Friday, March 28, 2014

Review: Ask Again Later by Liz Czukas

Ask Again Later
Ask Again Later by Liz Czukas
Publisher- Harper Teen
Released- March 11th 2014
Purchase- Amazon / B & N

Despite what her name might suggest, Heart has zero interest in complicated romance. So when her brilliant plan to go to prom with a group of friends is disrupted by two surprise invites, Heart knows there's only one drama-free solution: flip a coin.Heads: The jock. He might spend all night staring at his ex or throw up in the limo, but how bad can her brother's best friend really be?Tails: The theater geek...with a secret. What could be better than a guy who shares all Heart's interests--even if he wants to share all his feelings?Heart's simple coin flip has somehow given her the chance to live out both dates. But where her prom night ends up might be the most surprising thing of all...
My Thoughts: 
Truthfully, when I first saw this book, I looked at that cover and wasn't instantly dazzled. I'm a cover-crazz kinda gal and if a cover doesn't get my attention off the bat, then I usually don't bother with it. But! when a goodreads friend (waves to Sam) gave this a wonderful review and talked about how funny it was, I decided to give it a go since I need funny in my life and I'm so glad I did because, Ask Again Later was the real deal. Clever banter, awesome zingers, sweet friendships and an adorable romance. Truly, a fun-filled escape.

Ask Again Later, is the kind of story that makes your heart happy and puts one of those stupid plastered smiles on your face the entire time your reading. The writing is effortless, smooth and quite smart. What a brilliant and refreshing concept idea to have a girl who doesn't date be put on the spot for two good-intention prom invites. Heart doesn't know what to do and decides to leave it up to fate, or in this case, a Chuck E. Cheese token. But fate is a mischievous beast and our tender Heart will be in for one helluva night filled with hilarious disasters, epically entertaining comedy and finally some insightful discoveries. Watching Heart have to endure everything and anything that came her way was such a hoot and I thoroughly enjoyed watching her go through the 'what could happen' for both of her respective prom offers. One was obviously the better choice while the other was the prom from hell, which was both parts sad and hilarious. But no matter how Heart's night is going with both Tyler and his group and Ryan with the No Drama Prom-a Crew, it's where Heart ends up that makes it so incredibly worth it.

My favourite thing about this book is all of the amazingly awesome characters. They were all so funny and just fun to be with. 
Being inside Heart's head was a complete joy. She's sassy and sweet and all kinds of scared. She's the kind of character who doesn't like confrontations, gets manipulated easily by her brother and has commitment issues, but despite some of her flaws I like that she felt real and easy to connect with. But what I thought was so cool about her the most was that no matter what the night threw at her (which was a lot) she took it all surprisingly well and made the most of a bad situation. I liked that she just went with it, head up and just dealt with it. Kudos for Heart.
I also really loved all of Heart's friends, they are all a perfect mix of good times, tough love and endless support. While the romance in this is both sweet and frustrating. Despite what's implied there isn't a love triangle in this one, but I really did love both guys. Ryan is a sweetie-pie and I love how much of a friend he turned out to be when Heart needed it the most. But Schroeder/Chase is a different story and I couldn't help feel a tad conflicted with him. Most of the time he's charming and funny and I adored their banter and the use of witty nicknames, but then we have moody-Schroeder who quite frankly was a pain in the ass. Communication is the key to every friendship and/or relationship but I'm not sure Chase got the memo. Honesty people, it works.
While I really did love all of these characters, the only one I had an issue was with Phil. I'm a huge sucker for great brother/sister and family bonds in my books and was slightly disappointed that wasn't the case here. Phil was such.a.asshat. Period. Or well, at least he was in one version of the night, on the flip side I guess he was okay, but I can't help wishing he was written differently.
I really loved that ending. It felt like a warm fuzzy blanket after being stuck out in the cold for hours. Prefect and adorable.

Basically, I had a lot of fun with this book. It's funny and warm and sweet and cute as hell and the perfect book when your in need for something light and wonderful. A feel good, fun-filled read. Can't wait till Czukas next book, but this time there wont be any hesitation!

Find the author:
Goodreads / Website                               4 Snowflakes

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Cover Reveal: The Beast by Lindsay Mead

Today we are very excited to share some cover love for 'the Beast' by Lindsay Mead. I don't know about you...but this cover totally rocks! 

the Beast by Lindsay Mead

Demon possession has swept through Glace's neighboring kingdom, turning humans into Hellhounds. These great, fanged wolves are wild, desperate, and hungry. Only the sworn Hunters have kept them back for five long, bloody years.

