The Mediator Series by Meg Cabot

Who: Meg Cabot
What: The Mediator series 1-6
When: January 1st, 2005
Why: Intro to YA
How: Bought

Suze is a mediator -- a liaison between the living and
the dead. In other words, she sees dead people. And they won't leave her alone
until she helps them resolve their unfinished business with the living. But
Jesse, the hot ghost haunting her bedroom, doesn't seem to need her help. Which
is a relief, because Suze has just moved to sunny California and plans to start
fresh, with trips to the mall instead of the cemetery, and surfing instead of
spectral visitations.
But the very first day at her new school, Suze
realizes it's not that easy. There's a ghost with revenge on her mind ... and
Suze happens to be in the way.

There's a total of 6 books, so I just put the first one in the review. I'm going to review the Mediator series like a whole because 1)The books aren't that long and 2)No way am I doing 6 reviews to review a series. If you didn't know, since I don't tell this story as much, The Mediator series was my first interaction with YA. Before, the YA section had been this super scary place that I didn't dare step a foot in. I mean, what if my mom saw me there? I wasn't a teen, I was only 11! But I got anyway with it because Mediator was RIGHT next to the children's section and I just snatched it!

The Mediator tells the story of Suzannah, someone who sees ghosts who still have some unfinished business going on in the real world. And she's handled them all perfectly fine, helping them move on. But when her mom gets remarried and moves them to California in their new really old house, she meets Jesse. Jesse *insert swoony sigh here* is the super hot, spanish conquistor type ghost who lives, like, in her bedroom.

Suzannah is pretty much the most epic heroine ever. She's sassy, sarcastic, can kick major ghost butt, and doesn't let Jesse overshadow her when it comes to ghost-fighting. She was someone that I would totally want to be my friend, but she was also just a teenage girl. She got excited about boys liking her, and tried to act not excited about dances, and sometimes didn't understand why people liked her.

Side characters like Kelly, Ceecee, Paul in the later books, and all of the ghosts she ends up helping are all three-dimensional and super fun to read about. Each book, she needs to help some ghosts out, so you always have new and fresh characters to read about! The plot was fantastic, everything was intertwined to leading up to that final climax in Book 6. And god, Book 5 cliffhanger? Made me beg my mom to take me to the store and buy it. I was buying three at a time!

Then there's Jesse! Jesse was sweet, stubborn, and a true gentlemen (probably because he's from 19th century). He helps Suzannah out of tight situations but never dares to overstep his boundaries or try to do everything for her. He knows Suzannah or 'quierda' as he calls her which just makes me melt (if you don't speak spanish, it's the equivalent to calling someone 'love'). The romance develops slowly, not throw you into it in like, Book 2. They start out as business, and slowly become very tight-knit friends, leading up to something more.

And the end of the series? Fabulous! Though I CERTAINLY wouldn't mind if Meg Cabot made more *hint hint* ;)


Happy Reading!


Freefall by Anne Levine

Who: Anne Levine
What: Freefall
When: September 1st, 2008
Why: Tour
How: From Author

What would your life be like if military service was
compulsory, not voluntary?

Aggie is eighteen and getting ready to do her
service for the Israeli Army. She could get a cushy assignment—maybe pushing
paper somewhere—or she could just take her chances. Only, Aggie isn't like that.
Despite her small size and the fact that she needs to gain weight to even make
the grade, and despite the total disbelief of her entire family (except her
grandmother, who is an old freedom fighter and don't you forget it), Aggie is
trying out for an elite combat unit.

Ben—Aggie's crush of the
moment—isn't at all convinced that she's making the right choice. Shira, Aggie's
best friend forever, is bewildered (and perhaps a bit too interested in Ben).
Then there's Noah. And the serendipitous snow. And a good-bye kiss that turns
into, well, a real kiss.

