Saturday, December 23, 2017

An Upcoming TBF Book I'm Dying To Read

Hello everyone! Happy Holidays!

*Cover not final
When Lizzie Lavenza enrolled at Ingold as its first female medical student, she knew she wouldn't have an easy time. From class demands to being an outsider among her male cohorts, she'll have to go above and beyond to prove herself. So when she stumbles across what appears to be a faulty Bio-mechanical--one of the mechanized cadavers created to service the school--she jumps at the chance to fix it and get ahead in the program.

Only this Bio-mechanical isn't like the others. Where they are usually empty-minded and perfectly obedient, this one seems to have thoughts, feelings...and self-awareness.

Soon Lizzie realizes that it is Victor Frankenstein--a former student who died under mysterious circumstances. Victor, it seems, still has a spark of human intelligence inside him, along with memories of things he discovered before his untimely death...and a suspicion that he was murdered to keep that information from getting out.Suddenly Lizzie finds herself intertwined in dark secrets and sabotage that put her life, and the lives of Victor and their friends, in danger. But Lizzie's determined to succeed--even if that means fighting an enemy who threatens the entire British Empire.

I cannot believe that it is already December, which means that Teen Book Fest is only five months away! Going to TBF is always a pretty awesome experience and each year it is unique and amazing. This year I am dying to read Cadaver and Queen by TBF author Alisa Kwitney. 
It comes out on February 27, which can’t come soon enough. The first female medical student at a selective school and a mechanized cadaver Frankenstein? Sign me up! The book description has the perfect mix of mystery and feminism that promises an enticing story. And an enemy that threatens the entire British Empire? That sounds like it’s going to be an interesting and fast paced story. I first heard about this when I was doing some research on the TBF authors and their books. I have to admit that when I heard about this book I freaked out and immediately started wishing I could get my hands on a copy. Of course, there’s not much longer to wait now. And isn’t Lizzie Lavenza such an awesome name? 

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and stay warm! Enjoy the break and read a few books. See all of you at TBF! 

Until next time.





Wednesday, December 20, 2017

The Porcupine of Truth book review

Happy Holiday season!  The Porcupine of Truth by Bill Konigsberg is the perfect book to read over break. This year I am trying to read books outside of my usual genres(science fiction and fantasy). When I heard about this book I thought "why not" and I am so glad I did.

Carson Smith is resigned to spending his summer in Billings, Montana, helping his mom take care of his father, a dying alcoholic he doesn't really know. Then he meets Aisha Stinson, a beautiful girl who has run away from her difficult family, and discovers a secret regarding his grandfather, who disappeared without warning or explanation decades before. Together, Carson and Aisha embark on an epic road trip to try and save Carson's dad, restore his fragmented family, and discover the "Porcupine of Truth" in all of their lives.-Amazon

Image result for the porcupine of truth

I flew through this book. That could have something to do with the fact that I couldn't put it down or the fact that it was a pretty quick read. I laughed a ton. The two main characters, Aisha and Carson, are both into improv and that led to many funny moments. There were also some not so funny moments(I might have cried once or twice...).

There was a bit of a history lesson, although not as much as I expected. It is told in an intriguing way that made it feel very unlike history class. I loved how messy all the families were. The small town aspect was great as well. My grandparents live in a small town and even though the one in the book is in a totally different location I kept picturing all the town scenes happening in my grandparents town. Both of the main charecters were interesting, and I related to both of them in different ways.

I can't wait to read more of Bill Konigsberg's books. I honestly don't know what it is like because like I said I don't really read realistic fiction. So I will just suggest it to anyone wanting a light, funny, quick read over break that will make them think a little. Oh and sorry for the weird highlight thing on the summary, can't figure out how to get that to go away!

Happy Holidays,

Friday, December 15, 2017

Friday Fun Post: An Upcoming TBF Book I'm Dying to Read

Cover May Not Be Final
So many talented TBF authors with upcoming books… how to choose? Somehow I narrowed it down to Furyborn, the first book in the Empirium trilogy, a new fantasy series from Claire Legrand, set to publish on May 22, 2018.

When assassins ambush her best friend, the crown prince, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing her ability to perform all seven kinds of elemental magic. The only people who should possess this extraordinary power are a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light and salvation and a queen of blood and destruction. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven trials to test her magic. If she fails, she will be executed…unless the trials kill her first.

A thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a mere fairy tale to bounty hunter Eliana Ferracora. When the Undying Empire conquered her kingdom, she embraced violence to keep her family alive. Now, she believes herself untouchable until her mother vanishes without a trace, along with countless other women in their city. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain on a dangerous mission and discovers that the evil at the heart of the empire is more terrible than she ever imagined.

As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world—and of each other.

I will pretty much look into any YA fantasy novel that involves the words “dangerous,” “rebel,” “war,” or “kingdom,” but what drew me in the most to this particular novel was the plot- a cosmic war with magic with trials with assassins? I have already read (and reviewed) one of Legrand’s other books and I know this promising plot is in good hands with her straightforward yet thought-provoking writing style. She has also stated that Furyborn and the Empirium series are the books of her heart, and that she took special care in ensuring that her characters are flawed, real, and unapologetically themselves as well as heroic so I'm very excited for Furyborn’s cast. I’m curious how the dual perspectives will work together with the centuries separating them, and since each one seems to follow a different plot-line, I’m sure it will be exciting to read. The reviews I've seen have been full of praise, and recommend Furyborn to fans of Sarah J. Maas and Leigh Bardugo. The summary also gave me Red Queen/Ember in the Ashes vibes, other books I thoroughly enjoyed, and Legrand is sure to include her own unique twists and turns as well. In any case, I’m sure Furyborn will not disappoint, and it's definitely a book I would keep an eye on!