At the young age of fifteen, Belle LeClair became a Hunter. She no longer remembers how many hounds she's killed, or how many friends she's buried. Still, Belle leads the hunt till a tragedy forces her deep into the dark kingdom. Her heart will be turned, her loyalty tested— and fate will intervene.

Amid a backdrop of Steampunk inventions and a harsh winter landscape, The Beast is a re-imagining of the infamous love between a beauty and a beast.

Video Link: the Beast
Lindsay Mead lives in her home state, Michigan, with a small demon-dog named Suzie Q. She has obsessively made videos for YouTube since 2007 and can't seem to stop. THE BEAST is her debut into the world of writing.

*The book is set to release this spring*

Main YouTube Channel:
The Beast on Goodreads:

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Cover Reveal & Teaser: my not so Super Sweet life by Rachel Harris

Winterhaven Books is very excited to share with you the beautiful cover for Rachel Harris' upcoming title: my not so Super Sweet life. Soooo.... without further adieu...

My Not So Super Sweet Life (My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century, #3)


Cat Crawford just wants to be normal—or at least as normal as a daughter of Hollywood royalty can be. And it looks like fate is granting her wish: she’s got an amazing boyfriend, Lucas; her fabulous cousin, Alessandra, living with her; and her dad planning his second marriage to a great future stepmom. That is, until her prodigal mother reveals on national television that she has something important to tell her daughter…causing a media frenzy.

Lucas Capelli knows his fate is to be with Cat, and he’s worked hard to win her over once and for all. Unfortunately, Lucas has his own issues to deal with, including a scandal that could take him away from the first place he’s truly belonged.

As secrets are revealed, rumors explode, and the world watches, Cat and Lucas discover it’s not fate they have to fight if they want to stay together…this time, it’s their own insecurities.

Well, and the stalkerazzi.


PUB DATE: April 21st, 2014


Profile photo Author Bio:

Rachel Harris writes humorous love stories about sassy girls-next-door and the hot guys that make them swoon. Emotion, vibrant settings, and strong families are a staple in each of her books...and kissing. Lots of kissing.
A Cajun cowgirl now living in Houston, she firmly believes life's problems can be solved with a hot, sugar-coated beignet or a thick slice of king cake, and that screaming at strangers for cheap, plastic beads is acceptable behavior in certain situations. She homeschools her two beautiful girls and watches way too much Food Network with her amazing husband.
An admitted Diet Mountain Dew addict, she gets through each day by laughing at herself, hugging her kids, and losing herself in story. She writes young adult, new adult, and adult romances, and LOVES talking with readers!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Teaser Tuesday, # The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

Welcome to Teaser Tuesdays! Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: Grab your current read Open to a random page Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My Teaser Tuesday is for the following...

The Kiss of Deception (The Remnant Chronicles #1)
The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
Publisher: Henry Holt
Expected Publication Date: July 15, 2014

*Quotes are subject to change as they were taken from an Advanced Readers Copy.

Teasers from page: 12

"I'm not a soldier in my father's army."
My mother drew closer, brushing my cheek, and whispered, "Yes, my dear. You are."

Teasers from page: 93
"I see only reminders that nothing lasts forever, not even greatness."
"Some things last."
I faced him. "Really? And just what would that be?"
"The things that matter."

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your ‘teasers’ in a comment here if you don’t have a blog Thanks! 

Monday, March 24, 2014

Review: House of Ivy & Sorrow by Natalie Whipple

House of Ivy & Sorrow by Natalie Whipple
Publisher- Harper Teen
Released- April 15th 2014
Pre-Order- Amazon / B & N

