout Anne Boleyn catches the eye of a powerful king and uses her influence to champion an English translation of the Bible—Scriptures the common people could read for themselves. Meanwhile, Rose, a broken, suicidal woman of the streets, is moved to seek God when she witnesses Thomas More's public displays of Christian charity, ignorant of his secret life spent eradicating the same book, persecuting anyone who dares read it.
Rating:
3 stars
Interesting story. The beginning of this book was a little strange, but I liked the parts where we read more about Anne Boleyn. There is just something fascinating about her.

WoW 33. The Falconer.


Hosted by: Breaking the spine.

Elizabeth May – The falconer.
The Falconer (The Falconer, #1)Pages: 228.
Expected publication: September 19th 2013 Chronicle Books
ISBN: 1452114234 (ISBN13: 9781452114231)
Lady Aileana Kameron can sing, paint prettily, and murder the fae as easily as dancing a waltz. But how far is she prepared to go for vengeance . . . ?
Edinburgh, Scotland, 1844
18-year-old Lady Aileana Kameron, the only daughter of the Marquess of Douglas, was destined to a life carefully planned around Edinburgh’s social events – right up until a faery kills her mother. Now it’s the 1844 winter season. Between a seeming endless number of parties, Aileana slaughters faeries in secret. Armed with modified percussion pistols and explosives, every night she sheds her aristocratic facade and goes hunting. She’s determined to track down the faery who murdered her mother, and to destroy any who prey on humans in the city’s many dark alleyways. But she never even considered that she might become attracted to one. To the magnetic Kiaran MacKay, the faery who trained her to kill his own kind. Nor is she at all prepared for the revelation he’s going to bring. Because Midwinter is approaching, and with it an eclipse that has the ability to unlock a Fae prison and begin the Wild Hunt. A battle looms, and Aileana is going to have to decide how much she’s willing to lose – and just how far she’ll go to avenge her mother’s murder.
1. Epic cover.
2. She is slaughtering faeries in secret with pistols and explosives.
3. Vengeance and romance.

What is your WoW?

Review 131. Bella Forrest – A shade of vampire.

A Shade of VampireTitle: A shade of vampire.
Author: Bella Forrest.
Pages: 147.
Published: December 14th 2012.
Source: I got an e-copy from the author.
Buy: USA paperback. USA ebook. UK paperback. UK ebook.
On the evening of Sofia Claremont's seventeenth birthday, she is sucked into a nightmare from which she cannot wake. A quiet evening walk along a beach brings her face to face with a dangerous pale creature that craves much more than her blood. She is kidnapped to an island where the sun is eternally forbidden to shine. An island uncharted by any map and ruled by the most powerful vampire coven on the planet. She wakes here as a slave, a captive in chains.  Sofia's life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn when she is the one selected out of hundreds of girls to join the harem of Derek Novak, the dark royal Prince. Despite his addiction to power and obsessive thirst for her blood, Sofia soon realizes that the safest place on the island is within his quarters, and she must do all within her power to win him over if she is to survive even one more night. Will she succeed? ...or is she destined to the same fate that all other girls have met at the hands of the Novaks?
Rating:

Part of the excerpt provided by the author:

This man was danger and I knew it. I tried to wriggle away from his touch, but I was no match for his strength.
“Tell me your name,” he commanded.
I was about to refuse, but was horrified to find myself blurting out my name in response.
“Sofia Claremont.”
As soon as I revealed my name, his eyes lit up with a kind of sinister approval. Then he reached for my face and traced his thumb over my jaw line.
“Hello, Sofia Claremont. You’re one stupid girl for taking a walk alone at this time of night. You never know what kind of evil a pretty little thing like you could happen to come by.”
I found myself wondering exactly what kind of evil he was. But I was suddenly overcome by the sensations that were surrounding me. My senses took in everything at once. I heard the waves, felt the sand, smelled the ocean salt, tasted the flavor of cherry and saw the stranger’s manic appearance as he stuck a needle to my neck. The effect was instant. I was barely able to gasp, much less scream. I went from sensing everything to sensing absolutely nothing.
My last conscious thought was that I may never see Ben again.

Mel4

Review 130. Cynthia Hand – Hallowed.

