Thursday, December 30, 2010

Book Review: Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness

Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness
Publisher: Candlewick
Publication date: September 2010
ISBN: 9780763647513
Source: Library

Monsters of Men: Chaos Walking: Book Three
Viola and Todd are both caught up in wars that seem to have no end and no good can come of them.  The Spackle have risen against them and Todd must make a dangerous choice between what he knows is right and what he feels like he must do to save Viola.  Viola is also being torn between her friends who just arrived and being able to bring peace for Todd.  The war is ugly and it changes how both Todd and Viola think - can they both survive together?

Things I Liked:
The book definitely packs a punch.  There is so much to think about and it will make you question what type of person you would be in a similar situation.  What choices would you make to save someone you loved?  Not to mention the story is action-packed with twists and turns that you don't see coming until it hits you right in the face.  The plot is so well done and the surprises just perfect that you won't be able to put it down.  Or stop thinking about it when you're done.  An awesome sci-fi/dystopia/futuristic story that still packs the punch of the first two books.

Things I Didn't Like:
The only thing I found bothersome was that the message seemed a little heavy-handed.  Every few pages, we would be reminded of the exceptionally hard choices Todd and Viola make.  It also explicitly asked several times how far would a person go to save someone they love?  I think we could have figured out the theme without having it spelled out for us.  Still quite powerful and thought-provoking.

Read the first two books in the Chaos Walking trilogy
Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins

s-factor: !@#

mrg-factor: X
nothing explicit

v-factor: ->->->->
there is a lot of fighting and gore (it's about war, remember?)

Overall rating: ****

What's your favorite really unique book?

Posted as part of the YA-D2 dystopian challenge

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Book Review: The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Publication date: October 2010
ISBN: 9780385738750
Source: purchased

The Scorch Trials (Maze Runner Trilogy, Book 2)
*This review and summary will contain spoilers for The Maze Runner, so read at your own risk*

Thomas and his friends are finally out of the Maze and safe.  Or so they think.  When they wake up the next morning, things are not as they expected.  They are thrown into a new test and must get across a wasteland, trying not to lose their heads, starve to death, get struck by lightening, or have their noses removed in the process.  Through it all, Thomas looks for Teresa, but he little expects their reunion to go the way it does.  Can he and his friends survive this next phase of this cruel and brutal test?

Things I Liked:
This second installment definitely doesn't lack for action.  You are sucked immediately into what happens next.  Dashner has a way of creating odd situations that inspire fear and dread in the reader, not to mention his characters.  They are put through many horrifying and painful experiences on this next part of their journey.  While we learn some things about why they are there, we certainly don't learn enough to satisfy our appetites and it definitely left me feeling bruised and aching for the next book.  Also, I think the book has some deeper things at work, looking at how people react in situations and what we will do to survive at the expense of others.  An intriguing and fast-paced book that will leave you desperate to know what happens next.

Things I Didn't Like:
It definitely played on my emotions.  You feel anger and frustration, not to mention pain and betrayal.  It will leave you feeling a bit raw by the end, wishing they could have some kind of reprieve. At times it was also very confusing, but I am assuming that's because the characters are supposed to be kept unaware of what is happening.

Read The Maze Runner first

The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins
Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer

s-factor: none
all of it is made-up cursing

mrg-factor: none
just some kissing

v-factor: ->->->->->
plenty of horrible things happen - some of it a bit gory

Overall rating: *****

Posted as part of the YA-D2 dystopian challenge (at the last minute, of course :)

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Monday, December 27, 2010

Book Review: The Lost Saint by Bree Despain and GIVEAWAY!

The Lost Saint: A Dark Divine Novel by Bree Despain
Publisher: EgmontUSA
Publication date: December 2010
ISBN: 9781606840580
Source: Review copy provided by publicist

The Lost Saint: A Dark Divine Novel

Grace Divine was sure that after saving her true love from the wolf, things would get better.  But, when her beloved brother runs away, her world seems to fall apart.  She wants to develop her own powers, but isn't quite sure if she can do it without giving in to the wolf within herself.  When a mysterious young man offers to help her find Jude, she jumps at the chance.  But, will he come between her and Daniel or will more than that separate them?