Luckily for Aggie, her backbreaking,
sand-in-mouth, completely-lost-in-the-desert training produces an unlikely
dividend: friends. The kind she never imagined she could have. The kind you'd go
to war with—and for.

Freefall by Anne Levine was one of those books I thought I wasn't gonna like...and I ended up really liking it! With lovable characters, a cute romance, and a deep look at the decisions of a girl enlisting in the army, Freefall was an enjoyable read.

Addie, the main character, is a typical teenage girl. She's quirky and has crazy hair and feels young and childish. But she's also lives in Jerusalem where according to the novel (unsure if this is true or not), you must enlist in the army. She doesn't want to be in an intelligence agency, or pushing papers behind some desk. So she tried out for elite combat training. I could relate to Addie, since absolutely no one except Noah really believed she could do it. Despite many different obstacles that sometimes overwhelmed her, and everyone treating her like a child, she blossomed.

The whole elite combat training was rigorous and pretty cool to read about (though never would I want to go through it.) I mean, running with sandbags on your back for hours in a hot desert? Um, no thanks? But that's what she--and the best of the lovable trainees-- did. Lily was funny, spunky, and refreshingly funny compared to Addie's more analytical brain. Noah was aaa-dorable, though he didn't get to see a lot of him. What you do see, you'll love!

Something that really irked me had to be the ending and the length. Not the ending in itself, which I thought was an awesome ending, but the fact that it was so open. I'm pretty sure there won't be a sequel so I still had so many unanswered questions. Also, I felt that the shortness of the novel made it seem rushed. It didn't give me enough time to fully get to know and enjoy the characters!

But my rating? AHH-GREAT!

Happy Reading!


In My Mailbox (16)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi from the Story Siren!

For review:

Misguided Angel by Melissa De La Cruz (Thanks, Hyperion!)

The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell (Thanks, Harcourt!)

Unearthly by Cynthia Hand (Thanks, HarperTeen!)

Wither by Lauren DeStefano (Thanks, S&S!)

Traded/Bought/Contest Wins:

Starcrossed by Elizabeth C. Bunce (Thanks, Kelsey!)

Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler


Sovay by Celia Rees
Fire by Kristin Cashore

Happy Reading!
-Harmony B.


Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

Who: Andrea Cremer
What: Nightshade
When: October 17th, 2010
Why: Beautiful Cover (GORGEOUS)
How: Contest Win

Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating
from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and
fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for
the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human
boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the
very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose
everything--including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate

Okay, so you guys have probably seen me rave about this on Twitter and notice that in all of my "Something Weeks", Andrea Cremer has been a part of all of them. Why? Because Nightshade was great and Andrea is awesome.

My favorite part of Nightshade had to be the world-building. I can understand why people call it a Paranormal Romance/Fantasy because it definitely has fantasy elements in it (don't tell me those two are the same thing or i'll claw your eyes out.) She created this whole new world of systems and packs for the werewolves in Nightshade and it was just fascinating for me to read.

Of course, in every book, there's something you don't like. For me, it was Calla. I mean, in the beginning, I loved her. She was fierce and badass and wasn't gonna let Ren overpower her with his smexy Alpha self (more on my Ren love later). Then she met Shay and she become....a blubbering fool. And that always bothers me in a part of Paranormal Romance, when the main character is all-powerful and badass then just belong bleh when the other love interest comes. As for the rest of the Nightshades, I LOVED them. They were all funny and badass in their own ways.

Shay was also a moot point for me. He was sweet and nice but he had absolutely no respect for her werewolves custom. He didn't take her responsibility to her pack seriously, and just dismissed all of her culture saying that didn't make any sense and that's that. Seriously? He could've at least tried to understand a bit and not ignore the fact that she had a deep relationship and responsibility to her pack and it's well-being.