Josephine Hemlock has spent the last 10 years hiding from the Curse that killed her mother. But when a mysterious man arrives at her ivy-covered, magic-fortified home, it’s clear her mother’s killer has finally come to destroy the rest of the Hemlock bloodline. Before Jo can even think about fighting back, she must figure out who she’s fighting in the first place. The more truth Jo uncovers, the deeper she falls into witchcraft darker than she ever imagined. Trapped and running out of time, she begins to wonder if the very Curse that killed her mother is the only way to save everyone she loves
My Thoughts: 
Josephine and her Nana are witches and the last of the Hemlock bloodline. Witchcraft can only be passed down from female to female in every witching family. And while the Hemlocks have lived in Willow’s End all of there lives, it’s their land that makes them more of a target for the Curse for its potent magical value.
The Curse has been killing witches for generations and what killed Jo’s mother when she was a little girl, but no one knows who’s behind these attacks and the reason why Jo and her Nana have been hiding ever since. But when a strangely familiar man shows up asking about Jo’s mother, he unknowingly brings darkness and danger with him and could only mean one thing for the Hemlock family. The Curse has finally found them. Now is the time to fight as Jo and her Nana come together to try to unlock the secrets and solve the mystery of who could be hunting them and the witching community for hundreds of years and find a way to finally put an end to the Curse. But Jo must first try to find a way to protect everyone she loves from the shadows that could consume them and before she has no other choice but to suffer the same fate that killed her mother.

House of Ivy & Sorrow is such a cool book! I've always been such a sucker for witches and magic in my escape. There are just so much limitless possibilities that come with this lore and its fun and fascinating to see the imagination and creativity crafted for my favorite kind of genre. This would be my first book by Natalie Whipple, but it won’t be my last. You could tell that she put a lot of thought into her world twisting and turning it in unpredictable ways that was unique, clever and sharp. I really liked the way she writes, despite the pacing being a tad quick at times; the flow of the story was smooth and never had a dull or dragged out moment. This book is easily absorbing and I loved being able to sink into the plot and all the wonderful colorful characters. But my favorite part of this book was the old school magic, complete with secret portals, bubbling cauldrons, and nasty ingredients such as; spiders, eyeballs, bear hearts and crows awaiting disintegration for animated spells. I also liked that there isn’t a good or a bad side to magic, there is only darkness but its how you control that darkness that defines you. Magic can be harnessed through the earth and payment must always be paid, whether from blood, nails, flesh, limbs or one of the five senses. Sure, it’s a bit disturbing at times, but still pretty wicked stuff.

I really loved the entire cast of characters. They all balanced and complimented each other quite nicely and I enjoyed the closeness and bonds between family and friendships.
First off, I adored Nana Dorothea! I’d be dead afraid to have a grandmother like this of course, but I’d also be mighty proud. Nana is a tough old witch that goes above and beyond for her family. I wanted to laugh and cringe for poor Jo at times just thinking about having a boyfriend and hoping against hope that Nana doesn't ruin the night with her meddling interference. But while Nana is strict, she’s also very kind and loving.
Jo is such a sweet character but she’s also full of spunk and fight. She wants what all teenage girls want, a normal life with friends and a boyfriend and the freedom to enjoy her youth without worrying about her Nana striking her boyfriend down with lightning just before she gets her first kiss. But Jo doesn't have a normal life and she’s actually quite wonderful about that. She’s fiercely loyal to her Nana and the magical bloodline she must preserve being the only Hemlock left, she’s accepted her fate and fights every step of the way to protect everyone she loves no matter the consequences.
Gwen and Kat are amazing examples of secondary characters that really affect the story in a positive and uplifting way. It was nice to see strong supportive friendships that didn’t involve a lot of drama or angst and it was nice to see them united together especially since Jo could use all the help she could get to fight this battle.
Winn was such a cutiepie. I loved that he was so down to earth and content with who he is. I love that he’s a farm boy, hard working and knows the value of family. The way he was with Jo was just too adorable for words and I loved the subtle twist in his character.
Another character that I really loved was, Levi. I don’t want to spoil too much but I really enjoyed the complexity of the role he played in the story and how it ties in with Jo’s fate.
The romance between Jo and Winn was completely adorable, light but intense. The storyline was so busy that we didn't get a lot of screen time and I wish we got to see some more uninterrupted moments between the two, but they still managed to make a huge impact. We do have a little competition here, not exactly a love triangle but definitely some amusing conflict.
I also really loved the ending and while this reads like a standalone, I wouldn't mind seeing more books from this world since it has a lot of promise and potential for different plot directions for just about any of these characters.

All in all, I really enjoyed myself with this one. Natalie Whipple writes an intriguing and enchanting take on magic and witchcraft that really impressed me. The storyline is entertaining and unstoppable and the characters were all made of awesome. They’re warm, charming and full of fight. I look forward to discovering more books by Whipple, she’s got a new fan!

