Tag Archives: new releases

New Releases: July 3rd

Finally after over a month off, I have a TWO new books to enjoy! July is loaded with five releases that I am eagerly anticipating.

Team Human by Justine Larbalestier, Sarah Rees Brennan

The Lowdown: This book is the first collaboration between YA authors Justine Larbalestier and Sarah Rees Brennan.

From Goodreads.com

Just because Mel lives in New Whitby, a city founded by vampires, doesn’t mean she knows any of the blood-drinking undead personally. They stay in their part of town; she says in hers. Until the day a vampire shows up at her high school. Worse yet, her best friend, Cathy, seems to be falling in love with him. It’s up to Mel to save Cathy from a mistake she might regret for all eternity!

On top of trying to help Cathy (whether she wants it or not), Mel is investigating a mysterious disappearance for another friend and discovering the attractions of a certain vampire wannabe. Combine all this with a cranky vampire cop, a number of unlikely romantic entanglements, and the occasional zombie, and soon Mel is hip-deep in an adventure that is equal parts hilarious and touching.

Why you should check it out: Whenever I look at the the YA books that are featured on the Goodreads giveaways, I see a ton of vampire novels. All of these stories tell the same tale of the girl falling in love with the mysterious vampire. These plots–always told from the point of view of the girl–discuss how interesting and amazing this dangerous creature is. The protagonist’s friends are seen as the enemy for trying to get between her and the object of her affection.

Are you sick of these books? Are you tired of reading about a young woman who needs her supernatural boyfriend to survive? I have a feeling Team Human is the answer to this phenomenon, because this book focuses on the friendship between the girls more than the boyfriend-girlfriend relationship. I really feel that this perspective will make for a stronger and more interesting characters. I am really curious to see the authors’ take on a vampire story. I feel as if Larbalestier and Brennan can create a vampire story that I will enjoy.

The excerpt I read confirmed my high hopes for this story. The female characters seem smart and witty. The vampire is enough of a parody to be enjoyable without inducing eye rolls. When combined with author Maureen Johnson’s review of the story–“If you love vampire books, this is the book for you–if you hate vampire books this is also the book for you”–I realized I needed to buy this book ASAP. After all, if Maureen Johnson says you should read a book, you probably should.

Not sold yet? Check out the first chapter here and promo video here.

The Next Best Thing by Jennifer Weiner

The Lowdown: This story follows the life of Ruth Saunders; a character Weiner previously introduced in a short story Swim. That tale details Saunders’ life as a freelance writer who edits the college essays of prospective students. Weiner’s latest novel discusses Ruth’s life as she prepares to rejoin the television world after an extended absence.

From Goodreads.com

Blockbuster #1 New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Weiner returns with an irresistible story about a young woman trying to make it in Hollywood…

At twenty-three, Ruth Saunders headed west with her seventy-year-old grandma in tow, hoping to be hired as a television writer. Four years later, she’s hit the jackpot when she gets The Call: the sitcom she wrote, The Next Best Thing, has gotten the green light, and Ruthie’s going to be the show-runner. But her dreams of Hollywood happiness are threatened by demanding actors, number-crunching executives, an unrequited crush on a boss, and her grandmother’s impending nuptials.

Set against the fascinating backdrop of Los Angeles show business culture, with an insider’s ear and eye for writer’s rooms, bad behavior backstage and set politics, Jennifer Weiner’s new novel is a rollicking ride on the Hollywood rollercoaster and a heartfelt story about what it’s like for a young woman to love, and lose, in the land where dreams come true.

Why you should check it out: I checked out the prequel to this story–Swim–because it was free. After reading that small tidbit of Ruth’s life, I needed to know more. The first chapter only made me more excited about this book. I knew immediately that this story was a must-read.

I have previously discussed my love for the way in which Weiner depicts relationships in her novels. Whenever I finish one of her books, I can guarantee that I feel an emotional connection to the woman I just read about. Even though I may not have had the same life experiences as them, I still felt as if I understood where they were coming from and what they went through.

The stories are more than just tear-jerking tales of female bonding. Weiner takes the humor she constantly displays on her twitter feed and interjects it into her books. I am also hoping that Weiner’s experience as a showrunner for the short-lived TV show State of Georgia will be lead to interesting anecdotes of working in Hollywood.

After finishing this post, you must go and check out the short story Swim. It is free and can be read on your computer. I know that after reading it you will add The Next Best Thing to your to-read list.

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New Releases: May 8th

I hope you enjoyed my first “New Releases” post! This week there are two releases that I have been eagerly awaiting that I am going to discuss.