Okay, now we can talk about Ren. People can argue all you want about him being a man-whore and too Alpha-male and whatever, but you could really tell he cared about her. And he's too Alpha-male because...well...he IS the Alpha male. But he never tries to overpower Calla's decisions and lets her decide for her own pack. I can see how Calla had to struggle to avoid temptation, since Alpha-females have to be completely "pure" until the bonding ceremony. He was sweet and considerate and just plain sexy!


Happy Reading!


Author Halloween Love - Tricia Rayburn

Tricia Rayburn, author of awesome YA novel Siren talks about Halloween and how fun it is!

"The days leading up to Halloween are some of my
favorite of the year. I love picking pumpkins. I love seeing jack-o-lanterns on
doorsteps and cotton cobwebs in windows around the neighborhood. I love when the
air grows crisp and fills with that warm, smoky smell as fireplaces are used for
the first time in months. I love watching scary movies and specials on
TV—especially It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! And on the actual day, I
LOVE handing out candy to trick-or-treaters!"

Seventeen-year-old Vanessa Sands is afraid of everything—the dark, heights, the ocean—but her fearless older sister, Justine, has always been there to coach her through every challenge. That is, until Justine goes cliff-diving one night near the family’s vacation house in Maine, and her lifeless body washes up on shore the next day.

Though her parents hope that they’ll be able to find closure back in Boston, Vanessa can’t help feeling that her sister’s death wasn’t an accident. After discovering that Justine was keeping a lot of secrets, Vanessa returns to Winter Harbor, hoping that Justine’s boyfriend might know more. But Caleb has been missing since Justine’s death.

Soon, it’s not just Vanessa who’s afraid. All of Winter Harbor is abuzz with anxiety when another body washes ashore, and panic sets in when the small town becomes host to a string of fatal, water-related accidents in which all the victims are found, horrifically, grinning from ear to ear.

Vanessa turns to Caleb’s brother, Simon, for help, and begins to find herself drawn to him. As the pair tries to understand the sudden rash of creepy drownings, Vanessa uncovers a secret that threatens her new romance—and will change her life forever.
Happy Reading!


Glimmerglass by Jenna Black

Who: Jenna Black
What: Glimmerglass
When: 2010
Why: Hype
How: Bought

Dana Hathaway doesn’t know it yet, but she’s in big
trouble. When her alcoholic mom shows up at her voice recital drunk, Dana
decides she’s had it with being her mother’s keeper, so she packs her bags and
heads to stay with her mysterious father in Avalon: the only place on Earth
where the regular, everyday world and the magical world of Faerie intersect. But
from the moment Dana sets foot in Avalon, everything goes wrong, for it turns
out she isn't just an ordinary teenage girl—she's a Faeriewalker, a rare
individual who can travel between both worlds, and who can bring magic into the
human world and technology into Faerie.

Soon, she finds herself tangled
up in a cutthroat game of Fae politics. Someone's trying to kill her, and
everyone wants something from her, even her newfound friends and family.
Suddenly, life with her alcoholic mom doesn't sound half bad, and Dana would do
anything to escape Avalon and get back home. Too bad both her friends and her
enemies alike are determined not to let her go . . .

Glimmerglass is one of those books where you see the cover and you wanna know more about it but you're kinda hesitant until you get a recommendation from someone you know well. So I finally picked it and first half? AWESOME. Second half? Kinda awesome.

Glimmerglass is the story of a girl who runs away from home with an alcoholic mother to give with her fey father in Avalon, the border between Faerie world and humans. I always think it's cool when humans know faeries exist, and they're all "Hey, we're gonna try to take control of you now" and they fail (mostly because it reminds me of the Crusades...sorry, history nut). So she comes into this world, and apparently her dad's a big wig faery, and she gets thrown into a cut-throat, dangerous game of faery politics. And then I say dangerous, I mean dangerous.