Hallowed (Unearthly, #2)Title: Hallowed.
Author: Cynthia Hand.
Pages: 403.
Published: January 17th 2012 (first published January 1st 2012). 
Publisher: HarperTeen.
Sort: Part two of ‘Unearthly’
Review part one: Unearthly.
For months Clara Gardner trained to face the fire from her visions, but she wasn't prepared for the choice she had to make that day. And in the aftermath, she discovered that nothing about being part angel is as straightforward as she thought. Now, torn between her love for Tucker and her complicated feelings about the roles she and Christian seem destined to play in a world that is both dangerous and beautiful, Clara struggles with a shocking revelation: Someone she loves will die in a matter of months. With her future uncertain, the only thing Clara knows for sure is that the fire was just the beginning.
Rating:

This book was even better than the first one. There is much more action and less Tucker obsession. It was fast-paced and I liked the plot. There was a twist I suspected, but some things still managed to surprise me.

Book Blogger Love-a-thon interview.

love-a-thon
Hello bloggers! I decided to participate in the Book Blogger Love-a-thon and we had to do a interview swap. I was linked to Candice from The grown-up YA. This is my first interview and it was fun to do! I was also interviewed, so head over to her blog to find out more about me! :). Let's go on to the interview:

Review 129. Marissa Meyer – Scarlet.

Scarlet (Lunar Chronicles, #2)Title: Scarlet.
Author: Marissa Meyer.
Pages: 452. 
Published: February 5th 2013.
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends.
Sort: Part two of ‘Lunar Chronicles.’
Review Part 1: Cinder.
Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother and the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she has no choice but to trust him, though he clearly has a few dark secrets of his own. As Scarlet and Wolf work to unravel one mystery, they find another when they cross paths with Cinder. Together, they must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen who will do anything to make Prince Kai her husband, her king, her prisoner.
Rating:


Excuse me for fangirling, but AHHHHHHHHHHHH. This. was. so. good. I need to include some gifs to show you my love for this book, because I can’t express it with words alone. This was just epic and perfect. I might even liked it more than Cinder, because we get to meet Scarlet, Wolf and Thorne. More of that later in the summary, first;

tumblr_inline_mh5vzsEwZ21qgy7zt
All right. I’m okay. I’m okay. *Breathe*

If you haven’t read Cinder, there are spoilers in the summary, but you can read the review, conclusion and quote :)

WoW 32. The school for Good and Evil.

 
Hosted by: Breaking the Spine.



The School for Good and EvilTitle: The school for Good and Evil.
Author: Soman Chainani.
Pages:400.
Expected publication: May 14th 2013 by HarperCollins
ISBN: 0062104896 (ISBN13: 9780062104892)

At the School for Good and Evil, failing your fairy tale is not an option. Welcome to the School for Good and Evil, where best friends Sophie and Agatha are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime. With her glass slippers and devotion to good deeds, Sophie knows she'll earn top marks at the School for Good and join the ranks of past students like Cinderella, Rapunzel, and Snow White. Meanwhile, Agatha, with her shapeless black frocks and wicked black cat, seems a natural fit for the villains in the School for Evil. The two girls soon find their fortunes reversed—Sophie's dumped in the School for Evil to take Uglification, Death Curses, and Henchmen Training, while Agatha finds herself in the School for Good, thrust among handsome princes and fair maidens for classes in Princess Etiquette and Animal Communication. But what if the mistake is actually the first clue to discovering who Sophie and Agatha really are..? The School for Good and Evil is an epic journey into a dazzling new world, where the only way out of a fairy tale is to live through one. 

Fairytales, that's all I need to know! :D What is your pick this week?

Review 128. Gail Carriger – Soulless.

Soulless (Parasol Protectorate, #1)Title: Soulless.
Author: Gail Carriger.
Pages: 373.
Published: October 1st 2009.
Publisher: Orbit.
Sort: Part one of ‘Parasoul Protectorate’
First, she has no soul. Second, she's a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette. Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire - and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate. With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London's high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?
Rating:
5 stars
This book is hilarious! All the characters are so fleshed out and the mystery was great.

“Please, Lord Maccon, use one of the cups. My delicate sensibilities.”
The earl actually snorted.
“My dear Miss Tarabotti, if you possessed any such things, you certainly have never shown them to me.”