Things I Liked:
This book definitely helped me remember what it is that I love about paranormal YA.  I loved the excitement and the adventure that kept you on your toes and wondering what would happen next.  I enjoyed learning more about the mythology of the paranormal beasts in this series.  It had just the right amount of teenage drama and crazy fantasy stuff to make a good blend.  I was invested in the story and it didn't seem to follow exactly the way the romance does in these kinds of books.  I'm definitely looking forward to the next book.  Some favorite parts:

But then again, wasn't the superhero supposed to be the one who was always forgetting about plans last minute, or running off during important dinners?  If anyone was going to be standing someone up, shouldn't it be me? p258 of ARC
She pulled out my stake - or at least something that looked like my stake, only the hilt of it was now covered in bright blue crystals and diamond-like gems. 
"You bedazzled my stake?"
"Um...Surprise," April said. "Just because you're hunting nasty stuff doesn't mean you can't do it in style." p285 of ARC
Things I Didn't Like:
I would occasionally get annoyed at Grace for her constant need to save everyone.  She had a real hero complex.  She was also extremely stupid and blind throughout the book.  Doing stuff she knew she shouldn't and walking into dangerous situations.  Though, that seems to be a requirement for heroines in paranormal books.

The Dark Divine by Bree Despain

Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick
Shiver and Linger by Maggie Stiefvater

s-factor: !@ 
fairly regular throughout, nothing strong

mrg-factor: X  

some situations that were steamy, but really mild

v-factor: ->-> 
a bit of gore and blood

Overall rating: **** 

I happened to get an extra ARC which I'm offering up to one lucky reader.  Fill out the form below by next Monday, January 3, for your chance to win it!  (US only.) (Contest closed.)

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Book Review: The End of the World Club by J&P Voelkel

The Jaguar Stones, Book Two: The End of the World Club by J&P Voelkel
Publisher: Egmont USA
Publication date: December 2010
ISBN: 9781606840726
Source: ARC provided by publicist

(Check out the guest post and author interview with J&P Voelkel)

The Jaguar Stones, Book Two: The End of the World Club

Max has had a reprieve from his favor from the gods of the Mayan underworld.  After saving his parents, he was able to escape from them, but only for a short time.  With that favor hanging over his head, he can't seem to enjoy the rest of his summer.  Of course, with the strange things going on at his home, it is even harder - a jungle seems to be growing right there in Boston and his mother denies anything happened in San Xavier.  But, when the gods finally request their favor, Max doesn't have much of a choice.  At least he gets to team up with Lola again.  But, will they manage to finish their quest in time to save their lives and the lives of his parents?

Things I Liked:
This was another addition to the action-packed and fast-paced adventures in ancient Mayan history.  I really like the way the history and even modern culture is woven into the story.  I actually learn things and I think kids will as well, without even minding it!  The characters are quirky and fun, but it's really about the adventures and difficult situations they have to get out of.  They almost have a Percy Jackson feel to them, but not as entertaining or steeped in mythology as those books.

His friends saw only the gifts that his parents lavished on him: the video games, the laptop, the electronic drums - all peace offerings for being too busy at work to support their son at school concerts and class nights and sports meets.  (After the recent events in San Xavier, he was expecting a "sorry for opening a portal to the Maya underworld and unleashing the forces of evil that almost killed you" gift any day now. p19 of ARC
She cupped her hands around her mouth to make the sound of a howler monkey, the loudest land animal on the planet.  And if Santino Garcia was surprised to hear the girl of his dreams roaring like an angry dinosaur, he was too polite to mention it.  p 99 of ARC 

Things I Didn't Like:
I had a really hard time wanting to finish the book.  I thought the story went on much too long and took too many crazy turns.  I got a little tired of waiting for the climax.  Also, the writing at times felt a bit awkward and the plot a little uneven (not to mention unbelievable).  I was also a little disappointed at how little was discussed about the 2012 "end of the world" Mayan calendar thing.  Especially considering the publicity that was surrounding it.  In fact, it was a little vague about whether or not the world will end.  Still, I think kids will love the action and the disturbingly gross Mayan gods, without being bothered by some of these other things.