Dana was a character I would want to be my friend. I liked her because she was realistic in the way that we all want to get away sometimes, but she actually had the courage to do it, even if it gets her into major trouble. Also, sometimes she cried, but sometimes it's okay to cry. Especially when evil faeries are trying to kill you. I'd cry, so that's cool. But she also didn't just cry and sit there while the "grown-ups" played the game, she did a little bit of her "secret" undercover stuff as well (though that mostly ended in trouble as well.)

Ethan is pretty much the dude you see for most of the novel as her "love interest". He was nice, though kinda...suspicious. Something is just iffy about that boy, however charming he may be. But the tension between them was amazingly crafted and he was adorable. Then you get introduced to Keane later on as a combat teacher (she also tries and succeeds in learning basic fighting skills, which is a lot more than other heroines have bothered to do.) It does hint at a potencial love triangle, and i'm kinda leaning towards him, because he was just plain cool :)

Happy Reading!

Book SPOOKS! Treasure Hunt Clue #5!

Hello lovely bloggers and/or readers! I'm hosting Clue #5 of the Book Spooks treasure hunt whihc is being hosted by the awesomely awesome friend of mine, Nicole! This starts today (Tuesday, October 19) and ends in ONE WEEK (Tuesday, October 26) at six p.m. EST. There is a super amazing prize pack to the winners who get the most correct, which you can see over here at our lovely lovely host WORD for Teens.
Are you ready for Clue #5?
In food, in buildings, in bridges, inside you.
Can be soft or hard, or both if you choose.

Click here to fill out the form or see the other clues.

Happy Reading!
-Harmony B.


Tyger, Tyger Guest Post and Giveaway!

Today I have the lovely Kersten Hamilton on the blog! She's the author of Tyger, Tyger, an awesome book about a girl who gets caught up in a Golblin War with her little brother and a super cute boy. Kersten's been on the blog before if you've followed me long enough, and you can see my interview with her here!


What would you do if you were a goblin for a day?

I would be a very bad goblin. I would rebel.

To be a good goblin, I would have to bow before Fear Doirich, the goblins’ god, and offer him blood sacrifice.

Goblin kind call themselves the Sídhe, as if they were one flesh, but they are not. They are a chimera of creatures that were gathered from many worlds and cobbled together when they submitted to Fear Doirich’s will.

They came to Éireann with Fear Doirich, and Mab, the Queen of the Highborn, riding storm clouds: cat–sídhe and cobs, bean-sídhe and night hags, phookas and all of goblin kind.

Only three Highborn in the history of this world have rebelled against Fear Doirich, and he killed two of them, making a gruesome example of each one.

I’m not vain enough to believe that I would be a Highborn, more beautiful than earthly men or women, of course. But surely a Lowborn sliding through the shadows or slipping into the green, mossy pools of Mag Mell might rebel. Even a phooka, always hungry, always hunting, might somehow find that courage….

Thank you for hosting a stop on my blog tour, Harmony! Lock your windows and doors tonight – goblins are about.


I KNOW all of you are waiting for the letter from the Kindle giveaway and here is mine! S

Also, i'm giving away a pre-order of Tyger, Tyger for you guys!
Fill out this form AND the giveaway is INTERNATIONAL :)
Deadline is October 30th!

Happy Reading!


Tyger Tyger by Kersten Hamilton

Who: Kersten Hamilton
What: Tyger, Tyger
When: October, 2010
Why: ARC
How: For review

Teagan Wylltson's best friend, Abby, dreams that
horrifying creatures--goblins, shape-shifters, and beings of unearthly beauty
but terrible cruelty--are hunting Teagan. Abby is always coming up with crazy
stuff, though, so Teagan isn't worried. Her life isn't in danger. In fact, it's
perfect. She's on track for a college scholarship. She has a great job. She's
focused on school, work, and her future. No boys, no heartaches, no problems.
Until Finn Mac Cumhaill arrives. Finn's a bit on the unearthly beautiful
side himself. He has a killer accent and a knee-weakening smile. And either he's
crazy or he's been haunting Abby's dreams, because he's talking about goblins,
too . . . and about being The Mac Cumhaill, born to fight all goblin-kind. Finn
knows a thing or two about fighting. Which is a very good thing, because this
time, Abby's right. The goblins are coming.
This is one book that has to be on your TBR list. It's the perfect mix of Irish Mythology, adventure, mystery, a touch of darkness, and romance all mixed up into a pot and poured over this book. The beginning was a bit boring and I found myself procrastinating to read it but once Finn comes into the house, I was tearing through the pages.

