Thursday, 31 October 2013

Review: Crash into You by Katie McGarry

Title: Crash into You (Pushing the Limits #3)
Author: Katie McGarry
Release date: November 26th 2013
Publisher: Harlequin TEEN
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Format: eARC
Pages: 468
Source: NetGalley

The girl with straight As, designer clothes and the perfect life-that's who people expect Rachel Young to be. So the private-school junior keeps secrets from her wealthy parents and overbearing brothers...and she's just added two more to the list. One involves racing strangers down dark country roads in her Mustang GT. The other? Seventeen-year-old Isaiah Walker-a guy she has no business even talking to. But when the foster kid with the tattoos and intense gray eyes comes to her rescue, she can't get him out of her mind.

Isaiah has secrets, too. About where he lives, and how he really feels about Rachel. The last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a rich girl who wants to slum it on the south side for kicks-no matter how angelic she might look.

But when their shared love of street racing puts both their lives in jeopardy, they have six weeks to come up with a way out. Six weeks to discover just how far they'll go to save each other.

I just finished this book and my feelings are still all over the place. Crash into You is definitely my favourite of the series so far! Isaiah has always intrigued me, so of course I adored him in this book. Especially since we see a different side of him. The sparks that ignite between him and Rachel are evident from the beginning, and their developing relationship was amazing to watch.

Isaiah is still hurting from the last time he spoke to Beth, and now Noah's in college and Isaiah's still stuck where he is. He still lives with Noah, though. But when he needs rent money, he resorts to illegal street racing, which is where he sees and rescues Rachel. Rachel's existence centres around one person - her mom. She's essentially her dead sister's replacement, and she hates that. Rachel loves cars, but has to hide it from her family that expects her to follow in her sister Colleen's footsteps. But she rebels. And it brings her a lot of trouble, but also brings her right to Isaiah.

I loved Isaiah so much in this book! Though Noah is still my favourite, Isaiah is a close second. It amazes me that he's so tough on the outside but has such a kind and loyal heart. His piercings and tattoos are part of him, and I love that, but they hide what's within. Something Rachel finds out soon enough, and of course she can't help but fall for him. Isaiah's as messed up as Noah and Beth were, but there's a difference. Noah had his younger brothers, and Beth had her uncle. While Isaiah's alone, except for his mother who just got out of jail. I really empathized with him, and it's so great that Rachel sees the real him and loves him for it. We also get to see Isaiah's protective side, and man is it strong! He'd do anything to keep Rachel safe, and the intensity of his feelings for her shocked even me. I think that Isaiah just needs to take care of someone and protect them, and Beth just wasn't that girl. But he knows that Rachel is, and his love and concern for her is so admirable.

I found that I really connected with Rachel throughout the book, despite my total lack of knowledge about cars! Rachel has four older brothers, all of whom are really overprotective. Rachel's suffered from panic attacks that have landed her in the hospital before, and her family doesn't want to lose the only daughter they have left. It's explicitly stated that Rachel is Colleen's replacement, and I feel so much anger on her behalf. The song Numb by Linkin Park really describes her situation with her mom and Colleen, so listen to that when you read this! Rachel just wants to embrace who she is and her love of cars, but she's afraid of disappointing her family. I was so glad when Isaiah found her and she found someone she could talk to about cars, since they both share the same love. I admire Rachel's inner strength and her desire for independence. She doesn't like being seen as weak and needed to be protected. And her determination is so strong.

I have really conflicted feelings about Rachel's dysfunctional family. I pretty much despise her parents, and at times her brothers too. No one understands her. Her whole family will do whatever it takes to keep her mom happy, disregarding everything else. I get that her brothers are protective of her, but sometimes they went a bit overboard. I really do like Ethan and West, though. Ethan is an awesome twin brother, and he makes me wish I had one too. Though he does treat Rachel as weak and fragile sometimes, I like the way he always looks out for her. West is pretty awesome too, with his humour and baseball cap. Even though he bugged me at times, it's obvious how much he loves his sister. And I'm definitely looking forward to his story in Take Me On!

