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Showing posts from May, 2011

The FitzOsbornes in Exile

The FitzOsbornes in Exile is the second of the Montmaray Journals, the sequel to the YA historical A Brief History of Montmaray, by Michelle Cooper.

I would recommend not reading this review if you haven't yet read A Brief History of Montmaray. It'll contain inevitable spoilers for the first book, and I won't be having that! ;)

Instead, scroll down to Friday's review of A Brief History of Montmaray. Otherwise, let's see what is in store for our darling royal family next...

Sophie FitzOsborne and her family watched as German fighter planes attacked their tiny island kingdom of Montmaray in December of 1936. They were forced to leave their country, and barely made it out alive. Now they are living with their Aunt Charlotte, the Princess Royal who has been living in England for a long time and is fully entrenched in society.

It isn't hard to let the new clothes, luxurious accommodations, and dazzling balls and luncheons sweep Sophie's mind away to a happy place. …

A Brief History of Montmaray

A Brief History of Montmaray is a YA historical by Michelle Cooper.

Sophie FitzOsborne is a princess. She lives in a castle. But she wears hand-me-down dresses and the castle is kind of falling apart. And the small island kingdom she lives on is one that hardly anyone even knows about - Montmaray. She lives there with her younger, wild, tomboy sister Henry and her pretty, bookish, smart cousin Veronica. All of them princesses. The King stays in his room, raving and throwing things whenever he catches sight of anyone other than Rebecca, the slightly mad, obsessive housekeeper that worships him.

Toby, Sophie's older brother and the next in line to the throne, is away in England at school. He send Sophie a sixteenth birthday present - a journal. In it, she begins to write. It is 1936 and the cusp of many things. Things that may change her quiet, simple, odd life completely.

It's hard to give much more than that away! So, I'll take it from here with my observations. It doesn…

Thirteen Days to Midnight

Thirteen Days to Midnight is a YA thriller written by Patrick Carman.

Jacob just survived a car accident that killed the only foster parent he ever cared for. His friend Milo tries to pull him out of the dark place he's in and introduce him to the beautiful new girl that arrived while Jacob was out of school. Her name is Ophelia Jones, and she's daring and different. As a way to make Jacob feel better about his loss, Ophelia offers the first spot on her bright pink arm cast and Jacob struggles with trying to figure out something cool to write on it. He finally settles on, "You are indestructible."

It's what his foster dad said to him just seconds before his death.

Then weird stuff starts to happen. Ophelia has a deadly accident - but she doesn't die. In fact, not even her hands aren't torn from the gravel of the ground. She is spotless and completely unharmed. No matter how Jacob, Milo, and Ophelia try to figure it out, there is absolutely no way she should …

The Prince of Mist

The Prince of Mist is a YA horror novel written by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.

It's 1943 and the Carver family decide to move away from the dangers of the war in the city to a small, coastal town. They move into a beautiful, if dirty, home and immediately get to cleaning it - trying their best to make it their home.

Max isn't very happy about leaving his friends, but he saw how much his father felt he needed to move them all. But what his father didn't tell Max and his siblings right away is that this house has seen dark times. A young boy drowned and left his parents' shells of their former selves...

Curious and feeling like there is more to the story, Max begins to explore the grounds. He meets a boy named Roland that lives in the lighthouse with his grandfather and they become friends. Alicia, Max's older sister, finally starts to talk to him again - and a comfortable friendship develops between the three.

But as they dig through secrets, they find out about a cruel, mysteri…

Weekly Writing Contest!

Happy Saturday my lovelies! :)

It is that time again: an update on the most recent opportunity to win books from!

This week's Weekly Writing Contest is running in accordance with Melissa Marr's Darkest Mercy. It takes her Wicked Lovely series another step forward, this time sizzling with conflict. I don't have many more details on the book because I'm planning on getting a chance to read the series and don't want spoilers! Lol. But, it looks awesome! ;)

Your challenge is to write a short story or poem that involves conflict resolution. Now, I think that might be one of the toughest prompts, as it is kind of dry. So I want y'all to sparkle them with your imaginations and writing genius, okay?! For my details on how to win and where to submit go here.

Also, Josephine Angelini, the author of the YA Greek mythology retelling Starcrossed, will be paying a visit to Inkpop for a Live Chat on Wednesday, May 25th! Make sure to stop by and ask your Q's! Find…

Down a Dark Hall

Down a Dark Hall is a YA thriller by the oh-so-famous author Lois Duncan.