Showcase Sunday 24. Scarlet and vampires.


*Happy dance* I couldn’t resist buying my shiny copy from Scarlet when I saw it in the bookstore. It’s so pretty and I’m currently reading it. Finally, after waiting for such a long time! Review of Cinder: click

Scarlet (Lunar Chronicles, #2)Marissa Meyer – Scarlet.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother and the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she has no choice but to trust him, though he clearly has a few dark secrets of his own. As Scarlet and Wolf work to unravel one mystery, they find another when they cross paths with Cinder. Together, they must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen who will do anything to make Prince Kai her husband, her king, her prisoner.


I also got a review request from Bella Forrest. I got an e-copy from her book A shade of vampire. I thought it sounded interesting and I can’t wait to try it out.

A Shade of VampireOn the evening of Sofia Claremont's seventeenth birthday, she is sucked into a nightmare from which she cannot wake. A quiet evening walk along a beach brings her face to face with a dangerous pale creature that craves much more than her blood. She is kidnapped to an island where the sun is eternally forbidden to shine. An island uncharted by any map and ruled by the most powerful vampire coven on the planet. She wakes here as a slave, a captive in chains. Sofia's life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn when she is the one selected out of hundreds of girls to join the harem of Derek Novak, the dark royal Prince.  Despite his addiction to power and obsessive thirst for her blood, Sofia soon realizes that the safest place on the island is within his quarters, and she must do all within her power to win him over if she is to survive even one more night. Will she succeed? ...or is she destined to the same fate that all other girls have met at the hands of the Novaks?
 
That is it for this week! Show me your haul by leaving a link in the comments.

Review 127. Cynthia Hand – Unearthly.

Unearthly (Unearthly, #1)Title: Unearthly.
Author: Cynthia Hand.
Pages: 435.
Published: January 4th 2011
Publisher: HarperTeen .
Sort: Part one of ‘Unearthly.
In the beginning, there's a boy standing in the trees.. Clara Gardner has recently learned that she's part angel. Having angel blood run through her veins not only makes her smarter, stronger, and faster than humans (a word, she realizes, that no longer applies to her), but it means she has a purpose, something she was put on this earth to do. Figuring out what that is, though, isn't easy. Her visions of a raging forest fire and an alluring stranger lead her to a new school in a new town. When she meets Christian, who turns out to be the boy of her dreams (literally), everything seems to fall into place and out of place at the same time. Because there's another guy, Tucker, who appeals to Clara's less angelic side. As Clara tries to find her way in a world she no longer understands, she encounters unseen dangers and choices she never thought she'd have to make between honesty and deceit, love and duty, good and evil. When the fire from her vision finally ignites, will Clara be ready to face her destiny?
Rating:

This book was definitely better than expected! It wasn’t filled with clichés and I liked the refreshing take on Angels. The love-triangle did work for me and I’m happy that the romance didn’t play the main role in this book. I will be reading part two, Hallowed, soon and I’m very excited about it.

Review 126. Cameron Dokey – Winter’s Child.

Winter's Child: A Retelling of "The Snow Queen"Title: Winter’s child: a retelling of the Snow Queen.
Author: Cameron Dokey.
Pages: 173.
Published: September 8th 2009.
Publisher: Simon Pulse.
Sort: Stand alone in the ‘Once upon a time’ series.
Free-spirited Grace and serious Kai are the best of friends. They grew up together listening to magical tales spun by Kai's grandmother and sharing in each other's secrets. But when they turn sixteen and Kai declares his love for Grace, everything changes. Grace yearns for freedom and slowly begins to push Kai - and their friendship - away. Dejected Kai dreams of a dazzling Snow Queen, who entices him to leave home and wander to faraway lands. When Grace discovers Kai is gone, she learns how much she has lost and sets out on a mystical journey to find Kai...and discover herself.
Rating

image

One thing that bothers me is the fact that the blurb is incorrect. How is that possible? Grace’s grandmother always tells the magical tales and it is strange that they talk about the Snow Queen, since the book only mentions the Winter’s child.

WoW 31. The coldest girl in Coldtown.


Hosted by: Breaking the Spine.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown
Holly Black – The coldest girl in Coldtown.
Expected publication: September 17th 2013 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.
COLDTOWN WAS DANGEROUS, TANA KNEW. A GLAMOROUS CAGE, A PRISON FOR THE DAMNED AND ANYONE WHO WANTED TO PARTY WITH THEM?

