I am a librarian with a hunger only books can satisfy. There is nothing quite like a book when you need something to inspire, to assist, to ponder, to laugh, and to cry. Tell me what you think about new titles and old, and I'll give you my dish (and share recipes too).
Publish Date: January 24th, 2012 by Harper Collins
Last spring, Nikki Beckett vanished, sucked into an underworld known as the Everneath, where immortals Feed on the emotions of despairing humans. Now, she's returned-to her old life, her family, her friends-before being banished back to the underworld... this time forever.
She has six months before the Everneath comes to claim her, six months for good-byes she can't find the words for, six months to find redemption, if it exists.
Nikki longs to spend these months reconnecting with her boyfriend, Jack, the one person she loves more than anything. But there's a problem: Cole, the smoldering immortal who first enticed her to the Everneath, has followed Nikki to the mortal world. And he'll do whatever it takes to bring her back-this time as his queen.
As Nikki's time grows short and her relationships begin slipping from her grasp, she's forced to make the hardest decision of her life: find a way to cheat fate and remain on the Surface with Jack or return to the Everneath and become Cole's...
This just sounds like such an awesome story, who wouldn't want to read Everneath? I envy my blogging friends who have received it as an ARC or from NetGalley, and I hope they enjoy it.
Publish Date: December 20th, 2011 by S.B. Addison Books
Persephone has been running for her entire life. Running from the humans to keep her immortality a secret. And running from a man who haunts her dreams. Not a man, but a god, who will stop at nothing until he gets what he wants. And what he wants most, is her.
Trapped in the realm of the dead, Persephone plans to return to the land of the living. The underworld is a terrifying place where ghosts roam freely, three headed dogs patrol the gates, and it's a living grave where the rules of earth and the warmth of the sun no longer apply. But then, something unexpected happens. Persephone finds herself falling for the god who abducted her, the god who has chased her for five thousand years, a god who is none other than death himself, Hades.
Ripped out of the underworld by Zeus, Persephone must find a pomegranate to return to the realm of the dead and to her beloved. Consuming only a seed of the fruit of the dead would bind Persephone to spend her life beneath the earth's core with Hades. But Zeus has reduced every pomegranate tree in the world to ash. Except one. Persephone must locate that one remaining pomegranate tree, a quest that could ignite a war between the two mightiest of the gods. A war that could cause Persephone to lose the only family she's ever known or give up a love that comes only once every five thousand years.
Yet another take on the Persephone and Hades myth...and I am definitely not complaining about that fact. This one sounds quite exciting, and I can't wait to read Hammond's version of the story.
And how can you have a winter list of books without a baking book in there? Bet you were expecting an actual baking cookbook, weren't you? Well, there will be plenty of those, but you're not really reading them so much as following the recipes...or looking through the photos (like me).
Title:The Lover's Dictionary Author:David Levithan Genre: Contemporary Literature Pages: 211 Publisher:Farrer, Straus and Giroux Summary: How does one talk about love? Do we even have the right words to describe something that can be both utterly mundane and completely transcendent, pulling us out of our everyday lives and making us feel a part of something greater than outselves? Taking a unique approach to this problem, the nameless narrator of David Levithan's The Lover's Dictionary has constructed the story of his relationship as a dictionary. Through these short entries, he provides an intimate window into the great events and quotidian trifles of being within a couple, giving us an indelible and deeply moving portrait of love in our time.
The Dish: When it comes to writing in a fresh and unique way, I'd have to say David Levithan takes one of the top prizes. How many would think to write a story in the form of a dictionary? I definitely commend Levithan for delivering such a story that made for quick and enjoyable reading.
That being said, while it was a fresh manner in composing a story, it did have a few confusing moments. At times it felt as though the narrator was backtracking in the story, but I didn't always know where this train of thought was backtracking to in the timeline. I felt this sometimes disrupted the overall flow of the story, but that could have been Levithan's point. Life and relationships cannot be viewed as completely linear. There are always bumps and caveats we hit on the road.