Kit's Mom and her new husband are ready to go on a trip through Europe for their honeymoon and Kit agreed to go to an exclusive boarding school in the meantime. Or at least she agreed to go when she thought her best friend would be coming too. But when Kit's best friend is denied a slot (something that is extremely weird to Kit, as her BFF is way smarter and tests better than her), Kit is rather sullen about it all.

But when Blackwood Hall comes into view - a huge, ancient, imposing mansion that for whatever reason sends shivers down her spine - Kit isn't just sullen, she's scared.

Yet Madame Duret is charming and has been written about in magazines, so what is there really to be afraid of? Sure, the place gives off an unpleasant vibe, but Kit wishes her Mom well and lets them leave her behind, despite the dread it causes.

But then Kit finds out there are only three other students - apparently many a…

Guest Blog with YA author Amanda Brice!

Amanda Brice is the author of the brand new YA mystery novel Codename: Dancer, in which she tries to bring back the old-school mystery flavor with some dance elements! Happily, we have the author visiting us today to tell us a bit more about her new book and why she decided to write it!

Let's all welcome Amanda Brice! Here's what she has to say:

I get asked a lot why I chose to write about a teenage dancer. After all, I’m a 30-something lawyer. What the heck do I know about this topic?

Well, once upon a time, I was one. A teenage dancer, I mean. I’m still a dancer (well, sorta…I danced all through college and now take a weekly adult ballet class).

And don’t get me wrong, I love the paranormal books, but I wanted to write about something I could actually relate to. I mean, I’ve never been bitten by a vampire or dated a werewolf.

Sure, I’ve never solved a mystery, but I used to play Clue like it was going out of style. And I started writing really epically bad Nancy Drew fanfic (sta…

Silver Smoke

Silver Smoke is a YA fantasy paranormal by Monica Leonelle.

Pilot and Brie van Rossum are still reeling from their mother's sudden, accidental death when they are sent to Honolulu to live with their estranged, famous musician father. Paparazzi seem to shadow their every move and Pilot does his best to keep his sister from sinking deeper into the depression that seems to be taking hold.

But one morning as Pilot drives Brie and his best friend Rykken to school, Brie is struck by a motorcyclist's resemblance to her mother and takes her first step toward a secret that changes everything. Because what is revealed is that there is a race of superbeings descended from archangels called the Hallows - and apparently she may be one of them. They throw everything she knows about her mother into a tailspin and sets her on a path that is full of danger, but perhaps an inevitable one.

All Pilot sees, though, is increasingly bizarre and worrisome behavior from his previously outgoing and happy… Challenge Update!

It's time for another Weekly Writing Challenge!

By the way, I would love for y'all to let me know if you've been entering these contests and/or winning!!!

Okay, so this week the challenge is coinciding with the release of Compulsion by Heidi Ayarbe. It's a new YA contemporary about a teenage boy with OCD. Your mission is to write a short story, poem or essay from a point of view other than your own, one completely different - such as an animal or the opposite gender.

As always, two commenters will be randomly selected to win Compulsion and three other Harper Teen books of their choice - and two writers will be chosen by Heidi Ayarbe herself to win the same prize and bragging rights. ;)

To find out more and to enter click here.

Have fun!!!

Thirteenth Child

Thirteenth Child is a YA fantasy by Patricia C. Wrede.

Numbers have great significance in Eff's frontier world of magic, an alternate version of our own American frontier days. That's why her twin brother Lan is admired and exalted as the seventh son of a seventh son - his power is stronger and more natural than anyone else's, not to mention rare. This is also why Eff is feared and terrorized by her cousins and neighbors - she is a thirteenth child. Also rare, and long believed to be evil and the bringer of bad luck and bad intentions to all around her. At as young as five, Eff is blamed for everything bad that happens in her uncle's life and hears how she never should have been allowed to live this long and doom everyone around her.

But Eff's parents don't hold with such talk, and when Eff's father is offered a professor job at a magic school he takes it to give his family a fresh start - despite the school being perilously close to the Great Barrier, a magi…

The Lucky Kind

The Lucky Kind is a YA contemporary fiction novel written by Alyssa B. Sheinmel.

Nick Brandt is ready to make his junior year in High School a memorable one. Instead of just gazing at his dream girl, Eden Reiss, from afar he is going to try and talk to her. He figures a girl as gorgeous and awesome as her is only gonna be single for so long, and he'd like to be the one to change that status.

