Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Waiting On Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted at Breaking The Spine. I've always loved this feature so I decided to join in.

Coffeehouse Angel by Suzanne Selfors

When Katrina spots a homeless guy sleeping in the alley behind her grandmother's coffee shop, she decides to leave him a cup of coffee, a bag of chocolate-covered coffee beans, and some pastries to tide him over. Little does she know that this random act of kindness is about to turn her life upside down. Because this adorable vagrant, Malcolm, is really a guardian angel on a break between missions. And he won't leave until he can reward Katrina's selflessness by fulfilling her deepest desire. Now if only she could decide what that might be . . .

This book intruiged me the moment I saw the cover. It may have been the delicious looking coffee that caught my attention, but it was the unique plotline that held it. Can't wait to read it!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway

California high school student Audrey Cuttler dumps self-involved Evan, the lead singer of a little band called The Do-Gooders. Evan writes, "Audrey, Wait!," a break-up song that's so good it rockets up the billboard charts. And Audrey is suddenly famous!

Now rabid fans are invading her school. People is running articles about her arm-warmers. The lead singer of the Lolitas wants her as his muse. (And the Internet is documenting her every move!) Audrey can't hang out with her best friend or get with her new crush without being mobbed by fans and paparazzi.

Take a wild ride with Audrey as she makes headlines, has outrageous amounts of fun, confronts her ex on MTV, and gets the chance to show the world who she really is. (

This book was FUN, plain and simple. I had a blast reading it! While the plot itself was highly unlikely, I didn't disbelieve the story for a second. Benway's writing made everything extremely believable, and I had such a great time following Audrey on her crazy adventures.

Audrey was a wonderful, loveable character. She was so funny, sarcastic, and smart. One of those characters who is just so full of life that her energy bursts from the pages.

I thought the presence of her BFF, Victoria, was an important one. Their friendship was very true to life and reminded me of my own best friend (I miss you Kandi!). I really enjoy it when a novel focuses not only on romantic relationships, but on those important and long lasting female friendships as well.

I also have to point out how awesome the use of actual songs as chapter titles was. Instant soundtrack! The musical aspect of the novel was phenomenal. It made me want to get dressed up and go to a rock concert, or at the very least turn up the volume on my stereo.

Audrey, Wait! is a great choice for anyone looking for a page turner that will entertain and keep you smiling until the last page.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Season by Sarah Maclean

Seventeen-year-old Lady Alexandra Stafford is strong-willed and sharp-tongued and not interested in marriage. Unfortunately, her mother is determined to marry her off to someone safe, respectable, wealthy, and almost certainly boring. But Alex is much more interested in adventure than romance. Somehow, between ball gown fittings, dances, and dinner parties, Alex, along with her two best friends, Ella and Vivi, manages to get entangled in her biggest scrape yet. It's a mystery brimming with espionage, murder, suspicion, and true love. Romance and danger fill the air, as this year's Season begins! (

I've mentioned before that the more I love a book, the harder it is for me to review it. Let me tell you, I am having an incredibly difficult time talking about The Season without gushing and stroking it's pretty cover, urging everyone to go out and buy it right now.

I am a huge fan of stories set in the Regency era. There is just something about the rustling of the spectacular gowns, the rumble of a crowded ballroom, the giggling of young ladies as they gossip over their teacups, and the picture of a delectable english man in a crisp white cravat. It just makes me want to get lost in that world with no immediate plans of returning.

The Season is an enticing, steadily moving page turner with believable and complex characters. Alex, Ella, and Vivi are strong female leads who are beautiful, intelligent, and determined. Their friendship was one of my favorite aspects of the story and I loved all of their interactions.

The story itself is a richly woven tale telling not only of friendship and romance but involving spies, treason, and murder. I read the book in 2 days, stopping only because I had to go to work. I just had to know what happened! I just love it when a book is that good, getting me to ask questions and look for clues - suspecting everyone!