The narrator appeared to be a very sensitive soul, and when they connected with their partner, I could feel the open warmth between them. When some issue arose (usually involving an infidelity), it was clear how hurt both characters were. In spite of this infidelity (or infidelities?) the two never seemed to break apart from each other despite their bumps in the relationship road. Who knows where they will be in the end because relationships are always changing.
I thought The Lover's Dictionary was a great means of telling a story about life, love, and the trials people encounter while traversing both. While I'm not sure that I would read it again, I would say it is worth checking out from the library.
TGIF is a weekly feature created and hosted by GReads! that re-caps the week’s posts and has different question each week.
This Friday's Question:
When you're not reading: What occupies your time when your nose isn't stuck in a book?
My Answer: There are any number of things I'm doing when my nose isn't stuck in a book, though it is sometimes book-related. As collection development librarian, I'm always on the lookout for new as well as unknown already-published books that might help expand the library's collection. So there's another reason I visit bookstores and online sellers.
Secondly, I know I haven't had a DJL Dishes Dessert in awhile, but I really do enjoy baking and trying out new recipes. Recently, I obtained a cookie press that I'm hoping will be of great help during this coming month.
And then, there is my wonderful pastime (that sometimes interferes with my reading)...my Wii. I wasn't always such a gamer, and compared to my beau I'm still a novice, but I love having fun both with WiiFit and now Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (thanks to my beau).
Nothing can really top reading though once I hit my groove and I love books too much to stop reading for too long. ^_^
Rileigh Martin would love to believe that adrenaline gave her the uncanny courage and strength to fend off three muggers. But it doesn't explain her dreams of fifteenth century Japan, the incredible fighting skills she possesses, or the strange voice giving her battle tips and danger warnings. While worrying that she's going crazy (always a reputation ruiner), Rileigh gets a visit from Kim, a handsome martial arts instructor, who tells Rileigh she's harboring the spirit of a five-hundred-year-old samurai warrior.
Relentlessly attacked by ninjas, Rileigh has no choice but to master the katana--a deadly Japanese sword that's also the key to her past. As the spirit grows stronger and her feelings for Kim intensify, Rileigh is torn between continuing as the girl she's always been and embracing the warrior inside her.
Being a martial artist and a lover of Japanese culture and art, this book is definitely up my alley. It sounds like an exciting story, and I'm looking forward to seeing how Rileigh will grow after knowing that she has the spirit of a samurai warrior within her. Here's hoping March will get here soon! Plus, that cover looks seriously awesome.
Title:Dash & Lily's Book of Dares Authors:Rachel Cohn & David Levithan Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Pages: 260 Publisher:Alfred A. Knopf Summary: I've left some clues for you. If you want them, turn the page. If you don't, put the book back on the shelf, please. Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook version? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?
The Dish: We're all looking for that "someone" aren't we? That "special someone" that we can completely open ourselves to without fear, without masks, without regret. What if you decided to take a chance on someone that you had never met but only knew through the writings found in a notebook placed in a bookstore? That's just what Dash decides to do and thus "meets" Lily and so begins the exchange of dares placed within the pages of a red notebook.
It was a little hard getting to know Dash in the first couple of chapters simply because of his slightly cynical nature while Lily was an adorable gem of a girl. However, after more of their backgrounds are revealed, I definitely saw myself falling for Dash, or at least wanting to hear more of his story. And for him to just take a risk like this on a whim, that really shows how much he wants to believe that life is more than just the cynicism he has felt. He definitely has a good heart, and it shows in the company he keeps, particularly in one John Boomer known by his friends as just "Boomer." This friend of Dash's while rather energetic is a definite example of the pure goodness one can find if they only look hard enough. And it is his association with Dash that really helps Lily to see more of the boy behind the words.