Another reason I loved it was because it was so wildly different from other books I had read. This is a book that teens will love, but that people 14 and younger will also be able to read and enjoy. There is romance but it doesn't swallow the whole book. Kersten balanced the adventure and romance in a way that neither took other each other.

The level of world-building in this book is amazingly. She wove Irish legends, literacy stories, and Celtic myth in a way that I didn't find myself confused because I didn't know any of them. And reading this book, I had never heard of a lot of the legends that are mentioned. But I never once felt confused about any of the wonderful myths she included in the book.

Teagen is a strong and mature character on her own and with people as well. She's not perfect, she makes mistakes, but the way she handles them and handles herself is a show of strong and mature character.

And Finn. Finn was a refreshing change from the usual bad boy attitude from other boys. Sure he was confident and gorgeous, but he treats Teagen how all girls should be treated.He was someone who would keep his promises no matter what and protect what he felt needed protecting. He's kind and gallant and a strong addition to the Mac Cumhaill family ;)

Happy Reading!


Knight Angels by Abra Ebner: Excerpt and Contest

I hope you guys enjoy this excerpt from Abra Ebner's sequel to Knight Angels: Book of Love, Book of Revenge!



I sat in history class next to Jake. He had his glasses and retainer on, downgrading his looks a couple hundred notches, but it was safe. When he wore the glasses, the blue light wasn’t there, and when we were in the light, it wasn’t there either. As long as we hung out when one of those two situations applied, I’d be fine.

“Jake,” I whispered.

The teacher was circling the room, eyeing us like a hawk as we read about the Conquistadores in supposed silence.

“I’m bored.” I was too tired to deal with school. After what had happened last night, I hadn’t slept much.

Jake looked sideways at me, his brown eyes hidden and dull behind the thick lenses. Don’t talk out loud, idiot. Use your mind. Besides, I’m reading. Maybe you should try it.

I moaned, looking at the words on the page and reading the same line I’d read what seemed ten times now. “How do you put up with this?” I whispered again out loud, just to be impossible.

Jake glared. “I like learning.” His voice snaked through clenched teeth.

I smiled to myself for forcing him to play along.

Mr. Jackson clapped his hands together then. “All right class, time to break into our groups and continue working on our projects.”

It was music to my ears.

Jake slowly shut his book as the class broke into a low murmur. He sighed. “Want to go to the library?”

“The real library?” I urged with a wink.

Jake’s glance was so much smoother than his exterior would imply, a smile growing across his face. “Sure, Emily. The real library.” He winked back.

A rush of excitement washed over me. I’d put a lot of thought into what I was doing at school, and a lot of thought into what Jake’s sister was doing. I wanted to be like her. I wanted to do what I loved, though that wasn’t necessarily baking. All I knew was that sitting here following premeditated steps wasn’t what I loved. My clairvoyance had already taught me all I’d need to know, so school was just a giant mind-numbing experience. It was worthless, and if I could make him, Jake was going down with me.

Jake had risen from his chair, chatting with the teacher. I gathered my things and threw my bag over my shoulder.

“So, Mr. Jackson, we’re going to the library,” Jake finished explaining as I arrived at his side.

Mr. Jackson smiled at us in a way that made me uncomfortable—as though Jake and I were a couple and he’d found it endearing. “Sure. I’m very anxious to see what my two best students come up with.” He gave us both an awkward pat on the shoulder.