Tana lived in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. The only problem is, once you pass through Coldtown's gates, you can never leave. One morning, after a perfectly ordinary party, Tana wakes up surrounded by corpses. The only other survivors of this massacre are her exasperatingly endearing ex-boyfriend, infected and on the edge, and mysterious boy burdened with a terrible secret. Shaken and determined, Tana enters a race against the clock to save the three of them the only way she knows how: by going straight to the wicked, opulent heart of Coldtown itself.
I haven’t read any work from Holly Black before, but I’m really fascinated by this blurb. Leave a link to your pick this week!

Mel4

Review 125. Kathleen Peacock – Hemlock.

Hemlock (Hemlock, #1)Title: Hemlock.
Author: Kathleen Peacock.
Pages: 416.
Published: May 8th 2012.
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Sort: Part one of ‘Hemlock’
Source: I received a copy from the publisher for this honest review.
Mackenzie and Amy were best friends. Until Amy was brutally murdered. Since then, Mac's life has been turned upside down. She is being haunted by Amy in her dreams, and an extremist group called the Trackers has come to Mac's hometown of Hemlock to hunt down Amy's killer: A white werewolf. Lupine syndrome--also known as the werewolf virus--is on the rise across the country. Many of the infected try to hide their symptoms, but bloodlust is not easy to control. Wanting desperately to put an end to her nightmares, Mac decides to investigate Amy's murder herself. She discovers secrets lurking in the shadows of Hemlock, secrets about Amy's boyfriend, Jason, her good pal Kyle, and especially her late best friend. Mac is thrown into a maelstrom of violence and betrayal that puts her life at risk.
Rating:

The take on werewolves added something new to the genre.The characters were alright and the mystery around Amy’s dead was enjoyable. I wasn't completely blown away by the story, though.

Showcase Sunday 23. Bargain.

Two days ago I found my heaven on earth. There is this store and I always walked passed by it. I decided to take a look and it is now my favorite bookstore ever. You know that I live in The Netherlands and it’s hard to find English YA books in the store – and if they have a small selection, they are so expensive. I always have to order them from TBD. This store has a huge selection of English YA (with affordable prices) and upstairs, there is this bargain and second hand area. I almost did my happy dance when I picked up these lovely books:


I couldn’t believe the prices and I got some extra discount because I’m a student. They look like new books, except Soulless: the spine is a little cracked.

Stephenie Meyer – The host (gifted by a friend)
Sarah Zettel – Dust girl.
Kenneth Oppel – This dark endeavor.
Laini Taylor – Daughter of smoke & bone (example, this one was only 2,50!)
Gail Carriger – Soulless (and this one 0,90 cents)
Christine Cody – Bloodlands.

Review 124. Emma Newman – Between two thorns.

Between Two ThornsTitle: Between two thorns.
Author: Emma Newman.
Pages: 400.
Expected publication: February 26th 2013.
Publisher: Angry Robot.
Sort: Part one of ‘The split worlds.’
Source: Netgalley & publisher.
Something is wrong in Aquae Sulis, Bath’s secret mirror city. The new season is starting and the Master of Ceremonies is missing. Max, an Arbiter of the Split Worlds Treaty, is assigned with the task of finding him with no one to help but a dislocated soul and a mad sorcerer. There is a witness but his memories have been bound by magical chains only the enemy can break. A rebellious woman trying to escape her family may prove to be the ally Max needs. But can she be trusted? And why does she want to give up eternal youth and the life of privilege she’s been born into?
Rating
3 stars

Meet the intricate and difficult world of Nether. It’s a place between our world (called Mundanus) and the world of the Fae (Exilium). One of the big cities is Aqua Sulis and all the important and Fae-touched families live here. This book tells the story of several characters. First we get to know Sam, a Mundane. He is in the wrong place at the wrong time and that makes him a valuable eye-witness. He has no idea what is going on when he is questioned by Max and a sorcerer. Max is an Arbiter and he is assigned with the investigation of the disappeared Master of Ceremonies. When he and the sorcerer discover that Sam’s memory is locked by a powerful Charm, he must find someone who can help them.