Pick up the first book in the Jaguar Stones series by J&P Voelkel

The Red Pyramid or the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan
The 39 Clues series by various authors

s-factor: none 
(except in reference to the underworld :)

mrg-factor: none 

v-factor: ->-> 
it can be a bit disgusting at times, but nothing very gory

Overall rating: *** 

What books to do read to learn while being entertained?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Book Review: Scumble by Ingrid Law

Posted as part of Tween Tuesday, hosted by GreenBeanTeenQueen.
Scumble by Ingrid Law
Publisher: Dial
Publication date: August 2010
ISBN: 9780803733077

Source: Library


Ledge is hoping that on his thirteenth birthday, he'll get a savvy that will make him the fastest runner in the world.  But, when he ends up destroying things instead, he is sorely disappointed.  And his dad must be too, since he was always hoping for a fast son.  When he and his sister are left behind at the ranch to try to scumble or learn to control his savvy, things go from bad to worse as Sarah Jane is desperately trying to discover the reasons behind his weird family.  Can he keep their secret, and his temper, before he destroys everything he holds dear?

Things I Liked:
This was another fun and romping adventure with another savvy family.  I simply love the style and humor that Law writes these books with.  They have such a unique voice, as you'll see from the excerpt below.  The characters are lovable and you feel their frustration and excitement during each episode of the story.  A hilarious and unique family story filled with old-fashioned good fun.

"I'd known for years that something in my blood and guts and brains and bones was poised to turn me tall-tale, gollywhopper weird." p 2
"The place looked Wyoming wild, but now it was crazily patterned and molded; like somehow Grandpa had mixed up the carved swards and jutting stones of Machu Pichu in South America with the curved, thickly sliced, stair-stepping terraces of the rice paddies in China, then colored it in sage green, sandstone red, and straw bale gold." p 31
Things I Didn't Like:
I admit it didn't quite have the charm of Savvy.  I found it quite a bit more predictable too, though I'm sure that's my adult sensibilities coming into play.  This will be a hit with fantasy and humor-with-adventure-loving kids.

Read Savvy by Ingrid Law first (though it stands pretty well alone)

The Girl Who Could Fly by Victoria Forester

s-factor: none

mrg-factor: none

v-factor: ->
some minor incidents, nothing too scary

Overall rating: ****

What kind of savvy would you want to have?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Monday, December 20, 2010

Happy Holidays

I hope all of you are enjoying (or preparing to enjoy) some time away from work or school or other non-fun duties.  I am currently vacationing out of town, which explains why my posting has been (and will continue to be) sporadic and unpredictable.  I'll be posting some scheduled reviews occasionally, but I hope that you, like me, have funner things to do during this time of the year.  See you all back again in 2011!

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Friday, December 17, 2010

Book Review: The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman

The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Publication date: July 2010
ISBN: 9780399250965

Source: Library

The Grimm Legacy

When Elizabeth gets a new job at a library full of objects, not books, she does not expect to be drawn into a mystery.  But, when she learns about the Grimm collection - a special collection of items straight out of the Grimm brother's fairy tales - she feels the powerful draw of those items.  She and her fellow workers must find out who is stealing and replacing with fakes the Grimm collection, before they end up disappearing or worse.