Crash into You is definitely more dangerous than its predecessors. It's more intense, and the deadline Isaiah and Rachel have makes the book even more riveting. I loved the drag racing in the book, since I've never read anything like it before. Katie's clearly done her research on cars and racing! I can imagine the adrenaline rush Rachel and Isaiah get from racing, and it seems amazing. 

Another thing I adored about this book - we get to see so many beloved characters from the series in it! Noah and Echo are ever-present and always there for Isaiah. He and Noah are inseparable, and their bond goes so deep. I also liked seeing Beth again, and I'm glad that she and Isaiah talk things out. We also get to see Ryan for a bit, and what I didn't expect is that Logan plays quite a prominent role in the book. I loved him in Dare You To, and we get to know more about him in this one. I must say there's more to him than I thought, and it was nice to see him and Isaiah getting along.

I realize that my reviews of this series are always insanely long, but that's because I have so much to say! I couldn't take my eyes off the pages. Every race, every kiss had me glued to this book. The race towards the end had my heart in my mouth and I had to keep from skimming ahead to find out what happens. There was also a point where I was scared to death, but I won't say anything more than this - there are a lot of close shaves throughout the novel. Too close. But you'll be glad to know that Isaiah does get his happily-ever-after, and that's all I wanted. Now for the torturous wait until Take Me On comes out!

*Thank you to Harlequin TEEN for providing me with an ARC for review*

Rating: 5/5

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Cover Reveal: All the Pretty Lies by M. Leighton

ALL THE PRETTY LIES by M. Leighton has a cover and we get to share it with you today! Check out how pretty it is and then look below to read all about the title and M. Leighton.



Isn't it gorgeous?!? ALL THE PRETTY LIES is a New Adult Contemporary Romance filled with heat, lies, and romance. It is scheduled to be released November 12, 2013.

Here's the official blurb - 
All the Pretty Lies
“Live, no regrets”
Her…

Sloane Locke has led a sheltered life.  However, with a history like hers, she can understand why her brothers and her father want so much to protect her.  She has gone along with it for twenty long years, but those days are over.  For the girl who never makes promises, Sloane has made a pact with herself that things will change on her twenty-first birthday.  So when the clock strikes midnight, Sloane strikes out to spread her wings and break a few rules.

Him…

In addition to inking skin, Hemi Spencer possesses many talents. Controlling himself has never been one of them.  It’s never had to be.  He’s lived a life of indulgence for as long as he can remember.  Right up until tragedy struck.  Now, he’s nothing but controlled. He’s a man on a mission, one who will let nothing and no one stand in his way. 

Them…

Nothing in their lives could’ve prepared Sloane and Hemi for what they’d find in each other—distraction and obsession, love and possession.  But the one thing they can’t find is a future.  Neither one has been totally honest. And they’ll soon learn that the devil is in the details.  In the details and in the lies.

How far will two people go to live in the now when the now is all they’ve got?


Release date: November 12th 2013
Publisher: Self-published



About the author:


M. Leighton is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Wild Ones and The Bad Boys romance trilogies.  She is a native of Ohio, relocated to the warmer climates of the South, where she lets her mind wander to romantic settings with sexy Southern guys much like the one she married and the ones you'll find in her latest books.  When her thoughts aren't roaming in that direction, she'll be riding horses, swimming in ponds and experiencing life on a ranch, all without leaving the cozy comfort of her office.  

Find M. Leighton on:






Book Blitz: Unbreathable by Hafsah Laziaf - Character Profiles, Excerpt & Giveaway!


Hey guys! I'm so excited to be taking part in the Unbreathable book blitz. I absolutely loved this book, and I think everyone needs to read this ASAP.
If you want, you can check out my review here!