Lily had quite a bit of growing up to do in order to find "herself" especially since she's been sheltered by her parents and grandfather for so long. I can definitely relate to her situation, though she wasn't sheltered from the things I was. Having an older brother like Langston was a definite blessing even if he became a bit dramatic at times, but he was there for her when she needed him. And without his involvement, Lily would not have even taken such a risk with getting to know and meeting Dash. I was surprised at some of her actions as the story progressed, but this was part of her growth process. Sometimes, one has to be ankle deep in sludge before they realize their real potential and who they truly are, and I know Lily learned that lesson well.
Meeting Dash's friends and Lily's family through the tasks of giving the notebook to whomever needed it was a sheer delight. Out of all the side characters, my two favorites were probably Mrs. Basil E (Lily's great-aunt Ida) and Boomer. Their interactions with both Dash and Lily were intriguing, enlightening, and hilarious, thus helping to move the story, as well as Dash and Lily's relationship, forward. I was a little concerned when an ex-girlfriend came back into the picture and thought this would create more conflict, but she was surprising with the advice she offered to Dash. Levithan really created a different story for Dash in that regard, and I was happy with his choice.
Overall, this was a wonderful and light read, and given the season of the story is nearing now, I would recommend it as a holiday book. This is one book readers will definitely want in their personal library.
In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted byThe Story Siren, where bloggers post about all the books they have received whether in the mail, if we purchased it, or checked out from our local library. ^_^ Trying to be good, and also spread a little book love, I held off on buying books for myself and instead sent out three books for October's RAK hosted by Book Soulmates. November is my birthday month, so I received some books for my birthday and also treated myself a little thanks to coupons from Book Depository and Barnes & Noble as well as Books-A-Million and my beloved Half-Price Books.
Thud!by Terry Pratchett (Gift from Wildkin, my online friend from the UK, thank you, dearheart!)
TGIF is a weekly feature created and hosted by GReads! that re-caps the week’s posts and has different question each week.
This Friday's Question:
Giving Thanks: Which books are you most thankful for receiving from other bloggers, friends, family members, or publishers?
My Answer: I'd have to say I'm thankful for any books received from my beau and my family (though the books from my family are few and far between since they don't always know my taste). My beau gave me a copy of The Last Unicorn graphic novel, which is one of my ultimate favorite graphic novels now. ^_^
Particular titles, I have to say I'm really grateful to Karen of Books Beside My Bed for giving me Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater for Christmas. She really knew I'd like it. ^_^
This challenge will run from Jan 1, 2012 - Dec 31, 2012.
As we would like to see quality reviews linked up to our monthly wrap-ups, only bloggers can enter. Sorry about that!
Any genre, length or format of book counts, as long as it is a book that's been sitting on your shelf for some time now. Only books released in 2011 and earlier! NO ARCs and 2012 fresh-off-the-press releases allowed!
You can list your books in advance or just put them in a wrap-up post. If you list them, feel free to change them as the mood takes you.
When you sign up in the linky, put the direct link to your post about joining the 2012 TBR PILE Reading Challenge (You need to include the info + host list + challenge button. You can also grab the button code and add it to your sidebar!)
You can move up levels, but no moving down.
Sign-ups will be open until Dec 15, 2012, so feel free to join at any time throughout the year.
At the end of each month one of the hosts will post awrap-up. Every wrap-up will have it's unique theme, a mini-challenge, a giveaway and place for you to link up your reviews from this month. For each review you link up, you will get one entry in a drawing of one book of choice from Book Depository. It's open to INTERNATIONALS. For participating in the mini-challenge you will get +1 entry.
If you miss a wrap-up post + giveaway, you can link up your reviews next month. Do not, however, try to link up one review twice - we will be checking ;)
December is a wrap-up for the whole year. All the book reviews you linked up January-November + the ones you'll link up in December will be entered into a HUGE giveaway - 12 books, 12 winners, INTERNATIONAL.
You don't have to follow all the hosts to join the challenge, but you do have to follow all of us to be entered in giveaways!
