What’s up with Amazon?

Amazon has been making some really poor decisions in the last little while, including pulling publishing company Macmillon from their website.  I came across this good video on Books and Literature for Teens from author Jackson Pearce of Wishful Thinking on why buying from Indie Bookstores is better. Check it out.

Stupid Amazon for wooing me with their ridiculously low prices!

Check out this amazing website that will help you find local non box book stores in your area.

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Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

“Life in District 12 isn’t really so different from life in the arena. At some point, you have to stop running and turn around and face whoever wants you dead.”

Katniss has retuned from the games as a victor with her supposed boyfriend Peeta thinking everything might return to normal, but she couldn’t be further from the truth. The Capitol, unimpressed by her stunt with the berries, is far from through with her, and when the President comes to District 12 with a threatening message for her, the stakes get even higher. There are rumours of rebellion and Katniss is unknowingly at the centre. As her apparent power is realized she will have to make a decision, continue to play along with the Capitol, take her family and run, or stand up and fight.

Katniss Everdeen is not the only girl on fire, so is Suzanne Collins. Catching Fire was a fantastic second book. With the ground work of character development and world building already done in Hunger Games, Collins was able to focus more on plot development and surprises. This book has more twists and turns than a rollercoaster! Despite the fast paced nature and the fact that I couldn’t read it quick enough, there is actually tons of deep story layering taking place – all the pieces coming together throughout the book, leading up to the surprising cliff-hanger. Everything is more in this book, more suspense, more romance, more Capitol trying to control and more Katniss kicking butt! Once again, Collins creates a book that is brilliant on all levels and I absolutely cannot wait until the third book! (go team Peeta!!).

You might like Catching Fire if you enjoy books with: fast paced plots, surprises and suspense, relatable characters and love triangles, other worlds similar to our own, and books in a series.

Other books by Suzanne Collins: Hunger Games and the Underland Chronicles

If you enjoyed Catching Fire you might also like:  *see my review for Hunger Games*

Additional Info: The third book in the series is set to be released in August 2010 and Catching Fire was named one of the 10 best novels in 2009 by Time magazine.

Author’s website found here.

Rating: W3.5/4   C4/4   P4/4   O4/4   PP4/4   CR4/4

Grade: JS+

Covers:

Coming Soon to a Library Near You (9)

This week’s book: Tell Me a Secret

Author: Holly Cupala

Release Date: April 8th 2010

From Good Reads:

It’s tough, living in the shadow of a dead girl…

In the five years since her bad-girl sister Xanda’s death, Miranda Mathison has wondered about the secret her sister took to the grave, and what really happened the night she died. Now, just as Miranda is on the cusp of her dreams—a best friend to unlock her sister’s world, a ticket to art school, and a boyfriend to fly her away from it all—Miranda has a secret all her own.

Then two lines on a pregnancy test confirm her worst fears. Stripped of her former life, Miranda must make a choice with tremendous consequences and finally face her sister’s demons and her own.

In this powerful debut novel, stunning new talent Holly Cupala illuminates the dark struggle of a girl who must let go of her past to find a way into her own future.

non-fiction addiction(1)

Non-fiction for teens sure does have a bad rep. This monthly feature will introduce non-fiction titles that are fun and informative and hopefully bring to life the wealth of relevant and amazing titles that are out there. 

My So-Called Digital Life: 2,000 Teenagers, 300 Camera’s, and 30 Days to Document their World by Bob Pletka.

Pletka, a director of technology for Southern California’s Covina-Valley School District, organized a project with high-school students in his region. The students’ charge was to capture, with words and images, their lives during a month at school. Grouped into categories, the powerful student essays and photos address the trip to and from school, learning and the ways students play after school. The intimate images reach far beyond the headlines and hype about teen trends and emphasize the enormous pressures students face, beginning with their gruelling schedules–many pictures show the predawn commute to school. Equally affecting are the students’ frank critiques of the “dull, lifeless” teaching methods and the joy they find in dynamic classrooms. Adults and teens will come away stirred and enlightened by this raw, impressive student collaboration and by Pletka’s moving introduction, which challenges administrators to rethink how school is taught.