Title: Unbreathable (Unbreathable #1)
Author: Hafsah Laziaf
Release date: October 29th 2013
Publisher: Self-published
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
Purchase links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks


One hundred and fifty years ago, Earth was destroyed, and the remaining humans fled to the dusty red planet of Jutaire, where the only oxygen is manufactured, food is scarce, and death strikes often.

When Lissa's father discovers Earth still exists, she accidentally inhales the toxic air of Jutaire, and in one breath, discovers she isn't quite human.

Her father hangs for his discovery, and Lissa knows the Chancellors will come for her, for she saw the Earth that night too. With nothing to lose, she sets out to expose the truth. It isn't long before she meets Julian, a beautiful boy who can breathe the toxic air like she can - and shows her that the Jute, the original inhabitants of the planet, are more tangled in their lives than she knows.

But the Chancellors are only pawns in a greater game - one where the Jute control everything. Worse, the Jute plan to leave Jutaire for Earth, but to get there, they need her. And they'll stop at nothing until Lissa is in their clutches, even if they kill every human in the process.

The race for Earth has begun.


Book Trailer




Character Profiles



Name: Lissa
Age: 17
Height: 5’ 6”
Lung Type: Can breathe oxygen and Jutaire’s air without consequence
Inspired by: The girls who feel insubstantial but are not
Likes: Reading, learning new things, Earth, the stars, the color blue, Julian
Dislikes: Chancellor Kole, too much noise, attention

When Unbreathable begins, Lissa feels like she is nothing. She suddenly discovers she isn’t human, her father—the only person she knew—dies, taking with him her only chance at answers. As the story moves on, she’s more important - needed for something other than who she is. But this hardship helps her find out exactly who she is, and that she’s never alone, no matter how it seems.






Name: Julian
Age: 20
Height: 5’ 11”
Lung Type: Can breathe Jutaire’s air without consequence - too much oxygen deems dangerous
Inspired by: Perfection?
Likes: Drawing, Earth, his mother, the color blue, Lissa
Dislikes: Power, Queen Rhea, Rowan, Gage

Since the death of his mother, all Julian has wanted is to join her. His grief from all that he has lost has led him to hurt himself. He’s broken in ways he doesn’t think can be fixed, and sees the world through a single lens, until it’s shattered by a few words Lissa says before thinking. He’s soft-hearted, cares for everyone but himself, and in the end, it nearly costs him his life.



Name: Slate
Age: 34
Height: 5’ 10”
Lung Type: Can only breathe oxygen - full human
Inspired by: The opposite of what soldiers are perceived to be on Jutaire
Likes: Earth, peace, fighting, fresh food
Dislikes: Gage, Chancellor Willem, being a tool

Slate’s life is dedicated to serving the humans of Jutaire. As a soldier, he has pledged to do whatever it takes to keep the humans safe, until the ties of his blood pushes him to murder his own brother, striking an irreversible avalanche. When he discovers he was used by the woman he once loved, he doesn’t break down, because it gave him something better, but he is still grieved by the life he never got to live with a certain person.




Name: Rowan
Age: 20
Height: 6’
Lung Type: Can only breathe the toxic air of Jutaire - full Jute
Inspired by: The Darkling (Shadow & Bone)
Likes: Power, attention, Lissa, Julian - even if he won’t admit it
Dislikes: Humans, Queen Rhea, anyone who stands in his way

Unlike Julian, Rowan’s grief has led him to hurt others and take revenge. The lines between good and evil are nonexistent in his eyes. As Julian’s half-brother, and twin in appearance, Rowan and Julian have identical needs, though their methods of acquiring them aren’t as similar. Rowan’s desire for power and the need to be understood for who he is has blinded him to what is good and inclined him towards evil.




Excerpt




 If Julian notices my confusion, he doesn’t let on. In fact, he swiftly switches topic. “Did you really see the Earth?”


“Yes.” The word flies free from my lips. The outburst between Julian and Slate disappears from my mind. I’m light-headed, filled with a giddy happiness, at the thought of having another person to trust, despite the tendrils of warning fear.