Things I Liked:
This book had a fun, lighthearted, and totally awesome premise!  I love the fairy tale connections and the fun that could be had from all those enchanted objects.  I also really loved the idea of having a repository (or library of sorts) for literary-related items.  I think that would be so cool.  The plot was also intriguing enough that I kept reading to find out what happened to the characters, not just for the Grimm descriptions.  Here is a favorite fun part:

"There weren't any cars back when the Brothers Grimm were collecting stuff. Maybe they thought about shoes a whole lot because they had to walk everywhere and their feet hurt."
"That's an interesting theory.  You think maybe other stuff was just as important, but the Grimm guys only noticed the shoe aspect?  Like, they missed whole stories about hats and scarves because their feet hurt?" p 148-149
Things I Didn't Like:
I have to admit that the characters felt a bit flat.  I wasn't as interested in them so much as the story and the awesome repository of magical objects.  Also, the ending felt rushed and a bit too easy.  It kind of left me feeling like things weren't completely explained.  Still, for its clever ideas and the fun plot, I enjoyed it overall.

A Tale Dark and Grimm by Adam Gidwitz

Sisters Grimm books by Michael Buckley
Complete Fairy Tales by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm

s-factor: none

mrg-factor: X
just some serious kissing :)

v-factor: none

Overall rating: ****

What kinds of literary objects would you like to "check out"?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Thanks for Playing!

Thanks everyone who played my Name That Book game on Monday!  Also, I am not so clever as I think I am. :)  I thought I was being so sneaky and tricky with those puzzles, but every single person who entered got them both right.  And, for those who care, Book 1 was Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie by Jordan Sonnenblick and Book 2 was Alchemy and Meggy Swann by Karen Cushman (both of which are fabulous books, BTW).  And...

Paula was the winner!

Congrats, I've sent you an email and I'll be sending along some bookish delights as soon as I get your mailing address.  

Thanks again to everyone who plays along with my silly games!

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Book Review: The Line by Teri Hall

The Line by Teri Hall
Publisher: Dial
Publication date: March 2010
ISBN: 9780803734661

Source: Library

The Line 

Rachel and her mother live in a remote area of the US, right near the Line, the edge of the known world.  The Line has been there as long as Rachel and her mother can remember, separating what they know and where they live from Away.  With a corrupt and controlling government that has taken many of their basic rights, being far from big cities is a good thing for them.  When Rachel finds a message that came from the other side of the Line, she must decide between what is right and what is safe.

Things I Liked:
This book had an intriguing premise, with a government that essentially cuts off everything outside of its borders and restricts the movements of its citizens.  I was intrigued by the history of how the Line came to be and how the rights of the US people were slowly stolen away.  I like the setting of the book and also the way Rachel's relationship with her mother changes over the course of the book.  

Things I Didn't Like:
For the most part, I was unimpressed with the book.  I thought there was too little explanation of how things were and how they got that way.  I found Rachel acted much younger than a teenager in the book.  Her relationship with her mom felt much more like something a tween or younger would feel.  I was quite disappointed with the ending, too.  It felt like there was not any kind of closure to the story.  I can tell there is probably an expected sequel, but there should be some amount of wrapping up in the book.  After all the build up, things went very smoothly at the end, with very little trouble.  I think that the main thing it could have used was more detail.  Basically, it just wasn't for me.  

The Giver by Lois Lowry

Gone by Michael Grant
Candor by Pam Bachorz

s-factor: none

mrg-factor: none

v-factor: ->
very minor details

Overall rating: **

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Book Review: This Book is Not Good For You by Pseudonymous Bosch

Posted as part of Tween Tuesday, hosted by GreenBeanTeenQueen.
This Book Is Not Good For You by Pseudonymous Bosch
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication date: September 2009
ISBN: 9780316040860

Source: Library

This Book Is Not Good For You (Secret Series) 

The secret to the most delicious tasting chocolate in the world?  What could be bad about that?  Unfortunately, this book is not good for you, and thus I can't tell you anything about it.  Oh, except Cass' mom has been kidnapped by an evil master chef who, for the ransom, wants a magical instrument with super powers that will allow the Midnight Sun access to the secret.  Read at your own risk.