Find the author: 
Goodreads / Website                              4 Snowflakes

Friday, March 21, 2014

Review: The Shadow Prince (Into the Dark, #1) by Bree Despain

The Shadow Prince (Into the Dark, #1)
The Shadow Prince (Into the Dark, #1) by Bree Despain
Publisher: Egmont
Expected Publication Date: March 11, 2014
B&N / Amazon

Haden Lord, the disgraced prince of the Underrealm, has been sent to the mortal world to entice a girl into returning with him to the land of the dead. Posing as a student at Olympus Hills High—a haven for children of the rich and famous—Haden must single out the one girl rumored to be able to restore immortality to his race.

Daphne Raines has dreams much bigger than her tiny southern Utah town, so when her rock star dad suddenly reappears, offering her full tuition to Olympus Hills High’s prestigious music program, she sees an opportunity to catch the break she needs to make it as a singer. But upon moving into her estranged father’s mansion in California, and attending her glamorous new school, Daphne soon realizes she isn’t the only student in Olympus who doesn’t quite belong.

Haden and Daphne—destined for each other—know nothing of the true stakes their fated courtship entails. As war between the gods brews, the teenagers’ lives collide. But Daphne won’t be wooed easily and when it seems their prophesied link could happen, Haden realizes something he never intended—he’s fallen in love. Now to save themselves, Haden and Daphne must rewrite their destinies. But as their destinies change, so do the fates of both their worlds.

My Thoughts...

Bree Despain takes her readers on a stunning mythological joyride, and into the lives of Haden Lord and Daphne Raines. The Shadow Prince is told from multiple POVs and a wonderful addition to YA. As a fan of mythology, Bree Despain does not disappoint!

Daphne was quite the protagonist. The story of her life up until she moved to Olympus Hills, was simple but frustrating. Her mother was overprotective and wouldn't allow Daphne leave their small community. Then swoops in Joe, her rockstar father, who had been pretty much been nonexistent since she was young, presents a court order of guardianship and takes Daphne away to Olympus Hills. This scenario seemed ideal for the story, however, wasn't very realistic as her mother didn't fight to keep her there. And how did he get guardianship over a child he never spent time with!? I think this could have been worked out a little differently so it made more sense.

Daphne (who is a beautiful singer) is thrust into a new lavish lifestyle in Olympus Hills, and is presented with an opportunity to try out for the high school choir. Of course she breezes into the top spot, stealing it from cranky pants, mean girl, Lexie.  She meets another student, Tobin Winters. He had been kind and befriended Daphne right away.

In the Underrealm a Champion is chosen to enter into the mortal realm and has one year to convince their "boon" to agree to follow them back to the underrealm. Sounds pretty simple, but not when it comes to Daphne. She's a smart cookie and isn't going to fall for anyone's shenanigans, even the gorgeous Haden Lord.

"You might be from Hades and all, but you haven't experienced torment quite like high school before."

There's a serious supply of secondary characters and I really liked them all. They range from mean girl, nice guy, to mystery. Their supporting roles equally contributed to the smooth flow of the story.
Woven with lots of mythology, mystery, and romance, The Shadow Prince was an enjoyable and lengthy read!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Review: The Forever Song by Julie Kagawa

The Forever Song by Julie Kagawa
Publisher- Harlequin Teen
Released- April 15th 2014
Pre-Order- Amazon / B & N / Chapters

Allison Sekemoto once struggled with the question: human or monster?
With the death of her love, Zeke, she has her answer.
Allie will embrace her cold vampire side to hunt down and end Sarren, the psychopathic vampire who murdered Zeke. But the trail is bloody and long, and Sarren has left many surprises for Allie and her companions—her creator, Kanin, and her blood brother, Jackal. The trail is leading straight to the one place they must protect at any cost—the last vampire-free zone on Earth, Eden. And Sarren has one final, brutal shock in store for Allie.
In a ruined world where no life is sacred and former allies can turn on you in one heartbeat, Allie will face her darkest days. And if she succeeds, triumph is short-lived in the face of surviving forever alone.
My Thoughts: 
The Forever Song is the last instalment in the Blood of Eden series and dammme what an ending! Julie Kagawa has once again delivered a heart stopping, pulse pounding finale that fans have been on edge waiting for and I'm happy to say it was everything I expected from Kagawa and more!

