Throne of Glass Read Along

Discuss Chapters 1-28 for 2015 TBR Pile Challenge

The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski (Review)

"unlike any book I've read before"

The Bodies We Wear by Jeyn Roberts (Review)

"as things normally go, it is in the darkest moments where we see some sort of light."

Accordance by Shelly Crane (Review)

"Accordance was a great second installment to one of my all-time favorite series!"

From Ashes by Molly McAdams (Review)

"The romance was amazing, I became so invested in the characters, and the story held me in its grasp from beginning to end."

The Queen of Zombie Hearts by Gena Showalter (Review)

"white-hot romance, amazing characters"

Of Monsters and Madness by Jessica Verday (Review)

"The world was spectacularly built ..."

Blood-Drenched Beard by Daniel Galera (Review)

"a bit too confusing and foreign for me to fully enjoy"

Review + #Giveaway: Polaroid Cube + Accessories

"a chance to win not only the Cube Cam itself, but 5 custom designed accessories that will make using the Cube 10000x more fun"

Monday, March 30, 2015

The Countess Captive Book two in the Fairy tale Keeper Series by Andrea CefaloIvo ever {Blog Tour, Book Review & Giveaway}

Please join Author Andrea Cefalo as she tours with HF Virtual Book Tours for The Countess' Captive Blog Tour, from March 23-April 16. Take The Countess' Captive Playbuzz quiz and enter to win a Fairytale Keeper Clutch Purse & $25 Amazon Gift Card! 03_The Countess' Captive_CoverPublication Date: February 14, 2015 Scarlet Primrose Press Formats: eBook; Paperback Pages: 232 Series: Book Two, Fairytale Keeper Series Genre: Young Adult/Historical/Fairytale Retelling Add to GR Button During March of 1248, Adelaide Schumacher-affectionately called Snow White-has lost so much: her mother, her possessions, and now her home. Adelaide hates abandoning her home city, her family’s legacy, and her first love?Ivo. More than anything, she hates her father growing closer to her mother’s cousin?Galadriel. Adelaide plots to end their tryst before her fate is sealed, and she never sets foot in Cologne again. But good and pious can only get Galadriel so far. Never again will she be destitute. Never again will she be known by the cruel moniker?Cinderella. Never again will someone take what is rightfully hers. No matter what it takes. The Countess’ Captive is the much anticipated follow-up to The Fairytale Keeper and is book two in The Fairytale Keeper series. The novel combines Grimm’s fairytale characters with real historical settings and events to create a tale that leaves the reader wondering where fact ends and fiction begins.

Praise for The Fairytale Keeper Series

“A…resonant tale set late in the 13th century… with unexpected plot twists. An engaging story of revenge.” –Publisher’s Weekly “Great historical fiction. Strong emotion injected into almost every page.” –Amazon Vine Reviewer “…a unique twist on the Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Part fairy tale retelling, part historical fiction… The Fairytale Keeper is a story of corruption.” -Copperfield Historical Fiction Review “The story that Cefalo weaves is intriguing and leaves you hanging on, wanting more.” -Hooked to Books Book Review Blog “…it doesn’t feel like any retelling. Because it’s not. The Fairytale Keeper is its own unique story…very entertaining, containing a strong female role, a sweet romance, and much more.” -Lulu The Bookworm Book Review Blog

Buy the eBook

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Intro:  Adelaide fumes as she sits in a carriage belonging to her Father’s mistress, Galadriel. Addie is angry at her Father, Ansel, the affair. Furious with the city’s archbishop for his corruption. And enraged by Galadriel’s usurping of her mother’s place.  At Ansel’s commands they will leave the city she loves. But Ansel, furious at Adelaide’s disappearance the night before, has little sympathy for her.
Passing clouds of smoke roll through Hay Market. By now, the flames smolder, lapping at the blackened, brittle skeleton of Cologne’s famous cathedral. Soon, nothing but cinders will be left of her. May the flakes of ash roll past the glass windows of our overreaching archbishop’s palace, so he can see them for what I hope they are: the remnants of his power flitting away like snowflakes on a frigid gust.
Father and I wait in his harlot’s halted carriage in front of the White Stag, only a few blocks from the cathedral’s remains. I hold my sleeve to my nose to keep the ashes from my throat and close the shutters to keep the smoke from slithering in, but that confines the noxious cloud. Father shoves open the shutters, his deep–set eyes narrow at me.
How long will it take him to forgive me?
Truly, it is he who should seek forgiveness, not I.

Sneaking out of my room worried him, and finding me in Ivo’s arms enraged him. But I did not betray him. Not like he betrayed Mama and me. The way I found Father and Galadriel, my mother’s cousin, ten days ago is etched on the back of my eyelids.



Passing clouds of smoke roll through Hay Market. By now, the flames smolder, lapping at the blackened, brittle skeleton of Cologne's famous cathedral. Soon, nothing but cinders will be left of her. May the flakes of ash roll past the glass windows of our overreaching archbishop's palace, so he can see them for what I hope they are: the remnants of his power flitting away like snowflakes on a frigid dust. 