Being the hopeless romantic that I am, my favorite part of the novel was the relationship between Alex and Gavin. It was beautiful and realistic. Watching their feelings grow from friendship to those of romance and passion was delightful, causing me to smile and sigh on more than one occasion. Every one of their interactions was fully entertaining. I just loved the witty banter between the two! Sparks flew between the two not only during a passionate embrace but in conversation as well.

Sarah Maclean is a pro at what she does. The cultural and politcal history of the era was obviously well researched, allowing the reader to feel like it very well could have been told by someone straight from the time period. Every page was rich with detail and imagery. Just gorgeous!

If you haven't read this book yet, do so very soon! I was looking forward to it for months and I was not disappointed. It was even better than I had hoped for, and I cannot wait for more from Sarah Maclean!

Friday, May 15, 2009

City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

To save her mother's life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters -- never mind that enter-ing the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.

As Clary uncovers more about her family's past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadow-hunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadow-hunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he's willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City -- whatever the cost?

Love is a mortal sin and the secrets of the past prove deadly as Clary and Jace face down Valentine in the final installment of the New York Times bestselling trilogy The Mortal Instruments.

WOW. Just wow, wow, wow! What a perfectly thrilling conclusion to an amazing trilogy. I had been waiting a long time for this one, with many unanswered questions and high expectations about how it all would end. I was not in the least bit disappointed. In fact, this book took my greatest hopes for a satisfying conclusion and exceeded them by far.

The characters that us readers have known and loved in the first two installments continue to grow and I felt so much for them while reading this book. So much was going on at all times but I never felt overwhelmed. Rather, I felt as if I was part of the exciting and crushing adventure that Clary and her friends were on. I cheered for them, I was on the edge of my seat, and my heart broke into a thousand pieces when tragedy struck our beloved characters. I believe I even shed a tear or two.

Fans of the series should feel satisfied at the trilogy's conclusion. Anyone who hasn't picked up Cassandra Clare's work yet should do so ASAP.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare

Warning: Summary contains spoilers for City of Bones, if you haven't yet read the first installment:

Clary Fray just wishes that her life would go back to normal. But what's normal when you're a demon-slaying Shadowhunter, your mother is in a magically induced coma, and you can suddenly see Downworlders like werewolves, vampires, and faeries? If Clary left the world of the Shadowhunters behind, it would mean more time with her best friend, Simon, who's becoming more than a friend. But the Shadowhunting world isn't ready to let her go -- especially her handsome, infuriating, newfound brother, Jace. And Clary's only chance to help her mother is to track down rogue Shadowhunter Valentine, who is probably insane, certainly evil -- and also her father.

To complicate matters, someone in New York City is murdering Downworlder children. Is Valentine behind the killings -- and if he is, what is he trying to do? When the second of the Mortal Instruments, the Soul-Sword, is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor arrives to investigate and zooms right in on Jace. How can Clary stop Valentine if Jace is willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?

In this breathtaking sequel to City of Bones, Cassandra Clare lures her readers back into the dark grip of New York City''s Downworld, where love is never safe and power becomes the deadliest temptation. (

The second book in the Mortal Instruments trilogy was a spectacular follow up to it's predecessor, City of Bones. I couldn't put it down! The plot continued to captivate me and I found myself reading speedily along, full of questions and desperate to have them answered. The action was fast paced - something was always happening and the main characters acted and reacted with such vibrant life, jumping off the page at me with such wonderful description.

I adored each of the characters more with every turn of the page. Despite their supernatural elements, the reader is able to relate to every character we are introduced to. Clary, Jace, Simon, Isabelle, and Alec will stay with me for a long time after completing the series. They're each so endearing and heroic in their own right, and after reading I couldn't seem to get them out of my head. I love that, when a book is so amazing that the characters seem to follow you around for days afterward. I know that might sound completely insane, but there you have it!

For me, this series has it all. Loveable characters, and those you love to hate. Gripping action, emotional angst, laugh out loud humor, and an intruiging mystery. Without a doubt, check this series out ASAP!