Our story begins with our Master vampire, Kanin and his sired-children, Allison and Jackal on a blood thirsty journey chasing down the sadistic vampire Sarren to Eden before he unleashes a plague that will destroy everything in it's path. Sarren's has a plan to wipe the world clean and start new by using his mutated version of the Red Lung virus that can kill humans and vampires alike. It's up to Kanin, Allison and Jackal to hunt down Sarren before it's to late. And with every step they take, every obstacle  they face, they do it with dark desperation in their hearts, hunger in their veins and a taste of revenge and death on their lips. Stop Sarren, find a cure and avenge the lives he's taken. It ends now!

Wow! What a freaken ending! I'm awed, floored and speechless. If this wasn't a Julie Kagawa book, I probably wouldn't have been able to fully enjoy this experience since I tend to favor more lighter vampire stories and this is anything but light or sweet or cute. This series is dark and damaging, violent and vicious and I loved every.single.minute of it. 

You know, I don't even know what I can say about this book plot-wise. It's filled with the most gasping turns and riveting twists. But anything I say will be a spoiler and fans of this series will want to learn all the stunning revelations for themselves. So all I'm gonna say about my feelings towards this amazing storyline is that Kagawa completely out did herself with this one. All the directions she put this world through was treacherously brutal but she still manages to bring greatness to her brilliant cast of characters.  The journey to self-worth and personal growth is very shady in the life of a blood thirsty vampire but somehow they've learned to beat down their monsters and come out with their morality in hand, or well, most of them anyway. There are so many moments that gave me pure chills and thrills. Moments that shocked the hell out of me, made me laugh, made me smile and made me so so sad. But through it all, the action and suspense had me glued to every page of this devastating dark and edgy horror that made me want to both savour and devour it in the same breath.

I'm so very proud of Allison. I'm proud that in the end of everything she's been through she still got to decide what monster she wanted to be after all. That she didn't let the blood frenzy or the lost and pain she felt destroy what little humanity she had left. Instead she used her anger to fight with everything she has no matter what happens.
I've always had the biggest soft spot of our dear Kanin. He holds himself with decades of wisdom and regret that made him both vulnerable and powerful. Deep down I always suspected how things may play out for him in the end and while I was right, I wish I was very much wrong.
If Puck, from the Iron series had an evil twin vampire brother, it would be Jackal. For me to hate this character in the first book and then have that same character be completely redeemed is no small thing. I loved his taunting banter and how exasperatingly annoying he can be. He's still a selfish bastard mind you, but this journey, these books, wouldn't have been the same without him.
As for Zeke...well, lets just say I was very conflicted about his fate and leave it at that. 
LOVED the ending. Perfection is all I'm gonna say!

Bottom line, The Forever Song is a kickass conclusion to one extremely badass vampire series. Kagawa's writing is mesmerizing, her world is horrifically deadly and her characters will sink their teeth in your heart and never let go.  This was one helluva wicked ride! Congrats to Julie for a sensational job, only you can make me want to experience a dark vampire series and have me begging for more.  I can't wait to get my hands on her next big adventure, dragons!! Talon!! Gimme, Gimme Gimme!

Find the author:
Goodreads / Website                                  5 Snowflakes

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Guest Post: Ali Novak

Today on WinterHaven Books we have the amazing Ali Novak with us as part of the Sourebooks blog tour!  Tina just recently read her novel My Life with the Walter Boys and loved it and we are all so excited to read it too!  
Ali is stopping by to discuss her journey from writing online to being published.  Her insight is amazing and I am so glad she agreed to do this!  Check it out!

                                              From Writing Online to Published Print

The publishing journey for my book My Life with the Walter Boys can be described  in one word—long. Seven years long! I wrote the first version of the story when I was only fifteen. Piles of crammed notebooks and God only knows how many drafts  later, the book is finally being published.

It’s been a long time, but I can still remember the opening line of the original draft. It went like this: “Hey! My name is Jackie Howard and I’m a New York City girl.” Wow, just reading that makes me cringe. Of course, my fifteen-year-old self thought the story was better than sliced bread.

Since uploading the story to Wattpad in 2010, My Life with the Walter Boys has been read more than 29,000,000 times! Sometimes I just look at that number and I can’t even believe it, but I didn’t get my break until 2013 when Wattpad formed a partnership with the publishing company Sourcebooks.