Underworld (Abandon Trilogy #2) by Meg Cabot

The Lowdown: This book is the second in the Abandon YA Trilogy by author Meg Cabot

From Goodreads.com

Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back.

Seventeen-year-old Pierce Oliviera isn’t dead.

Not this time.

But she is being held against her will in the dim, twilit world between heaven and hell, where the spirits of the deceased wait before embarking upon their final journey.

Her captor, John Hayden, claims it’s for her own safety. Because not all the departed are dear. Some are so unhappy with where they ended up after leaving the Underworld, they’ve come back as Furies, intent on vengeance…on the one who sent them there and on the one whom he loves.

But while Pierce might be safe from the Furies in the Underworld, far worse dangers could be lurking for her there…and they might have more to do with its ruler than with his enemies.

And unless Pierce is careful, this time there’ll be no escape.

Why you should check it out: When I reviewed the first book in this trilogy–Abandon–I did not love it. I mentioned that I often found the book confusing due to its extensive use of of flashbacks to inform the reader of the main character’s back-story. A reread of the novel helped to clear up this confusion and left me with a more positive review of the book. As I am now familiar with the protagonist’s history, I doubt there will be much need for the author to travel back and forth in the narrative. This leaves me optimistic about the second book. I was also encouraged after reading the first two chapters on Cabot’s blog. (Note this link will contain spoilers for Abandon; the first book in the trilogy.) More importantly the author has released many of my favorite books and very rarely lets me down. I am choosing to be cautiously hopeful about this release and can’t wait to check it out.

City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments #5) by Cassandra Clare

The Lowdown: “COLS”–as it is often referred to by author Cassandra Clare–is the fifth book in the Mortal Instruments series. This is the second to last book in this YA hexalogy.

From Goodreads.com

The demon Lilith has been destroyed and Jace has been freed from her captivity. But when the Shadowhunters arrive to rescue him, they find only blood and broken glass. Not only is the boy Clary loves missing–but so is the boy she hates, Sebastian, the son of her father Valentine: a son determined to succeed where their father failed, and bring the Shadowhunters to their knees.

No magic the Clave can summon can locate either boy, but Jace cannot stay away—not from Clary. When they meet again Clary discovers the horror Lilith’s dying magic has wrought—Jace is no longer the boy she loved. He and Sebastian are now bound to each other, and Jace has become what he most feared: a true servant of Valentine’s evil. The Clave is determined to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. Will the Shadowhunters hesitate to kill one of their own?

Only a small band of Clary and Jace’s friends and family believe that Jace can still be saved — and that the fate of the Shadowhunters’ future may hinge on that salvation. They must defy the Clave and strike out on their own. Alec, Magnus, Simon and Isabelle must work together to save Jace: bargaining with the sinister Faerie Queen, contemplating deals with demons, and turning at last to the Iron Sisters, the reclusive and merciless weapons makers for the Shadowhunters, who tell them that no weapon on this earth can sever the bond between Sebastian and Jace. Their only chance of cutting Jace free is to challenge Heaven and Hell — a risk that could claim any, or all, of their lives.

And they must do it without Clary. For Clary has gone into the heart of darkness, to play a dangerous game utterly alone. The price of losing the game is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she even still trust him? Or is he truly lost? What price is too high to pay, even for love?

Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series.

Why you should check it out: If you have already read the first four books in this series, you are probably eager to get your hands on this one. The last installment ended on a HUGE cliffhanger, and I can’t wait to find out what happens next! If you have yet to read the series, I encourage you to check it out. The fast pacing makes for an addicting book that grabs your attention and won’t let you go. The alternate reality that Clare creates is so complex and interesting that you will tear through the pages to know what happens next.

Looking for an excerpt from this release? Check out this link here. Interested in checking out something from the first book? You can find a selection from the book here.

Books I Can Not Wait to Read in 2012

I love Tuesdays. Why? Not only do they signify that Monday is over, but they are also the day that publishers release new books. This means that almost every week this year I have awoken on Tuesday excited to get to the bookstore.

This excitement left with me with two problems. How do I keep track of all of these great releases, and how to I get the word out to others who may want to read them? My solution to the first problem was to create an Amazon.com Listmania List–Books I Can Not Wait to Read in 2012-to track publication dates. After thinking for a bit, I was able to solve the second problem. I realized I could use my blog to discuss the new releases for any given week. Each post could briefly cover what each book was about and then share why I was excited to read it.

I am hoping that these posts will help people find great new reads. Have a book that you are excited about? Let me know! I love finding new books as much as I love sharing my favorites with others.