Things I Liked:
Once again, this series delights and surprises me.  I love the wit and the dry humor and the positively extraordinary plot.  This book delves not only into the realm of the unbelievable, but it also manages to poignantly discuss the actions of people who are under stress and what we will do to save our families.  A romping, funny, good time of a book that will delight kids and adults of all ages.  And make you crave chocolate like you never have before.  Favorite parts:

You know, people always warn children about taking candy from strange adults.  But they never warn us adults about taking candy from strange children.  All those sweet-looking kids who sell boxes of candy bars on the street to help pay for their schooling - how do we know what's in those bars?  And don't get me started on that nefarious institution designed to lure unsuspecting customers into buying mysterious frosted goodies: the bake sale.  p 36
I'm not anti-vanilla, just pro-chocolate.  I wanted to make that clear for all the villains, oops!  I'm sorry, I mean vanillains, out there.  You know who you are. p 190
Things I Didn't Like:
I imagine the humor and side notes would get old if you read all the books at once (well, if your are an adult, maybe not a kid).  But one at a time, they are a delight!

Read the first two books in the Secret Series by Pseudonymous Bosch

The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
Reminds me also of the Alcatraz series by Brandon Sanderson

s-factor: none

mrg-factor: none

v-factor: none

Overall rating: ****

Totally unrelated, but I posted my 400th book review last week! Crazy!

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Monday, December 13, 2010

Name That Book, Episode 6

Name that Book is a biweekly game where you get to guess a book title from the photo clues.  

Since it's the season of giving, I thought I'd have a prize again this time. And, instead of giving it to the first correct guesser, I'll take guesses (NOT in the comments, only in the form) for a few days and then pick a winner from those who got both book titles correct.  The prize will be something bookish (and possibly even a book).  Ready, set, go!

Book 1:

Book 2:

Please be sure to leave all guesses in the form below and NOT in the comments! I'll pick a winner Wednesday evening/Thursday morning. (US only please.)

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Ghosts of Christmas Past

 A Bit of Me(Me) is hosted by Danielle of There's a Book.

I couldn't pass up the opportunity to revisit some of my favorite family holiday traditions. If you don't care to stroll down someone else's memory lane, you can skip right by this post and I won't mind. But, here are a few of the things my family did growing up that I hope to do when I have kids of my own:

The big thing for our obviously Christian family was reenacting the Nativity.  My parents have been doing this for a long time.  Our Nativity over the years:

Here's the first photo I could find - it was probably not too easy to fill all the parts with less than four children:

It was always fun to have a "baby" to play Jesus, though this one was a bit big for the part of a newborn.

And of course with old cameras and young children, it was hard to get a good photo.

Add another child and they're starting to have enough to fill the parts!

My older sisters used to fight every year over who could be Mary.  That's when my father starting keeping track of who played her each year so the four girls would each get a turn (at this point I haven't arrived on the scene yet).

Note the awesome beard my oldest brother is wearing.  This was obviously before the time it became known as the "pee beard" for its funny smell and no one would consider touching it. 

I was pretty disappointed to discover my parents hadn't printed any of the photos of my first Christmas, when I got to be the baby. Instead, I present my second Christmas participating in the Nativity (though you can see I probably didn't participate, since I'm not in costume).

You can see a gap in the years since that last one, but a definite improvement in photo quality.  This is also about the time my older siblings started disappearing sporadically from the scene.

My sister discovers the joys of sporting a beard:

And the introduction of the sheep hat, a favorite costume item:

I'm particularly fond of this year, since we finally convinced my parents to participate (my mom usually read the Bible story and my dad filmed it).  Also a favorite is my sister's even more excellent beard made from her own hair.

Not our most recent Nativity, but one of my favorite later ones was the year we had three babies to participate.  It was a fun year. 

I'm definitely hoping I get to keep up this tradition with my family!

There's lots of other things my family used to do (and some they still do) like singing Christmas songs around the piano and having Christmas morning brunch.  But since this post is already too long, I thought I'd just give a shout out to the awesome candy-making my mom has passed on to me:


Christmas isn't Christmas without the candy.