I will never forget the moment I was officially offered my book deal. It happened when I was at work, and after reading the email I started bawling. Like snot dripping down my face and everything. All my coworkers thought something terrible had happened, when really I was on cloud nine.

Besides being a dream come true, publishing was a huge change for me. The transition from writing online to writing under a contract was challenging, mainly because of the deadlines. In the past, I always updated my stories whenever I had free time, which wasn’t often. Having a consistent writing schedule was a foreign concept to me, and suddenly I had to rewrite an entire novel in less than three months! Let’s just say I spent many long nights at my desk chugging coffee and cranking out new chapters.

There were plenty of perks too! The best part of my transition was the wonderful staff at Sourcebooks, mainly my editor Aubrey. I’ll be the first to admit I’m horrible at editing, so to have a pair of professional eyes look over the book really helped whip it into shape.

Now that My Life with the Walter Boys is being published, it’s weird to think that I’ll never edit the story again—especially considering I’ve been fiddling with it for seven years. But I can look back on my journey and know that writing this book made me the writer I am today. If there are any amateur writers reading this and wondering what they can do to accomplish their dreams, I suggest taking a chance and posting online. You never know what might happen!
                                                 Find Ali at: Wattpad / Facebook / Twitter

Ali thank you so so much for stopping by.  I am sure this will help tons of writers out there who are trying to get their own story published.

About Ali Novak:
Ali Novak is twenty-two-year-old debut author and a recent graduate from University of Madison Wisconsin's creative writing program. She wrote her first full-length novel My Life with the Walter Boys at the age of fifteen. Since posting the story online, it has received more than 24 million reads and will be published by Sourcebooks Fire in March 2014.

When she isn't writing, Ali enjoys watching Food Network shows even though she can't cook, and reading any type of fantasy novel she can get her hands on. She is a Wisconsin native and hopes to make a career out of writing.
My Life With The Walter Boys
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Early Review: On the Fence by Kasie West

On the Fence by Kasie West
Publisher- Harper Teen
Released- July 1st 2014
Pre-Order- Amazon / B & N

She's a tomboy. He's the boy next door…Charlie Reynolds can outrun, outscore, and outwit every boy she knows. But when it comes to being a girl, Charlie doesn't know the first thing about anything. So when she starts working at a chichi boutique to pay off a speeding ticket, she finds herself in a strange new world. To cope with the stress of her new reality, Charlie takes to spending nights chatting with her neighbor Braden through the fence between their yards. As she grows to depend on their nightly Fence Chats, she realizes she's got a bigger problem than speeding tickets-she's falling for Braden. She knows what it means to go for the win, but if spilling her secret means losing him for good, the stakes just got too high.Fun, original, and endearing, On the Fence is a romantic comedy about finding yourself and finding love where you least expect.
My Thoughts:
I know this review is super early, but I simply couldn't wait to gush about my new favorite book! To say that I loved On the Fence by Kasie West would be a huge understatement. This book is my definition of the perfect escape. It's filled with the best.characters.evah. 
I freaken loved Charlie's family. Her brothers are her best friends and her dad is just this wonderful warm man raising a daughter without her mother and hoping that he's doing it right. Then we have a fantastic friends-turned-romance love story that plastered a smiles to my face the whole way through and melted my insides into goo. From start to finish, I totally fell in love with everything this book has to offer, so much so that I actually had to read it again once I hit the last page. Such a blast! 

It feels like I've only just discovered Kasie West's books and yet I'm already a screaming fan girl. She's rapidly becoming one of my favorite contemporary authors evah!
I've recently read The Distance Between Us and loved the sweet-feels and sarcastically charged humor, but I've always been a sucker for sports themed tomboys who dares to wonder what it would be like to be a real girl. West delivers a flawed but likeable protagonist with a realistic story and relatable connections. I was instantly consumed from minute one and devoured this in one sitting.