Buttering him up to let us leave class and his supervision was easy, but the dreamy look in his eye was no less irritating. I conveyed that toward Jake, he shrugged.

At least it’s a way to get on his good side. If he thinks we’re dating, doing what we want will be easy, he explained.

I gave him laughter in return. Just as long as it’s not true. I challenged. I know your reputation.

I’d never hit on a taken girl.

I pressed my lips together. Yeah, right.

Jake lifted one brow. Is that an invitation?

I put one hand on my hip. Certainly not!

Mr. Jackson was grinning wider now, and I realized that to him, it looked as though Jake and I were gazing into each others eyes when we were really having a mental fight. I snorted and pushed Jake toward the door.

“Bye, Mr. Jackson!” I waved over my shoulder. The class watched us leave with jealousy written across their faces. As the door shut behind us, there was a rise of murmurs, kids wanting to be granted the chance to go to the library as well, but as expected, no one else followed.


Contest: Copy of Knight Angels: Book of Love and Knight Angels: Book of Revenge.

Deadline is November 5th!
Fill out THIS FORM.

Happy Reading!


Looking for Alaska by John Green

Who: John Green
What: Looking for Alaska
When: December 28th, 2006
Why: John Green is EPIC *nerdfighter!*
How: Bought

Before. Miles "Pudge" Halter is done with his safe life
at home. His whole life has been one big non-event, and his obsession with
famous last words has only made him crave "the Great Perhaps" even more
(Francois Rabelais, poet). He heads off to the sometimes crazy and
anything-but-boring world of Culver Creek Boarding School, and his life becomes
the opposite of safe. Because down the hall is Alaska Young. The gorgeous,
clever, funny, sexy, self-destructive, screwed up, and utterly fascinating
Alaska Young. She is an event unto herself. She pulls Pudge into her world,
launches him into the Great Perhaps, and steals his heart. Then . . . After.
Nothing is ever the same.

Looking for Alaska was everything I expected it to be, funny, sad, heart-breaking and utterly brilliant. If it was possible, I love John Green even more than I did before reading his books. And after reading both this and Paper towns, I understand a lot of the book-based jokes in his vlogs (THE FOXHAT!)

Looking for Alaska is about a awesomely awkward boy named Miles (nickname: Pudge, even though he's stick skinny) Halter. He goes seeking more adventure in his life so he moves from "boring" Orlando (yes, I had a mini spaz cuz I live a few hours from there) to Curver Creek Boarding School in hot-as-hell Alabama. There he meets some...interesting characters.

You have the Coronal, who was just awesomely bossy. He's a super genius and totally screwed up. That's something I really liked in the book, everyone was a little screwed up inside. Aren't we all? Takumi has just....so. freaking. funny. (Back to the FOXHAT) And then there was Alaska Young. Alaska was self-destructive, deep, playful, flirty, and a lot of times a total b****, but something about her stuck. She was the type of person you remember, someone who was a crazy genius but who's crazy took over a little. I consider her female Edgar Allen Poe, honestly. She was brilliant and a tad insane, loved to drink and smoke her life away (quote from book: "You smoke to enjoy it, I smoke to die." ) , but was incredibly insightful.

As for the "adult content" in that book, it's really not bad at all. Sure, there's underage smoking/drinking but really? That's everywhere. The thing that everyone seems to have a problem with is the blow job. Huh, maybe I shouldn't have said that so bluntly... Ok but seriously? No detail was described what-so-ever. Stop being drama queens. Also, the scene that follows it just projects the fact that physical attraction (according to everything in the book, Lara is insanely pretty) cannot be a replacement for emotional attraction (like he has for Alaska) and vice versa.

I love how the book is separated between before and after, because that's really what it was. Miles was one person in the beginning of the story. He was gawky, nervous, afraid, and a little bit of a badass and then after, he is no longer the same Miles. He is permanently Pudge, permanently integrated inside Culver Creek and his friends and just he's a different person. I love character development!