“What’s it like?” For a moment, I think he's asking about trust. But when I meet his eyes, I know. Only one thing in our dwindling world can lighten and brighten a person's eyes to full awe.


“Earth?” I ask anyway. He nods and excitement builds in my chest. I've never spoken to anyone about Earth. It’s a secret that could take me straight to the gallows. But right now, I don’t care. “It really is green and blue and white, but different. Alive, almost.”


His eyes light up and I want to grab his hand and push away the sun, entice the moon into the sky so I can show him Earth. But I don’t have a scope. I don't have the courage to reach for his hand.


 “It’s a perfect round thing floating in a universe of darkness. When you've heard all your life that it doesn't exist, that it isn't real, seeing it for the first time shatters everything else. Everything you thought you knew is a lie.”


“Seeing it in the sky for barely a heartbeat is all you need. Nothing else matters, you know?”


My question echoes in awkward silence. I finger the hem of my shirt and when I meet his eyes, he's staring at me with an expression I can't place. His eyes are a mixture of dark and light and I can't bring myself to look away.


Heat creeps up my cheeks. With a jolt, I realize I'm sitting alone in a room, too close to a boy.


“What?” My voice is barely a whisper.


“Nothing.” He shakes his head. His voice is even softer, close to my whisper. Despite his answer, I can see the words waiting to be said.


“It’s so many millions of miles away”—he pauses and searches my face—“and look what it’s done to you.”


He's right. I can feel it, like a beacon of light inside me, spreading all the way to the tips of my fingers. Even before I saw the Earth, I felt it.


Only Earth could do that to me. At least, that’s what I thought when I saw it that night. But when he looks at me, I think… I think I feel it too. When he speaks, he seems to understand. I’ve been isolated for seventeen years, knowing no one but Father, who knew me all my life, who never truly understood me. Julian has known me for less than a day and he knows. I'm a person in his eyes. Not a shadow who became a criminal’s daughter.

About the author:


Hafsah Laziaf was born on the east coast on a hot summer day in 1993, raised on the west coast and is now stuck in the middle – in Texas – with more books than she can read. She’s the designer behind IceyDesigns and the blogger behind IceyBooks.



UNBREATHABLE is her debut novel.


Find Hafsah on:




Giveaway!




Waiting on Wednesday #44: Frozen

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine, which spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

My pick for this week's WoW is...



Frozen by Erin Bowman

Title: Frozen (Taken #2)
Author: Erin Bowman
Release date: April 15th 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian

The Heists were only the beginning.

Gray Weathersby escaped from the primitive town of Claysoot expecting to find answers, but what he discovered shook him to the core: A ruthless dictator with absolute power. An army of young soldiers blinded by lies. And a growing rebellion determined to fight back.

Now Gray has joined a team of rebels on a harsh, icy journey in search of allies who can help them set things right. But in a world built on lies, Gray must constantly question whether any ally—or enemy—is truly what they seem…



Taken was one of my favourite dystopian debuts of 2013, so of course I'm really excited for its sequel! I have no doubt that this will be as captivating as the first one, and I can't wait to see more of Gray and Bree. (Yes, Bree, not Emma. I'm Team Bree all the way!)


Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Sentinel Blog Tour: Reminiscing about Pure, Mini Interview & Giveaway!


Hey guys! Welcome to my stop on the Sentinel blog tour. I'm crazy excited to be a part of this walk down memory lane for the Covenant series by Jennifer L. Armentrout! Thank you to Valerie @ Stuck in Books for organizing this amazing tour :) 
You can check out the rest of the stops here.

Since my stop is all about Pure, the second book in the series, here's some info on it plus some of my favourite quotes from the book. And don't forget to check out the mini interview with JLA and her characters!