In some books, it may be the setting or plot that makes the story, but for this book the characters totally own it. Hands down, this book has the best characters ever.
Charlie is a very conflicting character and not your typically tomboy, she's definitely extreme. Her mother died when she was a little girl so she grew up without a women's touch, but I still think she was born with a competitor's edge and I envied her athletic drive and dedication. She may not have had a mother around growing up, but she still had a cop for a father who is fair, kind and loving and a bunch of boisterous brothers and a next door neighbour who are fiercely protective, supportive and aren't afraid to treat her like one of the guys. Charlie may come off a little too strong at times and I found her to be pretty stubborn, insensitive and defensive, but she also has this sweet and vulnerable side that I couldn't help love. Everyone has versions of themselves that they share with the people in their lives, but in Charlie's case, she didn't realize that she can have the best of both worlds and her journey of self discovering her inner-girl was just to adorable for words.
I simple adored Jerom, Nathan, Gage and Braden. They really are such a force in this book. My favourite part of the story was when all of these guys come together playing sports, goofing around and messing with Charlie's universe. Hilarious stuff!
Then we have Braden, who totally owned my heart. He may not have always handled things the best way, but he's always had Charlie's best interest at heart. Funny enough the romance in this is actually pretty light, but still just as powerful. It has the perfect blend of tension and chemistry. I absolutely adored the late night fence-chats and 'I know you better' games between Charlie and Braden. These two have an easy friendship with complicated emotions, but it was so easy to get lost in their 'alternate reality' and I found myself  living in their moments a little longer with each new scene.
The Distance Between Us fans will be pleased to see Skye again in this book, but we only get a second with Caymen and no Xander in sight, but it was still great to see them in this book. There is some heavy hearted issues that Charlie deals with concerning her mother, it was touching but not overly dramatic.

Bottom line, I couldn't love a book more. On the Fence, has it all my friends. The writing is fantastic and flows at an even pace. The story is absorbing and fun filled and these characters are rambunctious and full of life. Wonderful family togetherness, meaningful friendships and self-discovery journey that reminds us that we don't have to change for anyone and it's okay to be who you really are. Fans who like their contemporary with a little edge and a lot of heart will love this book. It's  my new favourite thing and  I can't wait to devour West's next book. Love, love love!!!

Find the author:
Goodreads / Website                               5 Snowflakes

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Teaser Tuesday, #61 The Selection by Kiera Cass

Welcome to Teaser Tuesdays! Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: Grab your current read Open to a random page Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My Teaser Tuesday is for the following...

The Selection (The Selection, #1)

The Selection by Kiera Call
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: April 24, 2012

Teasers are from ebook Page 20

"I stayed awake a little while longer, thinking of Aspen, and how much I loved him, and how it felt to be loved by him. I felt special, priceless, irreplaceable. No queen on any throne could possibly feel more important than I did."

"I think he enjoyed the sound of my raspy breathing more than the singing itself."

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your ‘teasers’ in a comment here if you don’t have a blog Thanks! 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Review: Don't Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Don't Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publisher- Disney-Hyperion
Released- April 15th 2014
Pre-Order- Amazon / B & N

Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend. Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it's one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took "mean girl" to a whole new level, and it's clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She's getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she's falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash.
But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn't just buried deep inside of Sam's memory-someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive.
My Thoughts:
It’s no secret that Jennifer L. Armentrout is one of my all time favorite authors and it’s so hard not to go all screaming-fan-girl every time I read one of her books. But dame! She just keeps getting insanely better and better. In the last few years, I've really grown to like mystery books, but if Jennifer keeps writing like this, mystery is going to be my new favorite genre! Just wow!

Don’t Look Back, follows the story of a girl named Samantha Franco who is struggling with amnesia ever since she came stumbling out into the dark, battered and bloody. Her best friend, Cassie is also missing and Sam is presumed to be the last person to see her alive. Frustrated and lost, Sam wants nothing more to remember her past memories and help find Cassie, but the more she learns about her former-self, the more she realizes how ugly her life was. With a second chance to renew her life, Sam grabs at this unfortunate blessing to be a better person and somehow make all the wrongs in her life right again, but she hasn't given up on trying to find out what really happened to her and Cassie on that faithful night. The only thing is, what if her lost memories are the only reason she’s still alive?

Truth? I wasn't really prepared to love this book the way I did since mystery isn't usually my main escape without some kind of paranormal-goody backing it up, but hey, it’s a JLA book, so of course I'm going into this with an open mind, but yeah, I wasn't prepared to be blown away!
Jennifer’s mix of mystery, thriller and bubbling romance has a pitch perfect pace and flows with incredible suspense and intrigue. This is my favorite kind of whodunit. I've always loved amnesia-type books, it gives us that extra edge since we’re learning everything along with our main protagonist. This book has a brilliant cloud-of-doubt lingering over the entire book. Nothing is as it seems and I didn't know who to trust and found myself trying to remember whole conversations between the characters to see if I could catch any clues. Nope, I couldn't  find any. Jennifer really created this one in a tight hold, only letting go at the right time and place. I loved the flashbacks, memories and notes. They were the perfect pieces to the puzzle and did an amazing job of keeping me on my toes. But it was the big revelation and the motive behind it that left me utterly floored. I was bouncing out of my seat! I would never have suspected this person, never saw it coming and thought it was such a brilliantly played move.