But it isn't really murder, is it? I didn't' really know what was in that mug, so it couldn't be murder. Besides, if she intended to poison me, and in turn I accidentally poisoned her, she'd by getting what she deserved. Really I would be defending myself, and Father, from a mad woman. 

This is another win for author Andrea Cefalo! She has taken the fairy tale Cinderella in this second installment and weaved in her well done changes with exciting details and well developed characters. 

We start off right where we left off, with Adelaide and her father leaving Colgne. Adelaide is trying everything she can to change her father's mind because she thinks this is the worst possible thing that her father can do. Imagine your mother dying and only one month later your father is involved with another woman. You'd be just as irate as Adelaide is. But alas, it doesn't matter the three end up leaving to go to Galadriel's home. 

This fairy tale story is entertaining, well thought out and worth a read. I found myself staying up extra late to read "just one more chapter." You know how that goes if you are a reader like myself. I just love this authors work. I am holding my breath for the next novel in this magnificent series. 

Will Adelaide be able to see her love Ivo again any time soon? Not if Galadriel gets her way. She is out to mess up Adelaide's life and it seems things just keep getting worse and worse for this poor little girl. The bright spot is that she has a few happy moments once she is in Galadriel's house but are they enough to keep her there or will she disrespect her father and run away? 

Such a fast paced and fun read, this should be on the top of your to be read pile. Of course,only after you read book one in this amazing series.


Take the The Countess' Captive Playbuzz Quiz


 

About the Author01_Andrea Cefalo_Author

Andrea Cefalo is an award-winning author and blogger on Medieval Europe. The next three novels in The Fairytale Keeper series will debut in 2015 and 2016. She resides in Greenville, South Carolina with her husband and their two border collies. For more information please visit Andrea Cefalo's website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

The Countess' Captive Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, March 23 Review at Library Educated Review at A Chick Who Reads Tuesday, March 24 Guest Post at What Is That Book About Spotlight at A Literary Vacation Wednesday, March 25 Review at Back Porchervations Spotlight at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers Thursday, March 26 Review at Cheryl's Book Nook Friday, March 27 Review at Bibliotica Review at With Her Nose Stuck in a Book Saturday, March 28 Spotlight at Romantic Historical Fiction Lovers Monday, March 30 Review at 100 Pages a Day - Stephanie's Book Reviews Tuesday, March 31 Review at Bookish Wednesday, April 1 Review at Shelf Full of Books Thursday, April 2 Guest Post at The Lit Bitch Friday, April 3 Spotlight at Caroline Wilson Writes Monday, April 6 Review at A Bibliotaph's Reviews Tuesday, April 7 Review at History From a Woman's Perspective Friday, April 10 Review at Boom Baby Reviews Monday, April 13 Review at Brooke Blogs Tuesday, April 14 Review at A Leisure Moment Wednesday, April 15 Review at Oh, For the Hook of a Book Thursday, April 16 Spotlight at Books and Benches Friday, April 17 Review at A Book Drunkard

Giveaway

To enter to win a Fairy tale Keeper Clutch Purse & $25 Amazon Gift Card please complete the giveaway form below. Clutch Purse Giveaway * Giveaway is open to US residents only. * Giveaway ends at 11:59pm on April 17th. * You must be 18 or older to enter. * Only one entry per household. * All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion. * Winner will be chosen via GLEAM on April 18th and notified via email. Winner have 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen. * Please email Amy @ hfvirtualbooktours@gmail.com with any questions. The Countess' Captive  photo d510c0be-0751-408d-92cc-d955605f8222.png

I'll Give You the Sun Read Along: 2nd Discussion


Hi guys! Welcome to the 2nd discussion for our January Read Along: I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson! Huge thank you to everyone who joined us and read the first half of the book on time to meet up with us and discuss them (or rather swoon over them) together!

About the Book


I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
Series: Standalone
Published: September 11, 2014 by Dial
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, LGBT
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound
A brilliant, luminous story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah's story to tell. The later years are Jude's. What the twins don't realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant novel from the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.

Discussion Questions

1) Did this novel pan out as you had expected? Are you a fan of the happily ever after or would you have preferred something different?

2) Now that you have finished I'll Give You the Sun, do you think it was work the hype?

3) Will you be reading more from Jandy Nelson?

4) While Noah and Jude are our main characters, we meet a nice variety of secondary characters? Out of this bunch, who is your favorite?

5) Did Jandy's narration decision (two story lines and two different times in these characters lives) add more to your reading experience or did it make it more difficult for you to get into the story?

Please leave your answers in the comment section below and don't forget to respond to other comments so we can have an amazing discussion! We'll be checking in and responding as well  :)

Our Favorite Quotes
"Sometimes you know things, know things very deeply, only to realize you don't know a damn thing."
She gets up, walks over to me, puts her hand under my chin, and lifts my face so I'm forced into the earnest of her eyes. "Listen to me. It takes a lot of course to be true to yourself, true to your heart. You always have been very brave that way and I pray you always will be. It's your responsibility, Noah. Remember that."
So we grapple with the mysteries, each in our own way.