1-10 - A Firm Handshake
11-20 - A Friendly Hug
21-30 - A Sweet Kiss
31-40 - Love At First Sight
41-50 - Married With Children
Considering all the books on my TBR shelf, I think this is a challenge I can handle for the next year. I've been collecting, buying, winning, and storing books (like a book squirrel), and it is high time that I sit down and read these books. I'm going to go for the Friendly Hug (15) level and we'll see where that takes me. Here's hoping for a good challenge met in 2012!
Gwen's life has been a rollercoaster since she discovered she was the Ruby, the final member of the secret time-traveling Circle of Twelve. In between searching through history for the other time-travelers and asking for a bit of their blood (gross!), she's been trying to figure out what all the mysteries and prophecies surrounding the Circle really mean. At least Gwen has plenty of help. Her best friend Lesley follows every lead diligently on the Internet. James the ghost teaches Gwen how to fit in at an eighteenth century party. And Xemerius, the gargoyle demon who has been following Gwen since he caught her kissing Gideon in a church, offers advice on everything. Oh, yes. And of course there is Gideon, the Diamond. One minute he's very warm indeed; the next he's freezing cold. Gwen's not sure what's going on there, but she's pretty much destined to find out.
Holy schnikies, this is one trilogy that I probably should have waited until after all three books were released before I started reading them. I was thrilled with Ruby Red (see my review), and I was hoping Sapphire Blue would be released earlier in the year. It's already released over in Europe, thus my using the Italian, German, and Norwegian covers rather than the US cover (which still isn't up yet). There were so many questions left unanswered within the first book, I just can't wait to find out which will be answered in Sapphire Blue! Here's hoping the time will zip on by!
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, a state that you don't have to worry about being deprived of more books as long as you're near a library. This week's Top Ten is:
Top Ten Books Gathering Dust On My Bookshelf
(In no particular order)
1. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness - Ironically, this was the book on my first "Waiting on Wednesday" post. I really loved the exciting summary, but then I saw just how MASSIVE this book was. And it's book 1 in a trilogy!
2. Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins - I know, I know, so many people have read it already and it's just been on my shelf ever since Karen pointed it out at a Half-Price Books in Round Rock. I'm not sure why I haven't picked it up, maybe I'm just not ready for it.
3. Wolfsangel by M.D. Lachlan - Another one from a "Waiting on Wednesday" post that I was excited about! I'm not quite sure why it's stayed on my bookshelf for so long. Perhaps it's because of being the first book in a trilogy. (Inside info on DJL: when it comes to trilogies I will sometimes wait until all 3 books are out before reading all three in one go. Why? Cliffhangers. Prime current example? Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier.)
4. Shine by Lauren Myracle - After hearing the whole fiasco involving her book "mistakenly" being nominated for the National Book Awards, I really should have read my copy. But the topic is one of those that I believe one has to be braced for, and right now, I'm still uncertain if I'm braced enough for it.
6. Tyger, Tyger by Kersten Hamilton - I think this one was due to my results of the hunt. After reading an awesome review over this one, I was on a serious hunt for it. It took me awhile to find it, but find it I did! And now...it's just staring at me from my TBR shelf...waiting.
7. The Iron King by Julie Kagawa - This one, I might have an idea of why I've held off. I fear it might not live up to what everyone else has really built up about it. I know so many people who have enjoyed it and several that have not...so I procrastinate.
8. Unraveled by Gena Showalter - I'm a bit confuzzled by this hesitance. Perhaps I'm concerned by the summary of Twisted, which makes me want to have it on hand before I take on the second book in the Intertwined series.
9. Little Women and Werewolves by Porter Grand, Louisa May Alcott - I really loved Little Women, and while I do enjoy parodies, I'm a little scared to see what Grand has done to change one of my favorite classics.
10. How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf by Molly Harper - It's just not the right season for this book! Come December, it is going to be read and I will do so huddled under a blanket because it will finally be cold enough for me.