I loved every single one of these characters. They’re all well developed, easy to connect with and easy to love and/or hate.
My heart really goes out to Sam. I can’t imagine what it’s like to lose your memories, but this girl makes it look like a blessing and a curse. I loved the way Jennifer portrayed her. I could feel how lost, deflated and desperate she was to help find Cassie, a girl who was suppose to be her best friend and enemy in the same breath. And then later I felt like I was going insane right along with her. I have no love for mean-girls, which is what I found so refreshing in this book since Sam is your ultimate mean-girl and we see the way she use to be with stories about her former-ways and later in her own memories. The genuine regret and sorrow in Sam is heartfelt and sincere and I love her child-like personality as she stumbles along in her renewed life, but she also has a fierce determination and fire in her that fuels the story from start to finish.
Scott is the best brother evah! I loved him so much. I've always been very fond of brother/sister bonds in books, and this one is just made of awesome. He’s protective, kind and funny and I even screamed a big ‘Hell Yeah’, in one of his scenes. Loved! Julie is also pretty awesome and I liked what she brought into Sam’s life. 
But it’s Carson Ortiz that really owned this book for me. My gawd. Can you say intense and sexy as hell? He is Sam’s constant rock and the only real friend in her life, but it hasn't always been this way. I thought it was pretty cool of Carson to give Sam another chance since he pretty much has every right to hate her, and yet, he stays true till the end, loyal, protective and wonderful.
I liked the fact that Sam’s ‘friends’ and even Del didn't smoother the story line. They played their parts well mind you, but they weren't the center of the plot which I was grateful for. It gave us more time to explore Sam’s past without the unwanted attention and immaturity of Sam’s mean-girl groupies and a boyfriend I would love to punch-out.
I love love loved the romance! Sam and Carson’s situation isn't found in very many books, actually, I can’t really think of one quite like this. It’s exciting, refreshing and even a little surreal given their history. The chemistry is off the freaken charts hawt. There were some real intense moments here where I could actually feel the sparks flyin’. So good! But it’s the friendship that I loved the most. In some twisted up way, it was fate that Sam got this second chance and being able to get a do-over, but finally, with the right person.

All in all, another JLA win! Don’t Look Back is an instant favorite! The mystery is captivating, gripping and exhilarating. The twist and turns are calculating and creepy but not overly disturbing and the romance is squeeze-worthy and pulse pounding delicious. Amazing characters, amazing writing and an amazing plot. I couldn't love this book more. I was totally invested and entertained from the first page till its gasping conclusion. I hope Jennifer continues to write more for this genre. She’s a natural story-teller and I can’t ever seem to get enough of her worlds. Loved!!

Find the author:
Goodreads/Website                             5 Puffy Snowflakes

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Teaser Tuesday, #60 On the Fence by Kasie West

Welcome to Teaser Tuesdays! Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: Grab your current read Open to a random page Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My Teaser Tuesday is for the following...

On the Fence

On The Fence by Kasie West
Publisher: HarperTeen
Expected Publication Date: July 1, 2014
*Teasers are from an advanced readers copy.

Teasers from ebook page 168
"So what, then? What were you going to tell me today?"
"The timing is wrong now. I'll tell you later."
"No. Please. I want to know now. I'm tired of secrets."
He stared at me for a long time, as if trying to read my sincerity. His breath touched my lips. It took everything in me not to close the distance between us. When his lips brushed against mine, I let out an involuntary gasp. Had I done that?
"Am I reading you wrong?" he asked.
I shook my head no. I couldn't find my voice, couldn't dare to believe this meant what I thought it meant.
He let out a slow breath of air that smelled so familiar. "I was going to tell you that."
"You were going to tell me that you wanted to kiss me?"
He nodded. "Is this going to change everything?"
"I sure hope so."

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your ‘teasers’ in a comment here if you don’t have a blog Thanks!