About PURE:


Title: Pure (Covenant #2)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release date: April 3rd 2012
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Genre: Young Adult Mythology
Purchase links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

There is need. And then there is Fate.
Being destined to become some kind of supernatural electrical outlet isn't exactly awesome--especially when Alexandria's "other half" is everywhere she goes. Seth's in her training room, outside her classes, and keeps showing up in her bedroom--so not cool. Their connection does have some benefits, like staving off her nightmares of the tragic showdown with her mother, but it has no effect on what Alex feels for the forbidden, pure-blooded Aiden. Or what he will do--and sacrifice--for her. When daimons infiltrate the Covenants and attack students, the gods send furies--lesser gods determined to eradicate any threat to the Covenants and to the gods, and that includes the Apollyon--and Alex. And if that and hordes of aether-sucking monsters didn't blow bad enough, a mysterious threat seems willing to do anything to neutralize Seth, even if that means forcing Alex into servitude--or killing her. When the gods are involved, some decisions can never, ever be undone.



Favourite Quotes




“Ever since I’ve met you, I’ve wanted to break every rule.”
— Aiden

“You’ll become the center of someone’s world one day. And he’ll be the luckiest son of a bitch on this earth.”
— Aiden

"I told you before I’d never let anything happen to you. I meant it.”
— Aiden

I guess there were two types of people in the world, those who sat around a fire, staring into the flames, and those who started the fire.
Seth and I started the fire, and then we danced around it.

“Don’t be jealous. You’re my only cuddle bunny.” 
— Seth

“You’re a bit crazy. You throw apples in people’s faces when you’re angry. You go off half-cocked half the time. It entertains me to no end. So if you are irrational, I hope you stay that way. I love it.”
— Seth

“Everything changed the moment you were born.”
— Seth


Mini interview about Pure


For JLA - Pure has been called Seth's book. Did fans' reactions to Seth surprise you?

I wasn't really surprised by the reaction to Pure because I knew that the book focused more on Seth than Aiden.

For Alex - Knowing what you know about Leon, do you think there was more to him being the one to find you in the labyrinth?

Oh, I'm sure there was more to it.

For Aiden - By far, the zoo was the best scene in Pure. What did you enjoy most about being at the zoo with Alex?

I loved knowing that I was doing something for her that made her happy.

For Seth - That whole sleeping issue that you and Alex have in Pure, did you realize what was up or did you just go with it?

I would've just gone with it. But, truth? I knew what was up.


About SENTINEL:

Title: Sentinel (Covenant #5)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release date: November 2nd 2013
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Genre: Young Adult Mythology




It's a beautiful day for a war.

As the mortal world slowly slips into chaos of the godly kind, Alexandria Andros must overcome a stunning defeat that has left her shaken and in doubt of their ability to end this war once and for all.

And with all the obstacles between Alex and her happily-ever-after with the swoonworthy Aiden St. Delphi, they must now trust a deadly foe as they travel deep into the Underworld to release one of the most dangerous gods of all time.

In the stunning, action-packed climax to the bestselling Covenant series, Alex must face a terrible choice: the destruction of everything and everyone she holds dear… or the end of herself.




About the author:

#1 New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Jennifer L. Armentrout Lives in West Virginia. All the rumors you heard about her state aren’t true. Well, mostly. When she's not hard at work writing, she spends her time, reading, working out, watching zombie movies, and pretending to write.
She is the author of the Covenant Series (Spencer Hill Press), the Lux Series (Entangled Teen), Don't Look Back (Disney/Hyperion) and a yet untitled novel (Disney/Hyperion), and new YA paranormal series with Harlequin Teen.
Jennifer also writes New Adult and Adult romance under the pen name J. Lynn. The Gamble Brothers Series (Tempting the Best Man/Tempting the Player) and Wait for You. Under her pen name, she is published with Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.

Find Jennifer on:





Giveaway!

Spencer Hill Press is giving away a $200 gift card to Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Book Depository or any indie bookstore of the winner's choice to not only stock up on amazing books, but to perhaps buy a Nook HD or Kindle Fire.