That’s when Catherine’s, also Cathy, story comes in the picture. Cathy ran away from her powerful family in Aqua Sulis. She lives in Mundanus, protected by a spell to keep her family from finding her. When Lord Poppy (a high Fae lord) takes a certain interest in her, her time in Mundanus is over. She is taken back to her parents and they already made plans for her future: she is going to marry William, second son from another rich family.

I like how these different stories come together, but I wished they connected sooner. I was waiting for the moment, but it felt a bit rushed when it finally happened.  

From all the people in the book, I found Cathy’s POV the best. Her story is sad. She is desperate to live in our world, far away from her fathers terror. I love how she never gave up and she stays true to herself. What I also appreciated was the fact that she was described as ‘plain looking.’ Finally something else than flowing, shining hair and dazzling eyes. I liked the original Arbiter. This is someone whose soul is dislocated from his body. The downside was the disconnecting I felt with Max; he has no emotions. He felt a bit flat.

The story was sometimes hard to follow. There are a lot of names and they all sound similar. I was a bit lost at some parts and when we got a glimpse of explanation, it was nearly at the end. There were some things lacking in the world-building. The plot was okay. There isn’t much mystery, but the story had a nice pace. The thing that really bothered me was the abrupt ending. It came out of nowhere and I felt like I missed something. Not a bad book, but it's nothing special. (I have to mention it: the cover is so pretty!)

He clasped her hand again, this time pressing it over his heart, but she felt no beat through the silk shirt. “Now I understand what a delicious creature of passion you are. It was buried so far beneath an inconsequential face and forgettable body that I almost missed it!”
Pooh

Review 123. Courtney Summers – This is not a test.

This is Not a TestTitle: This is not a test.
Author: Courtney Summers.
Pages: 323.
Published: June 19th 2012.
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin.
Sort: Stand-alone.
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?
Rating: Favorite.


What a heart breaking book! Be prepared for a very dark, gritty story with a cruel ending. I literary spent five minutes staring at the last line. How can you end a book like that? I need more than this, Summers! And I missed the answer to: how did it start? The zombies were just there, appearing out of thin air. These two points lowered the rating to 4.5, still very good.

WoW 30. Boy Nobody & Winter Queen.



Hosted by: Breaking the Spine.

Boy NobodyAllen Zadoff – Boy Nobody.
Expected publication: June 11th 2013 by Little, Brown & CO BYR
Boy Nobody is the perennial new kid in school, the one few notice and nobody thinks much about. He shows up in a new high school, in a new town, under a new name, makes few friends and doesn't stay long. Just long enough for someone in his new friend's family to die -- of "natural causes." Mission accomplished, Boy Nobody disappears, and moves on to the next target. When his own parents died of not-so-natural causes at the age of eleven, Boy Nobody found himself under the control of The Program, a shadowy government organization that uses brainwashed kids as counter-espionage operatives. But somewhere, deep inside Boy Nobody, is somebody: the boy he once was, the boy who wants normal things (like a real home, his parents back), a boy who wants out. And he just might want those things badly enough to sabotage The Program's next mission.
 
Winter Queen (Fairy Queens, #1)Amber Argyle – Winter Queen.
Expected publication: June 19th 2013 by Starling Publishing.
Becoming a winter queen will make Ilyenna as cold and cruel and deadly as winter itself, but it might be the only way to save her people from a war they have no hope of winning.
Mortally wounded during a raid, seventeen-year-old Ilyenna is healed by winter fairies who present her with a seductive offer: become one of them and share their power over winter. But that power comes with a price. If she accepts, she will become a force of nature, lose her humanity, and abandon her family. Unwilling to pay such a high price, Ilyenna is enslaved by one of the invaders, Darrien. While in captivity, she learns the attack wasn’t just a simple raid but part of a larger plot to overthrow her entire nation.  With the enemy stealing over the mountains and Darrien coming to take her to his bed, Ilyenna must decide whether to resurrect the power the fairies left behind. Doing so will allow her to defeat Darrien and the other invaders, but if she embraces winter, she will lose herself to that destroying power—forever.


And I recently saw the cover from Cold Spell, part four of the fairytale retellings from Jackson Pearce. I had to show it: pretty!

Cold Spell (Fairytale Retellings, #4)
Mel4