I came across this title during a program assignment and instantly fell in love. As a very amateur photographer myself this idea thrilled me. I think that photography is such an accessible and relevant way for teens to express themselves. As a teen I really enjoyed creating art through photographs and demonstrating to people how I saw things.

Wings by Aprilynne Pike

After being home schooled for most of her life, Laurel meets kind and sensitive David on her first day of high school. David is instantly attracted to Lauren’s quirky habits; she always has to be outside, she doesn’t like salt water and she only eats vegetables and fruit. Yet Laurel is anything from normal, when a blue flower starts growing out of her back Laurel finds out that she’s actually a faerie. When she returns to her old house she meets attractive Tamani, also a faerie, who helps her learn her heritage and charges her with saving her father and saving her land from evil trolls. Laurel will constantly have to choose between her faerie life and the human one she has always led and ultimately between David and Tamani.

I’ve been holding out on reading a faerie book for so long, because I just find the idea so cheesy. However, I’m glad I started with Wings, because I thoroughly enjoyed it and it opened up an entire sub genre for myself. I liked Laurel as a main character and found her not only believable but completely relatable. I think it’s a feat to make a girl who has a blue flower growing out of her back relatable to the average reader. I thought the romance triangle, while predictable, was actually quite interesting. As far as world building goes, I thought Aprilynne Pike did an excellent job, and I thought it really innovative to have faeries be plants. The book is incredibly well paced, and is captivating from start to finish. For those who are a little hesitant about faeries, I highly recommend this book.

You might enjoy Wings if you like books with: a little bit of romance, fast paced plot, magical and fantasy elements,

This is Aprilynne Pike’s debut novel

See my faerie post for more YA faerie novels.

Additional Information: Wings is the first of four books in a series with the second book Spells set to be released May 4, 2010. Fans will also be pleased to know that the film rights for the book have been picked up by Disney with Miley Cyrus as a possible cast.

Author website found here.

Rating: W3/4   C3.5/4   P3/4   O3.5/4   PP4/4   CR3/4

Grade: S

What’s going on with wordpress?

for some reason after I publish a post they are disappearing! It happened last week and now I realize that my review from yesterday is no longer there. So I appologize, I’m going to try and figure out what’s going on. In the meantime I’ll repost the review, if for some reason when you view my blog they are actually showing up and now I’m posting the same thing twice, let me know.

Faeries

As many of you know I was a little hesitant about the whole zombies as high school students/boyfriends thing, however that didn’t come close to my apprehension for the growing number of faerie books available for YA. Don’t get me wrong, I love faeries in traditional fantasy books, but when one starts dating the high school nobody, or worse the high school nobody actually turns into a faerie, things get a little concerning. To be honest I thought the idea was stupid. However, I have been proved wrong. I read Wings over Christmas break (review tomorrow) and loved it. I thought it was wonderful, and I can definitely see the appeal, I mean it is really not that different from vampires, or my new friends, zombies. So in honour of my new appreciation for faeries in the paranormal/fantasy genre I thought I would compile a list of some recent faerie books (there sure were a lot in 2009).

Wings by Aprilynne Pike, Need by Carrie Jones, Captivate by Carrie Jones

 

Ash by Malinda Lo, Bones of Faerie by Janni Lee Simner, How to Ditch your Fairy by Justine Larbestier,

 

Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr, Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr and Fragile Eternity by Melissa Marr

 

Wonderous Strange by Lesley Livingston, Daylight by Lesley Livingston

Lament: The Faerie Queen’s Deception by Maggie Stiefvater, Ballad: A gathering of Faerie by Maggie Stiefvater, Fairy Tale by Cyn Balog