What are your favorite holiday traditions?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Friday, December 10, 2010

Book Review: The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
Publisher: Dial
Publication date: March 2010
ISBN: 9780803734951

Source: Library

The Sky Is Everywhere 

Lennie Walker, a musician and average teen, is desperately trying to deal with the death of her energetic and loveable older sister, Bailey.  Her grief paints every day of her life and her interactions with others.  She finds herself drawn inexplicably to two very different boys - Toby, Bailey's boyfriend who seems to be the only person who understands the extent of her grief, and Joe, a gorgeous new boy with musical genius and a desire to bring Lennie out of her grief-stricken world.  But, she can't have both and she definitely can't have Bailey back, so she must try to decide what she can have and what she wants.

Things I Liked:
It was absolutely beautifully written.  I can understand all the raving about the writing.  Nelson has crafted words and sentences and colored a world that you can't help but love and grieve in.  Her depiction of Lennie's pain and the poems she writes to help her deal with it are just heartbreakingly real and gorgeous.  Anyone who's dealt with loss and grief will feel it just as Lennie and those around her do.  That is what I loved most about this book, Lennie's grief and her awakening to those around her who also lost Bailey.  It was so interesting to imagine what Lennie had to become in the wake of Bailey's loss and what she might not have done if Bailey had stayed.  Difficult to contemplate and yet so interesting to think about.  While the love story was emotionally riveting, I found it secondary to the rest of the book.  I couldn't cut down on the quotes I loved from this book:

This is northern Northern california after all - the final frontier of freekerdom.  Just in the eleventh grade we have a girl named Electricity, a guy named Magic Bus, and countless flowers: Tulip, Begonia, and Poppy - all parent-given-on-the-birth-certificate names.  Tulip is a two-ton bruiser of a guy who would be the star of our football team if we were the kind of school that had a football team. p 6
"You duck! You flying yellow duck! And you took this long to tell me?!" When Sarah gets excited, random animals pop into her speech like she has an Old MacDonald Had a Farm kind of Tourette syndrome. p 47
I put aside for a moment the fact that I've turned into a total strumpet-harlot-trollop-wench-jezebel-tart-harridan-chippy-nymphet because I've just realized something incredible.  This is it - what all the hoopla is about, what Wuthering Heights is about - it all boils down to this feeling rushing through me in this moment...Who knew all this time I was one kiss away from being Cathy and Juliet and Elizabeth Bennett and Lady Chatterley!? p 117
But what if I'm a shell-less turtle now, demented and devastated in equal measure, an unfreakingbelievable mess of a girl, who wants to turn the air into colors with her clarinet, and what if somewhere inside I prefer this?  What if as much as I fear having death as a shadow, I'm beginning to like how it quickens the pulse, not only mine, but the pulse of the whole world...how can the cost of this change in me be so great?  it doesn't seem right that anything good should come out of Bailey's death.  p 144-145
For the rest of my life, I'm going to leave the femme fatale-ing to other femmes.  All I want is to flee, but I don't want them to stare at my butt as I fly into the woods in this tiny piece of fabric masquerading as a dress.  p 204
Things I Didn't Like:
Actually, while my heart was breaking for Lennie, I found the love story to be rather predictable.  I saw from the start when she liked those two boys what would happen.  I really wanted to smack Lennie and tell her to get it straight before she messed up, but I also couldn't because she felt so broken.  The romantic triangle was kind of blah and annoying for me, even as it was supposed to be breaking my heart.  As I noted above, it felt secondary to the exploration of Lennie's grief and her life after her sister was gone.

Reminded me a little of North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley in terms of writing

She's been compared to Sarah Dessen a lot too

s-factor: !@#
scattered throughout

mrg-factor: XXXX
a lot of encounters for Lennie, some fairly descriptive

v-factor: none

Overall rating: ****

Do you ever find a book has great writing but disappoints in other ways, or has a fabulous story but the writing is just ok?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage

Thursday, December 9, 2010

I Actually NEED It 8

I Actually NEED It is an extremely irregular feature where I express my desire, or rather need, for certain books that haven't come out or aren't available at my library yet.  To learn about the reason behind the name, check out my inaugural I Actually NEED It post.