Other than that, Nick's life is looking pretty good. He has kind, loving parents that he actually likes to talk to, a best friend named Stevie that is practically part of the family, and good grades poised to get him into a good college.

But then the phone rings.

It's a hesitant voice, nervous really. And he's asking for Nick's father by his full name - a name he never uses.

At first Nick shrugs off the strange call, figuring its a reluctant telemarketer. But then it happens again, and this time Nick's dad is home. When Nick hands off the call, he sees how his father's fac…

The Time-Traveling Fashionista

The Time-Traveling Fashionista is a middlegrade/YA novel by first time author Bianca Turetsky.

Seventh-grader Louise Lambert has always felt a bit out of place in the 21st century. All of her favorite movies are black and white, and she's obsessed with the clothes of different eras - finding today's culture and fashion to be boring and without passion. In fact, Louise has become a little fashionista, reading up on vintage and taking her newfound knowledge to scavenge thrift stores for special outfits.

Except for her longtime best friend Brooke, Louise doesn't really have friends. They don't get her "weird" way of dressing. But she doesn't mind all that much, because she'd rather meet a James Dean or an Audrey Hepburn than all the kids at her school.

When Louise receives an invitation to a vintage fashion sale, she jumps at the opportunity. And once arriving, Louise is blown away the absolutely beautiful pink gown she finds. The two odd owners of the sto…

Royal Wedding Contest!

It's that time again! New Weekly Writing Contest!

This time, in honor of the Royal Wedding, it is coinciding with Meg Cabot's The Princess Diaries! They want you to write a story or poem that imagines a royal coupling, marriage, or honeymoon! I'm sure many romantic creative minds already have ideas after watching Will and Kate last week, right? :)

Find all the details here, and as always there is the potential to win the book featured (The Princess Diaries) and three other Harper Teen books - both those who submit and those who comment have a chance!

Join me back here on Monday and have an awesome weekend!

The Girl in the Gatehouse

The Girl in the Gatehouse is an inspirational historical fiction romance set in Regency times and written by the Christy Award winning author Julie Klassen.

Mariah Aubrey is no longer wanted under the roof she's lived under her entire twenty-four years of life. A distant relative offers the abandoned gatehouse on her estate as a place for Mariah and her only companion - Miss Dixon, her former nanny. But when her relative dies not long after Mariah has begun to settle in comfortably, if quietly, the heir to the estate demands a rent for the gatehouse that is impossible with the small funds her father offered her reluctantly.

So, Mariah turns to a hobby she has always loved - writing. She finds she can support herself and Miss Dixon by publishing her novels, but she guards her anonymity carefully. Novel writing is not proper for ladies, and Mariah cannot afford any more scandal...

Matthew Bryant returns back to land after becoming a celebrated Captain during his term in the British Na…

The Dark and Hollow Places

The Dark and Hollow Places is the third and final book in the YA zombie apocalypse series Forest of Hands and Teeth, written by Carrie Ryan.

So, as all of you regular readers of the Bibliophile Support Group know - I adored The Forest of Hands and Teeth and was a bit disappointed with The Dead-Tossed Waves, the two books that came before The Dark and Hollow Places. Read the respective reviews here and here.

But I was ready to continue the story. A basic synopsis will follow, which I recommend you don't read unless you've already read the two previous books - otherwise you will be spoiled!!! And for those of you who have read the first two books, I won't be giving much detail at all - because like I've said before, if you're already a fan why spoil what's coming next, right?

Annah has been alone for a long time in the Dark City. She's been waiting for Elias to return since he left that terrible morning to join the Recruiters. Annah wonders if he knows how lawle…

Blood & Flowers

Blood & Flowers is a YA fantasy written by Penny Blubaugh.

Persia ran away from her broken home three years ago and was taken in by the Outlaw Puppet Troupe, a group of underground actors, puppeteers, mortals, and fey that have become her ragtag family. They perform clandestine plays, let their imaginations run wild, and Persia finds herself falling in love with one of the members, Nicholas.

But not everybody finds fey magic to be harmless. And not everybody is fond of it. Of course, there are some truly bad things that fey have brought to the mortal world from the realm of Faerie, such as potent drugs and drinks that can destroy lives. This has brought about a prejudice. A prejudice that a vindictive and cruel theater critic with a hidden agenda uses to threaten the Troupe's very freedom.

Bonding together, the group is forced to flee to Faerie. But Faerie is not just flowers and beauty. It has its own dangers, murderous creatures, and a longtime monarchy that may not want them t…