Never too late to join!

And remember, it's never to late to sign up for 2015 TBR Pile Reading Challenge. While sign-ups are now closed, you'll be able to sign up again when Debbie posts her March - April wrap up on April 25!

Also, check back tomorrow to vote for May's Read Along!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Backlog Reviews: The Friday Society, Cress, and The Body Finder

Over the past couple months I've noticed that every few books, despite my feelings toward them, get pushed farther and father back in terms of writing a review - and the farther back from the read date they get pushed back, my notes make less and less sense.

I don't know why it happens, but it does. Maybe I have too much to say and don't know how to pick out the important things or maybe I don't have enough to say. Or maybe the laziness in me just wins out. Who knows.

So without further ado . . . A few of these backlogged reviews  :)


Title: The Friday Society
Author: Adrienne Kress
Series: Standalone
Format: ARC Paperback - 437 pages
Published By: Dial on December 6, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Science Fiction
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon Barnes & Noble IndieBound
An action-packed tale of gowns, guys, guns –and the heroines who use them all

Set in turn of the century London, The Friday Society follows the stories of three very intelligent and talented young women, all of whom are assistants to powerful men: Cora, lab assistant; Michiko, Japanese fight assistant; and Nellie, magician's assistant. The three young women's lives become inexorably intertwined after a chance meeting at a ball that ends with the discovery of a murdered mystery man.

It's up to these three, in their own charming but bold way, to solve the murder–and the crimes they believe may be connected to it–without calling too much attention to themselves.

Set in the past but with a modern irreverent flare, this Steampunk whodunit introduces three unforgettable and very ladylike–well, relatively ladylike–heroines poised for more dangerous adventures.


The Friday Society is such a fun read. These three woman who have nothing in common, other than they're all kick ass, manage to come together in the face of a murder. Solving it, not committing it. The writing is witty, the mystery wonderfully done (and shocking), and characters delightful. While it is a long book, it doesn't read like one. 

I guarantee you'll find something of yourself in one of these three woman. Whether it's Cora's thirst of knowledge, Michiko's loyalty and dedication, or Nellie's soft romantic heart and love of all things shiny. These three young women are strong and smart in a period of history where they were meant to just be pretty faces.

The Friday Society is an amusing and cleverly written novel and I know you'll have a hard time picking a favorite among these three ladies.



Title: Cress
Author: Marissa Meyer
Series: The Lunar Chronicles #3
Format: Hardcover - 350 pages
Published By: Feiwel & Friends on February 4, 2014
Genre: Young Adult, Retelling, Science Fiction
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon Barnes & Noble IndieBound
Rapunzel’s tower is a satellite. She can’t let down her hair—or her guard.

In this third book in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.

Their best hope lies with Cress, who has been trapped on a satellite since childhood with only her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker—unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing stop her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only ones who can.


Oh things are happening. So many thing are happening. I cannot tell you how much I enjoy Cress. Marissa is seriously amazing at writing and weaving together stories and characters and just making you cry out for more! I can honestly say that I enjoyed Cress more than Cinder or Scarlet - which is really saying something because I can't say enough good things about those two.

There is so much tension in this book - especially because everybody gets separated and now it's become a mission to reunite and stay alive. Marissa pushes her characters to the limit in this book and just when you think they can't take anymore . . . I just have so much love for this series and I cannot wait until I get my hands on Fairest, not to mention Winter!




Title: The Body Finder
Author: Kimberly Derting
Series: The Body Finder 1
Format: Paperback - 329 pages
Published By: HarperCollins on March 6, 2010
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon Barnes & Noble IndieBound
A gripping tale of a girl with a morbid ability that could lead her to a killer . . . and the boy who would never let anything happen to her.

Sixteen-year-old Violet Ambrose is grappling with two major issues: Jay Heaton and her unusual so-called gift. While her confusing feelings for her best friend are new, she has been able to sense dead bodies—or at least those that have been murdered—and the imprints that attach to their killers since she was a little girl. Violet has never considered her ability useful, but now that a serial killer has begun terrorizing her small town she realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.

Fiercely protective of her, Jay agrees to help Violet search for the murderer. But even as she's falling in love, Violet is getting closer to discovering a killer . . . and becoming his prey herself.


I simply enjoyed The Body Finder! I love the character of Violet - she is one of the characters who anger you because they're making stupid decisions, but at the same time you try not to fault them because they're trying to help. The first two thirds of the book was mostly getting to know these characters and their dynamics, with the murders taking a backseat. It isn't until Violet becomes a target (not a spoiler, it's in the synopsis!) that things really start to get tense. That last third is so gripping and nerve wracking that it makes up for the slower bits of the first parts. The chapters told from the killer's perspective also really add to the tension and mystery of this novel. Best part - I was completely taken by surprise as to the killer's identity!




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