XVI by Julia Karr
This appears to be the year of dystopian YA lit.  I happen to need more of this in my diet.  Plus, I've been following the goings on of Karr and her fellow dystopian writers at the League of Extraordinary Writers, which is lots of fun.  Coming January 2011.

The Water Wars 
The Water Wars by Cameron Stracher 
Same here - more fun dystopian lit (if you can call dystopian lit "fun").  Plus, come on, you know it's entirely possible for our future selves to be fighting wars over water.  That will come out of our eyelashes, of course.  Coming January 2011.

The Iron Queen (Harlequin Teen) 
The Iron Queen by Julie Kagawa 
I've really enjoyed the Iron Fey series thus far and I expect great things from this third volume.  Coming February 2011.

Stolen Nights (Infinite Days) 
Stolen Nights by Rebecca Maizel 
I was pleasantly surprised (for the most part) by Infinite Days, a vampire romance that had some excellent vampire mythos.  I'm intrigued to see where Maizel takes the story next.  Coming March 2010.

Outside In by Maria V. Snyder
Loved completely Inside Out and this futuristic-scifi-sorta-dystopian world Snyder's created.  Not to mention loads of other Snyder books.  I'm sure it won't disappoint.  Coming March 2011.

Wither (The Chemical Garden Trilogy)
Wither by Lauren DeStefano 

More dystopian with an awesome cover?  Yes, please.  Plus, it arrived for me in the mail this week.  Yeah!  Coming March 2011.

Human.4 by Mike Lancaster 

Um, I sound like a broken record, but this sounds like an awesome futury sci-fi creepy maybe dystopian story with a side of hypnotism.  Very cool.  Coming March 2011.

Steel by Carrie Vaughn 
Tough chick with sword?  Check.  Pirates?  Check.  Count me in.  Coming March 2011.

Eona by Alison Goodman
One of my favorite books of 2009 is finally, finally getting its sequel.  I adored Eon and can't wait to devour this next book.  Coming April 2011.

My Unfair Godmother
My Unfair Godmother by Janette Rallison 

Rallison writes funny books and I haven't read nearly enough of them.  However, I really liked My Fair Godmother, so I'm certainly planning to enjoy this one.  Coming April 2011.

Memento Nora
Memento Nora by Angie Smibert 

And we're back to the dystopian debuts from the League.  Another fascinating-sounding book with very chilling similarities to our own world.  Coming April 2011.

The Demon's Surrender (Demon's Lexicon Trilogy, the)
The Demon's Surrender by Sarah Rees Brennan

I have previously expressed my love for this series and especially the sibling relationships it contains.  I'm super thrilled to see where her characters go and what they choose to do.  Coming May 2011.

Corsets and Clockwork by Various Authors 
I'm becoming a big fan of steampunk and this collection of short stories has lots of awesome authors who contributed, including Maria Snyder, who you should know by now I adore.  Coming May 2011.

A Tale of Two Castles by Gail Carson Levine
Yeah for a new fairy tale from the queen of fairy tales!  I've loved quite a few of Levine's previous fairy tales and I have high hopes for this newest one.  Coming May 2011.

Divergent by Veronica Roth
Just add this to my list of dystopian delights and include a touch of a librarian who raved about it.  Must read.  Coming May 2011.

Nightspell by Leah Cypess 
While I didn't adore Mistwood as much as I wanted to, I want more from Cypess, who created an excellent new world and intriguing characters.  Coming May 2011.

The Revenant 
The Revenant by Sonia Gensler 
Ok, I don't really have any good reasons for this one.  It just looks and sounds deliciously creepy.  Coming June 2011.

Sweetly by Jackson Pearce 
I have a long-time love for fairy-tale retellings and Sisters Red was quite good.  I really want more fairy tale fun from Pearce.  Plus, seriously, that cover rocks in a creepy and disturbing way.  Coming June 2011.

Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

I've been impressed mostly by the writing of this series and the supporting characters, but I'm invested all the way to find out what happens next.  Coming July 2011.

What do you actually NEED?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage
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