PS The cover is gorgeous (even though it might not be final yet)

Be sure to check out Furyborn and meet Claire Legrand at TBF 2018!


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Book Review: The Dead Inside by Cyndy Etler

Hey Guys! Katie C. here with another book review: The Dead Inside by Cyndy Etler

All Cyndy wanted was to be loved and accepted.

The Dead InsideAt age fourteen, she had escaped from her violent home, only to be reported as a runaway and sent to a "drug rehabilitation" facility that changed her world.

to the public, Straight, Inc. was a place of recovery. But behind closed doors, the program used bizarre and intimidating methods to "treat" its patients. in her raw and fearless memoir, Cyndy Etler recounts her sixteen months in the living nightmare that Straight, Inc. considered healing. 

I've read so many books over the course of my life, but this one really stood out because of the fact that it's based on a true story. Reading through, it was easy to get lost in the plot and characters just like every other book i've read. However, afterward, knowing everything that I read really happened gave the book a whole new feel. Normally, I consider myself an avid fantasy reader, but I'm super glad i picked up The Dead Inside! Watching not only Cyndy grow and change throughout the book, but the world around her as well kept me glued to the pages the entire time.

One small thing I really enjoyed about the book was the chapter titles. Normally, authors either go with the name of the person of view (POV), or a title that relates to that chapter, or sometimes just a number. Instead of that, Etler took a different path and named each chapter after a rule. One thing about Straight, the "drug rehabilitation" place Cyndy goes to, is all the pointless rules they had there. The chapter titles for the book were all the different rules that straight had, such as "no getting out of seat without permission" and "host home doors and windows must be locked and alarmed". this interesting choice in chapter titles might not seem like much, but I thought they really added something to the story overall.

One more thing that I will say about The Dead Inside is that it's not a fun light read. This book is a true story about abuse, harassment, drugs, and more. This book will make you think. Even if you're like me (a person who enjoys light hearted middle school fantasy), I still recommend reading The Dead Inside. Sometimes its hard to imagine the lives of others when your so caught up in your own. And reading a book like this will not only bring you hours of intense, uninterrupted reading, but it will also leave you with a new perspective on the world that will stay with you forever.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Friday Fun Post: An Upcoming TBF Book I'm Dying to Read

Cover May Not Be Final

As I looked over the upcoming releases of our many TBF authors this year the one that really stuck out to me was American Panda by Gloria Chao. This is Gloria's debut novel and she has already announced her second novel, Misaligned, which is set for release in fall of 2019.

At seventeen, Mei should be in high school, but skipping fourth grade was part of her parents' master plan. Now a freshman at MIT, she is on track to fulfill the rest of this predetermined future: become a doctor, marry a pre-approved Taiwanese Ivy Leaguer, produce a litter of babies.

With everything her parents have sacrificed to make her cushy life a reality, Mei can't bring herself to tell them the truth - that she (1) hates germs, (2) falls asleep in biology lectures, and (3) has a crush on her classmate Darren Takahashi, who is decidedly not Taiwanese.

But when Mei reconnects with her brother, Xing, who is estranged from the family for dating the wrong woman, Mei starts to wonder if all the secrets are truly worth it. Can she find a way to be herself, whoever that is, before her web of lies unravels? -Goodreads

I read a lot of contemporaries and often the summaries don't stand out to me but this one did.  Mei sounds like such an interesting character to read about and get in the head of. The idea of the forbidden love story is always present in literature but American Panda is a version I've never read before. Plus the added on storyline about Mei not enjoying biology is something I bet many of us high schoolers may relate to. As I learned more about the book all of the reviews I read were positive and wrote of the perfect mix of humor and heartfelt moments which are two of my favorite things to read about. Overall I am highly looking forward to reading this adorable sounding novel next year and hopefully meeting Gloria in May at TBF!


American Panda is set to be released on February 6th, 2018

Friday, December 1, 2017

An Upcoming TBF Book I'm Dying to Read

Cover May Not Be Final.
After several years of anticipating and attending Teen Book Fest, I’ve learned that one of the best aspects of the event is how it introduces me to new, incredible authors. This year (of course) is no exception. If you’ve been monitoring the TBF attending authors page as obsessively as I have, you may have noticed that the acclaimed graphic novelist Penelope Bagieu will be coming to the Festival next year. She is the author of both Exquisite Corpse, California Dreamin’: Cass Elliot Before The Mamas & the Papas and a new book coming out in March 2018 Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World.

Throughout history and across the globe, one characteristic connects the daring women of Brazen: their indomitable spirit. With her characteristic wit and dazzling drawings, celebrated graphic novelist Pénélope Bagieu profiles the lives of these feisty female role models, some world famous, some little known. From Nellie Bly to Mae Jemison or Josephine Baker to Naziq al-Abid, the stories in this comic biography are sure to inspire the next generation of rebel ladies.

Sounds cool, right? In the first place, I love graphic novels-- seeing different artistic styles and how they allow the reader to view characters in new ways-- but I love novels about amazing historical women even more. Hearing about fascinating stories about people that you know are real is a different experience than reading a fantasy novel, but in my view, similarly appealing. For example, Nellie Bly traveled around the world in seventy-two days, beating the fictional Phileas Fogg’s record by eight!If you’re as intrigued as I am, check out the page previews on Macmillian Publisher’s site and make sure to attend Teen Book Fest this spring to meet the amazing Penelope Bagieu in person!

See you there,
Kate G.