My rating? AwesomeSAUCE.

Happy Reading!
-Harmony B.

p.s Did anyone get Alaska's knock-knock joke? Cuz I DIDN'T. Help?


In My Mailbox (15)

For review:

Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton
Grace by Elizabeth Scott

Sent by Fictional People:

Decameron by Boccacio + note


The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima
Glimmerglass by Jenna Black
Looking For Alaska by John Green
Going Bovine by Libba Bray
Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow

Happy Reading!


Covert Youth Agency: The Case of Tangled Love by Jason Ancona

Who: Jason Ancona
What: Cover Youth Agency: The Case of Tangled Love
When: August 2nd, 2010
Why: Blog Tour
How: For review

An elite group of nerds fight injustices by running a
clandestine operation in high school. The C.Y.A., a.k.a. Covert Youth Agency,
hacked into the digital school sign and posted their message: - - - If ever
you're in need of help and you have nowhere else to go, seek out the C.Y.A.
We're always watching and we're here for you - - - Peter "Pi" Samuels, a
fourteen-year-old sophomore, runs the shadow operation. Pi's obsessed with the
high school band's lead violinist, who's as beautiful as the music she plays.
When she contacts the C.Y.A. to find out if her boyfriend cheated on her at a
party, Pi's objective becomes clear. Prove that her beau was unfaithful. Then
maybe Pi will be the perfect shoulder to cry on. Pi schemes to destroy his
love's boy-toy, all while avoiding a deranged coach bent on exposing an
untraceable geek squad for hire. The Covert Youth Agency.

Covert Youth Agency was a fun, quick read that included two awesome things: The CIA and love.

The plot was pretty awesome! I mean, who wouldn't want to be a part of a secret school CIA that rights the wrongs of students and teachers? The CYA, Covert Youth Agency, is a group of "nerds" who band together to solve the problems of students who need their help!

Peter, better known as Pi, is pretty much the main dude behind this ingenious system of the CYA. Along with Tollhouse, his best friend, and Lightman, a chick with awesome brains and not-so-awesome social skills, they take up their next case. Which so happens to be the case of his friend and major crush, Vera. Pi was so awkwardly adorable, that it was hard not to like his character. Tollhouse reminded me of a giant teddybear and Lightman seemed like the kind of girl i'd get alone with pretty well!

The writing is very simple, not heavy on description and lots of dialogue between the characters. I'd recommend this for younger readers, Middle Grade and up. I also loved how readers could actually interact with the story and especially the ladybug code at the end of the book that Jason leaves for you to decipher (i'm still working on that!) Also, he's set up a CYA website to help out teens and you can apply certain things from the book into it!

All in all, cute and light read for all ages!
My rating: AHHH-Great

Happy Reading!


Hunger by Jackie Morse Kessler

Who: Jackie Morse Kessler
What: Hunger
When: October 18, 2010
Why: Awesome summary
How: Gift from Kelsey.

“Thou art the Black Rider. Go thee out unto the world.”

Lisabeth Lewis has a black steed, a set of scales, and a new job: she’s
been appointed Famine. How will an anorexic seventeen-year-old girl from the
suburbs fare as one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse?

the world on her steed gives Lisa freedom from her troubles at home: her
constant battle with hunger, and her struggle to hide it from the people who
care about her. But being Famine forces her to go places where hunger is a
painful part of everyday life, and to face the horrifying effects of her
phenomenal power. Can Lisa find a way to harness that power — and the courage to
battle her own inner demons?

I seriously just finished this and I really, really liked it. Hunger is the story of a girl fighting against her anorexia while also coping with the fact that because she tried to overdose on some pills, Death saw her and made her Famine, one of the four horseman (or horsewomen) of the Apocalypse.

Though it is in third person, we are mostly in Lisabeth's head. She was a beautifully complex character to read about, especially with the eating disorder war raging in her head, which she calls "The Thin Voice." The Thin Voice was mean and evil and put her down a lot, but even if it's not about eating, don't we all have that little cynical voice in our head? No matter how optimistic we are, it sits in that corner of our mind, when we're most vulnerable. This made Lisa a very relatable character to me, someone who was warring with herself to be a better person, though she wasn't sure what that really met.

The plot was insanely cool, and the reason I wanted to pick this up. I mean, there are four horsemen of the Apocalypse. Famine, War, Disease, and Death. Imagine having to be one of those horrible things, things that take lives everyday? And being thrust into it at what--16? Lisa handled it pretty well after she got the gist of it. And though unintentionally she hurt people, I admired her for being famine and still trying to do the right thing, though it hurt her.

The rest of the horsemen (and horsewomen) were each fully unique people. War was an evil, arrogant women who needed a swift kick in the ass for how power-drunk she seemed to be, which matches with what war is perfectly. Disease was actually kinda funny but serious as well, letting her know that she could do good as well as bad. And then Death was just...pretty epic. He's described as sexy and cold--but warm at the same time. And I think death is a lot like that, scary and peaceful, and entice-ful at times. So they all matched with that they were pretty well.

All in all, it was a short and strong read about anorexia and how it can affect a person, and how you can't overcome it in a few short steps, but a little at a time.

Happy Reading!
-Harmony B.


The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

Who: Sarah Dessen
What: The Truth about Forever
When: April 6th, 2006
Why: Hype
How: Contest win

Sixteen-year-old Macy Queen is looking forward to a
long, boring summer. Her boyfriend is going away. She's stuck with a
dull-as-dishwater job at the library. And she'll spend all of her free time
studying for the SATs or grieving silently with her mother over her father's
recent unexpected death. But everything changes when Macy is corralled into
helping out at one of her mother's open house events, and she meets the chaotic
Wish Catering crew. Before long, Macy joins the Wish team. She loves everything
about, the work and the people. But the best thing about Wish is Wes—artistic,
insightful, and understanding Wes—who gets Macy to look at life in a whole new
way, and really start living it.

I had heard a lot about this book, and Sarah Dessen in general. But yet I had never picked up one of her books. Why? As i've mentioned before, i'm not much of a contemporary nut. Probably because I wasn't picking up the right ones. This was a book that there's no concrete reason why I liked it, it was just a beautifully emotional book to read.

The plot wasn't something epicly amazing and full of complex inter webbed lives and difficulties or nothing like that. But I think simplicity helps a lot in contemporary fiction. I mean, how many of us have lives such as in Paranormal Romance novels? Yes, we wish. Contemporary is life, and we want it to me something we can relate it. I related to Macy

Macy is something that's instantly likeable, at least to me. She was dedicating to keeping her life perfect and absolutely non-wild. She has an obnoxiously perfect straight-A boyfriend (which is urgh) and a mother who is always working plus a sister who moved. Her boyfriend is luckily absent for most of the book, but she takes up his job as Informant of all things library. And she sticks to it, even though his co-workers torment he, which I really admired. Though I would've wanted her to smack both of them, I liked the way she handled things.

The Truth about Forever being a character-driven story, loved all the characters. Macy's dad never actually appears in the story because, you know, he's dead. But with the way Sarah describes him and all the stories from Macy's past, even he was a very well-rounded character. I loved how Sarah made Wes and Macy get to know each other, by playing Truth. Truth is where you have to ask a question and the other person has to answer it truthfully, or they lose. You find out a lot about both of them for it. Also, Wes is saaaaaa-woon.

Sarah writes the type of books that "Chick-Lit" readers LOVE, with wonderful characters and swoon-worthy loves, but with a much sadder-in-a-good-way undertone.

My rating: AWESOMESAUCE. Also, if you like Sarah Dessen, you should read Sarah Ockler. Just saying.

Happy Reading!
-Harmony B.


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